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
March 19, 2017 - 12:00 p.m.
I'm in the middle of a run of bad luck but managed to have a very good day anyway. I told you about my mishaps on St. Paddy's Day in my last entry; the run continued yesterday. Yesterday was a holiday too, one I neglected to mention to anyone; the anniversary of the destruction of The One Ring in the Cracks of Doom. If you look at the LOTR chronology it says that happened on March 25 but if you read the appendix on the calendar, you'll see that the calendar of the Steward's Reckoning and the Shire Reckoning is not the same as ours and the date in our calendar was the 18th. Even though I didn't say anything I hope you celebrated. I did in my heart, where Jimmy Carter lusted. What was I talking about? Oh yes, bad luck. After I finished writing yesterday I went downstairs to make breakfast. I was walking to the kitchen and felt that my foot was wet. I never wear shoes in the house, I wear slipper-socks. I figured something had spilled. I looked down. It was far worse. One of the cats did his business on the floor instead of the litter box and I had stepped on it. My sock was not a pretty sight. I ran to the bathroom and washed out the sock in the sink. Then I scrubbed my foot. Then I put on new socks and went to make breakfast. I did not throw up. I'm queasy about these things so that was not a given. I'm queasy now just writing about it. That was not the end of the bad luck.
Last night I went to see A World of Women's Voices with Sharon Goldman, http://bevgrant.com/, and Villa Palagonia. This is what salvaged the day. The show was in Teaneck, NJ but I got a ride with Allison and Joe. They live on the Upper West Side and even thought it's two buses and two trains away by City Island Standards it's easy to get to. I could do it with one train but the timing was perfect on the express that I took for one stop. See, I had some good luck. My timing was perfect. I got off the train to switch to the crosstown bus. I zipped my coat. I reached into my pocket for my hat. I came up empty. I lost my hat! That was at least the third hat I lost this winter. To make it worse this was the hat I was most careful about. It was a Bev Grant original, she knitted it for me. It was not just made with love but it was stylish. I did appreciate the irony that I lost it on my way to see Bev.
I have been to Joe and Allison's before a number of times. That did not stop me from getting lost, twice on a super easy walk. When I got off the bus I had to walk down two blocks. I knew that but was so busy thinking about my hat that I forgot and walked due west. I realized when their address didn't exist what I had done. I walked back to the avenue and walked a block downtown. I got to their address, I could see it was wrong. Did you catch what I did? I walked one block not two. I knew I needed to walk too but I was preoccupied by thinking about how I had walked down the wrong block before. That irony was not lost on me either.
I got to their building and recognized it as the right one. It's a walkup. I remember them being on the 150th floor. I remembered wrong. They are on the fifth. I must be in better shape now. I'm almost but not quite finished with the bad luck.
They were still practicing when I arrived. That meant I got a free show. Practicing off mic is when music sounds best.
They had good parking luck and were just a few blocks away. That's good parking luck for New York. I did Sherpa duty. They bring a lot of instruments to a show. The ride to the show was easy, it's only 20 minutes away on the other side of the George Washington Bridge. That does not count as a local show because they had to pay a toll. That's my rule from when I had a car.
We were the last to arrive. I walked in the door before Joe and Allison and I was carrying the percussion so I told Sharon and Bev that I was taking Villa Palagonia place. The jig was up when they walked in 5 seconds later.
Do I need to tell you that I was not there just as eye candy but to sell the merch? I was eye candy but that wasn't my only duty. I'd have had a good time even if they never played any music, I got to hang out with four of my favorite people in a place called The Puffin Center. There were puffins but they weren't living real puffins. I was disappointed as I thought there would be cereal. The pizza made me get over that. There were also cashews. Didn't I say I was going to stop talking about food? It's hard getting over an addiction. I just take it one day at a time.
Brian was in the audience and took some great pictures. Brian always takes great pictures. I thought he knew everyone but Bev but didn't really know Sharon, Allison, and Joe. Allison is the biggest fan of Brian and me as a radio team. I'll be going down next week to record a show.
The show was a collaboration. Each artist did their own songs but the others joined in. I have felt that Sharon and VP should do a show together as their latest albums are both themed on exploring their cultural heritage, Allison is Sicilian and Sharon is my people, Eastern European Jewish. The difference is she was brought up religion. I grew up loving bacon. Bev does labor songs that fit in well with some of the VP songs.
I did the Tarantella with Allison again. The timing was bad. I had to run to the bathroom and I heard her start to introduce the show and teach everyone how to dance. I've done it many times but I have no head for dancing. All I know is the rhythm. I have no rhythm. I did make it back to my place in the back as the song was starting so I was ready when Allison made her way to the back. I was brilliant. Fred Astaire would have been jealous. Too bad nobody recorded it and you didn't get to see.
Damn it. The show was recorded by the venue. If you ever see it remember that video ads 15 pounds and a left foot to people.
After the show, we were the last to leave. We had much more to schlep than the others. I got dropped off right by the Select Bus I needed. It had to cross from Manhattan to the other side of the Bronx but because it's a select bus that has few stops it took only half an hour. I got there a minute before the bus to City Island scheduled to leave. I thought this was perfect. I went to the stop and saw only one person there. That didn't bode well. I checked my app, the bus had just left. That meant waiting half an hour. That's the last piece of bad luck. The wait for the bus was tied with the select bus ride as being the longest leg of the trip.
Yesterday was a great night of music. I have music scheduled every night till Thursday. I think I might skip Thursdays. The other days I'm committed to doing the merch, seeing someone that I have never seen outside of NERFA, or going on an expedition to Connecticut with Kevin. I might end up skipping Tuesday too. I also have to record with Brian one day.
Now I should eat. I am not going to tell you what. See, I can stop. It's a process. Maybe there's a 12-step-program for people that blog about food.
Healthcare into the Maelstrom - March 25, 2017
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