Access it not our priority

Written for Slamalamadingdong, September 2020

Hello. I was just wondering if you’re going to livestream this event?

Hi, is there any way to attend virtually?

Will this be recorded and available afterwards?

Just wondering if I can Zoom in?

Can I? Will you? Is there any way to?

It’s not just me.

Four walls and an abdomen on fire. An acre of dust and trees and a highway they’ve forgotten. Brain fog on top of shaky hands and leaking eyes. An unsteady ferry and someone else’s money. Skin kept on the edges and time paused and rewound, paused and rewound, paused and rewound, paused and rewound, paused and rewound.

You’re just finally catching up. This screen has been our home for years.

Catching collaborations in the cracks. Sending love hearts and insufficient GIFS. I’ve been made of screen dreams and clocking up hours on

Zoom

Google hang-outs

Discord

Slack

Facebook

Insta

Skype

And I’ve been there in every event listing asking – can I? will you? Is there any way to?

But

Face to face is better

Face to face is better

Face to face is better

So I just can’t attend.

Twenty-twenty slides into our hands. Sickness and wealth and a one hundred year echo on a fresh new plate. Around me they’re toppling like dominoes into one or the other:

Zoom, Google-hang outs, Mattermost, Facetime, Mighty networks, rediscovering those conference calls.

You’re on mute. Everyone laughs but I don’t laugh because I’ve been on mute for years asking

Can I? will you? Is there any way to?

Face to face is better.

Face to face is better.

Face to face is better.

Better than me, better than you. Better than dreams made out of silicone screens. Better than time twisting itself into knots and trying to pick up where we left off.

I want to reach my hands through. I want to touch you.

But I can’t and I don’t. And this is better than nothing. Better

than goodbye. Better than never saying hi. You’re sick of it?

Can I? Will you? Is there any way to?

Ten thousand hours to be an expert. I’ve had a rural postcode for more than ten thousand days. How much of an expert does that make me?

Face to face is better.

Face to face is better.

Face to face is better.

Better.

Face to face is better.

For who?

For

You.

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