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
December 29, 2013 - 1:22 p.m.
I can't remember the last time I slept as late as I did today, 10:48. I missed almost all of John Platt's show. I'll have to listen when it's posted on the archives. The reason I slept so late is that I not only got home late but had a rare bout of insomnia. Usually no matter what my problems are I can fall right asleep.
I didn't do pretty much anything during the day but last night I made the trek into the not so frozen north, Hastings-on-Hudson to see The Lords of Liechtenstein and their sweater vests at Common Ground Community Concerts. I get there via Metro North at Grand Central Terminal and for some reason I always make the timing tight when I go there. It might be because it's just one train so it's so easy to get there. I meant to leave early and have dinner but I could not get myself moving. That meant grabbing something on the run. I went to the fancy hot dog stand that was quite close to the platform my train was leaving from. I had seven minutes which I didn't think would be an issue. There were two people in front of me but they were together. While the person at the counter got their drinks I gave my order, the hot dog with cheese and bacon and a pretzel, stop giving me that disapproving look, and you stop being jealous, to the other person working there who got them. And then I waited for the first people's order to get done, and I waited, and I waited, and I waited. The woman at the cash register seemed to have a lot of difficulty figuring out their drinks, which were in bottles. I finally said, "Can I just pay?" And she said, "No just wait a minute." I said but my train is leaving in I minute!" She said "That's doesn't matter." I was starved so I grabbed my food and left a ten, way too much money, and said, "give the change to the person behind me in the line." I hope she did. I would have missed my train if I had waited and I had no other chance to get food. I was not happy about that.
Carter, the Emperor of Westchester Folk Music, picked me up at the station and brought me back to the UU where the coffeehouse is. I grabbed some dessert, chocolate cheese cake, and coffee, and chatted with the volunteers. It was an unusual bill, essentially a high school talent show followed by the Lords and then the headliner Johanna Warren. I wasn't there for the start and I'm not fond of open mics so I had felt no need to go right in. I went to look for what Carter called, "The Royal Family of Liechtenstein," Dan and Noah, the Lords, their parents, Michael and Star, and their sister Autumn who I met for the first time. I couldn't find them. They had gone into the performance space. I didn't see them when I walked in and grabbed a seat. then Dan spotted me and called me over to join them. Yes I am a friend of Royalty and sat in the Royal box. Well OK, a row of folding chairs but the honor is what matters. And of course I was chauffeured by an emperor. You may touch me if you like.
I have unusual honor at Lords shows. Their song "Girlz" is always dedicated to me. They wrote a songs that's the story of my life, it's only fair. I don't get royalties.
Most times I see them it's for an audience that never heard of them. I love hearing and seeing the excitement as other people discover them. They always go over big. That's why I had them at the Budgiedome.
I took some pictures.
Nice little Folkie Boys
Then they took not just me but their father by surprise by switching instruments! I never saw that before.
Noah said he couldn't play the guitar, and then proceeded to play it. We talked about that after the show. He cannot play it from a professional point of view. He can do one finger picking pattern well enough to do it on stage. He'd be great from an amateur point of view. It's like me talking about music. If I talk to a layman I sound like I know everything. I know way more than the average layman. If I talk to musician I'm an ignoramus. I know far less than the average musician.
Johanna is also a young performer. I don't see well and my pictures of her didn't come out usual but it struck me that she looked like a young Suzanne Vega. I thought that's how she might sound but she was more like Dar. She does that thing with her voice. Now Carey knows exactly what I mean when I say that. You might too. I hope so it's too hard to put into words but it has to do with how long syllables are sung. Of course sounding like Dar is a far cry from writing or performing like Dar. She did not excite me but she's touring with Iron and Wine so I'm sure she excites others. I didn't get to hear too much of her because a few songs in I had to go to the bathroom. That didn't take long but when I came out I started talking to Star, Dan and Noah's mother, who was outside by their merch. We talked and talked and as I was about to go back in the crowd let out. She was finished. Oh well.
I had to get back to the train and Carter was busy so I got a ride to the station in the Royal Carriage. That was so nice of them as there really wasn't room in their car for six people. I don't know what happened with the timing of the train. I thought I wouldn't have long to wait but when I checked it was 45 minutes. At first I was not happy about that then I realized what the hell does it matter? It wasn't like I had home I was looking forward to get back to. I stayed in the waiting room which was arm and read which was probably being more productive than I'd be at home. I'm rereading Mission of Gravity by Hal Clement, a hard science fiction book that I read in high school. It takes place in the far future where we can send missions to planets that circle other stars. And to record moving images they use film movie cameras. This was in the 50s, he had them having the equivalent of two way video cams but Clement had no notion of improved systems of storing information. Not quite as bad as James Blish putting huge vacuum tubes in the engines that allow entire Cities to travel in space in his Cities in Flight series. Here's a hint. If you place a story in the far future don't mention any specific current technology. Assume everything will be done differently.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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