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
June 15, 2016 - 6:09 p.m.
I'm sleepy but instead of taking a nap I'm going to write because I love My Gentle Readers. If you want to reward me with some iced coffee delivered while I write this, it might even come out coherent.
Yesterday was John Platt's On Your Radar. That's pretty much the archetype of normalcy for me. Of course getting there is a bit more of a challenge than it is from Brooklyn I left the hospital and took the 5 bus to the Harrison MetroNorth station. I then had to wait half an hour for the train. I get off the train in New Rochelle and get on the 45 bus to Pelham Bay Park. From there it is the to 125th street where I changed to the express to 14th street. Tired yet? From there I could take two more trains to get to Rockwood but I had a lot of time so I walked and grabbed dinner. That was just peanut butter at University Bagels. I was still early so when I got to 1st Ave and 1st Street I stopped to read in the shade at First Park. There was live music, official live music with a sound system. I have no idea when that started or how long it will continue. I got to Rockwood at 6:15. Doors are at 6:30 but I always try and get there early to see if everything is running smoothly and to make sure that there are reserved signs on the first row of tables. There weren't yesterday so I made my own. When I know the artists I schmooze but I don't so when I went upstairs to use the bathroom and saw friends waiting to go down I hung out with them, even Lori not LORi, and she hates me. She denies that but you know it's true; you read it on the internet. As usual Fred joined me at my table. As usual Lori not LORi made Rona and Bob sit in the back in the seats furthest from me. Later they were joined by Suzanne.
This month's artists were; A Fistful of Sugar, Mark Newman, and, Hillary Bratton. That was three very different acts. Hillary interprets the songs of her bandmate, Barry Reynolds. They are gentle mood evoking songs. She was followed by Mark Newman who plays Rock and electric Blues, about as different as you can get. He plays acoustic guitar on some of the songs but there is nothing folk about them; gentle is not a word that comes to mind in describing his music. Fistful of Sugar looks like another string band with the requisite bearded men. Their songs are not standard string band fare. They have more intricate harmonies and unusual, sometimes silly subject matter. You do realize that silly is a compliment. Their attitude is clearly, "We are here to have fun and hope you do to."
So who else was at the show, Jenai, Dan, Matthew, Paul, and Kathryn. She is producing the East Village Folk Festival this Sunday featuring: Malcolm Holcombe, Greg Trooper, Diana Jones, David Massengill, Paul Sachs, Amy Allison, Sandy Bell, and Alan Kaufman. Guess who is doing the merch. Come on guess. You're no fun. You'll have to go to find out. One hint; he's eye candy.
I figured out what they do on the BX29 busses. They wait at the subway station for the to pull in and then leave before the people on it can board the bus. I just miss the bus far too often for coincidence. At night that means a half hour wait till the next one. For the second time there was this odd family on the bus, parents and two children, a baby in a stroller and a five-year-old. The parents don't sit together. Last night the father was in the front group of sideways facing seats and the mother in the front of the back half of the bus. Then they talk to each other by shouting during the ride. It's not angry shouting, it's just so they can be heard. I'm not sure if they are aware there are other people on the bus.
Yesterday in my program I finally got to talk about something traumatic that I've never discussed in therapy before. It happened years before I had a therapist and was not germane to the problems I was there to deal with. It felt good to finally get to tell the story and see and hear that everyone else including the therapist leading the group, felt my pain. You're never sure you're not making too much of something till you get the reactions from other people.
Today I was down in the City at DSS again, I'll be there again tomorrow. It's a bureaucracy but the people there tend to be nice. They are aware of how annoying the procedures are. They are also very understanding. I'm going through evaluations now. I took aptitude tests; some of them are hard. One type I first saw on the arms forces aptitude test. They show you a picture of a paper shape with dotted lines. You have to figure out which three dimensional shape it would take if you folded it along the lines. They give you very little time to figure it out, just seconds. My eyesight makes that a bit more difficult.
I'm tired and doing laundry and not going out tonight or the next so I will have time to write a thoughtful entry on what happened in Orlando when I get back tomorrow. That's the plan at least. Something could come up that I feel the need to write about.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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