Casey Hallas Art

Pool Boy Halloween 2021

C-Town Blues

(blues in G#)

I’ve got the C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
Porter says I shouldn’t
But there ain’t no stopping me

I kapo up a fret
I kapo up a fret
Sharks upon my neck
I kapo up a fret
Porter says I shouldn’t
But there ain’t no stopping me

He, fraternal twin
He, fraternal twin
A commie from Ohio
He, fraternal twin
He’s a holy roller
Like a bird on roller skates

I’ve got the C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
Porter says I shouldn’t
But there ain’t no stopping me

Porter has a cult
Porter has a cult
Commie from Ohio
Porter has a cult
He’s a holy roller
Like a bird on roller skates

You kicked me in the face
Kicked me in the face
Kicked me in the rain
When you kicked me in the face
You’re the schadenfreude 
In the class of ’98

I can’t find my phone
I can’t find my phone
My toilet’s overflowing
I can’t find my phone
He’s the schadenfreude 
In the class of ’98

I’ve got the C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
C-Town Blues
I’ve got the C-Town Blues
Porter says I shouldn’t
But there ain’t no stopping me


Anonymity

This is what I’ve managed. I was trying to use my talent and the way I looked to be a voice for change in the world. But here I am. When I search for myself, I am only my own media. Quite unpopular. Quite forgotten. It’s a great accomplishment. The people who used me aren’t posting about my mistakes online. There are not hate mails. There is no mail at all. Wonderful. How much harder can I fight? How much more can I sacrifice. I don’t have anything left anyway. Nah – no grand statements. Just quiet. Just hope, making money – making my art. That’s it. If you put yourself out there and you’re not ready, they’re programmed to destroy you anyway. And now I’m forgotten. That’s quite alright. I lived in RV parks for a couple of years. I’ve lived in warehouses. I had a building, I had a job, I had a house. 2 houses. I didn’t have anyone to share it with. What more does a man have to do? It’s quite impressive really, to be so unloved. The greatest part is now, I just have to be happy. Who has a voice? Who says anything? What’s the message anyway? Today as I’m walking Rascal the message was…if we’re all connected, and my consciousness and emotional pain is part of the larger consciousness – this battle between right and wrong of the god-head, well – I served my part with my philosophy. People my age, they don’t care. And young people, they don’t know me. So, who cares. I don’t want any more pain. I failed to make a difference. It hurt so much. I had faith. But my purpose is exactly what I’ve become. Meaninglessness. I didn’t have the talent. And I got hurt for trying. That’s the program. What’s the result. The world dies. That was the fight.

Materials

I’m selling my house in Oregon and piece of land in Washington. The only furniture I have left is a desk chair. Everything else is utilitarian – camping furniture, scaffold or shelving. My possessions are either for camping, cooking, books, art supplies, clothes or production equipment. I have my paintings and data – it’s all for creating or what I created. That’s what I’ve got left. This thing about image…I am embodied in my work. That’s how I exist, and my possessions get smaller and smaller. This is the path I chose, I knew it would break me, I knew I would lose people. Surely, the moral high-ground that people have tried to pass me over with will fall into the earth. This is absolute devotion. This is my response to Michael kicking me in the face in 1995 – do you know what you hate? What’s his provocation to assault me and attack my character? I have a theory, but you’d have to ask him. I remember every detail of the distortion he chose to create. GOD knows. It’s a battle…how we will be remembered in history. The pain I’ve lived with, the losses. A man like him can’t imagine. He believes his own lies. He doesn’t know pain yet. He will know in the shadow realm. He will live there to pay for his crimes. I will live on in my work until the end of human history. These are the artifacts of a warrior.

Church

When I move to Omaha I’m going to join a Unitarian Congregation. I believe in something greater than myself – I experienced it firsthand. It’s not “Casey thinks” – it’s something I know. I know, it was outside of my timeline. It informed my life from 1996 to present day. I just wouldn’t accept the dogma or hypocrisy. A lie that is used to perpetuate control is a crime against humanity. So what is the truth? I don’t know exactly, but I’ve been studying the question my entire life. I’m starting over. I’m starting over with a focus on health, family and community. You cannot draw arbitrary lines in who deserves to be valued and expect to be treated better. That is a lie. How many times have I experienced these value judgments? The safest place for me is in the flock. I can’t keep going on alone.

Meaning

All of it meant something. You cannot escape “meanness.” It’s in the heart of academia. All these people who took stabs at your character and undermined your success in life. What do they mean to you? They ain’t shit. They’re off running intellectual algorithms for the slave-owners. What have you been doing? Looking at the world with open eyes. You see the potential, you see the signified. They feed on pain. When you start rebuilding your psyche – why would you EVER want to be the whipping boy at their dinner parties again? Didn’t you think I would notice? It’s more like – here’s my gun. Here’s my back and here’s my cock. You think human history would have been a lesson to these fools, but it isn’t. That’s what will catch you off guard. Their hubris.

Endings

I’m at an ending. Everything I fought for – I see it in context, doesn’t matter. My voice is irrelevant – therefore, it’s the end for me. I’d say – painting, as a medium is inconsequential…or that it is, in itself, the sole meaning of what it seeks. I don’t want to politicize beauty. It’s wrong. And if you don’t think I’m beautiful, you missed the point. Society destroys innocence. It feeds on pain. You can’t SAY anything and have a voice. Our society isn’t about that. It’s about grand-standing and shame. I’m bowing out. I lost everything. My own conceit – my own need to be meaningful destroyed my life. It’s a good feeling to know it. It’s not like I had much of a chance anyway. At least now I’ll be more efficient at sorting who/what I will tolerate. These are opinions, and it’s all heading to disaster. The meaning is connection…achievement itself, is a construct. Who are you to be popular with? People who don’t do anything. What do they know anyway? You tell me something is meaningful – I’ll tell you about who is dying for you to say so. I’ve seen it. It’s collapsing. So what’s a poor painter going to be able to do about any of it? Nothing. That’s always been the reality. People create this horrorscape. You either get played in it, you’re part of it or you’re naive. It’s destruction and it’s going to get a lot worse. What does liberalism do for me? It shits on my sacrifice. I just want to go home. I just want to be held. I feel broken. They don’t call it pain-ting for nothing.

Justice

The best justice is preventative justice. My dad encouraged me to be an artist and to go to a liberal arts college and I was sure I had the talent be successful at it. This is a LONG shot – really, the rarest way to make your way in the world, but I was absolutely convinced I could be one of the greats. That’s why the betrayal I experienced is difficult to accept. Someone from my own discipline played me so hard it damaged my mind. And then to pretend he’s concerned. I don’t want to be a part of any of it any more. I lost – I lost out on a life. I was walking wounded. I’m here trying to recover, still. Standing up for myself cost me even more people. So I lost – BECAUSE I loved. BECAUSE I was trying to be a great artist – I got hurt. Because I trusted someone who I thought represented the values of the institution. He does, in fact, represent those values…betrayal, hurting someone at the start of their life. Stepping on the romantic dream. You people have no idea the horror I experienced. But even the loss of one of my dear friends – another blow to the heart – doesn’t measure up to the freedom of no longer being angry about my failure. The pain was in the way of everything. The nature of reality, the creation of loss – that is the common experience I’ve come to know. That makes me an artist of even greater potential. It’s the human experience I make the art for and about. All these people who gave up, they gave up. I don’t need to worry about it. The choice has been clear. But I know something about FAIR. I know something about what’s worth fighting for. This is what helps me move on.

If/When

I can’t play the if/when game any more. I value myself, I see my potential a certain way and other people see it differently. There is always a bias present – and I know, if I’m VALUED differently – then you would have tried harder to stay in my life. It’s very simple. I’m going to keep going regardless. I’m just not going to keep these attachments any longer. I’m too old for “I told you so.” I’m too tired. Time to retire this sentiment. I just wish people hadn’t hurt me on purpose. There’s no excuse for it. They fucked my life up intentionally when I was trying to start over and heal.

Pain

It’s been 21 years of excruciating pain. I describe what it feels like to doctors and therapists. Brain pain. Like there’s a knife stuck in my mind. They say it’s psychosomatic. It’s not. It never goes away except with certain illegal drugs. Everyone thinks you’re supposed to act a certain way, think a certain way. I have my own thoughts, my own motivations. But the pain doesn’t go away. And I lose people, all the time. People are constantly projecting. They think less of me. But they don’t know. They don’t know what I’m thinking and they don’t know what the pain is like. It’s hard to concentrate. It’s hard to connect and it hurts to love. The only way you can really understand is if you feel it too. It’s not fair. But people don’t wait, and they never think to be patient, or compassionate. Everyone always leaves and they think I’m a bad person. I’m not bad. I’m hurt. My mind hurts and it hurts to be alive. I lost my family. My first memory is pain. I had to hurt myself on purpose to call attention to a situation I couldn’t put into words. It was constant fear and a constant battle to protect myself. And falling in love always came with fear. Women don’t wait. They don’t have to. And they don’t have to work for it either. It’s something I’m supposed to do, but I never learned that. I was afraid. I got so close too and it always slipped away. Every person…who thought about what may have been wrong when I didn’t even know? 21 years. Lost. Everyone I ever loved has someone. Nobody I loved even tried. I don’t think you know what it’s like to be a man. And I don’t think you really understand equality. And people hurt me on purpose when I was just starting out like I was a joke, like I was stupid. You’re the one who’s stupid – look what you did to my life! People who KNEW better. Rationalizing the abuse, like I deserved it. You’re SO WRONG. I hate you…you know that? I hate you. Look at what I did with the knife in my mind. Who could I have been without it? What do you do, men, when it’s been years without touch? Take baths. That’s what I do. It gets you close to feeling contact. This is loneliness. And this has been a lifetime of loneliness.