It’s only when I stop for a little while that I remember why I drink in the first place. Humaning is painful stuff. I’ve been feeling the old sadness well up. The darkness falls. There’s less to see. The day is done. Outside it’s raining, inside it’s cold. All the little snickering beasties come crawling out of the cracks and point at me. “You can’t get the boiler fixed.” “Didn’t get that advert, did you?” “How’s your love-life?” “Wanna go skiing this year?” “Had any theatre auditions recently?”

The thing is, if I hadn’t been hammering myself and my bank account, these problems would be different. But there’d still be problems. The little pointing beasties would just have different shit to say. Because that’s the human condition. We can be restless souls. And we’re reared on stories, but we live in the actual world where stories don’t work. So some of us look for ways to take the edge off, or narrow the parameters. Things are simpler when you’re dumb. Magical dumb juice, magical dickhead powder, magical crazy pills, magical sleepy powder… There’s a roaring trade in this city for things that stop you being fully present. And I’ve been helping prop up the sales of that dumb-juice something chronic.


When I lose my voice, I never use anaesthetic drops or sprays – if you numb the pain you can start to tear your vocal folds and give yourself nodules. You have to work inside the parameters of your damage until you’re better. There’s always a voice to be found. I haven’t been numbing my voice, but the dumbing has been numbing my being. And likely damaging it acutely along the way.

It’s bloody hard to shut my head up though. I’m going to have to obsess about something or I’ll just go bananas. Yoga might be a good option, especially hot yoga at this time of year, as it involves using my body.

I’ll be busy for the next few months. The day-jobs are ticking over, and I’ve got two shows to think about so I’m not going to have much time to vanish up my own bum. But that also means I won’t have much time for the yoga. I’ll have to make time, and rinse a month’s cheap trial somewhere nearby, so that when I get to bed I’m exhausted. Right now I’ve got no sleep in me. I’m chewing my own arms off and drinking gallons of herbal tea despite knowing it won’t magically turn into a hot toddy. I’m fully aware that my alarm is set for six.

Thankfully this isn’t my first rodeo. I put the bath on when I started writing. I reckon that’ll do the trick. It’s ready now.

Beautiful crisp winter day today. I spent the morning with great hearts and good friends thinking about ambition and witches. First run of Macbeth since broken ribbed Banquo staggered about in Wales. It feels really exciting. Lots of new players, lovely to find a new perspective on the play. Great to see so many new friends and old stepping into the unknown and flying.

Rather than numb myself with stupid-juice, all I really need to do is show the beasties the stuff they can’t see from their little cracks. There’s so much in my life that’s fantastic. Remarkable fulfilling deep friendships, exciting challenging work, beautiful things to look at, comfortable place to sleep.

Stupid narrow minded little beasties. *squish squish squish*



Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

5 thoughts on “Beasties”

  1. Years ago I went to the premier of Macbeth the Roman Polanski movie. I met him, it was just after his wife was murdered. Anyway it was financed by Playboy so natch, the lead lady got her tits out in act 2. T


  2. You speak for many of us. Beasties saying different things. Too much suffering alone, induced by us not fulfilling our best talents with with other people. How do we join up more.


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