Saturday’s Theme Music

And so, all of us came to Saturday, June 11, almost the month’s middle, almost 2022’s middle. We’re bracing for the year’s longest day in the northern hemisphere while south of the equator, they’re prepping for the shortest day.

Spring weather continues its reign with temperatures at 72 F today, showers sometimes sprinkling us for a few seconds, and a high of 76 possible. 5:34 AM is when the show’s daylight portion began. The turning away comes at 8:47 PM.

Yesterday was a COVID-19 booster shot rollercoaster. Walking was often a Frankenstein’s monster imitation. Joints felt like they’d been carved from the finest granite and thoughts were doing a slow doggy paddle through confusion. Then, all is good! Hurray! It’s passed. No, wait, here it comes again. We surfed the net, returned to bed, read books, slept, repeat. Today, I feel pretty damn fine. She says she’s feeling better, too.

Today’s song, a 1993 offering from Billy Joel, arrived in the middle of the night. I’d gotten up to attend a cat’s need to leave the house. (“It’s urgent! I have important business,” he claimed. After he left, I heard him snicker. “Sucker.”) Returning to bed, I was thinking, it’s the middle of the night. I’ve almost been walking in my sleep. The neurons shouted, “A-one, and a-two.” Then they began “The River of Dreams”. Lovely song, so I wasn’t overly bothered.

So, you know, stay positive, etc. We shall overcome. Or endure. Here’s the music, and, yes, there’s my coffee. Cheers

Saturday’s Theme Music

Full sunshine, full leaves. Leafy trees square up shadows across the back lawn, ripe with weeds. Bees visit the slumping dandelions. Sunshine jumps into the open spaces.

It’s a lazy morning for me and the cats. Done eating, they wash up and chat up birds, twisting heads to regard a squirrel’s noisy trespassing, resuming their grooming after the squirrel takes his business away. I tend a cup of coffee, sneaking hot sips past my lips, waiting for the caffeine’s magic to jump into the blood and brain.

It’s Saturday, May 21, 2022. Had blood tests done yesterday, routine matters to see what’s what, mentioned because I was asked to sign my name and date a document. The neurons were instantly amused; how long has it been since I was asked to do these things that were once daily routines?

Sunrise was sprung on us at 5:44 AM, I’m told. I didn’t witness it, staying in bed at that point to wrestle dreams. Sunset will come around at 8:31 PM. We had a cool morning, 50 F when the cats and I went out back, but sunshine was rapidly warming it. The weather masters say that the high will be 73 F. I will do yardwork, I decide, regarding the bushes and trees.

Later, inside, awaiting the caffeine’s arrival, I surfed the net and hummed a song. For some reason, the neurons had dumped “New York State of Mind” (1976) by Billy Joel into the morning mental music stream. “Surprise,” they shouted, when I recognize the song. “But why?” I asked them. “Why that song?”

One volunteered, “It’s a slow, bluesy, sleepy song about routine moments and found-again places.”

“So?”

The neurons shrugged. “It just feels like the morning.”

Impeccable logic.

Stay positive, test negative. The caffeine is pulling into the station. Brain cells are climbing aboard. Here we go. Cheers

Thursday’s Theme Music

7:20 and 7:20 is when the sun will rise and set. We’ve achieved an equal number of hours on either side of sunrise and sunset. Guess it’s the vernal equinox in our valley, though the calendar says that today is Thursday, March 17, 2022. Spring doesn’t ‘arrive’ until this Sunday. But here we are, 44 F, with a projected high of 60, everything coming up green, blossomy, and flowery.

It was a dreamorama night but I awoke with Jerry Orbach singing “Try to Remember” in the morning mental music stream. That only lasted for about ten minutes before the neurons got up and changed the music to Billy Joel and “Only the Good Die Young” from 1977.

“Why’d you put that on?” I asked the neurons.

They shrugged.

“What’s that mean?” I asked.

They shrugged again. “I don’t know.”

Guess I’d run into some teenaged neurons.

Anyway, that’s the theme music. I believe my convo with sick cat inspired the neurons. Cancer is turning his demise into the long goodbye. Many folks say, end his misery, but he comes to me for purrs, demands food and gamely eats, sleeps against my leg, and generally gets around with too much life in the tank for me to drain it. He’s probably in pain but I don’t think he’s ready to go. I think he’ll let me know when he’s done.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask as needed, if needed, when needed, and get the shots. I’m getting the coffee. I would offer to get you some but you’re on the other side of this screen. Have a better one.

Cheers

Sunday’s Theme Music

“Sunday, Sunday, Sunday.” That echoing baritone used to herald local events during television and radio commercials. Monster truck shows. Wrestling at the armory. That sort of thing.

Today is Sunday, August 8, 2021. Smoke continues plaguing us. It’s better than fire. So many fires continue burning out here in the western U.S. that only the most positive of people can stay upbeat. White clouds are skulking through the sky. Temperatures will be on the cool side, with a high around 82 F, they say. But Alexa told me yesterday that it would only get to 86. Then 90. Then 91. That’s where it peaked. Hope it stays cool

Sunrise’s gray, gold, and pink marbleized lights and shadows came into the valley at 6:09 AM. We’ll have another red ball sunset at 8:27 PM.

COVID-19, the Delta variant, vaccines, and masks continue to dominate my news cycle. Despite the Olympics and the new U.S. air strikes in Afghanistan. All ‘water is wet’ news anymore. The U.S. has been bombing someone throughout my lifetime. Probably will be after I’m gone.

Yesterday had me getting rid of some old exercise equipment. I disassembled things to make it easier to load, transport, and unload at the dump. (Yes, nobody wanted any of it, further depressing me.) The bike required an allen wrench. I have several sets. When I realized I needed one and headed to the workbench, Billy Joel began singing “Allentown” (1982).

Well, we’re living here in Allentown
And they’re closing all the factories down
Out in Bethlehem, they’re killing time

Filling out forms, standing in line

h/t to Genius.com

Well, the song won’t leave my head. It played even when I was lying in bed. Even while feeding the cat getting a drink by the kitchen sink. So, I must spread it out to others to remove it from my mind. Sorry, friends. That’s how these things work. It’s been so since the first recorded song.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask as needed — and they do seem needed again in the U.S. as the nation records record numbers of new cases — and get the vax, if you can. The vax may not fully and completely protect you from the virus but it will mitigate its symptoms and the probable results. In other words, you’re more likely to survive with the vaccine than without it.

Cheers

Tuesday’s Theme Music

Today is Tuesday, know what that means? Means it’s May 18, 2021. Your reality may vary.

Sol pulled out over the hills and sluggishly beamed into the valley where Ashland is nestled at about 5:47 AM. His visit is expected to last until about 8:28 PM, when we’ll wave farewell and watch him set off for the rest of his daily visits. It’s never ending for that guy. He just keeps going and going…

Sol’s arrival was sluggish because surly clouds, puffed up and thick as steroid-infused weightlifters, wouldn’t make room. Some rain could be in our day, fingers crossed. ‘Too dry’ is how I’d label this spring. Temperatures will tug onto the lower seventies, maybe just the high sixties, depending.

Historically, Mount St. Helens blew on this day back in 1980. I just read it, otherwise it would’ve blown right past me. The old volcano had been threatening for a few months. When it finally blew, it made major headline news. We just don’t experience many volcanos erupting in the continental United States.

I was in the Randolph AFB Command Post at the time (in the Taj Mahal, under the water tower — yes, it’s true), and called the commander with the information when the volcano finally erupted. My wife and I lived in base housing with two cats, P.K. and Roary, watching cable TV on a big Magnavox console. We were getting ready to leave and head to Okinawa on assignment. Our car was a metallic copper Pontiac Firebird, the first new car we ever bought.

Dredging up music, I came up with Pink Floyd The Wall and Billy Joel. “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” was a big song at that point. Billy Joel was on a roll, pumping out albums and hits, and in the news because of his successful roll. I’m going with it because of its sentimental connections with who I was when. “Hot funk, cool punk, even it it’s old junk, it’s still rock and roll to me.” We can add a few more genres now, can’t we? It’s still rock and roll.

Stay positive, test negative, adjust your mask wearing as appropriate, and get the vax. Also encourage your friends and relatives to get the vax. Here’s the music. I’m gonna get coffee. Be right back. Ta

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Ah, pressure! The pressure on the healthcare system, the pressure on the global economy, the pressure on the governments and the parties, the pressure on the people.

Reading about all the events happening yesterday, the U.S. government’s coronavirus forecasts, and the political sniping, I kept thinking about pressure. Several major retailers say they have a few months of liquidity; they may not survive. People have been furloughed. Sales have plunged. Newly unemployed people are facing the first of the month and the pressure to pay bills when they don’t have much money.

That our ‘healthy economy’ in the U.S. was a facade has been pointed out for decades. Food insecurity was growing. More people were working in consumer oriented service industries. More were depending on tips. The gig economy was rising, and so was wealth inequality.

Pressure.

Billy Joel (such a talented dude) summed up in his song, “Pressure” (1982).

Sunday’s Theme Music

 

Two songs competed for the stream this morning. First was Billy Joel’s 1980 song, “You May Be Right”. That came straight out of my reflection in the mirror as I shaved this morning, inspired by the lyrics, “You may be right, I may be crazy.” It went on from there. Quite frankly, with my hair all wild at that point, I looked a bit loony.

But dressed, in the other room, heading out the door, into the stream came Procol Harum with “Whiter Shade of Pale” (1967). I went with the latter for my theme music today because it was one year ago tomorrow that I selected it for my theme music. That coincidence just couldn’t be ignored.

I love the enigmatic words, and the story that they hint about in the song, from the catchphrase, “Her face at first just ghostly, turned a whiter shade of pale,” to “the room was humming harder as the ceiling flew away,” and the reference to Chaucer’s, “the Miller’s Tale.”

Happy day, wherever you be, whatever you’re doing. Cheers.

Saturday’s Theme Music

Something from nineteen seventy-seven. Billy Joel had already established himself as a star by this year, but his album, “The Stranger,” gained him critical acclaim, awards, and increased popularity.

I enjoy the album. It came out the year I returned from my fifteen month assignment in the Philippines. The album seems like rock and roll and Americana. My favorite song is one called “Scenes From An Italian Restaurant,” but the album includes “She’s Always A Woman,” “Just The Way You Are,” and “Only The Good Die Young.”

However, I woke up streaming, “Movin’ Out.” The song expresses Joel’s disappointment with people moving up by buying consumer grades and making purchases to impress others. It’s a favorite theme for me, so here we are.

Friday’s Theme Music

Volcanos erupting in Japan and Indonesia, threats of missiles being exchanged between the U.S. and North Korea, Black Lives Matter, voter right suppression, Russia-gate, white supremacists, gun control arguments, protests, the Weinstein scandal, war refugees, Pacific Northwest and California wildfires and destruction, the Hurricane Maria disaster in Puerto Rico, hurricane and earthquake disasters in Mexico, hurricane destruction in several other American states, plans to build a wall on the southern U.S. border, the President threatening freedom of the press, the Vegas mass killer….

Contemplating it all over coffee brought to mind Billy Joel’s nineteen eighty-nine song from “Storm Front,” “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” He covered the headlines from nineteen forty-nine, when he was born, until the year the album was released, but the fire goes on.

At least, it feels like it on this cool, autumn morning in twenty seventeen.

 

 

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