Sometimes, an artist steps out of their usual role to work for someone else, and their own creative impulses bounce against exterior constraints to create some of their most interesting work.
Graham Coxon, formerly of the band Blur, was tasked with creating a song for the Netflix series I AM NOT OKAY WITH THIS. This is the song he wrote and recorded. Then he just kept making music, putting together a whole album for what should have been a fictional band. Check out also Vanilla Skin and Bloody Witch, and the whole rest of the album, too.
One of the problems people are having with the quarantine guidelines is that they’re going stir crazy with the people they’re quarantined with. Over at The Social Distancing Project, people vent their stories of stress, heartbreak, revived romances, and petty grievances for you to… enjoy, I guess? Some are sad. Some aggravating. Many are funny.
It’s a bit like a COVID-19 edition of reddit’s relationships group.
Being cooped up with my wife and son has added very little stress to my life, to be honest. My wife is a kind person and always has been. She’s considerate as a reflex, and is mellow when I’m upset or need space.
I make an effort to be a kind person because I fell for her, and I realized that my old habits–basically, that I wanted to make people laugh and would do anything to get that laugh, even say cruel shit–were poison to her, our relationship, and to me, too. When I realized how much she hated humor based on shock and cutting remarks, I also realized how toxic it was to me.
It’s hard to talk about how much importance I used to put on making people laugh. It felt like a connection, but one where I was both the one in power and the one who was doing a kindness. It was a sort of competition with the world to see who could get the most laughs with cruelty, but without crossing over the line where the laughs stopped coming. And the only way to continue in that wholly made up competition was to pretend I couldn’t see the way peoples’ faces looked when I hurt them. And when I couldn’t pretend anymore, those hurt feelings became part of the game.
Anyway, I’m glad I stopped doing that, even if I miss making people laugh.