Try and try again

I don't owe you an explanation. A strangely dangerous exclamation.

You have no idea who I truly am. A truth many seem to find hurtful, even though it's by no means my aim. It is something that could be remedied, but I suppose it's easier to take it as some sort of backhanded insult, embrace it bitterly and continue to uphold and maintain this fact. Still, I never utter such things with any other motive than being truthful (albeit to a naive degree; of this I am well aware). I realize I'm not the most eloquent or sensitive bastard when it comes such things, but the ensuing war of attrition tends to be something I'm never really prepared for. I suppose people think I'm more mean-spirited than could ever be true. A defense mechanism of sorts? I'll never know for sure.

Why do you care? A question I voice without innuendo or subtext, generally because I don't really have an agenda shadowing my output. Rarely if ever do I use window dressing to mince my words into a more easily digestible form. It's a strength as much as a flaw. If the question passes my lips, it does so with blue-eyed candour, never receiving the same in return. It is seen as a statement, even though I never think of it in such a way. Goes to show what an emotional tourist I can be, I s'pose.

Fight the urge. My mantra of late. Exercising self-restraint and listening to reason are furthest from my mind when all I want to do is let go, but the inescapable downpour far outweighs any potential rewards of following your instincts. True, it's not as fulfilling, but peace of mind is an invaluable commodity. And indeed rare. I'm trying very hard to steer clear of volatile situations, not to mention opportunities to stick my hand in the cookie jar. I'd like to kid myself that there would be no consequences, but I know better than that. Damn it, I do.

Walk away without a trace. A valiant effort for the sake of others when my warning lights begin to blink, but it never seems to come across in the way I intended. That old goblin of assumed declarations rears its ugly mug. These attempts are also rather susceptible to backfiring in surprising ways. Gems of dark humor; quite entertaining if you're not the punchline. But at least I'm trying.

It can't all be on you. Something I keep telling myself when one of the patterns above unleashes a snowball effect and all I can do is hold on for dear life. I'm honestly none the wiser why people can't let things be. Even less privy to why so many situations feel like I'm surrounded by fuses and my lap is full of liquid fire. Sooner or later a droplet will fall.

Tread softly, tread downwind. The few times I find myself in the company of others nowadays seem to be doomed to derail into a spectacle of weaponized wordplay, broken bonds and surprise attacks. Perhaps I lack the foresight to see them coming, or perhaps I am indeed losing touch with the most elementary of social skills. Still, calling these eventual and inevitable results unsettling is a contender for understatement of the year. The end result? I can speak only for myself. Emptiness.

Don't give them more ammunition. One of the more potent reasons why the undersigned isn't exactly the most open gent is because I know that divulging personal information grants others access to weak points. My weak points. I wish I could say I trust people close to me to not act in such a way, but as recent experiences have shown yet again, such notions would be little more than self-deceit. As for me, I don't go for the jugular. I simply won't. I can think of a million better ways of passing time than trying to wound someone with words, mostly because it's something I was once very skillful in. Now that the tables are irreversibly turned, such an attack always dazes me and is left to linger as a cloud of bewilderment over my head for days. I'm never ready for it. It makes every following attempt at sincerity that much harder. Something in me wishes to reiterate past yet fresh thoughtlings on echoes behind my back, but such uncomfortable revelations are in no need of rework and I'd rather spare myself the torment.

Grow cold. Detach. No. In spite of my sometimes overpowering instinct for self-preservation, at the end of the day I'd rather take the hits than shield myself from any situation with the potential to yield such an outcome. My life has changed dramatically in a short span of time, yet my surroundings - visitors and residents included - remain relatively unaltered. As a sum of its parts, then, it is indeed understandable how this can translate to communication breakdowns and even the disintegration of once shared common ground. Yet I must confess I'm trying to be a beacon of understanding for selfish reasons. Understanding is what I crave in return as well, though I certainly know I have a funny way of showing it. I'm simply tired of building fortifications when I'd rather try to find vigor in having the courage to be vulnerable even in the view of others. I don't want to feign strength like a wounded animal surrounded by predators.

Yet I wonder... what else is there to do?


Days in a haze

Wake up. Coffee. Turn on studio equipment. Work. Coffee for lunch. Try to relax. Stomp feet. Wiggle toes. Use table for drumkit. Deem relaxation an impossibility. Watch some TV. Strum cheap acoustic guitar. Come up with third song of the day. Return to work. Consider eating. Ponder. Decide not to. More coffee. More cigarettes. More work. Try to ignore cold feeling in gut. Fail. Try not to think. Fail. Pass out on couch. Wake up in cold sweat. Stiff dick. Stiff middle finger. Snarl. Go to bed. Repeat.

Days float on by while I ride an angry wave. Everything around me feels stale and stilted, which makes me push harder. I writhe in the stillness like electric current.

My concept of time is no longer tied to minutes ticking away. It's a blank, formless aura that fills the space between this moment and what I wish to achieve. A lump of putty I'm trying to shape into something. A veil of smoke to blindly sift through on my way to those goals in the distance. To my surprise it can actually be quite uncomfortable. I suppose I was more accustomed to routine than I was willing to admit. I'm trying to introduce some sort of structure to this, but it's challenging. Few things are absolute. Even fewer feel substantial. Nothing is certain.

My map is blank and I choose a new direction each dawn, with absolutely no tangible sense of where the hell I'm going. Maybe I've used people as yardsticks of sorts to chart this peculiar terrain I'm traversing through. For that I feel sorry and accountable for, but for reasons which I'll keep to myself. The only route I tend to be intimately familliar with now is running away from my own mind. A daily exercise, though not exactly an enjoyable one. Not to mention an endeavor that inevitably turns into a losing battle. But it keeps me occupied.

Escapism feels cheap when it yields next to no reward. I use people as counterforces to find a moment's balance, only to realize it's a fool's game. Running to and from them. People break so easily and I'm trying hard to watch my step. The only stability to be found is in the safety of the once trodden path. But then every pattern seems familliar. Old footsteps are retraced as the dead air begs to be punctured by any unknown force.

Too many old words dressed in new guises. Too many secrets no one can keep to themselves. I've heard too much and said too much. Should questions be left unanswered, silence will eventually sweep in to fill in the blanks. True or false, it doesn't really matter. Isolation and saturation offer similar results. Uncertainty in the face of anything and everything. At least it's consistent. I feel like a sitting duck no matter where I am and distrust boils in my blood.

I'm hoping I'm past the point of reducing my role to that of an orchestrator & instigator of bad vibes and sour moments. I'm trying hard to remain passive. Incidental. A ship passing in the night. I want nothing from anyone and expect the same in return. Sometimes no more than my mere presence seems to be enough to function as some sort of catalyst for combustion, which is certainly not helped or subdued by the fact that these days I can be somewhat... explosive. It drains any space of oxygen. I want no part in it.

Filtering my words seems somewhat necessary to steer clear of drama and squabbles. I don't like it nor do I find it particularily true to my character, but I'm tired of feeling like I have to justify myself. What I've written here, for example, has drawn its fair share of backdraft yet again. I never seem to know whether to laugh, cry or roar when faced with other people's fearfulness of open exchange. Sometimes it makes me wonder if I'm donning a clown's attire while none the wiser. The constant barrage of echoes behind my back reminds me of truths about spineless things. The cross of my naivety to bear, I suppose.

I stood on the balcony for what seemed like hours, lost in thoughts. The smoke formed rings around my fingers and I thought about snakes. I visited recent memories of smiles and all I could see were teeth. Someone else's or my own? Doesn't really matter.

The wind swept through the snowfall, yet the downward march remained orderly. But such a path isn't for me. This is not my world.



Strange as it may be, I feel like I needed to be pushed and swayed like a leaf in the wind, if only to stir my senses back to their prime. Perhaps it was necessary to mirror myself against unfamilliar situations to see who will peer back at me. But now that thirst has been quenched and it is time to let my blood burn for something truly fulfilling.

Everything around me serves as fuel for inspiration. I need but the tiniest spark and combustion is sure to follow. With isolation has come clarity, with clarity came stillness. With stillness I was able to re-introduce myself to my motivation, woefully absent as of late. I average about a song a day now and inspiration flows unrestricted yet again.

Chaos has its appeal, but working with focus and temperance means things get done swiftly and with surprising ease. I found my center without anyone's help or guidance, which has done wonders to solidify both my will and fortitude.

Some sort of resolution? Could be. Distance has offered me a measure of insight and that, in turn, has made it easy to discard excess baggage. I am no longer serving as some sort of road guard blocking my own advance.

I really couldn't tell you what I was looking for as I crashed into one person after another. For the most part I didn't rack my brain about it, opting instead to just let events take their course and let the chips fall where they may. A brilliant plan right up to the moment when something goes tits up. The Great Disservice I provided to all involved was to overthink and overwhelm situation after situation. I didn't ask for any of this, but I'm honestly thankful for every scoop. As a result, I'm a bit too exposed for my own liking, but it's really not much of a cross to bear.

I'm fed up with walking into situations where people who think they know me make some sort of value judgement based on what they thought they knew and how my actions tipped the scales in some unforeseen direction. I don't fit into their narrow mindset and I'm glad of it, but sometimes it would be nice to be met with other than preconceptions filtered through the subdued vision of another. I'm a walking contradiction and feel absolutely no obligation to justify anything to anyone. Still, if given the choice, I'd rather remain oblivious of how often people try to stuff me into the rectangular hole when I feel more like a triangle at that particular moment. I suppose we're all like that, the question being how often and how much you're willing to bend to fit into someone else's puzzle box. Me? Never could bend worth a damn.

Now, as the dust slowly settles, I reckon the worst mishap in all of this was getting caught in my own construct of smoke & mirrors. Everything still feels so new and most days tend to remind me I'm still a tourist in the realm of human helices entwined. Perhaps I had something in my system that needed to be released. An itch to be scratched? I really can't say for sure. But I do feel purged somehow, strangely balanced by the quiet following all those bewildering moments now well and truly behind me.

It has all been a hindrance on what I set out to accomplish by leaving my old life behind. I allowed my creative enterprises to spin their wheels as I briefly lost myself somewhere between playing games and being a pawn. But no more. I'm tired of thinking about other people's feelings, let alone playing shrink to my own dichotomy. Tired of caring. That may sound a bit harsh, but allow me to elaborate.

It's not to say I'd step over a granny lying sobbing in the snow or turn a deaf ear to a friend's sorrows. What I'm tired of are those whispered words we share with the one(s) lying next to us behind closed doors. Tired of trying to settle petty feuds orchestrated by fragile emotions, someone else's or my own. Tired of navigating the angry sea after hearts and minds have clashed and the safety of the coastline disappears in the distance. Joy, warmth and other potential rewards seem pale in comparison. There is certainly something to be said about having no one to answer to.

With perspective it all seems so trivial, especially after coming to terms with how far these little charades are from anything truly grandiose. But that also serves as a reminder of how fickle a beast perspective is. Even the smallest box you can stuff yourself into may seem to stretch beyond its reaches if the confine it offers is all you see.

Pretty schizophrenic, I know. But as I said, I think I needed a good shaking for the pieces to fall into their place. And now? Now I wish for no more than a little piece of distance and oblivion I can call my own. I think I'm entitled to it.

My side, your side. My side, your side.


The wanderer

Suggested background noise for this entry: Silent Spring by Massive Attack.

While my sense of irony has found ample nourishment in recent events, other cravings still persist. Ones I doubt will ever be put to rest. That's just the way I am.

It's ridiculously hard to comprehend how damn skillful I can be at falling from one happy accident to the next. No road map or tour guide aside from my dick in my pants, but there I go. A gallant swagger towards the next adventure. Flip the page and see me there, dangling by my ankle from a tree with a gleeful swing, with no real clue that I might be in peril. Nor that whoever might happen to stand under me will be crushed if and when the branch snaps.

Not long after, though, past mistakes creep into my HUD and I start anticipating the forthcoming of aches and bruises. Then things start to come apart. Seams unravel and prickly realizations find their way into the light. In an effort to make amends and fix the situation I tend to be as capable and efficient as a panzer on the open sea.

I hear the curtain call and my swagger shrinks to awkward, stumbling steps as I walk away. Shortly thereafter follows the stop-motion idiocy. Rewind, pause, examine, interpret, repeat. In short: relive and cringe. An exercise as futile as it is pathetic. Rarely, if ever, are diamonds of true knowledge hidden in the rough I speak of. You'd need the other person's eyes to accompany your own to spot them. Still, as you know, it's not exactly easy to stop yourself from dissecting the remains of your failures, no matter how dull the blade is and how much your hands are shaking.

The solitary looks for the favor of fortune,
For serene waters and a welcoming haven.
But his lot is to plough the wintry seas.
An exile's fate is decreed for him.

Some time ago I allowed myself but a drop of infatuation and my tongue still feels limp from the paralyzing aftereffect. I don't know how or why she, out of all of them, had such an impact. It was completely unexpected and remains an unanswered riddle. I don't know how it overcame me. Perhaps I was naive enough to think my desire would be enough to reap some unforeseen reward and I mistook her for the rainbow's end on this leg of the journey. For a brief moment it felt so good I allowed my foot to ease up on the brake. Unfortunately, knowing yours truly, that's a sure-fire way to cause a major accident.

I feel I've justified my earlier fears and burnt a bridge, even though my intent - which I'm admitting here as much to myself as to you - was nothing more than a rather stumbling attempt at seeking some sort of attention. Seeking a token of interest, compassion... something. Anything. A measure of redemption by making the other person feel - what? Something.


I've ventured down this road before and even though I was helpless to stop myself from resorting to old and lacklustre means of backhanded communication, the past is a resounding reminder that the outcome will most likely be a bitter and stifling one. I tried to shelter myself by shutting her out, yet I was and remain fully aware that it will have no such effect. It offers no more than an apt opportunity to smack one's self in the forehead and do a Homer Simpson impression.

Perhaps some unresolved fear of drowning in the quicksand of complacency makes me burn brightest for those who seem most ill-equipped to meet me halfway. Perhaps Henry Rollins tapped a surprising nerve when he said there is no knowledge without mileage, with my subconcious interpretation being that the pot of gold surely can't be filled to the brim unless I've broken myself into pieces while making my way to it. God, I hope I'm wrong.

There is none with whom to speak,
No one alive who will understand.
Best to hide sorrow in one's chest.
The storms of fate suffice to busy me.

Where does the irony come into play, then? In the simple fact that I feel I've now fallen into a very similar situation with the tables turned. My feet are dragging me to a place of solitude where no one can bring me sorrow or pain and vice versa, yet as I'm two paces from the door, affection greets me with an overpowering embrace. Affection I simply don't think I can offer in return.

After all these recent shitstorms everything in me is screaming for removal and isolation to allow myself time and perspective to hunt down my concentration. The wall of noise is sometimes broken by a faint whimper with pleas for companionship, but to be honest, that voice hasn't served me one bit lately and I'm beginning to question its tone. I am simply divided into too many asymmetric slices to function as someone else's counterpart.

But I don't want to be that guy. More to the point, I'm utterly terrified of being him. Not only because I feel I have more than enough unsettled scores in my history with absolutely no need to concoct new ones, but also because I believe in the boomerang effect of one's actions. It's all tied to my sense of balance and notions of karma's blind nature. As naive and unfulfilling as it may be, it gives me strength. But it can also be a vessel for second-guessing yourself and every move you make until you simply choose to ignore it and withstand whatever follows.

Yet I am without answers. When will the desire to leave another without scars turn into a charade, motivated by virtuous concern as it may be? When will good intentions become but a paved way for inevitably causing someone pain, no matter how involuntarily? These kinds of questions stall my engine. So I wait, contemplate, evaluate. To what end? Ask the snake swallowing its tail.

The wise man cloaks his heart:
Steadfastness and temperance.
He does well to dissemble his feelings.
Let his faith rest in that alone.

To bring this to a close, I would like to point out that it is not my intent to fill the weightless pages of this journal with constant coverage of my romantic and wounded sides locking horns in an eternal battle royale. Unfortunately these are the thoughts that have been finding me first in the night as of late. In due time this season, too, shall pass, giving way to whatever follows in its wake. Try to bear with me until then.

Excerpts from an interpretation of the poem The Wanderer.


My machine

Minä aloitan koskettamalla sieluani.

Some days I wonder if I've made a terrible, irreversible mistake by stubbornly patching this heart o' mine onto my sleeve. I've recently had far too many lessons in close succession on the cold ways of people not to at least allow myself to entertain such a thought. As said, I enter each situation with good intentions and a relatively clear conscience and, in my ever so eloquently gullible fashion, expect this primus motor to fuel the interaction on both sides.

This unpretentious, wide-eyed frame of mind is not only two steps away from complete lunacy, but also translates into a pattern in which I offer people a measure of trust, faith and devotion that far exceeds how much they should be entitled to and how much they're willing to part with in exchange. I should know better, but somehow it's just too easy to forget myself and the lessons of yesterday. I cannot comprehend that they are simply worth less, right up to the prickly point when it smacks me sideways as an afterthought. In essence I give more than I could ever hope to receive, yet this bleak truth eludes me to the umpth degree. You know what that spells on my forehead?


I get attached to people. My senses become imbued by the aura of another, my emotions thoroughly entangled in the scenery of their flesh. My ears ring with the sound of their laughter and all I want to do is rise to the occasion to be their hero when the sun sets behind us. Whether or not the person in my head should ever be awarded even a taste of such burning ambitions is wholly irrelevant; what sums them up as a human being becomes so completely lost in the web of my passion and imagination even I have trouble identifying where the imaginarium meets true flesh.

A veil is pulled over my eyes and the poetry of the heart begins to echo from a lonesome stage in front of a thousandfold crowd of my would-be's, never-were's and other thorns under my bed. The way I feel towards those special someones is monstrously heavy on impact; it is known to have crushed a great many things under its weight. At its best a powerful, nurturing force driving me to excel. At its worst a beast of overburden sucking the joy from each waking second.

Koska näin tässä aina käy
Huominen virittää jo ansalankaa
Ja sitoessani siteen silmilleni
Taputan itseäni selkään

That's what I do. That's how I roll, in spite of the danger. In spite of every single warning light flashing in tandem in the back of my mind. It's truly laughable how helpless I can be upon streams of my own creation. That's how my operating system works in all its sad, disfunctional glory. Should I attempt to exert a level of control or moderation, my equilibrium goes kaput faster than you can blink. There is no middle ground. I can't help it. If I have to turn everything off by force and will, the only route I know is to turn subzero. Works in theory, rarely in practice. If ever.

No matter how hard I try, I can never forget the sour aftertaste of these horrifying maelstroms of blood, beauty and illusion. Others might characterize them with more tender terms. Infatuation, attachment, pick your poison. They have all turned out to be costly mistakes. Each and every one. I find myself knee-deep in affection without equal response, tied down to a fucking-up-a-thon that seems to accelerate with every move I make. I expend all kinds of energy trying to untie the rope slowly tightening around my neck, aimlessly darting around the fractured halls bathed in darkness within, in a vain effort to find a source of light, warmth or air. The only voice answering my call is my own, reminding me that I alone tread here.

The alternative isn't all that appealing, as I remember vividly what I let myself become the last time I grew disillusioned with the humanity that fills my view and whispers ugly truths in my ear during twilight hours. This was many years ago, but I refuse to let myself forget it. I can only imagine how I made others feel, but I could wager a guess or two (though I'd rather not). The point is I remember what a bastard stared back at me in the mirror.

Let's face it: I was a complete and utter prick, breaking people left and right, never giving a moment's thought to who I hurt and how - at least not until those realities found me alone and attacked me at my weakest. My ice-clad sentiments were embodied first and foremost in the ways I conducted myself in the company of the person next to me at the time. I broke her slowly by overpowering her senses with a neverending shouting match of contradicting words and actions. I controlled and manipulated her as much with my absence as my presence. It was never my intent, but I toyed with her without compassion or mercy just to watch her bleed.

The final realization of how efficiently I'd broken her heart made me turn into an even worse excuse for a man. Hating one's self taints every thought, word and motion in ways I can never describe.

Minähän sanoin
Olevani mennyttä
Toistelin ja totesin
Ettet haaskaisi aikaasi

Sisältäpäin huusin
Mutinaksi muuttuneena
Kylmiä tosiasioita
Omasta vikavalikoimastani

Siitäkös sinä

And so here I am yet again, pushed and pulled in different directions by different women, re-learning bloodcurdling lessons on the nature of selfish and carefree actions in the face of unbridled honesty I can only describe as childlike. My lungs expel a dry laugh as I realize I'm the one whose muscles and joints will be strained to the breaking point by this tug of war. Not theirs.

I'm not looking for validation, I don't think I'm even looking for someone to hold close. Perhaps what I truly seek, then, is no more than the comfort of knowing I'm not pissing these emotions into the wind every time I allow them to take flight. As aspirations go, I'd say that's not exactly a tall order.

The sad, naked fact is I don't handle rejection well. To be honest, I can't handle it at all. It's not all about ego, but I certainly know the value of what I offer and how completely it diminishes my view of another when it's spat back at me without a care in the world. It fills my mind with hurtful, vengeful thoughts and reminds me of what I am capable of. Sometimes it severs the reigns of control and I become a very scary individual. You wouldn't want to meet that guy, no more than I would ever want him to be let loose. Not for a minute or an hour.

What time has offered me, though, is perspective on what kind of a horrid wretch I can be should I allow myself the journey to such extremes. So I refuse. Vehemently and arms wide open. Without question. For better or worse, this heart must withstand these stabs and endure the bloodletting of seething wounds for as long as necessary without growing cold. This is the pact I've made.

One I won't allow myself to break.


Snap, crackle, pop

I shouldn't feel responsible for other people's well-being if my role in their struggles is little more than incidental. Unfortunately that doesn't tame the swell of empathy and compassion, riddled with the aftertaste of responsibility as it may be. I am not innocent by any stretch of the imagination, but at least I enter every situation with good intentions. My feet are planted firmly and I'm careful not to wander beyond the wayside, but I seem to find myself at the forefront regardless.

I'm tiptoeing over egg shells, but in spite of my careful step I'm clumsy and the sound of constant crackling fills the air. I can't say whether the surface underneath is breaking at this precise point or if it's simply a looming premonition of things to come. Neither is preferable, but I know it's one or the other. I'm not a stupid man.

How do these things come to pass, I wonder? I walk alone with a comfortable pace, owing absolutely nothing to anyone, eyes fixed towards the great unknown and my thoughts filled with things that would make most men smile, yet my feet get tangled in weeds I haven't planted and the undertow pulls me in deeper with commanding grip. The fact that I can tear away at any moment and continue my stride doesn't widen my array of options, lest I wish to grow disillusioned about who and what I am. Without debt indeed, then? No. I owe it to myself to be a better man than that.

It's hard to be happy. To allow yourself to be happy. Hard to snatch a lonely spark from the sky and hold it in your hands without smothering it. Hard to find more than mere seconds of joy, value and freedom away from the roaring tides within. More often than not it feels like you have to steal those moments from the cold clutches of this city.

To forget your name, drown in the eyes of another and draw breath from their wet lips - these, my friends, are the building blocks to make this world a better place. Why, then, are they so fragile?

The question is rhetoric, of course. Very few priceless things stand the test of time without lending from your strength. Whether they fall and shatter by negligence or a forceful push isn't really the crux here, either. The real question is how many times can you begin to rebuild before you start questioning the worth of the endeavor itself. Should that come to pass, well, then you're playing Russian roulette against yourself. Guess who eventually loses?

I like myself more at my most vulnerable. In turn, I like you best when the armor falls. It's such a shame we mistake the security of these obstructing constructs around us as the building blocks to lift us higher and protect us from the weeds and thorns at our feet. There is no better reminder of life's cruel, painfully beautiful nature than the scars they leave us with.


Tonight's truth

Girl, I wanna die in yer arms tonight
I really don't care about the wrong or right
The fruit is forbidden but it's sweet and it's ripe
I think I'm gonna pick me some and take me a bite

Baby girl looks so good, she walks so mean
Got a vicious little sway, I think she's semi-obscene
She'll pick your bones clean, oh my God, she's so fine
She's sweeter than the dew out on the grapes on the vine

I'm 'a pick her, I'm 'a squeeze her, I'm 'a make me some wine
I'm 'a drink her 'til I'm crazy, I'm 'a drink 'til I'm blind
I'm 'a touch her so good, I'm 'a treat her so fine
I'm gonna make love to her soul, I'm gonna fuck all with her mind

I'm gonna die in yer arms tonight
I really don't care about the wrong or right
The fruit is forbidden but it's sweet and it's ripe
I think I'm gonna pick me some and take me a bite

Everlast - Die in Yer Arms