Friday, October 29, 2010

Letting people do what people do

Living life, waiting for fall, planning the holiday gift purchases. Don't give many Christmas gifts these days. Nobody has buckets of money any more and not so many kids to do for. Never been a giant fan of buying things "just because" anyway, although that comes off as pretty bah-humbug if you say it out loud. A better idea would be a beer and a barbeque, followed by dragging the big screen outside so we can both a) sit around the fire pit digesting burgers and hot links, and b) watch the football game. (Note to self: If this were a real plan of action I should better also drag out couches and easy chairs.) But that's just me. Oh, and just so we're clear, there would be a fire in the fire pit I mentioned earlier. I figured that was understood.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, although I'm more a wordsmith than photographer. Still, my pictures are worth a good 650 - 750 words each. If I augment them with captions, I figure we break somewhere near the standard 1k threshold. There are pictures both this post and last post. Some are not so good, but others are simply Mahvelous!, in the alternate reality, best case mediocre way in which I use the word.

I think I have not posted a picture of self since I lost me some weight. Will rectify that here (Rectum? Dang near killed 'im! Hahahaha). Had a big mirror and a digital camera. Was sitting there wondering, "what to do....what to do...", when it hit me. Heck, why didn't I think of it before? I can take a walk down to Crystal City. But first, let me take a mirror shot or two. And yes, the hair was my idea. I had me some mousse, I had me a black stripey shirt, and I had me some gold chains and such. Haven't done my Jesrey Shore look in, well, ever. Yep that's me. Since "The Situation" was already taken as an awesomely cool, Guido-fabulous if you will, self-imposed nickname, I will call myself "Compromising Position". Almost as catchy, slightly less chick magnet. But it goes nicely with my pony keg abs.

I would love to comiserate with some of you about the local races here and our bizarre political culture. But unless you live with the obvious lying, blatant stealing, and the tortured logic eminating from everybody in Talahassee, from the interns to the Court of Appeals (yes, even our judiciary is proudly on the take) that is presented, all straight faced and serious, to justify abberant behavior, you would never believe the stories. Here in the Sunshine State it's true, you can't make this stuff up! We are mostly mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. We want change and want it now, so we are going to throw the bums out and replace them with people who are exactly the same. That'll show us, er....them.

But I digress. I devolve. I may even .... Where was I?

See the pictures below. Buy a Todd Snider CD. Pictures below. Videos first. Ciao.

We learn from history that we learn nothing from history, out
Ramblin' Ed

Note the genuine smile. I believe in everyone.

I could not catch a picture that showed the beauty and quiet of this place, although I came close to showing the quiet. This is SW Washington State, 25 miles north of Portland up the I-5. Obviously, I had left the Interstate. Fun fact: I-5 from San Francisco and north, does not have very many gas stations. It's like they built a highway but forgot the gas.

I liked this bridge. It made me think of like if I was on one side of the river but needed to get to the other side. And I couldn't fly. Because I was a train. Fun fact: Despite the moniker, "Bullet Trains" cannot fly.

Pumpkin patch in WA. Fun fact: Barb wire does little to impede vegetation creep.

I wanted a picture of this awesome set of bridges back into Oregon. But the traffic was heavy and for over a mile there was no place I could pull over that also had a view of them. So, this is what they looked like from behind the wheel. Fun fact: This is kinda like dash cam, without the criminals and heavy Tru TV (Not reality. Actuality.) vibe.

At 60 mph, I soon found meself upon the bridge. Fun fact: I said "meself" instead of the more contemporary"myself".

Near Pioneer Square in Portland. Fun fact that actually is a fact: We saw these in an Armed Forces TV ad (we didn't get commercials, we got history lessons). A rich busisness man donated these to the city and they are all around downtown. His name was Benson and these are known as Benson Bubblers.

One man Blue Man Group. Fun Fact: He's not blue. It is, however, possible he has the blues. So I rate this claim as half-true. Possibly.


For such a mellow place, there's a whole bunch of rules. Bummer. Fun fact: Judging from this list, it appears that it surprisingly easy to get into a brawl around here. Hey!.... is that a Saints cap, buddy?

This self professed Billionaire slash Musician slash street philosopher is the one who wanted me to quit my job and be the face of his company for $250,000. You know the one who was also bumming smokes off of everybody. He thinks I was taking his picture. Fun fact: I wasn't. And I can give you 3 good reasons.

So, I get use a tanning bed and do my laundry at the same time? Well, it's about time. (Sign in lower right ) Fun fact: Discount Tobacco is sponsoring a wine tasting.

Would your city allow this establishment? Fun fact: Heh heh heh... Hung Farlow.
The following Monday I was far from the Pacific Northwest in Washington, DC. This was my view from the hotel. The Pentagon. Let's just say that the mood was far less mellow here. Fun fact: Local law apparently requires high and tight haircuts and prohibits public displays of smiling.

Fun fact: I am out of captions. But you should biggerize this. It's a good shot of the city and the morning traffic crawl.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Will Schuster is trying to make the world a better place

OK, sorry kiddies. I finally sat down to the keyboard and I ain't stopping for anything, otherwise another 2 months may pass between posts. The following photos are all from my BlackBerry, which for some reason has no flash like my last one. I have some pics from a real camera, but the data card is in my computer at work, so I'll have to post those pics later. They are mostly Portland and Washington State anyway.
Waiting for Hank III in St. Pete. Look who else was coming. My heros, all. Well, maybe not Assjack.
San Antonio's River Walk. Beautiful, in an old people's sort of way.
The band at Tootsie's. She sang to me. I tipped her. It was all a blur.....
I had heard of Hank III had also mentioned it. This was outside one of the Broadway dives.
Nashville, TN. Home of endless Johnny Cash and Jack Daniels kitsch, by the way.
Ooooh... a hat band!
I was impressed with the combination spare tire/subwoofer. That's ingenious.
My Nashville rental. The one with the spare tire and subwoofer.
Enough said.

Yeah, kinda gleeky. Sue me.
My how time flies. Been a while since I posted and I feel a little bad about that. But I have been on the road nonstop. I made it to my fishing trip in So. Fla, but then TSA changed all of their schedules that I had negotiated and I missed my ship's reunion in Jacksonville (and I had been one of the requestors of an east coast reunion). When I was home for one week, my wife was in the hospital for the duration. Not so much a major problem as a drawn out one.

So, as a child of North Carolina in the 60's & 70's, I found this to be interesting. If you look at the comments in my last post, you will find comments posted there from none other than The Nature Boy, Ric Flair. Who, you ask? He was a wrestler (or, in SE N.C., a wrassler) back in the day. Had not thought about him in years, and I am not sure how he wound up visiting my blog, but this isn't the kind of thing that you can make up.

In the last 5 weeks I have been in San Antonio, which was cool enough but not as cool as I had envisioned it. I thought the river walk would be better than it was. It was beautiful, but kind of boring actually. I thought about a quick side trip up to Austin, then I thought about it a couple of more times. But the work schedule made me wary of getting too far down the dusty trail lest somthing happen. And I really, really, really want to go to Austin. It will be my pilgrimage. Would love to be there for SXSW, but....

Then I was home a week, followed by a trip to Nashville. I had a ball in Nashville. Visited a record store that was run by a fella who played in Bobby Bare, Jr's band, Bare, Jr. Yeah, I actually have the Boo-Tay! CD. So I went ahead and picked up his latest, A STORM – A TREE – MY MOTHER’S HEAD, some DBT outtakes, Todd Snider, and Justin Townes Earle. Then I hit Tootsies and all the dives on Broadway...repeatedly. My hotel was, once I figured out the back way downtown, very convienient to doing some honky tonkin'.
As an aside, Justin Townes Earle continues my infatuation with the offspring of my teen year heros. Shooter Jennings, Hank III, Bobby Bare, Jr. etc. But Earle has more points on the compass, if you will. I absolutely idolize his father Steve Earle, whos song Guitar Town was my theme song forever. I just found out this morning that his mama was Allison Moorer whos Alabama Song CD is a hauntingly beautiful favorite of mine. (And she's a red head!!). Also...yes, there's more, Jason Isbell (previously of DBT) plays on his latest. Yeah, I know.
I left Nashville for Portland, OR (go back and hit the link. It's not there for my health) which has been my favorite trip in quite some time. It's no New Orleans, but I think it could easily be my second favorite U.S. city. I could get around by rail. The city is very alternative friendly. I met a number of bona fide characters who made me smile as we talked/babbled/veered far off the conversational course. "(sob sob) Then why do I feel so much pain!?"* and "I like you and I want to hire you for $250,000 a year"** are actual peices of conversations I had. It was, to borrow a favorite Appalachianist's descriptor, quite the bohemian burg. Loved It. Or, like they say up there, Keep Portland Weird.
* From the guy who was the most interesting and enigmatic guy he knew. A real self proclaimed messiah type.
** I would get the job after he returned from his world tour (with Mick Jagger opening for him). I would be the face of his billion dollar enterprise making sheds for Lowe's. The whole time, by the way, he was bumming cigarettes from passersby. I thanked him, but allowed that I was pretty happy where I was and, as I was sure a highly enlightened rogue like himelf would understand, it isn't always about the money.
After Portland was D.C., or to be excact, the Crystal City area of Arlington, VA.My room overlooked the Pentagon. Needless to say, a very different vibe from Oregon the previous week. But I survived and they finally let me come home again.

Been bothered by a trend I have seen a lot of lately. It's a flying thing, so many of you may not appreciate why it pisses me off. Has only happened to me once, and I cut her off with a very quick "not interested", but I see it about every other flight. You get to your assigned seat and someone is already sitting there and they tell you that they want to sit in your seat and why don't you just take the one that they were assigned. I play by the rules, logging a lot of butt miles in small airplane seats, I check my seat location on the website where possible and if not, I check in two hours prior to my flight to pick my seats at the kiosk. I work my way closest to the front and into a window seat. (I used to go aisle seat for better egress, but once the bag fees started, I was getting hit in the head with far too many carry on steamer trunks to continue that). And while I am really proud that you managed to procreate just the cutest child ever, or that you married an Army man, or I sympathyze that you can't spend 2 1/2 hours separated by 3 rows from your beloved husband/boyfriend/sugardaddy, it isn't enough to give you my seat. In my case, the young mother wanted to rock her infant beside the window and wanted to trade me for her middle seat. She thought it quite rude of me that I wouldn't even consider it, and I thought it presumptuous of her to assume I would give her my seat, but thoughtful of her to pre-warm it for me.
Bonus Link: I call it Johnny Pop, but it's really God's Gonna Cut You Down.

This video has more big names than a sri-lanken phone directory, out
Ramblin' Ed