Under The Table and Dreaming

We went to Dublin Zoo. I met a giraffe named Sandy,
bottle-fed when she was a baby, so very sweet and funny. It was nice. But what does that really matter to the subject of this blog – to show I have a life? I guess there are a lot of things I could add in here and it wouldn’t make it any better. I use this blog to vent, to dream, to talk about the things I know everyone around me would feel as boring (nope, my friends aren’t writers). Our walks in Dublin Zoo aren’t relevant anymore. I don’t pretend to be another waste of cyberspace. They’re done. Over. Pictures and all.

So, carrying on about writing: I’ve been confused. I’ve been stressed. Even though I didn’t want to admit it, my friend Reg spotted my Dark Passenger right on. (Sometimes I think from now on I’ll have a crisis every 10 years, because he says his having one right now, in his 40s.)

There’s an album from my favorite band (ever!) called “Under The Table and Dreaming” (Dave Matthews). It’s really good, I’m listening to it right now. I think even the title of the album alone describes exactly how I’ve been feeling.

But there’s an even better song to describe how I feel, from a portuguese singer and song writer, that has described how I always felt about dreams and the hard work of chasing them. It’s called ‘Por Outras Palavras’ (In Other Words) and many artists have sang it – Caetano Veloso, Susana Felix, Mafalda Veiga… It’s a beautifully written, calm and soft song that says it all.

It’s theme focus around the idea that ‘no one said it would be easy, you convinced yourself it would be…’ and it’s even harder when you have your own self discovery turned upside down.

My husband, who doesn’t know anything about writing, says it must take a very balanced person to write a full book, that surely if the writer is not okay it will never come out right. How does he know these things without even reading books?
Anyway, he’s right. You have to focus to be able to write a novel and more import of all, you have to know exactly who you are and what are your beliefs and be prepared that if YOU change, your book will have to change with you – which is a lot of self discovery and a lot of rewriting.

And that’s where I’ve been, in the big black whole. Or , if you want me to put it along the lines of what people who know me believe is my usual, very confident, positive self: I’m under the table and dreaming.

Reading everything I wrote so far and trying to make sense of it, rewrite it and understand who the hell am I. I’m sure everyone has a crisis like this when they reach 30… I’ve heard about it. If it wasn’t trashing my writing it would trash something else, like my love life… so may as well be this.

Here’s my translation of  ‘In Other Words’:

Ninguém disse que os dias eram nossos
No one said the days were ours
Ninguém prometeu nada
No one promised anything
Fui eu que julguei que podia arrancar sempre
I was the one who thought I could always live
mais uma madrugada
Another dawn

Ninguém disse que o riso nos pertence
No one said laughter is ours
Ninguém prometeu nada
No one promised anything
Fui eu que julguei que podia arrancar sempre
I was the one who thought I could always jerk
mais uma gargalhada
Another laugh

E deixar-me devorar pelos sentidos
And let myself be eaten alive by all senses
E rasgar-me do mais fundo que há em mim
And rip myself through the deepest of what’s inside me
Emaranhar-me no mundo
Entangle myself in the world

e morrer por ser preciso
and die because I must
nunca por chegar ao fim
never because I’ve reached the end.

– –

I think the best writers kill themselves over and over again so that none of their crap appears in their novels. (Yes, writing novels is like therapy to most writers, published ones confess this all the time, the secret is to NOT let it show – how mentally disturbed we all are! lol)


3 thoughts on “Under The Table and Dreaming

  1. There’s this great quote, I don’t know who said it but it goes something like, “I like to think of myself as a drinker with a writing problem”.
    I think that portrays the romantic view of “The Writer”; troubled by demons he can only exorcise through his craft.

    Have you watched the series, “Californication”?Although my person, my lifestyle, damn it even my continent have absolutely nothing in common with the series, a friend of mine said I remind him of the writer in the series.
    OK, I like a drink more than most but I’m a shift working father of two children living in Germany, so what has that to do with a womanising successful professional writer living in LA?
    The mind boggles, perception is everything and then again it’s nothing.

  2. Yeah, I understand exactly what you mean. I don’t see the connection between you and the guy from “Californication” either.

    But each people I know has his/her own idea of who I am. People my age think I’m courageous, confident and optimist. People 5 to 7 years younger usually think I have a very old mind and should lighten up a bit, go crazy, dress more feminine and drink more. Older people think that I should grow up… and have a baby and, probably, a real job as well. Babies usually ask me to carry them and teenagers think I’m very nice and understanding.

    I think I’m neither of the above!

    lol :P

    PS: Female co-workers usually think I’m a bitch. LOLOL I don’t engage on small talk.

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