Random Musings

So I was trying to mow the lawn between monsoons today, and the mower wasn’t even up to its usual level of incompetence, so after fixing the first issue and still suffering the slings and arrows of disappointment, I decided I should go to the store and get some parts, and by “parts” I mean “beer.”

Mowing the lawn usually gives me a lot of time for random musings. One of my musings today was the reluctant admission that I have made a bad decision in the relationship department. I did not choose wisely. I’ll call her Gretschen. She was a sleek back beauty I met in Elderly Instruments a year or so ago. She’s from the Synchromatic family. From a long lineage going back to 1883, with links to such esteemed musicians as Chet Atkins, and even British royalty: George Harrison. I thought she was a gem, a peach, a fortuitous find. She was gorgeous and well strung. So I adopted her on the spot. But we were not meant for each other. We could not make beautiful music together.


Alas, I have no musical talent, so I couldn’t bring out the best in her. This despite our local funeral home listing me as “musician” on more than one memorial bulletin. Funeral homes have a dark sense of humor. You would too, if you were in the business. I know. My grandfather was a funeral director. I simply run the A/V system at our church. I do funerals. I am not musical in any way, shape or form. I can’t follow a tune, read music, or even keep a steady beat. No talent whatsoever. (Oh, sure, I can play a mean CD, and even manage to play a tune or two on my old iPod– despite Apple’s random, confounding “updates” to the Windows software version, but I prefer to think I’m just collateral damage in the Forever War between Apple and Microsoft.) But I know I’ve disappointed Gretschen far more than she has disappointed me. Whenever I would express my pain in any way, she would get surly, angry, turn on me and yell, “You’re not my real dad!” Then she’d retreat to her gig bag to sulk. I admit I’ve left her sulking there for far too many months.

I think it’s time to part ways. We’ll see if Elderly Instruments will consent to take her back. On a consignment basis, of course. Unless anyone out there would like to adopt her and give her a good home where she can sing and be happy.

I need to get back to mowing the lawn before the rains start up again. Pretty soon I’ll probably need more “parts.”


Coming Soon, Starting Now

The time is nigh for doing more regular updates to my blog. What follows is some fictionalized non-fiction reminiscences from my past lives. I’ve divided these things into the categories of Rants and Memoir. Most can be both.

Also, check my SHORTS (page) now for entirely new short stories of Tales of Life in Deathe.

Sad End of an Era

Interesting developments deep in the U.P.: the end of a lease agreement for people who have had camps on the Ontonagon Rive in the Ottowa National Forest. Now that the 25 year lease is up they have to abandon their camps and walk away. Still hurts, even though they knew it was coming.


Music and Muses

I enjoy good music on some good headphones while I write. Especially when I write in a public space, like at one of our Peninsula Writers weekend retreats. Earbuds just aren’t sufficient to dissuade interruptions by fellow writers who are more sociable than I am. One of my recent discoveries is an American band with an international flavor, Pink Martini. Smooth and delightful. I’m building up a suite of their albums. Or CDs. Or downloads, as the case may be. I was recently thrilled to find I could tune in a Pink Martini channel on my phone with Google Music– even more thrilled to find I can stream it on my 1.5mbs “high speed” wifi.

But my pick for theme music for Tales of Life in Deathe would be Joe Satriani’s The Forgotten, Parts 1 and 2: Continue reading

A Little Shameless Self Promotion


I’ll just post these covers while I’ll taking a break from blogging to do other things far more boring and stupid. I’ll just mention that I was presented with two electrical problems this week, and it took me most of the morning to fix the third one. Huh? Obviously, somebody can’t count. Or do I sense a conspiracy of some sort? Click on the title tabs at the top of the page to learn more about Life in Deathe.


Call Me Wish Male

Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off- then, I account it high time to get to the U.P. as soon as I can.

With apologies to Herman Melville


(Coincidentally, I bought up the rear of the shortest funeral procession I’ve ever seen this week. A minivan hearse, a six-door Cadillac XTS limo, and a four-door DTS limo. And me. But I wasn’t invited. And I didn’t care, when they pulled into a rather shabby suburban neighborhood. Who knows, maybe this a new high school prom thing?)