Another car journey (and a Talking Head)
A car journey taken by someone else, who also wrote about it, also yesterday, as did I.
The difference between the two accounts was marked: one a sweet, contemplative meditation on the beauty of the landscapes and the art of the audio book, the other (mine) a supercharged rant about everything, really. I can, I have, driven like the former writer, but these days that state seems like a different person to me. Every journey becomes an epic in my mind and that, I suppose, is where the trouble lies. For years, it has been a well-known fact that I have a tempestuous nature, something that has been oppressed, suppressed, medicated and subjugated, but here’s the thing, whatever is done to it: it won’t go away.
It will for a while which is fine, it leaves me to Get On, but sure enough eventually, like the many-headed Hydra, it rumbles into action leaving me trailing, dazed and confused, stumbling in its wake. It is not, of itself, a bad thing. It is the management of it that can be a full-time job. It is like keeping a unruly dog on a tight lead (I have an unruly dog and that is probably a better analogy than a Hydra, but I know some who would err towards the monster), you cannot let down your guard. I have learned, the hard way, do not loosen the leash. And then there is the place between waking and consciousness where you have to and then, oh boy, does it come out to play.
I sleep but only by necessity and by forcing myself to ignore the unruly one’s many calls to action. It whispers in my ear – do this, do that, not that, not this. See this, here this one, this is THE thing. Quick write notes, take this down, do not forget it, quick, quick, quick! Last night it became convinced that each building has a sound (actually, I think that’s one worth thinking about) and it became specifically concerned with The Shard in London and the vibrational sound that it might have. And then because it really is a Hydra, it became certain that there was a symphony of the the River Thames urbanscape waiting to be written, by me, at bedtime. It really does take some convincing that this is not the time, nor the place, and maybe not even the right person to be telling.
The trouble is that some of the things it comes up with are interesting and drag me along. This was how I discovered this piece by David Byrne, of Talking Heads. It’s a South Bank soundscape, taking in some of the things that were preoccupying me last night and some that weren’t: Southwark Cathedral organ, Spitalfields market, for example. He also has a project where he plays buildings; that’s not quite what my unruly beast had in mind, but I am going with it, for now.