Movies

Lies, Gratitude and Love

Life has been somewhat surreal since September. I have been collecting on every piece of karma I have put out into the cosmos.

It’s tough to talk about my depression in real time and not in generalities. This one was a mother fucker. Sorry but that’s really the only way to describe it.

When ever I am stressed to the max I will literally black out. I lie about the stress and the horrible feelings that come along so that I don’t scare the living shit out of friends and family. This is a double edged sword.

I lie about the stress and the horrible feelings that come along so that I don’t scare the living shit out of friends and family.

One it makes me me a liar. I lie to escape the advice of  Dr. Phil watchers. I lie to quickly get rid of the immediate stress until I can hide. Kind of a ‘Look over there” as I make an escape. I lie about how I’m feeling. That one is more like talking myself into feeling better. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

I found out that the lies I use to protect myself and others, make me a “pathological liar.” I know this is true because I heard specific examples second hand by a person who wasn’t looking out for me and was doing their best to feel better about themselves by trying to hurt me. I’m a pretty easy target because I internalize my sadness instead of getting up and punching you in the nose for being cruel. But I’m not going to point fingers today or any-day. I will just know who is and who isn’t there to count on.

I blacked out in September and I tried to remove my hand by cutting it off at the wrist. I did a pretty good job except I hung on. Barely, but I did. I awoke in the hospital after bleeding out in my apartment for about three hours. My sweet neighbor Brooke found me hours later called 911 and I guess they drug me out and I came to in the hospital. I would give anything to have not put her through that. I am not her cross to bear.

I-portrayed-myself-at-the-verge-of-death-after-a-suicide-attempt11__880
You brought this on yourself

My ‘friend’ went into panic mode and started making calls to make sure she looked 100% innocent and called around and gathered info to make sure that even though I felt bad, I didn’t feel bad enough. As they were pouring blood into me my friend called and wanted the Version account number. My ER nurse actually ripped the phone out of the wall and wouldn’t allow anymore calls after the ones that came through.  Let me repeat… SHE RIPPED THE PHONE OUT OF THE WALL! “Don’t let any one else call this guy!” The Mother Theresa’s were out in full that day making sure I knew I wasn’t feeling bad enough for them.

From there I healed and then checked into the Monterey Monkey House. I walked around in my jammies and went to Group, colored pictures and watched movies with the rest of the loons.

As the song ‘Message in a Bottle’ by the Police says, ‘I’m not alone in being alone.’ in fact I’m normal when it comes to severe depression.


In Group they finally explained the stages and severity of depression, mania, and bi-polar condition. As the counselor went through the habits of each of these conditions she would ask if any of us had these habits. EVERYONE in that group of 20 people raised their hands.

I’m going to explain it once and for all and never apologize for it again.

I’m going to call this the Fuck Dr Phil and his Bullshit Show and his Dumb-ass forty minute diagnose’s  or FDPAHDAFMD for short.

Imagine a  scale of 1-10.  1 being bad, 10 being good…kinda

scaleMost ‘normal’ people live around 5. but can fluctuate up or down a number or two. Having a bad week might make you dip to a 3 for a bit or waiting on Christmas might put you at a 7. They are short term and will pass and the median will still be right in the middle.

Bi-polar people can range from 1 to 10 depending on the day and usually stay around 3 or 7 depending on the person. Mine is depression so I stay about 3-4 daily. I’m going to only focus on depression.

The term they use for me is Dysthymia. It is long term but a person can function. You can work, be social, go places, take care of yourself and hide the pain.

  • Feelings of sadness
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Fatigue
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Changes in sleep habits — oversleeping or not sleeping enough
  • Changes in appetite — overeating or poor appetite

When I am under stress, I can dip down to the 1-2 area, also called Major Depressive Order

  • Fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt almost every day
  • Impaired concentration, indecisiveness
  • Insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping) almost every day
  • Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities nearly every day (called anhedonia, this symptom can be indicated by reports from significant others)
  • Restlessness or feeling slowed down
  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide
  • Significant weight loss or gain (a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month)
  • Feelings of fear
  • Memory problems
  • Suicide

And there it is. I usually hit 1-2 when under a ton of stress. I have abandonment issues that pop up and people either don’t know or worse DO KNOW and use it against me as a threat.

depression-meditation-8Some people strike out and crawl up in a tower and shoot into McDonalds. Some people like myself internalize it and their brain just shuts down. Too much stimuli and fear, and months of feeling like you can’t do anything right. It becomes a self fulfilling prophesy but all I can do is follow my doctor’s orders.

The abandonment comes from the feeling of not being worth sticking around for. Friends and family write you off and you hear from them twice a year out of some sense of dreaded duty. Like having to pay taxes. Ya do it, but you don’t want to. I can tell and I can feel the resentment and the out of sight out of mind attitude. Hell I’d probably do it myself. I put these people through a lot so I can’t really blame them, but I also can count on them to either disappear, distance themselves, or pawn you off onto a doctor. I’m not looking for happiness. I have happiness. I’m looking for peace.

I’m not looking for happiness. I have happiness. I’m looking for peace.

The funny thing is, the number one thing every doctor and counselor tells me that I must have is emotional support. I’ll say it again THE NUMBER ONE THING YOU NEED IS EMOTIONAL SUPPORT! If you can’t get it here, then find it somewhere else. I get it that you need to distance yourself but you have to also get it that I will too. The difference is  you have the choice. My part is getting over the resentment I feel when I know I can’t call and cry. I don’t blame anyone really, but I do miss them. Life goes on, just without them.


It is Thanksgiving today so I’m going to give thanks where I know it is due. In no specific order.

  • Brooke Weston. My beautiful neighbor for two years who makes the greatest lowbrow art. Thank you and I love you.
  • Jen Shipley. A surprise friend, and my angel.
  • Lily, the other angel in my life.

Lily and Jen met for the first time when they broke into my apartment and grabbed my guitars and computer. They had never met in person and I hadn’t met Lily until later. When I got out of the hospital they brought me home, put me up. Now that is a friend.

BandfromBalcony3

The Mighty Dr. Wu

  • My brothers and best friends from Dr Wu’s Rock and Soul Revue. They dropped everything and gathered the money and the love and support to get me home to heal up and be around people who loved me. My Doctor, myself, and the fellas thought this was exactly what I needed. So Pat ‘Mr. Sax’ Lee, Mark ‘the Master’ Cornell, Dr. Shane Pitsch DMA, and his ex-wife Jamey, Kent “Sweet’ Aberle, George Ozier, Doug Evans, Chris ‘H.C.’ Taylor, J.B. and Michelle Faires, Bugsy Eagleson, and Doug Evans.
  • My brother’s in the Matt Poss Band, Matt Poss, Tim Alverson (I want that Tele back someday!) and Mac McDevitt.
  • My brother’s in Poprocks Jon Clarkson, Wally Hooker, and Brendan Gamble.
  • The loves of my life Kelly Guerrettaz, Brandi Yagow, Beth Kintner, Karen VanBlaircum, Jenny Green, Michelle Robertson,  Joi Green, Marna Neese. If I ever get married again, it will be to one of these women. Don’t worry ladies I’m never going to get married again, the last wife cured that and the last girlfriend cured me of relationships. Rest easy.
  • Tommy Dunn, Ike Edwards, Damian Light. Corey Neidigh, I have more love for you guys than I can ever express.
  • Rich Matlock, I never had a bad time at a Rhythm Pigz show, or with you.
  • Aaron Cox my oldest friend.
  • And who ever I missed. I got out of the hospital and found hundreds of ‘I love you’ messages.
  • My sister Mo for talking me through a lot of this.

When it comes to life the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude. ~ Gilbert K. Chesterton

A special thanks to J.B. and Michelle Faires. You put me up, took no shit, gave your love your time, your advice, and your studio to a guy and his cat who had no place to go. I have been thinking everyday how to tell you what that meant to me. I have never found the words that even come close to the the appreciation I feel. Thank you.

Dr. J.B. Faires

Dr. J.B. Faires DMA

Jon invited me to lunch and to hang regularly. Pat did too.

Michelle Faires said something as she was walking out the door one day. I told her I was overwhelmed by the out pouring of love from so many people and she replied “And the common denominator is you”

So I can look at these scars and know these people cared enough to get up and help me when I was sicker than I have ever been in my life. You don’t get in the paper for helping with an invisible illness. You did it anyway. I can’t express my gratitude enough.


So I’m back in California, I’m feeling better than I have in a really long time. It’s a shame some of the people in my past couldn’t hold out a little longer because the best has yet to come. I am actively searching for work in San Francisco doing Graphics. I sold my guitars, even my beloved Telecaster that I have had for 25 years, to get back but what the hell I don’t feel like making music anyway. Now I have no choice LOL.

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A Ketch, not THE Ketch

In the interim I just spent the week at the Breakwater Marina in Monterey working on my new friend’s boat. I spent seven days 8-14 hours a day in the sun, climbing ladders (the boat was in dry dock) cutting wood for bulkheads, painting the boat, smelling salt air and listening to the sea lions bark. I have a farmer’s tan and a new friend in Eric.

000PSTAR4

Eric is a character. He fits right in with the rest of my friends perfectly. He laughs a lot, He looks like Ritchie Havens, he listens to 80’s Rush, He hates Trump, and he’s famous. For real famous, not infamous. Award winning film star, scuba instructor, lives on a boat in the Caribbean. I’m sure many of you have enjoyed his work and I have put the pressure on him to hook me up with his friend-ish Sarah, who is also famous.

I want to take her to Dairy Queen for ice cream and then to the ASPCA to pet kittens and puppy dogs.  Eric seems to think she’ll expect a nicer date but ya know what? That seems like a great date. If she wants to dress up and go to dinner and dancing, we’ll just crash a wedding. If Sarah doesn’t want to go screw her, He knows plenty of people that I’m a fan of. I bet one of them would love ice cream.

sarah jay

Ice cream and petting puppies with Sarah

I watched a beautiful Ketch (it’s a boat) being lifted up and put into the Pacific yesterday. We smoked cigarettes and sat on the boat he restored. The two masts looked a mile high. It never felt so good to be so tired. Thank you Eric for giving me the opportunity and for not getting too pissed because I can’t remember anything. Call Sarah…

I have too much to be thankful for. I hope you all do too.

S.

 

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Why does Music Scare the Hell Out Of Our Government?

Victor Jara. Singer, poet, activist

Victor Jara. Singer, poet, activist

In the early 1970’s there was a Chilean teacher, theater director, poet, singer-songwriter, and political activist named Victor Jara (pronounced HAR-a.) He was a leading member of a group of folk musicians who established the Nueva Canción Chilena (New Chilean Song) movement. This led to an uprising of new sounds in popular music during the administration of President Salvador Allende and made Victor Jara a famous singer in Chile.

On September 11th, 1973 a CIA-backed coup d’état brought down the democratic Allende Government.

The Chilean military quickly arrested Victor Jara along with other leftists groups. They took them to the Santiago Stadium and locked them inside.

As the crowd waited Victor Jara, guitar in hand, led the prisoners in song after song to help ease the fear. One of the soldiers recognized Jara. He was taken to the center of the stadium and with the butt of their rifles, the soldiers smashed his hands. Afterward they  said “Let’s hear another song Victor.” And “Play your guitar for us Victor” Then a soldier pulled out a pistol and shot Victor Jara in the head.

After his murder, Jara’s body was displayed at the entrance of Chile Stadium for other prisoners to see.  He was 37. His songs were about love, peace and social injustice. Songs scared his government so much they had him murdered to stop his voice from being heard.

The Clash

The Clash

Please remember Victor Jara,
In the Santiago Stadium,
Es verdad – those Washington Bullets again.
~The Clash


I must have read it a hundred times. Entertainers need to keep their mouths shut. You are to be wound up, enjoyed and put away.

~~Bob Marley had an attempt on his life that was politically motivated.
~~Woody Guthrie wrote this ‘Land is Your Land.’ Look up ALL the verses to this song. It’s about socialism.
~~Springsteen wrote ‘Born in the USA.’ President Reagan used it (without permission) as a song to rile up his crowds. Too bad no one on Reagan’s staff bothered to listen to the lyrics. It is a bleak picture of Reagan’s America.
~~’We Shall Overcome’ was sung by the Civil Rights Marchers in the Sixties.
~~ Pete Seeger was blacklisted for not snitching on his peers in the McCarthy hearings.

Burl Ives. Folk singer, snitch, canary, deep throat, fink, informant, nark, rat, rat fink, informer, snitcher, squealer, stoolie, stool pigeon, talebearer, tattler, tattletale, telltale, whistle-blower and all around general bastard.

Burl Ives. Folk singer, snitch, canary, deep throat, fink, informant, nark, rat, rat fink, informer, snitcher, squealer, stoolie, stool pigeon, talebearer, tattler, tattletale, telltale, whistle-blower and all around general bastard.

Luckily Burl Ives came in and sang like a canary. This is why you see Burl in ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ and you don’t hear Pete Seegar as the Snowman in ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’ in fact, you didn’t see him for close to fifteen years. Thanks Burl. I love pissing off of the Burl Ives Bridge any chance I get.
~~James Brown stopped Detroit from rioting after MLK was killed by playing his show live on the radio.
~~Sammy Davis Jr. arguably the most gifted entertainer of all time worked as the first black entertainer in Vegas. After selling out his shows at the Sands he would have to go stay at a hotel across town because the Sands didn’t allow n****rs in their hotel.
~~The CIA has a file on John Lennon.
~~Bob Dylan had something to say…

They all scared the living shit out of their leaders. Music. If we are entertainers why do you care if we protest and join a cause? Because we know something that you know too. You can’t live without music in your life and sometimes that music has a message. It’s been that way since the first caveman beat on a log in 4/4 time.

Around 1982 A waitress from Detroit hopped onstage with thrift store clothes and a piece of pop fluff she called a song. She turned that into  ½ a billion dollars. Madonna had no  million dollar start up. No TV show to make her famous in six weeks. She didn’t have producers fixing her vocals. She negotiated million dollar deals constantly, then she hopped her happy ass on a tour bus and spent years on the road.

She is a self-made millionaire who took her shot and made it. 30 years later she is a Superstar. From Ramen to riches

Trump’s dad gave him a small million dollar loan and a bunch of cronies. But Madonna is the one who should shut up because she’s an entertainer…. SHe doesn’t know what it’s like to be one of us like Trump does.

Anyone here ever been to Detroit? Then you know what I mean.

To quote Madonna “FUCK!”

In physics, string theory is a theoretical framework in which the point-like particles of particle physics are replaced by one-dimensional objects called strings. It describes how these strings propagate through space and interact with each other.

In physics, string theory is a theoretical framework in which the point-like particles of particle physics are replaced by one-dimensional objects called strings. It describes how these strings propagate through space and interact with each other.

I am an American
I have the right to speak, even if it isn’t what you want to hear.
I am an activist. I act on things that are important to me. Your lack of empathy won’t stop me. Your apathy is what I’m counting on.
I am not a jukebox or a toy. I am a skilled entertainer with the broken hearts and scars that go with it.
I am informed. Musicians don’t listen to music after a gig. Talk radio is king or silence. I listen to a lot of news.
I read. I can tell the difference between a fact and an opinion. I don’t need led by the nose.
No, I don’t have to see it your way.
I don’t believe in Alt-truths any more than you do.
I don’t have it any easier than you do.
I have sacrificed to become the entertainer I am. I know what it means to be poor.
I am educated and smart.
I won’t accept lack of compassion as an excuse.
I know shit from Shinola so don’t piss on my President and tell me it’s raining.
….And I can play a bad ass fucking guitar
–S.

Like Share Comment. What do you think? Why does music scare our leaders?

Madonna…. Keep preaching sister. What is this? An entertainer expressing her view? I thought putting a boot in your ass was the American way?

Inner Beauty…Everyone Will See it if You Lose Weight

Passion. Motivation. Inspiration. Sacrifice.

We see these words and what pops into your mind? Blue tinted glitchy films of athletes drenched in sweat while their faces scream of agony as they cross the finish line, or lift an unimaginable set of weights over their head.
I’ve read recently about a wave of body acceptance crossing the nation. Gas Station food, sitting on your ass, not getting enough exercise. I should be ashamed of the extra weight I have put on since my depression has subsided a bit. There is no secret to losing it. Eat less, move more.

passion

Dedication!

Exercise has never been my favorite thing to do. The thought of walking out the front door in 100 degree heat and running never crosses my mind. The thought of lifting something heavy over my head doesn’t seem like a priority. I don’t want the athletes to think that I don’t respect what they do. I do want them to realize there are other ways to sacrifice that are just as hard, take just as much dedication and don’t give you shin splints or constant surgeries to get there.

I’ve heard it for years and to this very day it’s brought up. “I thought you’d get in shape with me! You never want to do anything.”Inner-Beauty-Best-Demotivational-Posters

Not exactly true. They don’t see that I don’t like the gut. They don’t see me cringe when I have to buy clothes. They don’t see me taking a brisk walk or skipping the snack that I’m craving. They don’t know the ache I feel in my lungs and heart from my smoking addiction which I have avoided through will power and an electronic cigarette. Right now I’d love to light up and read what I have written.

I was married to an Ironman triathlete. She could swim 2.4 miles, hop out and ride her bike 112, and then run a full marathon, 26.2 miles. We have no love left between us but I’d never take that achievement away. I saw it; I was always in awe of her and the ability to do such an insane race. I was at the finish line every time. A few times she even appreciated it.

She had the passion, motivation, and inspiration. She sacrificed time with her family, with her kids, ballgames, proms, birthdays (yes she went to London UK over her daughter’s birthday, and she forgot mine totally on a race trip.) Is it sacrifice or selfishness that guided her? She didn’t feel like she sacrificed anything. Who cares who you neglect as long as it doesn’t inconvenience you? THAT is the reason no love is lost between us. Narcissism and selfishness. Life went on while she was sweating; just she wasn’t a part of it. She chose not to sit on her ass over the needs of everything and everybody else. The sacrifice was given by her family, not her.

ironman-finisher

Success!

She couldn’t tell you the name of a single one of her “best friend’s” children, but she would work any conversation back to herself and her abilities. Which were being a damn good singer and an Ironman. It sure didn’t make up for character and honesty let alone respect.

Why do passion, motivation, inspiration and sacrifice only apply to athletes and upper management? Could it be that possibly my passion has nothing to do with being an athlete?

I’m passionate about art, learning new artistic abilities and programs, activism, reading, writing, songwriting, guitar playing, great movies, mentoring, and fighting for the rights of children, far out thoughts that lead to skills that I’d like to try. New things, new experiences, fresh ideas, wrongs that need corrected. Bad behavior that needs corrected. Documentaries about subjects I know very little about but want to know more. I have a passion for learning and exploring. I want to know how Ravens use tools, and why the laws of nature break down at the quantum level. I want to know how Robert Crumb thinks and what his process is when creating a comic.KK-254Who'sAfraidT.jpg

I’m motivated because I want to please myself. I’m curious. Recently I have tried and failed twice at sculpting and mold making. I know two ways NOT to make a mold. I know why and will solve the problem or realize I know how to solve the problem now and I might just move on to the next project.

I’m inspired by artists, writers, dreamers, good music, great songwriting, great animation, original ideas, and seeing an artistic medium that I’d like to try. I might not be the best at any of these things but I strive for them.

Sacrifice? Through the years I’ve sacrificed everything I’ve had at one point or another. I sacrifice my time to listen and laugh and cry with friends. I’ve sacrificed things that I love and moments of joy to do what someone else wants to. No one sees that.

I’m a guitarist and a bass player. I sacrificed every party, event, and good time to go out and entertain. I’ve sacrificed money and time to charities. I’ve sacrificed relationships and left myself open to ridicule by people I love. I’ve sacrificed time doing what I love because I have this built-in guilt that I’m supposed to be hiking backed up by society and friends who love to hike. I think hiking is ok, putting me down for not wanting to seems like a reasonable solution for not loving it though.

I write a new song. Record it and I can’t get anyone to listen to it. I recorded a whole album and even my best friends didn’t buy it. I’m giving it away now. Ask and you can have it. It took a year to make. It took a lifetime of heartbreaks and good times to find the words to write. Isn’t that dedication? I opened my veins and bled for you openly showing what goes on behind these tattoos. Maybe I should run along the highway with a sign advertizing my little collection of songs and a peek inside of me. If I show a little sweat maybe the songs will have some value.

v1_7Passion? I sat in my room as a kid learning to play a guitar. I still practice for the love of playing. Not for you but for me. No one saw it. No one heard the out of tune guitar trying to smoothly play Crazy Train. I worked for every note that comes from my guitar. Then through motivation I started working my way up the musical ladder until I was standing on a huge stage, or playing nose to nose with a guitar god and holding my own. You get to hear the results and never think about the dedication it took. Mainly because you don’t see the sweat dripping off a kid when he finally can play the opening lick from Layla.

My passions don’t involve a sport but unless they do, society, some friends, and strangers looks down their nose because I have a Buddha belly. I’ll finish with a true story.

I belong to a Facebook group of internet *Trolls. They gathered together to make fun of the Militia occupation of a bird sanctuary/gift shop in a Federal Park. Thousands of random people from all walks of life joined this group. No one trolls each other. They are just a group of clever, witty, sarcastic do-gooders. Many are activists and have been for decades. I have trolled hate groups for years. No regrets. These folks troll for good, not evil.

A young early 20’s gal hopped on the message board one day and started body shaming other ladies about fat asses, smoking, lack of will power, and no motivation. She’s a distance runner. She knows pain, she knows sacrifice, she knows dedication.

I came to the ladies aid and replied to her; “These people have been helping others since before you were born. From civil rights, to Save the Whales. Years of writing congressmen, marches, spreading the word and making the world a better place. Personally I researched and implemented a program that would help locate missing children after a tragedy in my old home town. I told them I wanted NO recognition. It was my duty as a citizen of the world.”
“What was it you say you do? Run really far? That’s nice.”

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Am I off base in thinking this way? Leave me a comment. Tell me what you think. You may get a discussion but you won’t be met with hostility.

Be sure to Follow, Like and Subscribe. I have low self esteem and could use the extra bump!

*Troll- (noun) In Internet slang, a troll is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory,[1] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion, often for their own amusement.

P.S. I Love You

This movie sucks and I’m walking out.

I’ve walked out of dozens of movies. I have seen thousands of movies I would have walked out on had I had the chance to. I love movies and haven’t seen a good one in years.

I’ve never went to a movie just so I could walk out about 30 or 40 minutes in. I do it in a heartbeat. Do something, even if it is wrong. Beats sitting for an hour or so knowing it’s going to suck. I’ll take my chances.

Toward the blissful twilight of my doomed marriage, Becca made me go see a creepy chick flick called “P.S. I Love You” It’s about this couple. A handsome couple. The guy dies, but before he does he leaves all these cryptic posthumous letters and gifts seemingly from the grave. The movie is the Notebook, Night of the Living Dead and the Davinci Code in a ps_i_love_you-1poignant, paint-by-the-numbers and heartwarming package. The only saving grace I had, were three middle-aged women setting directly behind me giving a play by play in their speaking voices. I still remember one of them saying “Oh my God! Ireland!”

Fact 1. That movie sucked. I don’t need every movie to be the Road Warrior but come on, at least some gratuitous nudity.

Fact 2. My wife was probably screwing around on me at the the time.

Fact 3. THAT guy should have had to set through that piece of shit movie.

Fuck that.

I’m out of here…

~Arlo