Category Archives: My Thoughts

Addendum To My Potato Salad Post, And Some Other Updates

This was me IRL when I realized exactly how easy it was to make decent potato salad, and that I’d been freed from the shackles of Corporate Potato Salad forever…

(Best experienced for these purposes from 2:23 on, as the link intended…)

I’d been meaning to post this basically since I thought of it, but life (and a flu that beat the flu shot and still hasn’t entirely quit, but is getting there) got in the way.

In other news…

I’ve been banging on the code behind the scenes here, so when I post, some of you may get emails that do not end up going to your spam folders or getting blocked outright. We’ll know when this post goes up if any of it works. Basically, if you’re on the mailing list and you actually get an email that isn’t in your Spam folder when it arrives, comment here, and I’ll know I done good. Actually, even if it does show up in Spam, useful information for me to have, so let me know on that as well if you can. Thanks in advance for that. I appreciate the work that the early adopters to the email subscription setup have done to help me kick the tires.

Watched all of The End Of The Fucking World, and then watched it again while I was super-sick so it was kinda hazy and weird and cold mediciney. Enjoyed the hell out of it both times. I’m not exactly new to the material, though…

I got the first 7 of these when I was in California in 2012, and ordered the rest from Chuck Forsman as they came out. Re-read them all recently, before watching the show, when a new printing of the collected edition came out (I missed the first printing of it). Really happy that he’s got a hit on his hands. If you liked TEOTFW, check out his other stuff, especially his recent I Am Not Okay With This, which is in the same vein.

I’ve also been playing a lot of Skyrim (a well-spent $5, in spite of its various problems), listening to as much music as I can (I’ve posted evidence of this recently, and I’ll be closing this post with just a bit more), trying to free myself from the shackles of Big Social now that I’ve beaten Corporate Potato Salad (I’ve spent a lot less time on the big two sites lately, thankfully), and just tryin’ to survive and stay entertained/distracted without being too numb or too disengaged from the world, or too consumed by the hyper-awareness that it’s burning (with little I can do as an individual right now to stop it from burning). Hopefully, I’m doing right by myself and others in the process.

I promised y’all more music to wrap up, and here’s my friend Andrew W.K. with that music. It’s called “Music Is Worth Living For”, and it’s the first single from his new album “You’re Not Alone”, which is due out March 2nd if memory serves.

I think that brings us up to speed.

I’ve caught myself pacing a bit more than usual this holiday season.

For those of you who know me a bit, you know that I already pace a fair deal, more sometimes when I’m talking. I’ve been doing it a lot for the past week or so. It took me until yesterday to figure out why.

Initially, I’d made plans to time-shift the holidays a bit, since “the holidays” now involve me driving several hundred miles in each direction to see family, and doing so is tough enough without also doing a significant chunk of it in New York Metropolitan Area holiday traffic. When I was younger, this would have been easier, but I tire more easily these days. So, we were going to get together a week earlier than we traditionally do among my family and a good chunk of my friends to celebrate. A family health emergency (everyone’s OK now, don’t worry about that, at least) torpedoed that, so we decided to time-shift our get-together again, to early January.

This has created a situation where, for perhaps the first time I can remember, I have nowhere to be and nothing to do related to Christmas, as it’s happening, and yet, the sense memory of the anxiety and anticipation of the event is still unshakably here. I haven’t even been able to positively redirect it toward other things that I need to get done, because most of them involve outside individuals, and, let’s face it, no one’s getting anything done until January 2nd at this time of the year.

Christianity (I’m not a member, but its influence is unfortunately everywhere in my country) and (especially) capitalism have fostered a situation where, even though the holidays are supposed to be times of rest and relaxation, and I’m in a situation that’s ideal for rest and relaxation, my brain simply refuses to believe that I can just take it easy, man.

Before anyone says “It’s not Christianity and/or capitalism, it’s anxiety”, I can tell you that, as someone who deals with chronic and/or acute anxiety every day, this feels different. This is anxiety brought on by institutional conditioning. The only other type of anxiety I can compare it to is “I don’t want to go to school” anxiety, because, like this other stuff, it was anxiety that would not exist without the heavy-handed influence of institutions. It’s a little different beyond that, because fear of school was fear of being in a hostile environment, and this is more like I’ve been trained to run headlong into a different hostile environment, specifically because there may be rewards after I run the gauntlet. (I rarely if ever felt like anything about public school was an actual reward in and of itself, because, at the time, very little of what I was taught there or how it was taught to me engaged, enriched or nurtured me, and very little of how I was treated by teachers and students alike felt like kindness. It felt like I was conscripted into 13 years of boring, ugly cruelty designed to beat the happiness, imagination and individuality out of me, with only the vague promise of possibly going to one of those places where I saw people partying in movies on HBO, albeit at a probable high financial cost once I figured that out, at the end of those 13 years.)

So, here I sit, marveling at the brain I thought was so independent in my younger years, telling me that I can’t relax, because of Christianity and capitalism.

These two forces, working in concert, have embedded this idea in my mind: “You have to be somewhere, though you don’t know where RIGHT NOW, for the celebration of an event that is personally irrelevant to you save for the opportunity to gather with people who matter to you, but before you get there, you have to complete difficult quests you cannot identify in this moment for all sorts of things, most of which you can’t afford, a some of which you will not be able to identify until you see them. Otherwise, the people you love will be DEEPLY disappointed in you.”

I’ll certainly survive it, I have to date, but what an unbelievable mind fuck. It’s some shit out of “The Shawshank Redemption” or something.

I’d end this piece with two words familiar to most of you, but no, it’s really not OK for me to say them right now, no matter what any of the true monsters of this world would like us to believe.


Anxiety’s robbed me of the ability to listen to music through headphones in my own home.

If I’m out in the world, under the right circumstances (car or bus rides, mostly, but occasionally walks or runs), I can do it, but at home, I always feel like I’m giving up a tactical advantage by not being able to hear ambient noise in my surrounding area.

As a (mostly) retired musician and a lifelong lover of music, this makes me incredibly sad.