July 15th, 2007

Rune 44


Lovely party yesterday. Despite napping a little Friday night, I wasn’t able to rouse myself sufficiently to attend the picnic during the day—Susan and Gavi went and said it was a lovley time. Was able to roll myself out of bed at more-or-less my usual time and head over for some of the Harriet Manor portion of the party. Susan was too pooped to pop, but Gavi came along.

Music broke out in the usual place shortly after I’d arrived and, after one rousing Kurt song, relocated to the Tiki sauna in the basement so the folks on the second floor could have some hope of getting some sleep.

The first time the circle came to me I had to pass—I wasn’t at all sure I’d be able to remember all the songchords or find the energy to get all the way through a song or, I dunno, something. I was feeling strange, out of phase, not entirely in true; you know, sort of at a 23° skew. Not 30°, 45°, 60°, 90°, or another of those regular, predictable angles that you can eventually figure out how to cope with, no. Something strange and funky. I reckon this may have been in part because my Ritalin prescription ran out early in the middle of the week and I hadn’t had the chance to refill it, in part because the management where I work have temporarily taken leave of their senses and I’m still reeling and off-balance from the shock of seeing what had been a very pleasant workplace regress to kindergarten at a military academy, in part because … well … who knows? Probably because I’m the kind of guy who finds himself in that sort of state more often than most people appear to.

I noticed Bonnie drinking a bottle of Raspberry-flavoured hard cider (wossbrand? Old Woodchuck or something?) and asked her if she could get me a bottle (despite the scary overtones of the possibly incipient Boonsfarming of the brand). She kindly made her way over to the camouflaged refrigerator in the corner and snagged me a bottle. I also had a toot of Chas’s wuskey. I figured that a little to drink could only make my state of mind weirder and that one of the possible directions it might then go would be to make it easier to think that I could actually play guitar and sing and thereby make music.

I was forlornly perusing my songlist in hopes of coming across a “fail safe” number—one I’d feel confident I could perhaps stumble through and perhaps even get the hang of by the end and finish well (since, after all, all’s well that ends well)—and hadn’t yet felt I’d found one when the circle got back to me. So …whattheheck … I launched into “Quinn the Eskimo.” Amazingly enough, all my ducks snapped immediately to attention and queued up as nice as you please, and “Quinn” rolled along not just sorta well but rather swimmingly. It felt good, it felt on, when I’d rush or lag it was the right amount and I’d still make the point, it felt … right. It sounded good to me and apparently sounded good to everyone else as well. It certainly didn’t hurt that the rest of the musicians and singers were at, or exceeding, their usual supportive best, but I think most of the difference was something internal rather than external.

And then I finished the song.

And immediately found myself back in front of the funhouse mirror; out wandering the wasteland. Which, again, was entirely internal. Every one made good, beautiful, interesting music by turns, and I should have found it entirely wonderful and engaging (and, in fact, did to some extent), but…

It went like that the whole evening. I’d be wandering out by the rings or in the belt or maybe even around Barsoom, Borderlands, or Ankh-Morpork and then the song’d come around to me and we’d nail it and all would be right with the world and then it would pass on and Rod Serling would step around the corner and talk to me…

Maybe I’d best get my Ritalin prescription filled today…