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 09, 2016 - 6:37 p.m.

Falcon Ridge 2016 Part 2: Die Walküre

It's after noon and I'm just starting to write. At least I don't have to make dinner when I'm done. I'm having bacon cheddar potato tart that Emily and Joe gave me at Falcon Ridge. I do have to make coffee, very strong coffee. I still have post Falcon Ridge fatigue. That is not normal for me. My hamstrings are sore for the first time too. I'm going to blame them on the mini-Crohn's attack I had Sunday night. It made everything more difficult.

Now it's three hours later and I've eaten breakfast and wasted hours. Hey there are lots of pictures of Falcon Ridge to tag on Facebook. There are things to catch up on including my procrastinating.

So now to start the tale of Falcon Ridge 2016.

Fred picked me up Thursday morning. City Island is a lot more on the way than Crown Heights. Jane helped me bring my gear out to Fred's Car. We were able to make it in one trip. I travel light even when bringing two extra camp chairs. It helps that I don't bring
My own tent for food. Jane lent me a large sports bag that fit all my clothes and a duffel bag that held all my camping gear. Fred travels a bit heavier. He even brought an extra tent. It was just the small backpacking tent he used his first Falcon Ridge so it didn't take much room even though Fred said he didn't know why he brought it.

I love the way we go up, in involves no turns till we get to the Festival; we just go straight north; Hutchison River Parkway to 684 to 22 then make a left turn when we see tents and trailers.

I met my first friends in the parking lot before we even picked up our tickets. It was Becca and Billie. I haven't seen them in two years. That is the longest I've ever gone without seeing Becca. Now to make sure we don't go as long again.

We got our tickets at Will Call and drove up to The Budgiedome. I was much better than usual setting up my tent. I only talked to people for an hour before getting to it. I had lots of people to talk to, Steve, Lori, Paul, Brianne, Craig, Abby, and Akshar at the Budgiedome and Joe, Emily, Carolyn, Sarah, Sam, Peter, and whoever else was up there the first day at Camp Steeple. At that point it was The Steeple Tent. We didn't vote on the new name till Saturday morning but I'm going to use the new name even in retrospect. Was Mel there? It's hard to remember who arrived when. I talked to so many people. Everyone at the Budgiedome, Camp Steeple, or camping with Mel is family.

Steve and Lori bring my tent. Sarah helped me set it up, until we realized we were missing a poll. We searched and searched. No poll. We told Steve, we thought he could cobble one together out of rocks and trees. Steve is MacGyver. He couldn't. But that didn't mean I had to sleep outside. I went over to Fred and told me that I know why he brought the spare tent; it was for me. I can stand straight up in Steve and Lori's tent just like I could in my old one. It's what I am used to. Fred's barely is large enough for me to lay down in. When I'm on my air mattress I can almost touch the ceiling when lying flat on my back. Joe had an extra tent that his brother could bring up the next day. I asked him to bring it, it was a bit of a struggle getting into and out of the tent. There are compensations. I can reach the pocket on the ceiling where I keep the things I carry in my pocket and my glasses. It has my mini-lantern in it so I can turn it off without getting out of bed. In fact, I ended up not using the other tent. It wasn't worth the work of setting it up. I added one upgrade to the tent, my little tarp on the ground in the vestibule outside the tent. I could leave my shoes on it and crawl on to it when getting out.

I was so good about getting ready and not wasting time I could get down to the Lounge Stage not much after it started. I was able to set up chairs for Fred and I not that far from the stage. I usually just bring my stadium seat but this year I brought my honest to god camp chair. By pure chance it was right in front of Gene and Isabel's. I talked to them for a while then got up. The Lounge Stage has great music but I usually end up spending more time catching up with friends. This year was no exception. I knew that the members of Pesky J. Nixon would be backstage; along with Scott they run the stage. I headed back there but met about 50 people on my way there and stopped and talked to each of them. OK I might be exaggerating just a bit. Who can I remember? Mark, Beth, and Heather. Who else? Everyone in Scott Wolfson and other Heroes. But that's all New York people other than Heather. I know there were some I don't see often. Whoever it was, it was wonderful. The rest of the evening I know I saw Brian & Katie, Eric, Jake, John, Peter, Paula, Chris, and the people I see most often, those whose names I can't remember now. Oh I saw Lori not LORi, Bob, and Rona. Lori hates me but I cornered her before she could escape.

I have to get up to the Budgiedome before the Lounge Stage ends to set up for our song circle. That meant missing Chuck and Mira aka The Sea the Sea. I talked to them and told them to come up when they were done for the song circle. They played in our first one since it became an annual event. That might have been the first place they played in public, they didn't even have a name then. It was for sure where they premiered the title song of their first album, Love We are Love.

I went up to the dome and found Villa Palagonia, Allison and Joe, already there. They had a set before the song circle. the plan was to start when people arrived after the Lounge Stage ended. We heard it end. Nobody showed up. We waited, nobody showed up. We waited some more. Nobody showed up. We had no idea what happened. We've had good turnouts in recent years. Finally, we gave up and they performed for the Budgiedome campers. I felt bad for Allison and Joe and bad for all the people that missed discovering great music. The next day several people camping near us wanted to know who played the great music they heard the night before. Next time they play for us come up!

So where was everyone? The Big Orange Tarp. This year marked the BOT's return to Falcon Ridge. It was set up in the camping area for emerging artists. We have to find a way around this next year. We don't want to move to the flats. The top of the hill is not just our performance space, it's our home. We'd lose so much of what we love about Falcon Ridge.

Chuck and Mira did find their way up. They had forgotten that they had promised Alan to play the BOT. They did perform a song so new that it wasn't even finished for us. At once point the lyrics were, "this is he part we haven't finished." I'm pretty sure that will not make it into the final version. We did talk for some time. Joe and Allison are good friends that I see very often. Chuck and Mira are good friends I see rarely so we had catching up to do. We always end up talking about the artistic process. They very much don't wing it. All the parts of their music fit together perfectly. Chuck and Mira fit together perfectly too. That's why they are getting married in a few weeks!

This looks like a good place to stop. you have the story of Thursday. At this rate there will be three more entries before I'm done and maybe an Afterward. There was already a Preface. Do you get where yesterday's title comes from? Here's a hint, I'm making an opera joke.

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 09, 2016
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