In March, Lawrence Ferlinghetti turned 100 years old. I just watched this interview of him from 2007 when he was only 88. I encourage everyone to watch this interview, to see a very literate and intelligent man who changed the world before the days of the Internet.

Disaster at Our Home!
Our adorable wild rabbits consumed my wife’s entire crop of Chinese Long Beans, close to harvest time. I told her they were very hungry & really loved her yummy beans, but she is inconsolable! It’s a 2 hour drive to buy them fresh at the Asian store.

Here's a Woman Politician I Think is Terrific!! --

And now for someone competely different!! I was very impressed by Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D - Hawaii), who appeared on Firing Line today. I really like that she is speaking out against regime change wars & she has experience on the ground, having served in the military in combat zones in Iraq & Kuwait. Tulsi is a Samoan name, from her father’s side. She was reared as a Hindu and a vegetarian. I really liked that she spoke from her personal experience in life, not from talking points she’s memorized. And best of all, when asked questions, I can’t remember any politician who has answered immediately with so many direct “Yes” and “No” answers. She is not afraid of taking a position and stating clearly what it is. She is NOT a mealy mouthed politician seeking fame, as some are. Of course she is an underdog, but has been so in every election she has entered and she won them all. Please watch this video to see why such a young woman is running for President. I’ve only known about her for two hours, but from what I’ve seen, I think she’s terrific.

When the NBA Finals are over, I am going to resume my education with the help of stories told by Ken Burns. Vietnam first, the hardest period for my generation by far. Harder than the assassination of JFK, or even the killing of MLK.


Life isn’t about finding yourself, or finding anything!
Life is about creating yourself!
Bob Dylan

Martin Scorsese creates his third must see Bob Dylan documentary.
The tour with the best hat ever, by far!

Mississippi John Hurt at Oberlin --

Mississippi John Hurt did a concert at Oberlin College on tax day in 1965. It was near the end of my sophomore year there. I had the blues, suffering through a difficult second year of calculus and a MUCH more difficult physics class. Did I go listen to the blues that night? Nope. I learned about the concert decades later, it was not the sort of music I was into at that time. The concert was released on LP many different times. I bought my copy of the LP on Record Store Day a few years ago, when it was released again. I believe the image below is of the original album. The one I bought has a differemt cover. It was a year after that concert at Oberlin when I learned about Bob Dylan and my life began to make turns for the better, though I didn’t realize it at the time.

Hurt was brought into a recording revival in 1963 (the year I started at Oberlin) by the legendary Dick Spottswood who soon became a lifelong friend & mentor of John Fahey. The story about locating and recording Hurt is recounted in this article. That had been in March 1963, two years before the Oberlin concert. Hurt appeared at the 1963 Newport Folk Festival. Dylan was there too and later on Hurt toured college campuses, including the visit to Oberlin. There is a clip of Spottswood introducing Hurt at Newport and a bit of him performing there.

Decades later I was very lucky to become a friend of Fahey, in the last years of his life. He drove me around Oregon telling me great stories about his life in music & stopping at thrift stores all over the area to look through the LP’s they had for sale. He could find the gems before I had even looked through my first bin of records. After gathering up a bunch of the good ones, John would package them up and send them to his friend, Spottswood, who would send back some spending money for John.

Elephants (“chang” in Thai) made a huge contribution to the history & culture of Thailand, beloved by all. We took a ride on one at the only government owned camp for them, near my wife’s family home, south of Chiang Mai. The handler gave Thida a shower after our ride.

Mr. Bee working hard in the morning sun, as these Spiderwort blossoms only last one day. But there will be others the next day, for weeks to come. The alternate name brings sad memories: Widow’s Tears.

On FB in the Dylan community, one of my friends from Europe has given us a terrific present on Bob’s birthday. He compiled complete scans of an important folk music periodical, the entire run from Feb 1962 to Sep 1988, with a 78 page index at the end. Our culture preserved!

John Fahey's #1 Fan --- Fahey Looms Large! ---

Last Thursday Google surprised me with a link to a terrific podcast about John Fahey that was published that day (5/23/19). It had a very interesting focus. It was about Fahey, as told by three women in his life. I have posted here about John before, who I was verrry lucky to have befriended near the end of his life, and I’m always interested in reading about him.

Right away in the podcast they disclose that they will be talking to three women in John’s life, including his two wives and another woman. They did it in chronological order, starting with his first wife, then his second. As it proceeded along, I was thinking, “I wonder whether they know about Melissa??!”

Melissa is a terrific friend of mine, who I originally met by way of the Rec.Music.Dylan newsgroup. A young man named Ben Taylor from the newsgroup came to visit San Francisco on holiday one summer. Melissa organized a party for Ben and other RMDers on the wharf in SF to welcome him to town. After sharing a meal we went aboard a cruise ship to ride out into the SF Bay to watch the Fourth of July fireworks. At the time, I was living in Palo Alto and Melissa was living in Petaluma, just north of Marin County. These were the exciting, hopeful days of the early web. Because of Melissa’s initiative, I got to meet her, as well as a bunch of other Dylan fans from RMD, all in honor of Ben who had come all the way from the UK.

That was the start of many fun times together. Every time Bob Dylan came to the Bay Area, Melissa and I would hang out together at the shows and then at a restaurant afterward to unwind and talk about the show. Melissa was also a fan of John Fahey. One April, Melissa called to tell me that John Fahey was going to do a show at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley. DId I want to meet her there and see him perform? Sure, I’d love to. When is it? April 11. Say, what!?? There’s no way a tax accountant can be going to concerts on April 11, not even to see John Fahey. So I had to decline, but encouraged Melissa to make the drive from Petaluma to see John Fahey!

She did and it changed her life and mine too! She ended up moving to Oregon and living with John and that’s how I had the good fortune of getting to know John. I visited them up there, we took him to see Dylan at a triple bill of Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell and Bob at The Gorge, a wonderful outdoor amphitheatre near George, WA. We also drove around the Willamette Valley in Oregon looking for good LP’s at thrift stores, and other adventures together. But did this podcaster know about Melissa?

Yes, indeed, she sure did! Melissa was the third woman featured in this podcast!

Were you ever at an event and then you read a newspaper account of it and the newspaper account was so full of shit? That’s how I got out of the habit of following the news. Well this podcast, at least the part with Melissa is the opposite of that, it is totally true, no bullshit. As soon as Melissa started talking, I was happy. That’s Melissa, that’s for sure!. I was proud of her honesty. I also thought the interviewer asked great questions and the transitions were narrated really well. So I highly recommend this podcast to anyone who has any interest in John Fahey.

Go here to listen to it.

The Spirit of Help & Cooperation, Freely Given

Thank you for your invaluable service, Simon!! Your work is very much along the lines of the dedicated work of many in the Bob Dylan community, which I first discovered in 1994 in the first ever Usenet music group, Rec.Music.Dylan. Tim Berners-Lee had invented the web already, but its eventual commercialization had not yet happened. On RMD if anyone breathed any idea about using the Internet to make money in those days, they could find themselves banned immediately. Instead the most active participants started compiling useful information about Dylan’s art and dozens of free, open, and useful websites sprang up. I took on the area of books, with my bibliography. We were all working to document and preserve the important contributions to our culture we knew Dylan was making. And we all know how things have recently gone from bad to worse because of the commercialization that was permitted to develop on the web.

The work you do in what I gather is an unoffical way has helped me on at least two occasions very recently. It scares me a bit that there is no comprehensive user manual for Manton does a great job of technical support for the activity, but a few people can only do so much. On Friday, you and Stephen (@DrOct) sorted out what was preventing me (for around one month) from linking to my pre-October 2018 postings in current postings. As far as I know, you both did this on your own, not at the urgings of anyone else. THIS is the spirit of help and cooperation that we had in the Dylan community 25 years ago.

I’m sure Manton had much more important things to attend to than trying to sort out why I couldn’t get a working URL for my old postings. You and Stephen took on the problem and in about an hour found at least a temporary solution, which I’m sure Mamton will eventually resolve more permanently when he has the time. But in the meantime, I will be able to proceed with my blogging. I appreciate this VERY much, Simon and Stephen!!!

Managing My Time --- click here -->

We are all capable of focusing our attention on one thing, or splitting it among many competing targets. When listening to the three songs featured in my Dylan posting today, I realized I was inside the performance on two of them, but on the third, another part of me started to wonder, “How much longer is this song?” I then realized, if my attention is wandering, as in the latter example, it’s perfectly okay for me to immediately stop the playback of that performance and go on to something else. There is no rule I must follow, like “If you start listening to a song, listen to the whole performance, give the singer a chance to draw you in and convince you it’s a worthy performance.” NO, that’s Not a rule I must follow. Especially if it’s a song I know really well, I can usually tell very early on whether a given performance or cover of the song is one that interests me, or is worth my time.

Life is short, expecially as one gets older. I still have a lot I want to get done, so I’d rather not be wasting any time.

The same thing applies to reading an article or a book. If it’s not drawing me in and holding my attention, I am perfectly free to go on to another one.

Tis the season for postings about Bob Dylan, because his birthday was 2 days ago, on 5/24. I’m giving in to the trend by linking to one based on a radio station that played a 4 hour compilation of Bob songs this morning. Hear the replay tonight, a very good song-list!

After 4 mos of pain since I fell on the driveway sweeping off fresh snow, a hand surgeon looked at the x-rays & told me, I believe you cracked your radial neck. He took new x-rays & confirmed it. Yup, broken! OK to skate board for exercise? Horrified: “NO, you are grounded!”

You may all know the ancient Indian parable of the Blind Men and an Elephant. In the US we are proud of our tradition of free speech, which allows our media to publish just about anything. I’m trying to calm down after an inflammatory article about this giant’s tail.

Jack, I’m very sorry to have annoyed you, definitely an unintended & regretted consequence! Many times (and now once again) I have realized that I should stay off the commenting platform, and then after a while I forget and try it again!. D a r n. I’m the Emily Litella of, except not funny. Just old & not up to date with technology or with young people. // @jack

Manton, the time stamps in the Archive of my postings can not be used to open the ones dated 2018-10-25 7:17 pm and earlier. Instead, clicking on the date stamp returns Not Found. The more recent postings work okay. Did I mess these up somehow? Can they be fixed? @manton

MarsEdit: The 1st program I installed on my new Mac Mini. Now have all my postings backed up over there, and can post here with it. Then ditto for my old Blogspot site! Could this great tool be setup to post to a Posthaven, or Hugo or Blot site? TIA. //@danielpunkass