Saturday, March 13, 2010

PSYCHOPOMP - CHAPTER THREE (Twitter Novel / Keitai Shousetsu)


To start at Chapter One, click here


KG’s weekdays run, almost exclusively, like this:


He wakes up around 8 am and immediately writes down his dreams. As KG has been on Paxil for several years, his dreams tend to be vivid and memorable, and he often uses them for inspiration for his work. Afterwards he fixes some coffee. It’s good coffee, Turkish, the best KG can get, but he only ever makes one French press worth. He does this because if he drinks more than this he becomes jittery and nervous for the rest of the day due to the medication he takes to control his anxiety and depression. He smokes one cigarette at this time. He will then spend up to an hour and a half online at the anxiety and depression boards he is a member of, conversing electronically to an extent with the acquaintances he has made there. He also checks the music review sites, specifically the ones centering on ambient music, to see what notice, if any, has been paid to his latest CD. He also looks to see what notice is being paid to his contemporaries’ music and notes what he may need to listen to.


Some days he spends more time online trolling for pornography. Other days, he will sit on the porch and quietly fret. If the weather is too cold, he sits in his kitchen. He smokes his second cigarette of the day during this period. If he smokes much more before he eats he finds his stomach gets upset due to the medication that he takes to control his anxiety and depression.


Around noon he makes his lunch. It’s usually very simple, a sandwich, soup, but he tries to do things, small things, to make it more interesting. Lately he has been experimenting with mayonnaise using basil and parmesan cheese or with some Asian hot sauce and crushed cilantro. Occasionally, when ambition fails he will just heat up something frozen delivered from the supermarket. He eats at the table in the front of the house and reads, or if it is baseball season he will sit in front of the television and watch Sports Center. He takes his first set of medications. Occasionally he cleans up afterward but usually leaves the dishes for days at a time.


After lunch he drags himself down to his basement studio. It is dimly lit and a residual haze of incense hangs about the place, but it is fully carpeted and reasonably tidy. The studio is littered with various electric and acoustic instruments; computers, keyboards and sequencers crowd the wooden workstations that line the walls. Microphones on arcing stands sit in a semi-circle around the center of the room like the legs of an overturned metal spider. In the middle of this is KG’s pedal steel guitar, which he usually begins by sitting and playing, purposefully or not.


The afternoon session is usually relatively short, and KG will only add grace notes to previous recordings or sketch new ideas in order that he will be able to answer the door starting at 3pm. Beginning then the mail comes, and with it new CDs, DVDs and books. UPS deliveries of new software and supplies he orders from the internet culinary houses also arrive around this time. If KG has set up for his weekly delivery from the supermarket this will arrive during this period as well. He’ll usually spend between an hour and an hour and a half unpacking, perusing, and stacking on shelves.


Afterwards he prepares his dinner which is usually a much more involved process than lunch. He will drink a beer (Asian, light) or sometimes two with dinner but never any more than that because it will counteract the medications he takes to control his anxiety and depression. When he is done eating, he cleans up and takes his second set of medications for the day. He smokes his third cigarette.


When finished he goes for a walk, usually the 2 miles down to the railyard and back. If the weather is temperate he will amble out past the torn fences and walk the blasted fields along the railroad tracks. If it’s cold or rainy he will usually stick to the road. Often during his walk he will begin to cry; occasionally there will be a reason he can cite for this, but more often there is not.


His work proceeds in earnest when he returns from the walk. If the work is going well KG will often not leave the basement studio until he is ready to go to sleep or to break for his fourth and final cigarette of the day. If the work is not going well he will return upstairs, watch a movie or listen to music and read. Occasionally he will allow himself a fifth cigarette. If he is too restless to sleep after this he will return to the internet and wrestle himself to a joyless orgasm. Often, sleep follows. Just as often it does not.


On the weekends, the schedule changes enough that KG allows himself dinner at a local Thai restaurant on Friday, a trip to the library on Saturday, and occasionally a movie in a theater on Sunday. He does not drive any longer and takes cabs into town for these three trips. This is the most his schedule changes unless some issue (contact from his record label, the family’s lawyer or his doctor) comes to bear and he is forced to make changes to accommodate it.


These are the parameters of KG’s life. They have been established over the course of several years, and they are inflexible.



Go to Chapter Four


2 comments:

tipota said...

jason, i read it over twice. what a story. geez. if it werent for the parts about the "prescribed" medication the parameters sound prettty typical of creatives
in art barrack communities who consider it freedom. because they have grant funding. or a gallery show once twice a year. or just barely make ends meet. scary. really scary.

Harmonie22 said...

I love this vivid snapshot but I think parameters are always flexible if the mind allows for that flexibility.