Carl...Thanks for the whatever it was you did there. Or Not.

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Posted by Kenn ( on April 14, 2000 at 22:56:31:

I didn't get in on the discussion following your misery post, so I have to start with a new one.
You did get some action off of that, eh? And you certainly seem to have some quality support. To me, you are a lucky man, you miserable old dope.

I've resisted a hundred times doing this, but your post finally got me.

Carl -- That's my own Dad's name. And he didn't care all that much for me, either. And for the same general reasons. Plus, I turned Libertarian on him while he remained a diehard, fundamentalist sort of a guy. Big disappointment to him.

But, my idealism and the way I "turned out" stems from a lifetime of pain and of being able to relate to suffering, poverty, loneliness and "failure". Frankly, I would have been like him if not for these terrific, life-shattering experiences...not that my Dad was a bad guy -- just ignorant of the fact that life is shared by all of us in the end and there is no difference between any of us; We all want the same things.
But then, you know all of that.

Thirty, huh?
Wow, man -- It's all over for you. When I turned thirty I was certain my life was finished. It was my most traumatic birthday.
Since then, however, they have all gotten easier to take. In fact, my last one snuck up on me. On the morning of my 57th birthday (there, Elaine -- Are you happy?) my daughter called and wished me a happy birthday and it shocked the hail out of me when I realized it actually WAS my birthday.

Forget all of that.

I'm a musician, too. I'm an unusually creative blues, gospel and jazz trumpet blower with a great sound. Not an ego thing when I say that...It's a fact. I am not technicallly great and I don't have a strong set of chops, but I play blues like few others can. I get better at it all the time because of one thing...I've lived it.
I realize that the Blues is probably not your particular brand of music, maybe, but you are living the Blues.
And since you've asked (you did ask, didn't you?) I can tell you something about the blues few others know 'cept you and me; I can tell you why so many folks love the Blues. It's because the sound of it resonates with the feeling of deep loneliness inside each one of us, the sadness of believing things should be better than they are, that our world has missed something vast and perfect by choosing a path which leads us away from our very nature -- our very souls.
It's the underlying sense of sadness that springs from desperate homesickness. We feel cut off from our source and we are damned sad about it.
The Blues is a music that strikes that particular chord inside. And it is so familiar to us that we love it and relate to it. Many of us live it.
It is good to wallow in the Blues now and then and to play it and listen to it, tp sing and write words to it. But it is only good if you can pull out of it at will, and if you recognize it for what it is...a call for compassion, for understanding. And a call for home.

Like you, my very promising musical career went out the window because of my physical miseries --:
A back that goes out whenever it feels like it; often at the most annoying times, leaving me on the floor or in a heap somewhere. It will leave me in a wheelchair some day soon if it doesn't get fixed;
A thirty year bout with clinical depression which went totally undiagnosed, even after it was apparent that I was deadly and seriously suicidal nearly all of that time. It was a living hell like my Dad and everyone else couldn't believe;
More than thirty years of chronic fatigue syndrom -- again undiagnosed until it became fashionable, which is always a fun ailment when you are driving along in your car, for instance, and you come to a stop light and suddenly find that you can't even raise your foot to the break pedal; (That little malady alone cost me six jobs and two cars);
Twenty nine years of migraines, averaging 72 full-blown attacks a year, each one lasting at least two days. (That problem wrecked everything else I had going, including a marriage and other budding careers);
The migraines became Cluster Headaches in 1986. If I had anything left in me by then, it didn't take long for the CH's to kill it off. I thought it was just a glich that would go away any day. Hah!;
To top it off...
My mother is battling breast cancer;
Several friends and family have died in the last month;
We have no medical insurance for me (no big deal -- I'm used to that);
Now, I am living in a little rented house with my beloved wife of twenty years, the only thing that has kept me going all this time --
And she is very sick...dying of breast cancer, herself.
We had to quit our careers again, but for her this time.
Broke? Well, hell yes.

So, I can relate a little bit, maybe.
That's why I love you -- You are one of us.
I'm also pissed at you because this is the first time I have told this board all of this silly stuff about me...I didn't want to do that.
Don't make me do it again!

Oh, and it's fun to fantasize, so can you imagine a band made up of you and me and that crazy Drummer guy and the other Clusterheads called "DEMON WALLBANGERS" or maybe "CLUSTERLAND JAZZ BAND" or even "THE SHADOWS"? We can record between attacks -- no pressure.
So, you win the lottery and call me. We'll blow the charts off the scale.

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