Not many people I know have ever heard of Clifford T Ward, those that I do meet usually know his song ‘Homethoughts from Abroad’, which I first heard Terry Wogan play on BBC Radio 2, that encouraged me to harness the force of the internet and do a ‘google search’ – notice I didn’t use the term that Google would rather we didn’t use? I mean who still says they Googled anyway?? It’s sooooo last season ;-)
So anyway, I found the website of the Friends of Clifford T Ward and discovered that Clifford developed multiple sclerosis at the age of 43 and died of pneumonia in 2001 aged 56. I bought Gaye and other stories from their site and enjoyed most of it, I got a bit depressed after a while, sad songs say so much.
I was sitting today, taking a break from organising my mp3 collection. A year ago I messed up while stoned and deleted about 40Gb of mp3’s so now, as I’m been converting some CD’s to mp3 for the umpteenth time I decided it was time I correctly labelled everything and put it in order (with the help of a great piece of software called The Godfather), in preparation for the shiny new hard drive I’m going to buy to store just mp3’s so that I don’t(at least less likely to) fuck up again! While engrossd in the art of updating my ID3v2 tags when a song by Clifford T Ward came on i-tunes playing happily in shuffle mode, I realised then how long had passed since I had listened to the album, on account of the fact that I rarely felt like listening to it all in one go, shuffle mode can be good.
The song in question was “I’m not waving, I’m drowning” the title kinda gives away the fact it’s not a cheery song but listening to the opening line made me think about something and in turn made me think it an appropriate title to this blog entry. It’s strange how the mental process works isn’t it? I mean did you really need to read this far? If you had skipped these few paragraphs and started at the next one would you notice? Would you care? I mean, how important is a title? I still have to ponder my subject headings for emails and get disappointed when I receive an email with a blank subject header or worse, “No Subject” how can you write even the shortest of emails and let people think it not worthy of a subject?! Anyway, I digress… this was the thought process that went into choosing the title of this entry. I’d been thinking of writing one for the past few weeks, more so these past few days but for one reason or another I’ve never been bothered enough to get around to it, the lack of a title was also a factor.
I recently met someone for the first time and we spent some time together, both of us relative strangers both looking for something, perhaps both unaware of what is being looked for. When we were talking I asked how i came across, no sense in beating about the bush as I missed the lesson at school that taught us how to do the whole reading body language thing. They explained that they thought I was difficult to read and because of that they considered I must be a lonely person. I shall have to re-consider asking for peoples opinions ;-) It made me think, both then and now. I knew that until a few years ago I was lonely. I had spent many years denying the fact, I travelled a little, some say a lot and knew I was doing it to cover up the fact I was lonely tho it didn’t occur to me then that if I perhaps stayed one place long enough I wouldn’t have been so lonely?
So, I don’t think the lonely part is as relevant as the ‘difficult to read’ part. This made sense, I probably am difficult to read as I’ve spent years, more than I can remember, erecting a hugely efficient system of internal walls to keep things away from myself, as well as others. After taking a sledge hammer to most of the other barricades I’ve set up around ‘me’ it seems only appropriate that I should set about this one as well and I think I’m pretty much done. As with most things it seems, fear has a lot to do with why it started but I’m slowly realising what some have known for ever, there is really not much to be afraid of, not really. I’ve been so used to being afraid of something I now no longer remember what it is I was afraid of in the first place, not the real issue, I just know I don’t like doing this or that for a reason but have never stopped to question that reason.
If I hadn’t asked my question, who knows how long would pass before I thought to pull down the wall? I’m still wondering if being honest with ones feelings is such a good idea but I figure if that allows people to ‘see’ me then that’s all for the best as I don’t want anyone to have the wrong impression of me.
So, we turn full circle, this is me, like it or not I am getting more and more comfortable in my skin. I’m not drowning, I’m waving.
And as a treat for those who have made it this far here are both the Clifford T Ward songs I mentioned earlier.
I’m Not Waving, I’m Drowning