Wednesday, May 31, 2006

My Birthday

The Not-So-Good: I had to have an osteo screening today. I had jury duty today.

The Very Good: When I woke up, there was a bottle of Sofia/Francis Coppola sparkling wine on the table, along with 2 chocolate frosted donuts. My friend Bess who lives in Colorado is 94. She painted a birthday card for us (top right). I got a camera case for my new camera (above). I found a great pair of running shoes at Nordstrom Rack. Chef John prepared an incredible birthday dinner. Now that I see these images, it's clear that I should have signed up for the stroke/carotid artery screening, too.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

What This Blog Is All About

I made this thing during the month of April 1987, before I even knew about computers. I was trying to accomplish the same thing with it that I try to do with my blog.

Every day during that month, I found something small. At night, I'd put the object in a little see-through plastic box. Then I'd glue the box shut. At the end of the month, I poured plaster of Paris into the pink frame, and stuck all 30 boxes in place. I was trying to save a tiny colorful piece of each day.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Happy Birthday, Tom

My mom sent a generous check for our birthdays. Tom bought nine t-shirts and a pair of swimming goggles.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

When We're Too Tired

When we're too tired even to consider going for a long walk, and all we can think about is eating leftovers from the night before and watching the rest of Transamerica–but we haven't been outside all day, here's what we do: We slink up the hill half a block, turn left, and walk to the end of Anza. It's Sutro Park. Funny putting on a down jacket at the end of May, but that's what you have to do if you want to walk to the very top where the Sutro Mansion used to be. The wind never stops howling up there. This evening we had the place all to ourselves. And look–it's low tide, and the beach is practically deserted.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Free Sample: DHC Mineral Mask

Before, during, and after the beauty treatment
transformed model is wearing earrings by Jamie Kole, gown by Versace, high-tops by Converse

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Blustery Day

On evenings when it's really windy, we hit the coastal trail. It's half a block up the hill, turn left, then 3 blocks over. Take a right on 48th, and follow it past the Seal Rock Inn. The trail goes through a forest above the ocean. If you look down, here's what you see.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

A Shocking Lunch

Here's one of my favorite recipes for lunch:

1 can black beans, Cuban style
1 can tomatoes, Mexican style

Open cans. Pour into bowl and stir. Microwave for 2 1/2 minutes on high. Remove immediately. Are you in a good mood? Do you have all the time in the world? Then add a dollop of sour cream, and pour some salsa on top for garnish. Eat with spoon.

Work for an hour and a half. Take a nap for 1/2 hour. Go back to work.

Today, though, I decided to try something special. I got out the little container of spinach potato frittata I had bought yesterday at Trader Joe's. It took 3 minutes in the microwave, but it was worth it. I cannot begin to tell you how satisfying it was. And it worked incredibly well with the garnishes. But then . . .
Is this not one of the
labels you have ever

I happened to turn the container upside-down. According to the Nutrition Facts, I had eaten not one, but three and one half servings. I learned that I had consumed 650 mg of cholesterol, and over 1000 calories. I then read the ingredients, which began with Swiss cheese and eggs. Butter and sugar were included, as well as the spinach and potatoes.

To compare: One container of Amy's veggie loaf with gooey gravy, mashed potatoes, and peas & carrots contains 0 mg of cholesterol and 280 calories.

Moral: Don't ever bother to read Nutrition Facts if you've already finished eating

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Secret Door

There's a secret door in the sea wall down on Ocean Beach. Every time I've walked up to it, there's been a kid playing beside it. This evening I trudged up to it again to take a picture, and this little girl was trying to push it open.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Darbi Hannah Interviews Me!

Darbi Hannah, from San Luis Obispo, interviewed me last week. She's in 5th grade and is a future cartoonist. She has a great head start–don't you think "Darbi Hannah" is the perfect name for a cartoonist?

My husband (above, red turtleneck) is one of my biggest inspirations.

What inspired you to be a cartoonist/illustrator?

My mom was my first inspiration. She loves to sing, and when I was a kid, she took voice lessons and would never stop practicing, even when my friends came over. It was embarassing to be out in the back yard playing, and suddenly you'd hear her doing scales, going higher and higher, and making funny sounds, not real words. I would pretend not to notice, but sooner or later somebody would ask what that noise was. I vowed to do something, anything that was QUIET when I grew up. Another person who inspires me is my husband, who is kind of funny.

Today, do you create cartoons by hand, or computer?
I work by hand, on the computer. I use a Wacom tablet that's attached to my computer, and draw on it by holding the cordless pen in my hand. So I definitely consider drawing on the computer "working by hand." I can't stress how much I love my computer. I love it with all my heart, and I think it shows in the characters I draw. I would never be an illustrator if I couldn't use the computer. I would make too much of a mess.

What are some things that can go wrong while creating a cartoon character?
Say your art director asks you to do an illustration of a monster. You send in the sketch, and the art director says, "Make the monster a little nicer. Kids don't like creatures that are scary." Comments like that can make you lose heart, because deep down inside you know that kids LOVE scary creatures. (Darbi, let me know if you think I'm wrong!) Nope! I think that's totally right! When you feel like you're doing something fakey, you aren't so excited about it. Of course if you're supposed to be doing a cartoon of a very nice character, that's different–though it's not as much fun. Other bad things that can happen . . . let's see . . . it can be disastrous when you spill coffee or chocolate pudding on your computer or on your drawing.

What exactly is a cartoon?

I cheated and looked up "cartoon" in the dictionary. It says: "a simple drawing showing the features of its subjects in a humorously exaggerated way." Basically, I agree with that definition, but as your next question suggests, there are many different kinds of cartoons, and some aren't funny.

Are there different types of cartoons in the world?
Yes! There are funny ones and sad ones (Maus by Art Spiegelman). Cartoons on paper, cartoons made for the internet and TV. Graffiti–cartoons on walls and streets. Japanese manga and anime. Political cartoons. Animated cartoons and still cartoons. Flip books!

How much time does it take to make a single cartoon character?
If you have total control of the cartoon character, it can take anywhere from a few seconds to weeks. Also, cartoon characters can evolve over the years. (Charlie Brown looked a lot different when he first appeared than he did years later.) Sometimes the most powerful and lively cartoon characters are done very quickly. On the other hand, if lots of people have to approve the final cartoon character, it can take longer! If you end up having to go through an approval process that takes a really long time, sometimes the cartoon character gets tired and loses a lot of its life.

Is it harder to create 3D cartoons, or 2D? Why?
It must be harder to do 3D cartoons, because I've never done them! Sometimes I'll put a little shading on my drawings, but not much. I think that's another thing that would take some of the spontaneity out of my work. (I'm just speaking for myself here.) I like art that is flat and garish. I use Photoshop and Illustrator, which are basically 2D programs. And I use Flash for moving cartoons. I don't use any 3D programs like 3D Studio Max or Maya. But now you've got me curious. Maybe I should learn a 3D program.

Do cartoons really send out a hidden message?
Hidden messages are always fun, and cartoonists like to have fun. I think that successful humor is always a little bit like a joke between good friends. And sometimes it's fun when you don't "get" the whole thing all at once.

How long have you been doing cartoons?
I think I might have a few panel cartoons I did when I was in 3rd or 4th grade. One is about making your bed, and goes: A hobo with a bucktooth knocks on the door and asks if he can sleep inside for the night. The woman (who looks a lot like my mom) says, "Sure, as long as you make your bed." He says, "No problem, mam." She hands him an armful of sticks and feathers and a bolt of cloth and some Elmer's glue. He says, "Um, what's this?" She says: "It's to make your bed with." Another one is about a McDonald's golden arches bridge, but I'll spare you the details on that one. As far back as I can remember, I always drew on everything: the sidewalk, dirty windows, the sand, the wall, my clothes, my hands, sometimes on paper.

Finally, which cartoonists inspire you the most?
On TV, Matt Groening (The Simpsons). In our newspaper: Charles Schultz, Don Asmussen (The Bad Reporter), and Scott Adams (Dilbert). In the illustration world: Seymour Chwast. In the book world: The Rotten Ralph books, Mark Alan Stamaty, Lynda Barry, Saul Steinberg, Maira Kalman. I was trying to think what these artists have in common. You never mistake their art for anybody else's. They all seem to be true to themselves. They don't try to be nice and sweet, and they don't try to please everybody on the planet. Also, their ideas are just as powerful as their drawings.
Note to Darbi: Please send me one of your cartoons with a hidden message!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Jeux de Printemps

Spots and Scott are moving back into their real cottage. Before they do, Scott wants to have it painted. So yesterday Tom and I went over to help move things out of the cottage, into the basement of the big house. We can't carry much, but we can carry food. Around 3:00 we were sent to pick up a huge platter at Ali Baba's. We returned with the platter, and when we entered the gate from the street, the sun came out. Scott's table and chairs had been set outside in the courtyard, and suddenly we were in heaven. One of the guys in the big house grows orchids. We were sitting in the sun surrounded by orchids. Scott is our wine aficionado friend, and had raided his cellar. We were all dirty and exhausted, but the sunlight and the food and wine transformed us. I said it felt like we were in France. Susan said, "I was thinking Italy." Having been to neither, I quickly agreed.

On our way home, we had to take some movies back to Blockbuster. When this happens, it's my job to run upstairs to Ross and check on things. I looked in the mirror and realized I needed a bath. I went over to the soap. I found a box of soap with this picture on it:

I thought: "Oh! That looks exactly the way lunch felt." On the front of the box it said Jeux de Printemps. Then in little letters, Made in Italy. On the back it said A magic union of the colors of nature with the fragrance of life. I snapped it up. The fragrance of life for $6.99. When I got home, I found the painting on Google. It's by Pierre-August Renoir, who was French. So I was probably right about lunch feeling like France.

p.s. Here's an actual photo of lunch, but it was really more like the painting above.

Bay to Breakers

Bay to Breakers is a 7.5 mile race. The runners start on one side of San Francisco, by the bay, and finish down the hill from our house, by the breakers. The runners have lots of fun dressing up. Some don't dress. And some take it very seriously. Gilbert Okari from Kenya (above center) won the race in 34 minutes and 20 seconds. He'll take home $37,000 in prize money. The people shown here were some of the first to finish, but they couldn't keep up with Gilbert.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Movie Review: Art School Confidential

I had another great idea about how to go see a movie on the big screen and save lots of money. Tom had happened to buy a case of Cracker Jacks last week, in preparation for bird flu. I thought a box would fit neatly in my bag along with the mini water bottle of wine.

I was thrilled to read the Nutrition Facts on the back and to discover that there were only 120 calories per box, and no cholesterol. Sadly, the reality of the situation is pictured below. On the left, you'll see how many Cracker Jacks are actually in one box. (That's a small bowl made by my friend Susan.) On the right, you will see that there are now 3 peanuts in one box (shown: 2 whole peanuts and 2 halves). But still more depressing, the "prize." A paper portrait of George Washington as a young man. Oh boy!

It makes it more fun to watch Art School Confidential when you realize that it's an adaptation of a comic book by Daniel Clowes. My favorite parts:

–When Jerome tells one of his teachers, played by Anjelica Huston, why he wants to win first place in the art contest; and how she responds
–When Jerome visits Professor Sandiford, played by John Malkovich, at home, and the professor's wife appears with tea.
–Professor Sandiford's paintings.
–Steve Buscemi, as Broadway Bob
–Where Jerome ends up
–Kissing through glass

I liked the movie a lot; I actually clapped when it was over. It ended elegantly. But I have to warn you: I was the only one who clapped. And as we walked out, I heard the people behind me say, "That was a disappointment."

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

A Good Night for Dinner

compliments of Chef John, next door

What did we do to deserve living next door to John and Emmy? I'll never know, but whatever it was, it wasn't in this lifetime.

Sexy Shoes for Spring

I know what you're going to say. These don't look like girls' shoes. OK.

We had to go to Blockbuster for a movie last night. It's my job to run upstairs to Ross to check on the shoes while Tom scours the shelves for movies. Three weeks ago I had stood in line with this very pair, when they were $19.99. At the last minute, I put them back because I had made a solemn vow to buy only girls' shoes from now on. But last night they were down to $12.99 and I broke my vow.

p.s. The movie turned out to be delightful. It was Apres Vous–very funny and sweet, and I watched it in my new shoes.

Monday, May 15, 2006

A Good Day for Mail

A package in the mail from Roger

Holly Hostess and her parasite pals. The box says: "Here is the girl with small friends of life present for always. Some irritation she finds with them, but much fun and love is to be shared."

And not only that: Music. I love this CD. I'm listening to it now, for the 6th time. Roger and Jose are taking off for London, Paris, Barcelona, Prague, Venice & Florence in a couple of weeks, and I'm glad they didn't sell this CD at their yard sale.
p.s. Roger, if that woman didn't buy Jose's coat, I will.

from Roger later in the week:
My dear Linda:
I'm not ignoring you -- just running so many errands for the trip (Note to self: Buy some crackers to eat as we're strolling along the Champs Elysees!!)

Linda, I love your blog entry -- those parasites (scratch, scratch) look PERFECT photographed -- very colorful. By the way, I hope you've read the warning about NOT PUTTING THEM IN YOUR MOUTH!! Very dangerous!!

Let me talk to Jose about his coat. I'm sure he'll love to unload it on you -- er, send it to you. Can we make this transaction when we come back from the trip? So busy right now...crackers... And don't put those parasites in your mouth!

Linda, I got a second Dave's True Story CD, but I sold it at the yard sale. I like the first one, the one I sent you, better. That's why I couldn't sell it! That's why I had to send it to a friend who appreciates music! WHY...WON'T...YOU...BELIEVE...ME!!??!!

Linda, as Mark Twain used to say, KEEP ON TRUCKIN'!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

P.S. Congrats on your "music download"...whatever THAT is...geez, you kids today...

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Beach Find of the Day

When we first moved here six years ago, I noticed that these two people and their dog walked on the beach as much as we did. They were tall and handsome–their dog was, too. It was obvious that they were from another realm. As far as I could tell, they owned Ocean Beach. I fantasized about knowing them and being their friends.

Later we got to know Spots a little. Because we were so enamored with Spots, we had to play up to her human companion, Scott. One day Scott asked us if we had become acquainted with anyone else interesting on the beach besides Spots. Not really! But I had always wondered about the two tall people and their regal dog. I described them and asked if he had ever noticed them. He said, "Oh, that's Anne and Peter. I'm going to the opera with them this weekend."

Almost immediately after that, Scott had a bad year. He got an infection while he was in the hospital. Because of the infection, he lost part of his hip and couldn't walk. When Scott got out of the hospital, Anne and Peter insisted that he and Spots move into the apartment on the first floor of their house. Easy to maneuver a wheel chair in and out of, and closer to the hospital. Anne and Peter took Spots with them every evening on their 6-mile walk, along with Augusta (pictured). Since Spots is an athlete, they began carrying a tennis ball on their walks.

A few months ago, Scott started driving again. As soon as he could walk with crutches and get up all our front steps, we coerced him into driving Spots over for dinner. Now he's getting ready to move back into his real house. But all I'm saying is, the people pictured here did turn out to be from another realm. They're angels, Baby.

From My Inner Child

Happy Mother's Day

Saturday, May 13, 2006

What He Bought

This morning at 7:30 Tom bounded into the bedroom fully dressed, and plopped down beside me. "I think I'll go to the farmers' market. Do you want to come?"

To me, the farmers' market is hell on earth. Mobs of people. The sun beating down on piles of fruits and vegetables. I'd rather go to Home Depot. I'd rather go to the Sports Basement! I'd almost rather have a root canal. I told him I thought I'd pass. The last thing I remember is yelling, "Don't buy too many fruits and vegetables!"

There is one redeeming feature at the farmers' market in case you're ever pressured into going early on a Saturday morning. Hayes Street Grill has a booth there. You can buy a crab cake sandwich & coffee, take it behind the Ferry Building, and sit by yourself and sulk.

Friday, May 12, 2006

This Just In from Key West

Barbara and Ice Bat on vacation.

One Reason I Like Emmy So Much

Have you ever gone to the bathroom after laughing through a meal, only to see a huge olive stuck on your front tooth? And no one even bothered to tell you about it? My next-door neighbor Emmy would never let that happen to you.

We were having dinner at La Vie. The boys were engaged in conversation. Emmy silently got my attention by waving across the table. She raised her left hand to her left front tooth and made a scraping gesture like she was removing something from between her teeth. I mouthed, "Thank you," and turned my head, pretending to gaze into the fish tank. I casually raised my left hand to my left front tooth.

Emmy became alarmed. She whispered, "No, Hon! Other side! I'm mirroring!" I then knew to switch to the right side, and was able to remove the offending morsel before the boys even noticed.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Lost and Found

This is my beachcombing find of the day. The red thing is a Jelly Belly character. I love the little surf board and the mini flip-flop and the paint chips!

When I picked it up, I was surprised to find Bible verses on back of the paint chips.

The pink chip says: "For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any double-edged sword. It judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." Comforting!

The blue chip says: "You my brother, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to sin." Why jump to the conclusion that if you're free, the first thing you want to do is sin?

I believe in God. I believe that God has a sense of humor, and does the best job a God can do. I don't think God jumps to the conclusion that we can't wait to sin. But on the other hand, when you read something like that, doesn't it make you want to sin?
By the way, if you lost this on Ocean Beach, let me know and I'll leave it on my front porch for you to pick up.

When asked whether or not the Da Vinci Code movie should have a "this is fiction" disclaimer on it, Ian McKellen (who stars in the movie) replied, "I've often thought the Bible should have a disclaimer in the front saying this is fiction." I read it on Jason Kottke's site

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Tea, Vodka, Coffee

I bought these tiny porcelain tea cups at Ross for $3.50. I wanted to photograph them. Do you have a child who would like them, now that I've photographed them? If so, let me know and I'll leave them on our porch so you can pick them up. If not, Tom and I can drink vodka out of them in the back yard with our next-door neighbors.

Tonight we went to La Vie with our neighbors, John (below left) and Emmy, to celebrate John's birthday. It was great fun; and La Vie had the best coffee I have ever had. Strong. Filtered before your eyes in a cup just a little larger than the ones above. The cup came with this solid layer of (cream & sugar?) already in the bottom, so you really couldn't insist on having it black.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler has a surprisingly sweet face; but it's his shoes we're interested in. He was at A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books tonight reading from his new book called Adverbs. You may know him as Lemony Snicket, writer of A Series of Unfortunate Events. He also wrote the screenplay for the movie, with Jim Carey as Count Olaf, and Meryl Streep as Aunt Josephine. Remember Sunny, the baby who bit everything in her path?

He said it meant a lot for him to be at this particular bookstore, being that it was here where he bought his first book with his own money: The Blue Aspic by Edward Gorey.

Daniel's mom was there. She kept going on and on not about Daniel's new book, but Daniel's wife's new book, How to Be.

When I took his portrait, he was very apologetic about his shoes and the condition they were in. He said that he had bad feet. When I asked him what he meant, he said that about the time they started making great sneakers (and he pointed to my huge blue shoes), his feet went bad. The doctor told him never to wear sneakers ever again. A most unfortunate event.

Doc Martens are his shoe, and only in black. He says they're getting harder and harder to find in black. Last time he came across them in black, he bought three pairs. I understood. In fact, when I bought the pair I had on (Nike Foamposites) and realized how perfect they were for me, I went back to Nordstrom Rack and bought 2 more pairs.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Mother's Day Presents

Wait a minute.
Did I really buy this for my mother?

an email from Aggles:
I certainly hope you did not buy that chemise for Mother’s Day!

me: Is that what that thing is? But Aggles, I did buy it! I also bought a white one for Mom.

Aggles: Oh – a white one for Mom is ok. But really, she doesn’t like chartreuse and I was afraid you were gonna give that to her.

It's not chartreuse. It's neon. With periwinkle trim.

Aggles: Yeah, well, I still don’t think Mom would like those colors!! But I think it’s great for you!!

me: I kind of liked it, too. But it's too late now. I just got back from the P.O. Anyway, I already have one that just screams ME! (left). Don't you think when Mom wears her cobalt blue sweater, the neon green and lavender will be fun showing a little bit at the neck?

Aggles: I ordered Mom a Victor Borge DVD. I think Amazon should have it to me in time.

me: Isn't Victor Borge a vampire? I don't think Mom likes scary movies.

Aggles: The neon one screams you, not the white one. The white one is boy undergarments. While you are trying to move to a more girly shoe perhaps you might consider moving to girly undergarments.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Way to Go, Evie

Evie passed her first licensing exam yesterday. She's going to be a psychotherapist. We worked with each other for 6 years at the publishing company–from 1985 to 1991. We were always tired and hungry. So it's good to change careers once in a while–though at the moment she says she's too tired to be hungry.

assemblage by Evelyn Ellis, former art director

Friday, May 05, 2006


You might recall how shocked I was a couple of weeks ago to rip open the envelope and discover that I hadn't won the $10,000 grand prize for my entry in the Converse Shoe film competition. Then, a few seconds later how my heart skipped a beat when the agency assured me that I had won the 2nd prize (me and 4,000 other filmmakers). Second prize was a free pair of Chuck Taylors, either hi- or lo-tops, in the color of my choice.

After staring at the color chart for an hour, I decided to make a sacrifice. A sacrifice for my marriage. I gave the free shoe certificate to Tom, and today a handsome box appeared in the mail. See above for Tom's color choice.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Gigantic Bird

When it's too windy and cold to go to the beach, sometimes we go to the polo field (below). It's in Golden Gate Park. It's surrounded by eucalyptus trees which not only stop the wind, but smell really good. This evening I was jogging on the dirt road that runs around the top of the field. I looked over, and there was this huge blue bird observing the soccer game! He let me get really close. But when the man on the bike rode up, the bird flew away. The man on the bike stopped and apologized to me for making the bird fly away.

Happy Birthday, Barbara

If it's your birthday today, too, and you want your own fuzzy creature, you can find one at Giant Robot on Shrader at Haight. They have all kinds of creatures to choose from, but Ice Bat is the best.

And now, on your left, the photo you've all been waiting for: Barbara and me.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

The Eyes of God

I had just escaped from Kinko's on Sloat and finally finally had the prints I needed.
It was a beautiful day, the sun beat down
I had the radio on, I was drivin’

Suddenly I looked up in the sky. I swear I saw God looking down on me and smiling.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Song for May

If I download one song or piece of music today, what should it be and who is it by? You don't have to name your favorite song of all time–just a song that's sticking in your mind at the moment.

My song, which is playing through my mind right now, is Boz Skaggs' Easy Living.

Artist: Chris Rice
Album: Smell the Color 9
Title: Life Means so Much

FUNNY, AS I WAS GETTING ON THE COMPUTER TO READ MY EMAILS, I WAS HUMMING THE TUNE TO "EVERLASTING LOVE" DO YOU KNOW THE SONG? ..... "FROM THE VERY START, OPEN UP YOUR HEART"........ i looked up the words to the song!!! i love the words!!! i have come to the conclusion that it was probably Robert Knight who recorded the song (that i remembered).

Hard for me to name just one!

I love this one lately: "Au Fond du Temple Saint" from "The Pearlfishers" written by George Bizet, recorded by opera singers, but also there's a fun version recorded by David Byrne on his CD "Grown Backwards."

Also I can't stop playing a Fred Astaire CD; "I Can't Be Bothered Now" is a fun song, but I also like "Top Hat, White Tie and Tails." Can you tell I'm spending most of my time at the nursing home these days? These are things I play for my dad. Ha!

"Can't Buy Me Love" The Beatles

"Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now" by McFadden And Whitehead
I heard it on a recent trip to Houston and again here in NYC and it's been in my head ever since:)

Susan L.
"No One Knows My Name" by Gillian Welch. I like the heartfeltness of this song, especially when she says, " ...sometimes I have a lonesome thought in my mind." It's about how she was adopted, doesn't know her father's name, and that no one knows her true name.

Susan E.
Monday Monday by the mama's and the papa's

Linda H.
My song is "Don't Fence Me In," by (I think) The Sons of The Pioneers. My dad was born and raised in Montana and loves this song and it totallytotallytotally fits as a mantra for his life. My sisters and I have just contacted Hospice to care for him (he just turned 90 in February and until 6 months ago was still going to his office every day to work as a petroleum geologist), so he's on my mind constantly, as you might understand.

what a hard question. One song that I think of a lot is by Joni Mitchell and I'm not sure of the name but I think it is "I Wish I Had A River". its about skating away on a river. i heard one DJ say it is a song for people who hate Christmas and I never thought of it that way. (It starts, "It's comin' on Christmas...")

Sal is back
Pal, This is the operatic version I play for Dad. It's beautiful, too.
Les PĂȘcheurs de perles, opera in 3 acts Au Fond du Temple Saint (Duet)
Composed by Georges Bizet
Performed by Czech Symphony Orchestra
with John Oakman
Conducted by Julian Bigg

My favorite song right now is: Complainte pour Ste. Catherine by Kate & Ann McGarrigle,
it is about 25 years old!!! But I still love it.

Check out "Max" by Paolo Conti. Actually, "Dragon" or "Hemingway" are good, too. He sings mostly in Italian but mixes in French and English. Sometimes he sort of growls instead of singing, and sometimes---but you'll see.

"Cecilia" by Simon and Garfunkle. Because a friend named his new baby Roman Atticus, we were talking about wonderful girl baby names...and Cecilia was top of my list.

100 Years by Five for Fighting. I'm thinking of the lyrics as I see lots of change related to aging and watch my girls grow up.... "15 - there's still time for you / Time to buy and time to lose / 15 - there's never a wish better than this / When you've only got 100 years to live."

Here's a video.
Eliane Lust is the pianist
L'Isle Joyeuse, 1901

Anything by Djando Reinhardt, but especially stuff he did with Stephan Grapelli. There is nothing in the world like Romani (politically incorrectly known as “gypsy”) music. A great movie to watch if you love this music is “Latcho Drom.” It’s not about him, but you’ll see why he plays the kind of music he plays. What an incredible, incredible thing to experience both the movie and the music.

My two favorite work CD’s are De Profundis (The Cracow Klezmer Band), Immortal Egypt (Hossam Ramzy), and when I really gotta crank it, Oye Como Va! (Tito Puente.) I guess that’s really three, not two. Oh well. Counting was never my strong suit!

I have been hearing Bad Day by Daniel Powter in my head a lot lately - I think mostly because he was on Ellen Degeneres last week and the whole audience was singing this song.

Where is the moment when needed the most
You kick up the leaves and the magic is lost
They tell me your blue skies fade to grey
They tell me your passion's gone away
And I don't need no carryin' on

You stand in the line just to hit a new low
You're faking a smile with the coffee to go
You tell me your life's been way off line
You're falling to pieces everytime
And I don't need no carryin' on

Cause you had a bad day
You're taking one down
You sing a sad song just to turn it around
You say you don't know
You tell me don't lie
You work at a smile and you go for a ride
You had a bad day
The camera don't lie
You're coming back down and you really don't mind
You had a bad day
You had a bad day

Our Franklin
"Fifty Miles of Elbow Room" (traditional?) Probably the version by the Red Clay Ramblers, but Dry Branch Fire Squad has a pretty good cut of it, too.

This is not my favorite song, but I likes it...and it's been on my mind whilst I sheet rocked a big hole in Marie's ceiling. Maybe it's the dust mask acoustics, but I can sort of sing it without too much complaint from innocent bystanders.

My song would be "Wishin 'n' Hopin'" by Dusty Springfield.

Mr. Anonymous
a Nat King Cole song that now I can't think of the name of...."Orange kind of sky?/something".....(At one point it goes "wham, bam, alakazam"!)

Ms. Anonymous
for me, today anything from Roy Orbison's greatest hits. Crying/Love Hurts (you can tell I can't remember names of songs) or Uptown.

The piece of music I would download: "Sailing" by Christopher Cross. He had this voice like vanilla ice cream -- but thankfully, NOT Vanilla Ice -- when I was a kid. I remember when my older sister and I stayed up late one Friday night to see him on Midnight Special; he was overweight and had this scraggly beard. The whole nation tuned in (it was the "American Idol" of my childhood) and seemed kind of let down -- like, how could this BEAST make such lovely music? Why couldn't he look like Shaun Cassidy, gosh darnit?! Whatever happened to Christopher Cross?

Tom and Elaine [[TvD]]
Actually I have two songs. The first one is by Paolo Conte, it's French. I love the entire CD (The Best of Paolo Conte) really, but I guess what stands out the most is the fourth song on the CD called Boogie. It just makes me want to grab Elaine and dance! It gives me a wonderful feeling. The other one is by Rod Stewart from the CD The Great American Songbook, and my favorite song there is The Very Thought of You. It too is nice to dance to.

Ken (The Doctor)
My song: "Give Yourself To Love"
Artist: Kate Wolf

Lyrics attached....

Kind friends all gathered 'round, there's something I would say:
That what brings us together here has blessed us all today.
Love has made a circle that holds us all inside;
Where strangers are as family, loneliness can't hide.

You must give yourself to love if love is what you're after;
Open up your hearts to the tears and laughter,
And give yourself to love, give yourself to love.

I've walked these mountains in the rain and learned to love the wind;
I've been up before the sunrise to watch the day begin.
I always knew I'd find you, though I never did know how;
Like sunshine on a cloudy day, you stand before me now.

So give yourself to love if love is what you're after;
Open up your hearts to the tears and laughter,
And give yourself to love, give yourself to love.

Love is born in fire; it's planted like a seed.
Love can't give you everything, but it gives you what you need.
And love comes when you're ready, love comes when you're afraid;
It'll be your greatest teacher, the best friend you have made.

So give yourself to if love is what you're after;
Open up your hearts to the tears and laughter,
And give yourself to love, give yourself to love.

Give yourself to love, if love is what you're after;
Open up your hearts to the tears and laughter,
And give yourself to love, give yourself to love.

By the way, I did ask Jim about "his song" for your blog and he said, "That would have to be anything by Alison Krauss." We were on the same wave length because I was going to choose "The Lucky One" from her Union Station Live recording. We just bought her latest CD, Lonely Runs Both Ways, which won an Emmy this year, and it too is a keeper! However, you have to be a bluegrass fan.

the song I would download at the moment is:
Rockin in the free world by Neil Young and whatever band he was collaborating with at the time.

The Man I Love by Etta James

F*cking Anonymous
I'm tarred sorta, but OK---opened the window tonight and blasted music like a dumb college girl.
Love Emmy Lou Harris and Mark Knopfler All the Roadrunning. Have you heard it?
Beachcombing is the opening song, and one called This Is Us, which I heard on the radio (which caused me to buy the CD of course, cause I still love to buy music in stores) is really nice. Others are good too. Give it a try. Then like the 60s man I listened to the White Album. Good all over again. Strange I never liked it much at the time. Nice tonight.