Tag Archives: Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

This Little Guy Kicked My Butt!!!

No — not the bears, and not the guy hollering that dinner is served.

I am, in fact, referring to this!! The no-frills, manual, inexpensive TREADMILL:

I put it together yesterday, after the all-important lube arrived.

Oh, and guess what? Once I unwrapped and untaped the flywheels, deep inside there was a little bottle of lube!! I didn’t need to wait a whole fucking week!

I guess it would have been nice if the instruction manual made it clear that there was a bottle of lube included, but that it was tucked away deep in the packaging, because I did, indeed search for it, but I had no clue I had to unwrap absolutely everything in order to find it…

Anyway. Water under the bridge now!! Because now I have just a ton of treadmill-belt lube in the house! Not likely to run out for a few years.

So. Yes. This harmless-looking treadmill kicked my butt yesterday. Because the slowest speed it goes is 3.2 miles an hour.

Now, in Olden Times,  I could easily walk 3.2 miles in an hour (in NYC-speak, that’s about 50 blocks in an hour; very easy to do). But if you — like me — haven’t needed to walk anywhere in any sort of hurry since March 14th, suddenly going at a speed of 3.2 mph is actually quite a clip!!

Plus it was REALLY humid  here yesterday and the temperature inside the house was 89 degrees Fahrenheit. So that made a sudden jaunt at 3.2 mph rather overwhelming.

HOWEVER!! I love this little thing. And it does fold up really easily, except that the handles do not fold down, so it ends up needing a lot of space, even when folded. But it does have a nice, battery-operated computer that tracks mileage, speed and time elapsed. Which is all I need. And since it’s manual, I don’t need to set it up anywhere near an electrical outlet. So I really love this thing. I’m planning on losing ten pounds on it  later today…

Okay!!

Oh, here’s something astounding. Now there is a rabid anti-Trump Republican-PAC faction, trying to make Trump-hating waves in Ohio. Republicans. Well, Republicans “against COVID -19” so they hate Trump. (I think it might be wiser to aim that anger at China, but that’s just me…)  (Oh, and are you seeing the random news items from all over the Western world that Wuhan lab technicians fled China and defected to the West? And that France, Britain and the FBI are, you know, I don’t know — gathering information from them? It will be really interesting to see if this  is true.)

Okay!! This weekend on Bad Seed TeeVee, all those fan-made videos will be streaming nonstop. You should check it out when you can, because those videos people made are just so cool.

And a new contest was announced on the Nick Cave Instagram site this morning, where musicians can submit videos of themselves performing Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds songs and then the winners  can be on Bad Seed TeeVee, too.  Or perhaps just get autographed slides? I’m not actually clear on that…

But lots of interactive Nick Cave stuff going on this summer, gang.

You know, it was brought to my attention yesterday that one of my few remaining publishers would likely be willing to publish any/all of my upcoming books — erotic or not. And while it really cheered me considerably for a little while, the more I thought about it, the more it just made sense to publish all my own stuff from now on. (Part of that is wanting control over my cover design.)

But it did make me feel really good.

All righty. Well, I’m still contemplating that flash/memoir piece for submission to an upcoming anthology. I’m not 100% sure yet. But if I do write it or if I don’t, the next thing I can’t wait to settle back into is Thug Luckless: Welcome to P-Town. So here’s hoping I make a firm decision about that today.

Have a wonderful Friday, wherever you are in the world, okay? Thanks for visiting. I leave you with my late-night listening music from last night — in fact, I fell asleep while listening to this. Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, LIVE, singing a cover of the Bobby Womack song, “I’m In Love.” (1982, Wembley Arena, London England) Listen and, if at all possible,  fall in love and enjoy. I love you guys. See ya.

Just Too Many Beautiful Days!!!

I know you’re going to stop believing me, but it is yet another unbelievably beautiful day here today, gang!

And I am off to town here shortly to get the groceries.

Sorry for not posting yesterday, but I actually was totally wiped out from finally completing Letter #8 for Girl in the Night. Not that it was so taxing to actually write it, but every day that I worked on it last week, the temperatures hovered around 90 degrees Fahrenheit.  So it was more the relentless heat hovering around my desk each day that wiped me out.

During the evenings, though, it really cools down around here and then the house is wonderful by morning. But, again, today, it’s supposed to zoom up to 94 by midday…

So!!

I did go to Granville last evening to have dinner with Kevin (the director of Tell My Bones) and his husband, at the Granville Inn. My first time being out and about and socializing since March 14th.

I had such a great time. I was really sort of anxious regarding how I was going to feel to see the inn during a pandemic, with everyone wearing masks and all that, but honestly, it was not so bad. They’re just face masks, right? It’s not as if some sort of irreparable horrific deformity has befallen anyone — it’s just a mask.

And we ate out on the patio, so were able to keep our own masks off the whole time. We were there for 3 hours. I could not believe how the time flew.

And I made a vow to myself before getting out of the car to not talk about politics. But, of course, this is America, and the overwhelming amount of artillery focused on removing Trump from the White House is hard to not at least mention.

I am, of course, opposed to Biden and that whole crew (and curious why more people aren’t talking about the news re: the Obama-Biden collusion on the Logan Act re: Flynn … hmmm.) Anyway.  I’m not voting for Biden because I don’t trust him or any of the machinery in full force behind him right now. So I have no clue how to vote in November. And of course, some of the things I feel about what’s going on in Washington right now had to come up in conversation — because they asked me.

And when I replied (trying hard not to get on my soapbox) they both sort of stared at me and said “How do you know all this stuff? You should run for President.”

I didn’t say this, but what should really happen is that more Democrats should leave the realm of CNN, and make a determined effort to seek out a news source that just relays facts, without the selective omissions and opinions, and then I think more & more Democrats would know this same stuff. (And I don’t think that too many Republicans are actually in the dark about how the news is getting reported & by whom — because we Democrats are notoriously known for thinking with our hearts, our compassion, and not studying the facts for ourselves. Which is why we are so easily led astray by drama and hysteria.)

Anyway, if more Americans would try harder to seek out facts for themselves, then more of us would see that on ALL sides we are receiving a dramatic distortion by those who would profit from us believing their lies. ALL sides. And right now, I think that the Democratic Party is the worst I’ve ever seen it.

I’m guessing a bunch of people are just going to vote for Kanye West at this point…

We actually did not talk too much about politics, per se. Although we did talk a bit about the progressive/liberal “Hitler Youth” mentality that continues to sweep the college-aged generation of Americans  right now. That is truly scary and just fucking awful. (And what’s worse is that they probably don’t even know who the Hitler Youth were because so many public school-educated young people all over the US are not taught History or Civics anymore.) (Or Art, or Music, or Drama…) (They’re taught anger and intolerance with a little entitlement thrown in.)

And we also talked a little about what China is doing to the Uyghur women in those internment camps (!!) involving shaving their heads and then trying to sell the hair to Americans… And why aren’t more Americans alarmed by that? And by the uncomfortable parallels to Auschwitz? Or by the global pandemic of slavery in the world right now?

Mind-boggling to me. All anyone wants to talk about is “get Trump out of the White House” and all problems will be solved.

Well, all that aside, it was great to be out with friends and have dinner at a place I truly love.

Some good news — the Nick Cave Instagram site announced today that those videos the fans submitted for Bad Seed TeeVee will be shown on Friday July 10th and on Friday July 17th, in a 24-hour loop, starting at 10am BST.  So that should be kind of amazing!!

Beyond that, I’m getting back to the final edits of The Guitar Hero Goes Home later today — once I get back from town. I want to make sure the temperatures are at their peak around here before I get down to any serious work at my desk…

All righty, gang! On that note — I’m outta here. Have a great Monday, wherever you are in the world. Thanks for visiting. I will leave you with some travelin’ music as I prepare to scoot right out the door! “Travelin'” by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, off of Nobody’s Children from their Playback Collection. Listen and enjoy and maybe even scoot out the door, too, and go somewhere!! Okay. I love you guys. See ya!

Travelin’

Well I’m travelin’, travelin’ baby, travelin’ on
Well it’s good to see you but I can’t stay long
No I’ve got a travelin’ fever, baby, got a travelin’ jones
No don’t look for me in the mornin’, baby, I’m gonna be travelin’ on

I’ll be good, as good as gold
To the next or maybe better
Wait for me down the road
Keep one eye open for my letter

Cause I’m gonna be travelin’, travelin’ baby, travelin’ on
Lord it’s good to see you but I can’t stay long
Oh I’ve got a travelin’ fever, baby, got a travelin’ jones
Well don’t look for me in the mornin’, baby, I’m gonna be travelin’
Gonna be travelin’, gonna be travelin’ on

I’ll be up before the sun
Get a big jump on the morning
You should have known all along
You should have known you’d get no warning

And I’m gonna be travelin’, travelin’ baby, travelin’ on
But lord it’s good to see you but I won’t stay long
Oh I got a travelin’ fever, baby, I got a travelin’ jones
Yeah don’t look for me in the mornin’, baby, I’m gonna be travelin’
Gonna be travelin’, gonna be travelin’ on

Travelin’ on, travelin’ on
Travelin’ on, travelin’ on

Well I’m travelin’, travelin’ baby, travelin’ on
Yeah it’s good to see you but I can’t stay long
Yeah I got a travelin’ fever, baby, a travelin’ jones
Well don’t look for me in the mornin’, baby, I’m gonna be travelin’
Gonna be travelin’, gonna be travelin’ on

© 1995 Tom Petty

Yes, It’s That Kind of Wonderful Morning!!

Here in Crazeysburg, the cocks — excuse me — the roosters are out and about, which is always exciting, and it is yet another incredibly beautiful day!!

(I’m kidding about the roosters, gang. They don’t actually allow you to keep chickens and such here in the Village of Crazeysburg itself. You have to take 14 steps out of the village if you want to do that.) (And I’m not kidding about that part.)

But that reminds me:  A million years ago, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers did a live radio broadcast out of Chicago, where they did just a killer (sexy) version of Howlin’ Wolf’s “Little Red Rooster”!

(This whole broadcast is actually really great.  It totally kicks A. I don’t think it’s on an actual album or CD, but there is an MP3 download of it that you can get everywhere.)

Okay!! So!!

Today’s kind of a big day for me. Today is my big foray into Granville, Ohio, to have dinner with Kevin (Director of Tell My Bones) (in some future make-believe land, that is. All theater in NYC is shut down until 2021. I’m guessing NYC will never get back to normal, at this rate.)

Anyway. Kevin and I are having dinner at the Granville Inn and I have not done anything social, let alone been to the inn, since March 14th. I’m not entirely sure that I remember how to behave in public, but we’ll find out. Plus, this will be the first time I will put on my eye make-up in 3 and 1/2 months. So weird.

But I’m excited!! And also nervous. Because life is just plain different now. I’m guessing that if I let go of believing in anything I ever knew before, I should do all right.

Yesterday, I was working on Girl in the Night, and I guess I’ve just been doing too much typing these last few days, because the bones in the tops of my hands started to really hurt. So I took one extra-strength Tylenol and within minutes, my hands felt great but I was so sleepy I couldn’t even sit at my desk anymore! I had forgotten that those darn pills make me sleepy.

So the bulk of the day was not entirely productive, although I did have a nice day, regardless. And the lawn guy came to cut the grass, so the weedsyard — is looking really spiffy.

And of course, by 9pm, I was quite perky and wide awake. And remained that way for a few hours, but I didn’t really feel like working at that point. So, after streaming another episode of Professor T., I just laid around on my bed in the dark — well, with the lights out. My bedroom is never actually dark because of the streetlights outside my window.

But I laid around on my bed in the dark, stared out the window at the truly beautiful night, watching the blinks of the fireflies wane, and I listened to Phoebe Bridgers’ new album, Punisher.

I Know the End Lyrics Phoebe Bridgers | Punisher - Genius-Lyrics

It’s kind of a depressing album, but it’s still beautiful and the lyrics are great. If I were closer to her age and not old enough to be her grandmother, I would likely relate to it a bit more, but I still really love her way with words. (Although the entire album makes me think of the song “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol. So I ended up playing that beautiful, non-depressing song over & over, and then finally fell to sleep.)

But back to listening to Phoebe Bridgers — I was thinking, once again, how incredible it is for young women nowadays to be able to make any kind of music they want to; to write any kind of songs they want to and have them sound however they want them to sound.  Because it definitely didn’t used  to be that way.

Plus there’s room now for so many more women musicians and songwriters and performers. They used to sign about one or two per genre, and then get behind them for about 2 albums, as long as they proved to be massive hits.  Of course, back then, there was so much more money at stake for the various music industry gatekeepers, and all that’s been thoroughly “disrupted” now by everyone wanting so much music for free (and I won’t get political today, I’ll just say, that Socialist tendencies are so great, gang; it helps make everybody equally poor).

However!!

I do genuinely think it’s so great that women in music nowadays have so much more freedom to express what they want to express, however they want to express it. And I think that’s just so beautiful.

And something else that is amazingly beautiful, is the Red Hand Files thing that Nick Cave sent out today. You don’t even have to know his music, or know the album Ghosteen, to be able to appreciate what he has to say about love today. You can read it here if you are so inclined.

On that note, gang, I’m going to get started here.  I’ll leave you with both the beautiful song “Punisher,” by Phoebe Bridgers, and the equally beautiful though very different song “Chasing Cars,” by Snow Patrol. Relax and enjoy!! (Or float off into the stratosphere is probably more like it!!) But either way, thanks for visiting! I love you guys! See ya!

“Punisher”

When the speed kicks in
I go to the store for nothing
And walk right by
The house where you lived with Snow White
I wonder if she ever thought
The storybook tiles on the roof were too much
But from the window, it’s not a bad show
If your favorite thing’s Dianetics or stucco

The drugstores are open all night
The only real reason I moved to the east side
I love a good place to hide in plain sight

What if I told you I feel like I know you
But we never met?

And here everyone knows you’re the way to my heart
Hear so many stories of you at the bar
Most times alone and some looking your worst
But never not sweet to the trust funds and punishers

Man, I wish that I could say the same
I swear I’m not angry, that’s just my face
A copycat killer with a chemical cut
Either I’m careless or I wanna get caught
Ooh, I’m not

What if I told you I feel like I know you
But we never met?
It’s for the best

I can’t open my mouth and forget how to talk
‘Cause even if I could, wouldn’t know where to start
Wouldn’t know when to stop

© 2020  Phoebe Bridgers

Sorry We’re So Late!!!

Hi, gang!

Well, today was another one of those days where I decided to go into town and get the groceries because I was down to, like, one 5- ounce container of Greek yogurt and some cranberry juice!

I’m so funny — I’m always wanting just a wee bit more than that in my fridge! But anyway. So I drove into town to get the groceries. But then I wanted to get some more stuff for my yard, and also, the other day,  I discovered that my backdoor — which I almost never use because it basically opens out onto the old well (another reason to stay sober!! and to steer clear of the backdoor if not sober!!) — anyway, I discovered that it has a hook at the top of the door so I suddenly needed to go buy a weatherproof summer wreath from the dollar store. Because god knows, I don’t want a perfectly good hook (3 summers now before I noticed it!) going to waste.

So I just ran a bunch of little — but very fun — errands in town this morning. And I tried to make that hideous backdoor area of my house look a little bit nicer. As the summer goes on, the morning glories start blooming like crazy back there along the old fence, so that helps, but otherwise, it is such an eyesore and, unfortunately, since my house is on a corner and my backyard takes up an entire block, you can pretty much see the eyesore from this whole area of town.

So now, as you can see, there is a colorful fake-flower wreath hanging there on the door, to try to draw the eye up and away from the general hideousness.

Here is a tightly cropped idea of what it now looks like.

I’m trying to crop out all the damage the starlings did to the soffit up above the door, and also crop out the old well, which is very close to that lawn chair there.

Even though, in real (non-cropped) life, it still looks sort of uninviting back there, I can actually see myself sitting out there at night, after dark, because you can see all the fireflies and of course the stars.

From the kitchen porch, where I usually sit, you can’t see any of that because there’s a roof over the kitchen porch.

So, we’ll see how that goes this summer! As always, you are welcome to #ComeVisitCrazeysburg (!!) , but bring your own mosquito repellent, gang, because we got skeeters out here like nobody’s business! (Oh, and I guess, bring another lawn chair!)

Well, I did indeed, accidentally unsubscribe myself from Nick Cave’s Red Hand Files letter-thingy, so I had to fix that problem. But he sent out another one today. A list of some of his favorite books! You can read it here if you so choose!!

Okay!!

My day here is more than half over already.  Luckily, I don’t have too much to say here today.  I’m in the middle of watching Withnail & I for the hundredth time. Even though I’ve seen it many times, all those many times were many years ago, and for some reason, I found myself wanting to see that again. So I started watching it last night but then I fell asleep. So I want to finish that, and also get some writing done.

Which means, my friends, that this is all I’m posting today! I hope you’ve had a good Monday, wherever you are in the world!! Thanks for visiting. I leave you with my driving-to-town music from earlier — “Let Yourself Go,” by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers (from their awesome album Mojo, 2010). (It’s SUPER swingy, so play it loud, gang, and just chill!!) (Or, I guess, drive to town!!) All righty. I love you guys. See ya!!

“Let Yourself Go”

Rain on the river I’m soakin’ wet
Waitin’ on friend who ain’t come yet
And he might not get here for three or four days
Got to make a little bit go a long way
I’ve got a blond-headed woman who likes to come around
Cute little hippy girl lives in town
Brings a bag a records and she plays ’em ’til dawn
Give me little lovin’ then she got to go home

When times are hard
When you start feelin’ low
Let yourself go
When the river’s risin’ and the world feels cold
Let yourself go
Let yourself go

I got a 442 sittin’ in the sun
Well it’s been ten years since she used to run
Man she was a beauty in ’69
But there ain’t no more comin’ down the line

When times are hard
And you start feelin’ low
Let yourself go
When the river’s risin’ and your world feels cold
Let yourself go
Honey let yourself go

© – 2010 Tom Petty

Social Without the Media!

As of yesterday, I made it so that my Instagram account is no longer private. We’ll see how that goes.

I like to keep track of who’s following me, because when I don’t do that, a ton of (allegedly) single men — most of whom I think are scammers — start following me and then immediately start hitting on me in a seriously personal way, and I am so not into that.

However, when I went into my settings to make that change, I noticed that I am now following over 800 people — about 10 of whom are actual friends who almost never post anything, ever.

The rest are film festivals and production companies,  bird and animal photo feeds, painters, photographers, bands I’ve never heard of, a ton of (apparently) really famous musicians that I’ve also never heard of; a small handful of famous musicians that I have actually heard of and have followed (in real life) for decades — and I cannot believe that they are in their 60s now, with grown children (??!!) (like, when did that happen?) — guitar gods, like Joe Satriani and Steve Vai, both of whom I still think of as being about 32 years old.

But now that I’m following them on Instagram, where they actually interact through video clips, etc., and you can see their grown families and stuff — I realize that this is so not the case.  (It’s sort of mind-bending, because, of course, then that makes me feel really old.)

Steve Vai | DiMarzio
Steve Vai, no longer 32 years old
Joe Satriani admits to being "shamed back into my woodshed by so ...
Joe Satriani, no longer 32 years old, either

Well, my point is that apparently I follow over 800 people, and my constant Instagram feed is still almost entirely photos of Keanu Reeves. I’m not kidding, either — and not exaggerating. It is fucking ridiculous.

Keanu himself is not on any social media at all, so these are all just fans posting photos of him endlessly into their feeds. And I mean endlessly. So I’m wondering, if I go ahead and stop following the Keanu hashtag, will amazing things finally get into my feed??!!

I also think it’s interesting that a couple hundred people follow me, but maybe about 10 of those people are actually following me.  (I don’t really post much of anything — just my yard, the sky, my cats — so I doubt I’m getting into most people’s feeds anyway.) (Especially if they’re following #Keanu.)

But I find all this stuff interesting.

Some people have to really, really work their social media accounts, all day long, because they’re either famous and wish to stay that way, or they want to get famous, or successful, or whatever. And so they want those numbers and the numbers are important to them.

It’s the same here on WordPress, with people following blogs that they never, ever read. It’s just numbers. I totally don’t understand the point in that, but a whole lot of bloggers seem to think that that’s what blogging is — getting followers. And I’ve noticed that a ton of people give up on blogging relatively easily. By that, I mean, a couple of days, a couple of months, maybe even a couple of years, and then they’re just done. They go off somewhere and have a life, I guess.

Not me!!

I’ve been “blogging” since 1998, and I can’t imagine not doing it, but at the same time, I’ve seen just the constant, constant shift in “followers.” It’s sort of like a meandering stream, you know? The readers are always there, but 95% of the readers change over time — sometimes even over a period of a few months. So I just don’t see the need to hunt down potential followers for anything, you know?

They’ll come and then they’ll go, ad infinitum.

But it’s still all very interesting to think about — what our culture has morphed into; that extremely short attention span. I actually love Instagram, a lot. And I love TikTok — although that’s a really different type of social media. It seems to be more about performing.  (As near as I can tell, most of the people on TikTok are trying to gain enough followers who will follow them over to YouTube or Spotify, etc., that will then garner them a way of monetizing themselves.)

In my opinion, that is a tough switch — to follow someone for 25 seconds at a time and then swipe up, versus actually finding them on YouTube and watching them for much longer than 25 seconds, so that it will count as a “view.” I love a lot of the people I follow on TikTok, but so far, @TylerJarry and hi.this.is.Tatum (a rescued pit bull who has a funny human voice) are the only ones I’ve liked enough to want to watch more of on something like YouTube.

Raspberries created by hi.this.is.tatum | Popular songs on TikTok
hi.this.is.Tatum

Still I do find it all really interesting — this whole shift in the culture.  And our new unwillingness to focus for very long (myself included now).

So. I still have not figured out which foreign language I want to study this year (see yesterday’s post re: my unexpected auto-renew of the mondly language app). I do kind of like thinking about it, though — pondering the various languages that are out there. You can study basically any language at all on the mondly app.  And — yes!!– it takes 5 minutes a day!!

Too funny.

Well, okay.

So, yesterday, none of the phone calls I was expecting came through. Yet again. But I am now getting accustomed to this new coronavirus approach to work, where everyone’s schedules are just up in the air, and everyone’s lives are suddenly so different.  Now I never know any more if I will be working with anyone from one day to the next, so I’ve stopped waiting around for phone calls. And I got a ton of editing done on The Guitar Hero Goes Home, so I was really happy about that.

I still have more to do on that, and plan on doing that today (so today will probably be the day when all the phone calls come in and everyone wants to work!!).

And tomorrow, my lawn care guy — who is having some lawn mower issues — is planning to come by and at least help me get rid of a ton of weeds, and poison ivy, and Virginia creeper, out back by the barn!! So that will make me feel at least a little better about my crazy yard.

I now have signs up everywhere saying that I need someone to mow my grass. So we’ll see what happens with that. You have no idea how bad my yard has gotten. It’s a total disaster.

All righty. Well. Much of Ohio starts opening up today, even though more and more people keep getting the virus — I guess because now there are more than enough quick tests available, so more people are finding out that they actually have it. Nothing is allowed to open to full capacity, but at least places are opening back up. So we’ll see.

Maybe that new normal we’ve been hearing so much about will finally begin happening around here!! Me — I’m just waiting for summer.

Okay. I hope you enjoy your Friday, wherever it leads you and wherever you are in the world. Thanks for visiting, gang.  I leave you today with a great song for rejoicing, for driving really fast out on the highway and watching all the birds soaring through the sky. A great song for thinking about life — past and present. And even a great song for wondering what the afterlife is like and what we might have to learn about (all over again) when we get there: “Learning to Fly” — from Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ 1991 multi-platinum album Into the Great Wide Open. (Lyrics are in the video.) Listen, dream, wonder and enjoy! It’s all over in a heartbeat anyway, right?? Okay. I love you guys. See ya!!

Remembering Tom Petty, 1950-2017 - K-ROCK 105.7

Whew!! We Made it!!

Yes!! I went out first thing this morning — drove into town to go to the market as soon as it opened, so that I could get my week’s groceries without having  to shop with too many people in the store.

(Ohio is on Stay-At-Home orders, which means we can go out for essentials but that’s it.)

And when I got back home, this time I paid attention to everything I touched before I washed my hands, so that I didn’t go through some sort of paranoia attack all day about whether or not I had washed every single solitary thing that might need washing…

And I’m hoping to do only one load of laundry today — instead of worrying that I didn’t get every single thing that my clothing might have  touched when I came in the door.

In short, I hope to have a nice day.

The weather here is unbelievable!! We did not get all the rain that was predicted — which is good because Wakatamika Creek has already become a veritable lake, flowing all over the bottom land. (It doesn’t affect the town, because the creek always floods and that bottom land always eventually absorbs it. In the nearly 200 years the town has been here, I guess they figured out not to build anything at all anywhere near that creek…)

Anyway. It is gorgeous outside. Most of the windows are open, which is such a relief for me, because I am allergic to cats and I have 7, so fresh air is just like the best thing that God invented, ever.

I am on Day 15 now of my quarantine. We still have no confirmed cases of the virus in Muskingum County — and here is something that actually pisses me off: Ohio has stopped reporting how many people test negative for the virus. The last time they reported the number, several days ago, it was close to 20,000 people who didn’t have it.  They only report now how many people have it and how many people have died from it. Which just totally skews everybody’s understanding of what is going on.

And when questioned why they stopped releasing the numbers, they let it be known that the nearly 20,000 who didn’t have it, did not even include the amount of negatives coming from the private testing sector. The State itself (not the private sector) is testing 500 people a day! And 1400 people have tested positive (that includes those who have recovered and 28 who have died). So who knows how many tens of thousands of people in Ohio don’t have the virus?

It just feels so manipulative and political, doesn’t it? (If you don’t live in America, you probably can’t get a real sense of how many politicians want to blame Trump for absolutely everything imaginable, even if it means having to “misrepresent” or downplay the facts. It just gets ludicrous.)

The Health Department here in Ohio also seems to be relying on a forecasting formula that the Federal Government has stated is outdated now because the forecasts did not match what is actually happening in Italy.  It just feels so controlling — try to make everyone feel hysterical so that they no longer trust the Federal Government.

It is just so hard to know what the heck is going on anymore, so it’s still best to just stay inside and wash.

And speaking of Italy — that Instagram photo I posted last evening (lower left of this page if you’re on a computer) is of Pope Francis giving the Urbi et Orbi blessing in a deserted St. Peter’s Square last night. Isn’t that one of the most amazing sights?

And speaking of the Pope… I spent yesterday catching up on some back issues of Biblical Archaeology Review (which has nothing to do with the Pope, just the Bible). What a cool magazine. But so hard to spell!! (I’m guessing that the next Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds album will have both the words “Archaeology” and “Apocalypse” in it so that I can go out of my fucking mind trying to spell it…) (See various references to my inability to spell the word “Apocalypse” as well as the 2004 double-album title Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus.)

I love Biblical archaeology. I love the stuff they discover, and how it helps us re-frame what was handed down in the Bible (for instance, before contemporary times, women had a very different way of interpreting what is written about Eve in Genesis because they relied primarily on Genesis 1 and let that inform how they interpreted Genesis 3 — meaning, in short, they believed that Eve was the spiritual equal of Adam and also that Adam was standing right next to Eve during that whole serpent thing, so, um …) (Also, the King James Version of the Bible misinterpreted the word for “pupil” to mean “apple” so the saying “apple of his eye” actually reads “pupil of his eye.” I just love stuff like that!)

And I especially love it when archaeology supports what is written in the Bible. I love all that ancient historical stuff.  Oh — and I ordered a scholarly book from Amazon yesterday that’s a couple years old already, but it re-examines Judas’s role in what happened to Jesus, along with the role of the Jewish High Priests, and it apparently redirects the blame to Herod. That the High Priests were providing shelter to Jesus from the Romans during Passover, and that Herod intercepted that.

(Folks, you really, really gotta closely examine that relationship between Herod and Jesus at every turn. Something really, really bad was going on there. We’ll probably never really know what. But it has something to do (I think) with the Romans having appointed Herod King, when that was not the way the Hebrews accepted a “King.” And all the John the Baptist stuff is connected there, too.)

This all fascinates me, personally, because I am working on a one-man play (titled In the Days of the Flesh) about the (fictional) Gospel According to Caiaphas, which exonerates him from what happened to Jesus.

And here we are today! I’m gonna go eat my lunch now and get this day underway.  (And, btw, the market was completely stocked with absolutely everything.) I hope you are having a good Sunday, wherever you are in the world. Thanks for visiting!! (Oh, and another by the way!! Dylan’s new song, “Murder Most Foul,” already has 2 million views on YouTube — and that’s not counting my endless listenings because I bought the song immediately, so I stream it.)

I’ll leave you with my breakfast-listening music from this morning, “Casa Dega,” which I only listened to halfway, because the windows were open and I realized that the birds were singing and I preferred listening to them!! But anyway, this is not the version I listened to, but I like this one because it captures Tom Petty live in 1978, when he still had that awesome attitude he had when he was young. (He’s 28 here.) Enjoy, gang!! I love you guys. See ya.

“Casa Dega”

Well the clouds roll by in the big blue sky
As the sun beats down on Casa Dega
And the moon pulls the tide and the tide brings night
But night is more than just night in Casa Dega

Oh

Baby I think I’m starting to believe the things that I’ve heard
‘Cause tonight in Casa Dega I hang on every word

She said to me as she holds my hand
And reads the lines of a stranger
Yeah, and she knows my name, yeah she knows my plans
In the past, in the present and for the future

Yeah, baby now I think I’m starting to believe the things that I’ve heard
‘Cause tonight in Casa Dega I hang on every word

Then she said…

Oh

And you almost pay the price of a whisper in the night in Casa Dega
Time rolls by, night is only night, can I save ya?

Yeah, yeah
Alright
It’s more than just a night
Alright
Yeah, yeah

© 1978 Tom Petty

Okay, um — is it just ME?!

I realize that I have an over-zealously filthy imagination, basically 24/7 — but does that photo above look a little on the lurid side to you?

It does to me. Jesus.

I spent most of the afternoon cleaning my house yesterday, and so I was going to regale you with something chaste and in really good taste (you know, sort of like moi) and, until that  provocatively positioned gal scrubbing floors on all fours caught my eye, I was going to go with something like this and try to pass her off as me:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I realize you don’t fool that easily, but I was still going to try… And please don’t tell me that the gal on all fours looks a lot more like me than the chaste gal in the intensely straight flowered apron does, because then you will only hurt my feelings and from there, we will go nowhere fast.

All righty!! Well, if you’re joining me yet again, I accidentally posted this post too soon!! Yes — it went out to about 400 people before I could stop it.

But here I am again.

I hope that was not an indicator of how the rest of my day will go.

So, yes, I did spend the afternoon cleaning my house yesterday.  And I had no less than nine windows open. It was such a beautiful day here. So sunny. Warm. Totally Spring. The cats were incredibly joyful with those windows open.

You know, I am always really aware of how sad the cats get when Autumn comes for real and I have to close all the windows for the duration. But it wasn’t until yesterday that I really saw the immediate difference the seasons make in the cats: Because of the open windows, they didn’t sleep the whole day away yesterday. They were perky and alert and just so joyful. So happy. Hanging out together by the open windows in the family room. All their little tails up straight & tall. It was so cool to watch it. And in the evening, they hung out by the open windows in the kitchen — I was in there streaming DCI Banks at the kitchen table, so it was almost like they were hanging out with me. (But, alas, I don’t fool that easily, either.)

Today is going to be another really gorgeous day. So I’m looking forward to it. It helps with the quarantine stuff when I can actually step outside and look up at the sky, you know?

Some more good news — my friend who works for NASA in Houston, who has been battling cancer for several months now, has finally begun to put on some weight. Still 2 more weeks before he will know if the radiation/chemo therapy worked.  But it’s a relief that he’s finally been able to at least put on some weight. We’ll see.

Other good news is that there were no new confirmations of the virus here in Ohio during the night. (Of course, alas, the day is still young.)

And still no cases of the virus at all in Muskingum County.

So, yes, I cleaned yesterday and I didn’t write.  I did think about writing, a little bit. And I’m not sure what I’m going to do today.  I think I’m just going to let life dictate to me where it wants to go. (I’m not really good at this, but I’m learning.) (There are a lot of things I’m not really good at, actually, and so I’m trying to listen to Life a whole lot more than I ever did.)

And yesterday, I also heard from a number of people from all over the place — just checking in to see how I was, which was so nice. Plus, my dad called me! Which is weird, of course, because I’m the one who calls him every day now.

But if you recall this blog on Tuesday, you might recall that I was having a really bad day, for a number of reasons.  And my phone call to my dad on Tuesday included me going off with the “F” word a lot, about various personal things and stuff even about my last marriage, oddly enough.  I actually couldn’t stop — I was a real cavalcade of the “F” word during that phone call on Tuesday. I was just so angry about so much stuff.

So my dad called yesterday to see if I was feeling better, which was really nice. And I actually was. I felt worlds better yesterday.

Just trying to get a grip on everything, you know? With or without this pandemic — although the pandemic sure brings things into tight focus, doesn’t it? In fact, nowadays, I hear from my first husband constantly — he emails me something like 5 or 6 times a day now from Seattle. Sometimes more. Sometimes it’s terrible news stories, but usually they’re upbeat funny little emails. They perk me up, for sure. He has a dry and very gentle sense of humor. He always has. His unusual sense of humor was what first attracted me to him. (And then his enormous capacity for quiet compassion was the next thing…)

I don’t understand life, at all, you know? I understand all of the choices I’ve made, and why I made them when I made them. And I don’t really have any regrets. And things that maybe I used to regret, I see now that there was no reason to have regrets because the decision wound up being the right one, in hindsight. But still. I don’t know. Life is just weird. (And I’m not just talking about my marriages, I’m talking about all the major decisions I’ve ever made.) (I remember every single fucking one of them.)

Okay, gang. I’m gonna close this and give some thought to what to do today.  I’ll write something, probably, but I don’t know what. I hope things are good where you are, that you’re keeping everything at bay. Thanks for visiting. I didn’t listen to any music at breakfast this morning, so I’ll leave you with my housecleaning music from yesterday afternoon!! Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Playback CD #4: “The Other Sides”.  Songs they never released on any studio albums. All righty! Enjoy. I love you guys. See ya!

“Psychotic Reaction”
(Recorded live, with Heartbreakers’ drummer Stan Lynch on vocals)

I feel depressed, I feel so bad
‘Cause you’re the best girl that I ever had
I can’t get your love, I can’t get a fraction
Uh-oh, little girl, psychotic reaction

And it feels like this!

I feel so lonely night and day
I can’t get your love, I must stay away
I need you girl, by my side
Uh-oh, little girl, would you like to take a ride, now
I can’t get your love, I can’t get satisfaction
Uh-oh, little girl, psychotic reaction

© 1966  Kenn Ellner, Roy Chaney, Craig Atkinson, John Byrne, John  Michalski

You’re Not the Boss of Me!!

Just no way do you get to tell me what to fucking do! Yay!

That’s pretty much the attitude of most of the people who live in Ohio, which is of course why so many people (moi aussi) continued to congregate in groups way larger than 50 until the Governor had to step in and issue actual mandates that forced people (like me) to not only stay home but to not even be allowed to vote. Wow. Talk about getting your privileges suspended…

So when the number of confirmed cases of the virus basically doubled overnight in the State, it was not a surprise to me at all, not in any way whatsoever, so I have to wonder how come “officials” found this leap “startling”?

I love when the “people in charge” have no real clue what the “people they are in charge of” are doing.

(A good example of that, you know, was when Trump won the Presidency. A lot of people in Ohio voted for him. I know it won’t shake you to your very core to learn that I did not vote for Trump. But, still, he won. And in my opinion, he’s the President of the United States. Because people voted for him. I know for a fact that they did. And it’s why I’m so sick of the Democrats because they spent the past 4 years submerged in this infantile outcry, stamping their little feet, wasting everybody’s time & money, trying to remove him from his elected position, rather than spending all that time & money making America great again in ways that were more in keeping with their own beliefs about America.) (Which is why, in my opinion, America is a great country– you’re legally allowed to have whatever opinion you want and you’re allowed to publicly say whatever you want to about the President without fearing for your very life and liberty. And it’s odd how so many people who are not Democrats tend to see that fact really clearly and so they continue to vote in that direction.)

Anyway. No one has died from Covid 19 yet in the State of Ohio. But we are up to 67 confirmed cases. Way more than Kentucky and Indiana have, combined. So, on we go.

It will, alas, perhaps come as no surprise to you to learn that my table-read in NYC for Tell My Bones has ground to a thorough and complete halt. So much so, that the director of my play texted me last night to say he was flying back to Ohio first thing this morning to spend the Spring and Summer here in his mansion on the hill.  He will be here until late August, just to get clear of NYC and the virus there. (Here in Muskingum County and also in the county where the director has his other home, there are so far no known cases of the virus.)

So the table-read in April is one less thing I have to do. And then that Literary Arts Fair in June that I backed out of because of planning to go to Zurich to make new friends and see Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, means two less things that I have to do.

And of course I scan the Nick Cave web site daily for any indication whatsoever that he might be postponing the European start of the Ghosteen Tour, and so far he his hanging tough — the only one in the world who is, actually. But that might be a third thing I won’t be doing this Spring/Summer if he does end up postponing the tour.

And of course the meeting with the TV streaming platform for Abstract Absurdity Productions in LA has been postponed until after the international quarantine is lifted. So that’s another thing that I won’t be doing this Spring. Although, for now, the film shoots will still be happening in Los Angeles this summer.

Sandra called last night and we chatted for quite awhile. Yesterday, the production of “Chicago” that she’s been rehearsing up in Stratford, Canada got closed down and so she will be back in Rhinebeck by Monday. (So, now that her schedule will be indescribably free for the table-read of Tell My Bones, there isn’t going to be one until the Fall.)

The only thing that remains in place for me, career-wise, is that our other play is still slated for production in Canada at the end of this year. And this sudden freed-up schedule for both Sandra and me, means that we can tackle some of those massive re-writes for that other play. And we’re both feeling really excited about that. We’ll probably just do it on Skype; I’m not planning to go back to NYC now before the Fall. But I’m still feeling really excited about getting back to work with her on that play.

So, all those things that I was worrying about having to do all at once, have now basically entirely disappeared.

And now all I have in front of me yet again is time to sit at my desk and write.

I made some progress with my broken heart during the night. Turned a little corner. Release people to what they need in their own lives and just open up my strange little path and embrace whatever comes along on it.

I’m not able to stop loving someone once I love them, but I am able to find a different place for it inside and then keep going.

Listening to the Bee Gees of course while you have a broken heart is never a good idea. We all know this. It is a documented fact that it only makes your heart break more. And yet, I guess I’m an Ohio girl after all, because I’ve been listening to the Bee Gees “How Can You Mend A  Broken Heart” pretty much non-stop for a few days. (That’s correct: No one in the universe is the boss of me. I will listen to the Bee Gees if I so choose!!!)

You know, I don’t ever want to be Albatross-y to anyone, least of all, to someone I love. So I have been trying really hard to keep myself contained (in a non-Covid 19 type of way, of course, because when it comes to the virus, I want to be sure to interact closely with everyone imaginable, until the Governor himself steps in and says, “No, no, no! Bad dog!! Bad, bad dog!! Now you have to stay in your little pen and you don’t get to vote!!”).

Anyway. I’m trying to sublimate whatever I’m feeling and turn it into something that can have it’s own beauty and go out into the world in other, more acceptable ways. It’s why I’m a writer, I guess.

And last night, lights out. Dark bedroom. Shattered little heart that I was trying once more to get a grip on. Suddenly, loud and plain as day, I hear singing — music. It was so familiar to me. But it was coming from somewhere inside me.

And I thought: What is that? I know that song.

And I suddenly realized it was the chorus from Tom Petty’s song, “You & Me.” Which happens to be the last song that Tom Petty actually listened to before he died. (According to his wife, Dana, who was there with him on the bed, watching the video on YouTube, and then later he had the heart attack and did not recover.)

But it’s also a song that I really love and that man who died a couple of summers ago used to indulge me and even while he also liked Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers a lot (he was older than me, but we were in the same generation, music-wise). Anyway, we played Tom Petty songs almost exclusively while he was here in this very room with me, making a whole lot of love (before he, too, died).

So “You & Me” is a powerhouse of potential heartbreak for me, but when I suddenly realized that it was the song coming through the ether to me last night, I grabbed my phone from the night table and streamed  “You & Me” on repeat. And almost instantaneously, the energy, spirit, whatever you call it, of the now-dead guy that I loved was all over me. There was so much joy. It was like a tidal wave of it, all over me in that bed.

I knew he was with me. I could almost see him, you know? Almost. And he was just filled with joy and I couldn’t help but be swept up into it, too. And even though I don’t actually “hear” voices, I feel his voice pretty loudly inside me. I can hear/feel the words. They were undeniably him and he told me stuff that was just filled with love. So much love. And he also said, “You gotta leave that guy alone now, Marilyn. Remember the boundaries.”

He actually said that. And then I fell dead asleep — if you’ll excuse the weird pun. At one point, I remember that I turned off the music on my phone. But I slept 8 whole hours. I haven’t done that in a couple of weeks, really.

So I’m feeling better, you know? Love in the Time of Cholera and all that aside — I am feeling better. And so on we go, right, gang?

You know of course what I am leaving you with today! Enjoy it. Celebrate it. Rejoice, even. Thanks for visiting. I love you guys. See ya!

“You And Me”

Take a look
At what I got
I can’t promise
You a lot

But you and me
And the road ahead

I can’t save
You from yourself
You gotta want it
All that’s left

Is you and me
And the road ahead

Wherever that wind might blow
Wherever that river rolls
You know I will go with you

Lookin’ over
The mountain’s crown
The water roars
And tumbles down

Like you and me
And the road ahead

Wherever that wind might blow
Wherever that river rolls
You know I will go with you

Just you and me
And the road ahead

Just you and me
And the road ahead

© 2002 Tom Petty

Getting Even MORE Ducks In A Row!

Okay. I am going to show you the (allegedly) FINAL version of our logo for Abstract Absurdity Productions. (And I love it!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

And to be honest, gang, I am absolutely overwhelmed by the responses we are getting to the company overall — not just our logo, but I mean our Mission, our raison d’etre, our inspiration (primarily European New Wave cinema from the 1950s & 1960s) , the storylines of our imminent micro-shorts (completely absurd plots). All of it.

And not only do we have that great cinematographer as part of our company profile now, but yesterday we got a social media expert onboard, as well,  who loves our European sensibilities and wants us to get our package together immediately in order to pitch it to an additional very high profile TV streaming platform. (We are already well connected to one other one.)

So it is extremely exciting, gang. But overwhelming, too. In a way, you know. As in: I might have to live in Los Angeles a lot of the time. I was absolutely not anticipating that.

And since the theater projects are in NYC and Canada, what does that mean?

It means that I’m sort of curiously running the potential conversation through my brain as to how I am going to convince my birth mom to live here in Crazeysburg for pretty much the rest of her life…

I didn’t sleep well at all last night. Well, I slept well, during the meager hours that I actually slept. I was awake a lot of the night. I made a decision about something on Thursday that I am determined to stick to because I know it’s the right thing. But it’s like being on one path — a path you really, really love being on. And then being re-directed by the entire Universe, basically, to suddenly go down another path. A path I can’t even really see yet, so I’m just walking it blind now, but knowing that it’s the right thing.

I don’t want to have a broken heart about all this because I know that’s not a thing that anyone wants for me in this situation. So I’m trying to just move forward.

So I laid there in the dark, the birds were already starting to sing outside my window somewhere. And I decided to stream Tom Petty’s song “No Reason to Cry,” from the amazing Heartbreakers 2010 album , Mojo.

And I’ll tell you what — I’m willing to bet money on the fact that Tom Petty knew for sure that girls would cry when they listened to that fucking song. Tom Petty-type girls, anyway.  And I did fucking cry. Because I’m overwhelmed right now. And the room was dark. And the sound quality on my iPhone is really, really good. Tom Petty’s voice filled my room like some sort of crystal bell ringing, right? So I cried a little bit.

But I also know that Tom Petty mostly wanted people to just live. Live life, fight for what you believe in, do the right thing. Stuff like that — don’t just lay in the dark and cry. So I switched to the song “Let Yourself Go,” also on Mojo. But it’s a song that I feel better represents who I really am. So I was able to move out of the tears and think more clearly.

And right then, I came to the decision (I’ve been debating it for a week now) to cancel the audition tomorrow for the literary arts festival that’s taking place in early June. It’s just too close to the trip to Zurich — assuming the trip even happens with this insane coronavirus craziness going on.

I was telling my new friend in Switzerland, regarding that literary festival, that aside from it being only a ten-minute reading, it’s a heavily edited version of a chapter from Blessed By Light that I really, really love. I am not emotionally attached to the piece at all now because I had to change my protagonist’s voice pretty extremely to get him to not only be family-friendly, but also to fit in the really short time-allotment.

So I emailed the festival people right then, before the sun was even up. And now, the Zurich thing can happen, as long as Los Angeles doesn’t become some sort of huge looming specter in early June, too… that hinges on when the cinematographer can be in LA.

Well. I forgot to mention that the coronavirus has delayed the opening of Nick Cave’s art exhibit in Copenhagen.

The announcement went out on Instagram yesterday morning. I’m guessing the book will still come out on schedule, though. So I’m making sure to keep 17 million US dollars freed up in my checking account, because I pre-ordered the book (in British Pounds Sterling) and I wouldn’t want to come up short on the day they decide to deduct the charge (for the book plus the expensive overseas shipping) from my account.

(Oddly enough, spell check doesn’t like that word “pre-ordered” and it offered me the word “pee-ordered” instead. I’m not real sure what the heck that would mean or why it would ever make sense to use it. I mean, like, what the hell would be going on when you’d need to say “pee-ordered” and it would actually make sense? Anyway.)

Well, I don’t have to do Booty Core or yoga today. And even though I have a ton of work to do on the new web site, I’m waiting for stuff from Peitor to arrive in my inbox. So until that occurs, I think I’m going to go back to bed and stare out the window for a little while. Drink some coffee. Wonder about life.

So I’m gonna scoot. Thanks for visiting, gang. Have a real good Saturday, wherever you are in the world. I’ll leave you to choose your own preference today: to cry or not to cry. Or maybe a little of both. It’s up to you — I trust your judgment completely. All righty. I love you guys. See ya.

“Let Yourself Go”

Rain on the river I’m soakin’ wet
Waitin’ on friend who ain’t come yet
And he might not get here for three or four days
Got to make a little bit go a long way

I’ve got a blond-headed woman who likes to come around
Cute little hippy girl lives in town
Brings a bag of records and she plays ’em ’til dawn
Give me a little lovin’ then she got to go home

When times are hard
When you start feelin’ low
Let yourself go
When the river’s risin’ and the world feels cold
Let yourself go
Let yourself go

I got a 442 sittin’ in the sun
Well it’s been ten years since she used to run
Man she was a beauty in ’69
But there ain’t no more comin’ down the line

When times are hard
And you start feelin’ low
Let yourself go
When the river’s risin’ and your world feels cold
Let yourself go
Honey let yourself go

c – 2010 Tom Petty

Just Too Much Joy On All Fronts!

You know how some people can’t pass up coins on the ground? If they see a penny, they will pick it up, even if it’s face down? (Which is bad luck, people! I’m just saying.)

Well, I’m the type of person that cannot pass up pens on the ground!!

If I see a pen and it hasn’t been run over by a car or something, I will pick it up and see if it works. And if it works, it’s mine!! (Over the years, I have become the proud owner of a couple of mighty nice gold Cross pens because of this habit of mine.) (I’ve also become the not-so-happy owner of a few truly awful pens — the kind where you can immediately see why its previous owner didn’t even take the time to seek out a trash can and simply threw it, most likely in rage, to the ground.) (However, I keep even the lousiest of pens because you just never know when you’re going to need a pen that at least works or has ink in it.)

Anyway, yesterday, I found the most amazingly perfect pen. And it’s just one of those cheap ball-point pens, too, that’s advertising some business or other and isn’t very pleasing on the eye and yet, when I quickly scribbled with it on a piece of scrap paper — wow. I could not believe my good fortune. It is like the best pen ever. I am so serious.

First thing this morning, I used the pen to write in my Inner Being Journal thingy and it just — I don’t know; it was such a joy. I just love a great pen. I’m a writer — pens mean a lot to me!!

I’m reminded suddenly of the last (and I like to think final) time I attempted suicide. Things were of course dreadful in my life. I was 19. I’d already dropped out of college — I hated college, even though I was majoring in Theater Arts and thinking that maybe I would like to be a playwright. I simply hated the school. But because my adoptive mother felt I was mentally ill, she wouldn’t let me even consider any of the schools I really wanted to go to (to study Theater).  (And as an aside, I did have a psychotherapist at that time who didn’t think I was crazy — he actually thought my mom was crazy and he told me so. But, sadly, it was our little secret for a very long time.)

Anyway. I was really smart. I graduated close to the top of my class in high school — and had I not been constantly skipping school back then (and I mean constantly; I hated the arbitrary rules &  structure of school) I probably would have been right at the very top of my class.  Nevertheless, I was still Valedictorian on Graduation Day — and there were over 800 kids in my graduating class, so that says something about how crazy I may or may not have been (like a fox, I guess).  So I feel pretty sure that I would have been able to get into any school I applied to because they were all these sort of strange, hippy-ish boutique-type Arts colleges. Not Harvard, or anything.

However, my mother wouldn’t let me get too far from home because she thought I was out of my fucking mind.

So I wound up at this god awful, huge, antiseptic, mind-numbing  university that was about 25 or 30 miles from where my adoptive father lived. Like he was going to keep his eye on me, or something.

I hated the school. Drank bourbon almost every day instead of going to most of my classes. I lasted about 8 weeks. Quit. Then went to California to allegedly live with the girl I was in love with, but — as loyal readers of this lofty blog no doubt recall — she was no longer in love with me by the time I managed to get there.

But back in Ohio, looking for any kind of a decent singing gig; really wishing I could figure out how to get to NYC instead but having no money and no real job; I was hanging out in this truly seedy Country & Western bar (called the Wagon Wheel) where they didn’t ID me and let me drink bourbon to my heart’s content all night and I was hanging out with all these criminals and much older ex-con truckers  — and my mom finally kicked me out of the house. Even though I was indeed paying her room & board to stay there, which I thought meant that I could do what I wanted, but she said: au contraire.

So. Out I went. Still 19. I got a waitressing job in a diner-truck stop type place off the Interstate. And I was living in a cheap motel that was one parking lot away from the diner. Sleeping with a much older, ex-con trucker at night in my cheap motel room bed — both of us drunk but still managing to fuck. Yes! I consider this one of those high points of my whole life!

Okay — I am going to cut to the chase of this dreadful story, and say that my best friend’s dad back then was a private detective. And after I had tried to kill myself in the motel room — in the throes of it, still, and vomiting everywhere — I left the motel room and managed to call my best friend on a phone. (We didn’t have cell phones yet — not even close.) I was in very bad straits. I did not want to die. I just wanted a life worth living, which is just so different. And my best friend’s dad managed to find me before it was too late. And afterward, they let me come live in their basement for awhile, until I could figure out something better — like, how to get to New York. And that Christmas, her dad bought me a really, really nice pen because he knew I was a writer. I still have the pen, 41 years later. (And I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve moved since then!)

Okay!!! Yes!!!! I digressed.

Well. Right after I fed the cats this morning, I took the trash out to the garbage bin and lo & behold! Robins everywhere!! Wow. It was so cool. They were in the trees. They were flying around. They were on the dead, brown lawns that will soon be super green. It was so cool to see it.

And then after the cats ate and the sun was really up — there were cats sitting at every window, watching the birds again. They get so tense and alert. I just love when they do that. It assures me that summer will soon be back around, too, and every one of those windows will be wide open onto the beautiful green and very lively world of Muskingum County.

I can’t wait.

So, yes! My upstairs toilet is working again. How cool is that? People are just wonderful.

And also yesterday, a friend of mine — a much younger guy that I’ve blogged about many times in the past. I feel certain we knew each other too well in another life and that we were seriously up to no good in it. Anyway. He’s something like 28 years old in this life. And he just moved to a new place. And I wanted to give him a gift but I didn’t want to just give him a plant or something like that, right? I wanted to give him something that would imply that life was awesome and stars are always exploding somewhere.

So I gave him something of mine that I really loved. It’s a very nice (and it was actually expensive) traveling martini kit. It is really the coolest thing. In a little locked leather case. But it’s meant for two. I didn’t buy it for myself — an old flame bought it for me. A man I had many, many vodka martinis with. Many Chesterfield cigarettes with.  And did a whole lot of the other stuff with him, too.  I took really good care of that little martini kit, though. I used to dream that one day, I would fall in love for real and we would travel first class on the Orient Express to Istanbul, maybe on our wedding night or something equally thrilling, and we’d make really  good use of the traveling martini kit.

Not that I think dreams ever really die, but it doesn’t seem super likely to happen. And I don’t really drink anymore, least of all vodka martinis. And I thought — man, this young guy has his whole incredible life ahead of him. Even if he doesn’t ever want to go to Istanbul on the Orient Express, well, a full moon over some amazing starlit field here in the wilds of the Hinterlands is more than good enough when love is involved. Plus, he drinks like a fish. So hopefully he’ll find some pretty girl to love who also drinks like a fish and, voila! He will already have the suave Martini Kit of Love to bring along with him.

Okay!! I gotta scoot. Booty Core awaits!!! Have a wonderful Monday, wherever you are in the world,gang! Thanks for visiting. I love you guys. See ya.

“The Criminal Kind”

You got a criminal mind
You got criminal looks
Boy you better look out
You’re gonna get hooked

Don’t you ever feel guilty
When you come up short
Man you better be careful
You’re gonna get caught

‘Cause you’re the criminal kind
You’re the criminal kind
Man what you gonna do?
Where you gonna hide?
They’re callin’ you a sickness, disease of the mind
Man what you gonna do?
You’re the criminal kind

Don’t you ever get tired?
Don’t you ever want to quit?
Yeah it’s been a long time, and you still don’t fit
Dog tags on the mirror, hangin’ down from a chain
Give up little sister, this ain’t gonna change

Yeah, and that little girl you used to know
Just don’t come around no more
Now she ain’t there to watch the door
She don’t wanna die in no liquor store

I hope they all made money, I hope they all get rich
Yeah, I hope they give hell, to every son-of-a-bitch
That put a man on the carpet
Or stuck him out on the line
Whatever let him get a taste of the criminal life

‘Cause you’re the criminal kind
You’re the criminal kind
Man what you gonna do?
Where you gonna hide?
They’re callin’ you a sickness, disease of the mind
Man what you gonna do?
You’re the criminal kind

c – 1981 Tom Petty