Thursday, November 24, 2005


The pain you have caused me
Has changed over the years.
There have been times when it seemed
My world
Would cease to exist because of your absence.
Other times,
I knew I would survive without you
In my heart, although you resided within me
For so very long.
You continually eat at my heart
Like an out of control cancer
Until now, there isn't much less to devour,
Because most of what had been there
Is gone forever.
I shed no tears anymore
Because I've come to an acceptance
That things are never going to change or become
The realist in me has finally attained
The clarity of light,
Necessary to see beyond the facade
Of your total and genuine non-caring self.
I no longer ask,
I no longer seek,
I no longer expect,
I no longer care,
Except to move on
And leave the pain of you behind me,
Now and forever.
I've been released....

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Dedication For These First Seven Months

It is with the most heartfelt emotion that I dedicate these first seven months of blogging to Jimi, Janis and Jim. Damn, I can't imagine where we would all be now if you were still with us....You will all live forever within my heart and soul...hope I can someday do justice to what you did for us all...

Sunday, November 20, 2005

just a wonderin'

So, now that gasoline prices are falling (not enough in respect to what is being charged for a barrel of oil like it was a year ago) how are the providers of home heating going to explain the record high prices for home heating, such as natural gas, liquid propane and home heating oil? Oh, yeah, I keep forgetting, we have George W and all his speech writers to try and sell us on his latest load of crap about that...stupid me....

Friday, November 18, 2005

Remembering Summer Heat, Part 4

I know that if you didn't grow up during the '60s, you can't comprehend the feelings that were going on during this time. There was such political unrest, not unlike today's. There was a war going on that was never actually declared a war, much like today's. People back then, however, protested to the inth degree against the US involvement in Viet-Nam, and it was a feeling I can't even begin to put into words when you were so dead against something that you knew was doing no good, yet you couldn't bring anyone home because the government wouldn't call a cease-fire and admit they were never going to win this war.(Hey, George W, does this sound at all familiar to you today?)

Anyway, one of the things that seemed to bring release to the tensions of the decade was music. I can remember my radio in the car was always on, either that or my 8 track player, and when I was home, I always had music playing on the stereo. Whenever I listened to my music, I envisioned in my mind entertaining people like they had never been entertained before. Each time Summer Heat took to the stage to play a dance, I always wanted to put some of my ideas I had to the test and see if they left the audience wanting more.

I received so many compliments on my lighting and how it complimented the band as they played. Of course lots of the people at the dances looked forward to the band playing "Fire" and seeing the cloud of smoke emanate from my pipe. There were other things, small things that we did week after week, some that worked, some that didn't work so well, but we at least tried to give the people that attended our dances something they could talk about days after the dance was over.

A few days before our dance following the Rush County Sectional Basketball Tournament final game on Saturday night, probably back in '68 or '69, I had conceived an idea that I hadn't even shared with the members of the band. The true reason I hadn't told them of my idea was basically because I was afraid they would shoot the idea down and tell me not to do it...and actually, I thought the spontanaity of it would be even better for them if it was a total and complete surprise.

Like I've said before, I've not been blessed with any true musical talent, other than maybe a little bit of luck writing songs...but I can't play anything well, just a little bit here of this instrument, and just a little bit there of that instrument. Several years prior to this time in my life my parents had bought me an acoustic guitar from probably Sears, but I never managed to learn much on it, mainly because I didn't realize I was trying to play the damned thing upside down. I play a guitar left handed, and for those of you who have tried to do that, you know that basically most cords are anatomically impossible to play because your fingers simply won't bend the right way. Anyway, I didn't know this at the time, so the guitar had laid around the house for several years without any attention being paid to it.

The night of the tourney dance, I fumbled thru my closet at home, found the guitar, and basically sneaked it out of the house and into the trunk of my car. I got cleaned up, shaved, and put on my favorite pair of stage pants, which were a pair of gold, wide corded corduroys with flaired bottoms. I put on my gold shirt with the huge color, another popular item of its time back then and made sure my hair looked just right...

I arrived at the Community Building about the same time the rest of the band pulled in and we began unloading the van and carrying equipment in and setting up the stage with the drums, the PA system, the lighting, etc. Denny and Mike tuned their respective guitars, Jim set up his drums just right, Jay set up the microphones, and I helped carry in the amps got the lights set up just right...While everyone was busy with their particular job they each did so well and so often, I got into the trunk of my car and brought in the old acoustic guitar and set it behind Mike's Fender amp.

It didn't take long before Jay spotted it and asked me what the hell that was for. I found a quick lie in my head and told him someone was coming to look at it that evening, which I guess really wasn't a lie because before the night was over a lot of people were going to be looking at that old acoustic guitar.

Back in those days, folks, there were so many things one could buy across the counter to get high on it was unbelievable. You could buy Romilar 8 hour syrup, which, if you drank the entire bottle would totally screw you up for hours, not to mention make you empty the entire contents of your stomach along with that feeling. You could buy Primatene tablets over the counter, each pill containing 1/4 grain of phenobarbital, so if you took four of them, you were getting a full grain of the depressant. You could buy a simple Vicks nasal inhaler, break it open and take the gauze that contained all the goodies for your sinuses and drink it down with a swig of coke and within an hour you would be on one hell of a speed trip that lasted for close to 8 hours or so...

On this particular night, if memory serves me correctly, it was the Vicks Inhaler that was going to get me going for the evening's surprise performance.

Even though the ballgame wasn't going to be over much before 9:30 or so, our dance started at 8PM sharp, and actually quite a few people showed that chose not to go to the basketball game. Right before we started our first set at 8, I walked outside, put the inhaler inside my handkerchief, laid it on the ground and stomped on it, so I could retreive the little soaked wad of gauze. I pulled it out, drank it down with probably coke or pepsi or something else, then went into the Community Building and joined the rest of the band on stage. Promptly at 8, Summer Heat started playing a dance that would be talked about for the next few years as one of the wildest shows they had ever seen us do(at least up until then.)

I did my thing with the lights as Summer Heat belted out tunes by Blue Cheer, Cream, Vanilla Fudge and the like. Within 40 minutes or so, I was really feeling the buzz from my trusty old Vicks wad. As we closed in on the 9 PM hour, Jay told the audience we were going to take a short break. We stepped outside, gathered our senses, I smoked a couple of cigarettes, something I've long given up since. We talked, and as we talked, I buzzed more and more and stronger and stronger and realized that we were probably within an hour of my big surprise. That got me going even more.

My excitement had to be showing, because Jay and Mike kept asking me what the hell I was on and why I seemed so uptight and excited. I told them it was just the excitement of the evening and that I thought they were playing great. Even Jim, who didn't really carry on a great deal of conversation with me usually, noticed I was wound. He even told me my lighting effects seemed better this evening that they ever had. That really made me feel far out, because sometimes my lighting effects got on his nerves...he said my timing sometimes thru off his drum timing...But tonight that wasn't bothering him at all.

Around 9:15 t0 9:20, Summer Heat once again took to the stage, and by this time, yours truly is really flying higher than the proverbial kite. More and more people began piling in, and the crowd was growing. Jay announced after just a few songs that Rushville had won the game and was moving on to the Regional Tournament, which met with lots of applause because, face it folks, Indiana is definitely a state that loves its basketball. Several more songs were played, and Jay began talking to the crowd again, and I felt like my time was about to arrive.

I glanced out at the crowd, which by this time, close to 10PM, was really growing, matter of fact, people reached three quarters of the way across the building. Their were couples standing together, waiting to dance to the next song, groups of people just standing around talking, and the usual group that found a place to sit down and be comfortable and just enjoy the music sitting down. Jay looked back at the band and announced, "One more song and then let's break for a few minutes."

Jay turned back to the crowd and announced, "We're going to do one more song and then take a short break. This is one of our favorites by Steppenwolf, it's called "The Pusher."

Those words were like magic, because I knew this was it. My lighting scheme for The Pusher was almost all strobe light, so once the song got going I wouldn't have to stay by the control box. This was just what I needed.

The opening chords were played by Denny on keyboard and then Mike joined in on lead guitar. For those of you who have heard this song, you know it's a slower tune but very powerful in its delivery. Tonight, I was going to make it the most powerful delivery Summer Heat had ever given of it.

Jay started singing the first verse, and I stood off to stage right by my lighting box and played my tambourine in beat to Jim's drums, eyeing the crowd, who were basically just dancing with each other and not really paying any attention to the band. Jay went thru the first chorus, asking God above to damn the pusher head was reeling at this point, and I was nervous as hell as the proper time was getting closer.

Jay began singing verse two, talking about the dealer and selling you lots of sweet dreams. I laid the tambourine down and slowly walked back towards the Fender amp as Jay began singing about the pusher leaving your mind to scream. As he belted out the second chorus of God damn's, I reached behind the amp and got out the acoustic guitar.

When Summer Heat played The Pusher, we had a very long instrumental in the middle, longer than Steppenwolf played on the original, and this was when I was going to pull my surprise. Jay always grabbed an extra guitar to play rhythm while Mike played a fabulous middle break on lead. When he grabbed that guitar, he looked over at me and saw me holding the acoustic and the look on his face was basically asking me "What the hell are you up to?"

He was about to find out.

As the instrumental between verses two and three had gone on for maybe twenty seconds or so, I held the guitar in a position like I was actually going to play it and walked up the front of the stage and looked out at the dancing crowd. It would be the last time I saw them until the song was over. I slowly turned the guitar to where the top was facing me, and let it rest against my right knee. As Mike's awesome lead got stronger and the song seemed to grow louder in my head, I reached down, grabbed one of the strings with my left hand, and pulled the string straight towards me, breaking it in the process. I remember my left hand feeling warm, and grabbed a second string, doing the same thing to it, pulling it towards me until it broke as well...I turned the guitar over to my left leg, again facing me, and pulled the remaining 4 strings from it, one at a time, and saw something in the strobe light that looked like dark water flying thru the air...

When the last string was broken free from the guitar, I again turned my attention back the other direction, held the guitar back on my right leg, and held it up all of sudden high above my less than five seconds, I drove it as hard as I could to the floor of the stage, breaking the body of the guitar, but leaving plenty of it still intact. I was lost in the music, and again, took the guitar up above my head and pounded into the wooden stage floor, more of the body breaking and the neck cracking away slightly from the body. I fell to my knees, and repeatedly drove the guitar down into the stage, smashing it beyond all recognition of what it had orginally been...

I looked over at Jay, who by this time was humping his guitar against the amplifier, causing this tremendous amount of feedback. Mike was facing his Fender amp, playing directly into it, the sounds of his lead guitar feeding back with such volume, and Jim was crazily beating the living hell out of his drums...

I kept looking for pieces of guitar that needed smashing, but all that was left was the neck, so I began attempting as best I could to destroy that as well...I honestly think it ended up in about four pieces...and all the while, I kept wondering where all this dark colored liquid was coming from that I saw flying thru the air in the strobe light.

I honestly don't know how long that instrumental went on, all I know is that when I finally realized nothing of that guitar was left to smash, I threw it to the stage floor, and Jay laid his guitar against the amp and he went back to the mic and the band went into the third and final verse of the song. I simply stood their, totally physically and emotionally spent, and stared at the destroyed guitar as the band finished the song.

When the final bars of The Pusher were played, I looked up from the stage to the crowd, and got the shock of my life. No one, not a person was dancing. They were all standing as close to the stage as they could get, staring at the spectacle that had just happened. A few seconds passed, and then the most thunderous applause we had ever received up to that time roared out of the crowd...I kept thinking, wow, how fucking cool, and damn my hands hurt. I bent down and turned off the strobe, Jay announced we'd be back in 15 minutes, and the main lights in the building were turned on. It was then that I discovered what the dark fluid was that I had seen flying thru the air in the strobe light.

My hands were completely covered in my own blood. Not only covered, but dripping profusely onto the stage floor. Jay ran over to me and hollered, "You crazy fucker, that was beautiful, man!" He was overcome with laughter and excitement at the same time. Mike was also fired up as was Denny, then Jim walked over and said, "Man, your hands are cut to ribbons."

Thru the pain I looked at them all and asked, "Yeah, but wasn't it worth it?"

Jay answered, "Hell, look at that crowd, man, fuck yeah it was worth it!"

That made me smile.

A real, big smile.

The funny thing I noticed, no one was leaving the stage area, they were all standing there like something else might happen. I heard people hollering "Far out" "Outasite, man" "Unfuckingbelievable, man." I even heard a few comments such as "that dude is fucking crazy" and the one I have never forgotten, "Man, that's the greatest thing I've ever seen anyone do on stage."

I stepped off the stage, several people coming over to help me get my hands doctored, because, quite honestly, there were some really nasty cuts, deep ones, no doubt from the guitar strings I had pulled off at the very beginning of this stunt.

During that break as we found a bottle of alcohol and quite honestly, we poured the whole bottle onto my hands and probably used a half a pack of paper towels from the men's room to stop the bleeding, but people kept coming up to not only me, but to the whole band and told us that was the most unbelieveable thing they had ever seen a band do in Rushville.

I was so high on the excitiment from all the attention we had gotten collectively, and was so pleased how Jay and had gotten into the moment and how the whole thing had blossomed into what it had blossomed into. A friend of mine told me the whole song lasted somewhere between 12 to 15 minutes. The instrumental with the destruction of the guitar was almost half the time. I don't remember, I truly don't, I only know that it was a pinnacle for me at that point of my short time with Summer Heat, and I didn't think it would be a moment we would ever top.

Later on, I would be proven wrong.

But for the moment, I was on top of the world, chopped up hands and all.

I think Summer Heat was feeling pretty cool too at that moment.

to be continued...

Monday, November 14, 2005

Starting Anew

One of the things I vividly remember during my November, 1975 hospital stay was the fact that I had no voice, no guitar, and I for one, can't read a lick of music. However, lying in the hospital bed, day after day, my mind could hear this tune, over and over, and as I hummed it in my mind, I grabbed a notebook and pen and began jotting down words as they came to mind. The following song was written from a hospital bed in Indianapolis, traech tube in my throat, no voice and no musical instrument. To date, it is one my most favorite songs I have ever written.

Starting Anew

As I wake up today,
And things they aren't the same
I'm haunted by the memory of you.

My life itself is young
In fact it's just begun,
And I want for so much now to be free.
Things have changed for sure,
Still my life remains impure,
Still there's my memories of you.

I want so much to be free
From your hold.
To be someone quite different
Not so cold.

But as I wake up today
With no new games to play
I'm smothered by the memory of you.

You rid yourself of me
And your as happy as can be
With your new someone you've had for so long.
I want to set myself free
For there's someone new I see
Yet, there's these memories of you.

I want so much
To be free from your hold.
To be someone quite different
Not so cold.

Well I've taken off my ring
'cause it don't mean a thing
And I'm destroying those bad
Memories of you.

Song Lyrics from 1973/ Life's A Struggle

Let the embers on the fire slowly burn their life away
I continue, with what I'm doing, never reaching, what I wanted to.
Life is full of its moments
And even the chance of losing you.

Life's a struggle,
It can make you
Or break you
It can keep a good man up
Or bring him down.

Let the embers on the fire slowly burn their life away
I still live with all I'm feeling, never sure, what I ought to do.
Life is full of its miseries
And now, my darling, I'm losing you.

Life's a struggle
It can make you
Or break you
It can keep a good man up
Or bring him down.

So let the embers on the fire slowly burn their life away
I'm so damned tired of always doing, these things you've asked of me.
Live your life the way you want to.
Keep your mind closed to what is truthful
In my heart you'll always hold a place,
For the rest of my life
I don't want to see your face...

Life's a struggle
It can make you
Or break you
It can keep a good man up
Or bring him down...

So let the embers on the fire....
Let the embers on the fire...
The embers on the fire....

Saturday, November 12, 2005

One Again The Demon Awakens

The fire is starting to burn again in me, and it's been years, nearly 5 now, since the yearning was there to sit and write and forget time and space...the fire is starting to kindle and burn again, and frankly, dear readers, it's scaring me...

During the last few years of my Mother's life before she left for a much better world, I sat at this keyboard, day after day, evening after evening, night after and night, and I wrote...did you get that, I WROTE!!!

Three-thousand, eight hundred and sixteen pages....Look at that again, folks,

3,816 pages...

And no one, not even yours truly, the author, read was written over a period of close to three years....written, never proof read, never re-read...just written...

And then, when I felt the time was right, I deleted every word, every sentence, every paragraph, every single thing over that span of time....words that had flowed, words that had just simply fell from my mind and out my fingers...


I remember some of them, a lot of them, but not enough of them, and truly, I believe that is a good thing...There were a lot of harsh words, a lot of things I felt but didn't truly understand and still don't, and a lot of confusion going on in my soul....

Most of the words that were deleted served their purpose and were purged from my being, and honestly, I think a lot of them were the best words I ever let out of myself...

Some of those words were hurtful words directed at people that didn't really deserve them directed at them, and they have been lost forever in print, and most of them have been purged from my mind as well.

I do wish a few of those words I hadn't my mind they were profound and worthy of being seen by others...they were probably some of the best word I have ever written...

I hope I'm getting my point home to those faithful few who continue to read what I expunge here...You've missed the best words the Demon has ever written or will ever write, bar none...they were deleted forever with the single stroke of a key...

So. a new challenge is born...

I'm about to start again, after all these previous entries, I'm now READY to start writing again for real...

Hope you stick around and see what happens...

Hope I do too...

Friday, November 11, 2005

I Failed To Recognize You

Muffled steps from behind me
Uncertain of the distance that
Separates them from me
As I walk alone, down the unforgiving
Darkness that surrounds me.

The lonely howling of a dog
From the next block over
Muffled voices crying out in the night,
Their sound amplified by
The magic that is night's amplifier.

My own steps move forward faster,
My head constantly turning to look
Past my shoulders,
Searching for what I perceive
To be the one who I can FEEL
Following me,
Catching up with me with each
and every step I take.

Darting around a brick cornerstone
Of a long and abandoned building.
The sound of traffic blocks away from me now
As I try and find solace
Anywhere but where I now find myself.

The streetlights seem darker here,
For what reason I have no clue.
I only know that it's so very dark
Where I now find myself almost running,
Trying to escape the sound
Of the one who is getting closer.

The wrong path chosen
A solid wall ahead, no exit to either side,
But only
The way I came in here.
Trapped, no way out,
The light has all but been
Consumed by the night.

I stand alone, not moving,
The sound of the steps approaching
Louder with each taken,
Closing in on me,
Me, not understanding why I'm being followed.

Suddenly, a feeling of warmth embraces my chest,
My hand reaching to feel its warmth
And welcome this feeling I had feared
For no reason.
Suddenly, I find myself smiling, recognizing
The stranger I had feared for so long
Yet who I now realize I should have ushered into
My presence.

I reach out my hand to shake the hand
Of the one who I had foolishly fled
And smile to great him now,
Realizing how he had been following me
So closely all these years.

His hood and sickle reassuring me
That we are old friends,
We've just been separated for too long
Are about to be reunited.

Welcome, dear friend....

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

30 years ago tonight

It's hard to imagine that's it's been thirty years, but thirty years ago tonight, November 8th, 1975 at 9:10 PM, I drove my 1972 Chevy Impala off of US Hwy 52, thru 256 feet of fence and thru 2 telephone poles. Eight feet of the first phone pole were never found. Might be the fact that I was driving somewhere in the vicinity of 110 MPH and quite under the influence of alcohol, my blood alcohol limit was registered at .235. My head hit the windshield upon impact and my throat came down across the steering wheel, breaking it into pieces.

Needless to say, I was hospitalized, given an emergency traecheotomy because my throat was closing off and I couldn't breathe. That's a pain I hope to never have to experience again. My larnyx and pharnyx were both fractured and I was told that if I survived, IF I survived, I would probably never talk again.

On the 11th day of my 14 day hospital stay they removed my traech tube and I was allowed for the first time in eleven days to have something to eat and drink by mouth. My first request, as I recall these 30 years later, was a glass of Pepsi and a pack of Kools. The hospital gave me a cold can of Coke, and the cigarettes, well, they were finally brought to me by a friend later on that evening...and they were Salems, to boot.

Since that fateful evening 30 years ago tonight I've had a lot of things happen in my life, some good, some not so good. I divorced the psycho I was married to at the time and who was actually the contributing factor the this accident, which I won't go into, but I divorced her a few months later, gained sole custody of my son, who I raised on my own until I met my wonderful wife who later on in years legally adopted him and whose name now appears on his official birth certificate as his birthmother.

I've lost both of my parents, Dad just a few years after this accident and Mom just a few years ago. I'm still married to the same wonderful woman who deserves a medal for putting up with me for almost the past 28 years. I have the most wonderful sister any man could ever have and had the pleasure of being able to work side by side with her for nearly 23 years.

I quit smoking over 21 years ago, probably the hardest thing I ever did in my life. I still have a few habits, my coffee and my beers now and then, but thru it all, I'm still here, and I'm still talking and I haven't shutup since.

I still haven't figured out why God chose to save me all those 30 years ago or what purpose I've yet to fulfill, but I can tell you honestly with each breath that I take that I take none of those breaths for granted and I'm thankful for every single word I'm able to say, whether it be the right word or not.

The best thing out of the whole incident after all these 30 years have passed, I still don't remember any of the accident or what led up to it. For that I'm eternally thankful.

I'm also eternally thankful that November 8, 1975 wasn't my intended time to leave this earth, because apparently there's much more for me to do.

Hope I don't let God down on my end....

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Sometimes, A Simple Glass of Whiskey

There are times when things going on in life, whether it be in mine or a friend of mine, or maybe a situation going on in the world, well, it seems like sometimes the only answer to them is a simple glass of whiskey.

Don't let this simple sentence set you off thinking that you're reading the meanderings of a drunk or someone with a drinking problem. That isn't the case. But there are times in this world that a simple glass of whiskey, no more, no less, can seem to make things seem a bit rosier, not much, but maybe just a little.

Being the pacifist that I am, I assure you the present situation in Iraq upsets me beyond words. And while I'm the first to say I support our troops who are valiantly fighting a war-monger president's war, I do NOT support the war. I feel this war was based on out and out lies to the American people. There were reasons we attacked that nation that we aren't ever meant to know. When I stop and think about the lives of our American soldiers that have been lost and the lives of our allies who are aiding us in this nonsensical battle, I sometimes grab a simple glass of whiskey.

Bill Clinton had the lowest morals of any president this great nation of ours had, but he ran our country successfully and we experienced 8 of the most prosperous years of the 20th century. He made some bad, moral decisions and made the mistake of lying to the American people about them when he stated that "I didn't have sex with that woman." Right, Bill, and you smoked pot but you didn't inhale...bravo for you. Truth is, that while his decision to be unfaithful to his wife while running the affairs of the strongest nation on earth was not the wisest thing he could have done, it wasn't him, but a Republican controlled Congress that decided to spend approximately 50 million dollars investigating a 20 dollar blowjob. When I stop and think of the idiocy that made that decision to spend that kind of money to investigate and persecute a man with an odd taste for cigars, I sometimes grab a simple glass of whiskey.

When something goes wrong at work, at a job that I have faithfully executed with a passion that amazes even me, and it's a decision that I don't understand, I stand up and question the powers that be, awaiting their typical government answer: "Because that's the way we want it done." It doesn't make any difference if the change is right or beneficial to the public we serve, it's just because it's the way THEY want it done. I was always taught to never question authority, but with each passing year, I question it more and more and I ask for answers, never receiving anything but what I just covered. When those things at work get so bad, you guessed it, sometimes I have to grab a simple glass of whiskey.

Family matters seem to prey on our minds the most, the good and the bad. Sometimes those family matters get out of line and get out of reason and we seem to lose control of them and not be able to grasp the situation and fix it like we think we should. It doesn't matter if it's the right fix, only that it's the fix we want, the fix we think should be set into motion. And when those situations remain unfixed and I can do nothing to ease it or make it any better to suit me, sometimes I grab a simple glass of whiskey.

I drop to my knees many times and ask the good Lord above for help, to get me thru one crisis or another and to solve it for me, and when asking God for this help, He may not solve the problem or do exactly what I think He should have done. And even though I shouldn't question as to why He didn't do what I asked him to do or what I thought he should do, I nevertheless have the human tendency to become beligerent and angry with Him, and sometimes at those moments when I don't think God is doing His job for me the right way, I grab a simple glass of whiskey. And probably way before I grab that glass I imagine God knows that I'm about to and in His own infinite wisdom He understands why and gives me that method to release my anxiety and tension.

I wish our world could come together, stop the fighting, stop the wars that plague our planet. I wish people could get along, quit fighting, quit divoricing and quit bringing unwanted and unloved children into this world. I wish the terrorists that are responsible for all the problems that they have created and all the lives they have taken could be caught and tried and held accountable for their actions. I wish all these things, but I know deep in my heart that they will never happen. Osama bin Laden will probably die a peaceful death in his sleep and never be brought to trial. I'll wonder how many died in vain while trying to catch this power hungry and sadistic bastard. I wonder the outcome of the trial of Sodamn Insane and will the Iraqi people give this man the justice he derserves or will he be set free or simply idly back in a prison cell somewhere awaiting his natural time of death? And sometimes when these things cross my mind and nearly drive me over the edge, I grab a simple glass of whiskey.

I miss my friends from the past, not just the ones from my childhood and the ones I grew up, but I miss the ones I spent a lot of my early to mid adult life with. I miss the ones that used to get together week in, week out, and I miss how we used to put the problems of the world and in our families aside for a few hours each week and how we would escape those problems and have a simple glass of whiskey. There are some of those people who have already left this world who I never had a chance to let them know just how much they meant to me and how much I cared about them. There are those of them who are still in this world, who for one reason or another, I will never ever see again or get to talk to again and I'll never be able to let them know just what had an effect they had upon my life and just how much I loved and cared about them, too.

There are also those parasites that have come and gone in my life, the ones who took and used, the ones who acted so very smug and so very caring all the while merely taking and using all they could with no intention of ever giving back. I'll never have the chance to let them know that even tho they may have fooled me for a while, they didn't fool me completely. When I think about the fact that in their mind that they had me snowed all along and still think that they do, I sometimes have to grab a simple glass of whiskey.

I've been mostly blessed thoughout my life with a wonderful family and wondeful friends, a great job that I love doing and with the exception of a few short years before my adult life came together, I've never wanted for much that I wasn't able to have. I'm thankful for those things in my life and am happy to have been blessed in this way.

I have a friend who continually tells me how much he wishes he could go back to years ago when things were different and not quite so complicated. Not me, faithful readers, not me. I'm glad to be where I am today with the problems I have today and with the resources available to me to try and make my problems better, to try and make the world just a little better place for others to live in.

I don't ever want to go back, and even if I could, I wouldn't change a thing that has happened because to do so would change who I am, who you are, and all of our lives would be changed in one way or another. We'll never know if those changes would have bettered things or made them worse, we only know things would be different than they are now, and I can't ever see wanting to be able to have that power in me.

For those of you who made it thru this entire blog, I thank you for your patience and your understanding and for allowing me to just simply vent a few things I needed to get out of my mind and down.

For those of you who skipped a few sentences or possibly the majority of the blog, I thank you for reading the parts that you did and I hope you gained something of value from it.

And for those of you who did read it all and find understanding and some profoundness in any of what I wrote here this morning, on this 6th day of November, 2005, take a moment sometime today and join me, please

In a simple glass of whiskey!

Peace and God Bless you all!

Sunday Morning, 7:12AM

Such a dark, dreary morning
As a strong wind is blowing.
The leaves swirling into sprials
Before they hit the ground.
A new carpet to walk on
Wet and damp
The colors of red and gold
And orange and yellow.
Begging to be walked upon
And scattered into a new arrangement
Until the wind changes its pattern
Yet again.
I long to walk upon this carpet with you
The wind blowing about us
Drawing us closer together
In an effort to stay warmer.
The wet leaves sticking to our feet
As we talk and laugh and share.
A morning like so many others
Yet so unlike any before
Because today as we walk
We share our new friendship
And walk this wondrous landscape

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Remembering Summer Heat, Part 3

I honestly have to say one of the things I remember most and admired the most about Summer Heat was the fact that they didn't play the "top 40" songs that so many local dance bands played. Summer Heat was innovative, playing a lot of what was at the time called "Progressive Underground" rock music. Songs by Cream, Spirit, Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Vanilla Fudge, Canned Heat, Steppenwolf. Summer Heat did NOT play songs by the Cowsills, the Monkees, the Archies, or The Partridge Family, and might I add to that, a hearty THANK GOD!!!

For those who attended our dances around the Rushville area, this was what they had become accustomed to because a lot of our fans were diehard Summer Heat fans and wouldn't miss a dance we played for anything. Sometimes, however, when we played out of town, that became a different story. Out of town dances where no one really knew that much about Summer Heat were occasionally requesting songs that fit the "Bubble Gum" genre, which was definitely not in the bands repetoire.

And the other wonderful thing that Summer Heat did when they played, they played LOUD! And not only did Summer Heat play loud, but they also played, in my opinion, great! The band practiced a lot, and I do mean a lot. Our practices were held in a law office just off main street, and the music brought kids from all over the west side of town who gathered outside the law office to hear the music being played. Although they were never officially street dances, on more than one occasion our practice sessions became just that: mini-street dances.

I must, at this time, do just a bit of bragging on myself, because, frankly, with each dance we played, I got better and better with the lighting and my "Simulated Stimulation" actually got the band a lot of compliments. There were times when my light shows were simply inspired by the music itself, and there were also times when the light shows were "chemically enhanced" shall we say. We are, of course, speaking of the 1968 to 1971 years, give or take, so a lot of free flowing supply of mind-alterers were readily available. To my recollection, no one in the band partook of any such substance, but the entrepenuer of Simulated Stimulation did on more than one occasion.

I actually got our songs down to a lighting scheme, so that when the song was played the lighting effects stayed pretty much the same each time the song was played. Occasionally, yes, I changed a few things, but for the most part, the lighting became just another part of the song that remained the same each time.

Still, for me, something seemed to be missing. Something seemed to me needed to be added to each show to make it just a little bit different than the last one. As we added new songs, I felt the need to add new theatrics as well. Being basically a non-gifted musician, Jay gave me a set of morrocas to play, a tambourine which I became quite proficient at one finger twirling and I got a cowbell which was used whenever we played the lengthy instrumental portion of "Rock Me" by Steppenwolf.

Still, this didn't quite seem to be enough, and soon, unbeknownst to the members of Summer Heat, I began plotting a special addition to our scheduled dance that was to be played at the Community Building immediately following the final game of the Rush County basketball Sectional.

Not only did it set a precedent for Summer Heat becoming the most unpredictable local band Rush County had ever had, but it set the stage for many theatrical performances to follow.

to be continued.....

Stone Becomes Yet Another Stone

Sometimes memories fade
Sometimes they change
Sometimes they remain like a block of granite.

From you, someone who was supposed to be so
Much a part of me,
I vividly remember you
Standing, facing me,
Your hand out,
Your heart closed...
But smiling your false
Yet greedy smile.

And now,
as I stand facing you
with empty hands
My heart has also become empty
and for you
I hold no smile.