March 18, 2017 by Utku Baserdem
Tick, tock, tick, tock, tick, tock…
I use my bass guitar to create the sound of the clock, the same one in the Pink Floyd song; Time… I want to pass the time, and now, I want it to pass away…
I’m bored, and time; it does not pass. I want to make a new composition, but I do not know what I want. I continue to imitate the tick tock sounds that Roger Waters has once emitted from his bass guitar. Time is passing, minutes are chasing one another; they cannot be caught…
“Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day
You fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way”
I am still bored. Sprawled on the armchair in front of the flat white wall, I continue to play, but now that I think about it, I am just imitating Roger. Even though it is my guitar that emits these sounds, and my hands that pick those strings, it is his composition, it is his moment, it is his life, it is his existence and I have wasted my time anyway by producing nothing but a cheap, really cheap, copy of his work.
“Kicking around on a piece of ground in your hometown
Waiting for someone or something to show you the way”
Maybe, by imitating him, I can become like him: Being Roger Waters. I feel that sweet voice of Jazz Bass, coming from the amp. It does not sound like Roger playing, and it is very frustrating… I wanted to be like him, I wanted to achieve perfection. I would like my guitar technique to be like him. You cannot catch that tone with Jazz Bass… Maybe if I had the right guitar, then I would be able to be the most amazing guitarist world would ever know. Roger Waters had once said; “I had the strangest feeling growing up – and I know a lot of people share this – that childhood and adolescence and one’s early adult life are preparing for something that’s going to happen later” in an interview (Henderson et al., n.d.). People constantly race to stay alive, and their fight of living can only continue through knowledge. Those who prove themselves in life are the ones we see as legends, and they are the ones that guide us throughout our path.
“Tired of lying in the sunshine staying home to watch the rain
You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today”
In the end, I am doing nothing but focusing on the somberness that has been eating my life away, instead of focusing on the more positive aspects of it. They composed, but the people made them exist. If you want to be as authentic as they are, if you want to be one of them, then do not get lost in the dreams created by other people, set a new world for yourself and live in it instead… But, to be honest; it is too much work, thus I would rather stick with what I know, instead of what is completely unknown to me.
“And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun”
The truth of the situation slams down on me like a sledgehammer. I am 23 now, and I cannot help but wonder about my future life; the future me. I am afraid to have a future where I find out that I have already missed the starting gun. I have time to do my plans, to accomplish my dreams. But when does the future start? Steven Wilson, a great progressive rock musician who grew up near a train station once said that trains reminded him of his old home. What if my dreams’ train has already been going on his way? My past is gone and my future will have gone too, but can I catch my train?
“And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it’s sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again”
I realize it now, I know that I will always be the last if I continue to do this, but it is too late for regrets. In the end, I am the last. I act, but it was too late. I try to reach the others, I strive to be at the same level as them, but it seems impossible. They are weaving their way into the future, while I am but a shade, still trying to struggle out of the past tenses.
“The sun is the same in a relative way, but you’re older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death”
I know that nothing, nothing would change if I did not exist. Nobody would miss me, and the world would continue to turn, just as it has always done. However, my living too is of no consequence. After all, a ghost cannot interact, or tamper with objects of the real world in any way, it can only observe things that it will never, ever have. As I come face to face with the possibility of my death every day, I cannot help but wonder whether the things I have done had any meaning at all.
“Every year is getting shorter, never seem to find the time
Plans that either come to naught or half a page of scribbled lines
Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way”
Time is running short, time is leaving me as I try to grasp it. I have always tried to produce a good album that would be known in all world, compose songs that would touch the heart of its listeners, but it is for naught, and time does not wait just because I asked it. I continue to caress the strings, but the song inside my head does not come out. I record all my jam sessions, but for what? Another great one, I say, another masterpiece. But all those masterpieces are either forgotten under hundreds of other recordings, or they are discarded away as failures, never to be seen again. I imagine, no, plan many great things for my future. I will be the best of the best, I say, I will be loved. “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation,” says Henry David Thoreau, “What is called resignation, is confirmed desperation” (Thoreau, 1854, p. 4). The desires I have, the things I want from life, are unattainable from my perspective because I will never be enough, or worthy of them.
“The time is gone, the song is over
Thought I’d something more to say”
Time will pass no matter what I do, as will the song, and my life, they all will be over. I will probably go to the grave with the song still inside me. However, one day, I hope to have something more to say, but it can only be possible if I start now.
Song Credit: Time by Pink Floyd (from the album Dark Side of the Moon), released on 4th February 1974.
Henderson, P., Sutcliffe, P., & Bungey, J. (n.d.). The first men on the moon part 2. REG(21). Retrieved from http://www.rogerwaters.org/21/Mojo2.html.
Thoreau, H. D. (1854/2013). Walden. New York: Empire Books.
Author Info: Utku Baserdem, MA Cand., Experimental Social Psychology Program (Baskent Un., Ankara) | email: utku_baserdem94 [AT] hotmail[.]com