Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Furious World? Now also The Curious World.

My kids are big fans of Peter Himmelman's "My Green Kite" and "Feet." I'm a big fan of Peter Himmelman's entire body or work. Each Tuesday night, I look forward to his online concert at Furious World. Now he's got something on Sunday mornings for the kids...and the kids' moms and dads. It's called Curious World presented by the good people at The Land of Nod. Click below for the teaser. Visit the site for more. I can't wait to watch this with my kids. We're all Himmelfans here.

Bez Cubed?

Could my bus riding days be behind me? No more two hour walks to work followed by two hour walks home?

If all goes well, I'll be driving one of these in the next day or two:

Wait. That's not it. Here it is, in the color that my daughter wants me to pick:

Assuming that it works out, no more blogging about too much walking here, folks. Reliable wheels mean that I can more aggressively pursue a part time job and start meeting friends and family for lunches and various meet-ups. Here's hoping that this helps me in my pursuit of being a bit more social and a little less poor. The beauty of mobility is so close. Stay tuned for how it all works out.

Germino, McDermott, and Himmelman

Researching cars can be exhausting. I'm not complaining though as I am feeling like a very lucky man to be in the position of researching cars. I feel like I'm just a day or two away from no longer walking 13.2 miles a day, not counting the walking that I do while at work. More on that later.

I found myself with Mark Germino's music in my head and went to my CDs only to find that I've once again lost Radartown. With that, I went to Pandora only to find that they know nothing of him. Fair enough. A lot of folks don't. Thankfully, YouTube provided me with what I was looking for. Well, mostly anyway. I wanted to hear "She's A Mystery," but couldn't find it. Still, what a perfect poet he is.

In a musical highlight for me, WRLT's Nashville Sunday Night series, broadcast from 3rd and Lindsley, featured Michael McDermott this week. I was at work but with a radio on and got to hear most of it uninterrupted. He sounded about as good as I've ever heard him and I hope that his audience continues to grow as it should. I'm reminded that I need to get my hands on his brilliant 620 W. Surf once again. I recommend the same to you. Out of print, but well worth the search.

Here's to being off work tonight so that I can watch Peter Himmelman's Furious World for the first time in a month or so. As I was writing this, I received an email update announcing that his guest tonight is the fantastic Joe Henry. Tune in if you can. It's always a fun show.

Mad Men, Skyline Chili, and me

Last week I decided that I wouldn't watch Mad Men anymore until the end of the season. Then I'd watch those skipped episodes back to back so that hopefully the lackluster episodes wouldn't linger on my mind as much. Of course, I didn't follow through on my plan and watched this week's episode tonight. There was so much more punch in the direction tonight. Snippets of scenes to come enticed perfectly. Their payoffs at the end rose to the level of their intrigue. I'm back to loving the show.

No matter what I eat this week, it won't beat last Saturday's lunch. Skyline Chili, courtesy of my dad. I didn't quite recreate the goodness that is the Skyline Chili Cheese Coney, but I came as close as one can in Nashville, Tennessee.

It wouldn't be a post if I didn't go on a bit about my long walks to and from work these days. Six point six one way and again home at night. I think I finally reached my breaking point today. I started out my usual way and was making good time until I saw what I should have remembered. Construction work on the dam forced me to have to turn around and walk a longer route. I was an hour late for work and absolutely exhausted even before the official beginning of my workday. Someone who ignored her stop sign came very close to hitting me.

That close call, following the previous night's tough walk home, led me to a feeling of utter exhaustion all day long. Yesterday my wife drove me to work since she got home from lunch too late for me to walk and get to work in time. Thinking ahead, I put my borrowed bicycle into the van with the intention of riding it home that night. It doesn't have lights and so I found myself at the end of my shift walking my bicycle home. Two police officers pulled over to talk to me and to remind me that I'm not allowed to ride it without a light. It was so ridiculous that I was actually in a good mood about it all. I'd like to thank those cops for reminding me to keep not breaking the law.

I could  look at fashion photography books all day long. This book is titled Unseen Vogue and is available at my local library. Well, when I return it, that is.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I'm spending more time trying to think of a title to this post then I did writing the post itself

Either Season 3 is weak or Mad Men is a show that is better watched the way I watched the first two seasons, an entire season over the course of two or three nights instead of one episode a week. It's only recently that I agree with the criticisms that it moves along way too slowly. I think I'll give Season 3 a rest for now and watch it all at once at the end.

Here are some pics I took on my late night walk home a few nights ago.

This building reminds me a bit of Nighthawks At The Diner from afar. Except that it's pretty much the opposite.

Scary trees on a hill. I saw this and thought of the image of the knight on the horse that terrorized Robin Williams in The Fisher King. It just needs a bit more fire.

Three shots from my late night dam crossings:

Sunday, September 20, 2009

New Route

I tried a new route for walking home from work Saturday evening. Considering Lebanon Pike, I wondered if it might be a bit more pedestrian-friendly than the sidewalk-lacking Elm Hill Pike. Sure enough, it was about the same distance as my usual route, but it felt a lot safer. Also good news, it looks like there's a bit more shoulder for bicyclists so I may try out my borrowed bicycle on Sunday.

Someone stopped and offered me a ride on this walk but I was almost home and feeling good. As you can see in the picture, I wasn't exactly dressed in the safest colors for walking at night. I initially hadn't planned on walking, however, I got off early and my ride had to stay late so instead of waiting around the workplace for an additional four hours, I opted for trekking it dressed as a cat burglar. Smart.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

While perusing old blog posts, I see younger kiddos

Oh, and a pic of me from back when I was a record store employee. Rock on, dude.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

She'll love the bit about Charlie Ravioli

A good friend of mine just bought Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik because of me. I feel so, um, influential.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Don't mind me. Just talking to the universe.

I keep hearing that it gets easier. I hear it from others and I hear it from myself, a reminder that it's either true or just a good and hopeful way to be. It's hardly worth going over yet again, but I'm in a mood for breathing deeply tonight. I'd do the woe-is-me thing, but there are far too many people having a rougher go of it than myself for me to feel like anything other than a whiner in doing so. Still, I would like for the universe to do me a solid and guarantee me that if I keep clocking in and doing my job, then I won't ever have any tough times with vehicles anymore.

Also, while I have the universe's attention (assuming that I do), I'd like for my kids to never get fevers and miss school again. (That H1N1 stuff was both worrisome and expensive.) There's also the issue of my laptop. For some reason, I think that there's a firewall issue where there really should be no issue at all. I can't access my iTunes Store right now. That means no new songs on my iPod and more importantly it means I haven't listened to a podcast in months. Has the universe not noticed just how much I like podcasts? Heck, I almost started one myself last year and I didn't even have an idea of what it would be about. We even bought a microphone and downloaded software and everything.

There is more that I would like to talk about with the universe, but it'll just need to talk to me personally. Some things are too private for a blog.


Broken Bottle

Bus by day, foot by night

I walked to the nearest bus stop this morning and took pictures downtown before taking the bus to work. These are the schedules that I always keep close at hand.

After work, I opted to enjoy the nice weather and walk home.

I admit that maybe walking home at night isn't the safest of choices. I could have called a cab, but I was in a stubborn mood. For the parts of the walk that don't have street lights, maybe I should wear something like this:

417 Union St.

I read somewhere that 417 Union is a great spot for downtown dining. Check their Twitter page for specials.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Blogging about walking, 6.6 miles each way

I walk and I walk and I walk. Except for the occasional yahoo who thinks it funny to scream out of his moving vehicle at a random pedestrian and my fear of stepping on a snake, it's always pleasing to me to spend an hour or two on foot. That is, if and when this father of three little ones has an hour or two to spare.

The car's a mess yet again and, lacking the funds to even get it looked at, I'm happy to put one foot in front of the other and, in the words of Poi Dog Pondering, "get to know things better when they go by slow." I called one co-worker yesterday when I discovered that there was a car problem and she was kind enough to swing by and pick me up on her way in. Later that night, my shift ended two hours before hers and so I made the choice to walk home instead of waiting in the cafeteria for her to clock out and take me in her car.

I was maybe a mile or two into my walk when I heard a female voice offer me a ride. As I was approaching the part of the journey that has no street lights, I answered her invitation with a quick reply in the affirmative. She laughed and said that her friends would kill her if they found out that she gave a stranger a ride. I laughed back and shared that my family would do the same to me if they found out that I took a ride from a stranger. We promised not to hurt each other and had a nice time talking about life, kids, etc. for the rest of the ride.

This morning I had to be in at 8 a.m. and so I left home at six and got to see the sky at a time of day that I'm usually sleeping. I got maybe halfway there when another co-worker saw me and gave me a ride in. I clocked out eight hours later at 4 p.m., changed clothes in the locker room, and enjoyed a full two hours of iPod listening and walk-walk-walking.

One day I'll be in better financial shape and the walking won't be such a necessary thing. At least for now the weather is good, I get rides from time to time, and I choose to look at the walking as a positive thing (for my legs and heart). Now I think I'll check Craigslist and see if anyone's selling a bicycle for cheap.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Two from Labor Day

My mom came over to visit today and was kind enough to bring me a big stack magazines: The New Yorker and New York. The piece in the latter on Annie Leibovitz was a bit of a wild read. It's old news now about her financial troubles, but it's really staying with me. I don't know much about photography, but people say that I have a good eye for it and I really appreciate their kind words. I enjoy it, however, I can't imagine making any money at it. So it's just my humble little pastime. Give me a day off from work and family obligations and all I want to do is walk around the city taking pictures of buildings, skies, bridges, railroad tracks, etc.

It's curious to me to think of Annie and the career that she has and then to consider how utterly in debt she is. Of course, I can't give her too much criticism for being bad with money. I'm bad with it, too. But according to the article I read, her irresponsibility with hers makes me look like quite the financial sage. I'd like to think that if someone wanted to pay me several thousand dollars for a photo shoot, I'd... Oh heck, I'd probably blow it.

Anyway, I'm home with a sick kiddo and his sisters on Tuesday while Paige is goes to Walmart to get new tires for the van. If anyone wants to pay me for pictures, that's cool. As the saying goes, the babies need shoes.

Have a nice day.

Friday, September 04, 2009

At least I can listen to Mahler on Pandora at home

Nashville radio will soon have no classical music during the day. We almost lost jazz last year and I suppose its future is probably still uncertain. I'd be more upset about the change at WPLN if I didn't enjoy listening to Talk of the Nation so much.

My zen