Weekly Roundup 16/06/18

Not my glasses

I interviewed for a promotion at work on Friday. I know I just got one like three months ago but our workplace changed managers and I thought i might as well try my luck with this new guy.

I think it went well, I’m very poor at telling these things. I tend to know if something is a complete disaster, but any variation between ‘waste of time disappointing’ and ‘fucking nailed it’ are lost on me. I managed to answer all of the questions put before me at least, there’ve been times before where I haven’t.

I think the last proper time was when I did a skype interview for a theatre company. At the start of the interview they said, ‘If you need to think before answering, take your time, don’t feel like you gotta talk right away.’ That kinda changed the game for me. You’re still always bullshitting to some extent, trying to wrangle the specifics of your lived experience into a shape that makes sense for the role you need to fill. But knowing that you were allowed the time to work on that before you actually started talking makes things so much more comfortable.

I never prepare for interviews anyway. I’ll reread my application so I can hit the major points, I’ll check over the job description to make sure I know what I’m attempting to get myself into. I just figure if they don’t enjoy who I am in the moment, fairly unrehearsed, then I’m probably gonna be unsuited to the position in general, probably be unsuited to the work environment too.

I’ve been working on gradually feminising my presentation at work too. I mean, I’m still stuck in shirts and trousers but at least I’ve swapped them all to women’s cut ones now. Ever since I’ve swapped to a safety razor, shaving irritates my skin less so while that dark hair means some crazy beard shadow at least I ain’t rocking stubble everyday. When I had my interview I were in this great pink look, I was wearing some lowkey makeup. It’s not that my comfort is more important than my employability, the two are basically inseparable. As time goes on I am increasingly less willing to compromise.

The badder I can get, the better I’ll be.

I went to a friend’s house party Friday evening. They were hosting in their parent’s house. It was one of those places that is called Something House and it weren’t being called that outta pretension. It was like a proper stately house, there was a discussion between all of us about whether it could be called a mansion which we never got to the bottom of.

It’s garden led out onto a river and the swans of the area with their signets would walk on out over the garden, badgering us for bread. You could follow the path around to a private tennis court. The garden furniture itself that we were sitting on seemed like altogether it would have cost over a thousand. At the evening a helicopter flew overhead, apparently taking someone back home to their nearby estate.

It was beautiful. I could totally not imagine living there. Like at all. It was designed for a different time, all of the rooms were too big. All of the ceilings too high. There were a good half dozen bedrooms and they all had double beds in that covered less than a quarter of the floorspace. What? You put in a wardrobe and a desk and the room doesn’t feel complete, it’s something else masquerading as a living area, alienating and uncomfortable.

There was too much history in that place. It’s inescapable. At the doors there was a yale lock but then at either side there was a hook at at night we strung up a heavy metal chain between them. There was too much precious in that house but none of it took any primacy above the form that the building took. Everything was subsumed back into its monolithic stature.

Most people’s houses will still be there after they die. They’ll at least become someone else’s. At least have a chance at reinvention. I feel sorry for that house, it’ll never escape the grasping hands of those who wish to fetishise what it represents. It’s too far away from anywhere to be vital anymore.

While we was out there we talked about the people that we know who we though would have a chance at becoming millionaires. I managed to keep a lid on the part of myself that would start shouting that being a millionaire is fundamentally unethical and that we should seek to engage in a large scale redistribution of global wealth. Sometimes its just nice to have fun with friends.

It just struck me at that moment how broken our society is that monetary wealth is our main quantifier of success. Like, the metrics of success that I hold to my life are ones that are pretty much firmly at odds with the accumulation of capital. It’s either money, or ‘making a living doing what I love.’ and I feel that but those are goals that leave so many out in the cold.

They indicate a deeply normative way of thinking. Which ain’t a bad thing if you identify as a normative person, but then you might never realise that your metrics exclude so many from the realms of success. Your idols become as normative as your mindset. Look at all the bullshit that Elon Musk has been shooting off out over twitter the past week. It’s instructive of the narrowmindedness and idiocy that comes without being able to look outside oneself.

I saw someone writing recently that they define success in turns of their ability to live as independently as possible without leaving their house. They suffer from acute anxiety and so their goal is not to mitigate it, or suppress it, but live in acknowledgement and acceptance of the way their mind works.

I’m not sure what my version of that totally is at the moment. I’m going to explore myself some, read what more people got to say on the matter. I’m tired of letting society occupy the way I feel about myself.

I finally managed to grab some time to pick up the second monitor that I’ve been intending to get. Picked it up for a tenner at a second hand shop. My graphics card didn’t even have a VGA output so it’s currently hooked up by adaptor to a DIV-D socket which means it has this charming habit when starting up to cycle through RGB/CYMK.

It also means that I have everything in place to actually start trying my hand at streaming. I try to remind myself constantly that it’s okay to try things for fun. Not everything has to be going somewhere, and capital M Mean something. Sometimes it’s nice to try out something a little different to see if you enjoy it.

It’ll mean if I take a concerted go at it that I’ll be playing more games again, I might even waste less of my time idling, refreshing the same websites over and over. I’ve practised a few times now, not live but videoing myself playing the Spelunky daily challenges. Like it’s amazing how quickly that goes, I’ll go through a session and stop the recording and realise that’s a 20 minute video on my desktop.

That’s sorta theoretical though until i actually get around to starting. It’s already actually made quite a huge difference to my workflow. Just having tweetdeck open on monitor two frees up so much of me to actually write. I ain’t alt tabbing over, I ain’t going down to my phone. I can see what’s happening out there live and click across to comment or quote.

I can manage my website’s twitter, my personal one, keep an eye on film and video game hashtags to keep up with those hot takes. I had resolved when I first put it there that it would stay off during writing, high-minded I were worried about the distraction. Weird how we all kid ourselves, I’m distracted enough on one monitor anyway.

How I’m going at the moment is a nice medium, the distraction is present but requires zero effort to engage with. A literal flick of the head. And so long as that is the case the cost of being distracted goes down, and the engagement with the work actually improves.

What I’m hoping we’ll see in the coming weeks is an improvement in my twitter game. As I conceptualise it less as a break from work, and something that remains present alongside my work, hopefully I’ll find more engagement in it as a tool for personal expression and self-promotion.

Don’t expect the quality of my hot takes to get any better though.

That’s it for this week. my dual monitor playtime sorta got in the way of my writing and today’s killer hangover wiped out the rest. Sometimes acting like the sort of adult who ain’t so invested in the performance of ‘adult’ is fun.

I’ll have reviews coming up this week of Hereditary and McQueen. Possibly The Boy Downstairs too, if I find more to write about it than, ‘It’s very nice, but super super white.’ Work has got me on shift all week so I might not even be able to catch Oceans 8 until the weekend. You can be sure though, the second that I’m able to jump on that shit; I sure as hell will.

Imma take a moment here to pimp some of my social media things as I ain’t had a chance to in a real while.

I’m on twitter at @qftwk or you can just follow the website @grandquiet.

If anybody does anything on facebook anymore I’ll be found here.

I’m alternately taking photographs and advertising my writing on instagram, username agrandquiet, it’s actually probably the place you’ll find the most non-website related content.

Any questions can be asked on curiouscat.me, or like, anywhere. I ain’t picky.

And shit, if you’re liking this please subscribe and like the posts. I really do appreciate everything I get.

Okay, that’s me done. Have a good week y’all, love each and every one of you.


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