Thursday, June 29, 2006

Buck can swim, I was just being a little overprotective

Originally uploaded by ffacker.
I met my family up at Llano State Park just outside of Junction, TX over the weekend. It was a nice park. We saw deer, armadillos, turkeys, wild pigs, a muskrat, and a three-and-a-half foot long rattlesnake while we were there.

Despite the episodic torrential downpours, it was a fun weekend, and we took Buck tubing down the river with us. He was swimming a lot, so we got him a doggie lifejacket to make sure he didn't get exhausted and drown. He did well, but it was pretty much an endless cycle of frantic swimming, sniffing and peeing in bushes on the shore, then four or five minutes of resting and sitting in your lap on the tube. Then he'd see another big patch of bushes, hop off, drag you over to the shore and start it all over again.

We didn't realize until late in the trip that if you laid on your tube and held onto his lifejacket, you could use it to steer him like a rudder. Then it was like having a dog motor on your tube, so he'd keep swimming away wanting to go to shore to sniff through the weeds, and we'd keep steering him downstream. I bet he swam a mile that afternoon. It definitely made the tube trip shorter though because he powered us right down the river.

I'm all itching to go camping again soon.

Rockin' the Boat

Originally uploaded by ffacker.
Well, after six weekends of trying to draw a crowd to The Boat, I finally gave up and took a break. I didn't play Father's Day because we figured nobody would show up at all, and then I didn't play last weekend because I went camping. I'm not playing this weekend due to the 4th. I guess I'll try again next Sunday and see if maybe I can finally get some people out there. It's hard because my name really has no drawing power, and then I'm doubly cursed because nobody comes to The Boat anyway. However, when someone does happen to wander in and listen to the music, they seem to enjoy it.

Big thank yous to Leigh and Ashley for for always being there, rain or shine. If I had ten more fans like you they might actually let me play somewhere indoors with air-conditioning!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Home Improvement

It seems like I've done nothing for the last couple of weeks except home repair and improvement. The oven quit working, and the fan in the bedroom quit working. After a huge hassle trying to get a repairman out here from Sears I finally just called place after place in the yellow pages until somebody had a service tech who could be here on Saturday. The oven is now working again. Unfortunately the fan is not, but there's always next weekend for that project. It rained all this weekend, so at least I didn't have to mow, but there was still the regular sweeping, dusting, vacuuming, laundry, dishes, etc.

The Escape has developed a huge crack in the windshield. That's a big downer. There's not even a rock chip. I guess it just cracked from the heat. I guess I've got to add that to my list of never-ending expenses.

I didn't have a show at The Boat this weekend because of Father's Day. I'm not playing next weekend either because I'm meeting my parents out by San Antonio to go camping. I've gotten so much better in the weeks I have been performing though. The first weekend my fingers were absolutely dying by the time I'd been playing two hours, and by the end of three hours it hurt too much to even try and playing anything except chords. Now, I can go three hours with no problem. I've got over 60 songs in my set list. My goal is to have 100 by the end of the summer. Most of it is modern rock -- hits from the 90s and 00s. Then there's some classic rock, and just a little bit of country. I need to expand the classic rock and country lists.

I think the biggest irony in all of this is that "More than Words" and "La Bamba" were two of the first songs I ever learned to play on guitar, and now they're probably my most-requested song at shows. Who would have that 14 years later I'd be getting paid to play the songs that I could never even get anyone to even sit and listen to?

I think the Hayter brothers filmed another episode of From the Rooftop last week. Unfortunately they filmed on a weekday, so I didn't get a chance to be involved. The script was pretty good -- it was about a supposedly haunted movie theater in Pasadena. Of course, the brothers don't realize it was haunted until after the fact. I thought the script was pretty good. I couldn't really think of anything to add to make it better.

It's another week of work, eat, sleep, repeat.