Have you ever just had a day where nothing but song inspiration comes into your head?

Red lights,
City Nights

I wish I was better at playing instruments, composing music, getting my ideas down onto paper musically. I've hardly any sense for such things. And hardly any patience or time to learn them.

We are building a religion,
you're invited to the ball

It's not the same when you grow up surrounded by music. Thoughts, dreams, hopes, all have rhythm and rhyme. Reality is just one big song to you, and you really just want to play in the band.

Street lamps and half-cranked amps...

But you don't realize that just by living, just by walking around you're a part of that huge, great, amazing band called reality.

Every parent every child
come one come all

Or I could just be rambling. Nobody likes to hear people who have lots to say but nothing to say it with. Dangerous they are. For those are the ones who can play all the instruments...

We are building a religion,
sign on the, dotted line

...but can't read the music you force them to play.

We are building a religion,
and it's not a crime.

They have the How Loathsome hardbound book at the library; just picked it up today. It reminded me that San Francisco is a competitor in my 'cities to move to' list. That's right, I'm getting the hell out of this town. I'll miss the rain, and some of the people. I'm sick of Seattle's stagnation, its shitty art schools, the recession; the lack of an industry with art jobs. I want to stay West Coast, but I spit on Portland, so that leaves California. Academy of Arts University puts on a good dog and pony show via their catalogs and DVD; I need to go down and visit them and make my decision about application. Ditto for Otis in LA, and the Pasadena Arts Center.

I hear San Fran is much like Seattle, but bigger. I may need something more frenetic right now; I'm not sure. I suspect LA's glitz and ditz would fill me with hate, though. I can also see myself living gleefully in either locale, though.

I need to get out, one way or another. I've run out of city. It's Bellingham squared, up here, and I feel cramped.

I'm waiting right now, waiting for Grandaddy Paul's legacy to come through. It will move me and send me to school. I bring illustration jobs with me wherever I go; that's the beauty of the mercenary artist (or the art hobo, however you want to look at it). And then what? Four years of art school (or three, if they take all my Cornish credits), networking, side projects whenever I can cram them in. A novel or a comic book. Painting. Student loans, VA money, inheritance. I'll spend a lot of time in agony about having fallen behind due to the Cornish fiasco. I'll try not to get boxed and packaged by art school. I'll make stuff. I'll play video games. I'll model and do modeling-related things (sweet and sassy Miss Becky says she'll introduce me to her agent). I'll have new friends and old ones. I'll try not to get suckered into living with or marrying anyone (what a mess that would be, for everyone involved...) When I get my bachelor's, maybe I'll go teach English in Japan for a year on the JET Program. I'll be the oldest Harajuku girl. I'll found the Elegant Gothic Yakuza.

A bachelor's in what? Costume/fashion design still holds a certain appeal, as does web design these days. The latter would be more useful. Illustration perhaps, although I fear burnout and institutional brainwashing. English? Fine art? Photography? Anthropology?! Harrumph. I need something that won't bore the piss out of me, won't break me too hard, but also won't be a complete waste of time and money.

If I had a car and a working laptop I'd just drive down there myself and invade every art school that looks promising, a day at a time, working while I did so. Gonzo illustrator. Wander the halls, eavesdrop, look at posted work, gauge the general productivity and happiness of the average student. I'm good at meeting people and getting information. What I want to avoid is the sort of unrelated bullshit that art school bigwigs feed prospective students; most of what Cornish told me during our courtship was outright lies. It, and the shitty relationship I was trapped in at the time, ended up screwing me pretty good.

Colleges have marketing departments just full of people dying to get your application fee, but who don't actually have any contact with the school itself, the students, the classes, or anything related to them except in the most tenuous way. Offices full of hip young adults with vague administrative positions who desperately want to answer all your questions with blurbs from the catalog. I don't blame them, exactly; the teachers are busy teaching and the students shouldn't be easy to contact. But what I need is to talk to the least satisfied student at the school, and know exactly how they became unsatisfied. I need to talk to the dropouts, the stragglers, the five- and six-year seniors. The Worst Possible Scenarios, not the fucking glee club. I need anecdotes, gossip, declarations of frustration and surrender. I need to read the graffiti in the bathrooms. I need to plumb the slimy, studenty innards of the place before I can really commit.

...

I will now call my father and try to sell him on this plan.

I will miss this rain.

Hi everybody! I hope you are all doing good. School is almost over and next year I’ll be in the fifth grade. I’ll be going to soccer camp at Ohio State this summer and trying to read another thousand pages of books. I hope I can do it!

I wrote two new poems the other day. The first is about dandelions because they are starting grow on the lawn. It’s kind of short but I hope you like it anyway.

The second is about SUV’s. I really don’t understand why people drive them, especially in the city. They take up too much room. I hope you like that one too.

Dandelions

To some they are weeds,
to some they are pretty.
To some they are nothing,
to them I feel pity

They’re here for a reason
Just like you and I
We’re all here for something
Before we wither and die

SUV’s

To those great big SUV’s
I ask you to “move over” please
In and out of lanes you zoom
Taking up too much room

Maybe the owner feels big and strong
But I just feel that it is wrong
All you do is burn up gas
And make it hard for people to pass

Who would need a car so large?
On the road, they’re like a barge
If you really need all of that space
May I suggest you clean up your place?

I hope I get to see a lot of you in July!

Bye!

/me says Usual disclaimers apply

I was listening to my usual drive time radio talk show yesterday on 97.1 (the Dave Glover show) and I believe Dave was talking to Glenn Beck on the phone (I'm not certain, I missed the beginning of the segment). Anyhoo, they were talking about how the media and then subsequently Washington get wrapped up in issues nobody or not many people give a flying rat's fart about, like this flushing of the Quran business. First of all they were wondering why that was even a story - which I agree with (yeah, wtf?) - and then they were wondering why the Government was getting so bent out of shape about it. It was an unproven allegation that somebody flushed a goddamn book for crying out loud. Beck made a good point in saying that if he were in prison somewhere and somebody flushed a Bible he wouldn't have given a shit because the words are inside him. It's just a book!

But I'm straying too far from the point I intend in making here. Dave Glover said something that struck me, something that makes a lot of damn sense: if your average Joe Hardhat were up in Washington legislating and not these say-nothing, do-nothing politicians, people only interested in pushing their own agendas and worrying about book-flushings instead of the real, important issues (like Social Security reform), we'd get a hell of a lot more done!

So it got me to thinking...

If I had my own country (yes, yes, yes, I know we've ALL had thoughts starting out with those six words, but bear with me) I would set government up like this:

First of all, legislators aren't elected. Nobody runs for these offices. Because that leads to politics and in this scenario politics is avoided as much as possible (yes I know politics creeps into everything and you can't avoid it entirely). My main concept is that every four years, using a sophisticated computer program, people from each district, province, or state (however my country is subdivided) are randomly selected to serve as lawmakers from that area. The beauty of this is that they could be anybody. White, black, yellow, every color in between, man, woman, young, old, doesn't matter. I would probably put some sort of age restriction, like maybe at least 25 years old and no older than 60. This would be to prevent gross immaturity and senility. Anybody ever convicted of a crime is out, too, as well as anybody not a citizen of the country. And anybody crazy or retarded or suffering from some other type of mental disability would be excluded, too. I'm not saying they would be selected, then disqualified because that would complicate things. Any of these folks just wouldn't be in the database to pull from to begin with.

Like jury duty it would be possible to get out of it if some sort of hardship is presented (but it would be hardships of an extreme nature, not as easy to get out of as jury duty). And it would be a federal law that any employers of selected persons let them resume that job once their four years is up or face stiff penalties.

So these lawmakers would be briefed upon arriving at the Capitol on what bills are currently pending and taught how to submit bills, what format they are to be written in, etc. Maybe they attend a short two week class or something. Then they go about legislating. Imagine this, these common, average folks, presenting and voting on laws, getting to the real issues and not worrying about books being flushed down toilets or what Vicente Fox is saying about blacks. These people would actually be the citizens worried about retirement, worried about taxes, about the educational system (a great number would probably have kids). And if they get selfish and try to introduce outrageous bills like free ice cream for everybody hopefully the other, more sensible selected lawmakers would vote them down. And in my system there is a President to veto or approve bills, like in the United States.

How would the President be elected? By the people, only no Electoral College, and they would be voted on every four years when the new lawmakers are selected. And the candidates for Presidency would be one of the randomly-selected lawmakers from the previous four years and the incumbent. There would be no campaigning, it would be based on job performance. The better you represent your people, the better your chances of being voted President are.

I would have laws preventing these individuals being tampered with. The penalty for bribing them would be a minimum of 25 years in federal prison, absolutely no exceptions. The penalty for accepting a bribe is you're immediately removed from your position and fined $250,000 and spend only a year in jail. People who work the computers that select the lawmakers are just technicians and programmers with no political power. If these people, or anybody else, are caught tampering with the database and the program, life in federal prison, no exceptions. Not even parole or time off for good behavior.

I have all kinds of other ideas for my country, but I'll leave you with this. Now you may commence poking a million holes in my idea and perhaps downvoting me. Have fun.

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