This blog entry was set to go out last Thursday, but with the emergence of our Crowd-Funder, it seemed like a good idea to avoid clogging the airwaves with yet more Peer Hat related stuff (especially when so many places are in dire need of immediate aid). This time last week, I think we started to digest the reality of our situation and the reality that people may simply not want to come and spend time in a place whose main currency is intimacy...at least in the short term.
My mind veers in every direction when I consider what actions must be taken to preserve The Peer Hat. Maybe, like anything that breathes, it's time to die has come and that we should all lay down our trowels for a while to await a better tomorrow. Or perhaps...perhaps there is no better tomorrow, without fighting to preserve something good that already exists. We've chosen to go down the route of preservation for the time being; obviously our levels of engagement with the idea have been high, and I have the strongest sense that we've barely even started in our journey. But also, there is an air of obligation, even profoundly so.
Here are some ideas that we have had.
Ambient Beer Delivery Service
Fairly simply put, we put some folk on bikes and send them wherever the beer drinkers wish them to be sent. We can't really see any reason not to do this at the minute, almost a no brainer, in fact. We think this represents the safest option in terms of us establishing some kind of extra income for the place. Psycho-geographic prospects are sweet also. I'd wax more about that, but I'm saving myself (see below).
The Peer Hat Album: EYE (?)
Bands and artists donate a song or two and we keep pumping out Bandcamp albums as fundraisers. Relies heavily on the goodwill of the artists, but then, did I mention that Her nest is lined with the jawbones of poets? In all seriousness, I think there's been something of a surge in people paying attention to each other's shit and that might have decent results for local bands (eg. the future is local, the dream is your contribution to the now).
The Peer Hat Online Festival... u/MIFFF'd
We're going to do this for sure...essentially a day long streaming thing with chat. Big issue with streaming, is that it tends to sound a bit on the shit side. Thus, we think it's going to be really important to emphasise the social dimension of things.
CYBERPUNK DYSTOPIC PEER HAT
This may not be a something that we get over quickly. Taking the position, that change could be permanent, we're going to need to develop the online side of The Peer Hat, on a business level. We desperately need another income stream to help us cope with the barren months.
Essentially, we've visualised a website which does the following things:
1) Acts as a kind of repository for Peer Hat related stuff...not as a boring archive or some such, but as an asset dump of sounds, video and art, that can be used by any member for their own projects. Imagine it all being customisable. Imagine that artists in the city have an easy place to share things. I find msyelf getting hot and bothered by this idea, a localised and unique audio/video trove. Like creating treasure.
2) Contains audio and video that's exclusive to The Peer Hat. Mostly gigs or whatever, but initially, private performances donated by artists. We envisage something like a digital vault, with featured performers, maybe with arhcive, maybe not. It'd be cool to have everybody participating, with everything filed appropriately and words to similarly combust affairs.
3) Charges a subscription fee. How long we do this for, we're not certain...definitely for the foreseeable future. We need to make it as if there's a virtual doorway, with a virtual ticket teller. In this case, more like a secret handshake.
We'd like to think that we could do away with any fees eventually.. Likewise, if we did consider carrying this thing on beyond these indefinite virus years, then we could maybe pay artists who appear, in the same way as we'd pay them for organic gigs.
Open the floodgates! Let the great sell off begin! Yep, these are definitely coming your way.
We want to look at the ways we can create a community digital hub. The money aspect, is just something we need to address....I've no idea if people would use it or not and how much it would ultimately contribute. The point is, we're forced to be thinking in this fashion. Any money we make from this is going to be hoovered by rent.
It does not come easily. I can think of lots of reasons to keep associations as analogue as humanly possible...that said, we need to consider other outcomes. The short and medium term forecasts, offer no real relenting of the current circumstances. Whether people will even want to socialise like they did in the past, remains unknown. Currently, many seem to be desperate to stay indoors. Regardless of the right and wrongs of it, as a current situation, that would be the death of us.
So we need to think with this apocalypse, not against it; indeed this weird, virtual Peer Hat, may turn out, to be a necessary crank in the machine. The potential is there, to make this something quite interesting and possibly even revolutionary--- if interest is sufficiently sparked. And of course, any activity would contribute to the place outlasting the moratorium on intimacy.
Let us know what you think of it all, should you get the chance to breathe.
The Crowd Funder has thus far been a great success...at the time of writing, we're 70% of the way towards our target of £10,000, so obviously, fantastic. Again, a testament to the power of an idea over a place. I've nothing really remarkable to add beyond our infinite gratitude...
So where's the poetry?
That was as utilitarian a post as they come, but we felt it necessary for you to be in on our thought processes. Again, as occurs so often, our thinking changes on a daily basis. We've felt so much love for The Peer Hat this past few days, that it's been hard to think objectively. My soul is being played like a harp. Your collective will, has me thinking of you all as some kind of uni-mind Orpheus...I feel better about nearly everything. This is obviously a good thing (I can safely inform you that the others here in The Peer Hat mind dungeon, feel the same).
These Things Are Happening, You Just Know There's Something Going Down
I embarked upon a wee journey this week, during my allotted exercise period (never thought I'd write that sentence). However, I'm going to make this journey the subject of my next blog, which will come out very soon (eg. next couple of days). I thought about adding my thoughts on my trek to this section, but it really deserves it's own treatment, since the instigator of my wanderings involved me directly; created an experience for me, allowed me to participate fully in something beyond baseline consciousness.
So hold fire on that.
The Doll Bride Mask
My man Tom Wise, who some of you may know from his bands Spillage and A Better Reality and also, invoker of punk band trouble as Lovely Hen Promotions, just sent me a banging tune from whatever nightmare isolation cell he's found himself holed up in. Tom is an unsung force at The Peer Hat, his presence tells me that the ship is steady as she goes, plus the gigs he puts on and performs at are always good. Looking forward to seeing him again, probably (definitely) on the Blood Bowl pitch.
Ian Moss doesn't stop
Two entries from our man Ian during today's blog entry. Let's start with a bit of Four Candles action
And of course, let's Flow Backwards....our man is locating us squarely in the lovable dystopia we like to think of as the early 80s
OK, let's leave it at that. More in the next day or so...almost a two parter this one.