Out On a Lim                            
To subscribe, send an email to SUBSCRIBE@henrylim.org
Out On a Lim (9.17.09 - 2.5.10) >>
Three birds were cooped up on the third floor of the library--one'd sworn that she wasn't stalkin' me on an online social network, one'd stalked me in real life, and one'd jokin'ly accused me of stalkin' her.

I just drank a warm cup of Ancho chili cocoa.

Tonight I made Japanese curry from scratch--I found a recipe that deconstructs the premade roux.  I poured it over tonkatsu, which I also cooked for the very first time.  Add that to my list of meals I won't order anymore.

I read their relationships via where they sat in the room.

Two shared the same desk and one sat alone behind 'em.  The front two weren't wearin' headphones and I'm guessin' chatty with each other whilst the one in back paid 'em no attention.  Not that they weren't all acquaintances.

I was invited to shoot the dress rehearsals for this year's opera production.

The pianist asked if she could leave her music with me--she'd a heavy stack of scores, too much to carry 'round all day.  "I'm your locker," I clowned as I didn't deny the offer to lighten her load.

Today I cleaned my shower.

(2.8.10)

We've got a copy of
Ram at work.  I don't own that album.  It's been like over a decade since I last heard it.  Personally, I've always liked the homemade charm of McCartney's first solo album--I've got that and've played it more often than in ten year spans.  And to be honest, aside from Lennon, my appreciation of the ex-Beatles is hardly complete--I ain't familiar with every studio outtake that Harrison ever recorded but never officially released or know what the B-sides were to all of Ringo's post-70's singles, if he even had any, etc.  So as I awaited a pianist to pick up some photos that I'd edited of her and her 'cellist, I put on McCartney's second solo album.

It's the opposite, production-wise--whereas the first one's got a minimal aesthetic, the followup almost goes overboard, in a good way, with layers of Beach Boy-esque harmonies and
Pet Sounds era orchestrations, plus a bit o' the ol' Abbey Rd. patchwork configurations.  I also like how Lennon heard anti-Lennon messages in the lyrics.  But to me, it sounds like another time, well, the early '70s, even though I don't consciously remember hearin' any of those songs.  I mean, I think The Beatles're close to timeless as they were on the forefront of the '60s, but the solo stuff seems to age, revealin' how they joined the times.  I can't wait to listen to the CD again tomorrow.

(2.9.10)

ACT the FIRST: I awake from a dream--my lawyer was pregnant, which took me a while to register, you know, via dreamtime illogic, cause he ain't female.  After releasin' my first piss of the bright'n'early 10 o'clock day, I take a shower durin' which I meditate upon The Temper Trap's track playin' scene in the last Zooey movie that I watched--the moment on the train, scented with a tainted past, painted in late afternoon light, and uncertain of a potential future.  I pick a black collared shirt for tonight's gig--shootin' a dress rehearsal for this year's UCLA Opera production of the West Coast premiere of the three-act Baroque
Giasone, the colour bein' consciously inconspicuous.  Mental note as I drink my orange juice after I combed my hair: don't forget my camera.  This was my second night's assignment--they've got two semi-rotatin' casts.  I need to charge my battery at work today--last night used up 'bout 60 percent of my mathematical juice.  I pack my wallet with four 20 dollar bills, turn on my cellphone as I stuff it in my left pocket, and reserve my right for the keys to my abode, mode of transportation, and loads of official entries into my place of employment.  Oh, and I don't forget my backpack full of photographic equipment.  There's one key that's not ringed with the others--my garage.  That's cause if it's hooked with the one for my car, I gotta detach somethin' whenever I come home.  Nah, keepin' 'em separate is less of a hassle.  Tomorrow I'm gonna talk 'bout my path of laziness with my ex-assistant as she model's a tie for me, spinnin' in my boss' chair, namely my lack of white clothes due to my slothful doin' of only one load of laundry per week, which means I don't separate my colours.  Yesterday I watched the first episode of the last season of Lost with Ted Ed Fred, Zaggs, and Calvin--JM was feelin' sick and stayed home.  I can only guess that Seymour's (my lawyer's) wife tuned her pregnant self in.  Flash-sideways.  Vegas.  I listen to disc one (sides one and two, plus Anthology outtakes) of The White Album (in stereo) as I drive to work.  The freeway's'ren't ridiculous as I only got to "Piggies" when I reach my parkin' lot.  However, I find a spot when "Julia" is over--I drive 'round in circles 'til a spot opens in the it-could-be-better-than-this structure.

(2.10.10)

ACT the SECOND: I eat my lavash wrapped tuna sandwhich.  And for the fourth time in the last three days I pop in
Ram.  It's really not a bad album--if I could indulge in another concert with my beloved quartet, I'd passin'ly consider performin' that song cycle next year.  Alas, they're seniors or masters degree students, and unless by some stroke of luck they've to all decide to return to school here.  Anyways, I ordered my own copy--the import remaster that includes "Another Day" and its b-side.  I always feel stupid buyin' music--especially the CDs that we've already got at work.  But it's the legal thing to do, I suppose, like no one's watchin' me.  Tomorrow the supertitles operator'll complain 'bout my focus on certain opera singers.  Yesterday I got an email from Woman's Day magazine askin' for permission to use some of my photographs and to not only answer a few questions 'bout my high-res JPEGs, but give a few sentences 'bout myself--I ignored 'em.  And today I got more pesterin' from the Seven Sisters publication.  I asked my assistant if she read the rag--if she did I might consider replyin'.  She didn't.  So I deemed the request uncool.  I mean, I don't need the validation anymore.  Tomorrow I'll eat a lavash wrapped egg salad sandwich.  Meanwhile, after lunch my 'cellist decides to use my computer to print somethin' to fax to her dentist or someone, whatever.  I think of somethin' funny to say to my second violinist.  In the 'fridge at work I've got aluminium foil wrapped leftover mozzarella and cheddar pizza.  On my break, I walk to the convenience store by the law school and pick up a bottle of sparklin' apple juice to go with my dinner.  Later tonight, my sausage book'll arrive along with the soundtrack to (500) Days of Summer.  I'll admit that I wished to see her, but it's never in blood, or at least, I don't like to think that my soul's been exchanged for heaven--cause, honestly, her name goes 'round in my brain at least a million times a minute.  And I think back to that Zooey train scene--if I were involved, I'd walk away, cause it might never be any better than this--albeit I'll've takin' a photo.  My battery's charged.

(2.11.10)

ACT the THIRD: It's my second time shootin' and I've got a better grasp on the first two of three acts havin' seen the scenes before.  I'll keep the aperture steady and shift the shutter speed whenever the lights change, which is very often.  I found a recipe for chicken enchiladas, includin' homemade corn tortillas--I'm gonna give it a try this weekend.  Tonight, after the opera dress rehearsal photoshoot, I'll pick up some Masa harina from the market.  On Saturday I couldn't find the necessary chili peppers (Ancho and Guajillo) at the supermarket.  Luckily, there's a tiny Mexican grocery store down the street, which I've never visited before--it was a treat to browse the foreign aisles.  And before the third act, as the house lights turn down, I power-on my camera, focus on the second most important subject in the world that I needed to shoot, and hear her say "Is anyone sittin' next to you?"  "No," I point with my free five fingers, "have a seat."  So she sits down next to me in the front row--she's to my left.  "Monkberry Moon Delight" drifts thru my soul.  At first her leg's crossed away from me.  And so's mine, cause I'm mirrorin' her as I try to capture the opera in pixels.  And then her scent connects with the memories in my nose--of yesterday, of everyday, and of now as she's sittin' next to me, laughin' at the funny duets.  Tomorrow I'll joke with her 'bout my camera wantin' to take her picture.  "Who?" she misheard.  "My camera," I played along with her personification of inanimate objects and she finally laughed.  I can't stop--"He said he really preferred to be shootin' you, but he had a job to do..."  "Hahaha," she continued.  But in the diminished illumination, she's loopin' me in intoxication and I was back in my seat pretendin' to care 'bout the opera as I rolled with her chuckles--she's got a nail bitin' habit that won't stop 'til I surrender my mind's eye.  She's frackin' sittin' next to me.  "Sweet Disposition".  I can't help but wonder who to thank for this.  The third act is where it happens.  That deserves to be repeated.  Durin' the third act of my day is when she sat next to me in the third act of the opera.  A moment.  This was another rung.  A goddess in the adjacent spot.  I could search every alternate universe'n'still come to the same conclusion--it don't get better than this.

(2.12.10)
(2.16.10)

I didn't know what a "European Capital of Culture" was until I looked it up in an online encyclopedia after receivin' an email from an advertisin' representative of Istanbul.  Seems they're interested in my sculpturin' skills to commemorate their city--every year some cities in Europe're chosen (sometimes it's one or two, once it was nine) to attract tourism based on the European notion that an arbritary title means somethin'.  So the 2010 selections're Essen, Pecs, 'n'Istanbul...my dog he got three legs, your dog he got none...

...ram on...give your heart to somebody soon, right away...right away...I wanna try my hand at kare pan (curry doughnut).  All the recipes that I've consulted call for "leftover curry".  So for dinner tonight I made some specificially to be kept for later, namely to fill deep-fried bread.  However, this was the first time that I've tried the recipe with an apple, caramelized onions, 'n' homemade roux--it wasn't bad and I'm confident that it'll likewise be a nice fillin'.  We're so sorry but we haven't heard a thing all day...we're so sorry Uncle Albert...

VL2'n'VC entered the library together--the former attached herself to the computerized catalog, the latter sat at a table and plugged herself into her laptop via headphones.  VL2 borrowed a pen from the circulation desk, where I lounged...I was walkin' down the street the other day...smile away...And she returned with a call number of a piece that was supposedly 2/3rds checked out--a trio with only one part still available.  "Where is it?" she asked.  "Upstairs," I pointed.  "Thanks," she ran.  If there's one thing I'll always remember, it's her enthusiasm.

In a drunken stupor, I made a batch of corn tortillas.  I was smushin' the dough with a plate.  Sixteen times.  And I don't remember the sober details cause it all went by in a blur.  The followin' day, my arms were sore as Hell...so I sat in the attic, a piano up my nose, and the wind played a dreadful cantata...(cantata)...And I'm guessin' that I'm gonna be makin' more corn tortillas in the future.  And they want me, an American born of Chinese-Indonesian'n'Japanese parents, to depict their Turkish city with toy bricks conceived in Denmark.

Come on little lady, lady let's eat at home...I like how I've snubbed magazines (Woman's Day), broacastin' corporations (BBC), and now a city (Istanbul).  I mean, come on, they wanted me to make shit for malls.  MALLS?  When did culture orbit 'round those consumerism traps?   Yesternight I fried some tortillas with my new cast iron press--it totally made it painless on my arms...we're just busy ridin', sittin' in the back seat of my car...Now, if it'd been Belgrade, I'd've cooperated.  This entry is brought to you by
The Thunderbirds.

(2.17.10)

I've been rentin' DVDs of
The Big Bang Theory.  I think Penny is cool.  The Indian character is funny when he gets all Harpo 'round her.  And the Jewish guy steals the scene every time--the horndog, like Barny from How I Met Your Mother, but a zillion times more nerdier.  The theme song by Barenaked Ladies ain't bad, although the cinematography is your standard sitcom neutral focus.  But I'd've to say that the stegosaurus in the openin' credits is definitely a plus.

Today I got a request to perform a concert on my harpsichord.  At first I laughed thinkin' I might be a joke, but as I got to the third paragraph of the plea, I began to suspect that they were really serious.  Um, I can't do that, not on such short notice--they want it to happen next month.  Let alone the maintenance and tunin' needed at this point in time--the instrument's so outta calibration and coordinatin' a playlist when I'ven't played the keyboard since last summer...

...is insane.  "Times're tough," the harpsichord specialist relayed.  "Really?" I conversed after the Vivaldi concert at the library rotunda.  "Yeah," he continued, "many o' my friends're outta work--and it's gonna get worse."  I helped him pack the harpsichord and walked with him back to the music buildin'.  In the basement I waved to VL1 and VL2--the former touched my shoulder tonight, the latter has an audition tomorrow and thus'll be praciticin' late tonight.

I found a recipe for taquitos.  I can't stop eatin' homemade corn tortillas warmed in my microwave with a sprinkle of a Mexican blend o' cheese.  Here I go again.  Wait...was she tryin' to seduce me?...well, anytime I find myself in the dark with a chick, I get that urge to make a move, even if it's unnecessary...DON'T GET LEFT BEHIND...And I'm back at home practicin' The White Album--some songs're more groovin' than others, on different days, oh well...

(2.18.10)

Well, well, well, oh well

                              -John Lennon

Well, well, well, well, well

                              -Paul McCartney

(2.19.10)

On the can, I flipped thru a "500 Greatest Albums of All Time" list in a popular pop music publication--it was 'bout seven years old, a discard from the library.  Immediately I located The White Album--number ten,
Sgt. Pepper was at the top, Revolver resided at the third spot, Rubber Soul placed fifth, Abbey Rd. 14, etc.

I've never really liked the album
Imagine.  I prefer its predecessor, but ain't always in the mood to hear Lennon scream 'bout his parental issues.  No, the followup, if I could sum it up in one word, is a bunch of "statements"--it's like he's tryin' too hard to be an artist.  After all these years, I've never owned the CD.

Of course, that album came in at #76,
Plastic Ono Band was #22.  And Harisson's All Things Must Pass took #437, Wings' Band on the Run #418.  None of this I'd've much to argue with, 'cept where was Ram?  The more I listen to that album, the more I'm inclined to call it my favourite ex-Beatles record.

There's so much goin' on, that even after a dozen listens, I'm still discoverin' new sounds that're mixed into the elaborated production--it's Paul's
Pet Sounds, but all the more tuneful'n'rockin' than Brian Wilson's dour masterpiece (#2).  Sure, the lyrics'ren't cool, but if Dylan can sing outta tune, McCartney's got a pass, too.

I certainly'd listen to
Ram over Imagine anyday--although, honestly, I think the greatest ex-Beatles album is Lennon's Rock'n'Roll.  But as a collection of originals, Ram's got my nod.  Cause in my humble opinion, Lennon peaked durin' the White Album, Harrison Abbey Rd., and McCartney on the climactic wail at the end of "Back Seat of My Car".

(2.22.10)
(2.23.10)

12:12

(2.24.10)

Morally, I couldn't accept a request to sculpt the mascot of a mass produced breakfast cereal.

My lawyer told me to quote a ridiculous price.  "Three million dollars," I didn't joke.  "No," he realistically coordinated, "how much is the cost of materials?"  I gave him an amount--I consider the exact number a trade secret given my connections in the business.  "Times that by 20," he advised.

Nevermind the money, it simply goes against my ethics to help promote a product that I don't believe in.

"Don't tell me you're concerned 'bout kids eatin' too much sugar," my lawyer sarcastically sighed.  "Not at all," I cut him off.  "Then what do you care if you're bein' unscrupulous?" he scoffed.  "That's not the point," I pointed out, "I don't believe in eatin' breakfast--'tis all a silly scam to sell more food."

"It's the most important meal of the day," he robotically stated.

"I'ven't eaten breakfast for more than half of my life," I added, "and I'm fine."  "You've got too much hair," was all my lawyer could argue against my "fineness".  But seriously, the older I get, the more "righteous" somethin' is claimed to be, the more suspicious I've become of the motivations behind such claims.

So I replied with a lie and told 'em that I was too busy.

(2.25.10)

Her words rang in my ears for the rest of the day.

"Are you done hittin' on your violinist?" my assistant greeted me.  I had to be at work at 9AM, two hours earlier than normal, for a staff meetin'.  I mean, I ought to shut up, cause I should be so lucky to've a job thesedays, but my thoughts were still asleep 'til I caught up with my regular schedule.  Not to mention, I was shootin' photos at 8PM, for an early music concert at the library rotunda, so I was geared for a long day.  However, the best thing 'bout bein' on campus at a time when I usually am not was that I caught VL1 sittin' in the lobby all by herself.  So I struck up a conversation.

"You've got a fan," VC laughed.  "So do you," I returned.

"Can you translate somethin' for me?" I asked my assistant, who's been takin' Italian classes, as well was in that country last summer.  Cause someone commented on the video clip of me and my string quartet's performance from last year--and it was in Italian.  "Aw," she pointed out, "he says he cries whenever he listens to you."  "How do you know it's a 'he'?" I clarified.  "It could be a 'she'," she agreed.  But what was creepy was "he" or "she" mentioned VC by name--which is odd cause I didn't include credits other than for myself (and Larry McFeurdy in case his fans forgot my real name).

But overall, the comment translated as bein' positive.

After the concert, I took Zaggs and his NA buddy to a '50s dinner for a late night snack, which my instrument conservationist friend recommended.  And the symmetry was fascinatin'--Zaggs' buddy used to be in the military, my friend was a CO.  The former a recoverin' drug addict, the latter never took any narcotics.  One has five kids, the other none.  Maybe I was tired, but it'sn't everday that I find myself in the same room with such exact opposite characters.  Not that one's "better" or "worse" than the other, but I do for whatever deranged reason, enjoy noticin' such distinctions.

"He's an asshole," VL1 whispered.

(2.26.10)
(3.1.10)

Here we go...

Henry Lim and His String Quartet Perform The Beatles

Saturday, May 8
8 p.m.

In 1968, after seeking enlightenment in India, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr recorded their double LP
The Beatles. Commonly called "The White Album," it featured a wide ranging collection of musical genre parodies, psychedelic nursery rhymes, and stark serenades. Composer Henry Lim, on vocals and acoustic guitar, will perform the entire song cycle accompanied by a string quartet comprised of students from the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.

courtesy of the
UCLA Library webpage

(3.2.10)

I just got back from a jam session with my ol' band, The Meanwhilers.  JM Allevato's written two new songs, of which we recorded a demo of the first and're still figurin' out parts for the second--I'm playin' keyboards on both, piano in the former, organ in the latter.  A couple of weeks ago, we layed down the basic tracks.  I came up with a catchy riff--I'm always amazed at how fast and outta nowhere those come to me.  Zaggs played a variety of percussion--an Afro drum beat, Latin bongos, and a variety of shakers'n'things.

Ideally, I'd've played on a real piano--JM's neighbour's got one.  But she wasn't home, so I tickled the sampled ivories on his synth.  Well, this's all just a demo just to get an idea of the arrangement.  And so I improvised a bunch of fills between his vocal lines, as well as did a solo durin' the fadeout.  Also, I came up with a celeste part durin' what JM's callin' the "pre-chorus".  Again, the first thing that came to my fingers was what got recorded--where it came from is beyond me.  But it fit, and that's all that matters to me.

Anyways, tonight I sang some ideas that I've been playin' 'round with--simple lyrics (although the rhyme scheme is somethin' I'ven't tried before--entire verses correspond with each other).  The melody is spacious, which allows for JM and Zaggs to do some fancy doodlin' between my vocals--Zaggs put in a neat shuffle, which is perfect for the song.  And what I thought of as a possible throwaway suddenly came alive--they totally unlocked the vibe, which is why I'm gonna give 'em co-composer credits.

I've been dreamin' of her
Ever since the day
I first fell asleep
In her bed

I've been meanin' to concur
Convince'n'convey
That at worst I could keep
From losin' my head

                      -The Meanwhilers

(3.3.10)

In the midst of a menial task at work, I was able to watch two documentaries online.  Oh, some background for this entry--I bought a small charcoal grill last week, in which I cooked some Indonesian chicken sate.  And in my quest to plan ahead, I thought 'bout makin' hamburgers next.  So it's no surprise that I viewed
Burger Town and Super Size Me.

The former was short'n'fun, whilst the later was the opposite.  Of course, the superficial aspect of my personality enjoyed the cute carhops servin' nostalgia in the feature 'bout the history of Southern California burger culture and wanted to strangle the tree huggin' girlfriend of the main character of the New York based anti-McDonalds rant.

I mean, you couldn't get two more polarized views on the subject--one's so sentimental that it portrays the closure of one of the original McDonalds as sacreligious, the other wishes death upon the clown's empire.  But honestly,
Burger Town inspired to try my hand at the iconic American food, and Super Size Me just made my eyes perpetually roll.

Well, here's why I couldn't stand the negative film, despite the medical facts that prove the harmful effects of fast food--the protagonist's attitude was just too dramatic.  Like, I couldn't trust him when he revolved 'round in pain from eatin' too many burgers'n'fries.  Good grief, you don't need to ham it up for the camera just cause you can't evolve.

Not that I condone McDonalds--nah, I'm not a McFan.  But there are good burgers out there, especially in Southern California, like the ones mentioned in
Burger Town, which gave a positive, if not overly glossed, angle of the ground beef patty on a bun.  In a way, I'm lucky to be located in the center of some of the best burgers in the world.

Fervent readers ought to know what my favourite burger is--Tommy's chili cheese.  I found a clone recipe that I wanna try, as well as homemade buns.  It doesn't look too complicated, not to mention, I'm lookin' forward to eatin' 'em for dinner for several days in order to get rid of the batch of chili.  And I wouldn't mind dyin' from 'em.        

(3.4.10)

I read an article comparin' The White Album with
Ulysses, specifically how both mocked genres in their respective artforms--"Yer Blues" is a parody of the British based blues craze of the late '60s, "Ithaca" is written in a pseudo scientific style, etc.  I can't say I can disagree.  But what I did find mildly amusin' is the paragraph that tries to establish The White Album as bein' parallel to a novel.

"Did I do somethin' wrong?" my new VA defended.  Long story short, my old VA graduated so my string quartet needed to find a replacement.  VL1 suggested someone, VL2 and VC agreed, and so I went 'bout recruitin' her.  It just so happened that she was in the library when I did--call it fate, but a circulation student outta the blue announced VA's presence and I simply followed thru.

Followin' that logic, I guess
Sgt. Pepper is like a variety show and Abbey Rd. resembles a symphony, whilst all their other albums're, duh, pop albums.  But yeah, The White Album does've a sprawl that goes beyond those shorter forms.  Akin to a book?  I suppose, if epic length is a factor.  I mean, it's fun to play these little academic games, but in the end, it is what it is--an album.

"Oh, I thought I was in trouble," she relieved after I gave her the details of my planned Beatles concert plus all the kind words of recommendation from the other three musicians.  But supposedly, my position at the library preceded me as she was afraid that she might've an overdue book.  It was funnier than it sounds.  Anyways, the best part is she agreed to join us.  
     
(3.5.10)

Sadly, it seems I don't react to other people's milestones and/or tragedies at the moment upon hearin' the news--like someone's retirement, divorce, pregnancy or death.  I mean, maybe it's my detachment from life that keeps my emotions in check, or perhaps it's the artist in me that compartmentalizes feelin's to be later accessed for some project.  However, more often than not, it's the little insignificant unforeseen things that bring on the tears.

Ever since I was a kid, I memorized my dad's office telephone number--I've got fond memories of callin' it and askin' his secretary to talk to him.  And I can still see the digits printed on his business card.  He announced his retirement 'bout a month ago--we've got a party planned for him next weekend.  I didn't give it much thought, even though I should've--without his lucrative internal medicine job, I wouldn't've been so spoiled.

One of the most popular requests I get is doin' weddin' portraits outta LEGO--be it based on engagement photos, anniversaries, or simply memories.  I've stared at couples for the usual month it takes me to complete a mosaic.  And I like to think that I'm symbolically gluin' together their relationship--at the expense, of course, of my brain cells from the toxic fumes.  But I've always believed that it's all worth it--I'm celebratin' their love.

When my brother announced that he and his wife were expectin' a child, I was on the surface happy--hey, I was gonna be an uncle, and more importantly, the burden of bearin' offspring in my family was relieved.  And I'm bein' completely honest in sharin' their joy, but really some of those sonograms're just plain abstract--I can't tell what's up or down in those fuzzy images.  Is that a head?  So emotionally, you can't blame me for bein' neutral.

It's been almost a year since my aunt died.  I've paid my respects and've glossed over a lifetime of memories.  But it never hit me like it did her daughter, who kept it to herself for a long time--she didn't tell her friends.  And I could tell she experienced it way more profoundly than I could ever imagine--they had a complicated relationship, nevertheless, she suddenly placed prominent importance to her by placin' a photo of her mother on her dresser.    

It hit me that my dad retired when I scrolled past his work number on my cellphone.

My sister's impendin' divorce became all the more apparent when she asked me if I wanted their LEGO portrait back.

And there's one sonogram of my brother's kid that's so obviously humanly formed.

I've never seen any of Michael Moore's movies--he seems too soapbox hoggin'.  And I can't completely say I agree or disagree with his point of view, even if they might be congruent.  But for whatever crazy reason my aunt thought he reminded me of him--a scruffy American.  And when I saw a review of one of his "documentaries" in an old issue of Rolling Stone, I couldn't help but make the stretch of a connection and lose it.

(3.8.10)

"A comprehensive look at the Beatles sprawling 1968 self-titled double album masterpiece"


(3.9.10)

I apologize for the consecutive entry focused upon The White Album.  (The White Album, The White Album, The White Album, alright already with The White Album).  But as my performance of it with my string quartet on Saturday, May 8th, 2010, is approachin', you can't blame me for rampin' up my obsession.  And honestly, after the concert's over, I'm pretty sure that I'll shut up 'bout the subject forever.

As you know, the original pressin' of the "legendary" (Amazon.com's adjective) double album included individually stamped numbers LP (based on what I've read).  Like the first copy was 0000001, the second 0000002, etc.  And the official mythology (per the
Anthology) is that The Beatles themselves claimed the first four.  Those numbers're collectors items for sure.  0000005 sold for about $30,000 in a 2008 auction.

There was some quote of a quote from McCartney that I found online--essentially, it claimed that one of his favourite memories is hearin' Lennon sing "Goodnight" as he taught it to Ringo.  And for some reason, the aural image put a smile on my face.  Cause that'd surely be a sound to hear.  Especially since there're no known bootlegs of the composer singin' his own song.  Although if he ever sang it to Julian, and you heard that...

Hilariously, I'd've liked to've gotten the week before my concert date--cause that've been my birthday, and side three would've coincided, not to mention it's VC's boyfriend's birthday, too.  But alas, the girls've got some Philharmonia duties to attend.  Hey, in a stretch of the imagination the names of the four gals in my group correspond somewhat with the Fab Four.  Well, obviously, VA's the feminine form of McCartney's middle name.

Remember that his first name was James.  VL2's name is based on John, via Johann, Giovanni and Ivan.  VL1's name is spelled with a "J" (although I think she told me a "S" is more correct), nevertheless, I sound it out as a "G" a la George.  And VC's name begins with a "R" not unlike Ringo.  OK, I'm bein' overly reachin' for links, but hey, sometimes I need to see some pattern in the chaos to at least pretend to understand

the White Album.  Come on, it's schizophrenic, to put it mildy.  I need to get into all four of the Liverpool lads' heads--which I've transplanted into my string quartet.  They've got the number four on their side.  And speakin' of numbers, there're two instances when someone audilbly counts to eight--"Don't Pass Me By" and "Birthday".  To which "Revolution 9" speaks of the numeral that follows those evenly spaced breaks.

Well, if no one's lyin', Ringo's got the number one White Album, which Lennon originally claimed, but outta the mulitcharacteristically goodness of his hearrt, gave it to the drummer of The Beatles.  And he's got that kept in the UK, whilst his 0000004 is in America.  So presumably 0000002 and 0000003're in Paul'n'George's estates' possessions.  Please show me another album that's got half as much nonsense in'n'outside of its sleeves.

(3.10.10)

I taught my assistant a new term today: "call girl".

One of the problems at the music library is space--we're runnin' outta of it everywhere, in the stacks where we keep the scores and books, and in the cabinets where we store the CDs.  One solution that we've instituted is transferin' the compact discs from their bulky jewel cases to thinner plastic sleeves.

It's a menial task, but due to its non-involvement with variously open windows of catalogin'n'acquisition clients and the Online Computer Library Center, I'm able to watch episodes of television shows online.  Yeah, I don't've digital TV at home, but that doesn't mean I don't watch it.  Lately, I've been tunin' into
The Universe.

The documentary series that debuted in 2007 on the History Channel is entertainin' (I don't've cable).  I suspect the openin' sequence of
The Big Bang Theory (which I finished watchin' the first two seasons of via a DVD rental service) segued me into a nerdy interest in space'n'the planets'n'whatever.  I mean, Penny is hot...

When my assistant auditioned at my former assistant's current graduate school of music, the latter posted a status on an online social network.  To which, my assistant former to my former assistant interrupted with an "Uh?"  For a brief moment I joked with the idea of creatin' a group called "Henry's Current'n'Former Assistants".

Anyways, so far I've liked learnin' 'bout the Impact Theory of the origin of the moon, the retrograde spin of Venus, the Red Spot of Jupiter and his four lovers, the lightnin' storms on Venus, the dream some bird'd of the Olympus Mons, solar flares, microscopic life on Mars based on meteorite evidence, and Mecury's deadness.

Or I'll be assembly linin' the task with my assistant--I'll break down the CD cases and magnetically strip sensitize 'em whilst she prints out'n'sticks on the call numbers.  We talk a lot 'bout non-serious subjects--my favourite topics.  And I mentioned a Japanese movie 'bout "schools girls by day, call girls by night".

"What's a call girl?" she wondered.

(3.11.10)

McCartney's playin' the Hollywood Bowl at the end of this month.  I wasn't too tempted to buy a ticket cause with the exception of Dylan, who liberally reinvents his songs nightly, I prefer not to go to concerts of performers that I've seen before, especially if I was greatly entertained, regardless of their conservative adherence to their recordin's.  Although I did blink'n'think of the coincidentally close crossin' of his tour's path'n'my show, but then I remembered that dismissin' Beatles concurrences is like ignorin' every breath--they're just too many to behold.

Anyways, I caught The Paul McCartney World Tour --when he was promotin'
Flowers In the Dirt at the Great Western Forum in Los Angeles.  It was cool to see my second Beatle--I saw Ringo at the Jones Beach Theater in New York with his first All-Starr Band earlier that year.  I never heard Harrison or Lennon live.  And other than catch whatever residual traces of their rooftop presence from street level at 3 Savile Row in London nearly three decades after the fact, I can't say without soundin' like a freak that I was within actual earshot of all four of 'em together.

Of course I've listened to some of the live albums, both solo and that legendary last group effort.  And I gotta say, my opinions've shifted over time.  I mean,
Tripping the Live Fantastic will always be entwined with where I sat and my view of McCartney thereof--emotions're difficult to untangle.  But after recently givin' it a spin, I cringed at the sampled horns'n'strings.  Maybe it's cause technology's gotten better since or my exposure to real instruments has spoiled me, but dude, if I can get classical musicians to join me on stage, I'm sure you can, too.

Live in New York still gives my spine a tingle--Lennon's voice rocks and the authentic saxophone doesn't hurt.  Live in Japan is pure Harrison, which isn't necessarily a good thing--he never sings without soundin' guarded'n'uncomfortable in a non-intimate settin', albeit his guitar playin' (and/or Clapton's) makes up for it.  And Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band...well, I'ven't heard it recently.  If I remember correctly, it didn't include "Yellow Submarine", which was my fondest memory of that concert.  Bein' in the audience just ain't the same.

(3.12.10)

I just watched
It Might Get Loud--the documentary 'bout Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White.  It's a solid three star movie--it would've been four if the jam session was better.  And I admit, barely into it, I wanted the three guitarists to just shut up'n'play.  But I guess since it ended up bein' a flabby blues exercise, I understand why my balls were left in the same state.

For background, amongst the three, U2's guitarist is my favourite, followed by Led Zep's, and then The White Stripes.  Ideally, I'd've liked to've featured Chuck Berry, Prince, and Joey Santiago, but those guys'ren't as high profile.  And if they could resurrect the dead, my dream lineup would be Robert Johnson, Chet Atkins, and George Harrison.  Man, imagine that jam...

I'm mean, I admire lot of what Page's done--some fine riff writin'.  And I thought White rocked live, moreso than on the recordin's I've got.  But The Edge speaks more directly to me.  Maybe it's cause I'm of the generation that came about whilst his band peaked--Page'n'White came before'n'after my time, resepectively.  Buddy Holly, Paul McCartney, and Kurt Cobain...

But it was nice to get the background on their lives--The Raconteurs' Detroit roots, The Passengers' Irish turmoil, and The Yardbirds' payin' his session musician dues.  They almost contradict each other, but somehow you feel sorry for each of 'em and it all makes sense--as my lawyer put it, Jack White likes to make life difficult, The Edge loves his effects, and Jimmy Page is talented, period.

However, this is how I saw it.  It's all on their heads.  Jack White wore a cool hat--he's all 'bout style as the ol' blues're his fashion statement.  The Edge wore his customary beanie--he's always hidin' his baldness, not unlike his reliance on effects to mask his chops.  And Jimmy Page was white haired--like he was flauntin' his age, reputation, and legend.

And here's why the jam session fell flat--they weren't bein' themselves.  Sure they've played awesome solos individually with their own bands, as the archival footage proves.  But together they didn't fit--Gillis seemed to be holdin' back, Evans wasn't plugged into his massive effects rack, and Page intimidated the pack even whilst he sounded like a hack.

(3.15.10)

There's a very pictureseque, in the Beatlesque sense of the word, spot on campus that I've contemplated usin' for my concert's promo shot--cause I need to submit a photo for the promotional committee to graphically design into a poster to post upon walls in university buildin's.  It's the crosswalk between Schoenberg Music Buildin' and the Faculty Center--if you put the four girls of my quartet on that street, with VA barefoot, it'd be a cool shot.  Unfortunately, it's the wrong album.

At my dad's retirement party, several attendees asked me what I'd planned for my next concert, date and subject wise--"May 8th and The Beatles" I replied.  They seemed excited so I didn't wanna confuse 'em with the not false advertisin' that
The Beatles is also the title of their self-titled double LP.  Cause I'm afraid if they knew the truth, they'd think twice--"Mother Nature's Son" ain't as familiar as "Yesterday".  Liberal immigrant grandparents'ren't hip to the Manson connections, the self reflexivitiy, the spiritual epiphanies, and the musical jokes.

So I'm thinkin' I gotta pump up the string quartet.  Cause no one'll be offended by four chicks that're serious 'bout studin' classical music--one's a masters student auditionin' for doctoral programs, and the other three're undergraduates seekin' further education.  Nevermind that "Piggies" digs at their genre.  But all that's irrelevant in the face of ideally I wanna get their four faces in portraits a la The White Album--separate, colour, and shaded similarily (VL1's shadow on the right, VL2, the left, VA the left, and VC none).

I just put the director's cut of
Helter Skelter on the top of my queue.  It'll bump the first season of 30 Rock to the second spot.  But I feel that the dramatization of a violent exegesis of The White Album takes precedence over a television comedy but not as darkly associated with my concert's main idea.  The hardest thing'll be convincin' VL1 to wear glasses.  And in a way, I believe that it'll be a million times easier than selectin' a shot of all four ladies--someone's always insecure whilst the others 'ren't.  And it's the right album.

For fun, I played
Rubber Soul at work.  Ask me a five years ago and I'd've said it was my favourite album.  But now it sounds light years behind The White Album.  I mean, I know I've gotta stay focused, but it's strange how what's perfectly a perfect collection of songs suddenly gets judged by the judgemental compartments of my brain to be deemed unexcitin'.  "Julia" is less famous than "Michelle".  Although, I guess the point I'm tryin' to make with my concert is: "Julia" is just as cool as "Michelle".

(3.16.10)

Errata: In yesterday's entry, paragraph 2, last sentence, "Liberal" should be "Conservative".  Sorry for the confusion.

(3.17.10)

2:42

Two four two

To for to        

Fo tor fo

Foe tour foe

Forty four

44

(3.18.10)

There were two things guests said to me at my father's retirement party, beyond the usual "Are you still makin' things outta LEGO?" that I'd never heard before.

This year marks the tenth anniversary of LUGOLA (LEGO User Group Of Los Angeles), which is an active club that meets several times annually, and I helped create.

I held the first meetin' at my apartment.  There's a disposable camera (before my first digital point'n'shoot) photograph of the other two intial members next to the base of my stegosaurus.

I've been specifically contacted by two members'n've read the postin's on the emailin' list wonderin' 'bout reunitin' with my fellow LEGO freaks.  I'm considerin' it...

"Hey Henry," my dad's best friend commented, "you know, from a distance, it's really strange...I don't know how to explain it, but...I mistook you for Jesus..."

I made a facial expression of confusion.  Cause a moment early, after huggin' a old family friend, she'd felt a shock that made her say, "Whoa, I feel like I just hugged Jesus..."

This year marks the twentieth anniversary of my graduation from high school.  I didn't attend my ten year reunion, and I recently received an invitation to this year's.

Actually, I might've, but because of Facebook, I'm not so curious as to my pre-college friends' doin's.  I mean, I know what they all seem to want to convey'n'that's probably that.

Besides, I'm such a loser...I'm not married, don't've any kids, and work at a library.  There ain't nothin' more pathetic.  I doubt I could look anyone in the eye without feelin' sorry for 'em.

"Hey Henry," my dad's best friend's sister in-law confided, "you know, I'll always believe that if
American Idol were 'round when you were qualified to enter, you'd win..."

All I could reply with was "?"

(3.19.10)
"I'm So Tired" performed by some chick on acoustic guitar backed by a string trio

(3.22.10)

Thursday night.  I'm stuck in traffic on the 405 headin' home from work.  My plan for dinner is to cook some Japanese curry.  It'll take at least an hour.  I could just pick some up from my neighbourhood's fast food place.  But I'd rather prolong my hunger by takin' the time to prepare my own meal.

Not that I don't've other things to do.  Last night I watched
Helter Skelter and made some minor changes to my string quartet's White Album score.  I mean, I could've dedicated 60 minutes to my latest weddin' portrait.  Or done some song mixin' for a friend.  In other words, I really can't afford any kitchen time.

Luckily I saw the 2004 version, which was 'bout two and a quarter hours long--the 1976 version is three.  I heard that the older one is better, but I got a kick outta seein' Daniel Faraday portray Charles Manson.  I thought 'bout rentin' both, but honestly, I've'd enough of this sensationalized subject for my purposes.

However, there was one point that could've changed the entire tone of the movie--the openin' titles were accompanied with a cover version "Helter Skelter".  Nothin' fancy, straightforward mimicry.  But had the producers gotten the expensive rights to the original, the authenticity of the story would've been sealed.

Imagine The Beatles, exponents of love'n'peace, connected, however chimerical, with a murderous cult.  Somehow, no matter how much harder you rock the song, even if you yell louder and scarier, you'll never reach the converse distance that the moptops traversed.  Plus it's McCartney on lead vocals--he's got a killer voice.

Speakin' of the White Album, I realized that I'd originally planned to perform "Back in the U.S.S.R." on acoustic guitar with my string quartet behind me.  But I believe that the segue into "Dear Prudence" is crucial, so opted to detune my instrument for that song and've it unplayed durin' the openin' track.

But upon reviewin' the score, I noticed that no one was takin' over the Chuck Berry 6ths on the backbeat, which I used to play.  So I reassigned 'em to whoever was in proximity--the violins durin' the verses, the viola durin' the bridge.  It's only two notes per bar, but they're the difference that brings the music to life.

(3.23.10)

Thank goodness for the Whittier Public Library--not the closest library to the house where I grew up in.  And no disrespect to the one in Hacienda Heights, because I'm sure their records'll show that I've checked out plenty of books from that location, but let the record show that durin' the later years of my residency in that neighbourhood, I took more advantage of Whittier's CDs and video rentals.  I mean, after I got my driver's license, I know one of my primary desitnations was the library over the hill next door.

Cause the Whittier Public Library'd the best selection of audio and visual materials to check out.  Nevermind that you couldn't get free music anywhere in the pre-internet days of the late '80s.  And the local video stores, Music Plus and The Wherehouse, didn't've a complete selection of Beatles titles--I'd found
A Hard Days Night, Help, Magical Mystery Tour, and Yellow Submarine, but Let It Be was elusive.  That is 'til I found it at the Whittier Public Library.  Immediately I borrowed it.  And made an illegal copy.

Let It Be is actually my favourite Beatles movie.  For one, it's got the best music--an Academy Award winnin' soundtrack.  And secondly, it's the most "real" of their films--the rest're scripted instances of their personalities, whilst this one's them bein' themselves.  I'm still waitin' for its official release on DVD.  Of course, I understand each of the survivin' Beatles' reluctance to bless it, cause it's not exactly a flatterin' portrait of the Fab Four durin' their closin' moments.  George vs. Paul.  Paul vs. John.  Yoko...

I remember the first time I saw the film--it was at Beatlefest '88.  (Don't worry, I only attended two of the annual conventions--I'm not a freak).  And the hippies in the audience would boo and hiss whenever the cops came on screen, as well as for Yoko.  I thought it was funny.  Hmm, now that I think 'bout it, I should've picked up a copy of the feature then'n'there--I'm sure one of the vendors had it, if not a bootleg of deleted scenes.  Oh well.  Which doesn't diminish the Whittier Public Library--I abused it regardless.

Honestly, I'ven't been there in 20 years or so.  I hope it's still goin' strong.  But I gotta admit that its validity in the past certainly didn't discourage me from seekin' a job in the field of music librarianship.  I should pay a visit next time I'm in town.  But I did recently watch my copy of
Let It Be.  What a crazy motion picture.  I could watch 'em rehearse forever.  And this time, as I watched 'em perform their final rooftop concert, in the back of my mind I thought, they've got The White Album behind 'em.

(3.24.10)

My offramp is situated so that if a cop decides to pull someone over, their vehicles'll block traffic if they decided to park at the base of the exit--even though if they could conduct their business just a few feet forward, they'd be in a unobstructive driveway.  Sometimes on the times this happens I'm certain that the police're bein' assholes just because they can be.

I read somewhere that a good string quartet listens to its violist.  And that when Mozart, Beethoven (before he went deaf), and Schubert played their own quartets, they sat in on viola--somethin' 'bout that instrument's range allured composers.  If that's true, I'm glad that I had the violist I did for my Dylan concert, and am grateful for the one I've got for the Beatles.

Previously, my violist was shy.  Nevermind that she wasn't bad lookin', but I'd assigned her some prominent lines in the Dylan tunes I did.  And I'll always remember how she intuitively played--cause like Bach, I don't notate too many articulations.  Yet somehow she always interpreted my notes perfectly.  Uncannily so.  Unfortunately, she graduated and isn't available for a reunion.

I've started to watch
30 Rock.  I've always thought that Tina Fey was cool, I just felt embarrassed to admit it given that everyone else thought so, too.  I think she's great in this series.  As is Tracy Jordan.  And Jack Donaghy.   So far Rachel Dratch, a darn fine dame, has been a multiple character delight.  Solid three star ratin'.  But what gives it its fourth is the hot assistant, Cerie.

Today VL2 formally asked me to take her senior recital photos.  It was enough to make me forget, even if just temporarily, that there's bullshit in the universe.  Selfless compassion overtook selfish anger.  Anyways, I told my assistant, whom I'd photographed yesterday for her senior recial poster, that VL2 hired me for her promotional campaign.  "She's got a lot of charisma," she admired.

I laid out my photoshoot plan to VA for our White Album concert.  "Can I wear a '60s outfit?" she suggested.  "If you want," I didn't disagree.  I relayed the story to my assistant.  "That sounds like VA," she replied.  My new violist is fun--perfect for The Beatles.  "I'm glad that at UCLA I got a chance to play The Beatles," she smiled.  If there's any goal I'd 'bout my show, that's it.

Tonight, on my commute home, I saw a highway patrol car cut off someone in the carpool lane.  Not at the designated "free to pass" area, but at the double line.  It wasn't cool--the police obviously wanted to prove their power over the average citizen as they interrupted the flow.  I'm findin' it to be a rarity 'moungst the populace.  Just because you deserve to be inconsiderate doesn't me you should be.

(3.25.10)

I began readin'
The Gunslinger (231 pages) last July on an airplane headin' for Japan to pay respects to my aunt who'd went to the clearin' at the end of the path.  When the Special Collections branch of the UCLA Music Library was bein' renovated and they needed someone to supervise the facilities crew as they changed the floors, cleaned the shelves, and whatnot, I distinctly remember gettin' thru the majority of The Drawing of the Three (463 pages)--all those beach episodes whilst stuck in the basement.  Likewise for The Waste Lands (590 pages)--it was so easy to read'n'supervise down there.  Wizards and Glass (718 pages), which is my favourite of the series, was all soaked in on my futon couch.  When I visited my brother in Corning last November, I took Wolves of the Calla (931 pages) with me.  Song of Susanna (544 pages) was another futon couch book.  And The Dark Tower (1050 pages) was also such, but I finished it somewhere else.

I was gettin' my car tuned up on a Saturday mornin'.  As I've learned from the past, you gotta show up early or they'll turn you away from bein' too booked.  Nevermind that yesterday I had a 9AM meetin', so I was in that zombie zone that society hammers upon its citizens--not really asleep or awake.  I brought along the last book in Stephen King's epic series to entertain me--as well, you get used to sittin' in the lounge waitin' for hours for your car to get serviced.  But before I started to read the endin', I dozed off and dreamed.  I was in a supermarket.  I'm not against the idea of havin' a soulmate--there's probably someone that matches every aspect of me, however unlikely.  But there she was, in the meat section.  Asian--hmm, who would've guessed?  And she wanted to trade cellphone numbers.  So I pulled mine out and noticed that I had four text messages from the individual members of my string quartet.  I didn't check 'em as I entered her last name.

Palmer--"Yeah," she confessed, "I know it's not Asian...I was adopted."  And before she recited her digits, she put her head on my shoulder.  I thought it was the most affectionate gesture I'd ever experienced.  And then she slid onto the floor, dead.  I woke up.  The first thought in my mind was "What did my string quartet text me?"  So I opened my book and read the last 90 pages.  Without givin' away too much, the series is 'bout a gunslinger and his quest to reach the Dark Tower, a mystical centerpiece of a multi-realities universe.  After 3893 pages of journeyin', nay obsessin' over this "Dark Tower", it was on a comfy chair whilst waitin' for my car's oil to be changed, etc. that the story concluded at its destination--I remember hearin' Goldsmith's score to
Total Recall playin' on the television across the room.  And the sunlight--it filled the space via the western windows.  I was like the gunslinger seein' the Dark Tower with my own eyes for the first time.

I won't spoil the endin', but it's what I expected.  The unfortunate thing 'bout readin' in public is I self consciously held back my tears--when I got home I gave the tale its due cry.  But one of the points it made was the slight differences in circular fate--the
Back to the Future butterfly effect.  Time and things're subtly, yet profoundly altered.  "One of my front lights is dead," I remarked to the car serviceman.  When it was all said'n'done, he clarified "Your front light wasn't broken...it just was disconnected, so we won't charge you for a new one."  "Cool," I said in a daze after my mind was blown from the book I'd finished.  "What're you readin'?" he asked.  She & Him're slated to release their next album, Volume Two, next Tuesday.  And although I've heard it streamin' online, I was lookin' forward to hearin' the tunes in CD quality.  I got home and as if time and things'd shifted, I received the pre-ordered album in my mailbox four days early.

(3.26.10)

Should I take spring break off?  Yeah, why not.  See you next week...

(3.29.10)

PROJECT: Dream transcriptions
STATUS: ongoin'
NOTES: So I'm back in college studyin' microscopic candy sculpturin'--super tiny sugar coated carvin's of famous landmarks and musical instruments, like the Eiffel Tower and violas.  I walk down the halls of the music department, which looks suspiciously like my junior high school, and peer into a room--in black'n'white, I see a professor snorin' on a chair whilst a five year old kid with thick glasses plays some Bach, not badly, in fact, quite accomplished for someone of his age and eyesight.  I've got two roommates--one's an undergrad dude learnin' 'bout Nazi spacecrafts and the other's a grad dudette writin' her thesis on the University of California's hush hushed human clonin' experiments.  I enter our apartment, which is situated at the top of a hill--seemin'ly our campus' livin' quarters resemble Cornell's, all uphill and spaced liberally, neighbourwise.  After greetin' my roommates, whom I really don't bother with other than they're there to help me pay the rent, I go upstairs to my room to take a nap.  I wake up with blood on my pillow.  My red hands scramble to locate the source.  It's my right ear.  I step into the bathroom, turn on the light and wash my hands.  In the mirror I see my bloody ear.  And a nauseous feelin' gurgles in my head.  I aim my ear to towards the toilet as blood vomits out of it.

PROJECT: Tamales
STATUS: postponed
NOTES: 'Bout a month ago I purchased a steamer specifically to make tamales.  But it's a two day recipe, and I'ven't been able to find the weekend time.  Last week, I was gettin' my car serviced.  This week's my family's celebratin' my sister's birthday.  Nevertheless, the first openin' in my schedule I get'll be devoted to this Mexican grub.

PROJECT: Lego portrait #19
STATUS: 2/3 done
NOTES: Likewise with the tamales, I'ven't been able to squeeze consistent time to work on this project.  Unlikewise, I've been inconsistently squeezin' tiny bursts of productivity--a few lines here, a couple there.  But as there ain't any deadline, I've bein' wallowin' in the ampleness of time.

PROJECT: White Album
STATUS: still a go for May 8, 2010
NOTES: One weekend that cockblocked my tamale makin' was spent editin' the parts before I could print 'em for my string quartet.  My notation software's a bit clunky in that ideally I should be able to design the score and simply hit "extract parts" to do such--perfect derivations of the divided notes.  However, it seems more often than not I gotta go back and clean up uneven repeat boxes, stray 3's for triplets, and make size adjustments to better fit songs onto single pages--that last edit isn't necessarily the program's fault.  Cause I want my musicians to make as few page turns within tunes as possible and I'm not adverse to not keepin' things uniform.  Anyways, 30 songs (minus the two solo numbers, plus an intro) ain't a small number of pages to edit, multiplied by four (two violins, viola, and 'cello).  But after 'bout eight hours, two slices of pizza, and three bottles of beer, I completed the extraction--actually, it was helpful as I found some mistakes in the score that needed to be corrected.  The followin' day, I took it all to the print'n'copy store to get everythin' coil bound.  I even made a cover--a blank white page with a crooked "The BEATLES" in light grey on the lower right hand corner.  The first one I handed it to was John--we'd finished a photo session.  She needed some shots of her wearin' a black dress playin' her loaned Strad.  We did some in Schoenberg Hall under the stage lights.  A dog named Buddha interrupted--she petted him affectionately.  Before that I took her to the Molecular Sciences buildin'--I needed a bluish background for her solo mug shot.  "He looks cynical and has taken too many drugs," she deciphered in her French accent after I showed her the White Album portrait from my mono CD that I happened to've in my backpack which I wanted to recreate.  "You're replacin' them with us," she observed.  I'm gonna shoot Paul on Monday.

PROJECT: Dream transcriptions
STATUS: continuous
NOTES: The survin' Beatles decided to record a sequel to The White Album, obviously and sorta cleverly titled The Beatles 2.  As well, it's graphically designed in the same blank cover, but with the added numeral next to the embossed letterin'.  And like on the
Anthology, Paul'n'Ringo lifted John'n'George's voices from old demos.  Unsurprisingly, it's a critical and commercial flop--essentially, the tracks're "Back In the USSR Again", "Dear Prudence Once More", "Another Glass Onion", "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da, Ob-La Du", etc.  Needless to say I get suckered into buyin' it and despite what everyone else says, I think it's not bad.  I've got it spinnin' in my car now.

(4.5.10)

I'm inclined to suggest that the credit "Production by George Martin" on The White Album is a misnomer.

Like the friendly "Lennon/McCartney" agreement that included tunes not necessarily composed by both--most notably on The White Album whereby a song like "Julia" has been historically noted to be soley written by John, yet shares songwritin' royalties with Paul.  I get the same sense of 'em honourin' a generous custom rather than subdividin' the truth of Martin's producer role.

And no disrespect to Martin, who's actually my favourite fifth Beatle--without his classical trainin', they wouldn't've'd such crossover appeal.  Not to mention, his arrangements on The White Album're some of his best--"Good Night" is the ultimate example, albeit overdone for parody's sake, of his contributions.  So "Orchestrations by George Martin" is without a doubt a credit that's due.

However, accordin' to the studio notes, Martin took a "spontaneous holiday" durin' the not so fun White Album sessions.  I read that when The Beatles recorded their first album, they had to enter thru the tradesman's door.  And they finished that LP in a single day at one of the three studios at Abbey Road.  Six years later, they took over the entire buildin'--John'n'Yoko in one, Paul'n'Ringo in another, and George in the third studio.

With Martin away, Chris Thomas took over production duties.  He earned his "Additional production" credit on such songs as "Piggies", "Helter Skelter", and "Happiness Is a Warm Gun".  But it's tellin' that of all their albums, except
Let It Be of course, Martin's influential guidance is present.  On The White Album his responsibilities seem to've lost focus and attention.  Not that I'm sayin' Thomas should get dual billin'.

The key evidence is in Martin's constant admission that The White Album shouldn't've been a double LP--he couldn't convice The Beatles to narrow down the 30 self indulgent songs in half.  How could Martin oversee three studios, go on break, not've final say, and be called the only producer?  Thus, even though it'sn't official, I like to think of The White Album as bein' the only instance where the credit should more accurately read:

"Production by George Martin and The Beatles"

(4.6.10)

Mad Day Out

(4.7.10)

My sister and I arrived early--we made reservations for three at La Grande Orange, a trendy restaurant in Santa Monica, or as the cool locals call it "LGO".  We waited in the bakery amidst the freshly baked ginger snaps, which we swore we'd take home with us after dinner.  You arrived 'bout two minutes late.  After hugs and findin' a seat outdoors, you gave me your latest CD--
Henry Lim Performs Dylan.

We later had drinks at The Yard, a hip bar three blocks away--my sister'n'I ordered the berry cocktail, me with less ice per the French fashion.  You ordered a Jack'n'Coke.  My sister yapped with her friend who is a castin' director.  Meanwhile, I tell you 'bout India--the "other side of the matrix", as my husband calls it, where the sounds of the mornin're a musical delight, with Muslim singin', Hindu chants, and Christian bells.

Durin' dinner we all bragged--you 'bout your string quartet, my sister 'bout her teachin' job where she educates the children of celebrities such as Kenny G, Pamela Anderson, and Sean Penn, and me 'bout delayin' my unemployment.  I live in Paris (where your first violinist is from).  The last time we met was 'bout six years ago in Boston.  And four years before that, in Miami.  "Life is short," I repeat.

You ordered the chicken tacos for dinner.  I ordered the veggie burger.  My sister the veggie tacos.  You drank a beer.  I a red sangria.  My sister a white one.  We all joked 'bout your former roommate, who was my ex-boyfriend, and how his current girlfriend won't let him hang out with me.  In another life, he used to think I was crazy.  Now, as fate seems to always've it, the tables've turned.  'Tis sad, but true.

"Well," I explained, "when I was a child, whenever we went campin', the tradition was to sing songs--I've got many cherished memories of those joyous experiences.  However, in India, you're not supposed to sing campfire songs--only drunks indulge in such activies, let alone women who drink're considered to be loose.  My husband'd to do some serious damage control after I suggested a song one night."

Customs're different 'round the world, durin' different eras, between genders, amongst families, across generations, etc.  You reply with how glad you're to see us, after all these years, and how your string quartet is comprised mostly of girls the same age as our youngest sisters.  "I remember 'em runnin' 'round my apartment," you laughed.  We walked back to the underground parkin' lot.  And said goodbye for now.

(4.8.10)

Someone said I look like a caveman.

"I'm Ringo'ren't I," Ringo confirmed as I nodded, "aahh, I knew it."  She sounded disappointed, like he's the last Beatle anyone wants to be.

Paul'n'I almost got locked in the botanical garden 'round 5PM.

Thru the main window of the music library, Ringo passed by, hand signalin' me if it was OK to take her photo now.  "Is it too dark?" she questioned as she entered thru the door.  "Not at all," I replied--my aperture was wide enough for the lack of light.

John Kelly's portraits for The White Album're becomin' my favourite images of the band.  They're moody, accordin' to my string quartet.  "He looks like he's been caught off guard," Paul interpreted of his photo.  (Not surprisin'ly, on the way to the botanical garden, a kid walked past us wearin' a shirt showcasin' these exact shots).  "So his got his head tilted," Ringo assumed the same stance.  I've shot three outta the four so far.  Tomorrow is George's turn.  Remember--his shadow is on the left side of his face, like Paul's.  John thinks she looks scary.

Thru one of its entrances, Paul'n'I descended into the botanical garden.  "Hold my violin," she requested as we took some steep steps--she was wearin' heels.  We found some bamboo to pose in front of.  She liked the bloomin' white flowers in particular.

Ringo was the easiest so far to shoot--I got her in the first take.

"Thanks for lettin' me be Paul," Paul admitted, as if she hoped to be him all along.  I wouldn't think it a stretch to consider her the "cute Beatle". 

Someone said I look like a professor.

(4.9.10)

A coworker tried to make conversation with me 'bout my latest recital posters that I'd designed for my assistant--somethin' bout "capturin' mood" and "negative space, but not actually, cause the curtain's there".  I had to stop her with "Hey, I just got lucky, man, I don't've a clue what I'm doin'."  Which is the truth--sometimes, thinkin' bout that kinda shit just'll go 'round in useless egotistical circles.  She's a critic, I'm an artist--the twain shalln't ever meet.

I've yet to see my string quartet all together in the same room.  Yesteday I caught Ringo'n'George at the music library computer terminals.  And few days earlier, Paul'n'George were checkin' their emails at the same time.  Or the time when John'n'Ringo were both houndin' me at the circulation desk.  But to see even three of 'em together is a rare sight--however, today I completed my collection of my gender swapped photographed Fab Four string quartet.

It's tellin' that I'm not a stickler for precision in my recreation of Kelly's classic portraits.  I mean, I tried to approximate the same backgrounds--a bluish grey wall behind John, Ringo in front of a crossbeam, etc.  And I showed my subjects the inspirational originals.  But what really mattered to me, I could care less 'bout their hair, although I admire those that played along, was the placement of the shadows 'cross their faces, be it left, right, or none.

There's somethin' to be said 'bout the time I got all four of the Pixies' autographs.  It started with Santiago and Lovering--I got em' at a Martinis' gig on the
Bossanova CD.  Deal was next--she was drunk as hell as she signed twice, once in silver, the second time in black.  The last, Francis, or as he was callin' himself at the time, Frank, was the most fun--there was a guy before me who said Frank'd never sign my Pixies album.  He was wrong in so many ways.

Cause I believe that my string quartet doesn't've any resemblance to John, Paul, George'n' Ringo--they're chicks after all.  But I give 'em an A+ for effort as they tried to mimic their respective Beatle.  It's funny, but I got anxious to complete the series--there's somethin' 'bout the number four that begs for completion.  Well, even if the concert turns out to be a flop, at the very least I can say that I got some cool photos.  Now all I need to do is get their autographs...

(4.12.10)
(4.13.10)
(4.14.10)
(4.15.10)
(4.16.10)

Durin' the late 17th and early 18th century, a fellow in the small northern Italian city of Cremona named Antonio Stradivari made about a thousand instruments--guitars, harps, mandolins, violas, cellos, and his well known violins.  It's assumed, though never clearly proven, that he studied under Nicolo Amati, a legendary luthier who pioneered designs that've maintained modern suitability.  Regardless, Stradivari made significant alterations to the archin', thickness of wood, scroll form, and varnish.  And although it's yet been scientifically determined why a Stradivari violin (commonly Latinized as a Stradivarius or abbreviated as a Strad) produces its superb tone--some've theorized that it's in the dense wood, the growth of which was affected by cooler global temperatures durin' that time, commonly called "The Little Ice Age"--others've analyzed the borax, fluorides, chromium, and iron salt content of the varnish--it's commonly accepted that these instruments're valued in the millions of dollars.

In 1732, an 88 year old Stradivari made a violin that became known as the "Duke of Alcantara" after the Spanish nobleman, who was an assistant of King Don Carlos.  It's unknown who owned it between then and 1925, when the Frenchman Albert Caressa transferred it to Erich Lachmann, who in that same year handed it over to Dr. Steiner-Schweitzer in Zurich.  Lachmann later possessed it until the Wurlitzer company got a hold of it.  The next person to be in charge of it was the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's concertmaster, Ilya Schkonik, from 1929 to 1945.  And then it was Los Angeles resident Genevieve Vedder's, who donated it to the UCLA Music Department in the 1960s.  In 1967, David Margetts, a member of the official chancellor's string quartet, The Roth Quartet, lost it--some say he accidentally left it on the top of his car as he drove off, others say it was stolen from his car.  Either way, it was listed in the American Federation of Violin and Bow Makers' registry as "missin'".  Until 1994.

As the story goes, it was allegedly found on the freeway by Teresa Salvato's former husband's aunt, who'd given the "Duke of Alcantar" to him--Teresa received it via a divorce.  Rather than go to court, UCLA payed her $11,500 in 1995 for the violin, where it's been kept in a vault ever since.  The latest appraisal sets its worth at $2.2 million.  And every year, the school holds a competition for the students, the winner of which gets to play the instrument.  Last year, my second violinist performed Bartok's second rhapsody on it--she freaked out when she dropped it, even though it was in its case.  Anyways, next week, my first violinist is doin' Mendelsohn's D minor concerto with it.  Two weeks ago, 278 years after it was built and its crazy
Red Violin-esque journey, she handed it to me--a genuine world treasure and most likely the most valuable object I'll ever hold.  "It's not easy to play," she admitted, "but when you do, it makes the most beautiful sound."  I gave it back to her and my ears couldn't disagree.

(4.19.20)

Today I went to the 14th largest shoppin' mall in the United States--the Del Amo Fashion Center in nearby Torrance.  I needed a new pair of shoes.  You see, I wear 'em 'til they break, which is usually 'bout three or four years on average.  And I always get a black pair.  Anyways, two days ago, I noticed a hole on the side of the right one.  It was small enough to hide for a day, but come the weekend, it was time to suck it and go shoppin'.

It must've been three or four years since I last went to a mall specifically to buy somethin'--I've gone to movie theatres, eaten at food courts, and accompanied friends in these shoppin' centers, but never for my own purposes other than for a pair of shoes.  The parkin' lot was crowded.  I found a spot far from one of the dozens of entrances.  And sure enough, there was way too many fat'n'lethargic people for my taste blockin' my path.

Anyways, I headed to the nearest department store, its men's shoe section, and picked the first one that caught my eye.  "Do you've this in 7'n'a half?" I requested.  The lady attendant took several sizes from the customer queue, went rummagin' in the back room, and returned with "We've only got it in 8, is that OK?"  I tried on the bigger size, they weren't noticeably too large, comfortable in fact, and so I rang 'em up quickly.  These'll do.

Normally, I'll get the hell outta the mall as fast as I can to avoid impulse shoppin'--my eyes always forward with a fast stride to the exit.  However, I thought 'bout last week's episode of
Lost.  It was Desmond centric.  And this might be a slight spoiler if you'ven't seen it, but Charlie'n'Faraday made appearances--both bein' musicians who "felt it", namely love that bridges alternate timelines.  The latter was tryin' to blend classical'n'rock.  And wore a hat.
     
"Fuck," I duped, "I need a hat."  And so I browsed various retailers, amongst the three food courts and seven anchor stores, for a hat.  It was easy to find one that looked like Faradays, but when I tried 'em on, they just made my head look bigger than it already is--they were those little fedoras.  No, what I needed was somethin' to distract people from the size of my skull.  Somethin' bigger.  But nothin' ridiculous like a sombrero.  A cowboy hat.

It seems like the kids're into Lady Gaga--they're always tellin' me to check out her newest video or givin' me links to some photo of her in a crazy outfit.  Whilst I think she's got some catchy tunes'n'her PVs'ren't bad, I can't help but notice she's kinda bad lookin'.  I think she covers (or uncovers) herself to blind the audience from her unattractiveness, which ain't a sin, cause as she's stolen from a million sources, I think I'm gonna borrow from her.

Well, not a sexy costume, rather the notion that I can divert eyes from my crappy looks and maybe even fool some people into thinkin' I'm a country singer.  This'll be for my White Album concert.  Cause there's no way my face is as iconic as any of The Beatles.  But I can superficially grow my hair and beard--I know it's the wrong album, but none of my string quartet can sprout facial follicles, so I'm makin' up for their lack of moustaches.

And all I gotta do is wear a cowboy hat and my country'n'western image is established.  However, none of the stores in the 14th largest mall in America had any, at least that I could readily find.  So I left, disenchanted with the mall system, and planned to order one online.  But as I drove home, I found a boot store.  I checked it out and sure enough, they'd cowboy hats.  I immediately found one, tried it on, and bought it.  I "feel it" now.

(4.20.10)
(4.21.10)

12:21

(4.22.10)

Ravi [Shankar] had a really sweet brother called Raju, who gave me a lot of books by wise men, and one of the books, which was by Swami Vivekananda, said: 'If there's a God you must see him and if there's a soul we must perceive it--otherwise it's better not to believe.  It's better to be an outspoken atheist than a hypocrite.'
                                                                                                                           -George Harrison

You might recall Paul'n'I gettin' locked in the botanical gardens durin' her photoshoot a couple of weeks ago.  I got some great pictures--her eyes were twinklin' as the sunset haloed her.  Anyways, last Monday she admitted that even though the images weren't bad, she doesn't think she looked like a violinist--even though she'd lugged her instrument there, she didn't pull it out, for whatever reason.  So I've got a folder full of cool portraits of her that'll never get used for her recital poster.  "Do you mind doin' it again?" she wondered.  "Of course," I blurted and then corrected, "I mean, of course I don't mind."  I asked her if she was free on Thursday--given that I was gonna shoot John's concerto performance that evenin', and'vin' my camera handy for it, I figured I could kill two birds on the same day.  "I can do Thrusday," Paul verbally agreed.  However, textually, when the time came for her to pose before my camera, she rescheduled--"Other day please. Today is hell".  The other day and heaven turned out to be Saturday afternoon.

Harrison in the
Anthology doesn't discount subconscious memories from childhood playin' a part in his fascination with India--mayhaps he heard sitar on the radio.  But he definitely points a finger at the soundtrack to Help as the start of his spirtitual journey due to the use of that instrument on some cues.  And it's coincidental that in 1966, as McCartney grew a mustache to cover a scar on his lip after a moped accident, Harrison did the same but under Ravi Shankar's suggestion to do so as an undercover measure as he went to study under the master in India.  Lennon was also unshaven, havin' just finished actin' in the film How I Won the War and bein' introduced to Yoko.  Starr was livin' the family life with his wife Maureen and son Zak, and followed suit.  After their Sgt. Pepper/Magical Mystery Tour phase,which was spearheaded by McCartney, they all went to India.  And what resulted, for better or worse, transcendentally and artistically, became what the fans've come to call the "White Album".  Ah, hippies...

"I looked like a pianist," Paul complained.  So I took her to Royce Hall, where I'd shot my assistant, who plays the piano, and'd rejected those pics cause she "didn't look like a pianist".  I carried Paul's violin to the venue.  She unpacked it in the reverb heavy corridors on the second floor.  She filled the space with music as I clicked away.  We got closer to her vision of herself, I think.  Afterwards, we snuck into a flute recital.  The program'd a typo--"Antonio Vivaldo".  We riffed on that joke upon multiple levels.  God, I think she's the funniest girl I've ever sat next to at a musical performance.  "Send out an email," she managed, "to all of us, to schedule our next rehearsal."  She made sense.  Next week the
posters're goin' up.  I've been contractin' via friends of friends the orchestra'n'choir--so far I've got a harpist, two flutes, a French horn, and someone to handle the singers.  My quartet'll recruit the strings.  The only snag so far is the double bass.

Paul's headin' to a conservatory in San Francisco next year.  I congratulated her.  "It's not too far," I smiled, "you can still make me dinner when I visit."  "I'll cook somethin' worth your travel," she returned.  At the Philharmonia's gig, for the first time, consciously, cause they're all enrolled in the ensemble, I just never registered that they were MY string quartet, I saw John, Paul, George, and Ringo share the same stage, albeit, from where I sat, I could only see Lennon, McCartney, and Starr as they were positioned on the outskirts of the orchestra--Harrison was buried in the viola section, but I got a good glimpse of her whenever everyone stood up for applause.  Her hair was loopy--I thought that was nifty.  The poster committee doesn't accept ampersands & I needed to include the phrase "free admission".  They were also wary 'bout misleadin' people into thinkin' that the concert'll be played by four girls--who's this unseen "Henry Lim"?.  But in the end, at least for the music buildin', the design's goin' forward.

(4.23.10)
(4.26.10)

"Glass Onion (Facu Cruz Rock N' Rave remix)"

(4.27.10)

Daily Bruin Radio

(4.28.10)

Ahora toda se le presentara

That's what my fortune cookie read at the Thai restaurant as I was accompanied by a Ukraine girl who's been borrowin' my
Dark Tower books.  After my White Album concert, she's gonna lend me her Ender's Game series--I can't wait, cause I really enjoy epic stories.  Speakin' of The Beatles, George's been the hardest to coordinate with for rehearsals--my assistant warned me of her erratic tendencies, and I'm willin' to play along, if she'll come thru, and she supposedly always does, I can't say cause she's the newest member of our string quartet, but unlike John, Paul and Ringo, she's hard to pin down--she doesn't reply to my emails or cellphone messages.  And she's the last to pick up her part.  Nevertheless, the rest of 'em recommended her, so I'm takin' their word that she's the best violist for our ensemble.  Why is it that when I'd dinner with a nurse who I graduated with from high school, at her house, the radio played a public station, and all the songs only seemed to sound like Radiohead knock-offs.  My drummer met the lead singer of the local band, Crossed Keys--she served him coffee at a coffeehouse.  Along with my lead guitarist, we listened to their CD, which reminded me of the Rachael Leigh Cook version of Josie and the Pussycats.  Ringo's been the most helpful in organizin' our rehearsals.  John needed a high resolution image of her for a Daily Bruin article.  A Norwegian classical music radio station wants to interview me.  And despite my ban on the press, there's somethin' 'bout the word "Norwegian" that's in tune with The Beatles inasmuch as I agreed.  They're nine hours ahead of me.  Paul stopped by the other day to pick up a CD I'd burned of all the photos I'd taken of her last Saturday.  We're rehearsin' on Friday.

Everything will now come your way

(4.29.10)

"Happiness is a Warm Gun (Remix)"

(4.30.10)

I just warn all the kids coming in the business: don't sign anything unless the lawyer's your brother.  Keep it in the family.

                                                                                                                                                -John Lennon

The above statement is all the more hilarious given that one of the arguments The Beatles'd was Lennon, Harrison, and Starr versus McCartney in terms of who should be their next manager after Brian Epstein died and their managerless yearn durin' which they produced The White Album--the former three wanted Allen Klein, the latter wanted his brother-in-law John Eastman.

For whatever reason, after my string quartet and I rehearsed "Glass Onion", they all started arguin' 'bout what to wear for the concert.  George suggested that we all wear white.  "I'm wearin' black," I removed myself from the discussion.  John said she's got her eye on a white summer dress--and no one else can copy her.  Ringo complained that she doesn't've anythin' formal in that colour.

Paul, after "I'm So Tired", kept on visualizin' us playin' 'round a keg of beer.  "Let's all wear flowers in our hair," George tripped--the others immediately shot her down.  "How 'bout we all drop acid before we take the stage," I joked.  "Do you've your part memorized?" Paul questioned.  "I hope so," I smirked--after 25 years of bein' acquainted with these songs, I should.

Ringo couldn't stop laughin' after I sang the line "And I feel my finger on your trigger".  She looked at George, and they giggled together as John and Paul didn't get the joke--"The foreigners don't understand," she continued whilst bustin' up (John grew up in France, Paul in Serbia).  "It's a sexual reference," she tried to explain.  "I thought it was 'bout a gun," I defended the non-laughin' members.

I thought 'bout differentiatin' the songs by composer--"Happiness is a Warm Gun" was written by Lennon, "Martha My Dear" is McCartney, etc., both to my string quartet and the audience for historical reference, but then I decided to let 'em to judge the music without the loaded assumptions that people've of the songwriters.  Likewise for the Harrion'n'Starr tracks.  I wanna keep things neutral.

Nevertheless, everyone agrees that George's lines on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" rock.  I'll always remember the first time we played it and John, Paul, and Ringo all simultaneously exclaimed "Wow, George--you've got a cool part in this song".  Indeed, George played it beyond my expectations--she seemed to enjoy the extended solo.  It's common trivia, but none of The Beatles're responsible for it--Eric Clapton is.

Another highlight for 'em is "Why don't we do it in the road?"  They all got that one--come on, they're college girls.  Screamin' my head off probably added to the fun of the tune.  Cause first'n'foremost, we've gotta be havin' a blast with the music.  "Let's play in John's room," they all lured me.  I faced 'em as they sat in their string quartet seatin' arrangement.  "I keep seein' a jug of beer here," Paul smiled.

(5.3.10)

I've been havin' several dreams in which I'm shavin' my beard--somethin' that I'm plannin' to do in real life after my concert.  Cause afterall, it's just a costume--lately, I can't stand it as food gets caught in the strands near my mouth and I gotta check myself constantly in the mirror to see if I'm all clear.  This is the longest I've ever let it grow--a la Lennon circa
Abbey Rd.  And my hair's long, too--the clumps in my shower each mornin's gettin' likewise annoyin'.  Yet in my dreams I always remember that I've yet to perform--I wake up checkin' to see if my beard's still there.

Not countin' John'n'George's avant garde/electronic releases, I find it tellin' that each of the solo Beatles releases post breakup to be highly symbolic of their personalities--John's stripped down primal scream masterpiece, Paul's stripped down homemade charm, George's overproduced three LP backlog of songs, and Ringo's overproduced
Sentimental Journey.  You get the sense that the primary songwriters wanted to downplay the production whilst the lead guitarist'n'drummer'd the urge to go in the opposite direction.  In a way The White Album predicted all this.

Cause on that double LP, Lennon'n'McCartney both've got their "stark serenades"--"Blackbird" and "Julia", both of which're recorded solo, accompanied by themselves simply on acoustic guitar.  Meanwhile, Harrison'n'Starr get propped up by some fancy studio musicians--the funky saxes on "Savoy Truffle", the orchestra'n'choir' on "Good Night".  Well, given that "Revolution 9" comes from Lennon's avant garde angle and "Wild Honey Pie" is pure McCartney self reliance, it's no wonder that it's the least "Beatles" album in their oeuvre, ironic title noted.

I had dinner with John last night.  And she came over to my apartment afterwards.  I took her to a Chinese flavoured ramen restaurant.  She was impressed with my mosaic of Paul.  We shared a bottle of hot sake.  We worked on her recital poster--picked a photo'n'font'n'moved 'em 'round on Illustrator.  She's got permission to play the Strad at my concert, which is cool--I doubt in the history of mankind any other Strad'll ever perform "Yer Blues" live.  Nevertheless, to be safe, she didn't leave it in my car as she brought it with us into the ramen restaurant.

(5.4.10)

Muslim Chick'n'I were drinkin' tea and disprovin' rumours when Pete Best showed up at our table.  My conductor asked "So what's next after Dylan'n'The Beatles?"  The only time I shop at Trader Joe's is for pizza toppin's'n' beer--and not at the closest one, cause it's got the most inconveniently smallest parkin' lot ever, no, I go to the second nearest one, I mean, they've got the same mozzarella'n'pepperoni, and I don't've to fish for a spot for my car.  The Ukraine Girl borrowed my copy of
Doctor Faustus: The Life of the German Composer Adrian Leverkuhn as Told by a Friend, but returned it after two days cause she disliked the translation.  John wants my assistant's job--unfortunately, I've already hired her successor.

Pete Best was still seein' her same boyfriend and confessed that she's been so desperate for money that she's been givin' piano lessons.  Seriously, I can't imagine doin' another concert after The Beatles, period.  Not that I hate performin', but for this one I've been the orchestra'n'choir contractor, photographer, poster designer, promoter, liason with the sound engineer, manager of the string quartet, rehearsal coordinator, arranger, and performer.  It's all fun, however toppin' that, which itself's been barely under control, the flakey correspondences with double bassists bein' the biggest figurative headache--my brain never actually feels pain--or anythin' remotely in the same scale is just askin' to be too much trouble.

15 years ago, in California, when you did jury duty, unlike today when you can call in to see if you gotta physically report, you had to sit in a room full of peers and wait, sometimes up to two weeks, until your name came over the speakers.  On one such occasion, Horndog Chick recommended that I read the
Heechee Saga.  I was already a library employee at the time, and the books were in the collection, so I checked 'em out.  I can't remember too many details of the story, but I do recall it bein' a great time killer.  So I passed on the title to the Ukraine Girl, who was lookin' for somethin' to read after the Dark Tower.  I think I sounded wishy washy--cause it's been a long time since I read those science fiction novels, so I suggested the Thomas Mann.

"Could you train her?" I joked to my assistant.  "She's your violinist," she scoffed.  Shark week is over.  But the absolute worst question I get is "Who's your favourite Beatle?"  My personal film historian hates McCartney, which I can understand, yet recently I gotta disagree.  I mean, to favour any of 'em would destroy the balance of The White Album--I gotta think of 'em as equals if I wanna do each of their songs justice.  Even Starr's composition.  The were, accordin' to Mick Jagger, the Four Headed Monster.  So my default response's been "All of 'em--they complimented each other along four vectors and to give more significance to one would miss the point."  I rented Across the Universe.  It was alright, albeit a little too forced in its Beatleness.        

(5.5.10)

I put my bananas'n'beer on the conveyor belt of the express lane at the grocery store.  Ahead of me was a lady who was also buyin' some bananas, but instead of beer had a couple of candy bars.  She pointed to my bananas and said "Health food".  Then she called my beer "Not health food".  Likewise, she did the same with her bananas and candy bars.  I laughed and said "That's the way it goes" as I lifted my left hand up, dropped my right hand down, and then switched their positions.  "Balance," she agreed.

(5.6.10)

Tomorrow:

Henry Lim & His String Quartet Perform The Beatles

Saturday May 8
8PM
UCLA Powell Library Rotunda

Next week:

Out On a Lim goes on a break for a week

(5.7.10)
Henry Lim and His String Quartet Perform The Beatles
Powell Library Rotunda, UCLA, 2010
photo by Jeannie Heng
(5.17.10)

Sunday, May 9, 2010.  Redondo Beach, CA.  The first thing I did when I woke up was shave my beard.  It was a chore as it'd grown to 'bout two inches long, yet the task wasn't totally unenjoyable as my mind's ear heard "Good Night" replayed from the previous night's concert.  And unlike many of my dreams, I felt confident that I'd really performed that song with an orchestra and choir--it wasn't a premature shave.  Cause I always knew that I was gonna get rid of my hippie costume the day after I played The Beatles before an audience.  I suppose some people might've trouble distinguishin' between reality and fantasy--I mean, I had dreams where I swore it was the day after the show, to the point where I powered up my electric shaver, only to stop myself, sometimes by wakin' up, and realize that I'm not in the future.  Not to mention, the whole time up on stage felt unreal--like it should, you know, cause come on, that's why I do it.  But either I'm lucky or foolin' myself as I had no doubt that it was time to shave.

And cut my hair.  So I drove to my usual barber.  On the way, I noticed a coloured spinnin' pole that I'dn't seen before--and it was within walkin' distance from my apartment.  How'd I miss it after all this time?  I've been wastin' gas travelin' to a barbershop on the other side of town.  But I'm a creature of habit--I'd rather rely on the random hairdresser that I got assigned each time at my usual place than tryin' somethin' new.  Unless I'm forced to by fate.  Which was the case as I found upon arrival that my ol' reliable'd gone outta business.  Naturally, I drove back to the earlier seen coloured spinnin' pole.  There was one customer before me--an old man who was gettin' his white hair trimmed whilst in his wheelchair.  I could hear 'em small talkin', but only a little bit, cause my mind's ear returned to the night before's White Album concert.  But soon it was my turn in the chair.  The barber gasped at my long hair as I told him that I get it cut once a year.  "How long've you been here?" I chit chatted.

"Oh, 'bout ten years," he replied.  "Hmm," I continued, "I've lived here longer than that and I'm just down the street but I've never noticed this place before."  "That's cause you only get one haircut a year," he laughed.  I did, too.  I knew I had to dedicate one song to my mother on Mother's Day Eve.  My options: "The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill" (the main character brought his mother along on huntin' trips) but that song was stuck in the middle of a continuous segue between "Wild Honey Pie" and "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" ; "Julia" (it's titled after Lennon's mom's name) but I think that song's too personally linked with its songwriter--it doesn't make any sense for me to sing it for my mom ; "Mother Nature's Son" (obviously) but it's too obvious ; and "Cry Baby Cry" (which I ended up choosin').  "You're my last customer of the day," the barber added.  He wanted to close up early so he could get ready to have a nice dinner with his mother, who's not too old--she's in her sixties.

On the day of the concert, I woke up 'round noon and watched Fantastic Mr. Fox whilst doin' my laundry--I kept my mind as far away from what it was gonna be immersed in 'bout eight hours from then.  I took a walk after I dropped of the DVD at the corner mailbox.  But as showtime approached, I slowly slid into my performance mindframe.  The biggest question was pullin' off "Good Night"--I scheduled the first and only rehearsal at the sound check--gettin' that many musicians together can't be any easier.  For fun, on the night before my concert, my shower'd clogged up since that day's mornin'--damn long hair--so I tried to predict the outcome of the closin' song.  I poured some bleach down the drain.  If it cleared I'd be fine.  If not I'll fail.  It might seem likely that the former'll happen, but trust me, the latter's not stopped from bummin' me out before.  Thirty minutes later the water still hadn't flowed.  I mean, things can only be oh so much in my hands.  Some outcomes're beyond worryin' 'bout.

An hour later, the bleach worked.  Likewise, not all the musicians showed up to the sound check at the designated time--the singers (surprise surprise) and the horn player (accordin' to one of my flutists) was runnin' late.  Everyone else was ready to rehearse.  So I told the conductor to run thru some sections without 'em--the mid section featurin' the string section and the section that featured my string quartet.  No problem.  It felt like an hour went by.  And then the missin' musicians arrived.  They took their places, tuned up, and away we went.  Now, I know "Good Night" is a parody song.  I've laughed (not outwardly) many times whenever I heard it.  But I dare any Beatlefan to stand in front of six violins, three violas, two 'cellos, a double bass, a harp, two flutes, a French horn, and five singers and not feel anythin' other than a response to the music as a joke as it vibrates 'round you.  A tear came to my mind's eye as I came to see that everythin' was gonna be alright.  My beard won't get shaved in vain.      

(5.18.10) Sunday, May 9, 2010.  Redondo Beach, CA.  The first thing I did when I woke up was shave my beard.  It was a chore as it'd grown to 'bout two inches long, yet the task wasn't totally unenjoyable as my mind's ear heard "Good Night" replayed from the previous night's concert.  And unlike many of my dreams, I felt confident that I'd really performed that song with an orchestra and choir--it wasn't a premature shave.  Cause I always knew that I was gonna get rid of my hippie costume the day after I played The Beatles before an audience.  I suppose some people might've trouble distinguishin' between reality and fantasy--I mean, I had dreams where I swore it was the day after the show, to the point where I powered up my electric shaver, only to stop myself, sometimes by wakin' up, and realize that I'm not in the future.  Not to mention, the whole time up on stage felt unreal--like it should, you know, cause come on, that's why I do it.  But either I'm lucky or foolin' myself as I had no doubt that it was time to shave.

And cut my hair.  So I drove to my usual barber.  On the way, I noticed a coloured spinnin' pole that I'dn't seen before--and it was within walkin' distance from my apartment.  How'd I miss it after all this time?  I've been wastin' gas travelin' to a barbershop on the other side of town.  But I'm a creature of habit--I'd rather rely on the random hairdresser that I got assigned each time at my usual place than tryin' somethin' new.  Unless I'm forced to by fate.  Which was the case as I found upon arrival that my ol' reliable'd gone outta business.  Naturally, I drove back to the earlier seen coloured spinnin' pole.  There was one customer before me--an old man who was gettin' his white hair trimmed whilst in his wheelchair.  I could hear 'em small talkin', but only a little bit, cause my mind's ear returned to the night before's White Album concert.  But soon it was my turn in the chair.  The barber gasped at my long hair as I told him that I get it cut once a year.  "How long've you been here?" I chit chatted.

"Oh, 'bout ten years," he replied.  "Hmm," I continued, "I've lived here longer than that and I'm just down the street but I've never noticed this place before."  "That's cause you only get one haircut a year," he laughed.  I did, too.  I knew I had to dedicate one song to my mother on Mother's Day Eve.  My options: "The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill" (the main character brought his mother along on huntin' trips) but that song was stuck in the middle of a continuous segue between "Wild Honey Pie" and "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" ; "Julia" (it's titled after Lennon's mom's name) but I think that song's too personally linked with its songwriter--it doesn't make any sense for me to sing it for my mom ; "Mother Nature's Son" (obviously) but it's too obvious ; and "Cry Baby Cry" (which I ended up choosin').  "You're my last customer of the day," the barber added.  He wanted to close up early so he could get ready to have a nice dinner with his mother, who's not too old--she's in her sixties.

On the day of the concert, I woke up 'round noon and watched
Fantastic Mr. Fox whilst doin' my laundry--I kept my mind as far away from what it was gonna be immersed in 'bout eight hours from then.  I took a walk after I dropped of the DVD at the corner mailbox.  But as showtime approached, I slowly slid into my performance mindframe.  The biggest question was pullin' off "Good Night"--I scheduled the first and only rehearsal at the sound check--gettin' that many musicians together can't be any easier.  For fun, on the night before my concert, my shower'd clogged up since that day's mornin'--damn long hair--so I tried to predict the outcome of the closin' song.  I poured some bleach down the drain.  If it cleared I'd be fine.  If not I'll fail.  It might seem likely that the former'll happen, but trust me, the latter's not stopped from bummin' me out before.  Thirty minutes later the water still hadn't flowed.  I mean, things can only be oh so much in my hands.  Some outcomes're beyond worryin' 'bout.

An hour later, the bleach worked.  Likewise, not all the musicians showed up to the sound check at the designated time--the singers (surprise surprise) and the horn player (accordin' to one of my flutists) was runnin' late.  Everyone else was ready to rehearse.  So I told the conductor to run thru some sections without 'em--the mid section featurin' the string section and the section that featured my string quartet.  No problem.  It felt like an hour went by.  And then the missin' musicians arrived.  They took their places, tuned up, and away we went.  Now, I know "Good Night" is a parody song.  I've laughed (not outwardly) many times whenever I heard it.  But I dare any Beatlefan to stand in front of six violins, three violas, two 'cellos, a double bass, a harp, two flutes, a French horn, and five singers and not feel anythin' other than a response to the music as a joke as it vibrates 'round you.  A tear came to my mind's eye as I came to see that everythin' was gonna be alright.  My beard won't get shaved in vain.      

(5.18.10)
(5.19.10)

"I skipped orchestra today," Anavi called to tell me.  This was the week before The Beatles concert.  "So I'm afraid to rehearse at school--I don't want the orchestra professor to see me on campus."  I didn't mind, especially since she had a solution that wasn't too ridiculous--we'd practice at Aluap's apartment, which was across the street from the music buildin'.  And bein' the manager of my string quartet, I told everyone else 'bout the change of plans.

I kinda got an idea of how Brian Epstein probably felt--caterin' to the whims of four young musicians.  He was homosexual and rumour has it he was attracted to one of 'em--switch the sex of The Beatles and his orientation and I could relate.  But beyond that, the manager's role is often overlooked as it does take place behind the scenes.  Roundin' up the girls for rehearsals and waitin' backstage before the show're some of the things I'll always remember.

"Can you do me a favour?" Gnuoyij asked.  "Sure," I served.  "Can you drive me to the grocery store after rehearsal?"  I followed her 'round the market carryin' a shoppin' basket as she filled it.  She's paranoid 'bout gettin' cancer so she only buys organic produce.  "If you're scared of gettin' cancer," I observed, "then why do you smoke?"  She laughed.  And that's when I became thankful cause after this gig I'm no longer managin' these eccentric ladies.

I mean, it was the most fun I've ever had.  But maybe it's cause I knew that it wasn't gonna last forever.  The excitement as the time to take the stage approached was your standard affair--every performin' musician knows that rush.  But to've shared it with those four girls was a treat in itself as they ran 'round in circles, nibbled on snacks, randomly anecedoted, hugged friends who wished 'em luck, and warmed up.  The audience missed a lot.

To be honest, it kinda hit me then how crazy the whole stunt was.  Each of 'em shot off in different directions and ran thru the music.  Not to mention, the orchestra and choir were also practicin' their parts.  So imagine simultaneiously hearin' bits of The White Album commin' from various rooms--the fiddle solo on "Don't Pass Me By", the vocal harmonies on "Good Night", the countermelody from "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da", etc.

That in itself was surreal, but to think I was in the middle of it all was even more so.  Now, I hardly am an attention hog--I'd rather let others be in the spotlight.  But I guess it balances out as durin' that concert, I played for a packed house.  And I can see how egos can trip out based on bein' at the center of all that attention.  But what kept me grounded was my belief in the music and all the other perspectives involved, not least of all the manager's.

(5.20.10)

Imperfection.  If there's one idea that summarizes The White Album that's it.  From the slightly crooked title on the cover to the offbeat tunes, it's not as neatly produced as
Abbey Rd. nor a total mess like Let It Be.  Yet it's precisely that balance between sheen and grunge which, for me at least, symbolizes The White Album's brilliance--I've got a soft spot for things that'ren't exactly perfect whilst somewhat showin' some inspired effort.  In other words, my concert had many flaws, but somehow they're in tune with the original work.  To've not made any mistakes would've been missin' the point.  Lehcar sat next to me at Anavi's senior recital.

She wore a tiny red dress which after complimentin' I couldn't stop contemplatin'--in the darkened theatre, my peripheral vision was activated.  I'dn't seen Aluap since the Beatles concert.  But I caught up with her at Anavi's reception.  "Sorry for messin' up 'Dear Prudence'," she apologized--indeed we all fucked up here'n'there, but she freaked out on that song and didn't play any of her sweet lines--the gorgeous lead guitar part.  "Don't worry 'bout it," I waved my hand in front of her eyes.  Yeah, it was a gapin' hole in the arrangement, but she more than made up for it later on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps".  I've only seen the first half of the show on DVD.    

My audio/visual engineer gave me some explanation as to why the second disc wasn't ready yet, but I doubt I fully understand so I won't pretend to spew any details.  Nevertheless, the first thing that made me smile when I watched it was how cool we looked--the girls all decided to coordinate with an all white scheme and I've got my bushy beard and cowboy hat.  The mix is a little skewed--we miscalculated the sound as we were far from the back wall of the room to accommodate for the orchestra, so the reverb has a bigger rear reflection.  Some in the audience commented that my vocal amp wasn't loud enough.  Durin' the intermission a professor gave us his review.

"I've always hated 'Don't Pass Me By'," he prefaced, "but you made it worth listenin' to."  We got a lot of favourable comments, but personally, that was my favourite.  "That was all my second violinst--she brought it to life," I admitted as I pointed to her as she blushed.  Although, I messed up on the lyrics--I sang a line twice, which I did on other songs as well--unlike Dylan, whose songs follow a storylike logic, The Beatles tend to've very interchangeable words, or so my memory likes to think.  Coincidentally, my string quartet and I circled Anavi after her senior recital like we were meant to be.  If anythin' we've all grown friendlier since sharin' the stage.

And along with their havin' dug the music--I gave 'em all copies of the album, as well performin' it all didn't not leave an impression--at the very least, we'd fun up there.  Cause normally they don't get to dress like they did let alone be featured at a well attended concert.  Sure they got nervous five minutes before showtime, but the excitement was undeniable as they eventually overcame it--if I remember correctly, the second half was more comfortable.  So I'm now objectively lookin' for tunes that might be worth postin' online.  Which means I'm not gonna put up the entire concert, cause it's not perfect.  I know that goes against the imperfection theme, but oh well...

(5.21.10)
Henry Lim and His String Quartet Rehearse The Beatles
Schoenberg Hall, UCLA, 2010
photo by Umberto Belfiore
(5.24.10)

Apart from future linkages to video clips, I'm gonna try my best, faithful reader, to make this the final blog entry 'bout my White Album concert--trust me, I'm as sick of writin' 'bout it as I'm sure you're of hearin' 'bout it.

I spent this mornin' takin' my first violinist to the dentist--she was havin' her wisdom teeth removed.  It was in Korea Town.  Unfortunately I forgot to bring a book to read.  So I spent the time with reception room magazines.

If there's one constant compliment I've gotten after the concert it's "nice arrangements", which I'm thankful for, cause I did put some thought into the score.  And it's nice to know that they acknowledged my involvement in the parts.

They'd a bunch of Korean-American publications which were educational--I learned 'bout "dol", which is an elaborate birthday party for one year olds, and "Black Day", which is April 14th and celebrates/embarasses singles.

Cause not once durin' the program did I ever mention that I did the arrangements.  In fact I kept it on the down low--for legal reasons as well as I'm not a big fan of braggin' 'bout what's essentially straightforward transcription.

They'd also some year old Time magazines.  I read an article 'bout auto-tunin'--and yes, it seemed like a decade too late.  And there was a story 'bout how cursive writin' is goin' extinct.  Again, like a generation behind the times.

Nevertheless, people've assumed, correctly I'll admit, that I arranged the music for string quartet.  Well, it's not like anyone else's published theses particular songs--The White Album ain't exactly appropriate for weddin's.

OK, now I'll shut up...

(5.25.10)

The last DVD I watched was
Up.  I thought the first ten minutes were worth four stars, but since the last hundred or so weren't, I ended up roundin' down to three stars for my final review.  And like most Pixar films, I'm just not gettin' what the geek majority sees in this brand name movie company.

I had a dream in which everyone, includin' myself, was a puppet.  I'd look at people and know, not necessarily by seein' the puppeteer, but with a gut conscious forebodin' that there was a metaphorical hand up everyone's ass.

Sure, the animation is clean and the stories not lamely constructed, but I'm just not impressed.  I mean, I've got no desire to see the third sequel to
Toy Story--I didn't think the second one was all that.  Yet every nerd friend of mine thinks it's gonna be the bee's niece.  Am I missin' somethin'?

However, every now'n'then the puppets would be removed--I'd either see thru 'em via hallucinogenic drugs or some deity'd do the revealin' deed.  But underneath each puppet was another puppet.

To be fair, I'ven't seen all Pixar's productions--I think the only one I've missed is
Cars.  But I've yet to rewatch any of 'em based on my initial responses to 'em.  I guess, like most freaks, a certain OCD is implied in what they deem as "cool", so my lack of repeat viewin's probably says somethin'.

Etc.  There was an infinite number of puppets underneath everyone.  So I went home and faced myself in my bathroom mirror.  Upon discardin' my puppet, I didn't find another--I found a hand.

(5.26.10)

"Yer Blues"

(5.27.10)

I carpooled with my first violinist to a pianist friend's recital--it was at a small church off Pico and started at 20:00--she'd a weddin' gig that finished at 19:30--her second violinist forgot her part--which I'd printed out for 'em--but they still got paid even if some of the guests might've suspected that not everyone had the same page--I texted her whilst I drove--wait outside the hotel--they played at the esteemed Beverly Wilshire--she got in my car, ate her dinner--a plastic boxed sandwich--and we made it just in time to find a seat, kill a minute of small talk, the lights went dim, and the recital began--French violin sonatas--Debussy, Pierne, Poulenc, and Ravel--progressively gettin' better--the three of 'em--my first'n'second violins'n'my 'cellist--'re goin' hikin' tomorrow mornin' at 06:30.

A friend told me a story--of how he remembers the day his mom sent him outside--he was told to play in the backyard--and on that day, as he looked up at the skies, two planes collided in midair--one slammed into the other--there was an explosion--plane parts skattered 'cross the sky--the fuel fell--parachutes were deployed--and his mom kept expectin' that a war'd begun--such that this was the exact moment in his childhood whereby he'd first heard the word "war"--a conscientious objector he was--the day, of course, was February 3, 1959--my friend wasn't aware of it at the time, but later discovered that that was the day that "That'll Be The Day" singer Buddy Holly--along with Richie Valens and "The Big Bopper"--died--we were havin' a late night dinner after the Early Music concert at Powell.

Yesterday, I shot some photos of my first violinist--she wore two dresses--one green--the other a small white one--it was the same locale as the shots I took of my pianst friend's recital promo images--which I took--and my second violinist's poster settin'--"do you wanna hike with us tomorrow?" she presented--my friend bumped into us on the stairs of the entrance to the Powell library rotunda--"this is my violinist," I introduced--"you're the one who played the Strad?" he complimented--the next day she told me how she was suspicious of that guy, and how she'd been warned not to let anyone see the violin--"hello," she mock greeted--at the '50's diner, my friend gave me the background story.

Even though he's quoted in the Wall St. Journal's article--written by Daniel Pearl--as in Daniel "beheaded by Islamic militants" Pearl--no one really knows the full story behind the "Stradivarius found on the freeway", but it was still cool to hear the theories first hand from the source of the byline--as well as havin'd that instrument at the center of the controversy ridin' in my car to a pianist friend's recital--it's beyond coincidence now--so I related the story to my first violinist who was mind blown at who my friend was--without whom she'dn't've that infamous violin in her care--alas 'tis not unlike the proverbial ring of the Lord--precious--the longer you're under its proximity spell, the longer you can't let it go--no one knew who the other was--no one really cared--no one is on none--no?

(5.28.10)

"Rocky Raccoon"

(6.1.10)

  "Have you ever ate an onsen tamago?"
"No, is it Spanish?"
"No, it's Japanese for 'hot spring egg'."
"What?"
"You know what a hot spring is, right?"
"Yeah."
"Well, in Japan they boil eggs in 'em."
"Aren't you supposed to be naked in a hot spring?"
"You keep the eggs in their shells."
"Ok..."
"Anyways, they taste good."
"Really..."
"Yeah, the yolks are gooey and the whites're like custard."
"Uh huh."
"Next time you go to Japan, try 'em."
"Sure..."
"Nevertheless, I'm tryin' to make some."
"You don't've a hot spring at home..."
"No, but I can approximate the temperature of the water."
"In your bathtub?"
"No, in a pot on my stove or oven."
"In your oven?"
"Yeah, I read somewhere that you boil the water first, then cook it in your oven at 160 F."
"Did it work?"
"No, I just ended up with regular hard boiled eggs."
"What happened?"
"Well, I forgot to set the eggs out so they can get to room temperature."
"Oh yeah?"
"Yeah, but I read somewhere else that you can cook 'em in your rice cooker."
"What?"
"Yeah, after you cooked your rice, you wrap the eggs in a paper towel and put 'em in the cooker."
"I don't think it's hot enough."
"I don't either, but that's what I read--plus, you don't wanna cook 'em too much."
"Why do you wanna make 'em?"
"Because they're good--and that'll be my goal for the summer."
"Good luck."

Editor's note: I figured it out--bring some water to a boil, add some cool water to the pot, place some eggs in, cover and let 'em slowly cook for 'bout half an hour.

(6.2.10)

"Happiness is a Warm Gun"

(6.3.10)

There once lived a match and a candle.  The former lit the latter and struck a friendship that on later occasions involved some form of stricken for light dialogues.  Here's an example, dated 5.29.10:

"He was inspirin'," she glowed.
"That's cool," I blew.

Or they'd revisit suicidal thoughts over burnt flesh amidst gossip and guesses of infidelity if not in this life, another.  And then there's the eternal question that the candle's been gettin' nonstop since 5.8.10:

"Who're you gonna cover next?"
"I don't know..."

Here's a list of non-solicited suggestions: Leonard Cohen, Tom Jones, Michael Jackson, The Bee Gees, Simon and Garfunkel, and Creedence.  All of which never crossed the candle's mind, but on 5.29.10:

The match asked, "So what're we playin' next year?"
"I've got some thoughts," I ran 'em by her.

Cause the candle'd set up a pattern: Dylan and The Beatles with his string quartet, which itself's becomin' an ongoin' ensemble, with at least one member continuin' since their live performance debut on 1.16.09:

"can we meet at 6pm tomorrow?...the light's better that hour," I texted my violist.
"Are you gonna've fun takin' her photo?" the match wondered.

"I hope so," the candle answered.  They'd drove back onto Western and headed towards the 10 freeway with the intent to get back to campus, as the security cameras'll swear happened after hours on 5.29.10:

[CENSORED]

But ultimately, it was 'bout the last time they saw each other, when the match died out and the candle lived on, and the existential conversations that took place, such as this one date stamped 9.99.99:

"Did you experience life relatively?" the candle mocked.  "Was time compressed?"
"What do you think?" scoffed the match.  "My life was a fraction of yours."
"But you did light me," the candle put into perspective.
"And there'll be others after me if and when you die," the match reflected.
"Thank you," the candle offered.
"No," the match redirected, "thank you."
"Goodbye."  

(6.4.10)

"Savoy Truffle"


(6.7.10)
(6.8.10)

"Don't Pass Me By"

(6.9.10)

There once lived a Mr. Camera and a Miss Viola.  He texted her durin' the early afternnon of the day before their appointment to both confirm the engagement that they'd scheduled for the followin' day's scheduled late afternoon meetin' time'n'place, with the former adjusted an hour later due to the better natural light.  "Should I wear this dress?" she pulled outta her tote bag whilst gunslingin' her instrument.  "Yeah," he double checked his backpack to make sure he didn't forget his--yes, this ain't a dream and yes, I'm ready to shoot some photos.

My lawyer is reimbursin' me.  He answered an ad for some sports car accessory.  However, the seller was located near my place of employment and rather than drive all the way up from his neighbourhood, he called me a few days before askin' me to do him a favour.  Afterall, he'd do, and did, the same for me--I bought an 88 key MIDI controller, which was, accordin' to his constant reminder, not a light piece of circuitry.  "What did he look like?" my lawyer wanted to know.  "I can't remember," I really couldn't.  "I'd call him Mr. Nondescript".

(6.10.10)

"While My Guitar Gently Weeps"


(6.11.10)

Like wearin' sunglasses, any thought of settin' up an account with an online datin' service has never, with the exception of this analogy, crossed my mind.  Maybe it's cause I've never really worn 'em before, maybe it's cause I work at a university, maybe it's cause my eyes've never felt any pain from sunlight, maybe it's cause there are practically thousands of girls on campus, maybe it's cause I'ven't worn sunglasses that my eyes've evolved to protect 'em from natural light, or maybe it's cause the supply'n'demand escapes me regardin' online datin' services.

That bein' said, there once lived an artist and his muse.  And durin' what photographers call the "magic hour", he bumped into her for what was the third time in one day--the first happened 'bout four hours earlier when she ran into the library and quickly asked him for a favour, which she just as fast neverminded--his eyes followed her behind--the second time was after a trash dumpster run--throwin' away empty jewel cases.  "Can I sit here?" he invited himself.  "Of course," she welcomed.  They didn't squint as the sun set in front of 'em with a brick wall at their backs.   

"Can I keep some boxes at your place?"
"Sure.  And the bike?"
"Yes, the bike, too.  And I'll come after summer to pick 'em up or you can drive 'em up when you visit me."
"I remember when you had blonde hair--that was the first time I saw you."
"I wanna grow it long, down to here."

She pointed to her waist.  Apparently it takes her a year to grow her current length--from her scalp to the bottom of her neck.  I don't know how we got on this subject.  Oh yeah, the comment 'bout the colour of her hair.  She didn't get the memo from leader of the string quartet--next year's theme's been picked.  "No way," she protested not in dismissal, but in jealousy cause she won't be 'round to play along.  "Fly me down," she laughed.  Three times--the last bein' a chance encounter, warm, casual, body language, memories, futures, albinos, videos watched, and papers due.     

(6.14.10)

"I Will"

(6.15.10)
(6.16.10)

"Julia"

(6.17.10)

Today was the first time that I ever heard a kid say "thumbs up ridiculous".  Likewise on this very same day did someone ask me "Is that your daughter?".  I picked up a palm reader who accused me of cheatin' on the girl I love.

Now, I don't know this kid well enough nor am I, by virtue of my age, hip on the youth's latest slang.  Although my position at a university puts me in direct contact with 'em.  However, she ain't beyond inventin' her own mishmashes.

"Seriously?" I thought to myself--dude, she's white and I'm not, so how can she seem related, unless I adopted her?  Let alone I'd've'd to've fathered her when I was 16.  But BTW he continued the conversation, I knew he was serious.

"I have a daughter, too, who just turned six and is startin' piano lessons."  Well, she's definitely the only one in my string quartet that was raised in America.  "You gotta start 'em early," I rolled off a cliche to leave the subject alone.

Actually, I trust everyone else's accented ears to keep me updated on the latest contributions to youthful euphemisms.  Or not--they too've got creative ways of musically reinterpretin' the English language.  Children're so dear...

"You should be proud of her," the man rattled.
"Thanks," I settled as I thought "shut up ridiculous."

Only, there must've been a mistake.  Cause earlier that day, I was cuttin' open an avocado.  And the knife slightly sliced my hand, addin' an extra line to my fortune.  No, she had to've read my palm all wrong.  There's no way.

(6.18.10)

"Good Night"

(6.21.10)

Hildegarde was almost fifty, and the sight of her made him feel absurd...
                                                                                           -F. Scott Fitzgerald

Paul sat next to me at George's concert.  John was in Paris.  And I don't know where Ringo was.  But Pete Best was in the audience and I said "hi" afterwards.

Not every girl that I've ever chased's made me feel jealous whenever they paraded 'round with their older boyfriends.  However I remember enough of 'em.

I just watched
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.  It wasn't bad, although it tries too hard to be magical.  Nevertheless, the Joplin waltz came close.

"It's your best yet," Paul praised.  "Better than yours?" I doubted.  "Well..."  I'd done all of their solo promotional portraits.  Well, except for Ringo's.

With yesterday's postin' of a link to our performance of "Good Night", I promise, faithful reader, that my Beatles project is over.  Thanks for your patience.

I can't exactly put any of my fingers on it, but I think the movie might've been a little cooler if it'd been called
The Curious Case of Cate Blanchett's Character.

Cause that'd be a real fantasy, not some symbolic fable 'bout males growin' younger.  I can't think of a female I know that isn't obsessed with age.  They'd resent such a twist.

In a week, Paul's leavin'.  I don't know 'bout the others but today'll likely be the last time I see most of the current and past members of my string quartet together.

The next incarnation's still in flux--George ain't sure if she's gonna continue her studies.  And besides, we're all gonna've to obviously change our names.

It wasn't until I found myself in the older guy's shoes, now the object of some younger kid's jealousy, that I felt humbled by time's sense of humour.

So I read Fitzgerald's original short story--it's online.  It's totally different--the only thing that's the same's the main character's name and the central gimmick.

I mean, I thought it was kinda offensive how Benjamin starts to hate his wife for her age--as portrayed by Cate Blanchett in the movie, who's name was changed to Daisy.

I'm guessin' modern feminist audiences would never let that fly.  And the film almost overcompensates in its sympathy for her character.  Very politically correct.

George Martin forgot to record Paul's concert.  So she's gonna play her pieces again as a fake live performance.  I was asked to shoot some pseudo real photos.

I'm pickin' up Jonny on Saturday from the airport.

(6.22.10)

Jonny's flight was scheduled to arrive an hour later than she texted which I read just after finishin' a Japanese fast food style beef bowl topped with beni shoga (pickled ginger coloured red).  It was laundry day as well as refill my orange juice jars with freshly squeezed liquid day so I knew that I'dn't've enough time to cook anythin' too consumin' of the afternoon.  Afterall, it was also wake up at 12 o'clock day.  "ok...i'm on my way..." I typed back, speedin' my drive.       

"How was Phil's recital?" she inquired as we drove thru an airport tunnel that flowed onto a freeway on-ramp.  "I like the poster you did for her," she continued.  "She looks like...what's her name?" she tried to describe.  "Wonderland Alice," she reversed.  "Where did she get that dress?" she poked into the million words per minute whilst traffic wasn't goin' anywhere conversation.  "Thanks for pickin' me up," she said as she greeted me at the baggage claim terminals.

Back at home, I received an email from my itoko (cousin).  It was a reply to one that I'd sent a few weeks ago apologizin' for not bein' able to attend her mom's death's anniversary's first year--my excuse followed the too busy at work template, but between the categorical lies was the truth, namely that Ed was graduatin' and I kinda wanted to spend maximum moments of her last days as a student at the university music library where I make an honest livin'.

Sure, it was selfish and possibly traditionally dishonourable of me, but my komichi (path) was losin' a physical kosaten (intersection).  Sure, technically the virtual and superluminal connections'll most likely remain.  Sure, obviously you can't compare literal and figurative death.  Sure, especially when you're related.  I'm sure I'll pay for whatever cosmic damage I've done, if I'ven't already, or mayhaps I'm makin' a mistake in assumin' that right decisions are a concern.

Anyways, there're a couple of rumours circulatin' 'bout the whereabouts of Colin--some say she's really sick.  I read my itoko's email--she wrote ii (ok) yo (friendly endin' particle).  Once the marbled slices of cow weren't red coloured anymore, a mixture of mirin (cookin' sake), sake, and soy sauce are poured onto the already cooked for a while wilted onions and meat.  But really, I was, like everyone else, everywhere and everything.  So I never missed missin' her.

(6.23.10)

Along with some homemade fish'n'chips I watched
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.  Oh, and I also drank some of the ale that I used for the beer batter--if you think that might influence my perceptions, so be it.  Anyways, I thought the movie was tiresome, with the arousin' exception of the Valentina character.  Wow, she's so not bad lookin'.  And I could've watched the same runnin' time of two hours and two minutes of a camera simply trained on her in a bedroom--I don't care what she does there, she could just be sleepin'.  With that bein' said, yeah, I'd rather spend an eternity lookin' at a photograph of her than watch half a second of yawn inducin' film.

Yesterday, Ed'n'I spent the afternoon hittin' her favourite spots on campus with my camera in tow.  She wore a blue dress.  So we started in Popper, where I waited for her to get dressed, as I played the second fughetta of my Op. 11 on the piano.  The stage lights were also blue.  Royce was next--the sunlight wasn't ideal, but in certain pockets of that iconic buildin', she looked ridiculously good lookin'.  And I thought of these last days with her.  They felt like years.  It's the longest week ever.  Nigel Godrich gave me a data DVD of me and my string quartet's rehearsal session before this year's concert.  I listened to it and thought, that's a nice snapshot of how we sounded...

...before the show.  It's raw.  Like I like it.  I'm still not inclined to buy a flash.  Cause who am I to argue with natural light.  Sure, I gotta find its sweet spot, but I'd rather stumble in the dark than use anythin' other than the godforsaken sun.  Next we hit the sculpture garden.  But there was a shadowy spot on a bench next to YRL, with a ray of light spillin' between the trees.  "Sit there," I pointed.  Then we ate muffins at Espresso Roma whilst discussin' the evolution of birds.  Today, she knocked on my office's door to give me the key to the bike that I gave her--it was locked at the southside of the music buildin'.  I'm gonna hold it for her 'til September, when she'll return.

Tomorrow, we're'vin' lunch.  And her flight's at five.  I'm gonna take the day off from work.  As I walked to the corner mailbox to send away the DVD I rented, I thought, "Why am I feelin' sad?"  It's not like she's goin' away forever, in fact we're guaranteed to be reunited later--afterall, I've got her bicycle.  And instead of two, I'm gonna be storin' three boxes of her stuff.  Lastly, we returned to Schoenberg and took some pics by the "Table Cloth" sculpture in the ethnomusicology courtyard.  "I like the way you say 'shirts'," Colin said on the rehearsal recordin'.  And to wrap it all up, all that CG nonsense is nothin' compared to the simple beauty of a pretty face. 

(6.24.10)

<Be careful.  Don't let 'em take advantage of you.>
<What do you mean?  They can do whatever they want--I'm the one who took advantage of them.  And what's with that advice?  I've been hearin' the same sentiment from my mom and my first violinist.  There's nothin' wrong with doin' favours for my string quartet, cause I've been thinkin' 'bout it and although I never planned it that way, it just so happens that I stumbled upon an ensemble whose company I don't mind.>
<My violinist friend told me that he watched your videos.>
<Cool.>
<He thinks your second violinist is pretty good.>
<Oh really.>

"Three days ago, I cursed Jimmy Lim," someone who knew my brother retold.  "We were both in wrestlin' and even though I was like fifty pounds heavier than him and in a different league, he challenged me to a match.  He was like a tiger--he'd start in the corner all slow and then all of a sudden he'd swoop up to you super fast and before you know it you're pinned.  When he got me, my leg twisted and my knee popped.  And to this day, whenever that knee goes out, I say his name in vain."

A bird snuck into the open air cafe.  We were inside, near the biggest window.  The football game was playin' on a plasma in the corner of our view.  And I faced the crossroad behind her where traffic allowin' vehicles'n'pedestrians fisheyed in the background.  Our legs didn't budge when our knees bumped under the table.  And I remembered that the last time we sat at an outdoor eatery, a similar lookin' feathered creature spied on us from the exact same angle.  Meanwhile we continued our talk.

The next day, with thousands of miles between us, I had dinner at a revolvin' countertop sushi restaurant with a pianist.  We traded gossip--which students were goin' out with whom, who liked who, and what professors were bein' investigated.  I had a bottle of hot sake, she a glass of plum wine.  On the drive down to the Japanese district, I told her 'bout all the chores I've been doin' for my girls--pickin' up and takin' 'em to the airport, storin' their stuff while they're gone, etc.  And she replied...

(6.25.10)

Hypocrisy--I wish I could say that I'm not linked to any blatant self contradiction of terms, cause I believe all those that engage in feignin'n'falsehoods do so for the sake of their survival, and in the end everyone's just as guilty of that regardless of the means, unless, of course, they've offed themselves.

Case in point--there's a lady who tried to mind trick me into seein' her as someone who doesn't blame anyone when she said "I don't blame anyone".  But she insisted by repeated mentionin' that there is someone responsible for the fuck up with the bureaucratic paperwork, which, incidentally was her fault.

Or think 'bout this--there's a progressive individual who's literally broadcastin' his opposition towards an immigration legistative.  And I don't doubt his sincerity, nor do I necessarily associate offspring with their parents' racist opinions, but I do know that there's some conscious effort to distance 'emselves.

I mean--I'm sure someone can find somethin' hypocritical 'bout me, even if I think otherwise.  And I hope that I've got no subconscious grudges guidin' me.  However, I don't've any sense of protectin' my survival--I've lived my life.  As well, I'm not that desperate for attention to resort to suicide.  Yet.

(6.28.10)

What if earth's sewage system was owned by humans puppeteered by aliens?  The cursor blinks...

Do fatal duos do those fake telltale doodles done in dewdrop decimal spiralglyphics?  Apparently the Baron'n'me can't disagree more than the borin' chlorine solution...

Should I care?  Yes--it's not every sixteen years there's a soul worth mergin' with of the same age should the contract legal whatever clear the clear, so to spoke, blow the smoke, poke, the joke, et cetera.  Awoke, I typed a blog entry in the clogged dysentery of the gogglespherethatisthebogglewe're...

In a dozen hours I'm Diamonds with Sky the in Lucy.  "Nine of our hours ahead," said Fred Ed Ted and the Calvin of Hobbes and.  Everytime I get a glimpse of a map, which if I'm at work is everyday cause there're two pinned on the walls of the circulation desk as well as a seismic chart back in the staff room, I can't help but zone into her time zone.  "Will you visit my country?" she asked over a chicken'n'bacon'n'avocado sandwich...

"I already said I would," I thought she understood.  "It's very poor," she poured a cup of forgotten water for me.  "If you came from there," I declared, "it's gotta be cool."  And she did her usual "aw shucks" reflux.  But I'm serious--most of her "friends" who're mostly down here'll most likely never follow thru on their tomorrow's soon up there.  I, on the other alone in the forest clapped hand'll handle the friendly promise where my mouth is.  Wizards scissors with sister's twizzlers miss the miserable mistakes that take the lake and the wake and the cake...

(6.29.10)

Is it ever really the day for anythin', least of all droppin' acid?  I mean, you can plan everythin' in advance, from the time'n'place via convenience, but in the end there's always gonna be somethin' not in the cards.  We're at the double bar...

"Where is it?" Jonny moaned.  "What measure?"
"15!," Colin yelled.
"Let's do it again," Ed reset.

Hobbes'n'Calvin stocked my fridge with prepackaged sandwich products--sliced meats'n'cheeses.  "It's good for you," they recommended as Hobbes wrestled with his stomach for 'bout a half an hour with the fifth volume of Peanuts...

"There's some guy who wants to talk to you," Hobbes woke me from my LSD trance.
"What..." I didn't want to bother.
"Yeah, he's at your door..."

I lost track of north.  I mean, it was all fun'n'all, but without my four girls, I can't easily find my bearin's--which, I suppose is the point of the drug, and I'm in no way complainin', but you can't sit in the middle of a string quartet and think...

"OK?" I eyed my 'cellist.  "You're holdin' that page too long."
"I'm thinkin'," she smugged.
"OK," I reassured.

"Do you have my keys?" the stranger barged.  "Nope," I told the truth.  "Sorry to bother you," he went on his way.  "It was strange," Hobbes spoke for Calvin, "we were sittin' outside havin' a smoke and this guy just drives up and asks for you..."

"Can I borrow your bong?" I asked before he fell asleep.
"Yeah, sure," he relinquished.
"Cool," I smoked.

But ghosts flew from my dead television screen.  The table melted, shifted across the room, and reconstructed in miniature a million years ago.  And shadows made as much sense as light in the bigger photo, circlin' 'round the peripherals...

"It's happenin' gradually," Jonny noted.
"Those three bars're out," Phil triple checked.
"You sound so proper," Colin mocked Ed.

"Everyone should've their own string quartet," I concluded as I heard their speakin' voices in their playin'--the way each of 'em talks, their vocal mannerisms, phrasin', and tone, creep into the sound they produce with their bowed instruments...

"Tomorrow at JM's?" Zaggs texted yesterday.
"sorry," I replied, "let's jam next week".
And so it's been planned.

(6.30.10)
(7.1.10)

I thought Ď'bout takin' the summer off from by blog, like July'n'August.  But then I figured that I actually enjoy writin' this online journal--the time it kills alone is worth not takin' a vacation.  Plus, the only other concurrent projects're some portraits made outta toy bricks--I gotta glue one tomorrow, ship one off to Serbia, and start another one for my personal film historian's mother's sister's housewarmin' gift.  Not that I won't be takin' a few weeks off.

For sure in August, when I'll be housesittin'.  Well, to be fair, I should take a break from OUT ON A LIM, just to recharge, so to speak--cause Iím fully aware of the lack of focus as of late in my entries.  However, fuck it, I might get addicted to the laziness of not exercisin' my late night typin' skills.  Besides, it's already feelin' like a long'n'slow summer and it's only just begun.  That bein' said, I'm gonna try to not talk 'bout my favourite subject.

(7.2.10)

"Come on, hurry up," the impatient lady behind me in line at the post office whispered.  I was up next, I'd waited a half an hour to get to my spot, and there was only one postal worker attendin' the queue that spewed out the door.  You could hear people updatin' their cellphone contacts 'bout the forever stall that was goin' on.  The postal worker, who wasn't good lookin', grossly overweight to be exact, was filin' some envelopes, which caused the lady to my rear to mutter her words of hurry uppance.  I tried to find some pattern in the lightin' fixtures to get my mind off the lag.  All I needed was a money order to pay for the security guard that patrolled my concert at the library rotunda.  And really, I wasn't in a hurry, so I wasn't pissed off, which allowed me to assess the situation without any subjective prejudice.  Let's just say I felt sorry for the single postal worker, who obviously was relishin' in the power she'd over the long line at her disposal.  Nevermind the lack of staffin', cause that's outta everyone's control, but the fact that this lone postal worker took her own sweet time whilst the line grew grumpier was one of the saddest sights to see.  I mean, if I were her, I'd've pushed myself to work faster--to lessen the aggravation that was obviously focused upon her.  But for whatever reason, be it her lack of appreciation from whoever she desired, or her drunken authority trip, I couldn't help but feel bad for the pathetic life she's livin'.  And everyone was pissed off as she minded her own business.  She loved it too much even though she didn't gloat, but it was in her bullshit maneouvers that I gleemed her intentions--fuck them all, I'm in charge here, even though everywhere else I ain't.  But really, 'tis almost everyone that makes me cry.  What's with your ambition, your revenge, and your need to prove that your alive?  And there's no hurry.  Relax.  It's all gonna be over before you know it.  I'm laughin' like an idiot at the dire seriousness that's supposedly at stake--the lady behind me, the postal worker, the cellphone callers.  What's it all mean in the end?  Nothin'.  Come on, hurry up and give it a rest.

(7.6.10)

In the food'n'beverage department, I can't say that I've got any passionate dislikes--I've got no complaints 'bout anythin' eatable or drinkable.  I mean, when I was younger, I couldn't stand mushrooms, but nowadays I can't not stand 'em--unlike my sister who shared that distaste, however she's yet to outgrow it.  Cause it's rare that there's anybody I know that doesn't've somethin' they hate, for whatever reason, be it sheer disgust or some weird childhood association.  And it's that mental blockage that's got me thinkin' 'bout why I don't drink coffee.

I can't remember the last time I had a cup--it'sn't like I despise it, cause I'll drink it if someone puts a gun to my head, but given the choice, I'll pass.  As a flavour, I'm all for it--in chocolate, in cakes, in ice cream, etc.  So it's not a matter of physical disagreement between my tongue'n'brain.  I did, though, think for a while that the temperature of hot coffee to be an issue as I lacked the patience to sip things, which makes no sense cause hot tea doesn't bother me.  But the other day, it all came back to me, like a lost puzzle piece, why coffee never crosses my mind.         

21 years ago, when I was 17, I spent a summer in Manhattan.  My mom'd a cousin there who'd a friend that let me stay in the city--in a small studio apartment, with screamin' neighbours'n'rats.  It was very cool--at that age I felt like I needed to grow up fast.  I got drunk every night--I remember pukin' the first time I put down too much beer.  The bars were great--crazy "Japanese only" places with sake'n'cocaine.  I loved walkin' in Harlem and Central Park late at night with the looney'n'naked tramps.  And there was a Chinese escort that I met at Canal Street.

Anyways, it wasn't all fun'n'games--that all took place at night, but durin' the day I had a job as a carpenter buildin' restaurants 'round town.  I had to report to work at 6 o'clock in the mornin'--and usually finished 12 hours later.  It wasn't easy--carryin' planks of wood, cleanin' the scraps, cuttin', sandin', etc.  There's no way I could do all that shit now, plus go and party afterwards 'til I blacked out and found my way back at work the followin' day.  But that's what bein' young's for--you find yourself.  At least I can say that I've worked an honest day in my life.

Of course all this was under the table--my coworkers were all illegal immigrants.  Actually I could've kicked back and not worked--I'd just quit a job at a movie theatre back home cause I couldn't deal with pretendin' to enjoy servin' people.  But I wanted to buy a drum machine.  So with my earnin's I took a job elsewhere with more pay'n'less bullshit.  I learned the word "amigo" amongst my Latin American buddies.  And without tryin' to sound racist, cause it ain't their fault, I gotta say that those guys're responsible for my apprehension towards coffee.    

Every mornin' we'd drink some to wake up--we all'd hangovers.  And it kinda worked, I mean, there weren't any big name chains back then, so I can't say we drank the good stuff.  But you could hand me the gourmet's best and I'll still picture myself standin' in a circle with a bunch of dirty illegal immigrants, waitin' for the boss' orders.  Granted, I'm thankful for 'em cause I never got addicted--that drug jives with too many unhappy souls.  As well, it just feels too much like work, adults, responsibilities, drones, etc.  It's for puttin' your inner child to sleep.

(7.7.10)

I've been stretchin' my vocal chords.  Everyday after the library closes--it's summer, so the hours're abbreviated--I lock myself in the back room and yell my head off, accompanied on bamboo guitar.  I'm tryin' to extend my range and I find screamin' to be a good warm up to relax my voice before I hit the high register.  Otherwise I'll sound like I'm strainin'--and nobody wants to hear that.  I used to sing into my rack of effects'n'listen on headphones--crank up the reverb'n'pretend I'm in a virtual shower.  But nowadays I've gotten lazy--settin' up the microphone's a bother.  Plus, I'm less inclined to use too much technology in conjunction with playin' music--the pure acoustic vibrations don't need any enhancements.  I mean, ideally, I'd practice in my shower--but my neighbours'd kill me.  However, the next best thing, when I'm at home, I've discovered, is a tiny corner by the threshold to my bedroom.  I shut the door and I can bounce my voice 'round without makin' too much noise.  As well, if I put my back against the wall, I can feel the notes down my spine.  I ignite a candle, place it in a lantern, set it on the floor, and turn off the lights.

(7.8.10)

"Larry McFeurdy's New Song (Acoustic Version)"

(7.9.10)

Eb     Ebaug+9

After warmin' up with "Karma Police" and a couple of run thrus of Larry's new song, JM began to strum those chords.  Zaggs playd a beat.  And Larry added a bass so that the progression became:

Eb    Ebaug+9/B    Eb/Bb    Ebaug+9/Ab

The Meanwhilers jammed away--each of 'em findin' somethin' in the pattern to continue endlessly.  This was definitely the beginnin's of a new song.  Eventually, they came up with a chorus:

Fm+9    Eb/G    Fm+9/Ab    Eb/C

But there were no words or melody.  Larry sang some nonsense lines as filler, makin' up verses or insertin' exisitin' lyrics.  Nothin' really stuck except for one repeated phrase that was catchy:

"Serbia"

That was six days ago and tomorrow they're gonna get together again for their weekly session.  Unfortunately, Larry didn't've anythin' written other than a few tentative ideas that followed:

"Serbia, someday I'll visit you"

Fortunately, it was a holiday--the day after July 4th.  He'd nothin' to do'n'nowhere to be, which're the perfect conditions for composin'.  When he woke up, he decided to finish the song.

"Until then I'll wait 'til when you return"

The song easily took shape and practically wrote itself.  But there needed to be a gimmick, like in his last song.  There needs to be somethin' that he'sn't done before.  And this is what he came up with:

"Aibres"

(7.12.10)

<<
Out On a Lim (7.13.10 - 11.4.11)

<<
Back to main page