I just changed my strings, and they are SLICK!
Swoosh. Slide. Squeak. Sharp.
I just changed my strings, and they are SLICK!
Swoosh. Slide. Squeak. Sharp.
It was a good long weekend/holiday at home. I got to take my dear friend Tracie with me. It was wonderful to be with so many people for whom I am thankful.
Thursday was quiet and lovely. My parents, Tracie and I went to 9 a.m. Mass and then spent the rest of the day at home. Mom cooked a small turkey, and as dad carved it, we stole the juicy little bits. We had a nice dinner, spent hours playing cards (cribbage and euchre) and ended the night with popcorn, a movie and a “fire.”
Friday, I attempted to show Tracie around town amidst a few errands, but all went awry when my brakes started to grind — suddenly and really badly. Our plans altered a lot, but my wonderful high school friend John helped changed the brake pads, which were metal to metal on the passenger side. Yikes!
We stopped by Best Buy around dinner time, and while it was still busy, it was bearable. We primarily wanted to look at digital cameras, which Tracie has researched on my behalf. Right now, I want this one. I’m only weighing the value of the quality versus carrying a larger-than-pocket-sized camera. However, I want ZOOM.
On the way out of the store, Tracie spied a kiosk with 2Gig MP3 players for only $35! We each bought one, and I picked one up for my mother, who paid me back. I’m very excited about it because it was cheap, and my iPod is broken. It’s got a window that allows you to pick by artist, genre, etc., as well as equalizer setting, FM radio, and a voice recorder. Groovy.
Friday night I had Woodchuck on tap at the Bier Stube, introduced Tracie to the Xlerator and got to hang out with my good friend Jenny and her cool boyfriend Ben.
Saturday was family day. The kids were awesome. The food, cooked by my sister Wende and her husband, was SO good. Panini sandwiches for lunch and for dinner stuffed portabella mushrooms, fennel and carrot soup, and tarragon chicken and wild rice, which was followed by brownies with ice cream and fresh raspberries. Seriously. We went to Mass at 4 p.m., and my niece Bristy was the cantor. It runs in the family; I’m so proud of her!
A lot of smiles and relaxing. It was wonderful to share my family with Tracie and Tracie with my family. And other than her constantly kicking my dad’s butt in cards, she was welcomed as one of the family. My vocalized prayer over Thanksgiving dinner was for family and friends; it’s as simple and awesome as that.
Just before the day ends, I’d like to pay tribute to my parents on their 40th wedding anniversary. How amazing really. And anyone who knows my parents understands why I feel so blessed. I have a beautiful family who was formed in their amazing love.
This morning they were blessed during Mass at the church where they were married. My mother said it was almost to the minute 40 years before. They hadn’t told anyone they planned this, and they said they were glad they could focus solely on each other. Where they had been and where they are going.
We all can only hope for a love so faithful and fruitful.
Last night was freaking amazing. Alphahouse Party at the Upstairs Lounge. It was DJs Butane, JNX, and J Thomas. I think it was Butane who was off the hook. I’ve still been high all day off the beat. God it was sooo goood. And it was good to know it could still feel so good. I haven’t had that much fun since Cornmeal, and not so much techno fun for a long while. I told Tracie it was relentless like when we saw the Surgeon, but it wasn’t so deep. It’s hard to explain. You have to be inside it to understand it. The crowd was good too. It’s great to be surrounded by people as serious about dancing as we are. That’s what I’ve always loved about the Upstairs. It’s not so damn fake.
Anyway, I’m also excited about my new Pandora station. For those who don’t know the glory of Pandora, it’s online radio that lets you build your own station from groups or songs you love. It will play songs by those and others based on the same rhythm and tonal structures. You can give each song a thumbs up or thumbs down and it will either never play the song again, or it will play it again and others like it. Thus far, my stations have been based on single groups. I listen to the Dead Can Dance and Buena Vista Social Club stations the most at work.
My new station Apoptygma Berzerk is based on that group and their song Until the End of the World, as well as Christopher Lawrence, Gabriel and Dresden, and Tiesto. Those are the groups. The other original songs are Ballerina by Armen Van Buren, Love is Gonna Save Us by Benny Benassi, Krafty by New Order, and Under the Water by Brother Brown. Since then I have thumbed up a bunch more songs. The station is SWEET! If you listen to Pandora and know good techno (trance) music when you read about it, let me know and I can share the station with you.
That’s Willy Porter, of course. Anyway, I found this great video of him tonight on YouTube. Moonbeam is not my favorite song by Willy, but I do like it. I can’t find any videos of my favs, at least not on YouTube. But this song exemplifies a lot of what I love about him. His guitar playing is phenomenal and awe-inspiring. Watch his moves around two minutes and 45 seconds into the video. Willy also sings and writes wonderful songs. He’s a rare one who can tell a great story in his pieces, with or without words.
The video shoot today was so much fun. I’d been fairly anxious about it since the beginning. That’s just my personality. Agonizing about the song choice and video concept. Then cleaning my apartment and deciding what to wear. Despite the anxiety, I had my usual hard time getting out of bed this morning. Until my sister called to wish me good luck. It was just so sweet, and talking to her made me more exited.
We ended up shooting the whole thing in my apartment. We planned to go to the park, but after shooting all the indoor stuff, the cameraman/show host decided against it. The song is about being tired and not wanting to “do a thing tonight.” We had shot blue, sort of staying-at-home, bummed-out-feeling scenes. He felt that it was actually too gorgeous outside to shoot a scene of me taking a walk in the park and keep the same somber feel. I don’t know if I totally agree, but I do know that we shot enough stuff in my place. And with the song being under three and a half minutes, it might have been tough to keep the continuity. Still, they would have been darn pretty shots in the park today.
There were five people plus me in my little apartment, but I’d moved some furniture around to open it up. I had some basic ideas of shot sequences, and we recorded them all plus a few of their ideas. There were two cameras. I sang along with my CD. We finished in under two hours and then headed back to the host’s basement studio to film the introduction interview. We did three takes and they liked two of them, one short and one long. So it will depend on what they need for the length of the show.
The show is called the Big Brother and Itch’y Show. It’s linked in my last entry. The show will air the first time on Friday, November 16, at midnight on KDHX’s local cable station. It will then repeat each subsequent Friday at midnight for a month. The show also is on two other stations at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. You’ll have to look at their site for details. It’s like 3:00 a.m. AFTER the time change, and I am too lazy to do link it again.
When I got back from shooting the interview, I sat with my celebratory Taco Bell in a patch of sunlight on my front lawn. It was, after all, a gorgeous day. I got up and walked into the center of my culdesac to look at the weeds, bushes, and remains of landscaping. I felt tickled and happy from my day so far. I got inspired. I went upstairs and changed clothes and came down with a garbage bag and tools.
I started by picking up all the garbage I could find. My back ached from stooping and reaching, but I filled a half of kitchen trash bag… with street trash! Beer cans and white castle wrappers. Then I got out my clippers and started going to town. My mom taught me to just step back and picture it, and then go to town. Do not be afraid to cut things out. It’s good for the plants. After I’d already cut out quite a bit, one of my neighbors came out. We’ve spoken many times, and he’d even bought my CD. He got out his clippers and joined me. Though, he warned that he’d clip but hated picking up. So I promised to take care of it. It was very neighborly and fun working together.
It was beautiful out, and the work was gratifying. We cut out a massive amount. I took at least seven trips with arms on both sides full of up to five feet-long branches and twigs and leaves. I filled an entire yard waste dumpster. Actually, I’m not sure how I got it all crammed in there. A few people saw us, and a couple of them commented. It looks SO MUCH BETTER. My heart just feels good at the thought of it.
To top off the day, I went out with a fun group of people tonight. We bowled a single game at the Moolah as part of our evening, and I won out of the seven who bowled with a score of 147. Heh. I did get a turkey, and I think I’ve only done that two other times. Very cool. What a great day.