“Fingers of thought are raking the space behind the cushions, looking for loose ideas, finding nothing.” Robin Sloan, Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Book Store
The few weeks got pretty dark. After the fire at our venue and after Ninja the cat’s death, I withdrew myself a bit from public life and focussed on work and on not letting the tinnitus and the black hole in my chest let take over. It is silly but somehow spaces like Zentralcafé and now Kantine have become something like an exoskeleton for me that I share with others, and without it I feel a bit smaller and more vulnerable. One platform less. It is so long since I have not been passionately involved in working with others on a shared culture space and naturally it is where most of my social life is rooted, so right now I miss it like hell.
The fire at the Kantine caught us at with bad timing too – not to say that there ever is a good timing for this. It came at a moment in which we finally almost had finished moving in. The first year in the Kantine felt like at least 50% work on infrastructure. There’s so little storage space and everything is in the way, and things break from being constantly shoved from one corner to another, and there are so many compromises to make. I also find it hard to make it work as a social space because it lacks niches and corners, there’s no hallway, just a tiny foyer, so there is no space to hang and chat that is not in the loud main room. And in the main room the bar is efficient for giving out drinks but it is not the social meeting point that a bar counter needs to be in a space that is focussed on low social barriers between guests and us. The things you learn about buildings from having to make do, from practical use. But hey, we do make do! It is but an interim solution and as such it is a great place that we will keep making the best of for the next few years. Hope it will get better in our future venue though.
Back to the personal: As for the ringing in my ears and the emotional limping, well, I don’t know if socially isolating myself is the best way of dealing with it but it is what I always do when I am this far down. It makes me feel horribly visible when I go out and I feel like I can’t cope with small talk. And, yeah, well, after so many years too many people in this city’s nightlife know me, so it’s hard to have an anonymous night out dancing and drinking the sad away. And when I am like this I am bad at reaching out to people I would at least like to try to hang out with. Let’s face it: We are all bad at reaching out. As ever I am very thankful for the internet. It gives you the possibility to keep in touch with human beings even when you don’t feel strong enough for doing so in flesh. There are people I have never met and don’t even feel the wish to do so, but to whom I feel closer than to many people that regularly cross my offline way. Anyway. My life over the last few weeks was mostly working, reading, watching tv series, the occasional walk or a talk or a concert or – like tonight – cinema with friends: Eggers’ The Lighthouse.
Oh, and playing with the cute monsters that have just moved in takes up quite some pleasure time too: We got two new cats after Ninja’s death. Our first instinct was to wait a couple of months and let the mourning settle but then the waiting felt like a pretentious thing to do. So now we got Lani, a fluffy shy Siberian whose previous owner got allergic and who didn’t want to give her to breeders. While two young cats would have been easier, she is such a sweetheart that we couldn’t say no.
Our other noob is a 5 month old kitten and she drives me crazy. In the best way. She is either wreaking havoc, running and jumping and kicking invisible demons and clawing her way up and down anything, or she is the softest sleepy bundle of purr, demanding to sleep rolled up close to you. She now is named Missy after the Time Lady from Doctor Who and Missy Misdemeanour EliotMissy “Misdemeanor” Elliott. Lani has a hard time with that crazy little shit that is all jump attacks and got no idea of personal space but it’s slowly getting better. As am I.
See, now I’ve even done a blogpost. Like I used to. Even with a quote I like at the top.