Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Friends that stay with you

This is a photo of a dear friend of mine that just recently passed. Although I fell out of touch over the years, we still remained strong in a heart-felt way. The woman I am speaking of is the one on the right. Probably the most talented and gifted person I have ever had the pleasure to know.

Her name is Roberta Meyer. I met Roberta early on in my sobriety, and she offered workshops for anyone with a desire to be in Communication. I spell that with a capital "C" because that was her gift. She brought that ability out in people just by her willingness to listen with intention.

She taught us that the degree to which we discount ourselves, is the degree to which we will damage others. In other words, love yourself, and know that you truly make a difference in the lives of the people around you. She authored two books, held many workshops and seminars, was an accomplished ballet dancer and taught dance throughout her life. She began programs that assisted families and youth at risk. She was a powerful speaker and  personality.

It was Roberta who listened when I had lost my mother to cancer. Ironically, she died from the same disease. She heard the language of my heart and I will forever be grateful to her for that. She was beautiful inside and out, and anyone who knew her would say pretty much the same thing.

May her Spirit live in the hearts of the people that knew her, forever.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

This Week So Far...

Monday I had a meltdown, Tuesday the Giants won the World Series. Wednesday I went for a hike around Lake Hennessy with a friend named Jim. Thursday I went to a men's meeting. Friday I prepared Coffee for the morning meeting and went to Thelma's house for Boysenberry Pie and whipped cream which Cathy brought, later i bought some fire cheetos for the trick or treaters who came by my place for Halloween. Saturday was the Farmer's Market where the rain lightened up and I made a modest income. Today is Sunday. A week of ups and downs.

I should mention that I went to see my physician on Thursday and was prescribed a medication. I am willing to give it a go. Doc says three weeks and then to return to his office for an update. It's a mild anti-convulsant called Lamotrigine. It is prescribed for bipolarity.

The doctor assured me that this has been very effective in treating people with mood disorders. I believe now that I fall in to that category. Over the years I have tried a few anti-depressants, believing that I just suffered from what I have learned is agitated depression. These medications have only served to make me feel a bit like a zombie. Emotionally flat. As an artist I was left generally uninspired and unmotivated. I gained weight and noticed that my libido was not was it was before taking these medications. I stopped taking them at different intervals throughout the late 90's and early part on the millennium. I stopped entirely around 2008. I don't like taking things that can be abused. These medications do not fall into that category.

Recovery from alcoholism has taught me to proceed cautiously when it comes to seeking advice and treatment from professionals. I have known my physician for over thirty years. I trust his judgement around his practice. I have been to other so-called professionals and have experienced many adverse results over the years, but have always returned to what has made a positive difference in my life. Good friends and fellowship has never failed me in times of desperation.
I am truly grateful for having been brought up in a loving family, however dysfunctional... we are all miracles. I am also grateful for my sobriety ,and the people that have supported that over the thirty seven years I have been drug and alcohol free. My life has been an incredible adventure and I would not trade my
problems for anyones. I have discovered how my experience can benefit others, but I know only a little. No one likes a know it all who is sometimes right.

Today, It is clear to me that I know very little yet am being directed through the belief in a Power greater than myself . That Power continues to serve me to the degree that I ask to be shown, and am willing to accept the outcome.

I am blessed to be living in a beautiful Valley, and thank God every day for the opportunity to live here.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Nice Autumn Weather

Friday brought some overcast skies which seem so unusual since they haven't been around in quite awhile. Warm, sunny and blue-sky days have been the ho-hum norm around here. It almost wants to make me snuggle up to a good book in front of a fireplace somewhere ( yea right, you hopeless romantic ). Last night the Giants won the National league pennant which was a good excuse for fans to go bonkers up and down the streets of S.F. ( saw it on the 11pm news ). I even painted a few extra Giants logo rocks to sell at the Market tomorrow.

Okay, so I haven't a license to sell Giants swag... just send me a cease and desist letter and I will stop. I've also painted a number of Mandala rocks and a few Halloween rocks with spooky faces like Frankenstein. This is a good time of year for that sort of stuff. Lately, these blog entries have been rather mundane because I find my sense of excitement has somehow flattened out.

I long to live more spontaneously as I get older. Below are some beautiful Hydrangeas. A lady at the Market let me take a picture of them. Are we all happy now?

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Stepping back in time

I took a trip to south S.F. with my friends Veda and Bill to visit Daiso; The Japanese "dollar" store in Serramonte. One can spend twenty bucks and walk out with a shopping bag full of items you didn't know you needed. Especially kitchen gadgets like silicone spatulas and hot plate holders. I wanted to get some glow in the dark dots that really glow bright to stick on my Spirit Rocks. They didn't have any this time. I especially wanted to visit my sister's store in the Castro but we were running a little late, and Bill didn't want to deal with the traffic getting in an out of S.F. on a Sunday after a Giants game. The City has just become crazy dense these past few years and it looks like that trend is not going to let up any time soon.It's really a young person's town nowadays. If I was still in my twenties or thirties and upwardly mobile, I would be up for the challenge to try and take it in on again. Not so in my sixties.

It's weird to watch a town grow over the years. Our family arrived in S.F. in the middle of the beatnik era. The Giants had arrived there to play in Seal Stadium only the year before. My dad took me to a game where I got to watch Johnny Antonelli pitch knuckle balls as I was more interested hearing the the beer and hot dog vendors yell out their products as they roamed the stands. It got cold after the fifth inning as the fog rolled in. The ever present summer fog. Coming from Connecticut, I mistook date palm trees for evidence of tropical weather because I recall seeing coconut palms in Florida as a kid, and figured that Bermuda shorts and a t-shirt would be de rigueur as I caught a nasty first summer cold following a"free" concert in Sigmund Stern Grove that July . How quickly one discovers that you are charting new territory when you hear for the very first time that dreadful time-warn "Coldest winter" quote from Mark Twain.

Tourists be forewarned... always bring a jacket.

Monday, September 08, 2014

When I'm Sixty Four...

This year my birthday falls on a Saturday, which will be on (you guessed it...) 12-13-14 ! The last numerically sequential date of the century.Could it be the end of days? Hmmmm... I don't know, but perhaps it is a good day to have a party. It's a weekend and the only thing I will probably be doing is selling rocks at the Farmer's Market. Saturday evening I attend mass, and then attend a meeting in St. Helena which gets out at 8:30PM . Maybe a movie and some popcorn at the Cameo theater. Hey, that sounds like a good time ! So, if you are in the area on December 13th, let's go to a show at the Cameo. This sounds like a plan.

My friend Eric reads this blog, and his birthday is on the fourteenth, and he will be officially a senior citizen that day. I still have a year to go.

So that's a wrap.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Banteron's Muse: Going Tubeless

Banteron's Muse: Going Tubeless: This is annoying, yet undeniably the price we will have to pay to feel politically and environmentally correct nowadays.It's Scott &quot...

Going Tubeless

This is annoying, yet undeniably the price we will have to pay to feel politically and environmentally correct nowadays.It's Scott "Naturals".This huge paper company is now presenting a new tubeless toilet paper roll.You are now able to feel good about taking (and for that matter) giving a shit.Comedians will have a field day with this one.You can hear one saying now,"Yo! when my fingers ain't enough for cleaning the old bung-hole, I can now use the whole roll!"Lookout Scott, it's coming.

Don't these people know that toilet paper tubes are a necessity for many a school art project? When stacked upright, several tubes can support weight thousands of times it's own.It's what this country is built upon!(an endless trash heap, that is...) It will be sad the day when children won't have that pretend telescope to peer through; But will this mean that it will be an eye-blink before Scott pulls the tubes from their paper towels? Ever try to place a new roll on one of those spring-loaded holders?

Like you, I don't want to think about these things. Waste,when out of sight is out of mind in my book; But Scott has a point, and no doubt has held countless meetings and focus groups to bring this idea forward for the rest of us to ponder.It only goes to prove the time worn Werner Erhard pontification..."Their is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come." Nor is a crap,when one is ready to deliver one.It's sort of like being stuck in traffic after two espressos and a bran muffin if you get my drift.New mother's will concur on this...Does everyone agree that toilet paper tubes are an environmental disaster? Didn't you get the memo on this?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

A little shook up

This morning at 3:30 am I was woken to a rumbling sound and items falling from shelves throughout my apartment. I bolted out of bed and through the front door down the stairs to the driveway yelling, "Earthquake!" Being the first one out, my heart was thumping and after calming myself a bit, i noticed I was still in my underwear. Hmmmm... well they were a plaid pattern and looked somewhat like a pair of swim shorts,so I didn't worry too much about people noticing.

The neighbors began to appear from balconies across the way, and everyone was standing around looking at each other wondering what everyone usually wonders... is that the end of it? Well it is approximately twelve hours later and we've only experienced mild aftershocks here at the North end of the Valley. Napa bore the brunt of the damage from this 6.1 magnitude quake.My sister and nephew called in short order to see if I was alright.No problem here.

My nephew posted pictures of his place in Napa where you can see that many items were tossed about; like ping pong balls in a lottery spinner.Thankfully everyone is still alive and hopefully we will not have another shaker like that for some time to come.Let's keep our fingers crossed.