A quiet night. A Friday night. But I’m just not able to do the party right now. There’s a fortieth, full of friends. An earlier version of me would be there and would still be dancing 4 hours before I was due to start work. That version would have appeared and put on a head and stank through a day in the window. This one is already in bed, bright and early, and will be fast asleep very soon.
Today brought more joy in the form of citybound individuals lacking genuine connection and finding some humanity through their chat with Panda. I’m not confined to Panda, but currently he is the wisest of the masks as they find themselves when I wear them, so I prefer to stick with him. Panda can be peaceful and thoughtful. Brown Bear just gets overexcited and angry and Blue Bear is clearly on something and largely incomprehensible. Panda is looking for love and talks in sentences. I might experiment with Bunny before long – he seems to think he’s important and is also capable of sentences. But he’s very easily distracted. Still, I’m there for ages. Gotta mix it up.
I think there’s a joy in being rounded but flawed. Panda has been given some great advice about how to overcome his anxiety around how every time he tries to make love the BBC come along with live cameras. He has these gimlet eyes that make him very easy to open up to. But there’s more to this installation than therapy. I might have to be distracted posh bunny tomorrow, or Amy has found my favourite mask from last time : Sexy Kitty. Sexy Kitty is cruel. I suspect that conversation will get dark fast.
It’s like an extended mask workshop but without some arsehole who has already decided what the mask does based on other people who have used it. I’m finding variance in these huge things, and the array of frock coats purloined from the Opera House are definitely helping define the characters I’m finding in them. There’s great joy in this work. If only the damn heads weren’t so HOT. “I’ve overstayed my welcome,” one guest said, and it brought it home to me that I still haven’t worked out how to end the experience. After a while, my face is cooking like a broiling cabbage, but I’m trying to encourage my guest to happily leave my room and go far enough away that I can get out after them and decapitate myself and pant like a dog until my temperature is normal again. A tiring room would be lovely. With refreshments and massages and a comfy chaiselongue.
I’ll be going all weekend. It’s a living. It’s a joy. It’s delightful. It’s exhausting.