12-15-03: Painting is killing me, but Christmas vacation is drawing near, and it couldn't get here soon enough; Jen and Mike D. are coming to town, so I'm sure to have work far from my mind, if only for a few days; Going to start production on a couple new magic CD's for Opus 1 in a couple weeks; I want to have something new for the convention in Cleveland next summer. And while in Cleveland, I plan on visiting St. Theodosius again. Can't wait!

11-17-03: I came across this great quote (in Guitar Player magazine from 1996) from Dweezil Zappa. It was an opinion on whether or not guitar solos were really necessary in anymore... 

     "I guess some people would argue that solos are unnecessary and perhaps even detrimental to songs. I would tend to agree--if the guitarist is a (bad)* lead player. Unfortunately, it's more fashionable to be noisy and out of tune, which I guess translates to terms like 'raw' and 'alternative'. That type of music can produce certain valuable improvisational moments, but it's generally bereft of any inspirational instrumental heroics. It also makes it possible for much larger segments of musicians to join in spreading the virus known as mediocrity".

--*edited profanity that rhymes with ditty

I'm relieved that there are others who didn't buy into the myth that Kurt Cobain was a 'genius'

11-09-03: Well, the Ravens lost again; I've decided not to make any more football predictions, since Carolina seems to be the only team I've picked correctly; Still trying to finish my last outside job of the year...sooo close, just need 4 good days, and it's done; getting the inside jobs scheduled, and everything looks good thru December; clueless as to what my next music project will be (songs, instrumentals, commercial/film scores,....????); I think I'll just get out the notebook and sit in front of the beat-up old upright and start writing, the way I used to do; how do ya like the little squirrel .gif I found?!? Yeah, the little critters are starting to figure out who's feeding them, and are hanging around, waiting for me to come out in the morning with the peanuts....hey, everyone needs a hobby, right?

11-01-03: Sorry for the bleak post bellow; I just found out that one of my favorite singers passed away last week...Elliott Smith, whom I've put on many of my 'Mix...' CD's, has been an inspiration to the kind of music I've written, but not recorded, for fear that it wouldn't be of much interest to anyone but me (plus, I'm just not nearly as talented). This guy's music is absolutely beautiful; if you've seen the movie "Good Will Hunting", the  acoustic songs you heard in the background were Elliott Smith.

10-27-03: California is burning...hmmmm. I can totally see why so many people would want to live in the 'People's Republic'; insanely high taxes/cost of living, black-outs, earthquakes and now fires--again. Seriously, it really is a beautiful state, if you can see thru the smog and ash. Here's the real irony: I saw a news reporter interviewing a (D) congress woman, and the reporter said something like, "...it's been said that only an act of God could prevent the latest wave of fires from spreading..." and the congress babe kinda chuckled, "..well, uh..ya..let's just hope we can contain it..." Act of God-- to help you!? God is the one thing California has tried so hard to remove. Moreover, if the sodomites out there could sue God for the fires, they would--but they can't--because he doesn't exist!! Is there a more accurate, modern-day representation as to why Rome fell? Legalize brain cell-frying drugs, rehab the guilty murderers and rapists, kill the innocent unborn, same-sex marriages, sue your parents, sue your friends, sue your own kids, sue McDonalds 'cuz you're a fat-ass..., do what you want, when and where you want, tear down the flag, and spit on the soldiers dying to defend your God-given-Free-willing right to do so.

9-28-03: Damn... The Chiefs didn't beat the Ravens--the Ravens beat themselves. The Chiefies got lucky, and anyone who saw the game knows that...But I won't make excuses...See you sorry pukes in the play-offs!

9-23-03: Dates are set for performing at Christ the King, for the October 4th, 4pm Mass, and the October 5th, 9:30am Mass. There will be a little get-together afterwards, where CD's will be sold....Mike D. is going to be playing violin, too. And I'm going to make an attempt to play the dulcimer live for the first time (no re-do's....maybe I should just cue up a tape, and act like I'm playing dulcimer!)

9-22-03: Finishing my next Taxi demo; checking out houses (on-line) in Dubuque, Iowa...can't wait to escape the ghetto, and all the glorious house-vibrating car stereos which surround me; about half of my NFL predictions are coming true: the Rams, Raiders and Eagles stink, though The Steelers aren't too bad; Carolina is showing a lot of promise, and could very well make a play-off spot this year...Hey Chiefs fans: watch out this Sunday,...J. Lewis is going to mock Priest Holmes, by doing that stupid, "...hey, look at me!" move he does when crossing the goal line; the Ravens are going to humiliate the over-hyped Chiefs, and I'll be picking up broken beer bottles in my yard the next morning, after I remove the Ravens flag from the front porch!

9-7-03: Got my first rejection from Taxi; time to move on to the next listing and, well,...just make something better than before.

8-30-03: It's amazing how a day off can make you feel (cooler temps and rain helps too); it rained all day today, and was only around 74 out...absolutely beautiful; Started working on a new Taxi submission; back to work tomorrow, and I'll be laboring on Labor Day (isn't that what it's all about?!)

8-27-03: Found this cool discussion board on "The Deer Hunter"; loaded another picture (from the Cleveland trip) to the photos page; still hot and miserable here, now getting really humid, too.

8-24-03: I realized something today, when my mind was wondering aimlessly around the room I was painting: If you water a plant too much, even if it's really hot and dry, you may end up drowning it. the more you try to help, the more you hurt...it makes no sense at all

8-22-03: Oh man; my ex-girlfriends are really going to be jealous when they find out I now have a stove! I'm going to bake a potato tonight, then boil some water to make macaroni and cheese. Tomorrow, I might even make some of my famous peanut clusters. You just can't appreciate how cool a little gas stove can be until you live 6 years micro-waving everything, or getting out the ol' portable stove-top burner to prepare dinner (I used an electric skillet to make the clusters--the stove will make it a lot easier). This is going to rock. 

8-18-03:  Today it was supposed to be 106, but it only got to 104; tomorrow is going to be just as hot, if not hotter; Can't wait until football season starts. Not only does it mean cooler weather is on the way, I get to listen to my Ravens on the NFL internet radio...they play the Chiefs this year, plus 2 ESPN Sunday night games, so I'll get to watch them at least a few times. I'm going to take a risk here and give a prediction (since it's hard to pick my team to lose, even though it may not be realistic): Chiefs: 11-5, losing in the play-offs to the Ravens (12-4), who will win the AFC title, and end up beating the Falcons (yes,... Atlanta!) for another Super Bowl. (With Michael Vick out for the first 6 or 7 games, you just know the back-up guy is going to kick butt, and cause a quarterback controversy). Teams to surprise: Carolina Panthers in the NFC, and the Houston Texans for the AFC. 'Expert' picks that will end up sucking: Eagles, Rams, Raiders and Steelers.

...send hate-mail to........

8-15-03:  Got the tax forms signed and in the mail today; no rain in sight, and it's already been a record drought here in KC; Went to Noon Mass today at Christ the King for the Assumption of Mary; just got done talking to Jen. --Kate, if you're out there, hope you're doing well--I miss you! Send me an e-mail sometime. Skippy still meows like crazy when he hears your recordings...hope to see you over Christmas, if not sooner.

8-13-03: Taxes suck; poor Mike D. is killing himself to get my forms filled out and mailed to me by tomorrow so I can get them, sign them and mail 'em out on Friday, the 15th. I honestly believe that if everyone were self-employed, they'd turn Conservative overnight...seeing the money come straight out of your checkbook makes you a lot less sympathetic towards people who live off all of us who work for a living. 

8-5-03: Had a great visit with Mike D. this Sunday in Topeka...Still don't have taxes done, but walking the tracks was refreshing, and a nice diversion from the daily grind; Got the package from Taxi last week, and already there are a few listings I'll be auditioning for (me and a few hundred others no doubt, but it's certainly worth a shot); talked to Jen last night....had a similar conversation (minus the politics), and felt the same buzz I always feel after I get done done talking to her....man I'm lucky to have these people in my life. I'll take a few really close friends over 1,000 acquaintances anytime.

7-25-03: Should be getting packet from Taxi tomorrow or Monday...getting excited about the future; I listened to some of the tracks off of the "Imagination" CD last night, and thought, "...hey, this isn't too bad...."; decided to promote the music I have before I jump into another project, though when I do, I'm still hoping to record a piano/vocal/acoustic guitar CD; note to Jen: the score is now 0-3

7-23-03: Well, I took a small leap of faith and signed-up for Taxi; some say it's not worth it, others say it's one of the best A&R services out there for independent music-makers like myself. I'll keep ya posted; Painting is going well this week...I'm working on a house with customers who are super nice to be around....I don't even view them as 'customers', more as friends. Plus, it's been fairly cool for the last few days, which has made the work a bit easier; Thanks, Clark for the ordering my Opus 1 CD's--hope you like 'em!

7-17-03: Went to the Royals game tonight...they beat-up on Seattle pretty good; painting the last few days has been a bit of a challenge--hot outside! I don't know how I did outside work full-time in college...I guess I didn't know any better! Still thinking about the next project...looks like it's going to be a guitar, piano and vocal CD, but would still like to do another Opus 1 CD for a January 2004 release.

7-10-03: I've been dog sitting, and once again, I'll have to take Sally up to the vet tomorrow morning (I'm sooo close to finishing this paint job--just a few more hours, but I may not get it done until tomorrow late) Oh well, I hope the dog is okay regardless of work. Why did she eat half the box of brownies left over from the Topeka recital?!? Nobody has ever accused her of being a smart dog, but she's so sweet it's hard to get angry when she eats everything in site.

Trying to decide what to do for my next CD project. It looks like it's either going to be a mostly instrumental electronic CD (i.e. Moby, with a bit o' singing), or the CD I've always been wanting to do (acoustic, singing-songwriting--i.e. Nick Drake). First, though, I've decided to read the manuals of the cool equipment/software I already own, so I won't have to paint too much overtime to buy the latest, greatest whatever.

Music of Tommy  No longer across from the school in Appleton City, MO

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