Weekend roundup: 01/04/18

Been on every level of the auditorium

Sorry I ain’t managed to get many reviews up this week. All my commitments seemed to land at once and it’s Saturday evening right now, the only chance I’ve had to write since like Tuesday. At least I caught Unsane the one evening I spent without commitments, I think I love it more than the four stars I gave it, it got a slow start but everything that happens once the stalker turns up had  me in tears in the theatre.

It did mean that there’s literally no theatres in my area that is still playing A Wrinkle in Time. I mean, they were only giving it daytime screenings because of the half term but it’s also my fault, shoulda prioritised the thing. This is the highest budget ever afforded  to a black woman director, record breaking, and those trailers looked gonzo. Now it’s just gone, I should do my due diligence when it comes out on DVD.

Letterboxd is telling me that I ain’t watched any other films this week. I can believe that I’ll be out at the cinema tomorrow, no better way to spend an Easter Sunday, and despite everything work has given me the Monday off too. Gives me time. There’ll be a better posting schedule next week, I promise, more time for self care too.

I met up with some university friends early on in the week. We’re working on a project together, nothing that will be realised digitally, we’re all actors in some sense or another, it’ll be happening for a week on a stage in the real world. I forget when I’m away from that world how giddy it can be to produce work that you’re passionate about. I constantly fear that I have no ability to turn that into meaningful action. Being around talented people does that to me.

I am amazed by their ability to make the right decisions, in their lives. Their ability to embrace the struggle and persevere through it. It’s not even that I am grinding against their success, It’s that when confronted I simply melt. Part of me has this self perception of confidence and power, bit I don’t think I ever took the reigns of my life. At some point everyone else let go of them and I can only wonder why my stagecoach ain’t run off the trail.

I’m sure I’ll just follow the path of least resistance the rest of my life. Someone slap me and say that happiness is more rewarding than comfort.

The middle of the week was dedicated to family. Forgive me if there’s shit too delicate to discuss here,  I might try to be open myself but other people’s secrets have always been easy to keep. Whatever, it’s particularly stressful around here at the moment and it just so happens that the house is full again for Easter. I was cooking for earlier this evening and fifteen minutes before everything was ready everyone piled in and the kitchen turned into an emotional place. I wish that I don’t have the reactions that I do sometimes. I can’t help but shut down.

My uncle visited us of an evening earlier in the week. Our grandmother is spending the bank holiday with him and his side of the family. He’s like now officially semi-part-almost-retired, which means he’s just setting up another business that he can run on his own terms because the guy literally does that as a hobby. He seems much happier for it too and envy the fact that he cannot help but be drawn towards his goals. I like to see him doing good, hope my aunt’s okay too.

We’re taking the additional hands and time afforded us this weekend to clean up my grandmother’s house. Spent a sweet four hours this afternoon scrubbing and disinfecting every surface in the bathroom. I dislike cleaning, everything takes so long and is way more tiring than you expect if you want to actually get something shiny. I like things being clean though.

I’m still trying to find that balance in my body. I remember when I was in university was a part of the gymnastics society, couple of times a week, workout clothes, a  lot of body hair. I wanted to shave it, it might not have been super unsightly but I know I was strongly against it. For whatever reason I couldn’t countenance the though of altering my body. As though it were something outside me, unnatural. I’m glad I’m past that, unloosed physicality is empowering, I can define my own way of being.

I only don’t shave all my body now because I’m too lazy. But when I get sad and just go to town: boy, it feel so fucking good.

Friday evening I spent with friends playing video games (note: two words) on stage at a theatre in a nearby town. I weren’t performing at all, it were just some sorta event where a bunch of games were set up and the attendants were given unfettered access. Like, the games were something, sure, but this were an actual theatre. the exhibition spread out backstage, understage, changing rooms.

Like, this place hosts proper touring companies. I seen proper professional companies fill this space and got to wander around in the dark areas, check out the rigging. It always more interesting when set but I ain’t stared up an auditorium so large ever. I try not to dream but fuck it, holding an audience so grand would be sweet.

As for the games, like they had everything from a 1976 Binatone TV Master running Pong onwards. I put some pictures up on my Instagram, I got to play Pitfall! on an Atari 2600, Manic Miner on a ZX Spectrum, Tron on a Mattel Intellivision. There’s something about these old consoles even more so than the games themselves. Artefacts of a medium still trying to figure itself out. How rude all the controllers feel in your hands, a constant physical barrier to engagement, and yet the very basis of engagement itself. You’d think that games would be over their preoccupation with the contradictory nature of interface, but it’s something so many investigate, maybe we’ll never get over it.

This was my first time in a while existing in an exclusively nerdy space. It was the sort of thing that I had pictured myself doing all the time when a kid. I became my hobbies as a kid. I travelled and went to Eurogamer Expo in London as my first youthful escapade to the capital. The online friend who I had planned to meet there wasn’t allowed to come by his mother, shame  he was one of the few from that community that I’d have had the chance to actually meet,  they were mostly American and now we have all but lost contact.

What struck me was how alien I felt there, among the other attendants. I am not the nerd I was, or maybe I just reconciled it with the other parts of myself. Probably I was judging the character of everyone around me, or at least.  These are always guy spaces and now I feel myself not that, the very nature of it feels strange. I don’t know what, or how, else to be, just gotta start living.

Speaking of, as I’m writing this it’s transgender day of visibility. That’s me. I don’t my part. I’m trash. I literally just hit the two year anniversary of being recommended to a gender identity clinic in this fucking country without a single professional seeing me. I just want the goddamn help I deserve but everyone so scared of my existence that I just gotta sit here.

Y’all know that nobody even tells you how they get in touch? Every moment frantically checking at this point, letters, emails, texts, answerphone. I know that if i miss whatever they send me I’m back out on my own again. I’ll probably end up taking holiday leave to get to my appointments.  All because they wanna be doubly sure that no cis folks make some sorta terrible mistake.

I’m exhausted by all of this.

I know a girl who I went to school with who’s been self-medicating. I’ve been assured it’s dangerous and expensive and illegal. I’m sure someone somewhere get’s a kick out of this, marginalising my and our-selves until we are forced into being criminal in order to self-actualise.  Fuck them. Fuck me. Fuck all this goddamn fucking bullshit. My existence is fuelled purely by spite.



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