31 March 2008

World Premier(s)

IMG_8254.JPG - cornstalker
The world premier of my latest serious song, I got chills listening to her sing, it was also the premier of me singing (backup) one of my one songs "More of You".

I have much to say, and much to catch up on. Somehow the written word is failing me now. I've been walking on grace, heck, I'm just breathing the stuff. Life has been stressful for me as of late, as I sit here, my left eye is doing the twitch thing, yet here I sit also with a smile on my face knowing nothing can separate me from God's love.

Before I knew God, I always wondered what the big deal was about peace. Not in the opposite of war kind of way, but being personally peaceful, it seemed like so much gobbledy-gook. Where was the fun, especially compared to worldly pleasures I loved to fill my time with. What a fool I was, I lived in constant fear of everything, timidity of what I wanted, and surrounded by people of whom I hadn't the wit to appreciate.

I still lose perspective, waste my time and talents, and fail to show the love I have for my friends. But the clarity is there floating in the back of my head letting me know love is only as far away as my next breath. What a privilege it is to be Gods own. No matter what it is you crave, substances, sex, power... it's a shadow of what it is to know God.

I would like to just give a big public thank you to God for all the amazingly talented singer/songwriters He has surrounded me with, Chris, ErinOneDay, SmileChild, and Epp, shown here with me.

Thanks to Cornstalker for the picture.

29 March 2008

The Ballad of the Undead Possum (new song)

There will be no back story to this one on account it is going to get me hit anyways.

The Ballad of the Undead Possum
a bar song style ditty based on grossly exaggerated true events

I was doing my dishes, out the window I saw,
this abomination, about the size of cow.
It headed for my house, and don't you know,
it went right underneath, into this hole.

I called my friend and got him on the phone,
I described the monstrosity under my home,
it's ugliness and size, I exaggerated none,
he said no need to worry, it's a harmless possum.

There's an undead opossum living in my home,
it's got me quite spooked and I'm afraid to roam,
so I sit in my kitchen, silver cross in my hand,
with wooden stakes and garlic, I'll make my last stand.

Harmless I said? You didn't see its eyes,
it's skeleton was showing, and it was covered in flies,
it was feral and mean, and around it's neck was draped
just like the movies, it was a vampires cape.

It's ugliness unnatural, and worst of all,
it's hideousness, a sign of Adam's fall.
I haven't long to live, it's get me real soon,
the calendar says, Tuesday's a full moon.

There's an undead opossum living in my home,
it's got me quite spooked and I'm afraid to roam,
so I sit in my kitchen, silver cross in my hand,
with wooden stakes and garlic, I'll make my last stand.

My sister came a callin' and said what's that smell?
It was all the garlic I got, to send the beast to hell.
She looked at me funny, thinking it was a game,
then said the possum's so cute, I think I'll give it a name.

So I got my courage up, in the full light of day,
I went to the back yard, to keep the beast at bay.
I went to scare it good, just like the book said,
it fell on it's side... but this one played UNdead!

There's an undead opossum living in my home,
it's got me quite spooked and I'm afraid to roam,
so I sit in my kitchen, silver cross in my hand,
with wooden stakes and garlic, I'll make my last stand.

Make my last stand...

Anybody seen the holy water?

23 March 2008

All I Have Is My Story (new song)

All I Have Is My Story

He lay on the bed, heart nearly beating its last,
I held his hand, so tight and so fast.
His breathing was shallow, but he spoke loud and clear,
"Here is my tale son, so listen and hear."

All I have is my story,
how my life came to you.
I am witness to the glory,
you've been there to see me through.

He laid out his life, of decisions he made,
of heartbreaking loss, born of pride and vain,
nearly taking his own life, stayed by a voice in his pain,
He saw the glory of God, and then he was saved.

All I have is my story,
how my life came to you.
I am witness to the glory,
you've been there to see me through.

Born of this world
not a possession to name
When we leave here
We take exactly the same
All of our efforts
Our fortune, our fame
stay on the earth
and so does our shame.

He told me "now son, now that you know,
don't be afraid of your witness, let your love show."
His breathing stopped, my hand he let go,
I called for the nurse... but he'd already gone home.

All I have is my story,
how my life came to you.
I am witness to the glory,
you'll be there to take me too.

20 March 2008

Literary Poke

LOL - I love looking through quotes, this one caught my eye while looking for something else, it should make a couple friends hopping mad. Too bad SmileChild is taking an internet break, she'd be one of them.
Just the omission of Jane Austen's books alone would make a fairly good library out of a library that hadn't a book in it. Mark Twain

16 March 2008

One Picture: All that needs to be said about my weekend

Yep, this just about summarizes my weekend.

10 March 2008

The Mean Thing To Do

Last week at Bible study, I heard an everyday word used in a manner that I hadn't considered before. The word was "mean" as in not very nice. The word was used and tied back to it's statistical use, "mean" as in the expected value. The expected thing to do is for a person, when confronted by an unpleasant, normal situation is for them to react in a mean manner, i.e. not with kindness. The point being made, we were then told that our standard for behavior was not what the average person would do, but what God would do, to act with love and understanding, rather than in a petty and selfish manner. Our standard for action is God's standard, not what the world says.

Good stuff, practical, obvious, and challenging. Yeah, a little too challenging.

Recently I was invited to a game night at Spanky & Mae's house. At one point there were probably fifteen people there, but as the night wore down, we ended up with six, the perfect number for an Order of the Stick game. The group was Spanky, CJ, Shmendrick, Mae, myself, and Ben (sat in that order).

One of the things that keeps me from serious gaming, is well, serious gaming. I want to jump in and get playing, and 'discover' the rules as we go along, make it a learning process. Let's play. I think it is an acceptable form of game playing, Schmendrick, with his knowledge of gaming, game theory, and role playing, could probably write an entire book on the subject. Mae feels the way I do about games, and I think to a certain extent, so does Ben.

It is not the only way to play a game, however, and I recognize that. Spanky likes to know what he is doing before he does it, which is not just about games, but about life too, and I respect that about him. Schmendrick can be interested in metagaming and interpreting the rules. CJ likes to figure out what the limit of the rules are and push them. I was frustrated with the pace of the game in the same manner I get frustrated on the golf course with a slow group ahead of me... "sheesh buddy your ball has been sitting there for the last five minutes and you can't figure out what you want to do until you get up to it?" I'm not certain if this was in fact what was going on, let's face it, Order of the Stick is a complex game, the quick start guide is a dozen pages, and it was only the third or fourth time we played the game. So not everyone knew what there options were, and these people are all veteran game players, we all know to keep the pace going. So I carefully considered all these factors before making an ass of myself, right?

I got mean. I timed two times around the table, and it took a lot of time (yes I know how much time), and when it got back to me I moved immediately. The reason I moved immediately is because my options were extremely limited. Was I smart enough to think things through as to why it was going the way it was? No, I opened my fat mouth and berated everyone else for the slowness of play. Nice work.

Hindsight being what it is, there must have been four hundred ways for me to speed up the game without resorting to the methods I chose to use. I "kept score" when I timed the play, and I am pretty sure we have been told that love does not keep score, and these are some of my dearest friends. The pace of the game did pick up later, but it had more to do with time constraints than any stupid utterance out of my yapper.

So here is an apology friends, I could have handled that better, and should have handled that better, and learned a another lesson about learning other peoples wisdom and applying it before I say something dumb.

07 March 2008

Jam Circle from Last Friday

Here is a video Matt made from the Jam circle last Friday at JNO. Nothing like seeing yourself on video to let you know what you have to work on. *smiles*

Go figure, I would be the guy with the bad dance posture.

05 March 2008

There WAS a Picture from Last Weekend

Silly me, there was a picture from my exciting weekend at Truman State last weekend. I'd like to thank Steve for snapping this candid shot, now we know how I behave when I get into a college girl's dorm room.
...and all the better, I am clutching Eeyore.

03 March 2008

Dance Weekend with No Pictures???

At the behest of Omaha Jitterbug Janet, I went down to the 4th Annual Rock Ya Body swing weekend Truman State College in Kirksville, MO. It was great, good for me, and a bargain at any price (a phrase that confuses me, but I'll go with it).

Ben when down on Friday night, I went to Jitterbugs Night Out, Steve said he wanted to ride with me, so we made arrangements to meet in the morning and head down. We left at 1000 with only a fast food stop, and made it in four and a half hours. The campus was beautiful, even with the lack of greenery.

About the event: the entire weekend was $12 (not a misprint) and included three dances including a live band, several hours of instruction from Omaha Jitterbugs Brian and Josie, and lunch on Sunday. Since we got there at 1430 on Saturday we caught the last half two and a half hours of instruction, and both Saturday dances, and left after the Sunday instruction. The band, Deadwood, was a blues style band who was good, and might have been worth the cost of the weekend all by themselves.

About the scene: The dancers are wonderful, and quite adept at lindy hop, more so than the average Omaha dancer. Their styling was very cool, their footwork was solid, and they did lots of dips with the follows being very trusting. Although it seemed that Balboa was not part of their normal scene, they were quite adept at dancing close and played slow songs, which, guess what, I like a lot. The music was more blues and modern than we play in Omaha.

About the people: amazingly friendly and accommodating. I wish I had more time to spend with the people there and get to know them. I can be kind of shy, and I appreciate when I am forced out of my shell and meet new people, and then I find out how cool they are. Next trip down there will be a longer stay. I'd like to name more names, but besides Janet, there was Frankie, Becka, Krystal, and Amy who I danced with the most ... ladies, I apologize if you are not mentioned here.

What it all means to me...

I have to kind of laugh at myself. I've known I should get away from Omaha for quite a while, someplace totally different. Well I went and discovered something interesting: evidently I am a good dancer, charming, and women like me. I think my failures in life, and my failures at dating over the last few years have left me feeling undesirable. The people at Truman State were so easy going and kind that it left ME feeling lump-of-coal-to-diamond uptight.

I was half thinking on the way home that a complete change of venue, new city, new job might be in order. I doubt very much that is going to happen, but obviously getting the heck out of Dodge Street every once in a while can be liberating, and makes for really fun dancing too.