youngraven: (Default)

How do you define a true friend? What would lead you to end a friendship?

The real question here is whether I'll get through this entry without burning Carole King into my brain on an infinite loop. Not that this would be a bad thing, per se. Carole King is one of my absolute favourite singer/songwriters.

Winter, spring, summer or fall - all you've got to do is call, and I'll come running, yes I will.
You've got a friend...

I suppose I've been thinking on friendship for a little while now, since I'll be taking my leave of one circle of friends and returning to another.

I hold my friends in high esteem, this isn't to say I find them faultless, but I don't see the worth in spending a great lot of my time going about with people I don't hold in high esteem.

Such as This One Chap...who delights in telling me all about the times that people who I don't actually know have had harsh words about me in his presence so's to can boast about how well he defended my honour. I fairly take exception to that ('cos what am I going to do - attempt to Sort Things Out with strangers? That's a bit weird, don't you think?), I question his motives, and thus he's been relegated to 'acquaintance'.

So, one criterion for friendship would be do not tear me down to build yourself up. I am fairly skilled at niggling away at my own psyche (for good and for ill), thanks very much. This is not a role in my life needs that needs filling; kindly desist.

Then, there was My Client...who's after deciding that I'm the next best thing to psychotherapy. Never misunderstand me, I'm not averse to lending an ear, being a sound board, or otherwise bearing witness to the spilling of one's guts (figuratively or literally). I do get that friends do this. Hell's bells - look at the title to this piece. Sure, I didn't write it myself, but I'm never scratching my head and wondering 'what the devil does that mean'. There's a stark difference between asking for support and wringing a person dry (much in the way there's a thin line between aiding and enabling). Do I feel oddly compelled to get to the bottom of things when one presents me with a parcel of mental woe? Hang me, but I do - and that's solely on me, I get that. However, it's not on me when somebody takes a notion to feel entitled to my perspective over that somebody's life. If nothing else, at the end of the day, I en't qualified - my advice could well prove bloody awful - why take that risk? 

Thus, another criterion for friendship would be do not call me Dr Freud and expect me to wear a pointy beard and ask you probing questions about your mum. Especially, do not pull me away from doing This Thing Over Here that I feel defines my very being in order to douse me with a gulletful of your fortnightly spates of angst. I know...I know...I can always refuse, but meet me halfway, yeh? 

Digging into my past friendships' dregs, I'm reminded of That Girl I Used to Go Round With to Stop Me Being Bored of a Friday Night (janey, what a title)...who's crashed headlong into middle age with an 18-page criminal report. As I recall, she's now been locked up at society's urging...five times? Six is it? Mostly for prostitution, but with the odd drug and armed robbery conviction tossed into the batter for a bit of spice and texture. As I'm sure the title I've given her depicts, I can't exactly call her a friend, really. Or a mate. Or...I don't know - comrade? That still seems too close. Circumstance might be the best word I can come up with. Ha. Thick as thieves. That's a good one, 'cos for a while our circumstance (apparently morbid boredom?) did render us nigh unto inseparable - and your wan there, she couldn't lay her hand to an object that it didn't end up sneaked into her handbag. Absolutely incorrible, she was - I honestly think she's a sociopath. I could go on - and I may do someday, 'cos I'm still baffled by what a thorough disaster is she - but that'll keep for now.

Which leads me to proclaim that an especially vital criterion for friendship is do not lead me into sin. (Mind, 'sin' is used a bit ironically here...only a bit).

That brings us to Mr Nose Is Growing...who singlehandedly ended his two-year marriage and slandered a mutual friend all in one calamitous go. There are many reasons that a monkey-based lifeform may deal in untruths. Fear, shame, cruelty, cowardice (not quite the same as fear) - some of which are more forgiveable than others. If a person panics and tells me a lie about something, then chances are I'll take that under consideration once the truth is out and my pardon is begged. If a person tells me a lie about herself 'cos the truth shames her? Again, I'm not heartless. I don't necessarily assume that a person will lie to me out of disrespect; more often than not, it's more about the strength of that person's self worth. Now yer man here...he lies to amuse himself. He's got this strategy when it comes to lying: tell as many lies as possible and as quickly as possible. The result is that people believe him out of self defence. He's filled up their ears with so many tall tales that to show them to be falsehoods should take rather more commitment than it's worth. In truth, most of the lies were harmless - tales of middle class derringdo meant to make the teller seem a bit more interesting than the average 30 something white primate. If he'd contented himself with being a bit of a Walter Middy, then I'd not want to spit something foul and sticky whenever I see him. Only he chose to take his lying to the next level, and in effect laid the blame for the dissolution of his marriage at the feet of somebody else (particulars spared to protect the innocent). I can fairly suss why he did as he did: he wanted out, and he never wanted it to be his fault. Sussing is not the same as excusing or forgiving. 

Therefore, a third criterion for friendship is do not be a lying rat bastard. Especially not at the expense of  myself or other people.    

Last of all, I offer the Fellow With the Green Eye Shadow...whose behaviour was so ghastly at the end of it all that it warranted me writing rather a derisive song about him so's to completely exorcise him from my life. There are few people with whom I've burnt bridges. Even with people who've come into my life and acted many different maggots, I'm slow to slam the door, lock it fast, and then flee prior to blowing up the building. 'Cos who knows - it might be that all we need to come to common ground again is a few years' distance. He'd have been in the unburnt bridge drawer, but for one thing that he did. Pardon the dramatics of it, but he came spying for a group of people who'd made it known that they intended to do away with me. It got back to me through three unrelated channels (which lent the rumour credence to my mind), so I've no doubt that it was discussed. Whether they ever thought to actually go through with it? I can't say - and I'd be daft if I went to go find one of them to sate my own curiosity. In short, it was what it was, and I don't need to know. This fellow - once I'd said my peace to the effect of 'if ever I see you again, it'll be too soon' - had the absolute daft gall to wait a beat, and then begin telling me all about some person who was giving him fits or something. Sure jeez, boyo - what part of eff the fuck right off did you not get? I told him to keep still and then turned and walked away.

Which brings me to the most important criterion for friendship - do not try to have me killed. I can fairly guarantee you I'll not be laughing with you, or at you, or even laughing at all. Make a move to teach me the ancient art of shoving up daisies, and we're done. Sin é. So that we're clear. (Note: it's not escaped me how mad it is that I've got to include this one on the list.)

All in all...I don't ask for terribly much of my friends. Sometimes I get a bit whingety and crave reminding that I'm not some sort of undesirable sea creature (why's it always sea creatures?), but mostly I'm fairly self contained. At the end of the day, I think that if we can find joy in each other's company, compassion in each other's sorrow, at least a wee swath of common ground, and we're willing to accept (or at least ignore) each other's quirks and idiosyncrasies, then I see no reason why we shouldn't be friends.
youngraven: (Default)
...whilst at the office, I'll have a go at chasing them away with a post about the weekend (you know, before I realised I'd an ex-plant).

It was rather an involved weekend, and I came away from it wishing it had been longer and I'd time to do Nothing at All. Ah well. So we began Saturday out at the DIY shops in search of lights for the new pub and...something else. Paint swatches for it as well. Both hunting expeditions proved successful, and I've now paint to choose, and the pub's got lights in. Oh, and we've also now got pleasant little solar lights along the pavement to our door and also near to our new fence. We've been meaning to add lights to the pathway for quite awhile now, so that one's off our list of things to do. :)

After we'd shoved the lights into the ground (it was that simple, the entire project took us round half an hour - if even that), we tarted ourselves up for our friend's yearly formal soiree. We looked rather well, I think. Where I myself am concerned, that's quite a compliment coming from me. I can usually find at least one reason that I look like a boy in drag whenever I don a frock, sort of thing. Two of the other females at the do glared at me, so I'll take that to mean that I looked very much unlike a boy in drag. :D

At any rate, I had a grand time nattering with [ profile] amalleigh, [ profile] colourblinde, and [ profile] turtliewings (amongst others who haven't got LJs) about various and sundry things. I even made a confession (in regards to something that happened last weekend - intriguing, I know) that sparked (I suppose that's a bit of a pun - more intriguing, I'm sure) rather a surprising conversation considering the people with whom I was speaking. I was amused, to say the least. If you really want to know all of the incriminating details, ask me privately. It's nothing earth shattering, but nothing that needs to be made public either. ;D So...good times. We stayed later than we'd planned to do, considering the next day's activity, but what do you do, eh?

So after tumbling into our beds, we woke in a hurry Sunday morning to race off to the railway station for a photo shoot. Was I late? Of course I was late. Why need you ask? Actually, I've been really grand with punctuality in recent years - it's only been in the last handful of months that I've found it difficult to arrive to a place on time. I suppose I've a lot on my mind? Sure, I wonder what that might be.../shrug/ At any rate, when I arrived, the others had already talked over a few possibilities with the photogs, so we dove straight into it.

It was a blast - despite the angry little bulldog of a man who came to shout at us towards the end of it. I'm going to write to Amtrak about him (I wish I'd got his name - it would make for a stronger letter). Sure, we were doing something foolishly dangerous in light of the information that he gave us (which conflicted starkly with what [ profile] typsygypsy had been told when she phoned ahead to check it was alright), but he'd never a cause to be rude or belligerent, and he was both in abundance. His demeanour bordered on violent, and's sort of turned me off patronising Amtrak. Which is what I intend to tell them when I write. Seriously, the man need's anger management skills. Direly.

After climbing about and risking life and limb at the railway station (I'm eager to see how the photos come out), we took Chris out for Mongolian barbecue, which was more grand fun. I've not really very many words besides 'grand', 'seriously', and 'sure' at my disposal today. So. At any rate, after that we wandered back home, and sense we'd done so very much in the morning, I'd convinced myself it was two hours later, and I fear I spent most of the rest of the day in a bit of a fog.

But...I did eat noodles.

youngraven: (Default)
...I'd rather be done with the month of March now, please. I know, I know - it's supposed the be the Bestest Month Ever!111!!1zomg*!!! for Irish musicians, And Yet.

Sure, it hasn't been as though the moon fell out of the sky and smashed half the world flat and made the other half to resort to cannibalism to survive, but it's been rather a difficult month, and I'm ready for the 'out like a lamb' part of it.

Irish Fest flattened me (and even more than I'd realised), and all that I did there was to mind instrument check-in, play at the O'Flaherty booth, and help [ profile] shaddowshoes to set up and strike his two stages. In an entire weekend, that isn't really a great deal. Only I caught plague (or whatever), didn't I? Thus I spent an entire day afterwards almost completely flat.

I'm one of the foolish sorts of people who tends to carry on with whatever I feel I should be doing regardless of how I may be feeling. Usually, I can get away with it, only not this time. In stead of expelling the invaders and utterly quelling any remaining splinter factions, I managed only to press the Plague into hiding.

It regrouped, gained strength, bought itself new uniforms and fired off a salvo that took out my forwards guard. The smiling, tie-wearing doctor at the quack shack labelled it 'bronchitis'.

But I don't smoke, sez I, which obviously fell on deaf ears, and last night I was told by a friend's son that smoking doesn't cause bronchitis. Well, I suppose I knew that, but I did think it made one more likely to suffer from it. At any rate, I'm being plied with medicine, so with any luck I'll have chased it away by Saturday night.

This has been our very first weekend in nigh unto a month that we've had no pressing obligations. So...yesterday, we went to see Michelle's daughter's film ('BITCH' - it's hystaerical), and afterwards we drove to meet with friends.

Today, after a long and pleasantly spent morning, [ profile] shaddowshoes went off to help a friend update a Macintosh, and I vowed not to do anything, really. Last night, Becky had warned me that I might be fighting this nonsense for weeks if I don't keep still for a little while, and it's got to be gone by Saturday night (which likely means I shouldn't go to seisiun this week. Grr)., it's getting late, and I'm starting to lose my point (silence, youse).

At any rate, as I was lolling about and drinking tea, I had a peek at my email - 'cos that isn't actually doing anything, now is it - and in said email was a message from a friend that I'd lost contact with more than a decade ago (and she's got an LJ).

She's married and living in Seattle now, and I'm looking forward to reconnecting.

The evening was spent at Trinity Hall, as it was Linda's birthday, and she needed to be lavished with baubles, beads, and Irish coffee.

* Yes, I actually did employ the phrase 'zomg'. What?
youngraven: (wish)
It never fails - I write about half of my holiday as it's occurring, and the rest of it some days later. You know, when most of it has scarpered out of my head and up a very tall tree. To guide me, I've copied my sister's entry - it isn't plagiarism if you change it round (ha).

Click me, I command you )
Ah, and look - we've come to the end of it, haven't we?

Peace out, slan go foill, and mind the gap youse.

* a punter is a person who comes to listen to a seisiun, sort of an NPC for all of you gaming lot.
youngraven: (wish)
Wednesday's flights were uneventful. No panicking air hostesses, no dying dramatically in the lavatories amidst flame and explosions. No screaming children. I was delivered to the Bay Area safe, sound, and in one piece. Well, mostly. One of my pieces arrived roughly an hour after the rest of me did, and that was some cause for consternation and cursing at the sky.

At least it arrived, and to be honest, this is my first bit of trouble with such things, and I have flown places many many times. I suppose I'm fortunate, then.

At the moment, I'm waiting for Sessa to return from an appointment she had to keep this morning, whilst searching for the words that will keep this post interesting.

I've got a bloody splitting megrim (likeyado).

So, after we'd done with waiting about for the last of my bits and bobs to complete its journey, we drove to Sessa's quaint little house, which she shares with a fellow called Jay (who seems alright, I suppose). Then we took the train to Shattuck Street and went to the cinema to see 'Little Miss Sunshine'. I'd come expecting to roar with laughter, and I didn't really. I think perhaps that I'd been travelling most of the day, had joined a conference call in Denver, and the rest of the audience was more in the mood to reflect. This isn't to say that the film was neither amusing nor enjoyable - it was both. Perhaps I'd have laughed louder if I'd been a bit less fagged out from the day.

Yesterday, we went to the gardens at UC Berkeley. We'll have to go back - all of us. The gardens were far more than we could explore in two hours. I shot many photos of the gardens, and sure I'd love to let you lot have a look at them, only I haven't got an SD card reader, so sadly they'll be staying on my camera till I can move them elsewhere. What do you do, eh?

We saw many lovely plants and trees, but curiously, the oddest one I saw yesterday was at a florist's in Telegraph Street. It was some sort of pin cushion flower native to NZ. I've looked for a photo of it online (because I didn't snap one yesterday), only I've not found one. It was a strange little thing - orange and grey and with yellowish tendrils sneaking out from an almost conical erm...middle?

After we wandered through the gardens, we drove to go and find Telegraph Street where the interesting shops are. We wandered in and out of them and commented to ourselves about the intricate glass pipes amid the sex toys and piercing jewellery (which is what I was after getting). At the end of our trek, I bought my new nose pins at Hot Topic. Quare, innit? Actually, I'm fond of a particular sort of setting, and I could only find it at Snot Tropic, so what will you do? Considering that the pins I've got which aren't this sort of setting have a nasty tendancy to fall apart...yeh, sure I'll take the circumstance. Och. I'm wearing one of the new ones now - it's tiny and iridescent. The people at the office will likely not even notice it. Not that I think they care, really.

So...after the shops, we met [ profile] sylphslider and her fellow at a Thai restaurant. I'm very fond of Thai. We nattered and shared coconut soup and curries and then went for bowlling. Something I rarely do, yet seem to do mostly well. Only I could never seem to knock down more than nine pins at a time. Sessa dubbed the remaining one 'the karmic pin', because sure there was some sort of cosmic lesson to be learnt. I found it highly frustrating. But fun. Nonetheless. Lest you misunderstand me. Lest I misunderstand me.


Right then, I've gone out of words, so I'm ending this. Now. It's over. Good-bye.

Peace out, slan go foill, and mind the gap,


Sep. 2nd, 2006 08:24 pm
youngraven: (wish)
After a reasonably uneventful journey, [ profile] shaddowshoes and I arrived safely at chez [ profile] barefootmutt. We were immediately whisked over to the neighbours' house for beer and natter. Needless to say, it was quite a late night, although I didn't quite realise it. Her neighbours are delightful.

At the moment, we're having a look at 'The Long Kiss Goodnight', so I'm sort of distracted. It's interesting, but I think I hear the beer fairy calling. As well you know, the beer fairy cannot be ignored. :)

Ah, what else? We drove round the town today - there are many lovely things here. The trails along the river, for one.


At any rate, we're having a grand time thus far, and tomorrow we'll go for a paddle down the river.

Peace out, slan go foill, and mind the gap.
youngraven: (whack-fol-lol-de-ra)
Friday, I think I made up for my uselessness at Sprig's last complete rehearsal. My god, but did we get a great deal done. Grand, of course, considering we'll be recording soon. The fellow with the studio believes that the more we do to streamline the process, the better. I tend to agree. So we're starting to work out the order in which we'll go into the box (he's got one isolation chamber).

Mmm...somebody's barbecuing. It's very distracting. I'm sitting on my porch at the moment (yes, it's hot as the blazes, but the breeze is lovely), listening to bugs make noise. It's zen, no honest. Bugs are cool.

At any rate, we determined that a click track is likely not the best way to go (well, for one, there are pieces in which we deliberately speed up and slow down - a click track would play havoc on our poor ickle bwains), so our next best option is to elect the person driving the rhythm as first to record. Grand. Fair enough, eh?

I've set Chris to the task of hunting down licencing agreements. I don't want to put myself or my mates into an awkward situation. Fortunately, it would appear that most of what we've decided upon is in the public domain.

So, Friday was brilliant. Hurrah.

On to Saturday (that would be yesterday). Saturday, we went to the Trinity Hall seisiun, which was being held in a church instead of Trinity Hall as Trinity Hall had been overrun by football hooligans. The landlord was afraid we'd be drownt out and annoyed, which was likely true.

It isn't that it's impossible to play a seisiun sober, nor is it that I usually play them pissed. It was different. Everybody was quiet, and polite, and...well, there was far more ceol than craic. The seisiun leader decided to make it sort of a cultural exchange between his seisiun, our one (at Gilligans), and a new one that's beginning in Denton. I thought that was decent of him. And he checked I was still interested in playing his closed seisiun occasionally. I gaped at him like a fish (subdued ambience + arctic room temperature = stupid bodhrán daemon - what can I say? In defiance of my Irish genes, I'm a cold-blooded animal. I require a basking rock and a heat source, hence the reason I'm on my porch in the dead of afternoon rather than in my house. BiGod, but this is a long parenthetical statement.), and said 'sure'.

That was a bit anticlimactic, wasn't it? See, the asides are always more interesting. You've got to listen for the sotto voce, a chairde. Quick - which other language can I shove into this entry? L'Chaim!

Right then. One of the fellows from the Denton seisiun had a Rigel mandolin which was easily the most...Jesus, I don't know how to describe it - other than it proves the theory that purple is theoretically green. The body of it was a sort of minty colour which mutated into a sort of grapey (??) colour. I muttered to the seisiun leader that I'd not know whether to play it or to lick it. Seriously, it looked lime-flavoured. I'd hoped to find a photo on the Internet, but to no avail. Yes, [ profile] typsygypsy, I remembered GIS this time. It was loud, louder than mine easily (which is a good thing, really, my playing has taken a dive towards desperate).

Hrm...the sun has gone away, I wonder if that portends rain?

So, after the seisiun, we popped round [ profile] shaddowshoes's sister's house for round half an hour, and then met [ profile] amalleigh and [ profile] koyote19 at an Egyptian restaurant. As is my wont, I ordered the falafel. Have I mentioned that I adore falafel? It rained in torrents at the restaurant, but it appears that it didn't rain here. More people wandered in, we drove the waitresses round the bend, and [ profile] shaddowshoes and I left before the dancer came on stage. Our next excursion will be to an Ethiopian place that [ profile] lasaire knows.

Tej, [ profile] themultifarious, tej!!


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