Some of them were my fault and some weren’t, but that isn’t the point. The point is that I refused to take anti-stress medication because big boys don’t do that sort of thing, and many was the night when sleep didn’t drop as easily on me as it did on the lucky old conformists out there. And so there was many a night when I would have to get up in the early hours and find something to do that would calm my mind. I had two favourites:
1. Go into the kitchen and clean everything – thoroughly.
2. Go into the studio and make an attempt to be creative. It usually involved spray-painted bottles and variable focus techniques for some reason. (You’d have to ask a dozen psychologists to explain my fixation with painted bottles and variable focus, and I expect you’d get a dozen different answers. I never bothered.)
Needless to say I never was creative in any meaningful sense, but it’s easy to believe in one’s creativity in circumstances like that. And so I did – at the time. Later, I had a couple of them printed up to remind me of happier days and the nature of delusion. This is one of them:
I got through. It only lasted about fifteen months until I sold the house and moved in with The Other Woman, and then there were more interesting things to do at night than clean kitchens or photograph painted bottles. For a while…