I’ve always been a fan of the barter system.
To me, bartering feels uncomplicated and deeply intimate. During my first few weeks in Portland I gave a flute lesson to my future boss. We were both a little broke. The following week she showed up at my door with a homemade blueberry pie. I was still broke, but something electric coursed through me and changed my whole approach to the game. Cash is nice, but pie is sweeter.
This week I’ll make two important trades. Mark will fix a massive crack on my upright bass in exchange for recording a couple of tracks for him. This exchange feels wholly unfair, but we’re both happy to try something new for each other. Then he’s going to leave town and I’ll have to follow him to NC just to meet folks to recommend his luthiery to.
Erin will trade me a computer for a guitar she deserves more than I do. She’s also leaving town in a bit. She deserves this, too.
Every month I trade my landlords a few hundred dollars for an apartment with a neat attic. There’s money involved so it doesn’t feel very poetic. But in this attic, I’ll finally make a little space for my new-old computer and my plugged up bass and my other sound machines. Then I’ll do something that I’ve been thinking about for a while.
Juniper Ginger – Death & Danger
- Just Words
- Lancaster & Pearl
- When I Get Writing
- What Shall Be Done
- Cut You In Half
- Snug City Blues
These songs are important to me. I wrote them in three different bedrooms, in a factory, in a car, in a liquored-up stupor, in an emotional stupor. I hope to release them on or around May 9th. It’s been a long year, and I’ve thought about a lot of things I never wanted to think about. What does death do to new relationships? What does it do to old ones? What behaviors are really hereditary, and what’s just bullshit self-indulgent avoidance? What does the compulsive meaning-maker do when everything feels meaningless?
I’m from away, but I kinda think Portland is tired of the overwrought phoenix metaphor. All I can say is 2016 drew a line in the sand for me and mine. Now we’re on this side. Now we’re all different.
Maybe I’ll do an “anything-but-cash” system once the album is out. Let’s lift each other up, sing some sad songs, and bake a lot of pies.