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
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
May 30, 2015 - 7:18 p.m.
I'm sleepy but it's late and I'm going out again tonight so I have to write. Let's see if I can pull this off I always say I can blog in my sleep so I should be able to.
Last night I did something for the first time that I should have been doing for years; I went to Terre Roche's Sunset Singing Circle. at Wagner Park. To add to the shame it wasn't even on my own initiative, Dan asked me to go with him. I have been seeing Terre since before Dan was born. I have sang Christmas Carols with her since he was a small child. Fred went last year. So why haven't I gone before? Come on you know the answer. Everyone together now. I'm an idiot.
It is incredibly easy for me to get there from where I live. It is all of five stops from me on the followed by walking a few blocks from the Bowling Green Station. So remember how I told you about my friend that couldn't find Battery Park from the Bowling Green Station? When I got there I decided to see how that was possible. I don't know the stop well and got off the obvious exit which is the furthest one from Battery Park. I got out and made believe I didn’t know where I was going, that I was just going to turn around till I saw something that looked like a park. It took me all of five seconds .I can't see how it is possible to see it. If you get off the closer exit it is right across the street. I wonder if she got off the wrong station.
I thought the song circle started at 7:30 and was planning on meeting Dan at 7:00. Because it was so easy to get to I could plan it perfectly and arrived at 6:58. Too bad I had the time wrong, it started at 7:00. I didn't miss anything but we sat far from Terre and more importantly I lost hanging out with Dan time.
We picked up our songbooks and Dan got a mat to sit on. I brought my stadium seat. I need back support. This is what we saw from our seat.
I should have taken note of every song we did. There is such a range. I suggested the second song, The Cuckoo. That's from the Anthology of American Folk Music to the Beatles, to Old MacDonald, there are lots of kids, to Lord help me Lorde. I sang along to everything but Royals On one song I played kazoo. One song was out of my range and I stopped singing then rethought it and tried to find a harmony I could sing. I might have sort of succeeded .Dan is way too nice to say the perhaps truthful,, "stop singing that is not a harmony and you are making my ears bleed." I am a terrible singer but I love singing and I am not afraid to sing in groups. You shouldn't be either. Here's the thing, as bad as I am there's always plenty of people worse, at least when I am not with my musician friends. And if you are the worst one there don't let that stop you. You serve a purpose you let someone else NOT be the worst singer there. You don't even have to sing sotto voce. Just don't sing very loudly.
I was rewarded with the joy of singing. I was rewarded with Dan's company. I was rewarded by hearing others sing. I was rewarded by seeing this.
That second picture was taken using the camera' HDR shooting mode. It takes two pictures with different exposure times and combines them. That's why in the second you can see the people. It's a very useful feature when the lighting isn't uniform. Of course sometimes you want silhouettes. I like the second more for what it does to the sky away from the sunset than the people.
Then just to make things even better this passed on the river just as we were about to end.
We finished with the song that should always end group sings, "Goodnight Irene." This is for now my default plan for Friday nights in May and June.
When it was over we headed to the subway and headed in opposite directions. I just missed my train by seconds. If a woman had not walked by slowing between the stairs and the train door I would have made it. Still I didn't wait too long for the next though it was longer than I stayed on the train. I went just one stop so I shop at Trader Joe's.
This morning I got up early for Joe's memorial service. Even though I'm not at all on the way Jim offered to give me a ride. That meant leaving at 9:00 instead of 8:00 and still needing a train from the Queens Village LIRR station. I was good and got up at 8:00 so I could make breakfast
The service was in the same church in Queens that Lori not LORi and Joe got married in. I navigated as its' my old neighborhood. We got there a half hour early but many people were there earlier. I know Lori from WFUV and the station contingent was there in force. I sat with Brian, Jim, and Laura. All the WFUV people sat together, Stephen, Sam, Kathy, Linda, and John. Who am I forgetting? Most were sitting behind us so I don't have a mental image of them sitting. Rona, Bob, and Lyle were also there they knew Lori before WFUV.
The service was done the way I like. It was primarily friends and family speaking from the heart. Some were all choked up. Some managed to be funny. You know that's what I want at mine and it's what Joe said he wanted. But it was all sincere and all spoke of the Joe I know. It wasn't like the last funeral I attended where people said generic things that didn't reflect who the deceased was. Yeah I'm not giving names on that. It finished with everybody singing Bob Marley's "Three Little Birds." We sang that last night too. That's one of my special songs that bears repeating.
After the service many of us went to Bourbon Street, the restaurant where the reception for Joe and Lori's wedding was. Brian and I were the only ones that met Lori and Joe at WFUV that went. The lunch was good. When we got there nobody was eating. My reaction was, "Am I the only Jewish one here? We head straight for the food. There was a touching slideshow that Joe's kids put together. I made my way into it a few times.
Brian graciously said he'd drive me home. I'm sort of but not really on the way. I navigated to my house but I got a message from him that my directions for him to get back to Jersey had problems. I don't know in what way. It should have worked. Google Maps said it was the fastest in light of the traffic. It was not the way I would have sent him.
OK so now I'm going out in 23 minutes so I better finish this up and post it.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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