New thoughts, new(ish) music, and a new blog post

Okay, this is to be my second post composed entirely on my cell phone’s memo app.  The previous one came out pretty well, I thought, and the rather laborious method of writing kept me from running off at the mouth too much, so to speak.  I’ve been typing on typewriters and word processors since I was about eleven years old, so I can type almost as fast as I can think (and sometimes faster, more’s the pity).  This is very useful for writing in general, but I sometimes get a bit carried away and have a hard time stopping.

As for what to write about this time, I think I will once again use a rather stream-of-consciousness approach, which should be legitimate, since a blog is a “web log” and a log doesn’t necessarily have to have a formal, specific structure.

Of course, I have whole lists of potential topics about which to write, and I skimmed through them before starting this post, but none of them grabbed my attention right now.  They can wait; they aren’t going anywhere.  The ones that are timeless, or at least have long-term topicality, will still be viable in the future; the ones that are not are probably just as well let lie.  Who knows, maybe they’ll come full circle eventually.

I do have one at least moderately interesting and specific thing to share, which I’ll also share in my main blog (if that’s really the right term for it).  I decided to go back to and sharpen up my song “Breaking Me Down” and am in the process of releasing it formally as a single.  It’s not up on Spotify or iTunes as of this writing, but it IS up on YouTube (and YouTube Music) already, so I am embedding it here.

As you can probably tell from the title and from the cover art, it’s not a Christmas song.  But it probably suits 2020 overall pretty well.  I didn’t know it when I wrote the earliest version of the words (and the tune) many years ago, but it’s a song about depression.  I didn’t know because I didn’t know that was what I was experiencing.  I just felt like crap.  I felt overwhelmed, I felt like a failure, I hated the world (at least some aspects of it), but most of all I hated myself.  Thus, the final two lines: “I break all mirrors, I can’t stand the sight / of everything that is breaking me down”.  Because, of course, what was mainly breaking me down was me.

So, if you need an antidote or at least a contrast to the occasionally forced and overdone cheeriness of the holiday season, take a listen.  (It’s actually not as bad as I’m making out with my tongue slightly in my cheek; it has a good beat, it’s decently paced, and you could even dance to it.)  I think it turned out well after I cleaned up and discarded a lot of schmutz that I had thrown into the music that had just ended up muddying and muddling the sound.  I also improved the percussion.  I feel embarrassed that I need to do most percussion electronically, but I simply don’t have any drums.  They are just too big, and though I love to beat rhythms, and am at least passably decent at it, I recognize myself as even less than an amateur.  I simply have no actual experience drumming.

Oh, well, life is hard.  But so is a candy cane, and those can be wonderful, at least in moderation.  And depression and dysthymia can be treated with at least some degree of success.  The fact that right now—the day after the shortest day of the year—I’m in pretty good spirits, demonstrates that treatability to me as clearly as almost anything can, since I tend not to do well in the darkening days, all else being equal.

I believe it was on a December 21st some years past that I played my one real, serious game of Russian Roulette.  Only one spin and one pull of the trigger, but it left me shaken and tearful and more confused and despondent than I was already.  I don’t recommend it.  As with many things, winning (or however you might characterize surviving) no matter how many times doesn’t mean anything against the fact that losing once (or however you might characterize not surviving) puts an end to all possible future games, of all kinds.  In this, it’s akin to playing in traffic or yanking on a tiger’s tail.  Getting away with it a thousand times doesn’t matter if you don’t survive the thousand and first.

Do please be as kind to yourself as you’re able.  If you need to indulge any darkness, at least you could (possibly) dance to my song.  The holidays can be hard, especially if things aren’t going too well for you, and this year has been worse than many.  But if nothing else, stubbornness is often a useful attribute.  And it can infuriate people who are worth infuriating.

I think that’s about enough consciousness streaming for now.  I do hope everyone out there has a nice time over the next week and a half.  And remember, the days are now getting longer, at least in the northern hemisphere.  And for those in the southern hemisphere, well…it’s summer, so enjoy it!

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