Saturday, October 22, 2005

Rainforest

The sky were grey and when i walked with a warm shirt that has patiently and devotedly waited for the me to use them in those cold days. just like i like it. im looking on my bare work room. because this is not a pleasant work environment, i didn't want to hang cool stuff for inspiration on the wall. in this room, which is a kind of attic with a diagonal ceiling, there is always a kind of norwegian lighting, a kind of pale sunshine and a cold feeling with light blue shades (although sometimes it can be quite hot there). nowadays, its even more norwegian. i could swear that i'll go out and find an iceberg nearby. i guess i would love it if the place im working was nicer.

suddenly i hear a faint but growing known voice. rain. i try to open the window to smell and breath that air, but the old window won't budge. i look beyond the window and i see the parched land watered. all of the buildings nearby are private and filled with all kind of vegetation, trees, and flora. among the village trees i spot some porcupines, one of my favorite trees.
on the percupine i looked and saw some moving and bright stains. they were PAROTS!

yea, parots! three or four of 'em! they were'nt of those small types either. they were probably wild ones from the rainforests. brought here as pets, flew away by chance and now live in my town and it's outskirts. feeding on whatever they can (like palm fruits that are in abundant in israeli towns because the palms are planted as city beautification on traffic islands and parks. gleaming with bright and boldly colored yellow and green with touches of deep blue, hanging and moving on the porcupine, dealing with their affairs as though they were hefty museum keepers anxious to close things and go home. i guess they were fixing their next.

there are some bats that live around here freely too and roam the nights. i guess it's part of the charm of the countryside.

--

instead of working i dwell in the easyness of writing. im happy while listening to "Selling England By The Pound" by Genesis. usually, i don't like getting back to my old progressive rock albums, but i guess this was an exception.

i was knowing the words and the tunes as if they were my memories or dreams. i shed tears on those innocent moments portrayed in tracks like "Dancing With The Moonlit Knight" and the stunning intro of "I Know What I Like (in your wardrobe)" . i get goosbumps when i hear that amazing guitar solo in "Firth Of Firth" and sail away with the lyrical flamboyance that remind me of the time i was listening to progressive rock, some years ago, when i was serving my military service. back then i would actually feed my desire for music by buying the albums with my humble army wage. i used to hear my favorite progrock albums and watch the painting of Jacek Yerka at the same time. the surreal and changing lyrics and music were very addequate to Yerka's painted worlds.

thinking about it, this album presents the rise and fall and the pathos of progressive rock. it has a strong emotional side, but alltogether a thick wall of flamboyance and bombastic aspiration that eventually seemed to be depressing. in this album there are amazing parts that are ruined by fancy-dictionary words that were gathered with no general idea at all (lead singer Peter Gabriel complained about it). there are also some badly sounding synths (mellotrons and moogs) virtuoses that really (to my oppinion) break the harmony that they sometimes achieve. if you look on the general picture, you could see a magnificent building, tore down by it's fancy, horribly detailed, heavy decorations. one of those virtuose pearls that just have to be mentioned is Peter Gabriel's unique theatrical talent, which allows him to be a british accents collidoskope and an amazing storyteller. just listening to "The Battle Of Epping Forest" makes clear what's the real genesis of those days - Peter himself. there are parts that you just dont need the music. peter fills the void with his stunning talent. in "More Fool Me" there is a kind of profecy. Phil Collins, the drummer, on a good vocal and simple (and non pretentious) love song. later to be Phil Collins, the lead singer and then the stadium filler monster and multi milioner superstar of the 80's.

indeed, a rear and unique ear candy for those who have a slightly patient ear.

Friday, October 21, 2005

A Trip to the Shire
























OUND MYSELF in a big field of peanuts and miniature 'tatoes (what are 'tatoes, master?), yummy!
while i watching Milky won't try to eat some, i picked some from the ground, broke the shell and ate two peanuts.
the shell looks like a nice yellowed straw basket and there are many of them, peeping beneath the gardenbed's earth. the field was about two football yards, and you could see people coming silently to pick some of the peanuts and 'tatoes left from the harvest. i saw two Arab women with black cloths and head dressing, two Thai workers with hats and gloves (although the sun wasn't much today), and a mother and her children with nylon bags. a horde of pigeons roamed the field for free good food. milky was indulged to chase them, although she failed to fly in order to catch them. i know that in the bible, and consequently between Israeli farmers, there is a certain kind of law. It states that a farmer should leave a small amount of his harvest unharvested for the poor to gather it straightly from the field.
although not roasted, those peanuts were tasty in small quantities (and makes you severely thirsty), and give a slight earthy taste. i suddenly had a flashback to my childhood. i experienced on eating sand when i was a wee boy. i can still remember the sand's taste. it was actually tasty, with that aroma of soil after the rain. i wasn't aware back then of worms and diseases, i was just worry-free and enjoying what Mother Earth gave me.

me and milky move on. we reach a village's small graveyard. it's a nice graveyard, full of vegetation and shade. it has this nice cuddling feeling, unlike the usual mass graves site my grandparents are buried into. those are somehow always hot, dirty and shadeless. but this graveyard had this serenity of a meditation. it's a small village on the outskirts of my home town, and there are few to be buried, and so the graveyard remains small and welcoming. i never had problems of being in a graveyard (but never had the desire to). it's living people and pain that scare me.

there are some unrecognized types (fonts) engraved on the tombstones, which make that place even more interesting. i directly could spot the known fonts, like Drogolin, Hatzvi, Koren. some of them are bastardised version of known fonts (deformed or changed a bit), some of them are old but new to me. they all have that smell of nostalgia that i love, of things that get older like books.i should go a take pictures of tombstones types some day. that should make an interesting project.

we continue walking and i can see a small nut tree forest at the distance, over the large fields. i feel it's a long walk for milky and she's tired. her tongue is waving outwards and her eyes are wide open. i know she's exhausted, but i know she likes it so much that she drags me onwards when i get tired. we walk in unknown territories, finding new paths just like Frodo (in the Lord Of The Rings) used to do before the whole adventure started. in a way, we took a trip in the shire (but unfortunately the views here are less stunning). the nature is making me feel good. i play in my mp3 player an audio book of Ulyses by James Joyce, but turns out the tracks have a sort of error and they are played in low motion, which upsets me. i was starting to enjoy it the Irish accents and the story itself. i really like audio books but i also feel as though i should be reading and taking a shortcut.

i was a little lost, but when getting out of an unknown village security gate, i realized where we were and so we returned home, happy and tired. at the end i found that we walked for two hours, way much than my usual, but I'm quite happy with it. i feel as though i filled my quota, and in addition i feel more serene and tranquil (which is the same i guess).

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Flowerbed


Here's a post I've been writing for the last several weeks. writing some sentences, here and there, collecting an mixing time segments. finally i managed to edit them into a whole post but it was deleted here somhow and i collected it again, so i hope it's okay...

'm walking along the street with Milky, my female dog and playing "The Picture of Dorian Grey" (audio book) by Oscar Wilde, smiling to myself when i stumble upon one of Wilde's witty and beautiful language pearls. he is truly a master of words.
earlier today i was invited to a family dinner at my aunt. i couldn't avoid my urge to unite that audio book universe with my boring existence. all along the dinner i looked at people attending the dinner, describing them to myself in my head, in that special way people are described in the book. especially at those fancy dinners Dorian grey used to attend. nevertheless, i couldn't arm myself with that cynical and ruthless way Oscar Wilde (or lord Henry) so perfectly describe people. i took an active part of the conversation, dropping pearls and sentences as though they written by lord Henry himself (again, minus the cynical seasonings).

overall, going to those dinners is somehow okay, though i rather be somewhere else. i guess it's a state of mind I'm in lately. suddenly, beyond the corner i see some people i recognize. they were old friends, whom i left so hastily back in the end of junior high, at the brink of puberty and pain. a man makes a move in his life. good moves make a short glory, but bad moves stick on you for a lifetime. this false move will accompany me through the lonesome high school days.
naturally, i was quite surprised. i would rather avoid this meeting. it's too painful, to see that I'm all alone and they have each other, and that i ran away and took friendship like these for granted. the first word that came out of my mouth was "all of you", like it was an ambush planned by my past. we started the casual "Hi, Bye" conversation. they asked and i said all is well, and then said i should be going. and so i left them.i felt humiliated, as though i haven't managed to get better, to show I've changed and I'm better. i failed to lose weight or show any significance of change. i felt small, fat, alone, childish, stupid. all those emotions came back to me. all the way walking in a laid back and satisfied way, as though to convince myself and perhaps them if they watched, that everything is okay. curving my lips to a forced and crocked smile, posing on an overall expression and body language of a happy and laid back man, with no worries.
a few minutes ago i was enjoying myself and smiling, but now my smile is fake, my skin is shivering as though I'm frozen, and my ears heavy and deaf. i turned the mp3 player off, walking with my dog to other routes to avoid meeting them again, and opening my eyes, should i spot this group at the end of a street.
later i came back home. i really love walking with my dog. that way i can really enjoy being in nature and alone and with her, away from the confinement of my house.

i played a wonderful movie on the DVD called "Finding Neverland" and i enjoyed it so much.Milky is sleeping besides my legs on the couch stool. i caress her and hug her, and then i kiss her on her Little brown head. i shed tears when i watched that movie, again and again. it has parts that are like my life. in similarity to the movie, people call me detached and a "floater". i float with my mind to fantastic realms because reality isn't that interesting sometimes.
i feel as lucky to be aware of that sensitive side and learning to live with it and be proud of it. there's a blooming bud inside of me, and he takes much time, but slowly its blooming and i understand more about myself. i feel exited and very emotional when i see signs that talk to my innocence, my childhood. it could be a teddy bear or a legend or a lost children's poem from the past. it makes me emotional. i feel exited and very emotional when i see something that talks to me in a pure emotional way.

i recently remembered one poem from my childhood, and was stunned to it's similarity to my present status and the my lost ability to enjoy parties. it's called "Be'arugat Hagina" ("in the Garden's Flowerbed') by one of Israel's most respected poets, Chaim Nachman Bialik. i made a rough translation of that poem that was a part of my childhood:

-------
In the Garden's Flowerbed, around the barrel,
a Cabbage and a cauliflower were about to dance.
the beetroot saw this, and so he joined
with him came Ms. tomato,
and joy grew!

(rough translation i said)
...

only the poor pea stood aside
leaned on his cane and never made a move
"how can cheer, how can i dance,
and all of my pods, they are all empty..

(I'll never make it as a translator, but i think you got the general idea)
-------

lately, i had a dream where i changed a design of a certain feature inside a train. i was discussing ( in that dream) what is the best way to design that element and it changed in front of my eyes as i was inventing new ideas. one of the design was pretty similar to a lobby, designed by Antonio Gaudy.
I love his works, he's a real genius. i saw a TV program about him a day after that dream. funny, isn't it?
although he was very religious, and maybe because religion is a strong thing, i can just feel his life in his creation. he really embeds emotion into his works... those parts, where i can feel the strong emotions coming of any art, and triggering a deep emotional response in me. i understand what the artist "talked"about, or at least i understand what i feel, because an art piece can trigger different emotions and interpretations in different viewers, social conceptions, and time.

the Fear




esterday i returned from a walk with Milky, my dog. we walked across town enjoying the cool air of the new winter that came. Milky is fearful of big dogs, so cleverly she does the opposite of what i do when i meet my fear. if she is near a big dog, she attacks that poor creature with ferocious hell hound barks, showing her teeth to him as though he ate her parents. when she starts making those scenes i can barely hold her. her frenzy berserk-like blitzkrieg attacks come in great contrast with her cute looks. she looks like a teddy-bear, but i guess looks can deceive. I remember dear Yoda saying "Fear leads to aggression..." nevertheless, she is nice and cute most of the time.

i notice that when walking with her, i also wear her fears. i discover myself to be more suspicious, avoiding encounters with people and big dogs, walking away from groups of teenagers that sit on the park benches. i become fearful like her. when we walk in new paths i always look aside, searching a malicious free village dog or just scary bugs, or snakes that will jump out of the earth.

when we came home, my little brother and his friends watched a horror movie called "Saw". i used to love horror movies, as they failed to scare me and just made a plain thrill. but now, when i heard the shrills and the horrible shouts of the victims, i felt a bit obnoxious. later, when i peeped a few times to see what the fuss is all about, i was quite appalled. there was this guy cutting his leg off, and the other guy begged him to stop. the whole scene was gruesome. i felt horrible.

although i kill virtual people in the GTA (Grand Theft Auto) game almost a day in a week, this felt just too much. no longer have i enjoyed watching people suffer at movies. what has changed in me? in the latest months my self esteem and security has dropped and shriveled. i fear more and i have more nightmares. through therapy i understand that right now I'm in a hard stage of the treatment. I'm opening my wounds and it's a hard thing to feel them opening and to look inside. i found out more about my bad sides and my good sides, my highs and lows, my rights and wrongs, my auto self destruction.

my dreams tell me about the sides in me that horrify and the challenges ahead. fear takes a form in my nightmare as cockroaches or spiders. i wake in the middle of the night, breathing swiftly. but later, when i interpret my dreams with my therapist, i understand the deep significance it holds for me. it's a battle at it's peak (or that's how i feel). there are so many things, so many lessons and challenges that are hard to deal with just by living. i had a real hard time to do communicative actions lately, to even think about going out or to answer to messages. it's not that i don't want the connection with the outside world, but things are getting more harder right now. it's a kind of survival test.

--

I went to the print house in Friday and we printed the newspaper that i designed and worked on for the past two and a half month. YAY! it was an amazing thing to find out I'm not stressed at all. i was focused, energetic (you know that energy burst before a really big fatigue?), and very positive. things turned out smoothly. i was amazed at how I'm not stressed. in fact i was more stressed in the iris (high quality print before the big print for color checks) than the actual print. the printers were nice and collaborative people. although they tried to hasten processes a little bit (it was Friday and they were due to go home when finishing our project), i could really sense that they know a lot. i added a pinch of cyan here, tried to avoid purple skies by lowering the magenta, and it came out rather good, with some beginner mistakes here and there. i really liked being there (although there were times between the plate changes where i had nothing to do). one of the printing assistant was a good music lover who really helped passing the dead time. at the end of the day, bounding was scheduled in Sunday and the first 1000 copies were due to be ready in Wednesday. it was all peaches.

ALAS! (PA, PA, PAAAAA!!!!!) we called lately to make sure things are going as planned, only to discover that the binding was referred to another binding house and thus postponed to (drums please:) Wednesday!! oh shit. well, it's so obvious, problems will occur. i should have been prepared. we got a promise but i don't feel that some of the printing house workers are reliable, and neither our bosses, so all the weight falls on us. typical but not. then - in Wednesday, the newspaper was all ready!

but again - ALAS! the print house manager stated to me in the phone that if that chimp (my term) boss of mine won't pay up, he won't get a square centimeter or a drop of ink of that newspaper. so things just linger and linger. i was quite upset. here's one of my chimp boss who had waited for his newspaper to be designed, and then when all is ready he fails to do his part in every goddamn step of the way, and so the newspaper is just gathering dust and he looses time and money. what a mutant chimpanzee!

i think the biggest revelation in these past hard weeks, was that i wasn't stressed at the print house at all. and for me it's a progress.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Happy New Nightmare

Happy new year everybody.
i know i won't have one. i just know. as i knew i won't have a happy birthday, happy Hanukah, happy nothing. how can it be a happy new year, when i already feel old from the burden of just living.
how can it be a happy new year if i hate myself, and everybody is saying that i should love myself but i cant understand how is that possible. how can i smile when I'm feeling like this face in the mirror belongs to another man, when it's too much to even seeing myself in the mirror.

this is not a "save me" post. this is just for whining.

i know things will be better, i just don't see it around the corner. in fact, it seems so blurry and faint, like an old postcard.

i woke up in 7:00 a.m. breathing short and fast breaths, so i took my notebook and wrote that nightmare i just had. i was in the lobby of my building. in the electricity board, there was a mangled truck with a corpse of a child. i only saw his hand through the glass. when i got out to the parking lot, i saw another mangled truck with a hand of a man seen through the glass. then i got with my little brother under the building again, where there is a garden and some seats made from bricks. i saw a terrible spider looking insect, about the width of a melon, and he was walking toward me. i was walking backwards frightfully, while trying to hide behind my little brother and saying something like "oi", "oi". i wanted my brother to help me, but he only laughed at me and imitated me. i tried to escape that insect, but it was jumping against the wall, and then towards me, and then i woke up, breathing swiftly.

it reminds me a similar dream i had some months ago, with cockroaches swarming over my house, and i hystericaly cried for my little brother to help me, but all he did was to laugh at me and picked some of them, shoving them (to my horror) towards me, as though we were kids.
in the normal existence i love my little brother so much, and normally i don't resent him. most of my brotherly problems are with my older brother.

all this day i had to make some errands today, shopping for good prepared food for us to eat the next days. normally i don't have no problem cooking, but my little brother prefers new bought things. i understand him, wanting to go wild. he asked for some whipped cream in a can, Oreo's, pizza and all sort of things, because our parents gave us some money and said to us to go wild. me - i don't get excited over the money they gave us. the only thing i need is some quietness and space, and i know fat greasy food won't make me feel better in the long run. i have a simple need of quiet and space, my space.

tonight we have a family gathering because it's a holiday. i didn't bought myself any new clothing. i feel so ugly and so depressed, i don't want to buy anything. mom asked from my older brother to buy me some clothes and some new shoes. and so he went and i thanked him, but i didn't like what he bought for me. one shirt and a pair of shoes. i didn't like the shirt and i didn't like the shoes too, but i was too uncomfortable for him making all this effort and me not liking what he painstakingly bought (because i know that he spends much time buying clothes, so i appreciate it). i said i like the shoes but i didn't care how they look. i just can't enjoy that anymore. i can't buy myself new clothes. i just don't care about it.
this situation makes me walking in pants bought two years ago, and i feel like I'm too neglected. not much of a help to my enormous self esteem.

this family gathering is like the last place i ever want to be in now. all this food and those horrible boring conversations, and those even more boring question about how'sit going on and what about that paper, and my nice cousin secretly offering me to smoke some pot outside (and me refusing "because I'm driving" but actually I'm so depressed i don't think it will do any good). i feel shriveled, dried up. i don't want to do anything. i just want to be alone and watch the rain who hasn't shown in our country, (and sadly by the forecast - won't appear this year too).

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Press Release

Thursday. i woke up and knew that that day is a beginning of something new, exciting, and scary. for three months i have been toiling over the designing of a 96 color-pages newspaper for incoming tourists in English. this was my first work in this magnitude, and obviously i was quite scared of messing up the whole work. during the work i have learned so many things in designing and print production.

i can't even count the numerous working hours, over times and fights with my brother and my parents that were experienced along the process. at the end of the design process all i can say that most of it was worth it, that i need some rest but overall i want more.

to my joy, my parents flied to Prague, leaving me to rest quietly before the hard and stressing parts of the printing experience.

when making the newspaper i got a job that's normally done by an entire studio. i was an art director, a designer, and a production assistant. i was even an editor for a little bit, because our editor was such a bad worker that always tried to make shortcuts and do as much work as possible. i got assistance from a freelancer woman who helped a lot, in designing and production, but in some stage, she just couldn't take any more pressure (and indeed there was) and cried to me on the telephone that she's quitting and that we are making too much pressure on her. later i was told that she had a hard time lately. oh well. i hope she feels better now, but i won't like her to be my assistant on the next issue.

there were so many things i have forgot from the time i learned in a print production school three years ago, and i had to learn it all over again. i didn't learn to make the final files closure of the files until a Wednesday.

in Thursday i was due to print the final test before the grand finale. in Hebrew, the name for the test is "heetek shemesh" (meaning "sun copy"), but I'm not sure what's the name in English. this test is a low quality print, that is printed (in the print house), cropped, bonded, arranged together and placed just like the final result should look like, so the designer (in this case - myself) could see how it all looks and to find mistakes.

i drove to "Hish" printing house in the industrial area in Hulon city. on the way i played songs on "shuffle" mode, fishing some good songs along the way. the disadvantage in shuffle is that songs are lost forever if you don't write them, as the mp3 screen doesn't show the folder the song is in. if the album details are in the file they are presented, but otherwise it's a tricky thing. i remember many good songs that are now virtually untraceable.

Mercury Rev's new album is cool, and especially that touching Across Yer Ocean.
sage Francis sends me a bomb threat over a voice machine, seasoned with the best profanity a man can think of, alongside a beautiful sampling of a happy optimistic music, played in the background.
and for dessert -


A song called "Lost property" by "The Devine comedy". it was from Orbital's "Back to Mine" album (they have a good taste)
at first i thought it was Travis, as the singers sounds the same (they do, in a Tom Yorkish kind of way).
in that song the singer describes a list of inventory, a lost property, but he does that in a way that every single item seems to have a deep and profound meaning, a sad memory for each object. it's one of the most amazing song i had the chance to bump into.

anyway - back to reality..
In my hands laid the precious cd's with the newspaper files. i bothered last night to burn the "post script" files as well as the PDF files, just to make sure i have a backup plan if the PDF files turn bad. i tend to be very scared and cautious in my work. if i think of it, the print designing for me is a scary thing. so much things could go wrong. it could be your mistake and it could be just a temporary error that dropped out of the sky just when you were closing files for print. it could be that you forgot to do this or that, or just wasn't too concentrated. that's why i tend to relate to the files as ticking bomb, and almost everything should be thurally checked. alltogether - you have to love your files too. like a child. you have to tend for them , make sure that everything is ok, treat them in a gentle, kind and patient way, to listen to their errors.

as always, this kind of event comes in a pressing time. new year's eve is very close and we want to start the print ASAP because there are many tourists now.
if the newspaper succeeds, more advertising areas will be sold, and that meens that i'll finally get my godamn sallary. my boss has no money to pay me and i only stayd because this newspaper is important to my portfolio, and for a faint promise of a sallary. and you think your bosses are stupid.

i walked into the print house and gave the files to the production assistant, while making sure the files are OK and good to go and i also gave my phone number, should anything go wrong. the pre-production department manager said that the test should be ready at 12:00 o'clock. sadly, i had no where to go. it was pointless returning to work, because by the time I'd come I'll have to go back. i couldn't even go to my grandma (from my father's side) and step grandfather because i was told by my boss that the work could end faster so i should stick around.
it was after all, a dusty and rotten industrial area. what the hell could i do for three hours? i told myself that a creative man can occupy himself in the most boring places. so i took my camera and took pictures of the interesting and rotting parts.
i returned in 11:00 o'clock to the print house, only to find out that nothing started, because the manager didn't bother to notify me or my boss that the work stopped. the print house owner gave no permission because of money problems. one of my bosses, a very stupid man, failed to make sure things are ok, and on the other hand the manager didn't notify me. i was a little bit angry because time was precious.

the good thing is that earlier that day i nagged that blockhead boss to move his ass and come around and maybe hasten the production so i can get it , make some changes and send the final result to them. so he was around and fixed the problem, and the test was due to get finalised in 14:00. bummer.

i said to myself - fuck it, and i went eating at my grand mother's nursing home. all of the time i called to make sure things are moving and there are no further problems.
when i asked my grandma if there's enough food or should we eat out, she said in a very polish way - "there's enough. come!"

i got back to the print house, hungry because my grandma and step grandfather are used to eat food that will only fill a bird's stomach with a galon of oil for every food crumb. gladly, i found out that the work was almost complete.

i returned to work, made the corrections and sent the files in a cd (because there were too much to just send in email) via one of my unreliable bosses.

it's now the weekend, and i relax and then i refuse to relax. pressing and releasing. there's just too much that can go wrong. what if they will replace the wrong pages, what if my boss fails to give them the files. should i go and give it myself? should i have sent the whole files instead of just those pages that needed corrections?

i feel (and there is much diffrence off course) that print is like delivering a baby. on the mother's view - you've done all you can, and now comes a painfull experience that could go wrong. on the father's view - you walk around from side to side and there isn't much to do but to feel anxious and to smoke another one (but i don't even smoke). i know i should watch out for what's coming and see if there are colors missing or something, but im not sure what i need to say.
it's all so new. i don't know what to do. my first child.

Sunday will probably be the day of the final battle. the pawns are ready.
The Chronicles of Vendolusia