Observer Monogram Luke Dorny

008 A Midday & Windless Calm

When sirens have their way with you, you end up dead. Whether this means they entertain you until you are reduced to a rubble of starvation, your brain be it enchanted by music, or some other delightful fancy, who’s to know?

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figure 1:

My cover artwork for "A Midday & Windless Calm", referencing the moment before a Mermaid's song envelopes and destroys your will to resist, ultimately your death. "The Fisherman and the Syren", by Frederic Leighton, c. 1856–1858

Mermaids, angels, maidens, flying women. Whether a metaphor for the attraction of the ocean, or simply a mystery, magnified into humanistic fish because of deep sea delirium, it’s unknown. However, one thing for sure, there is artistic evidence of them throughout time hinting at their virtuous features or their debilitating vocalisms on society. Their existence frowned upon, disregarded, supported, feared, fawned over, and exist in transcripts and stories throughout the millenia. Some even suggest they were upon the Ark during the flood. Who am I to know. I’m just telling you what I’ve read. I’m no mermaid expert.

In our daily lives, and throughout history, there are moments of weakness where we succumb to temptation. I’m not talking about sin or the normal vices such as gluttony, your massive super ego, or your inability to tell the truth, though that may be yours. I’m talking about distractions, on any level. Interesting to note that some believe that when you ignore the siren’s call successfully, they fall to the Earth and perish. So persistent they need be.

listen and you may hear

They are mantic creatures like the Sphinx with whom they have much in common, knowing both the past and the future, their song takes effect at midday, in a windless calm. The end of that song is death.

Harrison, Jane Ellen (1922) (3rd ed.) p198 Prolegomena to the Study of Greek Religion. London: C.J. Clay and Sons.

Once he hears to his heart’s content, sails on, a wiser man.
We know all the pains that the Greeks and Trojans once endured
on the spreading plain of Troy when the gods willed it so—
all that comes to pass on the fertile earth, we know it all!

Homer, The Odyssey 12.188–91

Distractions tear us away from reaching levels of accomplishment in our lives. Distractions weaken our ability to conclude, complete, or even steer the ship. Sirens call out to us from time to time. The soothing voice of a mermaid may lead you to a fountain of unbelievable satisfaction. Or you may have your own demons in your life that you can’t escape. If this is the case, seek out positive sirens to overcome or overshadow that which brings you down. This isn’t a therapy session. If that’s what you need, seek out a solution, repair your situation, and move on. There is so much positive in this world, it would be a shame to become mired in a rut your entire life. To stay focused on a negative facet with no end in site is certainly death. Overcome.

Jazz at Tula's music has life

I don’t remember the first time I enjoyed a song and realized how it affected me but I know how much music means in my life. Music has life. Music, vocals, instruments, chords, drums, beats, strings, flutes, chorus, verse, measure, repetition, harmony, and rhythm. Had you heard that Dead Can Dance named their band so as it relates to the ability of musical instruments to emote life, even after the death of the animals that contributed to the making of instruments, cat gut strings, leather drums, dead plants? An interesting allegory for the power of music. Throughout time music has been frowned on and taboo because of its effect on the psychy and conscience, and to some extent, cause us to do wildly abnormal things, such as dance. How unruly.

Whether for good or bad, take notice of the things that catch your attention, if only to see what path it may lead you on. But don’t let them detract you from those things that are most important, nor let them keep you from achieving success in your endeavors. But take notice.

Designers.MX a midday & windless calm

For your distraction today, I present you with a musical mix of my own, to inspire, annoy, share, enjoy. A mix I created especially for the fellows at Designers.MX who whipped together a fantastic way to share musical inspirations of designers. Throughout the mix, you’ll find hints of things that distract, things that inspire, and some music that hopefully is new to you, although some of it is aging. Glad they approved of my submission.

  1. Ladd Company Logo - Vangelis (from Blade Runner soundtrack, Private Release)
  2. Paradise Circus - Massive Attack (from Heligoland, 2010)
  3. The Answer (featuring Big In Japan) - UNKLE (from Where Did the Night Fall, 2011)
  4. Monday - Paracetemol - Ulrich Schnauss (from A Strangely Isolated Place, 2007)
  5. Me + You - Nightmares On Wax (from Smoker’s Delight, 1995)
  6. Flynn - Ratatat (from LP3, 2008)
  7. Sure Thing (featuring John Lee Hooker) - St. Germain (from Tourist, 2000)
  8. Storm 3000 - Leftfield (from Leftism, 1995)
  9. Shudder/King of Snake - Underworld (from Beaucoup Fish, 1999)
  10. ‘79 aka The Shouty Track- Lemon Jelly (from ‘64-‘95, 1995)

What a wonderful website by Blake Allen & Josh Sullivan. Thank you guys for this.

Listen to their already massive collection of mixes on the site by some extremely talented designer folk. See what inspires them, leads them on. Why not create something as powerful as this and allow it to inspire and distract someone to greatness?

You undoubtedly have siren calls in your life that have moved you to experiences you may have not happened upon otherwise. It’s up to you to conclude whether any given distraction will help or hinder your own track. Take inventory of those things that enrich and destroy your life. Adjust as necessary.

Have you heeded or ignored a siren in your life? Tell your story.

Referenced

  1. sirens http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siren
  2. Mermaids http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mermaid
  3. angels http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angel
  4. Ark http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noah
  5. Harrison, Jane Ellen http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jane_Ellen_Harrison
  6. Prolegomena to the Study of Greek Religion http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0691015147/watchtan-20
  7. Homer, The Odyssey http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homer
  8. Dead Can Dance http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dead_Can_Dance
  9. musical mix of my own http://designers.mx/a_midday_windless_calm/
  10. Designers.MX http://designers.mx

Search flickr for mermaid

  • Commentary

  • There is one comment . Comments are closed. Move along.
  • Gravatar for Shane Shane http://www.shaneguymon.com 1

    from Austin, TX left this bit 6 years, 2 months ago on 2011 03 04

    FIRST POST!

    What you bring up about Mermaids I’ve wondered the same things about dragons.

    Also in regards to music, it is a lovely thing indeed and has greatly influenced my entire life. One song kept coming to mind as I read this post. The song is called “The Cave” by Mumford & Sons.

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