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

September 08, 2016 - 11:39 a.m.

A Woman's Voice

My head isn't spinning, I got enough sleep, my tummy is fine, and I did something interesting last night. Damn, I can't think of an excuse to explain the faults of this entry. Good thing I took my anxiety meds or I'd be crumbling under the pressure.

I did something unusual for breakfast. I made bacon and eggs but I put them on a sandwich with cheese. I often do that with sausage and ham but rarely with bacon. I was reminded why, it's the only one that gets worse when it's made into a sandwich. I tried it again as I have ciabatta rolls and that's not something I often have around. Aren't you glad that I know that you care so much about my breakfast?

Will you people on Facebook stop being interesting and distracting me. It's hard enough to write this as it is. Yes! I have my excuse. Now that the pressure is off I can get down to business.

Last night I went to see Sharon Goldman at Rockwood Music Hall Stage 3. It was the release show for her new album Kol Isha (A Woman's Voice). Sharon asked me to do the merch. Is there any chance I'd say no to that? If I could be there of course I would. I wanted to get there before doors opened at 6:30. I lost track of time and just made the 4:53 bus. That should have gotten me there a little before 6:30. There were multiple train problems and I didn't get there till 6:45. Doors had already opened. Instead of saving a seat for Fred, he saved our usual table. I knew half the audience and the entire band. This was very much a home game. But that slowed me down as I had to find Sharon to get the bank from her. I ended up going upstairs and downstairs many times and then when I found her discovered she didn't have change on her so I had to find her husband Shannon. I went upstairs and downstairs looking for him. Whew, I'm getting tired just remembering it. OK I'm not and I wasn't tired then. I just felt like a pin ball, bouncing off all my friends. Should I attempt to list all my friends there? I should mention the band, Stephen Murphy (guitar), Efrat Shapira (violin and vocals), Amy Soucy (vocals) Craig Akin (upright bass), and Cheryl Prashker (drums). I know all of them independently of Sharon but Amy. This is a real community. So who else was there? Paul and Kay sat behind us, that's easy, Elisa and John, Allison, Ina May, Bev, and Karen. I have to be forgetting people I'm close to because I'm an idiot. I actually forgot one of the above and had to go back and add her. And yes it's someone I spent a lot of time talking to. You know why? I'm an idiot. Bev and Elisa joined Sharon on the last song. The album celebrates Sharon's Jewish roots. You might have figured that out from the Hebrew title. I told Amy she should be honored; she was the only shiksa on stage. The men were both goys. But Amy's was the only women's voice that wasn't Jewish even though she sang in Hebrew.

I love the album. Sharon isn't religious but she was brought up modern orthodox and this was a big part of her upbringing; it's a big part of who she is. It emphasizes what I have always loved about Sharon's songwriting, that it's very personal without being maudlin and egocentric as too many "sensitive singer/songwriters" are. I just finished ripping the CD and started listening to it.

There is an irony to the title, in orthodox Judaism women are not supposed to sing where men can hear them. I think that excludes her husband and immediate family.
That makes the album meant for all a feminist statement. There are elements of that in individual songs, Pillar of Salt the song of Lot's Wife who doesn't even rate a name in Genesis and Lilith. Lilith was Adam's first wife driven from the Garden of Eden for not being obedient to Adam. She's not quite biblical, Lilith only appears in the Tanakh in a list of monsters. She's connected with Babylonian female demons. The Talmud and later writings developed her as Adam's first wife. The tone of Sharon's voice is defiant when she sings it. It's a rejection of subservience.

While most of the music is not related to Jewish liturgical or social music much if it shares the somber beauty I associate with it. It's filled with the sorrow of Middle Earth.

The album has one cover, Eliza Gilkyson's Rose of Sharon. I guess it was too hard to resist a song with her name in it. Its lyrics come from The Song of Songs.

After the show I ran upstairs to do the merch. I sold more than I thought I would as so many in the audience already had it from the Pledge Music. I'm sure that you want a copy now, you can buy it online by following This link to Sharon's online store.

Now I could have had a musical triple header last night. Sharon was finished around 8:15 and Skye Steele was at Rockwood 1 at 9:00 and Cricket Tell the Weather back at Stage 3 at 10. If I still lived in Brooklyn I might have very well done that but I don't. If I saw Cricket I would not have been able to catch the last bus to City Island. I was going to go to Sky when I realized when I was all done doing the merch at 8:45 that I hadn't eaten dinner. So I went across the street to Georgia BBQ. They have my favorite fried chicken in the City and I haven't eaten there in ages. It was so good and the waitress so friendly. It comes with two sides and it is the perfect sized dinner from me. I get filled up but not overfilled. I had fries and corn on the cob. Yes, I had corn again and wasn't bothered. Perhaps my Crohn's is in good enough shape that I can start eating it again. Do I keep trying it till I get sick? It's one of my favorite foods. I won't try popcorn, there's not enough value in that. It's a snack. But perhaps I can tentatively start eating corn again. I won't have two ears like I used to eat and I won't eat it on consecutive days. I want to make sure it passes through my system before having more.

My plan for today is to go to Brooklyn to see Cricket Tells the Weather. Yes, it's not nearly as convenient as seeing it at the same venue I was already at but this way I can get home in time. I'm back to hearing live music regularly. That's good. Do I have music lined up for Friday? I think not and I probably won't be able to make what I want to see on Saturday but I have a double-header on Sunday and I have to miss another "must see" show then. Why does everything happen at once?

OK now to make breakfast. O, I can watch Stranger Things and Doctor Who Friday night. It's nice having shows I look forward to binge watching.

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 September 08, 2016
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