Wednesday, February 8, 2017 / Southwest Flight 465 39,000 feet
All I wanted to do was add some pics to my journal that wouldn’t cause the software to move as slowly and painfully as the minutes I spend sitting next to some overweight passenger angered over their middle seating spewing crumbs of fried garlic and raw onion and simultaneously oozing oily body mass over into my personal space, my precious 17.1” of seating. Yes, my Precious. You would think that with drag and drop web design software something like adding and manipulating pics would be smooth and easy but images randomly drop upside down or rotated 90°, text wrapping takes a “widget” that has to be downloaded and then didn’t work worth a fuck and then there is the whole thing with my lost masterpiece of blogging. Or maybe it’s just time to get a life. I’ve been thinking for a while that I spend way too much time by myself or in the company of strangers.
Sooooooo…where was I? I think a lot of the lost text dealt with the catastrophe that was 2016. I spent virtually all of 2016 in a state of high anxiety. There was a a new disaster every time my phone rang and my heart still sinks every time I get a text or call from a family member.
Saturday, February 11, 2017 / SW Nashville to Boston
Wednesday / 10:30pm ABIA / After a somewhat brief moment of road rage at the Austin airport exit that brought memories of my 20 years of driving in NYC [why do those motherfuckers have to work on the only exit from the fucking airport when I’m trying to get the fuck home?] then home, finally, around 11:30. Hug my beautiful wife, hug the beautiful dogs, juggle the cats, eat some crackers and ice cream, take care of some school business, get to bed by 12:30.
Thursday / up at 6am, lots of coffee, ride the stationary Schwinn 16 miles while watching CBS news, walk the dogs a couple of miles, head for UT teach until 3pm, head home, hug doggies, 10 minute nap, make dinner, take care of school business, drink lots of coffee, walk the dogs 2 miles, fix dinner with Jess, watch episode of Baudelaires (great show – hats off to XXXX), try to work on Cézanne music and fail, 10pm head for bed.
Friday / up at 6, lots of coffee, walk the dogs 2 miles, teach Austin Community College and Berklee Online until 2:30, pack the car with all my shit for gig in Houston (took Collings Soco Deluxe, ’65 Princeton Reverb, ’65 Bassman with mod by Ziv Nigary) head for Houston about 3:30, arrive Cezanne about 6:30, Woody Witt arrives 7pm, set up equipment, Daniel Dufour and Richard Mikel arrive and set up, we run hard music for 20” or so and doors open.
I had a really good time playing at Cezanne. A lot of nice people came out, the band played great with the exception of the guitar player, room sounds good, not a whole lot of talking. Played until midnight, back in the car and back to Austin. Arrive about 3am, hug dogs, kiss wife, eat a slice of cold pizza, hit the sack, up at 6am back to airport catch first SW flight to Nashville now on the 2nd leg to Boston.
Back to current flight / Once in Boston I’ll pick up my rental car and head to Berklee to grab my guitar and then drive to Bennington, weather permitting (lots of snow and more on the way). Going to visit my mom who, while still in the rehab hospital, has been getting stronger and seems to be recovering from what the doctors think was pneumonia. Going to play solo guitar at South Street Café 2-4:30 tomorrow (is tomorrow Saturday?). Lots of online assignments to grade, hopefully I’ll be able to exercise although I think the snow will be an issue.
However things play out it’s been a brutal week so far and I should be a puddle on my faux leather seat but have only been able to nap about 10 minutes so far. Which is perhaps owing to the powerful jet of icy cold air from my vent that I discovered too late is broken and will not close. Speaking of puddles, one dark moment of the gig last night was when I was changing into my dress jeans in a men’s room stall prior to our first set and dropped my right shoe into the toilet. The same shoe I’m currently wearing. There does seem to be some provocative odors in my vicinity but possibly only the usual farting by my fellow passengers. Luckily I am protected from the most noxious odors by the icy hurricane blast from on high. Yes, it’s a glamorous life. Some people have their golden toilets (what the fuck is THAT about?) and some people pick their dripping shoes out of a shit encrusted porcelain model. That being said, in the grand scheme of things I see myself as the luckiest person in the world. I know there are a lot of people out there who dream of having a shoe, having a foot, having any of the incredible blessings that have been given to me in this life. I do not take these blessings for granted nor do I view them as my due but merely a cosmic toss of the coin which could (and probably will) change in the blink of an eye.
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 / SW Flt 465 BWI to Austin
Having a couple of fun gigs seemed to give me a whole lot more energy. It was a long, boring drive down and back to Houston but the crowd was great (of course I took no pictures), the band was great and really nailed some tough music, I didn’t die on the highway, made $50 or so for 12 hours of gig. The solo couple of sets at the South Street Café were really nice as well. It was one of those rare days when I felt like I could play anything – just kind of played without regard for anything except wringing every last bit of music from each tune. I was trying for total concentration and got there a couple of times. My utter exhaustion may have played some part of that and it’s certainly possible that I was only thinking that I could play anything when in reality I sounded like dog shit. If dog shit were to make a sound. In the forest. With nobody around. It was probably somewhere in the middle and I sounded better than usual which is very left handed compliment. “You’re playing like you never played before!” A few friends came out, though, and while it may not have been the most happening couple of sets ever I certainly had a good time and didn’t want to quit. But quit I did – I needed to visit my mom in the hospital which thankfully I was able to do 3 or 4 times in the 2 days I was in Bennington. I guess a day and a half. Now there is one more hour to go in this fucking oversold shitbox, get in the car at the Austin airport in approximately 1:45 and home. Tomorrow try to run early, teach some lessons at UT and a couple of dog walks.
Wednesday, March 1, 2017 / Logan Airport waiting to board Flt 934 for BWI connecting to some bullshit flight to Austin
I had all that travel a couple of weeks ago, got back to Austin 2/15/17 and woke up Thursday, 2/16/17 with what looked like bed-bug bites on the back of my neck, arms and face. They were itchy, swollen and inflamed. Fucking itchy. Went to the doctor, got referred to another doctor and started one course of treatment in case it was chicken pox. That didn’t work so Thursday started Prednisone which is knocking it out. On that same Thursday Jessica went to the emergency room with a pain in her abdomen – appendicitis. Thursday she had an emergency appendectomy so I was at the hospital from about 7pm to 1am, back home, to sleep by 2:30, up at 6:30 to walk the dogs, feed the cats, clean the house, teach, pick Jess up at hospital, fix dinner, feed dogs and cats, etc.
Stress and exhaustion would appear to be my new reality. Playing good, though. Playing is the only way to shed some of this fucking weight on my shoulders.
Saturday, March 4, 2017 7:30am CT / ABIA waiting for first leg flt AUS/BNA
Ok, asshole, stay on your side of the fucking seat divide. Fuck you you fucking fuck.
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 / Southwest Flight 465 BWI/AUS
On the other side of the “what kind of life is this?” aisle I bought a ’63 Deluxe (blonde tolex) from Mike Williams. The last, very last, so last, thing I need is another amp. But it’s pretty sweet. Unfortunately now stuck in my office at Berklee where there is already little room. I’m going to try to get it in a suitcase so I can bring it home on the plane but what a pain in the ass that is. I do have a big suitcase but I’ll have to check it and it’s JetBlue next week (no free checked bags) so it’ll be a minute before I get it back.