Wednesday, August 30, 2006

willie for texas energy czar, auntie rita for president

tonight auntie rita took me (tho i drove) to the tachi tribe's palace casino in lemoore to watch willie nelson (future texas gov kinky friedman's energy czar). aunt rita is an apple-shaped, copper-toned senior citizen with a mischievous smile & crow-black eyes that twinkle. she starts talking & crowds gather. she is loads of fun, likes to stir the pot, & can beat anyone at spinning a yarn. men love her & they always will, even when she's 90 years old. in her day, she was gorgeous & wild as they come & had more fun than 5 wild women could've. when i was a baby, she told me i would be a go-go dancer - now, she says my little cousin meredith will be a pole dancer (times change). she & my mom are fiercely devoted to each other in the love-hate way opposite personalities are - sisters, on top of it! they cook feasts for each other & the family, go on obscene shopping sprees, worry, yell, fret, laugh, & talk s**t about whoever's not in the room.
i enjoyed myself, both of us chowing "rez dogs" & a butt-burning pepper at the casino, me watching aunt rita play the slots, walking around amidst the jingles & flashes of the dark casino world while sipping free douwe egberts coffee (a tasty brew!), waiting forever & ever in the late-summer sun to see willie, worrying a bit about my aunt standing all that time as she chewed my butt for not working the security to let us in (razzing me to "flash some boob" or "show 'em your g*d* indian card!" as people in line laughed & laughed), but then once inside, everything being ok as the friendly, musty, jazzy, country-blues washed over everyone. usually the slow stuff makes me want to rowf! but willie's mellow show had much heart & soul. the music was laid-back, but definitely not sappy; the songs were romantic & felt authentic. i loved the sloppy elegance of it, how the band seemed to fall down the stairs, then all land at the bottom, soundly & together: ta-DA!!
willie's band was billed as "willie nelson and family" & that's how it felt - like watching a bunch of old friends playing road-weary, nose-tweaking, tough but good-hearted backwoods tunes, with a touch of big city. the church songs were especially rousing, but then willie said, "i'm gonna try an instrumental now, somethin by django reinhardt."
"that was bee-YOO-tiful!" aunt rita said at the end of it.... & it WAS.
john fogerty followed, but we didn't stay. aunt rita wanted to beat the post-concert traffic, she had more wild & funny & crazy stories to tell, & i was just along for the ride... tho i was driving. so off we headed for home, into the dusty, humid, dairy-stinking, but somehow lovely valley nighttime moonlit fields.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

the lost weekend on

popular science had an story about second life, a free-membership, streaming video program, a mix of virtual reality games (tho a game with no objective), ebay, & myspace. you create your character, "teleport" to different "lands," meet people, use fictitious $ (which you obtain with real $) to buy & sell stuff.
i was intrigued when i read that you can mold your character/avatar's appearance to your specs. i love photoshop & being a half-breed kid during the 70s, have always been obsessed with my (what i think to be) odd facial features & skin tone, so i jumped at the chance to create a cyber jenny & find others on secondlife who looked like me or like my mixed family.
that was thursday. i came up for air last night.
secondlife is highly addictive. and now i must delete it.
but before i do, i forwarded secondlife info to friends, especially artists. let them become immersed for a bit, too!
the avatar part was most fun! i was obsessed w/making my character "really" look like me. quickly i learned that it's impossible - you can only create an idealized "you." the facial feature possibilities & skin tones are anglo-centric. the body types & skin textures are of healthy 20-somethings. however, it sure felt creative to mess with the little template female til she came out looking generically enough like a cartoonized me. (see pictures of "me" at my "home," a swiss chalet. i don't know why my home was a swiss chalet. i think there were parties going on inside, but i was scared to go see.)
i opened an account for & made an avatar of my spouse, too, but he didn't much like it, so i won't post it here... i thought the resemblance w/ him was much closer than the one i made of me, but that makes sense since i objectively observe his looks better than my own.
anyway, in my three days lost in secondlife, i was befriended by a young guy who took me on a ski lift ride & helped teach me to walk & fly (you can fly places, realistically, probably one of the most mesmerizing features of secondlife, especially if you've ever wished you were a bird) & then asked me to go get a drink, so i teleported to beat it... i went to "amsterdam," & it did look like the real place, but it was filled with impossibly tall, gorgeous, muscular, &/or scantily-clad young people looking to pick each other up.
it became more & more apparent that the "people" i saw on second life didn't WANT to look like their real selves... many of the conversations i observed (i mostly just flew places & was a voyeur) were about second life being escapist, a fantasy place. i really thought i'd find lots of folks who, like me, wanted to be themselves! secondlife is very UN-myspace-like in this way. myspace is juvenile & narcissistic, but i've met many music & movie nerds on there, bright & strange & wonderful people who proudly display their own visages & quirky interests. i've actually met people i have stuff in common with on myspace! second life seemed quite generic, by comparison, a place i guess where you'd go to "get away" from yourself & your "first [real] life"... i did chat with a chubby, bearded guy in trapeze artist garb who said he was in his "first life" in a hospital in bangkok, but i got spooked again & beat it out of there.
i put brian's avatar at the car & motorcycle races, but at each, there was only one car & one bike, & no other people.
secondlife felt lonely. i felt like charlton heston in "the omega man." i found myself flying all over the place, looking down on empty villages, buildings, towns. i would land & there would be groups of young people talking. it felt like high school. i felt awkward. everyone was toweringly tall & slim & glamorous. didn't anyone want to look like themselves?? maybe i just was in the wrong places... i kept trying to find nerds, goofballs, fat people, record collectors, movie fans, but no luck. oh, one more thing: on secondlife, you'll find lots of porn. and lots of furries. you don't have to even be on the look-out: both are just THERE.
when i realized hours & hours were passing with me unawares, it was time to stop.
so i say goodbye to vinyl raveup, my second life alter-ego (you have to pick a canned patronym). i'm gonna quit second life. this time, i'll stop. i can do it. i'll quit tomorrow. :)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

los lonely boys texicano rocknroll por vida... & why my friend brian paxton is wrong because i'm narrow-focused, not narrow-minded... :)

our dear friends david & yoli gave us a night on the town - dinner at mama roomba's, then tickets to los lonely boys. i knew nothing about the band, so went on youtube & heard that grammy song w/all the melody & thought, "oh, YAH!!" it has the line that goes, "how far is heaven". :) ... saw friendly, ubiquitous matt munoz outside the rob-a-bank cnvntn ctr & recalled the last time i was there, at a rodeo at which the ambulance came down SEVEN TIMES to whisk away crushed-up cowboys... how nice it was to see 100s of happy people out for a night of music, happy even buying plastic cups of beer for SIX BUCKS... but then the opening band came on & i was dunked into irritated depression, practiced TM a bit, thought to myself, well, they're working hard at it, ...but they weren't even sweating!!! then the guy beside us said the frontman looked like jim morrison & i got even more bummed because he looked as much like jim morrison as i do, but wore an army coat, so there was the resemblance, how dang dumb can people be, i thought, grumble grumble, but then pulled the evil one back in & thought nice thoughts... but how did this band get this opening slot?
maybe the agent pitched it like this: "we got this band, & they have an accordion, & they have this song called 'paloma'"... the frontman (a nice enough i'm sure, self-serious looking guy whose songs i have written myself, but keep locked in a drawer) looked a bit like lux from the cramps, so i finished their set imagining him w/big greasy punker hair wearing fishnets & stiletto heels & that helped the time pass.
i went to the can & was spooked when i spied a stalker from the past, so ran back to the seats & soon enough, the show was on.
los lonely boys, of san angelo tx, are a brother act with lots of vocal harmonies a la other brother acts like the everlies, & their voices all are a lot like dave hidalgo's from los lobos to me, or my friend manuel, late of the blazers, who were under los lobos' wing for quite some time a decade ago.... there is a cute (bassist), skinny (guitarist), & chubby (drummer) lonely boy, & they sweated enough for both them & the opening act. i don't know this type of music much, but a few main influences seemed to be santana & stevie ray vaughn; i especially could imagine frail, long-haired guitar-whiz henry locked in his room as a teenager, going over & over & over those carlos parts w/spidery finger til they were perfect.
i loved a lot of the first 1/2 of the set, with its ultra-melodious songs performed in two- & three-part harmonies near-throughout: east side louvin brothers! there was a really lovely tune with a haunting half-step cuban-kinda vibe... then dad came out, looking like a mexicano kinky friedman, a cheesily handsome, big smiling man w/black moustache & white 10-gallon hat, & sang some tex-mex tunes. then even better! they winged two buck owens songs & i finally! realized what that music means to a lot of people. they didn't know the lyrics & blew changes & endings, but the emotion & heart were inspiring! :)
drummer ringo came out at the end & thanked the audience & god & his family... "the greatest thing in the world is when i'm playing and i look to my left & right & there are my brothers," he said, beaming like the happiest boy on earth... i've never seen THAT at a concert!!!!! the set wound up with a 15 or 20 min solo-orgasmo piece w/lots of wheedle-wheedle guitar & excess (we'd already had plenty of evidence these young fellows are bad-ars on their instruments), but overall, the night had so much heart & the musicians such commitment to putting on a good show...
it's kinda nice to like a popular band; i feel a bit more like i belong... maybe. it doesn't really matter, but it IS nice to have commonalities w/fellow humans. brian paxton says i'm narrow-minded, but i don't see what's wrong with liking what you like & knowing it. good music doesn't have to have a label or name, but to me, there's only good music & bad music. bad music is intolerable. it actually makes me physically ill!!!! it's like trying to have a conversation w/a person who's just vomited all over you!!! or having to play hostess while holding an enema!!!!, someone telling me music is good will never convince me. i learned that back in childhood when the cute boy at school told me to go buy this new foreigner album. that was the last time i let the opinions of others influence me musically!!!!!! ...well, here i am rambling again, so happy weekend to all. :)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

suitcase simpson & one-handed jenny on piano

i found out fattkatt wants me to play piano, not sing, on his record!!! aaaaahhhh!!! he told me, "don't worry, it's like a carl perkins song," but carl perkins played guitar!! he had backing piano on early cuts, especially on sun, where most all the platters featured keys... so i listened to fattkatt's song a few times &, after clarifying whether he wanted a jerry lee or floyd cramer kind of part (both recorded with carl early in his career), i came up with something kinda a little killer like: lots of 7ths & stabs, bloodied-finger glissandos, heavy on the south side... good thing i'm a lefty! good thing brian p just gave me rips of all the JLL mercury sessions! (i had one or two of them, but they're buried in my vinyl collection...)
it's kinda funny & amazing that red simpson is the other piano player on this record... because all red has to do is a red simpson kind of part. :) this is the guy who wrote "close up the honky-tonks" and hundreds of other great songs!!! my name'll be on the same record. it's amazing, really... :) here's red's website:
the other day, art fein called out of the wild blue asking us to be on his tv show & i was very flattered, but also stressed!! ...because a certain someone in my band was unavailable to play... so i got on el horno with all the interesting artsy people i could think of in the smellay region, sent art names: ruben from blazers/pistoleros, romeo carey (filmmaker son of timothy, the world's greatest sinner), pixelfest honcho gerry fialka & songstress wife suzy williams, count smokula, my ultra charming maniac writer friend clancy, and finally got cody bryant on the phone. pitched the show to him and red simpson. cody used to play shows with red at viva cantina by the racetrack in pasadena; don't know if he still does. he was en route to a gig, but called back. i don't think it worked out in end, but art was interested in having them on, and i hope he does!
fattkatt went and saw red last monday at trout's, so i guess he's doing better health-wise and that's real good news. he and his wife joyce are the best of folks. :)
anyhow, the corn is ready on the stove, so time to run... but first, in case your soul is missing, in attempt to get mine back visavee [sic] my profession, i'm starting this masters degree program in two weeks, twice a month in san francisco: . two people said it "changed their lives." that sounds like just the ticket! i made curtains today for my truck cause i have a feeling i'll be sleeping in it a lot while doing this gig......................... dang! there was smoke coming from the kitchen!!!!! i burned dinner!!!!!!!!

Monday, August 14, 2006

i'll gladly pay you tuesday for an htmlburger today

i just love cryptograms & other such code-like puzzles & was a typesetter for the baron of bakersfield for several yrs, but i don't know squat about how to write html. i guess it's not something you can just intuit... one time as a kid my dad showed me some basic programming & i wrote a little thing that made the computer insult you. clever kid, huh? (TYPICAL kid, that is.) :) anyhow, people've been pestering me periodically: how come you don't have links on your blog? finally, nick belardes ( set me up. i just needed him to get me started. once i SAW the code & how it goes, i could ape. i like, no, LOVE learning patterns. like when i was a kid, i was crazy for that game simon. i could go up into the 50s, repeating the musical sounds, before bombing out. so i love all that (i can't type it correctly or blogger thinks i'm writing code) < f =" "> < / a > < / li > stuff. it's all new!:) i went in & added more links to the ones nick had started for me, & now (i'm a little obsessive) there's about 100 of them, & i hope you look at them all, & suggest more of them. :) especially be sure to read "how to yodel." nick says my beefed-up page looks "cool," implying it didn't before :)... which i know it did not... & it still ain't, except what the presence of the names of cool people give it, but i'll take the compliment! thank you, nick.

Friday, August 11, 2006

go faster, go go faster, motorbike

here are the remaining vacation photos. the first is the waterfall you see at the end of a lovely 2.5 mile hike through calf creek (canyon in so utah)... next is me & viking lynn. she, stacy & i were the chi-chi sisters (distaff motorcycle "gang" counterpart to the kehoni bros [say out loud]) & i dressed ultra ultra colorful to remember stacy (rip). lynn gave me the longhorn tie-die; she & stacy were lone star gals & i've got texas in my heart, so it fit. next is dear brian & i at maynard dixon's house (he the renowned western impressionist), next row shows beautiful terri & 4'10" cece, who rode her own huge black dyna-glide the whole way & back. middle is the whole group, w me looking stupid trying to get really tall (& succeeding); then a lovely view on the utah side of lake powell. last row is a few of the friendly crew pulling in at our house; middle is the one & only johnny garcia; and last is part of the chichi-kehoni-glutton group, right before the parade through cedar edge, co. every year, the townsfolk want to see the sober bikers, so every year it gets more colorful & more candy & beads are thrown to the kids. this is a fun thing i get to do, & i need to be grateful, & i am right now. :)

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

kismet? coinkydink? caught w/pants down... not! :)

this is turning into a blog with too many photos of me & none of the band, but oh well... for now, the band is dormant, i think, as always happens, & why can't i just seize the helm like cattie ness?? she modeled it, but i still can't do it. however, i'm no model & never will be, pic here excepted, whereas becky is haughty glamour in the flesh... here's a little story about the sort of goth-pretty artwork you see: i was on the phone today with my sponsor, a dignified, respected, eccentric, lovely retiree of regal carriage who helps many many local females. she said, "before you go, lemme ask you: have you posed recently for any semi-nude photos?".....................
a pregnant pause fell while i searched my memory banks for possible embarrassing photographic incidents from my semi-wild distant past... then i remembered! lysa luna's tarot deck & craft! ... pat sent me the link, & there it was: lysa placed me (like recent very cool three chord whore collage i saw that obviously was her work) on a 4th of july-like background. she didn't know it, but that was the day, 11 yrs ago, i had to make a major lifestyle change. so this life i have today start on independence day back then, & there she seemed to put me! serendipity? coincidence? the stripes probably signify something totally different to lysa & i may be way off... i usually am... oh well... to me, it was cool kismet :) link to lysa's work is below, where you will find two other pix from her.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

denver pix + sat night roller girls' fundraiser

my bro in law & i went to lakeside amusement park in denver co on last leg of my vacation trip... it's a kind of run-down but wonderful place that hasn't been renovated probably since the '50s. he coaxed me into riding the wooden rollercoaster & if i hadn't been so terrified, i would've reached over & slapped the tar out of him. i just hate rollercoasters (the only thrills i used to indulge in, well over a decade ago, were chemical & therefore sedentary), but i gotta admit... it was fun, in a dreadful way. the other pic's with my mom at 10k+ elevation near gold hill in colorado (someplace uphill from boulder)... mom flew out & met me (i broke from motorcycle troupe & took greyhound over loveland pass to denver to hook up with her & bro in law paul). we ate like no tomorrow & paul was the host with the most. denver is the big sky, red brick, mile high city of many cultures... the elevation got to mom, but she said she had fun :) ; more pix will come when hubby gets home from rest of motorcycle jaunt (he's still on the road, tonight in winslow az)... i'm sure glad we didn't go to sturgis: the indians are protesting & that really would've been awkward!! (tho we wouldn't've been the ones partying on sacred ground: )... this weekend's the big bakersfield roller girls' fundraiser show with lotsa bands. through one after another miscommunication, the dusk devils won't be playing, but go out and support it. you can get the scoop at ... prosit & cheerio to all.