Friday, May 31, 2013

die Entwöhnung der Kätzchen (Deutsch / English)

Die Entwöhnung der Kätzchen ist in der Nähe.  Alle sind gesund und sind jetzt sehr schnell!  Jedesmal, wenn ich die Tür öffnen alle laufen in.  Mit fünf Kätzchen, fangen sie ist hart!

(The weaning of the kittens is soon.  All are healthy and are now very fast!  Every time I open the door, all run in.  With five kittens, catching them is hard!)

Jetzt sind sie geschnitten Pute essen.  Vielleicht diese ist warum sie laufen in!   Sie möchte mehr!

(Now they are eating sliced turkey.  Perhaps this is why they run in!  They want more!)

Aber sie kann nicht innerhalb laufen.  Sie haben Flöhen und ich werde nicht mit Flöhen leben!

(But they cannot run inside.  They have fleas and I will not live with fleas!)

Ich werde mehr Berichten schreiben aber bald sind sie gehen.  Bald sind sie Vorratsbehälter Katzen!

(I will write more reports but soon they are going.  Soon they are Reservoir Cats!)

"Das Hausboot Song" - Silas (audio podcast)

If you don't see this one is for Cat then you just haven't been paying attention!  Although it has audio problems I've uploaded it anyway as I like that it's in German.  The song is based on the chords from "People Get Ready" as people get entirely too literal about things and maybe the spirituality of love is the biggest part of it.

Besides, Saint Peter has nothing to do with getting to Heaven.  To get there you must cross the Rainbow Bridge and it's animals who say whether you can cross.  If you haven't treated animals well then, buddy, you better start saving up for a fire suit!  (Call me insane if you like but this thinking comes from native Americans.)

"Das Hausboot Song" is on the Ride the Dragon podcast now.  There's too much reverb on my voice so you might want to see the "Das Hausboot Song" lyrics.

Freitag Kätzchen Bericht m/Bild (Deutsch / English)

Auf den ersten Charlie zu Hause geblieben

(At first Charlie stayed home)

Aber dann haben wir Frühstück.

(But then we had breakfast.)

Sie essen nicht von der Platte.  Sie sind auf der Platte.  Sie mögen Eiern!

(They don't eat from the plate.  They are on the plate.  They like eggs!)

Nach Frühstück, es ist Zeit für ein Abenteuer!

(After breakfast, it is time for an adventure!)

Charlie fragt, "Gehen wir?  Was sagen Sie?"

(Charlie asked, "Do we go?  What do you say?")

Ich habe einen Schatten gefunden!

(I have found a shadow!)

Und wir haben ein Motorroller gefunden!

(And we have found a motor scooter!)

Mutti, können wir es haben?  Können wir?   Können wir??

(Mom, can we have it?  Can we?  Can we??)

"The NAZI Teapot"

Seig Heil the NAZI teapot,
it's wumpus-whacking scooby doo,
all covered-up in ice cream,
and starring who knows who.

The animals are moving
and they travel two-by-two
They march or they're waltzing
but they're dressed for Timbuktu

Their parents masturbate for friends
on Facebook news every day
They think it's very clever
and they have so much to say

With party hats and oatmeal,
gasping, wheezing, in their chairs
They titillate the masses
as they blindly search for air

And now the NAZI teapot
commands them to march on
but the wumpus whacked the scooby
and the ice cream is all gone

The NAZI Teapot

It was on a billboard for JC Penney's and it has since been replaced due to complaints from people who saw it.  And you thought the world couldn't get any more stupid ... but that only means you haven't seen Facebook.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

"Das Hausboot Song" (Gedicht) / English und Deutsch

Ach, mein Schmuselingchen (!)
Immer ich liebe dich
Ein Hausboot ist kommen
zum Fluss gehen wir

Mit Leben auf dem Wasser
Mit Vögeln und Schmetterlingen
Ist Sonnenschein und Liebe
zum Fluss gehen wir.

In die Glut des Lichts
In der Stille der Nacht
Fließt der Fluss vorwärts
zum Fluss gehen wir.

Ach, mein Schmuseling
Immer ich liebe dich
Ein Hausboot ist kommen
zum Fluss gehen wir

Vielleicht heute Abend eine Überraschung!

Oh, my little cuddle muffin (closest I can do!)
Always I love you
A houseboat is coming
to the river we go

With life on the water
with birds and butterflies
Is sunshine and love
to the river we go

In the glow of the light
in the still of the night
The river flows forward
to the river we go

Oh, my little cuddle muffin
Always I love you
A houseboat is coming
to the river we go

(I just made up Schmuseling.  It isn't really German but 'schmusen' really does mean smooch.)

"People Get Ready" - Seal (video) - Updated

Here is quite a beautiful rendition of the song:

Atheists choke on this kind of stuff because, oh Lord, it will support the Christians but many atheists live as anti-Christians which is just as religious as Christianity except the polarity is reversed.  In other words, without Christianity as a foil, they've got no act.  Dawkins is a classic example of this as he's made a living out of just that.  It's the same thing with the hell rock bands that worship the Devil, etc.  If that's not religion, what the hell is it (laughs).

Here are the lyrics to "People Get Ready:"

People get ready, there's a train a comin'
You don't need no baggage, you just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels hummin'
Don't need no ticket, you just thank the Lord

People get ready for the train to Jordan
It's picking up passengers from coast to coast
Faith is the key, open the doors and board 'em
There's hope for all among those loved the most.

There ain't no room for the hopeless sinner
Who would hurt all mankind just to save his own
Have pity on those whose chances grow thinner
For there's no hiding place against the Kingdom's throne

So people get ready, there's a train a comin'
You don't need no baggage, you just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels hummin'
Don't need no ticket, you just thank the Lord

I don't see the song as overtly religious in any case.  There's a train coming and the Lord sent it.  Viewed in something more than the puritanical sense of basic atheism, it can be a metaphor for the Universe as I didn't make it, you didn't make it, and, furthermore, you have no idea what did make it.  If you want to see Stephen Hawking's train jump off the tracks, read "A Brief History of Time" in which he talks about what was before the Big Bang and, what do you know, right away he starts talking about God.

I don't see how Faith can be such a terrible thing in the second verse as surely you have faith in something even if it's only your massive intellectual prowess.  The train is going to Jordan and I really don't know where that is but it doesn't make any difference as that's a metaphor as well.  Jordan is wherever you believe it to be and those who are loved the most will go there.  It doesn't say who loved them the most, only that they are loved the most.  To be loved one must give love so it seems pretty clear to me that these must be good people.

The definition of a hopeless sinner applies immediately to bankers, the one percent, or any number of greedy evil bastards on the planet today but it doesn't say anything at all about what their sins might be, only that they are selfish swine.  OK, that works fine for bankers, etc.  They won't be able to hide against the Kingdom's throne and that part seems pretty straight-up to me also.  We're all going to die.  So it goes.

So you don't need no ticket, you just get on-board.


Atheism is not a religion but it becomes one when it defines itself in terms of the negation of Christianity.  I have no particular interest in Christianity nor atheism but it does amuse to see them all jumping around and waving their hands in the air pretty much the same.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Donnerstag Kätzchen Bericht m/Bild

Die Kätzchen schlafen bei meine Tür und jeden Zeit wenn ich die Tür geöffnet werden wir das Spiel aufspielen, Nein, Sie Können Nicht Hereinkommen.

(The kittens sleep by my door and very time when I open the door we will play the game, No, You Cannot Come Inside.)

Siehst du die Katzenschwanz und diese Kätzchen ist schneller als die andere.  Mit die Kamera ich habe nur ein Hand!

(See the cat tail and this kitten is faster than the others.  With the camera I have only one hand!)

Gangster Continues to Work on Movie Role

After a blazing escape from a French jail which was obviously intended for nothing more than to make the movie of his life more dramatic, Redoine Faid was on the run for about thirty days.  However, that run came to an end yesterday when he was re-captured.  (CNN:  French gangster who broke out of prison in daring escape is captured)

French producers have said they want to get away from art films and jazz music as there is no money in them so they want to find a French Justin Bieber to make crap music and they want a story so they can be more like Hollywood and make crap movies.

Redoine Faid was cooperating quite well with this initiative and his escape from jail a month ago was perfect for a dramatic plot twist in his movie.  However, his capture may have ended his suitability for a movie role as it was quite stupid and his glamour appeal was quite a bit reduced by it.  As France's highest-profile criminal, the answer to escape capture is obviously to go to Greece and live on feta cheese and poor Internet service but what does he do .... he goes to a place just outside Paris where they caught him yesterday.  All over France, producers are tearing up movie scripts and saying, "Fuck it.  Let's go with finding a Justin Bieber.  How hard could it be."

Silas Scarborough Debut in Avination - Updated w/Pic

zaphod Enoch invited me yesterday to play at Koeln in Avination and that sounds like a splendid thing to do.  Holger made me a guitar with a most-impressive array of animations and Cat has a stream.  My avatar is pretty much presentable so the only thing left is to shut up and play on, da da, June 8 at 1:00pm PDT.

Avination is most intriguing and I'm really looking forward to this.  Cat is most intrigued as well and yesterday we built a circus tent together.  I got one hell of a big kick out of that as usually being the Guardian Clown means don't step on her toes while we dance (laughs).  Yesterday we were actually doing some building and that was most enjoyable.

That's all to say about the circus for now as that will keep until Cat is ready to make an announcement but it's been pretty obvious we have been scoping Avination.  Once we know how gigs play out in there we will know what the best move will be.  More to come!


Here's the stage and it won't be hard to find as it's part of the Avination Welcome Area:

Avination Silas:

First one sez he looks like a metal Justin Bieber gets the wrath of the kittens, see?

Mittwoch Kätzchen Bericht m/Bild

Die Familie!

Alle möchten die Treppe klettern!

(All want to climb the stairs!)

Oder hinunterfallen!

(Or fall down!)

Und dann kommt das Hund!  Ich mag nicht den Hund!  Ich bin klein aber ich werde kämpfen!

(And then comes the dog!  I don't like the dog!  I am small but I will fight!)

Wir möchten klettern.  Mutti, können wir, können wir???

(We want to climb.  Mom, can we, can we???)

Mutti sagte es ist ok, ja?

(Mom said it is ok, yes?)

Maestro Michi Plus Reis and Aldo at Cat's Art MusikCircus

The Internet is cursed but still the show went on.  Just before we were to go into Second Life to set up for Michi Renoir's show, a storm started blasting Bavaria with lightning so there was no option except for Cat to shutdown.  That's when I do the Guardian Clown stuff as the show has to happen no matter what.

Maestro Michi Renoir did a piano solo show last night.  As he explained it, his synthesizer had taken the night off to go out for beer.  What becomes of a drunken synthesizer in an Austrian beer hall is something perhaps we will learn next week.

Maestro Michi wasn't so much playing an all-out improvisational set last night but rather was playing songs he had written previously.  Of course he was improvising with them as well as it wouldn't be Michi if he didn't but mostly he was working within original frameworks from another time.  This is not at all a bad thing as the result was very pretty.

While Michi Renoir has played with a punk band in his musical life, what he was playing last night was far removed from that.  The music was frequently very gentle, delicate and beautiful.  Just as a guitar can be played hard or soft, so can a piano but playing soft doesn't mean he was playing the crap jazz from some music lounge for middle-aged salesmen.  His music was just as brilliant as his synthesizer work, it was just a different form.

The whole time everyone was hoping the storm would pass and Cat would be able to come to the show but that didn't work out.  Reis and Aldo came to the stage and started out with very high spectacle!

I've written a lot about the sweet and ethereal side of Reis Alter's voice but she also sings with lots of sensuality.  In one of their songs, Reis has a one-word refrain of SEX and of course the audience echoes it.  While that may go a little past sensuality, it's beautiful and the whole audience rolls with it.  Reis sings in all manner of ways and everything she does conjures up many images.

Aldo Brizzi drives the music with the most exotic rhythms I've ever heard in Second Life and he definitely doesn't stay with a standard drum kit as his percussion is highly elaborate and varied.  The rhythms he creates are all part of the imagery that goes from the deepest jungle to futuristic views of things we have never seen before.  Add to that a very powerful and deep bass and you've got music that you could enjoy all the more by sitting on your sub-woofer.  On top of all this he uses every voice at his disposal to create the animals of the jungle and you can't see them but you know they are out there.

It was toward the end of their show that Cat was finally able to login to Second Life and that was tremendous as the previous night the Internet had cursed my session so we really hadn't been able to dance since Friday.  Naturally, Reis and Aldo were happy to see her and they dedicated their last song of the evening to her, one Cat calls "The Laughing Song."  Reis starts laughing during the course of it and you can't help laughing too.

Here you can find Reis and Aldo online:

Reis Project (News on Facebook about Reis and Aldo with concert information)

Aldo Brizzi (Original compositions by Aldo and collaborations with other musicians)

And we danced!

The picture is not so good but I liked it because it shows the spectacle on the stage behind us.  Finally we could dance again!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Death of the Guitar Synthesizer

My guitar synth is a Roland GR-20 and, technically, it's not dead.  However, if you send bogus MIDI to it then it will give bogus sounds back and that's what is happening.  The Galaxy Guitar has experienced as many orthopedic events in its life as I have and that includes the neck being broken, the neck being severely compromised after a long flight, and, the one that is causing the problem now, a bridge problem after yet another accident.

What's unique about a Godin xtSA is that there is a MIDI 'pickup' and that sends MIDI over a thirteen-wire cable to a guitar synthesizer such as the Roland GR-20.  That's very cool as it means I can have the guitar sound like a saxophone if I like.  I can even make it play drums.  However, the part that is a problem is the MIDI 'pickup' is part of the bridge so the accident compromised it in some way.

That the guitar synth doesn't work was verified a few days ago as I finally located a transformer to permit converting power from 220V to 120V (US) so I could use it without frying it.  I'm very sure the problem is not the MIDI cable as I've run into those types of problems previously and typically those manifest as strings going dead.  Unfortunately, a thirteen-wire cable is not standard MIDI so testing with another cable is extremely difficult.  Nevertheless, it's not likely to be the problem as the note information the synthesizer was getting was inaccurate and that has never happened before.

All this is significant as I would like use the synth and that means finding a qualified Godin technician who can fix it.  This is all part of the reason for rolling out as there's no-one anywhere near here who can do it and possibly not even in Athens.

Dienstag Kätzchen Bericht m/Bild

Kätzchen am Rande!

(Kittens on the edge!)

Die Kätzchen möchte klettern die Treppe hinunter.  Jeden Tag kommen sie zu versuchen.

(The kittens would like to climb down the steps.  Every day they come to try.)

Aber wir haben eins Ding.  Wenn sie hinunter klettern, das erste Ding ist sie möchten zurück klettern!

(But we have one thing.  When they climb down, the first thing is they want to climb back!)

The Great Memorial Day Internet Burn-Up

Lefty Unplugged was scheduled to play the first show and Untolerable Bohemian was to play the second.  Cat and I were in Second Life about an hour ahead of time as there are many things that need to be done by the venue owner.  During the time before Lefty started, I crashed at least twenty times as I would crash out of Second Life almost as soon as I logged into it.

Cat does all the work to set up the shows so my crashes weren't affecting that but in my own little world I was getting highly-annoyed / fed-up / blah, blah.

When I finally got into the world and Lefty was playing, he was doing an original of his entitled "Let It Roll" and it's about meeting the things that come at you and letting them roll.  By that time, I was in no mood to let this Greek internet roll as it's so insufferably slow and so amateurishly erratic that I was ready to hang it from a tree and burn the remains.

Cat and I talked later about the best time to bail out of Greece as Internet access will be better anywhere.  It would be better in Athens as well but I have no interest in going there.  Ruins are cool but taking Cat to a volcano in Italy is outrageous and I definitely vote for the latter.

The objective in starting this adventure is to get to London to register for National Health Service.  It's about twenty-eight hundred kilometers and I've read that you don't think the scooter will make it but, so long as I don't beat it, I'm not clear why not.  Besides, there are zero choices.

Note that the route I intend does not cross the Alps but rather goes up the West coast of Italy and stays with it to break North just before Marseille and go to England through France.  This bypasses the Alps altogether.  That's unfortunate as they would be beautiful to see.  The other option is to go East from Italy to go near Vienna and then go to England via Germany.  This route is much more interesting to me but it's also significantly longer.  I intend to go to Germany after England so there is some merit to going to England now via France as it's not likely I would pass that way again.

The culmination of this roaming, ideally, is to find a houseboat to rent in Germany much like the one Alec Guinness occupied in "The Horse's Mouth."  That houseboat was permanently-moored and was pretty inexpensive.  Perhaps such a situation exists in Germany.  In any case, I have seen flats for two hundred euros which is less than I am paying now.

How to capitalise on this remains the most novel part as it's quite the looney adventure and should make for some good reading but it sucks to back off the contents of the blog so regular readers miss out just when it gets to a really interesting part.  More thinking needed.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Montag Kätzchen Bericht m/Bild

Wir hatte Angst dass Charlie hat eine krank Auge aber diese Bild ziegt ihre Auge ist geöffnet.

(We had fear that Charlie has a sick eye but this picture shows her eye is open.)

In der Tat sind ihre Augen weiter geöffnet als diejenigen die mir Nachrichten auf Twitter senden.

(In fact, her eyes are wider open than those who send me messages on Twitter.)

Dies ist der heutigen medizinischen Bericht!  Charlie ist geheilt!  Ich tat nichts aber sie ist geheilt!  Vielleicht ist das Mutti Magie!

(This is today's medical report!  Charlie is cured!  I did nothing but she is cured!  Perhaps this is Mom Magic!)

Aber wir haben keine Favoriten.  Nein, nein, nein!

(But we have no favorites.  No, no, no!)

What's Hot on the Blog

Apparently you find the discussions with Cat as interesting as I have found them but the Kitten Report made the list as well so there is still a demand for cute also and I think that's charming.  The articles on the top are fairly scientific and it's interesting to me to discover there is a demand for it.  Seeing this demand is also encouraging as our purpose is specifically to increase awareness of such things.  Knowledge is always empowering and this is, to some extent, an effort to counter the pseudo-knowledge presented on Facebook, almost all of which is bereft of any kind of analysis by the presenter, much like a magpie will decorate its nest with anything shiny.

Tonight will mark the beginning of the performance week with a return by Lefty Unplugged to the MusikCircus and you can see the week's performance schedule under the CALENDAR tab at the top of the blog.

The numbers posted above are for the last twenty-four hours but something I haven't posted previously is a list of the, da da, All-Time Greatest Blog Hits and you may find that interesting as well:

Jan 25, 2013, 1 comment
Feb 12, 2013, 2 comments