I’ve been chasing deadlines the last few weeks, or been chased by them – hence the sporadic posting. I’m not going to apologize, although the words every person who’s owned a blog has typed at least a few times are right there at my fingertips, begging to be let out in groveling apology to… who? The internet? My imagined readers? The cyborg gaze of some mysterious bot passing over this part of the web?
‘Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile.’
I’ve been busy with ‘real work’, but what’s that? Work that I get money and/or recognition for. With social media feeds taking over the internet, these drawings and this website have come to feel like making music in my own bedroom – it gets me no money and no recognition. But it’s still work. It’s the first to slip when ‘real work’ takes over, but like the base rhythm to a song, I always come back to it. This kind of unpaid and unrecognized work is the foundation, the spring that never runs dry. Without the sweeping of the porch, and the sudden noticing and ordering of yellow things, nothing else comes easy.
Hold fast to the great thought
and all the world will come to you,
harmless, peaceable, serene.
Walking around, we stop
for music, for food.
But if you taste the Way,
it’s flat, insipid.
It looks like nothing much,
it tastes like nothing much.
And yet you can’t get enough of it.
From Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching (the version by Ursula Le Guin)
Antid Oto – italian for antidote – was one of Leon Trotsky‘s earliest pen names. I also love the Malay word for it: penawar. A few months ago, I started taking regular walks and making drawings afterwards as a way to deal with worry, procrastination, hopelessness, writer’s block, internet rage, and digital distraction. I’ll post a series of them here, one every other day, for as long as I keep making them.