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  April 17, 2004


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April 17, 2004 - Saturday

Finger Blisters

Rain today giving me a welcome break from loading steel into our newest dumpster. Yesterday I got my burned motorcycle trailer part way through the dumpster door but had to give up when it got stuck half way in. Wasnít looking forward to dealing with that today. (Dumped the burned motorcycle in last month's load.)

Catherine has four new baby chicks that she carries everywhere with her. If she keeps in constant contact with the babies, they imprint on her and then follow her everywhere when they grow up. Makes it easier when we let the chickens roam around the property. When itís time to put them to bed, they let her pick them up. (Yep, these are pets, not food chickens.) She even takes them to work where they follow her around the halls of the SDSU Geology department. Catherine studied animal behavior before she ended up in geology.


Back in the early 60ís my brother was in a high school rock & roll band. This was before the Beatles, during a time when surf music was the rage. They werenít bad for a high school band and they played a lot of Ventures tunes. When Barry went to college, his electric guitars stayed behind and I spent hours banging away on those things. By that time it was a different era and the music I was interested in didnít require much skill to play. I never took lessons but when youíre just trying to imitate the squealing feed-back of Jimi Hendrix, it doesnít require a lot of study. I learned a few chords and got to a point where I could sometimes follow along when listening to my favorite albums. The Beatles were (and are) my favorite group but at that time I was also enthralled with the Jefferson Airplane and groups like the Who. Iíd play their records, crank the amplifier up to distortion level and try to follow along with the music. If I had turned off the record player I donít think anyone would have recognized the tunes I was trying to play. I did that for years and Iím amazed that my parents put up with it. (Let alone the neighbors)

My brother had good taste in guitars and, as I recall, I was playing on top quality Gibson and Fender models. They were difficult times and those guitars played an important roll in distracting me from some emotional problems I was having during the late 60ís and 70ís.

During the last ten years Iíve been having a reoccurring dream where Iím back in my bedroom playing those guitars. I suppose itís some sort of pathetic unconscious attempt at recapturing my youth but the feeling is nostalgic and comforting. On Monday I gave in and stopped by the Guitar Center and picked up a Taylor acoustic 110 model. Itís an entry level instrument though the Taylor brand is recognized as being first-rate and I ended up spending about $500.  A far cry from my no-name pawn shop model that burned up in the fire. This time Iím taking the time to practice a little more seriously. Iím learning the notes and studying along with a beginners guitar lesson DVD. And yes, Iíve got blisters on my fingers.



April 29, 1968 Ė Sunday

Itís been so long since I wrote that Iím out of practice. My problem is that I just donít have any free time. I work everyday except Sunday and even thatís not definite. With my job and school I donít have a spare minute.

Iíve been stripping the paint off my Model ĎAí and Iíve been trying to prepare it for a coat of primer. I then hope to have it restored to the authentic paint job it had in the 30ís. Besides that and working at the vet hospital, Bill and I have been cutting lawns to earn some spare change.

Recently at the hospital someone brought in a puppy that they couldnít keep. She is so cute I couldnít resist and took her home before anyone else had a chance. I didnít even ask mother or father about it, I just brought her into the house and set her on the floor where they were having cocktails. What a dog. Within two minutes she had them charmed and they were thinking up names for her. Sheís a cocker spaniel mixed with poodle and she looks just like that dog on TV.

In the past few months although Iíve felt tired, Iíve also felt much less depressed. Iíve been feeling surer of myself and I havenít been filled with that overwhelming fear I have of people. I guess itís because Iíve acquired the attitude of not giving a damn about anyone or anything. That may seem like a bad attitude but it does wonders for my personality. I was so afraid of what other people thought that I would shrivel up when ever I met someone. Iím still shy but now I have a little more self confidence.

In spite of all the work, Iíve also had some good times in the past few months. Ron and I tried to break into an abandoned house a few weeks ago. Itís supposed to be haunted and a couple of other people came along with their ouiegee board so we could communicate with spirits. What a ridiculous time that was. It was the middle of the night and we were making all sorts of racket trying to climb up a tree to get in an upstairs window. I ended up slipping and landed right between the legs
on a branch . Man that hurt. We could see we were getting no where and finally decided to give up before someone called the police. We werenít going to do any damage. Just goofing off for the hell of it.

School has been pretty easy this year and Iíve been getting by without doing much work. Iím especially enjoying my English class though, what with all my side jobs, Iíve lost all interest in academics. Iím not even trying to get into a good college and it looks like Iíll be going to junior college here in San Diego.

A few weeks ago we had an earthquake and it was pretty wild. It was the strongest one Iíve ever felt and quite exciting. Oh yeah, Ron and I also snuck into an abandoned nursery near the vet hospital so we could take a look at some marijuana plants one of the guys at school is growing. Turned out to be just one small plant hidden in the weeds.

Well Iíve left out a lot so I guess Iíll have to start writing more often and keep these notes up to date



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