Friday, 14 April 2017

Would You Just... Chunder On?

One of those days today, not bad, not good, just another day on Earth. It was steady on the bar, and I spent the morning feeling stupid, awkward; Liam Straw would say a cool thing and I'd say a version of it but worse -- Oh, Robert, with your hands like nervous spaghetti -- and I'd go, Oh, Liam, with your... ears... like... a wooden spoon, but a lumpy one I don't know leave me alone man I'm tired. Or Mark singing along to the playlist and me singing along as well to fit in, please like me, everyone please like me -- but then I don't know the words and I get them wrong and Mark has walked off and I'm just humming out of key to myself wondering if I even like the song wondering who I even am.

Trudging along like this, feeling gumpy, until twenty-minute break with a sandwich all of my own sat by glorious self on city centre park bench, just me and my sandwich -- and but then here comes the local drunk, always sleeping in pub booths pissing himself, waking up and yelling at customers, threatening bar staff, sobbing that alcoholism is a terrible disease, he's lost his brother his wife why he even alive why even live? -- and it's sad, I know, but for literally seven years it's just been this, without change, and compassion has limits, and it's my break, and he's leering over me, over my sandwich, saying something incomprehensible about Ronnie O'Sullivan, and I stare out and think, well, that's that ruined.

And back on the bar it's busy, the wave is breaking, and we bop around grooving to the rhythm, helping each other, owning our sections, staying focused. We're a team. We're together.

But in the fortress of my self I'm chundering on with the same old mindlessness, same boring thoughts, blabalabalaba, what if he and does she think and I never will but even if though when wasn't how come if they but could... And on and on.

Except there is one single moment when I wake up. What happens is I realise I'm chundering, and this makes me really glum and frustrated, man I'm so mindless, always in my head chundering on I don't know anything it's so stupid what's even... And I realise I'm frustrated about my frustration, and I get frustrated about that, and I get really angry -- And then I think, Ohhh, OK, but... yeah. OK. Let the chunder chunder. Grumble grumble. Just watch the chatter. Watch the frustration. Ohhh...

And I look around me brightly, and would you just look at this world? All of it ending. All patterns of light. Is that right? Well, it's structures made of more structures down into infinity, and it's shapes of starlight crush-forged in suns and sailing here to play for a time at being tonic bottle, bar blade, dumb old Robbie-Bear, silly leaking sink. And look at these humans crowding around, look how they crave. What do they crave? No one knows. Can I help them. Mate, can I help you? Wow. Your eyes are it all, past guarded shame of iris down into empty forever...

And three or four I serve with love in my heart, awake to the sublime tragedy, and then someone orders drinks separately so I have to make three trips to the same place, like I can't remember three drinks, and he rudely demands lager in "normal" glass -- All right, mate, I'll put back this cubist hologram of a glass that you have to drink from upside down hanging from the ceiling that I was going to use, shall I? -- And look how he's talking to his wife? But look how she's talking to their kid, Jesus, and how long is left on this shift? And who is coming in? And why doesn't I wish that wouldn't it whether if but chunder chunder chunder.

And I'm unconscious again until I remember on the bus home and get frustrated and then try to be more mindful, but then I forget again, then I remember once at tea, then forget.

And I don't think there's a special trick, any shortcut. I don't think it leads to anything particularly. I just think that we can plod in routine and autopilot through the moments of our lives, or we can wake up and catch them. And if we do... well, we don't get anything really.

We just get those moments.

The moments of our lives. Here. Now. Passing.

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