I think I’m stressed. But in order to prove this premise, I suppose it would be pertinent to diagnose stress itself. Let’s see. Irritability? Yep, got that in spades thanks very much. I keep snapping at people for no apparent reason, to the point where I berated my father merely for being unable to hear me. He’s deaf. That made me feel awful and full of self pity. So add those to the list. Three for three so far.
Then there’s that unnerving suspicion that you should be doing something else; exacerbated when you finally turn your attention to the thing you thought you should be doing, finding only that the sense is magnified. As I write this now, I know it’s because I have something better to do.
Then there are the physical signs. One look in the mirror confirms the dwindling eyebrow collection, and as I hunch in close to examine the wreckage, I feel the twangs of pain in my shoulders and the taut balls of frustration welled up inside my thighs. At which point, there’s only one thing for it. A steaming hot bath. Thus, the water lolls and lollops against your chin, soothing the aches and pains, as your brain constantly lists all the things that need to be done.
I hate my brain. And it’s become clear over the years that my brain hates me. We have an odd relationship. It sits there, silently amused and bemused by the things I do, contrary to its wishes and commands, and I resent the way it looks at me.
I’m pretty sure I just described text book schizophrenia, but my brain is telling me to stop being so ridiculous.
In the bath just now, I momentarily swam in the fantasy that it was 1930s New York, and I was sitting in a barbers’ chair on the sidewalk, as a man, his hair greased back, shaved my neck with a cut throat razor. For some reason, this is what I’m yearning for.
It’s either that or facing the reality that it’s less than a month until I debut my show in Camden, unprepared and unwilling to motivate myself to promote the damn thing with any kind of grace, tact or elegance. It’s taken a great deal of self-control to stop from pasting BUY MY TICKETS all over this missive, in a mass evacuation of fear and pleading; one made so easy by the coupling of CTRL and V.
I know what’s going to happen. Ten people will turn up for each show, and I’ll be so grateful they came that they’ll leave thinking, “why was he so grateful only ten people came? Man alive, he must be desperate.” I’ll kid myself in the meantime that it would be best if no-one came, but that would mean I won’t get the chance to break the show’s legs with any kind of thumping instrument.
So, here I am, arguing with my brain about the things that aren’t important. It thinks I should stop writing this now, and work to fix some of the show’s structural deficits. I tend to disagree, thinking my time is better spent melting the really nice chocolate I got for my birthday over a huge pile of cornflakes. I think I know who’s going to win this one.