Friday, March 31, 2006

It may be a nice enough place, but...
I don't think I wanna VACATION there!

Every time I see a certain "travel" commercial, I just kinda wonder, "why do you think I'd wanna vacation THERE?" I'm talking about the spot that says "vacation this year in beautiful NEBRASKA!!!" Huh? What? And the commercial says the "possibilities are as endless as your imagination". They've probably got that right, because it would take a lot of imagination for me to have a good time in NEBRASKA, for cryin' out loud. Isn't Nebraska "flat land on the prairie"? What am I supposed to do, park a lawn chair in the middle of a wheat field? And then I saw another commercial that sez, "take a vacation in beautiful MONTANA". Uhhhhh, no thanks...Our family once vacationed in Three Forks, Montana; my biggest memory of that is getting dived-bombed by kamikaze-sized mosquitos! Vacation in Montana? Hell, I'm already in Idaho; ain't that close enough? I can see lakes and trees without GOING anywhere!

Take me back to Chicago dept.: I never buy new CD's. There aren't very many artists these days I can identify with. But I went into the "Long Ear" today, and lo and behold, the group Chicago has released a new album..."Chicago XXX". Their 30th album. I have every one of their numbered albums up through "Chicago Twenty-One". I have their Christmas album, aptly titled "Chicago 25". So what I wanna know is, how did Chicago get from "25" to "XXX"? There is a great UNRELEASED Chicago album, "Stone of Sisyphus" (which would've been "Chicago 22"), and I think they've put out one more Christmas album. Still, that leaves 2 or 3 numbers unaccounted for, between "25" and "XXX". I know there are various "hit repackagings" of Chicago Albums, and I'm not sure if those "count" in the series or not. Me, I always liked Chicago best up through their 11th album, which was their last album with founding guitarist Terry Kath, who later died fooling around with a pistol. That was in about 1978.

For being one of my favorite groups, Chicago released some AWFUL songs, terrible songs like "You're The Inspiration", and especially "Hard Habit To Break", which is pure GARBAGE. "Baby What a Big Surprise" is another candy-assed putrid tune. "Stay The Night" and "If She Would Have Been Faithful" are also pure musical waste-product. But I don't hate all Chicago ballads; I thot "What Kind of Man Would I Be" and "Look Away" were great songs. Trouble is, in order to keep current with changing musical tastes, Chicago's music became all synthesized, polished and overproduced and ended up sounding like all the other crap you hear on MTV. If you play Chicago 18, it sounds like they're banging dinner plates in front of the microphones, because all of the percussion has been abnormally electrified. Also, Chicago used to write all its own music; now they rely partly on "outside" songs. Well, if the songs are good, I don't care. But I remember when Chicago was a free-spirited band in the '70s, when their music was a LOT more fun than it is now. To quote one of their past hits, "Old Days...good times I remember..."

Adventures in bird-feeding dept.: Do seagulls remember things? I mean, most birds are kinda stupid, right? But sometimes I wonder, when I pull up into the parking lot by the lake, if they know it's me when I drive up. Do they recognize me or my car? I do know they get excited when they see a human being carrying a loaf of bread. Do they think, "oh here he comes, he's that guy who was here the other day, and it looks like he's gonna feed us again", or do they just think, "FOOOOOOD!!!!"? I used to hate seagulls, I admit. But when I sit on the bench, and I hear a loud "squawk" behind me, there's a seagull there, imploring me to toss him some bread.

Other seagulls keep vigil on a nearby garbage can, or maybe it's one seagull who does that. I don't know. I can't tell them apart. Other seagulls will fly around in circles, knowing I'll try to toss 'em a crumb of bread in the air. I try not to let them hover "over" me, for obvious reasons. I'm really not in the mood to come down with bird flu anytime soon. There are two seagulls I do remember. One has a club foot; instead of a webbed foot, he has a stump that he hobbles around on. (could be a "She"; I can't tell the difference) Another seagull I saw today only had one leg. I must admit, I favor those two birds when I see them. Life's gotta be hard in the ultra-competitive bird world without having a club foot or missing a leg altogether.

Making a "wake" on Coeur d'Alene Lake dept.: Time to close out this post, and since you've managed to slog your way through all of the above, you can now travel back in time to days of yore long ago; I believe this picture comes from the 1930's or thereabouts:

In the background, you can see some sort of floating boat-house on the surface of Coeur d'Alene lake. Here, we're looking northwest, towards the place where the dike road meets the road that travels in front of North Idaho College. I see a puff of smoke in the trees way back there; it's either fog, or one of the mills at full-steam ahead. Either way, this is a cool old photo.

In the blogging business, this is known as a "dandruff" post. Why? Because it came off the top of my head!


Blogger Jinx said...

For a while we had a crow that hung around our yard. We could recognize him since he had a weird feather sticking up out of one wing.
The whole neighborhood got so they recognized "Clarence" when he came around.
Haven't seen him yet this year so hope he shows up again.
But to make a short story long.. I think they probably recognize you as the bread man. do they avoid leaving you messages on your car?

10:42 PM  
Blogger little ol' me said...

Well, Jbelle, if they do leave 'messages' on my car, I can't see them...I have a WHITE car, after all. So I probably wouldn't know. What I don't want is one of them going "number-1" when they're hovering over me, so I don't toss the bread straight up anymore, I toss it up, but FORWARD and up. Squawk!

2:21 AM  

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