Wednesday’s Theme Music

I hear raining ratatattating on windows and roofs but it’s a sound held only in my mind. Dawn has broken. 6:29 AM. A slow ascent of mothy light. Shows the smoky particles off well. Gives the sun that fine burnished red tone as it streams past curling tree leaves, through windows.

Drum roll. Today is Wednesday, August 25, 2021. Sunset will be at 7:56 PM. Daylight’s shortening period is accelerating. Minutes are sliced away on either end.

Our air quality ranges around 123 in some parts of town, 250 in other sections. Varies with elements. Wildfires rage around us, miles away, pushing their presence through smoky sunrises and sunsets, terrible air quality. Encountered a woman the other day who’d fled, evacuated. Lost her house from a fire down in California. Only two houses remain in her neighborhood. Enduring the smoke doesn’t seem as bad after hearing that. Still sucks, though.

Dreams aplenty last night. Kept my mind buzzy. From one came a string of CCR songs. “Long As I Can See the Light” led the string. “Stuck in Lodi” followed. “Lookin’ out My Back Door” closed the set. Other songs mingled after I rose and tended the feline gods. Reading news, reflecting upon attitudes and politics, I end up with a 2005 Audioslave song, “Be Yourself” in mind. I enjoy how the song splinters responses to the same situation, shows how different people function (or fail) in parallel during life. One minute is one person’s happiest; it’s also another person’s worse. We’re all living in Schrodinger’s box. We are alive or dead, happy and sad, alert and inert by the second. At least that’s how it feels until I get some coffee in me. Lyrics sample:

Someone finds salvation in everyone, another only pain
Someone tries to hide himself, down inside himself he prays
Someone swears his true love until the end of time, another runs away
Separate or united, healthy or insane

h/t to good ol’ Genius.com

Had a little coffee. Need a lot more. Be posi. Test negy. Wear the masky as needed. Get the vaxy. Enjoy the tune. Be yourself is all that you can do.

Cheese. I mean, cheers

Tuesday’s Theme Music

20:16 – 06:13. Sunset, sunrise. I complete the math in my head. Daylight minutes are falling back. Sunrise is later. Sunset is earlier. An annual thing. Recurring. Yet, I let it dominate morning thoughts like the end is nigh. Probably a product of circumstance. Outside activity is limited. Another high dome is settling on us. Back up to 101-105. No humidity. The drought deepens. Its pervasive effects suck out life. Air quality is unhealthy as wildfire smoke curls up in the valley. Better the smoke than the fire, I remind myself with some weariness. Trying to be positive. COVID-19 cases are also setting new area records. ICUs are overrun. Hospital staff have contracted COVID-19. Then there are personal matters I don’t put in posts.

Good morning, and a happy Tuesday to you, too! Today is Tuesday, August 10, 2021. 2021 is hurrying by as a year but it’s gonna leave a mark.

For music, I’ve been sucked into a song by The Calling, “Wherever You Will Go” (2001). This was a cat issue. Tucker insisted upon being my bodyfloof, right there at my heels as I walked down the hall, jumping up on the desk when I sat to type, etc. I processed the usual requests – “Are you hungry? Do you want a treat?” Petted and brushed him. Gave him some nip. But he hung with me. Guess that’s what he wanted. Which prompted the song.

Stay positive. Yes, it’s hard, innit? Is for me. Life can be a wearying business. Especially if you’re like me, staring at the smoke, contemplating COVID-19, struggling to write, pondering the imponderables. But stay positive. Rant a bit. Let it go, if you can. Test negative. Wear the mask when it’s needed. Get the vaccination, please.

Here’s the music. Cheers

Sunday’s Theme Music

After peeking in through windows at 5:38 AM in Ashland with shy pale goldens, the sun boldly shouldered in, shouting, “We got your sunshine. We got your daylight.” Such a bold sun plans to put out browning, sweat-inducing heat, don’t you know. Temperatures will hunt the lower nineties before the sun, still in its place, disappears from the valley at 20:39.

Got the darkness trying to throttle me. It’s a debilitating but brief trough experienced when I ponder what’s the use of all this nonsense? I was walking as it struck, like a bolt into my soul, just before sunset last night. Because a wildfire is being fought and people evacuated, I was thinking about wildfires and water shortages. Many new homes are being built in Ashland. Development is the daily cry as the trucks lumber in with supplies and workers busy with foundations and walls. We were already being told to conserve water. Now there is less water to be divided among more households.

Dev is good but with that shrinking water base, we also have an expanding wildfire season. Before COVID-19 shut down activities, wildfire smoke did the same, cratering the local economy becoming an annual thing. The first time it happened, businesses dismissed it as a one off. Second time, some pulled the plug. Third time, dark mutterings about what are we going to do were heard.

City council lacks the leadership to move out of this mess. Frankly, the mess is bigger than them. Is it climate change? By the time sufficient data is collected, we probably won’t be around to know. Meanwhile, the new houses being built are closer together as land becomes a precious commodity. Streets are narrower. Traffic density rises. Did I mention that a two-lane state highway longitudinally bisects the town? Only one way in and out, not a reassuring realization for planning evacuations. Every street feeds into it.

With the darkness and these bleak realizations colliding, on came an old song by the Smiths. Here are the lines.

This town has dragged you down
And everybody’s got to live their life
And God knows I’ve got to live mine
God knows I’ve got to live mine

h/t to Genius.com

The 1984 song is called, “William, It Was Really Nothing”. Yes, it’s really nothing; just a little darkness nibbling the psyche. Stay positive (you know, like me!), test negative, wear a mask as needed, and get the vax. Cheers

Friday’s Theme Music

The welcoming committee began tentative sounds a few minutes after five thirty this morning. 5:39 AM came, and with it, the sun’s first official appearance of May 28, 2021, in Ashland. Clouds departed. Cool mountain air muted the sun’s efforts, but warmth of around seventy-eight degrees F is anticipated before the closing ceremony begins, ushering the sun away at 8:37 PM.

Today finds me hooked on a 1968 anti-war song, “Sky Pilot”, by Eric Burdon and the Animals. Out walking, I heard a small airplane passing overhead. Studying it brought “Sky Pilot” to mind. This is pretty ironic; “Sky Pilot” isn’t about aircraft. It was that chorus that ricocheted through me: “You can never, never, never, reach the sky.”

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask as required, and get the vax. Speaking of the mask, the whole approach has unraveled around here since the CDC made their new mask policy announcement a few weeks back. Witnesses attest to people entering stores with a mask on, per the stores’ signs and policies, and then promptly removing them. Pretty undermines the spirit and intent, doesn’t it? Store managers report they’ve been directed by their corporate law offices to pretty much leave it alone.

Here’s the music. Cheers

Self Portrait 2021

Looking into the future. Apparently not too happy. Lot of Dad showing up in my face, along with sagging jowls, wrinkled flesh, receding hair, and graying beard. Like how the light catches my scars on my forehead from my halo device. Damn this thing called aging, anyway. Pass me another beer, please.

Friday’s Theme Music

Here it is, Friday, the first in the merry, merry, month of May. It’s Friday, May 7, 2021. It’s Mother’s Day this Sunday in the U.S. My card has been sent off, the notes prepared for the call on Sunday to Mom. I don’t think she’ll be doing anything special for Mom’s Day. Three of my sisters live in Mom’s region and generally celebrate holidays together. All of them are moms, and two are grand-moms, and Mom is a great-grandmother. But this is 2021, where COVID-19 continues its reign. They used to all go out to brunch somewhere together for this holiday. I suspect that Mom’s daughters, grand children, and great-grands, will bring food and flowers by for Mom and will visit with her a few at a time.

Clouds moved in yesterday, delivering chilly overnight temperatures but no rain. The sun’s first showing was at 5:59 AM, but did little to warm us, so far. We’ll see what happens between now and 8:17 PM, when Sol announces, “See you tomorrow,” but general consensus is that the highs will be in the low to mid-sixties.

Alarming news came out regarding rain and water for our area. We’re in an extreme drought. Weather conservation and curtailment actions have yet to be enacted locally. They always take a ‘wait and see’ approach until it’s a crises, which serves no one. The area depends heavily on the TID, and the city has been told it’s not getting as much TID as last year. Forty percent has been cut from one contract, while one hundred percent has been cut from the second. Local reservoirs and dams are at bleak levels. I’m breaking out my rain stick. It scares the hell out of the cats, but anything that can help must be done.

Of course, this might be the wrong way to go about it. “Wrong Way” is today’s music choice. At its core, the 1997 Sublime song is about a fourteen-year-old prostitute whose only family is ‘her seven horny brothers and drunk-ass Dad’. The is song is rife with references to doing things the wrong way as the singer rescues her but then mistreats her, himself.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. That seems to be the right way. Time for my coffee. Cheers

Tuesday’s Theme Music

Good morning! Welcome to another edition of Tuesday, the day that prompts you to ask, “Really?” Today is Tuesday, April 27, 2021. Yes, we’re skidding down April’s final days. Then comes May when we sit back and think, remember April?

The sun also rose today, clocking in at 6:12 AM, with plans to clock out at 8:06 PM. Serving notice that yes, summer is coming to southern Oregon. The day plans to be fair, but with some semblance to spring, with temperatures ranging from 37 F in the morning to 63 in the late afternoon. Perfect weather for something.

Today’s song comes to us from the Cure, all the way from 1987. I had several substantive dreams in vivid color last night. At the end of it all, awakening and thinking about them, the Cure’s song, “Just Like Heaven” was left ringing in my mind. It’s that one line that first stayed, and then invited the rest in, “You’re just like a dream.”

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. Cheers

Friday’s Theme Music

TGIF! Yes, it’s Friday, April 16, 2021. Sunset is expected at 7:53 PM in Ashland while sunrise took place over thirteen hours before, at 6:29 AM. Summer’s shoulders are crowding into Spring’s thing as temperatures this weekend are expected to jump into the 80s. Controlled burns are underway around our small town. Smoke scars the blue sky and the burnt-wood smell lingers, an unpleasant reminder of past wildfires, and the ongoing threat.

Are you one of those who said, “Thank God it’s Friday”? I definitely am. I think that with so many people saying it, happy for the weekend, it lifted our collective energy. Still gives me a jolt although Fridays have much of the same flavor as most days of the week in these days.

“Name” by the Goo Goo Dolls (1995) came to me yesterday. I was in the car, waiting for my wife. She’d gone into a store to pick up two items. I wasn’t interested in going in. As I sat in the car, watching people going in and out, waiting in cars, etc., I remembered the song. I first heard it while on temporary duty in New Hampshire, visiting a satellite tracking station. The song always struck me as about anonymity, about being a person in a crowd of people where no one knows one another. Not a party group, but people going about the business of life.

Anyway, the song stayed with me. I present it to you. Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. Cheers

Going-out Day

Going-out day was coming up. Just twelve days until they would toddle out to re-discover the world.

He thought, what should I do about my beard? He played with it during the thirteen months, twice shaving it off to begin again. No matter. It wasn’t the beard that dissatisfied him but the foundation underneath it. The sagging on display. As for his hair…oh.

She brought out her clothes. Examination of style and fit was conducted. Her shoes followed. She thought about what to do with her hair. A lot could happen to hair in thirteen months.

They made tentative plans. Cautious. Visits to new old places were broached. Small dreams of where they could go and what to do were nurtured. They would still wear masks. Of course. Wash hands. Avoid contact. Socialize outside.

She marked her calendar. Hairdresser. Dentist, hard times in cautious ink on the calendar, the first mark on its fresh pages. He planned a day in his mind. Beer with friends. He’d not seen them in thirteen months, except one of them. Two who were there before would not be there.

A lot of life happened in thirteen months. It was a heavy weight.

Floofsday’s Theme Music

Good Night. Today is Floofsday, March 32, 2021. Sunset is at 7:01 AM in Ashland and sunrise will be at 7:45 PM. This morning’s temperature is 75 degrees F but we expect to cool down some, reaching 51 by late tonight.

Yesterday’s walk was gloriously perfect. Sunshine burst through, heaving the heat into the high seventies while a mild breeze countered the worst effects. Trees and flowers are blooming, spreading colorful shapes, threading the air with sweet scents. Lot of walkers were out in the hilly streets where I was roaming. Most of us weren’t masked but shied away, keeping proper distance plus.

This situation kicked the 1985 Dire Straits song, “So Far Away”, into my conscious music stream. “So Far Away” was on Brothers in Arms, the album that included “Money for Nothing” and “Walk of Life”, two of my favorite Dire Straits tunes. Stationed at Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina, I played that album a lot that year, driving my Mazda around the southeastern United States on temporary duty assignments in the Air Force or going north — a straight shot up I-77 — to visit family.

I thought the song works as a theme song for this day. Last April seems so far away. Although we’re marking progress toward the pandemic’s end, a return to normalcy also seems so far away.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. Cheers

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