Monday, February 26, 2007

Angry Lake Ontario Thoughts and a
week of high blood alcohol levels

I wrote a song in my head while driving beside lake ontario on the QEW
last night...except it wasn't about the QEW but more about the 401. Within
the song, I saw Lake Ontario as being angry - I watched the icy shores of
Niagara get thrashed by a festival of wind, water, waves and mist. I think
it will be a good song. I'm not really sure about the feel of this 'new' blogger.
I was blogging from the beginning. It took me darn near half a work shift to figure
out why I couldn't post, damn java script html tags.

Life really does boil down to community. Monks live, sleep, eat and meditaite
in community. My brother was telling me that many Zen Buddhist monks keep
their eating bowl and utensils right inside the sleeves of their robes so as to
always be prepared. Ghandi wanted to start a revolution of pacifism with the
people of his community by reacting in a non-violent manner to the turmoil
that surrounded them. Many thought he was crazy at first but eventually, his
people stuck with him and helped him to make history. More on that later...

This past week, Sarah and I were able to 'retreat' to Ottawa and hang with the
'rents and the bro. Tonight will be the first night since...last wednesday that
I haven't had 2-3 alcoholic beverages of some kind in my system (i.e. wine, beer,
sour puss - take your pick, really) - a fine notion of what sort of week it was. Now,
I wasn't a basketcase drunk but I also was not a sober baptist by any stretch of the
imagination. Let me run it down for you...

Monday night to Friday night - Ottawa. Wine with dinner most nights,
colonnade Pizza with Benny and the fam and Ghost Dog (great flick) wednesday,
whilst thursday was Joel Stewart's cooler filled with snow and sleeman product
on my parent's backyard deck. DANG it was cold and good. So cold and good.
Friday, we stopped in to Sarah's sister and brother in law's and had a very small
peterborough party at a home-brewing beer place (The Old Stone - I recommend
the Red Fife Ale and The Bitter) but don't tell anyone from peterborough that
we were there. (They will be jealous because I'm very VERY popular. Aye...if only
that were true.) Saturday was looking like a chill day back in St Kits but thanks to
a call from some long lost friends (J & O), we were able to sit around our apartment
and blast off with a small bottle of Dry Riesling and a giant jug of Gamay Noir.
I think the perfect bookend to the weekend (and a 6 day long alcohol binge) was
hitting up one of my most beloved pubs in Guelph, of all great places - the Wooly.

A moment of silence for the Woolwich Arms.

Another moment of silence for Creemore (on tap) and Wellington SPA (on tap).

A jovial time was had with some great friends (though Sarah was worn out by that
time, understandably, and had a mound of work and studying building up that
needed attention). I even drove through a small snowstorm on the way there and
a mammoth one on the way home to make it happen. The promotion of community
is a great thing, maybe even the best of things. After we had tapped out the Wooly,
it was great to just sit around in V and L's basement pad with B Wil and myself,
drink some coffee with milk and 'dirty sounding' sugar-in-the-raw and just talk.
The best kind of talking always requires listening. We spoke about and listened to
a great many subjects. We spoke about a freshly broken heart...and one that is
still healing from a deep wound. We spoke about a fresh baked batch of cookie
dough and the poor decisions of people who let the look of photographs ruin
friendships. We spoke about love, hate and all things ornate. I don't think any
conclusions were definitively determined...but ideas were thrown around and all
things were considered.

Church wasn't meant to be a boring, cold sanctuary that freaks people out
and makes us feel like we are never good enough. We made it that way. I miss
being involved in a home church/small group and last night made me realize
how key community is to the core of my existence. Even within talking about
chunks of nothing and the odd bit of're moving somewhere.
Progressing. Learning. Changing...both as an individual and as a group. It's
the main thrust of Early Acts after Jesus had left for the great beyond - He left
the Spirit to show us that we need each other.

Much thanks to all who made this past week an epic one.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The Will To Live

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Some days you just feel like you've got it right. A tornado could cascade by
and you'd just shrug and think 'ah well. could be worse'. I'm not referring to
a form of apathy but rather...a viewing of the world from behind a light,
yellowish tint glass. You're still involved and if enough pressure is applied,
your protection is shattered, but you're still sort of...removed. It's a good
feeling. It's the knowing that all will pan out the way it is meant to pan out
and that for now, just being on the boat is good.

So...I played a few gigs with Graven over the past few weeks. It was meant
to be a winter tour but it ended up being a very 'mini' tour. We rocked Ottawa
on January 22nd and Burlington this past friday, February 2nd. I don't really
know where it's all going to lead but one thing is for was fun. On top
of that, we were actually good. The ottawa show was a little fairy-tale-esque,
what with the collection of amazing friends and family who showed up in
support and love coupled with the amazing sound of Zaphod's, (killer set-up
and sound rig) while Burlington was a little more...down to earth. I'm not saying
Burlington sucked by any means but it was definitely the more meagre of the
two shows. Burlington's venue (The Red Rooster) was definitely cool, boasting
the filming of a free DVD of your band and a pretty much unlimited bar tab,
but our 'extra sound' guitarist Paul was MIA in sickness and so was layer which
could have helped cover up a few major mistakes. Spirits were high at both
events and one thing is for sure...Dalton and Ray are the two people who I most
prefer to play music with in all of this universe. Dalton plays a beautifully
low-ended, driving bass (adding in some mega-high vocal harmonies where
needed) while Ray plays the skins like nobody's business.

All in all, I think part of the fun of the whole ordeal was not just being a bar,
promoting your stuff and trying to sell a product...but just being with great
friends and having them there to back you up. A good example of this
comradery shone out in Burlington when I stepped on my patch cord, yanking
it out mid-song. Before I even realized what had happened, though, Dalton
was basically under my arse, playing bass one-handed, re-inserting said cord.
It seems as if Graven could have a future is the time of re-assessing
and pondering.

Bigger spring tour?
New full length album to sell on bigger tour?
Trying to get signed to an indie label?

When you've got good people with you, the possibilities are limitless.

Anyways, that's all for now. Sarah and I are pluggin' away until mid february
when a needed week off should re-charge our batteries.

I know God is in all this...somewhere. I think the biggest part of learning how to
deal with the innate psychotic nature of Christianity is seeing God's working in us
and speaking to us through the everyday acts of other people.

website statistics