Having a very nice, restful vacation, thanks for asking.
Spending LOTS of time with the amazing new girlfriend, slowly moving in with her piece-by-piece; saw my wonderful daughter for the first time in six years (lots of excuses on both sides, few real good reasons); still hitting the area Goodwills and finding a few overlooked treasures; discovered a great record store on 6th Avenue in Tacoma, HI-VOLTAGE RECORDS -- tons of vinyl and lots of reasonably-priced CD's ... While we browsed they played Richard Thompson's RUMOR AND SIGH, which I'd never heard before -- "Don't Sit on My Jimmy Shands" is hilarious. Found a few CD's to replace aging vinyl -- Yes, Bowie, Queen, couple Moodies, Fleetwood Mac's TUSK, etc. Somehow kept the bill under $50. We'll be back soon. Too bad half a dozen other used record stores on 6th Ave went under after the economy tanked.
Other than that, have been eating better (not so much junk food and snacks), reading, enjoying doing simple domestic stuff with the girlfriend, chilling out from work, doing a little writing (not much), and not thinking too much. If it weren't for the theft-and-financially-related weirdness at my (former) house -- none of which has been resolved yet -- this would be a perfect break. But I'm not complaining.
Been reading THE HARLAN ELLISON HORNBOOK (1990), a collection of 1970s columns from the LOS ANGELES FREE PRESS, some of which are very personal. Harlan writes about his parents, about his tough early days as a writer, women who done him wrong, writer-heroes he looked up to who let him down, writers who idolized him until HE let THEM down, etc. Some of it's just light, silly fun written to brighten your day, other columns are pretty emotional. Good stuff. If you like Harlan's books of '60s/'70s TV criticism, THE GLASS TEAT and THE OTHER GLASS TEAT, you'll like this.
Couple days back while doing things like the dishes and the vacuuming, took out a pile of CD's and played a ton of old favorites, like:
Beach Boys -- Kiss Me Baby, Let Him Run Wild, Surf's Up.
Bob Dylan -- Tangled Up in Blue, Shelter From the Storm.
Moody Blues -- Meanwhile, The Story in Your Eyes, Question, It's Up to You, Your Wildest Dreams.
Jim Croce -- Workin' at the Car Wash Blues, I Got a Name.
America -- I Need You, Sandman.
Fleet Foxes -- Blue Ridge Mountains.
Jade Warrior -- A Winter's Tale.
Carole King -- Been to Canaan.
Five Man Electrical Band -- Absolutely Right.
Eric Clapton and B.B. King -- Days of Old, Riding With the King, etc.
Fleetwood Mac -- I Know I'm Not Wrong, Brown Eyes, Never Make Me Cry. (The CD remix of "I Know I'm Not Wrong" is disappointing -- they rush the choruses. What the hell happened there?)
Carpenters -- Rainy Days and Mondays, Goodbye to Love.
Paul Stookey -- Wedding Song (There is Love).
Stylistics -- You Are Everything.
Van Morrison -- Into the Mystic, Jackie Wilson Said (I'm in Heaven When You Smile).
Queen -- '39, Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon.
David Bowie -- Changes.
Todd Rundgren -- Saving Grace, A Dream Goes on Forever.
Rickie Lee Jones -- On Saturday Afternoons in 1963.
Norah Jones -- Shoot the Moon, The Long Day is Over.
Janis Ian -- When the Party's Over.
Joni Mitchell -- Raised on Robbery.
Steely Dan -- Gaucho.
Doobie Brothers -- Neal's Fandango.
Pink Floyd -- DARK SIDE OF THE MOON. (Complete! Shocking!)
Jethro Tull -- Skating Away on the Thin Ice of the New Day.
Pete Townshend -- Now and Then.
Love -- Alone Again Or.
Florence + The Machine -- Shake it Out.
Keane -- Somewhere Only We Know, This is the Last Time, Bend and Break, Your Eyes Open.
Gordon Lightfoot -- Seven Islands Suite.
...Have also been giving my face a rest, growing a beard. Which I will be shaving off just as soon as I finish typing this post, because it's driving me CRAZY!
Hoping you are the same....