hello. i'm jenny page. once upon a time, i had a band in bakersfield cali called the dusk devils. you still can find dd music online. now i live in the mtns & am married to the most awesome frontman alive, whiteboy james. i know him as james or husband. we are as happy as two nuts can be. life is an adventure, a chore, a beauty, a choice, a turn. life is goooood. :)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

don't think the magic's gone

our gig yesterday, my last with the band, got cancelled when a big rig overturned on I-5, blocking the band's admittance to frazier park. i already was here since i've been working on the mountain teaching... the others weren't & all went through hellish, treacherous drives before sue at the tavern decided to call it & they all had to turn back. what a bummer for them & the audience & me, who wanted to play piano one last time with the blues express!!! i've not read if it was a fatality crash, but i know traffic on the 5 was blocked for most of the night. drive safely, everybody!
went kinda nuts yesterday, 10 hrs (off & on) doing schoolwork planning. i want to do a good job, better than i've ever done, now being entrusted to be not just the 6th grade teacher, but the school's fine arts teacher & after-school librarian. yaaaaaaaay! the kids' exposure to the arts, then, is largely dependent on my competency & organization. i am so grateful! all the stuff i've long-done, music, art, writing, bibliophiling, is all coming together!
the day after dear manuel died, no kidding, i was a little startled to so clearly heard his voice in my head singing the refrain of the song below, so today i stopped thumb-twiddling, finished writing the song, then recorded it & made a little video (well, slideshow). i haven't recorded in a long while; the results are rough, but i like the song. i can still hear manuel singing it in my head when i listen. i lifted some of the song structure as well as the solo melody from a few of his songs, as his fans will hear: that's supposed to be guitar, which i don't play, but i might have to learn to, since as fine arts teacher, i'm also instrumental teacher, which necessitates procuring the rudiments of about 10 instruments... yes, i like the song, tho not the recording: the best part is, i know manuel would've like it. :) i can hear him saying, "that's coooo, jenny, that's rock n ROWl..."

video
welcome back to the u.s., niece maddy. she's been gone 2 months in asia, first teaching english, then being taught korean. what an adventurer! the farthest i went at her age was... well, no place. i was going nowhere at her age except boozeville. in fact, every single young person i know (cousins, stepsons, donna's dear laurel & levon) are doing worlds better than i ever did. may they all live long & be great!
i miss my dear husband. i hope he gets back from the road soon.
ok, now it's time for columbo!!!! and peanut butter!!!! life can't get much better. :) 

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

this weekend

friday all will say goodbye to manuel gonzales, or "big manny," our friend departed. here are details:
viewing - noon to 2 pm, funeral & burial, 2-3 pm, home of peace memorial park mortuary, 4334 whittier blvd, whittier ca; potluck reception for family & friends, vfw hall post 1944, 4-8 pm,  16157 e. gale, city of industry, ca.
i made this so i will remember always his face & person the way i remember him. there's a beautiful pic of him & james on this blog if you go back to april 2016, but i -- perhaps selfishly -- just put the ones here where i'm posed with him.
saturday will be the following: Come See Whiteboy James - Sat. Aug. 13th
WHERE: Shenanigans Irish Pub & Grille
423 Shoreline Village Drive
Long Beach, CA 90802
USA 8 PM-11:55 PM
COST: Free
CONTACT:
562-437-3734

the following saturday, we'll play here in town at sue's tavern, & after that, james will have me replaced with an electric bass & i'll just play with his band wherever i have the energy (& when he wants me, of course). the kids will be back in class
& i again will be a public school teacher.

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Saturday, August 06, 2016

my dear sweet friend is gone, & the whole world cries

one of our very dearest, sweetest, most talented friends on earth went to heaven last night. james & manuel became fast friends about three years ago; manuel gave james a sailor's cap that he treasures. i got to meet manuel as a fan of his band 25 yrs ago & in the last many years, was blessed to play music with him here & there where he'd look over & smile, "jinny, play a little of that johnny johnson." this kind, gentle giant with his silly sense of humor could play anything on the guitar, chuck berry like no other, & he sang like a bird. the world without him will be a dimmer place. we love you forever, manuel. rest in peace, dear soul. love, jenny & james

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Friday, July 29, 2016

more self-respect, more respect for fellow man...

we are kicking booty here at home getting stuff done, & a little fatigued now, i'm taking a break & found this online:

i've long-known about elvis's creed & that it had a logo -- heck, i even have a t-shirt (memphis mafia were given gold rings w/the insignia, expected to wear them at all times), but i didn't realize there was a slogan, too, as well as a pretty crazy-sounding credo written by the King himself. it concludes with the promise of "freedom from constipation" -- i'll just put a link here...  it made me think of long time ago being moved by, of all things, jimmy carter's campaign poster for (i think) governor back at the carter museum in hotlanta and... can't find the damned thing online, but it said something so different than how a politician'd advertise him/herself today, something like "principled, diligent, compassionate." WHAT?!!?!? anyways, i know carter has always been hard-working, & any fellow still building houses for the homeless, still happily married to the same person after all these decades is a-ok in my book... today, too, i saw a fluff online about presidential & presidential-hopeful IQs & i probably don't need to tell you who's near the bottom, but of the past 40 yrs, carter & president obama were way up there & at top was... you guessed it... bubba. he was a rhodes scholar, after all, as was, of all folks, kris kristofferson, whom james met some yrs back, & now i've brought this all back around to us, so that's that, time to get back to work.
(ps, read peter guralnick's book about sam phillips. it will kill you, to paraphrase holden caufield.)

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

what i remember about becoming a teacher back in the early 90s...

me (standing before some people i can't remember): ok, so what do i do?
them: here, write a check for a 30 thousand bucks.
me: ok. here it is.
them: ok, now you're a teacher.
that can't be right, but through the fog of years, that's how it seems.
when james moved here to the mountain house in 2014, i was a little embarrassed when, while cleaning, we came across a GIGANTIC stack of work from the teaching program i went through, an expensive 9-month baby: the stack was at least 3 phone books thick. i flipped through as memories flooded back: i was the typist for the group bc of my speedy fingers. i was the note-taker bc of my quick writing & summarizing skills. i was... the overachiever, or more likely, the control-freak who ended up doing everything for group projects bc everyone else moved too slowly.
but even having seen all that work, i don't remember it that way! i was drinking back then, so maybe the brain cells associated with all my teaching school hard work are forever gone.
i do recall my 1st year teaching, realizing, nothing can prepare you for this! it's like on-the-job training! then, the 1st day of my 2nd year, it happened: the eyes in the back of my head appeared. supernatural!
++++
nowadays if you wanna become a teacher, it's a different story. got a whiff of that when i went in,  initially to try to sub. used to be if you had a pulse & had taken a little test called CBEST, you could sub. now a person has to pass this test, get on that list, fill out these forms, get those fingerprints, take a TB test & get a physical & get signed off by a doc, cart the forms down to bakersfield, wait for DOJ clearance... what? all this to SUB???
i went straight past sub to "real teacher" after that, thanks to the nice principal at my new school deciding me to be desirable due to my do-gooder work cleaning up that school's library in my then-free time. (had i already been in james's band, i wouldn't've been able to do that at all!) so pleasant to learn that, w/no intention of doing so, just cause i love books & libraries, i'd impressed the principal with the work i'd done. for fun & for free: that's one of the credos of my secret society of drunks, & it worked out in this case.
i count myself super-lucky bc now i'm gonna again be a teacher!
getting that going required a whole bunch more hoop-jumping than being a sub. somebody, the doc or the counselor, used the word "rigor" & the lightbulb went on: i need rigor to make this happen, fortitude, tenacity, stick-to-itness. i couldn't be a flaky part-time library worker, part-time musician & suddenly return to teaching. not nowadays! how much do i want this career again?
the nerd within was activated; here was the opportunity to get organized & responsible again, to prove i can still do it! not to mention to re-enlarge my knowledge base, ghave creative teaching moments, & work w/kids. to try to put this in place meant fill out more forms, complete TWO applications, take everything to bakersfield, get fingerprinted AGAIN, pee in a cup at a drug testing lab (trying not to laugh or ask too many questions & therefore look like a weirdo), send off for three college transcripts (CSUB was easiest, an e-transcript obtained w/snap of fingers; ULV was a little trickier; i opted to send request for NCOC transcripts via certified mail, since the school's no longer even open!), copies of credentials, three letters of recommendation, a 20-page PACKET with all the insurance & liability & rules & warnings & etc stuff, james's & my tax forms proving we're reeeeeellly married, three online classes supposed to be about 6 hours' length that took only 2, but STILL...
i hope tomorrow i will sign my contract. i hope tomorrow i will get to see my classroom.
hope is a thing with feathers, wrote emily dickinson.... here is the whole poem: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poems/detail/42889https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poems/detail/42889

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still don't feel like writing

this might be a new brain-trend. still, yesterday i had an experience that could be useful to recount, so here goes:
yesterday i confronted a family member who has hurt many people. this person returned to society last yr & (of course) was welcomed by mama back into the family, tho with the caveat if she ever had whiff he'd returned to old, horrible, evil behavior, he'd be "dead" to her. i have stayed on high horse & avoided this person til yesterday, when that little voice told me, go talk to him. so i did, much more assertively & directly than i thought possible, tho not inappropriately (sometimes that happens when i get overwhelmed, like i'll start blubbering or lashing out).
the encounter ended up being a sort-of reverse amend: he expressed sorrow for past behavior, confirmed what i'd suspected, that as a child, he'd been victim of the same kind of crime he later perpetrated, said he knows many ppl will never want anything to do w/him, but understands that's a consequence of what he did, & indicated that he now tries every day to be a better person. and i've seen that. actions speak much louder than words, to me; i believed him.
the person's demeanor, once we went back into the gias' house, was much humbler. the wall between us was gone. i found myself afterward feeling flustered, a bit irritated, even guilty, wondering if i'd  done the right thing. i realized what was at the kernel of the discomfort: compassion.
this is no bs: i then sat down on the couch to work a cryptogram, making sure i sat down there in the same room w/this person whom i'd avoided until that morning, & the solved puzzle read this: "if i understood all, i would forgive all." damn!
like kramer said on seinfeld one time, "it's the little man, jerry. the little man always knows!!" (as does my little woman.) i'm grateful i now can hear that little voice here & there, heeding me to do the right thing.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

wow.

i am so calm.
many times, i get on here thinking, "i don't know what to write," & suddenly seven different connections will jump into my head! so i start blablablaaing!
right now..... nothing.
this is weird...........

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

pix from our first time out as a couple

- july 4, 2012 in long beach, photos by dewey
(oh, here i go again, blabbing about my spouse...)
- i remember that day, floating above myself in a haze, being in public with james for the first time. and i indelibly know this pic of him, so much feeling radiating from those sea-blue eyes. he was really physically sick all the time back in these days as well as pretty tortured in his soul; so happy he's getting his health all straightened out now. james still has a lot to tell the world, so much to share... as for me, i shall help children again. and write songs. and play piano. oh yes, and hope to live! not just exist! do you know what i mean?
- last night we listened to howlin' wolf & amazed & enthused over the sinewy atmospheric world of that music, & james told me about hubert sumlin, whom he knew, & i'm forever amazed by james... we were happy to read on the CD liner notes that mr burnett always had the best sidemen cause he bothered to pay them fairly, which james always does & always has done but a lot of front men DON'T, & that burnett, a self-educated high school drop-out (like james) fell in love with his wife lillie tho she was from a proper family & was formerly educated -- you know, like i am. and that they were married for 49 years. happily.
i wish i could tell you a fraction of the stories he tells me about all the musicians & other ppl he's met, stories funny, sad, horrifying, unbelievable, life-affirming. i hope he'll let me ghost-write his book some day: all he'd have to do is sit down & talk; i eagerly would do the typing. it would be quite a read!
not much else up except this a.m. i was so exhilarated to get bloodwork, drug test, AND fingerprinting down all before i came back up the mountain for library work. feels so great to be getting that sense of responsibility & organization back, prepping for the return of the teacher within. then at the library, little tiny terry came up & wrapped his little arms around me & several children are getting to know me & look with such adorable trust to me for direction & we served lunch & corraled kids & introduced an art project & then put away tables & chairs. i still feel pretty great, but who knows? could be that extra-octane coffee i had on the drive home...
oh, that's enough for now.
well,
be well.
be.