BACK AGAIN for the third time. Last Fall, we raised over $800 to help the Spokane All Saints Lutheran Church feed the hungry every Tuesday evening. Maybe this Spring we can go for a thousand? Come if you can. Bring a friend. A good time guaranteed.
THE ENNEAGRAM offers a systematic way to understand the underlying foundation of our personalities, or ego structures. It uncovers the source of our fixations and reflexive responses to life. It offers the best of a wisdom tradition in that it reveals underlying subconscious—even mystical—structures; and, the best of a scientific theory in that it predicts with uncanny accuracy our reflexive behaviors that vary depending on our moods and stress levels.
It is more akin to sacred geometry…
While cosmic in nature, the Enneagram is grounded not in the stars but in ourselves. It is NOT astrology. It is more akin to sacred geometry: the same way in which the Greek Golden Ratio reveals an underlying structure of the cosmos, the Enneagram reveals the hidden structure of our personality and its distortions.
The Enneagram has offered me priceless clarity in myself and in my relationships. While it doesn’t “fix” anything, it allows clarity and insight—as getting a pair of glasses won’t fix your eyes, they do allow you to see clearly.
That is the Enneagram.
Classes will be weekly on Thursday nights.
Classes will be held in the upstairs conference room at Express Employment, 331 W Main Street in downtown Spokane, across from the Grand Hotel parking garage.
Doors open at 6:30pm.
Classes start at 7 sharp and end at 8:45.
Class dates are May 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th.
Class size limited to the first 18 who make a deposit or show up.
Cost is $25 per class or $80 for the series.
Share the flyer. Bring a friend. Prepare to be amazed.
OUR relationship had always been challenging. Promises implied. Promises not kept. It offered a strangely invasive and yet impersonal way to create friendships. In the process, it took everything and gave back what it wanted, when it wanted and how it wanted. Although it took from me freely, if I needed its help, I had to pay; and even then, I had no idea what I was getting.
Worse, for me as a participant, it became a mesmerizing social cesspool, a relentless torrent of trivia, some helpful, most not, and much of it divisive and destructive to our shared and fragile human community.
…I had no idea what I was getting.
My work is about savoring life. Facebook, as I came to realize, is about overwhelming life with dazzling displays of sound and fury. And, while it collected, saved and sold every detail about me and my “friends,” it revealed very little about itself. Presumably free, Facebook has “revealed” itself to be a very bad bargain.
If you want to stay in touch, we always have email. And this blog is interactive and much more thoughtful, considerate and discrete. Nobody is collecting anything on anybody here.
But more to the point, you can’t smell the roses, or the coffee, through a computer screen.
And celebrating my tenth anniversary as a cancer dancer.
WHAT an unlikely journey this has been. Ten years ago I was diagnosed, much to my surprise, with stage-three, highly-aggressive bladder cancer. The odds were fifty-fifty. My own sense was I would not survive. That I did is a miracle. Why I did, I have no idea.
But for the first six weeks post surgery, I was bed bound at home—remarkably pain free, but bored—when these curious rhymes started assembling themselves in my head out of thin air. I wrote them down. They kept coming. At the end of my recovery I had a book’s worth. Perhaps even more remarkable, none showed up after that. The collection was complete.
I split the words…to come up with KOEMS.
Next, I needed to figure out a title. No help from the muse on that. But, I noticed the verses seemed to be a hybrid of a puzzling zen KOAN and a whimsical nursery rhyme POEM, so I split the words and set the halves together to come up with KOEMS. Seemed to fit. Then I asked a dear friend, Sally Pierone, to do the illustrations and voila, I had the makings of a pocket poetry book.
I printed 40 copies and gave them to friends. Now it’s ten years later. Technology has evolved. Seems a good time to share a virtual version with the world. So here’s the introduction to the reformatted edition.
I’ll be following with the series, one KOEM at a time, over the next year. The first sets the stage for what is to come.
In total, there are 30 KOEMS in the series. Except for the first and last, which did not appear exactly at the beginning or end of the process but were clearly the opening and closing KOEMS, they will be uploaded in the order they appeared to me.
TURNS OUT to promote my songs, I have to promote myself—at least until some truly talented and charismatic performer shows up willing to take them out into the world. Since that hasn’t happened—and may never happen!—it looks like I need to do that myself. From a secluded backwater like Spokane, that means the next step is landing some gigs on the “house-concert” circuit* in drivable locales like Portland, Seattle and Vancouver, Canada. And that means making a promo video. No video, no gigs. The things I’m learning on this unlikely journey.
So my dear friends Don Hamilton and Lorna St. John offered to shoot such a thing in their cavernous photo, video and recording studio. They created a visually captivating stage for my performance so that twenty or so friends could show up and pretend to be an enthralled audience. More nervous than I hoped, I somehow survived under the lights’ glare with everyone’s encouragement and will post the result when available. For now, so grateful for the magic of video editing. Mistakes? What mistakes?
And I’m most grateful to the support of so many friends helping me get my songs heard!
*Yes, it is true: there actually are people who enjoy letting wandering troubadours sleep on their beds (sofas?) and sing to their friends, who sometimes count in the hundreds. It’s a counter-cultural miracle.
AFTER two singles released and a political video satire on the side, I’m checking in to see how this is going so far? It’s all new for me and the digital metrics are impersonal, e.g.: this many views; that many likes; maybe a few shares.
According to the data, my political satire was a hit bringing in over 4,000 views and 60 shares. I anticipated it would do well as our uber-Republican congresswoman is unresponsive and unpopular and the locals have become politically awakened—if not enraged. Timing its release to the Women’s March was pure serendipity, and my cadre of activists handing out 1,500 flyers there didn’t hurt the cause any.
My other songs, so so. Outside of a dedicated group friends that I’m grateful to have (you), new subscriptions are hard to come by. Facebook postings and even paying for boosts don’t seem to move that needle much. Maybe a few new likes. Of course, I knew I was engaging in a nearly impossible dream to begin with:
I’m 70 years old, fer gawd’s sake!
My “target demo” of progressive, educated people (primarily women) over 40 has mostly aged out of engaging with new music, let alone buying it.
And, nobody buys music anymore anyway, they stream it.
Like me, my demo has cocooned, so there are few live venues remaining for an old, unknown singer songwriter to go to.
Radio is virtually dead for independent artists.
Social media is absurdly oversaturated for everybody. It’s become a firehose connected to a cesspool. Good luck finding a sip of fresh water without getting your face ripped off.
And of course, I’m not hip: I don’t play bone rattling rock and roll or rap.
And yet, I want my songs to be heard and think they’re worth hearing. Am I completely delusional? Maybe! If not, and if they are worth hearing, by whom, and where, and how do I reach them? It’s a puzzle, although I’m more than willing to keep at it—I’m only just starting this trek after all.
IMAGINE buying a completely new kitchen for $200. Top of the line stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, coffee maker—the works. You even get appliances you’ve never used before. Plus all new cabinets, countertops and sink. The works. Catch is, the supplier picks everything for you, guts your old kitchen, installs things where he wants and leaves you with the manuals. And all the new appliances are digital with new controls, menus, sub-menus and functions you’ve never seen before. And it’s time to start dinner.
That’s what just happened to me, musically speaking. After spending most of 2017 learning my previous recording and mixing program—along with how to use its highly sophisticated tools—I’m back to square one, more or less. Many tools are similar but are in different places, and there are complex new ones to comprehend, let alone master.
It’s deja vu all over again.
I didn’t have much of a choice as Mac operating systems march ever onward. And the latest OS ate my obsolete Logic 9 program. Fine then. Yes, it’s overwhelming—and yet intriguing. Lots of amazing new features to explore. Whether I can get up to speed by the beginning of March for the release of my next Song of the Month is anyone’s guess. I’ll try. But If not, here’s plan B: To release the simple version free and then the studio version when I get it done.