Thursday, August 17, 2017

I Test Well

All my life I seem to have done well on standardized tests. All those things at the end of high school- I got scores that were close to perfect. Don't let me fool you into thinking that I'm smart. I did well on the subjects that I don't know anything about. Trigonometry. Calculus. 

I finish before pretty much everyone else, too. I'm pretty sure that's because I can't bear sitting there taking a test.

Somehow it all failed me in growing up. Oh, I've always been good at balancing a checkbook and my table manners are alright.

The important stuff, though, it's all been slow. I just don't take much seriously. You can dress me up but I'll soon be a mess. I want everything I see and then when I get it, I don't want it. I'll show off for attention and sometimes I cry when I'm left alone.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

True To Myself

So long adolescence. I never settled in very well. Current events demand my participation and the world seems to be on fire. While we teeter on the brink of nuclear war, that event has been pushed off of the front page by nazis and klansmen marching in Virginia.

Me? I remember when there were stars in the sky; when radio programmers played stuff they liked. Of course cocaine and whores and fifty dollar bills helped 'em like some of it. Can we just call them disc jockeys again?

Read the best book you can find. Not the old one. Not the new one. Read the best book you can find.

If some guy named Bob tells you what music is good and you have to pay Bob money, I'm not interested in anything you've got for me, thanks.

Monday, August 14, 2017

My Source

Queasy. It doesn't really take much. On the other hand, if real disaster hits I'm your guy. I'm fine until the last tourniquet is applied. Then I faint.

When culture curdles I seem to find a measure of hope. As disturbing as I find these times, I sense peace and love on the horizon. Oh, I fret that times may get worse before they get better. Hate has some real momentum out there and ignorance isn't going out of fashion without a tussle.

I don't have time for hate. You don't either.

Give us peace on earth and end this dreadful, dreadful war.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Red Blood, Pink Diamonds, Blue Dreams

Maybe love's a mirror. Just a mirror. You can't really love completely until you can really love yourself.

I'm a slow learner. S-L-O-W. 

My mom told me that I was the smartest one in class. Pretty sure I wasn't. She told me that I was more handsome than Clark Gable. Rock Hudson. I needed glasses from the third grade but I'm not blind.

Here's what I know now. All I want is to be loved. You'd think I might work harder at being more lovable. As I look around at Donald J. Trump, Katy Tur, Lionel Richie, O.J. Simpson, the Dalai Lama, I realize that that's all any of us want.

Now I lay down my armor. I love all of us. We're pretty good, aren't we?


Friday, August 11, 2017

Let Me 'splain

There have been times I tried to fit in. I've shopped for clothes, applied for jobs, had my hair cut, attended church, married the girl, covered songs and voted the party line. I don't regret any of it. Well, maybe a marriage or two.

My producer, Phil Gernhard, always told us, "Pay attention. The fun is all about getting there. There's nothing special about a wall of gold records. It's all about watching that first one go up the charts. Hearing it on the radio for the first time."

Well, Phil blew his brains out a decade ago. He had several walls of gold records and marriages that he regretted. He was rich. Really rich.

Me? I never "got there." Not by any standards.

There was a time when my new records would go to the top ten on the Americana charts and I would hear them on the radio. They were never hits, though; never made any money.

I hope you don't read anything into that. I'm not whining. Maybe I'm boasting. It never quit being fun for me. Turns out I can't be managed. Produced. Guided.

Socially awkward? Yeah, those women hurt my feelings. I don't think they meant to. I'm pretty sure that they just assumed that I knew. Seems obvious now. Really obvious.

Well, now I've tried the patience of my friends. I'm good at that. I guess it seems that I'm begging for praise with my pitiful self deprecation, fishing for compliments.

Honestly, that's like looking for Trump's cunning political strategy when he gets out his phone.

Listen to me here- I'm alright with me. Oh, sure, I have impure thoughts from time to time. Okay. I frequently have impure thoughts. Alright, alright, I'm obsessed with smut. Nevertheless, I think I'm an okay guy. To me, everyone is special. Unique. Holy.

If I thought something was wrong, I'd cut my hair. I'd vote the party line.

I'm probably at my most socially awkward when I ramble in Sunday school talk.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

You can't make a silk purse.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Where The Rhyme Takes Me

Automatic pilot suits me just fine. I'm programmed for 4/4 time but I'll move to waltz time to keep myself awake. I don't pay much attention to key. I usually find an octave that seems to suit me but I'm likely to change that in the middle of a song.

Now, Picasso painted realism before he went boldly into representationalism. He knew perfectly well that there was one eye on each side of the nose. Charlie Parker knew all his scales. Boy, did he know all his scales! He heard the melody and he played it when he wanted to play it. Mostly he plucked genius out of the ether.

Somehow I've bumbled through without really learning how to do much of anything. In order to defend myself, to keep from admitting to the sin of sloth, I have used any excuse that I could come up with. I've probably stolen some of them.

This is no apology. I betcha' I would do it all like this again. In fact, I recommend it.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Soul Fires

There's a fire in my mind and I really can't be confined here. Evolution doesn't allow for satisfaction. I'm satisfied.

The peaceful tribes disappeared. They were finally pushed to Patagonia and other real estate that nobody wanted. I'm over here across the street from the river.

If you don't believe in karma, you must not be watching cable news. My good luck, I still remember everything about duck and cover. This time next year either we will have a good laugh about "fire and fury" or the cockroaches will dance in the daylight.