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Monday April 17

Implications of being Global Mobile really sinking in today.   It means up early and up late communicating with people all over the world who are on a different schedule.

At 12:12am, diary writing is about the last thing I feel like doing right now.   So what.   Since when has doing what I feel like doing ever been a priority for me?

Since my days in engineering school, I have built up a skill in denying my feelings in favor of getting necessary stuff done.   Years of work at this:  cartooning on a deadline, problem solving on a deadline, practicing guitar, working in groups.   

None of these really involve doing what I feel like doing.  

Many years ago, I realized that one of my primary talents was my ability to convince myself that what needed to be done would be rewarding, fun, exciting, and worth doing.  And, with some effort, I could also generally convince others.   

The standard Pelota aphorism applies here: Begin with the impossible, then gradually move towards the ludicrous. 

The negative side of this ability to do something other than what I feel like doing is that I am often out of touch with what I feel -- for me, what I feel is constantly repressed in favor of what I can see and touch, or it is lost in the resonance or absorption of the feelings of those around me.   

My own feelings are often upstaged or buried under those of the people around me.   In Helen Palmer terms, this is classic number nine strategy.   

Perhaps this is my means of avoiding my own feelings:  loss, despair, pain, grief.

And yet, I don't really feel these things unless I give myself the time and space to look around and see how things really are.

But why spew all of these thoughts here?  Onto something brighter.

* * *

Almost forgot: I ran into Peter Kardas in the Oakland airport yesterday afternoon.   Small world.  And a bright spot in my otherwise, standby day.  We have a gig together sometime soon at the Ballard Firehouse.

* * *

Useful mail from Taylor Sherman this evening letting me know about some Netscape bugs in these very pages.   Seems there are some bugs in this HTML.  Fixed the obvious ones.  The rest will have to wait.  Thanks for the feedback, Taylor.

* * *

Called Bob and Jaxie's machine this evening thinking that I was going to miss SGC rehearsal as my evening meeting began to spiral toward midnight.  Bob called back reminding me that we have the week off as Curt and Jax are both out of town.  Duh.     

I was thankful that rehearsal was already called off.  And yet, I missed my SGC pals tonight.  

* * *


Tuesday April 18

Sneeze x 1000 today.    Not an exaggeration.   Pollen count must be through the roof as measured by my nasal pollenometer.  Apologies to those who endured my constant nose dripping today.  

* * *

Attempted to call BillR on a far away Island today.  No luck.  Not possible to connect.  Then, TravisH, an ongoing and reliable hero, forwarded me an email confirming how useless BillR really is from far, far away.   

Need him back in proximity. 

Same is true in the office.   Proximity is key in the process of collaboration.   I remain skeptical about the possibility of telecommuting to get work done in groups.   Likewise, I also remain skeptical about 'jamming' on the internet. 

People working together need to be in the same room, breathing the same air, looking into the same eyes together.   Great plans can go off course when collaborators separate themselves across the globe.  

A lesson here to discuss tomorrow with some key collaborators.

* * *

Nice to see Curt's diary online and brewing about the project in New Jersey right now.

* * *

A few other kind bug reports from other ongoing heros today too, DanK.   Perhaps I will have time to look into these this weekend???   

"HA!"   say those that know.

* * *

Some small eruptions and implosions going on in the local landscape here.   Nothing insurmountable, but given my already stressed nostrils, and my barely open eyes, I am ready to say goodnight at 9:41pm this evening.   


* * *

Wednesday April 19

Dog and pony.  Arf.  Nay.

* * *

Thursday  April 20

A day of action and progress.   

The office was full of Heart today, and we made some real headway in many areas.  I am home early again this evening, but must sleep sufficiently before my 7am meeting.  Luckily, this meeting is taking place at a Starbucks, so there is a slight chance I may even be awake.

Neglecting all areas of my personal life lately -- bills  laundry, correspondences, ballistic orders, all piling up gently at home. 

Looking forward to this Easter weekend to catch up on rest and a return to order at home.  

* * *

Friday April 21

My day began at 6am, up and into the shower and off to a 7am meeting.    And what a meeting.  High power, high energy, high voltage, all the way.   No coffee needed to energize this meeting.   

Another doorway opening, stage right.  Whether to enter?  That is another question for another forum.  This is a game of chess.   Every apparently small move affects the potential across the entire board.

* * *

Then back to the office for a jam-packed day of meetings.   BTV is really beginning to take on a life of its own.  There has been a tangible shift in the team this week.  Something is being actualized before our eyes which is bigger than all of us.   Meeting after meeting today, it is clear that this team is beginning to play in tune and in time.   SteveE and the tech team delivered on a major milestone.    And there is a strange new drive in the office.   

Curt is going to come home to a new company next week.  The growth, the pace, the intensity of the wave we are riding has grown considerably in just one short week.

* * *

This evening, home early-ish again; tomorrow -- a blessed day off with time to clean, organize, and straighten the growing piles at home.  And time to change my strings.  

* * *

I watched the SBRS tape from Whidbey Island (Feb 4th, 2000) last night before bed -- there is much to learn from watching oneself on tape.  This group has an innocence, will, talent, focus, and ability to deliver, but it is obvious that this material is not quite "played in" and that these musicians spend much of their time doing other things.   

It is clear that there is good work going on here; but I wonder how this group might perform if this were the 37th night of playing in this material in this configuration.    With all of the obvious care and attention to detail, and group precision, there is still something missing -- a cohesion, a unity of purpose, and a unity of sound.   I can see it on the tape, and I can hear it in the playing.   There is a dynamic missing.   It's close,... it's struggling, but it is not quite convincing.

Even with my own clear and acknowledged bias toward this music and these performers, I can see there is something missing.   What is it?    

It may be quite simple.  

I spoke with someone today about two Stevie Ray Vaughn videos -- one from a very early concert and one from a very late concert in his career.  The person characterized the first as loud, energetic, but mono-dynamic -- everything was at the same volume, same tone, same brute force.   Impressive, but kind of like a punch in the face, lacking in subtlety.

The later concert, he said that Stevie was "singing" his guitar part; with tone, with dynamics, with a clear "voice."  The second was said to be simply much more 'musical.'  

* * *

I have mentioned this before, in different words: Bert Lams once told me that he feels that a musician's most valuable skill to develop is patience. 

* * *

More telephone tag with Brock yesterday.  Must end this tag this weekend.

* * *

A surprise call at the end of my work day from PF in SF.   Seems she may come to Seattle for the upcoming CGT/TL/SGC show at the King Cat Theatre and to visit BTV.   A delightful call, and a strange sense of rightness settling in as my long week at the end of a long month comes to a close.

Easter season is in the air on this Good Friday.

* * *

Saturday April 22

The soothing voice of Shawn Colvin is blasting across the living room as the laundry spins downstairs and as the piles of orders and bills slowing grow shorter here in the office.  Some irony here.    Wow -- just had major tingles run down my spine.  Strange to hear Shawn's voice in my living room right now.  

I met Shawn a three or four times in 1992 and 1993 when I was working with Mary Lou Lord.  Many years ago, Shawn and Mary Lou used to play in the Boston subways together, and after Shawn got famous, she remained a great supporter and friend to Mary Lou.  Both Shawn and Mary Lou were huge Joni fans, and when Shawn recorded Fat City with Larry Klein at Joni's house, Mary Lou got to go hang out at Joni's house for a few days during the sessions.   It was a sort of dream come true for Mary Lou. 

It may not be obvious, but one of the songs on Shawn's Grammy-winning 'a few small repairs' was written about CourtneyL (and indirectly about KurtC and MaryLouL.)  The song (new thing now) is a poetic reflection about a little known saga which unfolded from 1991-1994 that I should not even really mention here in case angry powerful people read this diary.   

Right.  Fat chance.

The spine-tingling inside clue about this song: after Kurt dumped Mary Lou, she used to call him "butt-head" in her conversations with Shawn and other friends.   

* * *

Laundry is complete and the sun is shining.  Now, out to putter in the sun, wash the inch-thick layer of pollen off of my car, and wander around my neighborhood.

* * *

Ignoring the phone today.  Sorry Dean.   Sorry Dan.  Sorry Jim.   Sorry Charlie.  Okay, so I answered Charlie's call by mistake.   No problem.  But that's it for today.   

Today is a rare day off and I am going to hibernate in the sun and solitude.

* * *

Sunday April 23

Easter 2000.  Morning practice in the reverberant guest room.  

* * *

Some purchases at Tower yesterday: NIN (the Fragile), Elliott Smith (Figure 8), Bill Frisell (Ghost Town), Bauhaus (Vol. One).  

The Elliott Smith CD is excellent.   Twisty melodies out the wazoooo.   If Lennon and McCartney had had a son together, it would be Elliott Smith. 

Also, looking forward to getting the new Brock Pytel CD which should be ready any day now...

Speaking of Brock, I finally called him back this evening.  A get together later in the week is inevitable... and I need to plan a special dinner to celebrate the release of his new CD with Curt, Bob, Jax, Isabel, Brock, Heather, and Clement.   Getting all of these people into one place for dinner (my house) may be next to impossible in the next few weeks,... but I'm going to try.   

Begin with the impossible, and move toward free food.     

May even open the door to Dean, Patty, William, and Louis.  Now wouldn't that be a full house.  But rumor has it that I now have space in my living room.   That is until the ProTools arrive.

* * *

Home from work at 10:37pm.   An Easter Sunday afternoon in the office with a major segment of the Dream Team.  Some good forward steps this afternoon.   

The only bummer for DLV, Guitar Center was closed.

* * *