Further to what I wrote herea month or so ago, I am going to point out to you why it is important to occasionally sit down, and do absolutely, positively nothing at all. Proper fuck-all, as Mickey Flanagan would put it.
As I already said in the earlier blog, I firmly believe that all great art comes from utter boredom, if we are constantly entertained, it will never occur to us to do anything ourselves. This is still true. However, this weekend, the weather has been pretty lovely for the most part, so I have been finding myself sat out in the garden, with some kind of beverage in my hand. Now whether the beverage has been a cup of tea, or a pint of cider, the effect is the same. Devoid of the telly, or the radio, or whatever record I would normally put on, my brain suddenly starts to work a bit better.
Equally, when I am out wandering the moors with the dog, my brain goes a little more smoothly for the same reason, however, when it is trying to cope with navigation, checking Rizla hasn’t got stuck in a hole, or started chasing sheep (or more often, being chased by sheep, the big wuss. It is embarrassing to own a sheep dog who is terrified of sheep) it is not at optimal thinking about stuff level. If one is sat, doing genuinely, absolutely, totally and utterly fuck all for a bit, then the ideas actually start to flow a bit.
As usual, this weekend they mostly flowed about things that I am not currently trying to work on, but I have redesigned the garden, figured out most of the ideas for how to rebuild my studio shed, and had a couple of excellent ideas for future reference if I try and write another book at any time. My actual book is still where I left it last tuesday night, when I last wrote a bit of it, as you can’t see a laptop screen in the sun, and if I write it on paper, I’ll just have to go and type it all in again. And I am very lazy. The summer house seemed a good idea, but when it’s proper sun, I want to be actually in it (and by in it, I mean wearing long sleeves, a big hat, and covering any other exposed bit in goth factor 5000000 suncream).
I did eventually give in to the urge to do stuff though, and one of the song ideas that has been floating around my head for months, became a fully finished, working song. Bit of paper and a pint of the appley stuff in the sunshine made all those lyrics come flooding in finally, happy times. I did try and record some stuff in the studio, but looking out of the window at the lovely sunshine made me want to not be indoors. So I stopped. I was going to get stuff done today, but then the sun came out again, and I am now looking longingly out of the window again, wondering why I came inside to write this. In fact I may stop now, as it is not that important, but I wanted to not have wasted the entire four day bank holiday weekend.
Of course, wasted is a subjective term, as I have spent a great deal of time out in the sun, chatting with my lovely wife, and several of my very good friends, I have strolled through beautiful countryside with my dog, I have drunk a goodly amount of winkleigh cider, and we cycled to the pub in Exbourne for lunch today (cycling hurts a great deal it has to be said, but I have got the hang of going up hills, so might start cycling to work now as well). All of these are good experiences, and certainly not wasted time. Worth remembering what’s important sometimes.
Anyhow, remember to do absolutely nothing occasionally, put down the remote control and stare out of the window blankly, have a bit of a sit down without listening to the radio, or anything else. Make a bit of time to be on your own, just you and your many, many thoughts, you may finally make sense of some of them, and come up with that grand plan for something you never thought you’d get your head around.
Enough of this, I’m off to the pub, it’s nice in the beer garden as well.