I am on sabbatical as of right now, been too busy to think of about my OWN needs as of late. Jim Diamond
I have chosen to take a sabbatical for a multitude of reasons. I have blown up my old Facebook page and created a brand spanking new one under an alias. I am also not answering calls from anyone but my closest friends and my family. The reasons for this are many. Being a performer and being in the public eye is very difficult. The problem lies in the fact that I love music and I love playing and singing, however, there is this problem. The problem, and the part that hurts me the most, is that people can be very hurtful and people can be vindictive. Frankly my heart can not take that kind of pain. I am going to continue on doing music in one form or another, but for all intensive purposes EZ Street will never exist again. I just need a lot of space, room to find out where I am going on my musical journey, room to grow and evolve. Since I have made this choice over a week ago I have found a peace and solitude I haven’t felt in over a year. So, my friends, the journey begins…..
With that I leave you with one of my fav Boston songs that kind of exemplifies what I am feeling….
Aquarius Horoscope for week of April 11, 2013
In Samuel Beckett‘s novel Molloy, the main character talks about a long overland journey he took on foot and by bicycle. Before the trip, he had read somewhere that when people are lost in a forest, they often imagine they’re moving in a straight line when in fact they’re going in a circle. That’s why, during his own travels, he intentionally walked in a circle, hoping thereby to go straight. Although this might sound like a loopy strategy, Aquarius, I think it will make sense for you to adopt in the coming week. Your apparent path may be very different, maybe even opposite, to your actual path.
I invite you to keep a running list of all the ways life delights you and helps you and energizes you. Describe everyday miracles you take for granted . . . the uncanny powers you possess . . . the small joys that occur so routinely you forget how much they mean to you . . . the steady flow of benefits bestowed on you by people you know and don’t know. What works for you? What makes you feel at home in the world?
To achieve what the Zen Buddhists call “beginner’s mind,” you dispense with all preconceptions and enter each situation as if seeing it for the first time. “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities,” wrote Shunryu Suzuki in his book Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, ”but in the expert’s there are few.”
As much as I love beginner’s mind, though, I advocate an additional discipline: cultivating a beginner’s heart. That means approaching every encounter imbued with a freshly invoked wave of love that is as pure as if you’re feeling it for the first time.
“Life and death are of supreme importance. Time swiftly passes by and opportunity is lost. Each of us should strive to awaken. Awaken. Take heed, do not squander your life.”
I have just finished watching “The Buddha: The Story of Siddhartha” on Netflix and it was such a touching documentary of the Buddha’s life and journey from having everything a person could offer, to throwing it all away and going on a journey to find answers to all of the many questions he had, to suffering. Finally coming to the realization that all the knowledge he needed was already deep within him. I was going to go to the Dharma Center last night, but I changed my mind and am continuing on with my reading. I ordered the “Tao Te Ching” for my Kindle today. I have decided that I can do this journey on my own. Everything I saw on the documentary today confirmed what I already know, Be Your Own Light! With that I leave you with the Rolling Stones….
- The Tao Te Ching: An Introduction (beyondthedream.co.uk)
- Who was the Buddha and what is Buddhism (maggiestrueobsession.wordpress.com)
- Buddha (peacelovehealing.wordpress.com)
- Buddha (iamyogablog.wordpress.com)
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. ~Henry David Thoreau, 1854
I am going on sabbatical for awhile, how long I do not know. All I know is that I have some questions that need answers. What this means is I am at the end of one journey and beginning another one that is entirely different. It means that I have disabled my Facebook account permanently and I am not going to be performing publicly for awhile. I am also not answering phone calls from anyone but my family and closest friends. One thing I am doing is going to The Dharma Center tonight to begin the next evolution. I recently finished reading “The Gospel of Buddha” and suddenly realized that I needed to actually go to a teacher if I ever expect to achieve the enlightenment I so dearly want. One other thing I will continue to do is my blog, after all, this is, more-or-less, my journal of self-discovery.
With that I leave you with Alan Parsons….
Aquarius Horoscope for week of April 4, 2013
American author William Faulkner won a Nobel Prize for literature, an indication that he had abundant talent. The prose he wrote was often experimental, cerebral, and complex. He was once asked what he would say to readers who found it difficult to grasp his meaning “even after reading it two or three times.” His reply: “Read it four times.” My counsel to you, Aquarius, is similar. When faced with a challenging event or situation that taxes your understanding, keep working to understand it even past the point where you would normally quit. There will be rewards, I promise. You’re got more strength and intelligence than you realize.
I found Rob Brezney’s horoscope for me rather ironic. I am going to visit the Dharma Center this evening in my further search for understanding, not only of myself but of my journey. I am putting music on hold for awhile because it causes me as much pain as it gives me joy, an exact 50/50 split. So, my friends, I am on a self jouney, a sabbatical of sorts. Wish me luck.
With that I leave you with Blind Faith…
In chess one cannot control everything. Sometimes a game takes an unexpected turn, in which beauty begins to emerge. Both players are always instrumental in this. Vladimir Kramnik
Is there some point where you reach a stale mate with yourself? How do you decide what that point is and when you actually “give”. Have you never had a brother or friend bend you fingers back so far that you thought the fingers were going to break and give and they asked you to call “Uncle” My brother Todd used to hold me down until I called “Uncle” He drove me so hard that I wouldn’t give up until I broke. Why would you do that? Why does it have to be coming back now, why why why!!!!
One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important. Bertrand Russell
I have come to the conclusion that if I am not having a nervous breakdown I should. I am losing perspective, I can only feel the pain in my heart right now, and it’s not good. We played on Saturday and the weather was so nice that we played to a very small crowd. Managed to get Daniel up to play, but hell we could have played the phonebook for all it mattered. We are supposed to play on Friday and frankly I think I would rather die. It’s a new place for us and for once in my life I have no idea what to do. I am feeling so down, like everything I have ever done makes absolutely no sense! I know, the ravings of a lunatic. Welcome to my world, it’s your child’s room that is simply a mess. Clothes strewn all over, toys from hell to breakfast, and candy wrappers strung out all over. If I share a song with you that kind of explains how I am feeling will you share?
I always liked those moments of epiphany, when you have the next destination. Brad Pitt
OMG, sudden flash of light! I just realized the biggest part of my problem. I have been comparing myself to everyone else and forgot just to be ME. Yes, scraping my house and getting to the core of the problems with my house is causing an Occam’s Razor, the answer is usually the obvious. I have been staring at myself for so long and comparing myself to everyone else for so long, thinking they were better, without realizing they were just different. I am who I am and I need to stop basing my life on comparisons with other people. That will never get me any where. I finally realized that it’s like standing on a treadmill expecting to go somewhere, when in reality you are stagnating. Holy Crap! Why did it take me so long to figure that out. I think I can sleep now before I have to go play….WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee:)
A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body. Benjamin Franklin
Instead of buying paint I should just invest in some TNT and blow my house up, LMAO I have to show you the pics and you will see why. I must be out of my mind folks. You never know how trully bad something is until you take off the surface. This isn’t true only of my house, this is a very true sentiment when it comes to people as well. On the surface everything looks great, but then you begin scraping back the layers and find all the BS that’s underneath. I think I have gladly bit off more than I can chew, thank goodness I am a painter because I wouldn’t know how to deal with this other wise. If only people could be fixed so easily. You know replace a couple of boards, a little putty here, a lot of caulk there. LOL. It would be nice if we could fix our fractures so easily right? At any rate, here’s the pics. No laughing or looks of horror allowed, it will be pretty when I am done with it (I think )
Right door step
Right front cor
Right Front Window
If anybody says their facelift doesn’t hurt, they’re lying. It was like I’d spent the night with an axe murderer. Sharon Osbourne
And so it begins….I am starting on my house’s facelift today, and if you look at the picture you will see why it needs it! Yes, I am sort of a Jack-of-all-Trades, Master-of-None, LOL:) I used to paint professionally for a living at one time and on occasion still do for a little extra $. I just don’t want to be like that mechanic that can fix anyone else’s car, but has 20 broke down rigs in his yard, so to speak. So the quest for exteior beauty begins today. I will update the pics as we go along on our journey toward aesthetic peace and beauty…..
It’s been awhile since I did a vlog so I thought I would update everyone!
Aquarius Horoscope for week of March 28, 2013
Your brain has a bigger capacity than you realize. According to professorof psychology Paul Reber, it can hold the equivalent of three million hours’ worth of television shows. As I’m sure you know, your brain is not even close to being full of that much data. And in accordance with the current astrological omens, I suggest you cram in as much new material as possible. APRIL FOOL! I told you a half-truth. While it’s correct that now is an excellent time to pour more stuff into your brain, you should be highly discerning about what you allow in there. Seek out the richest ideas, the most stimulating information, the best stories. Avoid trivial crap.
I have sporadic OCD cleaning moments around the house. But then I get lazy and I’m cured. It’s a very inconsistent personality trait. Chris Hemsworth
Guilty as charged! I am in one of my Mrs. Clean moments. I have a laundry room that is cobweb central and needs a serious once over, then it’s on to the music studio so I can get in there and get some work done today to get ready for WilliB’s on Saturday. One of the cameramen from yesterday’s nightmare TV production asked me if I wanted to do The Goddess Festival, so maybe someone will be getting with me on that. Other than that, I am also on a health house cleaning. I am going to be changing my diet, it’s not that my diet is bad, I eat pretty healthy compared to most adults my age. I am just thinking about cutting out most breads and cutting off my terrible Diet Coke habit. I drink way too much of that brown crap loaded with carcinogens. It’s also time to get the mountain bike out again and get back into my morning rides that I have so dearly missed this winter. So with that I leave you with Eminem of all things LOL….
Aquarius Horoscope for week of March 21, 2013
In the 17th century, polite people referred to mountains as “warts” and “boils on the earth’s complexion.” So says Robert Macfarlane in his book Mountains of the Mind. Annie Dillard describes the peculiar behavior of educated European tourists in the 18th century. When they visited the Alps, she writes in Pilgrim at Tinker Creek,”they deliberately blindfolded their eyes to shield themselves from the evidence of the earth’s horrid irregularity.” Don’t be anything like those dumb sophisticates, Aquarius. When you spy irregularities in the coming weeks, consider the possibility that they are natural and healthy. This will allow you to perceive their useful beauty.
All of creation loves you very much. Even now, people you know and people you don’t know are collaborating to make sure you have all you need to make your next smart move. But are you willing to start loving life back with an equal intensity? The adoration it offers you has not exactly been unrequited, but there is room for you to be more demonstrative. For help in cultivating this approach
In her role as DJ Debi Newberry in the film Grosse Pointe Blank, Minnie Driver defines the term shakabuku as a swift spiritual kick to the head that alters your reality forever. That’s the kind of jolt you’re more likely to get if you’ve been avoiding the entreaties of your shadow.
But if you send your shadow flowers on special occasions, or periodically give it license to blubber its horrible secrets while sobbing on your lap, it might be more inclined to deliver a whoopibuku, which is a soft spiritual stomp on the toes that inspires you to make a course correction.
But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep. Robert Frost
It never fails, I always do this the day before an important show, I can’t sleep. I thought I would lay down after dropping Micael at work and get some sleep. HAH! Who was I kidding. The minute I lay down and close my eyes my head starts spinning with all the things I need to do. Today is Michael’s birthday so I am preparing his dinner of corned beef and cabbage, poten ben fedi, and I frosted the xcake I baked last night. Yes, I cheated this year and used a boxed cake, SHHHHHHHHH don’t tell. LOL. I had no choice because the cake I usually make takes 3 hours to make from scratch. There are just so many things to do to get ready for tomorrow and we are also going to try to get out to Meridian to see “Five Smooth Stones” tonight. So, I give up. It’s off to the shower with me! With that I leave you with “Wicked Game”….
The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves, and not to twist them to fit our own image. Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them. Thomas Merton
Ok, I have finally gotten a few minutes to catch everybody up. January and February were incredibly stressful and busy, it seems that March is coming in like a lamb for me because things have really settled down. So much so that I am returning to work writing freelance for the magazine that I work for! They are happy I am back and they missed me. I have learned 2 new Led Zepplin songs, a Grateful Dead song and an Irish Lullaby, all for the St. Patrick’s Day party at The Crescent Brewery. I am so excited!! I got a new acoustic guitar, same brand as my old one but newer that is just begging to be decorated. Brother Bob brought it to me and that same day he brought me a beautiful tiger’s eye! My frind Cindy, who is playing mandolin for us, just got back from Hawaii and brought me two beautiful hairclips! So with that I wanted to share a few pics with you from the last month.
Beautiful Blue Tiger’s Eye from Brother Bob
My first grandbaby Avery Harper
Kira, Isaiah and Avery
With that I leave you with one of the new Zepplin songs I learned….
- St. Patrick’s Day (sunvalleymiddleschool.wordpress.com)
- Thomas Merton and Humility (literarylew.wordpress.com)
- Thomas Merton on Charity (percalamus.com)
- Thomas Merton, The New Man (jkinak04.wordpress.com)
- Love Is The Reason For My Existence: Thomas Merton (heartflow2013.wordpress.com)
- St. Patrick’s Day (lindsaylee91.wordpress.com)
“You can do anything, but you can’t do everything”
I took a break away from everything yesterday and decided to make a sink skirt for my bathroom, cut up some of the grapevines that are lying around my yard and need to be disposed of , found a black sweater to go with my kilt, made a nice dinner for us and did not one thing involving music! It was a nice little break. Here are some pictures of the sink skirt that I made yesterday, and the reson for it is there is nothing below the sink, the pipes are exposed and I just wanted something to make it look a little more attractive. If I do say so myself I am brilliant LOL
Aquarius Horoscope for week of March 14, 2013
Former football quarterback Joe Ayoob holds the world’s record for throwing a paper airplane the longest distance. After it left his hand, the delicate craft traveled over 226 feet. I propose we make Ayoob your patron saint and role model for the coming week. From what I can tell, you will have a similar challenge, at least metaphorically: blending power and strength with precision and finesse and control. It’s time to move a fragile thing or process as far as possible.
It’s possible there’s still enough oil buried in the earth to sustain our civilization’s exorbitant appetite for material comforts for another 100 years. Or it may be true, as some researchers suggest, that global reserves of black gold are rapidly dwindling, and 20 years from now we’ll all be farmers and hunters sitting around campfires at night telling stories.
Whichever scenario comes to pass, you may be happiest and smartest and healthiest if you cultivate a simple and earthy relationship with luxury—something akin to poet Omar Khayyám‘s notion, which was “a jug of wine, a loaf of bread, and thou beside me singing in the wilderness.”
P.S. The amount of oil left in the world has no bearing whatsoever on your ability to cultivate ecstasy.
If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau
Sorry I have been away so much lately, I have missed you all. Things have been incredibly busy this last month and now with the St. Patrick’s Day event coming up I have had a boatload of things to do. This week is also Mike’s Birthday and every year for his Birthday I fix him an Irish/Welsh dinner topped with a German choclate cake for good measure. So, on Friday we celebrate his 56th birthday and on Saturday we have a full St. Patrick’s Eve event at The Crescent Brewery. As soon as this week is over thing’s will settle down to much more normalcy (I hope ) and I will have more time to write. I think I am going to need at least a day or two to recover after this weekend though. I hope everyone is well!
Aquarius Horoscope for week of February 28, 2013
In the movie Fight Club, there is an animated scene at the very end that required an inordinate amount of time to produce. Each frame in this scene took the editors eight hours to process. Since there are 24 frames in each second, their work went on for three weeks. That’s the kind of attention to detail I recommend you summon as you devote yourself to your labor of love in the coming days, Aquarius. I think you know which specific parts of your creation need such intense focus.
For over two decades, Peter Jouvenal worked as a journalist and cameraman who filmed war-torn hot spots, including Iraq in the Gulf War and Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion. He eventually retired from that gig and bought a restaurant in Kabul. He has few regrets, but one came after the fall of the Taliban in 2001.
While exploring the organization’s deserted safe houses, he happened upon a place where Osama bin Laden and his wife had recently lived. Among the items the couple left behind was one of her bras. In retrospect Jouvenal realized he should have pocketed the exotic piece of lingerie; a tabloid newspaper would have paid him a fortune for it. But because he had spent his entire career dealing with more mainstream news media that sought more respectable evidence, the idea didn’t even occur to him until much later.
Was there ever a time when you were in such a deep trance, enthralled by your habits and belief system, that you failed to notice a valuable anomaly that popped up? How can you train yourself to be so alert that such a blunder won’t happen again?