Today a literal thunderstorm came out of nowhere, cooling everything with rain in just the same way that the gratifying response to my last post cooled for me the Summer heat of my own dearth of ideas. Thank you, everyone, for the "let it rain", although I stop entirely short of crediting the words for the weather.
I heard today from a friend back from Iraq after his fourth tour of duty since 2001.
I am far removed from the action.
My law partner and I drove to Mesquite to the wonderful Japanese restaurant there. We got some great work news last night, about which I will not elaborate here. There were few customers--just a beautiful, gracious, quietly attired Japanese-American woman who seated us, and Davis, our African-American waiter from Chicago. He talked about how funny it is that Dallasites can't drive in snow (a subject prompted by traffic delays in the rain on the LBJ Freeway), whereas my partner and I, who lived in Los Angeles (albeit in different eras), assured him that rain driving in Los Angeles is a more pure thing of wonder.
Substantial parking lot traffic apparently was parked in the Japanese restaurant lot in order to gain easy access to the Hooter's Restaurant next door. I cannot imagine anyone foregoing the food at the Japanese restaurant in order to sit near Hooters' girls, but that just shows my imagination is more "limited" than the be-hatted and be-trucker-capped dudes inside Hooters. I ate a chef's choice sushi bento box, which I very much enjoyed, while my partner had a bento box of duck that looked heavenly.
My wife and I went after my work to the natatorium, where I swam in the shallows and in the Lazy River, followed by fifteen minutes in the hot tub pool. Then we went to San Miguel, where I ate a grilled chicken breast. A man with a harp and a man with a guitar came to our table. I half hoped they would play "Guadalajara" in a spirited toothsome twosome way, but instead they played that old Oaxaca favorite, Elvis Presley's "I can't help falling in love with you". It was actually rather romantic.
I think of songs I love as guilty pleasures, like Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis". It's funny how some pop songs do it, and others don't, and it's like an irresistible elixir when one swallows one that works.
When we arrived home, our friend Donna called to let me know that Scott had had a major schedule conflict come up to require postponement of our planned folk song recording session. I was not disappointed, because Scott's a good friend and the conflict was both worrying and unavoidable.
I spent the time from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. writing and recording a new song. I tried to make this more ambient, with only limited success. The song violates one of my rules for ambient works--it fails to feature silence as the tour de force instrument. Still, I think it's going to do better than the 2.8 stars that my novelty song "Gladiator Song" got, and certainly better than the 1.4 stars I got for "Bethany Lakes Park". "Gladiator Song was picked as a "song of the day" fore one day next week, but I tend to trust the review that dismissed it as much more fun to record than to hear.
We'll see how "Beech Ridge" does, as it is up now. if I keep slowly progressing, I will write a good ambient song, but this one is too busy to qualify just yet. But we'll see how the other folks like it--I find I can rate others' music well, but my guesses as to the ratings others will give my own have not been accurate.
I played dulcimer tonight, working out a lot of "This Old Man". Someday I would like to know enough songs to play concerts in nursing homes with sufficient expertise to make the experience enjoyable for the listeners. I gave away my only can-jo, so I ordered another one on eBay. They are very inexpensive. My seller contacted me by IM, of all things, and we had a nice chat. He told me of the mandolin aficionado who kept insisting upon trying to tune the can-jo to perfect pitch. Needless to say, she broke the string. We agreed that if a can-jo were in perfect tune, it would not be a can-jo. Woody Guthrie would no doubt agree. He asked me to confirm what kind of resonator I wanted, and I told him "Canada dry ginger ale". I did not remember that this week featured Canada day. I just like the soft drink. When I get my can-jo, I will play "Born Free" and "Greensleeves".