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Flying among clouds is awe-some even if you’ve done it a hundred-plus times before
I’m in North Carolina again, this time to work on my friend Andrew Sa’s album. We landed in Greensboro last night through clouds of heat lightning. The lightning and even the plain old clouds, with the sun setting behind them, were beautiful. Now I wish I had taken a picture of them, not to say, “Hey, you’ve never seen a sunset like this before!” but rather to say, “Hey, isn’t every sunset like this amazing?!”
Earlier this week I pressure washed lichen off patio furniture and scooped 50+ pounds of leaves and crap from some gutters. It is satisfying to pressure wash. Videos of the process are a social media genre for a reason. I started this cleaning session carefully, keeping myself clear of backsplash. Then the sun (beating down on a black t-shirt) and my not having eaten anything wore on me and I let the water ricochet where it may, out of the narrow gutters, into my face, all over my pants and shoes. Standing on a rickety, vintage ladder, the water’s pressure even almost tipped me over once or twice. I stayed aloft and the sun dried off what the Ryobi wet.
Even earlier in the week I helped two friends pack a moving truck for Pennsylvania. (We’re inching toward our thirties but we’re not too old yet to help each other move.) Their belongings included a Nazi Wehrmacht helmet that one of their grandfathers had brought home from fighting in WWII. In an impulsive act of curiosity, I put it on my head and I immediately regretted it. Any piece of gear of that origin would feel weird to wear, carries a negative feeling, but a helmet is particularly intimate. Putting it on you feel like you are its former wearer or at least that you have a kinship with him, which, needless to say, is a disturbing, unwanted feeling. I kinda couldn’t believe myself, that I had put it on, wanted to shake my hair out, go to a mikvah or something.
Finally, a few days before that, I walked down Belmont Avenue at night with Liam and we overheard one of the most thrillingly hilarious sentences two musicians could overhear on the street: “I just hate the happiness of fun music.”
And the response of the person to which the man was talking? “I don’t know, man.”
I don’t know, man.
I’m drumming with Sima Cunningham at the Hungry Brain in Chicago on June 9 and 10.
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