Going Backwards to Go Forward

Pre-Memorial Day Saturday, I’m sitting in a high-windowed office watching thunderclouds fly over L.A. without quite raining. Inside, I’m watching video digitize, and footage from my first-ever music video unspools nerve-wrackingly in the corner of my eye. I’m always shocked to see what I actually look like; it bears almost no resemblance to what I think I look like. Fortunately, I’m only in about a third of the footage.

Oddly, though, the video director chose a song not from the latest CD, but from 2005: THE UNDOING (EVERY DAY), which I recorded with Billy White Acre, who also rewrote me (a satisfying, if unsettling, experience). So I’ve gone back in time just when I’m writing forward to album 4. The director doesn’t notice or care – he’s busy scrawling notes and choosing shots. I decide I like not being in charge.

Meanwhile, I turn the lyrics to VERONICA over in my mind, amending and deleting and re-settling them over the chords, while I see actors emoting to an entirely different song. I don’t know why, but it makes it easier to focus, as though all their emotionalism takes the hysteria out of me. Reminds of a friend who got involved with a preternaturally calm man, and immediately became hysterical, as if there had to be a certain level of hysteria in any relationship, and if he wasn’t “pulling his weight,” then she had to make up the balance.

I can’t believe how late it’s gotten.

© Dudley Saunders