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 23, 2013 - 12:30 p.m.

The Battle of Penannor Field.

I am sometimes amazed that I can remain a cheerful hobbit. I am not feeling cheerful as I start to write this let's see if I can drive off the darkness by writing. Whenever I use that metaphor I think of The Return of the King. Ghn-buri-Ghn tell Theoden and Eomer, "Drive away dark clouds with bright steel" as they go to the Battle of Pelennor Fields. I might be a peacenik by lifestyle but my internal struggles are martial.

I stayed in almost all day yesterday, later than I planned on. I still desperately need to go shopping and don't know when I'll be able to do it. I'm doing a lot today. Now it really shouldn't be a challenge getting out of here and shopping and being back in four hours then going off to therapy, but I know that it will be. I was supposed to pick something up on the way home the last two nights and didn't. Not just something, bacon! that's part of my breakfast rotation. Oh and good bread. I guess I'll make an omelet this morning. It isn't like that's suffering. I was just in the mood for bacon and eggs. Or maybe I'll have poached eggs two days in a row! There's no law against that. There isn't is there? I don't want to run afoul of the law.

On Saturday night I met Joanna Wallfisch at Jean's party. She's a musician and I liked talking to her and you know my theory that if someone is fun to talk to they are more likely to make music that I like, It is no guarantee, there are plenty of people I love as people that I don't love their music, but it is still more likely than a random person. At least I knew she had something to say. My pet musical peeve is people that have something to say but don't say it in their music. They say in song the things that have been said in song countless times. In that case you better be able to compose like Mozart if you are going to entertain me.

I am not thrilled with where I'm living and it is two trains to anyplace but I do get where I'm going pretty fast. I can get to Rockwood Music Hall in about half an hour, even changing trains. And as I always leave later than I want when I go there, that's a good thing. I always think I'm going to be late but I never am. I got there 10 minutes before the show. I got there just as the people from the previous act were leaving, well some of them. There are not a lot of seats at Rockwood 1 or 2 for that matter, so if you are not staying you should get out of your seat so the people there for the next act can sit. Most people do exactly that but you notice the ones that dont.

I got my seat and by then Joanna was getting set up on the stage. I wouldn't say I was surprised that she recognized me and came over to thank me for coming but I wouldn't have been surprised if she hadn't. At Rockwood the light is so dim I sometimes don't recognize people I know well.

I just made an executive decision and decided to gripe before I talk about the show. I do not know who the performer on before her was but I do know that I don't like his fans. At least not the ones at my table. Forget the ones that were slow getting up. That's a tiny thing and was just a slight inconvenience for me. But the rest of them were the classic bad people to sit with at a concert. During her first song they would not stop talking. the guy right across from me actually sat with his back to the stage talking loudly with the others. The woman sitting next to me shoved her camera right in my face, without saying a word to me, to take a picture of the people across from me. She took, repeated FLASH pictures, not even of the performer, during a song! If you don't know Rockwood I should explain that the tables are right next to the stage. They were about 10 feet from Joanna. And she was singing a capella. Fortunately the realized that they liked her voice and got a bit better the rest of the show with only an occasional breaks for talking. And the photographer then took flash pictures of Joanna. Which was really annoying for me right next to the flash. And it wasn't like she'd take one picture. she'd take groups of three. And she had a nice Cannon with a big lens I bet she could have gotten fine pictures without a flash. Look what I did with my phone.

At the end of every song the worst talker, the one that turned his back, Felt the need to announce an editorial comment. Now they were positive. he liked her. But I don't need someone's running commentary.

OK enough negativity. On to the good stuff. Well OK the pictures are good stuff too but Joanna is not just "another pretty girl with a ukulele." Notice that's in quotes. It's by a pretty girl with a ukulele, Carey.

From talking to her about and learning of her jazz background and the way she described her music I thought there was a good chance that her music would remind me of Anna Dagmar's. But when she took the stage she did something that My Gentle Readers know it not something I usually like, she took out a looper. I said her first song was a capella but I did not tell you that. She avoided the biggest pitfall of looping, wasting endless time recording the backing loop. She knew to keep them short so she could get to the song. Her voice is great and the lyrics were good but my thoughts were; This is more up Fred's alley. I posted a pic on Facebook and tagged Fred.

She then moved over to the piano and won me over. And guess what, she did remind me of Anna! I like being right. It was more her phrasing than anything. Anna's is more instrumentally driven. I was right again in that she had something to say. At the party we discussed if she was a singer/songwriter. She sings and writes songs but her genre is very much not singer/songwriter. It's closer to standards than anything. she even did a standard, "I'll Be Seeing You."

She doesn't let the grass grow under her seat. she changed set up every song. She moved from the piano to the uke. And from the uke to the jar and bottle? What you say?

Her friend Dan joined her on stage and it's a bit hard to see but that's a jar he's holding in his hand. He used it as percussion. Joanna has enough well placed faith in her singing to perform without harmonic accompaniment.

Here is the slideshow of all the pics.

After the show I went over to Georgia Barbecue for dinner. This time I ordered the right thing the fried chicken. It's the one restaurant I go to where I have trouble finishing my meal. This time as I was coming straight home I took a doggie bag.

Even better than the food was the post dinner conversation with the waitress, Ashley. Yes I remembered another name. Now I cheated and wrote a note on my phone but I didn't look. But I better look now to see if there is are any other notes. Nope that's it, it says "Ashley Mythology." That's all I needed. Now let's see if I'm right and can reconstruct the conversation.

As I was leaving I told her that I liked her hair. It was a combination of Katherine and and Hilary's. She had braids the same color and consistency as Katherine's, though shorter, but the ends were dyed a deep blue. Hilary posted a status that involved her blue pigtails and then posted a pic of them. So it was on my mind. I told Ashley about Hilary getting carded and having problems because of the blue pigtails and out of state ID and Ashley said she had the same problem, which led to finding out that she was from Michigan, which led to a discussion of regional accents. And how she went to Western Michigan University where I spent a summer at summer NSF psych program.. Then I asked what she studied and it was theater and mythology. And which of those got me excited? Well I gave it away before, mythology. So we then had a long discussion on comparative mythology. We ended up talking at least half an hour. I love that I can have a meaningful intellectual conversation with a waitress at a barbecue joint. I also love that I could reconstruct the conversation. There was more too on the proliferation of Chinese and Japanese TV on Hulu. I sometimes do pretty well for someone without a brain.

When I got home I had an unexpected conversation with Savannah about Phineas and Ferb. Yep that's me, comparative mythology and cartoons.

And you know something I feel better. I drove the dark clouds away with writing. The pen keyboard is mightier than the sword. And I think I figured out breakfast. I'll have poached eggs but today with patty sausages. Mrs Last Name stop snickering. Don't milky way either.

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 23, 2013
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