Category Archives: pictures

this is so cool!

i’ve knowingly been around this building for 45 years, but i’ve never actually been inside the Women’s University Club in seattle, until yesterday, when the ballard sedentary sousa band played there. it’s been there for 90 years, or thereabouts, and has been the venue for many a ‘hoity-toity’ event presented by the rich, upper-class women of seattle… and now it has also been the venue in which the BSSB has played, which either means that their standards are slipping, or that the BSSB has moved up the ladder, in our social circles, by several rungs… ๐Ÿ˜‰

but the photo below is not that… it is about 3 blocks away, right next door to the building i lived in (according to the handy-dandy chart of when things happened) between 1996 and 1997, at terry and east union

seriously, this is one of my favourite places in the entire city, and i would live there again in a cold second, given the opportunity… there’s nothing like waking up in the morning, walking a few blocks, and being able to eat breakfast at the pike place market before starting your day… 😎

when i got to the women’s university club, i played, as i was expected to do, but i then learned about the fact that, in 1927, John Philip Sousa had actually been a guest of the women’s university club, and they had his signature in their guest book! so, of course, i had to take a picture of it…

150729 John Philip Sousa autograph

of course, because of the fact that i took it with my cell-phone, it’s kind of blurry, but hey… it’s a real piece of history, that i’m a part of, because we actually got to sign the very same guest book! ๐Ÿ˜€

hot cat

👉 PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT 👈

150719 hot cat
DANGER — HOT CAT

i’ve posted copies of this photo in various places, and the responses i have gotten have all been along the lines of “i want to rub his belly”…

👉 NO YOU DON’T! 👈

this is very much a situation like in the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon, where five of his six ends are pointy… maybe you can’t see them right now, but i assure you that if you were to reach down to rub his belly, the five of those six ends that are pointy would converge on your wrist and not let go.

so, here are my pictures…

so, here are my pictures which i wasn’t able to couldn’t be arsed to figure out how to upload the other day. they are all taken within a 5-mile radius of 47.2464070, -124.2233262 (47ยฐ 14′ 47.0646″ N by -124ยฐ 13′ 23.9736″ W)

where we stayed
where we stayed
humptulips dyke road
this wasn’t in the 5-mile radius, and i’m not completely sure whether it’s not spelled correctly, or (possibly) referring to something completely different than i am thinking…
inside looking out
inside, looking out
sand
sand
sand
not fukushima or deepwater-horizon this is the pacific northwest
not fukushima or deepwater-horizon this is the pacific northwest
dead sand dollar
dead sand dollar
live sand dollars
live sand dollars
zora wading
zora voluntarily wading in water up to her shoulders — no, seriously, this is a big thing, ’cause zora HATES getting even the slightest bit wet… we’ll make a beach-doggie out of her yet…
birds
birds
birds
star-light
sunset

J.W. Pepper

Tenor Hornin a post called fezorocity and antique brass…, from 100911, i wrote of obtaining an antique tenor horn, around 100 years old, stamped with the J.W. Pepper logo. i actually did some research online and found pictures of similar horns from around the same era.

i immediately featured the horn in an educational post entitled “THE "RIGHT WAY" TO REMOVE A STUCK BRASS MOUTHPIECE“, in which i used it as an example of a stuck mouthpiece and the correct way to remove it.

120502 tuba triothen, on 120502, i posted a composite photo of me playing three different tubas, one of which was that same horn with the J.W. Pepper logo. at the time i was under the impression that it was more or less a “mid-west” and/or east coast company.

little did i know… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

140331 salamandir at the moisture festivalit turns out that there’s a branch of J.W. Pepper in tukwilla, just down the street from ikea. i went in there today and immediately felt like i’d been there all my life… they had racks of catalogued sheet music all over the place, a rack of batons for sale on the desk, and a friendly dog who greeted me at the door.

i ordered a copy of the piano score for Le Tombeau de Couperin by Ravel, which should be here next week, and i’m going to take the horn with me. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

200-year-old Mongolian mummy may still be alive

200-year-old Dashi-Dorzho ItigilovThis extraordinary picture shows the mummifed male body which is believed to be several centuries old. It was found at 6.30 pm 27 January 2015 in Songinokhairkhan province, reported Mongolia’s ‘Morning Newspaper’.

‘The mummified body sits in a lotus position, as if still meditating.

‘Experts that only had time to carry basic visual test say they believe the body can be about 200 years old’.

The report added: ‘So far there is no information as to where the body was found. The only details we learned was that it was covered with a cattle skin’.

It was not clear if it was the skin of a cow, horse, or camel, said the report. The mummy was delivered to Ulaanbataar National Centre of Forensic Expertise’.

Initial speculation is that the mummy could be a teacher of famous Lama Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov.

Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov, born in 1852, was a Buryat Buddhist Lama of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, best known for the lifelike state of his body.

His remains were reported not to be subject to macroscopic decay.

source

——

As police say lama found in lotus positon was destined for sale on black market, there are claims it was one step away from becoming a Buddha.

A mummified monk found in the lotus position in Mongolia is ‘not dead’ and is instead one stage away from becoming a real-life Buddha, it has been claimed.

Forensic examinations are under way on the amazing remains, which are believed to be around 200 years old, having been preserved in animal skin. But one expert has insisted the human relic is actually in ‘very deep meditation’ and in a rare and very special spiritual state known as ‘tukdam’.

Over the last 50 years there are said to have been 40 such cases in India involving meditating Tibetan monks.

Dr Barry Kerzin, a famous Buddhist monk and a physician to the Dalai Lama, said: ‘I had the privilege to take care of some meditators who were in a tukdam state.

‘If the person is able to remain in this state for more than three weeks – which rarely happens – his body gradually shrinks, and in the end all that remains from the person is his hair, nails, and clothes. Usually in this case, people who live next to the monk see a rainbow that glows in the sky for several days. This means that he has found a ‘rainbow body’. This is the highest state close to the state of Buddha’.

He added: ‘If the meditator can continue to stay in this meditative state, he can become a Buddha. Reaching such a high spiritual level the meditator will also help others, and all the people around will feel a deep sense of joy’.

Initial speculation is that the mummy could be a teacher of Lama Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov.

Born in 1852, Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov was a Buryat Buddhist Lama of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, best known for the lifelike state of his body.

Ganhugiyn Purevbata, who is the founder and professor of the Mongolian Institute of Buddhist Art at Ulaanbaatar Buddhist University, said: ‘Lama is sitting in the lotus position vajra, the left hand is opened, and the right hand symbolizes of the preaching Sutra.

‘This is a sign that the Lama is not dead, but is in a very deep meditation according to the ancient tradition of Buddhist lamas’.

The mummified remains, which were covered in cattle skin, were found on January 27 in the Songinokhairkhan province of Mongolia.

However, there is more to the story and now police have revealed that the monk had been stolen from another part of the country and was about to be sold off.

An unnamed official said that it was taken from a cave in the Kobdsk region by a man who then hid it in his own home in Ulaanbaatar.

He had then been planning to sell it on the black market at a ‘very high price’, with local media claiming he wanted to take it over the Mongolian border. Police uncovered the plot and quickly arrested a 45-year-old, named only as Enhtor.

According to Article 18 of the Criminal Code of Mongolia smuggling items of cultural heritage are punishable with either a fine of up to 3 million roubles ($43,000) or between five and 12 years in prison. The monk is now being guarded at the National Centre of Forensic Expertise at Ulaanbaatar.

source

artesian well

artesian well

once again, i was at the artesian well when there was nobody else there, but this time, i was the last person there: when i showed up, there were three other cars, but they left fairly quickly, and there wasn’t anybody else there for the entire time i was filling my bottles. as i was driving out, two other cars pulled in. in the 25-or-so years that i have been filling my bottles there, i have experienced a relatively small number of times that i have been the only person there, but i have experienced even fewer times when i was the last person there… i have been there at all hours of the day and night, and had to wait in line for other people to fill their bottles.

it’s apparently called Well #5 or The 164th Street Artesian Well, but, as far as i have been able to tell, the “locals” who use the well would prefer it if nobody else knew about the well, so i won’t give any more information about its location.

je suis charlie hebdo

je suis charlie hebdo

je suis charlie hebdo
mohammed: a star is born

Religion, a mediaeval form of unreason, when combined with modern weaponry becomes a real threat to our freedoms. This religious totalitarianism has caused a deadly mutation in the heart of Islam and we see the tragic consequences in Paris today. I stand with Charlie Hebdo, as we all must, to defend the art of satire, which has always been a force for liberty and against tyranny, dishonesty and stupidity. ‘Respect for religion’ has become a code phrase meaning ‘fear of religion.’ Religions, like all other ideas, deserve criticism, satire, and, yes, our fearless disrespect.
     Salman Rushdie

je suis charlie hebdo

cape

a long, long time ago… probably 1980 or thereabouts… i had just moved to bellingham and was a student at fairhaven college, on the campus of western washington university. there was a “student market” called the “VU Vendors” on weekdays, where “professional” vendors (somewhat like what Hybrid Elephant was like, at the FSM) and students who wanted to sell stuff congregated. one of the latter vendors was a guy who had made a cape out of army blankets, which he wanted to sell because he needed some “medication” (i never asked what kind of “medication” he wanted), but i didn’t have the amount of money he was looking for, so i memorised the pattern and went on my way. about a year later, after i had gotten a job, i bought a couple of wool army blankets and made my own cape, which have worn, more or less constantly, since then.

i wore it when i went to the rainbow gathering in 1982. i wore it when i was a migrant fruit picker in 1983. i wore it when i freight-hopped to various places, i wore it when i hitch hiked places, i slept under freeway bridges, and in farmers’ fields wrapped in my cape… in 1993 or thereabouts, i wore it when i went out picking mushrooms, got it caught on a barbed-wire fence and tore a hole in it, which i repaired. eventually i modified the design a little, and cut arm-holes, which fastened with velcro, so that i could wear a backpack and still wear the cape, when it was raining. originally it had three buttons that i rescued from a pea-coat, but the buttonholes failed, so i removed them and replaced it with a metal frog that i got at OCF, where i wore it to protect me from mosquitos.

eventually, i learned that it wasn’t really a “cape”. it is actually a garment called a burnous, a traditional garment worn by Berbers… but nobody knows what a burnous is, despite the fact that it is actually a really cool garment…

it was well worn, and well loved, so it wasn’t particularly surprising when i was putting it on a couple months ago, and the frog ripped a big hole in the front, and i decided that it was time to retire it as a garment…

141215 cape in progressbut i still want need a cape… i NEED a cape. it has been a part of my wardrobe for 40 years, and it’s lack has been felt intensely… so i went out and spent $250 on real wool fabric, and real lycra lining material, and made a new one. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

at this point, it’s about 85% finished. i put together the pieces, and sewed the neck, but i’m letting it hang for a couple of days before i finish it, because that way the lining will have a chance to “settle”… the old cape didn’t have a lining, so it wasn’t a problem. i found it rather bizarre, essentially, to have to make two capes, and sew them together inside out, so that the lining came out right.

and i didn’t realise until i hung it up, that, because of the fact that it’s made of brown cloth, it looks suspiciously like a “jedi” cape… which, naturally, means that i’ll be getting a lot of comments from tourists at OCF next year, but… oh well, i’ll deal with it…

Every time you see me, you want to mess with me. I’m tired of it. It stops today.

Eric Garner's last words

Black men and boys killed by police.
I can’t breathe.
Impunity for the killers — no justice, no peace.
I can’t breathe.
Militarized police met peaceful protesters on their knees.
I can’t breathe.
Weapons of war — a show of force on our streets.
I can’t breathe.
Disenfranchised youth driven to violence as speech.
I can’t breathe.
Cynical media think this makes great TV.
I can’t breathe.
This cowardly Congress afraid of losing our seats.
I can’t breathe.
Half-hearted reform when there’s more that we need.
I can’t breathe.
Just thinking about the despair that this breeds.
I can’t breathe.
Black lives matter. Hear my pleas.
I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.

i always enjoy getting packages from india

package from indiapeople who send packages from india seem to have an entirely different attitude than people (including myself) who send packages from the united states… this one, for example. if i were to wrap a package, i would probably stop before i got to the pillow-case wrapper, secured with red embroidery floss.

package from indiait also had a return address that was different from the return address that i got on the “official” computer printed UPS tracking label, which was from somebody who operates a mail-forwarding service in jamaica, new york… booorring!… ๐Ÿ˜

after carefully removing the cloth wrapping around the outside of the package (because you never know, with packages from india, whether or not the cloth wrapping may be used for some esoteric, indian purpose that won’t become clear until after the rest of the package is opened), i discovered this, package from india which was a little bit more like how i would expect a package to be wrapped… although, in my, personal, opinion, they went just a little bit overboard with the shipping tape that covered the entire package. it’s my understanding, in this case, that it may be an “extra precaution”, since what is contained inside the package is of a somewhat sensitive nature, but that’s getting ahead of myself… ๐Ÿ˜‰

package from indiathis is another reason why i enjoy unwrapping packages from india: they inevitably wrap whatever is inside the package in newspaper which, depending on which part of india it comes from, is written in hindi (devanagari), or tamil, or sinhalese, or punjabi, or urdu, or something other than english american… it’s really interesting to me to try to read the articles (i usually fail miserably, because i only know sanskrit, and not very much of that), but i can usually make out ayurvedic terminology, or dates — in this case अक्टूबर “akṭubara” or “october”…

it takes so little to amuse me… ๐Ÿ˜Ž i haven’t even gotten to the contents of the package…

parad (solid mercury) mala

parad (solid mercury) mala

this is the contents of the package: a parad mala. i know that the main component of parad is mercury, and i’m aware of the fact that there is some mystical process by which they turn liquid mercury into a solid object (Mercury mouth closed with Aghor Vidhya, Murthi-Badhha/Agnibadha — sustain the heat) but i’m not exactly sure how it’s done, although it is my impression that it is mixed with herbal substances and strained through a cloth mesh.

generally you don’t get such exciting, exotic packages from the united states… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

NOTC

141019 vashon island amanita muscariai played with the fighting instruments of karma in mt. vernon on friday, olympia on saturday, and vashon island on sunday. i left my top hat in mt. vernon, but i didn’t notice it until saturday, when i was in olympia and getting ready for the show… so i had to go to mt. vernon to pick it up today. for all the time i lived in mt. vernon, the first time i have ever been in the lincoln theater was friday…

141019 vashon island amanita muscariaon vashon, i arrived very early… we caught the 9:10 ferry, and we weren’t actually supposed to show up until 12:00, so i got a chance to wander a little bit on vashon, and i found a whole bunch of amanita muscaria… truly a cup of wonder… i took a bunch of pictures…

141019 vashon island amanita muscaria
141019 vashon island amanita muscaria
141019 vashon island amanita muscaria

i’m seriously considering applying to go on tour with the chautauqua next year. it starts with performances at the oregon country fair, and (this year) procedes to southeast alaska during the three weeks immediately following the fair. it sounds like A LOT of fun, and it would be a great way to re-connect with a bunch of people from my karass with whom i have been out of contact for far too long… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

nooze

i went to bellingham saturday, and came back today. there are a number of interesting developments that came about as a result:

apparently there is a “bullet shuttle” that runs from downtown bellingham to downtown seattle and back, that only costs $11… which means that there’s a good chance that i will be taking it to bellingham, and/or whitley will be taking it to seattle more regularly, for the purposes of, basically, getting And More back together. along the same lines, whitley and kamalla have offered to house my keyboards in their house, which means that when i go to bellingham, my keyboards will be set up and ready to go, and when i’m not there, other people will be playing them. the piano (which is missing three tines) has been packed up in a box and sitting behind the couch for about 7 years, and before that it was in a box in the hallway… i haven’t actually had it set up since we moved in to this house… so putting it to good use again is most desirable, and this seems like a prime opportunity.

while i was on my way to bellingham, yesterday, i took sort of a detour through mount vernon, so that i could go by the places i used to live. while i was in mount vernon, it started to rain, and then, quite suddenly, it started to rain so hard that, after slowing down, and slowing down, and turning my windshield wipers to their highest settings, i still could not see, and was forced to take refuge in a parking lot for about half an hour, until the rain let up. as i was pulling out of the parking lot, i saw a building across the street that was, literally, pouring water, tens of gallons a minute, from all of the downspouts… and the streets were flooded in several places, to the point where, when i had to drive through a flooded part, i was concerned because it was over the floorboards of my car… i haven’t seen it rain that much in that short a period of time more than once or twice before in my entire life.

the main reason i went to bellingham in the first place was that kenyth’s 80th birthday was last week, and i went to deliver a birthday present (Operation Mindfuck) on monday. while i was there, i heard that there was going to be a music jam (which is what they’re calling the stairway jam these days), and it was suggested that i come up for it, so i did. another thing that we discussed while i was there was the fact (in my opinion) that kenyth really needs a wikipedia page… a fact that is complicated by the fact that kenyth has kept absolutely ZERO archives of the work that he has done, class notes from classes he has taught, personal correspondence, and that sort of thing, and further complicated by the fact that, to be a wikipedia page that isn’t deleted immediately, a lot of the information posted has to be backed up by stuff that is publically available from internet, which, in this case, would be practically impossible in anything like a realistic way. the upshot is that i am going to help the community of people who want to see this happen, by registering a domain (how about http://KenythFreeman.dance/ or http://JosephPFaddlefum.name/ or something like that? ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) and pointing that domain name towards a blog that i can set up, and then give to the people who actually know what content there is, and can organise it the way it’s supposed to be.

on my way back, today, i mostly took surface streets, and only hit the freeway once or twice. i was north of burlington on what i think was Highway 99, and i found the new location of “The Music Shoppe”, which was a place i worked a couple of times a VERY long time ago: the first time was right after i graduated from the tech school, and ended when i got fired for telling sam, the owner, that the “chemical tank” that he bought, ostensibly to “dip musical instruments”, was full of the chromic acid that he bought and then discovered he couldn’t use because it’s carcinogenic (and, generally, only used as a “bright dip” for brass instruments before they are buffed and refinished), and it was beginning to leak, because it wasn’t really a “chemical tank” but, rather, a stainless steel dairy tank with a bright brass stopper… and the chromic acid was dissolving the bright brass stopper, because, well… chromic acid dissolves brass… ๐Ÿ˜

anyway, the second time, he actually subcontracted my musical instrument repair business to repair musical instruments for “The Music Shoppe”, and that ended when he refused to pay me for an instrument that i had fixed, that his customer had refused to pay for. basically i said that, until i got paid i wasn’t going to fix any more instruments for him. he said that he hadn’t paid me because his customer hadn’t paid him, and i pointed out that his customer was HIS customer, and that MY customer was him, but that didn’t seem to make any difference. they apparently moved from their shop in the fountain district in north bellingham, some time in the past, and they are, as of 1st november, moving in to burlington. i left Operation Mindfuck in the front door for them to find when they open up tomorrow. ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

The U in U2 stands for “Unwanted”!!

๐Ÿ˜ก

the U stands for "Unwanted"

Not pro Bono: Apple’s audio junk mail made spammers’ lives easier

Apple: take this fucking U2 album off my iPhone, NOW. I do not want it, I did not ask for it, it takes up space, it’s my device. Go to hell.

Just say BO-NO: Mark Hosler of Negativland on Apple’s ‘U2rusion’

Got iTunes? You got a U2 album. Here’s how to delete it.

unfortunately, it’s not how to delete it. because of the fact that it’s “in the cloud”, it doesn’t necessarily take up space on my device, but i can’t immediately delete it using any of the methods recommended — using iTunes on my computer doesn’t even show that i have a U2 album, so re-synching my device doesn’t do anything, and there’s nothing to un-check, and you can only delete something once you have downloaded it from the cloud…

i don’t use twitter, but i am outraged, and i reflect that guy’s twitter: Apple: take this fucking U2 album off my iPhone, NOW. I do not want it, I did not ask for it, it takes up space, it’s my device. Go to hell. ๐Ÿ˜ก

ॐ ༀ ૐ ੴ

the typewriter has been left in the capable hands of the guy who is either going to fix it and give it back to me, or take it and sell me another one at a discount… and, honestly, i hope he wants to take it and sell me another one at a discount, because he’s got an underwood manual typewriter that doesn’t require electricity, and that’s what i really want… if there’s no electricity, an electric typewriter is an expensive door stop, but a manual typewriter works anyway… ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

glow-in-the-daylight house
almost finished, and it glows in the daylight as well…
140909 milestone 666666
666666 outside of bellevue, appropriately enough…

peek tures

this is the latest incarnation of Operation Mindfuck:

140831 operation mindfuck

imagine you’re walking down the street in downtown seattle, pushing a baby carriage and probably thinking about going shopping at the pike place market. as you are crossing the street you encounter a strange guy going the other direction, who hands you this tiny envelope and then walks off…

THIS is Operation Mindfuck… ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

within the next week or so, i AM going to manifest a typewriter, which i intend to use to write cryptic messages on the outside of the envelopes.

chirp

okay, this is probably supposed to say “crip”, but it’s my impression that it says “chirp”… woo… i’m really afraid of the illiterate gang-member-wannabe who imitates birds that lives in this remote “suburban” neighbourhood… woo… ๐Ÿ˜

the front half towing the back half

this is a picture of a sign. the sign is a picture of the front half of a car towing away the back half of the car, right?

thought so…

Ebeneezer Squeezer The Second

Ebeneezer Q. Squeezer The Second — The Apprentice Holy Snake

frank lies in the sun

Frank Zappa enjoys a puddle of sunlight

after

140814 after

yes, it was almost a week ago, but, whatever… it’s done, and i got the screens for the two big windows today, so that part of the house is FINALLY finished…

of course i still have to replace the trim that’s rotting off, and paint the whole thing again…

ah, the pleasures of being a home-owner…

OCF 2014

i arrived at the fair on tuesday, 140708 and returned home yesterday, 140714, which is also the 11th anniversary of my brain injury.

needless to say, i did not have another brain injury.

this year, as far as it concerns me, everything went right enough that i can consider this year’s OCF experience one of the best vacations i have ever had. things didn’t go 100% right all the time: i lost my sunglasses, there was some controversy about a new part of the theatre, there was the usual tensions regarding whether incense smoke or the odour of porta-potty was more preferable, the booking representative from the ritz didn’t communicate with me directly regarding our tokens… and it rained… but it all worked out in the end: i found my sunglasses immediately after arriving at home, the part of the theatre that was causing the controversy (a place that i called the “wheelchair-exclusion zone”) was summarily dispensed with, next year they’re going to expand the theatre (AGAIN!! ๐Ÿ˜€ ) and move the porta-potties farther from our noses, we received our tokens anyway, and it rained for almost exactly an hour, before the fair actually opened, and it was cool and cloudy all the rest of the day.

140709 Keith Neale tends bar at the Morningwood dedication

morningwood is now a permanent, year-round installation, rather than having to be taken apart and stored elsewhere during the off season — much to the relief of simon, who now gets to arrive and NOT have to spend a month moving pieces, sorting them out, and building the stage from scratch. as a part of the approval for making it permanent, there were a number of archaelogical digs in the area, and a lot of investigation into the prior use of the site. i got to participate in martini hour with some of the high-up bigwigs from archaeology, who have proved that where morningwood odditorium now stands has been a gathering place for humans for at least 10,000 years.

140709 Morningwood Odditorium

the dress rehearsal on thursday night, according to tradition(?), is the first time the show is performed in its entirity by a majority of the cast and band, and this time was no exception… what was the exception is that, for the most part, it was a much more complete show than it has been in the past. two years ago we substantially modified a significant portion of the script on friday, after the first day of performances. this year, it was, more-or-less, the same show on thursday as it was on sunday. the primary difference was that there were more lines that were forgotten on sunday than there were on thursday, which is about the least amount of hassle for the amount of entertainment we got out of it that is possible, under the circumstances. there will have to be some re-writing of the parts before december, to remove the OCF-specific references: lines like “lets go to the barter fair! best shopping at OCF!” and references to “flower children” and the ritz will have to be changed in order for our seattle audiences to make sense of the plot

140709 Morningwood Odditorium

sunday afternoon, after the last show, i was in the ritz, and a guy was leaving. he walked to the bottom of the stairs, and kept on going down. somebody asked him if he needed help, and he mumbled something which could have been “yes”, “no” or “potato”, and two or three people gathered around him. i came down from the top level, and asked if he was diabetic, to which he responded “no, well… yeah”. at that point a couple of the people ahead of me took his shoulders and started guiding him out of the sauna. we got him outside, and sat down on one of the benches outside of the sauna, and he started coming around. he said that he had been “voluntarily” lowering his blood-pressure (it sounded a lot like the kinds of things the PHBFH used to say) and that the “chanting” had put him into a “mind-space” from which he couldn’t recover… i was concerned that he may have been having a heart attack or something. i left him when the ritz’s “certified medical professional” showed up. i went by about a half-hour later and the guy and the “CMP” were still sitting on the bench, talking, but i didn’t hear any sirens or anything that might have implied that he was taken away in an ambulance. i imagine that they have pretty regular medical “emergencies”, especially considering that they let pretty much anybody in to the sauna, regardless of how drunk, high, handicapped or screwed up they are, so they must, either, be pretty good at dealing with these emergencies, or are even better at covering them up. considering that it is OCF, either one is a good option.

140709 Simon and Keith Neale, unknown martini-drinker, and the guy who taught the horse's ass to tap-dance... no, really!
140709 Simon and Keith Neale, unknown martini-drinker, and the guy who taught the horse’s ass to tap-dance… no, really!

there are more pictures, which, if i get around to it, will be posted on flickr.

workshop

my friend david bought a really expensive curved soprano saxophone on ebay recently — like $1200 expensive — because it had been “cleaned up and completely repadded” by… um… someone.

then he contacted me to find out if he had actually gotten a good deal or not.

on the surface, it appeared that he had paid a little too much, but not anything that couldn’t be fixed with $200 or so of competent repair work. he informed the seller, and actually got $250 back, making the instrument worth $950… still a bit too much, but it appeared that it could be rescued, so i took on the job.

140424 curved soprano saxophone

the first thing i did was remove all the keys… which is the first thing you do when you get a sax that needs to be put back into playing condition. i quickly discovered that all the keys had not been removed when it was “cleaned up and completely repadded”.

140424 curved soprano saxophone140424 curved soprano saxophone

in fact, on top of the 4 keys that i knew about that were composition cork (instead of the standard leather that most saxes have), i found two pads that were so poorly installed that they probably can’t be rescued. on top of that, i found two springs that were installed in a “haphazard” way (they were installed backwards), one of the clothes guards is missing and another one only has two of its three solder points made solid, and the neck cork needs to be replaced. also, because of the fact that it’s an old curved soprano it has D auxilliary key (modern ones don’t have it), and because of the fact that modern ones don’t have it, people who don’t know any better will block the key closed, so that they don’t have to regulate it… but that also has the unfortunate side effect of making the instrument play out of tune… which is exactly what happened in this case.

which drives the “fixing it” estimate up to $500 or so… and that’s not to mention the two top tone-holes which have been drilled out and replaced with brass tubing…

140424 curved soprano saxophone

this is why you have to be REALLY careful about buying old curved soprano saxophones off of ebay… he could have bought a brand-new, FUNCTIONAL curved soprano sax for $800… and he probably will do that once he decides what to do with his $1200 instrument that needs $500 worth of repair before it can even be played.

now here

140315 now here - Heppner, Oregon: 45.3709091, -119.4803830

once again, we’re in heppner, oregon — 45° 22′ 15.1314″ N, -119° 28′ 49.3062″ E — for a sheep dog trial, which means that moe got up and left at about 6:30 this morning, and i am left behind, at a “rural hunting lodge”, to fend for myself for the day… which means that i woke up at 9:00, took a shower, ate breakfast, and now i am looking at the choice of either wandering around in the middle of now here for a while, or playing with caustic on moe’s ipad (the fact that she’s running sheep dogs means that she can’t use the ipad, and i can)… and, despite the fact that it looks like it may rain, i’m thinking of going out anyway. last year i heard the voice of God and i want to hear it again. there’s too much extraneous noise in the house.

after the sheep dog trial is over, we’re going to Tokeland for 5 days. there is no telephone and no internet access, so i’m going to give my luddite streak a run for its money… and fly kites (and “other things”) on the beach.

ETA: well, i went out to now here, and, as expected, i heard the voice of God again. it was far more silent than i have experienced just about anywhere. there was the occasional sound of the wind, and, even more infrequently, a bird would chirp… but it was totally silent. and i heard the voice of God…
140315 now here
Now Here – click to embiggen

i built a small marker, about halfway up the hill:
half-way marker
you can barely see it from the lodge with your naked eye, if you know where to look. you can see it clearly with binoculars, again, if you know where to look. it’s practically invisible, but it marks approximately half-way from the lodge to the fence.

cartoons

once again, i’m digging through boxes of stuff that is left over from a time before internet… and i’m coming up with definite reasons why some of things should not be forgotten so quickly.

like this:

880320 Calvin & Hobbes

by the way, it’s remotely possible that you can comment without being automatically spam-filtered… unfortunately, i don’t have any way to test it, so you’re going to have to do so, and report back to me if there are any problems.

hu nose

100 mm diameter quartz crystal

those of you who may be waiting to comment, but can’t, i haven’t forgotten you. unfortunately, the problem is two-fold, and in order to address the first part, i have to be able to back up the blog… but i can’t, because of the server configuration being run by my host, EZPZ… they’re not going to change, and i can’t back up because of the fact that they run something that is incompatible with my being able to back up, and until they fix it, there’s nothing i can do.

it would be time to investigate other hosting possibilities, except they have informed me that they’re going to try to address this problem within the next few weeks, and told me to wait… and considering how many times i have done so in the past, i am not too fond of the idea of packing up and switching hosts, so i’m going to wait and see what happens.

so…

it’s been a week, and the inside of my car is looking a bit more like an art car, but the outside is still just plain black. it is NOT going to get a “vehicle wrap” unless i can find a professional that is willing to do it for $1000 or less (the quote that i got yesterday was for $2,500), but if not there are other, less expensive options that have presented themselves… but it may also mean that i’m going to do some of the work myself, with actual paint much to the chagrin of moe… and i sort of see her point. this is a much newer car than i have ever had before, and there’s no telling what will happen to it five, or ten years from now.

i’m currently trying to figure out how to colour the black-and-white sticker model that i made for the hybrid elephant logo a few years ago, because if i can figure out how to do it, i may have that put on the hood of my car… ๐Ÿ˜‰

moe and i moved two enormous piles of wood, today, from where they were more-or-less randomly piled after having been cut up (some as long as two or three years ago) to a place where, when summer comes and the hornets make nests in it, won’t be so close to a gate that people have to go through all the time.

140110-salamandir-and-the-wood-piles

now i’m tired.

tomorrow we’re recording the songs from the panto, and i’ve got a xmas party to go to for moe’s work in the evening.

woahy…

so i bought a “new” car yesterday… ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

Ganesha The Car, v.4.0

i’m still kind of dazed and confused… i didn’t expect to have to buy a new car for… oh, i don’t know, a year or so… it’s not as though buying a new car was completely unexpected, and it’s not as if i couldn’t afford it (thanks to my grandmother, who has been dead since 1988), but…

okay, my old car died — they thought it was the fuel pump, but that was two days ago, and they were supposed to call me with an update, but didn’t — and in the mean time, moe and i went down to salem, oregon, where monique is friends with the people who own Withnell Motors, and, thanks to my grandmother, i bought a “new” 2009 Hyundai Elantra Touring, which qualifies as the newest car i have EVER owned (with the exception of two literally brand-new cars that i bought with moe, which were “our” cars)…

i have four panto performances coming up in a few hours, so i’m not even going to be able to BEGIN processing all this until monday…

snicker

i have owned ebeneezer dot net and ebeneezer dot org for many years… like “more than 12″… when i first bought ebeneezer dot net, ebeneezer dot com was owned by somebody else — it may have been Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s organisation, but i don’t remember — anyway, it was for sale, but i figured i didn’t need a “COMmercial” address for a church, so i turned down their offer of $5,000 to buy their domain.

a couple of years later, i noticed that ebeneezer dot org had become available, and i purchased that, as well, and moved my “dot net” domain to a domain — “dot org” — that was more suited for a church anyway. at that time, i noticed that “dot com” was also available, from the company that hosted it when it was in use. i still wasn’t interested in a commercial address, so i didn’t even bother looking up the price.

today, just for a laugh, i looked up ebeneezer dot com again. this is what i found:

ebeneezer dot com
Ebeneezer.com — The Leading Ebeneezer Site on the Net

dot com is now owned, apparently, by frank schilling. if his marketing department is to be believed, all i have to do is register “dot com” and the money will start pouring in… all i would have to do is pay frank schilling’s price… which, i guarantee is going to be a hell of a lot more than $5,000…

as the current, and past owner of dot net, and dot org, i sincerely doubt that is going to happen… even if i did have the unreasonable (given that i registered ebeneezer dot org, AND dot net for free ๐Ÿ˜ ) price frank schilling is, undoubtedly, demanding for it.

also, it just occurred to me… it could very well be that the fact that i own dot net and dot org contributes to the fact that dot com is probably never going to be purchased by some upscale retailer or restaurant… i mean, who would want to be accidentally confused with this kind of nonsense… my name could be frank schilling’s curse… although, given that “His registry, domain marketplace operation and assorted name-holdings are estimated to be valued in the vicinity of $500 million”, i kinda doubt it.

i think i know too much EVER to be enticed into thinking that i can make money, solely by owning a piece of “property” on the internet. it may have been possible once (although i kind of wonder, even about those people who have made their fortunes on the net), but it’s certainly not possible any longer.

old school…

i am in the process of putting together an old-school component stereo system. a long time ago, i had an old-school component stereo system, but it faded away over the period of a number of years, and has been entirely gone for some time now. but this is a new era. i have recently obtained a marantz amplifier:
131124 marantz amplifier
and a pair of real “Realistic” speakers from the 1970s — 36″ speakers in solid wood cabinets — which i add to my already existing sony turntable and cassette player… and, unlike 30 years ago, i paid less than $300 for the entire lot! soon (like, hopefully, tomorrow) i will receive a mini-stereo-to-RCA cable, and 100′ of pure copper speaker wire, and i will put together the most KICK ASS stereo i have owned in a number of decades.

lose one, gain one

2013-10-23 Charlie
Charlie passed away a few weeks ago. he was our final cat. after that, we didn’t have any cats at all for a few weeks… until this past weekend, when we got a new cat.

131110 frank zappa kitten
his name is Frank Zappa, and he’s a mighty hunter… ๐Ÿ˜Ž he is also the first cat i have ever owned that wasn’t a tuxedo. yes, i know. in the past, i have been associated with other cats which weren’t tuxedos, but they were all “other peoples’ cats”. they just hung around me all the time. what did you want me to do? chase them away?

trebuchet!

a long time ago, when i was a software tester for a living, i worked on a project where the software we were testing was called 3D Castle Creator, so, naturally, i built a model trebuchet with which i flung tennis balls into the far reaches of the cube-farm that was my office… but it was a simple medieval trebuchet.

the one i got today, is a modern “floating arm” trebuchet, and it can do a lot more with a lot less, let me tell you… ๐Ÿ˜€

trebuchet

i haven’t tested it yet, but the previous owner claims to have lobbed a golf-ball over 200 feet on a regular basis. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

flooooooooooooote!!!

through an interaction with someone i didn’t know on the south king county freecycle, i found out about this gemeinhardt flute for sale for $15 on craigslist…

so i went and bought it.

it was made for me… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

i can repair it for probably under $10 (not including my labor, which i’m not charging myself for anyway) and turn this flute around for between $80 and $120… maybe as much as $150 to the right person… ๐Ÿ˜‰

flooooooooot!!
flute pieces — all present and accounted for!

only i gotta buy some new cork cement, because the last bottle i had is about 2 years old…

soon! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

yummy goodies

130821 yummy goodies
yummy goodies!

i went out with rick to various dispensaries today, and came home with this, ENTIRELY LEGAL haul for under $100: 3 “preroll” joints, 3.5 grams of “Chernobyl”, a gram of “Kryptonite”, 3.5 grams of “Maui Skunk”, a gram of some unlabeled stuff, and about 2 grams of “RSO“…

OCF afterglow

๐Ÿ™‚

i got back from OCF yesterday.

apparently i got a call from gliz about business cards when i was out of town a while ago (when i went to heppner, possibly?), but i had never done them, and forgotten about them, so when i got a call from gliz this morning about “where are my business cards?” i was a bit taken aback… but i believe i handled it very well, starting with an apology for spacing out on them whenever it was that he originally called about them, and then making arrangements to have them printed post haste…

i must take a REAL camera to OCF next year. this year i only took my phone, which was a big mistake: lack of disk space, weird focusing rules, practically no control over the shutter speed and no tripod mount are the primary difficulties… i got some decent quality pictures, but nowhere near as many as i would have if i had a real camera.

there were prayer wheels made out of 50-gallon drums yellow kid!
Gospodor's Monument

and more pictures, if anyone is truly interested.

excessive

i was expecting a package on friday. friday came and went, and there was no package. apparently the postal delivery person wasn’t our “regular” postal delivery person, who knows that packages get delivered behind the gate, because we got a slip in our mailbox when we got home, that said that the package was available for pickup at the (third-most distant) post-office after saturday…

which was okay, because we were at the beach until saturday anyway, so i went down to the (third-most distant) post-office today and picked up the package. it was fairly large, which was exciting, but it was suspiciously light, which could mean a number of things, not the least of which were it not containing what i was expecting, or the fact that what i was expecting was made out of expanded polyurathane foam… neither of which turned out to be true, strangely enough.

i opened the package…
excessive packaging
to find a smaller package and a whole bunch of air-pillow packing doodads… which is actually really cool in itself, because i use air-pillow packaging materials when i send out packages of incense, and the air-pillows are the small variety that i use all the time.
excessive packaging
excessive packaging
inside that package i found
excessive packagingmore packaging materials, and another box…
excessive packaging
which was really jammed in there solidly. it took several minutes and a great deal of cursing to get it free without harming the inner box…

which contained…
excessive packaging
an expanded polyurathane foam insert that was also EXTREMELY difficult to remove. the urgency for removing it carefully was emphasised by the cryptic japanglish note that said

TO AVOID DAMAGE WHEN UNPACKING PLEASE HANDLE THE MAIN BODY OF THE ITEM DO NOT PULL THE ITEM OUT FROM THE FRAGILE PART PLEASE UNPACK WITH CARE
Please unpack the product with care to avoid damage and injury. The product is packaged:
☐ With ______ pcs of accessories       ☐ Without accessory

the result?

excessive packaging

a 5½" x 3½" x 2½" statue out of a 9" x 9" x 18" box.

it’s a cold-cast bronze, hand-painted statue, and it is exceptional quality, but it came with 96.7% packaging and only 3.3% product…

⁇⁉

WFTCFM

busking for the first time this year yesterday. there was no drummer, but there was a violin player. we played for around 2 hours and made around $20 a piece, which is not too bad. i would have stuck around and done another 2 hours, but i had an appointment with rick and the “world famous” tacoma cannabis farmers’ market again. this time there wasn’t the chaos and uproar at the outer door, primarily because of the fact that we showed up later in the afternoon.

cannabis

also i was a little less awestruck as i was previously, which meant that i was better able to pay attention to what was being said to me (which was still rather difficult, as there is A LOT of ambient noise, music playing, announcements being made over a loudspeaker, and hundreds of people in a warehouse) and i bought two eighths, one of “skunk“, and one of “purple destruction” which is an indica-dominant variety. i am somewhat surprised to discover that i like the sativa better than the indica, despite the fact that, medicinally, indica is supposed to be a better antidepressant…

but it all gets me stoned, so i’m definitely not complaining… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

king street station

i have performed three times in the past few years, at the king street station in downtown seattle. the first time was a few years ago, and it was also the first time i performed with the Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band. i was the only trombone player, there were supposed to be two others, but they couldn’t make it. we performed outside, on the platform where passengers board and disembark the trains, and despite the fact that i was the only trombone player, it went fairly well. at that time, the ceiling had been artificially lowered, and completely covered by an “accoustic” ceiling which was supposed to save money by giving the city less space to heat. there were a couple of ceiling tiles missing, and you could see a tiny glimpse of what used to be the ceiling, several stories above, but most of it was hidden.

the second time was also with the BSSB, but it was out in front, on jackson street, for the opening of the renovation of the king street station, about two years ago. we put our cases inside the upper level, which was in the process of being renovated, but it wasn’t open to the public yet. there were open beams, brickwork, and lots of dust inside, but we were actually playing outside, so it wasn’t really an issue. where we put our cases was right at the level of the “lowered” ceiling, and you could see above it, but it wasn’t much to see: a lot of cobwebs, 50 years of dust and grime, and the underpinings (overpinings?) of the suspended ceiling which was put up without concern for the artistic nature of the real ceiling.

king street station grand re-opening

the third time was this morning, and it, too, was with the BSSB, but this one was the “grand re-opening” of the totally refurbished king street station. they totally removed the old “lowered” ceiling, and restored the station to the way it looked 100 years ago… only with totally new electrical, mechanical, plumbing, a seismic retrofit, and a new roof on the bell tower. this time we played in the big waiting room with the new three-story-tall ceiling… which made the room uncomfortably “live” but we did admirably well in spite of everything.

hoo boy… this really should have been 4/20, but it was close…

i accompanied my friend rick to the “world famous” tacoma cannabis farmers’ market today…

rick is an “authorised” cannabis patient, but he can’t get around, because he is confined to a wheelchair, currently, so he calls me, and i go and rescue him. because of the fact that he is more-or-less permanently disabled, he gets one of those placards that people hang from their rear-view mirrors, which goes on my rear-view mirror when i am driving him around (exactly why he gets one and i don’t is another story entirely, and one with which i am not totally satisfied, but it doesn’t have anything to do with the current diatribe)… except that it wasn’t there yet, because i was driving (you’re not supposed to put them on the rear-view mirror until the car is no longer in motion, because they block your view). the cannabis farmers’ market has a parking lot in front of the building that is for disabled parking only. the guy that waved us into the parking lot saw that rick was holding the placard and waved us in, but the (EXTREMELY stoned-looking) guy who was handing out paperwork at the door waved us away, because he didn’t see the placard. i continued to park, and he continued to wave me away, and finally i got out and explained to him that we were authorised to park there, at which point he started to argue with me, until he saw that rick had put the placard in place while we had been talking. there was a line of people waiting to get in, and so we got in line, and the same EXTREMELY stoned-looking guy gave rick some paperwork to fill out, which he did. by the time rick got his paperwork filled out, we were at the front of the line, but there was a step, and no way to get the wheelchair over it with out raising more chaos with the already-noisy crowd that was now behind us… and then it turned out that they wanted paperwork from me as well, which included me signing a piece of paper that said i am a legal medical marijuana patient… which i am not. i told the guy this, and he said that he couldn’t let me in. so i went and sat in the car while the extremely-stoned-looking guy pushed rick into the building. they came out again a surprisingly short amount of time later, and rick explained to me that we should come back at 2:00, when there would be less chaos, and then we could both go in, so we went to another couple of dispensaries and perused the (now legal, despite the federal hissy fit that’s going on currently) varieties, and the ranges of raw bud, and edibles, and tinctures, and sodas, and topicals, and…

and, because of the fact that the dispensaries we visited were all in store-fronts with a dozen or so varieties, i thought i knew what to expect. i was wrong.

the “world famous” tacoma cannabis farmers’ market is, conservatively, 150 different vendors each of whom is selling anywhere from two or three, to as many as 25 or 30 different strains, plus the same wide variety of hash, and the edibles, tinctures, sodas, topicals and so forth i saw in the other dispensaries multiplied by 100.

this is what a farmers’ market should be like… and it was “foggier” inside than it was outside. there was a dense “medicinal” cloud that permeated the building. i understand where the extremely-stoned-looking guy was getting it from, now. i did notice that there was an “emergency” door that had been blocked open (so much for the bureaucratic foofaral at the door, just go around to the side) where people could go to get some fresh air.

the cannabis farmers' market

EXTRA BONUS! despite the fact that i am not a medical marijuana patient, was able to legally purchase a bottle of honey-hash tincture for $15, and two grams of hash for $25. i traded a gram of “medicinal grade” bud and two joints from rick for the honey-tincture, because he’s not allowed to smoke at the facility. i also bought a cute little bong for $12… at that rate, i’m going to have to re-adjust my thinking about the beer-bottle bongs…

new office

new office
there may be some more final details, but it’s 99.98% finished at this point. the keyboard that is currently a “stand up to access” is going below the desk, but i’ve got to buy the drawer sliders separate from the desk, and install them myself, because they don’t make an under-desk slider for the desk i’ve got.

hee

so i found a way to make QR codes fail to work…
an irritating QR code that doesn't work
ETA: almost immediately i discovered that, while it didn’t work when i tested it locally, for some unknown reason, as soon as i posted it, it started working… weird… i’ll have to play around with it some more… ๐Ÿ˜

so i went out for a walk the other day…

so i went out for a walk the other day, and when i had climbed the side of the hill to the point where i decided that it was far easier to go up than down, and if i didn’t start heading down soon, i would probably be travelling in the dark, which would have made going down that much more difficult…

i realised that i had only reached about the middle of the hill, and i deliberately took the least steep grade possible, but still, a lot of the time, it was much easier to scramble on all fours rather than trying to walk upright…

anyway, i had a fairly decent quality camera with me, that wasn’t my iphone, so i started taking random pictures, most of which are going to make excellent wallpaper pictures…
a flock of deer
this is a fairly good example. i took it more or less at random, picking out features that i figured would be interesting, but not too distracting, because i figured that they would be used as wallpaper…

then i looked a little more closely, and discovered that i had taken a picture of…
a flock of deer
a flock of deer. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

in the middle of now here

i went out for a walk today. it was the middle of now here. to give you an idea of how far out in the middle of now here we are, i submit this photo, without further comment:
heppner, oregon
it was during this walk that i learned what it is to hear the voice of God as the wind blowing through the grass.

many, many years ago, before my son was born, i discovered The Tree Of Being, a tree whose existence justifies the exitsence of everything else on the planet. at this point, i don’t remember exactly where it is, but it is on the west side of sehome hill, and i’d know it if i saw it. this was a very similar experience. as i sat, meditating, in the middle of now here, i heard the voice of God as the wind blew through the grass. all around me was the voice of God. i didn’t have to try to perceive it, because i was in the middle of it, and it was all around me. i would have had to try not to perceive it, and if i had, i would have failed, because it was the voice of God.

and it said, “I am Tina Chopp!” ๐Ÿ˜‰

ETA: some of what i say is a lie. like aleister crowley, i have realised that if i don’t say that some of what i say is a lie, some day people may read what i have written and assume that it is all true. this is a warning to those people. don’t take some of what i say seriously, because it is a knowing falsehood.

a brief peek at where i am currently…

heppner, oregon

heppner, oregon

heppner, oregon

it’s a “hunting lodge” in the middle of nowhere. just to the left of the fence, in the center of the first picture, is what we can expect to see directly outside our house.

monique is going to spend the next couple of days at a sheep dog trial. i’m probably going to go exploring with a camera.

pictures can be found here.

acetocella

acetocella is the company that made Acqua della Madonna, a sparkling water that came in a gorgeous cobalt-blue teardrop-shaped bottle that i have been wanting to get more of, ostensibly to make bongs. the water is just sparkling water, nothing really special, but the bottle is a work of art…

although, if this photo, gleaned from googlemaps street-view, is any indication, acetocella may be out of business. i don’t really know what makes a place “no longer in business”, particularly in a case where that business is located in another country. if any of you out there have experience with this sort of thing, particularly in italy, could you tell me for sure whether or not this business is still in business, or whether it is an abandoned building that is being used for storage…

Acetocella

i don’t hold out much hope. i wrote to their “info @ acetocella dot com” address and it bounced almost immediately with a “sorry, no mailbox here by that name ” message, which is not a good sign…

the date is up

hipy papytoday is the fifth anniversary of my starting this blog. for the record, i’m still SO GLAD i got away from LiveJournal, despite the fact that i have a lot of friends who still use it.

i haven’t switched out the system on my computer yet, primarily because, after flipping out yesterday, it has settled down again, and isn’t producing the kind of errors that were making me think about switching distributions… but i’ve still got the debian live disk, and i’m just waiting for an excuse to wipe the whole system and try another one.

i’ve spent the past couple of days cleaning up my workshop. i have a lot of empty glass bottles waiting to be made into bongs on my main workbench, and a whole bunch of painting stuff left over from the summertime on my jewelry-making workbench, which i cleaned up to the point where i can actually work on both workbenches. i’ve got a whole bunch of things that could be made into earrings or pendants, but no real motivation to make anything out of them, despite the fact that the holidays are rapidly approaching.

BBWP patches

also, after having a number of difficulties getting emails to and from the lady who actually did the work, i now have 10 Big Boys With Poise jacket patches which i’m going to distribute to the other Big Boys (and other people) at monday’s rehearsal.

more new incense! 8)

Incense!! 8)i went out today, and when i arrived home, i discovered that the mail delivery person had been there, and left me a note that said i had a package that was too big to deliver, and that it could be picked up at the post office (that is the 3rd closest to our house, but that’s another matter entirely). so i went down to the post office, where the korean person i talked to behind the counter informed me that, because of the fact that i received the notice today, the probability was very high that the package wouldn’t actually be ready for pickup until friday.

meanwhile, i could actually see the package on the shelf behind her… i mean, usually a package from india is pretty distinctive, and this one had bands around it that said “INDIA POST” in large, distinct, english and devanagari letters…

i said why didn’t she go and take a look anyway, and, so she went back to the shelves where the packages were, and, after staring at the package for about five minutes, she realised that it was mine… and then she spent another five minutes checking the serial numbers on the package against my drivers’ license, and having me hand write my address into their little touch-screen pad (which i deliberately made as illegible as possible), before handing over the 40-pound package.

which, naturally, was full of really high quality incense from india… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Incense!! 8)
with my logo printed on them!
(yes, it’s on purpose)

ooh! aparajita… AGAIN!

aparajita from sri satyanarayana parimala
the real, authentic Aparajita Special Herbal Durbar, made by Sri Satyanarayana Parimala Factory

so i finally got in touch with someone from mavana regarding where to obtain authentic aparajita on this side of the world. they wrote me back and directed me to Wonder India (they have a couple of different URIs, but nothing is there), and they sent me a bunch of samples, including, most significantly, a box of AUTHENTIC aparajita special herbal durbar manufactured by mavana, doing business as the Sri Satyanarayana Parimala Factory in mysore.

notably, they are NOT cauvery, and have nothing to do with them… which makes me really wonder what is the situation with intellectual property in india, because the incense i got from mavana, today, is, substantially, the same incense that is produced with the same name by cauvery as well… ๐Ÿ˜

however, and this is the big difference, this company is located in the united states, and has a relationship with mavana/sri satyanarayana parimala, and they CAN get, essentially, unlimited quantities of real, authentic aparajita!

and they are a lot less likely to rip me off, send me less product than i ordered, talk in some weird, foreign language, and all that other stuff that has frustrated me so much in the past.

Psilocybe semilanceata

Psilocybe semilanceata spore prints

Psilocybe semilanceata spore-prints. i found about 100 of them at moe’s sheep field. i’m absolutely positive that there are more out there… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

it was REALLY strange to be finding, and picking mushrooms with other people, doing other things, in the same field… usually, if there’s the first hint of other people in the field, i usually take my mushrooming activities elsewhere… this time, moe, and the actual owner of the field (whose name is jim) were also in the field, talking about sheep… it was really difficult for me to continue (despite having found a hoard of mushrooms) and not walk, slowly and deliberately, in the opposite direction…

Public Ritual Vegetable Sacrifice for Trolloween!

Sacrificial Pumpkin

this is the first Public Ritual Vegetable Sacrifice i’ve held for a while, and because of the fact that it’s going to be part of the Trolloween celebration (the Fremont Troll was unveiled on halloween in 1990), it will be an abbreviated form of the ritual, in which the public will not be given the opportunity to sacrifice their own vegetables… until later…

i’m going to have to make sure to remember to mention that when i am doing the public reading, before the actual sacrifice… that’s a really good point…

this year i’m making a slight change in the sacrificial victim, as well. because of the fact that i am going to be sacrificing it with a sword, instead of the more regular gravity and ground, and because of the fact that i will be surrounded by people, i have actually filled the pumpkin with halloween candy, rather like a piñata, which i intend to spread as far as it will go. beforehand, i’m going to read a passage from The Book of Randy, which is Book 11 of the Books of Tina Chopp, in honour of Rev. Osiris Ranebo, although i doubt too many other people will recognise that fact.

they’re really desperate for people to help with crowd control – last year the parade included 150 to 200 members of the public, and the parade crosses two major thoroughfares, and according to the most recent email that was sent out, they’re still short 6 people. i tried to get ian interested, but he’s doing something else that involves a family that is staying at his house while they try to get into emergency housing.

THE PUBLIC IS ENCOURAGED TO ATTEND!

ETA: i just found a sermon that i delivered at a vegetable sacrifice in 2001 which i totally don’t remember giving at all… it’s too bad, too, because i would really like to remember having that dream… ๐Ÿ˜

not quite dead yet, but…

ManWoman by Mark Berry
photo by Mark Berry

Last news about Manwoman

Sorry to say that my dad, ManWoman, is not faring well. He has a kind of cancer that causes his bone marrow to cease making blood. The technical name is Refractory Anemia with Excess Blasts. In short, without new blood, it is impossible to breath, fight infections, or clot and stop bleeding.

He had been receiving transfusions of blood and platelets, but there is no cure for this kind of cancer. Not chemo therapy. Not bone marrow transplant, because he is old and weak. In any case, ManWoman does not wish to endure weeks of traumatic medical treatment, when the potential time gained is so very small.

ManWoman has made the decision to pass peacefully โ€” and with Dignity โ€” in the comfort of his own home, surrounded by family and friends. No further transfusions or treatments will be made โ€” except medication for the rather intense pain. When the blood cells from his last transfusion are gone, well… The clock is ticking. There is no exact prediction how much time is left. One day or a few days โ€” probably. A week or two โ€” maybe. Months โ€” not very likely.

I wish there was better news, but there isn’t. It will be a sad day when he passes, but he has left the world an enormous and inspired body of work. He will not be forgotten by those who love him. We will always carry a piece of him in our hearts.

~ Ivan Cat

okay

so the idea that i had for art the other day has taken on an entirely new, and monitarily positive aspect…

but i should start from the beginning, since this is being told for the first time.

idea factoryi was sitting in my workshop the other night, and i had just finished a beer, and i realised: i have diamond-tipped drill bits, and a bench motor, and i know how to use them: it wouldn’t take much to take this otherwise useless empty beer bottle and re-purpose it for my own, moist, innermost desires… so why don’t i modify this beer bottle, and make an entirely new, “useful item” out of it.

so, i drilled a hole in the bottle, and rumaged around in the boxes of miscellaneous bits and pieces i have (quite well organised, mind you) until i found a glass pipe stem and a collet that the pipe stem goes through, that was left over from a water-pipe from years ago, which didn’t make it…

and i quickly discovered that i had drilled the hole in the wrong place, so, of course, i had to drink another beer, so that i could try it again. ๐Ÿ˜‰

the second ideaonce i got it right — and verified that it was, indeed most exactly correct — i started casting about for empty bottles likely candidates, and quickly came up with the first idea, which turned out to be an empty bulleit burbon bottle… which is part of the hoard of empty whiskey bottles i have been inexplicably saving for about a year and a half, not knowing exactly why i was doing it…

now i know… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

i figure i can easily retail devices like this for $25 to $50, or wholsale them for $10 to $20 a piece. so, i went to the pike place smoke shop and told them that i could drill holes in bottles, and wondered how much they would pay me for finished beer-bottle water-pipes. they were very excited to learn this, and it turned out that i don’t even have to hand over finished water-pipes. they are just as happy to receive bottles that have holes drilled in the right places, so that they can put in their own doo-dads and mark them up the way they want. they said they would pay me $10 a bottle, for regular ol’ beer bottles, and left the door open for negotiation on “specialty” beer bottles… which i am assuming includes the antique grolsch bottles, the “Arrogant Bastard Ale” and the “Dead Guy Ale” bottles…the third idea

and it also means that the really fancy ones, like the bulleit bottles, and the fancy italian water bottle and stuff like that can be finished and retailed at my own web site for whatever i think i can get for them. ๐Ÿ™‚

so i dug around and actually produced 10 “regular ol’ beer bottles” — although i’m not certain that they won’t take the “new” grolsch bottle and the “Hobgoblin” bottle as “specialty” bottles (to be honest, if they do, i DON’T CARE) and drilled holes in all of ’em… i actually drilled holes in 13 bottles, but i broke three of ’em, because i was being impatient and working with tools that were almost worn out… diamond-tipped drill bits wear out really fast when they’re used for a project like this. i figure ⅜" and ½" diamond-tipped drill bits are going to become sort of like #2 jewelers’ saw blades, in that i will always have a whole bunch of them, and about half of them are going to be worn out, or almost worn out.

now all i’ve got to do is alert my beer-drinking friends to save their bottles for me… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Stanley says "chirp"
Stanley sez “chirp”

incense!

i got a notification from the letter-carrier yesterday, indicating that i had a package that they hadn’t delivered because i wasn’t home, and the package delivery required a signature… naturally, i wasn’t home, so i went down to the post office today to pick it up.

it’s really bizarre to me, because of the fact that we live so close to the border between king and pierce counties, that the post office to which i had to go to pick up my package, is the third farthest post office from my actual location: the first is in milton/edgewood, but that “doesn’t count” because it’s in pierce county, and the second is in federal way, which is in king county, but it’s on the “wrong side of the freeway” from where i am…

Incense!anyway, i went down to the post office, wondering what it was, because i wasn’t expecting a package. when i got there, they took a lot of information from me for a “normal” package – signature, printed name and street address – and the lady went back to retrieve the package… and it turned out to be from india, which i was totally not expecting at all. of course this made me wonder even more what it was, and i opened it up as soon as i got out to my car… after all, it isn’t every day that you get an unexpected package from india… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Incense!

i seem to recall, a month or so ago, corresponding with a “mr. sriram” from india, regarding the possibility of my doing business with his company, and it may have been that i asked him if he could send me samples, but it was long enough ago that i don’t remember…

but the incense smells OUTRAGEOUS!! it smells like the kind of incense that i remember getting in the early ’70s when it’s not lit, and lighting a stick immediately transports me back to when incense actually smelled good, and not like it does today, which is like a chemical factory… the paperwork that came inside the package doesn’t have an email address, so i’m going to have to hope that my recollection is correct, and that i have an email address somewhere for “mr. sriram” at srinidhi solutions… ’cause their incense is AMAZING! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

halvah!

0011between 1982 and 1984, before i went into the tech school, i had a “job” as a cookie baker. part of that job involved making halvah, a yummy treat made of sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, cocoa powder and other goodies, stuck together with honey or maple syrup. the reason i called it a “job” was because, as far as i knew, i was the owner of the business, and more-or-less it’s only employee, which may have actually been the case, although i never found out. i got the “job” from the PHBFH when she got pregnant with ezra and couldn’t work any longer, and when the “job” ended – when i went to seattle to start attending the tech school – i “gave” the business, called “Celebration Cookies”, back to the guy who had originally started it as a restaurant called “Celebration Cookery” several years before… but i never worked out of an “approved” kitchen, i never paid B&O taxes, i never had a health-department inspection or any of that “real business” stuff that normally goes on, so i don’t know for sure whether or not it was a “real” business, and thus i don’t know for sure whether or not it was a “real” job…

and, after i gave it back to the guy, i probably shouldn’t have worried about whether it was a “real” job or not, because, while i tried (and mostly succeeded) at making it a profitable use of my time, the guy i “gave it back to” was out of business within two months: he went out and spent the entire bank account on two ingredients that we used only a very little, and when he needed more of an ingredient that we used fairly regularly, there was no money in the bank account for it… so he went out of business… oh well, i’ve never looked back.

after having baked anywhere from 25 to 100 dozen cookies a week for a short period of time, i got to the point where i stopped eating cookies all together, except for the gingerbread cookies, and the halvah, because they were both yummy enough that, despite the fact that i had experienced the raw ingredients up to my elbows (and in my hair, and pretty much everywhere else), i still wanted to experience the finished product. eventually, after giving up the cookie business, i still made halvah, because the grain grinder was the only part of the business that i didn’t give back to the guy… because he didn’t ask for it back, and because i wanted to keep it so that i could continue to make halvah, because it was IS so yummy… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

i even modified the halvah recipe to make it more yummy, because… well, that’s what you do with recipes for yummy treats… ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Halvah!the last time i remember making halvah was before we moved into our current house. the grain grinder “disappeared” around the time that we moved, and i didn’t notice it until several years later. i tore the house apart looking for it, and couldn’t find it anywhere… it was because i wasn’t looking in the correct place, of course, but i didn’t find that out until i had given up looking for it, and had considered it a lost piece of history for several years.

until yesterday, when i looked in the correct place, while i was in the process of looking for something else… i suppose i should have looked for something else in that place before last night, but it was behind a whole pile of other stuff, and the cabinet that it was in was full of a whole bunch of other stuff that is “too cool to throw out, but otherwise useless”, which was put back in the cabinet and had stuff piled up in front of it, so it isn’t too surprising that it was overlooked…

but, the upshot is that i found my grain-grinder. so, i decided to make halvah. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

and it still is as yummy as i remember it. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Halvah!

i only made half a pan, because i wasn’t sure if i remembered the modified recipe correctly, but i did, so now, as soon as that’s finished (likely within the next two or three days, depending on how yummy moe thinks it is), i’m all set to make a full pan. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

grump

who?
i’m hoping that this will be the only political post for a while, because the political news that has been coming across my RSS agregator has been universally driving me crazy. sometimes (well, more times than not, actually) i think it would be better for everyone if we eliminated all laws, as well as all national borders, and be done with the whole thing. ๐Ÿ˜

ganesha the art car

Ganesha the Car, v.3
i finally got around to adding sanskrit to the other side of the car, but i still haven’t decided what else i’m going to put on it… it has a lot to do with the hood and the roof, which need to be sanded and have a new coat of gloss black applied before it gets anything else… and i’ve got the gloss black paint…

eventually, eventually…

stuff & such

the sousa band played for the centennial celebration of the volunteer park conservatory today.cell phone and penny-farthing...

the sousa band has become the local “go-to” group for centennial celebrations. we’ve done a dozen or so centennial celebrations for various groups and organisations since 2007… it’s really an honour to play music that was written 100 years ago, for people who are celebrating 100 years of some thing or another, because we know that people who were celebrating 100 years ago were, very likely, listening to exactly the same music…

it was “victorian day” at volunteer park, as well, which meant that there were a whole bunch of people in old-fashioned costumes, and, incongruously, a guy with a cell-phone and a penny-farthing…

Over 'lyrethere was a really interesting musical/kinetic sculpture in the conservatory, that i haven’t seen before, called “Over ‘lyre”. after examining it a little bit, it appeared as though there were speakers that had the cones pulled out of them, and had anchors attached to wires, which, when the speakers made a low-frequency rumble, jiggled the wires, which had pendulums attached that struck little bell-like objects. the really cool part was that i figured all of this out before i read the little blurb about the installation (which was “hidden” in plain view, right below the sculpture), that explained, in detail, exactly what i had figured out was happening… 8)

Over 'lyre description

gay marriage

My opponent doesn't even believe in the bogeyman

Your choice of lifestyle is an abomination!

the problem is that, in spite of the fact that it’s generally accepted that these things do not matter, there are still significant numbers of people who still believe in the bogeyman, and that people should not be left handed…

trust the cartoonist to show the rest of us how stupid we are being…

and, also trust that, because of the fact that this information is being shown to us by a cartoonist, nobody will take it anywhere near as seriously as it should be taken… ๐Ÿ˜‰

a long, rambling post about OCF

i screwed up my leg immediately before the fair, so my original intent of going down to help with the construction of the stage was pretty much shot before i even started, but i went on tuesday anyway, basically, as i said, because i can, but also because i knew that i would have an easier time actually making it to camp on tuesday than i would on wednesday, and i was entirely correct. i didn’t have a vehicle permit (they cost $20, and allow one to park in the SCOF lot, but they don’t go on sale until wednesday), however i talked my way into a “full load teddy” which is a document that allows you to drive into “the eight” (or, in my case, into chelamela meadow), so i didn’t have to unload my gear, load it onto a “gator”, and then unload it again at the stage (which is what you have to do if you don’t know how to wheedle a “full load teddy” out of the hippies whose job it is not to give you such a document)… having an obvious limp due to a recent leg injury definitely helps. i unloaded at the stage and went out again and parked my car in the lot called “miss piggy” (there is also a lot called “kermit”). wednesday i got up early and went to get my wrist band cut off, and to buy a vehicle permit, which got me into SCOF lot a lot easier than the lady who sold the permit to me said it was going to be… ๐Ÿ˜‰

tuesday and wednesday i basically spent taking it easy, setting up my camp, and walking slowly, with a pronounced limp, which had gone away by the time thursday came around.

camp sitewhen i finally got unloaded and back to the stage, i was in for a major shock. the oregon country fairgrounds had experienced a late snowfall last winter, and it had brought down a whole bunch of trees in our camping area, which meant that (oh, horror of horrors!) i had to find a completely new place to camp this year. not only was what was left of my campsite already taken, but the rest of it, and two or three other camp sites adjacent to what used to be mine, were completely filled with tree-detritus, or actual fallen trees. simon and kenny took up what used to be my camp site, and i was forced to find camping in “new jersey” (which is the camping area in front of the stage). i did manage to find a spot that was enough like my previous place that i was able to pretty much duplicate the camp site from last year, with a few differences — the overhead was a little higher, and the path to my camp site lead through a bunch of other camp sites, and was separated from the path by a rope on which curtains and blankets had been hung, to obscure the camping area from casual view.

Lightsit was a much more subdued fair this year, without anywhere near as many twinkly, sparkly things as in previous years. i’m sure at least part of it was because, prior to the fair, some of the fair “big wigs” were taking a joy ride, thanks to a pilot who was apparently “one of them”, over the fair, and were involved in a plane crash in which everybody was killed. i didn’t know any of them, but a lot of people knew at least one, and some people knew more than one of them, so i understand why things were more than ordinarily subdued.

the shows were… interesting. we did a mashup called “Sleeping Beauty and The Magic Pea”. they were all, very definitely, good, even the ones where nobody could remember their lines and all of the music cues got screwed up. apparently none of the fair-going public noticed… which is to be expected, more or less (after all, the audience doesn’t know the show ahead of time), but the first 3 shows were definitely more rough than the last 3 were. this is primarily because norma (who wasn’t in the show this year), essentially, publically shamed simon into learning his lines (her specific words were “simon, you need to learn your lines, because it’s making everybody else look bad”). i understand that simon has been having quite a few personal difficulties the past few months, but we’re a more-or-less “professional” theater group, and “the show must go on”… once everybody (and it very definitely wasn’t just simon) learned their lines, and the music cues were straightened out, it turned into a finished production very quickly, and, once again, i can say that i’m proud to be a part of the crew that turns out shows like this. 8)

Ritz & Rati sought out Lem, who is one of the guys responsible for booking acts for the Ritz, early in the fair (i think it was wednesday or thursday) and he said that he would be sure to book the philharmonic for saturday at 7:00 pm… which actually happened! we finished our 3:00 show (at 4:10, as usual) on saturday, and i threw all of my stuff together, lashed my tuba to a convenient set of wheels (actually, moe gave me a collapsible hand cart a couple of years ago, which works perfectly for an instrument of this size and girth) and made it up to the ritz by 4:30, where i proceded to sauna until it was time to perform. then, when it was all over, i put my gear away and had some more sauna, and still got out of the ritz before it became crowded. i got 3 tokens this year: one that i bought, one that i earned for playing at the ritz (which was a brand new one, minted this year), and one that i earned as “hat money” after the final show. i now have a “pirate stash” of ritz tokens… ๐Ÿ˜‰ an average of two per year for the past 9 years. the ritz has a stylised eagle sculpture in front, and this year someone had put a stuffed rat in its beak… which was amusing in a vaguely disturbing way.

and, once again, playing “Il Ballo Di Qua-qua”, naked, for a bunch of naked hippies who were all doing The Chicken Dance, was one of the major highlights of the entire weekend. i would pay to do a performance like that… seriously! 8)

signsthe “new” tuba was an interesting experience. because of the two or three rehearsals that we had pre-fair, i had a reasonably good idea of what i was in for, and busking before the fair also solidified my confidence, but there were a couple of instances where i KNEW that “the information is in there” (pointing to my brain), and all that is necessary is for me to re-establish the connectons that got screwed up when i had my injury. there were a couple of times, specifically, where i was asked something about transposition, fingerings, and my tuba: i answered without thinking, and at the same time, i was thinking exactly the opposite of what i just said… i thought about what i had said, and considered it against what i had just been thinking, before i decided that what i had said was actually correct, in spite of the fact that what i had been thinking at exactly the same time was incorrect… it happened one time, i noticed it, and figured that it may have just been a coincidence, but then it happened again within a 24 hour period, and that convinced me (if i needed convincing to begin with) that “the information is in there” and it is my job to re-establish the connections so that information will be free again.

other stuff happened, but i will probably write about them some other time.

i left on tuesday, and returned on monday. the week went way too quickly, ended much too suddenly, and left me with major withdrawal symptoms. more pictures can be seen here.

Open Letter to San Francisco Bohemian Club

it’s never going to happen, of course, because the 1% are too conscious of their controversial positions in society, and are well aware of the fact that, if they agree to the 99%’s “recommendations”, their power will vanish, but it’s even more strange to me that i am somehow related to the bohemian club, through hokum… was hokum a full member, or was he one of the “associate” members, whose sole purpose is to provide entertainment for the bigwigs?


Open Letter to San Francisco Bohemian Club

by Peter Phillips – July 4, 2012

Mr. Robert J. Boesch
President San Francisco Bohemian Club
624 Taylor Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

Dear Mr. Boesch,

Media Freedom Foundation/Project Censored has joined a coalition of some twenty-five social justice organizations and occupy groups to protest the San Francisco Bohemian Clubโ€™s practices at your annual summer encampments.

We are holding an Occupy Bohemian Grove protest in Monte Rio on July 14, 2012. For publicity and information on this event see: http://www.occupybohemiangrove.com/

Occupy groups from five cities are involved in protesting your annual summer encampment of the rich and powerful 1%. Given that it takes $588,000 in assets to be in the top 1% of the world richest people, we believe that a significant portion of your members fit this category.

Our group has attended the planning meetings for this protest, and want to inform you about the days events and make some policy recommendations for the Club to consider.

The Occupy Bohemian Grove coalition is planning a four hour public assembly from noon to 4:00 on July 14. During that time there will be speakers, music and a creation of care ceremony in opposition to your cremation of care and private talks by policy elites at the Grove. KPFA radio will broadcast live from Monte Rio, No Lies Radio will video feed the proceedings on the internet, and Russia Today TV will be filming and interviewing activists.

We are not planning or promoting civil disobedience or trespassing on Grove property as part of the protest. We are not organizing a march on the Grove, as has been done in the past. Some curious participants may walk up the Bohemian Highway to see your gates.

Recommendations to the San Francisco Bohemian Club in a time of Occupy the 1%.

Whereas:

The 2,000 acre retreat, now privately held near Monte Rio, California, is in part an ancient old growth redwood forest with trees over one thousand years of age and;

The San Francisco Bohemian Club continues to exclude women from membership and;

Significant public leaders in the world give private keynote addresses (chats) on a daily basis on important policy issues, and;

The private happenings inside the summer retreat boundaries face continuing unproven rumors regarding nefarious behaviors and insider deals made by powerful elites.

We Recommend that:

1. The Bohemian Grove recognize the rights of humankind to enjoy a fair share of the common heritage of the ancient redwood forest by opening the Grove to tours on a regular basis when club members are not assembledโ€”

2. The Bohemian Club begin a policy of admitting women and arranging the Grove to accommodate both gendersโ€”

3. The lakeside chats and other addresses by key policy officials be made public on-line and transcripts prepared and publishedโ€”

4. The Cremation of Care ceremony be transformed into a building of unity of care in the world and the ceremony be made public on-lineโ€”

5. The Bohemian Club set up an on-line live feed from the main stage and field circle, as events are occurring.

We strongly believe in full transparency of public figures giving lectures to a select few men and we believe that the privacy of your events is unnecessary in a time of increasingly inequality between the 1% and the 99%.

We think that the San Francisco Bohemian Club can demonstrate a belief in an open transparent democratic society by simply changing a few of your historical policies. As symbolic representatives of the top 1% in the world, it is time for you to exercise a responsibility to help build a fair sharing of the worldโ€™s resources starting with your own Club.

This letter has been publicly released. We trust you will take our recommendations seriously.

Sincerely,

Peter Phillips
President Media Freedom Foundation


bohemian grove shipping labels
“Mr. R. Stabile” is Hokum W. Jeebs

my obligatory pre-oregon country fair post

we had our second rehearsal with about half the cast for the panto last night. the other half either weren’t there because they have already left for the fair, or they had “other obligations”, but one way or the other, it’s evident that we’re basically going to do the same thing this year that we have in past years, which is NOT have a show ready when we open at the fair. other people have taken to referring to it as the “oregon country theatrical workshop”, because basically we have made a habit of going in to it with sort of a half-baked idea for a show, and coming out of it with a more-or-less fully realised show.

what makes it extra scary exciting for me, this year, is that i am, essentially, learning a new instrument. it’s an instrument with which i am fairly familiar, and if left to myself, i can play it quite well, but, when other people are involved, the fingerings are all screwed up, and i have to learn new fingerings. unfortunately, it’s not a “logical” transposition (i.e. “up a fifth” or “down a fourth”) it’s “down a full step”, which means that Bb is equal to Ab, and C is equal to Bb. it would be a lot easier if i were to have “transposed” parts, but tubas aren’t supposed to be transposing instruments, which means that i have to learn the fingerings, rather than having my parts transposed for me (as i have in the past, with my Eb tuba). it’s better for me in the long run, because once i learn, i’ll be able to play music with anyone, but in the short run (meaning “at the oregon country fair”) it’s going to mean that i’m not going to be able to play anything like as well as i can, and want to… ๐Ÿ˜

needless to say, i WILL NOT be playing Rubber Duckie at the ritz this year… ๐Ÿ˜

they’ve been threatening to saying that they’re going to modify chela mela meadow for the past couple of years, to give us more of an actual theater space, and less of a “roadside attraction” with thousands of non-audience-members wandering past our audience, while we are trying to distract the audience. they haven’t done anything yet (meaning, within the past couple of years), but there’s a very strong possibility that the morningwood stage with which we are so familiar will be moodged around in some way or another. there’s also a fairly good possibility that nothing, whatsoever, will have been done since last year, and everything will be exactly the same, but i don’t know.

after busting my balls trying to find another passenger who need a ride to the fair, it appears that both of my “very strong possibilities” have decided that they’re going to drive themselves this year, so i am driving myself (boo!), which means that i’m leaving on tuesday (yay!)…

a very dangerous objectbecause of the fact that i’m taking, essentially, two-and-a-half times as much tuba, i’m not sure whether i’m going to take all of my sound effects… they’re all in a shipping-sized box, so taking only some of them would be a little more difficult than taking all of them, but taking none of them would be orders of magnitude easier… i don’t know if any of them will be used, however (sort of like how they weren’t used last year), and with that much more tuba, it’s questionable whether or not they’d even be missed.

i’ve settled on the place that’s going to tint the back windows of my car, but because of the fact that they’ve had not-professionally-installed tint on them in the past (which was removed before i bought the car), the back windows are all skundged up with glue residue which will have to be completely scraped off before new, professionally-installed tint will adhere correctly, and if the back windows aren’t scraped clean, the new, professionally-installed tint will not adhere correctly… which means that instead of getting my car windows tinted before going to the fair, i now have to wait until after the fair, and pay an extra $100 to the people who are going to clean the windows before tinting them… and all of this because i keep my tuba in the back of my car and i don’t want it to wander off with someone who sees it there while i am off doing something else.

this is what i think of people who believe in the eschaton

idiots
idiots

which is not to say that i don’t believe in the eschaton — i know that it’s coming, sooner or later — i just don’t believe in any of that religious crap, about the select going to heaven and everybody else going to hell, or whatever they believe. when the eschaton comes, we’re all going to burn, there will be no “chosen people” or “elect of god” or anything like that.

It has never mattered to me that thirty million people might think I’m wrong. The number of people who thought Hitler was right did not make him right. Why do you necessarily have to be wrong just because a few million people think you are?
     — Frank Zappa

i think i’m healthy again…

120507 airport sculpturethis morning, i got up and took ganesha the car to the place where it’s going to get its brakes fixed. i took my bike, and rode most of the way home. along the way, i was a terrorist and took pictures of the massive sculpture at the north end of the runways… seriously, i was expecting some jack-booted thugs at any moment, despite the fact that i was well outside their "security theater", simply because of the fact that i was taking pictures of the runway.120507 terrorist photo but the important part is that, while there was some coughing, it was directly related to my inhalation of burning cannabis, and wasn’t because it was happening randomly. now, i have to admit that i didn’t ride all the way home, i did ride the distance between burien and the south-east end of tukwilla, international boulevard – about 5 miles – where i got on an "A route" bus, which i rode to the federal way transit center, and from there, i rode home – another 6 miles or so. it was close enough – i actually rode past the station on my way to 170th, where i got on the bus – that i seriously considered the option of taking the train into downtown seattle, where i would probably have ridden out to mercer island and gotten a ride home from my sweetie, but then i realised that i had a dog that needed to be let out waiting at home, and monday is the day moe goes to classes after her work, and doesn’t get home until later, so i decided on a more direct route home.

but the important part is that i was able to do it without feeling more than ordinarily exhausted, and without coughing. it’s a good sign. 8)

cursed, blessed moisture festival, anyway… ๐Ÿ˜

hee

120502 tuba trio
on the left, i’m playing a B-flat tenor horn, manufactured by John Distin and stamped with the J.W.Pepper logo, from around 1900, in the middle, i’m playing a nominally Elkhorn E-flat tuba that i have no idea when it was made, and on the right, i’m playing a Conn C tuba, made within the past 25 years.

if we had a longer couch, i could probably get in a double-B-flat sousaphone, as well… 8)

TUBA!!!!!!!!!!!

TUBA!!!!!

on the right, my, nominally, Elkhorn three-valve, E-flat tuba, which i have been playing regularly (as in, ‘almost daily’) for 12 years.

on the left, the new-to-me Conn four-valve, C tuba which is my payment for the ugly sousaphone project.

i also got a vincent bach mouthpiece, a hard case, and a soft case. the fact that it is a C tuba is a little bit of a frustration for me, because i thought it was going to be a B-flat tuba, for which i know the “concert-pitch” fingerings… it’s also going to be really confusing being a transposing instrument that is not in E-flat, unless i either get transposed music or… learn the C tuba fingerings…

the thing is, it wouldn’t be SO frustrating for me if it weren’t for the fact that i both knew the C tuba fingerings, and could transpose, on-the-fly, in my headPRIOR to my brain injury. ๐Ÿ˜› that’s one of those bits of information which i am convinced still lives in my brain somewhere, and i just haven’t figured out how to connect to it again. ๐Ÿ˜

but i got a real tuba! i’m a real tuba player now! ๐Ÿ˜€

the END of the ugly sousaphone project!!!

The End of The Ugly Sousaphone Project!
The END of the ugly sousaphone project!

i’m FINALLY done with the ugly sousaphone! it’s not any less ugly — in fact, it’s significantly more ugly in a lot of ways — but the important part is that it is, now, one contiguous piece of tubing from one end to the other, and it will play and sound more-or-less like a sousaphone is supposed to sound.

i have to thank craig from allied supply, who built the new lead pipe, and david cole, a repair technician at kenelly keys who provided advice, encouragement and a few spare parts that i didn’t have… but that’s why i prefaced this entire project with the comment that i probably couldn’t do it all myself.

tomorrow, i deliver it to an anxious thaddeus, and he will pay me with hokum’s B-flat tuba! i can hardly wait! 8)

i have now, officially, replaced the lead-pipe on the ugly sousaphone

i added the last piece, which is the mouthpiece-receiver pipe, to the narrow end of the ugly sousaphone, and cleaned up the tons of old solder left on the instrument. now it’s just a matter of patching the split 3rd valve tube and installing a water key, and it’s a working sousaphone, once again…

i was able to cover the water key hole with my finger, and get the instrument to play… as long as i didn’t use the 3rd valve… 8)

ugly sousaphone project

it’s getting closer, ever closer! 8D

ugly sousaphone project

it’s good that i was a little nervous… it prevented me from doing stupid things like picking up hot metal with my bare fingers on more than one occasion… but it also was primarily because of the fact that, apparently, i can’t do things like “sweating” stuff like i used to be able to… it appears to be one of those “use it or lose it” skills that i haven’t kept up on… 8/

oh well, it’s airtight, and that’s really all that matters, when it comes right down to it.

hee hee hee… 8)

salamandir transferring vinyl
photo by Magick’s Mom

i’m not sure whether i should do this or not… not because i don’t want anyone to know about this, but because of what my friends, particularly, will think…

i dug out (literally) a recording of the first time i ever “improvised” a solo with a jazz band. this is from 1973, and it’s pretty obviously a middle-school band (junior-high, for people who live on the west coast), featuring me playing trombone.

Watermelon Man

now this was before i knew what it was to “swing” (and, apparently, the drummer and a few other players were similarly clueless), and i had help writing out an “improvised” solo, because i didn’t know how to improvise, but even taking those things into account, i think i did a pretty acceptible job…

shooze

birkenstock athensi am fairly bizarre… maybe you already knew that, but if you didn’t, there it is. one of the ways i am bizarre is that i have worn exactly the same style of shoe, more or less, for the past 30 years. when i was born, i had some congenital difficulties with my legs and feet. i don’t know very many details, but i do know that i had my right leg in a cast from the age of 6 months or so, until i was about a year old, which meant that, among other things, i didn’t crawl: i went straight from “creeping” to walking, and, thus, didn’t get the crawling that is so necessary to a normal baby’s development. i also had to wear “orthopedic” shoes and a brace at night, to “help straighten out” my feet, and i was forced to do pointless excercises (stand facing a wall, and do “push ups” against the wall, while keeping my heels on the floor) until i was about 5 or so. even with all that “help”, i managed to destroy just about every pair of shoes i owned, by “running over” them on the outside, until i found the birkenstock athens.

when i find something that works, i tend to stay with it until i have to change… that’s why i’m bizarre.

i have owned three pairs of athens sandals, one pair of brown, and two pairs of black, in the past thirty years. i have gotten them “recrafted” — which, in “birkenstock terminology”, means grinding off the rubber sole, separating the leather uppers from the old cork footbed, and putting on a new cork footbed and covering it with a new rubber sole — uncounted times. the brown pair finally bit the dust last year, when the leather straps broke. then one of the black pairs came back as “un-recraft-able” from the birkenstock repair guy, and i was in a quandary…

i had known for some time that birkenstock had officially stopped making the athens style sandal a number of years ago. in fact, the 2nd pair of black ones that i bought, i had to order them from europe, because they had discontinued the style in the united states, and that was almost 15 years ago. so when my second pair of birkenstocks came back as “un-recraft-able”, i jumped into action.shooze

shoozefirst, i called birkenstock central to make sure that they really don’t have any more, and while i had them on the phone, i asked them about making my own, using an “un-recraft-able” pair as a template. they had never heard of such an idea before, but definitely encouraged me to see if i could do it… of course i already knew that i could, but that way they can’t complain… ๐Ÿ˜‰

i went to mcpherson leather supplies in the international district, and bought enough leather for three pairs of sandals (and spent all of $36… if this works out the way i think it’s going to, i’m probably going to go into the business of making obsolete birkenstocks for bizarre people). i also had the “un-recraft-able” ones traced by the birkenstock repair guy, so that i had a template.

then i cut out mirror images of the template (one for right, and one for left), which i intend to take to the birkenstock repair guy, who will put the cork, footbed, and buckles on for me, and voilá… a new pair of “athens” sandals.shooze shooze
8)

BBWP audition

Big Bois With Poise Audition for America's Got Talent
Big Bois With Poise, preparing for an audition

BBWP had our audition for America’s Got Talent this morning at 9:00 am at the downtown sheraton…

before i say anything else, i would like to point out that this is the third time this week that i have driven, and parked on the orange level of the WSTCC parking garage. i know that some people park there every day and it’s no big deal, but i used to live, literally, right across the street from the WSTCC, and i used to walk through it every day on my way to and from school and work, but now i live in a different city, almost in a different county, and it has been, literally, years since the last time i was in the WSTCC, much less parked there… it’s bizarre.

anyway, we parked and walked a block to the sheraton in our dongy-hats but no buckets, which raised quite a few eyebrows, and generated some really interesting comments from passers-by… “is this a video game??”, “what are you doing?”, that sort of thing. then we got to the sheraton and went up to the third floor “metropolitan ballroom”, checked in, and finished up our costumes, including getting up on our buckets. because of the fact that the audition was held inside, they didn’t want us to bring fire toys, so we all got zunis (i have been calling them “zoomies” for years… ๐Ÿ˜ณ ), and they had a strict limit of 90 seconds per act, so we did a “cut down” version of the big bois chant.

then they talked to us for a few minutes. the “celebrity judges” weren’t there at all (big disappointment), there was just a guy running a camera and two “non-celebrity judges” sitting behind netbook-style laptops. the 90 seconds of our act started off with krissy doing her “monkey call”, which is quite loud and took the judges completely by surprise. they asked what we do for “real life” jobs (i said i’m a tuba player… it’s more or less accurate. i put down “professional freak” on the paperwork that we had to submit) and how the act developed, and a few, superficial things…

then they started talking about what we should plan on if we get to the next round of auditions. obviously the guy couldn’t say “you’re in”, but from what he did say, i’d guess that there’s a better-than-50% chance that we’re going to “pass” this audition and get to the next round, simply because what he was saying had a lot do do with the logistics surrounding doing our act with fire — which, apparently, for the 2nd round of auditions, will, actually be happening… but the next round of auditions is happening february 23rd to 25th in san francisco…

yes, adam, it’s likely that i will be coming to san francisco later this month. we should definitely plan on getting together while i’m there… 8)

my understanding is that they will be emailing chris within a couple of days to confirm…

we’re gonna be on TEE-VEE!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

hobo nickels

120103 hobo nickeli’ve mentioned hobo nickels before, but i figured i’d give you an idea of how they are made, since one of the first things everybody says to me when i give them one is “oh, did you make this?”

this is how i made them. enterprising people among you who may not be willing to risk my not giving you a hobo nickel myself (which, itself, is, actually, fairly rare) can use these instructions to make your own, with the full and complete assurance that i don’t care, although i do think that anybody who goes through this much effort for such little actual payback is kind of loopy.

also, i apologise in advance for the poor quality photos: it is difficult to use a hand to steady the camera and take pictures when you have to use two hands to hold up the tool and the piece you’re working on, so that the light shows through the kerf just right… look at it this way: 50 years ago, you wouldn’t have photographs this good, and 100 years ago there wouldn’t be any internet to read this on, so the poor quality photos are pretty good in comparison.

1) get a jewelers’ saw, a good supply of #2 or finer blades, a hand-vice, and a whole bunch of nickels. the newer and cleaner the nickels are, the better the end result will look, but it really doesn’t matter. #2 blades are fine enough that they will cut without jamming, but remove material at an acceptable rate. larger blades remove more material, but they also break more easily and don’t twist as well. finer blades don’t remove as much material, but they offer more control, especially in tight corners, although they break way more easily, and don’t last as long.

2) get a solid workspace, with a way to solidly anchor a hand-vice. i use my bench vice with the jaws separated about 2 inches, and hold the hand-vice so that the jaws stick out over the end of the bench-vice jaws. adjust the hand vice so that the nickel slides in easily, and can be gripped easily, but releases when you release the hand-vice. this is important because when you are cutting, you have to adjust the orientation of the nickel without putting the saw down, which would require an extra hand with which human beings are not, sadly, equipped.

also, i work sitting down, but which ever way for you is most comfortable to work, be prepared to take breaks, because cutting is exacting work.

3) drill a hole in the nickels with a drill bit that is small enough that it leaves both the bust of jefferson, and the edge: hobo nickel manufacturing this is the place where you insert your #2 saw blade, before you clamp it into the saw… yes, you cut the background out from the inside… ingenious, isn’t it? 8)

4) cut all the way around the bust of thomas jefferson as close as you can, hopefully without cutting into thomas jefferson, or giving him weird facial appendages… unless, of course, you want to make the writer of our declaration of independence into a deformed frog-elephant. if that’s what you want, i have no control over what you do, and, as i said before, i truly don’t care

5) this is the difficult part: when you have cut all the way around the bust of jefferson, go back to the original hole, and cut around the inside of the nickel. the reason why you do this isn’t immediately obvious, but once you’ve tried to cut around the inside of the nickel from the other side, you’ll know why. basically, it’s because you have to have some way of stabilising the nickel while you’re cutting, and if you start from the other side, all you have is the rim of the nickel, which isn’t very much, especially when you start cutting it out. the only way to avoid this is to be ambidexterous enough that, when the time comes, you can just switch hands (which, obviously, means re-orienting the hand-vice as well) and do it right handed. if you can do that, then you can ignore this step, but even before my brain injury, when i really was ambidexterous enough to do that, i still couldn’t get beyond taking a few strokes with the saw and having to replace the blade because i broke it again

hobo nickel manufacturing hobo nickel manufacturing

6) rejoice, ’cause you’ve done it too!

hobo nickel manufacturing hobo nickel manufacturing

be prepared to break A LOT of #2 saw blades getting started… for that matter, be prepared to break one or two blades per nickel for a while. it’s tough getting your fingers trained to cut in the right place without twisting or flexing the saw enough that the blade breaks. fortunately, they’re not expensive. ๐Ÿ˜‰

what have i been doing the past few weeks?

120103 hobo nickelafter the panto ended for 2011 (it starts again on saturday, and runs for two weeks. get yer tickets now ’cause they’re selling out fast!) i got started making some hobo nickels. they’re not classic hobo nickels, of course, but they’re in a similar vein… and, hey… they’re only a nickel… and, as long as you don’t try to use the result as “currency”, they’re perfectly legal. 8) i broke most of my jewelers’ saw blades on the first couple of them, getting the technique right and re-adjusting my fingers. i went out to tacoma screw, to get more jewelers’ saw blades, and they didn’t know what i was talking about. i went to rockler, and they had them, but i’m not sure they’re the right ones, because they say they’re only for wood… and they’re 28 teeth per inch, and i’m pretty sure that the ones i need are more like 35 to 50 teeth per inch… i’m pretty sure that if i made the trip to hardwick’s, in seattle, that i’d be able to walk in and say i needed extra-fine jewelers’ saw-blades and they’d point me towards a bin of ’em… i went in there one time, and i said i was looking for a vice, and the guy asked me if i had considered smoking… ๐Ÿ˜‰ i made nickels like this A LOT, between 1986 (when i got out of the tech school, and realised that i could make them) until 1994, when i started having to limit my workshop space because of where i was living. they just kind of faded into past memory, and were only re-realised a few weeks ago.

i put in the order for another 20 dozen aparajita on the 15th. i still haven’t heard anything, but they are making the incense to order (SQUEEEEE!!!) so i’m not being as paranoid about it… i’m still being paranoid (after all, it’s sort of a natural state of existence for me), just not as much. i’m probably going to email again on friday if i still haven’t heard anything by then.

120103 swastika coini got this good-luck token in the mail the other day. it’s a little bit bigger than a US quarter, or a little smaller than a US half-dollar. i didn’t remember where it came from, at first, and because of the fact that i bid on it at ebay, it didn’t come from anybody i knew, or from an address with which i was familiar, which was pretty exciting, until i remembered where it came from.

after having gone to meet her, i figured out where the lady who knew who i am knows me from: she knows me because i am associated with Howlin’ Hobbit… although she was really disappointed when i didn’t drive up in my elaborately-painted art-car she was just as happy to take a picture of me wearing my hippy-hat

we spent christmas eve driving: we got up around 5:00 or so, and drove to salem, oregon, then we drove north and stopped just south of portland, then we drove into portland and visited a couple of different places before heading back, around 7:30 pm… by the time we got home, i had had about as much driving as i could stand for a while, so i spent most of the rest of xmas at home, being a hermit-crab. we took our annual trip to double-bluff off-leash dog-park on new-years’ day, and got there just as a polar-bear swim was getting over, which was kind of odd, because normally we are the only ones there on new years, and this year there were huge crowds of people, and music blaring… and an ambulance…

swastika t-shirt

Original ManWoman T-Shirt
Original ManWoman T-Shirt on przxqgl

i’m causing trouble again…

people generally (in this area, at least) don’t seem to mind me wearing or displaying swastikas as long as they’re not obviously “hakenkreuz” related (i.e. they’re “different” colours than were used by the not-zees), but my new shirt will challenge those preconceived notions about colour somehow being related to meaning…

maybe i ought to make some flash cards that say things like BLUE and YELLOW
to illustrate my point even further for those who still don’t get it (and i’m positive that there will be a few of them)…

gauri shankar

Gauri Shankar Rudrakhsha have been an interest of mine for some time, and i actually own a 7 mukhi gauri shankar bead

gauri shankar rudrakhsha

gauri shankar rudrakhsha

so i was sort of amused this afternoon when i was out for my walk and i passed the abandoned house up the alley from our place, where i discovered an abandoned gauri shankar pumpkin.gauri shankar pumpkin this was not growing, but apparantly had been deposited there, probably by teenaged doodlehums who frequent the area, and had smashed a few pumpkins a little further up the street.

brain damaged brain… 8/

i figured out why it wasn’t displaying like it should (a simple <p>…</p> took care of it) but i’ve been fighting with the code for this web page all day, and i haven’t gotten much of anywhere… and it seems as though things that are supposed to work, simply aren’t, for one reason or another… it actually seems as though what i want can’t be done using standard html and css — even though i KNOW it CAN be done, quite easily…

blah… ๐Ÿ˜›

GRR!!

okay, so i’m working on some new web pages for the fremont players. i’ve got a REEEEAALY simple CSS file, that basically sets margins and text alignment:

body {margin-top: .25in; margin-left: 2in; margin-right: 2in;}
.center {text-align: center;}

and i have an equally simple HTML file that’s going to be my index page (when i get this ☢☹‼‽⁂@#* “difficulty” worked out) which looks like this:

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN">
<html>
<head>
<meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">
<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="index.css">
<title>The Fremont Players</title>
</head>
<body>

<span class="center">The Fremont Players present</span>

</body>
</html>

now one would think, just from looking at the code, that the words “The Fremont Players present” would be centered, a quarter of an inch below the top of the page… but…

text alignment problem

and it looks the same whether i’m using firefox, safari, or opera… which means that SOMETHING is WRONG

but i can’t figure out WHAT… ๐Ÿ˜

it hasn’t been all bad, though…

111021 fez-up seattleyesterday we had a fez-up (left to right: Fez-Monger, Howlin’ Hobbit, yours truly, and Henrik Van Tiki who was visiting from hawaii) and the few days of not having anything specific to do gave me the time to do some research on where to get the next step of turning ganesha the vehicle into an actual vahana for ganesha, which resulted in my getting the stereo installed today… seriously, the people at car toys wanted $400 to install it, and the people at Foss Car Audio did it for $250, but it took me three days of calling people, driving around and getting estimates… anyway, the next step is getting it ready to paint, and getting the windows ready to tint.

also, there are some photos of my wanderings in tacoma, while i was waiting for my car to be done. the photos are from my telephone, so they’re not as good quality as i’d like, but… 8)

i really admire the artists at 0100101110101101.org

somehow, the artists at 0100101110101101.org invaded a rather up-scale art exhibit with art that wasn’t what the up-scale art exhibit’s curator thought it was. “The piece has been shown for over a month, and nobody questioned its authenticity or worthiness.”not dieter roth artwork

Dieter Roth never made this work, it’s a fake. We invented it one evening in a bar with our friend Corazon Del Sol, and put it together the next day. We bought all the stuff on the internet: an old glass jar, a vintage cork and lots of flies (yes, you can buy flies online), and sent the work to the unaware curators.

THIS SHOULD BE news! ๐Ÿ˜

busking

hat formerly belonging to Jon H. Stebbinsi got up at an unreasonably early hour this morning and went down to the FSM to busk.

while there, i found one of the vendors had a hat for sale for $10, that i couldn’t resist. it’s not a costume hat, it’s a real, authentic, merchant marine hat, that probably belonged to an officer. inside the hat was a little printed card that said “Return this Bernard Cap to:” that had the name, address and phone number of someone who was completely unknown to the person from whom i bought the hat.

i googled the name, and came up with some confusing results. googling for Jon H. Stebbins – the name as it is actually written on the card – gets no results, but it asks if i meant to type “John H. Stebbins” and gives a lot of nautical and marine references for that spelling. the one, glaring exception to this is the record of the courts opinion in reference to the case of U.S. versus Stebbins, from 2005, in which John H. Stebbins, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, raped his 6-year-old daughter, was convicted in a military court, and was sentenced to life without parole, plus a $75,000 fine. the opinion of the court was that he deserved everything he got…

however, if i just google Jon Stebbins, the first results i get have to do with the author of the book Dennis Wilson, The Real Beach Boy, The Lost Beach Boy and other classics…

i’m not sure either one of these is the Jon H. Stebbins that previously owned my hat, but if that’s the sort of people i’m going to find when i search for him, i think i’ll give it a miss…

it’s a cool hat, though… 8)

busking went really well, despite the fact that we were a trio (sketch had another engagement). we got a lot of really positive feedback from the people in charge, and made a fair amount of money at the same time. i could get used to this… 8)

i’ve got a new client…

thanks to the people at edgewood tire showing off their fancy business cards, i got a business card order from this guy named lamar, who wanted his cards to say $$ CASH $$ FOR JUNK CARS & TRUCKS with his name and phone numbers. i didn’t actually talk to lamar, but he wrote down what he wanted on a napkin and the people at edgewood tire put in the order for him.

this, needless to say, is not the way i have done business with people who needed printing in the past. usually i’ve found that when people write something down on a napkin, that some time has to be spent figuring out exactly what is needed. i told sally (one of the owners of edgewood tire, i think) that, and she agreed that it was not exactly the best idea, so i left my phone number and told her to have lamar give me a call.

days passed by, and lamar didn’t call me.

i stopped by edgewood tire again, and sally said that lamar said (already you begin to see why i was leery of doing this) that what was written on the napkin was what he wanted, and that i shoud just go for it. i still wanted to at least talk to the guy before i typeset something, but when i called both of the numbers he gave, and asked for lamar, nobody had any idea who i was talking about, so sally actually called lamar while i was standing in her office, and then handed the phone to me. it didn’t take long. he gave me the impression that he wanted them in a hurry, and suggested the word CASH should be in red. i asked him if he wanted any artwork, and he said that the words should take up the entire card… in fact, he said “if there is any room left on the card, fill it with the words i gave you.” i asked him if he needed to see a proof copy before i sent them out, and he said no (which is another BIG RED FLAG in the “normal” printing industry). i said i would see that his need for cards was met, and that if he needed any changes, we could talk about it for the next time.

so i whipped out a card that filled as much of the available space as possible with words. and sent them off with faster than normal delivery service… which was a mistake, because UPS couldn’t find my address (which is a down side to living in the “unincorporated” part of king county) and the day they were supposed to deliver it, the status suddenly changed to “we don’t know where you are, delivery postponed indefinitely” and i actually had to go down to the UPS package center in pacific to get it.

armed with the business cards, i, once again, tried calling both of the phone numbers on the card, and got the answering service for pacific auto glass, who didn’t know who lamar was. i began to think that i may never see payment, but i took them to edgewood tire and said that lamar could pay for the replacement gear that my new car needed, and sally said that was an acceptable arrangement, so i left the cards with her.

but i got to thinking… i actually have a junk car that i need to get rid of, so i tried calling them again. this time, there was an answering machine that said that if you need a new windshield or have a junk car, leave your number… so i did.

this time lamar actually called back. we made all of the arrangements for him to pick up(!) the old ganesha the car before he asked for my name and phone number (heh heh). when he found out who i was, he immediately put in another order for 1000 more business cards. he really likes them, and says that the word “cash” is exactly what he wanted…111013 cash for junk cars & trucks business card

Elwood Decker!

Elwood Decker -- Infinite Bliss And Eternal Peace To AllElwood Decker: A Path to God

Elwood Decker

i’m indirectly responsible for this… at least for the first one…

i originally heard The Bobs song “Elwood Decker” in 1996 or 1997, thanks to my my beautiful wife (who is THE Bobs fanatic), and immediately wondered who the hell he was… so i proceded to find out.

after some preliminary internet searching, i wasn’t able to find much about elwood, but i found a connection between elwood and a guy to whom i may be related, norm hammond. it turned out that norm hammond posessed all of elwood’s paintings, and it turned out that they had just hung a gallery showing in the old train station in oceano (the bobs changed it to nipomo, which is in the same neighbourhood, but more euphonious) of elwood’s paintings. norm sent me a bunch of reproductions, one of which is currently hanging on the wall behind me. i suggested that elwood really should have a web site, and norm said that he was working on several avenues to publicise elwood — at the time he was in the process of writing a book about him — but that he had never even thought of a web site. i suggested elwooddecker.com and (although i hadn’t expanded the business to the point that it is now) suggested that i could register it for him and build a web site. he said that he would think about it, but he was more interested in writing at that time. i haven’t heard from norm since then, but that’s okay, because it appears that elwood got a web site anyway.

i also put together a one-page biography of elwood, with one of the pictures of him that norm had sent me, and gave it to richard bob at the bobs christmas show, the last time they did the show at jazz alley (1997? 1998?).

of course that was some time before i got involved with the cirque de flambé and the fremont philharmonic, which would, eventually, get me to the point where i am friends and colleagues with matthew bob… 8)

so i went to bellingham yesterday…

so i went to bellingham yesterday. it has been a long time since i’ve been in belligham, and it has been even longer since i have seen the… crazy hippy freaks unique crowd that was there for kenyth’s 77th birthday party last night.

kenyth was my advisor when i first started college, and i started college during the latter part of the last century, but that comes later.

first, i drove through mt. vernon and saw many cow-fields adjacent to the nookachamps river that are going to be ripe for mushrooming in a few weeks, and, basically, i’ve decided that i’m going to take at least one weekend day and do exactly that… because mushrooms are my second favourite drug (the first is hashish, but that’s a separate story).

it took me about an hour longer than i thought it was going to, to get to bellingham, which still puzzles me somewhat. i went to ken & kamalla’s place, but nobody was home, so i then went to the madhouse, which is where i spent the night last night, and talked to darol and the lady who lives in the cabin (which was my space, 25 years ago) for a while, then i went out to wander until it was time for kenyth’s party.

the first place i went was the lake whatcom railroad trail, near where i used to live on valencia street, where i walked east (up hill) on the trail to this spot, where i found this:
old railroad bridge
it was somewhat strange back before everything got developed, but it is somewhat stranger now that it’s the only remaining evidence of a railroad line that used to go right through the middle of what is now a shopping mall and a fairly populated neighbourhood.

i then continued wandering east on the old railroad grade until i found a place that was built about the same time i lived there, which is a dam which funnels all of the water into a creek. a long time ago, shortly after the dam was first built, i used to go there and hide in the tube at the south end of the dam, and grafitti the inside of the tube. at one point, i even took a couple of sheets of plywood down there, so that i didn’t have to worry about getting soaked while i worked. i cleaned debris and gravel out of the tube at least twice, and i had a cozy, invisible little camp/hidey-hole there for a couple of years. now you can still get into the tube, but there’s a sizable pool at the bottom of it at this point, so you’d have to be a spry 20-something to get in there… i imagine that i could probably get in there now, but i imagine that if i wasn’t careful, i would get wet, and i didn’t want to do that yesterday, because it was threatening rain, and i didn’t have a change of clothes handy…

then i went down the tracks a little further, until i got to whatcom falls park, which is another place i used to live eons ago, when ezra was small. this is the place where the PHBFH lived, while i lived in the madhouse (when the PHBFH was living up to her acronym, which was about half of the time), when we went to vancouver BC to see the opera, when ezra was a tiny baby, and there were several old lady opera attenders who looked down their noses at us because we had a “babe-in-arms” at the opera, and everybody knows that babes-in-arms disrupt civilised things like opera… and they didn’t even notice when ezra went to sleep, shortly after the opening chorus, and slept all the way through, without making any noise at all. then, when we got home, very late at night, it was raining, so i parked the car while the PHBFH got out to open the door, so that we could avoid having ezra out in the rain for too long… except that the PHBFH wouldn’t open, or go anywhere close to the door, because it had a teensy little frog, smaller than the diameter of a dime, sitting on the door handle… 8)

then i went back to ken and kamalla’s place, where there was someone home this time, although it wasn’t kamalla, because she was apparently in california visiting her grandkids. i engaged in geek/music and/or music/geek talk with ken until it was time to go to kenyth’s party… which, coincidentally, was in the same dance studio where ezra took lessons from the time that he was 5 until he started at the pacific northwest ballet school, which used to be the nancy whyte studio, but is now called the “Presence Dance Studio”…

kenyth & francieas i said previously, kenyth was my advisor during the time that i was at fairhaven college, which was 1979 through 1984, and again, on and off, from 1986 to 1989. prior to my arrival at fairhaven, kenyth was actually the dean of the college, but by the time i got there, he was “just a professor”. his two “specialty” classes were “Introduction to Personal Philosophy 101” which was informally known as “the fly in the flybottle” or simply “the flybottle class”, and “Awareness Through The Body”. when i first started at fairhaven, you could take body awareness as many times as you wanted, but you could only take the flybottle class once… however, it had such a powerful effect on me that i actually took it twice (with kenyth’s approval) – although i never took body awareness at all (which is kind of a shame, now that i think about it).

before i met kenyth, i was a child from bellevue, a place which is, like it’s new york namesake, an excellent place from which to escape. kenyth introduced me to the person i would eventually become. he did this by allowing me to be me, gently, uncritically and with a great deal of humour (as well as various other things), and by not requiring me to be anything which i was not. it didn’t take long for me to realise that i acutally am another person, one who is 180 degrees different from the person my parents wanted me to be (who was boring and had no life).

and i saw a whole bunch of crazy hippy freaks unique people whom i haven’t seen for quite some time. i saw: douglas drake and joni papp, who i saw at burning man in 2008; karl meyer and stephan freeman, who i see at the moisture festival every year; sally peyou, who i got email from last week, but haven’t actually seen since 2007; yoav and yael yanich, deirdre morgan, kathy veterane, darby freeman, lisa carderelli, dani cutler, jamie jedinak, and a lot of other people whose names i am already forgetting again… all of whom i haven’t seen in at least 20 years… i got email addresses for the people i’ve been thinking about, and wondering what ever happened to them…

i went to sleep, and woke up in the madhouse for the first time since 1989 and it felt so right… if i ever have the opportunity to move back to bellingham at any point in the future, you can bet that i’m going to jump on it in a second. 8)

kenyth's dance

classic picture

from 1201 3rd ave suite 2200
snake suspenderz played a 90-minute gig at Davis Wright Tremaine law office, on 3rd avenue in downtown seattle the other night. it was kinda weird, because there were a huge crowd of people, but they were not listening to us… seriously, we got more compliments from the wait-staff that were hired caterers than we got from the law-office-related people, and we didn’t get that many compliments from the caterers… it’s really strange to not get confirmation that we’re doing a good job… they paid us $400 in advance, and from what little i gathered, they were more than satisfied with the job that we did, but they didn’t say anything specific, and they didn’t say they were going to hire us again… which the guy whose party we played at last week, did…

the law offices occupied at least 5 floors of the office building, but we played in the entrance lobby on the 22nd floor, which had a classic view of the sound, and i couldn’t resist taking a few pictures… ๐Ÿ˜‰

it goes klunk…

the new ganesha the car (truck?) v.3 is now on the scene!

new ganesha new ganesha

i took it to see the mechanics at edgewood tire, and they said that, for a car with 171,000 miles on it, it looks pretty good… although one of them said that he wouldn’t buy it, he also said that it’s a much better car than the last one… they also recommended that i put straight 30-weight oil in it, because thicker oil will give me more adequate oil pressure, so i had ’em change the oil and it already sounds a lot better.

although it goes “klunk” when i’m driving around corners. moreso when i go around left corners than when i go around right corners, but still… it sounds like someone replaced the shocks and didn’t tighten them down enough, or something like that. also, it looks strangely lopsided: the driver’s side seems lower than the passenger side… that could also be because of where it’s parked at the moment. it had some “do-it-yourself” window tinting in it at some point in the past, which was removed before i saw it, but there’s a hazy film of residue on the inside of all the windows except the windshield, which has to go… and then, perhaps, some real, professionally installed window tinting would be in order… 8)

and it’s black, which means that it gets white sanskrit this time… which should look COOL! 8) and it’s got a roof that i can paint… 8)

but at the moment i’ve got a gig that i am leaving for in about an hour and a half, so i’ve got to go get ready.

i got a new car!

not, needless to say, a NEW new car, but a new-to-me car. it’s a 1995 honda passport EX 4×4, which is significantly smaller than the humongous ford F150 pickup that i’m driving currently, but it’s still far and away the largest car i have ever owned. and it maintains my record of never owning a car that is newer than 15 years old. i’ve got to return the pickup tomorrow, so thaddeus and i are going to pick up the new car tomorrow, and then thaddeus is going to drive the humongous truck back to the issaquah highlands, where i will pick him up in the “new” car and drop him at home, hopefully before noon. meanwhiles, take a gander at the pictures of the new car from the craigslist ad:

new car new car
new car new car

i’m not sure what to think of this…

we have a border collie, lucy, who is obsessed with things. when we first got her, she obsessed about the cats, who were not amused. then, when we got stanley, she obsessed about stanley and forgot about the cats. then we got mango and it was as though stanley never existed…

mango has started staying at monique’s work over night, to cut down on the amount of travelling he has to do – and he was intended to be the “clinic bird” anyway – but lucy still obsesses about where mango used to be…

it has been 8 days now, and she’s still obsessing about mango’s empty cage…lucy and not-mango
if it’s possible, she’s obsessing more since he’s been staying at work…๐Ÿ˜ฎ

hee…

hee
moe just got home. she took mango to work with her today, in a travel cage.

lucy (the dog) spends most of her free time – and a significant portion of time that she should be doing important things like eating – staring at mango. before mango got here, she stared at stanley. now she stares at mango. before stanly, she stared at the cats. it was actually kind of funny when she tried to herd them… she was almost successful, but that is another story. now she’s staring at mango, in his travel cage…

except mango moved to his perch when she was outside… nevertheless, for about 10 minutes, she was staring at an empty cage

hee

unfortunately, something alerted her (perhaps mango chirped, or stanley said something) and she realised that she was off-target…

actually, i’m kinda disappointed. if she stared at an empty cage, we wouldn’t have to tell her to leave it all the time, and it’s almost getting to the point where that’s all we do… oh well…

2011 Oregon Country Fair

meadow lightsthere’s only so many pictures i can take of essentially the same thing… except for meadow lights. i could take endless pictures of them, because they’re all different in some way or another. i suppose you could say the same thing about two pictures of anything else, taken a year apart, but i’ll ignore that, for now.maque-animée
animated Maque, with Lindsay, backstage at the Morningwood Odditorium, OCF, 2011
i left on tuesday with myron and marilyn, and stayed with marilyn’s daughter, son-in-law, and their two kids, in their HUGE house in portland. siri (marilyn’s daughter) is a cello player, and her husband (whose name i don’t remember) is a music professor at one of the colleges that is not Reed, in the area. their house has at least 3 floors (they may have a basement, i didn’t check) in a very nice area, in the eastern part of town, near a catholic school/convent (for monique, who doubtlessly knows where i am talking about). we had breakfast at the Cadillac Café, and hit the road around 10:00 or so, which meant that we arrived at the fair around noon on wednesday.

there was the standard, and expected “hippy ineptitude factor” in play at the gate, but they actually had me listed under the correct spelling of my name this year (which is a miracle!), and, apart from waiting in line for an hour or so, it was nothing out of the ordinary… and we didn’t even need a “full load teddy” to drive in to morningwood, even though, technically, we had to have one (reminder for next year: get a full load teddy after getting wrist-banded, and before heading back to the car. grumpy said so.). wednesday and thursday were somewhat of a blur, because there were the “traditional” things; getting my camp set up, making runs to various cars to get things that had been forgotten, building up the last bits of backstage that hadn’t been done yet, finding out which showers were open (the ritz was open, but very crowded because only the showers in the front half were accessible), and that kind of thing, along with the mental adjustments necessary to go from the “normal” world to the “fantasy” world, and having to figure out how to deal with the unexpected things, like the baby robins that were not quite fledged, and nesting in the tree right next to the bandstand that we didn’t want to scare.baby robins seriously, they were cheeping and flapping around more or less effectively in the tree on wednesday, and thursday, and we were not sure what was going to happen when thousands of people and an amplified sound system started working right next to their nest, but all three of them were out of the nest by the time the gates opened at 10:00 friday morning.

we had a final dress-rehearsal on thursday, which was more like a “run through”, that was about as raw and unfinished as anything i’ve ever seen from the group, and despite the fact that we had all the music, we ended up cutting one of the songs, because the actor who was supposed to sing it hadn’t learned the words (no names – you know who you are). but despite the fact that the dress rehearsal well and truly SUCKED, it had come together surprisingly well by noon on friday… so well, in fact, that several people in the group (including me) expressed their extreme relief that the “run through” on thursday hadn’t been an indication of what the show was really going to be like. and it just got better from there. i remember saying that last year’s show was the best we have done so far, and that is what i say about this year’s show as well. not that all of the parts were totally memorised, but those that weren’t were skillfully covered, and nobody noticed. the jokes were as funny, and as fresh as ever, and there was the expected, and the unexpected in the proper quantities to make it easy to riff off the stuff that we didn’t have quite down yet, and easy to learn the stuff that we didn’t have quite down yet.

Long Fluteof course there was also the standard “horseplay” or “messing with peoples’ minds” or what-have-you, which included the dozen whoopie-cushions that i brought and distributed, and the “hippy fishing” that i participated in — after sunset, take a glow-stick and tie it to some black rigging twine, and toss it out into the path. when some stoned hippy tries to pick it up, yank on the string. — as well as four days, one more than the actual fair, where i went out and “hid” somewhere along the path, at night, with my cape, so that people couldn’t immediately tell that i was a human being, and played my long flute… which, i have more or less decided, with the help of those people who noticed me, in spite of the fact that i was “hiding”, is called a “didjeri-flute”. fossil-fool with maquei met a whole bunch of musicians, some of whom i have met before, but none of whose names i remember. there was the guy with the bright red sousaphone from the fighting instruments of karma, who is not the guy with the bright silver sousaphone from the fighting instruments of karma that i have run into in previous years. the bass player that i met at the ritz, and “fossil fool” the rock-the-bike rider/rapper were also memorable. and there were stories of famous people like steve weber from the holy modal rounders (stuart was out wandering around and he came across a band playing in the path, and a guy walked up to him and, forcefully, told him to take his guitar out of the case and play. it turned out that the guy was steve weber), and chris chandler, and bill kreuzmann, and a famous oud player being at the fair this year.

band plays the ritzthe ritz was kind of a trip this year. i was there on thursday evening when simon contacted lem, the guy in charge of booking acts for the ritz, and i told them that we wanted the saturday, 8:00 or 9:00 slot. lem took simon’s phone number and said he would call, because the staff at the ritz was really anxious to have the phil play there again this year. however, friday came and went without any word from lem. saturday, we were informed that we had been offered the midnight slot at the ritz, which was then changed to 6:00. we jumped on 6:00 and they said they’d get back to us, but when 4:30 came around and we hadn’t heard anything, we decided that we’d better go up to the ritz, just on the off chance that we actually had been scheduled for 6:00 and they’d forgotten to tell us (which would not be out of the question by any means). we got there and discovered that we were expected, which was a relief that was quickly dashed when another band showed up and it turned out that they were also “expected” to play at 6:00. after about a half-hour of people running around like chickens with their heads cut off, kim from the sauna, the person who is actually responsible for booking bands at the ritz, showed up, and it was decided that we would play at 6:00 saturday, and the other band would play at 6:00 sunday. the upshot is that i gave kim from the sauna my phone number, and talked with her extensively. she said that, primarily because of the fact that we played “Il Balon di Qua-qua” (otherwise known as “The Chicken Dance”) they were really anxious to have us back next year, and she actually said that we would be in the 7:30 saturday slot next year, and that she would call me to confirm that closer to the actual event. i got four ritz tokens this year: one that i bought, one that i found on the path(!), one that i got instead of “hat money”, and one from playing at the ritz. i now have 15 tokens. 8) yeah, i know that i could use them in the sauna, but i like keeping them as souvenirs instead.

weird cardsaturday afternoon, i was sitting on stage next to my tuba, before a performance, and some guy came up and handed me a laminated card — similar to the “photo id” card that some people (including me) wear instead of a wrist-band — and said “i think you dropped this”. i took it and looked at it, and it was clearly not mine, so i said “no, i didn’t”, to which he replied “well, you have now…” and walked off into the crowd. the laminated card had the “Pre-Post Sideshow Circus” logo that i had seen on a number of the “security” peoples’ t-shirts prior to that time, and the other side had a picture of a sousaphone player. i subsequently learned that this was a souvenir as well, which would explain why the guy who gave it to me seemed to have about 50 laminated cards on the lanyard around his neck.

morningwood without awningthe fair ended on sunday, and we left on monday. sunday evening was full of whoopie-cushions, hippy fishing, playing my didjeri-flute, smoking a lot of cannabis, wandering and hanging out with my friends. monday morning i got up, broke camp and helped them take down the stage. we left the fair around noon, and i got home around 6:00. sasha and stuart showed up with my two “heavy” boxes yesterday. the weather clouded up on the way home, and it has been raining on and off since then… it’s probably a good thing i came home when i did.

there are more pictures for those who are interested.

giant metal chickens

this may be what a “meme” looks like when it is in the early stages of formation…

i have seen references to giant metal chickens in three different places around the web during the past couple of days. while i am pretty sure that two of them aren’t, one of them may have been in reference to a band called Giant Metal Chickens, but i’m not sure, and i can’t find the link now, which, in itself, is enough to raise my suspicions. and one of them was a client and friend of mine, who posted pictures of a giant metal chicken which may or may not have been her own personal giant metal chicken, in high point north carolina…

giant metal chicken - high point, NC

bizarre…

which brings up another story…

my first semester of my first year of college was spent living in the dorm, first with a guy named josh, and then with a guy named joe. around the end of that first semester, i found, not a giant, but certainly much larger than normal chicken, made out of aluminum foil – for all intents and purposes, a “giant metal chicken”.

of course this chicken ended up in my dorm window, where it was the object of much amusement and derision from the other people who lived in the dorm, and at the end of the semester, joe asked me if he could take it home with him. he assured me that he would bring it back at the beginning of the next semester, and, as we were all moving out of that particular dorm anyway, i figured that if he took it, that would mean that i wouldn’t have to explain why i had a giant metal chicken to my parents, who were already under the impression that i was more than a little strange anyway.

naturally, when the next semester started, joe didn’t have my giant metal chicken. apparently his dog ate it.

and they thought i was strange…

the can can

baby grampsthe show at the can can last night went exceptionally well, but i think that the exceptional parts were more because of disorganisation and lack of planning than anything else…

the can can was STUFFED with people, which was a good thing from our point of view, because our “take” was based on sales at the door, but i suspect that a large part of the reason why the can can was STUFFED last night is because we opened for baby gramps — which was a complete surprise to us. i had been lead to the understanding that we would be opening for He’s My Brother, She’s My Sister, and, indeed, they were there, and played after baby gramps. truckin' davethe main objection we had was that nobody had told us that we were opening for baby gramps… we had discussed an apparent discrepancy in what the booking person had told us compared to what they had announced on their web site – which was just us and HMBSMS – and we had prepared for the possibility that they had just been disorganised (the can can has just recently moved back in to their original location, after having temporarily relocated across the street to accomodate a construction project). and, apparently, when gramps was called by the can can (he does shows there on a regular basis), he was under the impression that it was as a favour to someone, but he didn’t know who…

but if someone had only told us that we would be opening for gramps, we would have talked it up a lot more than we did… which, for us, was pretty extensive, but if people had known that gramps was gonna’ be there, more people that we told would have actually showed up…

and, as an added bonus (for me, anyway) was that accompanying baby gramps on toy pianos was my friend truckin’ dave – this guy – who i have known since the early 1980s, from bellingham (a “bellinghammer”)… i had no clue that this guy knew baby gramps, although gramps introduced dave as “my friend from the ’60s”, so the whole evening was full of surprises for me… and it’s close enough that it could actually be considered a birthday present… ๐Ÿ™‚

की कुर्सी और के जूते

shoezi went out to get the spare tire fixed that moe blew out on the freeway last weekend, and i also went around to various different places to find a chair to replace the one that i’ve been using for 10 years or so, that has taken its share of abuse over the years and isn’t really a chair any longer… moe told me that they have them at walgreen’s, but they only have folding camp chairs with arms, and i need one without arms, so i went to sportsmens’ warehouse, and they didn’t have ’em either, so i went to REI, because i know they’ll have them there… and while i was at REI, i decided to look at the vibram-soled barefoot shoes that i saw at SACBO last weekend, and, lo-and-behold, they actually had them on sale, and they were doing a "backyard camp-out deal with a 15% off coupon for one full-priced item… so, i bought a new folding chair (it’s actually a stool, because it only has three legs, but it does have a back rest) and new shoes for the first time in twenty years or so.

it’s really difficult for me to buy new shoes, because, if they’re not made right, i have a tendency to “run over” them really quickly: the sole of the shoe doesn’t match my weird arches, and i end up either walking on the inside of my feet, or the shoes give me massive blisters, and, one way or the other, i end up wearing holes in the sides of the shoes within a couple of weeks. birkenstocks seem to be the only decently made shoe that i can wear for more than a day with out getting blisters, and that’s been the way it is pretty much ever since i started buying my own shoes… but these are amazing… they’re like being in bare feet, except that they’ve got an extra layer of vibram in between me and the ground, and they’re practically impossible to “run over” because they fit so well… 8)

i’m really jazzed, and can’t wait to “try them out” on a long hike, or a trip to the beach or something… wait! i’ve got OCF coming up… that should do it… 8)

so…

i expended A LOT of spoons last weekend, because it was the solstice festival, and snake suspenderz played both days, apart from the caravan on friday. i’ve uploaded a whole bunch of pictures, which i haven’t yet got all sorted out, so there’s very likely going to be more pictures uploaded eventually. of course, the fremont “solstice” festival actually didn’t occur on the solstice (something for which i’m sure our ancient ancestors would decry with loud voices), but that’s because us “modern” folks have to get up and go to work on monday… a tradition which, despite the fact that it recently included me, i have never been able to figure out…

but today is especially important, because it is also our 13th wedding anniversary, which means, traditionally, i’m supposed to give my sweetie lace – which would be nice and i’m sure she would appreciate it, but it’s also impractical and i’m not sure she’d ever use it for anything… the “modern traditional” gift is textiles, and we just got a new bed-spread recently (with zebra stripes), but i’m not sure what other textile items we actually need at this point – i’m sure clothes are on the list, but i’d really rather give my sweetie something more romantic than clothes…

and i’m more convinced than ever that the decision to get married was one of the smartest decisions i have ever made in my life, but that’s only because of the fact that i decided to get married to moe, and not someone else.

i was reading my RSS feed and came across this…

deborah harry, chris stein. clusterthe picture on the right is from a collection of famous people hanging out with their vinyl. this particular one is deborah harry and chris stein, but what’s important is the vinyl that’s hanging above their heads. among the albums is Cluster II, an album that has been in my collection, in one form or another, for quite a number of years…

it’s actually kind of strange, because i don’t know who chris stein is at all, and i only have a vague notion of who deborah harry is, but i recognised the cluster album right away… oh well… ๐Ÿ˜‰

bun rab

bun rab
there have been a lot of ’em around this year. pretty regularly i see them early in the mornings or in the evenings, but this guy was out at 10:00 in the morning, and didn’t run away when he noticed that i was watching him… he was also about half as big as the “normal” ones i usually see, so he may just be a baby that doesn’t have his “rabbit sense” entirely clued in yet…

the rapture!!

so far, the rapture hasn’t happened… i’m preparing to have a big ol’ laugh at harold camping’s expense when the day is over… 8)

unauthorised authorisation dialoguein other news, i got a new unauthorised authorisation dialogue, like the one i got back in august of last year, but it’s for a different site… the site, LEAP.cc, is the site for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, which i have visited a while back, but there currently is no site there, and, instead, it asks for an authorisation (which i have NEVER provided), so i’m thinking that either they’re not in business any longer (not very likely) or someone has hacked their site. needless to say, i didn’t enter anything into the fields, and it’s acting pretty much the same way as the twitter dialogue that was coming up last year, so i’m going to guess that it’ll go away eventually.

the rapture still hasn’t happened… i’ll let you know something else comes up… 8)

Scientists confirm Extraterrestrial genes in Human DNA – for some reason i thought this was appropriate, despite the fact that it was originally posted in 2007…

Family Radio, which is harold camping’s “ministry” is offline… it’s the end of the world as they know it…