Often when I get really depressed I turn to Nick Drake. (Not unheard of.) His music is like this to me: When I was 15, I drank a two-litre bottle of Alabama Slammer and then puked up the contents of my stomach, including bile, until I had nothing left to puke. So I dry heaved instead. I knew I had to drink water in order to feel better but I could barely get it down. So I took tiny sips. I could feel the water in my stomach, knew it was helping in it’s own special way but I didn’t feel any better. It’s the exact same thing with me, my depression, and Nick Drake’s music. It doesn’t make me feel any better but I know it’s helping in its own special way.
The funny thing is, I haven’t wanted to listen to much Nick Drake lately. This is strange for me considering he’s a staple in my music collection and has been since I first discovered him. It’s made me wonder, am I happy?
I’m really not sure about that. I’m an incredibly moody person but I’m learning to be more aware of that. I monitor my emotions constantly, acknowledge what brings me up and what takes me down. Then I carry on. At the moment, I know there are certainly things that I’m happy about, so I thought I’d take the time to list them out, for you, my dear reader. (Making lists makes me happy, but that’s not on there.)
So, here are the five things in my life that make me happy right now, in no particular order.
1. Being inspired and inspiring others
I’m working on a contract for a social services agency, where I interview their clients and hear their stories. Last week, I was called in early to do some interviews, but one cancelled. So I ended up talking to the agency’s new graphic designer, who’d recently moved from the States. She knew no one in Vancouver and was trying her best to get out there and start a new life. We talked about our aspirations, frustrations, and inspirations. As I was leaving she told me I’d inspired her. It truly made my day.
Then, I went to interview a woman who had left an abusive relationship and was nearly on the streets. (This is a very condensed version of the story.) The social services agency had helped her find housing and she said that made her feel as though she was reborn. She said her new home in Canada was small and modest but gave her new life. She deeply inspired me. It truly made my day.
2. The song “Single” by Lil’ Wayne
You know those songs that pop up out of nowhere and immediately draw you in? That’s what this song is to me. It’s sexy, enticing and even though it’s about a guy who takes pleasure in cheating on his girlfriend, I am totally obsessed with the lyrics. It’s really vivid storytelling. Plus, I get pumped when he sings, “Put your hands up if you’re single” because for the first time in a long time, I’m happy to put my hands up.
3. Organizing a salon
The other week, I was hanging out on my new friend’s front porch. Her new friend popped by and we all got to chatting. We started talking about how parties aren’t about conversation anymore. Then someone suggested putting on a salon, which were popular 17th and 18th centuries as a way for people (mostly smart people) to come together and share ideas. The thought of being part of such a thing has got me really darned inspired and excited, and in turn, really happy.
4. Dutchie my dog
Ok, I’m not saying that some dogs suck, but you know. Some dogs really aren’t anything that special. Luckily mine is NOT one of those dogs. I adopted Dutchie in January and I honestly have no idea how I scored such a spectacular creature. She’s one of those dogs who were trained in the art of cute. That’s all she knows how to do. Act cute and be cute. She does this thing where she’ll do something naughty, like jump on the bed, and immediately roll on her back so you can rub her belly, rather than scold her. It’s SO FUCKING CUTE. And I get to witness shit like that every day. I don’t think there’s ever been anything else that could make me quite so happy. My dog Dutchie = happy, happy, happy.
5. Ayma Letang and Rape Whistle Fan Club
Last year, I desperately wanted to have a writing partner. But I hadn’t a clue how to find one. Is that something you post on Craigslist? Word of mouth? Lucky for me, the universe granted my wish. I met a girl named Ayma Letang who is hilarious, creative, talented, and fearless. I knew almost immediately we had to collaborate together. And that’s what we’ve been doing. Not only is it fun work, but also completely rewarding. We started a sketch comedy duo thing called “Rape Whistle Fan Club” and we just finished editing our first video. It’ll be premiering at Music Waste. It will make you happy.