The Eve of a New Year

Talking to MacHenry’s Pub about doing a New Year’s eve party with my band….I haven’t played New Year’s in quite a while…

Tomorrow, the mastering is finally finished. I had to take two songs back in and tweak them a tad…one, the vocals needed to have a couple of rides, and the other, well…It has a wee bit of headphone leakage on my vocal mix (just during a quiet part of the song.)
My original intent was to leave drums in from the top, so I wasn’t worried about leakage (I like my headphone mix LOUD, obviously).

But as I got to the mix stage, the play stage, I realized that dropping the drums out at the top took the song in an entirely different direction, more haunting and intimate. Thus, the dilemna began. I’ve realized it is just something I am going to have to live with: the human element!

Well, I see that my entry two entries back struck a chord. I got a flurry of personal email on that one! (not posted responses)
…you funny bunnies.
Perhaps I will regale you with more entries of my past romantic encounters….or then, again, perhaps I won’t. We shall see,
we shall see.

I had a fantastic lunch today with an Englishman. He does not eat french fries and used to work in a meat packing plant as a youngster. He has met the younger Bush and swears that he is a very, very dumb man. He writes programs and invents things and travels the world and is looking for God. I just sat and listened; it was relaxing and nice to hear an accent recite occassional poetry and the history of the English language (from Sanskrit through Phoenicians to the Romance languages to today.)
See what one can learn over a spinach salad!

I’ve been thinking of my favorite things. Here’s some of them, just because I like lists, and I don’t list much in here, so I thought, “Heck, I’m gonna list.”

Movies: To Kill a Mockingbird, Lost in Translation, Reds, Adaptation, Spirited Away, Gone With the Wind (in theatre), Manchurian Candidate (in theatre…Frank Sinatra is incredible), Whale Rider, Winged Migration…fell asleep during Casablanca and Even Cowgirls Get the Blues. Ugh.

Books: The Life of Pi, Possessing the Secret of Joy, Interpreter of Maladies, The Tao of Pooh, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, anything by Jerzy Kosinski, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, The Lorax

Places: By the ocean on the edge of Honduras, talking with the children as they dive and retrieve conch shells with the living creature still inside…the sun glinting off their wet, happy skin…Kauai, with my husband at the diner in the morning after the roosters woke us up or catching green sea turtles with Kimo…sittting by myself in the kayak in the rain with the rainbow over head…Romania, with the women in the sunflower fields, their hair pulled up and back with kerchiefs, or the passing of a cigeratte (for entrance) to an orphanage guard…handing out the toys to children, the boxes of raisins and containers of apple sauce; talking with a gypsy on the street…washing a homeless boy’s feet and hands, scrubbing and scrubbing and still layers of dirt embedded in his skin….Riding through Space Mountain with my nine year old and screaming while she laughs at me through the stars….Swimming in War Eagle Lake in Missouri with the sound of family all around for a family reunion….the smell of spent fireworks and hamburgers on the grill, the rustle of the leaves overhead, the high wall of sheer rock on the far side of the water….the feeling of being small against something so sure and final…The sight of brazen corn, yellow and spring green,
growing forever on the horizon with the periwinkle blue sky, endless, not a cloud in sight, of my back yard in Illinois…the sound of the train in the distance, cool, crisp fall air snaking in through the open bedroom window, dancing with my curtains, tickling my feet through the covers. Oh, that lonely train whistle! Come join me, it croons. Whoo-hoo…clickety clickety clack….rolling metal wheels over and over the thunder of travel grazing by our home, clickety-clickety whoo-hooooooo…dying into the unknown…and then, finally, silence, and the birds return to their chatter as if never interrupted and oh, how I love that train. Holding hands with a girlfriend in the back of her Cadillac, laughing and snuggling with the moon outside, shining through, the heater running as we carry on with our girly conversation about life and love and where we will be in years to come. The windows steam and we can’t see the moon anymore, but we don’t care, we are safe and warm and together….Sitting in a tree in Los Angeles, making up lyrics to a song, my boyfriend below, begging me to come down….finally, he acquiesces and joins me up in the slender branches, pinching my cheek, chiming in with my silly melody. Howling at the moon, tipping feet into salt water, feeding dolphins, touching skin.
Licking a new boyfriend from the side of his cheek, achingly, slowly up to his temple…Finding a letter in my mailbox from my friend, Nina, covered in dancing stickers…or the journal, returned at last!, from Julie and her worries of the world…Holding a new born baby to my chest and the smell of clean, tufted hair and breast milk and sweetness and the ache in my chest to have another child, but knowing I never will….The places of this heart, the sighs of rememberances and kisses and final goodbyes and the first hellos and the charm and tug of a flirty moment and the excitement of winning a race or buying a gift and wrapping and hand-delivering warm, homemade brownies and slipping a love note under someone’s door, mailing an anonymous story I wrote just that person for just that moment (seeing them slide a finger under the paper, finding the words, reading and sinking into a chair..who could have sent this to me? they whisper to themselves this I will never hear but forever feel and smile over in my mind’s eye) the hush of a new song rushing through my body and into the life of my guitar and voice and finding myself on stage, afraid but goofy and fearless and laughing with strangers and hugging the man behind the counter and giving all the money away from that night’s cd sales to the homeless and tying the shoe of a little girl in the post office and wishing I could have had tea with Dr. Seuss and
Jim Henson and Nina Simone singing messages on my phone while Prince William signs off on the telegram, handing it over to me so Lenny Kravitz can remind me I need to make another blog entry, this time just about him and the phone booth.

Excellent, Smithers.

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