Wednesday, 15 June 2011

After This Break...

Hello. You'll have noticed a pause in transmission. This is likely to continue for a couple of weeks. if you look to the right, you'll see a countdown timer. It's counting down the hours till my girl comes. I have been frantically preparing for her arrival by falling asleep while I'm supposed to be cleaning my room etc.

I'm taking a break from...well, everything be with her. The Month of  Joy continues, albeit at a crawl. Traffic at Bigmouthery has not been since picking itself up off the floor in early 2010. So the interim report? 'We don't like joy'. Scientific huh?

Anyway, I'm off for a bit...maybe you can stay tuned for the Month of You Suck, which should build traffic back up.


Saturday, 11 June 2011

Joy - Walking the Talk.

Sometimes it's difficult to feel joy, even when you try. This whole thing was never about feeling joy all the time. Confusion, sadness, anger...they all have their place in the messy salad that makes us human. It's impossible to be happy all the time and we view with a certain eyebrow those who claim to be. Well, I do. It just doesn't ring true. I've had a few days this week where joy was not downstage centre, warm in the spotlight. The Month of Joy was never meant to promote the notion that we should be cranked up to 11 every moment. It was never meant to promote anything other than the idea that we may be able to feel more joy if we consciously remind ourselves it exists. And it does. 

Friday, 10 June 2011

Happy 50th, Kim & Kelley Deal.

Some people know her, most people don't. She is, in my opinion, the Crown Princess of Rock. If Black Francis is The Scream, Kim is The Smile. She radiates something very special on stage. See that pic up there from the second Pixies show in Brisbane last year? That ain't no light, it's coming outta Kim. Honest.


She turns 50 today. Happy Birthday, Kim. And of course, I have to acknowledge that Kim has a twin sister Kelley, who, surprise surprise, is also 50. So the musical tribute below is not just for Kim because of her Pixies connection, it's from The Breeders, of which Kelley is an integral part. 

Monday, 6 June 2011

Why JOY, Why YOU, Why NOW?


Among the tiny number of people who know of this blog's existence, the overwhelming majority have been here once, for one second, before leaving, never to return. There is only a wee smattering of people who have been here more than once, and of those an even smaller number who return repeatedly. Within that group there are the ones who are aware that this month the blog is themed The Month of Joy. As the number dwindles we find a barely perceptible speckling of people who even care about that theme. And you, barely perceptible speckling, care, most likely, because you care about me. This blog entry is for you.

Not so long back I had two separate discussions with people in the space of a few days. One person I know reasonably well, the other, not so well at all. They both made the same comment: you don't come across in person the way you do on your blog.

I wasn't all that puzzled by the comment, save for the fact that no-one had ever said anything about it before and here were two people saying it, apropos of nothing, at quite a meagrely-spaced interval. "You're so much lovelier in person," opined one quite passionately. While I thought it was a very sweet thing to say, said person was also well on the road to being sideways drunk.

The 'people who care' already know I'm not really an ogre, they know that some of the colourful language and candid opinion contained herein is born mostly out of occasional frustration with...stuff. Most personal bloggers, as with the diarists of days gone by, write as a purgative. Emotional ipecac. My own motivation for starting a blog was similarly inspired: 'People must hear what I have to say because I'm chock-full of fucking great opinions and it would be a crime not to share them with an eager and suffering world.' And all that bollocks.

So why JOY? Well, that was kinda covered in the first joy post. We seem, as a collective, to default to being bored and grumpy and jaded and complain-y and unsatisfied and unfulfilled and morose and negative and pissy and just plain fucking boring. It's boring to be on the receiving end of it and it's boring to BE it. And it doesn't really matter whether you believe we only get one life or you are one of the many who think there's something to come after we're gone, to be all those things can hardly be good for you. Or anyone else for that matter. So that's why 'joy'. I'm just trying to remind people that, if you are not eating rotten scraps from rubbish bins, walking 15 miles a day for a bucket of cholera-free-water or living in quite rational fear of death or destruction on a daily basis, you have good reason to be joyful. Getting the iPhone 4 the day before the 5 comes out is no justification for thinking that your life sucks.

Why ME? I suppose the simplest answer is, 'why not?' I've had no revelation or (cringes) epiphany. I'd previously written about not taking the simple joys for granted. Plus, it didn't hurt that some people told me my writing was not reflective of my personality, which made me think that I too often taken joy for granted. Most importantly, one particular person who often makes me rethink the way I think...made me rethink the way I think. Which very neatly brings me to:

Why NOW? There could be many reasons really, but there's only one worth mentioning. She. See that little bit of peerlessly beautiful face up there? She is not only my love, it is through knowing her that I learned what it is to love without condition and by very short extension, the meaning of joy. Her name, for those of you who don't know, is Rhonda. I have known her for 11 years, most of which has been spent physically separated by the biggest body of water this little planet has to offer. In ten days (actually 9 days and 21 hours at the time this post is published) she will be much closer. She is the reason I feel joy, not just because of her impending arrival, but because she is the one person on this planet who makes me feel as if we may be more than the sum of our parts. While I could intellectualise it down to a stub, she taught me to feel that one must look within oneself to find joy. She inflames me and she cools me and she has helped to build me into a man (I hasten to add that, through no fault of her own, that job is not yet complete). And yes, SHE is the cat's mother.

If you were after one reason why I'd love for you to spend a little time contemplating the idea of simple joy, it's only fair I share something from the deepest part of myself. My joy is she and she is my joy.   

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Not-So-Simple Monday Joy

The weekend is over and if you're one of the few people reading this you're most likely not enjoying the fact that your two days' respite is over and you're back into the grind. The well-worn path of the working week is once again being trudged. This is the time that tiny spark is needed. I'm not suggesting that seeing a note telling you that life can be a joyous thing will change the whole damn world. I'm not even saying it'll change your day. What I am saying, or at the very least hoping, is that seeing such a message amid the glum faces, advertising and general malaise may cause you to see things a little differently for a little while.

Yes, the world can suck ass, your job can slice you off at the knees and people's behaviour can sometimes make you feel as if a massacre is a good idea. But to see a random scribble suggesting that you, yes YOU, are deeper, wiser, more wonderful, more capable of joy than you have allowed yourself to realise? Surely that's worth something. Surely it's an idea worth getting behind. I refuse to believe that we are suffering from 'joy fatigue', that we are so locked into the patterns of tiresome mediocrity and banality in our days that we cant afford a few seconds to look inside ourselves and see some goodness. I also refuse to believe that, with all the shallowness and vapidity that exists that this little idea is justifiably ignored.  

This whole thing is not about the furtherance of self-absorption. It's about looking at the real good inside you and living that feeling. Trusting the truth of it. Feeling the joy of it. So that it may then flow outwards.

To those who are so jaded that they already feel bombarded by this after six days, I have only one message: I ain't stopping till June is done. It may be fruitless and misguided, but I'm going to follow through with it.

And if any of this resonates in any way with any of you, get behind it. Get behind it vocally, forcefully, actively. Let's share it with as many people as we can.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Simple Sunday Joy.

The Month of Joy continues apace. There are now 12 people, 11 in Brisbane and one in Melbourne, taking part in what I can only call an 'experiment' because I haven't come up with another word to describe it. My thanks and gratitude for those people is bigger'n a breadbox. (More...)

Friday, 3 June 2011

Joyne the June Joymakers

Hallo again. Yes, it's three days in and I haven't quit. In fact, the whole thing seems, very slowly, to be gathering a little momentum. I've had a number of people email me at and ask if they can be involved in the Month of Joy 'experiment', which is great. I also had one random person email to ask why I'd stopped swearing so much on the blog. I can only really answer that by saying it doesn't really fit the fucking tone.

I've been taking a few pics of some of the notes I've left around town, so tonight when I got home I made a little video for you all, with some hastily recorded guitar (please forgive the quality, I did it all in a couple of takes on my phone camera - yes, the audio from my N95 video camera). Here it is: 


Once again, I ask...if you find any of this resonates with you, please spread the word. It'd be great to see if any little dot-sized impacts could be made on people who chance upon a message telling them they are special, or great, or deeper than they may think they are. And if you are one of those people who find a note, please let me know.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

The Month of Joy - Update

The Month of Joy is underway. Some people have shared their simple joys on Twitter & Facebook which is really heartening. I've been scribbling away in every spare moment, leaving messages where I can. However, my path through the day is pretty well-worn and routine, so there are many parts of Brisbane I can't get to. But some of you can. If you like the Month of Joy idea, it doesn't take much to join me helping to reach more people. Y'wanna? Yeah, course you do. me: and I'll send you instructions on how to join in. It costs nothing in terms of money and won't eat into your schedule.

Together we can make a difference. Actually we might not make any bloody difference at all, but it'll be fun trying.

Please, share the links and share the joy.