Saturday, December 15, 2007

It's only insomnia if you're actually trying to sleep.

You know what Yoda said about trying. I'm not trying.

Around 2am I started listening to Lundberg's podcast of Vandermeer's Appogiatura. Lundberg reads well. He even does voices. Not enough people do voices. I'd read an earlier version of the story- no, that's misleading; I'd bashed my nightshift-addled mind against an earlier version, and lying there listening with a not-insomnia-because-I'm-not-trying-to-sleep-addled mind, I noted all the changes. They were only little, but they were right. Until the last segment, which was entirely new, and the story I thought I knew turned out to be entirely different and wonderful and not unlike having the carpet ripped out from beneath me, but instead of falling on my face and embarassing myself the wind caught me, took me for a tumble in the clouds and deposited me somewhere high and far from where I could see for miles and everything was clear.

But out there, somewhere, is the little story of dead arms and dirt I anticipated. Creepy and strange and now, disappeared. It will never be read out loud, sad little story.

I want to be read to. It isn't really something you can ask of other people, not without receiving a funny look and an extension of personal space. I should put out a personal ad, "wanted: reader. That is all." Or start a business, with a troupe of readers on call, to come to you whenever and where ever you may need a story read to you. Funny voices free of charge. Pillows supplied on request.

I think this is a sad little want.

Afterwards, I dreamed that I'd messed up history so badly, the history books on my shelves were spontaneously changing their titles and texts, as the history of the world wobbled about and tried to reassert itself.

I couldn't hear rain when I woke.

There are things you consciously give away when you move out. It's the things you didn't know you were losing that make you stop and wonder if maybe you made a mistake. Losing the sound of rain on a rusty old corrugated iron roof, for example.

You gain other things. Tiles, for example. Light globes, when dropped on a tiled floor, make the most spectacular, satisfying, comical 'pop!' noise this universe contains. I stood very still for 2, 3, 10 seconds, until I was sure I wasn't about to toss the second light globe on the floor just to hear it again.

Nothing in this soundscape drowns out the noise in my head. It roars, it mutters, it doesn't shut up. Come on, 4am, bring it. I'm not trying, I'm not afraid of you.

(I just don't like you.)


  1. Thanks for the nice words about the podcast!

  2. You're most welcome, Jason. Once (if I ever) get connected at home, I'll pillage the rest of your podcasts.