I was in the middle of a conversation the other day with a colleague. I was trying to tell a story about getting on a water management committee.
It seemed like a millisecond but I began to reflect back when my colleague asked me. “You’ve always cared yes?”
But no I haven’t . In my last years at high school and the early years after leaving school. I wanted to toss in the towel and not be involved in this all consuming society that had polluted the world. This problem and had been illustrated in multiple ways during the school curriculum. To me the world was an ugly beast.
I did not want any part of it.
It’s not my fault.
And so began a lifestyle of well justified escapism and hedonistic behaviour.
My ambitions were to get a TEP scheme job that would see me employed for 6 months and then I could afford my hippy lifestyle of total abandon.
Or I was marking time until I turned 21. I could then apply to go to Art School and get into music and art big time.
In 1980 I took a trip to Dunedin to check out the scene.
That was a week of pure fun. Living life to the fullest on the fringes of reality. My survey was complete. No need to check out other options. Dunedin it was to be.
Between 1980 and 1983 were turbulent but. It seemed I had set up a plan. I only needed now to just have a fun and wait. Not a care in the world. A blur of living. Working partying and concerts, festivals hanging out.
I’m still in this reflecting millisecond and I notice something. In all my rejection of society and of it all, I seemed to care about me and my future. I had not tossed in the towel.
During my art school days I seemed to care more and more.
1984 I made an Arts School Magazine , got on to Student Council, took part in an Art festival had my first solo exhibition of a collection of ladders constructed from Manuka branches . I was looking at the battle between nature and our machines.
1986 was a founding member of Chippendale House an arts collective. Some great events during that period
Got involved in making music …became a drummer accidentally.
During this period I stil rejected society in general and thought I was not part of it and this was a new way.
A few events in 1986 led me to a big discovery. I could not reject it , I was not living outside of it. I was a part of it and also I did care very much.
It was a turning point. I think it was this period that I felt I wanted to get amongst it to become part of changing it from within.
Most importantly I did care and had for some time.