March 31, 2004

Nighttime's the right time

* From a 1979 interview of Throbbing Gristle founder Genesis P-Orridge:

Interviewer: ...But Burroughs said a lot of things about drugs, what do you think about drugs and heroin?

G. I think they stop people from being able to realize their full potentials. Heroin is basically a drug that shuts out the real world - even morphine. You're turning away from the world, and I just don't believe in doing that. I think it's one of the most successful ways of destroying youth culture and potential, and a lot of intelligent creative people. It's very easy in this world to feel despair and to feel that everything's worthless and a waste of time. And when something like heroin is easily available, I'm sure governments make sure it is, it's in their interest. If you've got somebody that's very creative, or an anarchist, or a junkie, which would the government prefer? - a junkie, every time. Because a junkie is the easiest persons to control - they'll do anything for heroin. And if you want to arrest them you can always do it, if you want to kill them you just give them a bad overdose. So it's the best way of getting rid of opposition. There's also the fact that people think they're doing something rebellious, so it's like making a whole generation commit suicide. A generation that otherwise would be very constructive and create a lot of trouble. So for those reasons alone I'm very anti-drugs.

I. I've written some strange comic stories, basically about music. In one of these stories there is a very powerful man who pays Lou Reed to sing 'Heroin' so that a lot of kids can idenify themselves in this song in order to sell a lot of heroin.

G. It's not such a fantasy, that seems very reasonable to me. I think that's more likely to be truth than most other things. All western governments have a vested interest in people becoming junkies, because it stops people caring, it switches them off. Burroughs kept saying that it's the best control drug, and it is, it's the ultimate control, and you don't even have to sell it - once they're on junk you don't have to convince them to keep buying it like any other product. There's no advertising needed once they've started. And I think rock music is another form of drug. The vinyl junkies - that's what I call them.

I. Like religion, TV, drugs...

G. Yes, Mum and dad have TV and beer and wine, the little kids have rock and roll, heroin or dope. When you get older you switch your symbols, but they're still the same thing. Yet each lot despises the other as if they were different. The parents think the kids are outrageous, the kids think their parents are, but they're doing the same thing. They've just got different versions of it, they've got no real freedom.

I. But I think that the nighttime is the most creative moment.

G: Yes, that's because all the stupid people are asleep and they don't blanket you with their negative energy. You see, round about eight or nine o'clock you start to feel deadened because they're all getting up and rushing around generating all this useless energy. All the stupid people going to work and then in the evening about five or six o'clock, they all come home and start to watch the television, then it gets a bit better, you feel more (the creative people) start to feel better. And as they are all going to sleep around eleven o'clock, you start to get ideas. Midnight till four they're all fast asleep and you get really good ideas. I think it's just the blanket of their negative energy eating up all the positive energy in the daytime. That's why the nighttime's the best time to work. So it's alright to sleep in late, you know, go to bed late and stay asleep in the morning because you can't do anything anyway, because all the stupid people are rushing about and getting in the way.

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