Pardon me while I have a moment.
I am overwhelmed by a concatenation of thought and emotion, of restrictions and limitlessness.
The only words sung in this excerpt come to me on occasion in the predictable situations of frustrated impatience. It’s one of my very favourite musical moments from one of my favourite pieces of music (and you can and should go listen to the entire Green Typewriters suite right now if you haven’t had the pleasure - my prattle can wait), a brilliantly cheeky skewering of the preceding ten minutes of the song, which largely consist of ambient drones, dripping water, and the sound of jets passing overhead. But then, oh - enough of the arty bullshit, here’s this beautiful guitar solo. Which is all well and good, but something about that line sticks in me like a shiv - “how much longer can I wait?”
Not in the grocery store queue, new album release, departure date sense… waiting for a fixed point in time to arrive is easy enough. For years I have felt plagued by a sense of waiting for my life to happen. Waiting, not for the day I get my shit together but the day I wake to find my shit has miraculously assembled itself and is awaiting my first step into a newly realized life. Perhaps it was even excusable at one time - I was once considerably more crippled by self-doubt, anxiety, depression, intense shyness - but most of these problems have receded into the past, not entirely gone but no longer the demons they were. Yet here I find myself, immobilized in the face of possibility… wondering at life in a world overstuffed with lovely people, fascinating art and ideas, staring uncertainly at the shit I have managed to get together - a perfect circle of friends and acquaintances who I feel far too distant from; a promising band which I barely put any effort into outside of obligatory band practices, a music writing gig I was thrilled to obtain and have utterly failed to produce a finished piece of writing for. Even this Tumblr, an address I’ve owned for at least a year, and created with the intention of cranking out first draft pieces as writing and thinking practice, has languished until today.
It’s too easy to whine about the time I have to waste on meaningless employment just to keep going, and how that poisons even my free time with exhaustion - this is life. Perhaps someday I will live free from the confines of working life - or at least, work that gives me anything less than complete fulfillment - but those days are far off. I’ve been reading a lot about Buddhism of late and one of the things that has stood out to me most is the idea that we create our own unhappiness by preferring to dream of distant oases of idyllic living rather than confront the reality of our day-to-day existence, that the future and past are irrelevant and all that is real is the eternal now, and this inspires me to act. It’s so easy to waste time, to fall down a rabbit hole on the internet and suddenly come to and wonder where the last four hours went… it’s so easy to turn the alarm off and sleep and sleep until I can’t stand it anymore and get out of bed irritable and still somehow unrested. There will be no resolutions, idle words in the heat of the moment, soon to be forgotten. But still, the question lingers - how much longer can I wait?