I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken

Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
-Bertrand Russell

What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell

August 05, 2015 - 11:30 a.m.

Thor's Day at Falcon Ridge

This is my first morning write in a week! That's like going a week without coffee in the morning. Yet I somehow survived. It's a Falcon Ridge miracle. Yesterday was boring, I had therapy and crashed. I did make something interesting for dinner. I put hot dogs and cheese whiz in garlic naan bread. Are you gagging or licking your lips?

Now back to writing about what's important, Falcon Ridge. Today starts the easy stuff, telling you what I did day by day. There's no pressure to give words of wisdom. Let it be.

Just as last year Fred picked me up at my house just as rush hour was ending. Our timing was great. He arrived shortly after I ferried the last of my stuff onto my porch. For once I didn't forget anything too important, just phone charging cords and there are plenty of those around. We didn't have to make any stops at a stores for last minute supplies. I lost all my camping gear with my stuff in storage so of course I had less to bring.

We went up what has become my favorite way, Route 22. It's nice driving through towns and such. I also like that once we are on the Jackie Robinson we make no turns till we get to Dodd's Farm. All we have to do is choose the right fork in the road. Yes these are the things that amuse me.

We arrived at about one. NOOOOO. I don't remember who the first person I saw that I know was. Did I really not know anyone down at the box office? I find that hard to believe. Back in the day I'd get there when the gates opened and was guided in by Phil and often waited right next to a friend. There was a bit of confusion finding my name on the guest list from WFUV. I knew I was on the list, I had just talked to Janeen not long before. Turned out the problem was that the volunteer wasn't looking at the WFUV list. I spotted the right list and my name. That's a good trick as I can't really see.

I talked about my arrival at the Budgiedome in my last entry. I had one scheduling concern. I hadn't heard from Kaia Kater who we had slotted to lead off on Saturday. She was supposed to play the Lounge Stage so I figured that I'd see her there. I headed down there and spotted everyone but her. When I tracked down Jake Bush he told me that she cancelled. Oh well. That just meant rearranging the entire Saturday schedule. That pretty much is part of the job.

The problem with the lounge stage is that I always spend more time socializing than listening to the music even when I love who's playing. There's always somebody I haven't seen in ages there. Oh wait I'm getting ahead of myself. I forgot an idiot story.

OK so there I was back at camp, the Steeple Tent actually, when Paul comes over and tells me that he just heard Kaia from the Lounge Stage on the radio. I had to race down there. So I did and almost got there when things looked strange. I didn't see the stage. I did hear someone call my name. I saw a shape but he was too far away to make out who it was. It was Graydon James from the Young Novelist. Thirty seconds later we were joined by Laura Spink, his wife and bandmate. They are the epitome of the kind of people I have to talk to at Falcon Ridge. They live in Canada, I hardly ever see them socially or musically. I love them personally and musically. I asked them where the stage was. They said, "Over there." They had not been to Falcon Ridge before but they were pointing to the official stages. Then I realized I had gone to where the Lounge Stage used to be at their camp. Now the Lounge Stage is the Dance Tent at the other end of the farm. It meant it took me a long time to get there but it also meant I had quality time with two of my favorite people. Of course they were there to play the Lounge Stage. I wish I had known. I'd have asked them to play the Budgiedome. They wouldn't have been able to as they left the next morning but I still would have asked. Maybe next year. Here was the Lounge Stage Schedule:

I arrived in time for the 7:20 set. I didn't hear any entire sets but listened to parts of all of them except the last. Oh wait, Jean did Arise Arise then. I heard that. I did the pinball things wandering around inside and outside the tent. There were just so many people I was delighted to see.

Then I went back to the Budgiedome to set up for the song circle. For the first time ever I got a ride up with Neale who also drove up Annika. When we got there it was already set up and filled with musicians. The Lounge Stage ran late and our musicians didn't. Most years we wait around half an hour after Lounge Stage for people to show up. It helps that we had lots of Chicks with Dip and their friends. Do we have the list of who sang anyplace Paul? We do! Here it is.

Charles Nolan
Michael Laureanno
Carolann Solebello
Mark Allen Berube+
Sharon Goldman
The YaYas
Karen Dahlstrom
Amy Soucy
Honor Finnegan
Megan Mercadante
Katie Martorano
Eva Rubin
Gordon Nash
Camela Widad+
Abby Lopaty
Mya Byrne+
Kirsten Maxwell
Fred Arcoleo
Aaron Nathans & Michael G. Ronstadt
Shawn Taylor

Notice that I'm on the list! Yes I sang. I wrote a filk for the occasion. I did it again on Saturday and it was videoed but I'm not sure it came out. If not I might record it here and subject you to my dissonant piercing wail.

Do you know who is missing from this list? The Mercadante Family Singers. Know something I'm going to name them after Emily and call them the Van Nort Family Singers then we can make a musical about them. The kids did a hand clapping song then at something like 1 AM Maggie joined the adults for Stand. I always kept verklempt at that.

Look at all the musical luminaries on that list. This was perhaps our best song circle ever. Even if it was ruined by me. Our goal with the song circle was to replicate what SMAF did, have the pros mixing with the festival goers with no boundaries. And that's what happened. Come up and join us next year. Don't get intimidated singing after great singers, get inspired. I guarantee you everyone will be supportive.

So that's the story of Falcon Ridge Thursday. I'm still not up to music on the main stage. Don't worry the worth will be worth it. Wow that comes off as egotistical. Well it will make me happy if you read what I have to say. I might not make music well but I appreciate it with the best of them.

What to make for breakfast? I think I'm going with poached eggs. I didn't have that while I was away.





Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
Late to Bed and Late to Rise - September 30, 2017
On Your Feet or On Your Knees - September 29, 2017
Why Life Doesn't End on Closing Day - September 28, 2017
Anna and King of I Am - September 27, 2017



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Horvendile August 05, 2015
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