The Porch gets a lakeview

November 30, 2008

This morning I awoke unusually early, 2 a.m.  I awoke slowly, first to the sound of the heated arguments of my neighbors.  At first, in my half-dreaming state I was sure they were discussing and arguing over communication theory.  Once I was fully awake I realized I could not actually hear what they were saying and that it would be ridiculous to discuss communication in such a heated manner at two in the mourning.  Also, as I became more aware I heard  the loud commotion of a large truck.  I lay and listened for a while and decided it  was probably a tow truck.  When I finally got up, just to check to see it was not my car, I looked out the window and saw fire trucks as far and the line of sight would allow me.  There were five that I could count.

I began to look around more intently (though I did not have it quite in me to venture out of the apartment to have a look down the street). I noticed a lot of water running down the gutters so it was either a broken fire hydrant, watermain or they were putting something out.  Later I noticed the water was also flooding the lawn areas around the building, and for a night we had a babbling broke outside our office window and a porch looking over a small lake.

This mourning sent me thinking (especially with its disorienting beginning).  I was reminded of one of my favorite verses from the Bible Psalm 16:8 “I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand I shall not be shaken.”  In those times we feel we may be shaken we must be sure to set the Lord before us in our ways and then we will live in the comfort of the security of having a great God.

facing change

November 24, 2008

The inevitable change.  It comes certainly, either accompanied by great anticipation or anxiety.  I love old stuff: cars, music, movies, literature and just plain stuff and I surround myself with it.  So living amongst all these remainders from past cultures I often feel the pressures of change heavily.  An example would be when I watch a silent Chaplin film in black and white and the movie ends it is replaced by modern television.  It hits that changes are ever-present and they quickly add up within a few years.  There are so many changes within our own lifetimes.


I try my best to walk into them optimistically but am always sure I will miss the ways and feel of past times.  The most interesting, exciting and depressing changes are the people changes.  Not only do people change themselves but the circumstances of people change moving people here and there now and then.  These changes in circumstances both benefit and hurt.  Great people, close friends are taken to other places yet without these changes we may have never met those friends.


 It is the inevitable change that we owe so much happiness to.  There are so many great and lovely people to know and share experiences with; we’ll never know them all.  Treasure the past and present, love the endless possibilities for the future and thank God for all of them. 


Pepper-Crusted Prime Jelly

November 8, 2008

Prepared by yours truly, culinary delight Mr. Shaw at Le Dinér de Denny’s.

It’s been awhile eh?

November 2, 2008

Despite numerous warnings, I fell for it.  Why am I up at 5:51am? Daylight Savings Time.

I’m playing at Lake Ave this morning, and I usually get up at 6:30 to do so.  I set my alarm clock to go off as well as my phone.  My phone woke me up at what I thought was 6:30, I showered and began to get ready and looked at the clock again.  Apparently the auto time feature on my phone somehow threw my alarm off.

Well, I could either go to sleep for another 45 minutes and battle having to wake up again, or I could stay up.  So, here’s some thoughts.

School is a lot right now. Time-wise, work-wise, and other-wise.  I am incredibly busy.  It’s all really great stuff, I can’t complain about that, but I have literally zero downtime. This is by far my busiest semester of school.  I have to turn in “intent to graduate” forms soon, which weirds me out a little.  In order to graduate, I have to pass the CLEP test and get out of spanish.  I know if I put the time in and really dedicate myself for a few weeks, I can pass it.  But the problem is, I don’t have that kind of time.  I’m worried what will happen if I don’t pass it.  Obviously, I won’t graduate, but what then?

To throw another factor in the mix, I’m considering grad school.  I’ll have to talk to some people and gather some info, but I’m thinking about it for sure, and that’s kinda weird.

I want to play the bass for a living see, and in order to do that, I have to be stinkin’ good.  Not just good, but great.  I play a fair amount now, but I don’t think I’ll be able to fully support myself after graduation with just gigs.  I don’t think I’m up to that level anyway.  So, part of me thinks, yeah, grad school is the answer.

My throat kinda feels funny, I hope I’m not getting sick.

A lot of bass players play a variety of styles, but once they get out of school, or especially in grad school, they begin to focus on one and hone their skills in one area.  I have 3 main areas.  Classical Upright, Jazz Upright, and Electric (I realize that Electric encompasses quite a few styles but I’m lumping them in as one).  My classical teacher used to play jazz, but gave it up to focus on classical.  He now plays with the LA Opera.  I have several other bass player friends who are quite intense classical players who used to play jazz, but no longer.  And it seems most serious jazz guys I know don’t care for classical much at all.  For me, last weekend I played Haydn Symphony no. 8 and Grieg’s Holberg Suite.  That was a blast.  Friday night I played straight funk for a Halloween party with 2 friends of mine, electric only.  That was definitely one of the most fun gigs I’ve ever done (including a funk Thriller/Ghostbusters medley).  Last night I played with the big band from school, also a blast.

I could list a dozen other things, but I won’t. My point is, I’m not happy getting rid of one of them.  But part of me does feel like in order to master one, I need to fully devote my time to it and drop everything else.  But which one…?

I recently discovered that Narwhals are in fact real creatures and not just mythological beasts.  And it’s blowing my mind.  I still don’t fully believe it.

Now I’m off.