Tuesday, December 22, 2015

merry christmahannukwanzasolsticefestivus celebration!!!

mr & mrs whiteboy james & mr & mrs big manny
- some morbid reflection has flooded my soul lately, but i think it's being prompted by the corporeal changes of being a vieja... drat! i can't worry about my loved ones current & past, human & non. it's crazy-making! james has been helpful in reminding me that it all will pass. so true: the good, the bad, the world as you & i know it. i only have my turn, & my turn's about half-over! better relish each moment rather than fall splat & wallow in anxieties & sadnesses i can't change a bit!
- the mountain is swaying & singing w/wind & blustery rain; in recent days, we've driven all over the place for a couple gigs, family in the valley, & dear friends' visit; it snowed for them & the wife exclaimed, "i've never seen snow!" what a happy moment for all. :) we had pizza & watched the wonderful, wonderful film a christmas story, a perfect film except for melinda dillon's anachronistic hairdo... so excited we'll have the young man visit us on the mtn for the holidays, then see family, then see friends, then the new year is going to be a blast this time, a record party & jam session hosted by the happy friendly talented contrerases!!! woo-hoo!
i really love this guy, & so does anyone w/a heart.
- wanted to share this -- a month or so back, i read about what makes humans most enduringly happy: closeness with others, helping others, & quality of life (not material, which is actually antithetical to happiness, but physical, spiritual & emotional). these seemed to me to correlate w/the pillars of the drunk club: unity, service, & recovery. the drunk club is most always right! here are a few more articles on this worthy topic. article one & article two
- these holidays, love more, buy less, & for pete's sake, care for your ever-changing, vulnerable, ethereal, precious flesh bag, cuz we each only get one on this turn at life! may your days be merry & bright. :)


mama says james looks like yul brenner in this pic. irish yul! :)
she saw snow for the first time this past week. :)

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

aaaaaaaaaahhhhh!!!!

just saw a bunch of pix from max's tribute sunday. of the ones of me onstage (thank you to all photogs who took them), i played a game called "how many chins does jenny have?" of course, as most stage performers know, singing pictures can be the absolute worst, especially when taken from a below angle! especially when you're a vieja, i shall add! here's a good one, & thank you to casey r for it:
oh well! it was fun & i did it to inject a moment of cheer in memory of max!
so since i don't have an eating disorder anymore, guess i'll just have to take other routes to avoid the spread of aging... or realize there are transgressions far worse than overweight... like being an a*shole! i can know that though my behind might be bigger than it used to be, so are my heart & soul :)
this a.m. i was hemming & hawing out in the yard on a beautiful sunny december morn, placing various christmas decorations around the yard & outdoors, when one of my friends pulled up in her truck, apologizing for just dropping by w/o notice, & i ended up filling out a felt-like ream of paperwork with her she said she just couldn't do alone, so now i got that good feeling of having helped! :) generally, i'm better in writing than extemporaneous word, so it felt quite satisfying & rewarding to be able to basically interview her, write her replies on paper, & know i'd done something useful & kind! after, we had a bagel w/hummus & visited a bit, listening to, among other yuletide music, the chipmunks christmas song, which made me fondly remember students over the many years cutting out & pasting & drawing christmas cards & ornaments in the classroom while listening to christmas songs... nothing is much better than the precious cache of memories i still get to have. they might be gone someday if my thinking deteriorates w/age, but hope by then i'll have more to take their place... can always hope.
anyways, happy happy to yall! :)

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

cha-ching!

oh gee, feeling pleasantly eyeballs-rounding-the-corner-before-i-do right now on a whole pot of coffee... zing! it's a happy morning/afternoon here... what nice weather outside! might go for a hike... we had the mountain holiday faire the other day & dear dear dad came out with me to sell my fleas (james had two gigs, so couldn't join us!), & what a nice day! cold, fun, met so many nice ppl, sold a BUTTLOAD of LPs! my big payday? a huge amount of dough for my life now, but i realize, as much as i would've made in one day when i was teaching! hahahaha! despite that, i'd much rather be in this life now than the one i had back then. at the library, working only pt-time, i still get to help ppl & interact w/youngsters, but it's all positive & i don't have to herd cats or undertake any behavioral modification strategies or deal w/stupid standardized testing or fights on the yard or yard duty, for that matter!! i hear from my dear seester that the climate of public teaching now's much less the way it was when i bailed, & i'm just so happy for her, that she has less crap to deal w/than we did 5-10 years ago! so to heck w/the big paycheck for me: i like it like this!
sun in LBC we attended a tribute for departed ornery, irascible, eccentric, resourceful, uber-talented & creative max bangwell, james's dear friend & long-time blues express drummer... my hubby was so, so, so, so sad, but we got up at pink arguello's request & sang together on the big stage. i told jr watson, on guitar, "little richard!" and he told the band, "rock n roll!" & we did my song "he's my baby" & right away, i saw teeth flashing & heads bobbing throughout the place & spirits were high, & that's why i wanted to do THAT song, cause i knew it'd make ppl happy & max would've wanted that. throughout the day, i kept pondering him, keeping him at the forefront of my mind, knowing he'd want everyone to be joyous & mischievous & having a good time... james was so beat afterward, we got a rm next door at the golden sails, where he used to play but we've never stayed, & what a nice place!! huge room, big soft bed, pretty manicured grounds, quiet & serene, & in the morn, beautiful breakfast rm w/softly-glowing view of boats bobbing on the marina & tons of yummy food, which really made big-eating james smile & delight! i was so grateful to be able to stay rather than try to get us caravanned home cause my sweet husband woke from sound slumber in a happy mood, & that made it all worthwhile! anyways, that's that for now; i need to be productive here at home for a bit...
here's where we'll be thursday... please come join us! it will be fun fun fun!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

stupid stupid cold, stupid stupid

- well, it's finally gotten too cold for comfort! brrrr!! sort of fun to bundle up like a stupid-looking zeppelin, tho... i'm waiting & waiting (see below), so meanwhile here's a really stupid story: when peewee was a kitty, we kept having to pull him away from the fireplace, where he wanted to, we thought, play or be a little toasty after the fire'd died down but the hearth was still warm. i'd sweep little ashen kitty paw prints off the hearth, smack (softly) his little kitty butt, admonish, "don't play in the fireplace, kitty!" we'd be watching tv & james'd exclaim, "i smell the cat box!" my super nose immediately would go on patrol, snarfing in the box's direction, smelling nothing, but detecting a smell elsewhere in the living room, TOWARD THE FIREPLACE. "must be an animal under the house," i would conclude, since the smaller forest creatures nestle in the crawlspaces, esp when it's cold... so yesterday i finally cleaned out the fireplace &... PEEWEE HAS BEEN CRAPPING IN THE FIREPLACE!!!! STUPID CAT!!!!!! i scooped an entire grocery sack-full of fossilized little nuggets from the ashes. yes, fortunately peewee has been big & fat for some time, so many months ago, his a*s got too wide to dip his way into the fireplace to sneak a dainty little hearth-poop, so merry christmas to us...
- i'm waiting for some stupid slow music files to upload to send to a fellow in bakersfield who might book us at his & his wife's smartly-arranged club in old town kern (bakersfield). i used to drink there many many moons ago, priding myself stupidly on how i would pay for a full basque dinner, then ONLY eat french bread with bleu cheese, along with sucking down least one bottle of wine all by my stupid self (boy, i showed THEM!)... stupid stupid youth of mine...
- how were your holidays? above's our warm & comfy thanksgiving pic. we are doing well, & i'm so happy... only one or two stupid relatives/people were at thanksgiving; most everyone was terrific & nice & funny & warm & helpful & loving... just found out i get to play the annual christmas party with big manny. he put up a fb profile pic much like one of james & me, so we said we should all start a band. here's me & james:
here's manuel: 
 he said we'll call the band monkey see, monkey do. :) i'm looking fwd to playing w/him, leo, & micky for the rush street christmas party (yay andy!) & also with james at the oasis for our monthly duo... i'm trying to convince james to learn "here comes fatty with a sack of sh*t," which i first heard on the john waters christmas album, but i don't think he's going for it... we really should have some christmas songs at our show, & certainly some stupid ones, too... ok, the stupid files uploaded finally; time to go.

Monday, November 16, 2015

blablablablablablablbalbalabalbalablabalbalalbalaba...

last night, in an amazing deal for the place, i got 3 pizzas for 11 bucks at the local market. winter bringing rain, high winds, icy snow has blown in & locals look different now, all of us hollow-eyed & hunkered-down in coats to combat the cold, lumbering & scurrying to get our supplies before securing ourselves tightly away for the night in (i hope) warm homes... the snow is beautiful & forbidding, but also light & playful: we've only this year so far seen it be the former, but i have learned living up here the weather's got so many faces, temperaments, colors, moods... it is a living entity, the greatest one of all! (see article below about nature.)
there's a local stir right now about a corporate dollar store coming to town: most objection is coming from local biz owners ("natch"), chiefly the guy whose family has a monopoly on local markets. he even was spotted removing local newspapers from stands so locals couldn't read the story wherein he threatened to fire employees who didn't sign his petition protesting the incoming dollar store! (his attempted subterfuge only resulted in yet another newspaper story, which only made him look more like a weenie...) man, that's rough: i feel sorry for the folks working for these markets. will they always have to watch their backs when they want to pop into the dollar store for a cheap item or two?
we're on a budget in this life-chapter (which is fine; self-restraint aligns nicely w/my OCDish tendencies), but i'd never buy everything from dollar stores. such food generally is limited, low-quality & un-nutritious, falling into the category of fake food, for the most part, & the products are plastic, cheaply-made, quickly-broken. but i hope this dollar store goes through cause it'll be nice to have more shopping options. we won't have to go off the mountain as much!
one argument from local biz owners is that the dollar store will create traffic congestion in our little tiny liliputian itsy-bitsy downtown.
oh, please!!!
competition is good, people around here are loyal to one another's persons & endeavors, & our locally-run stores generally are high quality & run, i think, with love & care. (example: the feed store; the library [not a biz, at least not yet]; the pizza joint; the video store; the vegetarian restaurant; the burger joint; the junk store; the toy store; the hardware store; the car wash!) go, dollar store, go!
next i will pray mightily for a movie theatre to be installed down at the outlet mall. come on, movie theatre!


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

mama mia, papa pia, potato chip

just saw this dazzling pic that kaykay posted of james, to which i commented he was the handsomest man i've ever seen, then joked in postcript, "except for johnny weissmuller." so then i had to look up weissmuller on google &... good gravy!!!!
the weissmuller shots (below) are such obvious beefcake, but some people like me are obvious in what twists their twinkie, as cousin tushi would say (another of her exclamations comprises the title of this post). dad & mom are the same way: he, always so gentlemanly, has only ever commented (politely) on women's physical appearance when they are as beautifully, intoxicatingly shapely as, say, dark-eyed sophia loren; mama's favorite has long-been big manly sean connery... me & james have had talks about the 1st time we felt "funny" seeing a celeb. i've known men who were most thrilled physically by women who looked more like teenagers or even were childlike (yeccch), or feminine caricatures, like bette davis, who really were more like drag queens or had masculine characteristics, but my husband & i have always been attracted, really attracted, by strapping uber-men (me) & -women (him), hunky (me) & healthily curvaceous (him) endomorphs, their visages maybe displaying high testosterone & estrogen levels. he recalls his first realization that there was something special about the female specie the first time he viewed raquel welch, in 10, 000 BC. good heavens! that must be one of the top-10 ultra-toned beautiful-bombshell images ever recorded! for me, it was walking into the tejon theatre in bakersfield & being stopped in my tracks by the sight of john amos (yes, good times 70s tv-dad john amos) shirtless in the world's greatest athlete: the strong chin, wide forehead, handsome, masculine face, & broad broad chest clicked something on in my 7-year old being.
- there's nothing wrong with androgyny or any other legal physical attraction (we're not fatty-haters, & if you are, go suck an egg). why write about this? well, it's my damn blablablog.
anyways, this is what i think about on this wintry day, the 1st snow having nestled the mountain these early morning hours. the house is quiet & calm & we had coffee, pyrenee's rolls from bakersfield, provolone & meats from generous mama, lingonberry jam, & now he's retired to rest & i'm on to reading in a few... he said this early morn he was out watching the sunrise & falling snow & cavorting wildlife & laughed happily, "this is my HOME!" i feel that way so often... no high-paying career would take the place of the simple & pretty life of today. to repeat thoreau for the 100th time, "that man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest."
anyways, back to my mundane, everyday, but fun-to-consider-for-the-moment topic, the pics here  give me that john amos feeling (tho the one of james additionally stirs my heart with many other kinds of love, which is what happens in marriage, as love deepens & broadens), & also remind me of the 1st time i saw my husband sans-shirt. that image will never be posted here or anyplace else, but i'll say, just to be polite, oh my, hubba hubba, mama mia, papa pia, potato chip.

Sunday, November 08, 2015

sleepy mind, beautiful life force

my mind feels soft & warm like a blanket... slow & quiet like late afternoon light... the low clear clean light is breathtaking & makes my brain & heart shush & draw in, comforted by the certain coming of winter.
just read a really neat, well-written article that i used to wipe my hands on as i ate & read (unfortunate habit of mine), before i realized i would have otherwise saved it, so i'll just quote it here, since i must now throw away the pb&j-smeared pages. "just as there are receptors in the brain for drugs, i like to think we have receptors for nature as well. we may believe we are run by our thoughts and anxieties, our urges and our choices, but come to a place like montana [or a place where nature is in charge, like here on the mountain] and you wil be reminded that the moon is running you. the sun is running you. the light or lack of light is running you. you are the full moon. you are the rushing river. you are the animal, moving and being moved" (amanda fortini, from good magazine)
...
oh, cool! here's a link to the article itself! i was initially not-much interested, but the piece builds into something quite different than its initial description of mundane activities... surrender by amanda fortini (of course, she's not just a great writer, but beautiful)
the link contains photos quite stunning! like the one below of james and me... his smile makes me swoon (as dad said, james has no bad angles, & as i say, his immense heart & soul shine through his eyes), and i know i'm not alone, but that is ok with me... :)

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

all hallow's eve

winter's coming! finally can feel it in the air... we watched most of soylent green the other night after the above crazy-successful show at long beach's  shenanigan's, but i can't ever watch past when edward g. robinson goes to the euthanasia factory to "go home" cause i start blubbering... am happy to feel winter in the air because tho charlton heston's hammy-yet-wooden macho brawn & corniness make soylent green laughable, its "dystopic vision" isn't cause it in ways seems too plausible -- the ideas that the future always will be hot, squalid, over-populated, evil-government ruled, with sexism & exploitation of the human even more culturally-imbedded... but now turns the weather to winter, yesterday & today with billowing storm skies bringing fresh cold rain & shining nighttime of brilliant, chilled stars... welcome, winter. :)
(btw, the peanuts movie comes out next week, just in time for the holidays.) :)

Friday, October 30, 2015

oh my, oh heck, oh crud, oh rats

have been sick in soul & also body all week. so much confusion, loss, blah.
looking at the dishes & no magic fairies are gonna do them. waiting for repair person to call back to look at the gas wall heater, which is emitting a not-intolerable tho steadily-annoying high c#. i would trouble-shoot it, but been too sick to stand much, never mind do heating repairs. once i lived in a 1910s walk-up in downtown backwardsland that had a lovely hissing steam radiator, the steady shush of which, on cold eves, was calming, but this sound ain't that. hard to get help on the mtn at the last sec like this. halloweeny tomorrow. mebbe all the repair persons are getting their ghosty & zombie & witchy & hobo & superhero & other costumes ready.
so much sad, sad news this week. god rains on the just & unjust alike; the birds outside don't care; life goes on; the low-angled lulling golden sunlight on the dusky green mountains, the wisping burr of pine, don't care. am grateful to be ill here in the soft & quiet mountains rather than in the loud & dirty city, which is good for a dip but not for a life. i'd be even more depressed if there...
remembered to turn to stoicism, its readings imparting advice not unlike that in 12 step programs or christianity or buddhism of various patterns, to my synchretizing mind... so much is out of my control; my duty is to find meaning, keep composure, when it's lost, relocate it.
here are a few worthwhile links. dishes next, dang it.
this is great: adam smith, "loved and lovely"
failing is part of the deal

Thursday, October 29, 2015

"you better be right, sinner, you better be right..."

have been feeling crappy about many things these past two days, so decided to make a halloween video. a creative attempt usually works to cut thru the sludge in my brain.
the original song was recorded in the '50s by freddie & the hitchhikers & rediscovered by the cramps. i recorded the audio when we lived in the apartment in oc, ca, back in 2013. it's one of the cuts from our 2013 halloween mini cd, called something like happy f&*$ing spooky halloween (you get the idea). if you wanna hear more, just email me or james or see us on facebook.
that is all for now...

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Life goes on for us. We're still alive. We're still here!!!!!

found myself in oildale, ca today saying that to a young guy i used to see at meetings who obviously sitting on the sidewalk dirty & ashamed wasn't in that sober place anymore, & he dipped his head & said beautiful & even wiped a tear. "brian visited me a few times when i was in jail," he said, referring to my 1st husband, & in that moment, i realized today was brian's bd, so i gave the young guy his number cause that'd be quite a nice bd present for brian, to do some 12 step work. then in another huge God shot, i turned around & another member of the fellowship was walking up, someone w lots of good time, & took the guy to his truck & gave him a shirt so he would be able to go into a place & get some food. "tell james hi," he called as i walked back to my vehicle, feeling so effin grateful & useful & happy, & then when i got in the car i learned life took away james's dear friend max. max! the greatest drummer i've ever heard, a smart talented wiry wily wisp of a guy, a trickster & a mensch. he chain smoked most of his life, got an aggressive lung cancer, immediately started a vigorous anti-smoking campaign, fought & fought to hold on! so scrappy, so vital was he, he last much longer than thought possible! but this p.m. he left this life & now the  rollercoaster has gone off the tracks into unbridled cyclone. why why why? there's no satisfying answer & after the happy beautiful trip of last week, i now feel clawed at & gnawed at by old dark inclinations, sad & mad in so many ways i can't even explain cause that box must stay nailed shut... i know after these dark skies, after this storm, the sun is gonna rise & hope when it does, i will be able to feel it. that we can feel it... we... can... good lord, max is gone & thousands mourn! unfettered souls swing from sweet, loving & kind to  suicidal, selfish, dishonest, damaged! i'd quote the big book, but what's the use? sometimes life is just pure sh*t & that's all there is to it.

binge

recently i was in a group of four or five women & it came up that every one of us has had eating disorders at one time or other. cheese & crackers! what kinda crap is that? to quote repo man, "i blame society..."
thought of this just now as i chomped down my (not gonna lie here) fifth piece of rugelach (had to look up the spelling), so tasty nutty-crunchy yet starchy-doughy, like so many foods i binge upon (shuddering while doing so since it's near-impossible to trace these tasties back to their originating farms or critters... or laboratories?) (btw, this is an eye-opening exercise to undertake when considering one's grub intake) (where was i?)  mom & dad got the rugelach & challah bread & other yummies from a jewish food festival that took place here in backwardsfield the other day... so i'm here to say hi to los padres magnificos & tomorrow have two dr appts before going back up the mtn to work... we had swell heart-warming small-town kinda events on the mountain the other day, a haunted library shindig my boss marie put on in spades w/the whole beautiful place decked out in morbid scary silly fun, then right across the street at the park, a community dinner put on by a local church, so i got spelled from patrol at work counting people in attendance to grab a bowl of delicious soup & bread AND see four of my warm happy friends from the drunk club! anyways, whatta life. i am really enjoying my turn lately, i tell you.
however, am frustrated trying to upload pix from james's & my trip; mama's little computador won't read the files, so i'm forced to be sensible & give up til am back home & can do it all in one swoop, rather than being a nut as is my tendency & spending hours here obsessively sending 80 photos one by one (the only way my phone will do it) to email, then creating a folder, dumping photos in one by one, then uploading each to facebook (see, i got it all figured out, like we nuts will do before embarking on some insane task completely counterproductive & time-wasting).
we had a really great great great great trip to the desert to celebrate three years' marriage, enjoying superb food & kind hospitality & very comfortable beds with nice soft sheets of higher thread count than my limbs & toes usually slide upon & wonderful gargantuan skies & lonely highways & neon lights & i could go on & on & on cause i can even binge on words.
instead i'll just post a pic or three or 9 of some highlights & more later, more later... maybe, who knows, who cares! just remember to watch (unless you're a homophobe) the french movie stranger by the lake (the eros & thanatos impulses! such scary twins! so spooky! so sexy! so doomed! been there, but ain't done THAT!) & read john waters' carsick (unless you're a homophobe... or have no sense of humor). chow!
james killed at sammy's original! god-like!

next we vegged at a wonderful spot in DHS

look at that face... can only write OMG!!
great guy commemorated in palm springs

the white shadow & the whiteboy in photogenic amboy
hanging w/shady & kim in bullhead city/laughlin

"help us, obi-wan!" awesome gift from shady guarded by magic glove

nearly the coolest place in vegas: james w/sci-fi center's william

after the trip: makeupless me w/kind, talented marie at haunted library


Monday, October 05, 2015

blablablablablablabla

mind's running a bit too fast to write much... all is swell. cooking, qi gong, friends, travels, "new" car (for a steal!), music, family, practice, library, paychecks, reading, step work, yoga, building projects, cat, funny hahaha, hahahahaha! blablablablabla!! more later, i think...
do wanna write that the oasis is considered to be the toughest bar in taft. i laugh! yeah, there's a fight near-every time we're there (not with our fans/watchers, & not cause of us, but cause of overuse of mind-altering substances by humans staying too long at the helm, i think). patrons & staff are always so friendly & accomodating & enthusiastic & happy & they have absolutely the best food i've ever had in a bar, specializing in sliders. we had fresh cod sliders one time recently! delicious! so fresh! so tender! (ok, the saloon we went with james's band in the netherlands, i just remembered, they served us, right at the bar, super-excellent scrumptious-tasty egg-bacon breakfasts next morn...) the fights happen after the shows, so don't worry, & realistically i think most can figure out that can be just what occurs when folks over-indulge, so please come down & see us for oildorado week at the oasis in taft!
no cover, just bring your dancing shoes & smiles... and tip money for the band, as james would say, "for the kids" (bwahaha; so irreverent is he.)
happy seven months drug-alcohol free to the man whom brother doug waggishly calls "james scarbelli" :D 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

shallow talk & for your consideration...

i think we'll always be photogenic, being a coupla real characters! james is my movie star, my hero, my friend, my love! he gets more handsome all the time, i know & believe. as for me, don't know how long my looks will last...
intellectually, i know & appreciate beauty & "cute" come from within... immaturely, i know & sort of lament that i'm no longer the girlish waif i was when james & i met! (my slimmer figure, however, i must remember was due to the desperate & rattled & unhinged & manic state i lived in during that time as well as the lot more jogging i did while in bakersfield with its lovely jogging/bike path!) yes, i miss my relative-to-now skinniness, but i know i'd rather be chubbier, older, centered, & much much happier these days! :D since i stopped dying my hair last year, too, i'm no longer mistaken for a younger person, which always was scary & creepy to me... i'm so fortunate that james is not creepy that way, desiring youth in the unsavory, even deviant manner of some... yeccccch!!!! i used to play music with a nice man with a nice wife (tho politically we were far opposites) & when he expressed lecherous feelings for a famous young female singer, i said, "isn't she the same age is YOUR STEPDAUGHTER???" he just shrugged & said, "yeah, so what?"
yeeeecccccccccccccchhhhhhhhhhh!!!!! blllleghhgggghgghghg!!!! anyways...
just ordered some vibram 5-fingers off ebay... can't wait! that will be fun, to finally try some out... natural running, here we come! :D
be sure to read the code book by simon singh as well as watch the lovely 1990 flick green card, one of my faves, which we viewed together the other night, transforming a listless evening into a warm & romantic one. (i really liked chappie last night, too as well as the doc lost souls.) right now i'm reading from our library (interlibrary loans are the best!) the life of christ by papini (1923 edition!), the urban homestead, & island of dr moreau by h.g. wells. if you are bored today, go to the public library! go for a walk or run or hike! sing a song! watch a movie! call or visit your loved ones! contemplate the sky & nature & how lucky we all are to be alive! that reminds me: please, please read this highly worthwhile piece by recently departed oliver sacks, r.i.p.: sabbath ... it builds nicely, then the last lines, BOOM! it really got me, to sound holden caufieldish.
 time for more coffee. have a lovely juan! that is all for now. over & out.




Wednesday, September 09, 2015

animal amore

am drawn back to blog to post this vid sister angie sent. it is the very cutest thing i've seen in some long while. in my old life, i had a rotten pet that looked like a bowling ball in a cat costume. his endearing quality, tho, was when i'd play piano, he'd come sit on top & purr. atta boy :)
the dogs, of course, were pure love... i miss them all the time. i know james misses his otis dog. dogs are proof of god, as sister angie used to say...
the older i get, the more i love animals... our funny fat kitty, the birds outside, the squirrels, the bunny rabbits, the loveable latch-key dog next door... but the gophers better watch out: james is gonna come hunting for the little hole burrowing buggers. and then, bizarre foods style, we'll have some gopher stew or maybe fried gopher!
lately all i want to do is read & work on projects around the house & organize books... i think rather than the little rascals school of architecture, as james said i'm from, it's more the robinson crusoe school i resemble. i'll walk, climb, drive anyplace to get building materials just so i don't have to spend money! plus it's way more fun, always has been, to make stuff when i don't have quite the right materials... anyways, things around here are really looking nice, in a funky kinda way... here's the wonderful video :)

Cute Golden Retriever Loves to Listen to GuitarWatch this dog jam to the music and get mad when it stops.
Posted by Epic Videos on Wednesday, October 9, 2013



Wednesday, August 19, 2015

this just in!

i posted the bottom paragraph on facebook & now james's phone's ringing off the hook w/his friends calling to find out all about what happened! i don't guess it's the kinda thing your average city-born  cult-hero bluesman does... maybe cause there's only ONE person of that description who would've had the wherewithal to know what to do! :D
i'm so glad he was here cause i would've probably tried to save it & ended up getting bit in the process... dumbbell the cat, as is, was trying to get outside to play with it...
here's the post:
james killed a rattler on our porch. i got this house over 5 yrs ago & have never seen a snake til now, never mind a poisonous one, & never mind right at the front door!! r.i.p., dear viper, now headless carnivore chow in arroyo. thank goodness for james the snake slayer...

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

embarrassing

not this flyer, which is awesome, but that i am so exhausted only two days into my Big Week at the library. i haven't worked a 40 hr week in over 5 yrs!!! anyways, i'm enjoying myself & it's good to be able to say that about work. laborare est orare
this whole dang week i will be going hi-ho, hi-ho, good little not-dwarf that i am (jeez, so tired, can't even write entertainingly)... feeling competent & being good to people while working with books, couldn't be much better unless i also had free diet soda & a piano in the corner & maybe a gym... then this weekend's the library book sale as well as fiesta days in frazier park & yippee!
ah, heck, just come to our show in taft. you'll be glad you did! :D
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz... time to chop logs...........

Friday, July 31, 2015

buuuurrrrp

sick sick sick sick sick!
yesterday my 48th bd was really nice, with neat monster diorama & pancakes made by james, our morning viewing of deadwood, which we're binge-viewing on roku at moment; hundreds of heartwarming well-wishes from cyber friends (so many dear sentiments! wow! people are so, so kind! what a wonder life is!); dramatic storm clouds followed by cloudburst & power outage (spooky beautiful cool!); slippery drive thru storm flood & then dry lower san joaquin valley farmlands w husband showing sweet care to frightened kitty; luscious ice cream cone; loving family... but then i got sick!!!! stupid stomach!!!! we went to a bksfld production of anything goes (fine choreography there, professional-level along w singing, & of course, cole porter score we all enjoyed very much) & i suffered (i hope quietly) throughout. arrrgggghhh!! pain!!! but there was no reason to make everyone go home. i've had no fever, so i don't think this spell's gonna make me kick the bucket... what's a little pain? so what? maybe if i ignore it, it'll pass quicker!
anyways, just was on mama's computer looking up stomach pain remedies & wanted to post these in case you don't know about them: peppermint; apple cider vinegar (i have a swig every day, but alas, it's on the mountain right now & we're here in the blast-furnace valley); bitters (any bars around here?); ginger.
when first i met james & his stomach problems were a continuing woe, i used to remind him about the BRAT diet: banana, rice, applesauce, toast. oh, & avoid stuff like dairy, heavy foods (hahahahaha! my husband can eat more than any one human i've ever met! but since The Event in march, his stomach's been much better, the source of his long-term pain not having been crohn's disease or IBS, but bleeding ulcer, now ameliorated!!).
gonna go search the cabinets for one or more remedies now, then return to bed & try not to eat the entire bottle of TUMS (they are delicious...).
may your stomach cooperate. may your socks stay sticker-free! may your nickels not be wooden & your teeth stay in your head!
more later!

Saturday, July 25, 2015

blablblablablablablablablablablabla

i learned the other night that hotdogs are made up of 25% total mystery "meat". yes, 1/4 of the ingredients in american brats don't have to be reported at all!! yech. offal!!! then i learned two celebs i really like, andrew zimmern of bizarre foods & dave attell of foul-mouthed drunk humor, don't drink anymore, tho i don't know if either are "one of us" ("gooba-gooble, gooba-gobble") (i wonder if anyone will get that reference?) (who cares...) it's inspiring to learn people in the public eye whom i already kinda like & admire for their irreverence & decency could be "one of us"...
just drank too much coffee while editing dad's latest history article (dad's page). people from the bakersfield paper have been trolling dad's articles & siphoning off, not always attributing him. fyi, you supposed "reporters," that is called plagiarism!!! but dad's such a gent, he doesn't say much. HEEEE knows he's doing the original rooting out of story, not the rats that take from him... anyways, dad researches history cause he loves it so, which is why we do things: out of love, not for glory. cause we must!!
that reminds me that i just read about someone who seemingly does everything for greedy, selfish "glory," the billionaire dipsh*t donald *rump, whose asinine comments about veterans, hispanics, other repub presidentio contendores pretty much ensures that eventually someone's gonna kick his butt, or at least slap the wig off his head. can't wait!! hahahahahahah!!!!
well, that's about it except for a million other things... james has a show tonight in smellayland, & that should be big fun! oh, and the storm dumped 3.45 inches of rain over 2 days last week. whew! oh, and i'm reading about 50 different things right now, and oh well, that's about it...have a gneiss wan.
Big head & big head all sweaty after musically slamming the crap out of the place.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

bum ba-bum bum

meeeeeee (hope you sang that, to the tune of the tums tv commercial of old...) i've just not wanted to write for some time... but this morning i realized it's that i haven't wanted to get on my computer because then... i have to... pay... ...
BILLS.
with this realization clear, i leaped up, turned on the ancient laptop, got it done. relief!!!
don't know why i procrastinate so at times. mebbe cause i don't have other bad habits, other than occasional descent into considerable depression & self-pity (& binge eating)... i rip articles from the NYer mag with plan to read them later. there was one on procrastination i kept for some months. but of course, i never read it. (badump-bump!)
geez, it's been a month since i wrote. i had my sobriety bd: 20 YEARS! didn't go to the international drunks convention in atlanta (HOTlanta, as dan m called it). got beautiful flowers from friends, pearls from james, cards, cakes, sobriety chip. my bd was a big huge happy wow. :)
Photo by Kaykay Jagger: me on really nice Roland, James w/new guitar.
mama recently had a 50 years reunion of her bakersfield college choir, the little choir that toured & sang all over europe, becoming the first americans ever to win wales's prestigious eisteddfod festival. at the college, i got to see their informal "concert" (they'd had just one practice) & with the first notes, dad, me, & the man to my right burst into tears. the sound of all of these reunited septuagenarians was that beautiful, that moving. we were watching something special & unique, all these talented once-20-somethings reconvened as 70-somethings, voices & hearts still so filled w/soul & conviction. choir director joe huzsti, who with his wife melinda have been huge life-long mentors to mama, talked about what this choir always has meant to him, tho he's since traveled the world many times, winning  many awards with other, more prestigious choirs, teaching musicians who've gone on to greatness. "they have a special something," he said (i paraphrase), delivering song so sincerely & w/a commitment that makes young musicians sound comparatively plastic. i thought of james. i thought of me. we're certainly not classically-trained maestros, but we are hard-working, hard-loving, hard-stomping & dedicated musical preservationists. the greatest compliment i ever got, i think, was from david nigel lloyd, who called me a "working-man's musician."
mr huszti was on the nose: no matter the musical genre, a few off notes, some clams, if sung or otherwise performed with unabashed, undiluted heart & soul, beam a life force that leaps from stage into the heart of the audience. such a performance can't help but move, being human, humane, transcending rather than "perfect"!
i'm so grateful i got to be there, as well as to help at the after-party at mom & dad's house! what nice folks! what talent! what testament to the power of music & hard work & love!
james has been having a wonderful time lately at his shows, both w/the newly-invigorated band & with me. he says so, & i can tell it's true. i'm so pleased for him!
we've gone out of town left & right. traveling, gigs, visiting family. friends have visited. we've played many music shows together, good, middling, great, fantastic! gotten magical feedback. i've worked at the library. still like it, still disconcerted to be doing one task at a time. i can get immersed in putting the books in order, tho. arranging all the deweys on all the books' spines is calming yet exciting, lulling, tranquilizing yet invigorating, like counting my footfalls when i run. that's the other thing! i've gotten to do some really cool jog-runs! and lotsa fun yardwork! even got some tomatoes growing, tho some butthead varmint's been eating them. and we've had a great time in the morns watching the birds, squirrels, & chipmunks chirping & hopping & munching & splashing at the birdbath/feeder area we set up under the window amongst some trees. the quail have birthed a new branch of the covey, so there's at least 20 of them running around here now, cooing so cutely, fatly, sweetly.
saw a coyote in the arroyo & for the 1st time since i watched one eat my cat in 2011, i didn't wish i could shoot it with a bb gun. as james has said, he's just trying to make a living. other than a deer, bunnies & hares are the only other animals i think i've seen... oh! and the biggest horny toad ever! i guess all the creatures have come down out of the forest to Civilization in search of water...
that's this wkend's biggest news: a huge storm washed in on tails of gulf hurricane. rain was beating the house like the band & i was sitting w/peeweenie (his name when he's being a turd) when i heard a great rushing swooping roar. i ran to the window & what a sight! storm runoff from higher climes had plummeted down the ever-dry, parched arroyo, creating a shooshing restless riverlet, a swifting running muddy creek! i got on galoshes & ran down there to chronicle the event... it smelled wonderful, like colorado used to (sure it still does, but i don't go there no mo) like wet pines, sage, earth.

Mt Pinos rocks (photo by Harriet H) from hike w/H
here comes the rain again! a cool heavy steady mountain shower! the rumble & flash of thunder & lightning! so invigorating! so scary! so beautiful! so overwhelming!
life! ah, life! we have it! :D

Saturday, June 20, 2015

it's a beautiful-evening ramble...

yesterday i learned that dear bobalu, front porch bob of long beach, ca, passed away. it was a really sad day, but touchingly comforting, also, to see all the love pouring out on social media in memory of bobalu. he saved james's life one time, & just for that reason alone, i love the man. but he just was a very likeable guy, & my gut ached all afternoon as i waited for james to wake so i could tell him. it was a somber eve once i did, but for the right reasons: mourning the loss of a good man. today when i got home from work, james told me pink arguello & co, all the musicians, will install a plaque at the new front porch, housed now at long beach's golden sails club on sunday afternoons, in bobalu's honor. he would've appreciated that.
just had a nice jog in the evening hills, slow but very nice, breezy, after warm nap with husband with soft wind blowing in through lazy golden curtains, before which was relaxing delicious late lunch in cool spacious dark mexican restaurant with smiling waitress, before which was work. i like my library job a lot. "it's so civilized," i tell everyone. that is my overriding opinion: no hoop jumping, no cat herding, no lion taming, like when i was a public school teacher. i can enjoy the children who come in, smile with them, joke gently with them, pull out books for them, appreciate them. no blasted stifling standardized lessons, no disciplining, no confrontations, no dog & pony shows. i also can have fun with students kid & adult in my library language mini-classes (volunteer). i love putting things in order, so shelf reading is quite pleasing. i catch errors; i'm a detail person, so it's a skill i can add. i realize my brain still works. so happy for that. sometimes in the past years (since "retiring") i worry i have impending early senility. i realize now it's cause, even w/times of diligent reading & attempts at self-edification, i've not been taxing my coconut enough. work has changed that, fortunately: i have to think, even cogitate. even better than my own edification are the other employees, & especially my boss, all kindly & polite. i like everyone quite a lot. lovely music plays all day long at soothing low volume. the library is clean & quiet. everything is organized. i can add to the order. we have moments to just talk. yes, it truly is incredible to be in the library after a long career in public schools, where every second (except my last three years, when i performed the librarian part of my teacher-librarian position) was push, push, push, the tempo crammed, stressful, anxiety-provoking, tho with moments wonderful in-between, those being exclusively teaching moments & student moments.
the other portion of my "work," music, has been pleasing. most recently, james had another "comeback" show at another venue in long beach. (he's so well-known & admired there, a self-described "minor cult hero," that every single venue where he has a fan base has advertised his first gig there after his near-death scare months back as his "comeback," & scores & scores come out to wish him well, cheer him on, revel in his performance.)
 anthony contreras has taken the guitar playing slot in the blues express; he's played with all kinds of people, chiefly, in my book, candye kane, but i'd never heard him til the other night, & i just loved his clean guitar tone, his lack of "rock" licks, his devotion to tradition, humble demeanor, & youthful energy. "i like the older stuff," he told me, "like the 40s & boogie-woogie." "me, too!!" i said, nearly jumping up & down with enthusiasm. anthony knows the "right" lines & chords for my ear, as does my dear friend manuel (big manny),  as well as how to ratchet the excitement up, like matt samia does, more & more & more til you think the whole place might explode. like matt, anthony, too, has a plethora of inventive melodies; you can tell he's got music & melodic sense coming out his toes. like james, he's a visceral gutsy traditionalist with a  sense of humor permeating his playing. the band bounced & swung all night & my handsome husband, the best band leader living, looked so happy. it was quite a party!
ok, well my muscles are warm & stretched, my mexican-food-filled stomach jostled into better comfort, my head, that cunning idiot, calm. time to shower off the jog-sweat. then i hope we will have a "deadwood" marathon, or i will read magazines.
ah, the breeze... after a life in the summer hell & smog of bakingfield, to live here now & feel the cooling breezes on my skin never fails to move me -- so crisp, so lovely, so inspiring, so aaahhhhh --  my throat catches; i realize my mortality; i am more alive in the moment, caressed by these mountain  breezes.
what a great life. yours, too, i hope.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

bliggidybloobedybooooblablablagggghgggghhghgg


 i don't know if my vllaaaaaaahhhhg will upload here (supposed to be above) & i forgot how to compress it, so here is a link to another vid from last month:

thanks for being so nice, all. all yall.
Posted by JamesandJenny Page on Tuesday, June 16, 2015
neither of us are any longer rolling in the bucks, but we're more grateful & fortunate than ever -- at least i am, & he says he is! for instance, yesterday i explored castaic (intending to jog, but it was too friggin hot!) & happened by the roadside (dry as a bone, post-apocalyptic movie road right above the interstate on the old road!) upon an abandoned travel trailer out of mad max as well as some old decking & cement foundation pieces. we'll make something out of it all -- fun to think about! back home, i found on netflix another anthony bourdain travel/food show (james doesn't care for him, but i do, tho he's too cynical to be our friend -- we both love the dorky turtle, andrew zimmern, on bizarre foods, tho; "that's one tough mother**ker!" laughs james). from the thrift shop, i scored a box of pretty tiles, some etched glass fan blades, books for james, & for me a great new read that reminds me of john irving: rambling, funny, shocking, sexy, humane.
"that man is richest whose pleasures are the cheapest," wrote thoreau. let's all remember together! kill  the corporate zombie system! death to consumerist suffocation! stay sick, turn blue, to quote the great philosopher lux interior.... bye for now.

Monday, June 15, 2015

squirrel!

1. squirrels & chipmunks recently have been ever-present, scampering fatly, adorably around like cartoon cuties (the little vermin...). obviously down here to find sustenance, they leap straight up to snatch the fat yellow flowers from the elderberry bush, james noted, which they then devour with great fervor.
2. yesterday while clearing brush off the side slope (i.e., raking it madly into the arroyo so it can't catch & ignite our property if there's a forest fire), i was relieved to hear  "our"  quail again,  endearingly rustling & chirping away from the tree behind me. we've been wondering where they went, if hungry predators had gotten them, since all the animals seem to be off their marks, mebbe due to drought conditions. our covey of california quail live. woohoo!
3. a weed i've been pulling up indisciminately, i found out yesterday at the ridge route museum, actually is a medicinal plant called indian tea. cool! it's a nice little museum, another thing that makes me like living here.
4. today all properties must be cleared, & ours, after much back-breaking work, is. :)
5. i realized lately at one of james's gigs one of my delights in life is to stand with back to wall in dark club (preferably with non-alcoholic beverage in hand) watching the action. it's a silky, secrety, fly-on-the-wall, safe & fun, intro-extrovert feeling. i got to make an amend that eve, too, so that was a real bonus.
6.  our duo finally has legs, tho not yet sea legs (more practice), but you can find our page & upcoming gigs at www.facebook.com/whiteboyandjenny ... it's a splendid feeling to work this thing alongside one another... we don't have to teach each other any style elements, like how to "do it right," what to play/not play, what to say/not say, how to sing it, what fits & what doesn't: we have the same musical heroes, references & understandings, plus we are scrappy stompers of song in love who onstage give no quarter! and we want to share the passion & fun with everybody... so catch one of our shows, if you can!
7. what have you discovered, learned or been reading lately? i don't wanna write anymore, so here's a vlaaaaahg.


Tuesday, June 09, 2015

bloopbloopbloopbloopbloop

still don't feel like writing except to say this life is the best i've ever gotten to have (& no peewees were injured in the making of this video). mo later. be cheery, deary.

Monday, June 01, 2015

no blablablablabla! happy june!!!!!

how are you? i just haven't felt like writing lately... all is swell! :D we are busy with life. here are some pix. this upcoming week we start our duo gigs... i will write more later, mebbe... life is goooood, to quote geoffrey holder (r.i.p.), the un-cola genie of commercials of old (as well as renaissance man & recurring figure in james's dreams!)...


Sunday, April 26, 2015

bwahahahahahaha!!! coughsputterchoke rettttccchhhh!!!

bro mike & darling darlene visited from smellay, a warm & nice but too-short visit. little darlene, a pretty, very sharp, eccentric 7 year old who reads aloud much better than many middle-schoolers, snapped this pic of us. the funniest comment, from fb pal james w: "great. now I have captain & tennille songs running thru my head."
ah, hellish wag, ah scurrilous wit! bye for now...

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

blablablablablablabla

we've been getting a lot done around the mountain house, fixing, rearranging, & building stuff. james says i'm from "the little rascals school" when it comes to assembling things. he, too, enjoys fixing & making things out of what we have sitting around the property. it looks great around here at our "winchester mystery house," better than ever! have had many lovely drives to-from bakoland since we discovered a way that goes thru farmlands & fields instead of along the interstate: country skies, sprawling crops, ranch houses & barns, james loves that stuff, too. :). peewee houdini has been getting out lately, one time out of his new "catio," but he doesn't go far. "didn't you ever get lost when you were a kid?" said james. "you're having fun, yayy! an adventure!, then go, uh oh: where am i??? you get scared!!!"... so i'm working on getting us to atlanta for the 80th international convention of the noble assn of drunks (not its name). i've gotten to go to all the others since sobering up, & dang it, we're going to go to this one!!! problem is, i kinda didn't think about how far away atlanta is. dang! but we're going! an extra lure is the georgia guidestones as well as family in kentucky... it's gonna be swell, even if i have to work for weeks to pull it off!
dad, doug & james all have pulled, injured backs right now, so at least our family main men are able to commiserate, tho they hobble in pain right now... my stupid leg muscle's still pulled, so still can't run. thought it was healed, then pulled it again while clambering up the steep slope out front doing yard work. argh! aging! drat!
well, that's it for now except i must stop procrastinating re preparing for upcoming classes i'm gonna teach... meanwhile, every time i volunteer at the thrift store, 15-20 "new" books jump in the car somehow. megalomania, pyromania, dypsomania: gimme bibliomania instead!!!! (sing doctor demento song.) hoho, heehee!!

Monday, April 06, 2015

so burrr blablabla

i had to stop drinking in 1995, & when i first started going to meetings, all i heard about was "the international" in san diego. every 5 yrs, the worldwide association of 12 stepping drunks has an international convention someplace in north america. i had missed "the international" by just two weeks!! i'd been on some of my last drunks while 100s of thousands of happy sober people were at "the international"!! it drove me nuts & thought i, i'm going to the next one or die trying!! of course, that meant i had to keep the plug in the jug...
back then, several hard-a**es & program doomsayers took one look at my young, selfish, immature newcomer butt & got my number, telling me i'd "never make it."
"oh YEAH???" i sputtered. "i'll show THEM!!" know-it-all jerks!! i would make it!!
then i got cast as glinda the good witch in a 12 step adaptation of the wizard of oz; my main lines were "the promises," which, if you don't know, are that part of "the big book" that tells you all the positive, mature, rewarding things you'll be able to do once you sober up & start to grow up. i'd drive around downtown bakersfield at night practicing my lines, steering & muttering those promises to myself, & realized i WANTED those things in my life!!
all the nice people i met, along w/the promises, the doomsayers, my immediate identification w/the big book, & the lure of upcoming international conventions helped ensure that i stayed off the sauce day by day.
i was in like flynn in bakersfield sober circles for many yrs. i loved helping others, feeling useful & purposeful, like a good person, "part of," yet outside the gossip. i had a strong role model in my 1st husband, a close-mouthed man who, like my dad, just didn't believe in telling tales. i felt good, even great, more uncrazy than ever at many times during those years... we went w/friends to the 2000 international in minneapolis as well as the 2005 in toronto. my dear friend jani & i walked around a colorful international market; we all went to the ginormous mall of the americas; i fell off the rails emotionally & missed seeing ronnie dawson at a local club; we ate thai food & delicious fish; we visited meetings in many languages & walked amongst thousands, thousands of happy sober people. in 2010 i'd just gone through a very sad divorce & went to the convention in san antonio. i saw my ex-husband there as well as throngs of bakersfield friends who'd traveled to the tx gathering in a big cheerful herd. i was in a really bad spot in life emotionally & spiritually then, but the convention was all-wonderful.
the next one's in atlanta. i'll have 20 years. did i mention the conventions always fall on my sober birthday weekend? my selfish part is pleased by this: every 5 yrs, i celebrate my bd not just with the u.s.a., but w/the sober world. i've started really getting excited about this convention, going to atlanta w james, continuing on to kentucky to again visit his loving, wonderful family there, traveling, being sober, having a chance to keep growing, getting healthier, connecting to others, helping & being helped, not just existing but feeling fully awake & alive.
can't wait!!!
to conclude, here's a section from the most important book i've ever read, pp 152-153. when 1st i heard it, at the little church meeting that was my thursday night home for 14 years, my chest swelled & i nearly cried. i grew up loving superheroes. i never wanted to become what i did, a confused, desperate, unhappy, sick in all ways girl-woman who broke her mother's heart, hurt all who loved her, in the vice of a fatal disease. these promises, not the ones i had to learn for the play, are ones that kept me coming back, & still do. there's hope for a new life to anyone who wants it. this isn't the only way, but it's the way that has worked for me.  if you, too, are inspired by what you read below, here's the link:
[Here you will] find release from care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead. Thus we find the fellowship, and so will you.

"How is that to come about?" you ask. "Where am I to find these people?"

You are going to meet these new friends in your own community. Near you, alcoholics are dying helplessly like people in a sinking ship. If you live in a large place, there are hundreds. High and low, rich and poor, these are future fellows of [the program]. Among them you will make lifelong friends. You will be bound to them with new and wonderful ties, for you will escape disaster together and you will commence shoulder to shoulder your common journey. Then you will know what it means to give of yourself that others may survive and rediscover life. You will learn the full meaning of "Love thy neighbor as thyself."
It may seem incredible that these men are to become happy, respected, and useful once more. How can they rise out of such misery, bad repute and hopelessness? The practical answer is that since these things have happened among us, they can happen with you. Should you wish them above all else, and be willing to make use of our experience, we are sure they will come. The age of miracles is still with us. Our own recovery proves that!

Our hope is that when this chip of a book is launched on the world tide of alcoholism, defeated drinkers will seize upon it, to follow its suggestions. Many, we are sure, will rise to their feet and march on. They will approach still other sick ones and fellowships... may spring up in each city and hamlet, havens for those who must find a way out.

Monday, March 30, 2015

it's alive!!!!

Just cleaned house for folks while James & Peewee sleep. When the surgeon cut James open, he said he exclaimed, "What the hell is THAT?" He called in his associate, then another. I know gruff life-saving Dr Heillbron Sr (nicknamed "Papa" by some at the hospital) is written to have 45 yrs' experience, his associate 42, so w all 3, over a century saving lives combined isn't out of the ballpark. They'd never seen a perforated ulcer of James's variety. He'd have died if it'd been a "normal" bleed out, & would've anyway had he not gotten to St Mary's when he did  (((shudder)))...
Below's a pic of us from last eve as we relaxed on the patio w family in the beautiful eve fragrant w jasmine... James lost 25 lbs over the course of what he calls his "event," all muscle, I think, since he's never had a roll of fat. He's started eating more like Dad, little meals about every hour, & his biceps still pop up like bowling balls, so he'll be back in fighting trim soon enough, I believe...
This a.m. Mama & I put together a "little library" to take out to the Friendship House. This is a VERY worthwhile endeavor, & m&d are doing their pt to make sure the books go where they're needed... read about how to start &/or find a little free library ... my finger is stiffening from phone-typing. We can't wait to be back on the mountain. We
are so happy for the gift of life life life.