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

December 07, 2014 - 11:25 a.m.

Shanhaied To Lichtenstein

Hey I'm starting sort of early, 9:34. Of course I always want to start before 9:00. I grade myself on a curve

It's been only 15 hours since my last update. I don't have to write about what I did during the day but I'll mention it because it was so cool. I went to the Metropolitan Opera to see Il Barbiere di Sevigilia. I am trying to get myself used to saying that not The Barber of Seville. Talking about the opera isn't pretentious enough, I have to do it in Italian.

I do have to mention dinner. I made peanut butter mashed potatoes. How do you do that? Just replace the butter in your recipe with peanut butter. Make sure to melt it in the microwave. It is delicious.

Then I was off to Jalopy to see The Lords of Liechtenstein and M Shanghai.

There is always a starting time question at Jalopy. The website said the Lords went on at 8:30. M Shanghai made a Facebook event that said that Lords went on at 8:45 and doors were at 8:00. I was marching for the Lords so I wanted to be there before doors. I felt bad I was late and go there at 8:20. Doors were not open and I beat the Lords there. They arrived shortly thereafter and went on at 9:00 on the dot. Apparently that was the plan.

I didn't know anyone at the show other than the extended Liechtenstein clan, family and friends. I forgot to wear my argyle sweatervest. I'm not setting a good example for the rest of the Argyle Army. That's the name of the Lords' fandom. I sat in the front row with Star, Autumn, and and and. damn I forgot this name, Dan's roommate. The other Star and Autumn are Dan and Noah's mother and sister respectively.

I've been seeing the Lords enough that I've run out of things to say about them. That alone says a lot about them. In fact you can include me in the extended Liechtenstein clan.

I was wrong. There was one other person there that I knew but I didn't see her to the Lord's set was over and I went back to do merch, Kat Quinn. She had trouble getting there and arrived late. I spent the intermission with her and the start of M Shanghai's set. She's doing a show with the Lords next month. I introduced them so I'm patting myself on the back. Alex Mallett is on the bill too. I did not introduce them but they met at NERFA and I'm the one that got all of them to go there. I'll pat myself on the back again.

I have seen M Shanghai before but clearly not often enough. They are Jalopy regulars and part of why Brooklyn is the Mecca of string bands. Who would have believed that ten years ago? Brooklyn is like Appalachia but with indoor plumbing and artisan food. How do I describe them? If you were looking at them without sound you'd think "bluegrass." They stand around the condenser mic and take turns walking up an taking lead. But the music isn't bluegrass. What is it? Good music of course. They are great instrumentalists and singers. Their songwriting has the weirdness that I love. Hell they have a song called Entropy. That's enough to win me over right there. They play the first Saturday of the month at Jalopy, I am going to more shows next year.

They did one sing-along where the entire lyrics were ooo. That's how sing-alongs should be. OK they don't have to be that easy but they have to be easy to learn. Lots of parallel structure helps. Even people who don't know the song can sing along to If I had a Hammer They just need help with the key word of each verse, hammer, bell, and song to sing. I recently heard at an open mic someone try to get the audience to sing along to a song that they never heard that was way to complex to learn on one listen. Remember if you want people to sing along either have a very devoted fandom where everyone has heard the song many times or keep it simple.

I have to prepare my list of best albums of 2014 list soon. First thing is I won't call it best albums, it will be "a lot of albums I liked a lot." Secondly there's a problem of time. People make these lists in December when the year isn't over. I decided last year that my fiscal year ends with NERFA or did I decide that it starts with NERFA? This year it ends as I want to include at least one album I got there. But it means I might miss something from last year. I go by my list of albums released in the year in my computer music library. One year that meant I missed an album by Spuyten Duyvil because I didn't have the year listed. There are still some albums I have to listen to.

My readership is cratering. Of course writing that here cannot get people to read this. I have no idea what I can do other than try and write the best I can. Yes this is the best I can, that's the tragedy.

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 December 07, 2014
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