02 February, 2008

Journal 008 (or The Candlelight Journal)

Feb 1, 2008 ~6:20 AM

Tonight has been very exciting. I am now writing this note by hand(!), and by candlelight. It is very romantic, indeed. There's just something appealing about the natural light of a flickering flame, that the ultra-bright coverage of an electric bulb just can't capture. It's organic, it's living, and it's a lot warmer, psychologically. Anyhow, the only time a candle can truly live up to its reputation is when the power goes out, as it did almost an hour ago, at 5:37 AM. No electric hums, no colored LED's, just quiet blackness interrupted only by a flickering flame.

I had just finished having a snack before the power went out. While I was sitting at the kitchen table, three times the light flickered - but even then, I didn't think they'd go all the way. I had just got up to my room when everything went black. It was quite chilling, as you could expect. But power outages are always so very thrilling, and I welcome them always. Lucky for me, I was standing right beside where I had my flashlight sitting - the kind with an electromagnet that never needs batteries (you just have to pump it up) - so there was a minimum of stumbling around in the dark for me.

Ironically, I had been lighting incense and candles earlier for my Imbolc rituals, so I was prepared to fire up my cinnamon candle for backup lighting. It was pretty neat taking it into the bathroom with me to brush my teeth. I grabbed my katana for defense, which I usually do in situations like this, when I get the sense something may be out of place (it's never serious, but better safe than sorry), although I was pretty confident the power outage was due to the weather conditions.

It rained steadily during the middle part of the night - though, looking out at the trees, which appear to have a coating of sleet (granted, it's hard to tell in the dark of night), it was probably more ice than rain. At 3AM, I tried to go out on the porch to commune while it was still raining. I had put on my ritual cloak, and my faerie amulet. As soon as I walked out the front door, even way under the roof of the porch, I was already stepping on wet ground. And it was cold, too. I laid down the towel and tried lighting a candle. I used the last two matches in the matchbook I brought with me, and they both died. I realized things weren't working out, so I took my ritual inside. At least it was nice to have the rain pouring soothingly onto the roof.

On an only vaguely related note, this may be a coincidence, but I discovered that keeping my door closed significantly helps to keep my room warmer than the rest of the house. I hope it's not just a coincidence.

Earlier today, I was playing with my bondage rope, and I think I finally worked out a pattern that avoids running through the crack of the ass - which, quite frankly, isn't my idea of welcome stimulation. And the rope I have is long enough to also tie off the ankles or, alternatively, the wrists (if I weren't practicing on myself) - and maybe even both if used efficiently!

Anyhow, while trying out my new pattern, I came up with an idea for a photo-op depicting a modernized version of the Eight of Swords tarot card, which I sympathize with. I would've jumped on it, but for the trouble with shooting myself. I keep finding myself wishing that I, at the very least, had a tripod to set up and steady my camera. Up until now, I've used a very ingenious, but very restricted, trick for shooting myself. It turns out that if I hang my camera sideways from the pullstring for the light, hanging in the center of my room, I can get the camera to point right at the door, perfect for a full-body shoot if I stand against that wall. As you can see, this is very restrictive. So I finally ended up buying a cheap (talkin' 5 bucks here) mini-tripod that I think will work with my digital camera, so I can see if it makes a significant difference.

(Uh-oh, police sirens!)

And I'm still pissed about the battery situation. Am I the only person who thinks the hassle of rechargeable batteries isn't worth the advantages? Alkaline batteries can only be used once, but they're ready when you need them. Maybe there are quicker chargers, but if I want to use my rechargeable batteries, I have to wait 8 hours, and by then, the inspiration/opportunity is long gone. Do I have to recharge my batteries every day, just so that they'll be ready when I need them, even if I don't use them for weeks at a time? Don't rechargeable batteries gradually wear down the more times you recharge them? Or am I mistaken, and are they immortal? I can't find anyone else who seems to have these problems, so I'm starting to feel like I'm doing something wrong.

That rant's just about killed my wrist, so I better wrap this up. I can't imagine what it was like before people replaced writing with typing - even though I was alive long enough to experience it. Writing has always been painful - physically in addition to anything else. And I just can't write as fast as I think - so I push myself to write faster and faster, and I just strain the muscles in my hand more and more...

Well, my last point is that it is now February, so the RPM Challenge is on. I start working on my project tomorrow! I'm registered under the name "Eight of Swords". For inspiration, I put on my ambient station on Pandora - which I haven't listened to in a long time. Good stuff. I'll probably listen to it a lot this month to keep my mind in the zone, and constantly hearing new stuff, getting new ideas. I hope my project turns out well.

Well, it's quiet now - very quiet. I hope the power comes on eventually, or else I won't have the distortion and feedback I need. But it could be hours. Not much left to do, so I should go to bed. For once, I'll enjoy a natural sleep with no lights at all (except the dim light that'll creep through the blankets as the daylight grows), and no sounds to disturb me (especially not the super loud fan on the computer!). I just hope I don't oversleep, without having the alarm set. If the power does come back on before I wake up, it'll probably wake me up then I can settle things before drifting back to sleep. For now, I'm not gonna worry about it. I'll just enjoy the rare electronic solitude. And so, I will now blow out the candle and crawl under the warm covers of my bed. Good night!

1 comment:

  1. It was kinda sad to see how dark my room was when the power went out, because I really do hate all those little electronic lights that come from the stereo, VCR, digital clocks, telephone, all kinds of things. They're really irritating. But there's no viable way around them. But when the power was out I saw how nice it should be all the time... Perhaps I shall have it back some day.