Tangled up in blue
Tangled up in blue
Hello out there..
I got tagged, as they call it. On Internet one has an avatar, and mostly not for nothing. Now people started a game asking one to remove the veil as much as one dares. It is like the old game of Play Tag, so, "being it" I must tag some other recluse, who is undoubtedly going to kill me, so I picked someone who could only do so by using a bomb-letter.
Here comes my nineteenth nervousbreakdown, as Mr Jagger once said.
1. I was born in januari 1941, at about 01.30, after six month of marriage of my Christian born parents, weighing remarkably much for a premature. Nothing I could do about it and I did not question my name, Robert, in contrast to the rest of the family, who were trying to figure out who this Robert must have been in the past of my rather Victorian mother. No Faith was mentioned after that, the families’ reaction on the issue had not amused her.
My little sister, who could count, reveiled me the situation afterwards, when I was about 30.
I am maybe a little naive.
2. My first four years I lived happily with my parents, while the outside world was in flames. We lived in Deventer, which had two bridges, an attractive target for the Allies. There were no Smart Bombs then.
We moved to the centre in november 1944; the next day our old house was bombed, killing some collaborators, but not me. Our new house had shelter, I still remember the faces of the people hiding in our big cellar during the raids.
I knew what happened, I am not thát naive.
3. My kindergarten-teacher describes me as an intelligent kid, living in his own phantasyworld, sensitive, very honest, with a veil that could be seldomly lifted, difficult for himself and others, very exstatic at times, with a good sense of humour. I drew and painted a lot and had a keen interest in learning.
I was a little naive too.
4: After the usual quiet years before adolescense I went to secondary school, where, besides learning some languages, I got in touch with chemistry and became an Alchimist.
My father being a medical doctor, I could get almost everything I wanted with his prescription papers. Very fortunate. I had a lot of luck, nearly blowing myself up a couple of times, after which my parents asked me kindly to do other experiments. I did not, I was somewhat naive in those days.
I also met my Partner for Life. It was 1959. And I started with photography, and loved details and composition.
5: I was called into militairy service in 1960. The army and me did not quite match, as I had learned to reason at home and at school. My primary question was "Why?", not always acceptable for my superiors. I was kicked off from officerstraining after three month, under suspicion of sabotage. I was removed to an open prisoncamp for the rest of my service, wich tested my sense of humour somewhat.
But then, I always wàs a bit naive
I also got to be an Anarchist, theoretical, fundamental, not aggressive.
I kept painting and drawing and was interested in explosives. Photography was out of the question.
6: As my teacher found me a bit too impulsive and sloppy to study Chemistry, and my request for the Academy of Art bounced because of a Lacking Future (my father thought), I went to the University of Groningen to study Law, the idea being that that was easy and I could find out what I wanted. It was 1962. I had no ambition at all.
I got into a students-house in a starters-room of about 3x3m, without natural light fortunately, so I made it my Workplace and Darkroom too. My Other Half joined me there a year later. It was quite cosy. Later we moved into better rooms, but the 3×3 stayed as a darkroom.
She was a teacher, and combining students-hours with her job was rather tiring. I also made it a point to wake her up enthousiasticaly in the middle of the night with a new product.
Call me naive. We got married in 1967.
7: I became infatuated with the 60-ies more and more. I also got more interested in people than in black characters on white paper. My final degrees were in Penal Law, Criminology and Forensic Psychiatry.
I tried to continue my studies in criminology or the deeper parts of crime. I DID get to teaching Law and Social science at a secondary school.
Being anarchist by heart, I had my own way with my pupils, and my "dialogues" with my director and other colleges were considered to be a bit provoking, so, in spite of having delivered good grades to my pupil-friends I was removed, for doing my best, for the second time.
I felt naïve for the first time and went hopping mad.
8: Realizing that if I had these troubles in the relatively safe surroundings of an educational institute, I would meet the same people elsewhere, and being quite recalcitrant, I decided to go to the Academy of Art. This upset my Other Half because she had expected something quite different, and she left.
I left, that is, because the little house I had taken over for her from a squatting junk made her cry. Couldn’t have that happen.
The only fight we had dividing the stuff was over a Dylan-record (Subterrenean Homesick Blues) We have it double now.
I understood her perfectly too. Wished her well. Naive ass.
9: So I went to paint and took pictures, even professionally for a time, but my love for experiment and New Ways did not always lead to acceptable images at the times it counted.
I once screwed up a Wedding-job because I found a new developer and film that should work better. But of course it did not. Fortunately the marriage turned sour too, quickly.
I left the Academy in 1978.
I earned my money as a teacher, but every single job blew up for the same reasons as the first one.
Finally, in 1982, I ended up, at an Institute that accepted my ways, as an advisor in Art at primary schools.
My very first class consisted of pupils of 6 years old, whom I presented with a lesson about dots and lines, realizing halfway my introduction, that I looked at a lot of blank faces. I got quite warm.
To my surprise they took to drawing like wild animals, and I was presented, accompanied by a lot of proud grins, with 20 drawings of a very sweaty teacher, droplets all over the place.
That tought me not to be so naive.
10: The divorce went as wrong as the marriage, so we lived apart together for a long time. My Other Half loved travelling to far away places, while I see cutting off a corner in the wood as Adventure.
In the beginning she went on her own, Iran, Pakistan, India, Afghanistan. Later she tricked me into coming with her. I went as far as India, Nepal, Malawi and Tibet. Morocco came last.
I liked it all.
We bought the house I squatted in and started living together again. With a good workplace. It was then I bought a computer.
Can’t escape being naive.
11. The first Gulf War began and I went bonkers when the bombing started. I looked with horror, got bombed myself again.
Difficult times followed: depressions, manic periodes, hallicunations.
Lost my official job but stayed at the Institute as graphic designer, being payed partly by the Ministery of Health, partly by the Institute. In these times I got to Nepal and Tibet. It was difficult but comforting.
The mentality of the Nepalese and Tibetans and the principles of Buddhism were a lot like what I saw in my "Dreams". After 12 years or so, it all got better and better. I learned a hell of a lot during this period. Maybe not so naive anymore.
12: Then some old friend gave me the gift of Flickr. I like it a lot, it challenges me to no end and I am very fond of the comments and discussions. My Alchemists soul rejoyces in photo-editing.
I can feel my work gets better by observing and weighing the work and comments other people make. It inspires me, in short.
So: if you are still awake, thank you for your interest and comments. And your pictures.
If you want my unprotected face: I look remarkably like my buddy-icon (~_*)