April 17, 2014
I ordered a laser printer (/scanner/copier) for my birthday–coming up soon! It was either that or a modest PA system. The printer was much less expensive. And more immediately practical, I think. The PA would be for LaunchPad shows where there’s no house system, like The Tiny Tavern, and most art galleries. We’ve been using my keyboard amp as our only sound system for years now, and I want to give it some help! But right now I’m more excited about making zines and CD & cassette covers and other printed art objects. Duplex laser printer will be my printing press!
Still no drinking, nearly 2 months. It’s good. It feels like a gift. Totally abusing black coffee, though.
Baseball season is 2.5 weeks old. I re-upped MLB-TV for a second month. I can’t watch the Giants’ live games (stupid blackout restrictions–so I listen to their radio broadcasts, which are excellent), but I’ve been following other teams with some interest. Especially the Astros. They switched leagues last year and are one of the worst teams in the majors. But they have the top-rated farm system and the youngest roster. The future could be quite bright for Houston, indeed. I’ve been enjoying watching them play. Every win is big!
Podcasting hiatus again, it seems. Regarding my “spare” time: I do things when I have the urge to do them. If I keep doing them past that point, they soon lose their magic. That’s why space money is rare, and future supplies are not certain. That’s why I quit the OCF, and the radio station before that. The urge had played out. Negatives were outweighing positives. Voluntary efforts must emerge from passion!
March 31, 2014
4:43am – Despite the crumbs tossed so far, the 3 regular-season but not traditionally-regular-season games played (all involving the LA Dodgers, interestingly enough), TODAY is what the vast majority of us think of as Opening Day. HAPPY OPENING DAY!
“My team” (since 11 yrs old) the San Francisco Giants seem much improved this year, if spring training is any indication. But they’re in a tough division, with the bottomless-wallet Dodgers determined to buy a championship no matter what, improved Padres, still-tough Arizona, and non-pushover Colorado. We don’t have an Astros in our division that we play 18 or 19 times, counting on 15-18 wins. Everybody in the NL West has potential to win. But it’s unlikely a wild card team will come from there, so the only way to get to post-season is to win the division. Go Giants!
The Giants’ year starts today vs. the Snakes in the desert. Tough ballpark for the infield, being hard and fast, but we just got done with a six weeks right there in the Phoenix area, so our infielders are as ready as they’re gonna be! It’s the pitching I’m more concerned with. Time to find out what we’re made of, as they say.
March 28, 2014
4:59am – Uh-oh, I hope I didn’t burn the oatmeal! I forgot to turn the burner off when I turned the timer off. But it’s only been 4 minutes. I put the cover on and it’ll steam for a bit, hopefully softening any burned-on oats at the bottom.
I’ve been caught up in Digital Diamond Baseball, playing the 2013 season with virtual San Francisco Giants. We’re doing pretty well right now (late April), but it’s what happens after Toronto in May that will be be telling. Last year, the real Giants acted like they were cursed from the time they entered Canada to play the Blue Jays until late in the season when they surged a bit to avoid a first-to-worst disaster of a year. I blame it on Melky Cabrera. Some kind of weird Melky karma. The juiced Melky (top batting avg., all-star game MPV) helped SF win the pennant in 2012. Hopefully we’ve got that off our backs now!
Still trying to keep up with new music, an impossible task but enjoyable. Hey, I did a weird-to-some “future-retro” kinda thing over the weekend: made two 45-minute Spotify playlists, then dubbed them to a C90 cassette. It sounds awesome in the car! I think I may do more of those. Popping a cassette into our circa-2000 vehicle’s deck is certainly easier than plugging in my phone and dialing up music on it. And I can record new stuff over and over on a cassette. Kinda like an analog USB memory stick just for audio.
March 21, 2014
4:41 am – Fleur’s “issue”–whatever it was–has apparently resolved itself, and she is her old self again. Maybe she ate a bad bug or something. Anyway, the crew is healthy, and that’s good.
I watched a big chunk of the Giants-Padres spring game last night. Wow, the G-Men are looking pretty darn good! The lineup was all major-leaguers since spring training is winding down, with the only regulars sitting out being Scutaro and Pagan. Michael Morse was also not in the lineup, but he’s the new guy and I don’t think of him as a regular yet. Juan Perez played left field instead. Blanco played center, and Arias second base. Great to see Posey knock a grand slam! Hunter Pence beat out 2 infield hits, and made a couple excellent grabs in right field. Bumgarner was scary good on the mound. And Sandoval also looked fantastic, with a couple nice hits and a couple runs scored. I’m excited! Regular season starts in about 10 days (not counting the two official-season-opening games in Sydney, Australia, between the Dodgers and Diamondbacks this weekend).
New gear has spurred me to start going through all our LPs. A lot of them have gotten out of order and displaced during the last few years since I stopped DJing at KWVA. New turntables are inspiring exploration and organization. I have several weird genre micro-collections: banjo music, organ music, accordion, barbershop quartet/chorus, “beautiful” music, children’s records, instructional records, moon/space missions. Lots of spoken word of various kinds. Soundtracks, “top hits” LPs. Etc. I want to start filtering these into my podcasts. Get more of an old-school Armadillo Radio sound going on!
March 19, 2014
5:10am – The new turntable arrived yesterday. It’s an Audio Technica AT-LP60 Fully Automatic Belt Driven Turntable. I’ve never had a “fully” automatic turntable. With this one, you put the record on the platter and then press START. That’s it. We played a few albums, and they sounded great. Our next step is to get a shelf or case or some piece of furniture that will hold a few dozen or more of our LPs, and put it next to the hi-fi. Then my vision of having a nice up-to-date stereo system that is ready to play CDs, cassettes, vinyl records, FM & AM radio, mp3s and internet streams will be realized!
It’s not like I fetishize records and cassettes. They neither make me feel hip and cutting edge nor old and passé. We just have a lot of them, and there’s vast amounts of good music on them. Why not be able to play them at will?
Fleur didn’t show up for breakfast this morning, and when I found her upstairs and told her about it, she wasn’t interested. A little off her feed, I guess. Hopefully just a slight belly issue or something that will pass quickly.
I upgraded to the new version 4 of Digital Diamond Baseball, a fairly complex statistical simulation game. They’ve added a “career mode” with player aging and the ability to generate fictional players with realistic stats based on real players. You can play multi-season “campaigns”–my term because this is kind of a Dungeons & Dragons for baseball, given that you generate “characters” i.e. players, who play out a career or lifetime, as it were. I’m still learning the rudiments, but I foresee endless hours of obsessive fun… if I want to. The “problem” is: there are so many options for fun per time available. Ah well. Life could be much worse, right?