Thursday 8 June 2023

Memory Mixtape #23: The Passing Of Time And All Of Its Sickening Crimes…

…is making me sad again.

Therapy time. Please feel free to skip today’s post, it’s just for me. (Then again, aren't they all?)

I was talking a couple of weeks ago about my… sadness. I’m going to use that instead of the “d” word, because it seems more appropriate. As we all know, writing can be good therapy. It’s certainly cheaper than real therapy, so here we are. And I’m going to use a therapist’s questions to help me.

Can you explain your sadness?

There are many different facets.

Pick one. Just one example.

OK. The present upsets me, but the past is starting to upset me too. Because it all seems to far away, and getting father every day. A while back, when I set up Memory Mixtape, I figured this would be one of my most popular series. Not popular with readers, since clearly I long since stopped trying to write for other people. Popular with me. I used to love writing about my childhood, my teenage years, and even just a few years back I had a long-running feature here called Radio Songs in which I relieved the highs and lows of my 20s, working in the radio industry. There’s comfort in nostalgia, in going back to the good old days, rose-tinting your past to airbrush out the bad times and create a glorious memory utopia where the sun’s always shining, even if it’s pissing down in the present. 

So why aren’t you writing Memory Mixtape every week?

That’s the question, isn’t it? Because the comfort’s no longer there. Now, when I try writing about the past, I invariably just get sad about what’s gone – long gone, in many cases. 30, 40 years gone. Never to return, never to get back, never to be there again or have that again or feel that again. 

D:Ream – Things Can Only Get Better

For many years of my life, it felt like D:Ream were telling the truth. OK, things might be bad right now, but they will get better. You’ll do better, you’ll get better, you’ll feel better. Since turning 50, the D:Ream potential has evaporated, and all I’m left with is the certitude of entropy…

Everyday things are getting worse

The Selecter – Time Hard

The goal is to be more like Frank. If only...


  1. I have found it hard to accept that X, Y and Z will never happen again.

    1. I think that's the true definition of Mid-Life Crisis.

  2. Oh Rol. I totally empathise and am sorry to hear it’s hitting you so badly. The joie de vivre has gone out of some of our blogs, but totally understandable. I have an old workmate I meet up with occasionally and she’s always upbeat and full of beans. Whenever I point out what’s going wrong in the world she just says, “ah but you think about things”. It’s a curse isn’t it. Oh to be able to not think about things.

    Take care. Alyson

    1. To paraphrase the League of Gentlemen (who were slightly less pc, for effect), "you never see an unhappy idiot".

    2. I wouldn’t go as far but yes, not one of life’s deep thinkers.

  3. Ah, I can only echo what Alyson says above (and agree with the L o G quote you paraphrased, along with Les McQueen's "It's a shit business", of course). I sometimes try to imagine how much easier life must be for those who don't feel, reflect, care, worry, etc. as much. Deep down, though, I think a lot of that is what feeds our greater qualities, even if we can't always see it ourselves. I reckon it's also a form of wisdom...

  4. Although my posts are more about nostalgia then new stuff, with the occasional anecdote, I am struck by the fact that compared to your blog and many others, mine often seem like exercises in avoidance...

    I do "think about things" but it doesn't often inform my posts (though the Tory government has usually been the prompt to do so). I'm living with...sadness...and it's frequently awful but I'd rather that than not to feel, reflect, care, worry, etc. as much, to pinch C's words above.

    Writing, reading and commenting on blogs is a salve in ways that I don't always understand or fully appreciate - yours is a great example - but it's a lovely community to feel a part of.

    Sending best wishes, good vibes and sincere thanks to you, Rol.

    1. Thank you, K. Keep applying the salve.


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