Quirky Voices Presents

QUARALOGUES - 4 - OK2BOK / SAFE / HOPE / YESTERDAYS TECHNOLOGY TODAY / THE WALL / LIVE!

December 31, 2020 Sarah Golding / Caroline Holmes / Isabelle Lee / Fiona Mackinnon / Aaron Clark / Tina Daniels / Julie Hoverson Season 1 Episode 4
Quirky Voices Presents
QUARALOGUES - 4 - OK2BOK / SAFE / HOPE / YESTERDAYS TECHNOLOGY TODAY / THE WALL / LIVE!
Chapters
1:22
IS IT OK TO BE OK By Caroline Holmes
9:51
SAFE By Isabelle Lee, VA-Tina Daniels
19:28
HOPE By Sarah Golding, VA - Fiona Mackinnon
27:45
YESTERDAYS TECHNOLOGY TODAY By...someone VA - Aaron Clark
39:32
THE WALL By Julie Hoverson, VA - Tina Daniels
47:32
LIVE! By Sarah Golding
Quirky Voices Presents
QUARALOGUES - 4 - OK2BOK / SAFE / HOPE / YESTERDAYS TECHNOLOGY TODAY / THE WALL / LIVE!
Dec 31, 2020 Season 1 Episode 4
Sarah Golding / Caroline Holmes / Isabelle Lee / Fiona Mackinnon / Aaron Clark / Tina Daniels / Julie Hoverson

Helloooooo and OH WE ARE ON THE CUSP OF A NEW YEAR!
Who's excited?
I AM

ALSO
ITS MY BDAY IN 2 SLEEPS
HUGELY EXCITED TO SHARE T'NEW WRITING AND A FRANK SPENCER IMPRESSION TODAY. (Apologies in advance)

All voices, alllll writers in todays ep are FAB, FANTASTICAL and A-TEAM AMAZINGGGGG, , and you can find all the links they gave me to their wares HERE ON MY QUIRKY WEBSITE. 

The writers and performers on this episode are:

  • IS IT OK TO SAY I’M OK?                Written/Performed by Caroline Holmes
  • SAFE By Isabelle Lee                         Performed by Tina Daniels
  • HOPE  by Sarah Golding                 Performed by Fiona Mackinnon
  • YESTERDAYS TECH TODAY        By Sarah Golding Performed by Aaron Clark
  • MY WALL by Julie Hoverson       Performed by Tina Daniels
  • LIVE!                                                           Written/Performed By Sarah Golding 

Allll music - yes all - was made up by me on GARAGE BAND - had reet fun with the basslines!
Sound effects can be found listed on the QUIRKY WEBSITE and are from the brilliant FREESOUND.ORG

Please do feel free to contact the talent herein, or enjoy their shows  by any means possible, and feel free to say you enjoyed their works = it doesn't take long, and I know will go a long way in lifting these brilliant creatives, all of whom I admire and am inspired by SO MUCH!

Thank you to returning performer Fiona Mackinnon and new voices to this show, Caroline Holmes, Aaron Clark (yes! Bitchin freeze of OZ9!)  and Tina Daniels (YES! WILDER OF Moonbase Theta OUT!). I am very lucky to know such brilliant and talented humans - please employ them all for their audio vocal awesome. I was lucky enough to have more winning scripts sent by Isabelle Lee (her first submission!), and Julie Hoverson and hope they make you think! There are useful links to the podcast subject matter in the quirky website for further reading, help, or advice.....
 
PLEASE DO pass on this podcast and the links to folks so it gets ears on it / in it. If you feel so inspired to create as a result of listening - creating a monologue or poem in response, or a review, that would be AMAZING and we would LOVE to hear from you! Might even perform them on a future ep! Ping all doooo to [email protected]

I can only give these contributors so much - If you feel so inclined to help me make more of this kind of project, feel free to join my lovely amazing supportive band of PATREON SUPPORTERS HERE - I also have a ko-fi account here. For as little as a dollar a month you will help me get more funds to pay more folks to make more groovy Quirky....(and I oft share eps early, ping new original scripts and give discounts on courses and more!)

I do mention before a few of the performances, to take care if your mental health needs more support right now - if you would like to read the transcripts of the monologues themselves please click here

Happy Listening from my tier 4 house...AND A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Hope tis fun filled and joyous and healthy... 

Sarah Golding
Quirky Voices

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/QuirkyVoices)

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Helloooooo and OH WE ARE ON THE CUSP OF A NEW YEAR!
Who's excited?
I AM

ALSO
ITS MY BDAY IN 2 SLEEPS
HUGELY EXCITED TO SHARE T'NEW WRITING AND A FRANK SPENCER IMPRESSION TODAY. (Apologies in advance)

All voices, alllll writers in todays ep are FAB, FANTASTICAL and A-TEAM AMAZINGGGGG, , and you can find all the links they gave me to their wares HERE ON MY QUIRKY WEBSITE. 

The writers and performers on this episode are:

  • IS IT OK TO SAY I’M OK?                Written/Performed by Caroline Holmes
  • SAFE By Isabelle Lee                         Performed by Tina Daniels
  • HOPE  by Sarah Golding                 Performed by Fiona Mackinnon
  • YESTERDAYS TECH TODAY        By Sarah Golding Performed by Aaron Clark
  • MY WALL by Julie Hoverson       Performed by Tina Daniels
  • LIVE!                                                           Written/Performed By Sarah Golding 

Allll music - yes all - was made up by me on GARAGE BAND - had reet fun with the basslines!
Sound effects can be found listed on the QUIRKY WEBSITE and are from the brilliant FREESOUND.ORG

Please do feel free to contact the talent herein, or enjoy their shows  by any means possible, and feel free to say you enjoyed their works = it doesn't take long, and I know will go a long way in lifting these brilliant creatives, all of whom I admire and am inspired by SO MUCH!

Thank you to returning performer Fiona Mackinnon and new voices to this show, Caroline Holmes, Aaron Clark (yes! Bitchin freeze of OZ9!)  and Tina Daniels (YES! WILDER OF Moonbase Theta OUT!). I am very lucky to know such brilliant and talented humans - please employ them all for their audio vocal awesome. I was lucky enough to have more winning scripts sent by Isabelle Lee (her first submission!), and Julie Hoverson and hope they make you think! There are useful links to the podcast subject matter in the quirky website for further reading, help, or advice.....
 
PLEASE DO pass on this podcast and the links to folks so it gets ears on it / in it. If you feel so inspired to create as a result of listening - creating a monologue or poem in response, or a review, that would be AMAZING and we would LOVE to hear from you! Might even perform them on a future ep! Ping all doooo to [email protected]

I can only give these contributors so much - If you feel so inclined to help me make more of this kind of project, feel free to join my lovely amazing supportive band of PATREON SUPPORTERS HERE - I also have a ko-fi account here. For as little as a dollar a month you will help me get more funds to pay more folks to make more groovy Quirky....(and I oft share eps early, ping new original scripts and give discounts on courses and more!)

I do mention before a few of the performances, to take care if your mental health needs more support right now - if you would like to read the transcripts of the monologues themselves please click here

Happy Listening from my tier 4 house...AND A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Hope tis fun filled and joyous and healthy... 

Sarah Golding
Quirky Voices

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/QuirkyVoices)

                                                 QUARALOGUES EPISODE FOUR

  • IS IT OK TO SAY I’M OK?  Written and Performed by Caroline Holmes
  • SAFE By Isabelle Lee     Performed by Tina Daniels?
  • HOPE  by Sarah Golding         Performed by Fiona Mackinnon
  • TOMORROW TODAY By Sarah Golding Performed by Aaron Clark
  • MY WALL by Julie Hoverson    Performed by Tina Daniels
  • OH NEW YEAR NEW YEAR BALCONY Written and Performed By Sarah Golding 


====

Is it OK to Say I’m OK?
 By Caroline Holmes


Hello! I’ve got a question for you: is it OK to say I’m OK? Because life since Covid has been so hard for so many people and the cloud looming over us seems to blot out the sun.


So it makes me feel rather hesitant to say that actually I’ve been having a pretty good time over the last six months or so. But it’s not helping anyone to feel guilty: so I’m just really grateful.


Here are five reasons


Number One: I’m not on my own. 


My husband & I have been together for well over 40 years. We’re still regularly squabbling and driving each other up the wall but he makes me laugh every day. We’re not romantic types, but there’s something really endearing about that glint in his eye when he’s managed to distract me with some stupid joke from being really annoyed. And he likes having a permanent audience and someone to boss around. Or try to.


Number Two: We’ve got a dog.


 A young Scottie to be precise. 


Hector provides constant entertainment. He’s not like other Scotties we’ve had in that he’s incredibly affectionate. He really craves contact. When we’re sitting at the table we often realise he’s got us both pinned to the floor: his head on one person’s foot and his bottom on the other. He requires regular on-the-lap cuddles too.


This dog also talks. He has a fine range of squeaks and yowls. Very expressive.


Taking him for walks guarantees us exercise and a chance to marvel at his energy. He seems to think he’s a greyhound or a mountain goat. He’ll go haring off, ducking and weaving, all on his own, or charge up and down hills just for the joy of it. If there are other dogs’ bottoms to sniff or children around, he’s absolutely delighted… often more so than the other dog or the child, and that can be a bit of a problem.


 We are paying a small FORTUNE for pet insurance, as he’s bound to need emergency surgery at some point. Anything left lying on the floor is bound to be for him… and he just loves chewing. 


He did his best to ruin my flat pack chest of drawers. I hadn’t even opened the box to put it together! Luckily the chewed bits don’t show…  

But the stains in the middle of my pale green carpet have resisted all cleaning efforts. An overnight snack on a couple of my favourite ball point pens. At least the ink wasn’t toxic. And no, it didn’t need to happen. “Just don’t leave stuff on the floor,” my husband points out in baffled frustration. “Well yes, that’s absolutely right!” I agree… and then forget to check again… 


Number Three: We have regular – remote - contact with family.


You know the sort of thing:

“I can’t see you, can you see me? What do I do? Audio settings? Where’s that? Mum, take the phone away from your ear. This is a video call.” 


Our kids & their families live down in London, so we don’t get to see them often anyway. But it has been great actually being able to chat & see their faces several times a week, and admire the grandchildren from a safe distance.


Number Four: We’ve both been retired for ages and we both have absorbing hobbies.


Well, I actually call mine work, cos I do make a little bit of money from it, but he won’t agree to that. “You’re having fun,” he says… which is true.


 He has a coin collection that he’s cataloguing with loads of historical side notes and that’s really interesting… and a couple of old cars he fiddles around with that aren’t, unless you’re actually in them going for a tootle. 

(Honk honk)

Now with the restrictions I haven’t had to go to rallies and trail around for hours looking at cars. Bonus!


My current work…hobby… is narrating and producing audiobooks. It’s fascinating.  The only drawback is how long it takes me. Professionals reckon on six and a half hours of work to create one finished hour of audio. It takes me more like twenty, and counting. I can’t believe it myself!  And some books sell and other ones don’t, ones I really like. Marketing is the key, apparently. Tricky, cos I haven’t really got a clue about that.


 By the way, have you heard The Swordswoman by Malcolm Archibald yet? Worth a try - especially appealing to lovers of medieval Scottish fantasy!’



Number Five: Learning. 


I’ve been doing it since the moment I was born and I’ll be doing it until the moment I die, and Covid’s not going to mess it up, because I’ve got the internet! 


What a thrill knowing that you can find new information and skills any time night or day at the click of a button!  I’ve just come to the end of Sarah’s Quirky Voices course for Voice Actors, and I’ve been loving it. It’s sparked off all sorts of ideas and possibilities for me. Amazing. Maybe I’ll get into marketing after all!

                        

So yes, in spite of being classed as elderly (awful word, please don’t use it to my face), I am OK and intending to savour all the benefits life is offering, especially now in dangerous times.


Thank you for listening. Bye!


=====

SAFE

BY ISABELLE LEE


If I’d known this was what we would all be facing I’d have thought twice. Maybe. Well, I’d like to tell myself that. Probably just wishful thinking though. When do I ever make a decent decision, pandemic or no pandemic.

God… pandemic, quarantine, virus, vaccine… it’s still so surreal that these words have become normal. This invisible danger that’s carried in the air and left on door handles, making us nervous to even open our own front doors. So we’re told to stay inside. Stay at home. Stay safe. Because that’s what home should be isn’t it? Safe. Somewhere you can bed in and ride this out, stay away from people who might infect you, who might be dangerous.

But I’ve messed up. I’ve let the danger penetrate my little home and I don’t feel so safe anymore.

It was good at first.

When we met up he said that he wanted it to be different this time. And I wanted it to be different this time too, so I let myself believe him. I really thought that we could make it happen. We were laughing again, having fun like we used to… you know… we were good together, everyone said so. And when he looked at me, and told me that I understood him better than anyone else I actually felt a pain in my chest as my heart started to revive, like the dull ache of a reawakened muscle that had been left to grow stiff and cold.

So of course I said yes and now he is back in my life and in my house and in my bed and in my head. We are facing lockdown together 24/7. It’s… suffocating.

There are good days and bad days. Lately more bad days. The moment I wake up I can sense how things are going to be, I don’t even have to open my eyes. Sometimes I just lie there with my eyes closed, pretending to still be asleep, struggling to breathe normally as I feel the oppressive atmosphere bearing down on me.

I would be lying if I didn’t admit that those days are really tough. But I know how hard life is for him in lockdown. It’s not easy for someone with his nature to be constantly trapped in this house. It’s making him more restless than ever. And I just make it worse for him. If I could stop messing up then we might be okay. It’s like I never learn, I open my big mouth and… well… um… well… last night things got way out of hand. I should have washed that plate again, I don’t know why I wound him up like that. . I think deep down there must be something wrong with me, I must be broken. I feel broken right now. I feel pathetic and small and squashed.

Last night he said that the world would be better without me in it.

I’m supposed to be calling mum today. She wants to show me her latest online purchases. She must be spending a fortune, she keeps buying new outfits ready for when she can go out again, although who knows when that will be. I’ll have to make an excuse and let her down again. But I can’t speak to her like this. I don’t want to upset her too.

Okay. Enough! No more feeling so sorry for myself. I should be happy that we are back together and I’m not facing this pandemic alone.

If I just try harder and stop saying the wrong thing or annoying him so much then he won’t be so disappointed in me. He tells me how I can make him happy, so if I can get a grip and stop being so needy, put him first, then maybe we can get back to where we were.

I’ll make a plan. I’ll make dinner! I’ll sort myself out and make things up to him. I’ll make things okay again. I know I can.


====

Hope


Oh cling to me humanity. 


Cling with edge of dug-in broken nail or full gripped slipping hand.


 I ...am here forever. My light...it never dims to nothing....there is always...a glimmer. Some call me a beacon, a sliver, a chance...some say I am thought of for the best, but oh how you must also ...in desperate times, whilst holding on to me with all might and all you hold dear...prepare for the worst. 


Are you prepared for this ...now?


Hmm?


Yea you. I address you...individually. 


Where am I in your mind? For your kind? 


For you!?


Do you recognise me? 


Do I hug you? Or are you trying to find me in every nook, every cranny but I hide? 


Do You need to search deeper. 

Look harder?


Who am I? 

I have many forms.


What am I that without me, all would give in to thoughts, and whims, and generations of inbuilt negative rabbit holes, and trains of thought, and eternal darkness to which we all too often succumb. 


Dark places are lit by my presence. However slight. You need me even when you don’t think of me. You oft want to share your use of me with others. Or they share me with you. Which is fine. But I may not visit them. Or you. Not your way. Or theirs.


So. Who am I?


Yes. 


I am hope. 


My many guises inbuilt into patterns of behaviours and entrenched forevermore within you. I cannot truly be tangibly touched, but you can be touched by me, and I can be felt. But you cannot make me. I just...am. And you should know, I am here if you need me. 


There is the fresh faced naivety of inborn hope in the young, ingrained and yet strained by life experience and adults taking it away. 

We select our Chosen Hope – to overcome the disease and continue Living, to yearn for the as yet conceived - we need this chosen hope to hurdle life’s reality and lengthen our mortal playtime in this crazy world. 


In time, Some deal in Borrowed Hope – when another triumphs of championing hope for you more clearly than you could ever imagine. 


Sometimes you can borrow me and feel even more hopeful. Oh the to and fro of a bargainers hope - to counteract the worry and the anxiety, those using this element of my peeling layers say and believe aloud - ‘if I do this then along will come that’. Our fight or flight can be bargained for. 


And the darkest hope - Unrealistic Hope – in your head being the next big thing - a Darcy Bussell, Stephen Spielberg, best foot baller, singer, dancer, writer, business leader, politician, Diva. All who made a deal with unrealistic hope live in a strange Probably not probable reality, but ...unrealistic hope prevails. 


And beware false hope - if it’s too good to be true it probably is! Insurance schemes and pyramid schemes and lotteries and tv and postal and door to door and online scams, and ohhh the hope, the vague hope that one single individual can meet your every whim and solve all how you feel,  are, and will be. Happiness does not often come of false hope. This way madness lies. 

There are those with life experience who are more malleable in their thinking...like Those with resilience of patience, who have oodles of Mature Hope – you can wait. 


For those with mature hope, something intangible means that you feel that somehow everything will turn out alright. That things are worthwhile. 


Martin Luther King Jr., took the long view when he said, “The long arm of history bends toward justice.” This still stands. Towering. Concrete. It does. 


We still can stand together in hope that justice will prevail. We just believe and cling to the hope that we will see more hope and optimism come to fruition in good deeds, good people and good times again. This world can heal. You can heal. We can be...better. 


But for now, we can but hope...that my light burns for the good in us all, and guides us all to a healthier, happier world.


Keep me safe within you.


I

Will always


Be 


Here. 


====

Technology of yesterday, today!
By Sarah Golding


Hello and welcome to next week's today’s episode of the technology of yesterday’s today, or ...TOY-T For those in the know, sponsored by quirky voices voice of NOW. No, We can’t believe they’re still going either. Sometimes we wish they’d...shutup. That aside and slightly to the left...In today’s show, we think back to how 2020 changed our fashion, mass commodity technology, our communication and our very understanding of who we actually are as a whole,  under one moon, one sun, seven governments and a god or few for those that want one.


First. FASHION. Ahhh fashion fashion fashion...Le mistakes et le life changing designs of 2020. 


Now here, from our smug little tiny moustache shaped like a pig tail world viewpoint of December 32, 2065, as we look back to over 30 years ago, to a time when the whole crazy world was gripped in the throes of a pandemic, we reflect on the good that came from that one crazy year. Millions sadly perished, millions became long term sick but! Trapped in their own homes and working remotely, with more time to think than ever on some days, the leaps and bounds we made in developments of fashion technology are astounding!


Take for example the holographic-folicle-fusion we know and use today. The simple implantation of a fibrous network rather than our own hair became integral to fashion and health as we know it now. Who needs clothes when NATURAL FUR-bbre clothing and hair can have you simply thinking what colours what fabrics you’d like to be seen in, and , boom, ooh la la, voila, programming in the days-wear with the KNOWYOURNEURALS connection, you could be wearing what you like how you like when you like, or of course, nothing at allllll you crazy Woodstock chasing kittens you. Though the wearing of birthday suits in public is still very much frowned upon.  And I only went to prison once. 


So, with the ability to programme in any fashion wear....mini skirt, a-line, Rara, hula, tights and baggy jumper, jeans, kilt and slogan t, cargoes, leather pants, hot pants, crochet pants, combats, lederhosen, anime cosplay or your trusty LBD, natural Fur-brrr wear changed how we wore what we wanted AND HOW! And also changed what I am wearing now! And don't I sound delicious!? The new holo clothing tech also was able to shorten and lengthen the hair coming from your follicular pores, with one simple thought, so ...you want a mini skirt, a maxi dress? With one thought through the KNOWYOURNEURALS network, you too, could look as good as me. Well. Nearly....as good, I mean, c’mon, you got to have great bone structure and a natural aptitude for being simply gorgeous too right?


The NAtural fur-brr network really made their name for themselves in 2021, offering what can only be described as marketing epiphany - health and fashion in one syringe - two-for one injection of the follicle network when they combined it with the newest approved vaccine against covid 19, 20 and 21 through 25. They really know how to work their socials n science huh? 


My grandmother got this two for one fashion and vaccine or f&v, and apparently, it’s what has given me such a strong constitution, great bones and immunity to....most things.....apart from the common cold.....why can we not break that one?! Huh? Whhyyyyy? Maybe cynical me brain says, the money the pharmaceutical industry makes is the cause of that, or maybe, it is so stubborn a gentle pain inducing adapting viral infection, we never will. Go go my grandmother and her forward thinking cutting edge decision making and the good ole f&v. And shame on all those backward thinking folks who....(LAUGHING) thought that some billionaire chip expert was going to inject nano bots into their systems to track our movements! What a waste that would be. They already did that with our mobiles! Imbeciles. 


That aside, formidable hat fashion of the 2020’s became incredible - stunning even, as people’s head hair could be changing colour and length and shape by the second! I currently am sporting the sailor boat Mohican, with rippling waves in a very fetching teal. Thank you natural fur-brrr network for making fashion fun again! And our hairdressers of course retrained to write the programs for hair fashion too, so, no one lost out. No one. Look...I even got the aural transplant for my crown....wait.....I just need to think and....


SFX SOUND OF THE SEA


I mean. It’s not just hair, it is art! Am I right? I’ll....turn that off for now though, don’t want to utilise my daily upload requests.....it’s getting expensive to top up!


But what of technology for home use I hear you ask? Well. Remember the zoom boom? And the countless video connecting service technologies that followed...YeronMUTE, MomTurnOnYourCam, VirtualAvatarspaceTearooms and more? 


How wonderful, that natural fur-brr enabled folks to connect to other folks across the world....using their own hair! Eyebrow connectivity became ‘a thing’, and who can forget the new catch phrase "


(SINGING)

if you didn’t grow your bush brows,

 you’d be left out in the field 

Of cows. Mmooooooo."


(TALKING)

Obviously a terrible catch phrase, but the hearty moo after seemed to be the bit folks enjoyed and remembered. So, strong, robust, abundant hair follicles above the eyes became hotly sought after, over the thin, arched, plucked, tattooed, threaded landing strips of yore, with those bushier of brow becoming number one look-up swipe left and SCOOOORE on the dating scene (as their upload and connectivity were faster)  With one sweep, and of course the KNOWYOURNEURALS connectivity, n some local WiFi, you could connect to audio and video using your own bushiest of bushy holographically enhanced Natural fur-brr eyebrows, any time any place any where. Even. In. The bath. We all remember THAT POTUS video, right? Where just thinking what you wanted to see, or how you wanted others to see you became a reality, to the point that, who actually knows what anyone actually looks like now? And who, truly, cares? I got me a new facial implant to make my cheekbones more playful and my eyes pop....literally....they can pop out ...on stalks. Great fun at parties.....and for seeing round corners on dark nights. 


Well, we’re out of time...don’t cry.....I won't...cos I don’t have tear ducts anymore thanks to natural fur..brr tearduct-be-gone. As I am sure you know if you have the money to get it, All salt water produced by the body can be recycled using the Tearduct-be-gone implants to power the holographic follicular network and keep you fully clothed for 12 hours or less....and warm too! (If that is you upgraded to the Kinectic conduction package, which stores up your night tossing’s and turnings to power AND heat your natural fur-brr choices of the following day. No need for house central heating when you gots your own. Genius.


Well


It only remains for me to say that, though over 30 years ago, we still feel the losses of those who succumbed to the virus. We do. May they rest in peace. But for those who fought, who beat it, who sensibly got the vaccine and survived to live on, we send courteous thanks for your resilience, your trust in medicine, and, we also celebrate the time humanity had for reflection, for thought, and for creation. Natural fur-brr founder and creator, we salute you, and are ..in a way.....glad you had to endure, so that you could ....create. 


SFX STIRRING MUSIC


We may be living in more underwater based dwellings, half the earth may be uninhabitable to to the 2035 meteor strike, the moving to Mars may have swelled our physical capacity for advancements in tech and living on hostile worlds, but blue voiture! our cutting edge, cutting no corner, cut hair no longer fashion is overdope. Schwaannnggg...supreme.....sublime....incredible, formidable n'oubliez pas monsieur et Mesdames et tout Les mondes ...and To use a 2020 thing....

you 


smashed 



it.


I’m Overly Dressed....no that really is my name...but I never live up to it..and...thank you for listening. 


Keep dreaming big. Keep doing grande. Keep big making the grande dreams to be grande done to be big dreamed.... though...try not to be asleep allll of the time huh? To not dream perchance to Peut-etre stay awake for a.....little bit....to make those big dreams come true.


Goodnight. 


====

MY WALL
By Julie HOVERSON


This wall sums up my life.  Superficially orderly rows of DVDs filling one wall of my tiny downstairs toilet.  But look closer and there's no real order, no method.  Or there is, but it changes as soon as I forget how I was rearranging them the last time.  These here, they're movies I know I liked when I bought them, but I can't actually remember the films themselves.  And up there, just at the end of my reach without getting up, are the ones I'm pretty sure I thought were stupid, but I can't remember if that was before or after I bought them.  

I know, I know, why not just worship at the altar of amazon prime, or netflix, or hulu or any of the other new gods of our contemporary world, in whose presence we gather every evening - if we are fortunate enough to have a regular schedule of any kind - and pay our homage through our holy binging or random browsing. Honey?  Honey, have we done the right obeisances by watching the entire series of shark this or tiger that?  Have we been righteous enough?  

Call me an old school atheist - what each god giveth, they can also taketh away, and I hate that shit.  Like the periodic updates to scripture, every season the "movies netflix is dumping" are duly decreed and complained about and agonized over - is there time to watch it before it's gone?  Will it ever come back?  Sometimes they're even objected to and petitioned about, but that's only for exclusive shows - we want our patron saints, goddamn it!  

And why not just hand our lives over to the new gods?  What else do we have outside these walls but mask this sanitize that, quick bring in the mail before someone sees your face is naked!  


Inside is easier.  Once you've been cleansed - praise the holy amazon prime for the goods it brings! - you can relax, naked face and all, and give your attention to the shows they graciously bestow upon us.  Without which we would be nothing.  Without which we would go mad.  

In desperation, we may even throw ourselves on the mercy of the mad god youtube, begging for solace, for the algorithms to bring us manna we haven't already seen a dozen times. 


Is that the whole thing....not a trailer?  


Quick, watch now before it gets pulled down, like the icons of a conquered race!  Yea, that god is yet more fickle than the rest and it hides as much as it reveals.


A few of us would survive.  We who read books and have retained a few, we who hoard the accoutrements of crafting.  We who put our faith in the DVDs.  But we don't want to stand out, to be singled out, to lose such privileges in a massive coup like the ones which have gone before - oh VHS, ancient deity that ruled for so many mighty years, what did you do to deserve the scrap heap?


I pay for my lip service, with the prime and the flix, and the cheap dark horse of shudder, but if something is really good, something I want to remember, to preserve, or try to share with friends - always assuming I can get close enough to share a TV with them again some distant day - I make damn sure that I'm not at the whims of anything larger than myself.


====

LIVE!
By  Sarah Golding

To toast the new year In

I Looked far out to sea

So full of hope, cool futures

And new fun opportunity


Oh if I’d known the maze

Crazed daze

Ahead of us Herein

I’d Cease all celebra-ti-on

neck

Drained dark half full cup full gone


So many dead

So many sick

New dreads and tiers

N Mask up quick 

Afraid to mix

Afraid to see

Your lovely friends 

And family

No hugs for grandma

Grandpa too

Alone inside 

Just me

Just you


Oh on this twelfth month 31st

I stand and gaze out fearing worst

Can I but hope MORE years I see

A precipice toed precariously 


Hope vaccine helps

Humanity blessed 

With unselfish b’haviour of the rest

Stops spread

Stops all conducting phase

Of these truly scary 

Covid days


So rise up

Value sister brother

And all earth’s creatures

One another

And hope the sunset of this year

Brings hope beyond

For all

Less fear


I wish you good health

I wish you all well

I wish you warm lit 

Way out of this hell

From all our balcony’s as we new year survey 

I wish you love, health fun and play 

I wish you all

Reflecting here

A full life 

LIVE!

A true great year 


IS IT OK TO BE OK By Caroline Holmes
SAFE By Isabelle Lee, VA-Tina Daniels
HOPE By Sarah Golding, VA - Fiona Mackinnon
YESTERDAYS TECHNOLOGY TODAY By...someone VA - Aaron Clark
THE WALL By Julie Hoverson, VA - Tina Daniels
LIVE! By Sarah Golding