Kung Fu Cowboy is almost almost almost done.
I'm recording the flutes right now. Everything else is done. Once in a while I replace a vocal...
This album keeps growing, but now I don't want it to grow any more.
Every time I climb up another step on this Zen Buddhist Ladder to Nirvana, I leave a lot of friends behind. They could keep up...they could work harder... they disappear.
Being solo appears to be my lifestyle. I prefer teamwork to independence.
I'm looking for a home again. A house. A place to live. A place to finish next year's album, LEVEL 4 Kung Fu Cowboy PART 2.
Days, weeks, I need a place to live.
Or do I?
Someon offered me a CAMPER HOME. Wow. Total troubadour.
I'm considering it. I've wanted to do the FOLK ROCK TOUR OF SHAOLIN RECORDS since 2005.
***Quick update: Feb 2010
I didn't get the camper home. There's an apartment manager job, dangling in front of me. I took the bait.
I applied three months ago, and the position is still vacant. Hmmm.
I lost this acoustic guitar, my Alvarez, December 3, 2009.
So I'm an ELECTRIC TROUBADOUR now. ELECTRIC ZEN.
ELECTRIC ZEN TROUBADOUR.
Yeah. That's the ticket!
I did my first gig a few weeks ago. Downtown in a club called, THE SMELL. I went over excellently, despite breaking my A string on the first song, and playing the entire show with only 5 strings. THAT WAS WEIRD. I'd never done that before.
I got my wah-wah out of storage and my MARSHALL AMP. I am ready to go. That's me. Electric Zen Troubadour. OOOPS. I mean, ZEN TROUBADOUR.
That's the ticket!
Love ya, I'm chuckling away writing this. I've just returned from a weekend in the Irvine MARRIOT Hotel, at the California Freemason SECRETARY'S RETREAT. I am being trained to be a SECRETARY for the Freemasons.
March 2010 Update:
I've been updating the 111 websites of Shaolin Communications.
My logic: these are my advertisements. I cannot afford radio ads, or newspaper ads, or billboard ads...but a website--that's my ad. Even these little expenses add up to more than I can afford right now.
I still don't have a car and I can't afford to pay my rent. I'm back in LEVEL 1, because that's the SURVIVAL LEVEL. When people talk about their finances and base their happiness on finances, they, like me, are in LEVEL 1.
LEVEL 1? For me?
I have to admit it. Only partly. My mind is in LEVEL 8. My spirit is in LEVEL 7, but my body is in LEVEL 1.
As soon as I either sell more books and records, or inherit some money, or marry a rich girl, or find a charitable person--I'm in LEVEL 1 prison.
If you've followed my story, you know how I got here. There are people to blame, but ultimately I made the fateful decisions that led me to this spot. Perhaps a better way of looking at this, is to say, "I decided to give up everything to raise some kids." But that's not totally accurate, because if I would have known that this was the price I was paying--I would not have taken the deal.
I've learned a great deal in the last 20 years. I've paid a huge price for this knowledge. Now, like a high school graduate, I need to get out and survive as an independent adult. It was hard back in the early 1970s. That was when I wrote, AUTUMN FLAVOURS. I am definitely in a better place mentally and spiritually than I was back then.
Last night, I was talking to my father on the phone. I'm glad and smiling to realize that I love him dearly and always will. My life is a roadmap for others to follow or learn from, but no one should try to imitate my life, because I am definitely from another planet.
When I was in the 3rd grade, I turned my back on my father. That was wrong, but for me, it was somehow right. My dad is a good man, but a simple man. He's a LEVEL 3 person, despite his narrow view of world religions. In our conversation last night, we were kind of arguing. Not agreeing, would be a better way of putting it. I was trying to "win" a little bit, but mostly I was glad that he was listening to me. For that, I give him credit.
We argued about Afghanistan and Iraq. He was spouting the Cold War rhetoric of the Republicans, "If we didn't go bomb them they would have sent more planes..."
I said, "Yes, and they still will. Dad, they've been hijacking wagons since the days of Moses. They hijacked stagecoaches in the 1800s. They hijacked trucks and planes and baby strollers in the 1900s and someone will hijack something in this century--but killing and bombing them does not make it right."
"So son, you're saying we shouldn't have sent anyone over there?"
"I didn't say that dad. I said we shouldn't murder and kill to make things better. We should have sent people over to build schools, and farms, and hospitals. All the money we spent on bombs could have bought a lot of technology. For every terrorist we've killed, we've killed one hundred innocent women and children."
My dad mentioned, "...collateral damage."
I said, "Dad, if you can justify for one second, the killing of innocent people, you have become a terrorist also."
My dad spouted those government sales pitches, and I told him to stop reading the newspapers. "Dad, how much have you improved as a human being by reading the newspapers? How has that information made you a better person or given you the power to help the world?" He didn't answer. "Dad, the newspapers are merely guiding you to be a puppet of these war mongers."
I don't watch the television news stations either.
Then we spoke of my Uncle Richard, whom I was named after. "Your Uncle Rich, he was a good man wasn't he," he casually spoke, expecting the answer that everyone gives.
I asked my Dad, "Did you really know him?"
"Well, he was always good with you kids."
"Dad, the most evil persons in the world have been able to give the impression of being good people. Most rapists are excellent and friendly with little children."
"Well, he was a good person wasn't he?"
"Dad, did you really know him?"
"Ummm. You probably knew him best son, you lived with him. He was a good man wasn't he?"
"Dad, I lived with him in 1970 and 1971, and you never cared to know then. Do you really want to know now?"
"Oh, so he was hard to live with."
"No Dad, I didn't say that. He was easy to live with. But do you really want to know whether he was a good man or not?"
"I guess not son."
"Okay Dad. But if you ever REALLY want to know, ask me again."
We spoke about CHARITY. I share some of my Freemason masonic learnings with him. I'm still surprised that he knows absolutely nothing about Masonry after being an insurance salesman all his life. But it makes sense too. That was why I kind of divorced myself from my father when I was in the 3rd grade, I realized my dad was shallow and disinterested in the truth of life and existence. My dad's happy to settle for the outward appearances of people and reality. He lacks that need to truly understand the nature of nature.
That makes him normal.
I told my Dad to look in Corinthians in the Holy Bible, because CHARITY is exalted as the highest form of human development. I pointed out that very few people are capable of it.
My Dad rebutted, "I'd give you the shirt off my..." (And he would.)
That's why I realized, that despite my Dad being a victim of religion and politics in LEVEL 2, he really does have a big heart and lots of compassion. He would give and share with anyone, no matter what religion or race, as much as he could, and he would ask for nothing in return.
For those qualities, I admire my Father. He truly is a wonderful person. Brainwashed, but genuinely loving.
I wasn't planning on sharing that conversation above, but hopefully, when I come back and read it in a few months, I'll decide it is inspiring to some of you--or I'll erase it.
I was planning to mention:
Unable to support myself with record and book sales, I've decided to accept an invitation to be a PINKERTON SECURITY GUARD. I haven't shot a gun in 20 years, but I am a natural with one. As a kid, I grew up playing cowboy and indian games. I liked being either one. I'm also excellent with a bow and arrow. I was freaking out some of my students the other night in Tai Chi class telling stories of my "Bunny Roasts." I used to make funny invitations that upset mostly the girls I knew in the 70s.
A friend of mine was gardener for a golf course in San Diego. Several nights a week he would drive around in a golf cart moving sprinklers around the golf course. Since the golf course was within the city limits, I couldn't fire my .22 pistol, but I could hunt with my bow and arrows.
His golf cart had headlights, and as animals do at night, who stare into the headlights, they freeze, unable to see anything anywhere. In that moment, they are sitting ducks--oh yeah, and the ducks--they would gather around the little ponds. As I got closer to them they'd pop into the water and swim to safety. So I would have to sneak up on them.
Yes. I have been a hunter. Of course, I ate every creature I killed, so I have no guilt or shame. Just the opposite: when I purchase my meat in the store, I want to say a prayer and bless the fallen animal. I also appreciate the fact that someone else killed the animal, gutted it, and skinned it for me. That's some ugly dirty work, but it needs to be appreciated.
Hey, that kind of brings me back to where I started, about killing those people in Iraq and Afghanistan. We hold up our newspaper headlines when we kill a terrorist, and want to think that it's safe to eat dinner now, but we aren't given credit to all those innocent civilians who died to pay that price.
At least when I hunt, there is no collateral damage.
(See if you can catch up with me!)