Steve Cook's soul, song, and sweat.

Shinybass journal entry 01-21-13

Just a few things to think about…

Good morning, world!  Do you remember a couple of weeks ago when the world was ending and it was 68 degrees in January?  Well, take that  – and stay warm.  I hope you didn’t rush out and buy grass seed or plants thinking winter was over.  As much as we would like to have San Diego-like weather all year round, only San Diego gets that treat.  The rest of us see seasons, and over the next couple of days, the whole country has a cold one.  Stay layered, cover your head, and remember the animals that stay outside.  The dogs can only handle so much cold.  Get them some straw or bring them in the garage or something suitable.  And remember the water dish freezes out there, too.  There’s your friendly tip for the day.

Today is a National holiday – Martin Luther King, Jr. Day for all you scoring at home.  And for those living in Virginia, it’s Lee/Jackson/King Day, which is one of the most backward racist pile of mule dung I’ve ever heard of.  For those that don’t know, the day honors General Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and Martin Luther King.  That’s like having a Judas luncheon at Easter.  That’s like having Kanye at Taylor Swift’s new video premier.  OK, it’s not in the same breath – didn’t mean to bring pop culture into the fold.  It’s just silly to me that we have so many concessions for so many things. (Let MLK have his day!)  I don’t have any answers here, I’m just pointing out flaws in our system.  (I know it’s easier to point out the problem than the solutions).  And I don’t want to start a race war here – but I think if the world watched more Dave Chappelle (who makes fun of everyone‘s habits, shortcomings, and racial bias), then we would all relax a little.  As my wife said this morning as I was on a rant – ‘Can’t we all just go fly kites?’  Agreed.

But in a seemingly racially charged America, littered with Constitutional disagreement and economic strife, remember that if you study history, we’ve been much worse off.  You can probably talk to your grandmother and she will tell you how bad things were.  We’ve been through a Civil War – think about the scope of that war and the broad-sweeping hell that must have been.  How can you live a ‘normal’ life if you have war on your doorstep?  Ask an Iraqui, I suppose (see how good you have it??).  And then fast forward to food and material rationing in WWII.  (See how good you have it??) As they say across the pond  – Keep calm and carry on.

You aren’t here to read about my lessons in racial equality, or brush up on the ebb and flow of mid-19th century economics and migration (PS – this place is really spooky and cool), you are here to read of debauchery from the inside and sometimes outside of the tour bus.  Our latest stop was at Joe’s Bar on Weed St. in Chicago – one of my favorite towns.  The area is starting to transform a little – the older buildings are being torn down, and now the OTB is inside Joe’s, which makes for an interesting mix of people during the day.  OK, mostly 60 and up males betting on the ponies.  When I bet on the horses, I usually win the first race I bet.  Then I bet the remaining 5 races and go in the hole.  I really, really need to learn that it’s OK to take the winnings and hang out, but human nature takes over, which is why the racetracks make the big bucks.

Phil Vassar has been playing at Joe’s for a long, long time.  We have a sellout crowd every time, and it’s just a huge crazy big party.  It was our first big show back this year, and I tell you – one off’s are tough.  We aren’t in a touring groove, so we sometimes forget things, don’t get setup as quickly, etc.  I love the 3rd or 4th night of a run.  The band is in a solid groove, and the routine of it all becomes more routine.  Not to say we aren’t a lot of fun on the first night of a run, because the ‘first night giddiness’ is abound.  Let’s just say we have a good time, all the time.

Friday night was no exception. We played a long, long set, and pulled out of the street somewhere around 2 AM.  Against my best intentions, the after-show chicken wings made their way into my system.  It’s not the wings, per se, it’s the sauce I love.  Maybe I’ll figure out a way to do buffalo-style tofu to keep my New Year’s resolutions going.

So we are off the road for a little while.  I don’t go back out for a few weeks, but that’s not to say I won’t be busy playing ‘catch up’ (not Ketchup or Catsup) on life, and cheering my Pens on to greatness.  I will still blog as it is deemed appropriate by the moderator – oh wait, that’s me – and I hope that you all enjoy this frigid weather – spring is right around the corner – but thankfully not too close.  Polar bears need love, too.

See you on the road!!!

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