Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Shopping List for the End of the World

Given the current State of the Union, I've been thinking about the end of the world and feeling woefully unprepared.  What does a Capricorn do when she's unprepared? Make a list! So, here's the beginnings of my shopping list for the end of the world.

1 stick of dynamite.  When it all goes down, I plan to blow up the irrigation ditch and restore the full flow to Mill Creek. Water is key, which is why our artesian well is such a blessing. May that aquifer hold out till long after I'm gone.

1 shotgun.  It's true, Sequoia and I don't own a gun; never had need of one. I find them repulsive.  But when push comes to shove, we may need to kill a few deer and/or fight off a few zombies 

55 gallon drums of beans and rice. 

Seeds for the garden.

Spare antibiotics

Gasoline. We might have to run the well pump or the generator or the chain saw.

Luckily, we already have things like a generator, a chain saw, a generous well with a gas pump and a solar pump. We don't have stockpiles of food and medicine, so that's the next priority. I think I have enough books to last a lifetime; I'll never lack for reading material.

Clearly I've been reading too much post-apocalyptic sci fi and watching too much news, but it appears to me that the center is definitely not holding.  Can't hurt to be prepared.

Making Sense

Another mass shooting, this time in Vegas. Some crazy old white guy with 23 guns sets himself up on the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay overlooking the site of a huge country music festival.  The perfect vantage point, fish in a barrel. A friend who works backstage at Cirque du Soleil wrote about spending several hours in lock down. They had all been trained on what to do in case of an active shooter because that's the world we live.  I've been trained, although I'm pretty sure I'd be worse than worthless in such a situation. I'd crumble like a cookie.

One of my Arkansas cousins write a post about how gun laws have to change. Pretty sure he's not going to get the big piece of fried chicken at the family reunion this year.  If nothing changed after Newtown, I'm pretty sure nothing will change after this, no background checks, no bans on semi-automatic weapons, no limit on the amount of ammunition you can buy.  Health care is a privilege in this country, but owning as many guns and as much ammo as you want is a god given right. 

One of my Arkansas cousins wrote a post saying that gun laws have to change in this country. I"m guessing he won't get the big piece of fried chicken at the family reunion this year. Hs own sister took out after him. She said that no law would have kept the shooter from doing what he was going to do. I wanted to tell her that maybe if he hadn't had 23 guns, including several semi-automatic weapons that had been altered to function as automatic weapons, maybe he wouldn't have killed and maimed more than 500 people. Just a guess. But, what's the point of engaging anymore? What can I say to person who believes that military assault weapons should be in the hands of civilians? It's like we don't speak the same language.

It's a beautiful time of year in the Colestin, I'll take the dog for a nice long walk this weekend, practice some music, maybe watch some TV.  Life goes on, until it doesn't 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

The Smoke

There were blue skies and puffy white clouds in the Colestin this morning, but the Rogue Valley is socked in with thick smoke.  Driving to town felt like Frodo walking into Mordor. I grew up in the Inland Empire in the 1960s, I'm used to dense smog, but this smoke is beyond anything I've experienced. There are days when it's difficult to see across the street.  The air quality has graduated from Unhealthy to Hazardous and they don't have a category beyond Hazardous.

There were thunderstorms yesterday. The weather service issued flash flood warnings and red flag fire warnings at the same time.  Signs and wonders people. What's next, frogs and locusts?


Thursday, August 31, 2017

Colestin Campout: It smells like burning


The most overused phrase in the blog-o-sphere is, “Sorry it has been so long since my last post.”  That said, I’m sorry it has been so long since my last post.  It has been a busy summer.  In June, Sequoia and I traveled to Sweden, his ancestral homeland.  He was sick with pneumonia while we were there and sick for at least a month after we returned. Despite that, it was a truly amazing voyage. We toured his family sites around Vastergotland, going back to the farm where his great-great-great-great-grandmother, Elin Jonsdotter, was born in 1780.  Crazy, right?  We also toured an archaeological dig at a Viking site not far from where his people come from.  I know in my bones that he has some Viking ancestors; just look at the dude!   I’ll upload photos soon.  

In August, we traveled north to visit DogBoy in his newly purchased home in Dallas Oregon.  Very lucky for us, he was right in recent solar eclipse's path of totality. It was awe-inspiring. I totally get what all the fuss is about.  I'm a convert and plan to travel to see the next one.  

Meanwhile, we are getting ready for a gathering this weekend, which is what prompted me to post. It won’t be a traditional Colestin Campout, nor is it the late, lamented Shit Weasel Weekend, it’s a blow out birthday celebration for everyone’s favorite artist, filmmaker, disc-golfer, skirt wearing, leg-warmer rockin’ Laney D’Aquino. Girlfriend is turning 50; hard to believe, she looks about 30.  Her best friends have organized this event, I’m mostly just providing the space and some groceries. Well, truth be told, I’ve done a little more work than that, but not nearly as much as I usually have to do for a party, for which I am deeply grateful.

Southern Oregon looks, feels and smells like the south gates of hell right now. It’s hot and super smoky, the air quality is the worst I’ve ever seen. It smells like burning as Ralph Wiggins once said on The Simpsons. I grew up in Southern California during the era of leaded gasoline and thick smog so, for all intents and purposes, I spent my childhood swimming in a sea of lead. It’s too late for me, I’m already ruined, but I encourage campers to consider their health and save themselves if the conditions are just too harsh. I completely understand why some folks may choose not to come. 

Meanwhile, have you heard about Sequoia’s new puppy Dazy?  Pronounced like Daisy, spelled like lazy.  I say Sequoia’s because I was advocating for an older dog, maybe one that was a year or two old, but he insisted on a puppy. Well, he’s reaping the whirlwind now, she’s running us both ragged. She’s super smart, couldn’t be more adorable, and may just be the death of me.  Pray for us campers.

  

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Dear Congressman Walden

How do you like your boy now? A little more than 100 days in and Trump is already saddled with a Watergate-sized scandal, only he's not accused of covering up some petty break-in. If he or his staff colluded with the Russians to throw the election, that is treasonous. If he fired the FBI director because he was getting too near to the truth, we have a full-blown Constitutional crisis on our hands. Can you say high crimes and misdemeanors?

He is going down hard and dragging you with him.  I'd be feeling schadenfreude if I wasn't so terrified.

You strike me as a savvy political operator.  If you have a lick of sense, you'll start distancing yourself from this madman. While you're at it, you would be wise to disavow your support for his disastrous Trumpcare and tax plans.  Didn't you just get an earful about Trumpcare in Wallowa? Not Portland sir, WALLOWA, one of the most right wing, rural corners of the state.

It's going down and, as the old union song asks, Which Side Are you On?   Ask not for whom the bell tolls, sir. It tolls for you.

Sincerely,

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Speaking Intention

Speaking an intention is the first step toward manifesting an intention. So, here goes:

I hereby relinquish and repudiate all band management responsibilities.  I ain't gonna do it no more.

I've tried to do draw this boundary before but always get sucked back in.  I have to be crystal clear about my intentions.

I will not book shows.
I will not promote shows.
I will not communicate or negotiate with venue operators.
I will not mediate discussions, debates or disagreements between my band mates.
I will not schedule or confirm rehearsals.
If rehearsal is not confirmed, I will not attend.
I will not handle money.

From here on out, I am the talent. I will rehearse and I will play. Nothing else.

I accept and embrace the reality that this will either radically reduce or completely eliminate my opportunities to perform in public.

One more show on Friday and then done with this shit.

So mote it be.




Thursday, March 30, 2017

Super Mommies

Just read a blog post written by a mother who feels judged and excluded by the "mommy group." Older woman’s perspective here: I never measured up to the super mommies when my kids were in school. I remember dashing out of work to watch my daughter play sports and sitting alone in the stands while the PTA booster mommies with their perfect hair and clothes gathered in a pack and whispered among themselves. Boy, did I feel like an odd woman out. And yes, it was almost always mommies. There were a few sports fanatic daddies, but they didn’t form packs, they were laser-focused on their poor kid to the exclusion of all else.  There is nothing wrong with being a PTA booster and hanging out with your “mommy group” if that’s what floats your boat; mazel tov says I. But for many of us it feels forced, awkward and induces a sense of inferiority.  Working outside the home saved my life.  Having a hobby (music) helped me create community. Yes, it is important to give our kids many opportunities to participate in activities and encourage them to try new things,, but it is just as important to occasionally do something that YOU want to do. Time and again I have observed super mommies lose their damn minds when baby leaves the nest. Their reason for being is gone and they have no idea what to do with themselves. Many have affairs, get divorced, pile up debt on shopping addictions.  Or worse, they cling to the kid and induce “failure to launch” syndrome.  Micromanaging helicopter parents aren’t serving their  kids' needs, they are feeding their own egos. For the sake of your family, for the sake of your kids, GET A LIFE.