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

June 08, 2013 - 12:24 p.m.

Burb Trek

When I linked to my blog from 10 years ago I had to edit it and replace every smart quote and apostrophe with a straight one because Firefox couldnt handle them. Why can't it handle them? Why aren't what is standard in written and printed English part of standard HTML? They look nice and are easier to read.

I know that's a strange way to start a blog but I used this document to do the find and replace and just deleted that before starting anew.

As long as I'm false starting I'll show you this.


Not quite me.

I spent the day looking for a place to live and proofreading for somebody else, none of which is much to talk about. Talking about the former gives me anxiety and the latter is actually fun and maybe one day I'll talk about the joys of proof reading but not today. I didn't do the going outside myself and getting perspective thing which is he source of everything I write. As I said when I started doing this ages ago I don't write about what happens to me but what I thought about. This isn't journalism it's memoir.

Last night I ventured into the rain into not deepest darkest New Jersey but wet and yucky New Jersey to go to the The Outpost in the Burbs in Montclair. It's one of my favorite venues filled manned by many friends but it is very hard for a New Yorker to get there. When I drove it meant braving rush hour traffic and having to cross Manhattan. Now I take the train but it's a hike from the nearest stations. Next time I'll take the bus which is much closer. But maybe not trains are much more fun. The real problem is the timing of the last train home. I'll come back to that later.

I had some last minute delays here so I left later than I wanted to. I lost the time that I left for grabbing dinner in Penn Station. I got there 12 minutes before the train left but that did not leave me enough time to buy a ticket. There are long lines them and the NJ Transit system is worse than the LIRR's so the line moves every slowly. Most things about NJ Transit are worse than the LIRR. It's the worst of the area's three commuter railroads. So I just got on the train and paid the $5 penalty for buying the ticket onboard. The conductor was delightful. That is not a rarity. People that work in the stations are not happy but the people that ride the choo choo are doing something that people dream of doing as a kid. So even though they stand on their feet and have to deal with the public that rarely project not liking what they are doing. They also seem to be hippie types and characters. The one yesterday was a character.

The train was a bit late, perhaps because of the bad weather. Then I couldn't find my way out of the station. I've been there before but had no memory of it. There were no signs pointing ot the exits. Everyone else went to the parking lot. I had to find Bloomfield Ave. I asked someone and he pointed and said just get out of the station and you'll be there. He was wrong. It left me on a different street and I had to look at Google Maps to get myself oriented. It wasn't too bad. It left me on a street that is almost parallel and they met at the place I had to leave Bloomfield. Once I got there I knew how to go. The UU Church where the concerts are held is on Church Street. Sort o easy to remember. There are many churches there. I don't think it's a coincidence.

Wow I've written a lot and have just gotten to the venue and I did the going outside myself and getting perspective thing at the show so I have things to say. I even remember some of them.

The lineup was Tall Heights, Bobtown, and The Jammin' Divas. I was doing merch for Bobtown and they were doing sound check when I arrive. I love that I got there and got greeted by Gail and Bill, Bob, and Mike and did not have to go into being on the list. Like I said, I know a lot of people there. I bet as usual I'm forgetting people too.

While I was waiting for Bobtown to finish and before I found the Divas I talked to volunteers. This is how I get to know so many people. I talk to anybody that isn't busy. I really enjoyed hearing the men talking about how beautiful the women in the bands were. I get immediate status from knowing them. Men are all 12-years-old. Not me. I'm six.

This show is a tribute to he power of NERFA. I discovered all of the bands there. Bobtown is the best example. I never even heard of them till last November. They weren't a topic of conversation in my crowd. Since them they've been booked by Bill, John Platt, Coco, and Mark Miller. They are now not just my friends but part of my community.

It is such a community. Each of the bands has done John Platt's On Your Radar. Technically not true, Tall heights is playing Thursday.

The Divas just get better every time I see them. I have said that they become a different band depending on whose song they are doing. But now I realize they are a different band for each of Becky's songs. They did three of hers. one was sort of singer/songwriter, one blues, and one funny. My favorite was the blues but I always have a softspot for funny. She wrote about coming out as a sing. That totally took me outside of myself I could write an entire entry on that. Just saying that sentence says a lot about both sexual preference identification and art. If I hadn't written a thousand words already and not gotten to Bobtown the band I had new revelations about I'd go into it now.

I love that the Divas make sure to give credit to Hadar for arranging the songs. It's not just because I love Hadar as a person but because she does such a great job of it. She turns three solo artists and her flute playing, into a band. It doesn't sound like a side project.

So now onto Bobtown. It's amazing how soon they became one of "my bands" even though I haven't seen them often. I might have seen Karen solo more than them as a band. I have certainly seen Katherine socially more. They are one of the only bands that I've listened to their CD more than I've heard them life. But that's not what I wanted to get to. It's that I realized that in some ways I enjoy them with the same part of my brain that appreciates Bach. You have to get meta to see this. Meta is my natural state. It hit me when they did Battle Creek (no it is not a song about Kelloggs). Listen for the clapping

Fred, Katherine, and Jen (who I will make sure to not call Karen) are all clapping different rhythms (I love the vowel deficient spelling of rhythms). You have to process different threads simultaneously. That's a hallmark of their music, and of Bachs. They do it harmonically, lyrically, and instrumentally. The song only exists when you put it all together. Sometimes it isnt simultaneous but happens across time as the song moves from section to section. Hardly any of their songs are strophic. The verses are not the same melody with different words. Not only can I pay full attention to every line of every song I'm forced to or I miss too much. OK I don't have to as I was thinking this while listening to Battle Creek but that was a lot of work for my brain. Good thing I was wide awake.

I only saw Tall Heights from a doorway at NERFA. I had heard such good things about them but so did everyone else. The room was packed. I introduced myself to them in the Green Room before the show. But I still didn't get to see their full set because we had to leave to catch that last train to Clarksville, well New York actually. Like at NERFA I didn't get to hear as much as I would like but I liked what I heard. They are doing On Your Radar on Thursday so I'll catch them then. You have to like a band where someone plays a cello standing up. Its held by straps over his shoulders. I'll save writing about them till I can sit and watch and go outside myself while listening.

We had to leave before their set was over. We being me and Bobtown sans Fred who had a car and the equipment. We got rides to the train station which was nice and made it with ten minutes to spare. I had time to buy my ticket this time. When I tried using my debit card to pay it just reset on its own before I could enter my PIN. Actually before it asked for it. So I decided to try cash. That was sort of fun as I only had a $20 and got 13 dollar coins as change.

Katherine and I took the same subway home but first I had to grab something to eat. Notice I never mentioned dinner. So I didn't eat dinner till well after midnight and then it was just a sandwich from the deli. Not a very good one either. On the bright side living like that helps me lose weight.

I was pretty wet when I got back. the arms of my trench coat sprung a leak. Can that be waterproofed? My socks were not in good shape either. Not that I'm complaining it was worth it.

Remember the days when I would write 600 words not 1747?





Annoying People - September 03, 2016
This Play Was The Pits - September 02, 2016
Banking on Getting Better or Avoiding Katastrophe. - September 01, 2016
Unlike Gilligan I Got Off the Island - August 31, 2016
Call of the Wilder - August 30, 2016




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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License. Horvendile June 08, 2013
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