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

August 06, 2014 - 11:48 a.m.

Falcon Ridge 2014 Part 2: The New Beginning

Now I'll back to the beginning of Falcon Ridge 2014. I actually packed the night before. I usually pack right before I leave. I realized that I never bought hand or bathroom wipes so I got up early and walked to Duane Reade and bought them in the morning. In fact the only thing I forgot were my extra ear plugs. I had some with me. I always keep them in my backpack just to make sure I'll have them at FRFF. For the first time ever I didn't have to stop on the way up to buy stuff..

Fred picked me up and my timing was perfect. He showed up just as I was ferrying things from the porch to the sidewalk. We packed up the car and moved to Beverly, Hillsdale that is. Fred had never been there so I navigated. Well once we hit he Jackie Robinson, that's the one part of the trip I'm never sure of. We took what I think of as the back route, 22 all the way up. that's nice as once we get on the Van Wyck we essentially make no turns till we get to the festival. That is of course unless there is construction on the Whitestone Bridge backing things up. So we took the Throgs Neck which meant a bit more maneuvering. Does anyone else feel the need to describe the route they took when discussing the best weekend of the year?

We made nice time and arrived at Dodd's Farm. I was disappointed that Phil didn't direct us into the parking lot. I like seeing a friendly face first thing when I get to the Festival. When we parked the car by the ticket booth I told Fred that's the furthest I've ever gotten before meeting someone I know. Then I looked out my window and saw Amy standing next to me. she had pulled in seconds before we did. So I saw someone I knew before getting out of the car. We were each other's first Falcon Ridge hug. There were many more. I won't chronicle the others to the last one.

There was a bit of trouble finding us on the comp list. Fred and I both got our tickets from WFUV. The woman assumed we were staff but we were with ticket winners. I wasn't worried. One year I got there before the list and they let me in anyway. I just had to leave my driver's license. I knew that Janeen could straighten things out.

Then we went up to the Budgiedome and I set up my tent. You didn't really believe that did you? I had to schmooze with everybody first. Lots and lots of hugs. Paul, Brianne, Chris, and Dorothy. Who else came by? I think Martin was there that first day then LORi and Steve. They couldn't bring their RV up the hill because of rain before the festival so they had to camp in the barbarian flats. I did eventually get my tent up and helped Fred with his. Paul helped both of us.

After a while Fred, Brianne, and I made our way to the Lounge Stage, back on the Family Stage this year. We brought ground seating, not a good idea as we were in the back. We needed camp chairs. Of course I don't sit much at the Lounge Stage. I hover on the outskirts finding all my friends. It's more for socializing than the music. Of course I still listen to music too. So many people I loved played.

5:00pm to 5:25pm - band - Scott Wolfson
5:30pm to 6:10pm - round - Dave Dersham, Hugh ODoherty, and Ryan Taylor Band
6:15pm to 6:40pm - band - Tumbling Bones
6:45pm to 7:25pm - round - Jean Rohe Band, Lords Of Liechtenstein, and Connor Garvey
7:30pm to 7:55pm - band - Darlingside
8:00pm to 8:40pm - round - Hayley Reardon, RJ Cowdery, and Caitlin Canty
8:45pm to 9:10pm - band - Spuyten Duyvil
9:15pm to 9:55pm - round - Heather Aubrey Lloyd, John Gorka, and Cheryl Wheeler
10:00pm to 10:25pm - band - Pesky J. Nixon
10:30pm to 11:00pm - band - Brother Sun
As you can see most of these are my friends. I sat and listened for Scott, Jean, the Lords, and Connor, and Heather, John, and Cheryl. The rest of the time I floated around. How can I not, I had all those people to talk to and many more. I'd see someone dart over and talk for a while. Or they'd see me and dart over and we'd talk or a while. Of course some people see me, dart in the opposite direction before I can see them.

One of the people that darted over was Richard who gave me physical copies of the most ridiculous edition of Acoustic Live ever, I'm on the cover, Acoustic Live presents its nominee for The Undisputed All-Time Heavyweight Champion of Folk Music Support

Yes I was pretty much insufferable and showed it to everyone I know. Musicians joked about me giving them my autograph but only Kirk had me actually do it. I guess he's the only one that really loves me. Why do I have any friends?

I of course kvelled over The Lords and Jean. And then of course there was Heather. Imagine how honored Cheryl Wheeler and John Gorka were to get to share a round with her. I kvelled again when she held her own with the folk stars.

Oh so you know how I was totally paralyzed with anxiety before the festival. It all went away once I was there. I became Budgiedome scheduling machine and filled in all the hole my paralysis and performer cancelations created. Things worked out great. I actually love doing that. I get an adrenaline rush. I never hit that stage this year before the festival.

After the Lounge Stage I went back to the Budgiedome to prepare for the music and song circle. That basically means arranging chairs. The music was Honor Finnegan and Mark Allen Berube. That's a great pairing that I recommend to other presenters. They are both funny but in totally different ways. They are also both brilliant. What struck me was how most performers even when they are good don't stand out, they aren't original. There is no one like either Mark or Honor. You want to hear music like theirs you have to listen to them.

This was the best I've ever seen Honor and I've seen her a lot. She was backed by Scott Wolfson and other heroes on some of the songs. That's her natural milieu. she can stand up and dance while she sings. I thought she could sell a song before. This way she's a force of nature. She just needs to have the band change their name to the Honored Heroes. You ok with that guys?

Then came the song circle. Here's who participated:

Honor Finnegan
Mark Allen Berube
Mike Laureanno
Phil Henry
The YaYas
Derek Burkins
Libby Koch
Carolann Solebello
Ryan Taylor
Davy Sturtevant
As always a special thing. I love the scheduled music for the audience but I love this too. We are going to do it next year. They are adding a day to the festival so I will get up there on Wednesday. If we can work out the logistics maybe there will be two song circles. We'll see what we can do.

So know what I never did? Get the inside of my tent ready, get my light out, inflate my air mattress, and unroll my sleeping bag. So I did that in the dark when I was tired. I somehow managed to do it and had a decent night's sleep.

I just told Katrina about something that she thought might bother me and she wanted to know If I were alright. It didn't even strike me that it could bother me but it would have before Falcon Ridge. I told her that Falcon Ridge healed me. It's better than therapy. It's better than drugs. It's the House of Tom Bombadil. "Heed no nightly noises! For nothing passes door and window here save moonlight and starlight and the wind off the hilltop."

I signed the Pro-Truth Pledge:
please hold me accountable.

Memories: Not that Horrid Song - May 29, 2018
Wise Madness is Now In Session - May 28, 2018
The NFL and the First Amendment - May 27, 2018
On The Road Again - May 26, 2018
Oliver the Three-Eyed Crow - May 25, 2018

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Horvendile August 06, 2014
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