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Friday, December 7, 2012

December...and How I Could Not Stop for Death...& Other Stuff

Well, it has been some time since I have been here.  I am going to have to go backwards, but in a very short time, so forgive my issues with typos and horrid grammar.

I last blogged around the time of Samhain...and so jump to now.  Because I fucking can.

Magic Sam's "My Love Will Never Die" is playing through my brain on iTunes...okay, here's what happened yesterday.  I noted this on Facebook, and I've got some interesting reactions.

I saw DEATH yesterday.

I was traveling to Washington for the first time in over three years.  I exited 495 and got off at the Kensington/Chevy Chase exit in MD.  With  me so far?

Moderate traffic, midday, nothing serious.  I round the bend for the turn in the road, and there IT was.

Death.

In the median, right by the intersection.  I drove past It to the light.

I say IT, because I don't know the sex of that creature.

But all in black, hood, cloak, the whole damn thing.  A smaller figure than I imagined.

Instead of a sickle, It was leaning on a crutch.

I saw It.  I know what I saw.  I kept driving.

I wondered...did I really just see that?  Did anyone else see that?

"Designated Fool," the Artist Formerly Known as Terrence Trent D'Arby...haven't heard this in years.

I was reminded of my friend Mary Sue Twohy's beautiful vocal rendering of the Emily Dickinson poem...but it just didn't fit the moment.  Too sunny a day, I guess.

Well...that weirdness aside, I navigated my way into the District to WTOP Radio.  Dropped in on my old XM Traffic boss Jim Battagliese, who now runs Traffic and Sports there.  Got to see an old building with a very active and somewhat up to date newsroom.  

A real fucking newsroom, right down to the day's newspapers all lying about the copy table.  I was also reunited with my old friend Amy Freedman and Bob Immler; great to see these folks again.  It was from the high point of my radio career; I had a dream job at a dream place...and of course you know who and what managed to fuck that all up.

But I digress.

"Shadow of the Whip," Harry Manx.  Interesting, folk-like stuff.  Reminds me of Ray Wylie Hubbard w/o the growl.

Talked about the old days, what 'TOP is up to, the competition from WNEW, which really is not.  Radio talk, and talk of writing.

Jim is the author of Stuck in Traffic, which you will find on Kindle.  A film that just read like a movie in the earlier draft.  Names were changed to protect the guilty.

This was partly to see if there is any work left in the world down there. The radio business is a dying art, unless my predicted (yeah) implosion of at least two gigantic bloated companies occurs.  

I have my usual jobbing about going on, and I'll get to that in a sec.  My main reason to go to DC was to head for the Phone Booth (aka, Verizon Center) to see the Hershey Bears and Norfolk Admirals play an AHL showcase matchup.

I am the primary radio producer for the Bears this season, my third of working with them.  I got a nosebleed ticket; sadly, Scott Stuccio could not get me access to the press box, but that's cool.  

Navigating DC traffic is insane.  The streets are on weird angles, one way is always the way you don't want to go, etc.

But, I did miss the city, and once you park the car (and remember Metro really works).

"Rastaman Live Up" by Bob Marley just passed in a flash, and it's "Come Hell or High Water" by Everything But the Girl.  I love Tracey Thorn's voice.

Okay, the Phone Booth is a small arena, but there is no bad seat in the place.  Prices for stuff...now you know why salaries are so high, or is it the other way 'round.  

NINE BUCKS FOR A BEER?  I don't drink, but really.

I have to work today, so I left after the 2nd period.  Good game.  On my way through the city, I passed the Sirius/XM building (formerly the National Geographic one); the lights were on but I wonder if anyone's still home.

I was left to reflect on my nearly five years there; it was a great time of my life, and the ride back through the city and the way home I took so many times was something to remember.

I still don't think my career is done.  

"When I'm 64?"  Love the Beatles, but not this song.

"I Go Crazy," Buddy Guy.  Better.

So anyway, I wonder if my encounter with Death means something.  Is it the death of my livelihood; my career?

Now I have had all of two job interviews with that place in Illinois, which did not pan out.

I had a short talk with the manager of a station...get ready...wait for it...THE ALEUTIAN ISLANDS.

Yep.  KSDP Radio, 830 on your AM dial, in Sand Point.  They are doing a pilot project.  Six months.

It would be an interesting experience; but I've not heard back.

I have another i'view on Monday.  Wish me luck.

I still love this business, but it leads me to my writing, and what I want to do.

I have finished "Time the Healer," the latest draft.  Cut nearly 50 pages off the longwinded missive about growing up, violence, bullying, hatred and the ability to find a way to forgive others even at their worst.

Not that I have done that completely, mind.

"Bad Influence," Robert Cray Band.  Nice.

Now, I've done a needed edit of "Sweet Dreams:  Searching for Roy Buchanan."  After two years, a fresh look has resulted in a tighter story, with an added element to a scene.  Much better.

SDS-2 has been edited, but I need to again.  The real work on a re-examination and rewrite of the series is needed, really needed.

As I told Jim, this is what I have to do.  This is my therapy; this is my touchstone to sanity, or what little of it remains.

I came out of a not-good depression in November.  I turned 47 on the 1st; again my thanks to my family and friends for the more than 200 greetings I got on Facebook.  Really nice.

The interactions with people in DC reminded me of what I miss, and what I cannot find in PA.  Something is missing; a human element is not here anymore.

I have to get out of here.  If I stay, it is only for work, and I will adjust.

Oh...we may be getting the band back together.

Ahltyrra likely will not reform under that name.  I got to see my co-founder Beth for the first time in over a year, plus most of the family last week.  They're doing alright, and I was very glad to be around them.

Beth has decided the band is not for her.  That said, the Dharma Fools are a go for a meetup this month.  We will see who is game, and what we might do.

"Dime Story Mystery," Lou Reed.  Another death song.

Well, that's that for now.  Off to work.

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