Sunday, May 29, 2011

good times on the road: Your House Review

Perhaps meditation works.

While enjoying the hospitality of Photo Lady, my last downstairs neighbor in Memphis, I had time to relax and be alone. Eventually, in a state of out of body calm, I realized I should continue east to NC.

I arrived in Greensboro yesterday. Saturday morning, I guess. My old friend, Joel helped me set up camp at Hagan Stone Park south of town. He's not set up for temporary roommates at the moment. I wouldn't change a thing. This is a good place for tent life and I'm glad to be here.

We saw Dave, my all time favorite drummer last night. It was a long day and I got lost on the way back to the park late last night. It turned out to only be a detour because I found home shortly before midnight.

We had a tasty meal at a diner named Your House. Like hell, it is. They will not take a debit card. I do not do credit. OK. We had cash, but the attitude toward this policy was mildly offensive so I agreed with my friend that a scathing review was in order. What made matters worse was that the food was good, and I was plenty hungry. Which bring me to some CSR tips.

Do not say to a patron, "I cain't believe you ate all that." Or when the subject of the card comes up and you say, maybe they ought to rethink that policy, don't roll your eyes and say, Yea, right". We were not only polite but the best looking and most famous people in the place. I don't think they know who I am!

So, if you go to Your House, which is not my house and probably not yours either, pay in pennies and tell them it is for refusing a perfectly acceptable alternative means of exchange.

While I'm at it: If your are grossly obese, as is your mate of dubious gender and species, don't go to a quiet wooded area where people pitch tents, play your radio way loud, sing along from time to time, and leave your fire untended. Your arguing is OK. It portends the marvelous prospect that you may kill each other.

Also, when you get tired of singing Free bird and decide o listen to NASCAR on radio, do you have to add to the commentary? And when you go to bed do you have to keep the race on even though your snoring sounds like a bull moose in heat?

Seriously, the McFatenlouds set up camp at the next place over from me and seem to fear quiet like the plague. It seemed futile to tell them to shut up. Besides the alleged female of the pair looks mean enough and big enough to be dangerous. The only words I heard which resembled any language I know were from her yelling at her husband regarding his lack of some sort of awareness after $%^&* thirty one years of marriage. Something about underestimating her. I doubt it was in reference to her weight or ability to make paint peel with a look or word.

Other conversation seemed to consist of a private language which sounded like, "Gitchumcainerrumpa, gurroh? Yebbadinassoh." I ruled out he missing link to explain this pair. Just don't think the material is there supply any evolutionary building blocks. Another reason I opted not to discuss their noise. That damned race is still screaming from the boom box in the tent. The snoring stopped though. I do not want to imagine the scene inside that dwelling. I feel better that the tent is large, which I guess necessity dictates.

But don't think I am not enjoying myself. I am. Joel came out here and enjoyed some of my Cuban coffee today and we had great discussions about whatever crossed our ADD minds. He's a wealth of knowledge and you can't have these discussions with just anyone. We hardly touched on political matters at all. That may surprise some who think I discuss everything I write about. I'm just a freedom lover, that's all.

I saw some videos of my friend playing bass, and I should say, Joel is a purely natural and highly funky player. He hasn't been playing all that long, but he's surpassed many who have been at it since they were kids. It's an obvious talent.

We also saw the owner of Somewhere Else and I endured bear hugs. That's where Dave the drummer was doing sound. For a small tavern they have first class sound and stage. What a waste. The band was playing angry white boy music. The singer's favorite lick is an extended sound reminiscent of that which I used to make when I used to drink and found myself hugging the toilet for hours, sure I would soon upchuck my entire stomach and other organs.

I'd hate to have an 18 year old child who was into self mutilation. That appeared to be the standard of the crowd there. Some of that stuff cannot be undone. Oh well. Not my kids. I guess peer pressure and baby boomer parents without any gumption yield bizarre and unpleasant results.

Good God!! Now the race car radio is playing some preacher. These people are nuts. I think they just can't take silence. I'll bet they'd leave it on if it were in Latin or Japanese--just to avoid being alone with their version of thoughts. And to avoid talking to one another.

Being attacked by bugs out here.

The end.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Not CEO material

Have I ever been more indecisive? Possibly not. I don't recall and do not want to commit to an answer. After all, I could be wrong.

First, I'm going to NC, then to Texas, then not, then yes, no, yes, no, maybe.

My concern is that I will go to TX and not want to go east, but instead up to CO, New Mex, etc. And I may do just that. But then will I forever regret not going east and seeing people and things there while I was so close?

That's the deal. I know I have to do something. Tomorrow I either go east or west. South is out--no way I care to hit New Orleans. It just does not appeal to me. Especially considering my sketching lodging plans.

This is all very strange. I will figure it out sooner or later.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Testing, and Where to What?

So, the overwhelmed Memphis Apple store turned it around in 24 hours. They couldn't fix the key between 8 and 0. He said they'd have to replace the keyboard for some reason, so I opted to keep it taped in place and buy an external keyboard. I also bought a new battery which has been on the list for more than a year.

Big storm warnings in the area. The warning sirens wailing, the whole bit. It looks like the biggest tornado risk may be a mile or two north of here.

Just spotted tornado in midtown
Heading to basement.

The above wouldn't publish but it saved. Did not end up in basement. The funnel cloud was spotted near enough to here but it did not evolve into anything serious.

I'm torn between directions of travel. Weather forecast indicates hot hot hot for just about everywhere south of Montana. The NC benefit is not going to be peopled by those I thought were playing, and sounds like a bust from my perspective. But from my perspective, I can't see the forest for the trees, can't remember why I wanted to take this trip, and can't see the point of any of this.
I assume that will pass. Maybe more than 24 hours in Memphis is a lifetime too much.

It is cloudy and rainy looking again. I guess I'll get to Dallas by Saturday. Finally heard back from cousins there,
The big question is whether to go east then come back through Texas. The thing is, I'd hoped for a return trip far to the north of that.

There are places east I want to go, but I have no love or longing for the places along the way. No desire to do much in the southeast any more. It's not the people just me and my lack of love for much of the past that places represent. I've lost my affection for dripping humid heat.

I guess, since I've never seen Austin, and need to see my Aunt, Texas has to be the next stop. Backtracking is against the grain, but what can you do?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Song of the South in Mississippi

My computer is in the shop in Memphis. It may be an item which they will do for free. It is, they say.

They have the part. Just waiting for genius person to put it in. I offered to do it myself but they strongly urged, NO!!!

OK. At photoLady's. Same house where I used to live. My old apt is empty and the place is for sale.

Good to have lodging.

Something about this town makes me angry. Just driving from Mac store to here seemed to get under my skin. I know is is much me. I have no reason to be mad but this city just does that to me. I very much do not want to live or die in Memphis.

Whether it is the hot humid air or the fact that a huge percentage of the population is not only dumber than a rock but wildly psychotic. I mean a HUGE percentage. The rest just pretend it is all dandy. Not saying there aren't many swell and wonderful people here. There are. Just saying there is an intangible force in this place which makes me angry, on fire with undefined rage, and feel like I'm fighting for my life. And losing.

The Hill country harp fest was very well done.
It rained but I stayed dry.

Sugar Blue and his band were On Fire. They were hot hot hot. SB looked younger than in recent videos. He has a nice personality and good humor.

There were a lot of nice people there, and many very good players.

I'm on borrowed time--not my computer.

Not sure what is next. Trying to contact relatives but have just now emailed. Other relatives have been no help in this lost Texas contact.
Some of that determines where to from here, when my mac is back.

Keep my old friend from long ago who plays sax in your thoughts. He broke his neck and is due to be laid up awhile.
They are doing a benefit in NC, Clemmons, I believe. People I jammed with in the 80's. At least a few of them.
I'd like to play it too, but do not know if that will happen. They should do more than one benefit. He'll need the help and all else, I'm guessing.

So, best of recovery to Dwayne L.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Plan Z2

OK. Come heck or high water I am out of here Monday night. Then a day in eastern AZ. Then 3 days to drive to MS for the blues harp festival, providing it is not under water. Then back to Texas, then we shall see. I expect to head east agin, then eventually west. The one place not on the list is Bumble Bee, AZ. That is where I encountered the cuchacabra a few years ago. Did I spell that right? Believe me I did not stick around and ask about spelling when its fearsome head caught my eye.

Maybe it is Chupacabra. Whatever it is, the only time people talk about them is on Coast to Coast AM radio with George Noory or Art Bell.

I lived to tell about it and to avoid the endless dirt road to Bumble Bee.

a blast from the past

PS: I'm bringing the last of the Howling Wolf spice rub with me. Great on potatoes or on cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo sandwiches, on wheat toast. The stuff is incredible and a little goes a long way--otherwise I'd already be out.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Strange Days:part 515

Mental blocks are sometimes treated with drugs or diagnoses of various types. That approach s the luxury of those who can carry their issue to well paid professionals. If that luxury is out of one's grasp, the best thing is to realize that the block is mental, and that means you have to fight through it.

I thought I put up a post a day or so ago and now it is gone. Maybe I imagined it.

I have coolers and other things now, found that Target is best for cheap gear, WalMart's selection is wanting. Cheap is how we role in this realm.

Maybe I can get the massive mess, that is the manifestation of my mental block, under control in time for an almost on time departure. It is working on me and actually causes shallow breathing and internal panic. That is unacceptable. No way for a brave man to be. I'll retreat into a calming trance and down a ton of Cuban coffee and bull through it.

Half of the purpose of this trip is to force me to confront things which my self imposed stagnation has allowed to become unmanageable and unmanaged.

If you really begin dropping out of life in an unhealthy way at an early age, it can carry over for decades. For some it takes longer to confront the internal lies, regardless of who is at fault for them being there, than for others. Like always, I probably have everything I need and find it difficult to accept this. The rest is just confusing work. Organizing and de-trashing is very complex for someone like me.

boohoo. OK. Whining is over for now. Luckily I don't have a flood to deal with. Cleaning up after a house is flooded would be a real challenge. I could probably clean up someone else's mess, for pay. But my own, it is as if I am looking at an unfamiliar planet and haven't a clue what to do. That is obviously a mental issue which is internally based on completely wrong premises.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Burning Bridges/Squeezing the Most out of Last Minute Prep

*****Phantom post returned. Here it is*****

I'm working tomorrow but bringing an instruction sheet for the people who will do what I do in my absence. The won't do repair work, just the regular things when people come in and when they leave.

The housekeeper's son and his pal often help her and they do good work. Maybe 18 or 20 years old. My nine button is messed up so I could not numerically list the in between age. I refuse to spell it out on principle of some kind.

I've told people I'm going to be out of here, so I have to go. That's the burning bridges part. No real or long term metaphorical bridges will be burned. Even though the landlord has placed this estate on the market. It is not possible due to various rules and regs to split out the cabin part. Otherwise, I might attempt to find a way to buy it.

If they sell while I'm gone, they'll know how t reach me. For their sake, I hope the sell. For mine, I'd rather the didn't. It may be more important to them than to me so I can't wish too hard for no buyers. In this market, it is very very tough. Especially out here with SDGE decimating Alpine business with their construction, uncertainty over the Powerlink scam, etc. Values have dropped to about 50% of their value in just a few years, and few are selling even at that. Great time to buy in East County.

Cheapo camping hint--there is more available for good prices at Target in this area than at WalMart. I don't go very high end with this stuff. And Target is the only one with the affordable airmattress with pump included. Better prices on coolers too. The 5 day jobs were all too big at both places so I went for convenient size that was on sale, included a tiny baby cooler inside plus a 20 pack of Coke.

Still skeptical of the Mississippi festival but I will pay about the time I leave if all looks like it is still a go. There are bound to be a lot of mosquitos if the wind is out of the west there, I have sticks that you burn to keep them at bay.

It sure takes me forver to start on things like this. A normal person would have spent the last month chipping away at the things that need doing, like leaving the house organized, etc. Guess I lack in the normal department.


Ever feel like you ought to state a premonition, just in case? So, then, it will make sense if it al panned out? I have, but I think it is a bad idea.

Best just to take things as they come and forget such hocus pocus.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Still Wonder What Synthetic Oil Is Made Of

The say it is better, and maybe it is. If it is not regular oil made from crude, I wonder how it is made. Someone ma have told the answer but I didn't remember it. Probably did not really make sense to me at the time.

I'll be using synthetic oil for my not so synthetic journey. I got rid of my old oil at WalMart. It is hard to find places that will take it and not charge you for that. WalMart makes it known that they are the place to go for that. What gets me is that the want you to sign a sheet with you name, address, and signature.

I realized, from past experience, that they do not check ID, so this time I signed in as J Pastorius from Alpine. Next time I'll be Stephen Hawking, although I need to check to see if he uses the ph or a v. Eventually I'll use names like Spiro Agnew and Wally Cleaver.

Why do they need you to sign? It isn't as if they can determine which of the oil in the dump tank was mine. Probably they originally thought it would be a good source for mailing lists, but you can tell they are not making use of it. I gave no street address for J, as in Jocko, Pastorius.

The tour should begin in a few days. How it will proceed, and where it will take me are variable factors. Those things are just not carved in stone. We'll see what happens. As time goes on the importance of things have changed. What I thought was the purpose has changed. It makes more sense. Because it is personal to me, there is no need to justify the why and all that. Doing that kills the idea. It is clear there are matters to be worked out and lessons to be learned.

I look forward to finally getting this car unloaded because it has been packed with junk and work related paraphernalia for years. The things that will travel with me are mostly light weight and functional. I always bring some tools and items that would serve in case of emergency. Of course the machete will be on board. It is a useful tool and has been used in the past for cutting sticks or chopping brush to put under tires for traction or just as an accessory which makes the riffraff think I am too crazy to bother.

Maybe I'll wait until Texas to get a haircut. The only good haircut here is expensive and way over at the coast. I don't trust any of the fairly priced haircutters any more. I could cut hair better than them, but it is tough to effectively cut your own hair. The need has reached near crisis level. It is just not good style at the moment, and a man of my stature can't go around looking like the unwashed masses.

In the mean time I could slick it back with some synthetic oil.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

These Guys Look Familiar

Imams kicked off Delta flight in Memphis.

When I worked at the airport, I had a few run-ins with people trying to create racial and ethnic incidents. I knew it and they knew it. I managed to keep things just under the boiling point. They egg you on and show utter disdain, as if you are a dirty dog. I think one even called me a dirty dog.

One of those guys looks like the one I caught one on one after an unnecessary bunch of trouble and insult. We exchanged words about how we really felt, both knowing the other could not substantiate any claim later. He'd lost whatever the battle was which was more public and in sight of video cameras. I won't say what I told him, but I think he left with the idea that I was as crazy as the craziest radical of his clan.

Speaking of clan, how is it less of an abuse of free speech when crowds gather in London to protest the death of their hero Osama, carrying signs that read, "Islam will dominate the world" than it is when Black Panthers or KKK do their insane rants? The outcry in the case of fanatics who support violent Islam is actually not that loud, partly because mind dead governments of the west and people who deny reality refuse to take these threats seriously. But up close, the mistrust is there. That's why passengers freak out easily, and a pilot who elects to fly a peaceful ship catches hell.

In this case, I don't know if the pilot was right or wrong, but it is his call and you are far safer not usurping the traditional authority of the pilot to make that call. My guess is that their behavior and disrespect of other passengers made them nervous. They are Americans and purposely wear the garb and play it up when they fly to spur on some incident which gives them the chance to cry that they are victims.

I don't really sympathize with them. They got their apologies and another flight, but it will not end there. CAIR is getting involved and on and on.

And I'm one who has questioned our policy in the Arab world and with Israel forever. But when people are trying to bully through playing victim and pervert our own laws to give themselves special privilege, I have no use for them. I've seen people show respect and make effort and I've seen the opposite. Knowing you are going to create discomfort and annoy, and purposely going that route is looking for special privilege. If the pilot found it unworkable then that is how it goes.

I swear I think I dealt with these clowns in the past. They behave as if they are going to spit on you.

They want to improve the bad image, dissipate alleged islamaphobia? Quick purposely fueling it. Quit being jerks, and do something about the stonings, beheadings, and human bombs who blow up for the glory of the prophet (pbuh). Speak up loudly and visibly when people get killed over friggin cartoons. Things like that would help.

Religious states, and absurdly catering to every religion is suicide. Let people do what they want on their own time but keep the state out of it. Wash your feet when you leave home, don't saddle the tax payer with your airport foot wash.

Intolerant groups always push the most tolerant of societies, and do all they can not to assimilate and to punish the host society for their own inflexibility and arrogance. These groups are the ones who ignore the values of the place where they elect to settle. All the while accusing everyone else of intolerance--only because they know the society under attack values tolerance. They don't. Many groups play this game. Their homelands would not yield one thousandth as much as most western european and the nothern two countries in north America do.

Mississippi Rising

They say the end of Beale street, which runs perpendicular to the Mississippi River, is getting a bit damp. I've been down there when the river was high but nothing like now, and it is nasty. It stinks and you feel the sticky, hot humid catfish droppings become one with the mist.

I hope it doesn't do too much damage. The casinos in Tunica are going to be in really tough straits I think. Floods, tornadoes, and hot weather on the way. Let's hope the Westboro cult doesn't go down to harass the people, telling them it is God punishing them for something to do with "fags". Sorry. I guess I could have gone a lifetime without giving mention to that group of psycho-cultists.

Anyway, at first I thought this would mess up the blues harp fest in Mississippi, but it looks to be far enough inland to be OK. Not so sure how some of the upper MS blues towns located on the river will fare.

Maybe I'll get there after all. If so, I am pretty sure I am going to have to do most of my TX and other visits between here and there on the back swing. Time will be too tight, and I hate to rush everything. It is a long way there, and I am a little apprehensive about the river crossing at Memphis. In case there is damage on the road in Arkansas, I need to have time to go another way.

We shall see. It could be I make Dallas for a day or two then go from there. But I may have to go straight there, continue on, then catch all the rest on the way back home, although I still feel like I have yet to find home. This is as close as I've got, and some people here do feel like family, so there is that. I know it puzzles them that I am so unsettled and nuts. It puzzles me.

What puzzles me about myself and my life is a lot, actually. On the other hand, I probably am more at peace than most in some ways.

I'm counting on being physically up to this endeavor, and hoping the adventure actually promotes a little better fitness and energy. I also am allowing the possibility that I decide I can't do it and turning around early. It could go either way.

Most likely, once I get rolling I won't want to stop.

Friday, May 6, 2011


Current mysteries will remain mysteries, however, in time for the 2012 elections, intelligence gathered by whatever means during whatever went down in Pockeestohn will serve to ensure one or more very dramatic operations which will divert attention from the obvious inflation of the dollar and resulting restrictions on travel and lifestyle. Not to mention lack of long term job growth.

Don't assume I would have any different prediction if a mainstream Republican was at the helm while totalitarianism seems to loom large. I wouldn't.

The good news is that it is hard as hell to control so much from a central power base, manned by the relatively few, who consider it their duty to control the lives and interactions of others. We vote and they assume they are elite and above us. Hell, if people keep voting for the obvious choices, I guess they have a point.

I will say, that without being convinced of any story I hear, and having only one alternate possibility in mind (which I hope is true), the whole thing does not give me a good feeling. Maybe nothing is amiss, but it doesn't seem good at the moment. No facts to back that up, so I can't say my feeling has any validity.

Like when they caught Saddam, I was kind of happy. But when his hanging was on video I felt like we'd let these people drag us back a few centuries. Other incidents over the last decade have reinforced that observation. Since when did we cheer in the streets and demand to see bodies? I understand the reasons, but the reactions are suspect. What has lead up to all this is suspect, and I'm going back many decades with that reference. We've had beheadings on tape. Tell me we aren't dealing with some people stuck in a time warp back in the worst of the Medieval period.

Anyway, I predict there will be more unusual and momentous expeditions and they will provide a big bump in the polls. I seriously doubt it will backfire politically. That would be no big deal if I did not think it would distract from some serious domestic encroachment on lives like mine.

I'll survive and be happy and insist you buy my book whenever I'm done. The rest I cannot control, but I do take notice. If only I had such a keen sense of the dynamics of the market.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Secret Photo Found!! Speculation Can End [WARNING!! Graphic Image]

Not I, however, many people have been disturbed at not having visual evidence that Osama is now a corpse. Due to my secret connections to the White House, I was able to obtain a definitive photo.
Anything else you see was probably altered on a computer.
Personally, I gain no sense of well-being, closure or even financial security as a result of seeing this irrefutable evidence. Apparently many others feel this is needed in order to put calm and meaning into their lives.

I still have difficulty wondering why it happened now, given that he was persona non grata soon after he was the opposite, and even Clinton could have taken him out. But that is all hearsay. It could be that things are not as they seem. I'd bet on that, but what is actually true in that world, I haven't a clue, even though I am an insider.

Definitive proof of demise of OBL, straight from secret sources in the White House

All those books. Probably just secret hiding places for dope and guns.

Wow. I just noticed that he was carrying a man purse when he was nailed. Photos don't lie. Far be it from me to make assumptions based on that. Oh well, you know what they say; Don't ask, don't tell.

Once again, I take risks for the larger good. Another public service. My sense of community spirit prevented me from selling to the highest bidder. No, I do this out of my obligation to society.

The real question of the moment is , Who will now become the poster boy of our enemy? Who will be the face that justifies ignoring the pesky 4th amendment and whatever else is needed in our war against drugs, obesity, terror, and bullying?

Again, due to my inside track on such matters, I can supply the answer.

Ladies and gentlemen, quit that breathing easy and false sense of relief you experienced when Bin Laden was put down. Meet the New Face of the Enemy!

Hide if you can. Jaba wants to eat your children, and ruin everything. He also is known to disguise himself as an elderly American woman, a two year old child, or who knows what, so we must conduct our security accordingly. He is believed to hide bombs in body cavities, so be prepared to prove your innocence to help us fight this menace

Thinking Again: part N(2)X

Too bad I don't have mathematical symbols on this keyboard. Then I could use that summation symbol, show exponents and integrals. And maybe even remember what they mean.

It is difficult for me to maintain a sense of what I'm doing. On the one hand I care about being a good influence on people and life, in general. On the other, if I think I do have any influence, it worries me a lot. I doubt I can ever live up to a good opinion. I'm a slacker, I think. Not a reason for being hated or run out of town, but that should disqualify me from having the slightest influence.

Over the years I have done a good job at avoiding situations which could influence anyone. No one gets too close for too long. I live miles away and never have company. I wanted to change that, but my fear of company snuck back into my psyche somehow.

Nothing I would like better than to have things in order, regularly have people around, and behave like the philanthrope that I am. I'm also a philogynist.

Isn't it ridiculous that more people know what a misogynist is, than know what a philogynist is? I think more people love women than not, yet the term for the opposite is all you hear. That is because what you hear does not reflect the pulse and heart of humanity, but rather the lies of those who would, for some absurd reason, want to control humanity. More information is put out with intent to manipulate than intent to inform. I have sadly grown to be of that opinion.

Would you want to be the supreme ruler of the world? Not me, and I wouldn't want you or anyone else to hold that title. It is odd that some people would want that.

Of course I do want to be the supreme ruler of my own life. Even if I do not want to influence others in some scary way, I don't want my life to be their responsibility either.

That influence thing is a tough one. I don't mind being an influence if it means someone lives a great happy life and cures the ills of the world.

But what if, due to something involved with knowing me, a person moves to some city, then that place gets flooded or overrun with lava from the volcano, and the poor person perishes?
Then I'll feel like they shouldn't have met me.

Probably happens all the time. I wonder how many are now one with volcanic ash due to my existence. A sobering thought.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Not Reacting, Not Much of an Opinion

Well, Jim, what does this mean for the USA?

That is the sort of news babble over the Osama take out.
The damned circus just won't leave town. One dazzling display after another.

My only real reaction is that I would much rather the Navy's SEAL Team 6 never be under the impression that I am a threat. If that target ever landed on my back, I guess I'd get a bunch of term life insurance and try to make some people better off than they are now.

Other than that, I am stunned by the reactions. None of it struck me like it did the people on the left or those on the right. Really, what info do I actually have? It is very limited and what I do know makes little sense.

So, I am trying to get things in quick order for a launch into the beautiful countryside very soon. I'll be communing with the bears, sending Joel to moon, and be on a great adventure very very soon. I'm counting the days and have plenty to do to make it happen. I've had some unexpected work come up which is good and helps me get things moving.

One thing I do not look forward to is the higher humidity in the southeast. It is way too easy to get spoiled here in San Diego county. But I enjoy being on the road with only a partial idea of what will happen next. I hope I can get it all done, and still be able to take my time and pass through some places where I am a stranger.

No telling. I am looking forward to this continuation of my search for the meaning of life, or whatever that represents in my mind. It may be code.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Joel [edited slightly]

My bass/harp playing NC friend expressed that he felt insulted that I did not list him here by name. He will soon be sorry, after I tell his story, and include insight and assessment.

One thing I decided not long ago: don't lose contact with the long time real sincere friendships. Re-connect and keep them alive. This Tour will include some of that. This is one of those. Few people have the ability to argue with my brilliant ideas and make me think about them. Joel would argue no matter what I said, just to see how wound up I'd get over it.

If you see a UFO go flying to moon next month, you will know Joel and I had a discussion in NC. He'll be the UFO.

I should point out that I met Joel at the wild and crazy jam bar, Somewhere Else Tavern in Greensboro back when the music scene was quite remarkable there. This was in the early '80s. Well over 25 years ago. Seems it was right about the time I had half way broken the ice and was somewhat the harp player of choice at the jams. At least I was rarely getting pushed off the stage by the in crowd.

Who knows, I was on a fast downhill spiral in other ways. Joel was the first straight forward honest person I'd talked to in ages, and he wanted to break into the jam clique. He asked the right guy for advice. I was always on the side of the new person who wanted to play, if they had any soul. And he did. We had many adventures related to jams and playing with bands around the area after that.

What we have in common is that we have, in our own ways, spent far too much energy tilting at windmills, both figuratively and literally. I can't prove the literal part, but I do suspect it. We both have fairly strong intellects, and find ourselves puzzled with the ways of the world at times. Misfits, and at the same time no real good reason for that. I've come to terms with that more than in the past. He's probably still in the dark. I said that just out of spite.

As a matter of fact he blames me for once placing us in a situation in which the odds were 18 plus a large, seasoned 175 pound female bartender vs the two of us. He claims it was his extraordinarily rigid code of honor and loyalty which prevented him from walking away or offering to help them thrash or/and maim me. He did comment at the time that if we escaped alive he was going to beat me up or some such nonsense.

In the end, we not only got out alive but got offered a regular gig playing there. We declined. I had experienced as much as I could take of the place. Besides, when you sort of challenge that many people, it is best to avoid doing it again. It often works the first time because it looks so stupid and they wonder if you are pitifully dimwitted, or maybe you know something and could really do a number on them using powers they can only imagine.

It is a one time only tactic at any given venue, and always a gamble. I've only been moved to engage in such foolishness while heavily under the influence, so I believe my days of challenging large groups to a duel have passed.

Anyway, Joel's integrity and loyalty are legendary. He's also somewhat of a badass, but not one to go around fighting. He has that Clint Eastwood thing going. If he didn't take himself too serious to act, I would think he could have done well in movies.

But that is the real crux of the matter. He thinks like I used too, that unless I made a notable mark on the world, and people knew about it, that my life would be a waste. That would be nice, I guess, but I no longer see that as the point.

I'm not sure Joel has let that perspective go. That is not to say that if I scheme a way to do some things that I have long dreamed, that I would not go for it. But most important is that I learn to do what is in front of me, treat people well, and put more positive out there than negative. I think if more people benefit than not from crossing my path, I've done OK.

My biggest problem is just taking care of my basic life. Plus there are some other uncertainties, but I have faith it will be OK. It is not too bad now.

I was thinking about the number of betrayals vs the number of people who have proven loyal throughout. I realized that I could probably list a huge number of betrayals of one sort or another, but I also realized I don't tend to think of those as often. Many are pretty much forgotten. I have to search my mind to find them. I'm glad of that.

When I think of the number of really good friends who would not throw me under the bus, I realize that there are more than I may even deserve. Considering that Joel has had to go out of his way more than once in the past, at crucial times, I have no idea why he remains a friend. Maybe I did not put his life in jeopardy that much.

I did do the driving sometimes and I was still drinking--a lot--so I guess he is lucky he survived. I may have never made it out of NC the first time, on my journey to live without alcohol had he not come over and forced me to get packed up. Actually he did a lot of the packing and that forced me to participate. He would have thrown it all out if I didn't man up.

So now, my goal is to help him step back in some way, forget what you can't change, and see how to work with what comes in. Everyone can't have the big Hawaiian waves, but they do find some they can ride, if they pay attention. Nifty metaphor, no?

Anyhow, it always pissed me off that if I was wiped out or whatever he'd blame it on the fact that I am not, and have never been a carnivore. He's one of those who can't let it go that I don't eat meat. Don't care what he eats, and if you count instances of being sick, I know he has more colds, flu etc than I. Most people do. I doubt diet is the reason, but the point is, who cares what I eat as long as I don't cook you or your belongings?

Joel was also there to help me move P and K in when I returned to NC, and that was a mess. She brought everything I specially asked to be left in the garage behind my mother's house, and she arrived with less than a team player, cheerful attitude. Lesson learned: maybe the child is great, but you might do yourself in playing hero if mom just wants the Jerry Springer show lifestyle.

OK. Deep down I knew it, but I thought there was a chance it would work. Joel knew it was hopeless but didn't push the point or even bring it up, I don't think. I had things to move and squeeze into a tiny upstairs apartment and he appeared to help because it was needed.

He also let me know before I stopped drinking that I'd lost my pride and self respect. I recall it clearly. That actually helped me finally give up and change.

So, as big of an egomaniac and whatnot as he is, I expect to see some places in NC that he insists I see. And he wants to personally introduce me to the places. I wonder if he'll round up some dancing girls for the occasion? I doubt and that is so politically incorrect. I guess we can rule out members of NOW and many other groups, after such a statement.

Anyway, Joel is a good harp player. I may have taught him cross harp and how to play the high end. He got me a little studio gig when I was up there with P and K. I'm more the slow simple rhythm type. He's like Mr Funky on bass, like Jocko and Stanley Clarke or whoever. Lots of slapping and complicated beats. Very complex, actually. He could do some stuff on harp that I'm not so sure I can do as well. I'm glad he has put more time into bass over the years.

I think the thing is-I like people but am not too comfortable around them very long. I am comfortable with short interaction then a bunch of solitary. It is kind of odd I guess because I like people more than most people do. And I do like it if a group I know well is together having a good time. But I doubt most of my friends would get along with one another. That is a bitch.

Possibly I have a compulsion to run if I get too included in people's lives. I good for watching pets, helping move, etc., but something seems to physically force me to keep it limited. Out here I forced myself out of that a time or two, but there was usually a project or something which served as excuse. I never quite realized this was guiding me so much until now.

I'm going to see if Joel will go chase the bears off my vertical plot of land in the NC mountains. If they eat him, I'll know not to hang out up there.

Neither of us drink now, which is a good thing for America and the universe. Well I don't, and guess he doesn't. No. That would be dumb and he ain't dumb.

Well, this did not really do Mr Ego justice, but I did mention him by name and threw in a few compliments. You have to be very careful with some people because praise so quickly goes to their head. I am not like that, of course. I am only made better by praise and it should be lavished on me thickly at all times.

Joel, on the other hand,...

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Just Wondering What It Is Called

Pakistan. I always thought the way Americans, and maybe even Bits, referred to it was "pack-e-stan". (Short E. Stan as in Musiel or Clarke)

Tonight I've been hearing a bunch of "pockee-stahn". (stahn rhymes with John) I've heard it before, but thought it was like calling the Marine Corps, "Marine Corpse", one of those things that would pass.

That is all.

Now back to the ever evolving dog and pony show. New acts introduced daily, and sometimes hourly.

I'm sorry, but there are times I detect absolutely no emotion or sincerity in public officials at press conferences, or elsewhere.

Makes you wonder if the bearded nomad was ever even a real person, or just a manufactured face in this era of personalizing everything, as if one person does and should wield immense power. I tend to think no one wields power without cooperation and help.

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day


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