This is What Avoidance Looks Like

If you ever wanted to see someone distracting himself from a painful situation and thus being a textbook case of avoidance, this post is it.

As someone who owns two Les Pauls and an SG, this is the single greatest video ever made.

I watched it yesterday before things went south and I was going to post this then, but instead I am doing it now as a form of deflection. If you don’t like it, you can suck it.

Sunday Morning

It’s 7:13am on a Sunday morning in January. What’s going on?

Tons. I’m going to have a busy day, I think.

My exercise is done for the day, as well as over 60% of my calorie goal. Nice. I am going to visit my father today and take him to visit my mother. I’m not going to have a ton of time to spend visiting though. I have to work today. I have a ton of paperwork to do that should have been done over the last week but got pushed aside due to some super hot customer issues. I’ll get as much of it done today as possible and get to the rest of it tomorrow. I’ll have it all done on time, but it’s going to make today suck a little.

What about the new cat? She started under the bed. We took one of the little covered cat bed/house things we got for Patches last year and put it into the bedroom. We also brought the cat tree we got for the cellar remodel and put that in the bedroom too. We sat in the room with her for a while but eventually just left her alone. Jen snuck back in to check on her and found her sitting in the cat bed/house. She called to me to come and see and when I called back the cat got spooked and ran into the bathroom and hid under the vanity. Sorry, kitty. She stayed there for hours, even when we left her alone again.

When we started getting ready for bed she was in the bed/house thing again. She stayed there the whole time. We thought that was an improvement. Around 2:30am Jen got up for something and managed to coax her out. She was purring like a porche and rubbing against our legs and just being super friendly. We got her to jump up onto the bed so we could pet the crap out of her. She seemed to love it. When we tried to lay down though she jumped off and tried to hide behind the cat tree. After a minute or so she ran out of the room and down the hall. I found her in the other bathroom crouching behind the door. When I moved the door a little she ran back to the bedroom and went back into the bed/house.

While she was walking around in the middle of the night, Jen was able to show her where the food and water and litter box are. We had all of it in the bedroom because we wanted them close so she could find them if she needed them. I am a little worried because I don’t see any signs that she’s eaten anything yet. We had dry food and lots of treats and we put them out for her, but I also went to a pet store to buy some toys (Patches didn’t really go for cat toys so we didn’t have any) and some wet food. I am going to put some of the wet food out this morning and see if she goes for it. We were told that she had surgery on Friday (she was spayed) so she might not have an appetite as she recovers. I just want to give her all the options we can though.

What else is going on? Music. Have I played the guitar at all this weekend? No, no I haven’t. Asshole. I am starting to think about recording ideas for RPM, even if I haven’t had a single musical thought. I am considering going with two amps at a time again. I have my Fender Deluxe Reverb here so that amp is going to be used like crazy. I might bring out my Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 and use it and the Deluxe Reverb together through the AB/Y splitter. It’s going to be pretty loud down here if I go this route, so I might try it to start with and then change my mind. The amps will be in a corner of the cellar that is as far away from the living room as I can get, and it’s reasonably far away from Jen’s office so hopefully it will be okay. If I bother her at all though, I’ll turn off the 18/30 and just go with the Deluxe. I have a speaker soak for the Deluxe so I can turn up the volume knob without getting obscenely loud. As for the guitar I want to use, it will be the Les Paul Standard again. I freakin’ adore that guitar. I will wait until either next weekend or the actual start of February before I put new strings on the guitar, but I really need to play at least a little bit every day to try and get my fingers into something that resembles playing shape.

Okay, I think that’s the gist of today. It’s time to start waking up for real and get something to eat. Happy Sunday, folks!

Random Lunchtime Stuff

Some random thoughts as my lunch break winds down…

I read a great article from Guitar World yesterday called 20 Ways to Improve Your Les Paul. The need to have my 1978 Les Paul Custom repaired/upgraded is never very far from my mind, but I don’t have the money to spend on it and I am nervous about trying to sell another guitar to pay for it because what if I am overwhelmed with sellers remorse? Worse, what if I sell it for a lot of money and then find out I didn’t sell it for nearly enough. Oh, the stress! Anyway, the article made me want to get on with it, even though most of the things it suggests are things I wouldn’t do. Fifties wiring and PAF clones are about all I have in mind. That and frets… yikes!

Speaking of Les Pauls, I haven’t played my new Les Paul, or any guitar for that matter, in weeks. I am starting to go through withdrawals again, and I have zero calluses left on my left hand. I am soft and smooth and in for a lot of pain and unpleasantness when I do start playing again. Crap.

Speaking of Les Pauls again, I just finished listening to The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway in its entirety in one sitting for the second time in a week. I don’t know for sure that Steve Hackett played all of his leads on a Les Paul, but it seems that way. There’s clearly a Stratocaster on the next Genesis album, but The Lamb and the three records he played on prior to that all sound like Les Pauls to me. I think he played through Hiwatt amps back then, but I don’t know that for sure. When I saw him in 2019 he was standing in front of a Marshall and a single 4×12 cabinet (he was also not playing a Gibson Les Paul at that show, but a Fernandez Les Paul copy. I think it’s the same (or similar) model I saw Robert Fripp play that same month). I wonder if it was a real Plexi, or even cooler, and old JTM45. Oh, to go back in time with a pile of cash.

I need to go grocery shopping tonight, and I want to get an oil change for the Mazda, which is about to be Bellana’s Mazda. I want the car to be all up to date with everything when we “sell” it to her. I also want to go back to the store that sold me the jacket yesterday and get them to take off the damn security tag. I am pretty ticked off about that. I hope to see my parents this weekend if possible, but it really doesn’t seem like I am going to have the time. There are too many things going on right now, only some of which are related to the imminent xmas. I am hoping I can throw the wife and step kids into the car at some point over the weekend so we can all go out and look at xmas lights. I want that to include a visit to Boston too, but I know it won’t. I wonder if New Years Eve in the city is a possibility? The last time we did that it was followed a couple of months later by a global pandemic, so maybe it’s bad luck? Who knows.

Okay, lunch is over. Time to go be productive for a couple of hours before calling it a work week. HoHoHo, Merry weekend.

Ah, the Weekend

Saturday… at last. Actually, I was convinced that Thursday was Saturday, and then further convinced that Friday was Monday. Man, Thanksgiving is the best but it messes up my internal calendar like crazy.

We need to buy a christmas tree today. The kids will be here tomorrow to do some decorating before they go back to school. I want to have a tree up in the living room before they get here, and I want to give it a little time to shake itself out too. Ideally I would have put it up a few days ago but say no to pre-Thanksgiving christmas stuff.

I also need to go out and buy myself a warm jacket that actually fits me, unlike the warm jacket I own now. Our Saturday in New York plan is still on for now. We haven’t chickened out yet. Jen actually booked a hotel room yesterday. It’s outside of the city but near a commuter train station. It’s going to be cold out there in the big city and I need to stay warm. You see, one unexpected side effect of losing a shit load of weight is that I am cold all the time. All of that built in insulation I used to have is gone and now I find that the world is a very cold place. Jen was teasing me about it yesterday. I was teasing myself too. Brrr, babie.

I’m down to five days left in November, including today. How’s the album in a month project going? Well, it’s going to fail, but other than that it’s going well. Eight songs, about 33 minutes. The goal for this project is 29:09. None of the songs have vocals yet and only two have melody and lyrics. See? I’m going to fail. I want to do car music tomorrow morning and get some singin’ in. I’m not sure what the forecast looks like so I don’t know if I’ll be singin’ in the rain or not (hardy har har). That means I have to crank out melodies and lyrics today. Once the lyrics are done (which will likely take two or three car music attempts) I will have to do leads. That should be terrible. First, I am grossly out of of practice and brutally drowning in rusty. Also, I have no calluses on my finger tips so the playing will also be painful. It’s sort of a lose lose, right? I might not get it done by December 1st, but I’ll finish these eight songs (and maybe add a couple of minutes of instrumental noodling to get myself over 35 minutes).

Okay, folks. It’s 7:08am. My exercise is done for the day. I’ve watched an episode of Pennyworth and a couple of youtube videos on photography. Now it’s time to get my shite together and start my day. Happy Saturday, everyone.

Busy Holiday Morning

It’s been a busy morning so far. Since my last post I showered and shaved and had a Covid scare and visited both of my parents and played a little guitar to relieve the stress from the Covid scare and from my mother being in a less than wonderful state. Ugh.

No more amp sims for NaSoAlMo. All eight songs have rhythm guitars played through a mic’d up amp. Good.

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Amp Fun

The guitar was played tonight. It was played through an amplifier, not through a digital amplifier simulation. It was glorious, as always.

I redid the rhythm guitar parts for three of the five NaSoAlMo songs that I did with sims over the weekend. In all honesty, the sims probably sound better than what I can get with my meager skills, but the real thing feels better when I am playing and that’s what really matters for me.

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Catching Up

Right then. The turkey is in the oven, the first round of dishes are in the dishwasher, I finished Bellana’s laundry, I took out the trash and the recycling, and the camera batteries are all charged up. That means I can post the pics I would have posted in the last post.

My first stop on the film shootin’ journey today was Walnut Grove Cemetery. It looks something like this:

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My second stop was Greycourt Park which looks a little something like this:

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My third stop was the guitar nook which you’ve already seen in the last post, but this time the pic is from my DSLR because I’m a total fucking snob:

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Now, in honor of The Great Black and White Film Experiment of 2022, which was the reason for the first of the two stops this morning, here are the same three digital pictures in black and white:

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Busy Morning

Sunday has been eventful so far and it’s not even 10:00am yet.

I got out of bed around 5:30, went to the cellar and took care of my exercise ring while watching the second to last episode of The Midnight Club. I still haven’t decided whether or not I like that show, but it looks like I am going to finish it. I then ate breakfast. Just a protein bar. When that was done the clock told me it was 6:30 and the Google told me the sunrise was at 6:42 so I put on a coat (it was 26 degrees out, yikes!), grabbed Dad’s camera and out the door I went. I took a few pics at the Walnut Grove Cemetery and the camera didn’t have any issues. Curse broken? I then went to Greycourt Park and took a few pics of the castle ruins. I was thinking of getting a couple of downtown pics too but it was so cold out I decided not to. I went to Market Basket instead. I walked in the door at 7:20 and it was mobbed. What? 20 minutes after opening on a Sunday morning and it’s mobbed? I guess everyone is doing Thanksgiving today? Crazy. After the shopping was home and put away I washed some dishes in preparation for our faux Thanksgiving and then retired to the cellar where I put rhythm guitars (with amp sims, sadly) onto two songs and then came up with a third song. That brings the NaSoAlMo pipeline up to eight songs, all of which have rhythm guitars (though only three used a real amp).

Now I’m sitting at my desk typing this masterpiece, waiting for Jen to call me upstairs to start cooking the five-day-early-feast.

It’s been a pretty decent morning so far, wouldn’t you say? I might need a nap today.

Oh, I’d post some guitar pictures, and a couple of quick point-and-shoot snaps I took at my two photo shoot destinations this morning, but both my DSLR and my point-and-shoot are on the charger. The DSLR was about to die and the point and shoot did die. I could use my iPhone but… aw, hell, I’ll take one with my iPhone…

The pedals are on, but the amp is not. Sad face.