5 Artists Who Influenced Me Who I’ve Met Or Talked To

1) Todd Rundgren: An inspiration because he does so many things well – musician, songwriter, video pioneer, computer pioneer, producer and so on. After being a fan for a decade – I saw Utopia in 1979 when I was 14 years old – I ended up hanging out with Todd on half a dozen occasions in the 1990s.
2) Charles Gatewood: An erotic photographer who was a big influence on me. I met him outside the Porta-Pottys at Burning Man 1997.
3) Zbigniew Rybczynski: Talked to him on the phone in 2004 for about a half hour. He’s a genius.
4) Howard Stern: I did a demo of the Video Toaster for Howard. He was businesslike and very sharp.
5) Neil Peart: Drummer and lyricist for Rush, he threw me off his lawn when I was 17 or 18. That’s sort of like meeting him.

Social Networking, 5ives

I’ve added myself to a couple of social networking sites – Tribe and MySpace. (I’m about 20 years too old for MySpace, I know.)I’ve spent a couple of years more or less hiding out and laying low so I guess I’m feeling the need to get some of my art out there and promoted again. I’m adding ‘friends’ to and fro. I’ve even found a few people that I actually know in real life.

I’ve also realized that content for the blog during the week is a little tricky, since the week mainly consists of me working. Not a lot of material there, really. So like a cook stretching a meal further through the judicious use of rice, I’m going to stretch the material a little bit by doing lists of 5 things, an idea I’m stealing from Merlin Mann’s 5ives site. Merlin is the dude behind 43 Folders, a really great site. He seems like a neat person. I should socially network him!

Brrrrraining

It’s cold and rainy. Solid steady pitter patters on the air conditioning in the apartment window. We ate dinner and then I sort of passed out in bed while Lauren gave Olivia a bath. I got up and Lauren and I had some cereal. Now I’m going to fix the covers and crawl under them until it’s time to go out to Starbucks in the rainy morning.

Don’t Mean To Be Cryptic

I really don’t. I’m going to try and explain a couple earlier posts of mine. Talking about one’s own spiritual beliefs makes one sound goofy or nutty or self-delusional. That’s one’s fear anyway. (In this little equation one = me.)

So, here’s what I hope is a concise version, but it’s still long. I was introduced to Ayn Rand’s ideas when I was about 15 years old and for about fifteen or twenty years, I considered myself an Objectivist / atheist / libertarian. I didn’t believe in God or anything like that because I didn’t see any proof. Then some things started happening around the time that one of my best friends, Paul Montgomery, died suddenly. There were a whole bunch of things related to his death that were just really weird – things he’d told me, things preceded his death. It’s a lot of stuff but one quick example is that he’d talked to me about how he wasn’t afraid of dying just a couple of months before in a conversation that struck me as very out of place. It was weird to the point that I mentioned it to Lauren at the time.

Paul%20Montgomery%20%26%20Me

Paul And Me: December 1998
When He Was Alive And I Had Long Hair

I’m not trying to convince you of anything. You can say it’s coincidence and I certainly would have thought that myself if it hadn’t happened to me. There’s a lot more to it and it all adds up to it certainly not seeming like coincidence to me. Believe what you want but personally, I started seeing a lot of things that seemed a lot like proof of what I saw no proof for before. In the past six or so years, those things have continued. And my politics have changed, too – I’m a more leftist economically although still very libertarian socially. I’ve mentioned this stuff in the past on my blog and if I ever get the archives posted, it’s pretty obvious.

I don’t believe in a giant bearded God who lives in the sky and says ‘Thou Shalt Not’ a lot. My beliefs now are a sort of Unitarian Universalist Deist Buddhist. I believe that there’s a certain flow to the universe and that sometimes it talks to you. I don’t exactly know what I believe beyond that.

This has led to some cognitive dissonance on my part. I used to be able to explain exactly what I believed while standing on one foot. The past few years, not so much. So, I’ve been thinking about all of that lately and trying to reconcile my current beliefs – as scattered as they may be – with my previous beliefs. For months now, I’ve felt like two people in an ever-so-slightly shattered and confused sort way

So, there’s an attempt to explain my cryptic posts a little more. I’ll talk about the things that have made me feel a lot less confused in another post.

Why I Go To Church

It doesn’t happen all the time, but it’s happened enough times now that it seems very obvious to me that it means something. I go to church and I hear exactly what I needed to hear that day.

Today it was something that brought together some of the stuff that I was thinking about last night when I posted. I haven’t exactly put it all together in my head enough to write about but all the pieces are there.