Wait, that’s it! I know now what I can offer you that no one else can: complete and utter dependence!

I’ve been meaning to write for DAYS.  Sorry that I haven’t.  Been lazy about getting these things done.  I’ve actually got MASSIVE website updates sitting on my hard-drive that just need a final proofread and test…and they still need it.  Sigh…  I sit in front of computer screens so often, yet so little gets done.  Ah well…  Let’s catch up.  By the time you read this, I will have finished writing the post and also will have Googled “Simpsons Quotes” for the post title…because we’re doing another RANDOM POST!  WHOO!!!!

Oh yeah…and this is my 1000th post…so…

  1. It’s after midnight…that makes it officially my 32nd birthday.  I was born around 10:00 a.m. so it’s not really “official” until then…but close enough for the Internet.
  2. Got home from Arkansas on Thursday night.  It was a good trip and my cousin Terry did a wonderful job with the funeral.  It was sort of a whirlwind, and I really wish we’d been able to stay another day (at least), but Dave and I are both working men and had jobs to get back to.  Still, it was good to see everybody, albeit for a sucky reason.  I did a much better job documenting the trip on my tumblr page, if you want to click over to that.
  3. I led music at church again this weekend…  Played my Telecaster through an amp.  First time I’ve done that at Pursuit.  I usually prefer to play acoustics when I do the “boy with guitar” thing, but felt like switching it up.  Think it sounded okay.  Here’s the list–apparently I’m stuck in 2006:
    1. Revive Us Again
    2. Praise Adonai
    3. Water
    4. How Great Thou Art
    5. God of Wonders
      T-shirt worn: RAMONES.
  4. Went to the Memorial Day Pignic at my Dad’s club yesterday.  It was hot.  Too hot.  Couldn’t take it.  I got there around 2:00 and left around 5:00.  I just couldn’t stand the heat.  It was giving me a headache and I was sweating non-stop.  Plus, my brother and his family only showed up for about an hour and split really quickly for whatever reason (didn’t ask, figured they planned it that way).  So didn’t really get to spend much time bullshitting with them.  Spent the rest of the day sitting on the couch and watching Deadliest Catch…which is no bad thing.
  5. We did my family-birthday thing on Friday at Joe’s Crab Shack.  Had some good King Crab, along with clams, head-on shrimp (first time I’d eaten that) and a surprise sausage that I don’t think they mentioned was going to be in the pot I ordered.  Good stuff.  In hindsight, should’ve just gotten a big-assed pot of snow crab…but nevertheless, it was very good and I’d like to go back soon.  They’ve got a slightly “louder” atmosphere than I tend to like, but the food’s so good I didn’t mind it.  Got some awesome gifts and had a good time.  Thanks to everyone who was there.
  6. A cop got shot in my neck of the woods.  Kind of a rarity around here.  Sad to hear about it.  It’s a dangerous job.  Selfishly, I find it irritating that they were searching every car at every stoplight immediately following it (they don’t do that when Joe Nobody gets shot, after all), but all things considered I get it and I wish the guy that got shot the speediest of recoveries.  I hear they have a “person of interest” in custody.  Hopefully they got their man and everything works out to a movie-happy ending.
  7. I had a grown-up moment just before leaving for my aunt’s funeral.  I needed a new suit for it.  I only had the one suit that fit, and people in the family had seen it two weeks prior at my uncle’s funeral.  (Man, the Lord’s really mowing down that half of the family…)  So I went suit shopping.  No luck at most of the places I went, but hit a home run at JC Penney’s.  Got a three-piece suit, shoes, and a tie for a really good price (less than what I would have paid for JUST the coat at Kohls—where I’ll likely never shop again).  And here’s the thing…  I was really happy about the tie.  That’s when I realized I was a grown-up.
  8. Missed my first new-comic books day in two years due to leaving town for the funeral.  I will sometimes not go on Wednesday if pressed for time, but when that happens, I’m always there on Thursday.  This week, I didn’t make it at all.  It’s Tuesday tomorrow and there’s no point in going in two days in a row.  Don’t get me wrong, I had an excellent reason for not being there…but it was weird, and I feel like I haven’t been in there in a month.
  9. I think my favorite thing in the new Muppets movie is that they just slightly grayed Fozzie’s eyebrows to make him look a little bit older. (EDIT: For some reason, in my original post, I wrote “earlier” instead of older.  Weird.)  God is in the details.
  10. Huh…sudden thunderstorm outside my window.  Here’s hoping it’s just rain and not hail and tornadoes this time.

Well…that pretty much covers it for now.  Thanks for reading.  Especially if you’ve read all 1000 posts.  If you haven’t, then get to work!  There are some really unflattering rants in the archives.

————

Current Listening:

  • Willie Nelson – Heroes
  • Of Monsters and Men – My Head is an Animal
  • The Lumineers – Self-titled…

Rest in Peace, Deet

Well this is a bummer of a post.

I’m writing from Jonesboro, Arkansas.  I was in Goobertown less than two hours ago, visiting the family and enjoying a brief period of happy, nice, sitting around doing nothing time before things get sad tomorrow.  It has barely been two weeks since my Uncle Bob’s funeral, and I’m here in Arkansas tonight getting ready for another one tomorrow.

This funeral is for my aunt whose given name was Violet Marguerite Johnston. But no one in this family goes by their proper name. (I myself am often called Wayne.) She went by many names… Sometimes Marguerite, sometimes Marge… But pretty much everyone in the family at one time or another settled on calling her “Deet.” And even that was often altered to “Deetie.” Though there is some disagreement on if it’s “Deet” or “Deat.”  I, as is obvious, have settled on the former.

Deet is known as “one of the girls” by most of the family. There were four sisters in the family who all lived in the same house for at least as long as I’ve been alive (and presumably longer). Deet was one of them, along with Naomi (who died in the 90s), Stella, and Clara. The house is on the old family property once owned by Arthur and Lydia Johnston, the family patriarch and matriarch, respectively. The girls lived in the “new” house and the “old” house (which housed over a dozen people in three rooms, with no plumbing) was converted into a barn…then fell over. Deet was one of the people who watched over the family farm. One of the”girls.”

Though everybody in the family is just as important as anyone else, we all seem to hold “the girls” in a special sort-of reverence and whenever anyone in the family said something like, “Let’s all go back to the house for supper,” no matter who said it, we all knew it was THAT house we were going to. The family property started with a patriarch and a matriarch, and ended up with FOUR matriarchs. Sadly, that number is thinning out, as we’re all getting older. Father Time is a real douchebag.

Deet had developed Parkinson’s a while back and also some disorder to the effect of dementia or possibly Alzheimer’s, depending on who you talk to. Her quality of life had declined significantly in the past several years. In fact, the last time I saw Deet at a family Thanksgiving, she seemed to have no idea who I was and very quietly (her voice down to a shaky whisper) began telling me about who her sisters and brothers were…which was a very sad moment for me. But in some ways I am grateful for it, because I am now comforted by the knowledge that she no longer is burdened with that.

Following are a handful of memories of Deet. This is the short list…but it’s what came to mind while I was writing this…and I think these are good.

  • When I was a teenager I was a huge Queen fan. I still am now…but back then it was all I listened to and talked about. I remember very specifically being in Deet’s car with her, and for whatever reason it was just the two of us. She asked me about the band because I was wearing one of their t-shirts. I told her about them and about how Freddie Mercury had died of AIDS recently. We then talked about the fact that Freddie was a homosexual, and she told me that she didn’t think it was anybody’s business what people get up to behind closed doors. At the time I remember being shocked that someone of her age and what I incorrectly presumed were her political leanings would say that. I always admired that.
  • When I was a little kid, like all kids my age, I was really into the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I had a formidable collection, just like everyone. I remember being at Walmart with Deet and looking around the toys. She told me to pick one out. I did…and I still remember that it was—don’t judge me—the Raph Space Cadet figure. She bought it for me, and because we were there so close to Christmas that year, she got it back to the house and wrapped it before giving it to me, so she could watch me open it.
  • One Summer we were at the house and I though I don’t really remember all of the details, I remember that my brother brought his friend Tim with him, and that somehow throughout the day, I’d torn my pants and was afraid somebody might make fun of me for it. I didn’t want to be embarrassed in front of Dave and Tim or any of the cousins, for that matter. Deet found out about it and stitched up the pants for me before anyone was the wiser. She was a life-saver, that one…
  • Deet is also responsible for one of my favorite turns of phrase. She would not be happy with me for putting this on the Internet…but then again, she also probably didn’t really know much about the Internet in the first place… My apologies to anyone in the family who’s bothered by this…but because of her, I find myself sometimes saying, “Tough titty, hard suckin’.” There might be some who think that is a knock against her character—although to my knowledge she only said it ONCE… But that’s the kind of thing that made me like her even more. For the most part she was saintly…but she also said that! 🙂
  • The last time I was in Arkansas for an overnight stay, I was there with my brother and sister-in-law. Coincidentally, it was just a few days before my 27th birthday. Deet had been told I would be there, but forgot to mention it to anyone else, so when I walked in she had a look of “Oh, right!” on her face that still makes me smile when I think about it. She spent most of the time we were there showing us all  different things that she wanted us to see, asking questions about how things were going, and so on…being sweet and kind as she was. I think it excited her to have us there and show Valerie around, who’d never been before. During the trip, she told me I’d “grown to be a taller man than I thought you would,” which I’m pretty sure was meant to be flattering.  She also talked to me about the book I was reading (I was reading Frank McCourt’s “Teacher Man” for the first time), and even though she had no interest in it, she made polite conversation about how many teachers we have in the family. And the day we were getting ready to leave, Deet remembered that it was my birthday—I’d been trying not to bring it up, as it was a complete coincidence–and she made sure to wish me a happy one. (No one had told her it was my birthday at any point. She just remembered out of the blue.) That was in 2007, a couple of days after I’d just resigned from my job at the Ferguson Church and my life was very much in upheaval, and I was not in a very “good place.”  And Deet remembered my birthday, and for a little bit it was okay. I’m in Arkansas now, once again just a few days before my birthday. And this time I’m here to say goodbye. The timing somehow seems right.

Deet lived to be 92 years old. 92! She was loved by everyone who met her pretty much immediately. We lost a good one. But on the other hand, at least I know there’ll be someone glad to see me and show me around once I get to Heaven. Because she’s definitely there.

I’ll talk to y’all after I’m back from Goobertown.

————

Music listened to on the trip so far:

  • John Mellencamp – Scarecrow
  • Hayes Carll – KMAG YOYO
  • Flogging Molly – Speed of Darkness
  • Drive-By Truckers – The Big To-Do
  • Johnny Cash – American II: Unchained
  • Creedence Clearwater Revival – Some “Best of…” Dave had in the car.

This is why Tara and I are friends…

I’ve recently been frequenting a new deli that opened nearby.  It’s called DeLeo’s, and it’s in Florissant off Lindbergh, near Trotterway.  Stop by if you get the chance.  They’re nice people who make great sandwiches.

They have a penchant for naming their sandwiches after movies.  For example their reuben is not called a reuben.  It is a Big Reuboni (in reference to “The Big Lebowski”).  Their pastrami is a “Pastraminator.”  They at one time had a turkey sandwich called the “Gobblefather” as well, but apparently dropped it from their menu once they moved here from Colorado.  (I found their old website…kind of a pity.  I wanted that sandwich.)  Anyway, the premise entertained me and I shared it with my friend Tara…and we’ve been coming up with movie-themed deli menus ever since…  So here’ a ridiculously long list of what we’ve come up with so far (with an occasional explanation or note).  We kept it limited to deli-type items…no steaks or whatever.  Feel free to play along in the comments.  It’s more fun that you’d think.  Sorry the list is so damn long.

The ones I came up with are in black.  Tara’s are in red.

  1. Apocalypse Cow (Roast Beef)
  2. Chickenzen Kane
  3. Chicken Little (Sliders)
  4. Queso-blanca
  5. The Passion of the Cheese
  6. Julius Caesar Wrap
  7. Monty Python and the Watercress for the Hold the Mayo (I fully acknowledge that this one is awful.)
  8. Dr. Strangeloaf (Meatloaf sandwich)
  9. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Fries (Sandwich combo with a big-assed side of fries.)
  10. Reservoir Hot Dogs
  11. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts…club
  12. Scent of a Reuben
  13. The Jazz Slinger
  14. The Breakfast Club (It’s got eggs and whatnot)
  15. Bacon, Lettuce, and the Attack of the Killer Tomatoes
  16. Soup: All the President’s Minestrone
  17. Close Encounters of the Beef Kind
  18. Nightmare on Corned Beef
  19. The Sixth Swiss
  20. The Full Monte Cristo
  21. The Shawshank Frenchdippin’
  22. The Curious Case of Benjamin Brisket
  23. Iron Ham
  24. The Pork Knight
  25. Harry Potted Meat
  26. Soup: Forrest Gumbo (contains many kinds of shrimp!)
  27. Soup of the Day: Caligulentil
  28. Silence of the Hams
  29. Robochop (It’s a pork-chop sandwich)
  30. The Ten Commandmeats
  31. When Harry Met Salami (Have what she’s having!)
  32. Ghostmuenster
  33. How Stella Got Her Reuben Back
  34. Gone with the Fin (Fish Sandwich)
  35. Hamelot
  36. Hamlet (Oh that this too, too solid swiss would melt!)
  37. Drink: The Golden Chai
  38. The Lion, the Witch, and the Pickleloaf
  39. Conan the Braunschweiger
  40. The Pastrami Code
  41. The Good, the Bad, and the Baloney
  42. Jurassic Pork
  43. The Right Stuffaletta
  44. The Roast Beef Horror Picture Show
  45. The Italian Job
  46. To Grill a Mockingbird  (It won’t sell…but neither will When Harry Met Salami…so…)
  47. Drink: Bridge Over the River Chai
  48. Schindler’s Dip (Menu Description: “It’s just…wrong on like…every level…especially since there’s pork on it…”)
  49. Philadelphia CheeseShrek
  50. Po’ Boyz n the Hood
  51. Edward Scissorhams
  52. Full Metal Baguette
  53. Side Item: Texas Chainslaw Massacre
  54. Side Item: Lord of the Onion Rings
  55. Order any sandwich open Scarface!
  56. Much to do about Mutton
  57. Beauty and the Beef (Which, incidentally, we also recommend as the porn-name for the movie.)
  58. Pastramigeist
  59. Star Wars Combo: A New Hoagie, The Empire Fries Back, and Return of the Pepsi
  60. Prequel Salad: The Phantom Lettuce with Attack of the Croutons.  Comes with Revenge of the Chips.
  61. The Skeleton Turkey
  62. Napoleon Vegemite
  63. Supermanwich
  64. BLTjuice
  65. There Will Be BLT
  66. Peanut Butter and Gigli
  67. A Ham of their Own
  68. Meatball Durham
  69. On Golden Fluffernutter
  70. Field of Greens (Salad)
  71. Little Shop of Hummus
  72. Close Encounters of the Bird Kind
  73. Crocodile Turkey
  74. Dessert: Almost Famousse
  75. Sex, Lies, and Veggieburgers
  76. A Fish Called Wanda
  77. Last Temptation of Cheese
  78. Big Trouble in Little Tuna
  79. Hammequin
  80. Goodfetas (Gyro)
  81. Slingblade’s Mashed Biscuits (Which I feel like is cheating, but I’m willing to let it go.)
  82. Veggie Sandwich: The Green Mile
  83. Drink: What’s Eating Gilbert Grape Lemonade
  84. Last of the Mobacons
  85. The Exorcist (Pea Soup)
  86. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Melt
  87. …and for after dinner: Complementary 12 Angry Mints

…and that’s it.  Hoping to get it to an even hundred by Memorial Day.  🙂

————

Current Listening:

  • Elvis Costello – National Ransom
  • Rufus Wainwright – Out of the Game

Cornerstone Cornergone. That’s a Terrible Post Title…

I have been informed that Cornerstone Festival will be shutting down after this year’s event.  (Link working at time of writing, but I would assume not for much longer.  Here’s hoping it doesn’t lead to porn in The Future.  Or that it does.  Whatever.  Life’s too short.)  I went to Cornerstone a number of times and enjoyed it quite a bit.  I’m sad to hear that it’s going away…but at the same time, the last one I went to was somewhere like 6, 7, or 8 years ago, so I guess it’s not like it meant much to me in the last few years.  Still it was good to know it was around, and I’ll miss it being a thing.  Thought I’d eat up some time and bandwidth by writing a post about some of my memories from Cornerstone.  We’ll go point-by-point and kind of randomly, because that’s easiest.  This is non-linear for the most part…mostly because the memories from different years kind of blend together.

  1. My first trip to Cornerstone was the year they did the Rich Mullins tribute show.  Rich had just died and Cornerstone got a bunch of his friends and band mates together to send him off in style, with several performances including all or at least most of The Jesus Record.  That was awesome.  Dave Knobel and I went for just that one day, driving about 1000 miles per hour.  Dave got a speeding ticket.  I offered to pay some of it.  He refused.
  2. I went with a variety of people over the years, but my good friend Amanda and her son Tobias were almost always constant companions.  I remember hanging out with them at many a performance and at the campsite.  Particularly enjoyed playing Hearts with Amanda and several other people during some downtime one year—which was also how I (and I think she) discovered the music of Waterdeep, which was playing in the background.  Tobias celebrated his first birthday at Cornerstone.  He was years-later baptized at the Festival…and he is now a teenager.  Where does the time go?  And how did I get so fat???
  3. Of course, the main reason anyone went to Cornerstone was for the music.  I came to love a LOT of bands through Cornerstone’s influence, and I got to see and celebrate the music of some real heroes of mine.  Here’s a short list of some of my favorites…
    1. Of course the Rich Mullins tribute and Waterdeep, both of which I’ve already mentioned…
    2. Saw the Ragamuffin Band in the year following Rich Mullins’ death, when they toured in his memory.  I filmed that one with a camcorder borrowed from Dave Knobel.  I meant to film more, but didn’t.  I enjoy shows too much to be a bootlegger, for the most part.
    3. Madison Greene — They’re no longer together…but a lot of the appreciation I have for folk music can be traced to Madison Greene.  They combined celtic, tribal, and various other influences to create something completely unique.  Their MySpace page still exists for some reason.  So check that out.  (Again, sorry if that’s somehow porn by the time you get to it.)  Plus, their lead singer (Michael Blair) kinda looks like me…so there’s that, too.
    4. Relient K – Yeah…I know…sorry.  I really only have the one record, and given who I was at that time in my life, I stand by it.
    5. Denison Witmer – In the first few years I went, I would frequently hang out at the Main Stage, but in the last couple of years I mostly frequented the acoustic stage.  (As a side note, I find most Christian rock acts “cute.”  I find Christian metal “adorable.”  I find Christian folk to be Christian music at its finest and most dignified.)  Hanging out at that stage, I ran across Denison Witmer.  He’s kind of Jackson Browney…kinda Graham Nashy…like super-laid back, what if Paul Simon slipped his shoes off and sat down a while–ish…  And I love every note.
    6. Miranda Stone – Opened for Madison Greene a lot.  I maintain that her “7 Deadly Sins” record is one of the bravest records I’ve ever heard any female songwriter produce, and it means a lot to me.  Got the chance to meet her at Cornerstone one year and she was very sweet and polite and funny.  Really wish she’d put out a new record.
    7. Caedmon’s Call – I was certainly aware of them by the time I saw them at Cornerstone (roundabout the “Long Line of Leavers” record), but Cornerstone is the only place I’ve ever SEEN them to this day, and it was outstanding.
    8. Steve Taylor – I went to the 20th Anniversary show (wow…that was a while ago, wasn’t it??!) and Steve played a set.  It’s a rarity for him to do that, having burned more bridges than most places have bodies of water that would necessitate a bridge…  The set was one of the best Christian shows I’ve ever seen, and his performance was definitely in the top five performances I’ve seen any artist give in ANY genre.  Go to eBay RIGHT NOW, and try to find a copy of “Liver.”  You’ll thank me.
  4. There would always be at least one day with really bad, sometimes SCARY rain.  I slept in my car, so I stayed drier than many…but there were some years that it was really bad.  I remember one year that generators kept flooding and shorting out.  Several shows got canceled when the skies opened…  There was always a place in your mind that thought, “Great…I’m going to die in a tornado at a Christian music festival in the middle of nowhere…”  But in hindsight, kind of a fun experience.  We all made it through, after all.
  5. One year I met my Indian Spirit Guide at the campsite.  (Stay with me.)  I was sitting there at our site minding my own business when an elderly Indian man in full tribal headdress wandered out of the woods (I’m not crazy!) and sat down next to me.  He looked over at me and said, “Do you want to learn how to cut a mango?”  Of course, I said “Yes!”  He then produced from some unseen pocket a mango and a fairly large bowie knife.  He then showed me how to properly slice a mango, ate the mango, and buggered off back into the woods.  I immediately shot to my feet and said, “Guys! Guys! I think I found my Spirit Guide!”  It turned out that everyone else had seen it happen too though…so it was probably just some dude.
  6. One year my friend Ian was relentlessly mocked by the other members of the group for making reference to a skunk-based He-Man character.  He couldn’t remember the name of the character and said, “I think it was called Stinkor or something like that.”  People laughed at the absurd name, and mocked him for inventing it…except for me, who said, “I don’t know…I remember that character, and he MIGHT be right about the name.”  And guess what…  He totally was.  I sent him a picture of the toy still in the packaging on Facebook a year or two ago and he thanked me for finally helping him prove others wrong.  Say what you will…when Derek Brink has your back, he (by which I mean I) has your back!  …it just might take a while.

I have a lot of good memories of Cornerstone…but then again, the last time I went, one of my friends who I was wanting to see didn’t show up.  I left the festival early because I didn’t really have anyone to hang out with.  And since then, Madison Greene has broken up, others of those bands have stopped releasing new material or retired completely, and I’m pretty sure my Spirit Guide is probably dead by now.  And I’ve never really had the urge to go back…  As much as I have fond memories of Cornerstone, they are memories of a specific time in my life which is now very much over.  And now so is the festival.  You can’t go back again, I guess…but I sure wish I could make it out there this year to say goodbye, nevertheless…  Oh well…  Could be worse.  Could be raining…in a field…while I’m sleeping in my car…

Rest in peace, Cornerstone.  Thanks for making a few summers really, really awesome.

Lousy Smarch weather…

Well it HAS been some time since I last blogged, hasn’t it? Sorry about that. Sometimes life gets away from me. The Internet, doubly so… So let’s catch up a little. The Simpsons quote is in place…let’s get random!

  1. Went to Uncle Bob’s funeral. It was good. The singer was not great, but otherwise the service was fine, and it was nice to see all the family—including my cousin Terry, who I haven’t seen for the past several Thanksgivings. Was hoping to chat about music with Uncle Eddie a while, but he drove one of my (more-or-less) ailing aunts back to Arkansas. Eddie’s a great musician, and I have a dream of going to Arkansas with my laptop and a few microphones and recording him playing, just as a keepsake. Seems like the kind of thing I’d have to talk him into though. Anyway…it was a good trip, albeit for a sad reason.
  2. Speaking of funerals, very sad to hear that both George “Goober” Lindsey and Duck Dunn have left us since the last time I posted. So…wait… The death-trilogy is MCA, Goober, and Duck? That…that just looks incredible in print.
  3. It is entirely possible that I will have a roommate living with me in the house in the next month or so. It’s looking pretty likely, but I don’t want to jinx it, so I’m not going to say anything more. But I hope it works out and I’m excited.
  4. I watch Deadliest Catch. One of the captains is trying to quit smoking on the show…and it’s really making me WANT to smoke. Oh well.
  5. I haven’t said much about my ongoing kitchen remodel, have I? Well, most everything is in place. The microwave and coffeemaker are living together on my countertop…the dishwasher is washing…the dishes are going into cabinets…and I’ve got ice trays. Just need to finish up some small odds and ends, and we’re done. I’ll put some pics on the tumblr page soon, I’m sure.
  6. Picked up the new Rufus Wainwright record “Out of the Game.” It’s super-poppy. Definitely the most pop-driven thing he’s ever done. Definitely the gayest record I’ll buy all year (and I mean that in every sense of the word). It’s good. It’s not his BEST…but it’s good, and I like it. Almost jarring to hear him go back to pop after the uber-weighty “All Days Are Nights/Songs for Lulu.” But a lot of it is instantly catchy and it’s entirely Rufus. So I’m happy.
  7. Been swamped at work lately. Just have to keep running uphill, I suppose… Sooner or later it’s got to level out, right? Hey…at least we’ve got the work. That’s no bad thing.
  8. I relistened to the old Blue Tattoo record-that-never-was recently in order to get some demos together for Two Hangmen’s drummer. It’s a lot better than I remember it being, but there are definitely things I’d fix if I went back to it, particularly in my own performances. Still, I did a small re-master (fixed some EQ issues, got it loud, etc) and it sounds pretty good. Can’t wait to re-record the ones that we’re keeping for Two Hangmen.
  9. Speaking of recording, I’ve put myself on a little bit of a hiatus on “Pop Art Manifesto.” I was getting a little too swept up in it. I haven’t touched it in about a month and I don’t think I will before the end of May. I need to remove myself and come back to it fresh, both so it doesn’t get stale, and also so I don’t accidentally regret things I wouldn’t have heard being so engrossed in it. I think it’s a strong enough project that it needs the benefit of me NOT working on it for a while. 🙂
  10. So TV’s “House” is almost over huh? That’s kind of sad. Love that show and love Hugh Laurie. But I hear-tell that he and Stephen Fry will be reuniting to do some voiceover work soon–so no complaints about that! (And now that he’s got the time…fingers crossed for JUST one more series of Fry & Laurie? Please?)
  11. Hoping to revive Empty Checking soon…but I’ve said that a million times and it hasn’t happened…so I won’t say more.
  12. My music is OFFICIALLY off of iTunes (et al) as of today. Just got the e-mail. At what I was paying TuneCore to host it, I feel less sad than I do FREE. I’ll find my way back to the Internet soon, I’m sure. If nothing else, I can host downloads from my own site, so that’s always an option.
  13. The Two Hangmen website should have a pretty big upgrade here shortly. I had to delay it due to a few things happening unexpectedly (ie – funeral), but I think I’m about one three-hour session away from being done with the upgrades, which will include the 2H EP going onto iTunes, where my solo stuff just left! 🙂

…and that’s it for now. I’ll try to blog more in the rest of the month. I promise.

Rest in Peace, Uncle Bob

There was a time I would’ve blogged about a thing like this the moment after I heard about it.  As it is now, I’ve been avoiding it…

My uncle Bob died on Thursday.  It was sudden and completely unexpected.

Bob was a—to put it mildly—“character.”  Anything I put in print about him won’t come across right, so I won’t tell my favorite stories about him.  Some stories are just better in the verbal context, complete with Southern accent and Bob’s specific timing.  I will say, by way of description, that he was the kind of guy that you rarely saw in anything other than a plaid shirt, often accented by a hunting vest.  At the family Thanksgivings, Bob would usually bring an offering of venison from his past year’s hunt, and he more than once killed the turkey himself with a bow.  He was funny when he wanted to be, but mostly quiet and often mistaken for grumpy.  And also often accurately described as grumpy.  And I’ll miss him.  Thanksgiving won’t ever be the same again—and in a year where we were all talking about what we were going to do with Bob and Cornelia (Bob’s wife/my aunt) choosing to no longer host it, that’s even sadder than it would’ve been anyway.  At least it is to me.

My brother and I are heading out of town for the funeral.  It’s in Cape Girardeau, MO.  (Cheap-shot at Rush Limbaugh suspended out of respect to the gravity of the situation.)  Hopefully it won’t suck too much.

I’ll try to write something cheery later.  Until then…keep fighting for your right to party.  (Had to reference MCA somehow…and that was a tall order, since Bob was the exact opposite.)