Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I've Discovered The Kenyans Magic Bullet!


I've discovered what make's Kenyans so damn fast! While running today (I had planned on doing an easy 5.0) I   was listening to my Nano and had set it as usual to shuffle songs and just go. After warming up for two miles the Ibuprofen kicked in and the pain somewhat abated in my back.  I felt actually pretty good and just decided to pick up the tempo. A song came up with a very up-tempo African beat. Actually a song by the Brecker Brothers. It's one of my favorites. Suddenly my feet became very light. I miraculously felt very light and skinny but also joyous! I was flying...although only short lived, fortunately for me the very next song was a very slow blues...

I think I'll download some more African music tonight and try out a full mix on my next running day. 
Maybe I'll train for the next couple of months with this method and see what happens come the Bay To Breakers...
Who knows maybe I'll win a BMW!

Work today was pretty mellow for a change and I was able to catch up on some odds and ends that have been left hanging for some time now. What's really weird though is that I've had job opportunities popping up almost everyday this last 2 weeks.
I really want to see how this new transition is going to pan out though. Ever though it's been quite difficult, I just don't want to make yet another move right now.
My Bee in the foreground, Gaga in the back...my kids in the park...

Saturday, February 25, 2012

When Creativity Flat-lines, It's Time To Just Breath In

I remember the first time I listened to Sara Bareilles. That was surely an awakening for me. I think it was about the time in my shitty musical career, I began to realize that my boat had left the dock and it was time to step aside and let the kids move through. I could hear all the elements of the musical things that had inspired me through my life. Here was someone who was multi-talented, original and was able to bring everything into a coherent and unique artist burst.
In 2007 "Between The Lines" just blew me out of my socks! It was just about the time I was going through something really heavy in my life. All of a sudden here is this very young person turning the tables and comforting me and inspiring me. It surprised me and like I say it was an awakening.

She's the real deal. If I had a kid like that I would be so proud and happy.
Since that day I've really opened myself to a fair un-embittered acceptance of this younger talent and even if at first it doesn't grab me, I'll go for the second listen.
There's a video that I've watched a bunch of times that  no matter what mood I'm in or how bad my day has been, I always end up with a smile on my face.

I'm watching a lot of videos now. I've tried and tried to  work at creating some new music but, it's just dead. I'm not feeling it and I'm a bit sick of my style. I'm old, tired and I just don't have the necessary time needed in my life to fully submerge into my creative potential so, I just keep moving - I run, bike and listen.

Sarah is just an example. There are so many good young artists now.
Anyway, I'm just about to watch a documentary on the Foo Fighters...enough hot air. Time to watch and listen...
BTW, one of the best live performances in history...

Friday, February 24, 2012

I Am A Dark Cloud

I got out for a good run after work. Still trying to get back on track. I'm developing some new techniques to help with my running. I watched a great documentary last night before bed called that inspired me to work on some original ideas for running workouts...
Lindsey Vonn-In The Moment

Including amazing photography and highlights, this inspiring documentary about Lindsey Vonn, the beautiful and talented downhill skier whose wins at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics endeared her to the world and whetted her appetite for more championships.
Her training regimen was awe inspiring! Watching her just makes me want to work a lot harder than I am right now with my running.

I'm trying my hardest to stay focused and inspired and keep my angst, righteous indignation and miserableness simmering in the background of my turbulent state of mind.
Tomorrow is my "Bike" day and I'm gonna try for some bigger than usual mileage for a change. I've been sluffing on the bike a bit lately.
RE: The title of this blog...
Let me begin with...

It is very difficult when you are unable to express oneself due to the possible fallout if certain people that have too much control of your life and future could possibly be monitoring your venting on a public forum.
I am really angry and I know I'm being manipulated, beat down and kicked to the curb.
...Unfortunately I must keep it under my hat but, this song fully expresses my state of mind.

This song came up on my mix during my run today and it was the perfect soundtrack for where my head was at after a horrible day like today.

Songwriters: Sam Dixon, Sia Furler

While away the hour
Into something new
Throw away the flower
They make you feel blue

Throwing stones at stranger
Waiting for the fight
Throwing stones at birds who
Struggle to take flight

I am a dark cloud
Swelling with rain
I am a dark cloud
Swelling with rain

Get it out your system
Get it out of you
Send them home with blisters
Send them home with truth

Send away the doubter
Blind them with your hoof
Try to save the doubters
Try to sell the new

I am a dark cloud
                  Swelling with rain
                                      I am a dark cloud
                                                        Swelling with rain
Today's Run- Back to regular Marathon training

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I'm In An Odd Mood-My Mind In Many Directions

Still enjoying my recent "Bi-polar" manic ride...So I decided to get a band together today and this is my first tune with the new band.

So anyway...I came across a new singer that I thought might add a lot to the new band...


Getting back into the running today with a good 4.0 miles. Seriously slow pace but, at least I did it. I'm learning to live with the pain in my back and getting my Ibuprofen doses down to a science.

I managed 30 mins on the Elliptical, some machine work and a bit of stretching. All in all a good work out. From the slowdown in training I've gained back about 4 pounds. A lot of that is the fact that Cathy is on a frackin baking spree and I can't deny the need for carbs.

Work is weird but, what else is new. I had a tenant that went psycho on me yesterday come up to me an profusely apologize...that was nice. Doesn't happen too often.

Gaga has taken to cleaning Layla. I think she thinks Layla is her puppy. I pretty sure Gaga has some brain issues but, I love her more than life. All three of my dogs actually.
Speaking of "Gaga". I stay away from posting stuff about Lady Gaga due to the fact that most everyone who knows me by now has figured out that I'm seriously obsessed with this woman but, I have to say again she inspires me and makes me incredibly happy and is one of those things in life that make it all worthwhile.
She's really special...
Thanks Gaga

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I Love My Manic Side - Eye Of The Hurricane

Yep! Here it comes!...

I've been waiting a long time for this. My good friend is knocking at the door. Some call this "Bi-Polar Disorder". I'm not sure what to think after being given the diagnosis a couple of years ago. I like to think I just have a lot going on in my head.
My good friend is the manic swing I go through periodically and I'm just beginning to feel the onset. I've been stuck in a depression too long and it was starting to scare me a bit. I had been feeling like I'm drowning lately. I think the pressures of work, hurting my back and bad human relations set me on a spiraling descent. Today I began the day in absolute dread but, all of a sudden the clouds went away and everything just went right for me. Running into my therapist at the hospital today and the caring and support I felt in "Ward 86" just kind of brought me back to where I need to be.
I was able to get my medications straightened out, blood tests, appointment next week with my Doc and a big loving hug from my good friend and my insurance re-instated.
I left Ward 86 and just started running and didn't stop till I arrived home 2.2 miles or so later.
When I crossed the threshold kissed and hugged my puppies I grabbed the better half and we ran over to get our taxes done...Yeah! Money back this year!
After a lunch of cheeseburger and fries and homemade apple pie with some strong coffee the mania climbed aboard and none too soon!
Yeah mental illness! Let the entertainment begin!!!

I've been seeking out new positive ways to escape these days. Music, I just don't have the time anymore. Exercise is great but, not enough cerebral activity so, lately I've been really getting into my "Galaxy Tab".
(samsung's answer to the "Ipad").

I just love this thing! It's perfect. I do so much reading now and my favorite thing to do is at night I climb into (my own bed) with my three dogs and watch inspiring documentaries, movies and shows on Hulu, Netflix. The HD picture is amazing and headsets give me the big sound I'm looking for. I find myself going to sleep with good thoughts in the Cabasa and waking up more energized with good thoughts.
By the way...I sleep by with my dogs and let Cathy have her own bed. I love the night sky, city lights and moonlight. I open the windows for lots of cool air. Cathy likes it dark and cooped up in her little room. I'm turning into a wild outdoor pack animal. I like space...
Stay tuned: Where my manic episode takes me no one really knows but, I'm looking forward to the ride...Here we go!
Hope the crash isn't too bad though...
One more thing...
Still thinking of Whitney this week, I came upon a really nice rendition of a Whitney tune...so perfect.
"I wanna dance with somebody"
check it out...

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Vision Quest - The Crow

In many Native American groups, the vision quest is a turning point in life taken before to find oneself and the intended spiritual and life direction.
 "He's gone" was the reply I got from my next door neighbor...
"No! He's right there"! I responded in frustration.
I was somewhere around the age of 3 or 4 and this was one of my first memories. I found a dying crow in my back yard and in my excitement bordering on a panic, fetched my next door neighbor to help fix the poor little critter. By the time I escorted her back to the bird, it was now limp and lifeless.
I couldn't understand how the bird could be gone? It was right there.
"It's gone back to heaven" she lamented.
This was my first experience with the concept of "mortality". Maybe the seed of my obsession with "black" animals. They're so beautiful but mysterious and like death have always represented something beyond which I can control.

This memory came back to me after a bike ride to the beach today. I've just been in a very dark state for too long now and I can't seem to shake it. Maybe it's the constant pain in my back along with the idea of not meeting my personal goals this year, my job which I hate but,I am so glad to have a job and also the fact that I'm swiftly closing in on the big "60" and disappointed with myself and my lack of accomplishments. 
I think a lot about death and the fact that I'm just not a very happy person. It's been a constant battle for me. I really want to be happy but...

 Today I as I leaned against the seawall looking out over the ocean I was surrounded by beautiful crows just floating motionless in the wind with their counterparts-the Seagulls.
Seagulls have a spiritual aura in their beauty and graceful flight along with the look and their freedom they seem to represent. Here I was free, breathing in the ocean air with the sun shining down through the crisp blue sky yet these dark thoughts and sadness in my soul seem to be my constant companion. I'm like that crow free to fly with the gulls but always cloaked in my darkness. I was able to get very close to them, enough that they would stare back at me without flinching with a look that seemed to say 
"you are one of us...get over it and live your life".

I need the experience of a vision quest. I would love to just escape into the woods for a time with just my dogs and the bare essentials to sustain us. I need to confront myself. I need to break away from human distraction. It's eating me alive. Too many years at odds with human nature and negative confrontation. I'm truly burned out. Time for a break.
Before I turn in to this...
At least I got out for awhile and brought my camera with me for a little inspiration. It was a beautiful but very short weekend.
shot from the Cliff House
The kids
A dog and a crow

Friday, February 17, 2012

Over The Hump? Crazy Week That Went To The Dogs

I met my deadline on work that needed to be completed this week...Bad back and all. I did some research on my back situation and I believe from everything I've learned so far, it's probably a herniated disc in my lower back. Too much heavy lifting, running and major stress created the perfect storm on my spinal column. There's not much I can really do but just rest it. Not sure that's going to actually happen though. At this point I'm just hoping it goes away someday.

I managed to get some hang time with the dogs. (high point of the week).
We had a full house for the last 3 days. Yesterday I was in training in San Ramon all day but, today I got to cruise through the day with some sporadic down time. When not posing for photos the dog children were beating the crap out of each other as usual.

This is my little on Layla giving "The Look"

...and here she's at the bottom of the free for all!

Last night after a insane 12 hour day at work, I arrived home finally and just ate a quick dinner and jumped into bed. I just needed something to get my mind off work and curled up with all the dogs and signed on to "Netflix". I just started searching through documenteries and happened upon a title named 
"Waste Land".
Pretty absolutely amazing! 
Filmed over nearly three years, WASTE LAND follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of “catadores”—self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s initial objective was to “paint” the catadores with garbage. However, his collaboration with these inspiring characters as they recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both the dignity and despair of the catadores as they begin to re-imagine their lives. Director Lucy Walker (DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, BLINDSIGHT and COUNTDOWN TO ZERO) and co-directors João Jardim and Karen Harley have great access to the entire process and, in the end, offer stirring evidence of the transformative power of art and the alchemy of the human spirit.
A rivoting documentry. I haven't finished it but, I'm off to bed now to see the rest of it.
Short blog tonight...
More dogs.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day To Me! - I Wish I Were A Wolf...

I had a pretty miserable day working and on top of it all of the pain in my back seems to just be getting worse. There is no break in the action and I'm working even harder than I ever have in my life. I'm burned out, bitter and sick of being ridden, shot down and made to feel just pretty fucking worthless. It's just astounding how many times in the last couple of months I've had to lock horns with people. Now I'm taking a huge backstep from where I was. I've worked years to get to where I was last year and now it's just gone and I'm eating shit to just keep from ending up in the street.
I'm thinking most of this back issue is due to an over load of stress. I can't sleep through the night without waking up in a panic about what the next day will bring. I wake up about half a dozen times a night and end up reaching for my kindle in the hope that the twisting turning old English dialogue of Charles Dickens will lull me back to sleep. I recently downloaded everything He's ever written so, it should last me awhile.

At present I'm involved with the story of "David Copperfield" and I can absolutely relate to his earlier life, poor, unwanted, abandoned confused and hopeless. I hope it all ends well for my sake...
As you can see I'm somewhat downtrodden, with the burden of a darkened soul...


I still got my girls! 

Today after a long day, I forced myself though the searing pain in my back and managed to run my doggies up to the park. I had so much fun with them and they with me. 
Someday I just would like to get away for a few days, just myself and the dogs and camp with them in the woods for a awhile. No talking, no humans and we'd just run and play. At night we'd howl at the moon and eat rare steaks around the fire. We would be a wonderful pack!

 Today is Gaga"s anniversary (my oldest dog). I bought her a little bow for her collar which she hated. As soon as I put it on her she just froze with that sad vacant P.O.W. look on her face that screamed "GET THAT OFF ME ASSHOLE"! She's such an Alpha girl. We call her the "Canon ball". She loves to throw her weight around and scares the crap out of even the big dogs at the park. It's hard to believe I've had her for 2 years. I'm more in love with her and her sisters everyday. At this point in my life I don't know what I'd do without her. She's my constant companion and I get some serious separation anxiety when she's not around me. I wish I had the capacity to love and care for people as much as I do with my pups. In the past few years I feel myself slipping more and more out of contact and and I'm losing connections with people. 

Too many of my interactions these days are of the negative hostile sort. It's giving me a very bad attitude about human beings and how mean, hostile and downright abusive society's become. In reality I think it's been like that all along but, I'm finally beginning to surrender to that fact and just ready to cut it off with people all together. The good ones are few and far between and then I realize I've never met an animal I didn't like. They're honest, easy to understand and so easy to connect with but best of all, absolutely non-judgmental. I need that now.

I don't know how long all this shit will last. I'm hoping things smooth out soon.
For now I'll just enjoy Valentines night sleeping with my dogs and reading my kindle every half hour waiting for tomorrows shit...

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Whitney's Dead! - The "Diva"

diva (English pronunciation: /ˈdiːvə/Italian: [ˈdiːva]) is a celebrated female singer. The term is used to describe a woman of outstanding talent in the world of opera, and, by extension, in theatrecinema and popular music. The meaning of "diva" is closely related to that of "prima donna".

Rest In Peace Angel...

"Whitney link"    I'm saddened but not surprised with this news. Life is complicated and can just be downright tragic in the end. Humans are fragile and who really knows what people are going through or have gone through in their lives, especially when someone is highly successful, talented and has gained so much notoriety at a young age. It's a boatload of pressure!
Whitney was a truly an amazing singer. I'm listening and watching her right now on "Vevo", and the tributes have begun. I'm sure everyone at the Grammy's tomorrow will have her in their hearts.

I love the Diva's. Not sure what that's about exactly but, I just roll with it. I must have some childhood issues. Growing up with a lot of bullying and, unsure of myself and lacking any self confidence I all-way's just felt better and protected around women. My Aunts were very comforting to be around and seemed to understand the glitches in my personality and so much more sympathetic to my pathetic state of being so hence the seeds of my attraction to the Diva's. 
Shit! I've named all my dogs after Diva's!

I hear a woman singing and there is no other instrument more beautiful sounding, well a violin is close. The timbre, the flexibility and range are pretty astounding really. When I started playing guitar I aspired to get a sound as beautiful out of my guitar. It was an uphill battle.
I love Joni Mitchell. Add that beautiful voice with her poetry and deep thoughtful expressions and that was all I needed. (I was actually listening to her tonight on"Pandora" before I change over to Whitney). I feel like I grew up with her. Every album, every song reminds me of a moment in my life. Some happiness, a vision of beauty mixed at times with a sad bitterness hmm...that's my life in a nutshell.

There are so many singers that I've enjoyed and been inspired by but, most of them are female. Still that soft voice of my Aunts, teachers, soothing, encouraging, moving me forward and healing the wounds. Of course I've expressed my thoughts with regard to a one "Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta ". 

Gaga is an amazing artist. She's probably one of the most level headed Diva's and a lot of people just don't understand "yet"! the depth and potential of her artistry along with being a beautiful sweet human being who really cares for everyone. She's the consummate entertainer. The comparisons to Madonna tend to make me want to vomit. Madonna is NOT! talented and if you've seen her behind the scenes,  she's a very shallow, abusive person with an arrogant and selfish point of view. I never got her...and I can't fathom the lame comparisons of Lady Gaga to Madonna. Sorry to go off on a tangent but, I'm very protective with my Diva's...
Me with my Lady Gaga tattoo and the artist who tattoo'd me.

Gaga will be around for a long, long time and she's an inspiration. Well I'm going to go back to listening to Whitney tonight and just thinking about her reign as on of the greatest all time Diva's...

Whitney we'll never forget you and thank you for giving us so much in your short life.

I hope you are at peace and with the ones who love you...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Dreamland...Hanging Ten Over A Precipice Of Depression

Dream Land

Thank Dog for great musicians and storytellers...

I finally was able to get back to running today after the serious back injury I gave myself two weeks ago.
Notice how I said "I gave myself"!
I was in a crappy mood on a fateful morning two weeks ago, maybe a bit of over training may have helped it along but, I decided to try and lift close to a 200 Lb. bucket of slop up into a garbage bin. No legs, all back! At about the halfway point of the lift the back just gave out. I felt like a prisoner who just got shanked in the chow line. The pain actually made me feel a bit nauseous and I was pretty much out of commission for a few days. Just when my running was getting focused.

I was able to finally get back to it today. The pain was pretty nagging but I took 3 Ibuprophen and managed to slowly get through a 5 mile run.

In the meantime work has just been pretty horrible and a completely negative aspect of my life right now. I'm beginning to think I just suck at what I do and I'm just not good enough at it to even keep up anymore.
I've been finding myself getting seriously depressed and I really can't go down that road right now.

To keep positive I just distract myself with beautiful things I'm privileged to see and hear everyday. I'm now obsessed with ducks! Last week I was on a property that had a lot of ducks walking around and I was in pain and not enjoying what I was doing so, I just focused whenever I could on just observing these ducks. I actually got jealous but, intrigued at the way they were just hanging out, socializing and having such a great time. Some things the creator has given us our just so perfect and beautiful. Too bad about humans.
To top it off this week I was yet somewhere I didn't want to be when I just happened upon these geese who just kind of seemed to be there for me! 
I think the ducks sent them...

Tonight I'm actually pretty tired and not in the mood for writing right now.
        Thank you duckies...

...and thank you Bruce Hornsby for your songs and story telling. They've gotten me through many a bad day...and there's really been some bad ones. This is an amazing and beautiful song that I've heard a thousand times but, really just felt like today it had been written for me...

Writer Bruce Hornsby
Isn't this old night so nice
I hope you can feel what I feel tonight
Little boy's not getting it right
Trying so hard with all his might

Clouds in the sky keeping the sun away
Doesn't mean the sun is not shining today
Seems something is always in your way
You've got a wide, wide array of insurmountable problems every day

Hey, slip away, slide away
Into dreamland, dreamland
Slip away, slide away
Into dream, dream, dreamland, dream, dreamland

In your own private place of dreams
I hope you'll find a place where it seems
The road is always straight and true
Wherever you walk is bright for you

I hope you'll remember these times we share
Hope you'll find some comfort there
In the meantime lose your cares
You can go anywhere, close your eyes and it will take you there

Slip away, slide away
Into dreamland, dreamland
Slip away, slide away
Into dream, dream, dreamland, dream, dreamland

Isn't this old night so nice, so nice

Gonna cherish my time with you
Gonna smile, smile the whole day through
Wake up tomorrow maybe you'll find
Darkness gone from your mind

Want you to be what you want to be
Don't want you ever hurt like me
Smiling through the saddest times
Could only happens in dreams, I wonder is it nice as it seems

Slip away, slide away
Into dreamland, dreamland
Slip away, slide away
Into dream, dream, dreamland, dream, dreamland

Dream, dream, dreamland
Dream, dream, dreamland
Dream, dream, dreamland

Maybe you'll get your wishes in dreams this night
Because I can't seem to do it here in real life
Dream, dream, dreamland
Dream, dream, dreamland

Maybe you'll get your wishes in dreams this night
Because I can's seem to help you in real life
Into dream, dream, dreamland, dream, dreamland