Wednesday, December 30, 2009

One of the greatest rags to riches story and why I love Amanda Holden.

For me, this is probably one of the greatest rags to riches stories I have ever witnessed.

A simple woman, from a collection of villages, stuns the judges and audience with a memorable performance that propels her instantly into a world wide phenomenon.

By now, most people have heard or they have seen Susan Boyle perform.

Yesterday, while surfing I came across this video of Susan. It was her first appearance on Britain's Got Talent.

I remember seeing this or a similar video long ago, but as I watched it again, it was like seeing it for the first time. It was emotional, uplifting and inspiring.

It's simply amazing to watch how a cynical audience, expecting nothing from this frumpy looking woman; with three judges that are almost assured that they will be hitting their "X" buttons, transforms within seconds of her opening her mouth to an auditorium of people filled with adulation.

It was as instantaneous and profound as flipping a bright light on in a dark room.

I am also particularly impressed with Amanda Holden.

I simply love her sensitivity and the depth of her emotional response to this performance. You can see she was purely enchanted by this performance by her facial expressions. She had that same look of wonder that a child gets when they are watching fireworks or a new Disney movie for the first time.

I just love her emotional sincerity. Amanda's comments at the end of the performance gives us a window into this lovely woman's gentle spirit filled with humility, grace and dignity.

Susan Boyle's first performance on Britan's Got Talent.

Friday, December 25, 2009

You do not own your property!

Don't believe me?

Well you already know or should know that when you purchase a house and start paying the GreedyBanksters the interest money for the mortgage; you receive a Title or Deed to the property.

All you are getting is the unquestioned "OBLIGATION" to pay taxes on the property you just purchased and the "PERMISSION" to transfer your "OBLIGATION" to pay taxes on the property you just purchased to someone else when you decide to sell it.

Then, when you sell it ... you have an "OBLIGATION" to pay more taxes on whatever gain might have had.

If you do not pay the Mortgage payments the current "OBLIGATION TO PAY TAXES" holder can take it back.




On my first trip to Japan I landed at Narita Airport outside of Tokyo. While we were taxing towards the terminal the plane steered around what looked like a section of the tarmac that had cherry trees on it. Lots of warning lights and a big fence was around the section.

When we deplaned I stopped to talk to the Pilots, to thank them and just talk a little, I noticed on the Airport Diagram on the Pilot's Kneeboard that indeed the section of the tarmac was clearly visible. I asked the Pilot "What's up with the trees?" He responded by saying that when Narita Airport was built there was a farmer who refused to sell his plot of land. His ancestors are buried there. So, they had to build around his property. He goes on there about twice; three times a week to water and take care of his trees.


In FUCKED FASCIST FREE AMERCIA [] people are losing homes left and right because developers want to build Shopping Malls or Stadiums.


Tell me we don't live in a communist state!

Look at this stuff:

As I was surfing I found this:
This seemed to indicate that everything I have been saying is all backwards. So I look up who is responsible for this site and I see these words in the About Us page: "Since its founding in 1941 by prominent Americans concerned with the mounting threats to peace and democracy, Freedom House has been a vigorous proponent of democratic values and a steadfast opponent of dictatorships of the far left and the far right."

Then I understood. If the countries appeared to look like the American Model then they were free. Most Americans simply do not know that they ARE NOT FREE!

The Canucks and Aussies are drowning in rules and regulations illegally imposed high taxes and other crap. The Aussies don't even have guns anymore.

Free Election Communism (America) is where the people vote for their dictators. Totalitarian Communism is where the dictators are picked for them. There is NO DIFFERENCE in the "COMMUNISM"

Do some of your own research.

I've been to 22 foreign countries and now live outside of the USA. I can tell you for sure that the USA is NOT the "free-est-country-by-any-stretch-of-the-imagination" in the world.

Communism is alive and well in America.

When I was growing up, the Cold War was in full swing. We had those ridiculous duck and cover films. Yeah, no kidding; If an Atomic Bomb blast was immanent we were supposed to "protect" ourselves by ducking under our little desks. Even now I have to question not only the stupidity of that thinking but who came up with that unbelievably stupid idea and why is it so many other seemingly "intelligent" adults followed this advice?

Aside from that, I knew intuitively that most of the citizens of Russia were kind decent people like we have here. Most of them weren't caught up in this "take over the world" mentality; they were just trying to survive.

Wars are started by the current "Leaders" in power. Not the citizens.

Senator Joe McCarthy was on a crusade to root out the Communists and America in its "infinite" wisdom thought we could beat them militarily. That's our philosophy "Who ever has the biggest stick..."

You can see how that approach is NOT working for us. We think of those in the Middle East as being less intelligent about many things. WE, the US of A are the babies on the block. Their cunning, conniving culture goes back thousands of years. They make fools of us at almost every turn.

Dubai is a perfect example of how they have "accumulated" wealth at OUR expense, and that's not the richest place! Check this out.

How many of you use the word "State" in your vocabulary? And, when you use it you are NOT saying I live in the state of so and so. You are referring to some oppressive law or restriction that is making your life miserable or a little less fun.

Khrushchev declared - "We'll get you without bombs, in a way you'll never realize." They will destroy us from the inside - and not a single shot will be fired.

Ever think about that? If you wanted to take over a country and you knew you could not do it by force how would you do it?

I would start by placing people into positions where I could manipulate the Educational system and the Political system first. Once you get the "children" in the schools to think differently; never questioning authority, believing everything the government tells you then it's like a dominoe effect. Take away a freedom here, then another, put a rule in place then another. You have help because you control the News Media that simply reports these events as fact (in other words they're not saying WTF is going on here? - They're saying accept it or you'll be in trouble)

You, the person reading this, it is YOUR responsibility just like me, to start asking questions, to start getting more and more people thinking about these things and saying "Hey, WTF is going on here?" and starting scrutinizing these "dictators" we are electing.

How long are you going to sit back and allow the "State" to own you?

Perhaps within a decade or less we will see a change in the educational system. Children will be given aptitude tests when they are very young and then be "forced" to attend schools that foster their abilities like science or math or gymnastics.

The misfits will be relegated to factory work to build up the military / industrial machine. Alcoholism and suicide will increase. Many will no longer have a say in their destiny; it will be decided for you.

This is definitely a possibility!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

How to fix broken drum sticks

There is nothing more frustrating to a drummer than to have a brand new stick split after playing just a few bars of a song. Usually when a drummer whacks the bell of the cymbal, the impact can, if the conditions are right, cause the stick to split down the grain of the wood. Sticks are made of money, or wood; ... same thing. It's expensive and it sucks, especially bad, when they're brand new.

Years ago, I discovered that I could fix drum sticks when they split for pennies.

It's a simple process and it works. The sticks lasted as long as sticks that had never been broken.

1) A bottle of Elmer's Wood Glue.  WOOD glue or Carpenters Glue there's a difference it works much better than the white stuff.

2) Large Hypodermic Needle or Syringe
Glue is thick so the larger ones work better. The larger ones in the middle of this picture work great.
Where to find them? Depends where you live. If you live in the country you can find great ones at COOPS very cheaply. Drugstores usually carry them

3) Very small C Clamps Depending upon how many you need to fix at any given time, you will need a 1 or more C Clamps for each repair. Back before I learned a lot of technique I used to have a pretty heavy hand and would split sticks regularly. This was also when stick manufacturing was not as good as it is today.

4) Several Large (Optional) Rubber Bands. Depending on the repair I have either used these by themselves or with the C Clamps.

5) Paper towels, or old cloth and a small bowl of warm water.


Spread the stick where the split is, being careful NOT to use too much force so that you don't actually separate the stick into to pieces. DON'T panic if that is what has happened. You can fix these just as easily. When working with two separate pieces it is a little more tricky to keep it aligned when you're adding pressure so, when possible, I like to keep them intact.

You want to open the stick up so that you can apply glue along the entire length of the split.
Sometimes, you can't separate the stick very far. This is why the needle is very handy in all cases.

Apply a generous amount of glue to the exposed areas. The needle helps you get into tight spots. You could also do this without a needle if you wanted to. Simply apply the glue into the area and then on a firm surface, floor or work bench with the stick pointing straight up hit the butt of the stick. The force of the sudden stop will drive the glue into the crack.

After the glue is applied place you C clamp(s) evenly over the split and squeeze the split closed. Not too tightly this time. You want to do it hard but enough to squeeze out most of the excess glue.

Wet the cloth or paper towel and wipe the excess glue away.

Relax the C Clamp(s). Now retighten them slowly carefully keeping the split area aligned. Once you have good pressure crank them a little harder than before. You should see some more excess glue appear, a smaller amount, just wipe it away.

I found that in many cases using rubber bands, I was able to get a uniform pressure that held splits or breaks that were wiggly in place better.

I used to keep the sticks clamped for 3 days. Less if the humidity is low.

Squeeze any remaining glue back into the bottle if there's a lot left and rinse the needle and plunger in warm water so it will be ready for the next time.
Put a pencil eraser or some other protective thing on the needle tip.

That's it.

Michael Vick get's an Award!

Michael Vick did a terrible thing.

Many people have done what he's done without any repercussions. Some people have done things that are worse.

No one is perfect.

It seems, though, when Stars and Professional Athletes do bad things they can be forgiven and even receive awards.

The world is full of many more people who have messed up, very badly. These people are not famous or extremely wealthy or in the news.

All they get is the punishment.

Most of the time there is no forgiveness and certainly no AWARDS!

Animal cruelty is just a cover for what's going on inside the real person. A person who is capable of caring so little for the "life" of these defenseless loving animals (animals feel pain; and they die in these fights) or any other living thing on this planet are certainly capable of hurting people just as easily; especially the defenseless children.

If you look at most child predators, serial killers, and very dangerous and deranged people; almost all of them started out by being cruel and abusing animals.

Something to think about when your handing out awards.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Child Abuse at its worst.

Please watch this video.
A story on Yahoo.

I have been researching crimes and punishments and our loopy Justice System for more than 12 years.

And again, as some of you know, most of my data is on my computer that's not working.

I have lots to say on this and in a later Blog I hope to dispel some myths and enlighten people on what the real score is out there with our Justice System.

Here is a true statement.

Child abuse is Child Abuse.

Why, is it when we add the three letter word "SEX" in front of child abuse everyone goes ballistic?

Some simple facts and it's all about perspective:

1) 97% of ALL sex offenses are NOT perpetrated by strangers. The victims know the perpetrators; family, neighbors, etc.
2) Only 2.7% of ALL sex crimes that are committed are of the Poly Glass, Adam Walsh severity. This per capita statistic has been almost constant for decades and decades.
3) Many of the Sex Offenders have not been caught yet.
4) Predatory Sex Offenders, those who seek out and prey on young children, are narcissistic sociopaths. To them, children are like objects. The silly and ridiculous knee jerk legislation that restricts (2000' feet) where these Sex Offenders can live has no effect on these predators. There are more than 3,000,000 registered sex offenders in the country. They have to live somewhere.
Here are some facts about this housing lunacy:
a) There is no evidence that this restriction has any positive benefit whatsoever with the propensity of a person to commit a sex crime.
b) Does this mean that children are SAFE if the Sex Offender lives 2001 feet away? For all of you "Lost in Space fans: DANGER! DANGER! WILL ROBINSON a Sex Offender lives 1999 feet away.
) Many of the crimes committed are molestations of people between the ages of 16 and 18. (How many musicians in famous bands have had underage groupies in their hotel rooms?)
Did you know that someone just putting their hands on someone in an inappropriate manner, because of the way the statues are written, that physical act could be escalated to a rape charge?
Guys, if you ever opened your drunken date's pants and put your hand on her tush, you could be charged with Rape! Girls, you have nothing to worry about; although the court will take a dim view of what I have to say next, when it comes to men, you can't rape the willing.
6) Women are not punished as severely as men.

There's a LOT more on this I could say, but I will stop for now.

Now we have a conundrum. Both of the following crimes are bad but, here's where the perspective aspect kicks in. Here's a perfectly logical question.

Who has behaved more violently and has done more overall damage?

1) The "Bad" Uncle that puts his hands down his step-nieces pants? Many Sex Offenders are not out to "hurt" their victims. Their skewed thinking, in many cases, has them believing that they are not hurting anyone. Many of them, in fact, just wanted to make their victims feel good. Statistically, a large percentage of Sex Offenders do not have their victims reciprocate in any way. In other words they don't have sex or any other physical gratification.


2) The lady in the video tape?
There are many more instances of this kind of abuse; Some cases more violent, some more oppressive (like being locked in a basement or closet for years at a time) abuse that last for years and years against children in this country. I would say, conservatively, that there are 25 instances to every single Sex Offence of children that are severely abused every day.

There is no correct answer here. Both crimes are bad, but, to me, the woman in the video is a little more violent, a little more egregious than many of the Sex Offenders.

My big question is why don't we hold these non SEX related child abusers to the same level of accountability as we do for Sex Offenders?

Most of the time the sentences for these people are only a few years in Prison and when they get out of Prison, they get to live anywhere they want to.

In my mind these people are as bad as, if not worse than the majority of the people we are labeling Sex Offenders.

These people should not only receive larger sentences than they typically get, but they should also be forced to register on the same exact Registry as Sex Offenders.

Actually, we should change the Sex Offender Registry to be either the Child Endangerment Registry or the Child Abuse Registry.

We should be concerned about all forms of Child Abuse!

In fact, if you look very closely at our entire population, and then scrutinize every aspect of everyone's life; and then you use the current wording of the Sex Offender Statutes as they are written in most states, more than 80% of the people in this country have committed some sort of sex crime.

I honestly don't understand the lunacy behind the 2000 foot restriction. Who came up with that in the first place?

Here's a clold hard statistic for you. Sex Offenders can't live within 2000 feet of a park, school, playground or daycare, but, they can live less than 20 feet away from a swing set that is in the yard next door to the approved house they reside in where 10 neighborhood kids play every day. The public parks and playgrounds are empty 70% of the time.

This also poses a threat to our society. The 2000 foot restriction effectively shuts these people out of living in 90 - 100% of most populated areas. So rather than register, they drop off the grid. Now we don't know where many of them are. Are you Feeling Safer?

Here is a diagram.
(P) - Park/Plaground/School
(S) - Sex Offender

Anyone have any idea of how many zig-zags it takes to make any sense out of this rule. I would think, that if whomever it is what is worried about the 2000 foot rule, is worried about a Sex Offender being in the proximity or "line of sight" from a school, then one or two zig-zags (500 feet) seems more reasonable.

And, finally; (and this is where the 2000 foot restriction makes absolutely no sense to me whatsoever) Most Sex Offenders have to work for a living in order to survive.

Here's a logic thought experiment for you...

DURING THE DAY, when most of the kids are in school and at the playgrounds and at the day care centers where are most of the Sex Offenders? Hmmm? They are away at work. DURING THE NIGHT, when the Sex Offenders come home from work where are most of the children? Hmmm? They are at home! They are no where near the School, park or playground.

Am I the only one that thinks that this whole 2000' thing is a little absurd?

In the last 15 years or so, with the many varied occupations I have had, I have come into contact with a number of Sex Offenders. Most of these people were intelligent, sensitive, caring people, that, for whatever reason, got caught up doing something stupid that wrecked their lives and were extremely sorry for all of the damage they had done. None of these people struck me as being the "monsters" that the News Media or America's Most Wanted portrays them as being.

I have a whole Blog devoted to this Sex Offender lunacy, because, I think in our country we have go so far overboard with this that we've lost all common sense and sensibility about it. We have gotten to the point where we are now classifying 5 year olds as sex offenders. C'mon, really? Give me a fucking break. This is how fucking retarded we've become.

Friday, December 18, 2009

This video disturbs me ... A LOT!

The video on this link disturbs me on several levels and I will bet that not one of you will guess the reason why.

Take a look at this video.

It is disturbing and sad that a teenager died in a fatal crash and a young man is being sentenced to spend some time in custody all because of some wrong choices.

It's not an accident when someone drives a car while intoxicated.

In truth, how I managed to NOT kill anyone or myself when I was younger is beyond me. There were times I was so wasted and high when I drove that I could have lit up a Christmas tree. I guess God was protecting the other people from me.

If you will notice about 7 seconds into the video we see the kid with his face blurred.

This has been a trend that's been going on for only a few years now. This never happened when I was younger and it is this that really disturbs me.

I found a Blog that is fairly interesting that has something to say about this. It's worth reading you can find it  here. ....

Everyone is freaked out about the revealing the pictures and if they to the identities of these kids will attract all of the pedophiles and that the pedophiles may somehow get to them.

There's a term; it's called "per capita" and this means a percentage. The sad truth is that the per capita number of sex offences has not changed significantly. If anything it has gone down slightly. The numbers are larger because the percentage of 300 million people is larger than the percentage of 100 million people. It is virtually the same as it was 20 years ago, 40 years ago, 100 years ago, 200 years ago.

Thomas Jefferson was a either a hero or a child molester. It depends on what time you lived in, and during that time there were many, many, many more sex crimes per capita than what occurs today. Check out the middle of the fourth paragraph of The DNA evidence is in.

Sex crimes have occurred with the same number of "per capita" frequency since time began. We just hear about it now more than we used to and it's only in the last 10 or 15 years that we've really freaked out about it.

Photography was invented in 1814. For almost two centuries we didn't blur a thing. During this time there were kidnappings, rapes, molestations, murders and other horrid things.

Blurring anything is not going to change a thing.

The predatory pedophile is not going to be stopped by a blurred picture or a 2000 foot housing restriction.

It's another example of Political Correctness and a coming of a more intolerant and oppressive government.

I wonder how many people could see the "handwriting on the wall" prior to the Berlin wall going up and warned people and fled the country.

When I see these things on TV, the first thing that comes to my mind is a quote from a tyrant that almost took over the world.

The man was Adolph Hitler.

I'll leave you with a number of quotes from Adolf Hitler.

If you spend some time reading these quotes see if there are any of them resonate on what's happening in our current world; The New World Order, Homeland Security, Loss of freedoms, etc. Some of these quotes I feel strongly about. I have put some comments in [brackets] when I wanted to share something.

"The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation."
Mein Kampf; the Ralph Manheim translation published by Houghton-Mifflin, 1943. pg 403.
[I don't know about you, but in recent years, this has been the new battle cry of America!]

[If you study Anthropology, you will find that in order for us humans to flourish as a species we must have a constant adversity to overcome. We need to be challenged and sometimes it needs to be severe. It's similar, in context, to the War of the Worlds book/movie. The technologically superior Martians were brought down by tiny microbes, the little germs we had been exposed to for millions of years. They had no immune system. If you took a new born baby and isolated it from the outside world and put it into a bubble the baby would not develop an immune system. Now, think back to the late 1800's when Ellis Island was flooded with immigrants. Many of these people were young kids that had to fend for themselves on the streets. Many of them worked in sweatshops, and dangerous jobs. Kids that did have parents, many of them were so poor that they had to go out and work hard jobs at an early age to help the family survive. Not only was this one of the most dynamic and prosperous times in America, many of these underprivileged kids people became the pioneers and leaders we have today. You can't protect all of the kids from everything.]

"The great masses of people will more easily fall victims to a big lie than to a small one. Especially if it is repeated over and over." [Regardless of what you have been told, it is physically impossible for the World Trade Center buildings to collapse as they did, because of plane crashes. -- I will share my thoughts on this in a later blog.]

"It is thus necessary that the individual should come to realize that his own ego is of no importance in comparison with the existence of his nation; that the position of the individual ego is conditioned solely by the interests of the nation as a whole ... that above all the unity of a nations spirit and will are worth far more than the freedom of the spirit and will of an individual."
[In other words the State is to have ultimate control and dominion over the people.]

"All propaganda must be so popular and on such an intellectual level, that even the most stupid of those toward whom it is directed will understand it... Through clever and constant application of propaganda, people can be made to see paradise as hell, and also the other way around, to consider the most wretched sort of life as paradise."

"No matter what amount of talent is employed in the organization of propaganda, it will have no result if due account is not taken of these fundamental principles. Propaganda must be limited to a few simple themes and these must be represented again and again. Here, as in innumerable other cases, perseverance is the first and most important condition of success."
Mein Kampf; the James Murphy translation. February, 1939

"All propaganda has to be popular and has to adapt its spiritual level to the perception of the least intelligent of those towards whom it intends to direct itself."

"We have to put a stop to the idea that it is a part of everybody's civil rights to say whatever he pleases." - From conversation on February 22, 1942
[Yeah, who cares about Freedom of Speech; now we have 'Politically Correct' … nah, that's not censorship!]

"The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed the subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the supply of arms to the underdogs is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty."
-Edict of March 18, 1938, H.R. Trevor-Roper, Hitler's Table Talks 1941-1944 (London: Widenfeld and Nicolson, 1953, p. 425-426).
[Hitler wanted a cleansing; a pure race.In today's world the "subject races" are not the Jews and other miscreants but the whole population. In the broadest sense, in today's world this is just another way of justifying gun control. The State deems it important to and necessary to take the guns away from the people all under the guise making its citizens feel more secure.]

"Great liars are also great magicians"

"How fortunate for leaders that men do not think."

"If you wish the sympathy of the broad masses, you must tell them the crudest and most stupid things."

"Of what importance is all that, if I range men firmly within a discipline they cannot escape? Let them own land or factories as much as they please. The decisive factor is that the State, through the Party, is supreme over them regardless of whether they are owners or workers. All that is unessential; our socialism goes far deeper. It establishes a relationship of the individual to the State, the national community. Why need we trouble to socialize banks and factories? We socialize human beings."
-Adolf Hitler to Herman Rauschning, "Why Does Socialism Continue to Appeal to Anyone?", Robert Hessen
[I think you get the picture here, no need to spell that one out.]

"Our strategy is to destroy the enemy from within, to conquer him through himself."

"Only force rules. Force is the first law"
[SS, KGB, Homeland Security]

"The victor will never be asked if he told the truth."

"To be a leader means to be able to move masses"

"The doom of a nation can be averted only by a storm of flowing passion, but only those who are passionate themselves can arouse passion in others."

"The [Nazi party] should not become a constable of public opinion, but must dominate it. It must not become a servant of the masses, but their master!"

"The man who has no sense of history, is like a man who has no ears or eyes."
[In other words folks ... keep your eyes open History has a tendency to repeat itself.]

"Demoralize the enemy from within by surprise, terror, sabotage, assassination. This is the war of the future."

"Strength lies not in defense but in attack."

"Success is the sole earthly judge of right and wrong."

"The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it."

"I don't see much future for the Americans... It's a decayed country. And they have their racial problem, and the problem of social inequalities... My feelings against Americanism are feelings of hatred and deep repugnance... Everything about the behavior of American society reveals that it's half Judaized, and the other half negrified. How can one expect a State like that to hold together?"
- In conversation on January 7, 1942; quoted in Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L. Shirer, p. 895; from transcripts published as Hitler's Secret Conversations, 1941 -1944 (1953). These should not be confused with later publications such as "Hitler's Secret Book" (1961) from transcripts of 1928, nor the widely known hoax of "The Hitler Diaries".

Are we heading down a slippery slope of tyranny? disguised as our new modern America?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The crooked Bankers are at it again! Credit card's newest trick: 79.9 percent interest

I mean seriously folks. Are you all that brain dead as to think that these schmucks have even the slightest concern for our well being?
Unbelievable Credit Card Interest Rate: Story on Yahoo.

It's unbelievable. They target the poor, the ones with the worst credit and drive them into the ground with a sledge hammer. Just kick'em when there down . While I was searching for the origin of that phrase, a phrase that I have used so often, it yielded this very relevant web page. The kick'em phrase in one of the posts.

How many thousands of bad reviews could we find on all of the banks?
Bad Review: Capital One

And we were FORCED to bail these fuckers out, so they could give hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses.

I've been saying stuff like this for years, and in a mini book that I am currently reading that I will pass the link along to you in a day or so, had the following quote in it. The wording is exactly what I have been complaining about for many years. This unknown author puts it all together in one paragraph. Sooner or later, if you wait long enough, someone will write and publish what you are thinking, and say it as good, if not better than you could have.

"The banksters first bought all the politicians. Next they bought all the major media to promote the illusion that politicians represent our interests. Then they took control of the education system, ensuring kids stop thinking at an early age. The Office of Homeland Security is designed to control us in order to confiscate our funds for the purpose of paying the alleged debt of trillions of dollars. Its only a matter of time before we will have no more cash, no pensions, no government 'benefits'. If we resist, there is an Orwellian police state and military police to ensure it." - author unknown

And we were FORCED to bail these fuckers out, so they could give away hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses to their crooked management.

I added the bold to the educational part. This country is becoming a country that is populated by opinionated people that are seriously mentally challenged. Why we, the entire population are putting up with this is just unbelievable to me.

I am only one of a handful of lone voices in the wilderness of common sense. It will take many more people, with the RESOLVE to change the system to clean this mess up.

I have hundreds of pages of documents, that I have written, that I can't get to that support all of this . I'm stubborn. My computer is still on the fritz, and I, being the expert; and wanting to save mucho dollars, am still trying to trouble shoot it. The piece of shite is giving me a real run for my money. The most frustrating thing about the situation is I BUILT the machine from the bottom up. Whatever the problem is, it's demonic in nature.

I have not used a credit card in over 15 years! Those bastards are not getting any extra from me if I can help it.

Monday, December 14, 2009

To Brine or not to Brine! The near Perfect Roast Turkey.

To Brine or not to Brine! The near Perfect Roast Turkey.

Perfection is a slippery word. We often say things like "this is perfect" or "that is perfect" … in the course of our lives, but in truth nothing is really absolutely perfect.

You can however get close to perfection on many things. Roasting a Turkey is one of them.

For years I cooked turkey the old fashioned way, like many households currently do that learned from Betty Crocker's Cook books or "The Joy of Cooking". Sometimes the Turkey could turn out to be a little dry and there was endless basting. But in the end they were tasty and we loved to eat them. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the methods in these books.

But, as I wanted to improve my skill as a cook, I decided to scour the internet and other cookbooks for other people's processes when cooking Turkey.

The genre, what I am after, is oven roasted Turkey. I also love Deep Fried Turkeys and Smoked Turkeys; those are different disciplines and you can achieve near perfection with those methods also. I am getting ready to build a smoke house.

Several years ago I came across a method described here.

If you follow this you will have a fabulous Turkey every time. The Turkey will be moister than the traditional method.

Being an engineer and musician I can't help myself to play around and tweak things.

I start the oven at 500 degrees for 30 minutes and I adjusted times and ending temperature down to 200 degrees and the result is (after a slightly longer process) I have a slightly crispier skin. Pundits will argue that 200 degrees is too low and will result in unsafe handling because bacteria could possibly be a factor I would agree in part.

Some slow cooking methods call for very long roasting times starting and ending with 200 degrees. Potentially you could have problems with these methods. Starting with an oven preheated to 500 degrees and cooking at that temperature for 30 minutes pretty much assures any surface bacteria in the cavities and outside skin will be obliterated.

Recently, I was researching brining. I've done a little of it with Brisket but not with Turkey.

Get a 5 gallon paint can, double lined with 13 gal trash bags; add some water and salt and you're in business.

I compared about 10 brining recipes for ingredients and quantities and times. What I did was dissolved 1.5 C Kosher salt, 3/4 C of Brown sugar in two quarts of water. I caramelized 2 chopped onions, celery a few other spices and added that to the salt/sugar mixture.

I added that to about 2 gal of ice cold water that I poured on top of a thawed turkey and put it in to the refrigerator for 12 hours.

This was my first time at this so I made a few false assumptions. If you are going to brine for a very long time you need to back off the salt a little. If you are only keeping the meat in the brine for a few hours then you will be ok.

The next time I do it I will only use salt and sugar to see how a minimalist version does. I can do some aromatics when I roast.

I rubbed butter under the skin and put it into the oven.

I was astonished!

With the non-traditional cooking method and the brine the Turkey was so moist and tender that I was concerned that it was not cooked properly. I had to assure myself twice. I checked with TWO different thermometers and the internal temperature was correct.

Is brining for every one? Perhaps not, it is time consuming and I had to remove a shelf in the refrigerator to make room. Fore me, this is not a problem. Those of you with a second refrigerator can do this with little inconvenience.

Brining brought a new level of quality to this process.

For me the answer is YES, whenever it is feasible … by all means BRINE!

Have a great day.

Friday, December 11, 2009

A political thought experiment.

When I was growing up I lived on the East Coast. We had Elementary Schools (grades K-6), Junior High Schools (grades 7-9) and High Schools (grades 10-12)

In my town we had North Junior High and South Junior High. These schools had their sports teams that competed against each other. There were rivalries. We rooted for, and had allegiance to the team from the school we attended. These were our learning grounds.

Both Junior High Schools merged into one High School. Now, the rivals quit competing and joined into one Football team, one Basketball team and one Baseball team.

Right now we have two major political parties in power. We have the Democrats and the Republicans. We have Independent parties but they do not have enough numbers to make a difference.

The Republicans would like nothing better than to win all of the elections so that they could be in total control. The Democrats want the same thing.

By this I mean all of the Senate seats and all of the seats in the House of Representatives along with the President.

If one party won all of the elections then we would be ruled by one single party. The opposing party with different view points is not going to take this lightly. They are going to try and win back some of the seats in the next election.

What we have now, is one party that has a little more control than the other party. The opposing party is always trying to circumvent the progress of the other party. This is called grid-lock.

We have political fighting that is taking up a lot of time and energy. There is lots of posturing, pompous people flapping their wings like birds in heat trying to out do each other. To me it has become total nonsense.

What if our politics could be changed to resemble the progression from the Junior High Schools, in my example, to High School?

What if we could create a New Party called the American Party (High School). Now this is the party that is really in power. These are the people that are making the laws and running the country.

The Democrats (North Junior High) and the Republicans (South Junior High) are learning grounds for how to run campaigns, how to get elected. Once, these people get elected they go through training like Internships/Residencies for Doctors. This is where they learn to be GOOD politicians. To graduate from this level they have to study procedures and take and pass stringent tests on Ethics, Conduct and the Constitution. They can't write any laws or do anything other than observe.

Did you know that a very large percentage all of the politicians that are elected into office have never read the Constitution, the document they have sworn to defend?

When seats vacate in the American party, those with the highest grades graduate into the American party. They become full members of the American party representing their state.

At this point in my perfect little scenario, we have a UNIFIED collection of people all joined together with a common goal of doing what's best for America. There's no fighting or bickering. There are problems to be solved and these people, who are not concerned about the next election or what they can get out of the deal, are committed to doing a great job. Why, because they only get one shot, one term; one try at it.

The legacy they leave behind is: Did they do something constructive and beneficial?

Without career politicians we won't have these "powerful" politicians. Politicians are supposed to be our servants not the other way around. They are not supposed to be powerful in any way shape or form. Some of the haughty Senators that have been in Congress for decades, the ones that won't stop to talk to people, and the ones that operate behind closed doors and pass unpopular legislation that hurts the individuals of the country and benefits corporations and Special Interest groups are just like the dictators and despots in other countries.

If a person can't run for office a second time and get re-elected then they won't waste any time trying to get re-elected. They are not likely to tarnish their legacy on creating crappy legislation that benefits a corporation and hurts the people. Because just like a Wiki someone will follow them and it is part of the training to make sure that only good and beneficial legislation gets written and passed. When someone finds crappy legislation it is their duty to have it changed, repealed or rewritten and to make a note of who authored the bad stuff.

It's far fetched I know but with some work it could be a great thing.

In the mean time, knowing that my idea is never going to ever become a reality or even be considered, I can say that we can have something that is similar to this by holding these crooks accountable for their actions.

Don't vote for people just because they are cute, or they have been in office before. Each citizen has a duty to follow up on what these greedy slugs are doing. If they don't do the right thing, vote them out after one term.

A lot of our problems in this country come from the fact that the stupid people keep on voting the same sorry dumb ass politicians back into office, the ones that hurt the country because they think it will be better the time around. Why? Because their campaign slogans are what the people want to hear. The professional campaigners and not smart people keep getting voted into office.

For me, regarding politicians, more "experience" equates to more self-serving greed and corruption.

We need to send the message that we are sick of the waste, sick of the fighting, sick of them spending our tax dollars overseas and sick of the greed.

That's it for now … it's just something to think about.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Great article for healty hair using natural products.

Hi all,
Here's an update for my blog on having crappy hair a few days ago.

The older we get the less likely things will improve alot, but, I am willing to try some of these recommendations out.

Having hair from hell, was not what I would have picked if I could have chosen what DNA traits I wanted to have before I was born.

The link to the Yahoo article is here: Natural Tips for Gray Hair, Hair Loss, and Dandruff

I always prefer Natural remedies.


There are a few shows that I really like; this one is really edgy and dark.

The show is Dexter.
You can find it here


I hope you enjoy it.

This season has been a "Killer" season!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Watch Movies and TV Shows

Here's are some of the best sites that I have found to watch videos other than YouTube.

Windows Annoyances

It's sad how gullible people are.

While scouring the web a few minutes ago, I happened to enter the search term "Windows Annoyances"

Windows is an Operating System (OS); it is what allows you to run your favorite programs on your computer.

Google returned 2,650,000 listings.

BTW: All web stats are dated 12/9/2009 circa 3:46PM PST

Let's look deeper.
WINDOWS annoyances 2,650,000
UNIX Annoyances 214,000
MAC Annoyances 84,400
OS X annoyances 332,000

Windows is clearly the winner or loser in this case.

The first on the list was a popular site I have been to far too many times than I should have been.

Windows 7         38
Windows Vista    530
Windows 2003     124
Windows XP     16120
Windows ME      2522
Windows 2000    2981
Windows 98      6262
Windows 95       833
Total Pages    29410
Total @ 10 per page    294100

This one site (as of 12/9/2009) has 29,410 pages of annoyances.

I mean really. It's a testament, don't you think, to just how incredibly gullible we are.

It's a testament to the fallacy of what should be considered good software and it should be a supreme EMBARRASMENT for Microsoft, the premier software company on the planet.

ALL OS's are a Pain-In-The-Ass in some respects. Windows simply has more of the painful aspects associated with it.

The public keeps buying new versions and believing that "Windows" and/or Microsoft is the best.

Personally, I am not much of a fan of any OS, or company.

I did like NeXTSTEP many years ago which had UNIX under the hood and Mac OX X is similar in some respects but I pledge no real allegiance. I have always been a partial to of UNIX because of its stability and solid design aspects.

For me, it's whatever works and works well. These days, that's not a lot.

Some day, I hope, some other genius besides me will come up with an OS that combines the best of Windows, Mac OS X, UNIX, BSD, Linux and NeXTSTEP leaving behind an OS that works, is stable, is hard to attack with virus and has little or no annoyances.

In the mean time, if more people would migrate AWAY from Windows to ANYTHING else then perhaps Microsoft would get the hint and fix their crap once and for all. And for the other OS's that people migrated to would become more popular and more third party applications would be developed for it.

Somestimes Google Really Sucks!

Sometimes Google SUCKS so bad that there are no words in the English Language to describe it adequately.

Here's a quote from:

1. Focus on the user and all else will follow.
Since the beginning, we've focused on providing the best user experience possible. Whether we're designing a new Internet browser or a new tweak to the look of the homepage, we take great care to ensure that they will ultimately serve you, rather than our own internal goal or bottom line. Our homepage interface is clear and simple, and pages load instantly. Placement in search results is never sold to anyone, and advertising is not only clearly marked as such, it offers relevant content and is not distracting. And when we build new tools and applications, we believe they should work so well you don't have to consider how they might have been designed differently.

What a fucking bunch of unadulterated BULL-SHIT!

Many corporations have these lofty "Goals", "Mission Statements" and "Hype".

Have you ever clicked on the "Contact Us" link in any one of the many "Google" Enterprises / Applications websites?

There is not one "Google owned" enterprise that allows for a direct communication with any of the people involved in the company.

There is no "Form" to fill out where you can make any complaints anywhere on any website. What usually happens, IF, they have it available, is that you get directed to some silly little forum where general people respond to your complaint or question. Most of the time, the responses from the people that take the time to respond are similar complaints the one you have. COMPLETELY USELESS!

EVGA, a company that manufactures high end computer components like Video Cards and Mother Boards has one of the BEST support programs in the entire world! Not only do they make it easy for people to get support, but they allow direct communication with ALL of the principle players in the company. They're not afraid of criticism nor do they brush away complaints that people have.Remember the Google … Focus on the user? Unlike Google, these people are really committed to the users.

The EVIL GOOGLE EMPIRE is the absolute complete opposite of this and it is contrary to their fucking hype of "Don't be Evil"

The corporation is becoming one of the sorriest corporations on this planet. They don't give a flying FUCK about the user. All they care about, just like Microsoft, is WORLD DOMINATION for whatever products they're pushing.

Google, how can you say you are so concerned about the "User" if in your quest to surpass Microsoft there is no place a user can voice a complaint that will actually get some recognition.

There new slogan should be are you Googleized yet?

Look, Don't get me wrong! I think that Google has done some very impressive things and they have some cool innovations; there are a few things about Google that I really like; including the blog software that I am using right now and their search engine. There are some things that I don't like.

Here are a few things that I don't like.

Ever since Google took over YouTube, many of the the videos are now unavailable to people outside the USA. Much of the content has been deleted in other areas.

I guess what really set me off, and it's a small thing, is their home page. What used to be a perfectly good; perfectly pristine page; a page without a lot of extra hoopla and behind the scenes gee-whiz kind of stuff has now joined the ranks of the new web glitz and glitter sleaze. Hey when MTV first started music videos were just that. Great vids of bands playing. I love progress, but some of the newer vids are pretty sorry.

Google's home page now has a fade in. I started noticing it about a month or so ago.

It's insignificant for the most part. For me it's the principle of the thing. Their fade in uses memory and processing cycles I would rather devote to other things and the worst thing like I said before, is that there is no place to ask "Why did you do that cheesy thing? Just because you think it looks cool?"

Additionally, Google has been gobbling up anything and everything that is important in the Internet. Eventually most of the major content will be in the hands of a few "powerful" entities. He who owns the bats, balls, gloves, uniforms and stadiums gets to make the rules of how the game is played.

This means the soon there will be more censorship and control over the Internet content. Google is slowly capturing the #1 spot for control of the content on the Internet.

Our world is de-evolving from a world that was filled with as much variety as there were sands in the sea shore to a new world of corporate sameness. Walmart, Microsoft, McDonald's, Google, GE, etc., How many times a day to we have to hear "I'm lovin it" or "Walmart. Save Money, Live Better Walmart!"

It's a sameness with cheap merchandise from China where the kids all have the same toys, we wear the same shirts and eat the same snacks. We watch the same controlled news and a pay huge sums of money to Insurance Providers that we have to sue in order to get a settlement.

Power is in the hands of the Information Providers.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Bad Hair Day? Don't waste your money on expensive hair products!

Hey all,

I spent decades believing the latest new commercials that promised shiny manageable hair. Garnier commercials that have shiny haired people running around! BOGUS!!!

When I finally got older, looked throughout my entire life I came to a conclusion that I had wished I would have understood when I was younger. I would have saved a ton of money and I wouldn't have wasted a lot of time on false hopes and expectations.

The truth is this: If you have really crappy hair you are screwed. IT IS THAT SIMPLE.

I know this for a fact, my hair, on a scale of 1 - 10 is about a 2! It's pretty bad and it is bad because of HORRIBLE GENETICS!

The truth is if you are lucky enough to have been born with thick, soft, beautiful, shiny, smooth, straight hair it don't matter too much if you wash it with Ivory soap, swim in the ocean or dive into a chlorine pool. A person with naturally shiny straight hair can do those things and when their hair dries their hair will look great compared to a person with crappy hair. People with crappy hair can spend hours washing, conditioning, blow drying and in the end, the hair will never look as good.

Examples of great hair are: Avril Lavigne, Susanne Sommers, Meg Ryan, Keanu Reeves, etc.

Why my hair sucked...
Fathers Side -
Grandfather: had straight Brownish Black hair and went about 50 percent bald.
Grandmother: had wiry coarse black hair.
Father and one Aunt: Wiry, coarse hair that was dirty blonde as a kid, dark brown as an adult. receding hair line with no gray. He had to wear his hair cut very short.
Uncles: All straight hair, receding no balding; no gray.

Mothers Side -
Grandfather: Straight baby fine hair that turned gray.
Grandmother: Wavy fine hair (from pictures) she died when my mom was 18 months old.
Mother: Baby fine light brown hair that was wavy and she turned gray.

Genetic Cess Pool; worst of both worlds: Densely packed (meaning very little space between hair follicles) super baby fine hair that has no life, luster, or body. It is wiry and wavy with cowlicks everywhere. I have had heavy dandruff since as far back as I can remember. Started out light blonde, and then dirty blonde, then brown then gray and then very light gray. My hair is about 1/4 the thickness of normal thick hair.

My hair is also like weird pubic hair or under arm hair. It grows very slowly and it stops growing when it reaches a certain length. For me it is about inch from my shoulders. And if I do wear it long it looks stringy and just plain horrible.

In high humidity it is frizzy. When it is wet all of the volume disappears because it is so thin. The only word that really works is "pitiful".

Can you image how frustrating it was to try and be a Hippy or a Rock & Roll drummer with HAIR FROM HELL?

I tried ironing it (back in the day), I tried chemical relaxers (hair is too fine), expensive products and the end result was a big ZERO!

Good diet full of anti-oxidants, hot oil treatments, aerobic exercise, good hygiene and scalp massages can help a little. But not much.

They may come up with something in the future that works wonders. Here's one possibility

I saw a Montel Williams show once that had this girl with hair as crappy as mine. Her hair grew longer. Maybe that's because she had estrogen and not testosterone and from the looks of her frizz I'm glad mine didn't grow. Here's the kicker. Her biological sister has some of the most beautiful hair you've ever seen. My heart went out to this nappy headed girl because I could relate. Her sister can get up, wash her hair and simply let it dry. The other girl can't even drag a comb through it. Montel's show gave her a make over, with a professional straightener but it was only a close approximation.

Most modern shampoos that you buy in the store are petroleum based. Some newer ones that are more natural can be found on infomercials and health food stores may work better because they don't have detergents.

In the end find a low cost shampoo and conditioner, with the right PH balance that works for your hair type. Change brands occasionally; your body can get used to one brand and it becomes less effective.

So the bottom line is don't waste your money believing that you will have great looking hair if you buy certain products.

Beautiful, healthy, shiny hair is low maintenance. I lived with a girl that had hair like many Orientals do. Quick wash, quick blow dry and she was good to go.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Playing Drums - A life changing experience.

Hi everyone,

Before I begin I just want to say that it is important to understand that we, as drummers, can learn from everyone who plays drums. Each person, regardless of their ability, talent, and technique has something unique to offer to the overall experience of playing drums.

"Good" or "Best", like "Beauty" is in the eyes of the beholder. For some people Travis Barker is the best drummer on this planet. For others like me, he's a good, talented drummer that has a long way to go in his career. One day, if he keeps at it, Travis may actually become a virtuoso.

World wide, when you look at the drummers in the world, the best of these players exhibit similar aspects of technical achievement.

Fame in music is a lot of luck. Being at the right place at the right time; being somewhat cute helps too. There are a lot of drummers out there that are famous that are also mediocre players.

This Blog, today, is about not forgetting the old time masters of Drumcraft.

There are plenty of really talented drummers today like Thomas Lange, Jo Jo Mayer, Max Weinberg, Steve Smith, Mike Portnoy, Steve Gadd,  Neil Peart (and many others) who are really excellent musicians and pushing the craft of drumming to new heights. One thing most, if not all had in common was that they looked up to the pioneers of the past like Buddy Rich, Louis Bellson Joe Morello, Gene Krupa, Lionel Hampton, Chick Webb and others.

With the exception of Chick Webb and Gene Krupa, I have seen each one of these masters play live. I've seen Buddy play about 7 times. The other folks 2 - 3 times.

I'll tell you a story about why you need to study these guys.

First of all I am an old guy; I've been playing for many years.

In the beginning, when I was a kid I had lots of misdirection during my formative years of playing because we didn't have the information that we have today.

I grew up in the 50's on the East Coast, a hop-skip-and-a-jump away from NYC but I did not have the brains (at least that's what I think now) to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities that existed there that I was too aloof to notice was happening there. Buddy Rich had a club there. Joe Morello, a great drummer who authored a great teaching book that I bought in the early 70's, had his drum studio where he gave lessons. You know what; I just found out about a year ago that his studio was about 2 miles from my freaking house. That's how cognitive I was. This was the late 60's early 70's. Most of that time period was a blur from the various Acid trips and way too much pot to even think about.

We didn't have the Internet, or DVD's or CD's or even cassette tapes, or instructional tapes.

I started beating on pots and pans when I was about two years old, but unlike Buddy's parents, who were entertainers and recognized that he had talent, my parents (being extremely dull and conservative) could not conceive that children could be good at anything, much less become famous playing drums. "Other" people did those things. In my family, people got jobs and existed doing mundane things year after year.

Many years after my father divorced my Mother and I was playing in a steady gig, aspiring to become famous, my stepmother asked "When are you going to get a real job?" At that time, in 1973, I was playing 6 nights a week making about $480 per week which was roughly 7 times the minimum wage at that time.

So, unfortunately, instead of inspiration and guidance I got hollered at a lot. My father never took me to see any of the really great drummers of the day in NYC when I was a small child. That could have been a life changing experience for me.

Also during those days the mindset when you were learning is that you had to spend a significant amount of time, like a rite of passage, on the practice pad. Anton Fig, Letterman's drummer relates a similar experience where he grew up in South Africa. My mother was poor, we lived in an apartment so there was only pads and pillows for me to practice on at home.

Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa were buzz words, they were drummers you heard about but were not on pop radio. WABC, (or W-A-Beatle-C as it was known during the early Beatle Days) in NYC, with good ole DJ "Cousin Brucie" didn't play too much of Buddy Rich in the 60's

Not having much exposure to the Masters I became influenced by the musicians of my day. Sandy Nelson, Ringo Starr, Ginger Baker, John Bonham, Carmine Appice, Keith Moon, Mitch Mitchell, Don Brewer, Ron Bushy, Bobby Colomby and many others.

To me, Buddy and Gene were "old fogeys" … what could they teach me?

I took drumming seriously and studied Music in school; I was an all around percussionist. I played tympani, xylophone, and other percussion gadgets. I majored in Music for the first year of college until I dropped out with dreams of being a Rock Star.

I moved to the mid west and was lucky enough to have played most of the 70's;House gigs, where you played 5 sets a night, 5 to 6 nights a week, year after year. Sprinkle some road gigs, studio sessions, warm ups, parties, concerts I figure I've been on stage more than 3,700 times in my lifetime.

You get pretty good when all you have to do is show up, sit down and start playing night after night. Playing a house gig is just like doing an A-List concert. The roadies have already set your kit up (exactly like you like it; cause it was that way last night) the sound check is done and you're ready to Rock & Roll from the get go.

I was a BIG fish in a very small pond with lots of small town fame. Remember the hay day for musicians was the late 60's and early 70's before MADD, Zero Tolerance Police and DVD's. They were filled with people wearing Leisure Suit Larry outfits and these people went to clubs to party.

One day, in 1975, a friend comes up to me and says he has back stage passes to the Jazz Festival. Buddy Rich, Louis Bellson and others.

Ok, I'll check it out. It's free and I've got nothing better to do that day. I'm thinking … yawn … old fogeys trying to keep up with playing drums. I'm thinking my chops are pretty good; yep, been playin 6 nights a week for several years now, there's not much these guys are gonna show me.

When I was back stage walking around I wandered over to Buddy's kit. "What a piece of shit I thought to myself. Look at that hardware. "That's some bad hat Harry" hardware he's got going on there. Then I walked past him he was pretty short. I'm 6'2 and I'm here to tell you that if you are short you got one hell of an advantage playing drums. It's all about physics, pendulums etc. Watch a squirrel scratch itself sometimes. WFD with one arm; the WHOLE arm!

Buddy gets on his kit, starts complaining about the curvy sticks that they had found for him (Vic Firth where are you when we need you? Oh, your stick factory does not exist yet) and now I'm thinking what a fucking joke this guy is. What a freaking Prima Donna.

His band gets settled in and they start. Buddy starts playing this intricate pattern on the High Hat and then proceeds to play this incredibly loud (what sounded like a thunder clap) 11 stroke roll with one hand with a stick height compared to jumping off a cliff. Now bear in mind I am standing, along with other stage hands, about 10 feet away, slightly behind and to the left of him. He is on a riser and I can see everything.

I'm sure that you have seen the Tasmanian Devil's jaw drop to the floor. Well, all I can say is that within moments I was standing on my lower teeth.

My brain froze … WTF … who was this fucking alien that was impersonating a human being and what planet did he come from?

I may be dumb about some things … but it only took seconds for me to realize that this guy was on another plane of existence from me when it came to playing drums. I'm seeing it but I am having a lot of problems believing that it's humanly possible to play drums like this.

I watched in awe at his musicality, his power, his speed, his technique and his incredible intensity.

When he played his solo, he went all out, after all this was a big festival and lots of big name drummers were there and Buddy was going to let every one know that he's the BOSS!

Watching him play was like looking at Indy cars passing bye in a blur. Ten minutes into the solo I left to get a hot dog because I was so overwhelmed that I could not comprehend what was going on. I came back he was still playing and from that day on my perspective on the difference between good and great drummers was forever changed.

I simply could not wrap my brain around the fact that here's this little guy with these pencil thin sticks playing louder than I have ever heard anyone play, ever! With such precision and speed that it was impossible to distinguish what he was playing sometimes.

When I left the festival I immediately wanted to go to the club. I was inspired and at the same time I was completely deflated. Where I lived I was pretty far up the Totem Pole (remember Big Fish Small Pond?) I realized at when I saw Buddy that in the grand scheme of things I wasn't even on the same podium where his Totem Pole was.

I thought about quitting and starting a restaurant or something. When I got to the club I tried to play some of the stuff I had just heard. At least I was excited to try it. Plub, Plub, Pfft, Splat, Plssh … hmm lets try that again  … Plop, Plop, fizz, fizz Blop, pop, fizz … For some reason, nothing I was doing sounded like what I had just heard.

Now, I am no slouch. I am definitely not a Casper Milktoast. I was a gymnast in High School so I had lots of physical strength and I love the power aspect of drumming. When I was in my zone, so to speak, Bonham's got nothing on me regarding being heavy handed. I was so into being heavy, prior to learning good technique that I played with 3/4" dowel rods with rounded edges. The old 3S marching sticks were like twigs. I was competitive and I liked going fast.

I used to laugh at guys in the Music stores when they told me about a new heavy duty pedal. I can't tell you how many "heavy duty" pedals I destroyed.

During a Jam session with Frank Zappa several years prior to this festival, he said that I had the fastest right foot he'd ever heard along with Elephant Ears (meaning I listened well). My hands were fast too, but not nearly as adept at playing the stuff that Buddy did. When I tried to duplicate it my hands were like glue.

At that time I could easily copy Baker, Bonham, Moon and others but this guy was on a whole different level. What he played what he was playing it was so weird because he made it sound very simple to play. Yeah it was simple that is until you tried to play it.

Something I discovered after lots of analysis on Buddy's playing he was an expert at playing simple patterns in a wonderful story like way; very fast.

So, I made a decision. I took my double bass kit off the stage, vacuumed the chips and sawdust off the carpet; wiped the drums down, cleaned the cymbals and put one 24" bass drum, one snare, one mounted tom, one floor tom, a ride, two crashes, a high hat and a splash and said when I can make this small set sound like what he did I'll start to add more drums.

I started practicing between 9 and 11 hours a day along with playing at night and several years later I could play a reasonable amount of what Buddy played that day. Even though my technique had improved, he had many more years and quite a bit more genius in how he approached the musicality of the craft. I started realizing that it was not how fast you can play, its what you play with the dynamics and how you embellish the song that's important.

But, I have digressed from my original concept.

When I listen to the many younger players like Benny Greb, or Travis Barker I am impressed with their talent. Most of the time, they have good taste and musicality when it comes to what they are playing during a song.

But, playing solos, is a whole different story. Their solos are like marshmallows! Lots of poofy fluffy stuff; not a whole lot of substance. Bonham; had substance. These guys have lots of stick twirling; disjointed licks thrown together, short lived bursts of speed where they stop and wave their hands wildly (and the crowd roars … people will clap for anything … I know from experience!) with not that much technical expertise.

It's like a different breed of drummer that exists today from years ago. It pervades the mind set of "drum thinking" today. Drum solos are filled with grooves and beats. How fucking uninspiring. I guess when your arsenal of licks is severely limited, the fall back is to play some groves to take up time.

Two years ago, I went to a Guitar Center Drum Off and watched these kids playing. All of them were like Travis Barker clones. Not much individuality. The judges were young too. This one guy gets up, he's about 35, he's older than the rest. He plays around the area in various Jazz bands and also in the colleges. He plays probably the best solo I heard of all the contestants that night and gets to move on to the next round. The judges critique was that he didn't play any grooves so he should consider doing that. Maybe its because I grew up in the 60's but this guy played enough stuff that would indicate that he could play just about any kind of groove.

I didn't go to the other preliminary rounds but I did make it back for the finals.

These were the top six from three weeks. Well, there were some other good players there. The guy I'm rooting for plays a good solo and gets a good overall response. Then this young kid gets up, with the spiky hair, tattoos and chains (he's clearly a favorite in the local area and friends with the judges) and says "I'm rudiment MAN! Oh fuck, I thought, what is this nonsense? He twirls his sticks, plays a few sloppy para-diddles and some poorly constructed flams and then proceeds to do a Travis Barker imitation. The crowd is hyped on this guy. The people working at the Guitar center putting this event on are taking pictures and wind up giving this guy almost 10 minutes of play time. No one but me noticed.

Not surprising, he won. As far as I know he fizzled in the next round, but it goes to show you that in the beginning stages of the Drum Off its a popularity contest and not about true drumming.

I'll devote an entire blog on what I think should happen with that. I wish I could have competed, but health problems prevent me from doing much anymore. I'm good for about 20 minutes before I start to fizzle. Getting old sucks, don't let anyone tell you differently.

All right, getting back...

Here's an example of a drummer that is pretty decent and very popular. He's certainly above mediocre. He has good musicality when he plays songs and has some decent technique. I also realize that this video example is not indicative as to his full potential. I have seen him do some drum corps rudiments with back sticking and such a long time ago. He's pretty good. This video that I am using for this illustration is what I see as very common place with respect to the solos of many modern drummers today.

Travis Barker:

Ok I am 58, I have congestive heart failure, Pulmonary Fibrosis and I have not played on a set of drums in years, yet today, without even trying hard or breaking a sweat, I could play everything that that Travis played on that video.

The question is why would I want to and the answer is that I wouldn't. I'd rather play stuff that resembles what is in the rest of these examples.

Please take a look at these videos.

I have compiled a small list of examples. There's a lot here to illustrate take your time and watch these when you have the time.

(In later blogs I will dissect a few of these vids and talk about some cool stuff like ergonomics!)

Most of the video examples are from Buddy Rich.

Today, people try to classify Buddy Rich simply as a Jazz drummer. This would be untrue. He was a drummer's drummer. The style of music he played is at the top of the food chain as far as difficulty goes. The best Rock Drummers struggle to even try to play the songs his band played  and sadly 90% can't even come close; the best fusion high energy drummers have a better chance, but most are still not up to the level that Buddy played.

Since fateful day in 1975 I have spent thousands of hours studying Buddy and other great players. Other players that I also really enjoy and respect are Steve Smith (Journey), Steve Gadd, Dave Weckl and Billy Cobham to name just a few.  They are some of the best and most talented drummers today. Steve Smith is one of the few rock drummers that has transcended into the upper echelon and can actually do a good job on the Jazz scene.

So, if you think that old fogeys have nothing to show you look at these vids if you haven't seen them before.

Buddy Rich 1970 West Side Story SOLO
Buddy is 53 years old in this video.

Here's the encore Mercy, Mercy after that incredible solo. Listen to the musicality of how he completely sets the tone for this song.

Two O'clock Jump
If you have a sound processing program like Audacity where you can slow the tempo of songs and retain the pitch you can hear the incredible precision and small details in this next solo.
Two O'clock Jump

A faster version of Two O'clock Jump 2:24 seconds into this video
Faster Version of Two O'clock Jump

SOLO Channel One Suite; 1978 Jazz Festival at the Haag.
A brilliant solo.
Buddy is 61 years old in this video.
Buddy Rich Solo - Channel One Suite 1978; Haag

Birdland, 1978 Jazz Festival at the Haag.

SOLO West Side Story mid 60's
Notice that he starts playing this song with matched grip. I have another great video of him doing a solo with matched grip. It's on the machine that is broken at the moment.

This is the most ambitious solo I have heard him play both in length, speed and stamina.
The fact that he plays these solos with heavy cumbersome Jackets and ties is even more amazing.
This video also has some great overhead shots.
At 8:00 into this video you can see an example of the raw and explosive power this guy had.
Most people have a hard time playing the 16th notes at that tempo quietly on just one drum. He's playing these notes at a blistering pace and SMASHING, not just hitting, a cymbal on each down beat. The Arnold Schwarzenegger of drums.

SOLO West Side Story with Frank Sinatra
Here is a version of West Side Story, one of his last performances shortly before he died. I think he's close to 70 years old here. Yeah that's right 70 freaking years old!

The ending of this solo is similar to the previous one, but the duration is much shorter in time. At any rate, here's a 70 year old that's kicking ass and taking names! Many young drummers today would have a hard time keeping up with this one.
Buddy Rich - West Side Story; approx 70 years old.

SOLO Buddy Rich Time Being part II
Another example of raw power and musicality.
Very few people on the planet had the ability to drive a band like he did.

buddy rich parky 73
Great cymbal work at 5:50

Now for a change up.
Neil Peart (Buddy Rich Memorial Concert) … I was actually impressed this time around. The first memorial concert I saw him play on years before this performance he was like a fish out of water. It's nice to see that he improved immensely. This solo is pretty good he's not playing anything overtly difficult, some nice combinations. Notice that when he goes back into the song, the transition from the solo back to the song is almost awkward and then he's almost not there anymore. This is where you can really see how much weaker virtually every other drummer is compared to Buddy while the band is playing. Not nearly as much drive.

Neil Peart Interview

The title of this says it all
buddy rich holy shit

And finally here's a video that has some of the same sounding licks that the Travis Barker video I started with has.

My final thoughts:

If you are going to idolize anyone, and I am not suggesting you do, because each of you that is playing or learning how to play can contribute to the drumming community and you can be just as good if you want to be as any of these famous people. You might have trouble catching up to Buddy, he started playing when he was 18 months old and did it most of his life. He had more experience by the age of 10 than most people get in a lifetime.

Study and learn from the best, incorporate what you see and hear into what you are playing and then use your own style and imagination to travel down the road.

My suggestion is to spend a lot of time, months or years studying this guy. Find a spot in a solo you like and try to play it. Each new level of technical ability you master makes you a better player.

If you could sit down and play every single thing this man played with the precision and musicality that Buddy had, I'd be asking for your autograph!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Ponzi Schemes

When I was growing up I was labeled "Class Clown" in school.

I loved to make people laugh, often at my own expense. School was boring, learning was a chore and if given the choice I would much rather play outdoors than sit in a classroom. I LIVED for RECESS!

That's changed, LEARNING is a passion now.

When I was about 19 years old I became the victim of a Pyramid Scheme. One of the guitar players in my band told me about this really great opportunity that he had just joined. He was excited and said I could make lots of money if I came and checked this out.

When I arrived there were about 30 people there. These four guys, in their early 20's, dressed in really nice suits were flashing wads of cash around.

All we had to do was get two people to send $35.00 to the people on the list and our names would get on the next generation of the list. Then the people we recruited had to get two people each and so on.

WOW! That's simple. I could see the dollar signs flashing across my brain like Neon Lights!

Today, my analytical mind would immediatly see that this is completely bogus based simply on the powers of 2 which, when you get a Degree in Computer Science, is where you spend lots of time - in that Binary World.

Even if only ONE person in the world initiated a Pyramid Scheme and everyone participated each person actually getting two people to sign up and they in turn get two more people ... by level 28 with all of the people added up you exceed the population of the USA by 200 level 33 you have exceeded the population of the Earth by 2 billion.

Some people, the individuals that START these pyramids actually can make a few bucks. Most people are aware of the scheme and even on a perfect day so to speak you will not get 100% of the people buying into the deal.

What happens to the people who join down line? They have less options because they are starting their pyramid at someone else's level 6 (as in the diagram below) or level 20. As you travel down the levels there are fewer people who are not part of the scheme.

Why these schemes work is that new people (suckers) are born every day and many of these people are as gullible as I was.

This is why education is so important!

What's even worse is when the schemes have more than 2 people to recruit, I have seen numbers like 6 and 12. Many of these multi-level marketing schemes that require a "Down Line" and such are fancy wrappers for the classic Pyramid Scheme. These new deals often sell a product like Vitamins or Juice and you get percentages.

Analyze what the whole concept is and above all do not use your emotions or greed to blind you to the real deal.

Be cautious if you hear words like Down line. Down lines are not all bad, people have made money in Amway, but again, it's where you are on the pyramid and the people below you that will affect your success. That being said run like a Gazelle being chased by a Lion if you hear the words "all you have to do is invest this amount of cash and then recruit or get 2 or more people to sign up"

Have a great day!

Florida attorney charged in $1 billion Ponzi scheme

Ya know, I just don't have much faith in people as a whole anymore.

I mean c'mon, really?

With all of the incredible informational services available; books (not withstanding still a great learning source), the Internet with BILLIONS of web pages containing news, information, videos about anything and everything how is it that people are STILL FALLING FOR PONZI SCHEMES?

These people never heard of the now infamous BERNIE MADOFF?

The total that has been estimated at more than a billion dollars. This suggests he's been doing it for awhile so there are, conceivably, people that were already involved before the fall of the King of Ponzi had his demise.

Folks, use that pinkish matter between your ears for something more than a 3 pound paper weight.

Educate yourselves so you don't become a victim.

IT IS EASY to get caught up in the moment, the lure of easy money, the lure of getting rich for sitting back and waiting. I know, I was a victim when I was much younger of a Pyramid scheme which is slightly different but still as lethal when it comes to losing money. I lost $35.00 back in the very early 70's which was a lot to me at the time.

In this day and age with all of the bad press about Pyramid and Ponzi schemes most people should be aware that they exist.

MAKE LEARNING FUN! I'm going to add that phrase I've been saying for a long time to my Blog Description.