Thursday, November 26, 2015


Brett Favre is getting his number retired at halftime of the Packers-Bears game at Lambeau Field tonight.  (Hurry up and retire it before he changes his mind again!)  Congratulations and thank you, Brett!  Photo courtesy of ESPN.

Oh, happy Thanksgiving, too.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Latest Listening Pleasure 22 - Arcade

Once again I have reached into the vaults of my memories for my Latest Listening Pleasure.  I wasn't going to write about Arcade as an LLP post, but I have been listening to them often enough lately and enjoying it so much that I even sought out more and have been enjoying that, too, so here they are.

Arcade is a band that was started by Stephen Pearcy from Ratt and Fred Coury from Cinderella back in the early nineties.  I have their debut release on cassette tape in a box somewhere, I'm sure, but even without hearing it since forever I remembered that I really liked that tape and had nothing else new keeping my attention at the moment so I ordered the 1993 self-titled CD off the internet to have it digitally.  It was every bit as enjoyable as I remembered and I listened to it for weeks on end.  Then I started looking for more, and I had already known they had a second album called A/2 released in 1994.  Those songs were on Youtube but the quality wasn't very good.  I didn't want to listen to all the songs like that if I was going to buy it eventually anyway, so I broke down and just bought the CD, used, from Amazon.  The sound quality is not very good on A/2, and I'm guessing they didn't have the same budget as the year before, but the songs are right in the same vein as the first album.  I had read reviews that said it was heavier, they must have meant that there was more bass on the second recording.  It almost sounds like they just made the demos the actual album.  Listen to the link at the end and you will know what I mean.

Below is what is probably the only official video from the band, from 1993 for the song Cry No More.  At least the only official video that I can find.  There are other good songs on that album, though.  Most notably Dancing With The Angels, and Messed Up World.

They even put out a third album, A/3 - Live and Unreleased.  While I am curious - and you know how I love the live stuff - I am hesitant to get this.  All the songs seem to come off the first album, none from the second, but there is a bonus keyboard solo (snore).  I have a feeling it was a last gasp effort to make money off the band before, or right after, they dissolved.

Here is the only complete live song I can find on Youtube, Cry No More, 1993, Osaka, Japan.

So, if you'd like a throwback to the Eighties, from a band that was together over 20 years ago in the Nineties, check them out!  I just like what I like, so Get Off My Back!

Previous LLP Posts...
LLP 1 - Pain
LLP 2 - Nightwish
LLP 3 - Die Antwoord
LLP 4 - Pain part 2
LLP 5 - Andrew Bird
LLP 6 - Nightwish part 2
LLP 7 - Paramore
LLP 8 - Newsted
LLP 9 - U.D.O.
LLP 10 - Nightwish Imaginaerum Movie
LLP 11 - Kiss
LLP 12 - Rick Springfield
LLP 13 - Hyrax
LLP 14 - In This Moment
LLP 15 - Faster Pussycat
LLP 16 - Sebastian Bach
LLP 17 - Cradle Of Thorns
LLP 18 - Amaranthe
LLP 19 - Lindemann
LLP 20 - Halestorm
LLP 21 - Garbage
LLP 22 - Arcade

Friday, November 20, 2015

First Snow of the Season 2015

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Predictions tend toward a mild winter for us here in Wisconsin, but who knows what will happen.  Same as every year, you deal with the hand you're given.  Our first snow of season is here, this picture is from about seven o'clock tonight, give or take.

It could possibly last into the afternoon tomorrow and accumulate multiple inches, a few to a foot, depending on the pattern.  I will update tomorrow if it is a dramatic enough difference.

 I'm starting to feel the annual sense of impending doom - doom meaning winter.  Otherwise, I still hope to mow once more and have a few other plants to compost. And I still haven't cleaned the gutters.  Actually, without our tree anymore and with all the huge winds we've had off and on for weeks, I'm not sure there's even much to clear out.  It all gets done eventually, right?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Bataclan Hall and EODM

We all know about the tragic terrorist attacks in France recently.  The biggest attack was at Bataclan Hall, at metal show featuring a band called the Eagles Of Death Metal.  Here is a video of the band onstage and in the middle of a song as the gunshots begin.  The video is not graphic, you can find those on the internet elsewhere if you wish.  But you can see the drummer duck down and a guitarist running off the stage.  Knowing that this is the very beginning seconds of what happened at that concert hall is what makes this video disturbing.  Be warned of that.

The band issued a statement today, I found it here at Blabbermouth.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Early 'Thanksmas'*

My Dad and his wife Pat had a gathering yesterday that they were calling Thanksmas.  They will be leaving for Florida at the end of the month and wanted to share the holidays with their families.  For some reason I felt we should go, my first mistake.  I don't like the holidays.  I don't like to travel.  Hell, I don't even really like my Dad, and I'm more like him than I want to admit.  But I felt we should go because he has had heart trouble this year and he'll be the first to remind you that he's not getting any younger.  Oh, and their Thanksmas celebration was happening during a Packers game, just to add to my personal anxieties.  I call them 'anxieties,' they have also been referred to as 'selfishness.'  Either way I'm not proud of my actions sometimes.

So, fine then, a couple weeks ago I resolved to myself that we would go and agreed to be there.  My plan was to show up shortly before the game, watch the game and socialize with them, and leave immediately following the game.  Over an hour travel each way, but we should get home just before dark.  Perfect, in my mind.  Plenty of time to relax at home on a Sunday night before facing another work week.  Besides, how christmas-y can you get in the middle of November unless you are a retail store?  I was about to find out.  Oh, I stuck to my plan, but, of course, it did not turn out well.

Most of their combined kids and their families were there.  I didn't know all the names, and I didn't really care.  The 'step' siblings became such long after I was an adult out on my own and I have really only met them a handful of times.  My niece was cute, she made it more fun for me by making me play bean bag toss with her before the game then trying to figure out the password and play the games on my phone.  It was a beautiful sunny day, this Ides of November, with temperatures getting up to 60º.  And I was sitting near a christmas tree watching the Packers lose two weeks before Thanksgiving.  I was feeling out of my element, but there was the finish line - the end of the game, which was drawn-out, of course.

When the game ended I said thanks and gotta go but it was not that easy.  I had explained earlier that we had things to do and I wanted to be home by dark, back to my plan.  So after the game I got up to go.  My wife became hugely embarrassed with Pat protesting and me saying hey, that was my plan all along.  We had to stand there awkwardly in front of everyone as she fumbled looking for christmas presents to give us before we left.  At that point I don't look good leaving or agreeing to stay for their games and gift openings.  My intention was not to get gifts in the middle of November or upset my Dad's wife, just leave.  But then I just wanted to disappear myself, I can't blame my wife for being upset with me, my time here was done and I wanted to go.

See, I've always been more comfortable at home.  And similar things have happened to me before.  I explained it to my sister once as having an elastic band attaching me to home.  The farther away and longer I'm gone the more uncomfortable I am.  Especially when it is for - and it usually is - for a holiday gathering.  I stopped liking holidays after, and in some ways because of, my childhood.  We always had to travel then, too.  I guess it all eventually goes back to childhood, right?  I'm the first to admit that I still hold deep resentment from back then that I am trying to ignore now.  I think I've done well with that lately but it is still there and always will be.  Life goes on.

So, am I selfish?  Do I have OCD with anxieties?  A form of agoraphobia?  Or am I just an ass?

Don't answer, I don't want to hear it.  But it's probably some form of all of them to one degree or another.

The agoraphobia thing, suggested by my wife that night, actually hits pretty close to home.  That would also explain why I get so buggy at huge events with thousands of people, too.  I know I've talked about that here before.  Still, I do not have panic attacks, though I do have plenty of anxieties.  So maybe I'm just a nut who needs to be on medication to take the ab from my normal.  I think I should probably look into this more.  But from right here, thank you.

*Updated next day:
One thing I feel was lost in my writing - and editing - is that I do need to offer my apologies to all involved who took offense.  Reading sentences 3 to 7 of the first paragraph and looking back, I feel like I set myself up to fail.  I'm also sorry for that and I'm sorry it happened.  
Okay, enough dirty laundry!  But writing it out did help me consider things more.  Many things.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Hamish and Basil, Leaves

Our two cats enjoying their limited time on the porch before the door stays closed for winter.  Yes, their personalities are scarily reflected in their facial expressions here.  You see our trouble...

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I know I have not written much lately, sorry but not a whole lot has been happening that can be written about here.  The weather has turned, leaves are almost all fallen and we have a lot less that I expected.  Last weekend I mowed, mostly to mulch all the black walnut leaves from neighbor Dave's trees.  They tend to lose their leaves earliest thankfully, so I can usually use the leaves that fall later for mulch.  There was never a shortage before but now, without our big tree in back, we have fewer than I expected from other neighboring trees.  Now I hope to get enough from the front yard for mulching our flowerbeds.  I do not want to use hay, hay does not disappear as easily the next season.

Kinda funny, actually - I'm worried about having too few leaves to rake and mulch this year.  Who'd a thunk it?  Garden post with lots of pics coming soon at the Garden Blog!