HIS SPIRIT LIVES ON! ... BONER, THE PIANO DOG ... November 27, 1994 ... February 20, 2010
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October 31, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
It feels like I stepped in and out of a twilight zone. The day was filled with doing tasks. I found a piece of paper that I had written on with the word Halloween and an address. With no clue where it came from or what it was for, I headed to the address as it began to get dark. It was a private home with a lot of Halloween going on. There was a table in the driveway with a neighborhood association sign and packages of candy with information inside. It was a perfect spot to engage with community. Mo and I stayed for a couple of hours doing what we do. There is no premeditated plan for my life in anyway, especially when it comes to Traveling Piano work.
I set my intent with conscious desire and what happens just happens. Where, how and when... unfolds as it all happens. For example, I wanted to be in a Las Vegas neighborhood tonight to share the Traveling Piano with community. The idea had been brewing in my head for several days. What a jackpot I found myself in! If I had tried to do what happened, researched or planned any specifics, it would never have happened. It is very difficult for people to understand the what and why of the Traveling Piano especially when they experience it on holidays and at events which is almost never. People become confused with the agenda of my simply being a person, now that Las Vegas is my home... a neighbor, sharing as neighbors should without being taken advantage of.
Most everyone by nature, and I totally get it, attaches the idea of my being a working performer, entertaining, providing a service, always looking for work and in their thinking... ways the concept will work for other agendas. I get it but it still drives me crazy, even more crazy if God forbid I ask for anything from them. Then it always turns into their terms and never beneficial for me. And no, I will not accept twenty bucks as a thank you and thereby set my worth monetarily... at twenty bucks, lol! The core of what I do has to do with creating short one-on-one relationships with strangers. You would need to know my complicated history and be able to think out of the box to understand the "why" of Traveling Piano's Musical Fun, Friendship and Respect with no Commercial, Organizational or Political affiliation.
On the way back to my place I was in awe of this city. When I first passed through here in 2011 it was the neighborhoods that impressed me. Most people around the world think only of the Las Vegas Strip with its entertainment and gambling. They have no clue to the many diverse communities and neighborhoods. Halloween tonight felt like the old days for me, old like when I was a child. There were people everywhere trick or treating walking around from door to door, no fears, no energy of apprehension. I have never seen so much community happening on Halloween anywhere in all of my travels, even where I lived back east for most of my life.
What impressed me most was how it was entire families as well as groups of neighbors. While driving home I was thinking how I did not want to push myself physically but then I saw halloween smoke with purple lights down a street and had to check it out. It was another family simply sharing with neighbors no, it was much more. They had not only candy but food and it was unconditionally without agenda and for the community at large. Up to a thousand strangers just coming to a random house to eat and share in a holiday celebration together. There was no question about it, I had to push myself to spend time there simply as a thank you for them being the kind of people they are, my kind of people! When I got back to my neighborhood, it was like another world. The arts district is no so family or community oriented. I would like to help make it that way.
October 30, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
After all this time I still must move past an impulse of feeling stupid every time I park in a random spot to work with the Traveling Piano. And, I must use little "tricks" to push myself forward with self-centered purpose. For example I tell myself I'm just going to record music, wait for something, use someone walking by who is interested and wants to engage, play simply for my own enjoyment, etc... Today I just put myself on auto pilot coupled with errands I had to do. I needed to get a drinking glass and was looking in a neighborhood store. On the corner where I parked, when I was done I created some music before I left. Then it was off to the supermarket. When I was leaving someone showed interest and I kept at it after they left.
I took Mo to a dog park and before leaving pulled to an area with no cars so I did not come across as conspicuous for all the dog park people. There was a guy there living in his car. He was a decent musician and it felt really good for him to get onto a piano after many years of being away from it. Another guy showed up and was blown away with the idea. It was really all about being connected with another human being through some musical fun, friendship and respect. When that type of encounter happens, that is when it feels like I should just continue doing exactly what I am doing in the way I am doing it until either I or the truck crumbles and... either way not seem to be too far away in the future. Both the truck and piano are catching up to me fast. I mean really after all, the setup has been all over the northern hemisphere and continuously on the road for over thirty years still running!
October 29, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Mo and I attended our monthly appointment at the local food bank today. Cross fingers, it still feels really good each time we go. Other commitments I've made since I've been here have faded out for one reason or another. At this place which is an apartment complex for veterans, I am always meeting new people as well as seeing neighbors I know and meeting new neighbors. The guy who runs the food bank tells me I make his job easier, the workers appreciate Mo especially people who normally are reserved, they open up with friendship and seem to trust my respect as well as connect with the music and fun of it all. My neighbor Bobby stopped by to sing and play a few tunes.
I met a tattooed guy from the top of his head to his feet, even his eye lids where tattooed. He had brought another neighbor in a wheel chair who needed help getting around. We talked just a little but it was enough to know he is a very, very interesting person with a history I would like to know more about for sure! Later in the day while taking Mo for a walk, as we passed several strung out homeless people in random spots. They acknowledged us by asking if we were going to bring the piano out to the street. I tell people in the neighborhood I will be out on my corner on this coming Friday night. I camp out there every first Friday for the neighborhood.
October 28, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Organizing my brain everyday is a challenge. Most people would not believe what it takes. I must from time to time write down basic functions, a basic routine so I don't forget to do "everything" because I can get very get messy with thoughts in my brain as to what to do next or what to do, period. Simple tasks such as feed mo, go to the bathroom, get my coffee, etc... have never been natural for me to remember or do and I have used lists for that my entire life. Tedious, organizational lists over and over and over have been totally necessary. Mo and I took a walk to a local grown up city halloween block party event and it just became more clear that in going back to making money and charging fees, I do not want to do what I already did for twenty years prior to this journey unless I can present my work from a different angle. Being an entertainment vehicle must come second and having a simple persona of a guy with a dog and piano on the back of a pickup truck who shares his piano with other people to play... did that, done that too. Although, I do realize how much fun and joy it is for people and events. Lastly, coming across as a street performer or a local novelty has never, ever been my thing.
October 27, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
I have had very little energy and motivation. I know it has to do with my weight and what I've been eating and it just all comes down to doing the best that I can and I know I am doing the best I can. About mid-afternoon I finally got up and out with the Traveling Piano with my mantra of wanting to extend myself to others in the service of musical fun, friendship and respect. As I got into the truck I told one of the little kids nearby to get their grandma and meet us around the corner in the parking lot. The kids are obsessed with me and Mo and most of them have never been on the Traveling Piano. I have distanced myself from my neighbors because they are mostly all crazy in one way or another and the dysfunctions caught up with me as I began to get entangled over a month ago.
The trouble did not seem to be around today so it was the perfect time and I did it away from the complex. It was perfect timing because the one little girls birthday is tomorrow and she is turning five. Her daddy is out shooting heroin somewhere and mommy is in jail and will be for a long time. There are four little girls and two grown up women living in one room and a crackhead grandson who constantly tries to crash with them all. It was he that I was trying to avoid and damm if he did not appear. I did not want him to see the speaker in the back of the truck. The cover is always on in the parking lot so the drug addicts don't know there is a speaker in the truck to get any ideas of stealing it in the middle of the night. Oh well, I'll just let that issue go and have God take care of it.
The mom of one of the kids also appear and started to smack the little girl in the truck because she had makeup on and I had to stop it to say, "no smacking of little kids in my truck", lol. So it went... the girls were inthralled as were two grownup neighbors who I get along with. After that I stopped at the new community park that was created as a memorial for those killed in the gun mass murder earlier in the month. After interacting with a few visitors the guy who made the park came over to thank me for being there a few weeks ago when I helped out. You can read all about that on October 8th. While I talked with him I kept telling myself over and over, "don't let him extend any more then a thank you, don't take any more than a thank you." There is a good reason for that which I may have written about or will some day in the future but it does "bug" me to have to think that way in situations like this.
October 26, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
I've been having very interesting conversations with people who live on the streets. The only common thread has been concerning failed relationships and alcoholism. The disease of alcoholism and how it takes hold in people, to listen and understand how it is mental, physical and spiritual and controls the mind even when not drinking... it just will always amaze me and not in any way that is good. To learn how living on the street can take hold mentally so there is no way to get off the street in one's mind, to have a mind that cannot conform to other minds, (which is not necessarily a bad thing in my eyes) to realize how some people take care of each other on the streets and how some people who live on the streets are such worthwhile human beings...
I feel grateful that people trust me enough to truly open up and share their lives with me. Some people tell me things they have never told anyone else. I can see them getting honest with themselves for the first time concerning certain issues in their lives while talking with me. To be able to facilitate that for them, what a gift for me to have. Of course it does not come naturally. I have spent many years in therapy both individual and groups myself to have learned how to listen, understand and be interested.
October 25, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
No energy whatsoever... I felt fine this morning and then totally crashed in the afternoon and fell asleep which is very, very rare. The hike yesterday may have been a little over the top especially with the high altitude. Mo having been so tired out should have been a clue that it was also a lot for me too handle. When I am immersed in nature or working with the Traveling Piano, what is going on physically with me is nonexistent in my mind. It truly is a "high" worth having on both accounts but now at my age and with being out of shape, staying aware of over doing it is a good idea.
October 24, 2017
Mt Charleston, Nevada
Mary Jane Falls is a popular Las Vegas, Nevada spot to hike to. It is at the top of Mt Charleston, about an hour outside of Las Vegas and today was the day to do that. It took a while to get there because I am not in such good shape but it happened step by step with a lot of stops to rest. There was some terrific scenery throughout the hike. The waterfall was almost dried up which I expected for this time of year and the ground was somewhat trampled from so many people over the years. Mo and I found a few caves and they had graffiti which was very disappointing but still it felt good to be there. When we were finished the temperature was about fifty degrees up there!
Mo was disturbingly tired but then again we have not been getting enough exercise and it is a fact, he is getting older. God, please help me with that fact. We met a couple originally from Yonkers, New York and I showed them the Traveling Piano before I left. Also, a group of kids happened by. I'm getting used to the fact that we are becoming very known around Las Vegas through Instagram and just from people seeing us driving around. Even without the truck when Mo and I are walking or we are in a store, people who pass by often say hello to us with a smile in a knowing way. Not as in "I know who you are" but just as a matter of fact with a friendly acknowledgment. It feels good.
October 23, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
My friend David was in town today and we had dinner together. There is a very indescribable, interesting connection between us. I met him through this journey. Our getting to know each other is a complicated story blogged throughout the years on the website pages. For example, I was about to phone him randomly to say hello as we had not spoken in a year and at the same time an email came through from him suggesting we get together. I just began watching a documentary on Vietnam and told him about it completely having forgot he was personal assistant to General Abrams who commanded military operations in the war. It felt very good to spend time with him. We stopped at the Las Vegas tourist sign where a memorial was placed for all the innocent people who were murdered recently by a moron with too many guns and those who supported his ownership of them. I felt nothing there as a memorial is just no good at a fun tourist spot. David has been a life long traveler and we have that in common as well as the idea of strangers becoming less afraid of each other and also the idea of sharing what we have to offer with the world.
October 22, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
"Keep going Danny, Keep going Danny"... ha, it is the little things people have said throughout my life, little phrases of support from those I trust really care that come to mind when needed, thank God. Getting up and out when I wake up is becoming more important. If I go online to social media or the news, the distraction from what I must do can take hold for hours and hours and... it never feels good, ever. Mo and I drove to the field as I think of it, the desert outside of Las Vegas. It only takes thirty minutes and I am in the largest "field" there is. I sat while Mo explored. The goal is to feel good and I can always feel good in nature. As soon as I parked an interested family came by and of course I took the truck cover off for a Traveling Piano experience. My job in life is to connect with people and this I must stay conscious of and extend myself with at every opportunity. When we were done the kid wanted to give me some money but I said no lets keep this experience of fun, friendship and respect pure in spirit only.
Of course I am somewhat desperate for money but two dollars will not help anything. Once again as I have always said when people say, "it adds up" no... it does not. For example when a bottle of water costs more than two dollars in todays world, there is no savings possible for an addition to add to anything. I'll tell you what adds up. The feeling those people got from someone sharing and giving without any other agenda but that. I love it, they love it, the world loves it, Mo loves it... lol. We climbed up a mountain somewhat and I sat on a rock just feeling good, no thoughts, simply feeling good. It is a huge mental challenge, always has been for me to create clarity of mind to decide and choose any task major or small for my life. At this point, I don't try to push for clarity anymore as I know its just not possible when it is not possible. It will come in its own time, it always does. When the clarity no longer comes that is when I'll be leaving this earth although I will not know it when that times comes. That is a good thing. Before it got totally dark a piano player found us with no other people around but us.
October 21, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
I am posting a rare picture of simply me. It is even more rare that my eye's are open and that I see a picture of myself that is almost acceptable. It feels like I am back to square one of when I moved here to Las Vegas as I have moved away from the the glue holding me to commitments I have made for myself. There is practically no support system in my life right now, it is all just me, or so it seems. I know allot of that is simply how I feel and that feelings are not always fact. Letting go of one of my service commitments and wanting to get support from the Asian Cultural center where I have been hanging out... it is a wonderful thing that I can change direction when I am on a path that is not working for me or I know will not work out in the future. Some people say you can do anything if you put your mind to it, use your mind's eye, etc... but, there are actually limitations in life if I am thinking only with my mind. The grace of God must be present to help work that "minds eye" and I must be in contact with that grace so I do not tell myself things that are not possible. If I am working from my mind only, that is when grandiose ideas come forward. Lack of possibility happens when I am using my mind only and without grace. Does that make sense? Its deep, I know.
October 20, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
As the larger scale personal validation for this journey dissipates it is important to keep to basics. I consider myself very fortunate in not getting lost with self-importance or with a sense of grandiosity. That has never been that possibility because the God of my understanding will not allow it. Whenever I get too full of myself something always happens to puts me back to where I should be and thank God I can embrace when that happens with gratitude. When my passion and arrogance asserts itself, I work to be responsible with it, always. "But for the grace of God" as I have said many times in my life. The basics; everything I do is for myself, not for outside validation, reassurance or with expectation or obligation from anyone else. Wow, that has been a challenge as I was raised with nothing but expectation and obligation. Also, even though I absolutely love validation and do need reassurance, the more the better and... from as many people in the world as possible, lol... my core desire has always been to affect people one-on-one in relationship. So, having a million adoring fans has never been my thing.
I think that is because I was taught to put people on pedestals and I know how that not only can destroy them, it destroys me with disappointment when I realize they are human beings with their own dysfunctions as everyone has, and what a moron I was to want to create an illusion of perfection in them. It has been passing through my mind these days how all the big things I have done throughout this journey are becoming nothing more than memories and not usable for advancement as far as impressing other people for any agenda I might have or feel a need for. Anyway, Mo and I drove to a mountain top for the sunset and created music over the Las Vegas skyline as it began to light up for the night. Along with other people we met some young kids hanging out, getting high. They were blown away with my music and as one said... "I don't know what that was but please continue with it." Not only was the Traveling Piano truck with Mo and myself somewhat alien like to them, the music was totally, the music of an individual spirit.
October 19, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Mo and I drove to get lost today and ended up at a dog park we have been to many times. I created music there, Mo got some good exercise and we shared the Traveling Piano with people. We are always meeting and interacting with homeless people and my heart feels for them on every level, every time. It takes a practice in objectivity to stay compassionate and empathetic without internalizing their pain and loneliness. My sense of professionalism helps as in my "job" to create Musical Fun, Friendship and Respect. God knows I have my own homeless "type" issues to deal with, the last thing I need is to bring to myself other people's neediness and feelings of being lost. The relationships I've been trying to create and build since being settled down have not been working out. Ongoing relationships do not seem to be in the cards for me, God knows I have worked on having them throughout my entire life. I wonder if it is because I think everyone is supposed to have them?
October 18, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
I enjoy living life on life's terms. It is the easier way with less responsibility. When I am living life correctly which is not all the time because I will never be perfect, there is a knowing feeling that I am not alone because it is not possible to live life on life's terms without dependency to some extent on a power greater than myself. I know there is a power greater than myself here on earth because I do not have the last say. If nothing else when I die here, life as I know it will continue. Some call it God. There are many other names and just as many definitions but it all comes down to a power greater than myself. With this kind of thinking not only am I not alone, I am part of the world with others and my thinking opens the door to "we" verses only "me" or "I" as in I am the center of the universe which is a feeling to avoid for everyone.
It leads to isolation, despair and a dangerous neediness. When all is said and done I know in my heart for better or worse that I have dependency issues. In dealing with that fact, depending on anything as in people, substances or any belief system fails me every time. The only belief that has never failed me in my sixty two years of life has been that there is a power greater than myself. Having a personal understanding of that power is what has kept me living for better or worse and even at times when it seems to me that I don't want to be living. When it feels like I don't want to be living anymore, the fact that I have a choice through a power greater than myself is what keeps me alive. It is the desire for choice more than the desire to stay alive that is most important to me.
October 17, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Nature soothes the beast from within my soul so Mo and I drove to the desert to be with nature. The sun was setting as we took a short hike and then as the stars came out I created music in the silence. I thank God for the ability to be in total silence and with nature here on earth... with my pup... and then to speak to and with the world through my music... what a gift. I also individually called on my friends and family who have passed on to be with us as we hiked. They are all with me and present as long as I keep them consciously in my memory. This I know. On the way back to my apartment I stopped at a music store where I saw they are now providing music lessons. They are offering a packaged fee that comes to $64.50 an hour. The store is taking two thirds of the cut while paying the teachers only $20. When I heard that I thought, thank God I would rather die than allow myself to be taken advantage of in that way. I would never be able to give my students the respect needed when I myself am not being respected for the service I am providing.
As I was showing the music store guy the Traveling Piano he told me about another guy in the area who plays drums from the back of his truck. Within five minutes of leaving I ran across that guy at a gas station on the side of the road. Wow, was it fun to see him having fun and he had just finished building his truck full of lights and smoke and bells and whistles with of course his set of drums. In my minds eye I had created a truck almost exactly like it thirty years ago. We talked and I offered all I know to him concerning how I made a living for twenty years full time using fees with my piano in the back of a pickup truck as well as the last ten years full time without fees, tips or commercial affiliation. He told me he had a dream of using the truck for the Superbowl which was too coincidental as that was also a dream of mine, the dream that started this journey. The fact that he was born in 1987 the year I began working with the Traveling Piano lol, it all just kept getting more and more interesting.
October 16, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
The need to switch tracks with who I have been associating with to create a transition and future dreams seems inevitable. To thy own self be true. It is not easy. Respect is very important for survival. My dignity is all I have when life comes down to ground zero. The idea of accepting lack of respect for myself, who I am, who I care for and why... there can be no favorites as in picking and choosing for different reasons especially when standing up for my well being and the lives of others. Staying true and honest with myself as much as possible is not an option. Living with and relating to respect with a "pink elephant in the room" when it comes to issues of survival, that is not possible for me, nor do I want for it to be. So, if I separate from family because they cannot give me the respect needed to stay alive and support the world from my perspective, the same must ring true for those I work with or relate with in business or any other way. To pick and choose who I stand up to concerning my beliefs and values according to how that will illusionally benefit me is to not be completely honest with myself. If staying true to myself seems to result in the loss of opportunity well, my life has shown that to be again, an illusion. As I look back through my life, every opportunity I have passed up on when 100% honest about it has been an opportunity that I actually never really wanted.
October 15, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Concerning all the people supporting trump like ways... I am understanding more and more that they are uncomfortable, the world is changing too fast for them. They do not want to accept that change is inevitable and good. They have more of a need to stay with, have more faith belief and trust in what they have learned as children than to challenge their thinking as adults. I connected with a new Chinese friend and her daughters today on the Traveling Piano to try and communicate through our language barriers. It is a huge challenge. Also, I met an artist from Beijing, China and his representatives who told me I have a place to stay when I visit. There is now question whether I can handle the politics of people in China. I am always fluctuating with what to do and know that nothing will happen while sitting on the fence not one hundred percent committed one way or the other. I am not going to be able to avoid contradictions in people or myself wherever and with whatever I do which is very difficult for me to come to terms with.
October 14, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
As I become friendlier and more connected with the people I have been hanging out with at the local Asian center, the fact that they live at the total opposite end of my political and philosophical spectrum becomes more apparent and significant. It is more than differences being stronger than similarities. The similarities do not exist in reality when considering the differences. I see minds becoming more warped daily everywhere not just there, everywhere. More and more white nationalistic parades with flags from trucks are happening on the Las Vegas strip just like with people who supported Hitler in Nazi Germany. Keep your eyes wide open. People enjoy and appreciate what I have to offer with the Traveling Piano while negating the fact that the love and equality, inclusiveness and respect comes from a place totally opposite from what they are supporting. That happens by unconsciously experiencing spirit through a warped or lazy mind. The warped, lazy mind will win over spirit in this world and that is very troublesome.
October 13, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
With one foot in front of the other, no projecting, accepting life on live's terms, gratitude, keeping faith and trust in a power greater than myself, staying honest, living in the moment, extending myself in service... I live with these tools in every moment and work to keep them consciously close to my heart. On somedays I am good with that and on other days not. Reality sets in often these days, the reality that I have no one but myself in this world as part of the whole for better or worse. Today I gave a somewhat structured piano lesson (no cost) at the cultural center, as well as attended my Chinese language class but did not participate. Not getting loss in a mindless abyss happens all the time now. That is not good or bad because it is an abyss as in "nothingness" so there can be nothing to judge, lol. I have cut my food intake, third day now because if I am going to be on television I refuse to feel fat concerning my ego and more so, I want to feel healthier. My issues with food, I thought they were over when this journey began. Everything that goes round comes around as they say well, damm, just damm. How many friggin' times in one life time can can going round and round happen? I suppose I could choose to enjoy it all, the going round and round?
October 12, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
We spent time at the Asian Cultural Center for the Thursday taping of the ACTV Music show. While creating music on the street outside, Elvis stopped by to say hello. Many people think he died in the 70's but he wants everyone to know he is alive, well and has been working full time since the 90's doing wedding gigs here in Las Vegas. He had just come from working one. A few of the people who work in nearby buildings stopped by. I am learning about Asian women. I tend to think of them as sweet and fragile. Lol, there is no stereotyping do be with that! Some are very strong and as hardcore as it can get and it comes from generations, thousands of years of generations in learning how to be who they are.
I love them! Everyone at this cultural center, I've said it many times, is very inclusive and friendly yet it feels so difficult for me to allow myself to be accepted. It is a big problem that must be solved and is all about trust. My trusting myself with other people. When I am in control, no problem. When I must be part of, one of, equal to... well, that has been my life long challenge. I accept that challenge. Allowing people to perceive me as less than or with my work on a level that does not communicate total respect in my eyes without being personally affected wow, that is an equally significant challenge. I accept that challenge also.
October 11, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Wow, now that the rant is over from yesterday... in the beginning of the journey I tempered not so nice encounters wanting to be respectful of people even when the relating has not been good or even wretched. I figure if I needed to remember I'll just go back through the blog and there will be triggers to snap all memories into place. Then there are social issues I feel are important to talk about and I've written about and also personal, relational issues in general that I know many people object to but they are not running my life and in fact do not support it, never will in anyway so why should I care? As I move back into the business end of life I'll need to rein in my opinions and thoughts depending on how it affects those I am relating to. This is not easy considering I have twelve years with no practice of doing that.
Saying what I think and feel, on my terms, in my way, doing what I want and how I want to do it, everything on my terms has been a wonderful aspect of this journey and has made the journey what it is. What a gift! It has been a tradeoff for sure. There are many less options in life when you don't play the game for others in order to benefit yourself. I choose... being honest for myself and an example of that for others... for better or worse, always with consideration, consciousness and being as appropriate as possible. How I relate to people is going to get tricky as I move back into the business world. Maybe its too late and I will not be able to adjust. All that matters is that I stay true to myself, who I am and what I care about most, no matter what.
October 10, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
There certainly are a lot of dickheads in this world and for every one of them there can be a unique specific reason... or not. God help me not to become one of them! It takes conscious awareness to not pick up on their ways of thinking and behavior which for most dickheads is completely natural. I remember saying I was fearful of running into them in Los Angeles well, here in Vegas it is no better. The polite nastiness of LA or straight out cut throat nastiness in Vegas... same difference. A few examples and learning experiences: Trust no one, be aware of total self-centeredness, people wanting to use everything about me, lol... acting friendly when that is not the intention, attempting to put me on a subservient level concerning respect. I've been having encounters with well, some would saying influential people in Las Vegas. One guy tried to give me $20 for sharing the Traveling Piano for an event of his. When I said it was a gift as a neighbor he lost it on me screaming in public because I would not accept his level of respect for my worth. Others have bonded over my generosity only to turn on me behind my back when it suited them to trash me for their agendas. There was a place I had given to several times with the Traveling Piano and as a result instead of giving back when they could, tried to take advantage of me to get and give more. While I don't want to write down too many specifics I also do not want to forget.
I ended up doing something very significant without obligation or expectation of any sort. As a result I was asked to lunch and I was not thinking reciprocation but friendship. Wrong. To them it was pay back. A sandwich? Worse, they had no intention of sitting down for lunch. It was like, "lets buy him lunch as a payback so we don't "owe" him anything. We sat down and ordered, then the co-worker went to the bathroom, called the guy sitting with me on the phone so the guy could say an emergency came up that they had to leave while asking if would I mind accepting "take out". Then as we were separating I heard the one guy say, "ok where do we want to go now, want to say hi to George?" Lol, what elaborate theatre to cover their asses in being able to say they reciprocated. Problem is, I wasn't looking for reciprocation and if I was, it would be for a lot more than a sandwich! I felt violated and disrespected but suppose I'm just going to have to be more on the look out for moronic behavior in the future, not get jaded from it. I want to get quicker with my responses to command respect and also mark them off as the nature of the business animal in this day and age. I know I will just need to let it a lot of the crap wash over me, over and over and over while not taking any of it in personally for myself.
On a good note... Mo and I drove out to Redrock Canyon and took a short hike and then headed to a spot where I played back in 2011 when I was last in Vegas. It was a lookout where of course there were people and I wanted them to leave so I could just be by myself. That was not going to happen. It took awhile to extend and get out of myself to create music and as a result I could see the music was affecting everyone in a beautiful way. We had a few fun interactions with people. The music I was creating was coming from sadness, sadness for the recent mass murders here in Vegas and about all the people who lost their homes and possessions in the California wild fires that are happening. For all the people listening it was just beautiful music perfect for the nature and environment they were in. I was feeling not only sad but poignant, natural, intimate and yes, also beautiful. When I bring my life down to the core, it is just me and Mo in the world on our own. Is that a bad thing or should it be different? It is what it is... unless I continually extend myself to others. Concerning the fires in California, last year I stayed in Lake Isabella where a community burnt down and well, pictures cannot show the reality of how awful it can be. Also I know the feeling of being in a fire as well as living with the need to for constant attention to the threat of a sudden wildfire. While having compassion and empathy for what others are going through I need to keep a professional like wall of protection for myself because as I said before, I am becoming more empathic as I get older and emotionally that can be dangerous.
October 9, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
Life is spinning faster and faster with less and less certainty for everyone whether they realize it or not. Or, maybe... there never was certainty and everything is simply becoming more real. As the USA currently implodes and natural disasters strike closer to home with less and less physical resources to deal with everything... as well as limited emotional support... what to do? Practice living in the moment, put one foot in front of the other, practice constantly to extend ourselves to others (not always easy)... gratitude, that is the main tool for me. Gratitude for what I have in the moment, there is a difference between having gratitude for what I have verses gratitude for what I have and do not want to lose. I must detach the joy from any feelings or fear of loss. This is a practice I worked on for two years with Piano Dog Boner. When the time came to let him go well, it was a complete success, not easy but 100% successful. Piano dog Mo surprisingly came into my life as a result. Letting go of Piano Dog Mo will be twice as difficult so I am hoping I'll have at least four years time to prepare or even better going together would be my choice! Both of us leaving in the same moment would be great as long as it is with joy and gratitude! Even better... with joy and gratitude in musical fun, friendship and respect with empowerment and inspiration... lol, and with a bunch of strangers! Why not?
October 8, 2017
Memorial Site, Las Vegas, Nevada
It was 2:30pm when I woke up. The sleep was needed but it felt strange, needing twelve hours of sleep. In some way I knew it was because of my plans for the day of holding vigil with the Traveling Piano from 6pm to 12pm tonight at the memorial here in the Arts District. I would nee a lot of energy to honor the 59 people killed a week ago today and also to support those who care about it, as well as the over 500 shot because of people who support the NRA. Any mind that has not been warped knows the ability to have automatic weapons should not be in our communities for the mentally ill or anyone... to be able to get a hold of. Anyway... people were appreciative that I was there especially those who created the memorial and that felt safe. Around 9pm a huge windstorm came up and I am talking big! Looking down the street I almost could not see the street lights because of the thickness of the dirt and sand. The temperature dropped and it became cold, blizzard like. It was strange.
The wind came in waves while Mo and I tolerated it. Amazingly enough, most of the dirt bypassed us on all sides. Still, there was a lot of dirt flying around! I felt determined to keep going and was impressed that all the new trees were staying intact as well as the memory fence with all the paraphernalia loosely hanging off it but then... one of the main guys came over and asked if there was a truck he could use because the largest central tree was about to topple. Of course without thought I gave him the Traveling Piano to use and we got it in place as ten people were trying to hold the tree up. I continued to create music until about 11pm. The silence with the few people who were there, it really felt like it was for us, a place to be together and help the world heal with loving energy. Before I left my apartment today I placed my intent through prayer to be as supportive as I could be and the Traveling Piano well, not only was Mo supportive for people, the music, myself... the Traveling Piano itself gave support to the memorial park when it needed it. Can we talk symbolism? All I could feel was gratitude and honor.
October 7, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
It felt like there was no energy to be had today as in something is very wrong with me in a physical sense. In any case I pushed forward and drove to the homeless area at the Las Vegas Boulevard and Owens intersection of the city to create some music. After a little while I found another spot on Las Vegas boulevard across the street from where around fifty people settled in for the night along a fence. A dad and his daughter having a keen eye saw us as they drove by and stopped. We were having fun until the security guards came and then we moved on. As I drove away I saw hands, like a lot of hands (lol) rising from the ground to say goodbye in appreciation from all the people laying on the sidewalk across the street.
On the way home I stopped at the healing memorial park and created some music. A young piano guy came up with a retired fireman from Chicago who had a Canine's for Christ support dog. Ha, it feels like the dog support thing is getting more and more out of hand. We need more people for Christ in the ways of Christ and not only in ways it suits their own self-centered egos. Mo does lend support for people but it is not to be a support dog. He's just being himself. It is the same as far as his being with me. People ask how I trained him and if he does tricks and the answer is "no" on both accounts. He simply hangs out with me on top of the piano to be with me. Although personally, Mo is a bona fide support dog for my anxieties. The space on top of the piano is safe for Mo in every way and he knows that its his job to simply enjoy hanging out there.
October 6, 2017
The Arts District, Nevada
I am off of social media for a day and it is not easy. Even if for a few minutes a day, I go on to feel connected and get my information as to what is going on around me even though it all means very little in my life and the world. I cannot let the future loom over me as funding to continue feels very insecure. Actually, it is insecure but is there anything secure? Making connections, feeling people out, trying different ways, devising different options for what I want to do to make some money is ongoing. Onward... While driving on my way to the Asian Center seeing that it is Friday and they have a Chinese Learning class there. On the way, I saw people in an area where I saw them last night and it looked like they were planting trees. It is about four blocks from where I live so I drove by to check it out and it is the cities memorial for the mass murders, the park created in four days, the ribbon cutting was in a few hours and so that was perfect for me.
I parked the truck and created music while people were cleaning up and getting ready for the hoopla. As soon as it was about to begin I was out of there. The television station asked if they could interview me and I declined but let them use my music for the background taping which they wanted more. Tonight is also the First Friday downtown event and so I stopped at a food truck of a Filipino couple I met at the Asian Cultural center and they gave me a fantastic meal of pork and rice. The pork was super fatty and there is nothing more I love than super fatty pork! Lol, they also make cotton candy which they gave to me. Before the night ended I played down across the street from where I live as I have been doing every First Friday in my neighborhood even though I am the only piece of activity going. I do it because the event is meant to be a neighborhood, community get together and not a get drunk carnival to purchase stuff from vendors.
October 5, 2017
The Las Vegas Strip, Nevada
While playing on the strip I watched directly in front of me, a pimp giving trouble to a new prostitute as he yelled at her to be more aggressive and smile. She was scared shitless and I told her to come over and say hello to Mo. As she shook with tears in her eyes, age twenty eight she said she just wanted to go home. She told me that her dad (now passed) created music on the piano as I do. I suggested she get up and try it out but she was too afraid. Her mother sent her to Vegas to go to a rehab and she ran away from it last night. I told her to go back and beg to get in as that is the better of the two choices present in her life. She could not handle them telling her what to do. That... is the disease of drug addiction and alcoholism. She cannot handle anyone telling her what to do, its not possible in the brain and she hates herself so much as a result that if forced, she will turn to hate first which would be the pimp. It is a physical, mental and spiritual disease and the resistance part is mental. It can be helped with understanding but more so with tender loving care through good direction but most of all almost always, only through a spiritual awakening of some sort. Force, manipulation, brain washing, fear never works... never has, never will. People heal through love only.
October 4, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
I have been feeling strangely distant from the recent mass murders here in Las Vegas. There does not seem to be a way to fit in specifically in a supportive way so I must simply continue doing what I do in general. As I tell people who feel helpless in not being able to do anything, I say just go out and create random acts of kindness to everyone, especially for strangers. After all, the was an attack on all of humanity. This is what I do with the Traveling Piano and there is always a special joy about it all when strangers get onto the piano seat together in order to explore. I went to a Mc Donalds today which I do once every maybe two years. I must remember to remember why I avoid that place! The food is usually, almost always really bad. And, I learned today that different Mc Donalds charge different prices! That is just wrong. A double quarter pound cheese burger with fries and a milk shake, $11.75. That is also wrong, lol! I live and learn over and over... over and over... not to waste money on crappy food.
October 3, 2017
University of Las Vegas, Sunset Park, Nevada
I'm very much in the Traveling Piano zone, feeling a little worn but capable and willing. My desire and passion to keep love alive after this attack on humanity two days ago feels steady and strong. As soon as I could get it together Mo and I went to the Bellagio Hotel on the strip for an Asian Expo that the local cultural center is involved with. The event was closing but I still got to see a few guys from Asian Cultural TV that I have been developing a relationship with. They want me to create segments for a show. I'm willing and able and just need to keep telling myself that so I can make it happen. I saw the piano player in the lobby of the hotel and felt total gratitude that I did not have his job, not that there is anything wrong with that! The last time I was in this place was 2011 and it was not nearly as impressive as I remember. Anyway, after paying $7 for an hour and a half parking we left. Every dollar matters because I have so few. We drove to the UNLV (University of Las Vegas) campus student center which near where the mass shooting happened.
I feel for everyone as I know what is in store for them as they process realty and that it will take time. I picked a random spot in the parking area and simply created music as the kids came out of the building after classes. We had fun! The discovery of the music and then where it was coming from transpired into some relating and playing and it felt really good and purposeful. For about a half hour before I left I found myself talking with a local minister who spiritually is on the same page as myself. It felt like I was getting filled up from heaven above to do a lot of work for the next week concerning the gun rampage. I drove to a dog park to give Mo some relief exercise. There I met a woman somewhat exploring conspiracy theory issues. I just shut that down faster than I do fundamental religious people who ask if I know where I'm going after I die and told her to be very care as conspiracy theories are the worst evil in the world today. They are a most serious sickness of the mind. When I listen to these people and the information they want to tell others without knowingly wanting to convince, I see clearly that they are completely lost in stimulating details of twisted, questioning facts fed to them from irresponsible media sources and the people who run them.
Demons use the most important and emotional life events that affect humanity as a whole to do nothing but destroy. Conspiracy Theories dehumanize our existence. Always, it is about confusion for the sake for self-centered validation. When I see how it affects people emotionally both from within and without in a negative way, I feel very sad and very angry. At the dog park about six different dogs came up to me to either play or just be by my side. They would try to engage me and want for me to chase them or tumble and some just wanted to be close and connected by leaning against me. This was all very strange and has never happened before... ever! It really did feel like verification and validation that I am in the zone of spiritual love. Then right before Mo and I left, a connection happened with a couple who had been in the front row of the concert and they told me how they had to escape while running over bodies laying on the ground. We had a short talk. I felt and still do full of gratitude and honored that people will share their lives with me after such a traumatic experience and also that I have the knowledge and ability to know how to respond and also be helpful. Having intimate relationships with the sharing of love and joy even if only for a few minutes can feel and be worth a life's time. I do not take any of it for granted and it is all about strangers becoming less afraid of each other through musical fun, friendship and respect.
October 2, 2017
The Las Vegas Strip, Nevada
Oh my, the worst mass murder in the United States of America here on the Las Vegas strip where I now live. For many people... when the question of owning a gun comes up and allowing guns of all types to be promoted by NRA members (living monsters)... too many choose, let me be proud and own my gun. Then they say oh how horrible when their friends, neighbors and families are killed because of it. I say... stupid, self-centered hypocrites. Many may not know the Traveling Piano has been involved from its inception with gun related community killings, since 1987. I was asked to Virginia Tech by the student government, traveled to Trayvon Martin's spot in FL, on Skid Row in LA, at Sandy Hook CT a week after the killings there and most recently with the Traveling Piano at the elementary school in San Bernardino, CA.
I still morn the 49 gay people killed in Orlando less than two years ago. I have been through ALL the arguments ad nauseam. Guns do not keep you safe, never have, never will. Machine guns and automatic weapons do not belong in your community. I know many people throughout the USA and world now associate me with what has happened in Las Vegas because I live here now and not far away from the tragedy. I know you all care. Thank You. It takes time for me to process strong emotions usually about two days. On a subconscious level I am emotionally devastated and I know that. Gun related mass murders hit me at my core from past ingrained memories and experiences throughout the Traveling Piano journey.
Through the strength of people who know the truth and stand strong a loud along side of me with it... I responded today with love. Mo and parked in different areas on the strip to share love with the Traveling Piano. I will ask everyone reading this to do the same on behalf of all who have been traumatized. Instead of getting sucked into the news, comments and arguments online, I will ask you to go out into your neighborhood, outside... and create a random act of love for someone. Until you can step out of yourself to see what has been happening from the point of view as someone who has been murdered as a result of pro gun ownership propaganda, you will remain a self-centered person lacking in compassion and empathy. If you do not care... then you are not my kind of friend and undeserving of my respect.
October 1, 2017
The Desert, Nevada
This was an interesting day. I was able to force myself out for a hike in the desert. As soon as I got outside the gate of my complex apartment lot a neighbor from across the street came over and asked if I was going to create some music right then and there. He said it would be great if I did and then another neighbor who also plays piano might ride by on his bicycle and play too. So I rerouted my plans, parked and jumped onto the piano for the guy and then his very thought manifested. Piano player Bobby happened by on his bicycle. Bobby began to play and then more neighbors came by and it became an afternoon hangout. After that, I drove to the desert. It was the end of the day and the road I took wanted $20 to drive even though the day was almost over. It is simply a tool tax because there is nothing on the road I was driving on. They call it a national park so they can charge money. I am now a senior so I could get an $80 life pass (which I do not have the money for) or $20 for a years pass. I was thinking I don't even know if I'm going to live four more years. That would be $20 a year to get my money's worth so the idea to hedge my bet came to mind and I paid the friggin' $20 for a year. Damm, human beings forced to pay to enjoy and be on planet earth. It doesn't get more fucked up than that!
Anyway, Mo and I found a turnoff into the desert. We took a little hike along a ridge and I began to create some music over a large vista with Lake Meade in the distance. I turned my head for a second and I saw that a car spotted me from the road and knew as soon as it slowed down that it would turn around to come back which it did and I had a really swell visit with a woman out exploring life and nature just like me. Her dog, the love of her life recently died so we had a talk about that and created some music, another car stopped for a picture and then I headed back home. I've been saving brussels spouts in the freezer for months as well as mashed potatoes in a pouch and had cooked some pork loin a few days ago that has been marinating in garlic sauce. That was a mighty good dinner and I have not had a home cooked dinner like that in ages. Then I watched a movie on my computer which I have not done in months. The movie was Carol and I strongly suggest it. Everything was great until I saw online that a mass murder happened down the street a couple miles on the strip and my mind went into a blur until I turned out the lights at about three am.