Monday, July 4, 2011

7 + 4 = 11

Happy Independence Day!  I didn't do too much of anything today, and it felt rather good.  I even started the day off by sleeping late, and since I didn't get in 'til around 3 AM from the party Jon and Karin threw yesterday, I felt mostly justified.

It's been a busy several weeks.  I've attended a music festival with Jenn and Rhonda, done a bit of catsitting for Barbara, gone to Sally and Matt's party (where Matt learned enough of "That's Just What I Am" to accompany me on guitar - thanks!), filmed some scenes for Rick Ford's latest venture, "Hassel Unbound" (would you believe I have an entry at IMDB?), played some of my songs in Duane Park for Make Music New York 2011, with Barbara as my roadie, visited New York's Central Park and Greenwich Village with Laura before going back to the park the next day for rollerblading with Dawn (followed by Rosa Mexicano's outstanding guacamole and pomegranate margaritas), had Peruvian ceviche with Yesika's family and Rhonda, attended a managers' meeting at Shadow Lake in Franklin Lakes which eventually turned into a company-wide barbecue/party, and visited Jon and the very-pregnant Karin for the above-mentioned party yesterday.  And of course I had that job thing going on the whole time, too.

I've also visited my parents more often than usual during the past five weeks, understandable under the circumstances.  After my dad finally agreed to see a doctor, he was hospitalized for nearly a week with renal failure and anemia (as well as high calcium and blood pressure readings).  Those symptoms have been addressed, but the cause was eventually determined to be Waldenström's macroglobulinemia, a rare form of cancer in the white blood cells known as lymphocytes.  This, too, is being addressed, with chemotherapy, and while the prognosis is good and my dad is in better spirits than he was a month ago, it's still been stressful on him and the rest of us, and there are several chemo sessions ahead.  He's already losing his hair, and as he and I have both managed to hang on to our full heads of hair with minimal greying, I can relate to the trauma; still, he's mostly holding up pretty well, although of course he has better days (when he can eat and sleep) and worse ones.

With all that's been going on, I've been pretty good about playing guitar every day.  I'm determined not to lose these calluses again!  In addition to performing at MMNY, I dragged my guitar along to Sally and Matt's party (because they wanted people to bring instruments), to Microwize's barbecue last Friday (because my colleague and fellow southpaw guitarist Nicole was bringing hers and asked me to bring mine, too), and to Jon and Karin's party yesterday (because Jon figured he and I could jam a bit if people left early).  I'm still learning to play, and sing, "Burning in the Sun," but I'll get it soon enough.  I'm also planning to write another new song or two in the very near future.

Pam is coming back to see me next month, and one of the events we have planned is a New York outing with my parents to see the new Cirque du Soleil show "Zarkana" and then have dinner at the Hallo Berlin beer hall.  We're all looking forward to it!  A trip to the Jersey shore, a performance of Zach Braff's off-Broadway play "All New People," and dinner at the amazing Cafe Matisse are also on tap for Pam's visit.  :-)

So, yes, there's been a lot going on, and this month will see a get-together or two with some old classmates, more romping around in NYC, and possibly a venture shoreward... and who knows what else?  Can you blame me for parking it on the couch for a few hours this evening to watch "Hearts in Atlantis" and "Flatliners?"  Well, it's back to work tomorrow, and it's just about midnight now, so I should probably park it in bed.  Good night, all...

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