Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Mexican hillbilly

So I need to talk to you. Got a minute?


I wanted to apologize for lecturing you yesterday. I could have said it nicer. I'm hoping you didn't feel attacked. (pauses) Did you feel attacked?

Yeah. I wish you had said things nicer too. Because then I go and blame myself and feel guilty and then I feel like I have that much farther to go as far as getting my life together. Which is just me. I feel shameful, and when you do that, you're just adding shame on top of shame. Fuck, I already have enough shame in my life.

I wasn't saying "If I ..." because I wanted pity. I said that because I feel that. I actually feel totally defeated and I'm trying to overcome that.

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry, too.

What are you sorry for?

For being frustrating.

(Shakes his head) You know, can we...

Start over?

Start over. Friends?



I'm glad that's out of the way.

It's a relief.


What's going on today?

Trying to get through with being moody to people I work with. I like the people I work with. I don't want to subject them to...to the emotions that have been going on lately, you know. Plus, I don't want to focus on the bad stuff too much anyway. I'm exhausted from analyzing so much. I need to clear my mind.

I finally sang yesterday. I kept playing guitar and I wrote but I didn't sing, and I didn't even realize it until I sang.

What did you sing?

I sang this song by Gram Parsons called "Juanita." It's got this great line:

I don't know what I done
And I'm feeling so ashamed

I also sang this new song I wrote, and a couple of other things. Well, actually, one was an instrumental, this fooling around in A minor, but then it modulates. It kinda reminds me of traditional Jewish music.

Pretty good, coming from a recovering Catholic.

I love those kinds of melodies. That kind of music just shows me some insight into the emotions of minor keys. You know, how those kinds of melodies can be so soulful. And they can be really sad. And normally I use minor chords as kind of "passing through" chords.

Fuck, man. I don't know if I'm even making sense. I feel like such a Mexican hillbilly in that way.

Mexican hillbilly?

See this dark skin? (points to arm) I'm Mexican, man. Which is a good thing. A very good thing.

The hillbilly part just means I feel like kind of a hick because I'm not formally trained. I mean, I gathered stuff from school, but also from tons of other places, and generally I don't learn a lot of things until I have to. I hope I didn't offend you or anything. I should think more before I say things. Sometimes I think someone should just put a muzzle on me.

(The interviewer looks at Farmboy but remains silent)

Okay. I know. I shouldn't say stuff like that.

I didn't say anything.

I'm just sayin', is all.

Monday, March 29, 2010

You need to be strong

Got our hours cut at work.

I'm sorry.

Boy, you're sure saying "I'm sorry" a lot lately.

That's because I am sorry that you're going through tough times lately.

Could be worse. I'm not losing a place to live or my truck. But I don't have any emergency money for if my truck breaks down or the computer needs fixing or whatever, and that worries me. I'm also at the end of my credit, and...well, I'm going to have to be a musician, it looks like.

Could be worse.

Damn right. Being a musician could be the best thing for me. My life could be greatly improved. If I get the gigs, that is. If I'm not rejected all the fuckin' time.

You know what, farmboy? You may need to teach yourself to tell yourself to shut the fuck up when you say things like that.

(Farmboy is shocked and speechless)

I mean it, farmboy. I'm not saying you have to be one of these positive thinking types. I know that's not your style. But, seriously, you're just going to wind up bitter and sad if you think like that all the time. And you're so much smarter than that, farmboy. I don't know why you can't see that. C'mon, farmboy.

Okay. End of lecture.

(looks up at the interviewer) I know that. (hangs head down) I'm sorry.

No, farmboy, I didn't mean...

I really am sorry. I know I'm emotional and self-centered and whiny...

Farmboy, it's your life. You should be self-centered about it.

But I can be a fuckin' drag. I know that.

You're painting yourself into a corner. Just stop. Take a breath. Don't panic.

I don't know...

Just rest. Your mind is on overtime.


You're a good guy, farmboy. I like you.

Are you breathing?


Breathe some more.


I want you to take care of yourself, farmboy. Listen to me. Right now it's really important to eat healthy, to get some exercise, to laugh, to learn, to sleep, to do good things for yourself. Because right now you're open emotionally to all sorts of things. You are super-sensitive, especially when it comes to rejection. So you have to treat yourself right. You need to start building a foundation of feeling good about yourself. And that may mean listening less to those voices telling you how wrong and bad you are.

There's another reason. You need to be strong because I think some changes are coming your way.

Good or bad changes?

We'll see.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wish I could smell the ocean

Hey. Good to see you. What's up?

Spring break is over. but I don't want to talk much about it. It's time to move on from this past week, I think. I'm going to go to bed at a good time and hopefully sleep well and get up and head off into, well, everyday life.

You okay?

Oh, I'm anxious. But I've done a fairly good job today keeping away from the bitterness and anger and hurt that have been eating away at me. I'm really hoping tomorrow goes well at work.

I miss music. I haven't been playing much, though I have been playing everyday. And today I wrote the first draft of a song, or at least the lyrics.

Great! Do you like it?

I need to get some distance from it, but it is good to be writing, to tap into that place where the writing comes from.

Which is?

Well, in this instance, hurt. I actually haven't thought a great deal about where the writing comes from. Damn, ain't it enough to do the writing? Don't I have my priorities right if I focus first and foremost on the writing?

Yes, you do. But you know that.

Yeah. So I'm glad at least some songwriting has come out of that experience.

So the song is about...

My feelings. Or, rather, my feelings of helplessness and and hopelessness and my need for somebody to fuckin' touch me once in a while. I feel like such an alien creature. I look around at other people and it's like I'm watching from the behind a window saying "I wanna be like the rest of the kids." Don't I get to be a human being too?

Farmboy, where did this come from?

Well, okay, Mr. "I'm-not-a-therapist', this is the thing: I don't know where this came from, just that I've always felt this way. And, believe me, it would be so much easier to blame this on somebody, to say "Yeah, my parents, or the priests, or the teachers...", but it goes deeper than that.

One thing I'm thinking is that I really could use actual honest-to-God therapy --

I agree.

But I can't fuckin' afford the co-payments.

At least, you know, I have you as my friend. I can't tell you how much you've helped these past few days...

Glad to be of service.

I wish it were 20,years earlier, and my Dad was still alive, and I could be with my brothers and my sister and my stepmother and everybody. Man, i wish that more than anything. I wish I could smell the ocean in the air in my hometown. I wish I was better physically, and I wish all my work wasn't for nothing.

(Farmboy starts to cry softly, then stops)

Damn, farmboy. I wish I could help you.

(Farmboy dries his eyes on his shirtsleeve)

Oh, man, you help plenty. I just wish it hadn't come to this...

Farmboy, look...things can change. Things will change.

I hope so. You don't know how much I hope so. 'Cause I seriously love life, I love being alive, and I don't want hope to disappear.

It won't...

(Farmboy starts to cry again)

Farmboy, you'll be okay. You'll be better than you can know. You have to believe this...

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Today was just molestation

Good day? Bad day?

Bad day, but not as bad as yesterday. Stayed in, tried not to think about recent career developments. No escalation as of right now. And that's a good thing. I felt bad for not doing anything constructive all day, but then I thought maybe this is what I should be doing. Getting over things.

Sounds like...a better day than yesterday, yes.

The last two three days, life fucked me over. Today was just molestation.

What about tomorrow?

We'll see when it comes. I think it would be a real good thing to not fuckin' smoke so much pot tomorrow, 'cause Monday it's back to work, and that may not be a bad thing.

Get you back to normalcy.

Or some semblance of it, yeah. That could be good. Not be so isolated. Even though I think isolation was needed these last few days.

I think you're recovering.

Good. I think what happened was I lost my reason for living for a while. Seriously. I know this whole time I appear to be extremely over-dramatic and self-involved. Which I am. But this was what everything felt like to me. It was fuckin' painful, man. And, see, there's nobody around that I feel comfortable enough to say "I'm hurt" to somebody who will hug me which would then start me to cryin' like a five-year-old. Which, of course, is exactly what I need most. But you can't do that. I can't do that.

So tonight...

Tonight I can stay up and I found my anti-anxiety pills so I can take one.

Well, congratulations about today. Sounds like you've learned some things about yourself.

Yeah, that I can throw one hell of a tantrum when I don't get my way.

Stop it. You were hurt, and you recognized that you needed to take action.

Today was completely inaction.

No it wasn't. You could have chosen to get mad mad and obsess over it and have it turn out like the escalation it was the day before.


So breathe. Relax. Don't panic. Take the pill. Enjoy the weed. And sleep well, farmboy.

Thanks. You too.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Out in the world and can't escape


You okay?

This anger comes and it takes over. It just escalates. And not only am I aware of it, I buy into it. And it happens at the worst of times, the times when I'm out in the world and can't escape. Like, I'm driving, which is stressful to me, and my blood sugar's low because I didn't stop to fuckin' eat and I can't find my destination. And I plunge right into the anger and resentment and bitterness and not only does it swallow me whole, but then it fuckin' grows. It's like an emotional form of cancer, I swear to God.

I have a first line to a new song. Ahem.

Cut this hatred out of me

Got that? Out of me. Not out of my heart or my mind, but out of me. Fuckin' cancer, man. Fuckin' emotional cancer. It'll fuckin' kill me if I let it.

You know, that's probably true. If you let it, that is.

Yeah, I believe it.

I'm beginning to settle down, calm down. Would you mind if we stop now so I can eat something and have some water and...slow on down. I'll try to get with you later, okay?

Not so fast, farmboy. Just a couple of questions. Do you feel beat up yet?

No. I feel, just now, incredibly tired.

Did you feel that way when we started talking?

Um, no. Why?

Just curious.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Welcome to Clydeville

Welcome back.

Oh, man, this is not looking good.

I was thinking today about how I don't feel beat up like I thought I would. And you know why? Because I'm still in that anger phase -- I'm not sure how to phrase that, by the way. "Anger phase" seems kinda lame.

I think I know what you mean. You're pissed.

I am, and this is where things can get ugly. Man, fuckin' venom, that's what can come out of my mouth and I don't want to infect anybody. Seriously.

I went out tonight to the coffeehouse I go to, and, fuck, I was fuckin' crying while the music was going on. And then afterwards, I'm talking to friends and I'm talking all about this competition and how the folk music world is so fuckin' phony. You know, they all get up there, arm in arm, you know, we're all one big fuckin' family. Nobody ever looks at the ones who don't get to be part of their little chosen club.

So I'm spouting off, you know, and I'm cursin'...

(Sarcastically) I can't imagine!

Hey, eat shit, motherfucker. What I'm sayin' is I'm being bitter and ugly and I don't want to pass that on to my friends. What I really need is somebody I can talk to. Besides you, I mean. I don't mean to slight you. I mean, you've got the fuckin' patience of a saint and you are so much smarter than me...


I appreciate you, motherfucker. By the way, I'm giving you a name since you won't tell me your real name. Clyde. I've never known any Clydes before. So welcome to Clydeville, Clyde.

Real nice. Farmboy and Clyde. Sounds like a couple of bluegrass pickers.

So, Clyde, you are smarter than me and calmer than me and a whole lot more patient than me, and...

I can't write songs.

Well, obviously, I can't write them either, Clyde.

Okay, let's not go there. I would like you to try being kind to yourself right now, farmboy. Right now you may need to be in survivor mode, because what this has brought out in you is about more than a contest. You've gone through some kind of trauma. Seriously. Not the contest, but what being rejected brings out in you.

See, I told you. You're smarter'n me, Clyde.

You're pretty smart yourself, farmboy. See? You're joking around a little.

Yeah. It feels good. But I know it's temporary.

But it's here.

I am thankful for that. I know the bitterness, the anger, is gonna come back. Pisses me off.

I wish I had smart advice for you, farmboy. But it's like I said: I'm not a parent or therapist or preacher or even teacher.

You're my friend.


And I'm glad. Thanks, Clyde.

Life hurts

How are you doing? Are you okay?


Do you want to talk about it?

Maybe later.

I'll be here.

What am I gonna do?

I think we should talk, farmboy.

Nothing good is happening. I need to escape.

Escape from what?


You're not a failure.

I need to go to bed. For, like, a fuckin' month.

You'll be all right. It's just a contest.

It's about more than that.

How so?

Life hurts. I'm alone. No hope.


Past depression. Full-on...I don't know, man. I'm so fuckin' pathetic. We'll talk later, okay? I'm going to bed.

I want to talk later. Don't forget.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A lot more than a contest...

Are you busy? Can we talk?


I got this email. It was from the contest that I entered, the one that I went to a whole lot of trouble for.


I got rejected. I am such a fuckin' failure.


You know, the hardest part is that there's no peace with it. It's not like I can call up these people and say "So, what didn't you like? Why is my song wrong? Why is my song bad?"

Hey, farmboy...

And it's not like I can even fuckin' cry over this. No, I have to hold everything inside and let it eat away inside me. And it's not like I want to feel better. I seem to want to feel it. (starts to cry, makes himself stop) But I'm too fuckin' hurt to even try to get over it. And I know it's not that big a deal...

It's a big deal to you.

Goddamn it, this is all I have. This is all I fuckin' have. I fuckin' work and work and work at this stuff, this writing songs stuff, and I'm a fuckin' failure. And I think things that I know are ridiculous, but I'm so fuckin' hurt and angry and there's no recourse, you know. My fuckin' best is not fuckin' good enough.

Have you been smoking pot?

No. I am fuckin' sober right now. But I'm gonna smoke pot and I'm gonna drink...

But you don't drink.

I drink sometimes. Fuck. I am such a fuckin' failure.


I feel like I will never feel any better. I fuckin' never accomplish anything. I'm just...I was just fuckin' born wrong.

Breathe. Take a breath.

I'll breathe in when I smoke pot. Which is fuckin' now.

(Farmboy gets up, goes inside the bathroom of his apartment, puts some marijuana into his pipe, and the smell of smoke fills the apartment. He does some back stretches and arm exercises. He comes back into the living room with a cup of Irish cream.)

You're back.

I'm back.

You stoned?

You betcha. I scraped the pipes and got a whole mess of that black tar stuff which is, like, pure THC. I think it's THC. But I don't remember, 'cause I'm stoned.

Fuck, I also found out today I may not be getting a medical marijuana card. Son of a fuckin' bitch, man. It has been one fucked-up day.

I bet you're going all through your emotions.

Fuckin' A, man, I fuckin' tell you. Fuckin' Alex Chilton died.

Farmboy, c'mon. Let me speak.

Yeah, yeah. Speak.

Damn it, farmboy, I just wish I could go and change everything so you could be the winner. 'Cause I gotta tell you, farmboy, I am so sorry. In your language: I am so fuckin' sorry that you didn't win. Because you should win. You should have at least been one of the ten. It was their fuckin' mistake, farmboy. They are wrong.

Man...I need a fuckin' success so badly.

I know I shouldn't care what others think, but I do.

I am so fuckin' tired of being the loser, you don't know. Motherfucker. I am so fuckin' angry, I am so fuckin' hurt. I feel like I am always going to be poor, always work at a stressful job that doesn't pay well, always be fuckin' mentally ill...


Let me fuckin' vent, okay? At the risk of sounding selfish, this is about me right now, me and my goddamn stupid little feelings. I'm tired of trying and working and seeing no results anywhere.

This is about a lot more than a contest...

Fuck, man, this is about my fuckin' life. This is what I do: I fuckin' write songs. That's who I am. And to have that fuckin' negated by some people who are judging me. And I fuckin' paid $30 for the fuckin' honor! I can't afford to buy groceries, I'm living on fuckin' Top Ramen and peanut butter!

Fuck, man, all this fuckin' stress, all this fuckin' work. It's never enough, you know, I have to run here and there and it's never fuckin' good enough. No matter what I do. The one thing that I thought might be good enough gets flat-out rejected.

So how's this, man? Am I being self-pitying enough? Am I whining enough for you?

(calmly) Stop it, farmboy. Stop it. Look, do this for me. Humor me. Take five deep, slow breaths. Then try to empty your head and just get into the quiet for a little while.

Uh...okay. 'Cause now I feel bad.


Because I've been yelling at you, and you didn't do nothin'.

Here, I'll breathe with you.

( The interviewer turns off the light. They both breathe and sit in the quiet. After a while, the Interviewer turns the light back on.)

How was that?

Hard. My mind just chatters away all the fuckin' time.

How are you feeling?

A little calmer. Sort of embarrassed. I feel like I'm gonna feel like I've been beat up after a while. Fuck, it's hard, man. And it's not going to go away real soon. It's gonna hurt for a while. Seriously.

Damn, I'm sorry. This shouldn't have happened.

In another life, maybe. Somebody else's life, for sure.

Hey, here's some Leonard Cohen for you:

And I thank you
I thank you
For doing your duty
You keepers of truth
You guardians of beauty
Your vision was right
My vision was wrong
I'm sorry for smudging
The air with my song...

"A Singer Must Die."

Yep. Written by Leonard Cohen. As sung by Jennifer Warnes. The song is so fuckin' true.

I need to eat something and maybe even take a anti-anxiety drug and go to sleep. For a long long time.

Remember, you can talk to me. Any time.

I know. Thanks.

Take care of yourself, Farmboy.

I'll try.

Be good to yourself.

You too, man. Thanks.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Kinda normal life

Today has been so interesting. I think I was beginning to feel down...

You think?

Okay, okay. As I was saying, I didn't feel too good. I was feeling worthless and lazy and "other-people-have-good-things-happen-to-them-and-I-don't" self-pitying. And I turned it around.


I went to the park and walked around. I sat for a while and did some deep breathing. Then I came home and read some of the Louis Armstrong biography I'm reading. The I put a chicken in the oven and watched part one of "This Emotional Life," this PBS documentary series. And I ate fruit today and had two servings of vegetables via vegetable juice. And exercised. And this was accomplished without being high. I did have some blueberries under the influence, though.

So it turned into a good day and I'm proud of myself.

Good for you. I'm proud of you, too. Good job, farmboy.

Hey, thanks.

So, tell me about what you've been learning.

I love learning.

I know. That's one of the things that drives you.

Louis Armstrong, man, what a hero. This is an amazing biography. I think it's written by a guy named Terry Teachout, he's like theater critic for the Washington Post or something. He a great writer. It's really pretty inspiring. And, think, he was a pothead! But, most of all, he was a musical innovator. I mean, he was the musical innovator. This is a really good book.

I also really liked the first part of "This Emotional Life." It was long, though. I probably should have stopped it after the "friends" segment. And, say, thing of "friends," did I tell you that in the joint I played in last night, there was an autographed photo of Jennifer Aniston in the men's room?


Seriously. I play all the class joints. I'm like fuckin' Sinatra in Vegas.

So, anyway, "This Emotional Life"?

I learned a lot, and a lot of it was really fascinating. It's a good show for me to watch. Plus, it was, like, two hours away from the fuckin' internet.

What's up for tomorrow?

I think I'm going to go see my niece and print up some bios, work on "Snow." Practice a song for the Songwriter's night at my favorite venue here in town.

So no conflicts today?

Nothin' I need to address right now. Amazing, huh? But it's not dramatic or anything, it's just kinda normal life, you know what I mean?

I'm not sure I do.

It's what you kinda do, or should do, every day. You go for a walk, you eat fruits and vegetables, you play guitar, you learn something. I like that it hasn't been this knock-out day, just, you know, a day...

Where you did things. Where you turned around what might have been a bad situation, emotionally speaking.

See, I can do that every day. If I'm not under that dark cloud of fuckin' depression or anxiety or whatever emotional problem has worked its little way into my brain.

You chose not to be under that cloud today, farmboy.

(pause) Yeah. Yeah, I did. Didn't I?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Times are fuckin' tough

Well, I went out and was social tonight. And I was the featured act at an open mike, so I played.

Excellent. This is a good way to spend your Monday of spring break. How was it?

I sang well. I could tell. I've become so much more aware of rhythm when I'm performing, and that's a good thing. I realize that part of my passion, my desire, is that I want to be professional. And by that, I don't mean anything to do with money. I want to do things right, you know?

A certain kind of standard?

Exactly. An old friend of mine once told me that he has a "bottom line" for his life. He does not go below the bottom line. And that's how I want to be as a musician and a performer. You're assured of a certain quality when I work in music. That's what I'm striving for.

I hate to ask you this...

(sighs) Go the fuck ahead.

Did you make any money?

No. Not even a free cup of fuckin' coffee. I sold no CDs. Man, I could have really used some sales, you know? But I know better than to expect to make any money at an open mike. I felt bad for this one guy, an older gentleman who played harmonica and guitar. I really got the feeling that he needed that money he hoped to make in CD sales. And I don't think he sold a single one.

Times are tough.

Times are fuckin' tough. I am so worried about summer...

Can you take that worry and put it aside for a while? So you can think of some kind of action you can take. Not just plans, but action.

Oh, yeah, make copies of the new one-sheet, get those demos, and give stuff to the churches I want to play at.

There are other actions, too. Cleaning your apartment...

Yeah. Exercising. (laughs) Eating fruits and vegetables. Playing guitar. Writing. Now the hard part is getting focused. I think like this: I'm raking the leaves and at the same time I'm yelling at myself for being such a shithead because, oh, look, over there, doesn't that lawn have to be mowed right now?

One thing at a time, farmboy.

I know. One thing at a fuckin' time.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Man, I am so fuckin' worried about money
that it ain't even funny,
I worry about money all the time.
If I only had money
I would have a little honey
and the whole wide world would be mine.

Like it? I just made it up. It's based on a true story.

Let me guess: More money problems?

I just worry and worry and worry. That's a big reason why I'm starting to push this music thing right now. It's like the classic win-win situation. I get to be a musician and I get to buy groceries and pay the bills. Then why am I so resistant? I don't know. I don't have a fuckin' clue.

Does it scare you?

Yeah. I'm also afraid that no one will want to hear me or hire me. Then I'll be depressed because I've been rejected and I won't be able to buy rent and groceries and credit card people. (laughs) It's the classic lose-lose situation!

So here, I'm gonna change the subject. Remember that first draft I showed you a couple months ago of a song called "Snow"?

Yes, I remember.

Well,it looks like it could be a song. I'll be working on it this week and I'll see if it sticks. But no matter what, it sure feels good to be working on music.

Good, because it may be something that you'll be doing a whole lot more of.

From your lips to God's ear, fucker.

Just wait. Seriously. You're putting stuff out there. You're putting out more action. That, my friend, is more than you've done in a long time. And you tell me it feels good. All this is really encouraging...

Until rejection comes around again.

Which it will. That's inevitable. But this time you get to prepare a foundation of, well, self-esteem, for lack of a better term. You'll be believing in yourself more. You won't need their approval so much.

Sounds good.

Oh, it will be. Just wait. Patience, farmboy, patience.

And you're helpin' me,right?

You bet. You know what?


Try not to worry, try not to panic. Instead, look to see what you can do. Look to see where the action can be applied. Then...well, apply it.

Man, you give great pep talks. You should go professional.

(laughs) I'm looking into it.

Good. Do I get a percentage?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Self-help through rhyming

What are you doing, here on the first day of spring break?

I'm hangin' out at home on a Saturday night. I can't afford to go anywhere, but I'm not complaining. I'm, like, just hangin', listening to music via headphones. I'm listening to this stuff recorded at a radio station by Big Star a long time ago. Their lead singer, Alex Chilton, just passed away and surprised me and made me sad. I've only just recently got into Big Star, and he is one fine singer. "September Gurls" should have been a big hit in 1972 or whenever it was. It actually makes me angry that it wasn't.

You didn't go to see your brother and his family?

Nope. I'll go tomorrow night. I played guitar today, messed around with working on a new song.

That's pretty cool.

Man, I really want to write great songs, songs that nobody else can write. (laughs) I feel like I'm a genius sometimes, but nobody know it but me.

That must be a little confusing. You go through most of your life, the overwhelming majority of your life, believing that you're a worthless sack of shit, if you don't mind me saying that...

(laughs) Oh, please, go on!

And then, in this one area of your life, you feel...



Yeah, and in the rest of my life I feel pretty much powerless. Seriously. In my darkest hours, I feel like I'm living just to hand money over to the insurance companies and the bank. Fuckers. But let's not go there.

There's always somewhere you don't want to go to.

Yeah, I have this aversion to making myself feel miserable. Usually.

I was going to say...

Writing songs is the best. There's nothing, nothing better than when it works and you're feeling like you're using all your muscles at one time. All your songwriting muscles.

And lately I've been good at it, and, man, what it does for my self-confidence -- it's self-help through rhyming. I could give seminars.

Here's a goal for spring break: To write a song I'm happy with. Which is a tall order, you know. I have high standards. Which is one of my best features, by the way. In songwriting. Man, I want to write great songs so much, it's like I can taste it. Damn, it's strong, that feeling.

It's why you were born, farmboy.

Fuckin' right.

Keep going with it, farmboy. You've got to follow this songwriting passion.

Oh, believe me, I do. Really, without it...well, I can't imagine.

Actually, I can imagine. I've had my heart broken by musical rejection, and it's the fuckin' worst, man. That's a place where I can feel powerless. But that's not where I am tonight. Tonight I feel all right. I'm considering drinking this one bottle of wine I have, but I don't do alcohol good. I can get sick from it real easily.

Sounds like spring break is going well. I really enjoy it when you pontificate about songwriting.

(laughs) Yeah, it's me at my most fuckin' opinionated.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Spring break

What's up?

Everything but my paycheck! Hey, I sound like that guy in "Cheers."


Yeah, that's the guy. Well, guess what, amigo? It's spring break! Spring break!

How long do you get off?

One week. A week in which I would like to get some things done.

Such as?

I need to take gig stuff to a couple of places, I need to work on my EPK -- electronic press kit. I'd like to do some recording and writing, and maybe take a little action with gigs. I'd also like to read and listen and learn and maybe even walk.

How about seeing people? Friends?

I will see friends and I'd like to spend some time with my niece. I will not isolate myself. This I know. Too much too completely alone can drive me crazy -- no, worse than that, I'll start thinking of things I shouldn't be thinking of, and then I'll start obsessing, and I'll get depressed and sad and devastated and...well, fuck, I can't think of a word for the severity of it. I can get real bad. And, right now especially, I can't let myself be drawn that way.

Take some time to relax, too. Don't make so many plans that you can't get any peace.

Yeah, I should try meditating or something. I think I don't really know exactly what meditation is. (laughs) I know what medication is.

Especially self-medication.

Yeah. We should talk about that, I guess. As long as you're not too down on me, it might be a good thing to talk about. I mean, just for my own...clarification, if you know what I mean.

I'm not sure I do.

In some ways, I think marijuana may be a good thing for me. I smoke too much, maybe...

Now, that's you saying this...

It's me, yeah, I know. I'm actually trying to get a medical marijuana card right now. Wish me luck.

Good luck. farmboy.

Thanks. I'm hoping it comes through.

Listen, you have to know this. I won't be judgmental about your use of marijuana. I think that's important for you to know. I'm not your parents or a police officer or a priest or anyone like that.

A friend?

I'll accept that.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Remember to breathe

Oh, man, I am so scared and so worried because I'm all fucked up in the checkbook. I look at things and I think "What am I gonna do?" Cause it's only March 18 and I have, like, 26 dollars in the bank and I have, like, no credit left. And then I think: What if something happens? What if catastrophe strikes? How did I get this way? How am I going to get some money?

How much do you need?

Like a hundred dollars. I need to make some money with music. I mean, not just right now but always. And I've started doing some stuff -- the bio, elder audience, working on the music itself -- but of course nothing's happened yet because it's too soon.

So you need patience --

Patience and faith. Faith that some kind of opportunity will come .

You know, I don't talk about God much, and maybe that's because it's personal and I look at the relationship as being just between us two...

You and God.

Yeah. And I think "Is God really going to let you down?" I don't mean that God's going to give me everything I want. What it means is, I'm going to get through this. My bills are paid, we're just talking food and gas here.

You know, I'm kinda uncomfortable talking about God. It really is that private. My faith gives me a lot of strength.

That's good.

Yeah. I like "faith" instead of "religion" 'cause it seems to be that religions just divide us from one another. Or maybe I'm not a church type of guy.

If I did go to church, it would be, like, Unitarian, I think.

In the meantime, I have to figure out a way to make some money, quick.

You know, you're right. You'll make it through. The important thing to do now may just be to not panic.

Yeah. That's hard sometimes.

I know.

Remember to breathe. And remember that you always have music.

Amen, brother.