Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Real Hotshot Producer at the Studio

Apparently this project is hooked in with wounded warriors.  The guy is a Marine back from some crazy ass islamic countries and wars.  Anyway, he can get just about anyone in town to sit in or do studio tracks.  So, it is big flattery to be asked to play.

At first I was skeptical of the engineer and producer.  Soon I realized that they were the real deal. The producer, Johnny something, has a gold record I'm told.  More importantly, he used to play and hang out with Norton Buffalo.  That means he knows how the greatest sound.  Norton was among the greats.

I did not know what they wanted or if they liked what I did for the first three takes.  In between they kept talking to the lead guitar, who was laying down a track at the same time.  Dobro and rhythm were already there. So, this was a case of fitting when and where it works or makes sense to me.

With no feedback I was clueless.  I took a break and the marine's girlfriend told me it was good.  They didn't talk to me because they had no desire to alter my approach. That was a compliment.

This was interesting because everyone involved was really happy with what was going on.  Lots of takes, and lots of waiting on my part. But it was fun and worth it.  By far the best produced studio sessions I have done.

Last night was beyond anything I anticipated, and so was this afternoon at the studio.  It was a little dicey towards the very end and on the way home because of an unruly esophagus.  Sounds kind of like asparagus.  That is not an attractive word.

I'm glad these guys understood the concept of blend and enhance.  My part is not way out front or even 100% or the time.   It is what I would do if I were me.  I remember hearing Toots on a tune by Julian Lennon, and it is just a very small part of the whole.  But that is all it called for. That is what separates him from whoever is not like that

Monday, March 30, 2015

Another fine day

I've learned not to assume I'm healed every time things are not too bothersome.  It does make for a good day.

The toxic pill has not created much problem today, nor have the other physical anomalies with which I deal more and more of late.  

Off to a real studio

I like the studios with wide open spaces.  So much is done with computers in living rooms and basements, you don't often find the kind of studio we'll be checking out today.  Maybe they can use me for other things.  Probably not.  

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Why Are All The Hot Viola Players, Over Forty, Married?

Alright, here's how it all goes; the violin player wanted to do a few of his own songs, and wanted to play MC when Sande, the front person, is tuning.  All well and good, depending on how you do these things.  It wasn't really in keeping with what this project is, so she said No.  Don't issue ultimatums unless you are ready to walk, or know you will get your way.

He walked.  He thought his ultimatum would win him his way.  But he didn't count on her being as strong as she is. And she is right.  Qhen you try to be special, or more equal than others, watch out.

So there is a couple, friends of Sande; she, a viola player, he a DJ, her husband ergo C. Blocker.
So to speak.  If you are married then no one should even test the water or push anything. Same goes all around.  If you are married, do not be a dweeb or dweeba and screw up. Just don't.

Anyway, here we are doing the first gig with no violin and Sande brings in Karen on the viola, and it was so much more fun than we expected.   Sande ran through the stuff with her yesterday. But without the rest of us, and there are many tunes.  Karen rocked it, and to boot, her husband the DJ tweeked the hodge podge bunch of amps and PA stuff so the sound was better than normal and feedback about it was more precise and critical. Jim.  I have to forgive him for being married to Karen and taking yet another off the market.

I don't care anyway, except it is great playing with her.  We blended well.   I'm still hesitant to pull anyone in, even the unencumbered.  Who wants to deal with days like to day.  Four or five hours it takes to get breakfast and be OK enough to take off.  "Hey, look!!! Didn't throw up blood this time! yay.

Tried to meet a guy at 1:30 at the ranch, before heading to the Spring Valley Inn to play.   I finally was able to get there at about 3:50pm.   Had the gig been an early afternoon thing, I don't think I could have done it.  I don't care what they say, my main troubles are between my diaphragm and throat.  How it ties with wacko blood production I do not know.  But I know I am in closer touch with what is up that any doctor who even hints at doubting me.  Some do.  Some have learned; like guitar players learn that if I say something is out of tune, it is out.  Made many doubters eat crow on that.

This viola player is another classically trained musician.  When they caught our show some weeks back, she and her husband complimented me.  She especially did.  I remember because she said nice enough things that I told her she was my new best friend.  And here we are.  I did not know at that time that she plays.  Whenever I can impress real musicians with my mouth harp, I figure I did it right.  Besides, I consider that what I have evolved into playing is not often done by harmonica players, and I'm somewhat pleased with this direction.

I made up my mind to play as much as I can with people that appreciate what I do.  Tomorrow I hit the studio for the Marine who is the star of the music therapy program they have for vets who need something besides a bunch of insincere, sycophantic "Oh (gush) thank you so much for your service".    Some things can become so generic that they lose their soul, and the ring of true feeling and passion.

Anyway, last night and this morning were not the piece of cake I prefer.  I am no stranger to hardship, but I think of myself as one, so little troubles always throw me for a loop.  I am always surprised that I, of all people, should have any difficulty.  I'm just not the type to be visited with misfortune.

My current saga with the soap opera disease which may not go away soon, or ever, actually has positively influenced my outlook, and even my behavior--sometimes.  I do not ask questions about mortality rates or how my particular complications influence things. I've done research.  I know what I test, and what has probably been missed and how it could work, best case.  So, I know where I am and I am quite happy to do my best to achieve certain very personal goals.  They aren't big things, except to me.

Oh man, I heard a girl today, aty the ranch--is it OK to say girl? or better to say I heard a wo-perbeing (must not say wo MAN, or perSon.  That is sexist. So perbeing, and if you have to push it, woperbeing.

I don't know how to eliminate the word "man" if man is the topic of the sentence.  Perbeing with outie.  Who knows.  God help us if they get too carried away with the official international picture language for illiterates.   Not so easy to read in all cases.

I never finished the sentence or thought above. This perbeing, with innie, named Chas, just blew Dan and I away at the Ranch.  I did play a little with her but mostly sat out because the tasty resonator and electric guitar backing her acoustic and rich full voice were all she needed.  They were keeping it soft and subtle and perfect.  One of those times when I felt listening was the thing to do.  Some things do better without me.  Knowing that gives me a smug sense of satisfaction because I know when not to add unnecessary things to a piece, whereas many do not.

Tough day, beautiful night.  Let us hope I timed food and toxicity so that I sleep through it tonight.
People with real issues and real chemo madness must be far tougher than I.  I couldn't do it.  It takes too much effort and planning.  And some stay sick all the time.  I'll bet playing this music helps me.  Even if you hate this music, which you shouldn't do, the act of doing what I do has to be helpful. I work out the diaphragm and lungs, and various muscles up there. And the vibrations are inhaled as much or more than exhaled.  That has to shake thing up internally.  We hope and believe it is for the good.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Whatever is Kava, I'm In

Last night I met a friend at a Kava bar.  I did not sample any kava, but I did have green juice and a gilled cheeses with avocado and something. It was good.

So, I ended up sitting in with both acts.  One of them has studio time at a very nice studio, and has asked me to come out and lay down some tracks.  I am looking forward to that.

Surprisingly, there are not many real studios around.  Everyone is recording in the their living room with a laptop and some software.  I haven't seen a real studio since Memphis.

Not that some of the home studios aren't good.  But they aren't making money off of their recordings, for the most part.   Just gives you something people can hear when you are seeking gigs which will probably never pay your cost of recording.  That is cynical, but true.

I cannot wait until automatic tuners are mainstream; a device that maintains the tuning automatically because it can't stand it when the guitar player has out of tune strings any more than I can.

They already have them somewhere for big bucks.   I wonder if they just hate to tune or if it does not bother them.  Or both   Shudder.

The Kava bar was mostly academic looking twenty somethings with a plethora of tattoos and great attitudes.  It worked out.  Easy to talk which most people did, but also easy to listen to the music if you cared to.  I think I was happy to play somewhere other than a bar.  Plus, I was just sitting in, as asked, so no obligation or responsibility.  Is that the definition of utopia?  I guess plenty of food and shelter need to be in the mix. And a car.  But other than that, it defines utopia.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Racially in Solidarinosc,

No one can do that embarrassing thing of talking about "white boys playing the blues" again in my presence.  Usually if I'm on stage when they do that, I ask who they are calling white.    Or I comment that "you people" are always bringing race into it.

Well I'm taking the same stuff you take if you have sickle cell anemia.  That is extremely hip, egalitarian, and solidarinosc out the yingyang.   So, where's the friggin' white privilege in that?

I fully understand the white privilege concept.  The problem is that much of it is false and pure political manipulation.   Unless you treat people equally under the law, and do not punish some and reward others based on condition of birth, things will always be hostile and tense.

Hostile and tense people are easy to control.  Once you convince a group that their trials in life are all the fault of another group, they are easily led using victim psychology.  They will kill for you, never knowing they are being used.  Well orchestrated fomentation of hatred ensures that.

The charlatans exploiting and creating racial tension are from both races.  I love it when some white celebrity or political figure rants about something being "just a bunch of white guys", or "nothing but white faces" blababla.  The old self-hatred-so-I-am-not-really-white card.   If only that were true...  But the positive part is that your existence prevents me from getting all chauvinistic regarding my race.  (the word chauvinist, per se, has zero to do with male or female.  So many people are clueless about that)

Once again, race is not a virtue.  Neither is your sex, lack of any gender identity, or what have ya.

However, now that I am in solidarinosc, I may reconsider.   This is why I am so soulful.  Well, and because I am a documented mutated person.  Part of me, anyway. Next craze?  Mutant music.  More soulful than soul, more everything.

Seriously, it is probably not common for someone to leave an office cheering with the news that I cheered. But this type of trouble leaves a little more wiggle room for hope than the other possible choices.  I don't have sickle cell, which means this new drug was working before I even took it.

Played a test run tonight at the open mic without the fiddle, who split the group. Of course it gets back that he's talking BS.  Too bad.  No need to spin it or try to make anyone seem bad.  He left because he wanted to be more special than the three other sidemen. Happens all the time with groups.  That is why so many very talented people never really see any action or even the inside of a studio. Ego, and foggy view of their best place.  I have that too.

But I have paid attention to my favorite harp players and how they did things.  Much of even Lee Oskar's career was as a side man for War and others.  He was good at it.  And the smartest of all is Willie's harp player.  It takes very good sense to stick with a good group, and don't worry about being the big bright light.  Just help the others make the song sound good.  Funny how it takes a libertarian to know when group action makes sense.

Mickey has had a great run, and far more stability and breadth of music than the usual harp fronted band.  Good sideman harp is an art and not all that common.

I wanted to do a short post but I got carried away.  The exuberance of a little wiggle room and no immediate indication of the definitely don't buy any green bananas stuff.

So much of my effort with this group has been laying down fat chords, many of them split, so the fiddle can play freely without clash.  I did not find he was ever pleased when requirement or chance for turn about presented itself.  It is rare to find people who get the blend, and if a player feels superior due to training or just because, it won't happen because they don't respect me.

A rare occurrence but it happens.  I'm not sure the fiddle respects me as a player.  Fortunately most others do.  And it may not have to do with playing.  That is what I think.  When people want to change me or bulldoze me, I know what is up.  Been around the block. So, now I call it out.  Maybe that is why he left, though that is no one's official story.  I'm glad of that.

I do think I was central to his decision in some way, but it is perfect that to indicate that would be a bad PR move for him, so he has not said that, as far as I know.  But he was encouraged to stay.  He split, and Sande wasted no time removing him from the band pic on facebook and from any written material about the group.  She is not doing it as anger or revenge.  She is right.  I like it that she is strong about drawing certain lines, and decisive with these things.  Strong woman, that one.

So, now I am changing how I play again.  Somewhat more of a hybrid thing. But it is taking some experimentation; trial and error.  If you don't take chances and try things, you don't know.  It settles in soon enough.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Dracula vs House

I forgot to mention that my esteemed hematologist, Dr. Dracula is clearly a proud graduate of the Dr Gregory House school of bedside manner and client charming.  The good thing is that I do not put up with it.

We had a minor dispute the first visit, over some material that I had ordered sent to his office from another bureaucratic medical facility.  It took all morning with many calls back and forth because many dimwits are in the loop and they screw thing sup, lie, and forget.

Anyway, I knew it had arrived.  But the info never made its way to him.  I convinced him to go check, over his superior-toned protests.  Finally he says, "Oh, you were right".  I replied, "Of course I was right!!  I would not have told you that if I had the slightest doubt!"  Then something else came up and he had to back pedal.  He is good but a little rushed.

This last time he tried to be gruff and brusk, and when he finished telling me was what, he wondered if I was thoroughly confused.   No, I am an astute patient.  He raised his eyebrows and suggested I'd be the first in thirty years.  "Your lucky day!"  I love it when I can confuse the ego of a guy like that.
It is fun.
Definitely a House candidate though, but he doesn't limp or appear to be on drugs, unless maybe some form of speed or cocaine.

It's a Miracle or something

This is my second attempt.  I wrote one post but I felt it would be boring and too long.

I've been waiting to hear whether I have multiple myeloma or some other bone marrow type of cancer.   The blood being produced is wacko.  That is the latin for not quite right.

What kept throwing them off was the very anemic condition of the fluid in my veins.   Various disorders in the blood factory (bone marrow) can be the culprit, they were thinking.  But what's up with this anemia situation?  The boy claims he does not menstruate.  They looked askance as I denied it over and over.

Finally they decided the lad was leaking a little blood from upper intestines, and it posed no real problem. Nothing worth fixing there.  And it fit with the idea that too much blood may be produced but an anemic condition still persists.  They need to fit stuff into a category in order to categorically deal with it.

Fortunately no weirdness showed up in a bone scan--still glowing from that xray.  I thought it would be cheaper to just go to my friendly local TSA.

Then they find out I am a mutant.  That is no surprise and it pleases me deep down.(if you had been my pal in college, you would see the humor and irony--inside joke I guess) They test for a mutated gene marker, JAK2, it calls itself.  Oh, that is a sure sign of polycythemia vera.  Yippee, you do not have multiple myeloma or other nasty death sentence condition.  So far.  It can go there, but maybe will not. Not any time too soon anyway.

I take a toxic pill that impedes cell production and hopefully lets me keep my hair and become more functional.  They monitor, tweak dose, etc.  But it is not like radiation and chemo or something that only a bone marrow transplant can cure.  That is what it looked like we were into.

This is not curable or wonderful, just by itself.  But in context, this is unbelievably good news.  I am so friggin thrilled, I'd probably kiss you if you were here.  Depending on what "you" is.  With a little more luck, maybe I won't have adverse reaction to this toxic pill and all will remain under control.  It very often does work out that way with this trouble.  Polycythemia vera/ and sort of essential thrombocytosis.  

I find it amazing that my body already has been getting rid of blood in a benign sort of way because that is the first step; they bleed you.  In my case there is no need.  Is that bizarre or what?  Some would call that a case of syncronicity because the forces of nature, God, angels and the like tend to treat me with special care.  I get the interesting breaks.  That is how my fortune works.

Some call it luck. Who knows.  I'm the guy who would be unlucky enough, or dumb enough, to fall off a tall building and land on a soft plant or awning, so instead of dying I'd just break a few bones.

It has been said that for an unlucky guy I am the luckiest guy around.  I think I get that.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wishful Thinking

Just five hours ago I was going to write that I felt almost cured.   Even though it is not hot, I guess the 80% humidity got the best of me at 4A.M.  I tried the acetaminophen trick.  It inexplicably helps some people with this sort of weirdo skin sensations.  I feel like it helped me the last few days.
Definitely not a cure-all.

I'm still wondering if it is a placebo effect of some kind.  I do not think so.  For some reason that particular drug does something to ease the skin attacks.  However it was a foreigner on the aquagenic pruritis forum who claimed ot was working for him.

And can we be sure to trust foreigners?  Especially if they talk English english? I'm sure you share my tendency to be skeptical of such people.

It looks like I will not be writing that I feel so good, maybe I am almost cured.  Maybe next time.

In other news, I think the fiddler is quitting our project.  The Sande(pronounced Sand ee.) project.   He wants to do more of his own material and he doesn't like being rebuked when he commandeers a microphone, mine for example, when Sande retunes her guitar, and starts playing MC, and semi-front man.

He's a good entertainer, but sometimes doesn't know he is stepping on toes.  I let him know how I felt about it.   Mostly how it is done more than what is done.  I turn around to switch harps and when I turn back he is just in front of me yakking on my mic.  The sound man re-qadjusted it because he talked so much.  Then I went to play and it was like an explosion as ear drums in the room burst.

You do that, you have to accept that someone might say don't do that.

It is the front man compulsion.  Some people can front when it is called for, then happily go back to being a supporting player when that makes sense, with no qualms.  He likes to be the front.  But as talented as he is, I do not think his original material,  at least what I've heard is the kind that grabs you and stands apart.  But he wants to work on his own stuff and says he is not growing.

I guess I saw it coming, but I kind of thought he'd more be finding a way to get me out, since I am not sure he valued the unique blend as much as I, as well as others, did.

I am not that pleased with this turn of events.  I thought his contribution to the sound was really important.  So, now she'll replace him.  There is only one violin I would go for but I'm alone in that.  She'll go for another guy who will be happy to be there, but I doubt I can work well with, so I expect I'll get booted.  Maybe not.  There is a young lady who plays violin, on occasion, with people I know, and she is pure magic to me.  Like a siren of sorts.

Her tone is like honey, and she is subtle and plays what I would play were I to play that instrument.

For now, I don't know.  I will just work it out.

Today we find out what this visit is about.  More accurately, bone scan and mutant test results will be revealed.   If he pulled me in six weeks earlier than planned for nothing, I will not like that.  Dracula is not the type to do a lot of stupid things, I don't think.

Also, I get to play for the Lutherans tonight will Kev and Lauren.  I'm singing harmony on the song as much as playing on it.  Crazy.  But I didn't want the Lutherans to forget me.  I am after all the official harmonica player for the Lutherans and Mormons.  Moreso the Lutherans these days.

My own church, the order of everlasting fertility rites, has turned their back on me.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Best Laid Plans ; part mmxv

For reasons beyond our control, the Hard Rock Cafe gig for this evening was canceled.  Had nothing to do with my bad behavior, fear of our noise, etc.  Details are unimportant and I would be making them up anyway.  I know it was canceled and that it had to do with things other than us.

Not like it was a show at Shea stadium, or even Qualcomm.

Last night was OK.  The stage has bright lights everywhere and the ceiling is super low throughout the place.  Lower on stage because it is raised and the ceiling is the same all through the place.

The lights are hot, and my usual spot on stage was hot with no air circulation whatsoever.  There is a four inch square in the ceiling on the opposite side which shoots cold air straight down. No louvers or any sort of grill.

I had to position myself over there,  I could feel the itch attack wanting to come on and that was my only hope if I was to be able to play even one set.  Maybe one song.  So, we worked it out.  It made me almost irrational in my frustration.  I was so mad I had to have the special spot. It is becoming harder and harder to cope with any warm temp or high humidity.  Lately I'm way too sensitive to all of it.

I hope they keep over-booking the house.  That way I just do a few things in between guests and go home.  The new manager does not know I have issues going on.  I will have to tell him soon.  I need to find a back up worker, but people either have transportation issues or they just aren't geared to handle it, or something.  If you understand how it works, it is a cushy job with a halfway decent wage.

I just want back up, not to lose the job if I don't have to.  I'm concerned we are headed that direction unless I find a better way to contain the attacks. Any more--for ages now--I cannot wear a short sleeved shirt or it will start in my exposed forearms.  It's nuts, but unfortunately, I do not think it is psychosomatic.  It would be interesting to see if hypnosis could play a role in negating the discomfort.

It is an overall thing besides the specific problem areas.  You can feel your face get hot and that sort of thing. Part of the program.

So, it was an OK show.  I was angry and humiliated at the same time for requiring the spot under the vent.  My playing was mediocre. At best.  Overall not our best and far from our worst.

I am not fond of bars.  Last night was Navajo Live, a bar.  Nice in a way, but too much of a bar in a way.  Even as a drunk I did not like bars.  I spent a lot of time in them, but I recall saying to friends while there, "$%^& Bars suck!!!  You know, if they didn't serve alcohol, no way I'd hang around a bar!!"   Profound.  That was the peak of my reasoning power back then.  I quit.

And I certainly never missed the bar.  Bars are not me.  They suit some people.  No thanks.

But, a nice bunch of people came out to see us and support us.  Mockingbird showed up, Tara and Diego.  I think Mockingbird is a terrific name, myself.  And they are a delight. Really.  They are some of the cool kids of the Americana scene.  I call it that.  Chuck calls it that, and he knows this stuff.

We don't know and neither does anyone else.  I csall it Americana fusion.  Friend Vicki calls it Root Rock, but after hearing root used in the Australian way, I thought it a little bit too X.  Still, that does have its charm.

Call things whatever.  I'd say it is the least over-produced, over-amped and aesthetically affected genre of semi popular music.  Most people just like to play it and that is all.  Plus very few are drunks and reprobates.

The blues crowd around SD is nice enough but largely dominated by people putting on affectations; just the right look.  The look that says, "Look at me.  I look like a badass, so maybe you'll think I'm a badass."  Must be lots of peer pressure because their are room fulls of players who have the same hat, the same facial hair, the same harmonica licks, same songs.

I thought I was blues for many years.  I see now that I am far from it.  I'm more like Manheim steamroller on a diatonic harmonica.  But that is a new thing.  Even a year ago I wasn't playing this style.  It serves many purposes.  One of which is that it allows me to exert less while laying down big platform for the violin to just run.  I do my solo when needed, but not like I might.  This is working out.  It must not be as easy as I think because I met a seasoned player who told me that, though I play a different style from him, he can't even do half the stuff I do with apparent ease.  Big compliment I thought.  He had no idea how nice it was to hear that at the time.

Now I forget our next gig.  Outdoor festival in May.  How I will handle that I am not sure, although I will find a way.

It seems like we may have something on the 29th of this month.

Too bad about Hard Rock; I was shocked at the number of people who said they planned to go.  Downtown, 5pm.  Rush hour.  Nice place though.  I hope our small group of fans doesn't give up on us.

I ought to be writing profound thoughts.  What if I kick soon and have only whining and bitching left in print?   I can just hear Joel now giving me the Charlie Brown authority figure talk.  You know what I mean.  Authority figures in Charlie Brown always sound like muted trumpets  No offense Joel, but I ignore it when people bitch about stuff I can't change.

More people have tried to change me over the years than should have.  I rarely try to change anyone.  I try not to because I do not know what their best path is and I am not their owner.  They are the owners of their lives so it is up to them to handle it how they see fit.  Then again, maybe I am so manipulative that I trick even myself, while not realizing I am trying to change people.  I do that well, actually.

I'll probably be around too long to piss off survivors, anyway.  By the time I kick they'll probably substitute targeted tickling of specific parts of the brain for reading or movies or plays, any of that.  I'll refuse to get the tickle device installed and I'll die a 120 year old freedom fighter.  It will be an honorable exit.  Full of valor, purpose, drama, and rebellion.  OK.

Something to look forward to.  All the in between is just roadside sightseeing.

But here's the deal.  If Joel lived in SD county, he could handle backing me up on this job and wind up with independent projects for himself along the way.  If he could maintain a flexible mind and outlook.  I worry about rigidity there.  I tried to teach the kid all I know, but you never can be sure they listen well enough to pick it up.

One can only hope.

That would solve my work issue and someone I trust would be in the loop.  Got no place for him to live or I'd send a post paid box and suggest he mail himself out here to help me keep the job with the people who made Barry what he is today.

I'm not in any spot to be host or even gracious.  This heat is not helping.  For me in the seventies is hot, and in the sixties is almost too warm.
Except for the times when that is suddenly, temporarily not the case.  Those times last up to an hour, on a good day.

I feel like a faker.  I'm trying to make the band thing work but I feel as if I can't be sure I can do it on any given day.  Same with work.  I could not strip and sand and finish a large item of teak right now.  Only if I have ample time with no witnesses. This sucks. And the family, highly toxic, dysfunctional family of the housekeeper, whom she has managed to get on the pay as her "sometimes helpers" seems out for my job.  Her son is a psychopath, I'm pretty sure.  I won't go into all of it.

Suffice to say what was a great co-worker thing became strained as soon as they realized I may be sick and having troubles.  I will still kick them into next week if ever there is a safe opportunity (free of law enforcement) to do so.
The housekeeper, herself, is kind of turning a blind eye to the rest of the crew's antics, but she will tiptoe around her son forever.  Matters not how out of line he is.  Maybe the manager figured out that they padded hours like crazy during the management change.  So blatant.  Pure theft.

I've never seen a work situation in which going to the boss about colleagues being bad people ever worked out.  It doesn't matter what they did.  You lose.  You let the boss come to you, and then you let him form his own view.  Or you implant the view into his mind, all the while managing to let him think it is his idea.  I'm thinking in terms of current manager,  He.

Those opportunities are hard to find.  Hoping to be ready when opportunity knocks is all I can do.
I can't go much longer without cluing him in on what is happening.

I never realized how much there is to like about life.  But the part of how it works when you have zero money can be a challenge.  There are people who live out in the woods without much money.  But the woods probably doesn't bring on uncomfortable, or intolerable whatnot.
So, there you have it!


Sunday, March 15, 2015

If You Are Lucky Enough to Live Out Here

..then you may be lucky enough.

The music situation is remarkable.  Very good players who just like to play and have a good time.  Many have some kind of impressive history, but that is not worn like a badge.  They like to play, that is all.

And it is the best thing for me, so I did well landing here.  I knew I did.   If only I had not allowed a mess to develop.  How did that ever happen?

I Really Want A Smoke

My imagination and google searches are going wild.  Except I only use google when I have to or when I am tricked.  They are too intrusive.  It is crazy.  I use other search engines like bing or startpage.

Anyway, I was reviewing the pathologist's little editorial and it almost shook me a bit. But only after I searched each term.  So, what is the lesson here?

I'll tell you what the lesson is.  Unless you will find the answers which are the ones you want, do not ask the question.  Is that so hard to remember?  Apparently, if you are I, or I am you, then OK, yes I don't know it. I forget this thing.

See how that goes?  This is what happens when you've been around the block and all you want is to get a handle on the mess and clutter and shameful lack of household care.  That is it, pretty much.  That is the hardest of my goals.   You may think, "Oh, your goals must be really easy.", but you'd be wrong.  My Kryptonite is the household normal cleaning and straightening neatness.  I freeze and am rendered helpless when confronted with domestic clutter and chaos.

The end result was that I wanted a cigarette as if I smoke them regularly and smoking is clearly the best response to everything that doesn't fall under my direct and immediate control.   But now I no longer want one.  I do not smoke any more.  One year and over three months.  A record for me, if you don't count the eighteen or nineteen years I was smoke free.  Those first 18 or 19 years.

I have to avoid any sort of giving in.  That is why playing with Sande and the group is so good.  It forces me to do more than I am sure I can do.  That is the best thing.  No way I want to think I am too whatever to play.

You can keep the smoke that I was going to borrow.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Just a Personal Pet Peeve

Pet peeve.  Right, like I'm going to be responsible for feeding and caring for a peeve; take it for walks, send it to school to learn to shut up and not be a nuisance, etc.

That being said, I find it highly annoying when comedy and variety shows invite politicians on for fun, phony, self serving banter.  The government holds the power over broadcasters so they have to kiss ass.  Obama wants on the show, OK.  Makes them feel safe with fcc and all that, while the pres gets to push his party and campaign for whatever bs he's peddling today.

Same goes for all of them. Huckabee, you name it.  Stay off of regular programs.  If it isn't designed for the thug, bully, political class, then the thug bullies ought to stay off the show.  Who is going to refuse and want the wrath of the IRS or whatever to come bother them?  It is extorted publicity in a way.

It is also cronyism.  They've been doing it for awhile with increasing regularity and boldness.  Such bull.  But it works.  Dolts and dumbasses, who have that inborn affinity for royalty will watch and say, "See?  They're just regular people like us.  Just a little smarter and better dressed. But he wakes up every day asking himself, 'How can I make the lives of the wretched little people better today'.  Yep, he's got my vote."

I do not like authority any more now than I did when I was a kid.  Less than I did then, actually.  They told me my views would change the opposite direction.  In some ways, though, I have more empathy and less judgement.  I judge philosophy and ideas more than make judgements on  personal matters that have no effect on me.

Maybe they aren't dumbasses.  Maybe they just either hate people or they enjoy the dynamics of cults of personality so much that they will suspend disbelief and adherence to reality as much as it takes to keep the king in place and looking good.  Make excuses, don't demand accountability.  Hating the "haters" can become addictive so  it is important to create events to bring out the battle.  I think people just do not grasp the idea that being owned is not how it ought to be.

They are perfectly willing to put the state on the title in exchange for some financial perks and 3rd world quality medical care.  Sometimes better.  But if you are 100% on the state's dime, the insurance is like playing Russian Roulette.  Primary care then referrals then bs.
Some people do OK and some probably give up or fall through the cracks.

If I'd had that sort of thing, I bet I'd have given up on them.  

Anyway, be careful because you have no idea what is at play with strangers, and often, with friends.  Ever look around while driving on the freeway and hope those people are not feeling as wiped out and restless as you are?   I do.  I think "this is no fun.  Feeling low."  Then I think "satay awake and alert so you can get home.  You can do this."  Fighting the sudden wave of sleepy exhaustion.  Almost dozed at stop lights and even driving.

Cannot let that happen.  I don't care who you are, if you sleep drive you are screwed.  Few things are more guaranteed to queer the deal.

Roughing It In No Part Harmony

Arachnophobia  is a fear of either spiders or archeologists, I'm pretty sure.  No need to look it up. I am probably right.  I like to remain as in touch and informed as our Dear Leaders.

I know all I need to know about events in states many miles away.  Trayvon in Florida?  Uh huh, mmm, hmmm, we know what's what.  No need to be there to know how it goes down.

Same with Ferguson and any other situation in which bestowing victimhood, deserved or not, upon a person or group simply for a predetermined condition of birth, can further one's popularity, career, and get votes.  Creating enemies of "the people", condoning violent mobs and calling them peaceful demonstrators, or even protestors, is a crafty power maneuver which uses any lie that will work.

What would be a fear of one's own nerves, for whatever reason, attacking one at the exact wrong time; like during gig time.  I did have that happen right before the Ramona gig, months ago.  My first outing with Enter the Blue Sky.  I had to hunker over someone's icy Toyota Sienna A/C for about 45 minutes, with fan running full blast.  It mitigated the discomfort and finally the episode passed. It felt like the wave of relief when a migraine leaves.

It wasn't in any memos I can find, but I thought the attacks had become permanently more subdued.  I was mistaken.

Last night it came on during a drive to town.  By the time I was driving home I had to scrunch over just to deal with it.  I could not wait for the full hot water shower.  That took awhile and I have a fear of it happening again.

Perhaps there is a name for it.  I am trying to think of something that would fit.  Pruritiocarcinophobic.   Also can be interpreted to include a fear of pilgrims.  There is a longer name for fear of pilgrim dolls and for pilgrim clowns.

I think you saw about as many pilgrim clowns on the Mayflower as there are jihadists clowns with water squirting flowers in a mosque, pbuh.  Oh I guess mosque can be said without pbuh. That is only when matters of profit, pbuh, come into the act.  Gross minus net, pbuh.

Sunday at Navajo live. Big stage, lights, etc.  Nice sound set up.  But their sound dudes, so far, appear to not only be deaf, but dumb, and not in the sense of inability to speak.  In the sense of making everything at least twice as loud as it should be, and spreading the balance between instruments in a random and unpleasant fashion.  Warren and I may force him to show us our channels, then educate him on what to do.

The last guy was a bit arrogant.  Guitar player of some kind. Diseased, so he can't fathom the fact that he does not know it all, and that the object of the effort is a nice blend; classy instruments with vocal on top.  Not an assault upon listeners, passers by, and humanity in general.

It is not that damned hard.  I'm often astounded by the sheer size of their bubble of obliviousness.

Then Monday, it is Hard Rock.  Our own sound stuff for that.  And that is not always good.    Often when playing out our PA has feedback issues and is not putting her on top, much of the time.  Yet in practice it is fine.

Different configuration of people placement when we are out must influence the PA performance.

Wait a minute, maybe Hard Rock is one with their own sound system.  They have nice people so we may get it right there.

We had to get a portable air conditioner at work.  Only one in town, and I found it.  Who knew Home depot and the rest thought San Diego had seasons?  They won't stock the portable a/c for another couple of weeks.

It is hot now.  I'm thinking it will end up in my house before too long.  It is becoming a health necessity to stave off much discomfort.  Heat and humidity are the real culprits.

I've seen posts on the aquagenic pruritus forum from people who have had the condition for over a decade.  Some do not have blood issues.  Some do.  But ten or fifteen years?  And they have twenty minutes or so of madness after every shower.  I'm not sure all of them have tried the near-scalding shower trick.  It is so counter-intuitive that I may have not considered it on my own.  I read about the hot shower solution,  and the theory of why it would work, both in the same forum post.

The theory on the forum coincides with what all the dermatologists concluded, though few, if any, of them had heard of this trick.  We think it causes the mast cells, which release histamines, to deplete themselves while the hot water numbs the area being affected by the histamines.  So it runs its course under the hot water stream.  Getting it hot enough is the trick.

Seriously, that trick is useful for people who may need it. It has saved me untold hours of near agony. When sweating or getting on the verge of it cause intractable itching, and humidity increase can also set it off, something is not working right.  At least in my case I know it is a by product of some iffy hydraulic fluid.  If a car was built by the same people who brought you humans, there would only be one fluid used for everything.

That is how blood is.  It is hydraulic fluid for the fun stuff, and like a fuel carrier, O2, for other stuff.  It's one of those items in the inventory of the garden variety human body which would leave a noticeable void were it to be removed.

On nights like this, I wonder how I can possibly manage to make all the gigs and do well.  I think it is important to set that as a goal.  Even if I feel out of it and not remembering to do the right things at the right times.  I have a long way to go before it is riddled with wrong notes and such.  But there is a difference in ad libbing accents and such, and working out what seems the best direction which works to be a consistent arrangement.  We do that, but I can forget, lately.

I've had people describe symptoms similar to these attacks as a side effect of chemo.  Something wrong with that approach, and really wrong that the art of targeting and destroying the enemy without killing our friends or ourselves has not advanced further than it has.  I knew a guy who was into such research and developed equipment to help.  He suggested the corporate-government-charity-pharmaceutical complex was corrupt, despicable and far more in love with treatment than cure, and only treatment that costs big money.   I tend to agree.  You kill the whole damned village to get rid of a street gang?  That is no good.

Oh, we did pass that audition so we'll be playing the Coyote festival at a local college on May 2.  Outdoor, afternoon thing.  I rarely ask for much, but I do want to be able to handle these shows without the need to run off for a scalding shower or stand under a very cold blast from freezers or a/c.

Think positive, but don't expect that to do anything but keep you working on tricks to make it happen.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The 2:00 A.M. Call

2:00AM seems to be a recurring theme in a couple of Sande songs.  Apparently that is when she gets the call that something is amiss; friend arrested or dead, etc.

So, I was slated for a bit of time off from medico land.  Then I get a call today.  Dracula wants to schedule an appointment sooner by six weeks almost, to discuss the latest imaging and lab results.  That kind of sounds like the 2:00 A.M. call.  Probably not going to say "yippee, it was a hookworm all along and we can fix it in a jiffy!"

Well if it is for one test, then that means a mutated gene. The other, well, I don't know.  That could be a real pain because the cure is possibly not very helpful.  I'm not sure if I have to still wait a week or two because that is as soon as he is available or he's out of town or what.

So, let's do our best to avoid letting the imagination run amok between now and the 25th.  Not the ides of March.  E tu Bucco?   I believe best case would be the mutant thing.  The other would be highly bone marrow specific, and uglier, so far as I know.

It may yet be a year of blowing through remainder of savings and getting the hang gliding or ultra lite action going.   I really want to be a proficient parasail person--easier to transport.

Eeeyikes.  What if I have to deal with the psycho lady who holds the information desk and any information contained there hostage?  She was trouble.

Maybe I'll end up running a harmonica therapy program for mopey ass doomed people dealing with the same general nature of malady.  Of course mine is rarer, since I am picky.

Now I get what most people go through.  I have had it so easy in many ways.  And I should.  I'm not cut out for pointless hardship.  Believe it or not some people are. They seek it.  And they play martyr on a mission while they do that.

Strangest Band Ever; that is a good thing

So, we have this group fronted by a woman old enough to be some people's mother.  And some people would be already out of the casa.
And we have a fiddle player of the same age who has intermittent kidney stone issues, then we have me who is even older, and I'm probably dying of some soap opera disease. They always find cool deadly stuff.
The drummer is losing the grip of his hand sometimes, hence plenty of sticks nearby in case he drops one out of the blue.  Bass player is younger and non committal.

A very unlikely bunch.  But the sound is beginning to shape into what we've been after.  And it actually does kick ass, and we actually are developing a following.  I am playing a far different style of harmonica than ever before.  I'm not sure I've heard exactly this anywhere, any time.

Some compliments are interesting.  There are those people who say they hear extra voices when we play, and some of those attribute this to an angel phenomenon of some kind.  Makes sense since one or two of us have a foot in the grave.

Another musician around town complained, good naturedly, that Sande had snagged the best musicians for her group, and how did she pull that off.  I'll tell you.  She has hours of great original music, she is pure energy and we all have fun.  Maybe it is keeping me and the drummer from keeling over in our misguided mortality.  This is the sort of thing I do best; blend and work with other instruments.  That is my pick when there is room.

There are times that the sound gives me chills.  Quite unique and remarkable.  Distinctive and original and it is working.   Capturing it, and learning to make it gel all the time, is not easy, but we are getting to it.

It still amazes me that people ask me to be a part of such projects.  I suppose I do have something to offer, to those who can see it, or allow it. You just can't play with everyone.  Or not do it and feel like it works.

But unlike a lot of people around, we don't put on airs and pretend to be younger,  or do that "Oh gosh, aren't we old. "Look at those spunky seniors jamming in slo mo".  Whoever started this seniors talk is evil.  Ever here those patronizing news stories in news person voices?  Barf city.  "Are our seniors getting the care they deserve?"  Gimme a break.

It seems to interest a wide range of ages.  Other than that I refuse to do age or gender studies.  I will not that this seems to get the attention of women and that is good.

If I can stay afloat and not queer the deal, this project could take off.  I want to drive a tour bus and have adventures.  Not likely to happen, but, we have two house of blues gigs, so maybe it is possible. Sande is the new thing.  Baby boomers are a large chunk of population and they will dig this stuff.  Maybe they can get on to something new and quit with the same Neil Young songs over and over, and pining for the old days, that sort of thing.

I'm always astounded to see the group who gave parents such a bad time, and who screwed the country up when they could, complain about the lack of discipline and common sense among younger generations.   It boggles the mind.  The generation that set the bar for bratty, phony and hypocritical.  What nerve to start in on, "When I was a kid, blablabla..."

Thirty somethings are clueless when it comes to how wealth got created in this country, and the dangers of too much official power, etc., but at living life, and doing it well, they may be the best of all.  Less fickle than my peers.  And they seem to enjoy life. The know how to do that in ways I do not.

They were still able to get outside some since there was no internet in their early childhood, and the culture was a tad less paranoid.  People forget or don't know that violent crimes and threats to children are probably lower now that twenty or thirty years ago.  Yet we in effect imprison our youth as if keeping people safe in a cage is kinder and better than letting them risk the hazards of the free range, so to speak.

You want your damned egg producing chickens to be free range and not dosed with antibiotics and hormones, but your kids are monitored 24/7 and dosed with whatever satisfies the school and shuts the little urchin up.  Ritalin, cocaine, whatever.  Why do people puch for happy chickens but only "safe" children.  Overly safe is a complete drag for anyone and not the nature of life, living, passion or motivation.

Of course if you watch the news, listen to Obama type sound bites or crazy ass preacher-politicians long enough, you think you are crazy if you question all the garbage.  I'm telling you, the status quo is what is totally off base, insane, and destructive.

Political figures in our age try to have that same mystique a priest might have.  They are priests with a gun to your head.  People do not stand up to this stuff because they are afraid, insecure, unsure, and suckers for itty bitty bribes in the form of free government things and unearned power over others.

Anyway, this group is not so typical of baby boomers or anyone else except people who can live without the approval of all the pop culture conformity police.


Maybe I'm Pregnant

I've got this crazy craving for ice cream and ate a ton of Klondikes.
the end

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

What This Pig Needs

...is more grease.  Grease that baby up!  If it stays where it is, squirming like that, it'll be tomorrow's breakfast bacon.  Or maybe next week's.

No question the creature has the moves, but I just don't think she's able to slip through the gauntlet without serious injury, eventually giving up.

We shall see.

Mark my words---three words, maybe four: Po ca hon tas.

Don't say I didn't warn you.  Misfits, run for your lives!!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

An Unsolitary Man

It is amazing how much of an isolationist I am, yet that is not my first choice, were I capable of making choices differently than I have.

I enjoy playing songs with people.  I like it when there is a singer, and worthy lyrics.  That is why I like the group I've been working with.  Mostly we are backing the singer/song writer, Sande.  And her stuff is good enough that I am willing to put my stuff on the back burner, without resentment or hesitation.

The best thing is that performing can suspend ailments for a time.  Maybe not a long time, but a time. Then again, maybe for a long time.  Do not know until the time comes.

I think I know how it is all working out.  Worst comes to worst I'll hire deaf mutes to overhaul my house and life.  They have to be illiterate as well, but intuitively good workers.  That way they won't be able to talk and sully my good name.

I'm hoping someone turns up with a video from this weekend at Crest Community Center.  Maybe because the house was packed the acoustics were better.  It was beautiful, powerful, balanced sound.  And we probably played part of the time at a new level. I am sure a few minutes were our best of all time.  An evolving project.  We are getting tighter, and more settled in ways.

If I discover a video, I hope it is good because it was fun.  If it is good I will put it up.  The last one can only be seen on FB by friends of the posting person.   Or so I understand.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Star and Micey - Love Me?/#1

I happened upon Star and Micey videos last night, somehow.  About a year before I left Memphis I crossed paths with them.  They were very young and had a very uplifting attitude and presence.  Only three of them then.

The guy with glasses that is shown for a second or two with a mandolin is the creative force.  The name came from his talks with a homeless guy who said his name was Star and his long lost wife's name was Micey.  Hence the name.  He'd just settled on it back when I saw them.

They had great family support but had hardly played anywhere.  It was a kind of invitation only open mic environment.  The excitement and joy of the whole thing, with such great family backing was infectious.   In a way, very southern.  I'd forgotten that little episode in my secret life.  It was a bright point during a dark period.

Not sure how I got there.  None of the old band knew of my forays into more acoustic, non blues circumstances.  Can't swear to it, but I believe I sat in with them on a tune or two.  They made an impression for me to remember 8 years or so later.

Ardent, one of the studios where I recorded, signed them.  Ardent is the most impressive studio in Memphis.   That is definitely the home of the cool kids.

So, I am thrilled that they got signed so soon after they began, and that they still have a good attitude and they rock.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

So, maybe later

I like the professionals who suggest options, with one of them some variation of the "Let's wait a couple of months and worry about it then,  Maybe it will be different."   I chose that option over the definitive but invasive visit to the core of my being--carnally speaking.

My vital signs are terrific, so I am pretty sure all else is just a misunderstanding of some kind.   However, I do plan to get a bigger car to compensate for ill formed, smaller than normal reds.   Remember Red China?   Of course.

But who remembers Red Rhode Island?  No one.  See my point?

Probably not, but trust me, there is one, either contained within the lines, or between them.

I may have yelled at the lady at the information desk who wears a mask.  At first I thought it was to avoid disease.  Now I realize it is to hide her identity because she's a terrorist.  A 95 year old female terrorist.

The bureaucratic maze that is this complex leaves people other than myself, even employees, at a loss when trying to discern the route between here and there, or even where there is.   So, there is a huge, semi circular desk, in front of a woman sitting on a raised chair, sort of like a judge.   She is wearing a mask.

"May I help you?"
"Where is imaging, x ray?"
Do you have an appointment?
I don't know, I just came from upstairs, Dr. Dracula ordered the tests, and they said to go but I am not sure of the directions given me. Just need to go there.
Where is your paper work?
I give her something, but it is not her job.  She wants to start calling to see if I really have authority to go to this xray place.

Do people crash x rays ordered for others?  Do they sneak in and make mischief?

I reached over and grabbed my papers and was trying to leave.  I got there eventually.  The masked matron was nuts.  I'm pretty sure she must have escaped from the psych ward, and she commandeered the information desk while real employees were at lunch.  No one would pay this terrorist shrew.

I felt the disapproving look of strangers while I angrily asked her to please just not involve herself in my business and forget I asked her anything.  I may have said, without thinking, "Hey the last thing I need is a fucking moron calling different departments causing more bureaucratic idiocy than we already have.  No more idiotic bureaucrats need to be involved."  Words to that effect, including an expletive or two.

It didn't dawn on me until later that she was an escaped lunatic.  I would have played along better.

Oh well.


Tuesday, March 3, 2015

La Musica de la Gente

The last time we played Good Guys tavern was just this past Saturday.   Month or so prior was out last outing at this bar, and it was what we considered our worst show yet.   This last one was good in many ways.

So, our March 10 House of Blues gig got moved to the 9th, and we had to cancel for reason that the bass player had a lame previous commitment.  It all comes down to an older woman he is stalking to no avail.

However, we now have 2 House of Blues bookings, June 30 and Aug 11.  Crest community center this Saturday.  I have played there with Copper Creek and it is always a nice evening.  I like that place.  Way up on a ridge.

We have a regular 3rd Sunday of the month show at Navajo Live.  And sometime soon, Hard Rock Cafe downtown.  Another place I like.

This new style of play which involves many very big chords, mostly split chords, and a lot of first position, or straight harp playing, taxes my lung capacity to the limit. It is not at all easy.   But it is not all typical either.

I encountered one other harp player doing a lot of stuff similar to what I do.  Blew me away.  He also fronts some songs, which I do not.   Not with this group and no covers, in any case.  After crossing paths with that guy, I think I may have upped my game a bit.  I have issues with myself if I think I've been smoked by a better player.  Not sure if he is better, but he does some things very much like I do. That is very rare.  The tone is great, too.  So, I focus more and try to utter perfect sounds and be the catalyst which defines the blend of guitar fiddle and harp.

Some of the songs have some sweet violin parts.  This is purposeful arrangement on the violin, not limited dimension fiddle.   People are liking the sound.  No one else has this sound.  I know of two other harp players who could play the background and compliment the violin.   Quite the surprise to find these two.  Keeps me on my toes.

Like me, these guys aren't hanging in the blues circles.  Kind of a rarity among San Diego harmonica players.  Most all hit the same blues things and play pretty similar licks.  Many really good players in this town.  Just not always the kind of stuff I care to hear.

I'm finding it a little more difficult to hang but it is OK for now.  I wonder how it will be in June.  Better, I hope.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Is It a Chronicle Candidate?

This past year has been the oddest year of way too many odd or stupid years.  I am not sure if this is a stupid one or not.  We measure February to February.

This is a merry go round that I can't seem to exit, and it is speeding up.  I imagine that sooner or later it will go so fast that I fly off.  It's the whole centripetal versus centrifugal force routine.  Actually, centrifugal force is a made up force.  It is really momentum at play which out weighs whatever the force is trying to hold me in the circle.

That is how it works.  Why does that leave one a sentimental puddle of mush and in no condition to face another human being at this instant?  No answer.

I'm thinking that by the time I see people who haven't seen me in awhile, they will think I got way older.  Which I did.  I use the word "got" in unsophisticated ways, just because I can.

I think I am following a saga that some may consider a little grim.  Only a couple of people are fully in the loop.  I curse myself for that, but they know medical things and want to be in the middle.  I believe they are scared, to some degree.

I'm going through the process which may give definition and finality to the trouble shooting phase, but if it is as it appears, I will likely go on a rampage of joyous nonsense until money or other things run out.   Maybe I should anyway.  I should not do it alone though.

RR shot me down about a year ago.  I do not know why, but sometimes people get all wrapped up in religion or other super natural endeavors, and they queer the deal.  How maddening.  I've been exposed to all the blind fanaticism I can take for one lifetime.

Anyway, I think it could have worked out, but not really.  Looking for gurus and magic?  Better pass me by.  That kind of thing is not real.  Fake spirituality born of peer pressure and wishful thinking, if any thinking at all is at play.

That is what recovery from alcohol or drugs can do--lead you to another kind of emotional addiction which offers continual validation and reinforcement, but can also screw up a young man's fancies.
Or an old man's.   Still, most things are better than active alcoholism or drug addiction.  I just have to back off from certain things.  It is personal to me.

We'll see wednesday if the last bit of blood study defined anything.  Then they drill into your bone to sample bone marrow.  With luck it won't happen, though it appears inevitable.   On Monday they want me to swallow a pill that is a tiny camera.  It sends pictures to a receiving unit you carry around all day.

I do not think this will yield any info at all, and I told them.  I think everything is higher up and that's that.  Allegedly this anemia circumstance is an energy sapper.  I thought I was just depressed.   It may be that I was oxygen deprived on a cellular level.   They think my ill formed blood is disappearing somewhere.  So they go looking for it everywhere.  Right here between my chin and my navel, I guarantee it.  Who listens to me?  It's my house and I know what is what.

This is why I walk away rather than invite anyone into my world these days.  I have nothing to offer and I'm falling apart.  So, the more I like someone, the less likely I am to leave the opening.  It would be too selfish and self absorbed, even for me, if you can imagine that.

We did OK on our Saturday night gig.  I wonder if anyone can tell how hard it is to do these days.  Probably not.  I may have a little missing in the realm of ultra fast garbage, but I manage with new ways of doing things; lots of gentle chording encouraging the violin to show off.

I feel like I should somewhere write down everything going on; good days, bad, symptoms, procedures, the entire case as it flows.  Where to do that?  I don't seem to be able to.  I can have a horrendous night, but if I feel ok later, I forget and feel odd mentioning it to paid professionals.  In my mind, somewhere, is the idea that I probably am not tough enough, or that I made it all up, and I'm actually 100% fine.

I have to do without real food all day Sunday.  I will do all I can to wake up very very late that day.  My stomach will be killing me.  It is for the pill cam.  It wanders down the small intestines taking snapshots like a Japanese tourist.
(I hope that is politically incorrect enough for morons to label me racist.  We've allowed our culture to be molded and shaped, more and more, by charlatans, fools, and complete imbeciles.)

People talked me into the pill cam. Maybe they are right, but I will bet the cam that nothing is amiss there.  You win, I give you the cam when I'm done.  You can wash it off and sell it on ebay. Who will know?  In any case, I am not sure this is necessary.  And I am probably right.  I don't think this will leave me in lasting pain like their recent foray down my throat with a camera on a stick.

I think it is good to chronicle some of this.  Otherwise I forget the sequence of things, and entire events.  It is all very surreal.  I want to know what's up, and then I want to fix it and be done.  Even if they can't fix it, I can do OK, armed with all the facts they have.  I'm a better trouble shooter than these beleaguered medical people.  They have to be like government agents and paper pushers to stay out of jail.  It sucks and soon we'll all die as a result.

Sande, the singer I back up, has a song that seems to fit me for many reasons this year.  The first lines are; When the rug gets pulled out from under your feet, and your world's spinning out of control... ...it's just a moment in time, but it's the rest of your life. all must be told...
Great tune.  But I don't know how long I can keep playing with this group if the sternum/stomach/skin issues get any worse or just stay the same and wear me down.

Nothing stays the same.  That much is fairly certain.  So, we shall see.

I'm pretty sure I've become used to a way of life which is not quite right or normal.  This is probably not at all a normal way to feel.  Tonight is working out to be another difficult one. But, I have what I need and more.  Compensate and improvise.  That is what I have to do.


Sunday, March 1, 2015

Seriously, Can Humanity Survive the Nonsense?

Research is not my favorite thing, but I will do what I must to become informed when I see the need. I've done it with things like the healthcare bill, back when everyone was talking "what it will do", but avoiding actually disclosing the text.  It is very convoluted and continually refers to other bills and leaves much up to bureaucratic discretion.  

In reality, no one outside of a few crafting the text of the bill could have had a clue what was in it.  Other than the extraneous things they added in according to donors desires and all that.  But that was then, and I made it known I felt it was more a bizarre vote ploy and power grab.  But like always, people like to think they are getting what they want and are more than happy to dance to the ends-justifies-the-means tune.

Rarely are the ends a long term bargain.

I have done more medical investigation than usual, lately.   It can work for or against you.  I've heard people act like someone who searches his own diseases is in for trouble.  If you aren't more in tune with what could be the problem with you, given some information on symptoms and what they indicate, then you deserve to be treated like a subservient subject by medical people and nurses who think in big valley-speak cartoon bubbles.

This is a quote from a page I visited,
 "In honor of Rare Disease Day, help spread the word with a photo.‎"

Really?  Rare disease day?  Come on.  This whole disjointed view of medicine, charity, science, life, has gone too far.  Let's celebrate rare disease day!!  Are you nuts?

There are plenty of diseases I don't have which are about as rare as what I may have. But what if none of the above is the case?  Then it would be even rarer.  I've lived in towns in which, according to these stats, I'd be the only one with whatever it is.  

For a few days I thought I was OK.  Or could easily become OK.  Then, after last night's gig, at home, weird, supernatural, demon possession stuff began.  Big red areas, like instant birthmarks, and dots like blood vessels or maybe got stabbed by a fork, looking dots.  Blackish, reddish.

Today, no patches and the dots all but completely gone.   Then I wonder.  What if it is a crazy episode and you only think you see it?  That prompted me to take pictures of my arm the last time it happened.  Hard to get a very good pic but it shows up some.  What if I just think it does?

Not hard to wonder if you are nuts when you already suspect as much.

I do not think the survival of the species, or even the pursuit of happiness are best served by having Rare Disease Day, or a jump in icewater to cure disease, or any of a million odd celebrations of sickness that are held all over the place, mostly by the unafflicted.  It is an industry built upon partial truths and much fear--the patients' and their families' fear.

There is a lot of money to be made and much trouble from lawsuits can happen. So, you play ball, cover yourself by filling files with enough tests to thwart a tort attorney, and if you are very lucky, someone's issue may actually be pinpointed and properly treated during the process.

That is the exception, not the rule.  The rule is that there are drugs which can make you feel OK while your true problem is never really well diagnosed.  Trouble shooting is normally weak.  But drugs can mask that.  We handle symptom A with drug X, and symptom B with drug Y, and then there are drugs to deal with the side effects of X and Y. 

Those things happen.  Drugs can be a bribe to pretend everyone is doing a great job and hallelujah, you're healed, sort of.  Some are great.  

Maybe a Rare Pharmaceutical Drug Day would be cool.  I don't even know how to express how strange that seems to me.  Rare Disease Day.  You think maybe some of us are from other planets, far away, and we just don't remember how we landed here, but we know it was a mistake?

Let's have a national, boy oh boy does my upper belly hurt day.  Or rare migraine headache day.  Everyone march, slamming pots and pans together to bring on the celebrated condition. 

I'll bet all my trouble is because I am not a carnivore.  It is not a thing I can easily fix.  I do not find it a natural desire on my part, eating a creature that motors around one way or another.  It would be easier if I did find it natural.  It must be.  


By the Way, I Doubt N. Korea Was the Sony Hacker

I had to see for myself what the video hooplah was this time.  Last time an embassy was attacked and they blamed a video which was like a bad SNL skit.   This time Sony gets hacked, private emails get exposed,  and Hollywood people get caught being the snakes and nincompoops they apparently are.  And then they get all indignant, as if they don't know their industry is petty and cutthroat.

Where else do people that dim think they are the intellectual elite?  It is almost embarrassing.

The film, The Interview, actually had possibilities and could have been a good film.  Or at least better.  The humor falls off into the shallowest, dumbest of all possibilities.  Dumber than I would have guessed, for sure.

They start off fine, with Eminem giving an interview where the guy cites lyrics and searches for meaning.  Em deadpans that it is because he is gay.  That is the highlight of the movie.

In any case, it is highly unlikely that N. Korea even took notice.  It is just too silly and stupid, and it just doesn't seem the sort of thing to catch anyone's attention.

I do not know who, if anyone, hacked Sony.  I do know that without this free advertising, and curiosity seekers like me, the project would probably have been 86'd, and would never have seen the light of day.

They had to know that somewhere along the way, early on, the writers and directors just gave up trying to hold to even a shred of quality.  They just gave up and phoned it in.  One or more in the bunch must be the type of people who can't come up with real humor so they stick to boner and fart gags.

Haha.  This is so funny and clever. Hahaha. Boner.

No. Not the stuff of international espionage.  I would wager large sums that the North Korea scenario is as big a lie as the one about the muslim video.  Maybe bigger.  Never happened.  Why the lie?

No telling.  You'd be surprised how connected to government and power some in Hollywood are.

In summary, The Interview sucks.

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


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