Got a few minutes...  thought I'd write an actual post.

Things are mixed for me right now.  Web traffic is waaay up.  Thank you for visiting!  And reading.  Kind of weird, I wonder if anyone I know reads this.  I know my wife does; occasionally.  She's mentioned a few things to me.  :)  Love ya babe!

Anyway... I didn't post anything patriotic over the 4th.  Didn't feel like and there wasn't anybody online anyhow.  I think people get a little bent out of shape over things like that.  "Public perception," "good citizen," whatever...  I've never been one to fret over that.  I can't control what people think.  Not gonna worry about it.  I find most people who are "offended" aren't worth talking to. 

There's a couple of things I learned whilst going to college.   I consider these two things to be crucial in assessing (judging) a person.  Specifically, do they exhibit either of these tendencies?  1.  A culture of victimization.  2. A spirit of cooperation.  

Being a victim has taken on a whole new meaning in the past 25 years.  It used to mean you got robbed, or murdered, or some such thing.  Now it's a passive-aggressive tactic used in debate, employment, and life.  I had a co-worker who was doing this all the time.  But I was too young and fresh out of the Marines and had no sympathy, empathy, any way to relate to this person, and so naive that I just bought whatever bullshit was being sold that day.  I didn't know it was a mask for incompetence, rebelliousness, laziness, and stupidity.   After a few years and getting close to graduation I was sufficiently deprogrammed to be able to relate to my fellow human and was able to spot "the victim" in seconds.  I think the most lasting imprint was an in-class experience, where a women in her 50s burst into tears after a few minutes of self-introduction and self-identifying patterns in ones life.  Her quote finished with "...and that's the other pattern in my life, everyone I love dies!" 

What I found most telling, was how the teacher aka "facilitator" simply nodded, and went on to the next person in the class for a repeat.  Of the 20ish of us, it was only me, the teacher, and one other student that didn't burst into tears and have a horrible story to tell about why we were the way we are.  

Since then I have run into this person in many forms.  I never want to be that person.  I think it's fine to burst into tears.  I think it's fine to mourn the dead. I don't think it's fine to air that shit out in a classroom, on the job, in a group social setting, etc...  Grow up and deal with it.  Or at the very least, keep it to yourself.    Write a song about it.     But I don't want to work with you.  I can't take it.  I don't care.  I'm not gonna listen and I'm not gonna be nice about it.  Especially if you waste my time or screw with what I'm doing.  Buh-by.

The 2nd trait is almost never exhibited by "the victim."  This is what I call a "Spirit of Cooperation."  This is ironic, because I was never graded well as a youth for working well and playing with others.  I call a spirit of cooperation many things - not needing to cover the bases, or explain every little detail and nuance, or make sure I laid everything I need out perfectly so you can flawlessly do your job.  A spirit of cooperation is often having a conversation with someone who has differing political view points and you can have a rational discussion about why abortion is or is not bad without proving the Big Bang true or false.  For the slow ones... this means saying - hey can you get those weeds taken care of?  Without saying, "You need to get some gloves, a bucket, maybe some garden tools, and pull or dig those specific non-grassy plants out and remove them from the yard."   While in most jobs, that seems obvious, in the music business, those people make or break things.  And in life, those people bring you up or drag you down.  When I get trapped in a discussion with those people, I just walk away.  I don't care, and what I know, is they're going to ruin my moment.  If I'm out and about, I'm trying to having a good time, be pleasant, or I'm working.  This means I don't want to have a conversation about religion, politics, money, the state of the union, blah, blah, blah....  And you really need to know I have ZERO interest in your opinions on these things.

What I find with those who are not interested in mutual benefit, is a serious lack of concern for their fellow citizen, a fundamental lack of history and knowledge about why certain things exist and for what purpose (this is HUGE among classical union musicians), and they are clueless about what goes on in the world, everyday and has been doing on in the world everyday.  They want their feelings to be shared and to be law. 

Sorry duder, that ain't how it goes. 

It's tough.  People do the wrong thing.  A lot.  For a lot of reasons.  Sometimes it's okay, and sometimes it ain't.  Sometimes, it takes time for it to be okay.

You gotta give help.  You gotta take help.  There are a lot of good people out there.  Most of them are gun shy because they're been treated so badly, so much.  That's the way it goes.  

This is so not what I wanted to write about.................