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

May 02, 2014 - 10:15 a.m.

Canon Fire

I haven't done anything of interest since I updated yesterday. To make things worse it was an angst ridden nothing. My strategy when talking about things like that in therapy is to counterbalance it with something positive I did that overcame anxiety. And I did do something positive, three things. None of them worked out. That makes it harder to do next time. Sorry that's as close as I can come to writing about it here.

I helped a student for several hours after class yesterday. That's good but I'm not sure how much I helped. That is not my fault but it still doesn't give me a feeling of accomplishment.

I need a new name for my nemesis. I was talking about him with my landlady and his behavior has nothing to do with me. I am not his nemesis. He's just a miserable human being. He gives her a lot more serious problems. But that didn't make it any less frustrating when I went to make dinner and discovered that he took the two remaining plates. For those of you not keeping score he has been slowly pilfering the plates. We had eight, we were down to two. Now he has those. The landlady gave me two of her own. I am keeping them locked in my room along with every piece of kitchenware I use, the pots and pans and utensils. I hate having to do that.

I am going to do something that at one point I planned on doing regularly, tell a story of something that happened before I started blogging. When I first started doing that the story I am going to tell was too recent but yesterday was its 14th anniversary so I think I can do it. And I have pictures too,

So now let's travel back to the last millennium. Yes 2000 was the last millennium, If you disagree you are simply wrong. Accept it and move on. In those ancient times there was a band from Canada with the unlikely name of Moxy Früvous . No there really was. I'm not making it up. It's the "Sound produced when yogurt dollops are dropped in searing liquid." Stop looking at me like I'm crazy. This is all true, you can look it up, Urban Dictionary. OK believe me now? Let me get on with my story. Please stop interrupting. This is just like my class. Yes this WILL be on the test. Can I continue now?

So this band Moxy Früvous had fans call Früheads. Früheads had their own website, Frühead dot Com aka FHDC. Before there was Facebook that was my homepage. That was my center of my social media. It was the center of my social life.

I met people there from around the world, from England, Vancouver, New Zealand, and exotic Philadelphia and Baltimore. Shelly from Philly and Carey from Balmer became my best friends on FHDC. Carey was 21 and in college. I was a bit older, just a tad, 42 and teaching in college. Is that right? Yes I did the math and it is. But that didn't stop me from driving to Newark Airport to meet her when her choir flew out of there to go to Ireland. We had lunch at an airport coffee shop. We were joined by her friend Megan. They had grilled cheese. I had a burger. You didn't think I'd disappoint you and not give the menu did you? I spent a lot more time driving there than we had together but it was worth it. It got the awkwardness out of the way. Because that is not the story I'm telling, This is the tale of the second time I met Carey in person,,

Moxy Früvous was playing Allentown PA. That's as close to convenient to all three of us as you can get, We planned on meeting at the show. Shelly and I would drive and Carey was going to get a lift from a friend that was also going to the show. The friend flaked out,. Now we could have just said "OK we'll have to do it another time." That's what sane people would do. We are not sane people. Instead this is what we did. I would drive Carey to the show and Shelly would drive her home. I had to work the next day so I couldn't take her back, Baltimore is close enough to Philly that Shelly could crash with her and still get to work the next day. Plus I couldn't stay in Carey's room as she was living in a dorm in an all-girl catholic school. I don't think the nuns would have approved of that. There were a thousand of them. Nuns that is.

Now to complicate things further Carey's choir, remember Carey was in a choir? Her choir played that day at noon on campus, The College of Notre Dame of Maryland (CoNDoM). So I left my house at 8 AM on a Sunday Morning and drove at 80 MPH to Baltimore armed with nothing but mapquest directions. I had no maps and Carey didn't have a car so she couldn't direct me. Good thing that was pretty easy and I got there early. I went backstage and said hello to Carey and Megan then went into the audience. Carey was that a chapel? I remember it looking churchlike.

Now after the show we didn't have a lot of time. We had to race up to Allentown. There was a complication. Carey's parents were there. She somehow didn't seem to think her parents would be too happy about her running off to Allentown with a strange slightly older man that she had only met once, so we had to avoid them seeing her with me. By the way by September I was crashing with her parents when I went to visit. her. People just trust me.

Carey and I slipped out the back. We saw her parents from a distance but they didn't see me. I guess she could have said I was a prof if they did. I mean I am one. Just not at that school, Of course as you will see I wasn't dressed like a prof.

We got to my car and followed mapquest directions to Allentown,. Too bad Mapquest thought there was an entry onto the beltway that didn't exist. We had to stop and ask directions. that cost us some time. Then came the best part of the day the drive up. There are few things I enjoy better than roadtripping with someone I love. This was our first real time together and we played getting to know you. Now if I had a working brain I'd remember what we talked about. I'm on the verge of remembering things but none of them are coming to me. I bet Carey remembers. I also don't remember where or what we ate. But I remember that's I had as good a time as I'm capable of having.

I also remembered that we ran late. Was that because of traffic or getting lost? I don't know. But we got there later than we planned. Of course that meant something like only an hour before doors? Or am I confusing going to the Vault? ButI know that Shelly saved us a spot. I think on the line but perhaps we had already gone in. Wow I can't believe I forgot that. I have two sets of memories running at the same time,. One is wrong. But whatever ii is I got to meet Shelly for the first time. This was the first meeting of the Batnose Brigade, the three of us. We weren't called that then. Or maybe we were. Remember I'm an idiot.

What do I remember about the show? That we sat about halfway back till halfway through the show when everybody got out of their seats and stood down front. I also know that they didn't end with The Drinking Song. Früvous ended most of their shows with that song. It's the tradition. Everybody puts there arms around the person on either side and sways together and sings along with the song. It's the big Frühead bonding ritual. Get Früheads together and they will still reenact that. Früvous NEVER did the song if I was at a show with Carey. That's because Jian hates me. Though this was before he hated me. Jian doesn’t really hate me but he played someone who does on TV.

Here are the pics.

Carey, Jian, and Shelly

Carey and Me

After the show We said our goodbyes. Shelly drove Carey off to The Land of A Thousand Nuns and I drove home. I probably got back at 2 AM and had to get up a 7:00. I used to do things like that a lot.

So that's the full story of something I often make reference to, one of my canonical tales, driving to Allentown via Baltimore. Now I have to make my breakfast. I'm meeting a student before class. Wow this is the first breakfast I'm making in more than a week? What should I make? How about matzoh brei? That sounds good.

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 May 02, 2014
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