Friday, August 31, 2018

Not Enough Monkey Business

We're all dying to tell everybody who we are. Don't ever apologize for loving somebody. I saw that on Twitter earlier today. Now they tell me.

Maybe peace of mind is the ultimate prize. There are days when I think I'm almost there. Then a sweet memory will waft through the ether and a grand sense of loss ends the illusion.

The love? Well, pal, there's plenty in the old snapshots.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Lookers and Barkeeps

A revolution is here. I just heard the news on television. Most folks in this country don't want a revolution, of course. I won't insert a political rant here. I'm worn out from all of that.

Voices of reason attempting to restore kindness and fairness struggle to be heard.

Where are the gentle voices of love?

Tuesday, August 28, 2018


Here's to the ones who have put up with me and here's to the ones with better sense. All my memories plant joy even though most of them are tinged with loss. I find a smile on my face most of the time when I check. I don't check often. I always thought those old men with one inch patches of whiskers here and there were funny.

Now I'm one of them.

It's not funny.

You know what they say about the alternative.

Monday, August 27, 2018

New and Alone

It's all art. The ones we call "artists" are the ones who recognize the fact. What passes for self deprecation is really just my comfort in my station in life. I tend to blather about my "failures" and my "lack of talent."

Well, sir, I'm not looking for comfort or sympathy. I don't fight for airtime or battle for chart positions. Oh, I've spent money that I couldn't afford on radio promotion and, when an americana chart was new, I kept my eye on the goldarned thing. For a little while. Seems it only noticed me for a little while, too.

No, I sing for the stars and I write to save the world. My music is in the ether. I suppose I'd sing on key if I could, but where's the fun in that? If God wanted me to play guitar properly, why did he make Steve Connelly? Terry Ware? Andrew Hardin?

My so-called career is a treasure and a gift from the cosmos. I'm the luckiest guy you ever met and I love you.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Weather Men Wanted

Don't ever pass up the joy. Not for money or prestige. Not for guilt or obligation. You were born with a surplus. We all were. 

The sadness? Yeah, we came right from the factory with a lifetime supply of that, too. Oh, it will be rationed over the years. There was a time, a long time, that I thought that any idea of suicide was just an extreme bout of mental illness. It is, I suppose. 

The first time that you ever have the blues so bad that you think that maybe express checkout might be the best option, well, that changes everything. From that point forward everything is different. The value of the joy becomes obvious. 

Get out there and love. Somebody needs it.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Taking Miracles For Granted

She seemed oblivious to the magic 'til gravity failed. Pretty sure that I have proven that I am able to control myself. To a point. That doesn't mean, of course, that I don't worry until I know that she gets home safely. 

Goofy still makes me laugh and Old Shep still makes me cry. My test for genius is the combination. When was the last time that you watched Charlie Chaplin's masterpiece, The Circus? It's the funniest film I've ever seen. Saddest, too. While he wasn't busy writing it, directing it, producing it and starring in it, he spent his spare time composing the theme for the movie. Smile. Maybe the most beautiful song I have ever heard.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Great Big Eyes

Don't fall. Just got that advice on a television ad. Seems like a good idea. How about, "Don't hurt," or "Don't die?" Maybe I should have gone into the ad racket.

Reality. I always thought that the concept was overrated. Now I long for the good old days. If the folks running the show don't have to follow laws, why should I? Nothing illegal is tempting me currently, but I'm keeping my eye out for opportunity.

Maybe I've just been holding out for utopia, I don't know. I'm pretty sure that we can do better than this.


Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Saffron and Magenta

My fear, as I understand it now, was that the end of romance, somehow, meant the end of love. Fortunately, it seems that I had it all wrong. You keep learning. You keep loving.

When I struggle with the fears that come with the final stages of life, I have to remind myself of all those other stages, all those other fears. 

Seems funny somehow- I was always scared to live. I think I forgot some parts.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Iron In The Water

The real me, the physical body that shows up for the dance, is like a dog that stays in the yard. For the most part. Oh, I've been a few places and I've seen a few things, but for the most part, I stick around home.

My heart and my mind, now, that's a horse of a different color. Well, I suppose those are horses of different colors, to be more precise.

Most of my life has been misspent on unrealistic romantic entanglement.

Romance gave up on me some time back, leaving me time to pursue rock climbing or origami or orchid cultivation. Mostly I sit around and watch "Father Knows Best" reruns or cable news and fantasize about life with Elinor Donahue or Ashley Parker.

It's a life.


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Something We Forget

Love is not something that we learn. It's something that we forget. 

Maybe you can't teach an old dog new tricks. An old dog might very well recall old tricks, however. I remember days when I trusted everyone, when judgement didn't occur to me. Yeah, I can recall loving without fear. Days before my first broken heart.

Either I'm very lucky or very unlucky. Depends on whom you ask, I suppose. I've not grown up that much. Let me thank an adoring mother, a doting grandmother and rock'n'roll. 

I love you.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Socially Awkward

The concept of power is really amusing when it comes to humans. Nobody has power over you that you don't give them. 

When I saw a newspaper ad for Volvos years ago, I asked a friend what he thought of the deal. He looked it over and declared it a bargain. I explained that I was interested but was afraid that I wasn't the type to pull up in a Volvo. 

He nodded and looked me up and down before he pointed out that I wasn't the type to pull up in anything.

That's my life. I've mopped floors, flunkied for the government, managed real estate offices, promoted concerts, packaged mortgages, written for newspapers and scooped mud from the bottom of barges.

Over six decades folks have hitched their wagon to my dim star. Powerful folks have promised to make me rich. Famous. To be honest, nobody has promised me anything for a good while now.

Do you suppose those folks thought they saw something special in me or do you think that I just posed the ultimate challenge?

Who cares? I liked that Volvo and I wouldn't know what to do with money if I had it.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Horny Holy Men

Beware the made up mind. Yours, mine or anybody else's. Sitting here, waiting for things to make sense, is like waiting for rain in the desert. 

Over a lifetime, my personal definition of karma has evolved. 

Now? We'll see.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Grace Beats Karma Every Time

Don't take any of it too seriously. You know how it all ends. I'm thinking that everyday kindness just might be our most underrated commodity. It seems to me that I learn a little, then have to learn it again. 

Sometimes it feels like life is just a distraction, but from what?

Love is the only thing that I see that has any value. I've spent a lifetime trying to nail water to the wall. Try to give love away and they're suspicious. I'm just beginning to figure some of this stuff out. You just love.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

What Color's The Rainbow, Mama?

There are no explanations. The more random the universe seems, the more patterns I see, the more miracles I encounter. I'm grateful to be just bright enough to understand how little I know.

Here's what Jamaica taught me:

Don't worry about dignity. It's all about grace. 


Saturday, August 11, 2018

A History Of Alcohol And Perfume

If I had waited to learn to write, I never would have written. I suppose you could make a similar case about my love life. I've managed to live a long time without learning to do anything. I suspect that more than a few others could make this claim. Most, I suspect, don't know it. Don't mistake self-awareness for self-deprecation.

She found me. I didn't find her.

I was born to play the one who got away.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Measuring Mud In Years

If you're waiting for life to make sense, have a seat. It's gonna be a long wait. Now that ignorance has thrown in with hate and greed to form a particularly ugly brew, pull up a chair and pull down the shades.

Imagine my surprise to discover that I'm Black. Gay. Female. Trans. Hell, I'm a communist! I'm just here in a white guy disguise, planted as a spy. 

Do I seem cocky? I know about love. I understand what your money's worth. Really worth. I can see that the glazed ham-headed emperor is naked and, honestly, I wish that I couldn't. 

Stand up and tell the truth. Do it with all the love in your heart. If I were famous, they would kill me. If I were wealthy, they would institutionalize me.

My plan this morning was to make fun of the Space Farce. I wandered off-course. Forgive me.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Did I Forget To Thank You?

Am I self-absorbed or am I merely reflective? What difference does it make? I've always had more than I expected and more than I needed. Of everything.

The sweetest people in the world have crossed my path. Some of them were famous and that was always exciting at the time. Most of them, of course, were not. Now, I worry that I have neglected thanking most of you.

My ambition in life is that I might be able to pass along some small portion of the love and the kindness that has been shown me. I'm including more than a few with more than two legs.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Blasting Caps

Might as well let it all ride on red. Why not? Every generation has new fears, modern nightmares. It's hard for me to believe that nazis are back. The KKK. No wonder I'm not big on nostalgia.

If only the ones who declare war had to pay for it. When the military industrial complex figures out how to get richer off of technology, tanks, bombs and submarines will quickly become obsolete. Elon Musk will lead the big military parade. Imagine! Nerds with laptops marching up Pennsylvania Avenue. 

U.S.A! U.S.A!


Tuesday, August 7, 2018

It's The Wine, Jake, It's The Wine

You know, I never could stand an Austin Healy but I surely did love to hear that engine. It was a sight to behold, too. The motor, I mean. When I was a kid, there was a chimpanzee in the neighborhood who drove one. Only with his trainer in the passenger seat, of course.

If only my memories rhymed! 

Kenny Golding threw a five pound bag of sugar out of a third story window during Spanish class. It conked Sybil Evans on the noggin and knocked her out cold. Ruined cheerleader practice, needless to say.

One day I'm gonna write a book.

Monday, August 6, 2018

A Risk Of Sin

Temptation is a dim memory. I seem to have run out of bad intentions. There's probably a drug for that. I would like to think that history might remember me as "the one that got away." Maybe I should have set my sights lower.

You don't work for happy, you allow happy.

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

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Just Look At It

Maybe I'm lazy. Maybe I'm just living in the moment. It's a sight better to be judged than ignored. If everything that we don't understand is either magic or supernatural, then I believe in magic. I don't have a clue. Never did. I try not to smirk when it's all explained to me. Be wary of anyone who thinks he knows much.

Here's my message- this is it. That truth that you're searching for- this is the truth. Look around you. The dog knows. The cat knows. The baby knows. 

We all need our own miracle. Don't wait for love. Love.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Start Over

Hey, I've got an idea.When we get this country back again, let's don't pick up where we left off. Let's do it right this time. From this point on, every idea that I put forward will be decried as some form of socialism by folks in this country who have inherited property.

Let me remind you that Europeans came to this continent and stole the land. Some of them brought slaves from Africa to pick their cotton, build their plantations, have their babies.

Do I sound harsh? Judgmental? Mean? Smug?

These folks appropriated a land of plenty. There were resources to provide a paradise for everyone. Now, somehow, we have managed to squander a great deal of this paradise to put feathers in women's hats and fertilize golf courses.

Here are a few things that seem relevant to keep in mind if we are ever to patch things up:

1. In a struggle between a good guy and a bad guy, the bad guy will win. Good guys don't sneak "foreign objects" into the ring. They don't have smallpox blankets.

2. There is no such thing as a benevolent dictator.

3. Whoever your god is, he isn't on anybody's side in any war. He never was. Never will be.

4. There are few among us who want to serve in government for the "right" reasons.

Let me stop here. You get my drift. Hey, I know that you didn't steal anybody's land. Calm down. Yeah, I know that you don't own any slaves. 

My point, if I have a point, is this: we can do better. Build a culture on truth and love, not money.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Save Us Again

So, as I sit here wining up, writing the first song that's ever meant anything to me, the clouds part and I see it all clearly for the first time. Rock'n'roll was about truth. Oh, sure, it was all about sex and rhythm and freedom and romance. A wop bop a loo bop a lop bam boom, fercrissakes!

The genius of Chuck Berry was that he was able to hide messages of inter-racial romance and pure lust in seemingly simple 4/4, three chord ditties. Roll over, Beethoven! Sit down and shut up, Shakespeare! We were being taught civil rights and the golden rule with a backbeat that changed the world.

Did it die of old age as truth fell out of fashion or have we given up on truth because we lost rock'n'roll? Who knows? Who cares?

The first of the "business men" who profited from rock'n'roll were crooks. Ahmet Ertegun. Sam Phillips. Alan Freed. The Chess brothers. Syd Nathan. Phil Spector. To their credit, they were crooks who loved the music. 

Did they have any interest in bringing us truth? It never occurred to them. All they heard was A wop bop a loo bop a lop bam boom. 

Eventually we were dealing with so much money that the real crooks took over. Clive Davis wouldn't know rock'n'roll if it bit him in the butt. Tell his attorney that I said so.

If the hair on your arm stands up and you can't sit still and you suddenly have the nerve to ask her to dance, well, that's what we called rock'n'roll. The best of it sneaks truth to all of us. Come on, rock'n'roll- save us again.

Roll 'em

Is it a perfect world or is this random wad of suffering just an insignificant blip in the cosmos? Be wary of anyone who thinks he knows. That's my advice.

The "what ifs" seem to have set in this afternoon and, of course, that leaves me wishing that I believed in reincarnation. My consolation is the knowledge that I wouldn't get it right on the next go-round, either. 

Oh, I don't wring my hands. Not much. I never learned much but I learned about love right away. I can go from zero to sixty in just a few seconds on the happy scale. I try to keep my foot on the pedal.

Love hard, dear one. Love freely.


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Good News From The Islands

On days like this I'm glad that I'm not like the others. I've never had much use for money. Good thing- I've not usually had much. I've been reminded that my excuse for not liking folks is usually based on them not liking me. Well, duh.

Well, sir, I'm working on it. I suppose that we would all like to think of ourselves as reasonably likable. Sometimes we all have to settle for toleration. At best.

Outsiders need love, too.