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
April 11, 2017 - 9:59 a.m.
I'm starting to write at 9:18, that's not bad. Good thing; I have another long day coming up. I've had a lot of long days of late. Yesterday was a long and winding road full of sound and fury signifying nothing. Like my mixed reference? It's apropos.
I finally went out to WFDU on the campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University to record my NERFA discoveries show. NERFA was in November. Every time I was scheduled to record it something came up to prevent it. Yesterday the stars aligned and Brian booked us studio time. The station's format has changed to Retro but there's more freedom on their HD2 channel and that's where this will be broadcast as a special.
I live on City Island and the station is in Teaneck NJ; to get there it takes two NY Transit buses, a subway, and then a NJ Transit Bus. I somehow made it there on time. I arrived before Brian so I just sat in the shade under a tree and read the NY Times. That was nice, it was a beautiful day.
We didn't go straight to the station, first we went to Boston Market for lunch. I haven't been there in ages. It was great. I did something I never do, I ordered corn that isn't on the cob. What do you call corn that's not on the cob? Cobless corn? I decided to celebrate my Crohn's disease being in remission by having corn and that's all they had. It was delicious. We couldn't go straight to the station because there were other people there. I continued my preparation of a second show. I figured that as long as it takes me so long to get there I should do two shows. That didn't quite work out. I did not finish the second show. I told Brian that I'd finish it while recording the first show.
When we got to the station we discovered there'd been a mix-up; the studio we booked was already in use. We had to use the small studio affectionately called "the closet." On the show, I referred to it as a phone booth. I joked that we had to keep putting quarters in after every song. It was not meant for two people. There was only one mic so it was more than cramped. It was a struggle getting two chairs in there. I had to disassemble one and reassemble it inside. I had to find a power strip and plug it in as there were no available outlets. It was a struggle. We ended up starting to record three hours later than I planned. I wasn't going to be able to do the second show anyway.
The show was in two parts, the first was the aforementioned NERFA discoveries the second explored "three-part harmony" if you don't count well. I was excited over that. I asked some of my favorite harmony groups which songs of theirs had the most interesting harmonies. I wanted to make the point I often make here, that harmony is a means of expression; there's a lot more to it than sounding pretty.
I was supposed to record a promo for Brian but we both forgot about it and I had to catch the bus back to the George Washington Bridge terminal. Brian walked me back there. The major accomplishment is that I didn't forget my computer or phone chargers there.
This is where I'd normally publish my playlist and tell you when it was going to be aired. You should know that normal and I do not get along. When I got home I got a message from Brian. The thumb drive he recorded the show on was broken. We have to do it again. We're going to make it simpler. He already has all the songs on his computer so all we need to do is record our talking. This might work out for the best as we should have the right studio with two microphones and be able to move. This was the stateroom scene from the night at the opera. It hampered our banter and that's a big part of the fun of the show. Brian and I are funny in a train wreck with clowns, sort of way; "it was tragic yet funny like a train wreck with clowns." Trainwreck with Clowns was the Comedia del Arte busking band that Carey and I had. It's the only one of our fake bands that actually performed. That means it wasn't fake but it's still a fake band. That description sums up both the band and me and Brian on the radio.
Today is the one day of the year I'm Jewish in the religious sense; I am making my annual pilgrimage to the holy land of Norwalk CT for the best Seder in the world. Before you argue, we have kazoos. I have another long and winding road to get there. I can't just get the train in Harlem which would be easy. I have to go to my PO Box and then down to Penn Station where the New York Transit lost and found is. My backpack is there. Then it's off to Grand Central to get my train I could use a day relaxing but I'm not there yet.
Wow I finished this before ten! I am going to once again forego the politics and have an early breakfast.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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