HIS SPIRIT LIVES ON! ... BONER, THE PIANO DOG ... November 27, 1994 ... February 20, 2010
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November 30, 2007
I have two bookings back to back tomorrow so my day has been dually focused. 1. on reaching the one thousand mark of listed items on the Boner site for people to consider with contribution... I did that... 2. planning and preparing for performance. I am always nervous about that, I spent a good few hours looking for a driver today. In the old days it was not a problem in the last six years it has been a problem. I solved the issue thanks to some great people. I need to consider that I am driving an hour and a half to South Jersey to step off a parade and then immediately head north into Pennsylvania another hour away to catch yet another parade. I have a fifteen minute window. I can do it, I did it last year but still it makes me nervous... I'm remembering to take some food along and gatoraide and Bo's sweater and...and...and... I hope the truck and piano works in the cold! Its been working for twenty years why should it stop now? Tomorrow is next to the last performance I have booked forever it feels like. I know feelings are not always fact. My final performance as it stands will be New Years Eve. I do wish I was playing more but all my time is spent preparing to leave ...and its cold outside!
November 29, 2007
I felt a need to go out and play today so I called Dane who owns the house I found by the river on Thanksgiving day to make sure it was ok. I took my computer to record some music. A part of me wanted to interact with people because I've been home alone too much. I'm really glad I went out because I had the best time! There was no opportunity to record music because I ran into Rick and Ryan two eleven year old buddys playing in the yard. We spent the entire time until the sun set taking video and pictures (they took some great pictures) and just messing around with the piano while grandma set up some decorations in the yard for Christmas. I put on Bo's reindeer antlers for fun.He likes dress up. The one kid says, "man, your my hero". He told me, "there was a stabbing at a nearby school today so we got out of school late and if that had not happened I wouldn't be here right now"... I told him, "your my hero". I said his thinking is the
way I want to think. "I know bad stuff is all around us but I chose to focus on the bad stuff in a good way just like you just did." These guys really made me feel good. I improvised while watching them play ball with Bo running around the yard. I improvised while watching the beautiful sunset over the water with the Philadelphia skyline in the distance. As I was leaving the boy says, "I liked your just playing better then the other stuff" ...meaning my improvisation verses the Boogie Woogie and Ragtime. Comments like this from kids about my music puts me in a state of awe. The fact that children and adults respond alike to my music overwhelms me with gratitude. Considering the fact that I was too afraid to express my total and original self musically for the first fifty years of my life, to watch people, all kinds of people... become mesmerized as I create and play my music... is the most awesome experience I have had in life to date.
November 28, 2007
I just finished listing 190 Christmas CD's for you to donate towards on Boner's website. Seeing as i am out to show the process... I will state that I am heading for a thousand items for people to choose from, then I will get to my paper work (three months worth) the house...ugh, and then street awareness to get people to come to the website. In the meantime I must get my Christmas decorations on the website. I used to be as known for my Christmas decorations as I am for music. This venture will be a success. I cannot afford to fail. This is what I have chosen to do. Please help out. I could be out playing the piano everyday, sharing it, inspiring, empowering, lifting spirits, creating friendship... that will come. I could be booking jobs to pay the bills. My decision is to move on with this journey by letting go of everything I have held near and dear...with respect, gratitude, contribution, participation... and then take a giant leap into the unknown. I must pay the bills in the process and this is the best way to ad to life and finance it, for now. One day at a time... breath, easy does it... I want to be careful to watch that my mind does not turn into a lost city or a treadmill. I want to keep clarity, focus and fun.
November 27, 2007
I took a picture of Boner so you can see how handsome he is looks on his thirteenth birthday which is today! I'll write more about that later. I just wanted to have this picture up here all day. Happy Birthday Boner!!!!!!!!!!!!! He is lying right against me on the couch right now because I need to get away from work and he knows it. Ha! He's saying, "come on already, enough is enough!" I don't have the energy to write much more tonight. Please go find a Christmas CD or 10 for yourself on www.bonerthedog.com. Do you know about the "Boner and Me Writings" link on this website? I wrote about Bo everyday last year and published it. I want to say that I am not obsessed with my dog. I do love him. We do have total respect, trust, patience, tolerance, gratitude, appreciation and attraction to each other. We share the same enjoyments in life. He has accepted domestication with total responsibility and I work very hard to connect with him on an animal level. We enjoy almost every moment that we are together. I know that he has these qualities because he physically expresses them to me. We are a mirror for each other, I can recognize myself in Bo... good qualities mostly of trust that I have never experienced before he was in my life... or to such an extent. I realize it will hurt when he goes but why focus on that? I don't. I focus on today and I enjoy every moment with him and when he gives love to other people.
November 26, 2007
I am happy to have found this picture I had yet to use from Sedona in May. I have always been visual. While I am sending all of my time preparing to continue onward (today I spent the entire day listing Christmas CD's on bonerthedog.com. I must continually remind myself about what I am doing and why. I felt completely alive during the time of this photo. I was traveling, feeling fresh and enjoyed the sharing of the Traveling Piano with everyone.I enjoyed watching people explore the situation, experience music in the moment, their lightness of spirit, the air, Boner's company, the freedom to create inclusivness and relationship... that's a biggy! It was fun and full of respect.
November 25, 2007
I'm having doubt, thats ok right? Nope, can't afford doubt. I was reminded that it is 32 days until the New Year and I am feeling buried in my agendas, paper filing, cleaning and getting the house ready, paying the bills, fundraising, stay healthy, help Bo stay healthy, pay the bills, list my possessions on Boner's site, promote, keep the Traveling Piano agenda living, create my first improvisational music CD, promote everything, create awareness, research and manifest the journey to China, keep this site going... Then I remembered my present focus is to introduce Boner to the the world before he retires. I had planned to do that originally in Hollywood but I was sidetracked with Virginia Tech and that was a good thing. So now I am working towards China but that might not necessarily how the dream will be accomplished. I don't know how it will happen my job is to have fun and enjoy all that life has to offer... breath, steady myself, time is an illusion. The world, new people... are meeting Boner everyday as it is through the world wide web, when we go to the local store, when we perform locally, through friends who spread the word etc...
November 24, 2007
A bit chilly outside but who cared? Not me... and Boner was fine with his sweater on! Today was the Collingswood New Jersey Christmas Parade. It was my umpteenth year with the community. They almost did not have us as there was a mixup with fee/contribution issues and they were going to cancel yesterday! I think it was because someone had thought I was asking for more money this year just because it was the last year and that was not going to work for them. Whatever, we straightened everything out and they were glad to have us back. I really appreciate there willingness to work with me and support the journey. I'll be back there to gift the community through Christmas. It was a big crowd. How I love driving down the street into a big crowd especially when they are up close right next to the truck and we are all waving, and smiling, and jumping around, and screaming, etc... I was amazed at how I can now... connect with people one-on-one while passing. As I was performing, I thought about all the years I hide behind sunglasses.
I was wearing three layers of clothes today because it was in the thirties so with the weight I have gained I looked like I gained allot of weight... which is relative. Fact is, I am still significantly lighter than I was last year. Know how I know? My Christmas hat did not fit my head. It kept sliding down over my eyes. It used to be a snug fit. My head is smaller. Along with all the humility I gained this year i hope my head doesn't get too small! One of the fun things I enjoy at Christmas time is the white furry tassel ball that hangs from my Christmas hat. The more I flail myself around while performing the more I get smacked in the face with it. When I am performing I am throwing my body around majorly so I am getting hit constantly, big time. it creates more chaos. The more chaos the better... as long as I can stay focused. Controlled chaos, I'm good at that as long as i am the one in control!
My life long neighbor and friend Larry drove us today. In his mid-seventies this guy is getting his license to drive a school bus. What a champ! A harmonica player happened along so we did some jamming and then he jumped onto the piano for a minute. As soon as Boner heard a marching band he started to get nervous but hung in until the end of the parade. Boner is the biggest champ!
November 23, 2007
I went back to the house that I found yesterday on the river to introduce myself to the family and ask if it would be possible to play on the end of their property away from the house. They handled that fact that this guy in a truck with a piano and dog named Boner just pulled into their yard to ask if he could play the piano on their front lawn by the river. The mom went in the house to get everyone and I started to play while waiting for everyone to come out. After a while I turned around to see them all standing on the house steps. it was very funny. Can you imagine? These people have no neighbors they are fairly isolated on the river and in front of them by the river on the front lawn there I am doing my thing with Boner wagging his tail trying to connect with them... I yelled, "what are you chicken, come on over here?!" The one guy about 20 years old yells back, "yea I'm chicken and went back into the house, so did his mom but the others came over and we had a short time of fun. Damm, it was cold! The dad was not home (the permission man) so I got his phone number to call him on another day.
November 22, 2007
I was originally going to find places to play today like soup kitchens etc... but after dealing with prescreened, institutionalized, consolidated over structured volunteer organizations and finding that most community dinners have conveniently scheduled thanksgiving for the needy on another day than thanksgiving...I was thinking NY but that was too far for my energy level... I just could not keep my intent and energy focused enough to do it. Everything felt contrived. Plus I have my own baggage in the mix. So today, I gave thanks to myself. It was a luscious warm breezy day so I headed to the river to be with nature, Boner, the music and myself. I wanted to stay as close to home as possible because the truck died on my driveway last night. I could not get it back started. I did not want to get stuck in a field somewhere on Thanksgiving. I found a new spot on the river. It was someone's house but no one was home so I just drove on the lawn right up to the waters edge at the end of the property and felt thanksgiving musically. It was interesting for the first time, as I was improvising just letting the energy flow... a new awareness came over me for the first time. As an especially warm blast of air would hit my face, it affected the music, it would take me in a new direction, as I heard the Canadian geese approaching from above the music would take a different approach as to what was to come. Boy, was that fun. I was just going along for a musical ride by feeling all my senses. I left to return home with the thought; I have peaceful and harmonious thanks to give to the world today.
November 21, 2007
As it was one of the last warm days for the year I thought it important to go out and create some awareness, promote the journey in either New York or Philly's Chinatown. Then I thought, "what is more important is to take care of yourself. I did not want to "performance" work or rush or have pressure. I went to the park to enjoy the late afternoon with music. A high school senior couple stopped by, "I heard about you", that's what people say to me now... their names were Lane and Michele and we spent a good fifteen minutes dueting and taking pictures etc... After they left I played well past the sunset and watched the sky turn different shades of pink. I emptied my mind reminding myself to breath and relax my muscles while I created music. I wanted to relieve any energy that was stuck, I wanted to let any new energy flow through me.
November 20, 2007
It has rained for the last two days so I have not been outside. Tomorrow is to be warm so i must do it. i am afraid to! Can you believe this? All it takes is one day off the horse... if you know what I mean. I am going to go into the city and play in China town to create some awareness and see how I am received by the community. I am working to let go of the concept of time. it does not serve me. I... here i go again getting philosophical. I am going to go create some music instead. Wish you were here to hear it. Oh, i'll put it up on the website.
November 19, 2007
I wrote a personal classified ad today to post in some online communities... I'm fully aware for the ramifications for my reputation! What the hell is that supposed to mean? !!! Ha. I have not yet posted it anywhere yet, I am trying to get the nerve. Here goes:
I have a two tier agenda here to find both friends and support and I want for you to be interested :) I have had a successful life long career as a piano man for the last twenty years while playing the piano from the back of a pickup truck and for the last ten years my dog named Boner has been hanging out with me on top of the piano during performance.
With that in mind, I am presently pursing my Wildest of Dreams and that entails having the world meet Bo before he retires first and foremost. All the while I am out to make and share healthy intimacy and relationship with life on every possible level ...especially musically. We create spontaneous performances with fun, friendship and respect and have motives to empower and inspire... We bring the beat to the street while creating music for people to discover.
I have never had a personal desire to come across in the world as a public *Star* ...a personal desire to exemplify a person in love with life to everyone I encounter, Yes! I started to realize my desires over two years ago. I am a healthy, sane, down to earth, upfront, kind, strong, and work to be considerate with everyone... kind of guy. I like a challenge to be flexible and inside at the base of my soul I am really shy and sensitive but you would never know that if you are only exploring my surface.
I am always looking to expand my circle of friends...my circle seems to expand and shrink by nature throughout life. I presently would like to connect with someone to mindlessly just hang out with and also to help support this musical journey that I am on. Spontaneity, adventure, simplicity, and "anything"... are key words for the hanging out part. As far as the journey I would embrace support on any level and every level! Help!!! I'll list some ideas. I currently spend my days...
1 ...preparing logistics, legalities, personal needs (my dog truck and I are heading for China)
2 ...working to simplify all my technological communication needs, ( the websites, internet, publishing, programming, cell, video feeds)
3 ...staying healthy (keeping interested in exercise and eating good food)
4 ...playing and exercising my dog every day and working to have a clean house (thats a lot of work)
5 ...creating outdoor musical performances as often as possible, daily if possible, yes even in the cold (someone to experience that with me would be major fun)
6 ...networking (all the time to create awareness and support, I charge no money for what I do and I need to pay my bills)
7 ...personally creating music (I am creating an improvisational CD, someone to help pick out the music would be great)
8 ...listing thousands of personal possessions online to raise funding (taking pictures,writing text, research info, cataloging, listing on ebay, cragislist etc...)
8 ...organizing (keeping sane with all the tasks and errands)
Does any of this interest you from the inside out... the idea of sharing a part of yourself, your life, what you have to offer with Bo and I? If personally in your life... if you are bored or interested, it feels like you have no life then maybe we can join up and make the best together ...or even if you have a full life but desire to expand it even more ...do you like interesting distractions :) ...I'm open to having a roommate also as I have two empty bedrooms in my house ... do you have a desire to grab onto opportunities of progressiveness when life presents itself to you ...if your thinking about an agenda or someone to give to for the holidays here I am... (Ha! I'll take it anyway I can get it) ...grab onto this opportunity to connect with a great guy (me) a fantastic dog (boner) and a worthwhile journey. (Flight of Peregrinating Musical exploration!)
I'd like the opportunity to see if we can connect. I promise that I will be interested in YOU! If there is an opening I'll willingly come into your life to add to it. Ha... thats true... Here are my websites... if nothing else "wingman us", please help spread this message and the links for us. http://www.ragginpianoboogie.com http://www.travelingpiano.com http://www.bonerthedog.com.
November 18, 2007
Now I remember why I was writing yesterdays thoughts. There was more to it. I wrote about the first twenty five years of my life and what a battle it was and that I almost ended up dead. What happened was that I gave up the battle because I knew I was going to lose it... a miracle happened because deep down inside I really wanted a miracle and believed in them and I deep down wanted to experience as much of life as possible. I decided I wanted to be a winner at something, anything so I became willing to try something different.
As a result, for my second twenty five years I continually had these miraculous happenings! I spent that second twenty five years learning to trust in them and that they wold continue. I've done three things to keep them coming. I acknowledge them, I am grateful for them and I share them.
Now I am in a third period of life. I have come to accept responsibility for the fact that "I" have been creating these miracles. God hasn't been responsible for them... I have been responsible for them! I have been creating these miracles that are the pictures of my life through the universal laws of attraction, the law of love, through and with God!
Now everyday I am truly becoming more and more a manifestation of what I choose for my life and I am "intentionally" creating my life and miracles... Enough of this type of talk... for like a year! Ha...more about the journey, the music.
November 17, 2007
These writings are not only about the piano, the music, Traveling Piano, the Raggin' Piano Boogie entertainment property, Boner, or the Journey of Peregrinating Musical Exploration. They are also about me. From childhood I knew about the laws of attraction and knew that attraction equaled life. I knew that thoughts created feeling and feelings created emotions and from emotion life as I know it manifests. Soon after that... realization became topsy turvy and that continued for the first twenty five years of my life. I entered into a battle with reality. Ninety-six percent of what I was taught from my parents, religion, society, my family was about denying my feelings. I don't blame anyone as I throughly understand that everyone was just doing the best that they could although I do still get angry about it all from time to time. I was taught NOT to trust myself or my feelings...ever. I was taught my "self" was fundamentally flawed my thoughts and feelings were for the most part wrong. I knew what I was being taught was not right. Life became a battle inside and outside of my head about what was right and what was wrong. Life itself slowly but surely disappeared. All that existed was a black hole of confusion, desperation and judgement about right and wrong, enough and not enough, too much and too little, too slow, too fast. At twenty-five years of age I was near death with these battles and they were all in my head with me, myself and I. I forgot the point of why I am writing this! I think it had something to do with my present motives in life but guess what? I don't want to think anymore so I am going to stop. If you have any questions ask.
November 16, 2007
I am having a bit of a problem with the change of weather. In the beginning days the daily Oprah tapes were a fun anchor for me. Going outside to interact creativity with music and people everyday has been a fun anchor for me. Last year when it was cold i still went out everyday because I was working to create funds for the journey and with fun I believed that would work. That did not work so i am not going to bust my ass in the cold again unless a new twist on the idea comes into my path and assures better results. I am now working with the Boner the Dog website and it is taking a tremendous amount of time. It is not so much fun yet because I am not getting a response. Every day during the journey's were fun anchors for me. Taping fifty live takes, one every day of Dizzy Fingers to publish on Youtube was an fun anchor for me. I don't feel like I have an anchor now so i am beginning to flounder big time. Help! I would like my anchor to be getting up at 7AM every morning for a few months. I would like to have a routine to anchor me for awhile so I can accomplish what is needed. Where is the fun in those last two sentences. Help! I did create some music for myself tonight :)
November 15, 2007
I setup my keyboard inside my house tonight and played indoors for the first time in over a year. It's cold out! The keyboard I am using has its limitations as to how much I can express myself with dynamics and sensitivity etc... but nevertheless check out the improvisational piece I published for today. Click Here! You will need to click the back button of your browser to return to this page.
Just in case you do not know there has been a new piece of improvised music published to this website everyday for over two years now. I hope you computer doesn't take forever to download it. It lasts about four minutes and is about 3.6MB in size. That is fairly large but it is just so awesome that I am creating my own music and that i love it enough and think it worthy enough to want to share it with you.
It is amazing that I could figure out the wiring to get the keyboard to give sound to the speaker let alone to the computer to record. An input and an output is simple for most people... not me. I would like to be able to adjust the sound equalizer and all that stuff but I am clueless. It is hit or miss. I just try this and that and wherever the action lays is where it stays. I usually do not think about what I recorded I just hear it to make the cut and then I publish it everyday. With todays music I started to think, "the steadiness falters in pace and rhythm a bit" and then I thought, "yea, well it was supposed to"! Ha. Talk about acceptance of, "It Is What It Is" !!!
November 14, 2007
November 13, 2007
My experience of today was astonishing. I feel like I have been whacked on the side of my head with a big fat piece of wood. My heart has not felt this heavy since performances that followed 911. The day did not start out this way.
Seeing as the weather was beautiful, I was able to go directly into "the zone". This is what I am going to call it from now on. It's not an original term but it fits. "The zone" ...is about a clear focus on creating spontaneous musical fun friendship and respect. It is about sharing empowerment and inspiration, the uplifting and freeing of spirit when opportunity presents itself.
Today felt like the day to go and visit the Olney section of Philadelphia. I had been thinking about it for two weeks. A local policeman had been shot recently in Olney and he died. The situation was full of community and media outcry and obsession. Now that the initial shock and hype was over and all major media coverage had passed, I wanted to go into the neighborhood to release some uplifting spirit. I was told there had been a "lockdown" feeling in the neighborhood. I wanted to contribute to the community, nothing else.
As I was driving on route, I began to have feelings about family. I was thinking about what I was going to do. I was going to show up in a community and musically present... and express myself while non-intrusively inviting everyone interested to partake. I was going to show and express my spirit. This was all about everything that I was taught NOT to do!
I was taught NEVER to show my spirit outwardly and I was taught to be wary of and not to relate to anyone outside the family nucleus. Family meant immediate family. Immediately family Excluded even my aunts and uncles. Pictures were taken on holidays that even Excluded the in-laws, one picture without the in-laws and then one picture with the in-laws. This was supposed to create an illusion of inclusion. I was taught to suppress my spirit of expression even within the family. I was taught to not associate with anyone unless absolutely necessary especially on an intimate or trusting level ...except my mother or under my mothers direction ...which really meant only my mother. Everyone was different unless they were family or at least of the same religion.
I was almost blatantly forbidden to talk with or play with public school kids. I went to parochial school. Public school kids were less than my family. I was not brought up with prejudice I was brought up with "they are different, they are not us, they are dirty, and they are loud, less than, stay away from them." It had nothing to do with have's and have not's. It was all about "different" and "not family". I grew up thinking, "damm I am different because I can not accept the family scenario, I do not want to accept it, exclusion is wrong for my spirit". As a result, I was in fact, "different" and did not feel like I belonged anywhere or was accepted in the family or with anyone else. There was a point in my life where I almost literally died with the insanity of the situation.
So here today, I am going into a black (different) neighborhood of trouble? As I drove into it, I felt like it was MY neighborhood almost like it was my home. No kidding. On the way, I had conversations with two black guys (different) while we drove next to each along the street. They were joyously, friendly guys. I felt like, "what a welcome this is"!
As I arrived in the neighborhood I did not have a plan, I was just exploring the area. I saw a group of about thirty kids hanging out. School had just let out. It was perfect timing; they were in the parking lot of a Duncan Donuts so I headed the truck towards them. It was interesting because the police shooting happened at another Duncan Donuts just a few blocks away. I drove right into the crowd and yelled, "anybody want to play some piano". Hahahaha... I did. Of course there is always one and he jumped right onboard! I thought a little about my camera and other stuff (since it was just stolen last month... in an upscale neighborhood... in what was supposed to be a much safer situation) ...but I was not going to let fear, interfere with my agenda. I just kept my awareness going. They all started to get interested until I suggested a picture and then they all said, "gotta get going'," they ran. That felt very strange that they were afraid to have their picture taken. It felt like it was part of that "lockdown" syndrome I was told about. The "communism" I had been warned about as a child. I was taught, "this is what they are". The feeling came from a place of social mistrust.I thought, "and we are better?"
I drove onward and stopped at the corner of Mascher and Chew streets. There were hundreds of kids coming down the streets from school and filing into row homes. I introduced myself to the local Korean deli storeowner on the corner. He was preoccupied with the kids... checking each one in and out of the store. Ugh, that was ugly to see here in America... period.
In general, Boner is not an icebreaker with people of black skin. When Boner stands up to greet, everyone tends to react to each other with expressive fear that often snowballs. It took some major coaxing to warm anyone up to the safety of the situation especially in this neighborhood where it feels like fear runs deep all around. The kids thought Bo was guard dog for me and the piano to keep them away. Double ugh.
Nevertheless, it turned out to be a good experience for everyone. Two young guys came outside of their house to feel out the situation. It was obvious that these were two kids who had been left to fend for themselves since their beginnings in life. I was able to get one of them up onto the piano and he just wanted to be empowered so much. His fingers were shaking with fear but his spirit was stronger than fear. He wanted to try out some music... real bad... and he finally did. I felt so good for him. After that, he started to read my brochure out loud to show his interest and ability to read while bragging in front of his friend, who could not read. They were around eighteen to twenty years old. I think this is when my spirit began to feel heavy.
It was at this point when I realized that this was not Katrina... this was not Mexico where no one thinks about any difference of have or have not... this was not a tragedy in Virginia Tech... this was my home. I was in a broken social environment and seeing that I had just experienced Mexico and that China is on the horizon, the fact that I am experiencing my country, America ...my back yard, everything was accentuated today. I was having an overall life experience of over-control, fear and repression.
A social worker stopped by who told me of a woman who also took her piano outside in a truck around the country and recorded people playing on it for National Public Radio. I thought that was very interesting! There are many people doing "like" Traveling Piano things around the country, I hear about them all the time.
I left the corner to find the local school recreation center. There are several schools in the area. I found a school named Cardinal Dougherty. It was a gem in the rough and while asking for directions I ended up playing music for a few guys in the back of the building. One of the guys coaxed a student up to bang on a piano key. Lots of fear about being "good enough" going around. I left that school thinking, "now here is a place where they take care of their own".
I went to the area public school building, which was so big it was two high schools in one building with many thousands of daily students. I met with one of the principals to check out possibilities for parking the Traveling Piano truck on the property for recess or maybe before and after classes. This was an interested man buried in hopeless bureaucracy with schedules, hierarchical oversees, checks and processes. I felt sorry for him. I said, "I know the ropes, I've been around, I'm going to take this conversation out of my equation, please forget we ever spoke, I may come back and just park in a public spot outside the school on the street." He was visually relieved and I left. I asked when school let out and he replied, "2:49 pm". Yikes!
The following words are about the big eye opener for me today. This hurts to even write. It makes me sad. Actually, it horrifies me! There is even a bit if rage. When I walked through the doors of the school, it was dark, like a movie version of a dirty old prison with stone walls. As I waited to meet the principal, I observed airport type security apparatuses and conveyer belts for the passage of personal possessions to get in. I watched security police, metal detectors with the need to go back and forth until the alarms ceased. When the problem could not be solved, the student would have to wait for a policeman to come and do a body search with public removal of clothes. Each student was thoroughly searched before entering. Thousands of children in my hometown neighborhoods are being raised in Prison Like School and Neighborhood Environments! Yes... children. This experience was not freedom... it was not an experience true to a healthy and progressive human spirit. This is not my countries definition of freedom. I thought, "there has been a hijacking of my experience of freedom and I am in my home town. Christ, I am in America. Children=School=Prison ... Adult=Prison=Life ... As I drove away, I started to cry.
To get myself back on track, I stopped to eat at a crab shack. I gave into food. I have gained twelve pounds. I weighed myself this morning for the first time in two months. How is that for honesty. If you have been reading along daily, you may know how my physical health is the foundation for my life, my Wildest of Dreams, period. It is what it is. My health is proprietary for this journey that I am on. Food is a primary issue that I live with to the best of my ability one day at a time, even minutes at a time. When I began this journey, I was around 260 pounds and I had never stayed healthy for more than an eight month period in my entire life. Well, I am still healthy after almost two and a half years. I am still exercising daily, staying aware and making better choices. (I could have chosen worse than the crab shack)
While I waited for my dinner, I played some music for two women eating crabs outside on a picnic table and for some guys sitting in a van next to me. That brought some levity, some lightness to my day. I gained clarity today. When I was to Katrina, Mexico, Virginia Tech, even in the flooded areas of Trenton, NJ there was no experience except that of fun, joy and gratitude. When I leave my present area after Christmas, I want to leave my home, which could very well be for good, with the same experience of fun, joy and gratitude.
I am going to work my home areas just like I have done on the road. For me it is a professional craft to stay highly spirited when others are not. The ability comes from a thoughtful desire to give, share and care emotionally with gratitude. I'm good at that when I stay mindful of it! This ability is a learned and developed talent that takes constant practice. I'm up for that. I am going to spend as much Traveling Piano time as possible in what could be labeled as depressed areas of my region, my home. I've been going to parks and "loverly" areas all summer. I am now going to head for the dirt, the rocks, the stones, the boarded up houses! I am going to practice at home... the skills I use when I am away! There will be nothing but respect, friendship, joy and happiness and also musical empowerment and inspiration for everyone!!! Hahaha... I want to free myself and contribute towards spiritual fun and a healthy environment. Fuck, yea! (sorry, I couldn't help myself... then again... that's not true... I take responsibility HA.)
November 12, 2007
Today was a first. It was a sixteen hour work day. Today I walked the dog, ate and uploaded 27 items to Boner's fundraising website. Thats it. This has got to get easier. I had hoped to make some apple sauce and create some music today but that ain't happening. It is now 4:30 am. Boner has been bored shitless, he is so bored he has been laying pressed next to me farting for the last three hours. I am going to play with him for about 15 minutes before I hit the sack. I thought of a past picture that I posted from the Katrina blog period for today. It is how I feel.
November 11, 2007
I was wondering when the leaves were going to change to fall colors. They have done it and are at the peak of color. I am glad I went outside today to see the beauty. I was creating some amazing music. People sat in cars with mouths dropped open. I was so happy that I was recording it. I said to myself, "boy do I have some good stuff to share on the daily "A Gift of Music Daily" link. Damm, I had the wrong setting on the friggin' computer again!!! Oh well, as i have said many times in the past, "there's more where that came from." I let Boner wonder a bit. I have been having interesting exchanges with Boner. I am experiencing everyday how much he only wants to please me and show his bond with me. When he is self centered it has nothing to do with me. It is not in reaction to me in anyway. He wondered too far off and of course he does not hear very well so I had to go get him. When he saw me he knew what was up and pretended he didn't. Her tried his best to stay out of view shifting to behind tree trucks, a garbage can, picnic tables... It was kind of funny. When we finally connected I motioned him to get his ass back to the truck and he ran to it... and then jumped up into it and onto the piano without coaxing for the first time in months. he's no dummy. I MUST spend more time creating music live for people!
November 10, 2007
This idea wants your support! www.bonerthedog.com
November 09, 2007
I had a comforting thought this morning as I woke up. "If I get to China with the truck an they want to take Boner away to keep him for any about of time and there is nothing I can do about it, I can simply choose to come back." There are always choices. Not that I am thinking there will be any problem at all. But I do review every scenario in my head.
Winter is here! I wore a thermal tea shirt when I went out to play music today so the cold was not a problem. I played piano with a gaggle of kids on my lap. I am seeing Christmas developing... what to do, what to do... choices... music... life... joy... Boner and our musical time together with the world.
November 08, 2007
I played Dizzy Fingers on the piano with my grand nephew sitting on my lap today. There is a video of it up on Youtube. The experiece was pure joy. I am going to try for it again tomorrow. Playing the piano with someone sitting on my lap. Now there's a new twist!
I am out to learn, I love to learn. Today's learned thoughts lean towards "it is what it is" concerning marketing of myself and deciding on the limits and boundaries... the balance of "it is what it is" as a professional. I'm not even sure what I am talking about but... to make a living with music in a visual sense I am going to have to, I think... ugh... present more than my "regular self"... I am going to need to adapt to more general standards... it seems to be compensated respectfully I have to act and look like what peoples idea of money looks and acts like. I mean, I know how to look professional, successful, important, accomplished... I've been doing that for over thirty years but over the last two years I have been shedding that image to reach people on a more intimate level to be on the same "regular guy" level with them. This has not translated into making a living. The bottom line is people will pay a guy in a suit coat a lot more than they will a guy dressed in rags. I am going to have to rethink the reality of my situation.
November 07, 2007
I've learned a lesson since I've started this journey that I cannot afford to forget. It is a "moving forward" verses "shutting down" lesson. The myth used to be, I can't excersise because I am sick. The fact is I am sick because I am not exercising. The myth used to be that I need to rest and do nothing to settle the chaos going on in my head. The fact is I need to stay busy, get to the piano to create music and interact with life through that. I went outside to play by the river today. It was a little uncomfortable because it was cold and yes, my fingers were cold... but the weather and any uncomfortability was MUCH better than sitting in my house. It was just fisherman George, Boner and me. It was heaven. George to a picture and some video for me and stayed until I was done even though he had a fish tugging on his line. He kept looking over at it while I rushed to get done. I played into the dark on the water. My original music is absolutely the meditation tool I have needed for all of my life. I have had difficulty meditating my entire life. I knew all the tools, I read all the books, well, I got it. I got it! I now absolutely meditate through my music. When I play it is ultimate intimacy, oneness it is a solely an experience of music. The only thing worldly about it is the sound. I often think, "this is what I enjoy most sharing with the world, it is my spiritual thought the good, bad, ugly and beautiful." How amazing I can do this! How special for people who are touched by it! For this I am responsible.
November 06, 2007
I want my mommy... only the loving part. The rest of my mommy I want out of my psyche! You know? She left the earth 25 years ago but she is still with me everyday! The love and... the fear, chaos, can-no-do, repression, pushing, not fast enough, not good enough, not enough, wrong way, right way, anyway but my way... I need all that stuff out of my psyche. I need a lot of space to create and spread my music throughout the world and to have ways to do that... to have the world meet Boner... and to achieve the next leg of the journey to China. It is getting cold outside. What to do with the Traveling Piano and my daily desire to create music for people to discover... what to do...
November 05, 2007
It took 14 hours to list 50 items on www.BonerThe Dog.com today. Go check it out. I have all my Thanksgiving decorations listed. The work included taking the pictures downloading them to the computer, resizing them, naming them, creating documents for them and then naming them also... researching and examining the items and writing the text, publishing them to the web and then cataloging the information. I'd rather be in the ghetto creating musical fun with neighbors and getting the kids to play on the piano. I'd rather be helping people rebuild their burnt out homes and taking musical piano breaks with them. This is why I am working so much with Boner's site, to raise the money to pay my bills to do that... here at home and all over the world. Please participate! Boner is going crazy sitting on the couch all day. I took him for a good long walk but he wants interaction with people. He is sitting licking the couch out of boredom. We both want to spread musical fun, friendship and respect, create music for people to discover, bring the beat to the street. Yea!
November 04, 2007
I drove to the local high school parking lot today. Burrr.... it is gettin' cold. The fact that I have a cold or the flu or whatever does not help. I had to get out to play. I spotted four kids skate boarding so I drove up to them and introduced myself. The fun started. We took some video of them skateboarding to piano music and some pictures of them at the keyboard. I spent some time improvising, choreographing the music to their jumping off concrete steps and doing boarding flips and twists. As I was playing an older guy came over, "hey you the guy that was in the paper?" I told him yea I was and then he told me he is a local plumber and a story where he recently took his dog to a major truma rehab to see his wife who was in an accident and they asked him to come back because people had such a positive response to his dog when he took the pup to his wife. He asked if I wanted to go back to the hospital with Boner and the truck and I said, "sure". We shall see if he calls. I told him it would have to be spontaneous and for the patients, not an event for the hospital because then i would have to charge a fee. He liked that idea.
November 03, 2007
I've been listening to my improvisational music for the last few days. I normally record some... cut it up... and publish it. I never think about it other than the listen for the cut. I have published a piece of my music to my website everyday for two years.... to share with the world. I am ready to create a music CD to sell to to the world! I need to pay the bills but that is not what drives my motivation. My motivation will always be to contribute and share my world. My present thoughts on the music are about acceptance, the acceptance of my own personal music and having the worth to be professional with it. This is... way, way worth having lived for. As I was listening to a segment of my music this morning... I cried with gratitude. I did. I sat and cried. To have had the life experience of totally communicating of my spirit through music and most importantly to enjoy that, this is so amazing to me. It is so out of the box for me. The experience comes from the totality of my soul. This experience was the most buried aspect of my soul for 50 years. It is pure love.
November 02, 2007
Cough, cough, sneeze, sneeze ...thats today for me. It did not stop me from taking Boner for a walk! When he walks in front of me I am always... and I mean always, I am in awe of him. There is not a day that goes by when I do not feel complete gratitude for his companionship. I am constantly amazed at how easily he pulls people into his space to share his interest in them. A few weeks ago I was playing some piano besides a roadside veggie stand and when I looked to the side this kid was sitting there in this majorly rigged wheel chair. He seemed to have appeared out of no where. Of course I tried to talk him into getting up onto the piano seat but he did not have enough time. I would have loved to have him be able to have the experience of trying out the piano, outside on the back of a truck with Boner hanging out with us. I am determined to accomplish my dreams and to have a balanced life through the process... well I just continue to go with the flow even though everything does not seem to be happening fast enough. I could not get it together to cook for myself today so I went to a hoagie shop and chose a chicken caesar salad. I pat myself on the back for that as nutrition must continue to be my number one priority. I put up around 50 new cookbooks on the Boner the Dog website today. I must get a piano setup in the house, I am not going to be outside in the cold everyday as I was last year... unless someone contributes to the journey to have me do that.
November 01, 2007
My friend Celeste took todays picture while i was performing up in Schuylkill Haven, Pennsylvania. it made me think of how "weathered" I will probably look after being in China for a few weeks. I emailed someone in China who helps get pets through customs and they responded, "you need pay lots of money to local quarantine office in order to get the pet release from them"...yea so ok... only problem is this sounds negative. What I would have liked to have read is, "you can take your pet with you from the quarantine office, it will cost the price of your house." That would have sounded better... that says can be done and exactly what is needed. Next she says, "it is not easy to do everything in China, so if you want to go ahead use the travel piano truck, I think you need get lots of permit first.Like for the car, your purpose, etc. Otherwise you will be in trouble." Yea ok but again... this sounds negative and too much work. What I would like to have read is... If you want to perform with the truck in China you would most likely need to get seven thousand different permits and have reason for each of them and then everyone will be happy." See...I can handle that . The fact is just how many permits 1...5...10...100? Whatever... I will just do what it takes. I will be filing all negative emails deep, deep, deep into my email bin.