Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I know what you're thinking.
"Second, that's great!!!"
No, it's not, it sucks that 1) I am better player than that guy and 2) He beat me
My winning were good and it's always good to come home with money, but I hate losing. But I love winning money. But I HATE LOSING. BUT I LIKE WINNING MONEY TOO.
I'm so torn. Coming in second bugs the hell out of me. Coming in second has this haunting effect on me. I'm replaying the losing hand over and over again in my mind. But I won money, so I should focus on that and stay positive.
I think you're starting to get the idea that I'm being pulled in two directions here. Coming in second is like receiving a really sloppy blowjob; sure it feels good but it's the slurping noises that really bother me.
Stacy was a real trooper last night. She waited on me to finish after she busted out early on a tremendously bad beat. But she kept herself busy making new friends.
Tonight, trivia. Where we will win and be victorious. No more sloppy blowjobs.
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Well it's been about a year and people are blogging less and less and I feel that for some, the fad is coming to an end. I'm not judging anyone, it's just an observation.
But there are some that have just jumped into it and that gives me a little faith. So here are two new people to the right.
JR is a friend from South Africa living here in the States. I always love spending time with him because he brings a different opinion and attitude to the table. I'm always amazed at what I don't know and I always end up learning something new around him. Also, his stories about moving to the States for college are awesome. He should write some of those down for all to read. Take the hint man.
Next is Gondeee, my oldest friend but not oldest in the sense of age but for how long I have known him. He and I were in the same cub scout troop (awwwwww) in 2nd grade and for whatever reason we have managed to in touch since then. What's even more amazing is that through all these years we haven't killed each other either. He recently made the investment of season tickets for the upcoming Braves season and I plan on attending more than a few games with him. Oh yeah, he is a huge baseball fan. You were warned.
With the impending arrival of the ipod I have been exploring the deeper and deeper levels of the itunes music store. I found a podcast of UGA athletics that includes previously aired editions of the Coach Mark Richt radio show and inside Georgia Athletics.
Since leaving Athens, I thought I would never hear the show again except on piss poor AM with crackles and hisses that we get in the house. But at long last, it was mine again, if only for a little while and with the crispness that only comes with the internet. After deeper research I found that as football tapers down, they switch the programming over to the basketball coaches radio shows. How freakin sweet is that? (for those interested, I did a itunes search for "Georgia" in the podcast section and it popped up on the main screen.)
While watching last night's evening news there was a story on charity events that use poker tournaments to raise money and help draw people in.
Part of the story focused on Odyssey Percussion, a non-profit group that was looking for new ways to raise money. So like many organizations, they investigated doing a poker tournament as a fund raiser. After their research Odyssey decided not to host a tournament because whether it's for charity or not, gambling is illegal in the state of Georgia.
In fact there are only three legal ways to gamble in the state of Georgia 1) State run Lottery, 2) properly licensed Bingo and 3) Raffles.
But there is this guy that tells people including this "iteam investigation" that it was legal. Yeah he was busted. But that's not why I'm telling you all this. I have some friends that are on staff with this Odyssey. As they were describing what Odyssey Percussion does, up popped a brief pic of Rob on the tele. I paused the TV and snapped a quick photo for your enjoyment.
Look at how intently he stares. Go Susan!!!
And more good news, today is the day off and I was awoken at 9:15 (normal wake up time on the day off is 9:30), by a pounding at the door. It was Mr. Fed-Ex and he had me a package. The ipod has landed. Gig money = Happiness. Off to go buy stuff for it.
Monday, November 28, 2005
When I loaded my gear in, I only noticed one dressing room and assumed that it was for the headliner. I put my stuff near the stage and went to eat some dinner, when I came back my wireless mic was gone. GONE, nowhere in sight. My horn was there, right next to Dave's but my mic was gone. This is an expensive piece of equipment and it is on permanent loan to me from my Dad. While it is basically mine he can call it back in at anytime.
I asked a few friends if they had seen it or moved it. Nope.
I asked the sounds guy. Nada.
I checked on stage, near the stage, back of house, my car (just in case I didn't bring it in as I thought I had). Zip.
Twenty minutes of quasi-panic, I found it shoved under the back of the couch in the dressing room. At that point the bouncer showed up and said that he put it there for safe keeping. I tilted my head to the side and with a very confused look said to him, "Thanks, I think". What I really wanted to say was, "Hey, you put that back right now."
Sunday, November 27, 2005
After a late night of football (Go Dawgs!!!), I got to get up bright and early for another church gig. After all the flugel fund is not going to build itself. The other trumpet player I normally play with at this particular church wasn't available so they got a sub. A sub by the name of Cecil Welch.
His bio is lengthy, but here's what you need to know. Cecil was the principle trumpet of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra when he was invited to be the principle for the Henry Mancini Orchestra. He also played Flugelhorn on Out of Time, the REM album. So the guy has not only been around the block but basically built a couple of highrises on the block.
To say that I was nervous was an understatement, but I did my best to match him note for note. I failed at that a few times but for the most part I played pretty damn well. At least well enough to receive two very nice compliments from Cecil. He was so nice and unbelievably talented. I could only hope to get to play with him again.
Saturday, November 26, 2005
Thursday, November 24, 2005
I hope everyone had a happy and tasty turkey.
While I will spend tomorrow at the retail gig, there is a gathering of friends that will be burning off the cranberries and stuffing by playing a game of kickball. Yes, you read that right, kickball.
Guess who's jealous, but I am so there in spirit.
The flugel search is tapering off for now. I just can't find one that I like, that is worthy of being purchased, I'm not going to buy new (that would be a HUGE waste of money. Why buy new for 1000-1500 when you can be patient and get the same for 500-700 used) and I refuse to go the ebay route. Ebay is just too risky for this type of purchase. An album is one thing, a horn is another.
So the way I figure it...The gigs are coming in with a good amount of regularity. So rebuilding the flugel fund will be easy and hopefully by February I'll find something that is worth my hard earned cash. The other purchase I've been dying to make is the ipod and tomorrow baring some type of snafu, I'm pulling the trigger on it.
Side note: I'm thinking about going with the 60 gig version, but so I really need that much space? I know the the 30 gig will do for my music and photo needs, but I wonder about the future of the device and what it will be able to do in a year or two and perhaps I will need the extra memory later down the line. End of note.
Apple is having a one day sale (like who isn't) and I'm calling their asses up to buy it and a bunch of stuff to go with it*. Then in three to five days, I will reap the rewards of getting up on Sunday mornings for the past two months.
But before we go there, does anyone have any suggestions regarding an ipod purchase?
Speak now or forever hold your peace.
*the accessory list
Universal Dock (to connect it to the home stereo system)
Remote (to operate the device from the sofa, but now that I think about it, I won't be able to see the screen, but I would be able to control the volume which I can do from the stereo remote, hmmmm, maybe not)
Apple Care plan (to extend the warranty)
itrip (to listen to it in the car)
A case (to protect it, but I'm going to go shop around locally for a case that makes me happy)
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
Actually, I have no good analogy for this.
At first sight, it was a beautiful horn. No blemishes, played VERY well, and blew like your senior year prom date. (To each his own)
But on the inside....That was a different story. Red Rot in the second valve casing. Not a big deal but cause enough to ask for a discount to get it chemically cleaned out. Also the Amado key on the main tubing was not working correctly.
The asking price for the horn was $700. Knowing that a chem cleaning and a new Amado key would be necessary, I countered at $500. No good. I came home empty handed. I want a flugel like no one's business but I'm going to buy a good horn at a good price, no exceptions.
Unless I find a GREAT deal in the next three days, I'm going to take the flugel money and dump it into an ipod with the appropriate accessories. And then start rebuilding the gig funds to a horn buying level for after the holidays.
At least that's my plan for right now, it could change when I wake up in a few hours.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Monday, November 21, 2005
I have never owned or played a Getzen so if you have some thoughts on the manufacturer or even the horn model itself, spew 'em out.
Last Friday I saw the new version of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. I liked the first 95% of the movie. The Oompa Loompas were freakin hysterical, but not in a knee slapping kind of way. But the twist at the end ruined the movie for me.
Tonight I saw the new Harry Potter. Even though I have the read the books and knew exactly what was going to happen; I stayed glued to my seat for 160 minutes. A fun plot driven ride, with a bonus of that no level of intelligence required to enjoy it.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
Did that happen? No.
It took 3 and a half hours to get from Athens to Marietta. Thankfully this trip did not break my record set in the mid-nineties. That continues to stand safe at four hours because 285 decided to stop working that day.
I can break it down further than that.
It took two hours to get from exit 129 to Exit 115. That is seven miles an hour for two hours.
The offending and subsequently dead person that started this unholy mess was traveling northbound on 85. For whatever reason, she crossed over the grassy knoll that separates north bound from sound bound and was promptly flattened by a tracker trailer. The end result was one dead person, three big rigs that had to be towed out, and six other damaged vehicles.
As we got through the final stages we heard a news report that the traffic was now backed up to exit 145. Over thirty miles of people in cars not moving.
So that little snafu ruined the planned nap and leisurely planned departure for the Skirts' gig at The Earl. Instead it was in the house, change clothes, pick up gear and out the house in fifteen minutes.
And now; a full review of The Earl. There are two sections to The Earl; the front restauranty/bar type part and the back club type part.
The restauranty/bar type part. I was served the greatest burger I have ever tasted at a restaurant. Juicy but not overly so, seasoned but still let the natural taste of the meat through and the fried okra with it was very fresh and oh so tasty. The beer selection was good but by no means close to Wild Wing standards. They had three beers from Sweetwater on tap and that's good enough for me.
The service was bland with no thrills. She didn't even attempt a pause to build a meaningful relationship with us. No, I felt so used, but the burger was so good that I still tipped well.
The club portion was through a door at the rear of the restaurant. A nice room for an intimate show. I got the sense that the room was driven by whomever was performing. The room didn't force or add anything to the performance, but rather it allowed the performers to be performers and let them set the ambiance of the room. Bryan, who took care of the artists, oversaw load-in, watched the gear that was left backstage, was also the only discernible bouncer for the entire bar, was amazing. He was always nice, polite, and extremely efficient.
My complaints about the club are few but important. The sound system was good but the mixing left much to be desired. For example, the opening act was, De Nuva Dahl, a pop rock act from Nashville, Tennessee. I loved their show but the mixing was so poor that I couldn't understand one sung word. They performed so many differing styles of rock and pop music it would be difficult to determine their influences. Fun stuff but after a busy tour, they are taking some time off. But fun, I'll go see them again.
Dave had told me earlier in the evening that Keith, Rob, Jamil, and Bobby were supposed to come out. But like everything else, their plans changed. Due to a high volume of beer consumption, the only one who made it was Keith. And as I told him when he got there; "You can always count on Keith."
The Skirts went on second and while they played well and put on a very good show, the club (complaint number two) had become uncomfortably too warm. This was due to the number of people in the room and the poor circulation. I felt like my lungs were closing in on me and I have a fear of dying by suffocation, so out the back stage door I went until I no longer felt like I was drowning on dry land.
Home around 1:15, showered and in the bed by 2.
The alarm clock started at 7:00 AM for another church gig this morning. I really don't like the church gigs, but as the weeks go by I find that I can afford a nicer and nicer Flugel Horn the longer I do them. So, I continue to say yes.
I've been off from work since last Friday and I have to work one day between now and Friday. Some call it vacation but since it's a week off interrupted smack in the middle by a day of work, I'm calling it two very long weekends that I get paid for not showing up.
I do have some plans for this time off. Tidy up the trim in the dining room, go to the driving range and perhaps take a lesson that I so desperately need, poker on Tuesday night at Moondogs, and catch a few movies. On the list to see over the holidays; the new Harry Potter, Walk the Line, Rent, Jesus is Magic and The Aristocrats.
In other news, The TV show "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" makes me bang a hammer against my skull.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
Bunny McIntosh is listed to the right under "People I don't" (know). I have been reading her entertaining blog since she wrote a very nice review in Flagpole of the Skirts' first album. We emailed a few times, I would ask questions and she would answer them. But that was a year ago.
Last Friday night as I made way down to the Watt, I stopped at this small restaurant to get a quick bite to go. A cute diner with an overly extensive menu for the size of the place. But behind the ordering bar stood Bunny. She was working hard slinging food to the masses in exchange for tips.
I was waiting for my burger and figured that I should introduce myself. As a conversation starter I said; "Excuse me, are you Bunny?" By the look of horror on her face I thought that I had accidentally told her that I had raped her grandmother or at the very least ran over her dog. Her eyes grew to twice their normal size, she put her hands over her gaped mouth, and nodded her head slowly.
Wanting to disarm her in a hurry, I quickly introduced myself and reminded her of our exchange of emails and the Modern Skirt connection. Her apprehention quickly dissolved and we shared a very brief but pleasant conversation. What a wonderfully nice person.
And that's the story of how I met Bunny McIntosh.
On a totally different note, a little birdy (Jojo) told me that some people from Arista are going to be checking The Skirts out at this Saturday's show at The Earl. Come one, come all. You can say you knew them when.
I will say hitting the hotel bar with my coworkers leads to a lot of fun.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Monday, November 14, 2005
After a few minutes of catching up I learned that she is back in the States working as a Park Ranger at Lake Allatoona. This is after she spent the past few years abroad as a civilian event planner employed by the Navy in Italy.
The Cobb Clan are living in Kennesaw and after hearing how many of us are living in the Metro Atlanta area, are anxious to get reconnected to old friends. Email me if you would like her email address.
Friday, November 11, 2005
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
Plans for trivia quickly fizzled out tonight. Kit had a corporate thing and Stacy had a family type activity which required her attendance. So not wanting to venture too far from the norm, I ordered wings to go from Wild Wing, camped out at the house, and vegged in front of the tube.
Today this corner of the web exploded. Hundreds upon hundreds upon hundreds of hits. 534 at last count, a new record!!! I checked the referals and here is the entry that got all of the referals and they all came from here. Anyone got a clue as to the language?
I've been saving gig checks for an ipod, dock, itrip, and remote. But just yesterday Dave reintroduced the idea of buying a flugelhorn. I've been pondering about what I could do with the horn and it could be fun. So for the past 24 hours I've been toying with the idea of putting this money towards another horn. Unfortunately that idea is currently winning, but I really want an ipod. I feel so torn. Damn you Dave. Yes, Damn you!!! But since I have no power in the hereafter I think you're in the clear.
Tomorrow I have a lengthy to-do list before I get some out of town company for the night. But on tomorrow's list is a visit from the Comcast guy. We are moving up in the world. I'm trading the cable box in for a DVR cable box. It is similar to Tivo without the big brotherness and monthly fee.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Tonight, trivia at the Wing.
Tomorrow, day off, driving range, Home Depot for something to soak up oil on garage floor, explore options for getting the oil leak in the Honda fixed, and do a touch of lawn maintenance.
Friday, work, and then travel to Athens for the game and a concert.
For anyone that's going to be in the Athens Friday night, the Modern Skirts with Dave and I will be performing at the Fabulous 40 watt. They are opening for The Whigs CD release party. It'll be an early show of sorts, probably going on around 11 or so.
Saturday, tailgating with friends, and then the game. This is probably my favorite game of the year. UGA is currently favored by three but look for the line to grow a point or two as we get closer to Saturday and DJ continues to move better and better.
Monday, November 07, 2005
OH HELL NO!!!
I went flying over to the store radio and shuddered when I discovered that someone had changed the station to WGOD-FM or as the dial said, 94.9 FM.
NOT ON MY SHIFT BITCHES!!!
I enjoy the holidays as much as the next guy; Family gatherings, the sights, smells, foods, buying stuff for other people, etc, etc, etc. But for Christ's sake (HA!) I don't have a need, desire, or want to hear the sounds of the holiday in EARLY FUCKING NOVEMBER!!! There is no reason what-so-ever to start the holiday season until the day after Thanksgiving.
With that said I was shocked when I walked into work today. Turns out that fairies are real and they, just like 94.9, can't read a calendar. Overnight the fairies magically redecorated the store with gift bags aplenty and bright boxes with bows.
And so starts the longest holiday season of my life.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
Friday, November 04, 2005
Golf was fun, I still suck at it, but it beats doing most other things.
As we trodded and beat the ground with our clubs and balls we must have struck a nerve with Mother Nature and it turns out that the bitch will fight back. Case in point; when Rob (Susan) teed off on the 15th hole, Mother Nature spit a wad of mud straight into his face. No warning just a lot of watery dirt into his eye.
While Rob was in some serious discomfort I ignored his cries of pain and tracked his ball. Despite the distraction of dirt in the face, his shot was very straight and just 20 yards shy of the pin.
I had a few shots that I was mildly amused with. It only took about 10 holes for me to remember how to hit a golf ball. After that there was no consistency to speak of, but there was a few moments I was proud of. But enough shitty ones to ask for golf lessons for Christmas.
Last night was the weekly poker tourney at Moondogs and I made it to the top ten. Not bad but I coulda done better.
Today was shaping up to be a jem (Read: shitty day). Work this morning was a far from stellar experience, and I'll leave it at that. But then I got two pieces of fun that turned the day around.
One, a little birdy told me that our injured friend made an appearance on AIM. Well that must mean that he is at feeling good enough to surf the web and that's a step in the right direction.
Two, Rob, AKA Toothy Ruthie, called and invited me to go chase small dimpled white balls around open green spaces for a few hours. Excellent!!!
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Instead I got to cook a real dinner. I love cooking a good meal as long as I'm not hungry, then I have no patience for it. I had dinner rarin to go just a few minutes before she walked in the door, which was a bonus.
I picked up another church gig for Sunday (different church, same ideas about religion and stuff, same pay as the other church, but two services).
I wondered a lot today. I did a lot of kitchen cleaning too, but the wondering took up the majority of the day.
It's obvious that The Daily Show with Jon Stewart leans more left than right, but I love them for trying to bash both sides equally.
I still love a good salad.
SNL is really sucking this season.
Why does my yard insist of fighting me on the whole weed thing?
I'm out of beer, why is that?
When will Steve Martin go back to being funny?
Why do I keep forgetting to bag that yard waste that I hid behind the tree?
Is Savannah secretly running the house? And if so, when did that happen?
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
This past Sunday I had another church gig and it was fantastic. I love playing my horn when I'm playing well. The other trumpet player hired for the gig was Kristine Harris. She is the chair of the Music Department for Truett-McConnell College and a very nice and very talented musician to boot.
Dave and I will be heading back into the studio this Wednesday for another recording session with the masterful Geoff Melkonian. I don't know what artist we are recording for, but I hope this session turns out as well as the last one did.
Oh and here's something so 'effin corporate that I can do nothing but hang my head in shame.
My beloved company is having some type of rally/party in November for the retail sales force. I think it is something designed to get us fired up for the upcoming holiday hell. Part of this is a company talent show. My co-workers and boss are pressuring me to enter and play something on trumpet.
What the hell would I play that would be considered entertaining to this group of people? First movement of the Hummel? Third variation from Carnival of Venice? The horn solo from the 70s classic More, More, More? What about Dixie? This can only end badly.