The Whistler's Dream

Everybody needs a dream...
Mine is to go to Oklahoma and play whistles for The Pioneer Woman. (Having been invited, not in a "creepy stalker" kind of way, for the record.) Heck, I'd play in a pup tent in the backyard for the joy of the cows and critters. What can I say? I'm a fan.
Everybody needs a dream...

Random Fluffy Foto!

Random Fluffy Foto!
Writing in bed, and Beka editing by ear. Really. The ear typed some letters. Really.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Father Daughter Banquet 2008

It's that time again - WCSG's Father-Daughter Banquet. I can't even remember how long I've been playing at this event, but I love it every year. Seeing the dads and daughters all "fancied up" and having a special evening is such a treat. Since I have 98% of my music memorized, I've got the best seat in the house for some serious people watching, and it's a hoot!

It's especially fun to watch what happens when I pick up a really big whistle - the word kind of spreads on my side of the room in a wave, as people get tapped on the shoulder and told, "look at that thing he's playing!" If I don't pay attention to business, I could make a funny noise from laughing through the whistle. The biggest reaction was when I picked up my bass recorder and played "The Rose" - the wave of heads turning to look at that big monster was enough to raise a stiff breeze! :-D (and, a number of dads and daughters walked by my little area, taking a good long look at the bass, and noticing that it's taller than some of the daughters looking at it...)

2 other fun things about last night...

1) Watching Lee Geysbeek (a.k.a. "Wally") walking around with his granddaughter. He's SO old... :-D

2) Playing "Remember When It Rained" in honor of Hannah, who labored so long at Father-Daughter past. This one's for you, dearheart!

Oh - and if I can get one, I'll post a picture of the AMAZING new vest Vicki made for me. Looks great with my tux shirt, and it's very VERY shiny purple!!!

Ok - one down, one more tonight. :-D

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Shuffle Post *A.D.D. Content*

*The following is a Shuffle Post - or what happens when a person with ADD blogs... the brain is set on "shuffle" so who knows what might get included. Continuity or any sort of sense is not guaranteed - read at your own risk...*

*** Watched the Fifth Element Sunday night, and I realized that I feel like Leeloo in the scene where she enters the word WAR into her screen, and is looking at all these images... When reading the news, I often get a little overwhelmed at all the terrible things reported. Yikes-a-Roni. Doesn't mean that we don't need to know what is going on in the world - just that sometimes I need to detox a bit from it.

*** Loveapalooza 2008 is now history, and it was a HOOT! A fun time was had by all! Thanks to everyone who came out and joined us!!

*** Ezri was in a cuddle mood this morning, which happens rarely. She's motivated by play, not by affection. So, when she gets in the mood to be petted, I always enjoy it.

*** Vicki left the house with both sets of keys today, so I'm gonna be a little late for work. :-D OK - a LOT late for work.

*** Work on the 10th season of Down Gilead Lane has begun, and I'm reminded again just how good God is. I LOVE getting to work on the show, and always feel unworthy and unqualified for the task. But here I am - a post-production editor for DGL, and loving every minute of it. (except for putting in footsteps - that's a little tedious... still fun, but tedious)

*** Two gigs this week with Jeremy - tomorrow night at The Black Rose, and Saturday night at the Whiskey Lounge. Not too sure about that last one - but Jeremy goes where the Lord opens doors, so we'll see what He has in store. :-D

*** The new bass Vicki got me for Christmas is AMAZING!!! I was thinking about that Sunday as we were doing How Great Is Our God, and I was adding some little fretless melodies in some of the quieter parts. Thanks, hon - I love this bass!!!

*** Getting ready for WCSG's Father Daughter Banquet. I'm doing background music for it again this year. Always one of my favorite gigs - fun to watch the dads and daughters have a special night together!

*** The bariatric surgery progress continues - we're waiting to see what Dr. Kemeter wants to do, since our insurance doesn't cover the procedure he would like to do. We can appeal, if there's a strong enough case for it, but it's up to him. The procedure he was wanting to do is a tougher operation, and the maintenance is much harder (in essence, you have to do all of your follow-up as perfectly as possible - not much room for error...) but he compares it to the difference between hitting a nail with a hammer or a sledgehammer. The other procedure usually results in about 70% loss of excess body weight. The procedure he'd like to do usually results in about 90%. I'd rather use the sledgehammer, but we'll see...

*** I'm a little glum about my new recumbent bike. Because of steering issues, I've fallen off of it three or four times, with the last one (in October) really doing a number on my right knee. We're going to try changing the steering and hopefully that will help, but I'm really afraid that this bike might not work for me. If that was the case, I'd have wasted about $2800 and would have a pile of regrets high enough to blot out the sun. Sunny days like today make me LONG for being able to get out and ride, but the bike scares me - having fallen so severly, I'm scared to try again. And afraid that I should have went for a trike instead of this one. Lots of doubts, fears, and places for the Enemy to play.

*** God is real. He makes Himself known in so many ways. But worship is still a tough thing for me. I haven't been back to the place of being able to really worship with my bass since before the layoff - I'm back to where it's just mechanical, with my heart kind of numb. Had a few glimmers of heartfelt worship last Sunday, and our ever-patient Father continues to work in my cold heart. My head is what acknowledges Him these days, because my heart still can't. It takes time, but that's ok - He has a lot of time and doesn't give up. :-D

There. My brain feels a lot lighter, having dumped so many random thoughts. :-D (Not that it was all that heavy to begin with - Vicki is the brains of this household. I'm just here for comic relief. :-D )

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Really REALLY nervous...

OK - I'll admit it. I'm more than a little nervous. Tonight is the first Loveapalooza show, and before 7pm I need to...

Decide if I'm happy with the pendants I have to give away, or throw one more thing on the plate and make a new one or two;

Load not only my instruments and such in the van, but also the jewelry, the extra schtuff that we have for the special stuff we're doing tonight, and anything else I might have forgotten;

(the loading happens at the back door, which involves three tall steps - murder on my knees...)

Making sure that the songs for tonight are not only in place on my laptop, but also are ready on my portable MP3 player, so that if one fails, I have the backup ready;

Before loading the van, first unloading extra equipment that isn't needed, with many trips up and down the stairs;

Take a shower and get all purty for tonight;

Oh... and put in as many hours as possible at CBH.

All of this on a tummy that still isn''t quite over a little bug thing that kept me home Tuesday. Yup - I'm nervous. :-/

Monday, February 11, 2008

Loveapalooza 2008!

Just in case you read this, but don't get my local gig mailings, there's a fun thing happening this week: Loveapalooza 2008! If you look at the upcoming gigs list to the right, the first two (2/14 and 2/15) are the dates for Loveapalooza.

So, what in the name of Fats Waller is it? Glad you asked. :-D I'll be doing some great music for Valentines those nights - nice enough to make the ladies smile, but not gushy enough to make the gents retch. Just right. Good background for you and your sweetie (or facsimile thereof) to have a nice conversation with. Or play a game. Or just sit, sip a beverage and hold hands. :-D

There will, however, be a couple of EXTRA SPECIAL features to make this night... um... Extra Special.

Win one of Cal's handcrafted wire-wrapped pendants! Enter your name in the drawing and at 8:30 we'll be giving away a pendant, handmade from a stone and Sterling Silver wire. Should be a nice treat for some fortunate person.

(I'll also bring along some extra jewelry pieces, in case you'd like to pick up some goodies... :-D)

Will Cal play "My Heart Will Go On"? YOU DECIDE! We'll be taking a vote on a song that's either one of the greatest love songs ever, or the song most likely to induce abrupt illness at fifty paces. Make your voice be heard.

So, this Thursday in Hudsonville, and Friday in Rockford, join us for Loveapalooza 2008!

BY THE WAY... if you'd like to get on the list for future emails about places I'm playing, all ya need to do is let me know ( and I'll add you. THANKS!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Basic rant post...

Why is it that things are so dawg blamed expensive?

We've been looking at remodeling our bathroom. At one time, we had been hoping to build a new house, but the layoff of '06 brought those plans to a screeching halt. So, we've accepted the idea that we'll be in our 100+ year old house for, well, probably the rest of our lives. Kind of a bummer, but not all bad. It's a house. :-D

So, our amazingly small bathroom is what we got. How small? I've yet to see someone's "small" bathroom that isn't bigger than ours. When you stand in front of the biffy (with it behind you), your hands are already in the sink ready to wash up. Our challenge is to take a house that never was intended to be accessible or convenient and make it such.

For the bathroom, we are (or were) looking at a walk-in tub. One of those little dealies that have a door and a seat. You come in, sit down, close the door, and fill the tub. Can be fitted with hydrotherapy jets, so it helps arthritis and poor circulation. Good stuff...

Except that they are WAAAAY expensive. We just had a presentation in our very own living room (not at our request - they simply kept asking until we told them yes just to shut them up), and when the final number for the tub, installation, finishing, etc. was all added up...

Over 20G. Yup. Over 20K. Five figures. Mucho moolah.

I'm sure it's worth it. Lifetime warranty on the seal, experienced people to install and repair the thing. Perfect features, steel understructure to support the tub, all that jazz. But it ain't gonna happen in my lifetime.

Would it be good for us? Undoubtedly. This would be a tub that would work well for us for the rest of our lives. And the warranty lasts that long. And, if by some plan of the Father we ended up in a different house, it'd go with us. The hydrotherapy would be excellent for my legs and overall health. It'd be perfect.

But, it ain't gonna happen. Not any way I can see. And that's a little frustrating. :-D So, why does the good stuff have to be so dawg blamed expensive?... Because it wouldn't be the good stuff if it didn't cost that much? I guess...

I'm off to collect pop cans, look for spare change in the car, and search the want ads to find a job. :-D