Saturday, February 27, 2016

A moving blog

So here I am again. I've been busy. Collecting and organizing all your stuff is tough. Still it's coming along. I did find someone to take 30 of my record albums, the rest I just can't part with. They show my listening progression from the first pop records, mainly Beatles, to the late 60's with all the new and groundbreaking stuff that happened during that time, Cream, Jethro Tull, Yes, Jimi Hendrix, King Crimson and so on. This brought me to an appreciation of jazz, especially when I attended the Berklee School of Music. I found myself in classes where there were guys, mostly guys, who could play rings around me, and people who could barely hold a guitar. Honestly I didn't have the drive to complete my education there because, even if you do have an ear for music, you have to work hard to learn the fundamentals, and then quite possibly face a life as a starving musician. I don't like starving, especially with being Italian. We really like our food! But going to Berklee did open my ears to different kinds of music. At this point rock was becoming fused with jazz. Right up my alley, so to speak. My musical tastes evolved and I more or less ignored pop music, especially disco. I will admit there were a couple of disco tunes I liked though I couldn't tell you their names now, but generally I found it boring and repetitive. It was there for dancing, not listening. On the classical front I am fairly ignorant though I did develop a liking for Bach. All these records reflect all the changes I went through musically. I still love the late '60s stuff, it's my base. So in reality I got rid of 30 but I still have about 200.

Though I still don't know where I will eventually will end up moving to, I am over halfway done in getting all my stuff together. Apart from all that things are fine except for this ringing in my ear. I went to the doctor and guess what? They found a tiny bell in there! Thank You! I'll be here all week! Try the veal! When I die I want to go peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather, not screaming and hollering like his passengers before the crash. What a crowd! Don't forget to tip your waitresses and waiters!

At work from time to time, hearing a customer at the deli counter mangle and mispronounce, the name of a particular cold cut is a source of amusement for us. We have a new item which is called ham off the bone. It replaced an item which was called smoked ham (though we have 7 other hams that are also smoked)  because guess what? They're smoked. But now they are pushing this particular ham. Why because it's ham off the bone and I'm sure that sounded sexier and more exclusive to somebody. Well you know what? All the ham that you will find in a deli is off the bone or else you couldn't slice it on a slicer. People have asked for the "hambone ham", or my personal favorite, "bone off the bone ham". Genoa salami has been called "general salami" Who could forget his exploits in WWII. I once asked a customer how he would like his ham sliced,..  "thin, medium or on the thicker side?" He thought for a minute and said, "Cut it mediocre." Still I can't wait to stop working completely. That should happen in about a year.

Below is a George Carlin bit from a television appearance sometimes in the 80's. It's from a broadcast channel not cable so the language is clean. George was known to use some off color language from time to time. He's my favorite comedian and as far as I am concerned there was nobody better or more brilliant. I have been a fan ever since I saw him for the first time on the Hollywood Palace back in 1965.

So that's it for now. I'm off to my friend Dave's house to watch The Soprano's. I never saw the original telecasts because I didn't have cable at the time. I'm at the end of the third season. This series is fantastic! Well written and well acted.
That's it.
I'm outta here.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Ahh! The Donald!

Sometimes, just to relax, I fool around with pictures. There's the move that I have to make in the next two to three months. Un-cramming stuff that I crammed into closets over the last 8 years. Since I still work three days a week,and it's amazing that even with four days off, I don't have much down time.  All the other things in my life, family and friends take up time on my off days. This was not how I pictured semi retirement. Yeah there's a bit of whining involved with here. Besides having to move and sort of reevaluate things in my life, things could be much worse.  I don't have any more problems than anyone else. I have been lucky in my life. I do have certain things that I have had and have a problem parting with. For instance about 30 birthday cards from my mother. I'm going to keep them. A typewriter! What's that? A reel to reel tape recorder. Tape? What's tape? Then there was a multitude of cassette tapes. At least I was smart enough not to get involved with 8 track tapes. I already got rid of the vast majority of VHS tapes. Remember them?
Just in my lifetime we went from long play 10 inch long play records that would shatter like a dish if you dropped them, to the 12 vinyl lp's, then cassette tapes for your car or home. Then cd's were introduced and lp's slowly disappeared along with the cassettes. Now we're going to keep our music in a cloud. You know...up there...somewhere.

So many things have happened during my life time. The cold war with the Soviet Union, the Cuban missile crisis, The assassination of a president, The Viet Nam war, The Beatles, watching a man walk on the moon in my living room and so on. Not to mention all the technology, both good and bad. It's really just me looking back and looking forward at the same time.

I re-found my telescope which I will hold on to. I haven't used it in 20 or 25 years. So today is a real off day for me. I'm not doin' nuthin', except maybe help Arlene kill off a bottle of wine tonight.

So as I said at the  beginning, sometimes I fool around with pictures for relaxation and amusement. Well yesterday and this morning I finished up some fooling with pictures that I started fooling with several days ago.
We have the presidential elections. I'm really not thrilled with any of the candidates but after catching bits and pieces of the republican debates I have to admit I found Donald Trump, though an egomaniac, kind of entertaining, in a professional wrestling, Vince McMahon sort of way. I then began collecting Trump pictures and other kinds to have some fun by putting ol' Don in ridiculous situations. One picture led to another and so on.
I also posted it on Face Book though this is still my favorite place. People actually write things with complete sentences. Not that I am a writer but I do like to do it.
Ok here's a slideshow of how Trump got to where he is today. Well it's really a bunch of silly pictures that I strung together with a bunch of silly words.

I'm outta here.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Boy do I have a lot of junk, My favorite pictures

I have taken the last two days off from sorting through things, what to keep and what to part with. Some record albums were hard to part with. Some I know I could have sold. I kept my favorites. Of course I rebought a good deal of them on cd's, which now is just more old tech. I have old tech electronics, a reel to reel tape recorder with about seven reels of tape, two cassette player recorders including a good deal of cassettes, then there are the various computer related things. Going through my desk revealed that I have a multitude of pens and markers and so on. Now I have moved several times before and of course I have gathered more "stuff" each time. I guess I'm at the stage of my life when I just want to unclutter it.

Then again it wasn't just me hanging around in sweat pants. Even though I am semi-retired I still work three full days a week and I find that I have good energy at work, in fact I have to say I have more energy than people 30 or 35 years younger than me. However after the 30-40 minute ride home I find that I am 80 years old trying to get out of my car and I am not real excited to keep working. However on the other hand I do have four days a week off. I like that.

Things are a bit iffy about taking a Springtime trip to Martha's Vineyard. On the other hand we have been there 11 times since 2010 so I guess I can take a miss if that's how things work out. I am lucky that I have been able to take advantage of this little gem of a place in my back yard at all. I look at the pictures all the time. Arlene and I have put nights aside just to look at the pictures and videos. If I hit the lottery that's where I'm moving. I also have looked at some of my favorite pictures of other local places I have been since 2007 when I first began taking pictures. Last blog I made a slideshow of our visit the Harvard Museum of Natural History. Yesterday I looked at some of the pictures of Boston. The beautiful Boston Public Gardens The Boston Common and the North End of Boston. The North end has Paul Reveres house, the Old North Church and 50 restaurants, 43 of which are Italian. It's a very Italian neighborhood. If you ever make to Boston you must set a day aside to hit the North End. Just about any of the restaurants will give you a fantastic meal. I can recommend Piccola Venezia, "Little Venice". This is what I ate that day. I can't remember what it was called but it was fabulous.

Here are some of favorite Boston pictures.

That's All Folks! I'm outta here.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Harvard Museum Of Natural History Pt 1&2

 It's snowing as I write this. I continue get my act together for a future move. In reality it's one big pain in the ass that I was not anticipating at this particular point in my life. Be that as it may, As I began my sorting of things I found a disc with pictures from our visit to the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge in January 2009. It was sunny but cold. Single digits. Harvard University is in Harvard Square. I made slideshow as a way of relaxing after a long morning and a shortened afternoon.There were various exhibits. Animal, human, skeletons, gems, minerals, and the fabulous glass flowers etc. 

Below is the second slideshow.

That's it for the moment. I see shoveling in my future.
I'm outta here.

Monday, February 1, 2016

I've been busy! Updated. The video now works.

It was an unusually warm day today. 62 or 65 depending who you listened to and at what time. Whatever, it still beats the 9 feet of snow last year, though you never know. This is New England.  I have been busy seeing that I have to move. I still have three  or four months to get my act together and boy have I accumulated a lot of stuff. It's not really the big stuff so much as the small stuff. I have been shredding mucho paper. I have made a list of all the things, larger things that is, that I'm going to have hauled away.

Now for a musical interlude. A local disc jockey makes spoof songs out of popular songs. They would play the songs on the air and then he compiled them on a cd. Many of the songs have a local bent to them, referring to local cities around Boston or Cape Cod. Others are more general in nature. This is one of them. I had to add some pictures so I could post it as a video here on Blogger instead of you tube. All the pictures did not line up just the way I wanted them to but the song is the thing. You will recognize the melody as Stand By Your Man.

At this point I have been shredding all kinds of papers that I have accumulated over the years. I have gone through all my vinyl records, video tapes, and cd's. There are places where I can rid of them for not too much money in return but at this point in my life, I don't need all these I always listen to the same stuff. By the way you can only put so many vinyl records in a box. They can become quite heavy. At this point there are 21 boxes of varying sizes in my living room containing books, cd's, vinyl records and video tapes. If I didn't mention it, my landlords are going to renovate my apartment on the first floor and move downstairs. I will go live with my sister for a few months (I hope) then I can move back upstairs, which is much nicer than this apartment. I can't wait for this to be started and finished. Hopefully I will be back in August or September, fingers crossed.

Well it's getting close to bedtime. I work 3 days a week, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I can't wait for that to be completely over in another year. And though things are a bit topsy turvey at the moment I told Arlene that we are going back to Martha's Vineyard this Spring. I am in love with the place and wish I could afford to live there. It's hard enough living around here. The house next to the house I grew up in is for sale. It's similar to our family house which my other sister lives in, is on the market for $550.000. It's similar to ours, two story, seven room house. Yikes! My parents bought it in 1960 for $13,000. I love the Boston area but it's one of the most expensive area's  to live in the country. Well that's enough babbling for now.
I'm outta here.