Archive for January, 2010

So Far

Saturday, January 30th, 2010

I am sitting here in my big, black comfortable leather poppa chair in my living room, fondling my left knee…which Doctor Dracula, M.D.  is shortly going to replace with something he thinks will feel better. Humans have always thought we could improve on the body that the Designer-In-Chief gave us. That’s where we got artists like Picasso. A lot of people would pay a lot of money for his famous painting of a woman with the body parts in unusual places. I prefer the original design, as expressed by people like my Lady Wonder Wench…thank you very much.

 I remember the worried look on the pretty face of a young woman by the name of Maureen with whom I was…as they used to say…going steady…when she asked me a question that was supposed to be a one question intelligence test. Since she was convinced we were eventually going to get married, she was concerned about my level of intelligence, because I guess I wasn’t showing much of it at the time…since I was at that point in my life, a pimple person.

 The question was, “If you could put an eye anywhere else on your body, where would put it.” For many reasons which would have made her blush if I told her about them, I figured the best place would be on my fingertip. It turns out that I had what she called the right answer The reasons she gave, of course were somewhat different from mine…so Maureen was relieved. I hope she is still relieved…wherever she is. If you’re reading this Maureen…your body parts were all in the right places…and I certainly appreciated that.

 The question does bring up some interesting points however. For example, why did the Designer-In-Chief decide to put something as drippy as a nose right over our mouths ? I’d rather have it there than in some other places I can think of…not under our armpits. But over the mouth seems…un-necessarily disgusting.

 Because I live where the winters get cold, I’ve often thought it would be good to have our ears under our arm pits…but of course that would mean we’d have to stick our hands up in the air every time someone was talking to us…which would make it even more difficult for us to look into the eyes of a lady in a low cut dress if our eyes were up there on the fingertip and hers were down where they belong. I mean…come on…think about the angles involved. And I won’t even begin to get into some of the shortcomings that I feel took place in certain gynecological and Viagral designs.

 Dick’s Details Quiz. All answers are in the current podcast.

1-    What’s with ladies leather underwear ?

2-    What’s the best vehicle for dealing with a hungry whale ?

3-    If you meet a guy by the name of “Stumpy” in Florida, what’s his likely profession ?

 Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 I was critical of a painter by the name of Picasso a few minutes ago. I don’t want you to think I have anything against artists. And I really don’t want to hear from the American Artists for Violent Action Against Wise Ass Bloggers committee. I like artists. In fact, there’s a story about an artist in the Night Connections 2 personal audio cd. It’s caller Painting, Pottery and Passion.

It’s about silence…it’s sometimes called icy silence. But this silence…in this story…was as hot as hot gets. Do you ever wonder why we do things like that…on purpose…play with fire ? The guys in the white lab coats say we sometimes really want to get burned. And they may be right.

 Painting, Pottery and Passion is from the Night Connections 2 personal audio cd. If you like it, you can just keep the current podcast, or if you want a fresh copy, just go back to the home page of this website, and download it from the Night Connections 2 icon.

 I guess it’s appropriate that I’m going to have a knee operation, because I’m a Louie-Louie Generation guy…and like most Louie-Louie generation guys, I can no longer call myself hip. I guess you could say Guys my age are much more like knees. Think about it. We’ve had to learn how to bend…even when we don’t like it. We’ve had to learn how to forgive, because there have been so many times when we’ve had to be forgiven. And too much jogging has definitely bounced our brains around a little too much.

 Most of us are optimists though. We still hope things are going to get better, because we’ve often seen them even worse than they are now.

 What a wonderful time we’ve had.

 So far.

Who’s The Guy ?

Saturday, January 23rd, 2010

I’m sitting here in my big, comfortable black leather poppa chair in the living room looking at a picture of my dad…sitting in his big comfortable poppa chair in his living room…a long time ago. He was the only hero I ever had. And that’s too bad, because you don’t really get to know the PEOPLE who are your heros. You know what they did. But you don’t really know all the reasons why they did what they did. We know that the first order George Washington gave his men when they crossed the Delaware river on Christmas Eve in 1776 was, ”Burn the boats.” Military Historians say that was so his men had no choice but to beat the Hessians at Trenton. But I wonder if he was also thinking, “Burning the damn boats will give these poor, freezing starving guys a few minutes of warmth before they go to lay down their lives for this thing we believe in.”

 We learn about Washington the hero…the gutsy, commanding guy, who used his head and won our war. But I always wondered about Washington the man, the friend, the guy…watching his troops…a bunch of other guys, some of them his friends, on that frozen, awful night as they were getting ready to die to keep freedom warm and alive in their hearts…and ours.

 Dad was a teacher. Most heros are. The things he taught were simple…and profound. He said things like “It takes real strength to be gentle.”  He said, “There’s a time for pulling yourself together, and there’s a time for letting yourself go.” He said, “Be a man.” There wasn’t any confusion about what he meant by that. As a teacher, dad knew that show was always more important than tell.  So showed me how to be a man. He always told the truth, even when he screwed up. So I never saw him get embarrassed…even when sometimes I saw him cry. He said “Big boys never cry, but big men sometimes do.” He loved to tell long, involved jokes to make me laugh. He liked laughing. Especially when the joke was on him. He was deeply religious. He said, “The rules should be very strict, but the application of them should be very loving.” He was very smart. He was a whiz at math…and music. Ooh he loved his music.

 My room was right next to the living room where he had his piano. And most nights when I was a kid, he’d tell me a story, give me a kiss on the head, and go play his piano…and sing…in that quiet, gentle powerful baritone voice.

 Dad wasn’t a big guy. I’m taller than he was. But he kept himself strong. He was always doing pushups. He was a college wrestler and a state champion quarter mile track star. He was a peaceful guy, except if anybody gave my mom a hard time. I remember that he came home once, and a delivery guy was yelling at my mom. The delivery guy was a very big, husky guy. Dad didn’t say anything. He just picked the guy up, and tossed him over the stoop. That was dad’s way of teaching me that job number one for any guy, is taking care of your woman. 

 He was a hard worker. He taught music and ran a couple of church choirs. But he always found time to play catch with me, and teach me how to run a little faster, and throw a pretty good punch. He also taught me how to play the saxaphone…a little. I didn’t have his talent. But my brother John did. And and I passed it down to my sons Dave, Eric and Mark. And he also always took time to stop at the florist shop up the block and bring my mom a rose or two. Usually, he couldn’t afford a dozen.

 Dad had five sons. But he never had a daughter…until my Lady Wonder Wench came into my life. I had my Lady, and he had his daughter. The night he died, she leaned over and kissed his forehead. He opened his eyes and he said…”That was very nice.” I think those were his last words.

 Dick’s Details Quiz. All answers are in the current podcast.

1-    If you hear a lot of heavy breathing in the middle of the night, what kind of beast is probably contacting you ?

2-    How much “meaningful conversation” does the average American parent have with the average kid ?

3-    Where did we get the idea for a “hot chick?”

 Dick’s details. They take your mind off your mind.

 I was telling you about my dad…and how he always wanted a daughter. Mom always wanted a daughter too. And My Lady Wonder Wench filled that need just as well as she did for dad. There’s a story in the Night Connections 2 album about a mother and daughter relationship. But it’s called, Daddy’s Girl. It’s in the current podcast. I know a guy who has a daughter. And he knows it. But he doesn’t have the guts to face up to being her father. He will never know that he’s missed one of the best parts of being a man. If you like this story called, Daddy’s Girl you can just keep the current podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just go back the home page and download if from the Night Connections icon.

 A little while ago, I said I’m almost sorry my dad was my hero… because I only saw what he did, and I never even tried to find out why he did it. I think that’s a guy thing. And it’s too bad. I don’t think I ever really knew dad very well as just…a guy. A guy with a wife and five kids…and a mortgage…and aches and pains…and hopes and fears. I never had the slightest idea about his hopes and fears. I think my Lady Wonder Wench got to know him better than I ever did. She knew him well enough to be the daughter he always wanted.

 Maybe that’s why guys always hope to have a daughter. We’d kind of like to have someone who’s smart enough and caring enough to find out not just what we do, but why we do it.

 I’m looking at his picture on the wall right now…and let me tell you…I’m taller than he was, but he was a very big guy. And he left some very big shoes to fill.

The Peek-A-Boo-I-See-You Game

Saturday, January 16th, 2010

I’m sitting here in my big, comfortable, black leather poppa chair in my living room, and I still have a smile on my face from playing a game of peek a boo with a baby a while ago. It’s probably the oldest game known to mankind. Well…one of the oldest. It’s built into our genes. When a baby is born, the doctor slaps it’s butt to get it to cry so it will breathe, then if I were the doctor, I’d make it stop crying by pulling the mask down from my eyes and I’d say peek !

 Peek a boo, I see you. The littlest kids understand when you hide your eyes and then say Peek. And they like it even better when you cover their eyes then take your hand away and say Peek ! Wow ! You made the whole world disappear, and then you brought it back when you said Peek. You have become a God-like individual to the kid. The Lord of Laughs. Not a bad idea. Sounds like as you get a little older, it would put a twinkle in your wrinkle.

 Peek a boo. I see you. That’s one of the key lines in the Avatar movie. Not the peek a boo part…just the “I see you” part. In case you’re one of the fifteen people on the planet who hasn’t seen the movie, I won’t spoil it for you by telling you too much about it. But for me…really…the whole thing revolves around the idea that most people don’t play peek-a-boo-I-see-you any more. Almost nobody really sees you. Or me. Or anybody. Not even your husband or your wife, or your kids…nobody. Most people don’t even see themselves. That doesn’t mean they don’t see the face that’s reflected in the mirror. It means they don’t see the person who’s making the face…the person inside the face. The you in the mirror.

 A quick game of peek-a-boo-I-see-you tore my life apart. It happened on the first day my Lady Wonder Wench walked into my studio at that station in Boston. She was in charge of scheduling the commercials and she had to makes some changes on the program log. She was wearing a plaid skirt with pleats that swirled when she walked, a sweater that seriously disrupted my chemical, electrical and atomic systems, and a smile that she half hid behind her long soft brown hair. She held out her hand and introduced herself…and she looked at me…and zap…it was like the static electric shock you get when you walk on a carpet in your socks. Her eyes turned the whole room electric blue.

 She was the only woman who…right away…had the courage to let me look right into her eyes…all the way into her eyes… without blinking or turning away. And what I saw….there…was pride, and humor, and beauty, and dignity, and intelligence …Peek-a-boo…I saw her…because she had the guts to let me see her.

 It was like her eyes were naked, and she let me see…her… shining…stunning…alive. Then she gave me a quick laugh, tossed her head, and just for an instant before she hid those eyes behind that quick flash of hair…I saw something I had never seen in anybody’s eyes. It lasted about half a blink.  I remember that it felt like one long fingernail flicking for an instant across a small itchy spot on my scalp. It tore me open.

 A lot of questions came out of that “I See You” instant. I put them in a story called called, Who Are You ? It’s in the Lovin Touch personal audio cd. The the power of peek-a-boo-I-see-you is…it made me feel…happy. Just like that…All of a sudden, I knew what I was supposed to be when I grow up. Happy. Just…happy. Sounds simple doesn’t it. And it really is. But most people make it agonizingly complicated. That quick flash in her eyes…that reflection of me looking at her…and seeing her because she let me see her…nobody ever did that in my life until then. It takes courage to do that…peek-a-boo-let-someone-see-you. What do you think. Are you up for giving it a shot ?

Dick’s Details Quiz. All answers are in the current podcast.

1-    What can you do with your tongue that will make the rest of the guys in the locker room edge away from you?

2-    Why should you X-Ray a prospective mate ?

3-    What’s the most famous peek-a-boo game ever played?

Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 Peek-a-boo-I-see-you is powerful stuff. You’re going to see a lot of people start denouncing that Avatar because lots of them really don’t have the courage to play the see and be seen game. Especially the be-seen part. I think that’s because a lot of people are afraid of the boogie man. I wonder if a lot of those people are afraid that if they peek into the mirror, they might find the biggest boogie man around…looking back at them.

 So it takes guts to play the peek-a-boo-I-see-you game. It can tear you open. But I think you’ll find it’s worth it. Because as that wound heals, you might find your own answer to what you’re supposed to be when you grow up. I hope you’ll get lucky, like I did. I hope you find that you’re supposed to be happy too.

My House Is Bugged

Saturday, January 9th, 2010

I’m sitting here in my big black, comfortable poppa chair in my living room…and I am still wearing my Indiana Jones hero hat.

I had to jam it on my head a little while ago when  my Lady Wonder Wench made a sound that shattered two of the glasses in our kitchen cabinet. It was her “Oh my God there’s a bug” shriek that erupts every time she sees something that doesn’t look like a neighbor crawling somewhere in our zip code.

 Most of the time, my Lady Wonder Wench has a warm and gentle  Mezzo soprano voice. It was one of the many personal attributes that inclined me, when I first met her, to ask her if she had any love that was going to waste…although I must admit that what I really had on my mind was trying to persuade her to abandon as many of her fundamental principles of decency as I could, as quickly as I could. I remember telling her that “To err is human, but it can feel devine.” But she just gave me one of those soft, warm, Lady Wonder Wenchy laughs. That was the first time I’d heard anything like that. Even after all these years, it always reminds me of butter melting on my pancakes. Which is not really surprising when you consider that it came from somewhere inside Lady Wonder Wench. 

 But there are several things that can change that voice into something of a sonic weapon. The New York Mets in the process of booting another game is one. Also cold finger tips where they don’t belong…many women drivers in suvs talking on their cell phones…and bugs. For some reason, she can deal with bugs when they’re on the floor. But not on the wall, on the table…and certainly not on her needlepoint.

 Unfortunately, over the course of the last few months, our living room has been bugged. And ours isn’t the only one. They’re all over the place, including the needlepoint shop where my Lady Wonder Wench gets threads, cloth, and the latest news. The needlepoint shop is run by a group of ladies, and most of their customers are ladies. And the ladies who work there are always trying to hide the bugs from the ladies who shop there, because there’s probably a lot of non-shatterproof glass around.

 The bugs are roughly the size of an I-pod, but thankfully with a lot less intelligence. They’re so big that if they didn’t look so much like something out of a Si-Fi movie, you might want to keep them for pets. They appear out of no where, but then they just sit there as if they’re expecting a pat on the back for making such a good landing on your wall…or your table…or in this case on your needlepoint. They make a satisfying crunch when you do pat them enthusiastically on the back with a Kleenex, but they take revenge by leaving a smell that will clear your sinuses and those of your neighbors for three blocks around.

 I keep my Indiana Jones hat handy, because I kind of like jamming in on my head, making a manly grunt, and grabbing a Kleenex on my way to assassinate a bug. I like the “You’re my hero” sound in Lady Wonder Wench’s pancake buttery voice when I do the heroic deed.

 You may have noticed that every hero has to have a hat, or a cape, or something that makes him easy to spot for the pretty women who are always milling around in his movies and often in his bed room.  And of course it doesn’t hurt that those hats or capes or whatever can be easily marketed to goose the profits of the movie studio for which the guy is heroic.

 Indiana Jones in my kind of hero. He can’t leap tall buildings with a single bound like Superman, but he’s the kind of guy who might try doing it in two bounds if he thought some pretty girl was watching. He’s not particularly handsome, he’s not particularly tall, he’s just a nice guy who…like me…might usually figure the best way to keep from being annoyed by a dripping faucet is just to turn up the stereo…but then lose his temper and  seriously consider unclogging an overflowing toilet with a twelve-gage shotgun if there was NO pretty girl…like my Lady Wonder Wench…watching, and generally keeping things under control. In other words, he’s my kind of guy.

 Dick’s details quiz. All answers are in the current podcast. 1-    What is it that 100 % of the guys listening to the podcast do that makes their women roll their eyes in opposite directions. 2-    What is the biggest difference between men and women.  3-    What do 85% of American women wear improperly.

 Dick’s Details take your mind off your mind.

 Some women’s voices are sexier than others. Lady Wonder Wench is at the sweatiest end of the scale. Aircraft manufacturers know that most pilots are men, and we tend to pay more attention to women’s voices than we do to men’s voices. I think hormones may be to blame. So the automatic instruments in a cockpit that say things like “That’s a mountain at 12 o’clock and a half mile…you may want to climb dummy.” are all female voices. Some people hear lots of voices that only they can hear. That can be confusing.  And there are some people who take the time to listen to just a single voice in their own heads. And that voice can clear up lots of confusion. There’s a way to do that. It’s in the Quiet Hands personal audio cd. It’s called The Strong, Quiet Voice.

 You’ll be amazed at how smart that Strong Quiet Voice in your own head can be. You’ll find yourself trusting it more and more. If you like The Strong Quiet Voice, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just download it from the icon on the home page.

 I have to admit, I really like jamming my Indiana Jones hat on…I always tilt it about 45 degrees to the left. As soon as I do that, I can hear the music…and feel the bullwhip in my hands…and best of all, there’s the Lady Wonder Wench sound…just like butter melting on my pancakes.


Thursday, January 7th, 2010

Proud Podcast Participant Al sent this…think of it as early for next Christmas.

As a joke, my brother Jay used to hang a pair of panty hose over his fireplace before Christmas. He said all he wanted was for Santa to fill them. What they say about Santa checking the list twice must be true because every Christmas morning, although Jay’s kids’ stockings overflowed, his poor pantyhose hung sadly empty.

 One year I decided to make his dream come true. I put on sunglasses and went in search of an inflatable love doll. They don’t sell those things at Wal-Mart. I had to go to an adult bookstore downtown. If you’ve never been in an X-rated store, don’t go, you’ll only confuse yourself. I was there an hour saying things like, ‘What does this do?’ ‘You’re kidding me!’ ‘Who would buy that?’ Finally, I made it to the inflatable doll section. I wanted to buy a standard, uncomplicated doll that could also substitute as a passenger in my truck so I could use the car pool lane during rush hour.

 Finding what I wanted was difficult. ‘Love Dolls’ come in many different models. I wanted the top of the line and I figured I found it, because according to the side of the box, it could do things I’d only seen in a book on animal husbandry. I settled for ‘Lovable Louise.’ She was at the bottom of the price scale. To call Louise a ‘doll’ took a huge leap of imagination.

 On Christmas Eve and with the help of an old bicycle pump, Louise came to life. My sister-in-law was in on the plan and let me in during the wee morning hours. Long after Santa had come and gone, I filled the dangling pantyhose with Louise’s pliant legs and bottom. I also ate some cookies and drank what remained of a glass of milk on a nearby tray. I went home, and giggled for a couple of hours.

 The next morning my brother called to say that Santa had been to his house and left a present that had made him VERY happy, but had left the dog confused. She would bark, start to walk away, then come back and bark some more. We all agreed that Louise should remain in her pantyhose so the rest of the family could admire her when they came over for the traditional Christmas dinner.

 My grandmother noticed Louise the moment she walked in the door. ‘What the hell is that?’ she asked. My brother quickly explained, ‘It’s a doll.’ ‘Who would play with something like that?’ Granny snapped. I kept my mouth shut. Where are her clothes?’ Granny continued. Boy, that turkey sure smells nice, Gran,’ Jay said, to steer her into the dining room.

 But Granny was relentless. ‘Why doesn’t she have any teeth? Again, I could have answered, but why would I? It was Christmas and no one wanted to ride in the back of the ambulance saying, ‘Hang on Granny; hang on!’ My grandfather, a delightful old man with poor eyesight, sidled up to me and said, ‘Hey, who’s the naked gal by the fireplace?’ I told him she was Jay’s friend. A few minutes later I noticed Grandpa by the mantel, talking to Louise. Not just talking, but actually flirting. It was then that we realized this might be Grandpa’s last Christmas at home.

 The dinner went well. We made the usual small talk about who had died, who was dying, and who should be killed, when suddenly Louise made a noise like my father in the bathroom in the morning. Then she lurched from the mantel, flew around the room twice, and fell in a heap in front of the sofa. The cat screamed. I passed cranberry sauce through my nose, and Grandpa ran across the room, fell to his knees, and began administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. My brother fell back over his chair and wet his pants. Granny threw down her napkin, stomped out of the room, and sat in the car.

 It was indeed a Christmas to treasure and remember. Later in my brother’s garage, we conducted a thorough examination to decide the cause of Louise’s collapse. We discovered that Louise had suffered from a hot ember to the back of her right thigh. Fortunately, thanks to a wonder drug called duct tape, we restored her to perfect health.

I can’t wait until next Christmas. Thinking of all my friends, including the strangers I haven’t met yet!!

Coming Sunday…”My Living Room Is Bugged .”

The Dick Summer Connection

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010

I’m leaving the New Year’s podcast up for another week. Lots of folks said they felt good about it.

 On the subject of the beginning of another new year, a group of unpleasant but very smart ancient people called the Mayans said we shouldn’t make any important appointments for 2012.  When us Louie-Louie Generation folks were in our pimple stage, if somebody ran around saying “The End Is Coming,” we giggled as we pinned a sign on the back of his shirt saying “Gone Crazy, Back Soon.”  But since the recent discovery known as “Blockbuster movies,” our society has come to respect such ancient warnings for the positive effect they can have on selling popcorn.

 But hey, what if they were right.  Just think…we’d never have to pay income tax again after this April, global warming wouldn’t get a chance to turn Arizona into oceanfront property, and campaign speeches would be history.

 So seriously…what would we, the members of the Louie-Louie Generation, do differently if we knew we had only one more year to mess up life?  Would we get holier, or naughtier?

 I think I’d cut loose.  How about you?  Please let me know.  You can add a comment at the bottom of this blog, or send me an e-mail at .  I think I’d have as much fun as I could…without hurting people.  I’d grab a handful of condom boxes at the drug store and sneaky slip them into the shopping carts of everybody who looks uptight.  Then I’d go over to the nearest security camera, look up at it and smile, and do something with my finger that you’re only supposed to do using a Kleenex.

 Actually, if I didn’t have to worry about anything after 2010, it would be easy to make some of the big decisions I’ve been afraid to make.  And some of those decisions would be kind of selfish, I guess.  Not proud of that, but it’s true.  For example…I’d retire. And I’d spend every last cent we have.  The last check I’d write on December 31 would bounce…if there were any place for it to bounce to.  I’d put my Lady Wonder Wench into our little airplane and fly low and slow all over this beautiful country…and suck it all in.  We’d stop in Nashville, Memphis, and New Orleans for the music.  We’d walk together in the quiet of the ancient California forest called Muir Woods…and make love there.  In fact, every night and a significant number of days…we’d make all the love we didn’t make before we met.  I’d sit down and record one more Lovin Touch/Bedtime Stories album.

 I’d hug more, and laugh more, and kiss and touch, and even cry as much as I possibly could.  I’d pick up my old tenor sax again…and practice “Harlem Nocturne” till I got it right.  I’d find something nice to say to every waitress in every restaurant.  I’d go back to Coney Island and swim in the surf at Bay 22 where I was a lifeguard so long ago.  I’d spend one whole night lying on the grass watching a full moon sail all the way across the sky.  I’d walk into a fitting room at a clothing store, shut the door…wait a while…and holler “Hey, there’s no toilet paper in here.”

I guess that leaves me with just two questions 1-    Why don’t I do these things?  What am I waiting for? … and

2-    What would you do?

 By the way, I think one of the reasons those ancient Mayans were so unpleasant was that their priests kept sacrificing virgins…which is the sort of waste that after a while is going to get any bunch of guys in the tribe a little testy.