You have discovered arachnoanarchy

You have discovered arachnoanarchy
otter clan omarian otter oasis

Sunday, September 01, 2013

I very recently watched two older TV show reruns that were based on the American response to Abu  Ghraib and the report of horrible human suffering perpetrated on the Iraqis by US military and CIA personnel.  One of these episodes was released in 2004 and the other in 2006.  Both of the episodes excused the American conduct as fighting the war the on the ground.  Both were emotional responses to the Abu Ghraib exposures of US torture, and supporting the US position of trying to fight the war on terror.

Let me say, unequivocably, that i was, and still am, deeply offended by the portrayal of the US actions in any sympathetic manner. But that was then, and this is now, and between the then and now we have had the proverbial hindsight.  And the hindsight, in terms of ongoing research by academics, NGOs, and others, has overwhelmingly determined that the US followed a course of torture and crimes against humanity throughout the Iraq and parts of the Afghan conflicts.  Yet, for some wonderful, oblivious, yet nefarious reason, the two TV shows have been shown in 2013, over repeated nights and days, representing the original Bush-Cheney rhetoric free from the long term residual fact-finding that went on to settle the actual scores.

This is typical America escapism, free from any long-term factual inquiry.  Thousands upon thousands of US citizens believe the US televised expressions of US policies.  Yet, they have never once been afforded, in the same moment of actual continuity, the revelation of truth and fact.  One of these shows has been repeated more than 6 times per year for the last 9 years, without one word regarding the actual long-term research exposing the facts and the torture.  That is 6 times 9, equaling 54 repeated episodes, where the US TV watching population has been repeatedly exposed to emotional content that have been proven absolutely false.  

If we, the citizens of this country, allow repeated episodic falsity to inspire emotional responses, more than 54 times over 9 years, we are screwed.  There is zero wonder, why, as we approach a year of massive failure of US institutional systems, that we are so far from knowing what is going on.   Systemic lies on top of systemic lies are burying the US in layers of massive BS, from which we will not be able to escape.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

So I am building this list from the top 100 Billboard hits from 1960 through 1970 or my sixth grade through undergraduate school years and thus from ages 12 to 23.  I have culled the lists down to those songs that I can remember that corresponded to my feelings and sensitivities for each of the years.  Thus I use 1960 songs for sixth grade, age 12; and so forth.  I used to sing all of these songs all the time, the shower, the pool, the bathtub, walking, surfing, etc.  I can still sing all of them, remembering moments that go with them: school dances, small parties, AM radio in LA, Ed Sullivan and Steve Allen shows, intimate moments, fits of anger and tantrums. 

1959-1960             Seventh grade         age 12/13    Woodland Hills, CA 
  1. Cathy's Clown, Everly Brothers
  4. It's Now Or Never, Elvis Presley
  5. Teen Angel, Mark Dinning
  7. Running Bear, Johnny Preston
10. The Twist, Chubby Checker
12. Alley-oop, Hollywood Argyles
13. Greenfields, Brothers Four
15. El Paso, Marty Robbins
19. Only The Lonely, Roy Orbison
20. Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini, Brian Hyland
25. Walk, Dont Run, Ventures
26. Save The Last Dance For Me, Drifters
28. Sink The Bismark, Johnny Horton
29. Chain Gang, Sam Cooke
30. Let It Be Me, Everly Brothers
39. Pretty Blue Eyes, Steve Lawrence
40. Way Down Yonder In New Orleans, Freddie Cannon
44. Mule Skinner Blues, Fendermen
45. Cradle Of Love, Johnny Preston
46. Please Help Me, I'm Falling, Hank Locklin
49. Finger Poppin' Time, Hank Ballard and The Midnighters
51. Let The Little Girl Dance, Bobby Bland
54. Volare (Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu), Bobby Rydell
55. A Million To One, Jimmy Charles
65. I Love The Way You Love, Marv Johnson
67. Tell Laura I Love Her, Ray Peterson
78. Georgia On My Mind, Ray Charles
79. Cherry Pie, Skip and Flip
86. Dreamin', Johnny Burnette
91. When Will I Be Loved, Everly Brothers
96. Poetry In Motion, Johnny Tillotson
97. Money, Barret Strong
98. Stay, Maurice Williams
 The common concept is that the music that you affix to oneself is the music of the pubescent adolescent.  I may be able to recall all of these songs, but i don't really feel a passion for them.  They are merely synchronicitous connections to events.

1960-1961        Eighth grade    age 13/14    Woodland Hills, CA
  1. I Fall To Pieces, Patsy Cline
  2. Tossin' And Turnin', Bobby Lewis
  3. Michael, Highwaymen
  4. Cryin', Roy Orbison
  5. Runaway, Del Shannon
  7. Running Scared, Roy Orbison
  9. Raindrops, Dee Clark
12. Take Good Care Of My Baby, Bobby Vee
14. Dedicated To The One I Love, The Shirelles
18. Where The Boys Are, Connie Francis
19. Hit The Road Jack, Ray Charles
20. (Will You Love Me) Tomorrow, Shirelles
22. Bristol Stomp, Dovells
23. Travelin' Man, Ricky Nelson
25. The Boll Weevil Song, Brook Benton
26. A Hundred Pounds Of Clay, Gene Mcdaniels
31. Quarter To Three, Gary
32. Who Put The Bomp (In The Bomp, Bomp, Bomp), Barry Mann
33. Calendar Girl, Neil Sedaka
34. I Like It Like That, Chris Kenner
43. I Don't Know Why But I Do, Clarence "Frog Man" Henry
46. Runaround Sue, Dion
49. Hello Mary Lou, Ricky Nelson
50. There's A Moon Out Tonight, Capris
52. I Love How You Love Me, Paris Sisters
57. Walk Right Back, Everly Brothers
58. The Way You Look Tonight, Lettermen
63. Stand By Me, Ben E. King
64. Spanish Harlem, Ben E. King
74. I've Told Every Little Star, Linda Scott
76. Angel Baby, Rosie and The Originals
77. Pretty Little Angel Eyes, Curtis Lee
79. Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavor (On The Bedpost Overnight), Lonnie Donegan
86. Big Bad John, Jimmy Dean
89. Rubber Ball, Bobby Vee
94. Let's Twist Again, Chubby Checker
95. Take Five, Dave Brubeck

Dave Brubeck gave into his ghost this past week, but the music of this period was so overwhelmingly all over the place that it created the foundation for an entire generation (the Who included)

1961-1962           Ninth grade    age 14/15    Woodland Hills, CA
  1. Roses Are Red, Bobby Vinton
  2. I Can't Stop Loving You, Ray Charles
  6. Johnny Angel, Shelley Fabares
  7. The Loco-Motion, Little Eva
  8. Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, Neil Sedaka
  9. Mashed Potato Time, Dee Dee Sharp
10. Soldier Boy, Shirelles
12. The Wanderer, Dion
13. Duke Of Earl, Gene Chandler
15. Let Me In, Sensations
20. Palisades Park, Freddy Cannon
23. Twistin' The Night Away, Sam Cooke
24. Wah-Watusi, Orlons
25. Peppermint Twist, Joey Dee and The Starlighters
29. Sealed With A Kiss, Brian Hyland
30. She Cried, Jay and The Americans
34. Love Letters, Ketty Lester
36. Cotton Fields, Highwaymen
38. Twist And Shout, The Isley Brothers
41. Lover, Please, Clyde Mcphatter
44. Baby It's You, Shirelles
45. Speedy Gonzales, Pat Boone
46. A Little Bitty Tear, Burl Ives
47. Crying In The Rain, Everly Brothers
50. What's Your Name, Don and Juan
52. Having A Party, Sam Cooke
53. Green Onions, Booker T and The MG's
55. Sherry, Four Seasons
56. Johnny Get Angry, Joanie Sommers
57. Can't Help Falling In Love, Elvis Presley
60. Moon River, Henry Mancini
61. Ahab The Arab, Ray Stevens
63. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Gene Pitney
65. Dream Baby, Roy Orbison
69. Cindy's Birthday, Johnny Crawford
72. Uptown, Crystals
91. If I Had A Hammer, Peter, Paul and Mary
94. I'm Blue, Ikettes
95. Where Have All The Flowers Gone, Kingston Trio
97. Town Without Pity, Gene Pitney
98. Walk On The Wild Side, Jimmy Smith
100. Surfin' Safari, Beach Boys

This was perhaps was the period of my overt all over focus.  Over the next year my musical ear chose to begin a serious quest for something completely different... 

1962-1963             Tenth grade    age 15/16    Woodland Hills, CA
  1. Surfin' U.S.A., Beach Boys
  2. Sugar Shack, Jimmy Gilmer and The Fireballs
  4. Rhythm Of The Rain, Cascades
  5. Hey Paula, Paul and Paula
  6. Blue Velvet, Bobby Vinton
  7. He's So Fine, Chiffons
10. So Much In Love, Tymes
11. Can't Get Used To Losing You, Andy Williams
12. My Boyfriend's Back, Angels
13. Sukiyaki, Kyu Sakamoto
16. Puff (The Magic Dragon), Peter, Paul and Mary
17. Blowin' In The Wind, Peter, Paul and Mary
18. Wipe Out, The Surfaris
20. I'm Leaving It Up To You, Dale and Grace
24. Walk Like A Man, Four Seasons
25. Mockingbird, Inez Foxx
26. I Will Follow Him, Little Peggy March
27. Pipeline, Chantays
28. Surf City, Jan and Dean
32. Heat Wave, Martha and The Vandellas
33. Walk Right In, Rooftop Singers
36. Surfer Girl, Beach Boys
37. If I Had A Hammer, Trini Lopez
45. Be My Baby, Ronettes
48. Days Of Wine And Roses, Henry Mancini
50. Candy Girl, Four Seasons
56. Da Doo Ron Ron, Crystals
60. More, Kal Winding
61. Fools Rush In, Rick Nelson
65. You've Really Got A Hold On Me, Miracles
67. Little Red Rooster, Sam Cooke
68. Then He Kissed, w Crystals
70. Those Lazy-hazy-crazy Days On Summer, Nat King Cole
75. Up On The Roof, Drifters
78. The Night Has A Thousand Eyes, Bobby Vee
80. Ring Of Fire, Johnny Cash
82. Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh! (A Letter From Camp), Allan Sherman
83. Judy's Turn To Cry, Lesley Gore
91. Go Away Little Girl, Steve Lawrence
93. Talk To Me, Sunny and The Sunglows
96. Do The Bird, Dee Dee Sharp

 During this year i began a path that has kept me close to music for 50 years.  I worked as a roadie for the Beach Boys show at my high school. I was called upon to make sure Brian Wilson's guitar amp was plugged in properly, as well as his piano sound to the sound board.

1963-1964             Eleventh grade    age 16/17    Woodland Hills, CA

1. I Want To Hold Your Hand, The Beatles
2. She Loves You, The Beatles
3. Where Did Our Love Go, Supremes
4. Oh, Pretty Woman, Roy Orbison
5. I Get Around, Beach Boys
6. Everybody Loves Somebody, Dean Martin
7. My Guy, Mary Wells
11. We'll Sing In The Sunshine, Gale Garnett
12. Java, Al Hirt
13. A Hard Day's Night, The Beatles
14. Love Me Do, The Beatles
15. Do Wah Diddy Diddy, Manfred Mann
16. Under The Boardwalk, Drifters
17. Dancing In The Street, Martha and The Vandellas
20. Please Please Me, The Beatles
21. Chapel Of Love, Dixie Cups
22. Suspicion, Terry Stafford
23. Glad All Over, Dave Clark Five
24. Rag Doll, Four Seasons
25. Dawn (Go Away), Four Seasons
27. It Hurts To Be In Love, Gene Pitney
28. Dead Man's Curve, Jan and Dean
29. Come A Little Bit Closer, Jay and The Americans
30. A World Without Love, Peter and Gordon
33. Baby Love, Supremes
34. Let It Be Me, Betty Everett and Jerry Butler
35. Wishin' And Hopin', Dusty Springfield
38. The House Of The Rising Sun, Animals
39. G.T.O., Ronny and The Daytona
40. Twist And Shout, The Beatles
41. Memphis, Johnny Rivers
43. Hey Little Cobra, Rip Chords
44. The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss), Betty Everett
45. Bits And Pieces, Dave Clark Five
46. My Boy Lollipop, Millie Small
48. The Little Old Lady, Jan and Dean
49. Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying, Gerry and The Pacemakers
50. A Summer Song, Chad and Jeremy
51. The Girl From Ipanema, Stan Getz and Astrud Gilberto
52. Can't Buy Me Love, The Beatles
55. Do You Want To Know A Secret, The Beatles
57. Baby I Need Your Loving, Four Tops
61. Little Honda, Hondells
63. Because, Dave Clark Five
66. Today, New Christy Minstrels
68. Leader Of The Pack, Shangri-Las
70. The Way You Do The Things You Do, Temptations
73. It's Over, Roy Orbison
74. Ronnie, Four Seasons
75. Surfin' Bird, Trashmen
78. You Really Got Me, Kinks
83. Dang Me, Roger Miller
84. Do You Love Me, Dave Clark Five
87. Don't Throw Your Love Away, Searchers
95. Louie Louie, The Kingsmen
99. I Saw Her Standing There, The Beatles
100. Needles And Pins, Searchers

I came down with mono and hep A during the second semester of this year.  I laid in bed for a whopping 8 straight weeks and listened to the radio.  This was the English invasion, and i was truly moved by the sounds and changes in the way the sounds were mixed. 

1964-1965             Twelfth grade    age 17/18    Woodland Hills, CA

1. (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction, The Rolling Stones
2. I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch), Four Tops
3. Wooly Bully, Sam The Sham and The Pharaohs
4. My Girl, Temptations
5. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin', Righteous Brothers
6. Downtown, Petula Clark
7. Help!, The Beatles
8. Can't You Hear My Heartbeat, Herman's Hermits
9. Crying In The Chapel, Elvis Presley
10. You Were On My Mind, We Five
11. I Got You Babe, Sonny and Cher
12. Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter, Herman's Hermits
16. Help Me, Rhonda, Beach Boys
17. This Diamond Ring, Gary Lewis and The Playboys
18. The "In" Crowd, Ramsey Lewis Trio
19. King Of The Road, Roger Miller
20. Stop! In The Name Of Love, Supremes
21. Unchained Melody, Righteous Brothers
22. Silhouettes, Herman's Hermits
25. Mr. Tambourine Man, Byrds
29. Eve Of Destruction, Barry McGuire
30. Hang On Sloopy, McCoys
31. Ticket To Ride, The Beatles
33. Papa's Got A Brand New Bag, James Brown and The Famous Flames
35. The Name Game, Shirley Ellis
36. I Know A Place, Petula Clark
37. Back In My Arms Again, Supremes
39. The Jolly Green Giant, Kingsmen
41. Like A Rolling Stone, Bob Dylan
42. I'm Telling You Now, Freddie and The Dreamers
43. Ferry Cross The Mersey, Gerry and The Pacemakers
45. Seventh Son, Johnny Rivers
46. I'm Henry VIII, I Am, Herman's Hermits
48. For Your Love, Yardbirds
49. California Girls, Beach Boys
50. Go Now, Moody Blues
51. Goldfinger, Shirley Bassey
54. Catch Us If You Can, Dave Clark Five
55. Eight Days A Week, The Beatles
56. Just A Little, Beau Brummels
58. I'll Be Doggone, Marvin Gaye
60. Tired Of Waiting For You, Kinks
62. All Day And All Of The Night, Kinks
63. What The World Needs Now Is Love, Jackie DeShannon
65. She's About A Mover, Sir Douglas Quintet
66. Shake, Sam Cooke
68. Nowhere To Run, Martha and The Vandellas
69. Heart Full Of Soul, Yardbirds
70. Love Potion Number Nine, Searchers
73. It Ain't Me Babe, Turtles
74. Tell Her No, Zombies
75. I Go To Pieces, Peter and Gordon
78. The Tracks Of My Tears, Miracles
80. I Like It Like That, Dave Clark Five
81. Laugh, Laugh, Beau Brummels
82. Take Me Back, Little Anthony and The Imperials
86. We Gotta Get Out Of This Place, Animals
88. The Last Tlme, The Rolling Stones
89. Do You Believe In Magic, Lovin' Spoonful
90. All I Really Want To Do, Cher
93. Keep Searchin', Del Shannon
94. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You), Marvin Gaye
96. The Race Is On, Jack Jones
98. The Boy From New Your City, Ad Libs
99. Ooo Baby Baby, Miracle

The summer of '65 i went and saw the Stones at the LA Sports Arena.  That changed my entire picture of music as i knew it.  Edgy raunchy magic came over me and i was hooked.  Damn, where were the American bands that i knew and loved.

1965-1966             Freshman    age 18/19    UCLA, West Los Angeles, CA            
1. The Ballad Of The Green Berets, Sgt. Barry Sadler
2. Cherish, Association
3. (You're My) Soul And Inspiration, Righteous Brothers
4. Monday, Monday, The Mama's and The Papa's
5. 96 Tears, ? and The Mysterians
6. Last Train To Clarksville, The Monkees
7. Reach Out I'll Be There, Four Tops
8. Summer In The City, Lovin' Spoonful
9. Poor Side Of Town, Johnny Rivers
10. California Dreamin', The Mama's and The Papa's
11. You Can't Hurry Love, Supremes
12. What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted, Jimmy Ruffin
14. Born Free, Roger Williams
16. We Can Work It Out, The Beatles
17. When A Man Loves A Woman, Percy Sledge
18. Winchester Cathedral, New Vaudeville Band
19. Hanky Panky, Tommy James and The Shondells
20. Good Lovin', Young Rascals
21. Paint It Black, Rolling Stones
24. Wild Thing, Troggs
25. Kicks, Paul Revere and The Raiders
26. Sunshine Superman, Donovan
28. Paperback Writer, The Beatles
29. See You In September, Happenings
30. You Keep Me Hangin' On, Supremes
31. Lil' Red Riding Hood, Sam The Sham and The Pharaohs
32. Devil With A Blue Dress On and Good Golly Miss Molly (Medley), Mitch Ryder and The Detroit Wheels
33. Good Vibrations, Beach Boys
34. A Groovy Kind Of Love, Mindbenders
38. Red Rubber Ball, The Cyrkle
40. Walk Away Renee, Left Banke
41. Daydream, Lovin' Spoonful
45. Bus Stop, Hollies
46. I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry, B.J. Thomas and The Triumphs
49. Dirty Water, Standells
50. Elusive Butterfly, Bob Lind
51. I Am A Rock, Simon and Garfunkel
52. Crying Time, Ray Charles
53. Secret Agent Man, Johnny Rivers
54. The Sounds Of Silence, Simon and Garfunkel
55. Lady Godiva, Peter and Gordon
56. Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind?, Lovin' Spoonful
57. You Baby, The Turtles
60. Uptight (Everything's Alright), Stevie Wonder
62. Sloop John B, Beach Boys
63. 19th Nervous Breakdown, Rolling Stones
64. Wipe Out, The Surfaris
67. Just Like Me, Paul Revere and The Raiders
71. Somewhere My Love, Ray Conniff and The Singers
73. If I Were A Carpenter, Bobby Darin
74. Don't Mess With Bill, Marvelettes
76. Working In The Coal Mine, Lee Dorsey
79. Barbara Ann, Beach Boys
80. Gloria, Shadows Of Knight
82. Rainy Day Women #12 And 35, Bob Dylan
83. Guantanamera, Sandpipers
84. Psychotic Reaction, Count Five
85. Land Of 1,000 Dances, Wilson Pickett
88. Five O'clock World, Vogues
89. Black Is Black, Los Bravos
90. Hungry, Paul Revere and The Raiders
92. Baby Scratch My Back, Slim Harpo
95. 634-5789, Wilson Pickett
96. Yellow Submarine, The Beatles
97. Nowhere Man, The Beatles
98. Zorba The Greek, Herb Alpert and The Tijuana Brass
99. Shapes Of Things, Yardbirds
100. I Fought The Law, Bobby Fuller Four

As with a few of my fellow southern californians, i began to understand and "experience" San Fran music, more specifically the sound of acid induced rock-n-roll.  This was the period i got seriously involved with the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and the Quicksilver Messenger Service. 

1966-1967             Sophomore    age 19/20    UCLA, West Los Angeles, CA

1. To Sir With Love, Lulu
2. Happy Together, The Turtles
3. Windy, Association
5. I'm A Believer, The Monkees
6. Light My Fire, The Doors
8. The Letter, Box Tops
9. Groovin', Young Rascals
12. I Think We're Alone Now, Tommy James and The Shondells
13. Respect, Aretha Franklin
17. Can't Take My Eyes Off You, Frankie Valli
18. Never My Love, Association
19. Soul Man, Sam and Dave
22. Come On Down To My Boat, Every Mothers' Son
23. Incense And Peppermints, Strawberry Alarm Clock
24. Ruby Tuesday, The Rolling Stones
27. For What It's Worth, Buffalo Springfield
28. Love Is Here And Now You're Gone, Supremes
29. The Happening, Supremes
30. All You Need Is Love, Beatles
32. Your Precious Love, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
33. Somebody To Love, Jefferson Airplane
35. Brown Eyed Girl, Van Morrison
36. Jimmy Mack, Martha and The Vandella
38. A Whiter Shade Of Pale, Procol Harum
39. Don't You Care, Buckinghams
41. Reflections, Diana Ross and The Supremes
42. On A Carousel, Hollies
45. San Francisco, Scott Mckenzie
49. The Rain, The Park And Other Things, Cowsills
50. There's A Kind Of Hush, Herman's Hermits
53. (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher, Jackie Wilson
55. Penny Lane, Beatles
57. Georgy Girl, Seekers
60. A Little Bit You, A Little Bit Me, The Monkees
61. California Nights, Lesley Gore
62. Dedicated To The One I Love, Mama's and The Papa's
64. Carrie Ann, Hollies
66. Friday On My Mind, Easy Beats
67. Soul Finger, Bar-Kays
68. Gimme Some Lovin', Spencer Davis Group
70. Let's Live For Today, The Grass Roots
72. Groovin', Booker T and The MG's
74. Pleasant Valley Sunday, The Monkees
76. Tell It Like It Is, Aaron Neville
78. She'd Rather Be With Me, The Turtles
81. White Rabbit, Jefferson Airplane
82. Here Comes My Baby, Tremeloes
84. Snoopy Vs. The Red Baron, Royal Guardsmen
85. Society's Child, Janis Ian
87. I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night, Electric Prunes
91. I Dig Rock And Roll Music, Peter, Paul and Mary
93. Ain't No Mountain High Enough, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
94. Daydream Believer, The Monkees
98. I Can See For Miles, The Who
100. Baby I Need Your Lovin', Johnny Rivers

Still deep into the SanFran music scene coupled with these bands from LA: Love, Doors, Byrds, Leaves, Buffalo Springfield, and even Canned Heat.  My mind was expanded and expanding and my interest in music grew.  I worked for the LA based Avalon production crews for shows around the basin including Jefferson Airplane, Country Joe, and the Dead.

1967-1968             Junior        age 20/21    UCLA, West Los Angeles, CA

1. Hey Jude, The Beatles
3. Love Is Blue, Paul Mauriat
4. (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay, Otis Redding
5. People Got To Be Free, Rascals
6. Sunshine Of Your Love, Cream
7. This Guy's In Love With You, Herb Alpert
9. Mrs. Robinson, Simon and Garfunkel
10. Tighten Up, Archie Bell and The Drells
11. The Good, The Bad And The Ugly, Hugo Montenegro
14. Hello, I Love You, The Doors
17. Harper Valley P.T.A., Jeannie C. Riley
18. Grazing In The Grass, Hugh Masekela
19. Midnight Confessions, The Grass Roots
20. Dance To The Music, Sly and The Family Stone
25. Judy In Disguise (With Glasses), John Fred and His Playboy Band
28. Angel Of The Morning, Merrilee Rush
30. Those Were The Days, Mary Hopkin
31. Born To Be Wild, Steppenwolf
35. A Beautiful Morning, Rascals
36. The Look Of Love, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66
38. Yummy, Yummy, Yummy, Ohio Express
39. Fire , Crazy World Of Arthur Brown
40. Love Is All Around, Troggs
43. Classical Gas, Mason Williams
44. Slip Away, Clarence Carter
46. (Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone, Aretha Franklin
47. Green Tambourine, Lemon Pipers
49. Reach Out Of The Darkness, Friend and Lover
50. Jumpin' Jack Flash, The Rolling Stones
51. MacArthur Park, Richard Harris
56. Summertime Blues, Blue Cheer
57. Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
58. I Got The Feelin', James Brown and The Famous Flames
59. I've Gotta Get A Message To You, Bee Gees
60. Lady Madonna, The Beatles
61. Hurdy Gurdy Man, Donovan
62. Magic Carpet Ride, Steppenwolf
67. Nobody But Me, Human Beinz
69. The Fool On The Hill, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66
70. Sky Pilot, Eric Burdon and The Animals
71. Indian Lake, The Cowsills
74. Goin' Out Of My Head / Can't Take My Eyes Off You, The Lettermen
75. Shoo-Bee-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day, Stevie Wonder
77. (You Keep Me) Hangin' On, Vanilla Fudge
78. Revolution, The Beatles
82. The Mighty Quinn, Manfred Mann
84. White Room, Cream
87. Time Has Come Today, The Chambers Brothers
88. Do You Know The Way To San Jose, Dionne Warwick
89. Scarborough Fair / Canticle, Simon and Garfunkel
92. Here Comes The Judge, Shorty Long
93. I Say A Little Prayer, Aretha Franklin
94. Say It Loud, I'm Black And I'm Proud
95. Sealed With A Kiss, Gary Lewis and The Playboys
96. Piece Of My Heart, Big Brother and The Holding Company
97. Suzie Q., Creedence Clearwater Revival

Started hanging out at the various clubs on Sunset and following the local bands around town.  The TRIP was next to the Playboy Club, the Whiskey across the street, and of course the Troubador down the street.  These made it easy to move around in very different scenes all in the same night. And Bill Graham started promoting concerts in LA, at the Cheetah, the Hollywood Bowl, and the Shrine.

1968-1969             Senior        age 21/22    UCLA, West Los Angeles, CA

4. Honky Tonk Women, Rolling Stones
7. Hot Fun In The Summertime, Sly and The Family Stone
9. Everyday People, Sly and The Family Stone
10. Get Together, Youngbloods
12. Crystal Blue Persuasion, Tommy James and The Shondells
13. Hair, Cowsills
14. Too Busy Thinking About My Baby, Marvin Gaye
15. Love Theme From Romeo And Juliet, Henry Mancini and His Orch.
16. Crimson And Clover, Tommy James and The Shondells
18. Suspicious Minds, Elvis Presley
19. Proud Mary, Creedence Clearwater Revival
24. Bad Moon Rising, Creedence Clearwater Revival
25. Get Back, The Beatles
26. In The Year 2525, Zager and Evans
31. Green River, Creedence Clearwater Revival
32. My Cherie Amour, Stevie Wonder
35. In The Ghetto, Elvis Presley
36. A Boy Named Sue, Johnny Cash
37. Baby, Baby Don't Cry, Smokey Robinson and The Miracles
41. Little Woman, Bobby Sherman
44. These Eyes, The Guess Who
45. You've Made Me So Very Happy, Blood, Sweat and Tears
46. Put A Little Love In Your Heart, Jackie DeShannon
48. I'd Wait A Million Years, The Grass Roots
49. Touch Me, The Doors
52. Lay Lady Lay, Bob Dylan
53. Atlantis, Donovan
56. This Magic Moment, Jay and The Americans
58. Hawaii Five-O, Ventures
59. Galveston, Glen Campbell
63. Time Is Tight, Booker T and The MG's
72. That's The Way Love Is, Marvin Gaye
73. Everybody's Talkin', Nilsson
77. Polk Salad Annie, Tony Joe White
79. Games People Play, Joe South
80. You Showed Me, Turtles
81. Come Together, The Beatles
82. Oh, What A Night, Dells
83. Something, The Beatles
86. Mr. Sun, Mr. Moon, Paul Revere and The Raiders
87. I'm Gonna Make You Love Me, Diana Ross and The Supremes
88. I Heard It Through The Grapevine, Marvin Gaye
89. Gimme Gimme Good Lovin', Crazy Elephant
90. Hang 'Em High, Booker T and The MG's
95. Ramblin' Gamblin' Man Bob, Seger System
96. Laughing, The Guess Who
100. Sweet Cream Ladies, Box Tops

The concert business exploded, as i began to fly up to the City for shows at the Fillmore and Winterland.  Bigger shows popped up at the Hollywood Bowl, UCLA Pauley Pavilion, as well as the Shrine. The Dead were becoming more well known in spite of records, while most of the major California bands released classic albums one right after the other.

1969-1970             Senior        age 22/23    UCLA, West Los Angeles, CA

1. Bridge Over Troubled Water, Simon and Garfunkel
3. American Woman / No Sugar Tonight, The Guess Who
5. War, Edwin Starr
6. Ain't No Mountain High Enough, Diana Ross
9. Let It Be, The Beatles
11. Mama Told Me (Not To Come), Three Dog Night
19. Thank You (Fallettin Me Be Mice Elf Again) / Everybody Is A Star, Sly and The Family Stone
22. Spirit In The Sky, Norman Greenbaum
23. Lay Down (Candles In The Rain), Melanie and The Edwin Hawkins Singers
24. Ball Of Confusion (That's What The World Is Today), Temptations
28. All Right Now, Free
29. Julie, Do Ya Love Me, Bobby Sherman
30. Green-eyed Lady, Sugarloaf
31. Signed Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours), Stevie Wonder
34. Instant Karma (We All Shine On), John Ono Lennon
36. Lookin' Out My Back Door / Long As I Can See The Light, Creedence Clearwater Revival
37. Rainy Night In Georgia, Brook Benton
41. The Long And Winding Road / For You Blue, The Beatles
46. He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother, Hollies
48. Come And Get It, Badfinger
49. Cecelia, Simon and Garfunkel
52. Lola, Kinks
53. In The Summertime, Mungo Jerry
56. Easy Come, Easy Go, Bobby Sherman
64. United We Stand, Brotherhood Of Man
69. Evil Ways, Santana
70. No Time, The Guess Who
72. The Wonder Of You / Mama Liked The Roses, Elvis Presley
73. Up Around The Bend / Run Through The Jungle, Creedence Clearwater Revival
78. Mississippi Queen, Mountain
79. I Want To Take You Higher, Ike and Tina Turner
80. The Letter, Joe Cocker
81. Ma Belle Amie, Tee Set
82. The Bells, Originals
88. Up The Ladder To The Roof, Supremes
89. Travelin' Band / Who'll Stop The Rain, Creedence Clearwater Revival
91. Psychedelic Shack, Temptations
93. Are You Ready?, Pacific Gas and Electric
94. Woodstock, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young
98. The Thrill Is Gone, B.B. King

Shockingly, in 1971, after being deeply immersed in the rock of the San Francisco-LA sound (including the Beach Boys psychedelic period) i ended up working for Bobby Sherman's management group, helping produce live music moments about LA.  For two years, i worked with the likes of Bobby, Partridge Family, Brady Bunch, et al. Hard to believe....

 BBC’s Radio 2 top 100 albums of all time

100. Welcome To The Pleasuredome - Frankie Goes To Hollywood
99. I've Been Expecting You - Robbie Williams
=97. The Album - Abba
=97. Come On Over - Shania Twain
96. Love Over Gold - Dire Straits
95. Demon Days - Gorillaz
94. Innuendo - Queen
93. Voulez-Vous - Abba
92. Dangerous - Michael Jackson
91. Listen Without Prejudice Volume 1 - George Michael
90. Play - Moby
=88. The Division Bell - Pink Floyd
=88. Scary Monsters And Super Creeps - David Bowie
87. By The Way - Red Hot Chili Peppers
86. Songs About Jane - Maroon 5
85. The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan - Bob Dylan
84. Paranoid - Black Sabbath
83. Diva - Annie Lennox
82. All That You Can't Leave Behind - U2
81. So - Peter Gabriel
80. Back To Bedlam - James Blunt
79. Please Please Me - Beatles
78. Different Class - Pulp
77. Dare! - Human League
76. Spiceworld - Spice Girls
75. All Things Must Pass - George Harrison
=73. Super Trouper - Abba
=73. Let It Bleed - Rolling Stones
72. Swing When You're Winning - Robbie Williams
71. Physical Graffiti - Led Zeppelin
70. No Angel - Dido
=68. War - U2
=68. Life Thru A Lens - Robbie Williams
67. A Day At The Races - Queen
66. Music - Madonna
65. Sticky Fingers - Rolling Stones
64. True Blue - Madonna
63. How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb - U2
62. Hot Fuss - The Killers
61. Rattle And Hum - U2
60. Parklife - Blur
59. Escapology - Robbie Williams
58. Diamond Dogs - David Bowie
57. Hopes And Fears - Keane
56. Let's Dance - David Bowie
55. Sing When You're Winning - Robbie Williams
54. Spice - Spice Girls
53. Urban Hymns - Verve
52. Led Zeppelin 3 - Led Zeppelin
51. Arrival - Abba
50. Help - Beatles
49. Imagine - John Lennon & The Plastic Ono Band With The Flux Fiddlers
48. The Unforgettable Fire - U2
47. Like A Virgin - Madonna
46. Let It Be - Beatles
45. Back In Black - AC/DC
44. Fever - Kylie Minogue
43. Faith - George Michael
42. A Kind Of Magic - Queen
41. American Idiot - Green Day
40. Bad - Michael Jackson
39. Harvest - Neil Young
38. Parachutes - Coldplay
37. Confessions On A Dancefloor - Madonna
36. A Hard Day's Night - Beatles
35. Like A Prayer - Madonna
34. Born In The U.S.A. - Bruce Springsteen
33. X & Y - Coldplay
32. Scissor Sisters - Scissor Sisters
31. A Rush Of Blood To The Head - Coldplay
30. Out Of Time - R.E.M.
29. Aladdin Sane - David Bowie
28. Never Mind The Bollocks Here's The Sex Pistols - Sex Pistols
27. OK Computer - Radiohead
26. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road - Elton John
25. Who's Next - Who
24. Ray Of Light - Madonna
23. Graceland - Paul Simon
22. Definitely Maybe - Oasis
21. Hounds Of Love - Kate Bush
20. Band On The Run - Paul McCartney & Wings
19. Led Zeppelin II - Led Zeppelin
18. Tubular Bells - Mike Oldfield
17. Parallel Lines - Blondie
16. Jagged Little Pill - Alanis Morissette
15. Led Zeppelin IV (Four Symbols) - Led Zeppelin
14. Automatic For The People - R.E.M.
13. (What's The Story) Morning Glory? - Oasis
12. Brothers In Arms - Dire Straits
11. Rubber Soul - Beatles
10. The Beatles (The White Album) - Beatles
9. A Night At The Opera - Queen
8. Abbey Road - Beatles
7. Bridge Over Troubled Water - Simon & Garfunkel
6. Revolver - Beatles
5. Wish You Were Here/Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd
4. Rumours - Fleetwood Mac
3. The Joshua Tree - U2
2. Thriller - Michael Jackson
No. 1 Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - Beatles

Thursday, July 04, 2013

thinking one unthinkable

There really is no possible way to express this in any different way:
the national and local multimedia are pushing USA military service as
the only path to hero worship, bar none. If you are not a military
veteran, you have no chance of receiving recognition for any success
in the mainstream today. This is specifically designed, through the
tri-part branches of the US government, to focus all of the nation's
interest and motivation on military veterans and rejecting all other
citizens recognition of moving forward in the US economy, the US job
market, the US as a whole.

I'm really confused by all of this. Why would all of the mainstream
media spend giant chunks of their dollars on promoting the success of
military vets, when they represent less than 2.5 percent of the US
population? As a country, we have, throughout US history, struggled
to envelop the wonders of this nation on the magic of the mainstream
as they achieve the success they so often receive. But in the last
twelve years, the entire multimedia operations are now focused on
whether on not the less than 2.5% of the mainstream population receive
the recognition and accolades as the sole measure of all of the
necessary benchmark for human success.

Personally, i am deeply offended. These US military veterans have
done not one thing to protect or serve the best interests of the
nation and of its citizens. Take, for example, the representation of
US military vets on the Fourth of July. It now seems that not one
celebration of the Fourth can be considered for media presentation, if
it doesn't show the care and service of US military vets. This is
absolute crap. The Fourth of July was, in its actual original form,
never about the non-existent (at the time) US military. It was
intended to be a national celebration of the entire citizenry engaging
in a concerted action against the tyranny of rulers. Much like the
Egyptians being currently engaged in the process of revolution, --to
pursue a government of the people, for the people, by the people--,
the Fourth of July very specifically honors and celebrates the
enlightened 56 non-military men who stood up to sign their names on a
document, that meant the willingness to sacrifice their lives for
simply wishing to have their own say in self government. There never
was the intent of a military presence. There was never the intent of
some other people stepping forward to sacrifice their lives so that
others may prosper. It was always about the self-sacrifice of the
individual in the pursuit of expressing his (and a few hers) own
individual rights against all.

We are a nation that hides our actual concerns and actions, behind the
veil of US military service. Citizens need to begin to recognize that
this is a smokescreen, designed and produced to divert the attention
of the people from the actual nightmarish tyranny of the less than
0.05% of the population. Why else would less that one-half of one
percent focus all of the media on 2.5%? It only makes sense as a ruse
to keep the general population ignoring the diverse cacophony that is
about to fall. Not one single veteran has ever protected the rights
of citizens; they have, however, served to keep the population
distracted from so very many challenging and dangerous processes that
are befallen them.

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Are any of you as pissed off as i am about the lack of factual reporting on the "scandal involving electronic spying on Americans?"  Is there no societal recollection on dear old Admiral Poindexter?  Is there no one in the US who even remembers the man?  Does the term "Total Information Awareness (TAO)" mean anything to anyone?  Good gawd people, have we succombed so far that  a single human being has been at the crux of this entire nightmare?  Even Wikipedia knows the person behind this quagmire:

Poindexter served as the Director of the DARPA Information Awareness Office (IAO). The mission of the IAO was to imagine, develop, apply, integrate, demonstrate and transition information technologies, components, and prototype closed-loop information systems. This aimed to counter asymmetric threats (most notably, terrorist threats) by achieving total information awareness and thus aiding preemption; national security warning; and, national security decision making. 

He not only created the collection and analysis of all the data, but then went on to actually put a massive free enterprise spin on the process:

Poindexter faced criticism from the media and some politicians about the Policy Analysis Market project, a theoretical prediction market that would have rewarded participants for accurately predicting geopolitical trends in the Middle East. This was portrayed in the media as allowing participants to profit from the assassination of heads of state and acts of terrorism due to such events being mentioned on illustrative sample screens showing the interface. The controversy over the proposed futures market led to a Congressional audit of the IAO in general, which revealed a fundamental lack of concern for privacy protection of American citizens.

Perhaps you need to read that paragraph again, while keeping in mind that the same person was indicted on numerous accounts of constitutional ignoring during the Reagan/Bush years, resulting from the Iran/Contra madness.  One man with a vision, and an incredible talent for computer programming, created the gianormous mess we are stunned to find out has been going on for nearly 12 years.  If any of you remember Peabody and Sherman from the 60s, then the name Poindexter became synonmous with geek and nerd.  And yet, an actual human being creating a matrix of computer programming, led the US to become the single largest scale collector of data (information) than all of science and knowledge before that.   Wow, know one seems to remember.  Well done, John.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Heroes and Villians

So a new television reality game show is coming this summer featuring Dwayne the Rock Johnson as the moderator.   The premise is all about finding "heroes."  Really? Really!

But what are the heroes they are intending to find.  Well, if we can judge a show by its trailers, the heroes they are looking for are willing fools who will climb up and over anything to garner points.  That ain't heroic at all. 

We have more than enough examples of authentic, real, day-to-day heroes in our lives.  Why try to manufacture a celebrity cult around something that is so obvious?  Just in the last three months, we have had a whole swath of heroes saving lives in dire crises that go far beyond anything a television producer could create for a reality game show. 

I can't stand stupid tv, and i can't help but speak out when it happens.  Just saying...

Friday, March 29, 2013

lena dunham

Lena Dunham needs to write the screenplay for the Prankster ladies. 

We now have films out about Cassidy and Kerouac, Kesey and Leary, etc.  What we truly need is a film about the lives of MG, Niki Scully, Nancy, and the others who lived out their lives by changing the world around them rather than the world changing them.  And Lena Dunham has the chops, the smarts, and the proper (psychedelizied) sensitivity to write the best possible screen play.

Friday, March 08, 2013

rambling rand....

I doth think that Rand Paul's soliliquy as a rebellious filibusterer was a bit short on fact.  Not specifically counting any of the history before i was born, Presidents have indeed ordered the death of Americans in America whilst they were not engaged in a clear and obvious terrorist act. 

I could mention Wilhelm Reich for instance, or maybe those poor sad folks who were given massive doses of radiation just to see what would happen.  We have a history of releasing dangerous diseases on unsuspecting ferry boat passengers.  We had Kent State and Jackson State shootings by military personnel. 

Hell, we are actually very good at killing our fellow citizens without cause or provocation.  Paul's lack of factual knowledge worked for his ilk, but it doesn't change the facts or the reality.  What a large stinking pile of Randshit.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

one way to think about it

Twenty years ago, i argued that the US had created a horrible nightmare for the children of Iraq.  Through the use of harsh sanctions, imposed under the UN 661 Committee, following Gulf Storm, more than 1,000,000 children were denied access to vaccines and medical supplies.  We ended up killing 500,000 of them.  A half a million of them in ten years.  In other words, over the entire ten year period, we killed the equivalent of a Sandy Hook incident every two days for the full ten years.  We killed another 30,000 during the Iraq war, most of which died during the seige at Fallujah.  And yet, we petition the world to hear our laments for Sandy Hook, whilst continuing to maim and kill children around the world.  Maybe, just maybe, we might think about that.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

far left of obama

It is really quite simple in some ways i suppose. I am, for lack of any better description a: tribally and socially cooperativist; pragmatically, psychedelically, and hermeneutically conscious cognitive libertarian; economically and geo-politically anarchist; and a deep ecological radical. In all practicality, i think that it is extraordinarily difficult to classify most citizens of the US under the simple polarizing taxonomy of liberal/conservative. Even the sub-labels such as socially conservative liberal or socially liberal conservative speak little of the vast diversity of the self aware citizen. But to reflect upon the 2008 election and the necessary work that must be done i openly state my conception of my position along the spectrum from which i advocate the change i seek.

pragmatically, psychedelically, and hermeneutically conscious cognitive libertarian

I have publicly stated on several occasions that i insist that my president would be one who has admitted to taking a relatively large dose (250 to 500 mcgs) of LSD. There are many many reasons for this but first and foremost is that the first time i voted for a presidential candidate, my candidate said the following about LSD:
Senator Robert Kennedy, in 1966 said: "Perhaps to some extent we have lost sight of the fact that LSD can be very, very helpful in our society if used properly"

Jonathan Ott wrote:
I firmly believe that contemporary spiritual use of entheogenic drugs is one of humankind's brightest hopes for overcoming the ecological crisis from which we threaten the biosphere and jeopardize our own survival, for Homo sapiens is close to the head of the list of endangered species.

We are indeed at the apex of a series of events that require the best and brightest minds, the most creative thinkers and artists to provide divergent and vastly numerous solutions to the catastrophic problems we face living on the planet today. It is beyond hope and reason to tacitly concur with this thought, yet do absolutely nothing to contribute to being part of the solutions. We need to agree that reason and rationality be paramount to the din of verbose, useless, religiospeak during this period. Idiotic acceptance of prophesies spoken by priests, pastors, imans, avatars, etc. concerning the whims of invisible, masculine, anthropomorphic, omniscient energy entities (illusions of deities), only further the planetary degradation and the loss of sustainable habitats for all living (actual real living) entities and species. Pragmatic reason must ascend to levels hierarchically paramount to rhetoric of faith, party, and money. Greed is no different a religion than its servant Mormonism or Scientology. As Terrence McKenna said:
Consciousness is what we're in need of to avoid running off the cliff into armageddon

tribally and socially cooperativist

Charles Sullivan wrote in his work for Planetization:

The age of exuberance—like the age of cheap oil—is mercifully drawing to a close. So I will say what was never meant to spoken aloud in the land of excess; and I will say it loud and clear so that it cannot be mistaken: Americans must dramatically simplify their lives to want less and learn more. We constitute less than five percent of the of the world’s population while usurping more than a quarter of her bounty. This is not acceptable—nor is it ethical.

No one has a moral right to take more than their fair share when that taking jeopardizes the chances of others of living a decent life, or makes nil their chances for survival—including other species.

Contrary to what one might think, we do not have to live like third world nations or like the hunters and gatherers of the past. But we must dramatically reduce our consumption and shrink our carbon footprint. Not only must we live within our own means but within the means of the planet to support us.

The majority of our food should be locally grown and mass transit must supplant the gluttonous and polluting automobile that proliferates on our nation’s highways. Moratoriums on development and urban sprawl must be enacted in order to protect critical habitat and rainwater recharge areas. Cities and towns must be redesigned and revitalized with sustainable industry. Goods and services, including work and jobs must again, as they were in the past, be rooted in vibrant, small scale local economies; and free trade agreements revoked.

Technological advances—no matter how boldly they are touted as saviors of humankind cannot increase the world’s carrying capacity and they cannot invoke justice. The latter is entirely up to us as sentient beings endowed with conscience. And this brings me to a second point: we must reduce the human population through adoption and cease to procreate for at least one generation—so that the earth can recover her carrying capacity. What better way to save the world, literally.

Simultaneously simplifying our lives by wanting less and reducing the human population will allow room for other people and other beings to share the bounty of the earth. And it will almost certainly have a beneficent rather than pathological social and psychological consequence: it will end our isolation and reconnect us to the rest of the world. We could finally realize our enormous potential to become world citizens and good neighbors worthy of respect and love.

Rather than an economy based upon savage greed and exploitation, let us create an economy based upon justice and equality, need rather than excess; a society that does not leave people behind but invites the full participation of everyone and recognizes that, “An injury to one is an injury to all.” Let it be all inclusive and worthy of respect: where every woman, man, and child, every being of this earth is the same under the law and equally respected and valued—a great global community seeking harmony rather than competitive advantage.

In the end, equality is beholden to the system we choose. Did we ask that the world be run on the profits of greed, or the prophets of wisdom? Where was that democratic choice? The profits of greed have given us voracious greed, consuming everything in sight; but they didn’t give us a choice; they took away our freedom and made us into lesser beings. But, if we are to muster ourselves to call ourselves Human one last time, where the prophets of wisdom really did have something to say, where people and the planet are put before profits in the Golden Rule, and where we have one large collective foot standing on the profit of greed then maybe, maybe YES we will turn this thing around:

economically and geo-politically anarchist

"I feel sure," William Morris told his fellow socialists gathered at Kelmscott House in 1884, "that the time will come when people will find it difficult to believe that a rich community such as ours, having such command over external Nature, could have submitted to live with a mean, shabby, dirty life as we do." One hundred eighteen years ago Morris was imagining a time "when no one was allowed to injure the public by defiling the natural beauty of the earth."

The Enemy of Nature is the capitalistic system itself, and if readers of such a statement should be tempted to dismiss the claim as mere Marxian doomsday-saying and thus forego a reading of it on the basis of our current celebrations that capitalism is the sole surviving economic system and therefore MUST be the best, such potential readers will be ignoring not only essential information, but be contributing to the continuation of processes which must surely end in chaos and anarchy.P. Webster "Salience" (Alpes-Maritimes, FRANCE)

Emily Hodges argues that most anarchic behaviors are tautologically flawed. From her essay titled "Perhaps Anarchy:"
Anarchism is an idea, a general concept, used to help us orient ourselves in a sea of ideas. But when does something that was meant to help us orient ourselves become a tool of oversimplification? The difference between a group and a community, in my mind, is that a community would act more like an ecosystem. It is more a utilitarian and social network than an identity. I think of artisans, farmers, producers, and notice that there is an independence and a interdependence. But the label of farmer, of cobbler, of blacksmith – these are identities, labels, useful in defining, explaining. Is anarchist, then, as useful? Is it something that you do? That you are? Does it express your daily activities as well as farmer expresses daily activities? To decide this we must first decide what an “anarchist” is or does, and then if “you” can cross-reference what you do and are, and see if there is a fit.

The problem with anarchists is that it is a largely theoretical idea. Very few self-proclaimed anarchists on this planet right now can claim that they BE anarchy. Perhaps they are proponents of change, of a different way of being to be implemented in the future. However, they are not doing it right now, not necessarily by any fault of them. It is simply very difficult to do. Very few people live without a government or authority over them, for the simple reason that there is nowhere to get away to. It is not allowed within the system, and it s impossible to “get out” of the system. – for the simple reason that we are all connected, as a huge industrialized nation under a massive government, as ecosystems and societies. We can even claim that those of us who do “get away” can do so only because of their positioning within the system that they are leaving, a position that happens to make their leaving possible only by the even greater bondage of others.

Even those “anarchists” who claim to reject government, work, and “taking part in the system” still physically live in the system, in the ecosystem of this system, and thus are a part of it. Additionally, they attempt to “remove” themselves from the system simply by taking part in the system from another angle that they do not realize is still participation. Some anarchists use food stamps or other forms of welfare. They steal, scavenge, squat all actions that may be a practical usage of available resources without consuming new ones – but that is an issue of resources, not anarchist ideology. It is simply not being wasteful. It is not being free. My question is this: those who are as practically anarchist as possible, those who have removed themselves from the system as completely as possible, not taking part in the “official” anything --- workforce, taxes, government – thus, living in a rural community or homestead, or living off of the excess of the urban areas, these people, they are removing their “power” from the system, not giving it any power, not feeding it their life force. But they are not rejecting the system. They have no power great enough to be free of the power that they are rejecting paying homage to. They may not be feeding in to it, they may not be responsible for its continuation, but they are not free from it. They are still citizens at the whim of the authority. They can still be drafted, they can still receive welfare, they can still vote – even if they chose not to. They can still choose not to vote, which is a freedom of this country. They can still reap the benefits of an extremely affluent society – living off of the leftovers of the consumers still affords them more luxury than many other countries. They are still in the location, still within the system, still reaping the benefits. Additionally, they still retain the rights of an American citizen, allowing them a lifestyle very different from those in Burma or Iraq. Additionally, the system still demands that you abide their rules. As soon as you break a rule and they catch you, you will realize how fully you are still part of the system. And the fact that you didn’t realize it before you were caught attests to the amount of freedom you had as compared to certain other places, nations, contexts, cities, identities. (You cannot give up your identity. But you can create it. You can use the power you have, you can give it up, but the only reason you have the ability to give it up is because you have it. It is still a choice that others do not have. ) We must have some citizenship. We must belong somewhere – and good thing, for to be citizen-less is to be power-less. To be undocumented is to have no rights, and I have seen both in Thailand, and the United States. So the question is not how can I remove myself from the system, but how can I create better system? That is question anarchy attempts to answer. But what is the realistic application of anarchy? How does one implement anarchy, so that it can gain power and recognition as a legitimate legal system? Could a country become anarchic, and be respected and powerful in line with other countries?

deep ecological radical

John Seed describes his vision of the role of the deep ecologist as:
Deep ecology is the name of a philosophy of nature which I believe best helps us understand why we behave so foolishly, and perhaps gives us some clues as to where we may best seek change.

The fundamental problem is anthropocentrism or human centredness. We are obsessed with our self-importance. Not long ago, astronomers were burned at the stake for daring to suggest that the Earth is not the centre of the universe and now we blindly destroy the future for 10 million species so as to fill the world with humanity for a few generations more.

To deep ecology, the world is seen not as a pyramid with humans on top, but as a web. We humans are but one strand in that web and as we destroy other strands, we destroy ourselves.

We might no longer believe that the world was made by an old man with a white beard 6000 years ago as a stage for the human drama to unfold with all the other species merely "scenery", bit players to be "subdued and dominated". Yet our institutions and personalities were forged in this mold and we seem hypnotised, incapable of giving substance to our new, ecological, vision.

Through thousands of years of anthropocentric conditioning, absorbed by osmosis since the day we were born, we have inherited shallow, fictitious selves, and have created an incredibly pervasive illusion of separation from nature.

A century ago Freud discovered that many of the symptoms of his patients could be traced to repressed sexual material. However, our sexuality is only the tip of the mighty repression of our very organic nature.

The reason why psychology is sterile and most therapy doesn't work is that the "self" that mainstream psychologies describe and purport to heal doesn't exist. It is a social fiction. In reality the human personality exists at the intersection of the ancient cycles of air and water and soil. Without these there is no self and any attempt to heal the personality that doesn't acknowledge this fundamental fact is doomed to failure. There is no "self" without air and water and soil. Incredible amounts of energy go into futile attempts to heal what is really a fictitious self while our actual, ecological self suffocates.

Some of the best thinking on Ecopsychology comes from the neo-Jungian James Hillman. In his "100 Years of Psychotherapy and the World's Getting Worse", Hillman blames a lot of the social and environmental problems that we face on the fact that the people who should be out there changing the world are in therapy instead. They treat their pain as a symptom of a personal pathology rather than as a goad to political action to bring about social change. Therapists create patients instead of citizens.

People are willing to die by the millions in defense of one social fiction after another - a religion or political system or ideology. Yet attacks on the Earth which gave rise to all of these and without which none could exist, leave us numb.

Because we haven't learned to identify with the living Earth, She fails to ignite in us anything near the passion and commitment that some of her lesser works manage to do. Though we are born, live and die in her, we have made ourselves unconscious of this. As Woody Allen said: "The Earth and I are two."

The fact that our sense of alienation from Nature is entirely an illusion can be demonstrated very simply by holding your breath for a few minutes. We can speak of "the atmosphere" as if it were somehow "out there". But it is not "out there". None of it is "out there". The air, the water, the soil, it is all constantly migrating and cycling through us. There is no "out there", it is all "in here", but most modern people, even those who agree theoretically, don't experience the world in this way.

As long as the environment is "out there", we may leave it to some special interest group like environmentalists to protect while we look after our "selves". The matter changes when we deeply realise that the nature "out there" and the nature "in here" are one and the same, that the sense of separation no matter how pervasive, is nonetheless totally illusory. I would call the need for such realisation the central psychological or spiritual challenge of our age.

In 1986, I co-authored a book: Thinking Like a Mountain - Towards a Council of All Beings. One of the other authors, Arne Naess, was Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at Oslo University and it was he who coined the term "deep ecology". In this book he concludes that "it is not enough to have ecological ideas, we have to have ecological identity, or ecological self". How are we to expand our identities in this way? Naess believes we need "community therapies" such as the Council of All Beings.

In the Council of All Beings we remember our rootedness in Nature. Using experiential processes, we recapitulate our evolutionary journey. We remember that every cell in our body is descended in an unbroken chain of life 4 billion years old, through fish that learned to walk the land, reptiles whose scales turned to fur and became mammals, evolving through to the present.


Wondering and wandering, as i move across space throughout the nights, i find that i am feeling more relaxed in this body than i would have thought possible, given the circumstances of the days. I am not sure why that is, or if it is just my elder years playing havoc with my sense of cynicism and snark. Perhaps i am just worn through, tried of the same old same old repeated again and again for no reasons whatsoever.

Have i given up? Am i too willing to rest on my laurels, or my own lack of concern for the "real" world versus the infotainment? Non lo so...  I am feeling old in my body.  It is all "meh."

Washington State candidates...

Alas, we are into the final swing of madcap electioneering here in Spokane, and the rest of the state.  And if you believe the television advertising, you would come to the conclusion that each candidate only has one significant pro/con position (most of which are really factless opinions).

So herewith, are a few of these opinion positions:

US Senate
    Baumgartner (a former CIA operative) will do good things and Cantwell can't do much.

    Cantwell worked to keep Boeing in the state, and Baumgartner doesn't know much at all.

US Congressional District office
    Cathy McMorris-Rodgers is a trophy for our DoD, and Cowen just makes movies.

    Cowen will strive to serve all the people, and CMR serves only her party.


    McKenna will protect women and children from abuse, and Inslee is responsible for massive tax increases.
    Inslee will work together with both sides to do some things, and Mckenna isn't who he says he is.

State Attorney General
    Dunn is the savior of all possible victims, and Ferguson liked it when he worked for a cop killer.
    Ferguson is a tough litigator and really cares, and Dunn has been a very bad and corrupt boy.

Indeed, all of the races are being presented in this format.  The lazy language of our process bleeds discontent.  Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Superintendent of Public Instruction (who is running unopposed) all share in this same manner. Nearly like "Me Tarzan, You Jane." 

Sadly, the truth has absolutely zero chance of breaking through.  The voters will be forced to guess which one they care about, based solely on the political party and/or affiliation.  It reminds me of middle school, where everyone is trying to find a position that they can hold onto and failing miserably.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

How i became known as the "Medicine Man" (abridged version)

Asked by a number of friends to tell more stories about the days gone by, i am particularly drawn to telling the saga of the Medicine Man. And yes, it is true that Steve Fisher attached that appellation to me, both as a joke, and to some degree in bestowing an honorific of sorts. But the story started long before that time.

Wayback in the wayback machine of Peabody and Sherman, i had the good fortune of going to UCLA for my higher education. The good fortune came not so much from the fine education itself, as for all of the great interesting people that i met and befriended. This included the Merry Pranksters, my first ex-wife, Terry "Flanafish" Flanagan, some notable members of celebrated sports teams, my mentor professors, illustrious and infamous graduates, and so forth. I also met people outside UCLA that greatly influenced twists and turns in my life. Lifeguards at Zuma in the mid-60s (the eccentric renaissance man Norton Wisdom), lifeguards at WR in the early 70s, graduate students in diverse fields across the country including Harvard and Yale, a handful of 60s bands most of whom disappeared over time, with one profound exception, etc.

In the abridged version, it was this glorious melting pot of a fine entheogenic stew in my brain that led to Fisher calling me Medicine Man. I was at UCLA in grad school, studying shamanism and the history of American Indian religions for a doctorate. I had good friends traveling around the world, conducting anthropological fieldwork, especially focussed on Shamanism. And i had two friends graduating from Harvard Divinity School (RF and Ev), one of whom (RF) contributing greatly to my path development. It should also be noted that i was in the middle of divorcing my first ex (El), and meeting my second (JH). So the stage was prepared (there were also lots of other things happening to and for me as well: teaching, working in the music business, loving the ladies, and so forth).

During the Summer of 1970, El and i took off from UCLA right after the Kent State protests, and dove into the back country of the Yosemite (we got an unlimited backcountry campfire all access pass from the supervising ranger who was the father of a good friend). Over the long five months of summer, various friends would meet up with us at different access points and hangout for a few days, bringing news of the world (riots, Nixon, protests, sports, life). On one of these adventures RF and Ev arrived with some of our supply of pure entheogens, wanting to go for all the gusto. It was during this "massive trip" that RF and i discovered that we were both really interested in the Lakota rites and rituals of South Dakota. His family was from the eastern side of the state, and my dad was from the west. We made some silly commitment to longterm plans to get together at some point in SD.

Time progressed, my doctoral research moved forward, i left El, found JH, worked at WR in the summers, and went about life. In the early fall of '72, i spent a day eating peyote and reading the whole of the newly released book Seven Arrows. I remembered things that i had overlooked from previous experiences, and began to connect the dots. I set about doing small rituals for myself, particularly at the beach, as a means of just connecting with the natural world. I became very good friends with Chuck King at Tower 18, talking about his days in WW2 and studying at Brown University, his writing poetry about connecting with nature. In December, my phone rang. It was RF, who had moved to South Dakota to work on the US Senate campaign of a family friend, James Abourezk. He said that Jim had won, and that he (RF) would be working as the Field Rep in the West River office (the western half of the state where the vast majority of the Lakota lived). He invited me (and JH) to come back for a visit, and suggested i could conduct fieldwork on shamanism among the Lakota.

I was already well versed in Lakota studies; i had become something of an expert in the Ghost Dance among them, knew the religious transformations that took place between the forest village dwellers of the 1600s to the Plains warriors of the 1800s, and was starting to train myself to speak the language. I couldn't go the first year (my music biz boss was rapidly expanding his enterprises), i still had classes to finish, and another summer of the beach. But i did go in January of '74 (and each year after that) and found an amazing and inspiring place. The politics were blown up with Wounded Knee, the FBI, the tribal goons, and a host of other ongoing sagas, but the true nature of the Lakota and the Black Hills was easily accessible. I met a number of spiritual leaders who became friends. I ended up working in the Senate office with RF. I could go to rituals that few other people could attend.

Each summer i came back to the beach i was changed. At first it was little stuff, performing rituals around my towers, spending time in the late afternoons meditating on the water and waves, delighting in creative pursuits, really enjoying life. I started doing little sweat lodges and feasts in the evenings for lifeguard friends, bringing back rocks from South Dakota and across the country from tribal lands.

I'm not sure when Fisher first called me Medicine Man, it was sometime during this period. It really hit home one winter when Fisher, Morales and myself spent three weeks crossing the High Sierra through Yosemite. Prior to that trip, i had performed a couple of vision quests with the help of John Thomas and Flanagan, including a modified sun dance at the beach. When Fisher, Morales and myself went on our trek, i did take some entheogens for various purposes, and we had amazing experiences including skiing down waterfalls, crossing large avalanche chutes, climbing and skiing peaks. We talked about that stuff, and i think Fisher came up with the name to give me the proper amount of grief.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

things for which i have terrible distaste in media

Online advertising with all of those scripts and popups that make it nearly impossible to completely load a page. I cannot even begin to tell you what any of them are about, because i tune them out.

All of the people who comment on GoComics Doonesbury daily cartoon page, who seem to think that the cartoon is magically real and about real things that happen.

Corona Beer commercials that promote the lethal use of alcohol on beaches (74% of all drownings are alcohol related).

The Fashion Police and host Joan Rivers, both of which are disgusting and horrendous examples of psychologically abusive bullying and abject terrorizing imagery.

A Direct TV advertisement that clearly shows a waitress toxically poison a group of customers for their football preference

The funding of the "grassroots" tea partiers by large corporate interests hiding behind non-profits, PACs and 527s after the Citizens United decision.

The funding of intentionally deceptive campaign commercials filled with lies and egregious comments without any "official" connection to a candidate.

The complete and utter disregard of truth in campaign statements and commercials, so blatant, for example, that even conservative bloggers are criticizing the GOP Promise to America for its mindlessness.

Everything having to do with the fashion industry, the Kardashian industry, the drug use of celebrities, and the paparazzi.

Those of my friends who still think they can make a difference by "educating the public" with studies and earnestness, in the face of the daily decisions by the policy makers and governments to ignore all of the studies and educational insights. Think GMO salmon for example.

Auto insurance commercials and advertising (good hands around the neck of a General lizard while that lady says idiotic things?)

The endless promotion of great wealth, and the wonders of the wealthy, arguing for more tax cuts, in the face of mounting poverty and unemployment. Who are the media talking to, other than each other.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Jon Stewart's closing comments...

‘ And now I thought we might have a moment, however brief, for some sincerity. If that’s okay – I know that there are boundaries for a comedian / pundit / talker guy, and I’m sure that I’ll find out tomorrow how I have violated them.
So, uh, what exactly was this? I can’t control what people think this was: I can only tell you my intentions.
This was not a rally to ridicule people of faith, or people of activism, or look down our noses at the heartland, or passionate argument, or to suggest that times are not difficult and that we have nothing to fear–they are, and we do.
But we live now in hard times, not end times. And we can have animus, and not be enemies. But unfortunately, one of our main tools in delineating the two broke.
The country’s 24-hour, political pundit perpetual panic conflictinator did not cause our problems, but its existence makes solving them that much harder. The press can hold its magnifying glass up to our problems, bringing them into focus, illuminating issues heretofore unseen. Or they can use that magnifying glass to light ants on fire, and then perhaps host a week of shows on the dangerous, unexpected flaming ants epidemic. If we amplify everything, we hear nothing.
There are terrorists, and racists, and Stalinists, and theocrats, but those are titles that must be earned! You must have the resume! Not being able to distinguish between real racists and Tea Party-ers, or real bigots and Juan Williams or Rick Sanchez is an insult–not only to those people, but to the racists themselves, who have put in the exhausting effort it takes to hate. Just as the inability to distinguish terrorists from Muslims makes us less safe, not more.
The press is our immune system. If it overreacts to everything, we actually get sicker–and, perhaps, eczema. And yet… I feel good. Strangely, calmly, good. Because the image of Americans that is reflected back to us by our political and media process is false. It is us, through a funhouse mirror–and not the good kind that makes you look slim in the waist, and maybe taller, but the kind where you have a giant forehead, and an ass shaped like a month-old pumpkin, and one eyeball.
So why would we work together? Why would you reach across the aisle, to a pumpkin-assed forehead eyeball monster? If the picture of us were true, of course our inability to solve problems would actually be quite sane and reasonable–why would you work with Marxists actively subverting our Constitution, and homophobes who see no one’s humanity but their own?
We hear every damned day about how fragile our country is, on the brink of catastrophe, torn by polarizing hate, and how it’s a shame that we can’t work together to get things done. The truth is, we do! We work together to get things done every damned day! The only place we don’t is here (in Washington) or on cable TV!
But Americans don’t live here, or on cable TV. Where we live, our values and principles form the foundation that sustains us while we get things done–not the barriers that prevent us from getting things done.
Most Americans don’t live their lives solely as Democrats, Republicans, liberals or conservatives. Americans live their lives more as people that are just a little bit late for something they have to do. Often something they do not want to do! But they do it. Impossible things, every day, that are only made possible through the little, reasonable compromises we all make.
Look on the screen. This is where we are, this is who we are. These cars. That’s a schoolteacher who probably think his taxes are too high, he’s going to work. There’s another car, a woman with two small kids, can’t really think about anything else right now… A lady’s in the NRA, loves Oprah. There’s another car, an investment banker, gay, also likes Oprah. Another car’s a Latino carpenter; another car, a fundamentalist vacuum salesman. Atheist obstetrician. Mormon Jay-Z fan.
But this is us. Every one of the cars that you see is filled with individuals of strong belief, and principles they hold dear–often principles and beliefs in direct opposition to their fellow travelers’. And yet, these millions of cars must somehow find a way to squeeze, one by one, into a mile-long, 30-foot-wide tunnel, carved underneath a mighty river.
And they do it, concession by concession: you go, then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go. ‘Oh my God–is that an NRA sticker on your car?’ ‘Is that an Obama sticker on your car?’ It’s okay–you go, then I go.
And sure, at some point, there will be a selfish jerk who zips up the shoulder, and cuts in at the last minute. But that individual is rare, and he is scorned, and he is not hired as an analyst!
Because we know, instinctively, as a people, that if we are to get through the darkness and back into the light, we have to work together. And the truth is there will always be darkness, and sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t the promised land.
Sometimes, it’s just New Jersey.’

Saturday, October 23, 2010


I am very confused with the way Zombies are presented in the media these days. They don't make any sense, on any level. With new films and a television series coming out this time of year, i think it is time to question our Zombie representations.

For example, how do Zombies become cannibals? Neither of the two base root representations of Zombies offers answers to this question. First, we have the cultural root of Zombie from the voodoo and santeria. The Zombie is a human being who has been given certain drugs to cause a near death trance. Then it is ordered to obey the wishes of its maker/master that may include the murder of other humans, but more likely simply carrying out the activities of a slave (growing out of the history of West Africans in the slave trade). After some time the Zombie is either released from the spell (the drugs have run their course), or is killed outright. Wade Davis, a Harvard ethnobotanist and researcher in entheogens, wrote one of the treatises on zombies in "The Serpent and the Rainbow."

Secondly, we have the cultural root of Zombie from cognitive science studies, and the study of consciousness. This root is predicated on the establishment of a base value level of a human being free of any conscious thought, whose sole relationship with the surrounding world is reaction to various stimuli through the sensory organs. The highly theoretical representation is offered as prima facia evidence for a base value that progresses from a null or zero state to one that reacts to stimuli to form conscious choice ("
It is argued that the concept of a philosophical zombie, as it figures in arguments designed to refute functionalism or physicalism, contains inherent contradictions"). At no time, in any of the cognitive science literature, has this Zombie committed murder of any beings. One caveat may be that the implied killing of other species exists is predicated on studies surrounding eating and taste.

Thus, in neither the original religious representation nor the scientific-based one, does the Zombie attack, kill, eat, and regenerate new zombies. Zombies are neither cannibals, nor viral agents of marauding attacks and reproduction. So how did zombies become so commonly represented in the media as cannibal viral agents? Why don't zombies eat whatever they ate when they were alive? How many different ways do we have to invent to kill zombies?

The simplest answer would be that we needed an agent that would terrorize human consciousness. Humans preying on humans is a classic archetype born out by millenia of humans killing other humans. The oldest recorded human war was around 2700BC, and certainly long before that (several thousands of years) small groups of humans were killing other groups. So i suppose having a cannibal virus that makes those that are bitten replicate into a cannibal virus, suffering from a leprosy-like deterioration of the flesh, is just another vision of war. But do they have to stagger around until you hit them with something?

Saturday, October 02, 2010

In the year 1965....

Perhaps the best thing i can say about MadMen this season is that it has reminded me of a time in my life that i hadn't thought about for a long time. 1965 was an amazing year for me in so many different ways. When you are eighteen, graduating high school and then going to UCLA with a scholarship, not much could bother you. Getting to see the Rolling Stones and the Beatles were icing on the cheesecake of a dozen magic moments.

The year didn't start all that well considering how it ended. On December 6, 1964, i was in my usual inebriated and high condition at a high school dance. That i was a student body officer didn't mean all that much to me either, but evidently it, and my condition, mattered to other officers and school authorities. Apparently reds and malt liquor were not compatible with a positive and contributing attitude for school support. It didn't matter that in the weeks before, i had stood in front of the assembled masses presenting awards to our school's Olympians; now i was the pariah to be punished. Friday night bled into Saturday morning, and i didn't really come to think much (i really couldn't very well actually) about the whole thing because i had to take the SAT. I don't remember the test at all; i do remember waking up enough to realize that it was afternoon, and i was taking the English subtest with an incredibly debilitating hangover. I think i scored an 1196 or so; not bad for seriously impaired.

So January started off with me having to go to another high school--Reseda was hand-picked by one of the Vice Principals--who thought that he could really punish me by withholding my athletic eligibility for 20 weeks. Reseda was the 1964 City football champions, but had not, up to that point in time, fielded a successful swim team. As i couldn't enroll in all of my classes at the new school, so close to the end of the first semester, i had the option of taking only four periods, one of which was weightlifting with the football team. That proved fortuitous, in that i got to know some of the players and the coach quite well, leading to recruiting for the swim team. It also led to wonderful mornings of drunken revelry under the guidance of the coach, who seemed not at all interested in keeping his "boys" from imbibing their pleasures. I did have another unfortunate run-in with the law right after my birthday in January. Three of us (from my old school) were out and about, cruising, because in 1965 that is what you did late on Saturday nights. We chose to follow a couple of guys to a "witches" house in north Van Nuys (near the Granada Hills border). Apparently, the people across the street from the house were fed up with the constant ruckus and had a standing call to the cops whenever anyone paid a visit. Needless to say my parents weren't thrilled with that either.

One of the deals, i had made with my dad, was that, if i could somehow keep my swimming going, still receive my Navy scholarship, and get accepted at the university of my choosing, then he would purchase tickets for me to see the Rolling Stones at the LA Sports Arena. These goals afforded me some options about how to proceed with my social agendas and still keep up appearances. I had left girlfriends back at my other school (Taft), and i needed to do my best to keep up with them. And i also had new ones at Reseda, one of whom followed me over there due to her lack of conforming to the norms of behavior. I also knew i needed to keep up academically in order to win my bets, which were important to me though not to others in my life. At the end of January, the semester ended, the new one began; and there was a winter prom at Taft, to which i had been previously invited (and allowed to attend).

I got a 4.0 in four classes at the end of the semester (i left Taft with a 3.2 in 6). The new semester required that i take Calc II and Calc I at the same time, a Senior English class, International Relations, Physics 2, and PE conditioning and swimming. The Calc classes posed a problem because i needed Calc II which was offered in the morning, but Calc I was only available after lunch before swimming. As the semester wore on i realized: i could do no work in Calc I, cover Calc II through a homework journal that could be copied from old ones in available files, IR would be easy working with a team of good students, essays were all i needed in Eng, Physics 2 would be tough, but it was first period after pre-school swim workouts.

I went to the Taft dance with Robin Miller, a cheerleader sweetheart, but ended up spending much of it with my neighbor Jerri Adair, a diver friend of my lust idol Sue Gossick. From that one winter prom night, i ended up taking Jerri to allnight grad night six months later, went out with Robin for the end of my freshman and beginning of my sophomore years, and proved that i could act appropriately and respectfully of my old high school. This latter turned out important, because at the end of the year i would be allowed to attend Taft senior activities on campus, without much supervision or taking any classes. And then there were the girls at Reseda, a few of whom were "excused" from their previous high schools for various issues, mostly drugs and behavior. All in all, my life, though shattered by the suspension and arrest, was pretty grand.

I swam before school, went to class, went to the high school swim workouts where i helped coach, and then swam at my swim club in the later afternoon with my brother. Weekends were spent swimming and the usual fake studying. As the school year went on, i got more freedom and latitude to go out again, and enjoy the last few months of that carefree life. My swim coach bribed me with beer, so i had a constant supply as long as i swam well. Reseda was a diverse population of a few surfers, lots of greasers (cars were a huge deal in the Valley in the 1960s), small pods of geeks and socias (socially motivated types), and the usual admixture of new hippies and the weird. Taft was mostly geeks and socias because of the professions of the parents who had moved into that end of the Valley in the 50s (Taft opened in 1960 --you can see a quite impactful list of Taft graduates who went on to fame at the bottom).

I remember quite well, one time, being invited out by one of the girls who had been suspended from Taft and was sent to Reseda. It turned out to be an odd sort of set up, involving a Taft girl who wanted to make her bad boyfriend jealous by going out with me, a bad boy. Her name was Karen Tremaine, and i had actually known her since the 8th grade, when she was "going out" with one of my better friends, Robin Ramondi (8th grade was another bad period of my life, a year i failed school, spent most of my time working in theater and music production running lights and sound, and bootlegging cigs for the juvenile home boys). It finally became apparent what was happening when we were making out at the Zuma beach bonfire, and Karen's boyfriend came up and caught us. All i got was a shoulder shrug from Karen as she went off with him. In some ways i think things never change. It made a lasting impression though, in the sense that the whole green monster of jealousy that i had watched in the Twilight Zone episode, could be manipulated with such precision for an outcome. I vowed then and there to not be jealous, nor envious, of and for others and myself.

During that academic year, i cut school a few times to go to the beach to surf, mostly with the Pierce brothers, whose extended family owned a large mortuary and cemetery business in the Valley. Otherwise i kept to myself most of the time, doing all the usual things a high school kid in the mid-60s would do. None of that looks like anything on MadMen.

to be continued: