Welcome to Glenn's Blog!

Here I will periodically post random thoughts and stories about what's going on in my life and the world around me. As if anyone cared. But seriously, you've found your way here, so hopefully you will enjoy at least some of what I have to say, even if you aren't entirely interested in it. At the least, it should be a good way to waste time.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019


So, yesterday was the annual Staff Employees Award Luncheon at Sac State. Our department goes every year, since, well, we get a free buffet lunch out of it. The luncheon recognizes those who have achieved milestones in employment here - 10 years, 15 years, and so on. As it turns out, this past year was my 20th year. Though it took some convincing on my part, because the University apparently had the wrong hire date down for me. They had to go all the way to the State Controller's office to verify when my employment began. The benefits of this: I got my name in the program (along with a whole bunch of other people), and my name scrolled down on the slide show (along with a whole bunch of other people).

20 years. Has it been that long? Yes. Yes it has.

I frequently remind people that I was a student here just before that, so really I've been on campus now for 26 consecutive years. I do that mostly to illicit sympathy. I don't always get it. But I also don't get students saying, "Wow I wasn't even born yet when you started here!". Even though that's true, in most cases. So, there's that small consolation. I also tell people to shoot me if I'm still here 10 years from now. No, really, I'm serious. I really don't plan to be here that long. If I am, it would certainly mean that my soul had died some time before, and my body just continued on in its place, merely out of habit.

One person yesterday was honored for having worked here for 45 years. Imagine that. I wasn't even born yet when they started working here.

But anyways. We had a nice lunch of pasta and salad and garlic bread. And carrot cake for dessert. Yum! I should have taken a picture of that. It was a highlight, to be sure. They also had some sort of 'other' cake there - it looked like a marbled cake of some sort. Actually it looked like a cheesecake-cake, if there ever was such a thing. Like a cheesecake, and in the form of a sheet cake, and with frosting. I'm sure it too, was delicious. And then we got to listen to people speak who are not trained nor experienced at public speaking, and they got to have the grand finale of butchering many people's names as they tried in vain to read off the list of honorees.

Incidentally, this is a highly attended event, being just one of two times in the year that the University Staff Assembly gifts everyone a free lunch. 600? 700? I'm not really sure how many people were there in the University Ballroom. A lot. But there's a lot of people on staff here. To give an idea, in the 20 years of service category there were, including me, 24 people being honored. 24 from that one year, way back in 1999. There were even more in each of the 10 and 15 year categories, and a fair amount in the 25 year category. So yeah, a lot of people work here. Bureaucracy at its finest.

So in summary, I got fed, my name got read, people clapped, some random person came over and handed me a 20-year lapel pin (now I have a matching set with my 10 and 15 year ones, which are tucked away safely in a desk drawer underneath some packets of parmesan cheese from Round Table Pizza), and now it's back to work as normal. 20 years down. Still a few more to go...

Sunday, October 20, 2019

No Answers, Just Questions

I went for a walk, and looked at the stars. They're always there, dependable, reliable. Shining down and smiling at us, showing us the way. Or trying to at least. I used to recognize more of the constellations, or at least my memory fancies that I did, back in my youth. But now I just know a few. Maybe it was always so.

I just finished a made-for-TV mini-series on Hulu called Looking for Alaska, based on the novel by John Green. I haven't read the book, but it's on my hit list to acquire. I think I just liked that it references Alaska, but in the book (and show) it's a person and not a place. Still, small details can attract us to things which we may have otherwise overlooked.

The story is about a group of friends at a private high school that more resembles a camp than anything. Several of them have troubled pasts - including the main girl, Alaska, who has a fairly serious drinking problem that no one seems to really notice until she drives off upset one night and dies in a car crash. But it's never clear whether or not it was an accident; in fact evidence seems to suggest it's not.

But wrapped within all of this happiness are serious questions about life and life after death, and why we're here, if there's a reason at all. And it ends with the hope that there is some place for us after this life, and that it's beautiful. But the reality is no one knows. To paraphrase one of the professors: the only questions worth asking are the ones that have no answers.

So tonight, I have no answers. Only questions. The show left me unusually emotionally drained. I'm not sure why, as I don't really relate personally to anything in it. But I found that I could not quite function, so I had to go for a walk. To get some air and clear my head. The characters in the show are prone to doing this too.

So now I swing on my swing, to and fro like a pendulum, and look at the stars. And they stare back at me, and everyone else, just as they have for millennia. Unchanging. They don't have any answers either. Maybe no one has any answers, just questions.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Kid Thoughts

Kids say the darndest things. And no, I'm not referring to that failed late-90s comedy TV show hosted by the formerly revered Jell-o salesman. My son turns six, two weeks from today. We know that because he asked me this morning how many days it was until his birthday, and I asked Siri, and Siri told us. He automatically began processing the timeline, and pointed out that after this week it would be mommy's week, and then my week again, and that's when he would turn six. Kids at this age have such a unique way of looking at the world. It's so innocent and unfiltered - and often so profound. We could learn a lot from them. We should already know these things that they seem to know; after all, we were all this age once. Perhaps we've forgotten much, in all of the hustle and bustle of life and of growing up.

This morning as we drove to school along the massive building construction going on along East Commerce Way, Connor suddenly started babbling about construction. "I know how the guys make buildings. First, they do the walls, and second they do the roof. Then third is the lights. They do the lights third. And fourth is the windows." Then he paused for a second, so I prompted him, "What comes fifth?". "Oh! Fifth is the painting and the flooring. Carpeting and pretty flooring. And they paint the walls. Then sixth they do the rain tubes." (he means the exterior downspouts. Apparently those are so important that they require their own dedicated step). "And seventh is the last step, that's when they move in the furniture." It's a pretty accurate, if overly simplified, description. He's not wrong.

Of course we, in our adult wisdom, know that there's innumerable steps in between all of these things. There's the concrete slab, and the pre-wiring, and laying out of the plumbing groundwork, and insulation and sheetrock and on and on. And it occurs to me just then, that we make life pretty complicated. I mean obviously the building of a house or office building IS complicated. It needs to be structurally sound and pass all the necessary inspections. So, too, does life need to be complicated sometimes, I suppose. To a point. But maybe we make life a little TOO complicated. Maybe we should take a lesson from an almost-six-year-old, and just focus a little more on the basics. The things that are really, truly important. The things that matter. Perhaps, in the end, that will help to solidify the foundation even more so than if we constantly nitpick all of the little details that pass us by in our daily routines. (Don't try this in 'actual' construction though; you certainly don't want your roof collapsing on you...)

On the other hand, last night's conversation with Connor as he sat soaking in the bathtub went more like this:

Connor: “I have my two tentacles!”
Me: “TESTicles. They’re called testicles.”
Connor: “....I have my two balls!”

So, there's that. Pure unfiltered wisdom from a little tiny package. Well, not so tiny anymore; he's 48.25 inches tall and weights 55.2 pounds, as of his physical this past Tuesday. But of course he still has a long ways to go. And in life, don't we all? Well we hope so anyway. We could drop dead tomorrow. Who knows? Better not wait to live, I guess, just in case. Just in case. That warrants repeating, because it's important: better not wait to live. For who knows how many tomorrows you have?

I actually started compiling Connor's random spoken thoughts, which have become somewhat infamous on Facebook under the umbrella of the "Connor Quote of the Day". I started this right after the new year, this past January. I suppose initially it was a device to distract me from my separation, which was very fresh at that time. It was also something new to start in the New Year. Not so much a resolution per se - I don't make those, really. But the Connor Quotes have grown throughout this year, and I have quite a collection now. I'm thinking of publishing a book of them soon. Not really for public use, just for myself and my family, really, and eventually someday for Connor. Perhaps they will be wedding gifts at his wedding, someday. That would embarrass him, I'm sure. The first of these, recorded on January 4, 2019, was this:

"Did you know I’m allergic to bad guys? I might cough at them and make them gross."

Well. That's not a particularly profound way to end this post. And I do like to leave my handful of readers with something to think about throughout their day. So I'll jump ahead to March 14, and offer this profound little bit of five-year-old wisdom:

“I still love you even when you do mistakes.”

There. Think about that for awhile. That's almost as good as this little gem from five days later:

“Daddy, I love you. I love you even when you’re sad. I love you even when you’re dead.”

Well. That's a little morbid. But unconditionally sweet. And it is Halloween season after all, so I'll call this "holiday appropriate". Perhaps it's a bit of a stretch. But I don't care. I'm going to be more like a five year old, more carefree and simple about the way I approach life. That's what we should learn from these little kid thoughts. My kid has so much to teach me...

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Exploring Humanity

So this past Saturday I took another of my frequent trips to San Francisco. Unbeknownst to me, it was "Fleet Week" there (shows how much I pay attention), and much of the Marina Green area was closed off for the pending festivities of military prowess. Who knew? That was my normal go-to parking location, as it's free to park there, usually. And it's right next to Fort Mason, which makes for an easy walk over to the Embarcadero area. Fortunately the area around Chrissy Field was still open, although they had traffic monitors with orange vests and little orange flags, frantically directing people where to park in order to maximize the available space. And it was already filling up at 9am; they were already given to having people park on the gravel areas. Packing us in as if at a sports stadium, and with no trees for shade to boot. But still, it was free. In a city as expensive as San Francisco, free is always a nice option to have.

This put me an extra mile or so away from where I needed to be, but I don't mind the extra walking. And I was early enough that I had time. I actually got another discounted ($49) ticket to see the matinee showing of Hamilton, as I had done back in early June. Really fantastic seat - row K in the Orchestra section, and just two seats left of exact center. It was a sign when I saw it online, saying "Buy me...buy me...". So, I did. The walk was as usual quite pleasant, if not a little tiring due to all the hills. There's so many interesting neighborhoods and cool architecture and store fronts and on and on, not to mention the panoramic views you are treated to as you reach the top of the hill near Hyde and Lombard Street.

Along the way I also stopped at a little local bakery for a chocolate croissant. I'm not even sure the name of the place, but they had a quaint neon sign in their store that proclaimed "I got baked in San Francisco". It made me wonder what exactly they put in their baked goods... Their to-go bags were long and pink and adorned with big block letters: "C6H1206". Not being too well-versed in coded languages, I had to google that; if only to make sure I knew what I was really ingesting. Turns out, it's the chemical formal for simple sugar. Whew! I guess I don't remember much of my last chemistry class, way back in...1992 or so. I'm sure they probably went over this. Stay in school, kids!

In any case, as the walk progressed back down the hill it came closer and closer to the theatre district, and that's when you start seeing more of the interesting locals. And by "interesting", I mean "crazy". Literally. Like, truly suffering from mental illness. It's the homeless population of San Francisco, and just like in Sacramento, ever appearing to grow and grow. It's society's cancer, and it's spreading unchecked. And it's quite sad really. At first you see random people just milling about, yelling mostly incoherent obscenities at each other, or at themselves, or at walls, or at blank space. There's the guy at the bus stop, straddling some lady sitting on the bench. She's fairly unresponsive, and you can't tell if he's trying to help her, put more drugs into her, or rape her. An older lady at the stop must have seen my concerned look, and assured me, "She's fine, she's fine". I guess that sort of thing is just normal routine for that neighborhood. I grew up far more sheltered.

Then you get further along and find rows of people camped out along chain link fences that block off vacant lots. They have nothing to do, nothing to say, and seem to not even be too aware of what's going on around them. One guy in particular had visible red track marks up and down his arm. He was so out of it already that he moved clumsily and as if in slow motion. He was completely unaware of anything around him. But he was desperately trying - still in slow motion - to get a needle back into his arm. That's all he has anymore. That's all his life is. So many people like this, they hardly even seem human anymore. Most of their humanity was long sucked away. That's why, I suppose, society does little or nothing to address these problems. They don't see these people as "human" anymore. As "alive" anymore. And there's so many, it's become an insurmountable problem to even begin to deal with. I don't know if that guy ever succeeded in getting that needle in, in finding a vein. He probably did. He's probably still there, right now, doing it all over again. It's all he has left.

In any case, I made it to the Orpheum Theatre a little after 11am and picked up my ticket. Even the guy at the window said, "Oh you got a great seat, right in the middle". I smiled. Yes, yes I did. Then, to kill a little time, I went and had lunch at a little local diner about a block away. It was called, curiously enough, Local Diner. Not very creative, but it works. They seem to specialize in breakfast, but also have lunch selections. I had a club sandwich. It came with crinkle cut fries. Seriously, who serves crinkle cut fries? That seems like something you'd buy in the frozen food section of your local supermarket, then promptly burn the edges of in your oven at home, as you curse your poor luck.

I then went to the same CVS that I had once bought a homeless guy lunch in, much to his surprise as he was only asking for change so he could buy something, anything. I let him pick out whatever he wanted, and he got a free lunch that day. Guess I was in a good mood back then. In any case, I saw no homeless people in the store on this day, so I just bought some snacks for the show. Why not? Snacks are always good. There was a religious group of musicians playing for and yelling at passersby across the street. Occasionally getting in arguments with the mentally deranged homeless population. They were really, really, concerned about our everlasting souls, and wanted us to find Jesus as quickly as we can. But alas, I had a show to get to.

Hamilton was, just as last time, amazing. It's so intelligently put together, the crafting of actual historical elements with modern-day hip-hop music. Really, quite brilliantly done. And expertly performed! You can tell the actors are really enjoying their roles. I may have taken video while the exit music was playing at the end. Shhh! Don't tell anyone! I feel like such a criminal! After the show I walked back down Market Street all the way to the old Ferry Building. You can see firsthand the transition as you leave the theatre district: from homeless and crazy people, milling about with nothing to do, trash floating along in the breeze everywhere, it slowly transforms into a more respectable city with a diversity of pedestrians heading off in every direction, and eventually you hit the more famously known tourist areas along the waterfont.

The Embarcadero was quite crowded; apparently the Fleet Week festivities had concluded, the Blue Angels were done performing, and the crowds were all out trying to enjoy the touristy spots. And they were EVERYWHERE. I have a general disdain for large crowds, so I sped through the area as quickly as I could squeeze through, stopping only at the last Ben & Jerry's near the end to get a milkshake made out of their Half-Baked ice cream. So good! I should have gotten a large one instead of a small. In any case I sucked that puppy down right quick. Or as quickly as I could given a paper-based straw that stared disintegrating partway through. Stupid paper straws.

In any case, I followed my typical path along the waterfront and up through Fort Mason. The sun was already getting low on the horizon; I had entertained the idea of taking a walk along Baker Beach and watching the sun set, but I don't think I would have made it in time. Even my favorite bookstore at Fort Mason was closed, as it was just after 6pm. So instead, I hit the Chrissy Field beach area, which was still quite nice and not too crowded.

I'd never really walked along this particular beach much, though I've walked past it many times when heading directly to the Golden Gate. It was nice to get my shoes off and get my feel wet, though it was a bit cold. The changing of the seasons is upon is. But who doesn't love watching the sun set with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background, as you walk through the soft, sandy beaches as gentle ocean waves chomp at your feet? It's a beautiful and awe-inspiring experience. I suppose it offers a glimmer of hope, by showing that there is still beauty to behold in the world. and I kind of needed that after traipsing through the not-so-good parts of San Francisco. What a diverse world it is! It's hard to have hope sometimes, when you so often see only the dark side of humanity. And I drive through downtown Sacramento everyday, so I see it, everyday, even if it is just quickly passing by in the car.

I ended up staying later than I normally do in San Francisco, but it was worth it to see the sun fully set and darkness set upon the world once more. Another day and another adventure, come to an end. And of course now it's back to the real world with work and responsibilities and raising a child and all of that. I'm glad I'm able to get out from time to time, though, to get away and experience things. I think it's human nature to explore, and not just our own world and surroundings but our own humanity as well. I can't really help those poor souls along the otherwise barren streets of San Francisco. But I can't help thinking, they were once like me, a child with parents who grew up and went to school and probably fell in love several times. They, too, once lived. I hope they do have some humanity left in them, somewhere, and that they might someday stop and look around and decide to explore it for themselves. Maybe they'll find some salvation. But I imagine, pessimistically, that those who survive this day and the next will still be there, the next time I visit. Things rarely change. Sad.

Friday, October 11, 2019

The Vortex Of Insanity

So I had the pleasure of driving to Vallejo the last two days for a little music gig. On Interstate 80, just west of Fairfield near the old truck scales which rarely seem to be in operation anymore, there's a section where some sort of construction is going on. Or, WAS going on. It's hard to tell, as there doesn't seem to be any actual construction happening anywhere. But the usual signs adorn the freeway: "Construction Zone - Reduce Speed", and "Speed Limit 55", and "Speed Limit WILL be Enforced." Apparently, they were serious about this rather unassuming looking section of pavement winding through the dry brown hills at the edge of the valley. Then there was another sign: "Lanes Shift Ahead". Except, it wasn't JUST a lane shift...

Picture this: you're driving along the freeway. Your lane starts, slowly, to shift to the right. You think to yourself, "Well, this isn't so bad, I didn't even need to slow d..." And then, suddenly...all hell breaks loose! Before you even see it coming, multiple lane lines appear, going every which way and intersecting one another. You have only a split second to decide which of the three set of lines you should actually follow. And you're not alone - there's several dozen other cars along for the ride with you. Suddenly, everyone is swerving this way and that way, narrowly avoiding crashes left and right. It's like watching a grownup version of the old fair-style bumper car rides, except everyone is trying desperately NOT to bump into one another.

And then, just as suddenly as it began, it's over. You began this psychedelic trip in Lane No. 2, but somehow ended up in Lane No. 4. You look quickly in your rear view mirror to see what the heck you just drove through - but in hindsight all of the lanes appear perfectly straight and clear, and there appears to be only one set of them. Right where they should be. What happened?? Did we all just suddenly shift into an alternate reality? Some sort of parallel universe? A different dimension that's superimposed onto, but just slightly askew from, our own? Or are we all just collectively losing our minds?? There's no honking. No yelling. No obscene gestures through the driver's window. No road rage of any kind. How can there be? Everyone that just experienced this is glad to have gotten out alive. And I'm sure we were all thinking: "Did...did I do that??" But we survived, together, as one species, through this vortex of insanity. And I got to do it twice, two days in a row. I can't imagine what regular commuters through this area must feel. Maybe they're used to it. They should have just posted a sign: "Drive drunk for the next 200 yards, and good luck!" The results would have been similar, I think.

In any case, I got to play a gig that amounted to a musical revue at a high school in Vallejo, directed by an old friend of mine who used to be a pianist at Sac State, and actually worked on my stage managing staff for a time. It was nice to pull out the old Ibanez bass guitar and play again. To dust off the chops a little. I don't play as much as I used to, in the days where I'd do six productions a year that ran for four weeks apiece. Or in the year that I played 8 shows a week of Forever Plaid at the Cosmopolitan Cabaret (RIP). But every once in awhile it's nice to play again. And the 8 piece orchestra was made up of Sac State alums, so it was nice to see some old faces again. And hey, who doesn't like to dress up in all black and go out of town?

I suppose, in a sense, high school itself is like a vortex of insanity as well. And even these private Catholic school kids are not exempt from that. They were quite...spirited. Energetic? What's the word I'm looking for? Oh yeah - crazy. But the concerts went well, at least as well as they could considering we had only a single, one-hour long rehearsal that didn't quite touch all of the pieces on the program. And that rehearsal ended as the doors were opening to let in the audience for the debut performance. Now, two performances later, we're done. Actually, if we had the chance to do it a third time, I think we'd just about have it down...

But the kids seemed to enjoy themselves. It was a mixture of a variety of choral ensembles, along with a couple of solos and duets, and even a hand bell choir performing Phantom of the Opera. Seriously, what high school even HAS a hand bell choir? This one, apparently. We had a good time, in any case, and the music was varied and fun. And the director pays well for services rendered, so, there's that. Afterwards the musicians went to BJ's in Vacaville for some food and drinks. It was actually a little funny, as we were all dressed in black - and we looked EXACTLY like the waitstaff there. I suppose we should have told them that we were the new crew, taking over, and that they were all relieved of duty. They might have bought it. If only for a minute.

And now, after a week of semi-intense playing, my bass is safely stowed away again. It's basically just going to sit in the corner of the room for awhile. Until the next time. When will that be? I have no idea. You just never know. Or, at least, I never know. Gigs are infrequent for me these days, which I suppose is okay as I don't know if I could realistically work many more into my schedule. Life is busy, and even finding time to do small gigs can be a challenge sometimes. There's just always so much going on, and seemingly all at once. I guess life, too, is a bit of a vortex of insanity.

Friday, October 4, 2019

Lyrics, Part 4

Oh, just when you thought I was done torturing you, here I am again. I actually find it fun, though, to really explore the meanings behind songs. And of course sometimes the meanings I find go beyond the original intent of the song, as I clumsily apply them to my own life, to my own existence as a human being. But that's okay; music should inspire us in that way. And in any case, no one is forcing you to read this. But if you're waiting for me to spout out some profound wisdom, like how 'life is like a play, performed without rehearsal', well you're probably going to be disappointed. Well, I mean, that is, if you keep reading past this first paragraph. And even that tasty little tidbit was inspired by a song from the Spin Doctors. So there. And away we go!

1. It's a long way to happiness, a long way to go. But I'm gonna get there, boy, the only way I know.

2. Sometimes, I see past the horizon. Sure of my way, where I am going. But where's the prize I have my eyes on? Where? There is just no knowing! And when despair tears me in two, who can I turn to but you? You know who I am. Take me as I am.

3. It’s a question of lust; it’s a question of trust. It’s a question of not letting what we’ve build up crumble to dust. It is all of these things and more, that keep us together.

4. We all lead such elaborate lives, wild ambitions in our sights. How an affair of the heart survives days apart and hurried nights, seems quite unbelievable to me. I don't want to live like that. Seems quite unbelievable to me. I don't want to LOVE like that. I just want our time to be slower, and gentler. Wiser. Free.

5. Loving can hurt sometimes, but it's the only thing that I know. And when it gets hard - you know it can get hard sometimes - it is the only thing that makes us feel alive...And it's the only thing we take with us when we die.

6. Take me back to the place where I once belonged. This could be anyplace - a place where you and I could sing this song. Take me back where I hear waterfalls flowing. Let me dive into the lake where winter hides the snow. Then comes the summertime; fields of scarlet poppies grow. Take me back where I see butterflies to-ing, fro-ing, and the river flows.

There now, that wasn't so bad, was it? Well if you made it this far, either you cheated and skipped to the bottom - or hopefully you've gained some insight. Into life, love, whatever. It's all good. As an unrelated side note - I mentioned previously about my "banner" month of blog posts in September. It actually was the highest amount of posts I've ever done in a month (10), narrowly beating out my previous record of 9, which happened in the second month of this blog's existence. Way back in July, 2009. Doesn't seem like it's been all that long, but 10 years have gone by. What a way to track time, clickety clackety on a keyboard! Well, anyways. On to brighter adventures...

Thursday, October 3, 2019


My brother suggested I write about chocolate chip muffins and cookies. Well, and also Disneyland. But, we really need to focus on one thing at a time here. I just can't handle this non-focused rambling on multiple topics all at once. So here goes: chocolate chip muffins and cookies are yummy. Especially with milk. There, that ought to do it. Literary excellence, this is not. But hey, everyone needs a springboard to start from.

There's only three months left in 2019, and we're slowly winding our way into the holiday mega-season. It used to be just a "season", but since retailers now typically start stocking Christmas items in July, I think it's fair to give it an upgrade. Anyways, during most holiday seasons I take advantage of the breaks from work to bake up some batches of homemade chocolate chip cookies. Yes, from scratch. With actual flour and cubes of butter and brown sugar, and so on. I suppose this is perhaps a last vestige of the days of my youth, when our grandmother used to come over one weekend before Christmas and bake all sorts of cookies. It was an event, to be sure. And we kids got to decorate the sugar cookies. Some family members of mine who shall remain nameless used to use "red hots" in their decorating. I always hated those. Though they did make convincing eyes. But anyways.

The picture here is the ACTUAL plate of cookies mentioned in my previous post. I'll call them the "Santa" cookies, based on Connor's assessment of the situation at the time. These were not, unfortunately, made from scratch. They weren't even from a tube; it was those Pillsbury packages where they are already neatly separated into 24 convenient squares. How lazy is that? Well, they eat well, in any case. And this famous plate of cookies is now long gone into the annals of our memory. This picture was previously only shared by me to one person, an old close friend who is very special to me. (No, not the "short bus" kind of special). They know who they are. But now here this picture is, resurrected from the deleted file on my iPhone, for the pleasurable and mouth-watering enjoyment of all of you fine people. Whoever you are.

No really, who are you? I can see that there's people viewing this, and it's not just me. It doesn't track me when I'm logged in and view it. You are all a a bunch of stalkers, that's what you are. But I digress.

Now where was I? Oh yes, cookies. So we used to bake all sorts of varieties of cookies when I was young. Or rather, the adults did the baking, and we mostly hung around in kitchen and got in the way. And oh the smells...can you imagine the smell of all manner of baking cookies, wafting through the house and your infiltrating your senses? It was simply delightful. That's what Christmas smells like. It kind of reminds me of going through the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland, as it's decorated for the holidays, and smelling the fresh gingerbread in the dining room scene that they somehow magically pump in. Not that we ever made gingerbread per se, but the sensory stimulation is similar. And I had to somehow work Disneyland into the discussion.

Well, I could go on and on here, but really how much can one write about cookies? It has to end sometime, and you just need to go eat some. Because you know you want to. You know you're salivating right now just thinking about it. I think everyone should bake some cookies this fall or winter; preferably from scratch, but even refrigerated cookie dough will do in a pinch. And then everyone can enjoy the warm smells of the holiday season, and reminisce about the carefree and joyful holiday seasons we used to enjoy as kids. Or something like that. If you don't have such memories, I suppose you can just create new ones. All traditions have to start somewhere, after all.

So what else? What else... oh yeah! Muffins. Those are also good. Tasty.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Even The Weather Can Be Interesting

So tonight I want to talk about...writing. I suppose that may be risky, sort of the blogging version of talking about the weather on a first date. But sometimes even I wonder why I blather on and on in this medium. It started about 10 years ago, and I was talking then about Disneyland and chocolate chip muffins, as I recall. But this wasn't intended to be a travel blog. Or a food blog.

I used to be a composer. Of music. Well I suppose technically I still am, though I haven't written anything new in over a year. The problem with that is, well, music just isn't IN me anymore. It used to be, it used to itch and scratch to be let out into the world. I guess you can call that inspiration. It comes and goes sometimes; it actually left me awhile after I earned my bachelors, and didn't return again for several years - when I started my masters. In any case, it's gone again. Music doesn't live in me now; I lost it some time ago. Perhaps one day it will return again.

So now I write on this blog. Even that has been troublesome, as there's been times when I've been lucky to churn out one post a month. I just finished a banner month in September, though I cheated a little: three of my posts last month featured lyrics. Someone else's words. It wasn't plagiarism, I swear! It was...an experiment, of sorts.

Someone told me tonight that I write very well. Do I? It isn't the first time I've heard that. It is perhaps the first time I entertained the notion to believe it. I suppose in some alternate fantasy life I might have imagined myself a writer. Like Vonnegut or Tolkien or C.S. Lewis. Or James Michener or Gregory Maguire. Or whoever. But I don't suppose I would know WHAT to write about. You should write what you know, as the saying goes. But what do I know, that anyone would want to read? Difficult to say.

So, I guess, I write for me. I explore the trivial and mundane in my life, right alongside the ponderings of some of the greatest dilemmas of the human experience. I write what I feel, what I experience. I suppose that's enough. It has to be. And I find it as interesting, actually, as a discussion of the weather. The weather is quite interesting! Stop and pay attention to it sometime. Perhaps discussing the weather has gotten an unfair rap as a social faux pas.

Oh - and the weather was beautiful today - sunny and clear, but cool and refreshing. I could elaborate, but, well, you know.