Thursday, 1 March 2012
On the challenges of (in)direct communication
On days like these you tend to notice the awkward, vocalised, public sharing of intimate details. Witness: standing apart as their uneasy alliance purposefully marches in time to a beat unrecognised; clutched shopping bags in outstretched twenty-something limbs that keep their tentacled hostility at a bridged, safe, distance. This is Argyle Street at dinner time, yesterday, and although the physical space is paramount - 'The Silent Lanaguge' (1959) - the raised voices keep them locked together, but divided in domestic battles. Others passing by watch and listen for the hurt accusations to fly and the emotional retaliations to shoot back. It's another kind of Soap Opera. The children stare and are, no doubt, reminded of unhappy times past, in a different kind of life. Assorted scraps of information are thrown out like manipulative hand grenades; 'Aye, but you said you never spent that money...' and 'No, but, it wisnae like that, it was a certain thing, eh...'. You can imagine the crippled - 'Oh poor me!' scene. She was right, he was wrong. Unworthy crimes and situated errors of timely consideration; a lack of direct and easy-to-hear communication. There is an aggressiveness evident amongst the non-existent passivity. And then, another scene, on the train between High Street and Partick, a young indie-couple with similar issues, going out for the night by the looks of it. Young, in love and together, at least until the next episode of 'Hollyoaks' is shown; his concern with a distanced baby daughter (and ex-partner) and her concern for an active, coupled-up, social life. 'But I thought you were getting her that day, what about us...' and 'No, I didnae say that, it's a Wednesday and I cannae go out then as I need to do the Nursery run in the morning.' Forced connections, unhappy splits fill the air of this carriage that can't be escaped. The 'stuff', and times, of our cultured lives I guess. The former couple will, no doubt, be together until the end of time... whilst the latter couple, well, they will break up sometime next week, before the storyline gets the chance to fully unfold. But who can tell, really. It's a game for fools, indeed.
"The very life..." - in other events, and in case you were wondering, my (new) job is safe for at least another three years, I can remain in Glasgow, within the technological bosom of my current employer. I'll be heading up the new Graduate School in the restructred Faculty, in an Associate Dean kind of way (again). I am both grateful and relieved, not to mention a tiny bit wary and scared. I can happily live without another job interview for a very long time though, I must say. Jim - you can have your purple tie back now - it did the job just fine. :) Ta.
Eduardo Niebla and Antonio Forcione - 'Celebration' (6.19)
Sublime guitars, passion of the soul. Not a word is spoken. Edward T. Hall would surely approve.