Good morning, and Happy Wednesday! I've been 'down' lately owing to some of the usual things but a friend sent me this and it perked me up a bit. I thought that it might perk you up too. Enjoy!
And, on another note, do me a huge favor - is there a friend that you have been saying "oh I'll call him/her tomorrow" but you keep pushing it back for one reason or another? STOP IT. Do it now. Take five minutes and call/text/email. I'm going to keep pushing this because it's really easy to get out of the habit of checking in. Someone out there will be very glad that you took the time to call them. (I am one of them btw). :)
Hi all and hope you're having a happy Saturday. In many parts of the country (especially here in NYC) there's a heat wave starting up. For those of you who have neighbors/parents who are getting up there in years, please do me a favor and find a few minutes throughout the next few days to check in on them.
Sometimes lower income elders don't turn on the AC because they can't afford it (and they think that they can "tough it out") or simply don't have it at all. It's a good thing to check in on these people and make sure they know someone cares and, if you know of a local library that's open or a senior center, offer to help them get there. I look at it like investing in the future - treat the elderly like you'd like to be treated when you get to that age. :)
Here's Linda jamming about a Heatwave. Yeah, it's a predictable choice, but I don't think you mind, right? After all, it IS Linda Ronstadt and you can't go wrong with Linda.
It seems like a good day to re-post an Angie strip from April. I kind of love the absurdity of this particular strip (I know that sounds a bit narcissistic since I created her with Woody, but .... there are times when I feel like children's theater author Suzan Zeder who famously (well, famously, in the realm of children's theater, anyway! lol) said that she didn't write her works, she merely transcribed them as they came from someplace and were on their way to someplace else. I tried to find the exact quote but, alas, she said it 25 years ago and while looking through her book of plays "Wish in One Hand, Spit in the Other" I could not locate it (I did, however, remind myself how much I love children's theater and how passionate I'd been about it during graduate school at Northwestern. Alas, my life took some different twists and turns - although, spending 20 years working within the LGBT community on activism and fundraising yielded other rewards that I could never have imagined, so, thankfully, there are no regrets.)
In any event, enjoy today's strip and tomorrow, be sure to check back here for the debut of a new character. :) And, as always, comments are ON (and moderated) so please let me know your thoughts. Thanks and have a great Saturday!
There's got to be a morning after. A morning after a terrific birthday where I shared some of my favorite music with you throughout the day.
But one post has vanished. I'm sure I 'published' it but it's nowhere to be found. I must tell you - it was brilliant. In fact, it was probably the best blog post I've ever written. It may have been the best blog post that anyone has ever written since the dawn of time... well, the dawn of blogs. Grown men would have wept after reading it, monuments would have been erected, and the course of human history would have been changed forever.
Ah well, so it goes. Whatever. :)
I merely stated how fun it was to have spent the birth day exactly how I wanted to spend it - a morning walk, volunteering at God's Love We Deliver, having a chinwag with my Mama, writing, and, finally, seeing a show with loved ones. There are a few days throughout the year that I have particular ideas about how I want to spend it - my 'dad's day' (which you can read about here), Christmas, New Year's, and, of course, my birthday. I think four days a year isn't really a lot to ask.
In any event, I ended the musical selection survey by posting multiple versions of one of my favorite songs - La Vie En Rose. I discovered this song just a few years ago and the fun is that each of the versions I'm posting has a meaning for me - especially the Grace Jones version which became my go to song during 2014 while I traveled for work and had the amazing opportunity to see and celebrate with friends I had been out of touch with for many years.
So, enjoy - instead of a wind down from a busy day, they are now the soundtrack kicking off the new year: my "Life seen through happy lenses" or, as a literal translation, my "Life in Pink".
(Seriously, I could not choose just one so I'm posting four! Enjoy!)
54, 55, 56, 57, birthday, birthday traditions, birthday wishes, blog posts, blogs, Edith Piaf, Gods Love We Deliver, Grace Jones, How I Met Your Mother, La Vie En Rose, Louis Armstrong, MEMO, rev andrew
OK so I know I just posted a whole thing on dancing, but this song from, of all places, The Jerry Springer Show, saved my life.
The year was 2005 and as it did in 2000, my life kind of fell apart piece by piece. I'm not going to go into the particulars but it just blew all the way around.
And, one of the ways in which I found my groove again, was by being introduced to this song. I cannot for the life of me remember who is was, exactly, that turned me on to it. I have a dim memory but can't be sure.
In any event, since those sad days, I have found this song to lift me up and out of my doldrums and give me the moment to express the LKJ;KJPOASIDFAISU that we all feel at times in this crazy world. Your baby daddy has skipped down with your sister and taken all your weed? OK - DANCE BREAK.
I occasionally have a Morning, or Afternoon, or an Evening Dance Break whereever I am. You may have noticed that I sometimes post that and this is where it comes from.
True story: a few years ago when I was working at the bank, I entered the elevator to go down to the lobby. The doors opened and I discovered a woman moving about - she looked at me startled. I didn't know her and wasn't sure if I should say something but I felt compelled and so I uttered "were you having an afternoon dance break in the elevator?" She looked at me embarrassed and I said, "can I join you?". And so from the 43rd floor to the lobby we had a shortish dance break. After a certain floor, it went express so we could jam out to imagined music without worry of additional discovery.
So there you have it. But if someone does discover you, all you have to say is "I just want to fucking dance". Trust me. More people will understand (and join you) than you think will. :)
True confession time - I'm with Emma Goldman, if I can't dance at your revolution, I don't want any part of it. And if my friends are still limber enough to dance when I leave this mortal coil, I expect to look down (well, hopefully not 'up'!) and see y'all dancing your asses off. Sure, I expect there to be wailing and gnashing of teeth, but mostly, I want it to be a party. The kind of party you know that I would have thrown. Naturally, I have been working on my own funeral for some time and you will be easily able to find them on my computer. Please follow the run of show, thank you. Please hire someone to put this together because I do not want to look down or up and see that it's disorganized and run poorly. I will be very upset. I may even have to crawl out of my grave and get the thing back on track. You cannot put my name on something that isn't awesome. OK? :)
ANYWAY there MUST be dancing. I've spent the better part of my adulthood blowing off steam by dancing half the night away and so my funeral must follow suit. In fact, writing this makes me realize that it's been a very long time since I've been out marking my territory on the dance floor, usually under the disco ball, because, really, where else would you expect me to be? I have even toyed with the idea of hanging a disco ball in my apartment but maybe that's a step too far (of course it's not a step too far but I feel obliged to state that I think it is because that shows that I'm sort of a responsible adult).
In all seriousness - this world is crazy and, for me, finding euphoria in music and moving and shaking the night away is one of the best coping mechanisms. I find it sad that people over a certain age stop going out. I've kind of lost that but in this 54th year, I hope to reinstate that part of my life.
Below is one of my more recent favorites from the clubs - I could easily post a couple dozen more that I go gaga for. Enjoy. And for cryin out loud - get up and DANCE whenever you have the chance!
Yes. I know. It's ELO. I'm supposed to hate the 'disco' sound but I can't. I don't. I love it. I truly love ELO and pretty much everything they do but MR BLUE SKY is my all time favorite. And it's the perfect launch to a year of being upbeat, positive, celebratory, and looking to the future. The Mister is in agreement with me on this and this song is, on occasion, blasted from our apartment. I am sorry, neighbors but if the guy on one side can sing opera music, and the girls on the other side can clank on the floor with their heels at 1am, we can blast MR BLUE SKY once in awhile. :)
As a sort of side historical note, my best pal in high school, Woody, and I wrote a MEMO version of THE MUPPET MOVIE and used the last little bit, the orchestral part for a scene where we arrive in New York (ready to conquer the world of cartooning) and are in awe of the tall buildings and the fact that we are, indeed, in New York City. To be honest, I feel like that every day and I've lived here since May 2003 (happy nearly 15th anniversary to me!) and for four years in the mid 90s... so 19 years total and I am still in awe of this city. As it should be. :)
This song selection is dedicated to my pal, AB who will get the reference of this song from our bingo days. :) And thank you, AB for the text. Yes. It IS International Andrew Altenburg Day, why thank you very much. Now, when do we celebrate your 57th or is it 58 at this point? I lose track! LOL :) <wink>
Good morning all - hope you've had a GREAT week out and about in the world! As you might know, today is my 54th birthday and in honor of that, I'm posting some of my favorite music throughout the day. Enjoy!
You know, I have some friends who find it silly that a 54 year old man would make a big deal of his birthday. I understand the thoughts, but I don't agree with it. I celebrate my birthday every year because to me, it IS a big deal.
You see, when I was in my mid/late 20s, I had a friend with whom I joked that I was approaching 30 and hadn't accomplished anything. It was a joke, really, I was only in my 20s, but, because he had been in and out of ill health due to AIDS for some years, he grimly replied 'well, some people didn't get to be 30'. And you know, he was right to be annoyed by my ridiculous notion that 30 was something to be dreaded.
I was always a proponent for celebrating the day in style but, after that, I took an even harder line. There was one year in my 30s when I celebrated for two months with dinners, drinks and producing fundraising events around the country. That was my personal best until I approached 50 - I started celebrating in July 2013 and that lasted through to March 2015. Subsequent birthdays have been a bit quieter, of course, just to balance things out!
But, 54 for me is abit special as it could be the last 'normal' year. Let me explain.
In 1980 my dad was diagnosed with cancer. He was 55. He spent a year on chemo and died at 56. This made a big impact on me, a young man of 17. So, for all these years, I've lived with the looming worry of making it through my 56th year.
So, today, I begin the ramp up to a two year cycle of celebrating 54, 55, 56, and, with God's help, 57 and beyond. Because one person I loved didn't get to be 57.
I hope you'll join me in this journey, because it promises to be fun and interesting.