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
January 02, 2015 - 10:53 a.m.
Let's see if I can finish this fast and actually get out of the house. I want to buy eggs and milk before breakfast. Now I guess I could just get them at C-Town a few blocks from here but it's more expensive there. I want to go to Trader Joe's. I'll see. Yes thanks to the generosity of some friends I have money to eat. Eating is good. Friends are better. Yesterday for breakfast since I had no eggs I had bacon and cheese on an English muffin. As much as I like bacon it needs to egg. Am I going to get thrown out of the bacon lovers club?
Yesterday I went to not one but two parties. My life might be in shambles but I'm still alive and while I'm alive I'm going to live. Dum spiro spero. Yes you have to look that one up. I don’t even have to look this up, that' the state motto of Maryland. How do I know? I had a book, "The Wit and Wisdom of Spiro Agnew" and that was on the title page along with saying it was the state motto of Maryland, where Agnew was once governor. OK let's check if it's still true. And it isn't. I bet it never was and the book lied. I could have just left it and had a good story but I couldn't. I have to be accurate and that means due diligence and checking my facts.
My first party was at Coco and Bruce's. They have an open house every New Year's Day and I won't miss it even when I'm invited to something else. Because I had the latter invitation I got there early, a little after 2 PM. When I got there, there were plenty of people but the only friends were the family. Vanessa standing by the door when I walked in so I got an immediate hug without having to look for people, great way to start a party. Oh and I was wrong, I knew Malcolm. I was just counting him as part of the family, he's Vanessa's friend.
Not long after I got there Sharon and Shannon showed up. Usually the party is largely musicians and we all sing together. Yes I join in the singing. No I am not a musician but I am part of "we." Then Karyn and Claude arrived. But that was it from our musical crowd. But we ate and talked and It was great. I love just being in that house, especially this time of year. It looks like a Christmas special. You keep thinking Andy Williams and Perry Como are going to walk in.
I got to indulge my eggnog thirst. I love eggnog and haven't had any this year. I of course waited for the unspiked bowl to be served.
My second party was Meg's birthday party, she's a New Year's baby. I knew that Sharon and Shannon would be going so shortly after they got there I asked if they could give me a lift. It's 15 minutes by car and about 35 by subway. Karyn and Claude were going too. Meg, Sharon, and Karyn are all Chicks with Dip, a woman's songwriter's collective. I'm part of the men's auxiliary, the Roosters.
We left at 4 and were one of the early arrivals at Meg's party. Sharon was once again the first musician guest to arrive. Well other than Meg but it was her party. Eventually there were a lot more, Aviv, Bev, Catherine & Jay, Carolann & Mark, their son, Katherine, Ansel, and one I just met whose name escapes me. And I was wrong. That's the singers but there was a another musician, Rich, he's a guitar player. He'll be playing with Meg at her CD release show. We talked about where we met. I think it was when he played with Amy Speace. He thinks it was longer ago than that. That's what happens, everything becomes a blur. Hell he just met Sharon a few weeks ago and they couldn't figure it out for a while. On the non-musician side there was Mike who was also at Coco's but he got there not long before we left.
I got many many many hugs. I needed that. I also got music. There were new songs from Meg and Sharon. The party was at Freddy's in the South Slope. What people in Park Slope call "Not Park Slope." I've been there many times. There have videos running all the time in the back room where the party was. They are neuro videos, clips from old weird movies strung together. While Meg was singing a murder ballad the video had someone being strangled. It was oddly appropriate but still distracting. Her next song was about tentacled monsters and the movie was about tentacled monsters! Of course that was just my interpretation of that song and I think most people don't realize that's what it's really about. I bet you didn't know that "All You Need I Love" was about the fall of the Parthian Empire.
It was nice hanging out with a bunch of my friends. I haven't done that in a while. It's really what I think of as "My Crowd." There were people there I didn't know well but so many that I did. I know the people from Meg's musical life. I bet I forgot somebody. People were moving around so I can't use my usual geographic method of listing everyone.
I stayed to the end, past the end. We finished with a sing along of "Auld Langs Syne." People don't listen to it. It's part of the background of New Year's Eve. But it's a great song. Robert Burns either wrote it or at least modified it. The history is murky. But it is one of the songs that will always get to me. As I've been feeling so George Bailey it means even more this year. Everyone get that I'm talking about the last scene of It's a Wonderful Life?
I was going to stop at Trader Joe' on the way home but I wanted to talk to LORi when I got home and I was by not stopping I got a ride home from Mike. I was right on his way. I knew that.
So I'm doing a bit better. My life is a mess but I'll get by with a little help from my friends. I have at least two messages that I have to read from friends offering advice. My anxiety still gets in the way of me dealing with that.
I'll leave you with this. Make sure to actually watch. Lots of people you know sitting in the gallery. I just fact checked. I just know two people and one wasn't in the gallery. But still watch. I love that at the opening of the Scottish Parliament building they didn't play a song singing the praises of Scotland but simply a great song that sounds like Scotland.
Damn that makes me cry.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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