It’s Better To Internalise

Because then the only person that gets hurt is me. Even this explanation now – it’s an externalisation of another externalisation that should not have happened.

Trying to be cryptic and such. Trying to be heard by…

It really doesn’t matter. Or more…it SHOULDN’T matter!

I make mistakes. Boy, do I make mistakes. And I sat there last night and I thought about it and I sat and I stewed and I felt so low.

And so I need to stop externalising.

I’m sorry.

It’s all good.

I get it.

This Is Who I Am

Why this blog has the domain address of “priptonaweird.co.uk” is because – one: It was primarily started to be more of a dedicated site to Jim, but would encompass and embrace all things Simple Minds. I never had any intention to make it some “super serious – uber fan” blog. It started as fun. 100% fun – with lots of ogling and drooling and petty fangirling.

Then I started to share the memorabilia I was collecting. Then talking about Jim’s FB posts and maybe screengrabbing a reply I got from him that I loved or thought was amusing. Also it became a place for my “art”. As I made my digital fan art and also began drawing and painting. And then going to gigs – and not just SM ones – and it just kept growing and growing and I thought I wanted it to be taken more seriously. A place where maybe “serious” SM fans could actually find useful information and learn something they hadn’t known before, etc, etc.

I started to conduct interviews: First with Jaine Henderson, then with Bruce Findlay, last year with Steve Jeffris of Warm Digits, and this year with Stuart Crouch and most recently – and most professionally too (I guess) with The Anchoress.

And that’s been great. I love doing those kind of things – although the interviews can terrify me! As much work as each post can be, I have been really loving doing the posts for Minds Music Monday on the Sons/Sister 40th Anniversary. And some of these posts came together with the help of Malcolm Garrett as well. I’m proud of all those posts.

But with that pride has crept in an embarrassment – because also, this blog has always had a personal slant to it. It is my own personal blog. That’s why the web address is what it is! It’s why it doesn’t have a “Simple Minds” name to it. I could have hauled it over. I could have bought a Simple Minds reflective domain name – but I love that this domain name is associated to ME!

Today has been another incredibly tough day. For reasons I don’t actually feel able to talk about right now but it is going to have a lasting impact on me. It’s been very emotional today. A lot of tears. I feel like I have spent sssoooo much of the past 12 months crying – esp. the past 9 months.

Sitting about, drying my tears, feeling embarrassed – yet again! When I was thinking about the blog and thinking about how open I’ve been on here of late – again…feeling embarrassed. But WHY?! Why should I feel embarrassed by my emotions?! Why should I be embarrassed to feel things and want things and want to be able to express things?! If I express them here and that ultimately allows me to work through those things and sort my shit out, isn’t that good?!

***I KNOW**** I overshare, and overthink, and over-analyse and … all of these things. I know this!
But this is MY place! This is me! As I used to say in the past – and I really need to remember this because this is what I was saying to myself this afternoon – MY BLOG, MY RULES! I am NOT beholden to ANYONE. And I am NOT going to try and make this blog into something it isn’t. As much as I feel I want to make this blog 100% professional with only serious band-specific content – IT ISN’T GOING TO HAPPEN!

This used to be my retreat. The place I would run to for comfort and fun and happiness. It is still a place I am running to but for different reasons. Because now it feels like it is the only place I am understood, the only place I feel able to be me. And, well, even that hasn’t felt entirely so lately. But I am taking that back! I want this to be my safe place. If I am not understood – tough! If you come here and read content and think I share too much – tough! With all due respect – I take your concerns on board. I am aware of them. Let it be known that I concern myself also – okay!!!! Nobody is more aware of my mental instability than me – OKAY?!

And even THIS will be deemed “oversharing” but … I’m working through stuff, okay.

To the people who visit, always, thank you. You don’t have to and lord bloody knows why you do…but holy heck, thank you for doing so. Whatever you gain out of each visit, I hope it is informative, useful or mercy be on the rare occasion FUN!

Welcome to Priptona’s weird, wonderful world of … whatever!

It Feels Like The End

I don’t know what this is any more. I obviously want it to be more than it is. More than it can be.

I’m too emotionally invested in this thing. I have been for years now. And I have been too frightened to cut the ties completely. Still praying to be liked. Still praying for something more. Still praying to be a “real fan” was enough.

The more time passes, the more I think that to have remained blocked from the Simple Minds Facebook page would have been the best thing for me.

Time would have healed the wound. I would have found something else to fill the cavernous void…eventually.

I cannot stop seeing the things that happen as things that I have caused personally.

Messenger gets taken off the SM FB page. And then Jim’s slow stepping away from all the interaction. No more comments on visitor wall posts. No more likes on visitor wall posts. Fewer replies to comments left on posts. Fewer likes to comments left on posts. Ceasing of likes and reply comments all together. Lessening of the number of posts written by Jim.

And now? Seemingly no posts at all.

Jim’s gone, and I can’t help but feel that I am the cause of it, because I feel like I am the one that wants him there most of all.

Two things have been making me cry constantly today. One, my cat is really sick and I am powerless to help him – other than to keep administering drugs to him, which seem not to be doing much.

The other, seeing Jim photographed with the Sardinian fans. Which sounds AWFUL! I want to put it into context! It’s because…seemingly…they are allowed to have something I desire more than anything in the world. Time with him. What’s more…they can “boast” about it. It feels like a boast. It’s just how it feels to me. And I just found it really upsetting.

I’m just being honest. I mean. All great for the guys, you know! It’s fabulous for them. It really is. But it feels like an “inner sanctum”. And while it feels like that. While it will feel like there is some “special place” for a select few and fuck the rest….?

I dunno.

It just feels awful. And I have spent so much time getting hurt by this and feeling guilty about it. And then knowing that IT SHOULDN’T MATTER! But….it does. It matters. It matters too much. It always has. And I just want it to stop.

I want it to stop mattering. I want to stop caring about it.

When I became a Simple Minds fan it felt like this new world opened up to me. I can’t express it! And it still brings with it the odd sweet gift. But it’s starting to feel a trap. And I am just way too heavily invested. And I am almost in floods of tears again just thinking about walking away. Trying to stop caring. And I want to stop fucking crying!

Did I do something wrong?

“Did I ask too much? More than a lot?
You gave me nothing now it’s all I’ve got.
We’re one, but we’re not the same.
Well, we hurt each other and we do it again.”

Where do we go from here?

Seems like I’m full of U2 songs tonight.

How ironic…

I’m not articulating this right. I don’t want it to sound bitter. I’m not angry. I’m sad. Sad to feel like all that I do is not enough or too much.

It’s a hamster wheel. A big fat hamster wheel. I want to get off but I don’t know how to stop it.

So perhaps I just need to “embrace the suck”? Swallow that bitter pill. Thank Jim for the memories and walk away?

I never wanted it to end. I never want it to end!

The biggest hurt? The biggest hurt is the notion of my walking away and him not giving a flying fuck. Not a single, solitary fuck. There are always other fans. Always another face. Another new enthusiast. But for me – there is no other Jim. No other band. No other man.

And yet, here we are it seems at another crossroads. Left or right? Which way to turn, Loz? Suck it up and forget about it? Or move on? Your choice. “Choice.” Or do we live in the past? The halcyon days? “Choice.”

Vlog Waffles Are Moving

In an exercise in tidying up this godforsaken blog, I will be shifting all the “Waffle” video blog posts (aka Vlogs) to a centralised page link. You should now see a page header called “Vlog Posts” in the menu. That’s where any new posts can be viewed. I may notify of a new post, if any go there.

The vlogs are something I want to come away from doing. And I certainly don’t want the main area of the blog full of vlog postings, hence I will be shifting them over there.

So…there you go.

Here’s hoping for some kind of return to “normal”. Whatever “normal” means when it comes to me and this absolute embarrassment of a blog.

If you ever had any interest in the video waffles, or more amazing still, if you ever took the time to WATCH any of them, I thank you.

A Ghost Of What Could Be

Original image by Thomas Horner

I think it has been coming for some time. I think I might be spent. Done. I don’t think I have any more to give.

It is a heavy heart that I say this with. My personal fandom for Simple Minds has altered. I love them. I absolutely love them! I can still wax lyrical about them. Lord knows I can wax lyrical about Jim! He is just…all things to me. And I say this knowing how absolutely darn pathetic it is – but I honestly can’t remember what a day feels like without thinking of him. I am, quite literally, Kerrsed. (Have to throw in a pun there somewhere!)

But I feel like I…

I will try to articulate it well.

The Simple Minds catalogue as it stands is finite. It will expand at some point in the future – yes. But there is only so much of “List your Top 5 songs” and all that kind of stuff I feel able to engage in.

It feels like it is becoming a hamster wheel. Around and around and around. Favourite album. Favourite song.

Speculation also drives me insane too. It’ll come when it comes, FFS! The new album. The recommencing of the tour. Jim’s “tome” of fiction. And currently…there is not much “doing” at SMHQ and Jim is obviously just not wanting to engage with the fans in social media any more – which is his absolute right, of course.

But that was the thing that drew me into the fanbase! That’s what drew me in to Facebook! His presence and interaction with the fanbase. I can’t emphasise enough what that meant! And how different that set Simple Minds apart from any band or artist that I had ever liked before. The human touch. Making the intangible feel tangible. That is what made you feel most special to me, Jim. The voice is one thing, the songwriting another. The stage presence another. But it was all wrapped in a bow with your…approachability.

I was always someone who just stayed out on the fringes. I was never one to really put myself “out there”. Years of self-doubt, social ineptitude and of mental ill health.

In recent times I have wondered if many of the things I see that made me feel different as a child and made things difficult for me were signs of ASD that were never picked up? That I masked too well and it went undetected? It happens to a lot of women with ASD. And as the wording goes – Autism SPECTRUM Disorder, there’s a spectrum there with some elements of ASD being stronger and more obvious in some than others, etc, etc.

I grew up with strong “stimming” traits. I rocked back and forth almost constantly as a child. The only time I would stop is when I was out somewhere, at school, or if we had house guests that didn’t know us well I would find alternatives. I would swing my legs back and forth or find other “stims” to do. I especially did the rocking when listening to music. It was the ultimate excuse to do it. I was listening to music! No one felt it was very strange then. But they did if I did it while watching TV or just…sitting and being. I also bite my nails. And not just my nails but the skin around my nails also. I eventually stopped the rocking in early adulthood but I still bite my nails and skin badly.

So…I have always felt somewhat alone. School was never something I enjoyed in a peer group sense. I loved learning and craved learning but I always felt incredibly uncomfortable around my peers and then when the bullying started, it escalated those feelings ten fold. I started staying away from school a lot as a result.

It took so much for me to step into the Simple Minds fanbase. I had NEVER socialised on this scale before, and I mean NEVER.

I can still remember how absolutely petrified I was going to my first SM gig and the idea that the people I had been talking to online would meet me just scared the crap out of me. I had tentatively agreed to meet someone from the fanbase at the gig, but I chickened out. I was just too overwhelmed. Meeting one new person is nerve-wracking for me but put that in a gig scenario where the person you have agreed to meet is there with maybe five or six other people around them and I am being introduced to them all…

It eventually happened. Bolstered largely by encouragement from Jim. The interactions I started to have with him gave me a confidence I had never possessed. It led me to do things I could only had previously dreamt of. I went on national TV to partake in a quiz, FFS! Something I had dreamed of for nearly 20 years, probably longer than that. And I did it, twice!

And those trips brought me to Glasgow and I fell in love with the city. And as a result of that, the city is now my home. And I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else! It feels as much “home” as Sydney ever did.

My hang ups are my hang ups, you know. They are mine to work through.

These days I just feel – estranged from the fanbase. It’s not a place I am feeling very welcome or comfortable being in. It is why I have, for the most part, stepped away from SM fan groups. There has been some petty differences and rather more disconcerting spats. I have never been great with conflict.

I certainly do not have the patience, zeal and diplomacy of Gordon Machray, for a start. His endless enthusiasm for the band and the music really is something to be admired. It is down to him that the Simple Minds Official Fan Group (SMOG, as I have often referred to it) is what it is now. All inclusive and all encompassing. I hope there are others more capable than me who will be willing to step up to the plate and help him in his time of need – as I guess it has become obvious that that really isn’t me.

This blog will continue. In what capacity, I am unsure. I am determined to see through the Sons And Fascination/Sister Feelings Call 40th Anniversary celebration. Beyond that…who knows? It’ll probably just revert back to what is ultimately some crappy, Jim Kerr obsessive fangirl site – in hardly any way linked to Simple Minds at all – just the tenuous point of a link being Jim’s “raspberry ripples”.

I guess I never really was much of a fan then, eh? And perhaps I never did “earn my stripes”.

The times had been great…for the most part. Apart from the whole “real fans” affair. I really could have done without that. But hey ho. There we go. We are fallible and all make mistakes in life.

I still don’t know what the future holds. None of us do. But I feel that whatever my future as a Simple Minds fan is, it will probably be confined to here on this blog and my own personal social media profiles.

Thanks for listening.

Neon Lights – The Cover Of The Covers – Which Led Off The Beaten Track

I have over the past few days found myself super intrigued by the artwork of the Neon Lights album.

I suddenly started to wonder who designed it, and more importantly, who wrote out the tracklisting on the cassette cover. It didn’t seem like it was Jim’s writing but I couldn’t help but think how awesome that would have been had he written it out. It’s one of the things I love about the cover art of Life In A Day, that Jim has hand written the credit notes.

So that had me thinking about what a great choice for a cover design it (Neon Lights) was and who had been behind it.

I was surprised (and somewhat disappointed) to learn that, looking into it, it was a team of artists at a design and marketing firm in The Netherlands that came up with it.

As a consequence of trying to learn more about the cover art, it had me at the Dream Giver site (which turned into me being Alice spiralling down the rabbit hole!), reading an article – and interview with Jim – printed in The Scottish Sunday Times on September 23rd, 2001.

I started to read it. It was a very frank interview. My focus soon turned to something else (though still wanting to find out about the Neon Lights cover art).

I’ll link to the interview at the end of the post, but in it Jim talked about (among other things) his relationships with Chrissie and Patsy and he described them as “women of their time”.

Seems a bit of a pigeonhole to put them in…

Like, they were “flavour of the month”.

That can’t be though.

Then again, he goes on to say… (interview excerpt below)

If the arrangement sounds a bit too cosy, it is. “I might make it sound like there was logic to the break-up of my relationships, but there were periods of disillusionment, fears, chaos and sadness,” he says.

“I was never the one to give in. That’s part of the modern way. People give in, because they can.

“The magazines suggest if you’re not having ten orgasms a night or you’re not having eight holidays a year then you’re not having a great life. Expectations are very high. If it doesn’t happen, then they’re off. But the fallout when it goes wrong is awful. I just thought: ‘I could do without this for a while and it’s better not to get involved.’ I wouldn’t trade those moments or emotions for anything but I’d be wary of them should they crop up again.”

Have they? “No. Marriage is about ‘the one’ and I don’t believe in that any more. It’s great if it works out but it’s a tall order. Now I think if there is a right person, they’re right for you at that period in your life.”

“That period in your life”? Okay, I get the idea of considering things in a finite way. I mean our LIVES are finite and there’s an element of the realist “self-preservation” not to get yourself caught up with the fairies with a rose-tinted glasses view… but…

I don’t know. The article just had me thinking about things. It’s never a thing that I feel comfortable in talking about – even if he did seemingly discuss this in public in a newspaper.

But I admit I have wondered for a while now how you become someone who he holds dear. Really dear. Someone who he sticks by – because it seems quite a rare thing from the outside. Rarer than the veneer seems to give off.

Esp. in terms of the opposite sex. I mean, how many people GENUINELY stay good friends with exes? I know there are children involved – but beyond that, or in spite of that – not many are successful at it.

I mean, in my own very limited experience of ex-relationships…or just…RELATIONSHIPS, full stop… I’ve had one other previous relationship and one rather…intense friendship, I guess you’d say.

My only other lasting intimate relationship, was with a boyfriend I had for about 18 months. I had just turned 19 when we met. We broke up because (in retrospect rightly so) he had had enough of my constant jealousy.

I didn’t see him for a while after we broke up. But then he started to come round and visit me. It became “friends with benefits” even though I knew he was with someone else (the person he broke up with me to be with). And I almost did a very, VERY bad thing. Full, honest, disclosure here – for a brief amount of the “friends with benefits” time – I tried to fall pregnant. NOT to trap him! I had no plan to tell him I was even pregnant. I had no intention of ever telling him I was pregnant and that he was a father. I was at a point where I was so wanting to be loved that I thought having a child would be the way to get love.

I very quickly came to my senses. And luckily before I ever succeeded in getting pregnant! I mean, geez. I’d have loved the kid had it happened – but, other than this brief time – this crazy little window of a few months – I have not wanted to be a parent. I have constantly doubted my ability to be anything like a responsible person and certainly did not want to subject anybody to a world that I feel, for the most part, offers much more bad than good.

Have I ever had any friendships from past “relationships”? Lol. One steady boyfriend and a total of three sexual partners (the boyfriend being one of the three) – no! Not seen or heard of or from any of them for over 25 years.

My longest lasting friendship is with a guy. We met when I was still dating my boyfriend. We’ve been friends (with periods of no contact) for over 30 years. But, he was never an ex. But it is how the first period of no contact came about. He wanted more than friendship. I didn’t. The friendship strained. I loved him. Absolutely loved him. I still do. He was there for me at my mum’s funeral in 2019. He means the world to me! But I was never “in love” with him. I broke his heart. And he still loves me. He still tells me! And he is so strong and so amazing, and he has two beautiful daughters.

It feels very exposing to talk like this. But that is the extent of my “past relationships” experience. An ex-boyfriend and two ex…”lovers”, I guess you’d call them. I dunno. I was never into one night stands, so they were guys I knew, but we weren’t dating. It’s another lifetime ago anyway.

Back to Jim, and the pondering of relationships with exes. I am reminded of “the good ex” comment that a lady left a few years back on a post Jim put up on SM FB. I think it was when Chrissie’s memoir came out and he posted about it. The comment read “You’re a really, really good ex!” And Jim replied with, “True. I am the best ex on the planet…was always an ambition!” Lol.

I know it’s his silly, flippant sense of humour at play to a degree – but he DOES seem to have a point!

I have been pondering this for some time now…what makes a friendship with Jim Kerr endure? What’s the secret? What’s the special ingredient? It’s just a question that endlessly intrigues me that I have endlessly pondered for about…just a little under 5 years now.

From about the time he posted this…

It made a profound impact on me, this post, even back then. I found it very telling. Telling of what, exactly, I’m really sure. I don’t know. I seemed to read something into it at the time, and it has always stayed with me.

Anyway…this has been a very long-winded post that meandered so far away from its original purpose that…geez, I’m not even sure WHERE we ended up, but there you go! It’s Saturday night in mid January in Glasgow – during a lockdown in the midst of a pandemic – what else is there to do?

Anyone with any theories on how to be Jim’s friend for a REALLY long time? Then let me know…

Interview in the Scottish Sunday Times HERE