Monday, October 22, 2012 worry.......

    So the Yankees didn't make it this year. That's it! I'm done! They're dead to me!!.....until next year. Ahhhh spring. New beginnings. Awakening aromas from the nearby Alpaca farm. And ......opening day. Everyone's a winner. Everyone's batting 1,000. We just have to get through a World Series I don't really care about, Halloween, a presidential election, Thanksgiving, Christmas, snowstorms, Easter and then,,,,opening day. Man, that sounds like a long way off.
    My grandmother used to tell me time goes by quicker as you get older. Who woulda thought she was right!? I can imagine that spring's right around the corner. And it's not even November yet!
    Life on the river's been good. Lots of music at the Winery across the street and lot of gigs. I've been doing some interesting gigs with The High Bridge All Stars. Rotating cast, of course. And 've been playing with my old pals Stolen Hearts now and then. And it looks like I'll be doing some solo gigs soon. Not my favorite thing but I gotsta woik.
    Playing my bass has become so easy. Maybe....... relaxed is a better word. I've been working with some online lessons and it feels good to practice again. New ideas....... new techniques. I wish I had taken the whole music thing seriously when I was younger. But when you're twenty, and it's the 60's/70's, girls, beer and ....other things....aren't necessarily a priority..... but go hand in hand with giggin' 5 or 6 nights a week. The music, gigs...friends...have always been good. Even if I didn't realize it sometimes.
    Had a cool getaway a couple of weeks ago to the Outer Banks in north Carolina. Some old pals and lot of playin' and singin'. What's life without playin' and singin? You have to let that little kid inside you out every now and then. I saw that one of my Facebook friends had a picture of her sitting in a tree. You go, girl! On my radio show I always encourage people to climb a tree, kiss a dog, roll in the grass...... and stick your face right in it. I bet the smell of "ground" will give you a great flashback. I was walking around Round Valley Reservoir a couple years ago and couldn't resist climbing one of those great evergreens. It's like natures ladder. I got a good way up when a friendly couple decided to stop under the tree and express their fondness for each other. Before things went too far they moved on and I came down.
    I seemed to have missed the grow up gene. I can't explain it but it's too late now, I guess. Uh oh...The Three Stooges are on. ....Peace.

Sunday, June 03, 2012 don't believe me...?

I'm was sitting in a bar the other day and the weirdest thing happened. A gorilla walked in and took a seat a few stools down. Now I thought this was kinda strange, but ok. So the bartender, Jimmy, walked over and asked him what he'd have. To our amazement he said," I'll have a Bud light....bottle." This was gettin' interesting. As Jimmy was getting the beer the gorilla put a ten dollar bill on the bar, looked up at the TV and just as Mariano was coming in for the Bronx Bombers, he looked over at me and said, "How the Yanks doin'?" I stammered, "Uh, They're up one run." Jimmy delivered his beer, picked up the ten spot, gave me a wink and returned with fifty cents change for our simian friend. I could see what Jimmy was pulling but just kept watching the game. A few minutes later the gorilla said,"Let's do it again" and pulled out another sawbuck.

Jimmy did his bartender thing, delivered the Bud, picked up the ten and with another wink towards me returned with fifty cents change. Another half inning went by, the gorilla got Jimmy's attention, pointed to his beer, pulled out another ten dollars and placed it on the bar. As Jimmy put the beer down he said, Ya know.....we don't get many gorillas in here." To which the gorilla replied," At $9.50 a pop......I'm not surprised." True story.

Friday, March 09, 2012

"If my words did glow......."

"Well the first days are the hardest days. Don't you worry anymore. 'Cause when life looks like easy street there is danger at your door. Think this through with me. Let me know your mind. Wo - o, what I want to know, is are you kind."

These are the opening lines from "Uncle Johns Band," a Grateful Dead tune written by Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter. Jerry certainly seemed like a kind soul. The Dead had/have an aura of kindness swirling about them. Bob Weir can get a little contentious at times but I think that weird macrobiotic diet of his has a lot to do with it. The guy's hungry. Somebody give him a cheeseburger! Are you kind? Am I kind? How important is kindness? It's only everything. I just had my sixtieth birthday and this idea of being kind that's dashed in and out of my consciousness for most of my adult life has finally taken root. Maybe reality TV and CNN's nightly visions of man's inhumanity to man has guided some synaptic pathways to zig instead of zag towards an area of enlightenment. I definitely......feel more.

When I was a kid I was always the guy who went back to the guy we were just pickin' on and tried to convince him we were just messin' with him and then hang out for a while. A conscience is a vile thing. I never wanted to really hurt anyone. I don't know if I put out that vibe or if it was really there. I had a reputaion for being tough but never got into fights; for being smart but was, on a good day, a solid C student; for being athletic but was mediocre at best. It depended on what group I was hanging with and who was the recipient of the vibe. I easily wound my way through the jocks, the freaks, the geeks etc. The geeks were good for tutoring when needed, the jocks were always good for some football, baseball if needed. The freaks were a lot of fun on the weekend. And I like to think I brought a little something to the party. It was always weird when I'd be out with one group and run into another group. I was a musician all through junior high school and high school and different groups would converge at my gigs on the weekend. At break time I'd have a little Carter/Begin/Sadat thing going. Detante was alive and well at Friendship Hall. One of my chess club pals actually started dating one of my cheerleader pals! To their credit they didn't give a hoot about public opinion and had a pretty good high school run. I can't really say I thought much about it at the time. It all just seemed natural.

I've hurt people in my life. Unintentionally. That's something that can wear you down. An early life lesson is this. It's a lot easier to get over being hurt than to get over hurting. I can still bring up a memory of a girl I broke up with in ninth grade and feel an unpleasant pang. But then I think of a girl who broke my heart when I was twenty and.....nothing! It's all about forgiveness; for yourself ....and others. Is it easy? No. Necessary? Hell to the yes!!

Kindness. It's how you carry yourself and react to situations. Is it better to ignore the drunk who's requested Freebird for the tenth time at the top of his lungs and is hitting on your girlfriend the whole night? Taking him outside may give you some momentary pleasure. But it's not like the movies. These situations can also involve police and hospitals. Bad karma. That doesn't mean there aren't times. There are. Then it's back to the wall and no holds barred mother &#*#%^!! But it's so much more pleasant to let someone think they won......when you know the truth.

The older I get (Did I mention I just turned sixty?) the easier it is to smile and walk away. Good karma. Did you ever see "My Name Is Earl?" It's about a guy who's done some bad things, has an epiphany, makes a list of all the people he's wronged and spends his life trying to bring his own karma back into alignment. Karma almost becomes a character. Hijinks ensue, lessons are learned and I'm not sure how it turned out 'cause I only see the occasional rerun. It's worth a quick You Tube watch.

You've heard,"Why do bad things happen to good people?" On the other hand why do good things happen to bad people? I have to believe it all shakes out in the end. Where the end is............?

Kindness. One little bit of it from us can make such a difference to some one else. The Grateful Dead have always let fans record their shows. They even had/have a special area set up near the soundboard just for the taping community. "Mics in the air....gentlemen start your recorders!" Thanks Jerry. You'll know your opportunity when it presents itself. You don't have to be Mother Teresa. I'm sure even mother Teresa had days when it was tough to be Mother Teresa; when she'd yell at someone,"Hey ....go do it yourself slacker.......what am I....Mother Teresa?!?! bad."

Our world is so contained. The office. The highway. The supermarket. The home. Friends. Relatives. Wives. Husbands. Kids. Here's your assignment. Try to let a random act of kindness sneak into each day this week. Man, it'll make you feel good. Just keep it to yourself and enjoy the glow. I'll bet..............Hey....what the.... Some idiot's trying to snatch my parking space. "GET THE HELL OUT OF THERE YOU *#%$^& &^*# *#$% #$^*#*^!!!!!!!!!!!......" Uh....gotta go. Peace.