chairman miao at home (2003)

On Thursday I was sent a folder of photographs by Alex Hayn from a time when I didn’t have a camera for several years and so up until now have had no visual record… These are some of them, of an evening at home in Tamboerskloof with my housemate, Meg Wright.

Rose and Narcissus. 2003. Photo: Alexander Hayn

Rose with Narcissus. Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

 

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

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Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003.

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Meg, when cell phone screens were still monochrome green. Photo: Alexander Hayn, 2003

burning at both ends

“My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends—
It gives a lovely light!”

― Edna St. Vincent Millay

I made this sleepless mix in 2003 on a slide into depression after I had to abandon my MA dissertation after three years’ work, like an almost-full-term still birth (I’ve just gone back to give varsity another shot, more than a decade later)… I was djing almost every weekend and hanging out with lost people on drugs talking mostly empty crap at one another until the sun came up. I passed many hours in the company of some beautiful, talented, bored, unhappy, bitter humans… and also a fat complement of irredeemable oxygen thieves. Anything to distract from the rip in the fabric of who I had thought I was, to cackle in the face of hopelessness. It just made me lonelier and lonelier. I would come home with the scabs over the hole in my soul all picked off, and listen to music like this to feel OK.

When we were kids, my dad used to warn us that “late nights make sad mornings”. He was right, though not for the reasons he thought.

Track list:

1. Velvet Underground – After Hours
2. Dntel – Umbrella
3. Lali Puna – Bi Pet
4. Grauzone – Eisbaer
5. The Kills – Space Race/Electric Horse
6. Suzanne Vega – Fat Man & Dancing Girl
7. Richard Hell & the Voidoids – Blank Generation
8. David Bowie – Kooks
9. Faust – I’ve Got My Car & My TV
10. Wire – I Feel Mysterious Today
11. Sparklehorse – My Yoke Is Heavy
12. Yo La Tengo – The Summer
13. My Bloody Valentine – Off Your Face
14. Adorable – Sunshine Smile
15. Slowdive – Alison
16. Lloyd Cole & the Commotions – Forest Fire
17. The Microphones – I Want Wind To Blow
18. Bauhaus – All We Ever Wanted
19. Einstuerzende Neubauten – Blume
20. Madrugada – Hidden track off Grit
21. Pixies – Wave of Mutilation (UK Surf mix)