The Worst Monday in Ages

Oh no… it’s Monday. Oh no.

This is the first time in two years that I have to come back after a full week’s vacation. The last time was a week in Orlando visiting the Mouse. That was followed almost immediately by Covid. Yippee. Let’s hope for less post-vacation drama this time.

I peaked at my email on Saturday. I was actually peaking at my calendar for this week, but I looked at my inbox too. There were about 250 unread messages. It will be a little higher than that when I punch in today, in a little less than an hour.

As wonderful as a week away can be, and in this case was, that first day back is such a kick in the sack that it can almost feel like it’s not worth it. Almost.

Welcome to the most emotionally painful work day I’ve experienced in just over two years. Hooray.


I have been on vacation for the past week. A staycation in fact. I spent the entire week off thinking that each day was Saturday. I would look at the Bruins game schedule and be surprised that they weren’t playing Arizona (because they are scheduled to play Arizona on Saturday, get it?). I would spend each day reminding myself to not miss The Walking Dead tomorrow, (because The Walking Dead airs on Sunday and I thought it was Saturday, get it?)

It’s finally Saturday. Well, finally is the wrong word because that implies I was impatient for it to get here and that, by extension, implies that I was impatient for my week off of work to end. I most definitely was not. I just mean that after spending the week thinking it was Saturday, it actually is Saturday. The Walking Dead airs tomorrow. The Bruins play the Coyotes tonight. Also, I woke up 100% convinced it was Sunday. My internal calendar is a dick.

Anyway, no issues with the CPAP machine last night. More circumstantial (is that the right word here?) evidence that when masks start having problems staying sealed it’s time to get a new mask. Duly noted.

I just had my protein shake and my first dose of vitamins. I didn’t miss a dose yesterday, which is good, though I did forget to take them around dinner time and ended up taking the last dose at nearly 9:00pm. I hope that’s not a bad thing. It’s just vitamins, right? It’s not like I am taking a narcotic or something. I’ll check with the dietician the next time I talk to her.

I have two things on my to-do list for today. There are a bunch of boxes in the dining room that need to be chopped up and removed. Also, the Kia needs an oil change. We’re taking my step son Harry back to school tomorrow so the car is going to get around seven hours of road time and I just want it to be in tip top oil shape, you know?

What else? I haven’t played my guitar once during the whole week off. That makes me sad, but I was legitimately wrapped up in other stuff. We really hadn’t planned on any of the things we did this week, but we ended up being seriously busy the whole time. It was good. I am very happy with this particular staycation. I just should have played the guitar some.

I am starting to get back into thinking about bringing my two 1970’s guitars to a tech for some work. They both need their frets checked out and possibly (hopefully not) replaced. I don’t want to do that, but I will if I have to. Those two gitters need to live forever. I want to have the wiring and the pots replaced on both of them as well. I want to go with 50’s style wiring (that has something to do with how the volume and tone pots are wired together. I think it’s the output from the volume connects to the input of the tone? Something like that?) That changes the way the two knobs interact, and it eliminates the drop in high frequency response when you lower the volume knob. I guess it also means it’s possible to increase the volume with the tone knob, which is weird, but I’ll get used to it quick. I also want to put new pickups into the Les Paul Custom (not the ES-335, those pickups will stay in forever). I just don’t know what to get. I want to go boutique and cork sniffy and I want to get as close to late 1950’s Gibson PAFs (patent applied for) pickups as I can. I also don’t know where to go for any of this. I have one shop in mind, in Andover, MA, but I haven’t decided. Someday soon I’ll start this ball rolling. After the kitchen fun is over with.

Okay, gotta go tear up some boxes and get an oil change. Your humble blog narrator will talk to you later, oh my readers and only friends.


I am officially on vacation. One full week. It’s a staycation but it doesn’t matter. I am off for a whole week for the first time since February 2020 and I a so very ready for it.

Now that I am on vacation I think I might take a nap.


Woah, Really?

I knew this, and I was aware of it, and it wasn’t actually a surprise, but I just looked at my work calendar for next week and saw that I have the entire week off and it sort of just hit me… Wow! Really? I am off all next week? Kick ass!

I have two hours and fifteen minutes left in the work day. After that I am cooking dinner for my love. Chicken and quinoa and broccoli. Broccoli is like a special occasion thing. I just steam it, but it is so good. Maybe we should have it every day. After that, I am going to mix the last two songs. It’s a moral imperative. I’ve had enough music finished to declare RPM a success for over 24 hours now, but I’m not done until every note of every song is mixed and that means two more songs.

There are currently six songs on the A List, meaning they are definitely on the final album, and eight songs on the B List, meaning they might make the album but also might not, and four songs on the C List, meaning they suck too much to share even by my low standards. I would like to end up with 10 songs on the album and 10 songs on a not-album. A leftovers, or outtakes album if you will. I might go with more than 10 on the submission though, but I want to make sure only the better stuff gets submitted, even though in all honesty they all suck pretty bad. I should really hire a singer next year. Yeah, right.

My watch has been blowing up all afternoon. After all of these years of RPMing, I follow a lot of RPM Challenge participants on They are all uploading songs in batches today and I am getting email notifications for all of them. It’s pretty funny. I would like to apologize to anyone who follows me on alonetone because of the consistent, steady bomb of notifications they got yesterday as I was uploading songs all day long. Sorry about that, folks.

Back to work now. Just get through these last two hours and you can get back to the tunes, Robert. You can do it.

Back to Reality

Show me an American adult who isn’t day dreaming about week long Christmas vacations and I will show you someone who is either lying or took this week off because they were day dreaming about week long Christmas vacations at some other point in the recent past.

Damn it. As it turned out I could not have taken any time off this week. There are too many pressing things at work. Still… I really wish I had.

Back to work at 9:00. Until then I am moving some of my desk back to the bed room from the office. I think we’ll keep the extra desk in the office for weekends and stuff. I don’t want to try to work in there while Jen is working. We did that at the start of the pandemic and we just distracted each other all day. Nope. Separate rooms is professionally good. Outside of work though, I really liked being in the same room with her even when we weren’t actually doing anything together.

So that’s my first post-Christmas workday morning. I can see how fascinated you all are. Have a good first day back, folks. Hopefully everyone’s jobs are nice and quiet today. HoHoHopefully.

Indoors is Still Scary

I took my mother to a doctor’s appointment today. It went well, thank you.

Based on the massive traffic I struggled through getting home I would say that pesky pandemic is over. If that’s the case, why was I freaking out so while hanging out at the hospital?

I was cool as a cucumber on the outside, but a basket case of Covid worry on the inside.

I am so ready for this bullshit to end. Get the damn vaccine.

10 Years Ago Today

You know how Facebook does that memories thing where it shows you things you posted on this day in history?

10 years ago today we were at the San Diego Zoo. That is both a wonderful thing and a moderately depressing thing because Covid.

Let’s focus on the wonderful part, shall we?

2011-08-06 - San Diego Zoo 260
2011-08-06 - San Diego Zoo 249
2011-08-06 - San Diego Zoo 248
2011-08-06 - San Diego Zoo 387

Lunch Break

Lunch break on a Wednesday. We’ve been talking about the desks in our new building today. March 13, 2020 was the last day at our desks in the Waltham building. Two months ago the Waltham building was sold. Now we have desks in another building but prior to this morning none of us had gone to check it out. One guy went today and reported back that none of our stuff from Waltham has made it to the new desks yet. Uh oh. The upside is that some of us might be getting new monitors out of the deal. I had two when we left. They were both old and less than good. This could work out for me.

Wait… didn’t I write something about not talking about work?

The AC folks have come and gone. The window for their arrival was between 7:00 and 11:00. They knocked on the door at 10:50. His first question was, would you like me to wear a mask? Yes, yes I would. Thanks. It was just a routine cleaning and the AC in the wall in the bedroom clearly benefitted from it because it’s working like crazy now. It’s actually cold in here. I haven’t spent much time in the rest of the house yet so I don’t have any news from that front yet.

The tech said the wall unit in the bedroom was pretty old. Huh? It was installed three years ago. How is that old? Was it sitting on some warehouse shelf for a decade before it was installed in our house? Worse… was it used?

My father is in the hospital again. Day two. My brother is with him. The idea is to move him back into a rehab so that he can get back to a point where he can take care of himself better than he can now… which he can’t. He asked to have some of his more common aches and pains looked at while he was in there. Good idea. No real news on any front yet. Hopefully he’ll be in a new rehab quickly and he can get back to working on getting better. I am scared and worried and stressed and wracked with guilt and I am just overwhelmed with it all… and I’m not the one in the hospital bed. I can’t even begin to imagine how he feels. I hate this. I want my dad to be better again.

So Covid is over, right? The world is opened up again, right? People are still getting sick and people are still dying, but it’s all over, right? I’m thinking about things that I can do that were put on hold. Vacations would be first on that list but we have two college kids now and we are out of money. I already had a haircut, but I need another one because my hair grows faster than light. I need to get my eyes checked. Jen has done that already but see the previous sentence regarding money. I may have to ride out my old glasses for a little while longer. There is a guitar and an amplifier that I’d like to trade in. It depends on how much I can get for each item, but if I can get a used ’68 Deluxe Reverb or a used Les Paul Junior in exchange, I might. I don’t know how that will go.

Okay, time to clean up my lunch and get back to work. The hope is we will be watching episode two of Loki by 6:00pm. Four hours or so from now. Fingers crossed.

Wish my dad good luck, okay? Thanks.

One Year Ago Today

I keep doing this but here’s something I posted one year ago today:


Just in case you forgot that society fell apart in March 2020 and here we are in February 2021 and it still hasn’t come back online yet.

We are only 15 days away from the one year anniversary of my last day in the office. It’s been a brutally long two weeks.

Screw you, Covid-19.