Little By Little...

I spent a couple of hours yesterday watching a Twisted Sister documentary on Vimeo. It’s the best £4 I’ve handed over in a long time. Great band and a great documentary too. You know already if you want to watch it, so let’s move on… oh wait, let me drop the movie poster in here because it makes me smile and takes me back to a more innocent time:

Yesterday was majorly productive. I put the latest issue of The Mag to bed around lunchtime so I can forget about that for a day or so - though I guess I had best start work on the next one pretty soon - and turned back to a radio show idea I’ve been working on since the death of my 'if you blinked, you missed it' podcasting idea of a few months back. Over the last few weeks I've been gathering tracks and rearranging them over and over in iTunes until I was happy I had enough material for six shows.

And now I do. With the assistance of GarageBand, I built the first show, ironed out some creases and generally created an environment in which I could pull the other shows together reasonably quickly. If you’ve never done anything like this yourself, you’ll be amazed at exactly how much time it chews up, so this was an important step. It’s probably incorrect in every way imaginable and I would hate to parade my methods in front of a producer, but hey - that sort of thing never stopped me before. Hell, I even got it together enough to find a platform it could be broadcast and syndicated from - that was no mean feat either.

I’m hoping to have a cache of shows ready to roll and grow into by the end of the month, which is about the time they’ll hopefully start broadcasting too. I’ll post an update when I know some more. It’s worth me mentioning here too that this show probably won’t feature what you’re expecting from me. Kind of, but not quite. No spoilers.

What else happened? Oh yeah… I was starting to think the book I had planned for late (very late) this year - Cities of the Dead - had fallen into a crevice it couldn’t climb out of but then, as if by magic, I got a request to head out to Warsaw. I’ve never been and am very, very much looking forward to it - that’s in four weeks time, so that will be here before I know it too. There’s work to do while I’m there, of course there is, but there will be holes in which I can investigate life for the book.

If you missed that post, Cities of the Dead is a collection of travel writing - my style. Its completion has always been dependent on getting around the planet to make it happen, so this is a big step in the right direction. I think that tips me just over half way with it.

Backtracking a little here - while I was hunting down the Twisted Sister movie, I saw a trailer for a movie called Minimalism. It’s made by the two guys who have made blogging, writing, podcasting, internet celebrity careers out of the subject. I like what they do a lot even though I think - considering they're the two best known minimalists in the western world - they still own far too much stuff. What kind of minimalist takes a hairdryer on a ten month road trip? It wasn’t even the guy who has the most hair that packed it… it was the other one... the one with something like three inches of hair! I’m not passing judgement, honestly I’m not, but really? A hairdryer? 

Anyway, Minimalism is about excluding the things in your life that are of no use to you. ‘Owning stuff’ is not ‘living your life’. That's a true and liberating fact. As I’ve pointed out before, when it comes to your precious belongings, when you die, some fucker will only come along and throw it all away now you're not looking.

I still find it a little odd that when people talk about minimalism, they bandy around figures like ‘150 things’ being a good goal to aim for. It’s not a good goal at all. It’s a lazy goal in every way imaginable. If you’re game for the actual commitment of minimalism, 50 things is a good first goal. If you can get down to 50 things you absolutely must have in your life, you can certainly get down to a fluctuating 20 over the next few months.

20 things that mean something to you. It can be done. We're not talking cutlery in the drawer, shampoo on a shelf or a toolbox under the sink. We all have lives to live and stuff to take care of - we're talking 50 items that add value to your life. Go. Go now and make room in your house, in your head and your life. It's incredibly liberating. When you've done 50, you can do 20 because you are not the accumulation of everything you have gathered around you.

You are a spirit and a soul - not a storage unit for the universe.

Everything else is just noise.

The movie looks great though. Here’s the poster for it:

Quote of the Day:

“Sometimes you wake up in the middle of the day. Sometimes you wake up in the middle of your life.”

<Yarrow Kraner>