August 27th, 2007

abstract butterfly

Monday makes us happy, Tuesday makes us think, Wednesday makes us hopeful, Thursday makes us wink

I don't live my life from weekend to weekend, but I do notice that only five more days of work will lead to the three day Labor Day weekend. So far we have no great plans for that weekend, except an hour's drive to the largest flea market in the world, in Canton.

The presidential election remains fourteen months away, and yet the news commentary coverage of this election has already rendered it as banal as possible.

This weekend I signed up to make a twenty five dollar loan through kiva.org, which funds microloans to folks in the third world. If the loan "funds", then apparently I'll be a lender to a Tajik clothes retailer. I'm glad to participate in this very small way in micro-lending.

My favorite remix site, ccmixter.org, just added tons of albums by the ambient artist Robert Rich to its sample pool. I do not own much Robert Rich, but I am delighted to have the chance to remix those samples. This weekend I created a song using a sample from my nose flute, a foot-operated bicycle pump, a battery-powered toothbrush, some bolts from Home Depot, and my 25 dollar softsynth Sawcutter 2.0.

This week's song title at Songfight.org is
"history of my broken heart", for which I believe my song has the perfect instrumentation. I have until Monday morning to devise and perform lyrics for the piece.
My prior songs adopted that style of lyric writing involving really trite, obvious lyrics at a failed attempt at irony. This time I will write a long free verse piece that will sound remarkably like my weblog voice. If one is in for a penny, and for a pound, one might as well be in one's own way of doing things.

I still am not very good at recording vocals. I get the raw track down in fairly good shape but I am not good at processing the sound into the mix. I will keep trying to read and learn.

A fellow on youtube who watched one of my Texas hike short films asked me about places to hike near San Antonio. As I put together the information to send him a detailed discussion, I got a longing to go on the hikes I mentioned. If there were but world enough and time, this cloistering at work would be no crime, but I hope I get to take a few of those hikes in the larger world when there is enough time.
abstract butterfly

brief flash of insight

Tonight I remembered an old and hard-learned lesson. It goes something like "play to your strengths". I am always grateful when I learn that lesson at a relatively painless cost. I also believe in the companion phrase: "try something new often", but that doesn't change the bit about play and strengths.

I am pleased Alberto Gonzales resigned. I hope that an appointment will be made that will clean up the rubble.

I won a case today, which was a good thing. It's good to work in a field with concrete milestones for achievements. Yet in my work one loses some and one wins some. It's not really practical to talk much about one's wins and losses, as win, lose or settle does not tell the story. The story is not best told in a weblog, anyway. The stories tell themselves in my mind, always--an endless supply of narrative. I am good at entertaining myself.

Robert Rich is now releasing on Magnatune. This is a grand and wonderful thing, as this means great ambient material available for remixing at ccmixter. I am returning to ambient and chill music--I set aside efforts to write traditional songs, as my efforts to do so turn out neither traditional or as songs.

I do plan to write August poetry, and to load up Reason 3.0 this week.