Wknd Rprt: July 2019 – Wk 2

NOTE: This report should’ve already been filed a couple days ago but it sat unpublished in the draft folder.

So after the live show we played on the 5th of July, I forced myself into a guitar sabbatical for at least a week. Looks like that will turn into at least two weeks because my brain has shifted back from musician mode to author mode (actually, our next show isn’t until Sept 6, so we’ve got some downtime for a bit yet before rehearsals resume). Thing is I’ve always oscillated between my two main arts like that since I added being a “serious writer” to my artistic passions in 1993 (five years after first picking up the guitar in 1988). So I am perusing my list of (unfinished, always these days) writing projects and reconnecting with them to see which one or two is screaming the loudest at me for abject neglect. Fast-forward a few days since beginning that perusal and I have totally identified which projects are screaming loudest. More on what I like to call The Writer’s Plight later.

And now a brief brief on the previous week that was . . .

– READ –

When I was at HALF-PRICE BOOKS the other day I overheard a guy say that he was in the middle of two books. My immediate thought was: Just two? I chuckled. I can’t say I always read multiple books at the same time . . . well, actually, comic books totally conditioned me for this approach to reading. As a youth I was reading comics some six years before truly getting into novels. Non-fiction books I devour quicker with more intense focus because that’s less about entertainment and more about edification and knowledge. I’ve always been obsessed with variety. Music, books, TV, movies . . . people. I’m terribly bored without a rainbow. I will confess that there are times I wish I could be more of a one-lane at a time kinda guy. Most often I’m not. And currently I’m in one of those modes where my book acquisitions are frequent and I just want to read ALL THE THINGS!!!


– Watched –

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I was skeptical that it would be better than SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING, as many have said. It’s just as good as but I always give the edge to the more emotive offering, which SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME is. Love what the final post-credit scene portends for the future. Oh, and Tom Holland is exceptional! Zendaya was sublime.

I watched this 7-video playlist courtesy of CapnOfCrunch on YouTube. I will finally see JAWBOX live and in person on July 27th at The Metro in Chicago. Can’t wait! These clips totally got me even more stoked!


DISCOVERED

I listen to a LOT of podcasts (maybe I should post a list of my subscriptions at some point?), many of which focus on comic books and/or their creators. But it’s always cool to get a more visual feature about comics and their creators. I happened to stumble across the debut of this particular one by one of my favorite comic artists.

Description from YouTube . . .

THE DRAWL WITH JASON LATOUR: Talking comics & creativity with writers & artists while trying to push my own.

ABOUT JASON: Jason Latour is a writer & artist. He co-created the EISNER WINNING Image Comics Series: SOUTHERN BASTARDS, Marvel’s SPIDER-GWEN and is a proud part of the OSCAR & GOLDEN GLOBE WINNING SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE. In 2015. He won the National Cartoonists Society’s Reuben Award for Comic Book Art. Charlotte NC is where he learned to draw(l).

FOLLOW:
https://www.youtube.com/user/jasonlatour
https://twitter.com/jasonlatour
https://www.instagram.com/jasonlatour/ROJECTS


T’was a good week, all things considered. This week could be even better with some scheduled time off and plans with some friends as well as some quality solitary time as the fam leaves me and the pets behind for a few days getaway.

Be well and live your best life.

-BLR

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Wknd Rprt: July 2019 – Wk 1

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The climax of the week came in the form of my band’s live performance at Radio Radio!

What a helluva week! What a helluva month and change, really. As I write this I am on Day 5 of a 5-day respite from work, having had the 4th and 5th off as paid holidays and then I scheduled a vacation day for today to ensure a day of recovery for all my shenanigans. I’ve probably set myself up for failure with these weekend reports as I struggle to beat my Oldtimer’s disease and try to remember all that happened the past two or three days, let alone the whole past week. This is all for posterity, so I will stick to the most notable events with the usual bullet points.

  • Thur, 4th of July – Spent time with the fam of course, enjoyed some good grub from the grill and lovingly baked dessert goods. The weather was nearly perfect and I always enjoy spending time on the in-laws shady front porch. After that I was off to band practice where John (guitar) and Rich (bass) and I fine-tuned for our performance on Friday night.

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  • Fri, July 5 – Did a little shopping Friday and decided to finally try to see if I could squeeze into some 32-inch waist jeans again. And not only did I squeeze into them with ease, but I decided to go with the “skinny jeans” option and I have to admit I may never buy the non-skinny version again because I love the slimmer taper at the ankles. I confess that I haven’t worn 32s probably since before I was 32, which was many moons ago!

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  • Fri, July 5 – I also bought some leather CHUCK TAYLOR ALL-STARS, inspired by one of my guitar heroes, DEATH ANGEL co-founder/songwriter ROB CAVESTANY when I saw him onstage a few months back. I can’t remember if his version had the white logo or not, but I the all black logo on mine.

Hero House Comics

  • Fri, July 5 – As a band we were to load in to Radio Radio! at 7 PM, an hour before doors opened, two hours before the music was to begin with the first band, Dead Squirrels at 9 and the Garbage tribute band at 10. So we had some time to kill. My bandmate and buddy Rich introduced me to this store HERO HOUSE COMICS and its cool owner as well. It’s a swell little store that I will be sure to visit whenever I’m down in the FOUNTAIN SQUARE neighborhood in Indy. I grabbed a sticker that is the exact replica of that sweet logo above.

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  • Fri, July 5 – Still with my bandmate Rich, we went to enjoy some art over at the Murphy Arts center that was also in the Fountain Square neighborhood. Tim McLaughlin’s photography was quite impressive.
  • Fri, July 5 – Friendly support as my lady April plus my friends Nikki, Rick, Ryan, Tina, Ian, B.J. and Violet all showed up to our band. I was so in-the-moment and anxious/impatient that I failed to snap any pictures of all their smiling faces.
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Rich and I onstage — shot by my friend Nikki.
  • Fri, July 5 – Finally showtime. Our still-yet-to-be-named Alice in Chains tribute band took the stage a little after 11 PM and we charged through our 9-song set in what seemed like a blur: Them Bones, We Die Young, Down in a Hole, Junkhead, Rooster, God Smack, Nutshell, Would? and Man in the Box. The highlight for singer Jason and I being Nutshell, the song I would up unexpectedly playing the most lead guitar on in the general scheme of things. Weeks ago I wasn’t confident I’d play it without flubs, no matter how perfect I’d played it in practice. Thankfully that’s exactly what I did, which was essentially the cherry on top. I was a sweat machine up there with numerous beads of sweat running unimpeded down my bald head. My ears rang and my joints ached well into the next morning, but like a football player taking multiple hits in a game his team won, it was all worth it.
  • Sat, July 6 – Most notable Saturday was my popping some Ibuprofen to quell some soreness and taking an unplanned 4-hour nap. The best sleep is the sleep you don’t plan, right?

Best Bet Breakfast

  • Sun, July 7 – We had breakfast with our dear friends and frequent dining partners Nikki and Rick at Best Bet, a little local eatery with a cool Vegas casino theme. I got an omelette with roast beef, mushrooms and cheddar cheese with two pancakes and those Ava potatoes that I never eat. Then the four of us moseyed on over to IKEA for oohs and wows at all the neat stuff we say we’d like to have someday.
  • Sun, July 7 – Met up with Ryan, one of my longest friends and we went to the Built to Spill show that I statused the other day. BUILT TO SPILL played all the songs from their 1999 album Keep It Like a Secret. The last time I saw them live was 20 years ago during their original support of that album. I unexpectedly ran into Justin and his lovely wife Allyson, and also got to see my old buddy Mike and his lovely wife Amber too. I saw and head-nodded a few other familiar faces as well. Naturally I bought a shirt that has the image of the Keep Like a Secret album cover and sky blue color scheme.20190708_154449~26405074541344289604..jpg

Whew. And now I return to my mental health day, er, scheduled vacation day with the plan to do not much at all except write this post, maybe hit the library, get some reading in and maybe try to get in a few backlogged episodes of FEAR THE WALKING DEAD.

Be well and live your best life.

-BLR

Wknd Rprt: June 2019 – Wk 5

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  • Went to the Indianapolis Museum of Art (also now known as Newfields: A Place for Nature and Arts) down in the big city as my life partner and I celebrated 15 years together. Neither of us had been (I may have way back in grade school, but can’t remember) and we’d always wanted to go, so we did and we took LOTS of pictures of so much amazing art, many of which I’ll be sharing in a series here under the headline title of Artjunkie (Fun Fact: Artjunkie was my old online handle way back in the LiveJournal days of 2003-04). logo_for_oph
  • We started our Saturday celebration activities with a yummy breakfast at the Original Pancake House. Who knew that chopped toasted Georgian pecans would be so tasty on French toast?

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  • The historic Oldfields Lilly House and Gardens was quite a think to behold. We took a tour of the gardens and greenhouse as well as the manse with its awesome 42 rooms (not all available to the public) and impressive library area that I would have liked to somehow transpose to my house!

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  • We ate dinner at the El Meson Mexican Restaurant where I tried a wet burrito for the first time. It was most delish. Everything I’ve had there the past year has been wonderful.
  • A stop at the local comic shop, Comic Carnival (my former employer from some 25 years ago) and Barnes and Noble produced a few book purchases that I probably shouldn’t have made, but I have a book problem, you see. I’ll show my haul in a later post.
  • Played guitar for a lot of hours this weekend — in fact, I think I’ve played guitar the past month more than I have in all of the five previous months combined. Perhaps. Maybe I exaggerate. But still, when you have a live show looming in a month (now a week), fingers get real busy if you want to achieve proficiency in your rhythms and fluidity in your melodies.
  • Did not get much reading in this weekend, but I think I have a plan to fix my reading backlog woes, which I will also share in a later post.