Monday, July 18, 2016

The Evening Series : Volume 1

The Evening Series: Volume 1

Cocktail hour comes at 7PM, just as the sun is heading behind the mountain range.  It is the last moment of my sobriety.  It is at this time that I look forward to my drunkenness.   One of the things I have learned in life is that to be drunk, is better than be sober.   The straight life.  I lift my drink to sobriety as I get my dueling pistol to shoot the soberness in its face.  Which reminds me, I need to replace the mirror in the bedroom.  

I only drink the drink that French gangsters drink.   Henri Bardouin Pastis. It contains more than 65 different herbs and spices.  At least 21 of its ingredients are secret. It is a confidential matter between the supplier and the drinker.   Yet, the beauty of drinking such a liquid is dwelling in its secrets. The purity of having an edge, is when you really start feeling alright.  And I do feel right, man, right in my head.  The clothes on me are weighing me down. I’m by my self, so I don’t see why I need to wear the job uniform that one wears whenever they leave their home.   The steel framed chair feels good on my skin, and I have nothing on except my watch.  It’s important to notice the passing of time.  “My name is Bill and I’m a head case.” What song is that?  Good god, it’s 7:43 and I’m feeling a tad light headed. 

In the room, where I do most (if not all) my drinking, I have two images on my wall.  One is a knock-off print of a painting by Peder Severin Kroyer “Hip Hip Hurrah!” Artists Party at Skagen, 1888.   I like it, because it makes me happy.  It looks like a family setting, where they’re drinking champagne to toast some happy occasion.  The appeal to me, is that it’s not tied to a particular holiday or incident, such as a wedding. It can be just friends out in the backyard (nature?) and enjoying the day without a thought in their heads, of the misery that will come around the corner.  The other is an etching by William Hogarth called “Gin Lane (1751) ”.   A street scene where it is literally hell on earth.  A drunken woman who is sitting on top of a steep staircase is dropping her baby, as another is passed out drunk, with his chest exposed, showing his rib cage.  Food is not part of the Gin Lane world.  These two images remind me of the duality in life.   As I sit there in my chair, focusing on both paintings from a distance, I feel like I’m walking on a tightrope between the two works.  So, the two works of art express the best and worst, within my world.  

The duality I feel that is within me, is like a beast that refuses to go to sleep.  It rests quietly, but I’m fully aware that it's awake.  Drinking combines both parts of me, and eventually it joins as one.  The sense, of coming together, finally gives my anxiety some much needed rest.  I’ll drink to that!

- Tosh Berman (July 18, 2016; from 8:10 PM to 9:30 P.M.) 
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