I’m sorry to bother you, but I’m a US postal worker, and my mail truck was just ambushed by a band of backwoods mail-hating survivalists.

Today is a good day.  I got invited to jam with a local band this afternoon.  I didn’t want to go, but my reason sucked, so I went anyway.  I was pretty anxious on the way and for the first few minutes.  Then I asked if I can play too.  They asked me what I play, and I said I’d love anything with sticks or strings.

When anxiety turns into excitement like that, it’s a weird feeling.  It almost feels impossible to contain.  Everything in me demanded I jump up and down or I would burst into a gazillion broken pieces.  I hopped a few times to prevent it, then stopped and hoped nobody noticed.  The man who plays lead guitar (saw and) said he hoped my enthusiasm was contagious.  (I decided I love him.)

I went for the bass because nobody else did.  I told them I’ve only been playing it for a short time, so don’t expect any solos.  They all laughed, and I had another one of those moments where I wonder if they know I mean literally, then agonize over whether to ask.  I didn’t ask.  (Thank you, Stevie Nicks, for being the one person on this planet who finally managed to convince me to always think before speaking, and take my time.)

Tangent:  It took a long time for me to fully concede it’s sometimes better to say nothing, (even if it’s incredibly hilarious.)   It’s a semi-painful concession.  Part of me would rather live in a world where anything is okay to say, so long as it’s wicked funny.  Then I remember there’s absolutely no way that wouldn’t end in (rivers of) tears (for me.)  Damn.  I guess Stevie Nicks got me to (finally) grow up.  Um…  Ow.  😂😂😂😂😂

I had so much fun playing my face still hurts from smiling.  M. complimented me and seemed surprised how well I hung in there.  Then I ruined it by telling him it’s because I practice with the same songs, and therefore suggested them (Jackson 5.)   Jermaine Jackson is the bar I set for my bass playing endeavor.  (If you knew how many notes I currently have to drop to stay in time with the song, you’d be laughing with me.)  It still sounds pretty good, though.  I’m a rhythm bass player.  Heh.

I brought my violin, but as expected, they just looked at it, then looked at me, then looked away.  Did everyone in South Dakota get together and decide on this reaction?  I bet there was cake.  😒  I’m probably still a little bit over excited.  It’s hard to calm down after having a great time.  M. wants to go sit in the hot tub.  It would probably help, but it just seems so unsanitary.  Maybe I’ll just put my legs in.  Apparently, my germaphobia ends with my knees.  💜

“I mean, only a sick twisted mind could be that rude and ignorant.”

I’m having so much fun getting to know Evanescence all over again.  I geeked out about it on my new creativity blog.  It’s still too sparse for sharing, but it’s getting there.  I’ve discovered synthesizers are fascinating.  I’ve only played with one of the pocket operators so far:  Robot.

I only meant to fiddle with it for a few minutes.  It turned into over two hours, somehow.  It’s slightly larger than a deck of cards.  I got the cases, despite being offended by how they’re marketed.  Just charge more for the complete product.  Don’t compromise after creating such an excellent tool.

I’m kinda mad at Teenage Engineering for marketing this product like they have low self-esteem.  They’re an innovative company creating awesome stuff for creative people.  If I were in charge, they would come with a better case, and each would cost $99.

I wouldn’t give the customer the option of passing on a case that will very likely prevent them from breaking it within a week.  That’s just silly.  They would be installed before shipping.

I sure do love the product anyway, though.  So much.  Now I want a base station where I can position three connected Pocket Operators optimally for playing them live.  It needs to secure them, and angle them for access.  It should have some weight to it.

It should have some sort of LED lighting, and an OLED screen.  And provide power to all three Pocket Operators.  Rechargeable, with at least six hours of battery life.  And a nice case.  I’ll stop before I talk myself into building a fugly prototype.

I guess I assume the minds who can create such a fascinating tool could also recognize these things as a logical addition. Fortunately, there are 3D printers.  I’m going to go look for more footage of Stevie Nicks on her current tour.  She’s finishing up in New Zealand.

I watched one yesterday where some people in the audience at the concert were talking while Stevie Nicks was singing.  That’s really rude (on earth.)  I actually read the comments on YouTube, it was so disturbing.  There was one, and it said exactly that.  I clicked whatever icon signifies my support and approval.  Dammit.

“Jerry, Newman and I are engaged in a epic struggle for world domination.”

It’s been a fantastic week. I’m still listening to Synthesis by Evanescence several times a day. It will be a while before I’m ready to listen to anything else. (This always happens with unicorns.) M. is overtly studying my behavior.

I don’t mind, of course. I just thought of four ways to elaborate on that, and they all made me laugh out loud. M. asked me if I’m “over Stevie Nicks” now that Evanescence just rocked my world. (I walked away without saying a word. See Alison adult, then feel smug about it.)

I think he was just teasing me. Especially since I insisted he watch some Stevie Nicks interviews with me on YouTube yesterday, (to get a different perspective.) I’ll ask later because now it’s going to bother me. I’m still pretty timid about assuming what I interpret is in the same universe as that of others. (For good reason.)

I’m astonished how little anxiety I’ve experienced this week. My ears are a bit raw from wearing uncomfortable headphones for hours. I’ll be ecstatic when wireless headphones improve. At least enough to completely replace wired cans for music. They’re podcast ready at this point IMHO.

I’m researching a new pair of critical listening over-ear headphones. It’s probably a good thing Evanescence doesn’t release albums too often, as this happened last time. The mastering is superb in Synthesis. I haven’t watched the making of videos yet, but when I do, I’ll be hoping to see which headphones they used, (then praying I can afford them.)

I’ll never own a pair of Beats. That’s my precise level of an audiophile. Heh.

Dear Pharell Williams, please (all over) design some Audio Technica Limited Edition ATH-MX50’s with built-in Bluetooth 4.2, Amp/DAC, memory foam/breathable pads, and a dope hard case. Love, me. I’d pay $499 (with minimal whining.) Please. 🙃

I’m reading Oathbringer, presently. It’s an uber-epic novel in a series within the Cosmere (universe.) It’s going to take me a while to finish my first read, and I’ll re-read it several times. It’s part of my journey. Brandon Sanderson earned a lot of influence in my life. (Right up there with Stevie Nicks, and just as gently.)

I had a shower cry over Al Franken’s outing as a predator. He came from Hollywood, which made it less shocking. But it still hurts a lot.

Dear predators, predatory behavior makes loving you painful at best. Please grow forward. Love, Evolved humanity.

My inner 5-year-old just called me a hippie and suggested I move to California, so I’m off to beat my drums.

“It’s an amazing thing.”

It’s an incredible week.  Evanescence released a new album, and I’m already in love.  I purchased the CD, but until it arrives, I’ve been listening non-stop on Spotify.  It’s titled Synthesis.  It has some tracks fans are familiar with, but they’re different.  Better.  Damn.  My hands are shaking because it’s so fabulous and I’m listening while blogging, which is super hard for me to pull off.  It feels like having a tug of war with myself.  This is going to be a short post.

Tomorrow, Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson is released.  Finally!  I’m overwhelmed with joy.  As if that isn’t enough for me to disappear for a while, I also acquired a used generic electric bass and three Pocket Operators by Teenage Engineering.  They’re little handheld synthesizers.  I got Arcade, Office, and Robot.  (The other four are on my wishlist for now.)

Until I finish reading Oathbringer and calm down a bit over Synthesis, I’ll be too distracted to obey clocks.  I can’t believe how happy I am right now.  I can’t focus enough to say more, so I’m off to listen with my Grado’s.  In the dark.  Where I can cry without feeling obligated to explain why.  Peace.

“I’ll tell you what your problem is: You brought your queen out too fast.”

I had fun hanging out with M. and throwing a Stevie Nicks party this afternoon.  We’re going to watch Stevie Nicks Live in Red Rocks, next.  M. has decided he’s also a fan.  I almost said, “Performing music is totally how she got all her fans,” but I caught myself.  Whew!

I even wrote a poem.  M. wrote one too.  He won’t let me share it, though.  (It’s excellent!)  Mine is far less impressive and perhaps a bit heavy on the Negative Nancy.  Saw that coming, did you?  Heh.  Ah, well.  Here it is:

 

“And now, it’s payback time. Pottery Barn is in for a world of hurt.”

I’m scattered today.  I may as well apologize now.  This series of ramblings is going to be a doozy, I can already tell.  I finished reading Reckless:  My Life as a Pretender, by Chrissie Hynde.  I loved it.  I stayed up all night reading it.  I had to take lots of breaks to look up colloquialisms from her youth.  (I can speak 1960’s now.)  I took notes because I’ve never heard of a lot of bands she mentioned, but will rectify that situation soon.  I know a lot more about drugs, now.

I didn’t know much about Chrissie Hynde before reading the book.  I knew she was cool, and I could easily conjure her image and voice in my mind.  That about covers it.  When I found out she was touring with Stevie Nicks, I was ecstatic.  I saw some footage uploaded to YouTube by fans, (thanks!)  The crowds were unbelievably humongous.  Holy shiitake mushrooms, Batman!

The book kicked me in the nuts twice.  The first time, because Chrissie Hynde described a collection as Aspergian, the second because she has no idea how wonderful and brilliant she is. I got past the first kick instantly because she was descriptive, not mean.  No malice, no foul.  The second took longer because it reminded me of how big an asshole I was back when I thought my “superior” skill at learning from books, the only taught method for both our generations, made me awesome.

I’ve since learned the difference between awesome and asshole.  You’re welcome.  😂  I feel guilty because I know my former superiority complex has a lot to do with the lack of confidence I see in many brilliant people who were told they weren’t by influential people in their world.  And worse, because all my book learnin’ doesn’t seem to help me convince them they’re so much more than they’ve been led to believe.  Sigh.

Someone who works in a different office but shares the break area informed me my Ph.D. in Software Engineering is no achievement.  I laughed (pretty hard.)  Then I said, “I know, but I have a brown vagina.”  Then he laughed and said, “Expensive liability insurance.”  (That’s precisely when it stopped being funny to me.)  I appreciate him for comprehending out loud, though.

It occurred to me I have things in common with Chrissie Hynde.  Such as, we both knew what we wanted at a young age, and went for it.  We also both know that long, agonizing moment where we first recognize we’re about to suffer a fate worse than we ever imagined.  Her books’ content covered exactly what I would have asked her, with detail in all the right places, and that just blows my mind.  I read some reviews on Amazon and was surprised to see comments by fans who wanted tabloid content and were disappointed to get her history instead.

(As a recovering asshole, I can’t help but think…  Autobiography:  An account of a person’s life written by that person.)  So anyway, I also noted Chrissie Hynde can draw, created her own style, and is the boss.  So now I know she’s cool, a survivor, a good descriptive writer, and a vulnerable human, living her life out loud despite it.  I also know she’s the mum of two young women, and she’s a 🇬🇧 Londoner.  (She doesn’t fake the accent like Madonna.  Heh.  I suspect Madonna does it because it’s hilarious.  What Madonna may lack in raw musical talent, she more than makes up for in music industry acumen.  Come at me. 🙃)

I’m just kidding, don’t come at me, I’ve already cried twice today, and I’m a wee bit dehydrated.  😂😂  (Nothing to blog home about, just a typical day in the life.)  We moved M’s dresser and a chair into my apartment.  We’re going to take this s.l.o.w.l.y.  So slowly I don’t really notice the change, (and freak out because he’s in my space, and he’s this person I can’t ignore because it would hurt him and I don’t want to hurt him, and it will be hard until it’s not, then it’ll be the new normal, and the planet will continue hurling through space… Whew, almost talked me into panicking!)  I’m off to run in the moonlight with my new dog.  Yay.  🐕

Honey… Aren’t we going to the Poconos next Friday?

Today flew by.  We have a new code monkey at work.  My boss took my advice and hired a disabled veteran.  I helped her get oriented this morning.  I’ve seen her at the VA a few times and am glad to have another woman at work.  I hate being the token anything, but if I had to pick, I’d rather be the token black person than the token woman.

Someone said something ridiculous about Taylor Swift today.  She’s never been on my radar, but I’ve seen her perform on TV.  I forget which awards, but she brought it.  I remember thinking she was so young, and would probably have a long career.

The comment kinda pissed me off, so I asked the commenter if Taylor Swift didn’t return his text message.  He looked at me like *I* was the one being ridic.  So I asked again, stating we should get to the bottom of what Taylor Swift did to him to make him say such a thing.

Turns out, she didn’t do shit to him, (he’s never even met her.)  I leaned over and Googled her on his terminal.  Her latest video popped up, and I clicked play.  It’s a song titled, Look What You Made Me Do.  Before long, everyone was gathered around watching.  (Music videos and car accidents, eh?)

When it finished, I told him she doesn’t need me to defend her.  I don’t even try to interpret music videos, but I think Taylor Swift pulled an 8-Mile move:  Self-deprecation, wit, and fierceness.  (Plus, it has a nice beat, and you can dance to it.)  I bought the song and will get the album when it comes out.  She’s on my radar now.

I haven’t bought music by someone so young in ages.  Oh, wait.  I forgot about Justin Beiber.  I like his voice.  Come at me.  😂  I saw an interview of Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders) and Stevie Nicks on Youtube earlier.  (It’s from an Austrailian station, I think.)  They’re touring together!  People who take pictures and video at concerts:  Please upload to YouTube.  Thank you!

There’s a part of the interview that mentions Chrissie Hynde’s book.  She’s a survivor.  Some survivors who read her biography were upset by how she told her story.  She said, “They can go fuck themselves.”  It made me cheer for her.  I’m so glad she didn’t let them invalidate her.

Someone did that to me once, but I was too stunned to respond.  I just sat there and felt the tears roll down my cheeks.  It was one of those upsets that sticks around long after the tears are dry.  When Chrissie Hynde said that, I stood up and said, “Yeah!”  Guess what?  It no longer bothers me.  I just needed to see another woman take back her power.  I’m glad it was such a cool lady.

You got a problem with paba?

The Depression Monster is kicking my ass.  I’m doing surprisingly well, despite.  Well, in that I’m too numb for it to touch my spirit.  The buffer has always existed, but it’s only recently occurred why.  I’m delighted by this new insight.  I’ve decided to accept it without analyzing it (to death.)  My understanding is enough.  How rare.  But I don’t dare linger here.  The brain zaps from Prozac withdrawal are happening every few moments, now.  It feels a lot like being excessively high on cannabis.  It’s almost out of me forever.  Yay.

I’m glad I went on the marijuana tour last year, or this would probably freak me out.  (Okay, definitely.)  I was awed by the amount of weed I was able to consume without consequences during the tour.  I watched the younger tourists consume far more simultaneously, also without repercussion.  It had the intended effect of eliminating rote fears.  Something about cannabis works the same way Prozac does on my brain.  Does this mean I’m going to replace Prozac with pot?  Nope.   😂  Fuck drugs.

While I had no compunction with legally consuming in the past, I’ve grown since.  People who were off my radar then are now present in my world, and their influence is intense.  I could legally smoke a joint in front of both Michelle Obama and Lisa Bloom (my imaginary personal life coaches) without feeling like I was hovering over a pit of doom.  I couldn’t do it in front of  Stevie Nicks, though.  I can’t even do it knowing Stevie Nicks exists.  So here we are.  Post pot life.  I’m glad I experimented, but fuck feeling like I’m hovering over a pit of doom just to get high.

It’s not even ironic.  Stevie Nicks specifically said to avoid cocaine, bourbon, and weed because she used the hell out of them, and it almost killed her.  She added Klonopin to the list of never do’s, too, stating it was the worst of them.  Through watching her documentary DVD’s and the interviews on YouTube, I learned of this dark chapter of her story.  It made me grieve for what she endured.  (That’s the only part that didn’t surprise me.  😂)   Do as I learned, not as I did before learning.  That’s fucking powerful.  I’m amazed by this turn of events, but not upset.

I’m pretty confident I was born high enough.  I don’t need mood altering substances to tease reality.  I can just read a Stephen King novel.  Or Clive Barker, who is rapidly gaining my loyalty as a reader.  I abandoned Tess of d’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy quickly, and read Duma Key by Stephen King, instead.  If you’re an artist, read Duma Key.  You’re welcome.  (It’s an excellent story, regardless.)  I’m done reading fiction that centers on women as victims.  I’m basically abstaining from the Lifetime Channel variety of novels forever.  ‘Cuz holy shit.  It’s like forced empathy training for sociopaths, (as if that would work.)

What?  Your novel is about a woman who got raped?  (Visualize me running away, screaming “Fuck!”)  I don’t even watch TV anymore.  I have four TV’s, two of which are newer 4k LG’s with HDR.  I’m going to give away the other two.  The new ones are still useful for movies and video games.  And to watch Will and Grace when it starts, of course.  My other show, Better Things, I buy to stream via Amazon.  I’m going to give away my Fire TV, too, since I just realized I haven’t used it since I set it up a year ago.  Oops.  Roku made it redundant.  I haven’t even looked at the Apple 4k whatever.  I’m good.

I need to give away my excess computers, too.  My house AI can stay once I adjust her, but all the single card computers can go.  I don’t need to know the humidity level of my bedroom while I’m  sleeping, for starters.  I regret I’ve crossed the line between smart home and smart ass home.  Sigh.  I thought I would love it, but it turns out I find it incredibly annoying between the hours of 2 and 4 AM.  Even Wanda Sykes couldn’t make me laugh during that time…  On second thought, she probably could.  😂  But until she shows up to try, I’ll be sleeping during those hours.  I’m off to debug de-feature.

Mom, Dad… I have fleas…

(Reads previous post and cringes.)  I’ve tried to hang on to my rage, but it fled about ten minutes after I published my rant.  I can’t stay angry for shit.  It takes too much energy for something that accomplishes nothing.  I worked on my quilt a bit earlier.  I’m hand quilting for the first time (though I wish I picked a smaller quilt.)  I understand why thimbles exist, now.  I discovered this after sewing through the top few layers of skin on my finger, (and wondered why my quilt was stuck to me.)  Still, no blood lost, though.  I’m using Wonder Woman flannel for the back, and black and white striped fabric for the binding.

I think drumming is improving my motor skills.  I don’t bother with the tools built in my module to test my timing anymore.  I get 100% every time now (which kinda ruined the fun.)  I think it’s intended for noobs who are learning drums as their first instrument.  Or people who don’t practice very often, perhaps.  I keep talking myself out of building my own drum module (and programming it not to suck.)  My brain won’t leave it there, however.  If I do that, I’ll want to sell it to others, which means I’d have to make it talk to Yamaha, Roland, Alesis, etc.  And that means coding for the proprietary hardware of competing companies.  (The horror!)  There, I just talked myself out of it again.

I watched Tina Fey’s Weekend Update segment.  I love her.  Oddly, it didn’t make me want cake.  (Probably because it got massacred hilariously.)  I lived in Boston while earning my Ph.D.  Watching 20k people show up to march today made me miss it.  It was incredible, and many pointed out they far outnumbered 45’s inaugural farce.  I hope they know their actions today healed some of the hurt, so many of us carry in silence.  I hope they know it made me so proud of them.  They are my America.  Sassy, bold, peaceful, and not having IT.  It led me to say something I haven’t in a while;  I love my country.

I spent much of the day doing chores and hanging out with M’s mom.  She braided my hair, (and it’s not tearful tight, yay.)  I finished Far From the Madding Crowd and began the last of the Thomas Hardy novels I downloaded.  Tess of the d’Ubervilles.  I’m going to read books by women authors for a while after this.  I need a break from the (Victorian era) misogyny.  I might give Ann Rice another shot since she’s mentioned in one of Stevie Nicks’ songs.  (Fan logic. 😂)  Five days and a wake up until Stevie Nicks performs in St. Paul.  😊

I learned some things when I watched her concert DVDs.  Turns out, they don’t do all the new songs on their latest album.  It surprised me, and I’m disappointed.  (Not terribly, though, as I’d still love to see her perform any song.)  The last concert I recall attending was DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince with JJ Fad opening.  (Supersonic 😂)  It was an outdoor concert, and when he began, Parents Just Don’t Understand, the crowd surged forward, and all of us up front got pushed under the stage for a bit, (at which point they stopped the show to let us out.)  It was 102° F, and his hip hop dancers were drenched in sweat and looked like they were on the verge of heat stroke.  They ended the show early to prevent that.  It was still cool seeing Will Smith, though.  I’m off to read.