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Internal Monologue, Hotel Hallway, Effingham redux

Has it been two weeks? Same town, different hotel. Brown paisley hallway carpet–nice, if kept in the periphery of one’s vision. Far end of my floor, direction I’m walking, there’s a small window and down there, out on the “landscaped” grounds is a scrawny maple tree, about my height, all a-fire in red leaves, being moved and tossed around by a substantial force I can’t see or feel, but know–it’s there: wind kicking up its proverbial heels, its usual Autumnal kung fu moves, pushed here northwesterly, going on and on, tearing the leaves, taking us down into winter. Wind: it’s a wonder, ya know? I understand it’s just low pressure and high pressure doing their simpatico dance, but still–all this invisible, out there, filling the atmosphere, pushing, pulling, then lying still, you never know. It’s like free will not your own. I’m watching this little tree get gently ravaged by the wind, while holding a cup of the slightly better than in-room coffee from downstairs and two granola bars, the simple ones I like–Nature Valley “oats ‘n honey,” that were there in a basket next to the coffee vat simply labeled, ha ha, “Gourmet.” But it’s okay; it’s a good morning and I’ll take it, comic ironies and all. I didn’t even go around the corner to the breakfast room, because there were small children in there, and I’m sorry, but it’s just too early for those cute yet shrill voices to enter my consciousness and throw off my so-far-so-good internal vibe. I slept well last night; no alcohol, no sugar. Just a half-hour of politics on the television (which is about 29 minutes too many), then a chapter of the book I’m reading (Don DeLillo’s “Zero K”), and finally listening with lights out to a Fresh Air interview with the brilliant Elaine Pagels.

All this to say yes, I’m out here again, plying my wares and playing my songs, opening several shows for my friend, the mighty mighty Todd Snider. We begin the adventure tonight at S.P.A.C.E., in Evanston, IL–a sold-out show, which is great for us, but not so much for you, if you are not in possession of a ticket. But I love this venue, and I look forward to kicking it in this evening: me, myself and I, three guitars, and an old amp or two. Tomorrow I’ll be headed to Goshen, IN, to be interviewed at 2pm eastern time on WGCS 91.1 FM THE GLOBE. 

I’ll write more along the way–a cliche it is, but it is true that it gets lonesome out here (I can’t remember who it was that said that this is why phrases/ideas become cliches: they are as familiar to us as the names of family members or dreaded diseases(or the endless pharmaceutical ads on television meant to treat those diseases), because they are indeed true.) So it’s good to talk, and pretend you’re listening while I’m writing. But there are more important things to think about today, such as VOTING. If you have not voted, please please please do so. The fact that likely less than half of eligible voters will exercise their right in this election just drives me bats. Don’t get me started. Fortunately, I need to close here and load out and get on the northbound side of the road. It’s a beautiful day out there, but ain’t they all, somehow. Love and gratitude. Wind and leaves. And each of us, moving through it all.


2 Responses to Internal Monologue, Hotel Hallway, Effingham redux

  1. John Jackson November 6, 2018 at 10:40 am #

    What a wonderful post. I, too, listened to Fresh Air with Elaine Pagel’s and share your opinion of her and her writings. Check your email for an article from the New Yorker I’m sending. Hope you have a great run on this tour and hope to see you soon.

  2. VAN November 6, 2018 at 10:40 am #


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