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Do trust in the things you love

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Hello everyone It’s pretty mad being here I’ve never really done anything like this before in my whole life So you’ll probably have to bare with me a bit and also excuse me if i start swearing or anything I am Cornish, it’s part of my language, so... So yeah my name’s Mickey Smith and I grew up on the west coast of Cornwall I dunno, some of you might have been there? It’s a beautiful part of the world, it’s wild, it’s inspiring, it’s like… it’s rugged, it’s full of natural goodness and for me it’s full of off the wall kinda crazy lovely people that are really dear to my heart and in many ways it will always feel like home to me but, growing up there on the other hand it’s in many aspects it’s a very dead place for a kid there are scarce opportunities there’s very poor local people, fighting for scraps really all surrounded by plush second homes in epic locations that you’re not allowed to go and play near and there’s not much future for the youth, there at home. and there’s a real feeling of hopelessness in that and that culture gets drummed into you when you grow up there that feeling of being a second class citizen in your own home is something I remember and the only way to counter that vibe, I found was getting out amongst the natural wilderness around you and the ocean for me, like, other than heading down dark paths is just nature, you know and it’s free and it’s incredible and because of that I was always, kinda a mega happy little grom just running around, having a good old time. Something I learnt from a young age was to arm myself with a grin My mum my sister and I used to spend hours just cackling and laughing together and that’s something that has stuck with me through life like, letting laughter, be all at once my disarmer and also my deflector shield for the shit that gets thrown your way, you know? So anyway, one summer my mum and dad split up which wasn't actually a problem for me it was actually a great thing, best thing ever for a few reasons I won't go into But mainly because me, my sister Cherry and my mum spent that whole summer on the beaches around Land’s End and I spent every waking second in the sea swimming around in the waves, floating there riding whatever I could, from bits of plastic to wood that’s something that has stuck with me now like, still I still love doing that being immersed in the rhythms of the sea that summer kind of, is really like, where I discovered my love and fascination with waves So that was one thing that really a life changing event for me, that summer. A few months later my mum met a musician called Al and he was her boyfriend this was second catalyst for me because through Al, I really kind of discovered music I was never taught, but there were always instruments around and I picked up the guitar and the drums and anything else I could get my hands on and Al was always up for me playing along in my own weird and wonderful ways or not so wonderful but soon enough, Al had me out on the road with his band playing 3 or 4 nights a week all over the place I remember, pretty fondly, just the boys loading up this old blue van he had with massive great speakers and shit loads of stuff and then they’d lift me up and slot me in on top of the speakers this little grom in the back and then they’d set off and Al would take great pleasure in They’d plug the bands PA system into his car stereo in the back and he’d just blast my head off with all sort of music everything from Stevie Ray Vaughn to Black Sabbath and anything in between And in a roundabout way all those experiences were like, another big perception shift for me because during those times, I kind of, started to see it wasn't all doom and gloom on the work front, this adult world. You could go out and really, potentially, have a lot of fun and laughter and craziness and even still earn a little bit of money doing it and it wasn't this depressing, joyless Cornish future that was, kind of, bread into you when I was growing up in West Cornwall, you know and my mum, bless her, saw me generally loving doing that and fully encouraged me to roll with that with the waves and with the music she's a natural teacher and she’s a bloody good one and she generally cares, for like, enabling kids to learn and think for themselves quite a few people have touched on that a lot. And that’s something she did for me But she always made sure I was held accountable for my actions But showing that trust really empowered me as well, you know. like as a young kid. and it started helping me see I didn't have to fit into this weird mould that everyone else, seemed to be conspiring to have in store for me So yeah, I was inspired by all this mad living I was getting to do from a young age in the sea And at night my eyes were opened to all sorts of different aspects of life Playing everywhere from working mens clubs full of unemployed miners pubs full of unemployed fishermen British Legions full of war veterans To these mad posh hotels full of pretence to festivals full of madness and excess at the same time there is all that after hours, sort of, life education in the daylight, I was learning so much from hanging out on the coast and around the storms, the winter winter storms were my favourite kind of times I would just spend hours wandering and surfing and exploring and that kind of sparked this, I don't know what it is but, something in me, that just what I loved doing. it gave me a real solid feeling inside I was learning a lot about the things I loved and that was all that mattered to me then and at the time I was also getting into documenting my little weird adventures with disposable cameras and super 8 films. I don't know why I got into it really. It just kind of felt natural. It's still how it feels today for me.

Video Details

Duration: 19 minutes and 41 seconds
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English
Producer: The Do Lectures
Director: The Do Lectures
Views: 58
Posted by: jonheslop on Feb 23, 2012

Watch this talk. Mickey Smith. “If I can only scrape a living, at least it will be a living worth scraping” Beautiful life affirming stuff.

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