Thursday

why the whys

Why the whys
Tie the ties
Live in peace (and)
Win the prize

mo•ti•Va•tion
Is the Question
think about
a keen sugGestion

this Goes to that
i Wear a hat
it’s How i am
i Am a cat

Live a life
not Filled with lies
Ask the asks (and)
Why the whys

Tuesday

Feedback

 

I have been asked to reflect on feedback. That is, what it is I feel and how it is I react to comments and critiques of me and my work, and why it is I feel and react the way I do.

Those closest to me know well that I will deflect positive comments like a Serena Williams backhand. Tell me you like a photo and I’ll tell you how, “I just pointed a thing and pushed a button.” Tell me you liked a song and I’ll tell you how, “…it’s all contrived make believe sounds that you don’t understand anyway; the same notes over and over in some order.” Tell me something tasted good and I’ll explain that, “I’m just a guy who added heat to someone else’s cooking notes.” I’ve had work in gallery exhibits that never told anyone about or attended even for cheeses and wine.

The same people also know negative comments are my reason to exist. I will fixate on the slightest sleight; for days, sometimes years, maybe even for the rest of my life. And by sleight, it could be something not even directed at me or even an awkward compliment. I’ve invented stuff to be pissed about. Critiques move me forward.

Education and employment feedback has all centered on how bright I am but how I wasn’t living up to my potential. Maybe I wasn’t living up to what you thought was some fake ass potential but who are you? I always felt that teachers, professors, and work supervisors were focusing on the wrong stuff, measures like numbers or profit or how to make themselves look best.

To be honest, there have also been people in my life who totally got it but thought they could trickily capitalize through labor or idea exploitation. But I have always been fairly exploitation immune. I think this is a genetic thing; a slave descendant black American trait passed from that side of the chromosome lottery.

And worse, if I don’t live up to my own impossible standards I will beat myself like I owe myself mafia money. You would think I’m keeping score (I am) or am in sort of competition (I am).

Why? I don’t really know. I don’t know the origin of my reactions. I’ve been told I’m good or I’ve done something well since I was in high school. So, for over 40 years I have received positive feedback far out of proportion with negative. But I’ve never fully trusted it. What do people want by telling me good things? Why are people even having opinions on me or my output? What if I actually believed I was good or done at something or valuable to someone? That seems so absolute and nothing is absolute.

I have been working on appearing thankful and humble when offered praise. Not that I’m not humble or grateful but I’ve found better words. I typically now grind out, “Thank-you-I-work-hard-to-do-a-good-job.” That curated and practiced retort covers just about every scenario. It beats what I said for a while, “I know.”

I do believe I have performed at a high level for a good long time. Maybe my baseline is better than a lot of people’s best. I have no way of knowing that. Or, better stated, instead of assuring that I am perceived of doing a good job I just do a good job; or, do the job the best I can and move on. When I’m working, I try to work quickly, efficiently, and quietly.

There have been positive comments I have taken to heart and held closely. And these are the words and sentiments that have shaped my life and form the basis of who I am.

I still don’t know what I’m supposed to say here. I’m a lazy slob. Half con, half fraud.

Thursday

Mixy2022

 
Mixy2022
 
 
15:01 para auriculares y cacao

 tyhardaway dot com 

The Black Beatles

 

That was an era, right? In early 2009 we were just about to launch The Black Beatles; four kooks from North America. I mean, look at that dope image. This was back when a sliver of hope remained for the world wide. Then my brain broke and simultaneously, and completely unrelated, the internet died. At least a robust, intelligent, and organically creative internet. A social media. When Social Media came it murdered all hope. Clicks and likes and influencers and emoji and AI and ads. I was wrong. I would've lost my shorts on the bet. I was so wrong. So wrong. The project never really launched.

Tuesday

The End of This Year's Slide


I have really nothing to say about the end of this year’s slide



When explained all the rituals a friend lit up like the sun and declared

“So it’s a cult built on seasonal affect disorder” (exclamation point or mark I never know)

Yeah something like that but no nothing like that at all I didn’t clearly explain

Eating popped corn and drinking tea on this shortest of the short days



While not necessarily the easiest of slides it was genuinely eventful and fulfilling

With highs and lows and real confusion and true heartbreak and sincere joy



The goal may well be to someday achieve congruity – my own personal singularity

A place of peace and quiet without all the commerce and competition

Sadly I mistakenly envisioned this future to have become something other than this

There has definitely been a pivot from production to consumption and that frightens me



People and only people who you pick and choose and you hope chose and pick you

Are the final frontier of this era of "interconnectedness" that is as fake as "the devil"



In these tiny moments when I briefly surface from this lucid slumber

In the thin air between middlespaces and alone in thought and person

With slow motion scenes replayed on loo
p

The juries never take too long to return their verdicts



I have really nothing to say about the end of this year’s slide

Monday

Spirals

 

Moved off the grid
Before there was a grid

Instant knowledge
Instant Contact
Instant karma

We had space to fail
We had freedom to thrive
We had time to ripen

Off da zoinkys
Ride our donkeys



Live to fight another day
That’s the thing the old folks say
I’m the hunter you’re the prey
It’s just my trust that you betray

Feeling like a castaway
I come for work they come for play
Oh the things we do for pay
Fight to live another way



In me more than you
Less mad more disappointed
This is my world now

2021


 

Friday

Attic Day 2021

 


My life is like no other. Yes, I realize this. I try to play it off like I'm just a dude and all that stuff, but I'm not. I always felt that to admit what I already know would make me look like an asshole. I am not an asshole. Nor can I care about a perception I cannot control. Is just is. I am only what you believe I am.

Where I am all about Field Mowing Day, Rich always reminds me of Attic Day each and every December. I appreciate that more than he'll ever understand. We invented that in like 2005. It works. We invented so much. And I have to believe we will invent so much more.

What is Attic Day? I don't know. I'm finished explaining everything. It's all here already. It's all everywhere. I've already done the work. I've spread a pandemics worth of breadcrumbs of clues everywhere. So if you don't get it by now, that's really not my fault. I don't know what to tell you.

I have learned so much this year. If I were to step back for one hot second, I might declare it one of, if not the, most significant year of my life. 2021, goddamn. It's doesn't matter why. I'm telling you it was. I learned about people. I learned about me. I told Rich that I should Barry Sanders this shit and and go out on top. I could walk a legend. Will I? I have no idea what I'm doing for dinner tonight, how would I know what I'm going to do next? I predicted none of this (while I predicted it all, doy). This year made me happy, sane, alive, and engaged with the world.

Today I received this album on vinyl. Finally. I was talking to a very dear friend on Monday and realized I didn't own it on vinyl (I looked). Turns out it's hard to get and expensive. I found it. I reviewed it here a long time ago but never fully invested. I'm invested now. I really do not care about your tired Spotify Wrapped summary. I can't make meaning out of that corporate propaganda. I curate this. I own this. I accept this. I welcome judgment as much as I ignore it. This record makes me happy, sane, alive, and engaged in the world.

I saw a Skyline today. It was making a U-turn by the noodle shop where I was going to meet Hoff for some ramen. I've had a lot of ramen lately. I followed it because it was parking. OG JDM right-hand drive. The kid got out on the sidewalk. I said, "I bet people are always taking pics of your car." "Only those who know," was his spot perfect answer. I respect this kid. We chatted a little and I took two pics. Was later asked if I was a "car guy". I had a hard time answering that. I like what I like without too much influence. I just like what I like. I would drive that Skyline (or this one). This car and interaction made me happy, sane, alive, and engaged with the world.

There are so many amazing people in my life. To feel loved, accepted, and valued is humbling. I can't even express the gratitude and astonishment I feel all the time. Some of you know how I feel about you because I've told you how I feel about you. I guess I'll have to do a better job letting the rest of you know that you made me and you made this life. I guess, maybe, I can just do a better job in general. Yeah, I do pretty well. But what if there is a better? Imagine better. I know I can do more. And therein lies the magic; I can do better. Will I do more? I honestly don't know. But I will continue to pursue being happy, sane, alive, and engaged with the world.

Thanks. Happy Attic Day, friends.