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Thursday, October 28, 2004

A switch to beer from water, and away we go.

I'm listening to "Super Black Market Clash" and basking in the national glow of the Boston Red Sox having won the World Series within the past hour. Quite a performance. The Curse Of The Bambino is now gone. Now, at the rate the Red Sox win world championships, they are due to win their next one in the year 2090, when I am unfrozen at the age of 124 and.....oh never mind.

We are six days away from knowing who our next president will be. I approach this week with equal parts fear and hope. We can't possibly take four more years of the reckless leadership of Bush 43. In Florida, Michigan, Ohio, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and Nevada, the Republican Party has too obviously drawn a line in the sand with shady maneuvers ranging from shredding Democratic registrations, deliberately suppressing the black vote and in the case of Ohio, putting a whacko in charge of the state elections who refuses to accept that an election could ever possibly be rigged. We may be headed for another fiasco such as the 2000 election, only in more than one state. I have prepared for election day by taking half a day off to make sure I get to the polls and cast my vote for Sens. Kerry and Edwards. Leslie, much like me a few months back, shook Edwards' hand at a rally yesterday in Racine. Here's hoping the luck of our life together rubs off on the Democratic candidate for Vice-President. I genuinely like Edwards. I voted for him in the primary and I continue to be impressed by his caring for the America that has been left out of the last four years.

Remember, Mr. and Mrs. Undecided Voter, the Republican president who has promised to keep you safer was in charge when 3,000 people were murdered on September 11, 2001. It was his responsibility then, and he failed. He was too busy doing yardwork at his palatial cowboy wonderland in Crawford , Texas. It is with this in mind that I paraphrase Country Joe McDonald's old song "Superbird", which was written in 1967 about another president from Texas:

"Come out, Georgie, with you hands held high
Drop your guns, baby, and reach for the sky
We got you surrounded, and you ain't got a chance
Gonna send you back to Texas, make you work on your ranch"

My gift to the world this year is a vote for John Kerry. Trust me, the world needs it.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Three beers and I'm listening to The Clash. I feel so East End!!!

I played a little bit of guitar today. I'm trying to get faster with my strumming as I cannot play leads. The results were horrible. Good thing I can cover it all up with a voice.

It's a funny thing. As bad a day as Leslie had, I sent her off to sleep with a smile. I hope to whatever that I can do that for the rest of my life.

I tried calling good friend Ted Lathrop in Kalamazoo to arrange the whos, whats and wheres of seeing Robyn hitchcock on the 5th of November, and his phone number was invalid. I posted a note in the Yahoo Robyn Hitchcock group to shame him, as well as sending him an e-mail. He's coming. He just doesn't know it yet.

I talked to my old friend Tom twice this past weekend. Oh the drinks we pounded in the past. If I could only remember half my time with this man. He has three boys and he's a pilot. I can't possibly wish him any less good fortune. He's a true friend.

Autumn is sinking in. I'm getting a little nutty, to say nothing of rammy. Leslie tried on a Halloween costume tonight consisting of fishnet stockings and I damn near blew the buttons on my pants. That is, if sweatpants had buttons.

Man do I ever love this life. I still have a long way to go. I NEVER imagined saying that at 38 1/2 years old. I was going to "submit for renewal" as they say in the film "Logan's Run" at the age of 40. Leslie gave me life and a future. I love her.

Anyway, enough of this rambling. I have things to try to remember and things to try to forget, all in equal measure. Peace to all!!!!

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Another late night. I just polished off a big bowl of an ice cream flavor called "Jamaican Me Crazy" (bananas, rum and chocolate chucks; not bad) and playing another self-deprecating game of Literati with Tara, a flamenco dancer from Minneapolis who takes great pleasure in dragging me across the board like a union buster holding a set of tire chains.
Leslie and I were out at the food store earlier. On the way there, I heard "Surf's Up" from Brian Wilson's long-delayed masterwork "Smile". I've decided after listening to this that I MUST get back to working on my opera about the dangers of technology. I have had these songs in my head for YEARS and I've never put it down and finished it. It's time. Right after hearing "Surf's Up", the songs started coming back again. The one song in this opera that I feel could be an encapsulation of everything I've learned is a song called "Step Across The Sky". More on this as the opera takes shape.
I think I owe the reader a song. Let's see what other fricatives can be found in the Writ Of Common Wisdom..........

I write a lot of songs about the idea of God. I was raised Catholic, but now soundly reject all it stands for. Jesus probably was a really cool guy who didn't live long enough to spin his own press. When you have members of a cult write about the greatness of someone they followed, a lot of inaccuracies are sure to follow.
Anyway, different interpretations of God enter my thought processes rather often, and I'm compelled to write them down for reference later, so the people who later form a cult around ME can approach God from many angles. I present now, for your head-scratching pleasure, one of those angles.

God Is Your Conscience

God does not have a beard; why would God not want to shave?

God is not in the trees; God will not be in your grave

God is not in his pants, or in her beautiful hair, no

God is your conscience, and if your conscience bothers you, then God’s there

God is not in the water, God doesn’t swim; God doesn’t fly

God is not that tear that is flowing from your eye

God is not your mother or your father or a cloud in the air, no

God is your conscience, and if your conscience bothers you, the God’s there

God is where you are; God is everything you own

God is flesh and blood; God is skin; God is bone

God is your teeth, your tonsils and your hair, but most of all

God is your conscience, and if your conscience bothers you, then God’s there

A sprinkling of Catholic guilt, a sprinkling of LSD and Voila! Instant enlightenment. Or so it seems.

One week until the election. The Republicans are trying to steal this. Can civil war be far behind?

Friday, October 22, 2004

In the last two nights, I have been exposed to more cigarette smoke than I truly care for.
Last night I played the open mic at Linneman's, a local music-friendly watering hole, I went up third and covered a Tim Buckley number, dusted off "Bend Over, It's Autumn" and played "Sweet Thing" by Van Morrison to close my set. I was there with Craig Stoneman and his dad, who never got to play. I found this out tonight when I went to see Craig play with local banjo god Martin Grinwald ( I THINK that's his last name; I'll check later). Martin has a gift.
And now I find myself at my blog. Exactly 12 days from now we'll know our leader for the next four years. I'm scared to death that Bush will get four more years to steer this country straight to its death. If you have a brain, America, vote for the man who has one. Think of it as a two-for-one deal. Mr. Kerry has a conscience too.
I'm very close to giving up playing music outside of my home. It strikes me that nothing I do musically works for me on any sort of level. If I had a choice, I think I'd rather just love Leslie, play video games and truly apply myself to my personal development. I often wonder if the songs will stop coming. I'm coming to a point of peace in my life. Usually when a person reaches that point, it's all over. And yet in Leslie, I see a future. I'm just going to wait and see what sign comes next.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

I really want to type a review of the Richard Thompson show in Madison that Leslie and I attended on Friday, but I just can't get motivated to do it. My humble apologies.
Work is improving, Leslie and I are getting closer and closer to the wedding date, I'm playing an open mic tomorrow and I've recently befriended a flamenco dancer from Minneapolis who gives me a nightly drubbing in Yahoo Literati. All in all, life is interesting, inspiring and beautiful.
This past Monday was Laura Nyro's birthday. The people I discuss her with all gave their postmortem blessings and greetings to her. Such nice people. Such lovely music.
I noticed as I was singing today that my high notes and my power are coming back. It's rather exciting. I like hitting those notes again. I've been lazy in the recent past in trying to hit notes. I have to shake out of that. With practice comes comfort. Man do I love to sing.
I don't really have anything earth-shattering to report other than that. I get paid tomorrow. Always exciting.
No songs tonight. I just wanted to check in. Vote for Kerry. He actually KNOWS his ass from a hole in the ground.

Friday, October 15, 2004

A funny thing happened on the way to morning.....

I fell asleep at 5 today. I was up far too late last night, and combined with the turkey dinner I had last night, I was asleep fairly quickly. I truly thought that I would be asleep through to the early morning, but at a few minutes past Midnight, I woke up for good. I decided that this was a good time to experiment with my senses a little bit. I way laying in bed with my eyes closed, and was concentrating on the sounds around me. Granted, due to the Autumn cold of evening, the windows were closed, so outside sounds were limited, but I listened to the world around me anyway. I heard the heater warming up, then running, then shutting off. I heard an occasional sigh from beloved Rocky the dog. I heard mostly the sleep breathing of Leslie as she lay next to me. I heard a handful of really tough crickets outside. I heard the distant sounds of traffic from hte main thoroughfare that passes a block and a half from my window. Upstairs, someone got up in the middle of the night, turning on the fan in their bathroom. Other than these sounds and the silence of night, there was nary a sound. In its own way, it was beautiful and refreshing. It recharged my mind in a way that was unexpected.
While I was awake for about 90 minutes in bed, Leslie spent those minutes looking for the perfect place to sleep in bed. She alternately rested her left arm on my ear, her knee gently in my backside, and the tip of her foot onto my right shin. It was when she turned over and swiped virtually all of the covers that I laughed to myself and finally decided to get up.
Now I sit listening to Tim Buckley's "Goodbye And Hello" with a peaceful smile on my face, having a glass of water and reveling in the good things. I always have to laugh at people who define themselves by their possessions. The things they miss just from not paying attention are the most wonderful things in life.
This calls for a song. Let's go to the Writ.....

This song is an old one. I wrote this after I became convinced that God was out to get me, forever planning to make my romantic relationships unhappy. This song is now a humorous ode to days gone by. God has smiled on me by delivering Leslie to me.

God Is A Ladies Man

Heaven’s a place where’s everyone’s ugly

And everyone’s beautiful once in a while

And God’s this big dude who does what he wants to

I wonder sometimes if he ever dares smile

Well, I’ve got a clue, I’ve got an inkling

Of what brings a glow to the holiest eye

It’s sure not your prayers of faith and devotion

But the sight of the ladies just passing on by

‘Cause God is a ladies man, simple as that

He takes all the good ones, then hands you your hat

Yea, God is a ladies man, who could resist

And there’s not one lady that God up in heaven has missed

The weather in Heaven is just about perfect

Indian summers ten months of the year

But don’t stare too long at the thinly-clad ladies

For ladies are only God’s property here


Now men of the world are usually rammy

We all stay quite lustful from 14 ‘til death

But don’t bother asking your god for a woman

You’re not getting’ any, so don’t waste your breath

Somewhat funny, somewhat pessimistic, VERY dated. That's a weird one. Sorry.

I'm going to listen to Tim a little more and try to get a little more sleep, as futile as that may be. Later tonight. Leslie and I go to Madison to see Richard Thompson. I can't get enough of those songs and that guitar. What a gifted man.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

America tuned into the final presidential debate hoping to get a straight answer from their president on domestic policy. What America got was hyperkinetic obfuscation and at precisely, 9:19 EDT, FOAM on the corner of the president's mouth.
This president just doesn't get it. He doeesn't care about anyone but himself. He's worthless as a leader and as a man. He should be expunged from his office if not by ballot then by force.
And given the news I've been reading today, it looks like the Republicans are going to do EVERYTHING they can to try to reduce the Democratic vote for John Kerry. In Nevada, a Republican is trying to disqualify Democratic ballots based on supposition of ineligibility. Here in Milwaukee, the Republican County Commisioner has refused The Democratic mayor's request for additional ballots for the coming election, which were requested because of a record registration drive that would surely deliver the city, if not the state, to Mr. Kerry if those registrations turn into votes. In Florida, the handpicked Republican Secretary Of State is pulling out all the stops to disenfranchise voters, resulting in multiple lawsuits by honest parties attempting to reverse the process.
If Mr. Bush wins this election, it's going to lead to Civil War. I no longer feel that that thought is an exaggeration. People are at each other's throats right now in the United States. Incompetance at the top tends to spread downward quickly. I'm seeing a traffic accident unfold right before my eyes. If Mr. Kerry loses this election, I do not choose capitulation. I choose to fight.
I'm a few days late, so I'll recap Friday's show very quickly.

We all played three songs, except for Jennifer Lee, who played two. This is where I come in. I sang backup on Jen's songs, and I even tried my hand at bongos on one of her songs. I told Jen earlier tonight via a forum post at the Project I Am web site that rhythm won out over fear. I was really impressed with Craig Stoneman's songs on Friday. He has a song called "Sweet Lightning" that's just top-notch. He gave me a CD of it, so I'll put it in heavy rotation soon in the house.

Leslie told me I should stop writing funny songs. What would I do if I was forced to write non-funny songs one hundred percent of the time? I guess she wants to be a widow.

Things are going really well at work. MANY things are getting done, and I couldn't be happier. I can't believe it's already the middle of October. I must make a pact with myself to spend more time outdoors and MUCH less time inside eating. I'm woefully out of shape and it's not getting any better. I'm almost too much for my guitar. I need to fix that.

Later today is the final debate. Bush has been using a transmitter in the last two because he gets easily stunned and confused when forced to actually think for himself. It's incredibly scary that this man is running our country. He MUST go!! NOW!! For the sake of the future of mankind.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

It is 1:40 in the morning on October the 9th. I have just finished watching the rebroadcast of the 2nd presidential debate from this past evening.
After witnessing the debate and watching the two candidates carefully and keenly, I am now ready to state for the record that I believe the President of the United States, George W. Bush, is currently in the throws of a drug problem.
Multiple times tonight, while Senator Kerry was speaking, the president sat on his stool showing definitive signs of amphetamine use. His breathing was visibly shallow. His eyes were blinking extremely rapidly.
The suspicious behavior continued while the president was speaking. There were instances too numerous to count where the President kept tugging at his jacket while pacing the floor during his answers to the St. Louis , Missouri audience.
These could all be considered quirks in my mind if they were anyone else. Unfortunately, the President indicted himself earlier this week when he "decided" to skip his yearly scheduled physical examination. Given his past actions, in particular with respect to what we have learned about his avoidance of a routine physical while serving in the Texas Air National Guard, I believe the President has something to hide, and as citizens, we should now demand and require the President to submit to the American people proof of a clean drug test, duely regulated by a team of health care professionals.

This is not a joke, lest anyone believe that I am less than completely serious about my allegations. The president is on something, and as a citizen I demand to know what that something is.

I shall post to the blog tomorrow regarding the rest of my night. I am in shock over what I saw on this debate tonight, and it will take a while to come to grips with the truth. I humbly request the rest of the night off from the readers.

Friday, October 08, 2004

MAN, is it ever late.

I just thought I should drop in to bid the reader good night and offer a boatload of peace to all my readers/viewers.

Since I have NOTHING to say, how about a song from the Writ?

I think it is the responsibility of every great songwriter to give the world a bawdy sea shanty. This is mine. Picture this song being sung by pirates waving cutlasses, and you won't be disappointed.

Give ‘Er One For Me

If you meet a lonely lady as you travel ‘round the world

And you feel as if her body should-a be against ya curled

But her face just isn’t something you would really care to see

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

If you find a chocolate beauty from the Isle of the Dead

And you get her all alone in some hotel room with a bed

And there’s just a little more of ‘er than you would like to see

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

If you meet a Hindu harlot in the mud in Bangladesh

And you have a little time to share the pleasures of the flesh

But the floods have left ‘er smellin’ like a skunk on highway 3

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

So you found yourself in Sydney on a sunny afternoon

And the natives all are restless and the ladies start to swoon

It’s no matter if she’s white or if she’s aborigine

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

If you come across a China girl in what they called Peking

And her body makes you dance and her hair it makes you sing

But her eyes are crossed and pointing where they shouldn’t oughta be

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

If you find yourself in Rome and catch the old amore flu

And you catch the fiery eyes of a bella lass or two

But they want to bring you home so you can meet the family

Flip ‘er over and give 'er one for me

If you’re walkin’ cold and lonely on a narrow Paris street

And you spot a young French kisser that you’d kinda like to meet

But she blows smoke in your face and she’s as stupid as can be

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

For many moons and suns you will be walking on the Earth

And some of ‘em are thin and some of ‘em have girth

But when someday, boy, you marry and retire from the sea

Flip ‘er over and give ‘er one for me

And now that my bawdy sea shanty has more than likely insulted a majority of world cultures, I bid you a good morning.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

It has been roughly 30 minutes since the end of the Vice-Presidential debate. In my mind the loser of this debate was neither Dick Cheney nor John Edwards.
The loser of this debate was Gwen Ifill, tonight's moderator, who is a correspondent for PBS and other political talk shows across a few other networks. Her line of questioning was of very little substance, and at times incredibly partial to Mr. Cheney. It is hoped that she is NEVER chosen to moderate a debate of this importance again in my lifetime. There was not a single question asked about education. The candidates themselves had to bring it up.
In the end, this debate will be of little substance on Saturday, one day after George W. Bush and John Kerry debate in a town hall format, answering questions from the general public. Knowing what I know about the president's inability to form a complete sentence not written by Karl Rove, this debate will mean nothing in a week.
I was disappointed that Edwards didn't go after Cheney for the vice-president's many lapses in morality that have plagued him since leaving his post as Secretary of Defense in the first Bush Administration. Edwards mentioned Halliburton and its MANY shady dealings only a few times. He needed to do this a LOT more, and call the vice-president exactly what he is; a thinly-disguised war profiteer.

Friday, October 01, 2004

The first Presidential "debate" was this evening. While I am an unabashed supporter of John Kerry, I saw something tonight in the middle of the debate that completely summed up the presidency of George W. Bush.
I watched the debate on C-Span, the government affairs channel on cable television here in the States. I watch these types of things on C-span because it is free of spin and half-assed "analysis" by the unimaginative stooges in the National Press Corps. This network was not a slave to prearranged camera angles. The cameras were on the candidates for the entire time they occupied the stage. During the debate, the candidates were in split screen. Every little move they made was in full view.
So, about an hour into the debate, while John Kerry was making a point, Bush reaches underneath his lectern for a glass of water and starts drinking. He then got a very surprised look on his face, for the glass had no water in it. He then reached under the lectern for a glass that actually contained water and began drinking.
I do not know how long it will take or even IF the substantial damage done to America by the presidency of George W. Bush can be reversed. I can state unequivocally that the thought of a second term with Mr. Bush as my president, based on what he has done to this world so far, leaves absolutely no room for optimism. President Bush's glass, both literally and figuratively, is empty. God Help America.