previous months: 8/1/2023 -- 12/31/2023 

1/1/2024   1/4/2024   1/13/2024   1/29/2024   2/21/2024   2/29/2024   3/1/2024  
3/10/2024   3/16/2024   3/25/2024   4/2/2024   4/3/2024   4/8/2024   4/14/2024  
4/18/2024   4/29/2024   5/19/2024   5/26/2024  

beginning   latest entry

1/1/2024

My plan was to launch 2024 from a good start: get some new music done! And I have: Four pieces, 21 minutes each, completed just before Christmas. I'm not sure what I think of them yet (all four 'semi-ambient'), but they were enjoyable to do. HAPPY NEW YEAR!


1/4/2024

I had another one of those 'time-shift' moments late this afternoon. I went over to get my RSV vaccine, and stopped in the grocery store to pick up some milk. Coming out, the sky had turned pink in sunset, and with the slant of the light, coupled with the 45° temperature, I was suddenly back in high school. It was March. The feelings all aligned.

Driving back, I was listening to the vcv-4 piece (listed in the above post), and I had a flash of how lucky I've been. In high school, I always wanted to have access to the synthesizers and tools to make the music I wanted to make. Now I have them. And more. I have the freedom and instruments I need. Then I was thinking about the sunset, over Admiralty Inlet, the Pacific Ocean. I live on an island in the Pacific! How did I get here?

If I had somehow been able to materialize and tell high-school Brad what this would be like, I would not have believed any of it. It was waaaay outside my experience. I wonder what the future will be for our children as they grow, for Shai and Naomi, and (new!) baby John Michael?



1/13/2024

I'm back in Indiana. About an inch of snow fell last night, and some residual flakes are floating gently around. I love looking out the window, the bare tree branches gently swaying, and watching the snowflakes float this way, that way...

It's been a tough visit. There is much I don't write in this blog anymore, personal things that are not public. Although I doubt it hardly matters. I don't think many people read this. I do, now and then, and it's here for me in the future (if that future unfolds). Certainly the writing has lost it's 'urgency', my on-going encounter with myeloma, but that's a good thing! I'll trade 'urgency' for time spent with family and friends, time working on music, time just being, always.


1/29/2024

I'm sitting in our Whidbey living room with a direct view of Mt. Rainier, snow-covered and partly shrouded in clouds. Massive.

Yesterday I awoke with the song Puff the Magic Dragon in my head. In particular, this verse was running on a loop:

I thought it was "Dragon's wings and magic things" in place of the "Painted wings..." line. Whatever, it made me so profoundly sad! I could hardly bear it. Even know, I'm tearing up a little bit. Why can't the joyous times last forever?

But that's the paradox and tragedy of living in time. To freeze those moments, to stop the flow of time would destroy the very thing I want to preserve. What about the other moments, the ones yet to come? I live in the hope that they will visit, again.

I wrote early on in this blog about wanting to do this.

There are things I wish I could do. I wish I could take away Mom and Dad's dementia and make their world the place of goodness and light that Mom desires. I wish I could fix Daniel; take away his troubles and woes. I wish I could lessen Lian's work-load, she is so good! While I'm at it, I wish I could solve the world problems. I wish the best future for Shai and Naomi. And I wish I could make Jill happy. Puff the magic dragon indeed.


2/21/2024

I haven't written much here, again, because I believe that I imagine I should write Deep Thoughts about Big Things, and frankly I haven't had many of those lately. Which is -- as I've observed before, I think -- probably good because (for me) those Deep Thoughts are often motivated by bad medical news, etc. So far, knock on wood, things are good. I'm enjoying this 'extended retirement slide' a lot. Shai and Naomi! Oh my!

I do have some items I want to post here, since this blog is a semi document-of-record for work I do. In addition to the vcvetudes I finished at the end of last year, I knocked out some more semi-ambient music using a signal-processing technique that stretches sound waaaaay out:

I also got out my guitar and did another 'political rock song', with a video too!: The presidential election is starting to really heat up, and I felt I had to do something. Seriously, though? My little anti-Trump music video won't do much at all, if anything. However, if it reminds even one person just how awful Trump is, and convinces them to go vote for Biden instead of some idiotic third-party candidate, or vote Biden instead of sitting-out the election, then I'm happy I did it. There is too much at stake. I'll bet I'll be writing more about this in the coming months.



2/29/2024

It's leap year again! Leap day, too. Jill and I are out in Indiana, because Mom is celebrating her 90th birthday tomorrow. Brenda and John are arriving late tonight. It will be quite a thing (more later). I've been working on some new music; will finish when I return to Whidbey. Then I have a bit more traveling to do through the first part of April. Life, oh life.


3/1/2024

HAPPY   BIRTHDAY   MOM!!!!!!!

Nintey(90!!!!!!!!) years old today! Brenda/John/Jill and I were there; we had quite a celebration! More in future posts here.



3/10/2024

There is so much to write! So much to record for recollection! Shai with the 'bird' costume Jill created (what a Grandma!), Naomi barreling down the ski-slopes in Austria, I'm crankin' out more and more music, heading to visit Doug Scott in San Jose in two days, springtime flowers are blooming, and then we get ice.snow... all this and more! I need to catch up, somehow.


3/16/2024

Spring has definitely sprung! It's been creeping in, but the majority of the time we've had cold/rain here in the Pacific Northwest. The weird thing is how the climate does 'jump ahead' sometimes of where I expect it to be. For example, I took these pictures the third week of February:


           


February! I remember the snowdrops about this time of the year peeking up in New Jersey, sometimes even late January. But they were snowdrops! The climate, I think she is a-changin'...

Today, however, was full-on springtime. High around 72, and a nice cool low tonight. I even feel, sort-of, optimistic. I had a wonderful visit with Doug and Julie in Mountain View (we even went out to Napa Valley to taste some wine!), and things are going ok here. And in Indiana, again, sort-of. Happy Ides of March! Happy St. Patrick's Day! Happy Spring!



   





3/25/2024

I just watched a bald eagle glide slowly past. Yesterday I noticed that the trees are beginning to 'green'. There always seems to be that day when it happens. It's cloudy and cool today, but our good friend Sharlene is arriving later to look at properties on Whidbey. Exciting times!

I also finished another new piece:

I actually completed it about two weeks ago, just before I flew down to see Doug. I wanted to have it ready for him to audition. I hadn't done the final tweaking until this past weekend. It was better than I had thought at the time I finished. Or at least that's how I think about it now!



4/2/2024

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SHAI NEEMAN!!!!!!!

Eight years old! What a wonderful thing!!!!!!!


4/3/2024

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NAOMI NEEMAN!!!!!!!

The big THREE!!!!!!! These two days are amazing. Really, they are.


4/8/2024

I'm in Indiana, visiting with Mom and Dad.

And...

I saw an eclipse today!


Mom and Dad ready on the front porch



pinhole 'camera' showing the moon starting through


   

   
fun "eclipse" crescent shadows


       
run-up to the MAIN EVENT













the MAIN EVENT!


It was amazing, breathtaking, astounding, marvelous, thrilling... yeah, words can't do it justice. I'm still processing it (and will be for awhile, I think).



4/14/2024

Today is my birthday! I am sixty-seven years old. Not a big 'round number' birthday, but still a year-gone-by nonetheless.

I took this (panoramic) picture shortly after breakfast:

It's not one of the painterly-like sunrises or sunsets we get here on Whidbey Island, but it shows the promise of a lovely day ahead. And in fact it was -- I'm violating one of my 'premises' for this blog and posting this text a few days after it happened. Hey, I'm getting lazy in my old age!



4/18/2024

HAPPY   BIRTHDAY   DANIEL!!!!!!!

Wow, THIRTY years! What an adventrure! What a familiy! What a Daniel!!!!



4/29/2024

The world, the world, the world the world. Oh my. I don't even know where to begin. I will say that we had a wonderful Passover Seder with Lian and family + friends this past weekend.

I'm heading to New York in two days. Columbia. Oh my. There is so much to say, but so many are saying, and it's just overwhelming. I really, really hope that peace can be achieved. Given how people are now acting, I'm pessimistic about that. But there is hope.


5/19/2024

It's a gorgeous spring day today. The forecast was for clouds and rain, but -- as often happens here on Whidbey Island -- it was (nicely!) wrong. Maybe later.

Oh so much is happening! Jill and I had a good trip to NYC, had a grand time museum- and restaurant-hopping with Jeff Ellentuck, and I got to meet colleagues/students/friends at Columbia (not on main campus!). As I said in my previous (several weeks ago!) post here: the world, the world, the world... What can we do? How can we make things better? I have a bunch of new electronic music gear, end of the fiscal year budget-spending, and I think I'll just hide out with it for awhile. Maybe a long while.


5/26/2024

It's been cool and rainy for the past several days, and it looks like it will continue through the coming week. Some good friends from NY are visiting for a few days (Michael Gogins and his wife Heidi) and we'll have to deal with the weather, but the real annoyance is that our Scatchet Head area is under severe water restrictions. One of our well pumps failed, and it was supposed to be replaced several days ago. However, some of the needed pump-parts didn't arrive in time, so we're still taking severe conservation measures until next Friday.

Poor Jill! She became commissioner of our water district shortly after we moved here because she was able to see that the water plant needed some serious work. She put together a set of funding initiatives, and we were just about to go out to bid when the pump failed.

And we're not alone in the US with our infrastructure woes (hey, Roosevelt!). What was I saying about "the world, the world, the world" above?