Usually i’m ignoring the passing of a year. Our preception of time is a constant. There is no reset button that is getting pushed in the final midnight hour of the gregorian calendar and new years resolutions are rubbish (at least for me they are). “Happy new year, you mental figures!” were the first words i shouted into the darkness of the first moments of 2017. I did so because subjectively 90% of the six million euros spent on fireworks in austria have been fired off in a two kilometre radius.

So….2016 was the year were i became aware of how severe my depression/personal disorder/OCD really is. My behavior is pushing people away and usually that is something i prefer over people being attracted to me. But when ones Wife is among them the perspective changes. My therapist sent me to a psychiatric evaluation and a psychiatrist for medication. I have not taken any. Instead i told him “Yeah, i’m a little calmer.”, which i really have become but is hard to maintain. Every “blow” feels more impactful. More personal. After i got out of the psychiatric ward back in 2002, i was starting to take anti-depressants. They helped. I spent a week that needed the utmost level of attention i could muster to perform basic tasks. The rest of the time was spent staring at walls or the tv-set. The pharmaceutical industry has surely made some advances in developing new/improved medication, but despite my better knowledge i’m afraid to loose myself. To loose that certain thing.

Stopped working out. Also stopped eating enough and varied (been living on two cold cheese sandwiches and toast for breakfast each day), and with the energy i needed at work there is not enough left to spend in my free time.

Work has been a drag. Budget cuts lead the new contracts, lead to less salary. I started this job because of the money and the benefit if not getting trapped in a rut. The whole process has been reduced to a rut, and were working even more insane hours for less money. On top of that pile of shit sit some colleagues that are….well, special and always talk about how beautiful their cock is while other dicks to the heavy lifting. Mention it, and the boss tells you that one should be careful about placing himself in the spotlight. Easy to say for a guy who’s slowly drowning because his people stop caring if shit gets done less each day.
I could do freelance work, but i lack the killer instinct. It could work out, but it also doesn’t have to. And i learned hard work is never a guarantee for success.

That is another big problem, it seems like no matter how much i put into something, at the end it’s a lost cause. It’s fun of course, but i witness people not even caring about the thing they do that have to get theirs asses seen shut because everybody wants to set up camp in their colon.
I revisited some photos i took eight years ago when i did nothing else but aim press down the shutter. That will sound like i’m crawling up my own rear, there are some great results among them. Things that made no sense or offered no apparent idea to work with suddenly invited me in like an old acquaintance and we brought each other up to speed about what happened in the time spent apart.

Niv and i started a podcast which was great! We don’t spend enough time together and it forced me to learn new things that would have ended up as intentions in a notebook. It also helped build a bridge to my older brother in-law because there isn’t a topic he doesn’t know anything about. He pointed me in the direction to find software and tutorials which i soaked up and try to expand on as much as possible. Got out the old soldering iron to tinker with stuff again.

Writing helped. Sent a newsletter out 40 weeks in a row. Nothing interesting in there, just scratching that itch caused by the need to have some sort of interaction and the need to write.

A colleague also told me that he “can’t read” me in german because he feels like an imitation. “English is your jam.” he told me. German has become more attractive i must confess. It is my first language, and there are things in it that only work when you apply a viennese accent and slang.
I’m considering doing a podcast in german. There is an open spot in a german Steven Universe podcast that i applied for. But a comic themed show would be neat because german comic podcasts don’t work for me. Then do it better. i hear my Grandfather say. I’m working on it.

Frozen’s message was a theme: letting go. I quit my account at an online journal because i stopped writing and it felt like everybody there was repeating themselves. That isn’t the truth, my awareness was tuned into finding repeating patterns which i amplified. And it was hard to take that step because i was writing there for 13 years. I’ve met amazing people, fell in love, lured out of my into another shell.

Quit a lot of comic series that i read out of habit, tried out many new titles, became more interested in the backstage area of comics and titles outside of the big publishers.

But the biggest thing was the kindness, generosity and time other directed my way. My theme is to feel like a burden and failure, and while i can’t believe the nice words and gestures i’m deeply thankful for. Have to make up new words to be able to properly express it.

a giant movie

Steven Spielberg lost me a while ago. After a certain point i lost the „Spielberg made another movie!“ brand of excitement and it got replaced by a „why didn’t he direct Transformers?“ feeling of disapointment. Anyway, we went to see his latest directorial work, The BFG.
Anybody else thought he made a Doom movie[1] before we read The Big Friendly Giant beneath the shortened version? Ive seen the trailer before The Force Awakens, and was looking forward to seeing it. It felt like classic material for a Spielberg classic, a large story in a small enviroment, in this case a kid in a large enviroment. And for the first twenty minutes it really works the magic. We get introduced to a timeless[2], hyperreal version of london through which a giant wanders at night. Sophie, an orphan with insomnia spots him during one of his exploits and promptly gets abducted. And that sequence alone is worth the price of admission. The handling of scale, the creativity, tenderness and playfulness with which we see BFG naviagte unseen throught the city and finally shakes off all restraints once he’s reached the outskirts where he puts his physique to use. The uplifting feeling this sequence telegraphes only gets repeated once, when we learn the purpose of BFG’s nighty exploits and he takes Sophie along for preparation.
The rest of the movie feels like….they could have easily rework the script, perhaps give us more background on the giantfolk, instead it follows a certain predetermined path no matter the consequences. And that is sad because it leads to an end that glorifies the benevolence of monarchy towards its subjects, which surely was apporpriate when the book the movie was based in has been published, but could have been handled more gracefully than „send in the troops“.
Dreams are a plot point of this movie, and it does feel like a dream narrative, which i’m sure younger audiences will dig. It just felt a bit to dictated by a third party for me. I guess i was hoping to get this „Spielberg made another movie!“ excitement back.

[1] there is a gun in the videogame Doom that is called BFG 9000, short for Big Fucking Gun
[2] well, not entierly timeless, when the president of the USA gets adressed as „Ronnie“ we could place it between 1981 and 1989

such attention for a few inches

Let’s talk about sexualtiy. It’s a topic i’m not comfortable with and perhaps it would be good to challenge oneself once in a while.

I choose the topic because we watched a thing about the human penis and how it evolved over time. In the show, a guy with a Phd in something who likes to compare the sexual behaviour of primates and humans presented an artifact from way back when that resembled a penis. When asked what how our ancestors might have used it he said, that i could have been a piece of paraphernalia used in ritual, a kind of calling card for a group of people or a weapon. And, but he wasn’t to sure of that, it could have been used by the female members of the groupe as, well, a member.
That made me think about how we deal with sex in our culture. We might perceive ourselves as sexually educated beings that practise the art of intercourse not only to prolong the existence of the human race but also as an alternate form of communication, an activity, a crime. It is a part of our very being, something that gives but also takes power away from us. And then someone with a degree wants to tell us, that humans who had the tools to fashion a penis out of stone did so to use it as a weapon. Because a short, blunt rod made from stone[1] is preferable to say a spear or a hammer when one has the choice. Of course it was a „cult“ item like the venus of willendorf but nobody can tell me that humans didn’t use the thing for self pleasurement.
Afterwards there was a discussion about the female sexualty. And while i so far was never able to have the female experience on the topic, it felt like they ticked of a checklist out of a livestyle magazine. Bringing a woman to the point where she agrees to get intimate with one feels like a task the partner has to prepare months beforehand. That sounded insane and i was glad that sexual therapist, a woman, who was part of the discussion said that most female patients are frustrated because they want to Get It On while their partners want to be left alone. Of course it’s different strokes for different folks, but i don’t think that we’re generally that different in sexual behaviour, which is a long way to say: i assume it starts in the head for both.

[1] which is not fair, because two or three of the items the guy has in his inventory could be used to bludgeon another human being to dead

against the winter blues

Death In Paradise is a british (BBC?) show about an english Detective Inspector being transferred to the fictional caribbean Island of Saint Marie where he and the other members of the local police force solve a murder every episode (i’m aware that you are all aware of how a police procedural show works, but for completions sake, i explained it).
The show features one or more known face from british television every episode and is a delight to watch. Not that it is overly complicated, but the first two season feature Ben Miller as the main protagonist, and his portrayal of the bulletin board stiff upper lip british gentleman, who refuses to don an airy attire despite the new climate he now works in is a part of my spirit guide.
He gets killed and replaced by a new DI played by Kris Marshall, who’s chief officer goes into the direction of a brilliant but chaotic cop.
The best thing about the show is that it not only crushes it’s enemies[1], but features tropical landscapes which is relaxing somehow and it doesn’t matter wether one starts watching an episode from the beginning, every few minutes there is a summarization that brings the viewer up to speed.
Man, it’s a great program to watch in winter.

[1] a Conan reference, from the first movie not the books. just in case.

A few years ago i was confused with a known shoplifter and was introduced into the world behind supermarkets, specifically the facilities that house the store detectives.
I got reminded of that incident when i realized how many cameras are mounted in a supermarket we visit during our lunch breaks.
J, a colleague, asked if i had seen a photo of the actual perpetrator, and if he was my mirror universe counterpart. I have not seen a photo, and i had shoulder long hair back then and was shaven clean, so he must have been bald with a beard.
Our train of thought took us to my evil counterpart trapping me in his dimension while he took over my life in our world. We started world building. Let’s say i try and purchase something in the mirror universe, i would get arrested for not shoplifting and then thrown into a nice place in the suburbs for a few months because in the mirror universe, where everyone is evil, jail is the standard accommodation. We started to think about an economy that is based around stealing, lying and cheating. My counterpart would get mad because he misses his cell while earnest living condemns me to a life of luxury in the evil realm. Soon the rest of our world finds out about the evil realm and we go to war for it.
We did not get further than that.