Friday, January 24, 2003

Off to Florida

See you when I get back. The neighbors are watching the house, so don't even think of breaking in! :-)

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Thursday, January 23, 2003

Gigantic post about Beatles, the 'rents, guitars, and such.

I have wonderful parents, and wonderful in-laws. My in-laws are taking their entire family to Florida. How cool is that? Then my parents go and do something nice for us--in fact my Mom made whoopie pies for the office! (Mom, they were awesome! Everyone said how good they were.)

If I weren't a drummer, I'd be a bass player. Sittin' in the back, lettin' the funk flow, gettin' my groove on. Today, I talked with my good friend Harvey, the retail manager of the greatest music store in the world, Northern Kingdom Music. He's just got back from the North American Music Merchandisers show (NAMM). What has Fender gone and done? Released this. Oh, how sweet. And my favorite Fender color (tied with sea foam green). If they had that color on a Jazz bass, I think I'd flip. This P copy is mighty good looking, though. I may need to sell some drums!

Did you hear how they airbrushed the cigarette out of Paul's hand on the Abbey Road album? Complete hog wash. It did lead me to this article on the whole "Paul is Dead" rumor of the 60s. I actually wrote an paper in college about the rumor, complete with cassette of backwards clues. The Beatles have denied this whole publicity stunt all along, but there are two "clues" that can't be explained away in my mind. Here they are:

1) In the song "Glass Onion" from The White Album, there's a line "Here's another clue for you all / The walrus was Paul." Now, why would John be writing about Paul clues? I've yet to see anyone even offer an explanation as to what that's all about.

2) The black carnation from Magical Mystery Tour. I had never seen an explanation for that until today. Paul claimed it was because "they ran out of red ones." So follow me, will you. On the day that photo was shot, either:
a)They didn't know they were going to need flowers. So they grabbed whatever was handy: 3 red carnations and one black one! Sure, I'll buy that.
b) They did know they were going to need flowers, and the person responsible for buying the flowers only bought three. Thus, they ran out while giving them to the four Beatles. Sure, sound plausible. [/end sarcasm]

So a big thank you to my nephew Eben for lending me Spider Man. It was a pretty good movie. Kirsten Dunst is pretty cute. Toby McGuire did a great job getting all muscle bound for the role. Willem Defoe is a great actor--but I remember the Green Goblin like this. And that's how I prefer him. Green Goblin is my favorite cartoon villain. Who's yours?

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Cold Florida

Been cold up here in Maine last couple of days. Yesterday, it was 3 degrees when I woke up. Today, it was -3. Checked the weather for Florida--Monday it's supposed to be partly cloudy and cold: highs in the 60s! Holy Cold! Today in Orlando it was 70 something. Up here, my winsheild wash fluid froze. Florida, I'm ready for you!

Other than that, not much going on. I made a Stewart Copeland drum wallpaper for the office. (I haven't changed the "My Desktop" picture yet, but I will.) Last night, I taught a beginner's Internet class. Tomorrow night, I plan on packing. We leave Saturday morning.

Who will watch ebay for me while I'm away?

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Monday, January 20, 2003

You want a what? For what? How old is it?

Vacation to Florida is coming right up. I decided it was time to break my Dad's 35mm Pentax K-1000 out of the mothballs. It needed a new battery and a new flash. So I went to the friendly neighborhood Wal-Mart. Here's the exchange:

Me: I need a hot shoe flash.
Camera clerk (looking at me like I have three heads): A what?
Me: A hot shoe flash.
Clerk: For what?
Me: A camera.
Clerk: What kind of camera is it? How old?
Me: It's a Pentax K-1000, you know, a regular SLR with a hot shoe.
Clerk (looking at me like I'm Satan himself): An S-L-R?
Me: You know, single lens reflex?
Clerk: (no answer, just a look that says "I have no freakin' idea.)
Manager: Wait! Does this thing kinda slide on to the top of the camera?
Me: Yeah.
Manager: And does it take batteries? I mean, does the flash unit itself need batteries?
Me: Yeah.
Manager: I have one of those! I wondered why we carried it? (Reaches under counter.) Is this it?
Me (holding a box that says "SLR Hot Shoe Flash"): Um, yeah, this is it.
Manager: That's been here forever. I didn't even know what it was for. I think it's $10 or $15.

The manager doesn't even know what a hot shoe flash is! Good thing I didn't ask for something more obscure, like slide film.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Birthday Greetings

Just a quick note to wish Mom a happy birthday.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Saturday, January 18, 2003

Me playing drums back in '86

Last night, Sue went scrapbooking. Our TV is in the shop. So, I moved the VCR upstairs to the bedroom. After supper, Julia and I watched The Jungle Book in bed. After it was over, I put her to bed--around 9:30 maybe. I can't sleep when Sue's not home, so I watched a promtional video on Pearl drums. That was about an hour. So then I watched this old Battle of the Bands tape from '86. The band was Rival, and Kevin Teel was on guitar (and he was already a monster player then) and TJ Kierstead was on bass. (TJ's in the jester hat.) What a hoot! Classic tunes like Bad Co's "Can't Get Enough of Your Love," Van Halen's "Ice Cream Man," and ZZ Top's "Tush." I noticed some things: One, for high school bands (mostly), we had some talent. We were playing as good then as some bar bands are today. And the high school bands I know today have no where near the technical ability we had then. In my opinion, of course. At that battle, we came in third. Second place was another high school band (Pilots on Drugs, or POD) from Lincoln Academy. First place went to Private Toys. These guys were a serious hair metal band from Portland. They had their act down. These guys were professional. In fact, they won the year before too. I bet they felt good, taking that $100 prize away from high school bands.

Something else I noticed: my playing hasn't got that much better in 15 years.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Keep my daughter safe

Make Iraq comply.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Uncle's computer, a nice compliment, and, what else, drums!

I Am

Which tarot card are you?

All black magic malarkey of you ask me, but I needed to take a quiz...

Here's another old WWII era snare. This time, it's not a Rolling Bomber. Instead, it's a Ludwig "Victory" drum. (Don't confuse this with WFLs "Victorious" line of drum.)

Other neat things on ebay: a yellow Vistalite kit; a Tama Gladstone with 3-way tuning (too bad they lost the necessary 3-way tuning key); a Tama rosewood piccolo snare. I still like the looks of them, but my Bearing Edge BUBINGA will blow it away, I'm sure.

I was looking at my logs today, to see how people were finding this page. Someone was searching for "Kevin Risch Maine." Kevin's a drummer I went to college with. So, I looked on Google to see how I scored. The second result was for Kevin's band "Holy Moly." So, I started poking around the site, and found this. See that towards the bottom? "The biggest thrill has been playing with drummers Like Bill Batty, Tim Rowe,Jim Doherty, Kevin Risch, and Aaron LaChance." Like me??? I am sincerely flattered, Sonny. Thank you very much.

Tonight, I'm working on my Uncle's computer. I dropped a CD ROM drive in it, and added some more memory. He got it from his old workplace. They had a 6 gig drive chopped into 4 partitions! Why? Have no idea. I went to put it all on one and the problems started. Whenever I work on someone's computer for cheap I run into problems. If I charge them full rate, no prob. My next door neighbor? Problems. My other next door neighbor, the financial planner? Big problems. (You do not want to be the guy who accidentally erases the hard drive of a financial planner! After much praying, I got out of that one.) My uncle. Well, small problems. I put the CD and hard drive on different IDE channels (on JP's suggestion), and it's working ok now.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Good Morning

Another good morning post. I figured out the image uploading problem on ebay. It was becaused there was a Mac involved in the process. I had to re-save the files on a PC, and it worked fine. The auction, if you care, is here.

At the office today, we're shooting our first live action TV comemrcial. Of course, those of you living outside of Maine will never see it, but still. Maybe I'll get a copy ripped and post it.

Here's hoping your day rocks Neddick!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

I hope the rest of the day isn't like this

Stardate, Tuesday, 7:37 am. I was trying to sell my old motherboard and processor on ebay. Since I upgraded last week to an Athlon 2000, I no longer need this Pentium III. So, I'll ebay it. After 4 or 5 tries, I can't get ebay's picture hosting services to work. Argh! What will this mean for the rest of the day?

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Saturday, January 11, 2003

My day

We walked into the club last night around 8pm. Already, the place was filled with smoke. It got worse as the night wore on. All of us noticed that notes we could normally sing were out of range. On the second break, I went outside into the 15 degree night. I just couldn't stay in there anymore. I got home, and Susan said "You smell like smoke." This club is always smokey, but when it's cold, the windows and doors stay closed, so there's no fresh air at all. I had to put my coat out on the porch today to air it out. This morning, my head was pounding. After some breakfast, coffee, two ibuprofen, and a shower, it was gone.

Speaking of breakfast: sage sausage, and holes in middle. Julia loves them, as does Sue. They are good, if I say so myself. After breakfast, I did the dishes, and went to the dump. Then I spent a couple of hours at the LAN party my friends had. They are making it a two day event, some of them. Talk about a room full of geeks!

I got two CDs yesterday. I used the Amazon certificate my sister, brother-in-law, and nephew gave me for my birthday. I got one by new bluegrass artists Nickel Creek, and a girl who sounds like a female Burt Bacharach: Sarah Shannon. I heard about both these artists on NPR. Then, I downloaded a couple of tunes from Nickel Creek. I liked what I heard, and bought their cd. See--that's how online trading of music files increases sales. It's not all flat out piracy.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Friday, January 10, 2003

Pre-Weekend Post: Pens and Stuff

Afternoon Delight lyrics. One of those crazy songs that gets stuck in my head.

I was cleaning up the bathroom today at the office. In the little reading material basket there was a catalog for Levenger. (Billed as "Tools for serious readers.") I'd never heard of them, but this was quite a catalogue. Nice pens, book covers, journals, bags, cool stuff like that. Back when I was in college, I bought Susan a Waterman fountain pen. I tried it, and liked it so much, I bought one for myself. (Funny how I work for an Internet company, yet like old technology like fountain pens and pocket watches.) It was a Parker. I used it all through college. I had this History professor who talked a mile a minute. A smooth writing fountain pen worked so well; he would keep on truckin', and you'd just keep on a writin'. But somewhere after graduation, it got lost. This catalogue got me thinking about a fountain pen again. I've read good things about the Waterman Expert II. The Waterman Phileas is about half the price, but doesn't come in black--only somewhat funkier marbles.

Beginner's Guide to Fountain Pens
Fountain pen FAQs
Pen collecting newsgroup FAQ

I'm will tell this story, but I don't necessarily believe it. I was talking about the spam filters for email here at work. I purportedly said "Someone needs to lower the snare threshold." Hmm. My mind, thinking about snares? Impossible!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Wednesday, January 8, 2003

Good night all

Just a quick note goodnight. The computer is back up and running, and all seems to be well. Let's see in a week if I am still saying that!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Tuesday, January 7, 2003

Recent lack of posts

Not much posting happening, huh. I'll riddle ya why: I'm upgrading my home computer. New motherboard, new hard drive, new 1700 Athlon, new ram. Go it all installed, and problems. I've been working on this durn thing since Saturday afternoon. Something's not right. I've been trying to track it down, but there are too many variables. I think I've eliminated ram and hard drive. I'm going to try installing new motherboard drivers tonight. Hope that works...

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Saturday, January 4, 2003

Octopus Frontier

Funny. I just posted about Brautigans Octopus Frontier. I decided to check ebay for a copy of June 30th, June30th. Instead, I find this. See, I told you they were big bucks.

Snow up here this morning. Not as bad as they forcasted it though. We'll see what happens the rest of the day. My gig in Portland for tonight cancelled yesterday. The loss of the bucks stinks, but I didn;t want to drive in this weather. I'm actually quite happy.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Friday, January 3, 2003

I'm done with Richard (almost)

I finished Richard Brautigan's book "So the Wind Won't Blow It All Away." I have read all of his novels now. I have read all his major poetry books except "June 30th, June 30th." The minor ones I haven't read are all mostly broadleafs or self bound books, like "Lay the Marble Tea," "The Octopus Frontier," and "The Galilee Hitchhiker." Those are mucho bucks.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Dryer and Web Work

I did some work last night on our clothes dryer. It's been taking a long time to dry a load of clothes. I mean, like an hour and a half. Yesterday, this appliance guy I know comes into the shop. So I ask him about it. He says bad ventilation will cause the thermostat to keep the element from coming on--the dryer, in effect, thinks it's hot, because the warm air can't get in. So I checked the vent tube, and there was quite a bit of crud in there. And while I was checking it, I broke the tube. No biggie. So while it's off, I reach in the back of the dryer to clean the lint from there. I pulled out what I thought was a mouse cat toy. I could feel wire in the tail. Then I thought hmm... I used a trowel and poked around. Turns out, it was a real mouse--just real old. Gross!

I also did an update on the drums pages. I've included the snare that Chick gave to me.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Thursday, January 2, 2003

Last Year's Snare Buys

Funny. Just for the kick of it, I reread my posts from last year, seeking how many snares I bought last year. The number? One. Maybe two. The only one I bought was the Be-Bop. Now, I received the Pearl Mahogany last January, but I paid for it in December. And my Bearing Edge that I just ordered was ordered last year, but won't make it until this year. So I'm not sure where to place those. My guess would be when they were received, so the Mahogany will count towards last year. And Chick gave me the marching snare (no pictures yet), but that one was given to me.

I actually got more cymbals last year. I bought a ride with rivets from Jared. A splash and a swish from The Drum Shop. Chick gave me another splash.

And, technically, I bought the Gretsch set this year. But there was no snare with it!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Wednesday, January 1, 2003

Happy New (snare) Year!

Blah blah, new year, blah, whatever. I've never really cared for this holiday. It's rather silly, I think. It's just another new calendar. My guess is is that it's just another excuse for people to go out and get themselves blasted. Me? For the third year in a row, we stayed home. I haven't played a new year's gig since The Sudburry Inn when 2000 rolled in. And you know what? I could care less. Yes, new years gigs brng more money. But also more drunks on the roads. I'd just as soon stay home, watch a cartoon with Sue and Julia, make a casserole for supper, but Julia to bed, and then watch Austin Powers: Goldmember. All of which I did. Then we went to bed, and... and... went to sleep. Yup. I didn't even kiss my wife at 12:0O; we were both asleep.

(I did hear about a good tip for judging your ability to drive after imbibing. It seems if your drunk, you can't tell whether you can say the alphabet or not. Someone has to hear you say it, then tell you where you mess up. You, being drunk, probably wouldn't believe them. Same with arms out then touch your nose trick. But here's one you can do yourself, and no one needs to see you do it. You can tell if you passed or not. Stand on one foot for 15 seconds. It doesn't matter how high. Then, switch to the other foot. If you lose your balance while switching feet, you shouldn't be behind the wheel.)

I will make a resolution, though. I resolve to buy fewer snare drums this year!

Too bad I'm off to a bad start. I've been looking for a Tama Rosewood snare. It was like the Holy Grail of snares for me. Some guy left a comment here, asking if I was still looking for one. After some negotiations, we couldn't close a deal. He put it on ebay. It didn't sell. I renewed my offer. Her relisted it. It didn't sell. A 3rd time he listed it. It didn't sell. Still, my offer was rejected. Three tries to buy this drum, all unsuccessful. Finally Sue said "Isn't it clear to you that God doesn't want you to have that drum?" Well, it got clear...

I had been talking with another drum builder abouth another brand of drum. Turns out, he's a Christian. We emailed back and forth, and then Monday night, he called me at home after my last radio show. What a very nice gentleman. And, we figured out a custom made snare for me for less money than the Tama rosewood!!! So I ordered a Bearing Edge snare, with olive ash burl wood hoops, maple inner plies, and BUBINGA!!! inner and outer plies. Tell me, which do you think is the prettier drum? Me to!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

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