Thursday, May 31, 2007

do what He says!!!!

It sometimes doesn't matter if we're completely proficient in one thing or if we spent years training for something else, the fact o' the matter is God might direct us in a totally different direction in order to use us to help further His kingdom!

"But, God," you might think, "this isn't what I'm good at. This isn't what I studied for. Why? I'm not sure I wanna do this."

Ummm, is that for you to decide? No. What someone's always gotta do is keep an open mind and -- be available. be adaptable. be acceptable.

Zilch Day 2

i don't like these days.

shin still hurts.

this poison-ivy-ish dealie on my left hand is waning but still uncomfortable...

can barely tie my shoes. have stopped cooking dinner for a few days so i don't get any dried pink calamine flaking off into what i'm preparing. not that it would kill me, maybe give me cancer, who knows, but i'm just resting.

so i think today qualifies as an Zero Day Due to Injury(s.)

Been Waitin' For This One...

I saw this film about three years ago and I've been wantin' and waitin' to see it again since then. Finally got to...


It's happening in hundreds of places across the globe -- a band is trying to make it big. Alex Proyas (The Crow) directs this story of one such band.

Kick Gurry is the Lead Singer, Brent Stiller the Lead Guitar, Pia Miranda the Bass Player, and Chris Sadrinna is on Drums and together they're practicing their music, waiting and hoping for their first gig. One of these days they just know they're going to have a recording contract and will be playing in front of throngs of fans.

Along for the ride is their seemingly good-for-nothing manager (played by Russell Dykstra) and (Maya Stange as) the band's unofficial videographer and girlfriend to one (and then another) of the band members.

Aside from the music there are lives to be led at the very same time. Trials and tribulations all around that are both funny as well as tragic. Proyas' direction is quirky and definitely not sleepy or boring. His use of very non-traditional editing techniques as well as the addition of on-screen graphics and text help to make this an interesting time. Standing out in particular amongst all of that is two drug related sequences and the depression-related hallucinations of Joe the Lead Guitar Player. The primary story here is really that of the relationships between these people and the big time producer they seek help from. Music is just what everything revolves around. The plots are not new or fresh and the lives of these characters are not examined on any deep or very meaningful level... but the writing and directing is fun.

I liked this movie. For one, I'm infatuated with Australian cinema. And for two, not every film has to be intellectually stimulating to be a decent time spent in front of the screen. What's here is completely coherent and decently acted plus it's got a terrific soundtrack. Seriously, what more do you need?

(This should, however, receive perhaps just 2 stars, getting knocked down for the sexual situations, some nudity and the drug use.)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Zilch Day Problems

I'm thinking maybe I should keep track of Zilch Days and Zilch Days Due To Injury.

It might encourage me to get out more.

I don't really need the encouragement, though.

I don't think Zilch Days will eclipse Running Days but at the rate I'm going currently, seeing more Zilch Days than Hiking Days would be in effect and that would definitely make me wanna get out hiking more.

Of course there are times when Injury Rest is a must... which is sort of today.

Shin still has minor pain. Rest more and more? Or keep running to allow the leg muscles/tissues to get used to 19-20 minutes?

Also, and this is neat, I picked up some poisonous oils from something on the trail and its affecting the whole back of my left hand. Right now in one area I'm picking up a lot of branches and moving them and in another area I'm pulling a few thin, growing-very-tall weeds where they're just plain annoying. So in my contact with all that, one of them, which was not poison oak or poison ivy, is poisonous enough to affect me. Now, I cannot make a fist without tremendous effort and the fingers feel tight when doing so and almost painful. From my wrist down to most of each finger is covered with a layer of pink calamine lotion. I pretty much can't use the hand. Luckily the best position for my fingers is bent like they're around a tennis ball so the tips can hit the keys of the keyboard okay. Trying to tie my shoes -- not easy.

I've had this problem once before. Like two years ago and down here in South Carolina is exactly where it happened when visiting my dad. Same trail.

I'm not surprised. Not angry. Just an inconvenience. An itchy inconvenience.

So, yay, another Zilch Day Due To Injury. Joy.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

When God Talks, Listen!

Matthew had every right to put Mary away. She cheated on him! Well, that was what he thought until God told him what was what. From that point on he knew he was to be the dad to one very special kid!

Play Misty For Me

Back out for another run tonight. Evening is night, right? It's almost night. If the sun's still above the horizon, that's not night. As I'm out there it dips below the horizon, stars become visible, but the sky doesn't get completely black before I walk back in the door. Still there's a tint of blue and it's not fully dark yet. I suppose I'm out there from the latest part of the afternoon right through most of the evening, just about to night.

ANYWAY... my two minor problems felt better, good enough to feel safe from further injury. I probably woulda been safe yesterday but twas good to have the rest. Even with the rest I wanted to get back out there. Now that I'm back from this evening's run I feel GREAT... except the shin problem persists. Not happy about that.


About 70 minutes on the trail...

Running Time:
19 minutes & 20 seconds (+8)

music...

Ellis Marsalis
from Ruminations in New York (2005)
Homecoming
When We First Met
Zee Blues

Time For a Friend
-benefit for Kevin Dunn-
Wolfgang's, San Francisco

Bob Weir acoustic w/David Nelson & Tom Stern: The Race Is On°
Bobby with the Whitey Melvin Quartet:
Fever°, Misty°, Twilight Time°
Kingfish with Bob Weir:
City Girls,
The Winners, Festival
Bobby solo acoustic:
Heaven Help The Fool

This Time Forever
Desolation Row°
Throwing Stones

° = First Time Played by Bobby. I'm not sure why but this is represents only slightly more than half the tunes with Bobby. These may have been broadcast on the Grateful Dead Hour and that could also explain why not all of it is in order... I put them in order here but on the recording they're slightly rearranged. One of these days I've gotta see if all the songs exist 'cause this is a cool little show. Fever is excellent, done in a reggae style so completely unlike later times played by Bob & Rob and Ratdog. Misty is pure Bobby Lounge Singer. Very interesting. Desolation Row was apparently a crowd selection. It had been in the Dead's repetoire for only about a month but he nailed it here; so sweet. All around some pretty neat tunes, groovy stuff, fantastic acoustic Weir, loved it all and almost 19½ minutes worth made for a great run.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Monday Night Music

For my listening pleasure this Monday night...

Ratdog ~ 11/7/97
Riviera Theatre, Chicago

Walkin' Blues Saint of Circumstance,
Queen Jane Approximately, West L.A. Fadeaway,
K.C. Moan (Bob, Rob, Matt),
Heaven Help The Fool (Bob & Rob),
Juke (without Bobby?), Little Red Rooster,
The Winners Easy To Slip Supplication Jam
Bass (w/St. Stephen & Satisfaction), Drums,
Corinna Jam Sugar Magnolia
Encore: Johnny B. Goode

Classic Ratdog. 1997 is classic? Well, yeah, it is! In the evolution of this band, this is darn near ancient. In a way, it's the equivalent of the Dead back in the late 60's in that neither band had a very large catalog of tunes to play at the time. The selections Bobby decided on came from a rather small list. It was a slowly growing list but compared to 2007 numbers, the choices were limited. Did that matter? No way! This is an excellent example of RD at their best that Fall. They'd been on the road for three weeks with only one show left after this one so they've had a lot of shows to really get their sound as tight as can be.

From the opening notes of Walkin' Blues it was clear the Chicago crowd wanted some Dead that night! Of course this wasn't the Grateful Dead anymore and everyone knew that. This was Ratdog. The music they were giving the fans a little more than two years after Jerry's passing isn't the same anymore... but still to so many in attendance, these songs represent the Dead and all that was great about them. Even in their presentation here, because they came from one Mr. Bob Weir, well, this was some of the freakin' sweetest live music on Earth.

With Saint of Circumstance kickin' in as Walkin' Blues wound down, it was clear this was gonna be a fun night! Cruisin' through Dylan's Queen Jane and Jerry's West L.A., it came time for half the band to take a little break while Bobby, Rob, & Matt did a nice acoustic K.C. Moan followed by Bobby's Heaven Help The Fool. A raucus Juke warmed the crowd up again for a howlin' good time on Rooster, a tune which always seemed to be a 1st Set crowd pleaser at Dead shows. Winners-> Easy To Slip-> Supplication Jam made a smooth slide right to Wasserman's bass solo. Since it never made a GD comeback and to this point in time Ratdog wasn't playing it and no other Dead member-related bands existed to play it, this one-man instrumental rendition was music to the ears! Following that Rob went into his standard playing of The Stones' Satisfaction which meant crowd sing-along time. The two, Wasserman & the crowd, worked nearly perfectly in time together. What a fun night and there's still some more to go!

After a brief Jay Lane drum solo, the band came back out and cranked into one of the Dead's most-hated new tunes in '94 and '95 -- Corinna. Ya know what, this is a song that needed the Dead to die so that the tune could live. Bobby really makes it his own with Ratdog the way it just couldn't be done with Jerry & Phil and a legion of Grateful Dead fans, some of whom go all the way back to the early 70's and late 60's. Half the Dead crowd couldn't embrace Corinna. I think since Jerry's death, the song is better appreciated done by Ratdog.

As Corinna slid into a sort of holding pattern Jam, the crowd got antsy knowing something special was coming. Talk about appreciating a great song from Ratdog, out of the Jam came those oh so familiar first notes of Sugar Mags! The crowd danced, the crowd sighed for Jerry, the crowd loved every note of the end of this show! After a standard Johnny B. Goode encore, the folks who filled the hall this evening dispersed into the Chicago night, pleased, blissed, filled with a great couple hours of music from the new Leader of the Band and his new gang of players.

With Jerry gone over two years at this point, it's just not the same anymore... but it is, but it's not. It's changed. Many Heads simply could not get into this music. Many did. And few knew at the time how important this tour was as part of the post-GD years. The crowds came out over the summer for the wang dang doodle that was the 1997 Furthur Festival. The bands playing that tour did their best to fill the gap that was left with no Dead for a second summer in a row. Phil made an appearance at Shoreline; he knew that there was more music to be played. But it was this Fall Tour that really proved the fans were still hungry for Dead tunes and not just from some ordinary cover band and not just during the summer season. Soon enough Phil & Bobby got together for the very first Phil & Friends show followed shortly thereafter by another Ratdog tour. The bus surely was rollin' again and it was only pickin' up steam. Fans were hungrier and hungrier and this night in Chicago was a beautiful appetizer of what was to come.

Zilch Day

Day o' Rest.

I've got two very minor strains, one on each leg. Wanna make sure I don't make the situation worse by damaging what's already ailing causing me to be off the trail for days and days. Would be bad.

So today's a welcome Zero Day, sort of welcome, I mean I'm not exactly happy I'm hurt but it's not bad. At least my desire to be out there getting exercise isn't ailing. That's going strong. I know I'll be back out there as soon as possible.

Blue Twisted Madness





Bizarre might be a good word to describe this erotic thriller. Independent Japanese director Shinya Tsukamoto takes the viewer on an intense and surreal ride that will not soon be forgotten. The story centers around a woman (Asuka Kurosawa) who's longing to connect sexually with her husband. Their marriage has become lifeless leading Rinko into a compromising situation involving a patient of hers. What follows is nothing less than completely strange. The black and white cinematography with a blue tint added in post-production definitely adds to the dreary half reality, half insanity that seemingly revolves around and around each other through every minute of this film. At times Tsukamoto takes us to a place that'll either blow the viewer away or leave one feeling as lost as John Edwards in a middle class neighborhood.

While many laud this film as some sort of cinematic work of art, I will agree it's interesting but the subject matter, as it was presented, is purely objectionable. Because of that this is really a horrible movie hardly worth watching.

Transportation

Flipped on Music Choice's Retro-Active Channel
for a little while this morning.
The very first song
wasn't Long Song or Lullaby or Fascination Street
from The Cure's 1989 album Disintegration...
...it was the title track.
Très cool.
From the very first note that entered my ears,
I was mesmorized
How long's it been since I heard this?
At least a few years.
So what's the big whoop?
Man,
Disintegration is just another album that qualifies
as one o' the best ever.
Yeah,
but bigger than that was I was frozen in my chair,
transported back in time,
to another place,
when life was so simple,
so fun,
so different,
so wild.
It's pretty messed up...
or am I just hallucinating again?
that 1989-1990 seems like not so long ago.
But it was.
Except in moments like this that I had
when I was sitting here in whatever year this is
but in my mind,
at least in my memory,
I was back in New Jersey
oh those many years ago.
This cassette was
(almost)
permanently in that tape case in the car...
in my
1980 Jeep Wagoneer
ski & surf-mobile
and later
in my '76 land yacht
station wagon surf-mobile.
It was listened to on the way to see
The Cure at Giants Stadium
(with Love & Rockets and The Pixies opening!)
-- their very first North American show
on the tour for the new album.

It was listened to on so many 2 hour drives
on the Garden State Parkway
to and from
Long Beach Island,
as well as Point Pleasant & Seaside Heights.
This album was high school,
especially the summer before senior year.
What a totally different world that was
from where I am today.
That was a special time,
so true it was.
Robert Smith was a huge part of it.
Always the Deadhead,
that's who I was,
who'd never be taken for one who really dug
The Cure
or Depeche Mode or INXS or R.E.M.
or whatever other band on tape
I could squeeze into that tape case under the seat,
that tape case sitting right in the middle
and ready for reaching into.
It was probably The Cure who was so central
to who I was musically
(aside from the Dead.)
Then their album Wish came out.
Again, played a gazillion times
just like Disintegration,
and eventually the two albums' listening pleasure evened out,
both getting the Play button just as much as the other.
Soon another concert,
this time for the 1992 Wish Tour.
Home for the summer
from the University of Utah,
once again spending almost all of July & August
down at the Jersey Shore,
it was announced they'd be playing one more show.
After two months playing most major U.S. cities
(and maybe a few up north in Canada, eh,)
there'd be one final North American show.
Where?
Duh, New York City, of course.
(Queens, not Manhattan, but still NYC.)
Right next to (or very close by) Shea Stadium...
Pretty cool.

But for some reason,
like two weeks beforehand,
the show was moved.
Oh well.
If I remember correctly there was word that it would be at
The Ritz.
The Ritz?
WOW!!
The Cure in a relatively small club rather than a huge setting?
How cool would that be?
How could that be?!
It couldn't be true.
Maybe just a rumor?
It wasn't true.
(There's no way it coulda been true,
they could never have gotten everyone
who already bought a ticket
into that small space.)
So, a little further east we had to go,
to Lawng Eyelind...
Uniondale, Long Island...
Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Ohhhh, mannnn, it was thought,
more on the disapproving side
but still thankful there'd be a concert to see.
Better in Nassau than nothin'!
Twas all General Admission
and a great show my best friend and I saw,
just like we did three years before at the Meadowlands.
And it was that night,
on the way back to Oakland,
when I first drove over the Brooklyn Bridge.
Bumpy road leading up to the bridge itself
is about all I remember...
of course, also the majesty of
the World Trade Center
and pretty much the whole New York City skyline!
(But then again,
twas nothing I'd never seen before.
Growing up near NYC,
it was a sight as common the back of my hand...
but still awesome every time!)
Wait.
Over the East River and through the city
without stopping in?
Not sure why but that's what happened.
Blew right through
lower Manhattan,
straight to
the Holland Tunnel
and home maybe 30 minutes later.
Boom.
When the next song after Disintegration started,
I was free to leave the trance it had me in.
How come Marty McFly
was able to go Back In Time
but we can't?
Hello?!
What's up with that?
I'd love to relive all of 1989 & 1990,
perhaps '91 & '92, as well...
exactly as it happened.
With all that was great
I'd take again what there was that was bad
just to enjoy those moments again.
Why not?
God Bless memories, I suppose.
... [shaking my head in ponderance...]
...[reflective speechlessness...]
Good times.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

What's With All The Begats?

Why? Why is the New Testament (King James Version, of course) kicked off with Matthew giving us more begatting? There was so much of that stuff (that (nearly) everyone snoozes) through in the Old Testament. Matthew, what's the purpose?

Pushin' Forward (But Not Back!)

A few minutes before hittin' the trail yesterday, I turned my ankle runnin' to see where the heck my dog went since he got through an open gate. He didn't get far, I knew he wouldn't drift any significant distance from this house, not at his age. But in my scurrying I turned my ankle enough to know I did some very minor damage. My run went fine but after getting home it was hurting. Alright, I suppose I'm an idiot for running but I didn't think it was that bad.

Got out again this evening for another good run. Smooth as silk... the run itself was. Coming back was something else. Why no pain during the run but pain hiking back? The ankle that I turned hurt and another problem popped up on the other leg, with my right shin. I guess it's just a case of shin splints. But why now? In all my running I have only felt this pain very minorly and only one single time a couple months ago or so. Now it's bad enough to probably make me rest tomorrow and not just rest but try to stay off my feet as much as possible. This bites.

Trail Time -- 83 minutes

Running Time -- 19 minutes & 12 seconds
....(up 12 from yesterday)

tunes...

Louis Armstrong

Let's Do It (Let's Fall In Love)
Sweethearts On Parade
White Christmas



(1990)




Wooden Jesus
Four Walled World
Times Of Trouble
Reach Down
Say Hello 2 Heaven
Call Me A Dog
Your Savior
Pushin' Forward Back
All Night Thing
Hunger Strike

Quite simply one of the best albums ever! I said the following after listening to Carlos Santana not too long ago -- this album really puts into perspective the contrast between mediocre music that I listen to and the really good stuff. Right now my desire to try other music is so strong that it could be awhile before I narrow my list down to selections that I know I'm gonna dig. When that happens, this'll make the cut, it should go without saying... and then like the NCAA basketball playoffs going from 65 teams to 32 then to the Sweet 16 to the Elite and then the Final Four, Temple of the Dog's gonna keep making that cut down to what could theoretically be a list of Top 100 Albums... but there's a long way to go before that happens. In the meantime it'll be more sampling and more listening to stuff I know I like, like this one. Chris Cornell and Eddie Vedder shine on these songs. Mike McCready's guitar work is often sounding very much like that heard on Pearl Jam's Ten which was released less than a year after Temple of the Dog. One of my favorite aspects of the music here is it doesn't have very much of a metal sound. This is pure grunge, maybe to my ears, about halfway between loud and fast Soundgarden and mellow Pearl Jam. Just darn good music!

Happy 100th, John Wayne!



The Desert Trail (1935)

John Wayne stars as a rodeo rider seeking his prize money in this B-western from Lone Star Productions. He and his buddy are framed for murder but they're determined to find the real killer and clear their names. They ride horses and shoot guns and the whole thing's a real hoot.

Before The Duke made it big in Hollyweird he did a whole bunch of these smaller pictures. Each one pretty much follows the same formula as a gazillion B-westerns from the 30's. Thankfully John Wayne was hooked up with some decent studios which, for an extra like 60 or 70 production dollars per picture compared to lesser studios, turned out decent, almost hour-long films that make for a short, fun watch. But what's really interesting about this one is, well, uhh, nothing really. It's just a young 27-28 year old Duke versus the older, gruff, tough Duke in so many of his films from the 40's onward. Basically this is just your average B-western. Since it stars John Wayne it definitely gets a slightly higher score than most.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Hoooo, Boy... Tough Today.

After having my previous two runs be wicked shorter than what I've been striving for, twas time to get back to a full length run. And, boy, was that not easy. I'm not sure why but at the end of my run time I was so beat, so much so that I pretty much completely stopped moving for a brief moment, hunched over, hands on knees, the classic, "Oh my God, I'm so glad that's done!!!" while gasping somewhat, seeking to regain some semblance of normalcy. Pure joy, I say with nothing but sarcasm. It really is no wonder why so many millions of Americans would rather sit around and get fat and face fat-related illness later in life -- this running crap ain't easy! I'm sure for a few people it is. Not for me. I'm an athlete but not a runner. I'd rather be roped into and climbing a rock face on a mountain, going straight up... or hiking on a beautiful trail or mountaineering on anything in the Alaska or Brooks Range, or, if you bug me enough, maybe something down in the Lower 48 just so long as there's no yahoo on a cell phone.

Anyway... Trail Time -- 79 minutes

Running Time -- 19 minutes & 5 seconds

music...

Lorrie Morgan - Leave The Light On (1989)Lorrie Morgan

Leave The Light On

1989 debut









He Talks To Me
Five Minutes
It's Too Late (To Love Me Now)
Dear Me
If I Didn't Love You
Out Of Your Shoes
Train Wreck of Emotion
Gonna Leave The Light On
Eight Days a Week -
Far Side of the Road
I'll Take The Memories
Lorrie Morgan - Leave The Light On (1989)

Lorrie Morgan - Leave The Light On (1989 debut)dload @ 256 kbps
Lorrie Morgan - Leave The Light On (1989)


and...


Grateful Dead

a few more from: Go To Heaven


Antwerp's Placebo (The Plumber)
Easy To Love You
Lost Sailor, Saint of Circumstance
Don't Ease Me In

Alright, I'm having a sort of unpleasant time with trying to run to country music. The problem is with so many friggin' mellow ballads. I've come to the conclusion that a medium to faster paced song is easier to pay more attention to in order to pay less attention to how much I'd rather not be running and also how much I just want the run to be over already. I don't like to be thinking, "Alright 1/6 of the way done... 1/3 there... halfway there... 2/3 done, getting closer, one more song after this one..."

It might be helping with discipline, though. It takes me extra work to not just pull up and call the run a Failure. It also takes extra work to keep a good pace when a song is so slow I think snails prefer a more upbeat tempo.

On the bright side, the cover of the Beatles' tune Eight Days a Week is pretty darn barnstompin', hillybilly yokel, kinda bluegrassy country good and made for a great last running song 'cause it made me wanna speed up and finish on a great note, no pun intended. I didn't speed up during the last minute this time but ending my run with something I know that's fast-paced is always a good thing. Five Minutes is pretty good, too, which apparently, and I didn't know this until a moment ago, was her first Number 1 song on the Country charts.

Maybe for running a different order of songs would be preferred. But basically it's a really strong album and she's got a great voice!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Turkey Trot

My dog's doing better. I don't know what the heck was up. On some sound advice I got him some heavy duty worm medicine and that has alleviated his whining crying sound when on his side. He's been sleeping soundly on his side without having to constantly get up and move around looking for some painless comfort. He drinks his water, and is happy to eat biscuits but hasn't touched his food since Monday... but I do believe he is on the mend. I've still gotta monitor him constantly, well, mostly constantly except for the little bit o' time I took to get outside while he's sound asleep.

Got out for another mid-day short run, my second this week. Not as hot as I would have liked for a run of this nature (I'd really dig 90+ degrees!) but it was certainly better to be on the trail than sitting in a chair!!

Saw a couple of turkeys on my way down the trail and the same two on the way back. One had a huge plume (is that what it's called?) of feathers, a classic Thanksgiving decorations looking turkey. Damn me for leaving my rifle in Alaska or else this sucker woulda been mine on the dinner table tonight! Actually, no, I wouldn't blow away a turkey. Reindeer, sure, but I think I'd rather just buy a turkey. In any case... compared to deer, these guys let me get so close, maybe 30 feet away at which point they ducked into the woods. And also unlike deer, they weren't in a huge hurry to get away from me, just ambling away taking their time. Seemed like I almost coulda ran and leap at the big bird and grabbed it 'round the neck, not that I would but maybe if I was starving and in need of some food, hey then ya gotta do what ya gotta do... but I was just out for a run, not grocery shopping!


About 75 minutes on the trail...

Running Time -- just over 10½ minutes

music...




another mix of tunes from his first three albums:

Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J. (1973)
The Wild, The Innocent & The E Street Shuffle (released on 9/11... 1973)
Born To Run (1975)

Night
She's The One
Wild Billy's Circus Story
The E Street Shuffle
Mary Queen of Arkansas
Lost in the Flood
Meeting Across The River
Thunder Road
Kitty's Back
The Angel
For You
Backstreets

Almost more of the same from a few days ago.
Different songs but from the same great albums.
10 stars outta 10 stars.
A+++

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Zilch Dog Day

Holy cow, it's been wacked... should that be whacked? Lower Wacker Drive. Whack-a-Mole. Take your pick, I guess.

When your dog is like a child to you and he starts to cry while laying on his side, you might start to worry like crazy and wonder if he needs to go to the vet.

When he's okay while laying on his stomach, legs extended straight forward, or okay while walking around, what is one to think?

And then, when crying from seemingly being in pain, petting seems to make him fine again -- what's up with that?

Oi vey, ay caramba. Should one be having a cow, man, or just allowing this to play out for a little while to see if it subsides?

Last thing in the world that I wanted to do today was bring him to the vet and possibly have to leave him overnight.

Being away from him for a night, or two, or a week, or two, that can be done -- I can take my mind off him and know he's in good hands while enjoying whatever it is the heck I'm doing while not home, while I'm away from my pup.

BUT if he's in the hospital overnight and I ain't there, he's gonna be quite unhappy and that would kill me, figuratively not literally.

So, I had to spend all day and this gonna continue on into the night, monitoring him, just paying close attention to his movements and sounds. If this gets worse then he's gonna have to go to the after-hours animal hospital... or first thing in the morning he's off to the local vet.

We shall see.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Yuck Zilch Gross Tired

Zero Day. No run. No hike.

Exercise Time = Zilch.

Quite tired especially from washing my dog's rear end. That wiped me out because Cassidy is not one who enjoys standing in a bathtub getting hosed down. Just to get him into the bathroom was a chore... like a two year old pushing a donkey. And then what I had to do was so gross but it needed to be done. Diarrhea and a very furry white dog do not go well together... kind of like Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell starring in the same movie. Second time in less than 2½ days that I've had to get him into hosing position and do this most disgusting job. I just might be the dumbass who caused this when I cooked up for him on Sunday night a whole load of chicken scraps that I've been saving from when I trim down chicken breasts. Giving him chicken scraps from time to time is a treat for him with no problems whatsoever, never once, nope, all's been fine & dandy and he's been one happy camper. But this time I've been saving 'em and I think a pound worth all at once, well... not good. I've just gotta hope he's done with it and gets back to regular so I won't have to go puttin' down old sheets and towels all over where he wants to lay down. Boy, I guess life would be easier without Dillweed but that dillweed has truly been Man's Best Friend and I wouldn't trade him for the world!

Tremendously Unmemorable



Bewitched
(2005)

Mainstream movies that've been released in the past dozen years are, for the most part, movies that I have not yet seen. That doesn't necessarily mean I'm not familiar with standout performances from certain actors and actresses as well as directors and highly acclaimed films that some have made. Though I have not seen any of Nicole Kidman's most recent movies, I do know her work. So seeing her star in this movie had me scratching my head.

Kidman plays Isabel Bigalow who is cast as the new Samantha in a new Bewitched TV series revival. Opposite Isabel is Jack Wyatt, a washed up movie star looking to make a name for himself once again (played by Will Ferrell.) The question is -- why were these two paired together in this movie? Imagine Jerry Garcia doing a song together with Michael Jackson. Weird, ain't it? Well, here Will Ferrell and Nicole Kidman go together kinda maybe like mustard and watermelon. Like dropping a '62 VW Bug engine into a new Ferrari. Like the Pope at an orgy.


Anyway, as Wyatt is looking to regain his A-list star status, Isabel just wants to be as normal as your ordinary average mortal rather than the witch she is. Her dad (Michael Caine) isn't making that easy for her. While the crew of the TV series is casting the new Samantha, Wyatt spots Isabel in a bookstore one day and casts her in the series and subsequently falls in love with him.


Nicole Kidman, I must say, did a good job with the material she was given. She's truly an A-lister herself, a world class actress which is why it's strange to see her in this role. Even though she did a good job, playing Isabel was not her kind of character. And Will Ferrell was okay, his usual goofy self. Still these two who excel in their craft in their own way just didn't work in this.


Also showing up here is a slew of names including Shirley MacLaine, Jason Schwartzman, Kristin Chenoweth, David Alan Grier, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell. But none of them could save this movie from being just a mediocre forgettable film.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Short & Hot

Being in a place that I despise to much can be difficult. There's no doubt that I'd rather be back in my beloved central Alaska working and playing and exploring my 586,000 square mile backyard.

Unfortunately family emergencies happen and I've been down here in South Carolina tending to my ill father's needs. This is the most important thing for me right now. But while I am here, when I can, I'm gonna work on taking advantage of this place the best that I can.

I've decided to end continually striving for a slightly longer run each and every time I head out the door. That is still my main goal but sprinkled in amongst times inching closer to being able to run a marathon, will be some an occasional short run under the direct heat of the midday sun. Oh joy. I hate the heat. So why'm I doin' this? I've gotta strange idea that it'll help me in some way or another. At least I'll be used to running when the Heat Index is between 90° Fahrenheit and, oh, 105 or so. I ain't gonna push myself during these runs, just gonna keep 'em short and sweet -- 10-15 minutes takin' it relatively easy with sufficient ice water to sip on just afterwards.

Today wasn't quite 90, more like 85, but here's #1...


Trail Time: 74 minutes

Running Time -- just about 10 minutes

for my listening pleasure...




a mix of tunes from his first three albums:

Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J. (1973)
The Wild, The Innocent & The E Street Shuffle (released on 9/11... 1973)
Born To Run (1975)

It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City
New York City Serenade
Does This Bus Stop at 82nd Street?
Incident on 57th Street
Tenth Avenue Freeze Out
4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)
Spirit in the Night
Jungleland
Growin' Up
Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)

Tain't almost nuttin' better than a little Springsteen! Perhaps someday I'll expound on these albums but really there's no need. Just some o' my favorite music, hands down, nuff said!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Zilch Day

No run. No hike.

What's my excuse? Hmmm... I was going to run but the day got a little crazy. You see, an Air Force cargo plane was transporting an elephant but due to lack of proper funding from Congress to maintain the fleet as well as it should be maintained, the cargo bay door failed mid-flight and out slid the not-so-well-secured elephant. Thankfully the crew had prepared for such an emergency by attaching a pachydernm approved parachute for use by elephants. It deployed okily dokily landing the Asian beast safely in my backyard. But as the package landed, it spooked a Grizzly bear who was wandering past. The elephant broke loose and the two started to fight somethin' fierece. While all this was happening I was resting my hamstring yet again but I got up lickity split, grabbed my camera, and started snapping pics of all this commotion. I really wanted to film it to send it into CNN's I-Report dealie so I could get my name on TV 'cause afterall, that would make life complete. But due to my lack of filming device, I had to take plain ol' boring pictures. After elephant & grizzly settled things with a handshake and decided to go grab a milkshake, I discovered no batteries in the camera.

D'OH!




It should be worth noting that I'm currently still in South Carolina taking care of my dad... so what was a Grizzly doing on the loose here?!?

Sunday, May 20, 2007

19 down, 221 to go. Ugh.

Just another fine & dandy run this evening. Slowly pushing toward 20.

Trail Time: 72 minutes

Running Time:
19 minutes & a second
(up 9)

tunes...


her 2001 debut album...

released just a month before 9/11... ouch.



Second Nature
I Believe In You
Serious
Better Than I
Touch Of Faith
It's All Good
No Less
Up
Home
Do They See Jesus In Me?

+

Grateful Dead

4 songs from: Go To Heaven (1980)



Feel Like a Stranger

Althea
Far From Me
Alabama Getaway
There's a (sort of) recent song from Joy Williams' latest album that I really like. For the life o' me I can't think of its name but it spent awhile last year at the top of the Christian music charts. So I thought I'd give her a listen starting with what she first put out which was this album from 2001.

Unfortunately this was not the most enjoyable... and that might be being kinda kind. I got the feeling this was music made to grab the Britney Spears kind of audience, sort of? Twas, I do believe, aimed at teen girls. The songs so closely border on that pop sound that, if I was scanning radio stations and I heard something like this, I would pass right on by. It doesn't fully cross over into that full blown sound, though... so, it was tolerable.


There is one thing to especially note about this album -- I would pay a hundred bucks for this CD for the very last song alone. Do They See Jesus In Me? is just Ms. Williams singing while playing the piano. It's a complete departure from the rest of the album, an absolutely beautiful piece of music!! Eventually I'll give her later CDs a listen and I hope this one song here is a precursor to more mature music from her in the future, music that veers away from girlie teeny pop towards some nice singer songwriter sounds for adults.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Zilch Day O' Rest

Decided today to take the day off intentionally, for some rest.

Do I really need to? I s'pose it can't hurt.

Friday, May 18, 2007

More Lawng Eyelind...

Lately, at times, I've had a minor twinge in my left hamstring but for some physiological reason I never feel any level of pain or discomfort when running. Same thing this evening. Hit the trail and all was good. Back for a little while now and all is still good. I feel great!!!

Trail Time: 72 minutes

Running Time -- 18 minutes & 52 seconds (+19 seconds!!!)



Jerry Garcia Band ~ 2/29/80
Calderone Concert Hall
Hempstead, Long Island, NY

(early show)
Mission In The Rain,
They Love Each Other, Let It Rock,
That's What Love Will Make You Do,
Knockin' On Heaven's Door -» Deal

Gerry?

image from www.psilo.com

It seems that great tunes always makes a run easier. At least so far. Tonight's selection for my listening pleasure again filled my ears with sweet, sweet music while my legs were seemingly carried along as if floating down the trail without any problem whatsoever.

Throughout the History of the Dead and Jerry Garcia's bands, etc, this is the only show to have taken place on February 29th. Jerry was around and playing for some 30 years but this added day to the calendar only happened 7 times in all that time. Somehow inbetween GD and Jerry shows, 2/29 was only played this one time (and then once again in 2000 by Bobby's Ratdog.)

Actually, this date had two JGB shows. Rather than two sets for this night, they, I guess, ushered everyone out of the theater at the end of this 55 minutes of music and then allowed a whole new set of ticketholders in a little while later for another show. Listening to the two shows together makes sense especially since no songs were repeated... but for running purposes, this one show fit perfectly.

The quality is not the greatest. It's an average sounding Audience recording but isn't terrible and is easy enough to enjoy. The show itself is short... too short in my opinion. To sort of borrow from an extremely overused phrase -- it's not always size that matters. Short shows can certainly smoke. This one may not smoke but it's alright. I love these Jerry reggae-ish Knockin's and then the intensity surely picks up at the end with Deal but there's nothing particularly mindblowing. Overall it's a nice almost hour of music from Jerry in early '80. Good stuff.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Curing The Sedentary Blues

Some rain last night into this morning made me wonder if the trail would be a little more wet than I would like for a run... so I laced up the hiking boots and decided to take it a little easier this evening.

Hiking Time out on the Trail:
1 hour & 37 minutes

music...



The Cure
Pornography (1982)


(2005 deluxe edition)

A Strange Day
Siamese Twins
One Hundred Years
The Figurehead
A Short Term Effect
Break (Instrumental Demo)
Pornography
Cold
Demise (Instrumental Demo)
Temptation (Instrumental Demo)
Airlock: The Soundtrack
The Hanging Garden
Cold (Live at Hammersmith Odean 5/82)
A Strange Day (Live at Hammersmith Odean 5/82)
Pornography (Live at Hammersmith Odean 5/82)
All Mine (Live at Hammersmith Odean 5/82)
A Short Term Effect (Live in Brussels 6/82)
Siamese Twins (Live in Brussels 6/82)

I'm not exactly thrilled with the title of this album... but then again the word Pornography doesn't strictly mean something sexually explicit...
"Lurid or sensational material."
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition.
Still it's an ugly word but that other definition makes listening to this okay -- afterall, it is sensational material! Well, except for the live stuff which, while musically good, the quality is that of a fan's Audience recording, and for the time, that bites. Sad but true. But the rest of the songs are just awesome. Interestingly, the 13 minute Airlock: The Soundtrack, at times, is extremely similar to a Space from the Dead. One could almost, at times, not even tell the difference! But next time I listen to this I'll remember to not include the live stuff, bunch together Airlock plus the instrumentals. The primary focus should be on the original album. That alone is such well made early Cure. I've always loved this band. Definitely, in all that I listen to, I need more Cure!!!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Plus 10

Another run. Another miniscule improvement.

Time on the Trail -- 71 minutes

Running Time -- 18 minutes & 33 seconds (+10)

music...


Green Day

the 2001 expanded reissue of their 1991 debut album...

1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours

Paper Lanterns
16
409 In Your Coffeemaker
1,000 Hours
Road To Acceptance
At The Library
The One I Want
Rest
Why Do You Want Him?
Green Day
Don't Leave Me
Only Of You
I Want To Be Alone
Going To Pasalacqua
Dry Ice
I Was There
Disappearing Boy
The Judge's Daughter
Knowledge
Paper Lanterns (Live at WMMR)
Words I Might Have Ate (Live WMMR)
Studio Banter (Live WMMR)
One For The Razorbacks (Live WMMR)


Hmmm. Trying to be musically open-minded I think is why I chose to listen to some Green Day. They are very far from being on my Top 50 list... very far. I don't love 'em but I guess I don't really hate 'em... I'm just eh. But I decided to give some of their music a chance starting with, as usual, their debut album. My opinion -- this makes some decent house cleaning music, like when you're busy movin' stuff around, doing dishes, dusting, polishing, etc, etc, actively making what's a little messy into something quite neat & presentable... when you're not really paying attention to the music but want something loud to play in the background. This might work for that. It's not bad but it never made me go "Wow." Didn't make great running music, that's for sure. I might give some more of their albums a listen in the future but in the very long run, I've gotta feeling that Green Day isn't gonna be on my most listened to list.

Find it @ My Musikita

Gentlemanly Crime



Okay, there are B-westerns galore... but what if the movie's not a western but still a B-movie? Shouldn't movies also be called a B-comedy, etc? If so then this one is a B-gangster.

Chester Morris plays Gene Fillmore, the ringleader of a small crime syndicate, always in suits and hats... afterall, that was the common attire of the time. Fillmore wants his boys to be operating on the sly, to never be obvious about who they're stealing from... and no shots fired. Be gentlemen.

One of the gang members needs a little extra dough so he sticks up a young man and his fiance for a hundred and thirty eight bucks. After trying to get his money back, the guy and his girlfriend become involved with a little more crime than they would have liked.

Seriously, I've just typed more about this little film than was warranted. Coming in at just under an hour, Law Of The Underworld is an average hour spent in front of the TV, nothing special but eh, it wasn't bad.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Zilch Day

No run.
No hike.
Time to make an excuse...
hmmm...
i don't think there was any legitimate reason for me to not get any exercise today. every day without exercise is pretty pathetic.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Run With No Catchy Title (again)

First run in FIVE days time. Bad, very bad. I suppose it's more exercise than some people get in a year but to have taken 4 whole inexcusable days off is just ludicrous.

Great run, though. Wait. I meant -- great run!

Started off again with a hike out and then saved my run for the return trip. Pretty much right outta the front door I wanted to run. I was itching to! Instead I hiked out at a nice pace and then ran back. By the time my running time was up I was freakin' beat! Whewww... but since getting back and cleaned up I have felt so high, so great, but at the same time kinda cursing myself for not being out there for so long.

Must not take so many days off!

Trail Time: 71 minutes

Running Time: 18 minutes & 23 seconds (up 11 seconds from last time)

music:


The Stone Roses

their self-titled debut album (1989)




Bye Bye Bad Man
She Bangs The Drums
Made Of Stone
(Song For My) Sugar Spun Sister
Don't Stop
Elizabeth My Dear
Shoot You Down
This Is The One
Elephant Stone
Fools Gold
Waterfall
I Wanna Be Adored
I Am The Resurrection


Holy cow. What a great album!!!. It's been many years since I last heard "I Wanna Be Adored" -- a song that was a popular favorite in the early 90's. That one song was the extent of my knowledge of The Stone Roses... until now. This Manchester band really coulda, really shoulda stayed together and put out more music than just two albums. At least they recorded this one and I'm glad I listened to it! A bunch of the songs go beyond just standard Start It Up, Play It Through, Done... they get into exploring musical spaces that are usually reserved for "jam bands" like the Grateful Dead... uh, and whoever else does that kind of music nowadays. Anyway, some of tunes really go off for awhile and you can easily get lost in the music. Did they really compose their jams that way? Or maybe they worked 'em out over time while practicing and then layed them down perfectly during studio recording sessions? In any case, it's just a shame this band doesn't exist anymore to play these songs live. Perhaps some people wouldn't get it? Perhaps others would be, because of this music, be opened to bands that, when live, play songs that go eight or ten minutes due to extended playing i.e. jamming. Musically, at a live show, some people wanna hear songs done straight forward like on the studio albums but just in person. That can be okay, maybe, sometimes. But why not dance to a band exploring with sound? That's what's hear on this Stone Roses debut and I can't stop raving about it! Wow. If I was gonna sit down and rank albums from 1989, this would be darn near the top!!!

128 kbps dload @ Back On The Road

Domestic Violence? What Else Is New?


Murder Between Friends

(Made-for-TV, 1994)

Before Martin Kemp, of the 80's band Spandau Ballet, made it big as a British Soap Awards Best Actor for his role on EastEnders, he tried to make it big in LaLa Land. In his quest for American success he co-starred with Stephen Lang in this Husband Kills Wife Courtroom drama.

Kemp and Lang play best friends Kerry Myers and Bill Fontanille. Then one ordinary mid-1980's Louisiana day, Bill offed Kerry's wife with a softball bat. But wait... Bill claims it was Kerry who was the one who whacked his wife. In comes Timothy Busfield as the prosecutor to seal this case shut and send Fontanille to prison. But uh oh, a slight twist and all does not go as he had hoped.

Th
e telling of this story on the small screen is pretty standard Made-for-TV fare. Since this is based on a real life case, there's no way to really know how accurate it is. The performances were decent all around and never was I feeling terrible bored. Who was really guilty here? Had to find out. And it wasn't until writing this that I discovered who Martin Kemp is and that he's British -- his accent in the movie was sufficiently American enough to pass by my discerning ears.

A complaint I do have is at the beginning of the movie the director showed a whole lotta shots of Bourbon Street and the French Quarter in New Orleans in order to establish where this takes place. That's all well and fine but that must have just been some stock footage because clearly this was filmed in (and around?) Los Angeles. They really should have made the decision to actually film on the streets of New Orleans and then the movie could have achieved a higher level of authenticity which means something to the knowledgable viewer. Instead the producers decided that the average viewer A) won't know the difference and/or B) is dumb enough that we can fool them. Their loss because their little docudrama could have been better if it was more real. Still it's an interesting story but nothing spectacular. Might wanna read the book -- Blood Will Tell -- for more info.

A slightly interesting sidenote, Kerry Myers today appears to be a reformed man, speaking to kids on class fieldtrips to Louisiana's Angola Prison, advocating for prisoner rights and is the editor of The Angolite, a highly aclaimed magazine published behind bars.

one says one number and the other another
but they were set at the same time. Hmmm...

 
Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated