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
September 16, 2015 - 12:52 p.m.
Yesterday at around 3:30 I posted on Facebook: "I'm an idiot again. It never ceases, does it?" When I do that I think, "Oh good I have something to write about." Then last night it hit me. I don't remember what I did idiotic. I've been trying to remember and I think I succeeded and there is irony. I'm an idiot because I forgot to put something in the last edition of Wise Madness. Five years ago Red Molly wrote and sang this.
Yes I have a theme song. I had posted it in old editions of wise madness but the site that hosted them disappeared and the original is on a computer that I don't have access too. So as a person that needs constant affirmation I wrote Abbie and Laurie and asked if they had it and could send it to me. Abbie did! Now I have it and it's safe on the cloud.
Let's see if I can return to idiot stories later. It's something else I've been meaning to write but now I have to write about yesterday.
One more thing about today. I just resisted responding to someone saying something idiotic on FB. I'll say my response here. Magic doesn't actually work. Painting pictures of animals on the cave wall do on ensure a successful hunt.
But I just now responded to something stupid someone else said on another thread. He was talking about how WFUV played great new music then said how he just hear, The Kinks, Wilco, and Bell(sic) and Sebastian. I'm sure he doesn't think they were new, he just couldn't keep his concentration up for an entire sentence.
OK so last night I went to see John Platt's On Your Radar, this month's artists were Mark Allen Berube, Lover's League, Mason Porter. There were so many responses to the Facebook event that I thought we might have a sellout. I always get there early but I wanted to be extra sure because I had to save some seats. I also get paranoid because Rockwood forgot to put the reserve signs on the front row and someone took my table. They didn't buy it when I said that it was supposed to be saved.
I do get to go in before doors so I hear sound check. It's nice to get a preview and to talk to the artists before the show. The only one I knew was Mark and he was up first so he checks last. He wasn't there when I got in but I introduced myself to the other bands. I heard Lover's League on WFUV Sunday Supper on Sunday night and heard one thing that I loved, Reverend TJ McGlinchey is a minister in the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster! So in addition to my usual gear I brought my FSM flag! When I introduced myself I showed him the flag.
I always know a lot of people at OYR but because Mark was playing I knew the majority. So I won't list them all. As always I sat with Fred and we were joined by Erika and Arthur. I saved the table behind his for Coco and Bruce.
I have written about Mark a 173 times (totally made up number). You'd think that I'd have run out of things to say .But nope, he still inspires me. John told him that he should do five or six songs if they were short. Mark did eight. He timed it out and knew he could fit that into his 24 minutes. Most but not all of Mark's songs are funny and he understands that you can't overextend a joke. A set by Mark is like an episode of Monty Python,. Each show was a series of short skits. The worst one was the Cleeseless episode that was all one skit about a bicycle tour of Russian. I might even be getting details wrong, I couldn't sit through it. But in the best episodes there were short skits which were a series of gags around a theme and as soon as they ran out of gags it was over. That's what Mark's songs are, a series of gags .Even the songs that aren't funny are structured the same. I always say how I love songs that go from A to B. That's now how Mark usually does it. If the song isn’t funny it's a series of observations or emotions by a character in a situation. Works great for two and a half minutes, maybe three. There is absolutely no fat on his songs or his albums. Sticky his latest is a bit over 40 minutes.
I got to kvell as I heard the entire audience laughing out loud. I started giggling at the harmonica introduction to My Left Arm in anticipation of what's coming. Then I got to hear the audience start to get the joke, not all at once. That's always fun to observe. I also love when someone does an out of genre cover of a song and people figure out what song it is at different times.
It makes me feel good to hear other people loving music that I think of as so personal. If they get it then to some degree they get me too. I often have doubts about that. Fred gave Mark perhaps the ultimate compliment, he said that the only other people that could write one of his songs was They Might Be Giants.
Mason Porter was the one band totally new to me. I might have heard them at Falcon Ridge during the emerging artists but I might have been distracted. They belong in the same tent as Spuyten Duyvil, the very high energy string bands but not quite tent. They really have to shorten the name of that tent.
After the show I had to apologize to Allison and Joe AKA Villa Palagonia. They asked me when the October OYR was and I said the usual second Tuesday as I hadn't heard differently. So they scheduled a show the third Tuesday. Guess what, OYR was moved back a week so they are conflicting. I'm going to actually miss an On Your Radar for another show. I don't do that very often.
I headed home and had a late dinner. I made Jerk Chicken. Last time I made it I forgot to put on the jerk seasoning so I had barbecue chicken instead. Yes sometimes I'm an idiot. But not last night. I had it with plantains so it was a Caribbean meal.
I have therapy today because Monday was Rosh Hashanah. Tonight I'm seeing Christine Lavin, Don White, and David Massengill. I'm actually going with somebody, Honor is joining me. I have to figure out what to do for dinner. I have two and a half hours after therapy, not worth going home so I'll pick up something.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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