November 16th, 2008

Bloc Pity Party

I am not having a good weekend, to say the least. I've been trying to make up for months and, in some cases, years of neglect in the management of my books and papers as part of an effort to return to the productivity of pre-Arizona years. Not that I was better organized then, mind you. It's just that I sorted my ____ more regularly and efficiently. These days, going through a file box of random items is a lot like opening a time capsule from a period I don't want to remember. And let me tell you, there have been a lot of periods I don't want to remember over the past decade, from my repeated struggles with respiratory illness to the realization that I am locked into Protestant relationships in which good works mean nothing substantive. It doesn't help my mood that some of the people I care about most are mad at me and, worse still, with reason.

At least I can console myself with the thought that I'll be seeing Bloc Party up in Tempe this December, an event I've been preparing for by listening to the band's three albums over and over again. I am warming to Intimacy, just as I warmed to A Weekend in the City before it. I think it helps that I've also had the new Cure record -- of which I have become extremely fond, surprisingly -- on auto-repeat, since some of the criticisms levied at Bloc Party have focused on the overlap between their records, a quality which a longer view might show to derive from clarity of purpose rather than a lack of inspiration. The fact that Intimacy is such a visceral expression of male anger and regret has also contributed to its winning me over. I'm in a space where I am more open than usual to those feelings -- hence the Cure's appeal -- but recognize that it's better to experience their full force vicariously.