Posted by: guinness222 | July 3, 2017

“Journaling, Pt II”

Day before the Fourth of July, 2017. Sitting here having a pint of Guinness, and looking at some  “You Tube videos”.

Boy you guys are curious,….I heard the “Why?” All the way down here in “Broiling level heat, with 102% Rlative Humidity”.

Basically two reasons, #1 The heat and humidity demand the Guinness, and #2 the 3rd of July,  is a great day to reflect . Your particular life, being prime, and trying to write, and chronicle it, for the inevitable “Down the Road”. So let’s deal with #2 above, as I’m smart enough , believe it or not,…to know I can’t change #1, so other than find a cool haven to relax, and ‘hydrate; (reasonably of course), and stay healthy, until I leave “The Big Blue Marble”, ….well my only real desire is to continue to write, love my wife and family, and prod you to do the same , much earlier than when I figured it out for myself.

So on to #2,….music has definitely shaped my life, and not just John Phillip Souza marches, or Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and his unforgettable 1812 Overture, (Done in Boston, Massachusetts,  by the Boston Pops, in the Hatch Shell with the incredibly timed assistance of the Yankee Division of the Army National Gurdand artillery) most folks don’t realize that,so bear with me . (BY THE WAY that’s one of my “Bucket List” wishes, did it several times when I was young, aged 5 – 12, but REALLY ever fully appreciated it and it’s interpretation as I do today, 60+ years later.) In the 1950’s I somehow got hooked on the swing era music, (not the dance craze part, but the music), the swing era had genuine talents like the Dorsey Brothers, Glenn Miller, and all they started with in the 30’s was RADIO, only!! NO pictures unless you were a) there live, and b) had a camera to try and take a black and white picture, if it were even permitted.

Think on that for a bit, the RADIO was, SOUND ONLY!!! There were no “portable” radios, even into the 50’s, then they were everywhere, (if you could get a strong signal, and, even hold it, and it was only about 30% full of “static” which then was “tolerable”. Plus “earphones” were primitive, covered half your head, and in need of much more development,….but enough about that portion of music.

I was working part-time in the A&P Supermarket, before and during Junior and Senior High School, ‘bagging’ groceries in PAPER bags, doing some shelf stocking, (here we are almost 60 years later and I literally hated the “pickle aisle” and the “baby food section” with all the glass bottles. You know “Clean up on Aisle six”,  Yuck, the damn baby food, I wonder how many bottles!!  But you did it, it was part of the job, and the floor could not be “sticky” when you were done or they would page you and call you back to do it again!

But I  ramble, in the late 50’s, (the era of “Green stamps”, “Plaid stamps” and every other type of “Premium” or “Bonus Deal” had became the norm.) All the Supemarkets were “competing” against each other! The corner store, or local market with very limited choice and product assortment, they were all vanishing to the Supermarkets, who found this new “marketing competition” strange to deal with, loyalty was minor whereas it was critical to the “local Markets”, and “Corner Stores”, So what? So they better get it right!

One of the “premiums, or weekly deals” to encourage  loyalty to that chain , The A&P, was a series of 33 1/3 rpm (revolutions per minute) Classical Music records. One each week for 24 weeks offering you an entire collection. I decided to get the first one for $0.49, just to see what it was all about, this Classical Music stuff. I found I loved it and then I bought others in succeeding weeks for $1.29 each, when I could afford it.

Sort of putting the horse before the cart as we did not have any thing but this little 45 rpm player and that wouldn’t work for 33 1/3 rpm records, (unless you liked Alvin and the Chipmonks doing Classical) But when I could save enough money I went to the local furniture store and bought a “Hi-Fi- High Fidelity” record Victrola that would play it.  It was a piece of furniture that was big enough for the living room with a “GREAT sound quality, (but it was Hi-Fi, and I heard there was a new technology on the way called “Steroephonic Sound” on the way.

Just as I was graduating “STEREO” came out, but as life has it, I joined the U.S. Navy Reserve in 1964 and then wanted more involvement and commitment, so I “shipped over” to the “Regular” Navy, for a total of six years, where I “wrote the check for ‘up to and including my life” as Vietnam Nam was just “kicking off”, no time to keep up with things,

But a few artists Bill Haley and the Comets, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holley, The Big Bopper, etc,  had begun surfacing in the late 50’s and early 60’s, with several new forms of music, among them “Rock ‘n Roll” (origin of the term was a term used by the “Blacks” for a ‘roll in the hay’) it was fast, hot and moving, with virtually no “RULES” to it, and a lot of drums, electrically amplified guitars, and lots of movement. Another form of music , (and I might say more appealing to my tastes after the swing music, and then “Classical” was the acoustic guitar based, banjo and “lack of heavy drum beats” turned up to 12 on the microphones, was “FOLK” music, typified by “The Limelighters”, “Peter Paul and Mary” “The Kingston Trio”, and “solo” artists like, “, James Taylor”, Joan Baez, “Judy Collins”, and aside from the more mellow instruments there was a lot of harmonic singing and more realism not repetitious “howling” and soulful ballads.

The “Country/Western” genre was still alive and well, but it was a “Southern” thing , which I still had not embraced as a legitimate form of music, But more on that in another episode. (Yes I have come to “like” Country” music as well for what I will call some “strange” reasons ,….it will be explained,…again later,…stay tuned!

So what does this have to do with “journaling”? Really more than you think, let me show you.

No matter who you are friend, follower, or stranger,…let me ask you a question. How much of what I wrote about in this entry, of my likes, dislikes, musical preferences, etc., did you know about, do you even remember about, or do you care about? That is what journaling can provide you with, more insight, more knowledge, and more “connection” with a person. Back to my Grand father and even his Father,…..I NEVER knew what they liked for music! Not even a clue,….but it is important, maybe not now, but as we sit by the fire “down the road” we always think about did we have anything in common, did we have likes, or hatreds, and can realize the where of their origin, or in it’s absence, our creation of it.  For example, Nirvana, Kirk Cobain, Freddie Mercury and Queen, where was I on this area,. Just as they were Irish,I can’t assume they liked what we call “Irish Pub Music”, they must have heard of the Classical genre, and “swing”. Perhaps a flaw we might want to fix, or maybe not, but another piece of the “Us” that came from the older “thems”, and can be translated to the future “thems”, by US, again we at least owe the new “THEMS”  a glimpse, and let them sense the link to the other “older THEMS”.

More later. Tomorrow being the “Fourth of July” I think I’ll think about and possibly  address the art of “Journaling” as “Journalism in real time with the element of time being gone, for “the NEW THEM” to try and understand ” the “US” in  our Time”.

-30 –

Part III sound interesting to you? Let me know, just as no one can live in a vacuum one can neither write in a vacuum!


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