Sunday’s Theme Music

This is it! Sunday, February 28, 2021, the last day of February, the last day of the second month of 2021. From my perspective, it raced by like a Formula 1 machine. Lots of noise, here, and now it’s almost past.

What a way to go out. Here in Ashland, sunshine has roared in. Gone is the ice, snow, fog, rain, and mist. It’s only sun, sun, sun. The cats are all, “Mee-hoo!” (Actually, I made that last up. The cats are like, “Sunshine. Whatever. Let me out.”) Sunrise came at 6:48 AM and sunset will be at (fanfare) 6:00 PM, for eleven hours and twelve minutes of glorious sun. Temperature now is 42 degrees F, but we’re looking for highs in the upper fifties. It may be for just one day but I’ll accept this gift and enjoy it.

Today’s music is “This Is It” by Kenny Loggins and Michael McDonald (1979). The two share song-writing credits. Loggins is the primary performer and it hit the charts under his name, but McDonald adds vocal support and has played the song many times in concert.

It’s a good song for deciding you or we are making changes or ready for changes.

There’ve been times in my life,
I’ve been wonderin’ why.
still, somehow i believed we’d always survive.
now, i’m not so sure
you’re waiting here, one good reason to try
but, what more can i say? what’s left to provide?
(you think that maybe it’s over,)
(only if you want it to be.)
are you gonna wait for a sign, your miracle?
stand up and fight.
(this is it.)
make no mistake where you are.
(this is it.)
you back’s to the corner.
(this is it.)
don’t be a fool anymore.
(this is it.)
The waiting is over, no, don’t you run.

h/t to Metrolyrics.com

So, there it is, the theme music for the last day of the second month of the new year labeled 2021. Stay postive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. That is all.

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Hello. Welcome to this edition of Wednesday, brought to you by 2021. “2021. The year that has to get better.” Today is the twenty-fourth of February, meaning that February is fast running out of time. Today’s sunrise came at 6:54 AM in Ashland. We expect sunrise about eleven hours and four minutes later, at 5:55 PM. A sun bomb has gone off but the air is chilly at 40 degrees F. We expect another late charge into the low to mid fifties by late afternoon. The mountains blocks so much sun as it steals over the sky, robbing us of warmth and plunging us into early twilight. Across the valley is the land of sun, where it’s bright all day long, you know?

Rush is the music provider today. “Limelight” from 1981 skipped into the mental music stream as I walked yesterday. Its rhyming lyrics, with their sharp enunciation, are memorable.

Living on a lighted stage
Approaches the unreal
For those who think and feel
In touch with some reality
Beyond the gilded cage

Cast in this unlikely role
Ill-equipped to act
With insufficient tact
One must put up barriers
To keep oneself intact

Living in the limelight
The universal dream
For those who wish to seem
Those who wish to be
Must put aside the alienation
Get on with the fascination
The real relation
The underlying theme

h/t to Metrolyrics.com

And so the song goes, a good walking song, solid beat except where it slows for the solo, but that’s how prog-rock often goes, innit? Stay positive, folks, and test negative. Persevere, carry on, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. If that all fails, have a drink. Think I’ll go get a coffee, black, thank you, and unsweetened, like my soul.

You know?

Monday’s Theme Music

Thickening fog is graying out this Monday morning in southern Oregon.

Hi. Today is February 22, 2021. The temperature is 39 degrees F. Sunrise and sunset are 6:57 AM, 5:52 PM, presenting us almost eleven hours of daylight.

My mind has been busy with dreams, reading, writing, and thinking. Among the thoughts. They mentioned on the radio that, oh, surprise, people are creatures of habit. Surveys show that eighty percent of Americans have daily routines that they follow. They eat the same thing for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, go to the same places to shop, watch the same shows, etc.

Well, hello, yes. Much of this is driven by routines but by prices, selections, availability, health, and convenience. My breakfast, for example, is usually oatmeal. How it’s flavored varies. I add different fruits and nuts to it, or raisins, or peanut butter, or sometimes all of it. Yogurt with granola stands as an infrequent breakfast alternative. Once in a while, probably once a month, I’ll buy a breakfast burrito from a store. Once in a while, maybe every other month, I’ll have a doughnut or pastry for breakfast.

These things, though are driven by nutrition, taste, cost, availability, and convenience. I used to make and eat other things for breakfast. Metabolism changes, life style changes, and weight gain all started nixing how often I do that, along with convenience and laziness. Making a more elaborate breakfast (besides being pricier) is time consuming, and there’s cleaning up afterward.

Boy, I sound defensive, don’t I? But they’re right: we shop at the same seven places for our groceries when we go out. Those seven: Shop N’ Kart, Trader Joe’s, Costco, The Food Co-op, Market of Choice, Bi-Mart and Albertson’s. They’re all within a twenty-minute drive. They have decent prices. The food quality is good. We’re checked out places, but these are the ones we trust.

Enough whining. On to the music. Today’s theme song is “Sowing the Seeds of Love” by Tears for Fear, 1989. Don’t ask me why; it came into my head this morning, and I had no reason to not select it.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. We’re still a few weeks from being eligible for the vaccination, ourselves. Here’s the tune. Enjoy.

Saturday’s Theme Music

7 AM, straight up. That’s what time sunrise was today in southern Oregon. Sweet to rise to daylight. Can’t say sunlight. Clouds continue bullying us with their dour expression. We did have a late afternoon sunshine visitor yesterday. Some blue sky accompanied her but she shied out before we were too comfortable with her presence.

Sunset today will be at 5:50 PM. I’m pleased for the later afternoon hour. Gives me time to do a walk without taking a flashlight and worrying about a bear or cougar coming up to make conversation.

Hello, and welcome. Today is Saturday, February 20, 2021. Outside’s temperature is 36 degrees F. The high isn’t straying far away from that mark, peaking at 48 as rain clouds keep the sun from getting carried away with warmth.

The Wayback Machine was active this AM. First, I heard singing: “Pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little, cheep, cheep, cheep, talk a lot, pick a little more.”

Don’t know why that tune from The Music Man made itself known but it didn’t last long. Songs about Saturday — probably the top three Saturday songs I usually associate with Saturday, “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)” (Elton John),  “Saturday In the Park” (Chicago), and “Saturday Night” by the Bay City Rollers”, take a turn in the mental music stream. Then, though, dealing with the cats, an old Jim Hendrix favorite from 1968 pressed in.

The cats were just busy with whatever I was being busy with, underfoot, underhand, etc. So “Crosstown Traffic” kicked in.

You jump in front of my car when you,
you know all the time that
Ninety miles an hour, girl, is the speed I drive
You tell me it’s alright, you don’t mind a little pain
You say you just want me to take you for a ride

You’re just like crosstown traffic
So hard to get through to you
Crosstown traffic
I don’t need to run over you
Crosstown traffic
All you do is slow me down
And I’m tryin’ to get on the other side of town

h/t to Songfacts.com

Of course, I was singing the cat variation. This is where cat is subbed for girl. Room is subbed for town. Walk is subbed for ride and drive…

Stay positive, test neggy, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. Cheers


			

Thursday Thoughts

  1. My cousin, Glenn Seidel, passed away, ending his cancer fight. A genuine nice, caring person, his death is one that makes you question life’s mechanics. I wish he’d never suffered cancer; he’d watched his mother and younger sister fall to cancer. It’s good that he’s no longer suffering, though. Watching the suffering, unable to do more than mouth platitudes, is the struggle for me when a friend, relative, or pet is suffering and dying. No, it’s not about me; the survivors always mourn. It’s about what he — what they all — went through before reaching the point of death. Here’s to Glenn.
  2. Weather is on my mind. We’re contemplating a move east. Why? Summer weather here in southern Oregon has become a litany of summer suffering: wildfires, or smoke from wildfires suspend or kill activities and travel. Drought requires water restrictions, which is enforced via capitalism: if you have the money, you can buy the water. Depressing, right? But our winter is comfortable, remarkably snow free and freezing free. Moving east to Ohio or PA would mean plunging into that stuff.
  3. Watching Texas suffer from lack of planning for cold weather brings deep sighs of frustration. Save some pennies, increase profits, but when the shit hits, you’re wickedly unprepared. It’s sadly now the GOP way. Yet that ‘save some pennies, increase profits’ mantra holds fast against critical thinking. It’s always the poorest classes who suffer most, of course.
  4. Since I’m on politics, will the righteous right-wing notice that President Biden, a Democrat, immediately reached out to help states, whether they’re ‘red’ or ‘blue’? Doubtful that they’ll notice; doubtful that they’ll remember. Yes, experiencing a strong cynical streak today.
  5. We worry about the animals along with people, you know? We hope the animals are warm and safe, too. The logical response is, this is life; suffering is inculcated as part of the formula. Death is a natural ending. Still, I hope for the best. Guess I’m an unrepentant optimist.
  6. Writing (knock on wood) continues going well, which continues to scare me. There’s a burst of jubilation as a major chapter is completed. After a pause of reflection, anxiety strikes as I face the ever-present, ever-daunting question, what next? That question always pulls me back into the puzzle that’s called writing a novel.
  7. I’m watching more foreign television shows that are in their native languages. I run in place and watch television to wind down at the day’s conclusion. Usually do two to three miles between 10:30 PM and midnight. Bad dubbing draws cringes and winces, which are disruptions to the entertainment. Don’t need it. Instead, I watch television in German, Icelandic, Norwegian, French, etc., eyes glued to the captions. We like how characters appear in television from other countries. Characters in the U.S. TV land are typically pretty people with pleasant lives and mild challenges to their principles and decisions. Typically, matters are quickly resolved, with little complications. There are exceptions. The characters in stories in other nations are less pretty, less glamorous, and more natural. Yes, they’re more like me. Fortunately, watching foreign television seems to be a growing streaming trend. A great selection is available.
  8. One exception in U.S. television that I continue to admire is “The Wire”. Watching it for the second time, finishing season four, the levels of excellence in production values, acting, character development, plots, and story arcs all still impress me. It’s been several years since I first watched it, yet so many of the people and story-lines remain memorable. It’s a gritty show, but you end up rooting and crying for so many.
  9. Finished reading/read six books last week. I’m mastering the jogging-in-place-while-reading process. Five of the books were fiction, the other was non-fiction. Reading does enhance/intensify my writing process. Hungry for more books now. One is on hold at the library, so I need to head that way, but also research more to add to my list. I’m reading mostly crime and speculative fiction while I’m writing my science fiction/speculative fiction novel.
  10. With running in place augmenting my walking and other exercise, my 28-day average remains over 12, coming in at 12.41 for this cycle, with a best day of 14 on February 7.
  11. It’s raining outside. My cats are in and asleep. One sleeps on my feet as I type, keeping me warm with his weight. Another is in the foyer, curled up on the bench, a paw over his eyes. The third is stretched out on the guest bed like a ginger throw. Their presence and the knowledge that they’re safe and comfortable reassures me against awareness of the world’s pain.
  12. Now, time to go eat lunch. Then it’s back to writing like crazy, at least one more time. Stay safe, please. Cheers

Thursday’s Theme Music

Hello, and welcome to this edition of Thursday. Today’s date is February 18, 2021. The temperature is 39 degrees F under sporadic rain, a vast difference from yesterday’s sunny disposition. The sunrise was at 7:03 AM while sunset is expected at 5:47 PM in Ashland. You know that means we’re moving closer to springing ahead, right?

We’re not enduring those horrible winter storms challenging most of the nation. We stayed too warm due to some weather system off of Oregon’s coast. It doesn’t save anything north of Eugene. Up there, they’ve been battered. Move east, the storm managed to sweep down over the plain states and invade Texas. Those proud Texans are asking for help. Some, like elected officials such as Mayor Tim Boyd of Colorado City, and Senator Ted Cruz, don’t particularly care. They could be wearing Melania’s infamous, “I Don’t Care Do You?” jacket.

Boyd told people without water to “think outside the box to survive” and called people waiting in the cold because they have no power “lazy” – even as authorities were telling people to stay home to avoid icy roads.

“Bottom line quit crying and looking for a handout!!” he said, before finishing off his message in capital letters,”DONT [be] PART OF PROBLEM, BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!!”‘

That’s leadership. Meanwhile, Ted Cruz, demonstrating his concern, flew to Cancun.

Today’s song choice is “Glory Days”, a 1985 Bruce Springsteen offering. Glory days is an affliction that affect many as they peak at an early age and then continue to tell stories about who they once were, and what they did. I was thinking of it because I wondered if the United States was afflicted by glory days, telling about what we once did as the nation falls apart. Hope you enjoy the music. Remember, stay warm, positive, and safe, and test negative.

Sunday’s Theme Music

Good morning. Today is Sunday, Febraruary 14, 2021. Sunrise was at 7:09 AM. Gray paint has been spilled across the sky. Rain pummels our area. It’s 35 degrees F outside. Snow showers are expected, still we’re better off than in many places, where the snow is mounting like debt. Sunrise will be at 5:42 PM.

Today’s music is provided by Curtis Mayfield. “Move On Up” came out in 1971 but didn’t crack the charts in the US. That history surprised me. The song always moved and encouraged me. Seems to be true for others, as Joe Biden uses it, and it’s been employed in movies. I don’t hear it often on the radio, though.

Just move on up
Toward your destination
Though you may find, from time to time, complication

Bite your lip
And take a trip
Though there may be wet road ahead
And you cannot slip
Just move on up
For peace you’ll find
Into the steeple of beautiful people
Where there’s only one kind

So hush now, child
And don’t you cry

Your folks might understand you
By and by
Move on up
And keep on wishin’
Remember your dream is your only scheme
So keep on pushin’

So hush now, child
And don’t you cry

Your folks might understand you
By and by
Move on up
And keep on wishin’
Remember your dream is your only scheme
So keep on pushin’

h/t to Genius.com

A hopeful song is welcomed today, making it my choice for Sunday’s theme music.

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

Wednesday

Today is Wednesday, February 10, 2021. Sunset was at 7:14 AM. Sunset will be about 5:37 PM. Nice having that increased daylight. Winter’s worse aspect for me is that late sunrise and early sunset. Those effects are pronounced on this side of the mountain, where mountain narrows sunshine’s impact. The temperature is up to 34 degrees today with the high of fifty-five coming later today.

Randy was in my dreams last night. I’ve written about him before. A year older than me, he worked for me at my last military assignment. After he retired, he became a successful businessman. Colon cancer cut that career short when he was sixty.

He and I had a lot of fun together. Randy was a big Boston and Van Halen fan. I think he leaned toward Van Halen by a few degrees, probably because Van Halen had a larger body of work than Boston, but it was only by degrees. Anyway, I decided to go with one of his absolute favorites, “You Really Got Me”. Lord, what do you think of that attire? Definitely part of the big-hair rock era, innit?

Stay positive and test negative. Wear a mask and get vaccinated. Here’s the sound.

Friday’s Theme Music

Today is Friday. It’s freezing (29 degrees F) and foggy (well, a little) but not frosty. So another 3-F day, utilizing different Fs.

Sunrise was at 7:20 AM while sunset is expected at 5:31 PM. Per annual worry, we’re monitoring the snowpack. Our snow pack provides us water throughout the year. As he snowpack melts, the runoff refills our reservoirs and cisterns. As in other recent years, we’re falling short again. Right now we’re peering into the future of another dry summer, re-kindling concerns about wildfires. Fingers crossed that it doesn’t happen.

Went through a lengthy song list this morning. Seeing that fog and cloud cover, I streamed “Let the Sunshine” and “Sunshine of Your Love”, “Daytripper” (because I was thinking of daylight) and “Walking On Sunshine”; “Friday’s Child” (the Wendy Matthews song — too mellow) and “Black Friday”; and “Friday” by Phish (oh, that’s too depressing).

As none of that brought me joy, I shifted directions and recalled yesterday’s walk. Up there in the hills, I could see for miles, which brought home the 1967 song by The Who, “I Can See for Miles”. Its energy was more satisfying for the moment. Plus the fog was lifting and thinning, giving me hope for a sunnier day. It’s possible; yesterday began as a much foggier day and ended up clear and sunny. It was that deceptive cold, the kind where you look through the house glass protection out at the world and think, “It looks like a pretty nice day out there.” Then you get out there and body parts began abandoning you, running back to get into the house’s warmth.

Watching this video of “I Can See for Miles”, I was struck by my cousin’s sliding resemblance to Pete Townsend. Never noticed it before. Cousin is in hospice, thrust in there by cancer. He’s fought it for several years, but it looks like cancer is taking him, just as it took his mother a decade ago and his sister last year. Cancer is a cold asshole.

Well, stay positive, right? Sure. Test negative, wear a mask, and get the vaccine. Here’s the music. Enjoy.

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