Turf Marking

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FYI

Things you need to know:
  • Some posts, or the links they contain, are NSFW. This is your only warning.
  • This blog serves the cause of my freedom of speech, not yours. I wield censorship like a 10 year-old boy who just found his father's handgun.

Monday, March 31, 2003

HAPPY HAPPY JOY JOY!

Many times in my life, I've seen small miracles. No water turned into wine, crippled people suddenly walking, or anything like that. But I can now officially say I've seen enough of them to know that they do happen.

My trumpet has been recovered!!

Friday, March 28, 2003

THE WHOLE STORY

Isn't it funny how this version of an AP story on Al Jazeera's website being hacked is slightly different from this version posted less than 12 hours earlier?
NEW QUOTE FOR YOUR EMAIL/USENET SIGNATURES

People are misquoted all the time. This time, however, there appears to be no mistake.

"F____ Saddam. We're taking him out."
  -George W. Bush
FINALLY... ONE REASON TO SMILE

Guys like these are why the Time Lords strictly enforce the laws of time.
A MOMENT OF SILENCE PLEASE

My most prized possession - my trumpet - is missing. It really is like losing an arm.

Sunday, March 23, 2003

FREE TOYS

Courtesy of the same person who introduced me to Lime (the music notation program from the Cerl Sound Group).

Since I got Lime, I managed to hack out transcriptions of jazz solos, and lead sheets. I even picked out a random Chicago song to transcribe a horn soli. It actually came out pretty well, too. But since I didn't have a MIDI input device, I had to hack it out with my computer's keyboard -- not that I was complaining. It was exactly what I was wanting, short of having a MIDI keyboard. Heck, I don't even know how to play piano, anyway.

Well, my friend gave me his old Casio CT-670 keyboard and a stand. How old is it? The demo track is The Way That You Love Me by Paula Abdul, if that's any indication. It's even operating out of the old MIDI standard, but hey... as an input device, it'll suit my needs just fine. I just need to find cables.

Looks like I just might eventually get to live out a few of my old "pipe dreams" after all.

Saturday, March 22, 2003

FUTURE GOAL

I saw a commercial, and immediately marked my calendar for April 16. I just have to see Bulletproof Monk!

Damn, Chow Yun-Fat rules!
WHAD'YA THINK?

I fiddled with the layout a bit. I don't know if I like it or not. Might keep it. Might change it back. Don't know yet.
IDIOT-BOXING

Last night was the series finale of Farscape on the Sci-Fi Channel.

Now, no one will ever convince me that Farscape wasn't a copy of Blake's 7. In fact, do a little research and you can even see the behind-the-scenes similarities of both their finales.
LYRICS CORRECTION
Tell you one lesson I've learned
If you wanna reach something in life
You ain't gonna get in unless
You give a little bit of sacrifice
Ooh sometimes before you smile you gotta cry
You need a heart that's filled with music
If you use it you can fly
If you wanna be high

The Roots, Sacrifice (feat. Nelly Furtado)
words/music by Trotter, Thompson, Gray, Hubbard

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

REVENGE OF THE 70s? OR IS IT THE 90s?

don't it make you angry the way war is dragging on?
well, I hope the president knows what he's into, I don't know.

Chicago, Dialogue, Part I
words/music by Robert Lamm


My take on current world developments is quite different than what it would've been back in the 90s during our first go-round in Iraq. No rants about right or wrong, how to weigh freedom of dissent vs. support for our troops, or whether or not we've got questionable motives.

I was just struck by the poigniancy of watching high school students debate to struggle to understand the burning, if unspoken issue: "If I'm going to be called to serve, I want to understand why."

Saturday, March 15, 2003

NOTICE

Before you plan on sending me yet another email of a list of "Full Deck" -isms, please be informed that I already know where to look.
What Was I Thinking?

I can't let the day slip by without acknowledging the Ides of March.

I wondered -- when exactly did 3/14 become known as "pi Day?" No one sent me the memo.
Random Updates

I apologize in advance for any boredom that may ensue by reading today's entry.

LIME SUCCESS!
I managed to use Lime to finally work out a lead sheet transcription for the song Speedball by trumpeter Lee Morgan. I was working on that thing for months! Maybe I'll finally get around to finishing this one Chet Baker solo that I've been working on.

RANDOM WORRIES
I gotta find a part time job for the summer. Maybe a part time job for right now. Gotta make ends meet, you know.

SPRING IS HERE
I actually got to talk a little walk around the neighborhood today in a tshirt and jeans. Just what the soul needed.

Thursday, March 13, 2003

My New Toy

Over the past year, I've been making an effort to revive some of my old musical skills. Not only do I play trumpet at my church, I'm blessed enough to be at a church that actually plays decent contemporary Christian music, not old hymns with a backbeat.

The orchestra director is a friend of mine who turned me on to Lime, a music notation software program from the Cerl Sound Group. Now, I've got reason, motivation, AND a tool to finally relearn and maybe expand my musical knowledge. It always was one of my life's goals to write a song or two.

Monday, March 10, 2003

Shout Out

Happy birthday, Dad! He turns LXXV today! Longevity tends to run on my dad's side of the family. I hope it remains a family tradition.

Saturday, March 08, 2003

Back to Basics

This blog took quite the personal turn for awhile, lately. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that in and of itself. But, I feel I've lost touch with what this thing's supposed to be about - mostly thoughtful, if slightly uninformed and possibly mad ranting about nothing in particular.

If you recall, somewhere in my first entry or two (I won't link. You're intelligent enough to find your own way there.) I lamented over the fact that I couldn't load my blog directly onto my AOL site. Hence, the "freedom" link underneath the title -- the area on my website that originally contained my rants. Going there, then clicking "instant gratification" would cause this to load in a frame, giving the illusion that the blog was just a seamless part of that site.

But, I become more displeased with it. There's really no intuitive connection between my AOL pages and this one. I'd like to forge one, but I don't know how. I could add a column on here and throw a bunch of links on it. Have it not load onto the frame on my AOL page. Endless possibilities it seems, and yet it seems more effort than it's worth to make the effort, aside from the affront to my personal aesthetics.

Ok, I'll write back when I have something a bit more important to consider.

Friday, March 07, 2003

Psycho Babble
Credit cards crystal shards no backyards
Blah blah blah
Empty trains winter rains see-thru brains
Blah blah blah

Robert Lamm, Sacrificial Culture
words/music by Robert Lamm & John Van Eps

Most people know of George Carlin's classic routine, the Seven Dirty Words -- the ones you can't say on the air.

Well, I can think of 100 Words that you shouldn't use, just by virtue of the fact that they're currently popular with bloggers and random undesireables everywhere.

Courtesy of Word Spy

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Idiot Boxing

I watch too much TV. I remember a game I played at a party a few years ago. It was a contest to see who could name different TV theme songs. After awhile, it was like "Name That Tune" with me being able to name the song within a couple of notes.

What do I watch nowadays and why? Before you ask, no, it's not reality TV. I don't rail against it because I just haven't seen any of it. The first and last reality show I saw was the first season of Survivor. I almost cried when Rudy lost. Since then, I just haven't been interested.
Law & Order - Remember that period a few months ago where there was an episode every other hour of the day? Most people don't realize it's been on more than a decade now. I love the spinoffs, particularly LO: Criminal Intent - Vincent D'Onofrio is definitely the new Columbo. But nothing tops the originial. The two things I love the most: Jerry Orbach's pre-title sequence wisecrack and Fred Dalton Thompson as the new DA. His character is like Dr. Phil without the compassion.

24 - I thought for sure this concept would get old after the first season. I wasn't too impressed with the first few episodes of this season, but now, I'm hooked.

The Dead Zone - I've said it before, he's no Christopher Walken, but Anthony Michael Hall is just as good. I can hardly imagine him in braces accidentally swallowing a birth control pill anymore.

REIGN: the Conqueror - It's interesting if sometimes overwrought. It takes itself a little too seriously in it's "retelling of the story of Alexander the Great." It's better than Aeon Flux, though.

Lupin the 3rd - Or Lupin III or Rupan Sansei or whatever anime purists choose to call it. And yes, I know what they show on Adult Swim is merely a watered down, newly translated version for Cartoon Network. I surrender - I'm a dork for liking it anyway. Maybe I'll be "graced" enough to one day see it in the original japanese with subtitles.

Those are the shows I make it a point to watch. The ones I'll actually tape. The following shows I catch when I can, despite whatever inference you might draw from the comments I make.
Enterprise - I like the theme song, sue me. There might be a lot of negative things to say, but it isn't consistently lame like Voyager was. Though, I question the wisdom of using time travel story lines with Scott Bakula. I saw all the episodes of Quantum Leap.

Farscape - I do watch it, though I'll go to my grave saying it's a Blake's 7 ripoff.

Stargate SG-1 - One word: MacGyver.

Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda - This show's going downhill faster than Earth: Final Conflict. What started out as interesting premises degenerate into dumbed down shades of what they were. I bet Gene's turning in his grave if I were convinced he were really dead. I swear with all these new shows, he's the Tupac Shakur of sci-fi TV.

Mutant X - Horrible, yet oddly compelling.

Angel - I needed a TV vampire fix since Forever Knight got cancelled.

Everwood - (Mostly) clean and wholesome, not too preachy. I like it.

That's what -- 13-14 hours a week, give or take the odd Law & Order reruns on TNT? Or, the odd WWE Wrestling show I catch now and again? I don't think that's enough to call me an addict, do you?

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

Today's New Word

PRESAGE
v. 1. To indicate or warn of in advance; portend. 2. To have a presentiment of. 3. To foretell or predict.

From The American Heritage Dictionary, 2nd College Edition

Not the Kreskin

can you honestly evaluate the story from within
without part of you blocking the way

The Sons of Champlin, Freedom

Something I've finally come to terms with is that I have the INFP personality temperament. (You can do a web search on Myers-Briggs personality types yourself -- I'm feeling too lazy to link at this precise moment.) Translated, that's a personality type that is (I)ntroverted, i(N)tuitive, (F)eeling and (P)erceiving.

I'll explain with a snippet of a brief summary of a Readers Digest version of a explanation. My locus of control and source of renewal is basically internal. My primary way of obtaining/filtering information and interacting with the world are through my perceptions, intuition and feelings. It's said that people like us have some kind of "sixth sense." Basically, it's because we perceive the subtle, the less obvious and can put it in the context of the big picture.

My personal problem is that up until very recently, I've never been able to distinguish between the strengths and weaknesses of my personality. If INFP types are guilty of anything, it's missing the trees for the forest. That can be dangerous for people who use their feelings as their primary guide through life. Emotions and "the big picture" can sometimes lead us to false conclusion. Emotions sometime run so strong that sometimes we inadvertently believe our own press about having a "sixth sense," when we sometimes discount what we sense around us using our first five senses.

What does all this mean? No idea, specifically, other than to say that this is one area where I need to mindfully strive for more balance.

Monday, March 03, 2003

Affirmation of the Day

"Because I'm good enough. I'm smart enough. And, doggone it, people like me."

all of my life I've been searching and hanging on
turn a corner, never know what I'd find
but now I'm back again like I never went away
let me in, I'm through with wasting my time

Phil Collins, Inside Out

Sunday, March 02, 2003

I Had To See It To Believe It

I heard the rumors, saw the link, and finally checked out:
Wil Wheaton's Blog

Yes, TV's Wesley freakin' Crusher from Star Trek: The Next Generation! Read the blog, especially his FAQ. I swear, he cracks me up almost as much as Bruce Campbell.

Saturday, March 01, 2003

And Now For Something Completely Original

Maybe one day soon, I'll post my mission statement. That standard, that compass that, in theory, guides my day-to-day decision-making. Now, there are a million and one ways to construct one. I just happened to use Stephen Covey's method. Here's another.

I won't post mine, but suffice it to say I feel out of touch with it. Intuitively, that should indicate that I need a new one. But, I'm not sure where to begin. It's almost like I lost my grounding -- not totally, so it's not necessarily as dramatic as it sounds. I've still got one or two things to center me.

It's like I know exactly where I am. Just not exactly where I'm going.

Ok, this thing's getting way too personal.
While I'm At It

I might as well go for broke and tick off my second favorite songwriter on the planet. It's a new month and a new outlook. Actually, it's an old outlook that I've been trying to live up to. For the sake of documentation, here it is.

The Show Must Go On
words/music: Bill Champlin [transcribed the best I could]
performed by Chicago

I've been trapped in the madness
From the shadows of sadness
I laugh it away
I've been blind to the passion
While the whole world is flashing
I stash it away
While I'm singing of freedom
I'm trying to sell
What I never had
Hoping I'll be released from my own kind of hell
'Cause I've lost the key to my past

The show must go on
It seems like there's something I'm leaving behind
The show must go on
'Cause the dreams that I'm having
I'm having all the time
The show must go on

And there'll be no confessions
'Cause I'd only be guessing just where to begin
There's only one thing I'm knowing
This feeling ain't blowing
Away with the wind
And I'm tired of turning my back on myself
Throwing truth away
Let the fire burn down the front door to myself
And give me a season of play

The show must go on
I just keep pretending to live for the game
The show must go on
I just keep on bending the rules to fit the pain
It's time for collecting
What I've been neglecting
It's gonna be a little strange
'Cause one day I'll be gone
And I'll be back in town
Nothing's gonna, nothing's gonna be the same

The show must go on
And I just keep pretending to live for your game
The show must go on
I just keep on bending the rules to fit the pain
And I put on the face
Win every race
It's only the strong, can't you see
And I'll keep up the pace
I won't leave a trace
Of yearning for some room to breathe
Still going on, still going on