Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ol' Sploggy rides again

Yeah, well, Why not.
Decided to do 10 miles and got distracted again by roads not traveled.
To make the ride a bit less boring, I rode around Seward park, which warmed me up and encouraged me to drive on on northward.

It was kind of gray and rainy looking, but I've been wet before.

Turned up McGilvra to avoid the dread s-curves just north of Leschi on LWB.
Ended up in Madison park where I bought a nice maple bar and a cup of prettygood coffee.
Sat outside where a brief glow of sunlight filled me with a soon to be dashed hope for the rest of the ride.
Some one at the next table was walking three small dogs one of whom was intent on having some of the walker's cupcake.
Climbed up on a chair and was tugging the cup the cake was in and almost had it before his guardian snatched it back from the canine jaws of doom.
The two white dogs behaved themselves impeccably.
So they got no attention whatsoever.

As soon as I finished my repast and got on the road again, it started to rain in vero.
So I had a couple miles of that before it stopped.
When I got back to the dreaded s-curves on LWB, I said to myself, what the heck, and rode up anyway.
The road isn't that bad.
Especially after a maple bar and a cup of Caffe Vito.
Drove on through the raining drive to the Arboretum, where I took the high road while they took the low road I don't know if they got there before me..I mean who are they anyway?
Took the path through the wetlands trail to MOHAI and noticed a sign at the museum parking lot that "Dont ride bicycles on the wetlands trail.
I seem to be collecting a bit of a rap sheet, or would be if I ever got caught.
HA Ha ha hahahaha!

Why not go into the museyroom I said, once again I said this to myself, because, because I RIDE ALONE! This is not for any antisocial motivation on my part.
I guess society is just anti me.

Read the whole story in the archives of this blogsite.

Then what happened?
Sun came out a couple of times.
I was not deliberately intimidated by an automobile in a SSO-related incident of vehicular intimidation.

You know, maybe it wasn't intimidation.
After all I did not become timid.
If anything a teeeeny bit bolder.

There are OLD bikers,
And there are BOLD bikers
But there are no OLD BOLD bikers.
I didn't fall off.

Here's what I did do.

First three quarters of the trip before I accidentally reset the computer;

12.75 miles
34 max
10.0 avg
The rest got lost in the accident

Here's what I got for the rest of the trip;

7.53 miles
21.5 max
8.8 avg
0:50:58 hrs

And fortunately the little machine has a backup which saved the whole trip:

29.61 miles
3:03:17 hrs
9.6 avg

I realize that this blog is supposed to be about my musical career.
Here is my musical career.
13 years of composition study,
Maybe 5 live performances.
Maybe 3, maybe four pieces that are actually worth a damn.
Amongst possibly hundreds of compositions including 10 "symphonies" and 14 "concertos"

A piece for solo piano sung by a choir of cats.

A trio for piano, bass, and flute that got me thrown out of whaddyacallit hall.

A variation for solo piano of a Diabelli waltz that got me laughed at in the little room of whaddyacallit hall.

And seven short works for wooden train whistle and strings right hand only.

And of course the excellent rendition of the double concerto for two violins and piano that has made it all more or less worth it.

II (that's supposed to look like a double bar, which means stop reading, put down your instrument and take a bow.

Oboists may resume scraping reeds.

Yours truly....Uncle Doug


Friday, September 25, 2009

More bike ride splog

Got tired of lethargy so I decided on a short one.
Coasted down to Rainier ave and headed south.
Just past Pucinella Pizza I saw a curving road off the the right that I've been curious about and decided to see where it went.
It went up through the back streets
Lots of hills and valleys some nice curvy bits along the edge of the hill, finally ending up in Skyway.
Enough for today, at least I got a ride in for Sept.

8.33 miles
0:57:17 hours
8.7 average
112.4 total so far since the big 100 miler.

You remember that I took the Vespa to the shop for service.
I found out there that the tabs were expired, so I'll go take care of that today.

Not much happened yesterday except the music that we decided to go hear in the evening.
I had planned to go to the little Red Bistro to hear Stuart and his band play some Choro.
Which we did.
But, I had also planned to drop three blocks to the Cafe Vignole and listen to The Bottom Line duo.
Unfortunately I got the times wrong.
Bottom played earlier than Choro.
But we went to Choro first.
So I missed.

I had a Rakett for Stuart which I delivered.
It's like a clarinet folded up in a bottle.

You've seen this one before.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Airport to Nebraska

Woke up to a nice day.
Too nice to stay inside.
So I decided on a scooter ride.
Don't feel up to a bike jaunt.

About the time I got the scooter fired up, I began wondering if the appointment I made for it's latest service was today or yesterday.

So, after a short trip to the bank for deposit of our socialist welfare checks, I pooted on over to Big Peoples Vespa shop.

It was today.
At noon.
It was ten.
So I dared Anonomann's wrath and the possibility of a re-occurrence of the Seattle Symphony related incident of vehicular intimidation by ascending the dread Queen Anne counterbalance and attending Starbuck's for a brief session of coffee, croissant, and watching all the girls go by.
Got back to the scooter store by noon, then had to wait for an hour or so.

Walked around Georgetown and saw many sights.
Bought some 78 vinyl in the form of some contemporary composer's music.
Gotta keep an eye on the competition.
Several jun...antique stores and amusing things made from the fore-almost mentioned
found materials.
Plus there are lots of interesting old houses in the neighborhood.
Charming and artistic.
I could almost hear the bulldozers plowing it under to make way for some more ugly soulless, new construction.
"Tagging" is a felony but the law apparently doesn't apply to vandalizing a neighborhood with cheap architectural graffiti.

Saw a sign that said "Eat" "Felafel"... I suppose, if you ate too much.

Any way the yellow felafel truck was surrounded by a cedar fence apparently because the fascists downtown are up to their usual harassment tricks.
There was a sign in one of the local businesses that said "The Felafel Truck is not a crime.
And it's not.

Saw a cute little restaurant called "Hanger" had a cedar fence around with an arbored gate and a windmill in the form of a Piper cub in a garden .

Anyway, the scooter store is located at the corner of Airport and Nebraska.

So there you have it.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


I have been spending too much time in computer game land.
The last three days, in fact.
Mainly running around shooting bad guys and stealing artifacts in Tomb Raider.

I'm getting my fill.

Although today I did do a little work on the mandora project.
I'm using a 2" wide fingerboard but slimming down the peg head to fit violin tuning pegs.
The outside strings are a steep angle from the peg to the nut
This is likely not a good idea.
So I added some pieces of wood to reinforce the peg head so that I can carve out a better route for the lowest and the highest strings.

After that I'll make a bridge and finish it.

Took a box of books to half price and sold them.
Bought a book of rock guitar techniques, like I'll ever learn them.

Also went to a fabric store where Meredith, in an unusual stroke of genius, didn't buy anything.

And went to the store for food.

I think school starts this week, so I'll have to write something.
I did write something for a double bass concerto but it is dismal.
Kind of movingly dismal but dreary nonetheless.

Meredith, on the other hand, is doing useful work for one of the candidates running for some gov. office.
Also she volunteers for the local grade school library.
And tutors math at the public library.

And she's making dinner as we speak.

Smells good.

Whatta deal.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wolf Bar

Here's what it looks like partway up the trail from the Quinault to Wolf Bar. The trail eventually crosses the whole Olympic peninsula. Meredith did that hike once from the other direction when she was younger. It's a whole bunch of miles of climbing.

We met a bunch of trail workers coming back on their mules (one was a horse).
They had been clearing a rock fall that had blocked the trail.

Thanks guys.

Nothing exciting happening here, in fact, just the opposite.
Last night I stayed up late to see the comedian hosted tonight type shows.
Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Fallon.

The shows were all exactly alike, same format, same screaming audience, same exact jokes about the same exact things, the same weird co-host guy off to the side, the same total lack of either content or good interview skills.
Oh Johnny, why'd ye leave us?

The Horror!

The only real entertainment of the evening was the rat that the cat brought in.

Keth and I had a few laughs trying to catch the little bugger until it eventually ran outside.

Now I'm going to shut up and google some game sites and try to find out how to get through these tricky games I'm dealing with.
They seem to require some intelligent thought!

I'm looking for more instant gratification.

I'm too old for deep cogitation.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Return of the native

We're back.
It rained the first day (Wednesday) but we waited it out and took a hike later in the day.
After that it was hot and sunny. We tried to walk up to Wolf bar but pooped out due to the heat and due to the fact that I stopped drinking caffeinated coffee.
Meredith complains that I'm no fun when I'm a somnolent slug. She also complains when I talk too much and make stupid jokes which is what happens when I'm all drugged up on caffeine.
So, six dozen of one, half of another.
We got only one picture as far as I know, on the trail up in the general direction of Wolf bar.
Which we didn't get to.
Maybe next year.
After Lake Quinault, we drove on down to Seaview to Len & Miriam's Sou'Wester resort.
Turned out it was the weekend of the world famous Hot Rod Run to the End of the Earth.
So I went and looked at the cars while M went to a bead store.

On the way home we stopped at a McD for coffee and I started jabbering away about my musical success of Friday the 4th.
You remember that, when Ilkka Talvi, Margie Talvi and Kevin Aanerud played my concerto for two violins and orchestra (piano reduction) and it was a big hit, don't you?
Anyway I'm still living off that thrill.

Has the thank you masked man man been by today?

On the way over toward I-5 we looked for Rainbow Falls Park, the one that used to be accessed by two bridges across the Chehalis until the Chehalis flooded and knocked them down.
Now there is a bypass road that crosses the river and accesses the park from the other side.
It's a six mile detour that includes a funky one lane bridge that we didn't get a picture of.

Instead of hitting the freeway we took the back roads through Tenino, Yelm, Rainier and Puyallup.
Stopped in Yelm for a midday meal.
Got my first glimpse of Mt Rainier from the other side on the way out of Yelm (I think it was Yelm [at any rate, it's fun to say Yelm])
Wow! It's even more scary than the view from Seattle.
Floating on a evanescent cloud of...well, cloud, it seems to be some kind of extraterrestrial vehicle ready to slip off it's bed and crush us all.

Which in a way is sorta true.

Actually I don't believe it for a minute.
It's a computer generated special affect.
It's gotta be.

Like that beer ad where the guy punches out a Grizzly bear for a case of Bud, or whatever.

Or the world being round.

Or men on the moon.

Or men being descendant from Apes.

Watched 2001, a space oddity last night.
What a hoot.
An infallible computer? Ha!

Besides, you could put all of HAL9000 on a zip chip and plug it in your iphone (or whatever the kids are calling themselves these days)

Watching it on a little 42" TV screen leaves much to be desired, like the fact that it's really about a Peyote trip when you get right down to it, and seeing the living room curtains reflected in the screen sorta keeps you from getting totally involved.

There is a scene where our hero has to go into a special room to make a phone call from the moon. It is a push button phone anyway.
Takes up a whole room.
It costs him a buck seventy.

Or maybe it's LSD.

Anyway, I fell off the caffeine wagon and now I'm addicted to applause.


Monday, September 07, 2009


We are going to be away for a few days.
Going to Lake Quinault.

My game computer is dying. It's obsolete, but the only one I can run Duke Nukem on.
It is experiencing it's own gotterdammerung, I guess

Fix it? Find a used one?

In the mean time, I'm loading some newer games on my music computer.
So far, I'm totally stumped by a jump in Tomb Raider.

But I did finally solve a problem in MYST III.

I need the distraction

Now that the violin double concerto is done I've got to write something better!

And the cello concerto is more or less done too, so It's on to the double bass concerto.

A double bass concerto, who will ever want as thing like that?

One must keep one's self challenged, I guess.

Anyone in need of a set of short pieces for wooden train whistle and violin right hand?

I didn't think so.

So anyway It's a labor day party at a bro-in-law's place then off to the wild green yonder right after a dental appt tomorrow morning.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Hoo-ray, Hoop de do, and Yee-Haw!!

O, didn't they play nice.
O, didn't they sound good.
O, didn't everybody love it.
I am - like - like --


That's me talkin' about the 2 violin and piano trio.

Just got back from the show.

My recorder even worked


The piece is 14 min long, but the recorder quit at 11.3 min.
Fortunately, someone else was also recording so I'll eventually have a good copy.
I'll have to get a bigger flash card or whatever it's called.
Looks like the same thing as in the camera.

Billions of thanks to all involved and to all those praises and applause.
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