Random Ruminations on Our Trip to NYC

* I was very pleasantly surprised at our layover in Atlanta to notice--from the very second we got off the plane--the wonderful diversity found in humans here on god's green planet. It was beautiful. People were round or thin or had big heads. They were brown or blue/black or pale as ghosts. They had little button noses and big old hairy noses. You could tell that a lot of them had not been born in the same country.

On the other hand, I recently played a private party here in Charleston and counted 25 of, oh...30 men, with their sunglasses on a string. Yes, the sun is bright here in Charleston, but wouldn't that suggest the women would have the same accoutrement? No. The women were wearing high heels. These folks were amongst friends, eating free tacos, at 9pm, in a shelter at a state park, wearing high heels. Or sunglasses on a string.

* Alison and i visited with a couple at a place named Coffee Shop. The guy i visited with works for a Branding Agency. Now, occasionally--much like i occasionally sit up in a sweat and fearfully say "holy shit, batman! I'm goin' to hell!"-- occasionally i will regret that i am not wildly wealthy. One of the biggest things that fuels this regret is that i think it would be pretty easy for me to be richer. I mean, other than hard desk work (which i can't stand), the only reason i don't make a fortune in advertising or investing is because of some goofy-ass morals.

Anyway, in a moment of weakness, i told my lunch partner that i wanted a job at his agency. I told him i was born to that job, man. I'm not sure why, but he answered me with a seeming non-sequitur. He said something like, "Sometimes it just makes me feel sick in my stomach the way these corporations talk about people as if they just didn't exist. Like cattle or a bunch of numbers."

* Alison and i went for a really long visit at the hmmm...i've forgotten now...the Union Square Farmer's Market, i guess it was. It was fantastic. A person could get nearly every grocery item they would need for a week at this market. And each piece of organic fruit, every heirloom vegetable, all the hunks of non-rBGH cheese were labeled as to their origin. Almost all of them were just right outside the city.

Hey, i mean i love the market at Marion Square , but you'd have a hard time staying alive on bad craft, hot pickles and crepes. Whatever happened to the "Agrarian south"?

* Apropos to my Atlanta comment above, Manhattan sure is a lot whiter than it used to be.

* Re: Times Square. I have been to Times Square several times in my life already and know that it has not always been in it's present state, but sheesh man, why do so many people care about having their picture taken in front of 40,000 advertisements? That's all that's left of the place: Advertisements.

* I love love love the subway. Love it. I love the heat, the stinkiness, and the third rail. I love the crush of people, and the gross feeling i get when i hold onto the chrome rails that millions of people with snot on their hands have been holding onto also. I love purposefully not looking at other riders. I love the fact that the subway is underground, that it goes fast and that it's still a great bargain at $2.00 a ride now. If there were a ride at the fair called "The Subway," i wouldn't ride it, i'd buy it.

* As i proofread this list i notice it's pretty vacuous. These aren't really living up to be what i'd call "ruminations." I must just not have it in me right now. (i realize it's 10 pm and i haven't had dinner.)

* Here's a real arrogant horn-tooting story for you, and then i'll quit: I love to go to vintage guitar stores in cities besides Nashville. (In Nashville you just get the evil eye the whole time, but other places, not so much.) Here's what i do: In cities besides Nashville i'll walk into a vintage guitar store and start looking at stuff like the old 50's models martin d-28s. In other words, guitars that cost anywhere from 10,000 to 50,000 dollars. When you do this kind of thing you usually start gettin' that watchful eye from the staff. They're just waiting in fear, all puffed up and stuff, for the moment when something goes wrong. They aren't going to tell you not to touch one, but they sure wish they could. The moment i cherish is when i finally get one of these really nice instruments out and start playing. Out of the corner of my eye i can kind of see that sales guy start to deflate. What this means is that I've passed a test, and it makes me proud. It means that i can actually play.


Kevin O'Mara said...

You may think this post to have been vacuous but nearly every paragraph had some little tidbit that resonated with me. Therefore, great job.

I wish to hear you play again.

Kenneth said...

Next time give 'em the opening lick from Rush's "Spirit of Radio." On a D-28.

Quiche said...

Bad craft- kitsch or crap, or both?

Your guitar shop story reminds me of the day I bought my violin. The sales person, a saxophonist, asked, "Can I tune it for you?" -I laughed!

Kenneth said Rush, I say "Django's Tiger" (Django Reinhardt) on an acoustic.

Alison- will you be lecturing in Nashville in the near future?

Biffle said...


awww, the crafts aren't that bad. I'm just a craftsnob. it's not kitsch, just a lot of beads and stuff.

there were a couple of "django" style guitars there actually.

(and i don't reckon alison will be lecturing anytime in nashville. unless she takes to street preaching.)

Quiche said...

I've had my eye on the gypsy guitars, but they can be pricey! I have thought to take up learning guitar. It seems it would be kinder to my neck and back than the violin.

I found a You Tube video of the Rosenberg Trio jamming to Django's Tiger, where they are set up in front of their vehicle behind the scenes of the Manouche Festival they have every year in France, and some guy walks up with a violin and plays Stephane Grappelli's part. I loved it so much I put it on my blog page.

Hope you and Alison are having a nice weekend.

Kelly Piepmeier said...

Thanks for sharing that "awesome jam", quiche! I thoroughly enjoyed it.
(Alison's Mom)

Laura Vaughn at CofC said...

It's true. Atlanta is so delightfully diverse. I lived there this summer and LOVED it.

- Laura