It’s a Buggy Life

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It has been nice weather here the last couple of days. It is nice to be able to sit out in the yard in the morning. Get away from the phone. Have a cup of coffee. Read a book.

And then there are just those times when I have a moment to take notice.

The above is a photo of this year’s garden.

As I was looking at it I happened to notice a lone ant running up and down the wooden frame. I do not know exactly why I stopped to notice this one. He was all over the place exploring. I tried to get him in the photo. But that guy would not stay still long enough.

But I began to think about the scene. It made me think of my own creative process that I am working with and through here.

Plant the seeds. Try the best to grow them. However, give up on the idea that I have full control or even realization of the final product.

As for the ant. It is about the process. Like the travels of the ant it is never going to be a straight line. It is all just an exploration.

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I Might Have A Theory Here

I have been reading though several books that has a premise of taking a different approach to your work. Recently, it has been several titles by Seth Godin and last one was Everything I Know by Paul Jarvis. (I may expand on these titles later) In the absence of being able to have a conversation in regards to what I attempting to here, I have to create my own “internal dialogue” for that. It still amazes me that I hear people say they cannot find ANY material that fits their need. Or even worse, when they do they complain that it “challenges” what they know.

As I have said before. There are ideas that come to my mind and I have to go with them. If they make me want to write them out. All the better. Keep Writing.

I just started reading Think Like a Freak by Stephen D. Levitt and Stephen Dubner. The authors of the Best Selling Freakanomics book series. I wish books like this were mandatory reading in schools. However, if you are unwilling to take an examination of your own “Dogmatic Conceptions” then you better stay clear of them.

Today, I decided to eat my lunch at the Inner Harbor to enjoy the weather before it goes “crazy” once again.  The problem is you have to stay in your vehicle well you eat because you WILL BE attacked by seagulls. However, they will not leave you alone in your vehicle. They will stand right next to it and just Squawk nonstop and loudly at you. The reason is people go there to feed them. Even though there are signs against it. People will buy extra French fries at the food stand to throw at them. So now Seagulls have become “Whiny Moochers”.

SEAGULLS

 

Well, today as I was in my truck I was also reading the latest book I mentioned. Those damn birds were “Squawking” at me. There was a point, that I lowered my window and yelled at a flock of seagulls, “Shut the Fuck Up!” They did. But they gave me the “How-Dare You-Tell-Me-That-Look.”

And that I a Freakonomic style thought in my head.

I have also seen the same “upset” behavior in humans too. And it happens at almost every fast food place. There is that person who complains that they were shorted fries in their “Super-sized” order. Or complain that their buddy snagged ONE from their oversized pile of French Fries. Also anyone calling out the obnoxious behavior gets the “Fuck-Off-I-Can-Do-Whatever-I-Want” response.

I may Theory here

As the amount of French fries available increases. Obnoxious “Squawking” increases too.

French Fries not the healthiest option for man or fowl.

It may have to do with the fact never side feel any shame. Fries included.

So if anyone feels the need to further research this premise. Please feel free to do so.

I have already spent too much time on this.

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Road Side

VantagePoint

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Threat Level: Ironic

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There are ideas that I am in the midst of working on. However, there are the things that I am forced to take notice of. And they are an interruption and annoyance to the process.

And this is the latest case in point. It is not a major occurrence. Yet. And hopefully never will become one. But I have noticed enough times to run out of fingers in doing the math on it.

Here is my Public Service Warning.

I do not know why this is happening. But it has been enough to take notice.

Here is the Threat Potential.

I was unable to get a photo of it.

Out of nervousness for my own personal safety.

I have seen pick-up trucks being driven a single white male. Ages 20-32.

With the following decals on the back of their trucks.

The Confederate Flag

AND!!

The Irish Shamrock

AND!!!

The male driver is blasting Gangster Rap on the stereo. 75% of the time.

I suspect

NONE OF THESE GUYS are doing this to be “Ironic”

WHY? People, is this even happening at all?

Please post your theory of “WHY” in the Comment section below.

 

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Road Tripping

tuneinradio

As I mentioned, in a previous post I had to travel to Allentown PA area. I downloaded a bunch of podcasts to listen to for my 6-8 hours of travel. However, as I got started I kept running into construction areas and had to pay attention to lane shifts. Plus, being aware of the other drivers. I just could not hold my attention to listening to the discussions in the podcasts. So I just turned on the radio and just “channel surfed” until I found something to listen to.

This post is about my thoughts brought on by songs I heard or came to mind during my travel. Think of it as the blueprint for a mixed tape.

“Flirting with Disaster” – Molly Hatchet

 

 

I have to travel for the most part by myself. It would be nice to have a travel buddy. But being into things that most people will never take time to at least attempt to understand makes finding such a person a bit tough. Also when people do not try to understand they only see the ‘unknown” as a recipe that can only result in “disaster”.

“Ramble On” – Led Zeppelin

 

 

Yep. This song was played right after the first song. I guess sometimes you have to go seeking the source of the “calling”.

“Thanksgiving” – Stephen Kellogg

This was the totally unexpected find. I was able to tune in an Alternative radio station out of Rochester NY. There was the line that caught me off guard. “And my friends they traded me in”. It is hard for me not to notice that when it comes to friends things have “shifted and drifted”. The odds of them returning back are not likely going to be a checkmark in the “favorable” column. I think it may have been comedian Marc Maron who said, “You remember the innocent that formed the friendship”. And you may remember that “lightning in the bottle” moment of it too. The reality is the “chemical equation” in the bottle eventually burns down and out. In Charlie Hoehn’s piece he talks about the need to remove “anchors”. It is hard when it involves “scenarios”. Even harder when it involves “people”.

“Here I Go Again” – Whitesnake.

I am not sure if 80’s hard rock and metal bands should be praised or condemned for the power ballad. Every album, at the time seemed to have a mandate to have one on it. However, I think this one may deserve a pass, musically and lyrically speaking. But the video that helped make the song popular should be condemned as being basically being “bloated”.

“Green Grass and Hide Tides” – The Outlaws

 

 

This song came on the radio with a bit of irony for me. Interstate 81 from Cortland to Binghamton was full of Troopers running a speed trap. There should be a code tag for Twitter called #BaconAndPork to alert drivers. Plus I needed to take a rest break to stretch the legs for a bit. As I pulled off the Troopers were also pulling Big Rigs off there for Inspection.  This song came on the radio. Ironically, by a band called The Outlaws given who surrounded me at the moment. The other irony is Spring after almost a month really had yet to show any signs. For a song about “green grass” all I could see gray grounds and bare trees.

Also I would have loved to seen a Trans Am and a Big Rig going “Bandit-style” down the highway at that moment.

“On the Road Again” –Bob Segar/Metallica

 

 

Caught this song around Binghamton. Yet I am going with the Metallica cover. Metallica, band with such a fan base that those who love them go “above and beyond” and those who hate them do the same. Ironically, both sides tend to be the same person all in one.

“Little Lion Man” – Mumford and Sons/Tonto’s Giant Nuts

Again going with the cover version featuring Johnny Depp. It can be heard on the “West of Memphis” soundtrack. Traveling alone gives me a lot more time to spend in my head. This song is about how strength and flaw both exist at the same time in a person. And the struggle to find the “State of Grace” between the two.

I have to do this trip every five years. Sparing the details. I realize where on am I on the “curve” is not that close to where I expected to be on it. Eye opening and a bit heartbreaking.

Astronomy – Blue Oyster Cult

 

 

Blue Oyster Cult never seems to get their recognition outside of the song “Don’t Fear the Reaper”.

One of the downsides of urban living is the inability to be able to sit by campfire and see all the stars in the night sky.

I always wondered how the Greeks and Romans of ancient times got the people to accept how they layout and named the Constellations. And they did without selling the “naming rights”. (The annoying part of capitalism)

Robert Plant – Ship of Fools

 

 

After some thought, I decided to withhold comments on this one.

Pearl Jam – Given to Fly

 

 

Sometimes you come to “Revelations” you cannot share. There are some things you need just hold on for yourself.

“King of Birds” – R.E.M.

 

 

This song for me is the “hidden treasure” on their Document album. It is about being resilient in regards to time.

“I must create a system or be enslaved by another man’s;

   I will not reason and compare: my business is to create”

                           William Blake

 

“Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight” – Japanese Proverb

 

“There is a Wind” – The Album Leaf

I cannot remember when and where I discovered this song a couple of years ago. It is on their Chorus of Storytellers album. An album I will play when I need to tune out the various “noises” and meditate from time to time.

“I don’t believe people are looking for the meaning of life

            As much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.”

           

            “We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned

            So as to have the life that is waiting for us.”              

 

Joseph Campbell

 

“Long May You Run” – Neil Young

 

 

I don’t know how you can travel any distance and not include a song from him.  And seems like a good way to end this playlist.

 

 

BONUS TRACK

As I was assembling my notes for this and on my home from work I heard this on the radio. It seemed for some reason to fit here for me. Think of it as the post credits bonus scene.

“I Wanna Get Better”- The Bleachers

I think the real struggle now is getting people to just simply “Listen”.

Social media has made too easy to just “Shout!”

 

 

           

 

Extra: Road Trip Travel Tips

Google Maps is all right. But if you have to find a place that is on back dirt roads be warned Google Maps has a slight touch of the “LSD” when it comes to them.

Plus the directions lack visual clues and hints that would be helpful. Example: You will pass THREE Lake Streets before you hit the one you want.

 

It is also dangerous to write notes and drive at the same time.

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