7.00 am: Fixing my feet to the bedroom floor was the first challenge. The nausea and weakness returned. Today was for sitting at my desk in the warm, undisturbed, supping tea, eating occasional squares of dark chocolate, and being charitable to my body. 8.15 am: A communion. 8.45 am: I completed the admin for yesterday’s teaching and research before determining what could be achieved today. Whatever gets done on a ‘sicky-day’ is a bonus. (‘Sneeze!’)
A reflection on death in the midst of life:
The conference descriptor: Am I a ‘sound artist’ or an ‘artist who uses sound’? Neither term sits well. The former could suggest that there’s such a thing as an ‘unsound artist’ (which would suit me far better); the latter is ponderous. Besides, I’m far more than either. I’m also an visual-art historian, sound-art historian, visual artist, writer, artist-guitarist (as distinct from a musician), tutor, professor (whatever that means), administrator, Christian, Anglican (with Baptist leanings), father, husband, relative, friend, member of a church congregation, European (still), British (I’m ashamed to say, these days), and South Walian (which has always had greater significance for me than the denotation ‘Welsh’). I’m also, at times, inconsistent, inconsiderate, inattentive, insufferable, incorrigible, inflexible, and indecipherable. So say those whose opinion I respect most. I’ll not demure. My own self-estimation is decidedly more severe. (In the background: Joni Mitchell’s Turbulent Indigo (1994) and Taming the Tiger (1998).)
11.00 am: Having added a few sentences to the paper, I began designing its Powerpoint and accompanying logos. The endeavour matched the measure of mental clarity that I’d at my disposal today. Having completed The Aural Bible trilogy, the series appears to be moving on regardless:
In contrast, The Pictorial Bible series ended decidedly with the third exhibition. On that occasion, I’d played an endgame. The works had answered the question that was set them. Anything made after that realisation would’ve been superfluous. Which is not to say that the series is over forever. A new game may yet suggest itself. But, for the moment, ideas are presenting themselves in terms of sound alone. And with that I’m content. 3.10 pm: The weather became unstable again:
4.15 pm: Several of my academic colleagues in the university are suffering symptoms like mine. I paused to take stock of my own condition. I should ease up tonight; tomorrow will be the most demanding day of the week. 5.20 pm: Dinner preparations.
7.30 pm: For the remainder of the evening, I worked in second gear on easy things that hardly mattered.