Monday, March 31, 2008

Eyesight to the [Nearly] Blind

Dad can see without glasses again!
What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite.
—Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

Friday morning, the kids left for the annual Band Trip. This year’s trip was to San Antonio. Suna and I had the evening to ourselves, so we ate BBQ.

We went to see my dad Saturday morning. She has blogged several of the pictures on Flickr. The one I’ve posted here shows Dad without glasses for the first time in 40 years. He’s 85 and had eye surgery on both eyes now. So he no longer needs them. Isn’t that cool?

Grateful Monday

So, that brings me to this week’s Grateful Monday.

I am so grateful to still have my father around to guide and inspire me after all of these years. How many people my age have that luxury? Especially since I arrived so late in my parents’ lives.

Losing Mom was about the hardest thing that ever happened, even though it took so long everybody was relieved when she finally passed—maybe because it took so took so long, five years. When Dad goes, I hope he goes quietly in his sleep after a long day walking around his farm, resting secure in his beliefs.

In the meantime, I am so grateful to have him around, even if I don’t do a really good job of keeping in touch. Even if we really don’t get along all that well. And even if we disagree on so many topics that are important to us both. I get sad every time he mentions that he won’t be around that much longer. I sadly agree with him. “Not more than another twenty, twenty-five years,” I say.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Friday’s Feast

Appetizer: What does the color dark green make you think of?
Arbor vitae.
Soup: How many cousins do you have?
I have no idea. My father’s brother had no children. My mother had one sister, but I only met her once. I don’t know if she had any children or not. If you take the older definition of any blood relative, the number could be infinite.
Salad: On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how honest are you?
8.5. I don’t think anyone who is truly honest would ever answer 10. We all have some dishonesty in us. Even Mother Theresa hid her crisis of faith. Ghandi was able to keep his vow of poverty because he relied on rich friends.
Main Course: Name something that is truly free.
…Still thinking. Everything I come up with results from the labor of something. Just because we don’t pay for it doesn’t mean that it’s free.
Dessert: Using the letters in the word SPRING, write a sentence.
Sarah Price ran inside, nearly gutting herself on the knife her brother was using to peel an apple.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Comedy in the Capital

We had a little trouble finding Cap City Comedy Club last night, mainly because we thought it was on 183 at Lamar, but you couldn’t get to it if you took the Lamar exit. But we got there well before the show started and got to visit a little.

It turns out that going to a comedy club is a good activity for a work night. The show was over by 22:00. We were in bed very close to our usual time. I will say I liked the local acts (except for a two) that opened much better than the headliner. One of the locals was a black guy who had me in tears. “Why are the old folks the only ones dating?’ he asked after we were the only ones who admitted to being on a date. I wish I had gotten his name. I would like to see his act again as he grows.

But to be fair, But to be fair, Eddie Gossling said he had a terrible cold and had just flown in. Flying with a cold is miserable, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Friends and Gratitude

Just because I think it’s pretty.

I forgot to mention that I had lunch last Friday with two friends from work: The Crawfish and The Cosmopolitan. I worked with them both at ALE, but on two separate teams. Now they work together, and I am elsewhere. We went to the Juarez Bakery, and I bought some churros for the Aestre ritual we never got around to this weekend. (I think building the new bed and planting the new plants should suffice.)

Today, there was an invitation in my in box from Cosmo. Her hubby won 20 tickets to the Tuesday night performance at a local comedy club, and she was sharing the wealth. Suna and I decided to go.

Grateful Monday

Today I am grateful for friends who share. It is something I should try to do more of.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Good, the Bad, and the Pretty

New raised bed with retaining wall
We are all just flowers in God’s garden
That is why He spreads the shit around
—David Byrne

This weekend was spent doing what Robert Heinlein called “pick and shovel work to prolong life.” OK. It wasn’t so much to prolong life as to make the yard look better.

Yesterday I built a nice retaining wall and flower bed. It was the first time I had ever built this kind of wall. The hard part is getting the first row of stones level. After that it takes care of itself. It will be nice. We can sit on the wall to weed the bed, and I can reach the center of the bed from all of the edges.

The picture is the finished product, but Suna posted a couple of pictures of the work in progress, if you’re interested. Beccano even helped turn the dirt and mix in the garden soil.

Today, we bought a little more soil and the plants for the bed. I turned in the additional soil. The local soil has very little organic material—something I hope to rectify over the next few years. Then the plants went in.

Catelina Midnight Blue
Beccano’s choice

Suna wanted red petunias to carry forward the red theme. I bought a tomato (Mr. Stripey) and some sweet basil). I planted the petunias a couple of inches in from the center of each top stone. Then I made another row a few inches in from that. I planted 10-15-Y onions in between each onion. (Can you guess which song I couldn’t get out of my head? Right—except these were onions in a petunia patch.) The tomato and the basil (turns out there were two in the same pot) are in the center.

Then I went to work finishing the new gate I started yesterday when Suna and Beccano went to the home store to buy the rest of the rocks I needed to build the retaining wall. It turned out beautifully…except that I laid the skeleton down the wrong direction. So I built the prettiest gate I have ever made up-side-down and backwards. So since I was running out of daylight, I repaired the old dog-chewed gate enough to last the season.

The good news is that I used 5/8” staples. When I picked up the new gate, one of the boards popped off. So I shouldn’t have too much trouble taking it apart and rebuilding it. Sigh. It’s like erasing a whole sock of knitting, but with a lot more physical labor.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Superhero Bodyguard

What’s not to love about a cute little girl with big, shiny blades. Just because she’s a little…um…crazy…
Photo source: SerenityMovie.com
River: Don’t be afraid. That’s what it says. Don’t be afraid… But you are afraid. You’re afraid we’re going to run out of air. That we’ll die gasping. But we won’t. That’s not going to happen… We’ll freeze to death first..
—Joss Weadon. Out of Gas.

So which sci-fi toughy would you want to be your bodyguard? This poll gives you an opportunity to vote.

The only problem is, they list the wrong Summer Glau character. You can vote for Cameron, the terminator from The Sarah Connor Chronicles. I would prefer River Tam from Firefly and Serenity. After all, River defeated a whole army of Reavers in what I think is the most beautiful fight scene ever filmed. And Summer is from San Antonio.

So, post a comment to let me know who you voted for and if you would rather someone else had been on the list. I put my vote in a comment, too.

Friday, March 21, 2008

The Feast

A pretty Lilly in the front bed

I bought this Asiatic Lilly when I stopped into the home center several days ago. I bought it because it was such a pretty shade of red, and I thought it would go nicely in the front beds.

When I was putting it in the ground yesterday, I noticed that its name is “Orange Pixie.” The tag didn’t list the Latin name. We’ll just have to see if it turns more orange as it matures. Right now, it looks pretty damned red to me.

Suna posted another view to her Flickr account.

Friday’s Feast

Appetizer: Given the choice, would you prefer to live in the country or in the city?
No question about it—I would much prefer to live in the country. Ideally, I wouldn’t be able to see my nearest neighbors—just acres and acres of ranchland or trees.
Soup: Who is the cutest kid you know?
That is an unfair question, but I would have to say Beccano because he smiles rather than scowls.
Salad: Fill in the blank: I couldn’t believe it when I heard ___________.
…the latest Linda Ronstadt album— Adieu False Heart, the one she did with Ann Savoy. I am used to hearing Ronstadt sing in Spanish; French is something else entirely. And they sing so well together!
Main Course: If you could star in a commercial for one of your favorite products, which one would you want to advertise?
The Fender Jazz Bass. I bought mine new in 1972. It has such a wide range of possible sounds and an easy action!
Dessert: What type(s) of vitamins and/or supplements do you take on a regular basis?
Stresstabs and Osteo Biflex. I sometimes take Centrum Silver as a substitute or supplement to the Stresstabs. The Osteo Biflex keeps my fingers from aching.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

A Master Moves On

Authur C. Clarke (1917–2008)
Photo scource: Wordpress

Today saw the passing of science fiction great Authur C. Clarke—one of my writing heroes and the last of the early masters to leave us. Heinlein, Asimov, and Bradbury have all gone before into that unknown country.

Clarke’s book Childhood’s End helped me break free from traditional religious thought at a time when I could no longer deal with its repressiveness. His later book, Rendezvous with Rama helped me come to terms with the fact that I still believe in something, which I guess is why I feel at home with Unitarianism.

I won’t take up any more of your time mourning the master. But fellow LibraryThingian Tim Jones has written a better eulogy than I could.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Back in the Office Again

Well, today I was back in the office. It was good to be there again, but it’s funny: when I’m working from home, I want to be at the office. When I’m in the office, all I want to do is go home and work. As Gilda Radner used to say, “It’s always something.”

I had lunch today with my former boss who now works for the Beatles’ former record company. She is doing everything she can to help me get on there. I must say that I’m actually looking forward to something new.

Grateful Monday

So that brings me to today’s Grateful Monday. Today, I am very grateful to have good friends, old and new. I don’t always do a good job of keeping in touch, but I never forget.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Somehow, We’re Stompin’ Around

The “extra” geraniums Suna bought.
If I should go astray and say, “I lost my way,”
Nobody would know me
But if I don’t believe I can and still say, “Hear my plan,”
Somebody would follow just because it’s free
—Larry Byrom and John Kay

This weekend was mostly yard work—nothing very exciting. Saturday I dug a trench around where I want to put the new flowerbed that will replace the sage I killed last weekend. Suna bought some cilantro and thyme, that I planted today. She also bought one more hanging geranium because it was so pretty.

Aaron, our newly-ordained intern, delivered the sermon today. It was all about keeping up with change and not being so dogmatic that we can’t adapt to the times. We are a church that accepts all individuals as they are but challenges them to continue to grow and adapt to the new people who join. He thinks Unitarianism is exciting because we change, not because we’ve got it right.

Like the song says, “We’re all hippos rollin’ down river. Sometimes, we can’t touch the ground.” Nobody has a monopoly on Truth—not even me.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Famine and Feast

My favorite musical instrument
Photo source: Wikipedia

Nothing but the feast:

Appetizer: On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 as highest), how much do you like your own handwriting?
As an art form, about an 8. People often compliment me on how good it looks—until they have to read it. So as a practical means of communication, about a 2. I can’t even read it all of the time.
Soup: Do you prefer baths or showers?
For the daily grind, I prefer showers. A bath leaves me feeling a bit scummy. But when I have time, my real preference is a long, soaking bath followed by a shower. Nothing makes me feel cleaner than that combination
Salad: What was the last bad movie you watched?
A Force of One. This is a 1970s Chuck Norris classic. Beccano and I watched it one Saturday afternoon while Suna was knitting. Or rather, Beccano watched it, and I watched parts. Since I do most of my movie watching at home, I don’t have to (and often can’t make myself) sit through a bad one.
Main Course: Name something you are addicted to and describe how it affects your life.
Music. If I go too long without music, I get really cranky. It’s like withdrawal without the pain and vomiting.
Dessert: Which instrument is your favorite to listen to?
Anything that’s played well. It’s not the instrument so much as the instrumentalist. I suspect Yo Yo Ma would sound awesome on a brand new cello—maybe not as good as his million-dollar antique, but still good enough to make you cry.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Socks

You Can’t See the Forest
But for the Socks
Photo source: Threadless.com

The shirt I ordered Suna from Threadless arrived. “It’s called You Can’t See the Trees But for the Socks.”

I love the design. The shirt is dark brown—very woody. It shows two pairs of knee socks. The socks themselves are a forest scene, and the brown from the shirt extends into them to form tree branches. The space between the socks forms the tree trunks. I love this kind of double-image.

When I saw it online, it said, “Suna wants to own me.” She seemed really happy with it, trying it on immediately.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Farewell and Choir

Today started out by taking The Prince to the airport. Because of Spring Break (I guess), traffic was lighter in morning rush hour than it was in the evening we picked him up. I really enjoyed his trip and getting to know him. I hope his flight home is better than the trip out here. Maybe then he will come back some time.

Choir this evening was fun. We had almost a full compliment, or as full as it gets. I sang fairly well, I think. Some times it’s there. Sometimes it ain’t.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

50-50

“Yep. That’s a fire”
Photo by: Suna

Again with the working from home. I took off a little early because today is my birthday. Suna and I are both 50 now. And I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate that to work in the yard. The Prince pulled down a bunch of old, dead vines from the front of the house while I removed a sickly sage.

We sat around on the back porch while dinner cooked. After the sun got low, it turned a little chilly. So Beccano and I started a fire in the BBQ. It turns out the potbellied pit makes a pretty good fire pit. Just a few logs got hot enough to take the chill out of the air.

I cooked dinner tonight, and—as usual—the beef turned out tough but tasty. Tonight’s was not as tough as some I’ve cooked. I don’t know why it always turned out that way. I cooked it at a fairly low temperature in the oven for about an hour. Then I put it on the grill for a few minutes to absorb some of the oak smoke.

Monday, March 10, 2008

On the Eve of Fifty

I worked from home today so that I could spend some time with The Prince and the Boys, who are on Spring Break. Mostly I worked. When Suna got home, she told me that she would not have to pay for her insurance at the University, but she can’t add me until we are actually married. The good news is that if she works there for five years (?), she will have insurance for life.

The Prince insisted on paying at the Chinese restaurant where we had dinner. Hunan Ranch is a strange name, but it fits in with the Avery Ranch theme of the neighborhood. We used to joke about Avery Ranch being a type of salad dressing, and Hunan was a ranch dressing with Hunan seasonings. This joke got even funnier when the “A” on one of the signs burned out, leaving “very Ranch” after dark.

We dropped in to Hunan Ranch a couple of months ago, just on a lark. I am glad we did. The food has been consistently good, no matter what we try. The prices are reasonable, and the atmosphere is relaxing. Even though they took the industrial approach to the ceilings and air conditioning system, the floors are carpeted, and the walls seem to absorb the much of ambient noise. You can talk without screaming to be heard over the pep rally that seems to be an annoyingly consistent feature of restaurants these days. As usual, we each ordered what we wanted and then sampled from everybody else’s.

Grateful Monday

So this week I am grateful to have The Prince come visit. I really like hanging around with him. Too bad he lives so far away.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Celebrating Our Birthdays

Suna looks at a birthday card from TubaBoy while he is busy texting his friends. The card features a large biker-type wearing hotpants he doesn’t have the butt for.

The Prince came with us to church. After a rough night (my sinuses closed completely down after dinner), I finally took half a Benadryl at about 6:00. I slept through most of Rev. K’s sermon.

We spent the afternoon working on the house. The Prince and Suna pulled up vines and other weeds in the back flower beds. They have them looking very good. I finally got around to cutting a couple of fence boards that a tree had grown into. They no longer make that annoying creaking in a wind. The only other thing I got accomplished was to trim a shelf so that it fits in the cabinet with the new brackets. One shattered the other day, and we realized that another had been missing for a while. I had wanted to make a tennoning jig, but I realized that the piece of scrap I wanted to use was too badly warped. Looks like I’ll have to buy a little MDF. It’s more stable and will last longer, anyway.

The Prince treated us to dinner at Artz Rib House, where we enjoyed the music of Danny Santos and Eddie Collins, who asked me if I would be interested in playing bass with him, assuming his current bass player actually quits. The boys ate a lot of meat. The Prince seemed to enjoy the meal and the music. Jeff Tveraas also showed up and played part of the break set, the 20 minutes between sets.

When we came home, we celebrated our respective birthdays. Mine is on Tuesday. Suna’s was last Wednesday. The Prince’s was in February. TubaBoy got me a 4G USB key. Suna got me a collector’s edition of The Long Way Home, a collection of the first “episode” of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 8. The Prince and Princess gave Suna a bracelet. It had been a gift from The Prince to The Princess that they had planned to bequeath to Suna. But they decided to give it to her when they could enjoy her reaction.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

A Loop through Central Texas

Beccano, The Prince, and I laugh at something. We are in front of a large moon-shaped fountain/sundial.
Photo by Suna

We went started out today with lunch at a new chain called Which Wich. It is a standard sub shop with an interesting twist. When you go into the store, you pick out a sandwich wrapper from a category like Italian or Vegetarian. Then you mark all the options on the wrapper, hand it to the cashier, and pay. Sometime later, your sub pops out of the oven, fully grown. The sandwiches are tasty enough—not outstanding, but tasty—but the place has the school gym atmosphere that seems to be more and more common. My ears were ringing from the ambient noise by the time we left.

From there we went on a circular tour of Central Texas, out 1431 to 281 and back on 290. We stopped at Whittington’s in Johnson City that specializes in jerky. They sell it for $26/pound, but it is very good. They even ship it free to solder. (I think they mean soldier.)

Then we came back home. The Prince and I smoked some pork loin on the pit, had a couple of Black and Tans*, and generally kicked back. Suna cut and seasoned some veggies. I smoked them with the meat like kabobs. A little pre-packaged potato salad, and we were set.


* Prince, you’ll want to click on that link. The first picture in the article is of Yuengling’s Black and Tan lable. They suggest pouring the lighter beer first.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Back in the USSR

A mixed review for American Airlines’ customer service: exceptionally bad followed by extraordinarily good.
Photo source: American Airlines
Flew in from Miami Beach BOAC
Didn’t get to bed last night
Oh, the way the paper bag was on my knee
Man, I had a dreadful flight
John Lennon & Paul McCartney

Suna’s dad arrived late this evening after a long day fighting the airlines. We picked up The Prince at the airport. He had a long day of it. His wonderful flight that would have had him here at 11:30 AM was canceled because the plane never left Dallas for NC the previous day. We knew that ahead of time, and he had called American Airlines to have them make a change.

Unfortunately, he got a trainee who completely screwed up. Apparently, instead of rerouting him as she had said, she just canceled everything. To their credit, AA took care of him today. They paid for a limo to take him half-way across NC to catch another flight and a cab to take him from one Dallas airport to the other for the connection to Austin. Even that extraordinary measure left him in airports or on a plane for almost 15 hours. He may never want to visit us again.

After picking him up, we took him to Mesa Rosa, which has almost become a second dining room for us. A good meal and a few beers later, we were all in a much better frame of mind—ready to come home and go to bed.

Friday’s Feast

Appetizer: If you could be any current celebrity for one whole week, who would you want to be?
If I could, I would want to be Al Stewart, I guess. I’ve always wanted to write as well as he does. And it might be nice to have his wine cellar.
Soup: On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being highest), how much do you enjoy talking on the phone?
-1.
Salad: Name a charitable organization to which you have donated (or would like to).
The church.
Main Course: What is a food you like so much you could eat it every single day for a month?
There isn’t one I would want to eat every day. Variety is the spice of life.
Dessert: Have you or anyone in your family had the flu this year?
I did. It wasn’t that bad, but the pneumonia that followed on its heels was a killer.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Suna’s Birthday

Suna models her new birthday present and smiles like Mona Lisa.
You say it’s your birthday
Well, it’s my birthday, too, yeah
—Lennon/McCartney

OK, not quite. My birthday’s next week. Today is Suna’s birthday. I gave her her birthday gift a little early so that she could wear it today, if she wanted. In fact, she put it on immediately and wore it to dinner last night, too. Anytime I can make Suna this happy, it feels like my birthday. She even forgave me for not giving her a card.

Here is a close-up of the necklace. Angela made a beautiful thing here.

So about the gift, it is a string of freshwater pearls and sterling silver beads. The clasp is decorative, secure, and sterling. The necklace and matching earrings were custom crafted by local jeweler Angela Woods-Meyer. Angela designed the set to coordinate with a silver and freshwater pearl that Suna already owned. And Suna doesn’t have to worry about seeing other people with this set; Angela never repeats a design.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Garden Song

A late frost made posing all of the plants easier. I had to bring them in anyway.
Inch by inch, row by row
Gonna make this garden grow
Gonna mulch it deep and low
Gonna make it fertile ground

I spent much Saturday whipping the front yard into shape. This involved shaving the weeds as close to the ground as I could and edging the driveway and sidewalks. Edging always makes a huge mess because I have an ancient Craftsman edger ($30 courtesy of Craig’s list). So, I broke out the power washer and blew the mud of the pavement.

While I had the power washer out, I went to the back yard and washed the accumulated crud off of the small deck outside the back door. This deck was originally the floor to a treehouse the neighborhood association made us take down last fall, much to Beccano’s dismay. His grandfather built the treehouse when the kids were little, and it had remained hidden for years. Last year, the NA looked harder. It looks much better with the growth blasted off.

Then Suna and I went plant shopping. This year, Suna decided she wanted a red flower garden. Last year, I bought whatever was on sale. This year, we timed it right and were able to stay within the red pallet and within my plant budget. We bought a range of plants, including:

This whiskey barrel had a lone survivor from last year’s garden. I surrounded it with red impatience and begonias, with a little dusty miller to grow over the sides and make the reds pop.
  • Begonias
  • Celosia
  • Dusty miller
  • Geraniums
  • Gerbera daisies
  • New Zealand
  • Sweet pea

We also had a few survivors from last year.

  • Our fern grew so well last year that I split it in half and repotted it. Both halves overwintered well. One lives in the media room, the other will goes back outside.
  • Several of the begonia’s overwintered, despite a lack of care.
  • Two or three of our pepper plants look like they’re coming back from the dead.
  • The perennials all seem to have perennialed.

That means all of my free time Saturday and Sunday was spent repotting and positioning. I had to bring them all in as soon as I got home from work on Monday. The sweet pea was fairly wilted by a late afternoon cold front that dropped temps to almost freezing, but it seemed to be doing better by bed time.

Monday, March 03, 2008

On Broadway

Image
This was TubaBoy’s first official gig. He has learned one of the most important lessons in music: If you don’t know the part well enough to sound good, just don’t sound bad.
They say that I won’t last too long on Broadway
I’ll take a Greyhound bus for home, they all say
But they’re dead wrong, I know they are
’Cause I can play this here guitar
And I won’t quit ’till I’m a star on Broadway
—Barry Mann, Cynthia Weil,
Jerry Leiber, and Mike Stoller

This weekend was one of the best I’ve had in a while. It was all about music.

We started Friday with a Trey Bone rehearsal in preparation for Sunday night. We got together at Deadhead’s to go over a few of the songs Suna and company have been doing for years. I’ve taken to playing lead bass. With two guitars already in the mix, a lead guitar wasn’t adding that much to the sound. Now, I’m rounding out the bottom while still adding some linear movement. We decided on four songs: “Helplessly Hoping,” “California Dreaming,” “Attics of My Life,” and “I’ve Just Seen a Face.”

After gardening all day Saturday (more in a later blog entry), we went to a house concert at MoneyMan’s house. I call him MoneyMan because he is the church treasurer, not because he is exceedingly rich—although he is not poor. His spouse won’t eat anything that has ever touched an animal product or flame. Even so, there was excellent snackage. Not to mention excellent music by Karen Mal and Ken Gaines. Two steel stringed acoustic guitars, two voices, and no amplification yielded a warm, rich sound that completely filled the room. I really enjoyed listening to them. I love the imagery on her song “The Space Between.” And I like the title track to Ken’s Catfish Moon CD. He is working very hard to keep a dying style of music alive.

It’s hard to believe that this was their third anniversary playing as a duet. Their first performance together was also a house concert at MoneyMan’s house.

The sermon at church Sunday was delivered by the senior religious education class. They also provided the music. Jewel2 sang and played acoustic guitar (nylon strings) for the transitional bits and a hymn. A small ensemble played Let It Be for the collection. And TubaBoy joined an electric ensemble for the postlude. I never thought I’d hear Red Hot Chili Peppers in church.

Then Sunday night was our “gig” at BB Rover’s Café and Pub. Well, it wasn’t really a gig; it was an open mike. After Attics, the crowd was so wowed, the owner asked us to play a fifth song, instead of the three (four with an encore) we had planned. We added “Landslide.” It’s good tune for Suna to sing, but the guys have an unfortunate tendency to not put the correct chords in the cheat sheet. They’ll put the chords in one key and then capo (seven frets in this case)—I’ve always played with people who could transpose before. Sigh. I started in the written key instead of the key they actually play it in. Other than that, it was a good evening.

All of the acts at the open mike, although of widely varying style, were good. Well, maybe one of them wasn’t, but we couldn’t hear his voice in the mix. So it didn’t matter. This being my first open mike, I wonder if any city other than Austin (or maybe Nashville or LA) would have the quality of performer showing up at an open mike in an obscure café. It really reinforced that I made the right decision when I chose to stop trying to earn a living as a performer. There is just too much good, unsung talent for the market to support.

Grateful Monday

So that brings us to what I am grateful for this week: music. It is so good to have music back in my life, pervading my life even. I am surrounded by music and musicians. Oddly, I find the cacophony of developing musicians satisfying, especially when the get what they were working on. I love the wonderful exploration that comes of not being afraid to make a mistake.