October 12, 2004

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i was blowing through Victoria a years or so ago, and called up my friends Galadriel & Flash to see what was happening. After getting over the brief shock of hearing i was in town Galadriel asked me, “Do you want to go see a local indie dyke bluegrass band?” Well, who can turn down an invite like that? And so, i was introduced to a great band at one of the best live shows ever. i gave Galadriel $15 and a couple more weeks later a copy of Triangle Mountain by Barley Wik was in my possession. At that point, the band was selling the CD themselves, at concerts (they ran out that night), or through friends and supportive fans.
Just this week, i was brainstorming with a friend while mixing up a few minidiscs, and i recalled Barley Wik, and it dawned on me that Kimber still has my copy! She returned clothes that i’d given her, but not that disc. Worth a good laugh, i tell ya! Well, i can’t blame her; they’re that good, and she always really did like that album.
i see now that they’ve released a second offering, Dusty Lullaby, which i shall have to get ahold of if i can. Maybe two copies; i can think of at least one person who’d appreciate it for Xmas or somesuch…

Today is my parent’s 21st wedding anniversary. i must admit, that scale of time and commitment gets to me. Earlier this summer, i asked my mother why she’d stayed with my stepfather so long, when clearly the first 10 years of their marriage were… “Constant hell?”, snorted my mother, sarcasm being the favoured communication mode in this family.
She went on to say that She and He had come to the point where they wanted that life-long commitment. They saw in one another that person who they knew would complement them in life. Myself, i can hardly name two other folks so apparently dissimilar! Still, the biggest thing that they shared was a desire for commitment, and despite all the anger and sorrow, they both knew that they were an unassailable team. Indeed, over the years, it seems unimagineable to picture them apart, though they still move in different social circles, and have wildly differing hobbies, jobs, and opinions.
Only recently have i really come to see how this steadfast example has affected me. i’ve grown up to believe in the powerful synergy of a commited relationship, and i’ve found myself pursuing that same ideal for myself. i supose that i’ve become more relentless than neccesary in this, my desire for partnership. Is this really what i want, or a holdover from my childhood conditioning? I’ve seen how parents can inflict horrible values upon their children, like distrust and anger; have i had some innapropriate values thrust upon me as well? Will i always believe that relationships are born out of struggle, and that peaceful love can only be the fruit of years of commitment, often in the face of much sorrow?
Lately, i’ve had some heady discussions with my friends Serious and Professica about social activism and revolution. It’s made me begin to rethink my own life-goals, and the way in which i value myself as a member of a global community. Serious and Professica are pretty different from each other too, with vastly different ways of expressing their views, but when they come together, it’s nigh impossible to win an argument with them!
All in all, on this day of anniversary, i’m given to thoughts of commitment and responsibility, both to myself, my friends & family, the world, and to that one true partner of mine, wherever she is. What’s a promise worth? i’m still finding out…

Over a meal last night, friends and family alike agreed that i have a problem. My long-time pal Serious who works with “troubled” youth (and has a nice psychology degree) reaffirmed what some other folks have been saying for years. A little research of my own, and it looks true.
Kimber was right all along: i’m mildly autistic. Actually, it looks like i have Asperger’s Syndrome. No wonder i’m so brilliant! No wonder i’m so fucked up!
So, what does this mean? Not a whole hell of alot, really. There’s a pharmacopia out there waiting to “treat” me, but then i wouldn’t really be “me” anymore. The cognitive therapy and medative practice i’ve engaged in so far seem to be the best there is. Knowing that some doctor has named a condition, and that it applies to me, doesn’t help much, at least not directly. It does, however, alleviate some of the “what’s wrong with me?!” anxiety, and makes the “cognitive” part of cognitive therapy that much more literal. At least it supplies a better label than “weird”, or being lumped in with the ubiquitous ADHD crowd.
There’s folks from my past that i’d like to ask about this revelation. Unfortunately, my personality has pushed alot of them away. It would be interesting to see how people feel when they learn that i actually can’t always behave a different way, even when i really want to, and that my “weirdness” doesn’t alter my underlying humanity; it just makes it very difficult for me to translate my thoughts and emotions into something more plainly recognizable by “normal” people.
Further in-depth information can be found here.

Okay, i’ll admit it: punk rock music is too loud. At least at live concerts. Sure, i’ve listened to (and enjoyed!) it plenty enough, but in all honesty, i’ve bought very little of it for personal consumption. It always seems like my pals have some sort of decent punk playing in their cars/on their stereos/blaring out of their PowerBook, and over the years i’ve gained some appreciation for it. And yes, a few ripped copies have made their way onto my minidiscs.
And, okay, i’ll admit it: i personally know all the members of The Rebel Spell. Still (in the spirit of all this honesty), i really actually totally dig their latest album, Expression In Layman’s Terms. It’s street-punk, pure and simple, but well-played, with intelligent socially-active lyrics. Todd Serious and the band put on a good live show, but it sounds better at lower volumes, like, say, “5” on the walkman. If, like me, you can’t understand all those words sung at 9000 mph, there’s reprints in the CD cover, and info on the website.

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