Much ado about a great many things

Maybe I should post more frequently? Less frequently? 

I have to admit, this re-starting of the blog is a bit of an experiment. I could easily get many many more hits than I currently do, but I purposefully am writing this blog without really telling anybody about it. This way I can write about anything at all, without any direction, and just ramble, as I have been doing. I feel like I’m waiting for this thing to take shape, or get into a presentable format, then MAYBE I’ll start promoting it, etc. I see that  have a few subscribers, and I wonder what they think. My thoughts and writings don’t seem very linear to me lately, and I think it shows in the blog. Scatterbrained doesn’t even begin to cover it. 

Anyway, on to some recent events. . . 

My mother got some bad news today. She’s been working at AVON in Pasadena for about 20 years now. Lately, in the news, there has been writing about the closure of her plant. She is going to be out of a job, and I am gong to have to step up and start paying for more stuff. I don’t mind, but timing wise, this is the WORST time for this to happen. I know there isn’t ever a good time for bad news, but I JUST started rebuilding my Coronet, and have dumped a bunch of money I saved, into it. Perhaps the old belt strings will have to be tightened more than ever, but that’s ok. We’ve come up a long way, way too far, to panic when shit is bad. We’ll be ok, I have complete faith in our work ethic, and our smarts. Plus, all her kids are grown with great jobs, and we’re going to take care of her. Still, I can’t help but hate AVON, all in the name of a couple of extra profit dollars, (400 million! The company makes 11 billion in annual revenue!!!) they’re putting some people out, at the worst possible time, job market wise. Corporate greed and profit margins make hungry bellies, and lower a standard of living for something like 170 employees. I read that the facility is 330K square feet, with around 170 employees. 


The thing that gets me, is the nagging question, “How can you run a 330K facility with only 170 people, and say that you aren’t making money?” If that’s ALL the people in hat big ass distro center, I’d say it’s pretty efficient! Think back to when machinery wasn’t in place there were probably 4 or 5 times as many people working there, and those were the fat years for the company. The greedheads at the top have been trimming away ever since, and now here we are. Even though they can run that huge place with 170 people, its not enough for them. They need all that money, to line their pockets, and keep away from their faithful employees. Good people, like my mother. 


Ok, enough doom and gloom. . . . 

Some good things happened this week too. I’ve started reading “Do The Work”, a companion to Steven Pressfield’s book “The War of Art”, which inspired me to do a great many things last year. It has really changed my effectiveness, and has made me more productive, writing blogs, songs, drawing, doing better at work, etc. All this after just a little inspiration!  So in tribute, I bought the second book, and I hope it has the same impact. DO THE WORK is something I’ve been telling people for the longest time, and I do a lot of work, but as any artist knows, you’re never really satisfied with your body of work. 

I mentioned briefly earlier, that I have been trying to get on top of my old Dodge Coronet again. I’ve saved up some good money, and right now she’s sitting in a shop in Alhambra, CA, waiting to be worked on. The ignition and some wiring have to be done, as well as a front brake swap to Disc, from my old beat up Drum brakes. After this, it’s all about paint, and she’s DONE! This pic is what I want her to look like. 18 years of chasing down parts, heartbreaking break downs in busy intersections, and cursing the day I bought this nightmare, I’llhave surmounted one of the most stubborn and challenging things I’ve ever done! After 3 engines, 3 transmissions, a whole parts store full of oils, lubes, parts, tubes, hose, gaskets and grease, this thing is going to run. I used to be wary of saying that, but no more. She’s going to run, and I’m going to see to it, that’s all there is to it. 

I also bought a chess set, and a set of dominoes for my house. I doubt anybody will want to play either, but I had to have them on hand in case the opportunity arose. I’ve already talked a couple of guys into playing, and I hope they follow through, because I want to get better. Chess to me, seems like a puzzle, and the pieces you don’t see, are in your opponents head. I love that about the game. 

Dominoes on the other hand, are for drinking and smoky nights on a table with a few friends. I love dominoes, and like chess, what you don’t know (The dominoes your opponent is hiding) is what you need to manipulate to make stuff happen, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun. 

Wednesday, I went to see Calexico at the El Rey Theatre. Awesome band, but as a Mexican, listening to white people try screaming out Gritos, it was kind of embarrassing. I wasn’t prepared to feel that badly, for that many people, all at one. It was truly horrific, and I doubt I’ll ever shout out a big grito again, for fear of sounding like that anglicized version I heard Wednesday. Other than that however, it was an amazing night. The music was incredible, and the talent on stage was out of this world. I saw one fellow sing, play the accordion, guitar, some mariachi guitar, trianlge (lol), percussion, Vibraphones, trumpet, and backup the singer with awesome harmony. All in all it was quite an awesome evening. 

Today is Saturday, it’s cold in Los Angeles, and I am starting to feel the effects of a cold that everybody at work had all month. The Emergen-c’s I’ve been drinking every morning failed to fend it off, making me sort of question there efficacy. I also had a ton of greens, foods rich in Vitamin C, no fried foods, no beer, and a good handful of different lozenges, cold eaze, halls, riccola, etc. Nothing fended off this cold, it just had to win, so here it is. 


On that note, I’m going to hang back on the couch today, do some laundry, and perhaps later I’ll go out for a bite. Weekend feels empty after last weekend’s buzz of excitement with Mike Watt and tons of friend around. I suppose I need my rest, but I hate a wasted weekend more than most. 


Until next time, thanks for reading, any feedback would be appreciated. Also, since I’m relying on word of mouth, if you have any reason to forward this to somebody please do. 


– Fred. 


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