Vincent the Black Cat

We used to have a black cat named Vincent, he was the coolest blend of walk slow, affectionate, happy to be held; and wild-man outdoors Mr. Danger cat. Our daughter once woke up to him BANGING on her window with…

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Great Advice

I felt stressed, depressed, riddled with anxiety, on a wobble. Work was crushing me in a crucible of new technology, new role, change of clients, change of focus, change, change, change—and I was scared. My palms and feet were sweaty.…

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An Atheist’s statement + my reply

Hello. I am an atheist. I define atheism as suspending acknowledgement of the existence of gods until sufficient evidence can be presented. My position is that I have no good reason to acknowledge the existence of gods.And here is the…

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Lenny Breau

Jazz guitarist Lenny Breau was phenomenal, other-worldly. Chord melody and just crazy good.     I met him at a music trade show called NAMM in Anaheim, CA. Got to speak with him. This is tall stuff. It got taller.   …

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Opening Act for the Eagles’ Randy Meisner

   We lived in Madison, Wisconsin. I was a full-time guitarist in a 5-piece country rock/western band. One morning I’m hanging out with my friend Scott, the other guitarist, when we get a call from our agent.    “Oh good, you…

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Playing in the Big Band

At GIT (Guitar Institute of Technology), the great studio guitarist, Tommy Tedesco, conducted a workshop. You may never have heard the name Tommy Tedesco, but you have heard him play guitar on many soundtracks—pop-rock of the ’60s (Beach Boys, Frank…

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    The crashing economy tanked our catering business, and I needed money. We served a reservation center for one of the airlines near LAX, and what once had provided an income so good that it induced facial ticks in our…

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Confusion: when my singular train of thought attempts multiple streams of consciousness. 00

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Friendship & Grace

If we are friends, then part of the contract is to extend each other patience and grace; for when we work closely while our soul’s character is being carved into shape by stresses trials and challenges – in aggravation we…

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Ginger Baker

   Watched a documentary on world-famous drummer Ginger Baker titled “Beware of Mr. Baker.” Not what I expected; profoundly sad. Conclusive proof that achieving the pinnacle of fame, success, and top echelon in your art, including producing a portfolio of Awesome…

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The Wall of Fear

This is embarrassing, but for your sake, I’ll throw myself on the grill. Susie & I lived in Madison, Wisconsin. I worked in a bookbindery—a factory that made covers for books. My job: someone slid me a stack of naked…

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You Don’t Understand…do you?

When someone berates you with “You don’t understand!” don’t take offense. Consider it an opportunity to build a bridge of friendship, to understand them more fully–or perhaps by allowing them to cover ground you’ve already comprehended, your willingness may help…

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Watching People at Whole Foods

Shopping at Whole Foods—actually Susie was shopping, making the choices, doing the work– I was wandering, quasi-glazed, staring at stuff and watching people. I observed two individuals with markedly different sets of attitudes. This one guy—I called him Johnny– was…

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the boy’s eyes

     At age 11, my son Casey was an enthusiastic novice. Those things I’d seen so many times—the road, the bridge, the people, the view—are fresh to him, and with newness he LIVES! I see through his eyes, his…

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Casey’s Story (Part 5)

     From that moment on—the Skype sessions, the tupperware-on-his-head games, the smiles—we didn’t look back, he was ours, here we go.     We drew a bath, Casey looked wide-eyed at the watery oblong tank. When we tried to put…

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Casey’s Story (part 4)

     We were told, “Here he comes…”      Through the opaque glass door, two adults—an older, sadder-looking dark haired man with sorrowful eyes and tired face; and a younger woman, smiling eyes sparkling like she’d been let out of…

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Casey’s Story (part 3)

     Finally, the long, long flight to China.     We asked our doctor for sleeping pills, he prescribed some ‘anxiety relief’ drug which helped very little—I was anxious about not sleeping! For most of the flight I sat slumped,…

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Casey’s Story (part 2)

     Three months before we were to get our little girl child from China, Susie said to me,      “Wouldn’t it be great if they gave us a boy?” (We already had three biological daughters)      “Sure, that’d…

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