haven't done anything exceptionally noteworthy; mostly just work and chores. wheee! what a life.
Loren's mother eventually returned from AK with him, and we managed to make it out to see the Blue Angels. it was good times. hung around "backstage" with Matt and Chuck for a while after the air show. there was another group of jet pilots there called the Patriots; don't know who they're affiliated with, but they put on a good show too. at one point two of the jets made a big heart with red smoke, and a third put a white smoke "arrow" (just a straight line, really) through the middle of it. the crowd really liked that one.
after the air show i took Loren to see his Grampa at his new inline store in Northgate Mall, and then we went for a (very) late lunch at Wendy's before heading over to see his Gramma for a while. then it was on home.
Loren simply wasn't prepared to spend the rest of the summer here, so i wrestled with that one quite a while. eventually i decided to let him return to his mom's if she'd put it in writing that he'd return this weekend- today at 3pm, actually. after the events of the last week i'll not be surprised in the slightest if he doesn't return today- but i remain hopeful. we're long overdue to spend some time together.
finished The Damnation Game by Clive Barker yesterday. other than sleeping, it's really the only thing i did. hated to see a perfectly beautiful day go to waste, but i certainly must have needed the rest, since i slept the whole night through as well.
saw Chris's band Fallback at the Boxcar Ale House, a bar on the north end of the Magnolia area in Seattle. it was their first live gig, and they acquitted themselves pretty well. they managed to squeeze their 6-piece onto an absurdly small stage, and rocked before a crowd of mostly friends. they were well received. from a critical point of view, i'd have to say their mix was remarkably good, especially for a first gig, and considering that they miked only the vocals, relying on their amps to get levels. i only noticed a couple minor hiccups in their performance, which probably went largely unnoticed by those in the audience for whom critically appraising a performance isn't part and parcel of the experience of taking in a show. i suppose being fascinated enough by an art form to pursue it for yourself does in some ways detract from the pure enjoyment of that form for its own sake. i doubt a filmmaker can watch a movie without being aware of the camera moves, and the editing, and the lighting techniques, etc. in some ways, the price paid for the greater understanding of an art form is compensated for by the greater appreciation of fine execution of the principles involved, but in others, i suppose it's akin to knowing how the magician performs his illusions.
in any case, it was fun, and i got to see some old friends of Chris's i've met before, and meet some new ones. even pulled a little roadie duty, carrying Chris's amp back to their ride. it was great to see the breathalyzer i got Chris for Christmas last year passed 'round- i don't think we were using it quite properly, since i had 3 or 4 beers and a shot of tequila in the space of about 3 or 4 hours, and blew a .02%- i expected it to be about .04% or so? i only had a little minor buzz though, so i suppose it could've been accurate. if it was accurate, and the effects of alcohol accumulate at a somewhat linear rate, then the state's .08% limit is certainly not an unreasonable place to draw the line past which someone is clearly 'under the influence' of their drink. for instance, Chris's sister Jennifer blew a .06%, and she seemed clearly a bit tipsy to me....as well as, i might add, enjoying herself.
and, back to the musical part of the observations, the whole thing made me think i'm spending entirely too little time on musical pursuits, reminding me (again!) how much fun it is to play live music before an audience. i'll have to remedy that.
but on to other topics.
today is another sunny day in what amounts to the longest string of nearly-unbroken fantastic weather that i've ever seen in this state. it's been simply gorgeous all summer, with no more than 3 days that remained overcast and only 1 of rain. actually, if anything, there's been too little rain this year. my hydrangea is certainly suffering. normally i don't need to worry about watering the plants, but this year the hydrangea flowers (usually beautiful this time of year) are almost all brown. the leaves are green as ever though, so the relative drought isn't threatening the life of the plant. the rest of the plants in the front jungle are surviving as well. the rose tree isn't as prolific as it has been in years past, but it stil sports a glorious red blossom occasionally. more time spent watering the plants would definitely be in order.
haven't done a damn thing to the back yard in ages, much to Chowder's chagrin. he's long overdue for some running around, and i'm forced to conclude that wishing i was finished with the project i set myself won't get it done. unfortunately i haven't been up to the task for weeks. i was just getting ready to give it the last big push when i dropped a pretty big piece of steel on my foot at work, the hard way, edge-on. it landed on the knuckle of my big toe and i've been hobbled ever since. i'm getting to where i can walk basically normally again, but i still can't bend the damn thing right. on top of that, i cut the hell out of my left little finger in a futile attempt to catch that piece of steel on its way down. actually, my foot hurt so much i didn't notice it immediately- i only realized i'd lost a fairly large chunk of flesh when i saw a little pool of crimson, with some brightly shining steel dust in it. then, a few days later, i punctured the end my right middle finger on another piece of steel, and it wouldn't stop bleeding either. hobbling around my trenches with bleeding hands wasn't the most appealing prospect, so i gave up on the idea for the moment. as of this writing, i'm feeling physically up to the task again, so i expect the motivation to get to it will follow soon.
i found a piece of software online called 'Inform' that's a tool for creating interactive fiction (such as the old adventure game Zork). the moment i saw this (free) piece of software i knew Loren would be interested in it, so i downloaded and installed it. he took to it immediately. he's had more time to play with it than i did, so he's becoming the resident expert on it. he spent most of his alone time here (while i worked last Monday), and a good deal of time at his mother's since, putting it through its paces. should be interesting to see what he does with it, as well as how long he plays with that before something else captures his attention.
for his part, Chowder seems happy to have my (somewhat less than thrilling) company this weekend. he's certainly a social animal. i think he'll be quite happy to have Loren here for a while. i've set Loren the task of walking him while i'm at work, and though Chowder's certainly more enthusiastic about that than Loren is, i think it's good for both of them.
well, i suppose it's time to move on to something else for the moment. the chores, after all, only wait so long before the house becomes unbearable. and i suppose a little music might be in order, while i put the house in order. PEACE
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