Archive for January, 2008

Guitar Strings are Breaking

January 29, 2008

I have gone through over 3 packs of strings the last couple of weeks.  I don’t know what has changed but suddenly my acoustic is more prone to breaking strings, and I am growing frustrated.

My technique hasn’t changed all that much, except that I play more rythym then lead lately.  Maybe I’m putting too much pressure on the strings.  I don’t know.  This isn’t cheap though.

Nothing sucks like getting in a groove and then having to change a string midway through an awesome song.  I can’t afford a setup fee right now, so I’m going to be left figuring this one through trial and error.  I even tried a heavier gauge, but that didn’t help.

Southerners Love Their South

January 21, 2008

Yes, they do.  I could not carry as much pride for my region of which I originate, but dang, those Southerners love their home.  As a New Englander, born over 100 years after the Civil War, I am sorry to say that I had nothing to do with the that war.

Well, I am proud of the history of my area of the country.  After all, it was here that the Pilgrims came (accidentally) to have religious freedom so that they could worship God as they thought fit.  And forget what the editors of history want you to believe, these were peaceful people who lived in relative harmony with their native neighbors.

New England was where the abolition movement gained steam.  While I disagree with the violent end that many abolitionists came to, I do agree with the principle of their message, that no man should be a slave of another.

New England is where the revolution really started.  The Sons of Liberty were radicals intent on putting a thorn in the King’s hide.  They inspired the rest of the country to seriously consider separation from the Empire.  They were the first to lose blood, and the first to write a constitution up. 

Take Nathan Hale.  A man from rural Connecticut, who boldly proclaimed his young life for the cause against tyranny.   This was a product of Yale and the Yankee way.

The history of New England is something I can take pride in.  Great literary giants and artists called New England their home.  Mark Twain himself wrote his famous stuff while residing in Hartford, CT. 

Anyway, yes, New England is rich in history.  Unfortunately, New England is at a crossroads.  Fiscally conservative, and socially liberal, we have given our country people like Ted Kennedy and John Kerry.  With the influence of postmodernism and secular humanism permeating most of our educational facilities, the byproduct that is resulted is a an attitude of laziness and anger.  We are a mean bunch at times, and fall into the stereotypes that our southern brothers created.

Why don’t we try to be more hospitable?  What happened to the inventive spirit that ran rampant during the industrial revolution?  When the blazes did the independent New Englander care about what the rest of the country is doing? 

I like the south.  It is a warmer part of the country that could never understand the hardship of cold New England winter.  Southerners are a hospitable type that like to feed you fried foods and gravyed biscuits.  Unfortunately, plenty of them are still bitter about that stupid war.  I only wish they would take to heart General Lee’s advise to “don’t bring up your sons to detest the United States Government. Recollect that we form one country now. Abandon all these local animosities, and make your sons Americans.” 

What he did AFTER the war was much more important than what he did DURING the war

Who’s on Second?

January 21, 2008

Paul finished number two in Nevada.  Great!  The problem?  The bias of the media was so apparent.  They mentioned the number 1, but not number 2.  I told my wife that it seems the MSM will only mention their favors only up to a point.  If Paul finished fourth, they mention 1, 2, and 3.  Paul finished number 2.  They didn’t mention anyone but the number 1 (I don’t care to mention his name, but it is not my job to report the news).

So, mainstream media.  Who, perchance, finished number 2 in Nevada?

This game that the media is playing is so obvious now, that it borderlines on the boring.  Thank God for the internet.

Itching to Play Guitar Today

January 16, 2008

For some reason at work today, I have been itching to play guitar.  I haven’t played since Sunday, so a three day drought has me wanting more.

Sometimes a quick break is the best cure to this little hobby of mine.  I hope I have a chance tonight after work.  We’ll see.  Lately I’ve been so tired after work, that I usually lay on the couch until the food is on the dinner table.  The guitar is calling me tonight.  I have had pretty consistent practice sessions the last few weeks, and my hands need to feel the guitar.  Strange, but I think the guitar is finally becoming an extension of my body.

Two Game Skid

January 15, 2008

I have been too busy to pay attention to the Celtics the last week, but I see they’ve been stumbling a bit, losing two in a row.  I don’t know the details to those games, so I couldn’t guess as to whether or not this is a sign of things to come, or if they’ll be back on track with the next game.

The local radio is advertising package deals for Knicks-Lakers games and Knicks-Celtics games.  The Knicks are the most overpaid and lousy team.  Now they have to resort to selling off tickets for better visiting teams. 

Still, the Celtics have the best record.  If they can keep on track, this team has the potential to go down as one of the best teams in Celtic’s history.  That is saying a LOT.

For The Love of Breed (Breedlove)

January 14, 2008

I played with my first Breedlove last Saturday.  I needed some more strings, so I packed up the kid, and the wife and I journeyed out to Guitar Center on Route. 22 (This is a haven area, because literally across the street from Guitar Center is a Sam Ash).  I walked in their acoustic section (the first room, with the cheap $500.00 guitars) and played some Martins and Takamines. 

I then ventured into the next room.  The expensive guitars.  The guitars that I can’t afford.  My wife said, “Oh, you should try this one.”  It was a Breedlove.  $2300, used.  I played that thing for the longest I’ve played a strange guitar in a guitar shop.  It plays so smooth, and sounds so nice, that it was instant love.

Sadly, I had to leave it behind.  Suddenly my D-03 feels like a redheaded stepkid.  I didn’t even put the new strings on the Larivee after playing the more superior Breedlove.  I don’t have $2300 to put into such a beautiful piece of art.

I wanted to show my wife my next birthday gift: 

Toneworks Pandora

They were out of stock. Actually, they were confused, and thought I meant the Line 6 Pocket Pod. Nope. I have the Line 6 Toneport UX2. I enjoy it, but it requires a computer wherever you go. The Pocket Pod is mobile, but I know that Korg has a great reputation.

Vote Belichick!

January 10, 2008

Strong on defense, not afraid to use surveillance!

Classic.

 Go Pats!

GO RON PAUL!

Those CFL Bulbs Are Hazardous!

January 7, 2008

As originally predicted, those CFL bulbs that the government is going to soon require everyone use, are indeed hazardous.

The UK Environmental Agency issued an extensive list on how to properly dispose of the CFLs if they become damaged.  You can’t vacuum them up, as the dust circulated in the air could cause the mercury (yes, that poisonous toxin) implanted in the bulbs to become inhaled.  You have to vacate the room for about 15 minutes after the bulb breaks, and then pick up the pieces using rubber gloves.

Those predisposed to skin ailments may suffer more, as these bulbs can cause irritants like eczema to grow.  Also, these bulbs are known to cause headaches.

There you have it, folks.  Our government wants to lower our “carbon footprint” by giving us cancer, headaches, and rashes.  This stupid bill will prove to be more costly than beneficial in the long run.

What is so wrong with the mercury-free lightbulb that Mr. Edison invented?  Can’t engineers figure out a way to develop on this great invention so that it uses less energy?

I am going to hop the border for the Edison Bulb every chance I get.  Screw that stupid CFL bulb.

Dr. Ron Paul Gets 10 Percent

January 4, 2008

While 10 percent did not hand him the primary, it did prove to me that he is more than a 3 or 4 percenter.  As his word spreads, and more freedom loving Americans come to their senses (myself included, look for the blog I wrote about coming to the light and breaking ties with neoconservatism), Ron Paul’s message will start to enter the forefront of mainstream politics.

Watching the news this morning while waiting for my medium coffee, cream only, from Dunkin Donuts, I noticed that sad shocked face the commentator revealed when showing that Hillary, *gasp*, came in third place *gasp*.  Maybe the MSM isn’t so keen on their favorite beast not placing as originally predicted.

Yes, the Doc only received 10 percent, but this is a start, and enough for him to stay in the race.  Spread the word, freedom lovers, we need to elect a president that values the US.  Vote for Ron Paul.

2007 Was Quite The Year For Me

January 2, 2008

So this past New Year’s Eve celebration was probably the most quiet I’ve had in a long time.  I told my wife and baby to have fun at some friends while I sat on the couch watching stupid movies.  I then went for a two hour walk with the iPod draining its battery.

That two hour walk did give me much needed thought time alone.  While walking, I realized I don’t have enough solitude to think about God’s greatness and awesome power.  He is a God who is just and fair, yet He is also the God that can wipe us all out with a meer thought.

Another year rolls around, and to be honest, I don’t see the significance anymore.  I guess I’m going through a rut right now.  Sometimes I wonder if I’m the man in the song written by Tourniquet with the lyrics “and the years rolled along till nobody was there.”  Maybe I’m just not a people person as much anymore.  Maybe I’m looking for people who think alike.  Maybe I’m just bored.

I did come up with a resolution.  To start jogging again.  I don’t care what people think, I just need that time alone in the morning to get by myself, with God, and to burn some energy off.  I bought a cheap pair of running sneakers, and I plan on getting up early starting this week with the intention of putting in 1 round trip mile. 

1 mile.  From there I plan on building it up until I reach a few miles at a time.  Maybe I won’t be so fat when 2008 comes to a close.

My wife is pregnant again.  I don’t know if it has sunk in yet, because honestly, I am not as excited as I was the first time.  I pray that changes.

Well here’s a synopsis of what 2007 was for me:

1.  Drive across country with wife and kid and moved to Orange County, California in January.
2.  Start new job, fly wife and kid back to NJ to finish up packing stuff and ship second car.
3.  Settle into 1 room with an adjoining bathroom in Mission Viejo, CA as a room share.
4.  Fly my wife and kid back from NJ to California.   She settles into “apartment”
5.  Contact previous job about former position in Feb.
6.  NJ company offers job back with 20 % raise.
7.  Drive wife, kid, and cat back across country and have all stuff shipped back in April.
8.  Move into brother inlaws house and start job again.
9.  Baby has big 1 year birthday bash in May.
10.  Begin looking for a house to buy in June.
11.  Find a house we like in June, but owner deliberates on offer.
12.  Finally close on house in July and move into house, finally taking all of our belongings out of storage.
13.  In October, I receive notification from my company that I am getting laid off come March 31.
14.  Severance package is not enough for me to sustain a family, so I begin aggressively pursuing jobs.
15.  Receive an offer from a company in November.
16.  Take that job offer and begin a new job yet again this year.

So, this year for me was quite a blur.  While I have some regrets (moving to California, moving back to NJ to take old job), I am starting to believe that life is not going to be a life of ease and settlement for me.  My wife and I still feel like wanderers, and we want to see other parts of this world. 

My dream is to move to Australia someday.  Of course, having never been there, I can’t even pretend to predict whether or not I would like it out there.  I always dreamed about living in California.  I did it, and it didn’t work out.  Maybe I didn’t give it enough time.  How can I know now?

While I still love the landscape and climate of California, I have wanted to see Australia since I was a mere child.  The land holds a magic spell over me for some reason.  I think I would settle on the Melbourne area, this way I’m not in LA part 2 (Sydney), but have enough of a metropolitan area to not feel that I’m stuck out in the backwoods.

Will I ever get there?  Only God knows.  With a wife and now a second child on the way, this will probably grow more and more difficult.  I do regret moving back to NJ sometimes, and then quickly buying a house.  Then again, I feel that I am running from God’s will, whatever it is, and that He is patient, yet always finding ways at getting my attention.

When I was in California, I had a good two weeks that were spent without any friends or family.  God grew very close to me.  Then I think I hit that stage of homesickness and wanted to come back to all that was familiar to me.  I began to compare Californians to East Coasters, and the Californians were not measuring up.  I began to miss family and friends.  Once the deal was closed with the NJ company, I was locked and loaded to get back.

Not quite.  Towards the last week or so, I actually began to like my surroundings, and Californians laidbackness.  I often wonder if I didn’t give this enough time.  A huge dream of mine finally came true, and I backed out.

Oh well, I guess life is full of mistakes and whatifs.  The only thing for me to do is to move on.  I am going to stop living in a dream land all the time, and try to appreciate the day God has for me today.  I have my dreams.  I don’t feel settled at this point.  Who knows?  Maybe God has something different planned for my family.