Black Pearl, pretty little girl, let me bring you up where you belong – Phil Spector

I got badly sunburned yesterday. Then I took a bad fall. Whacked myself on the noggin.
I was wall washing, like an epileptic drunk when I saw my eyes in a window. One dialated, the other a pin hole. I was pretty sure I was concussed. No blood so I soldiered on for a while before I called for an ambulance.
At the hospital they confirmed the concussion. No big deal except I wasn’t allowed to sleep. The doc came and yelled on me about my health. He drained about 1,200 milliliters from my thigh. It was mostly blood and not fluid. For some reason I thought that was a good thing. I don’t have any idea why I thought that. I do know draining it took a lot of the burning pain away.
I got a lecture about how I was risking my health by not following procedures after my heart “procedure”. I felt like saying its not my fault but I just listened. I did point out I was taking all my meds, pretty much in the right way. I told the doc I’d do my best to follow orders. I think we both decided the other was an idiot.
T#hey did more heart x-rays and stuff then they released me. I thought I was going to get some chance to sleep but officially I was in Emergency and not in the hospital. That’s a technicality I can barely understand.
It was an unfortunate ending to what seemed like a decent enough day.
I told you about the shouting homeless bike mechanic. There was an event, some sort of political rally, with free food. I was standing around irritated that there was no food there I could even consider eating, when I saw the mechanic pulling up on his bike with a guitar!
I asked him if he was there busquing. He gave me a great crazy man answer. “I don’t busque! Do the birds in the trees busque? I make music! If you want to hear it that’s fine by me. If you should have a little money fall out of your pocket that’s okay too!”
He started to play and he was horrible. His guitar was a flat top that he’d strung with nylon. The tone was odd but interesting. His box was totally out of tune and the way he played it was . . . we’ll call it the Richie Valen’s bashing around technique.
He only had two chords, both clearly two he made up. A sort of Am7 at the top of the neck and a freaky CMajor he pled arounf the 11th fret. There were a whole lot of strings he didn’t fret and, even with nylon, a whole lot of buzzing. It was a nightmarish sound. People were walking past him and laughing at the crazy man.
That made me mad.
I asked if I could tune the guitar up for him. (No, I am still terrible tuning guitars totally by ear – I still don’t have perfect pitch.) He at first refused explaining that he’d been a musician for 40 years and yadda yadda yadda. Then he just handed the guitar to me.
I sat down and tuned the box pretty slack, looking to just do a whole drop note and tune it from an open D.
To try it out I started to strum out the song that had been bouncing in my head all day, The Rolling Stones, Chris Farlowe “Out of Time”. Since I don’t know the words it had a lot of da da dee verses, but always a strong chorus.
We actually got a little bit of a crowd and the Mechanic yelled at me, “Well, don’t stop now!”
So I played the first song I could think of, “O Lucky Man”. Which is a nice rhythm based number with cool lyrics to detract from my cramped hands and missed chords. Then I went straight into the Kinks, “Till The End of the Day”. Which everybody knows so you don’t have to play it too well.
People were tossing money so I played a song, an old Elvis tune, that I learned recently for my ex-friend. I think I do it pretty well and figured out easy ways to do the chord changes so my hands didn’t suffer; “Home is Where the Heart Is”.
The drugs make my tongue swell and give me terrible dry mouth. On this tune that didn’t seem to make much difference, in fact the choking sound on the high notes actually sounded emotional, at least to my ear.
I ended my big come back with Dion’s “Dip Drop”. Its semi-obscure but cool, more guitar percussion than playing and it has a killer chorus that always gets people’s heads bobbing.
After that I couldn’t play any longer. Didn’t matter the mechanic was stoked. He’d gathered up $8.40
He wanted to only give me forty cents! Because it was his guitar and I did break his G – String. I settled for a dollar.
Not so much in my heart or mind but my body is dwindling. I see little old ladies passing me on the street. I’m constantly dizzy, lost. The pain is sometimes overwhelming. People must think I’m forgein and that erk, ouch, damn are a major part of my alien vocabulary.
I don’t want to die. I know that my life has been full. There’s too much tragedy in it but when I think of my life I think of the smiles and the laughs. I remember the tasty waves. The days when it was 10 foot and the Santa Ana’s kept the face flat and smooth.
I’ve won an awful lot. I’ve had more miracles than a born again Christian at seminary school.
I was always amazed when someone said they loved me. Amazed at how many people did. And amazed at how many people said, “I love you,” not to try and get me to fall for them but because they really did love me.
I’m conceited but I never understood why anyone should ever love me.
I’ve been so lucky in that I love so many more. I didn’t tell enough people how much I loved them. There’s my advice. Tell them that you love them. Just tell them.
There’s no one out there for me to really hate either. I have enemies, had them but I think I always won when it was important and lost only when it was in not responding to petty and vindictive rage.
There are so many things I only got to see once, but I did get to see them.
If it gets to the point where I can’t go on anymore I found a place to lie down and pass over. A baseball field because no place is closer to heaven than a playing field, and no playing field more blessed than a baseball diamond.
Its an oklay field. There’s no little league team there, all adults so i wouldn’t have to consider the horrow of a kid stumbling across the homeless guy’s corpse. Its only 270 feet down the right field line! I’d have beebn a pure power hitter if I’d played my home games there.
I walked the base paths. I imagined getting a blooper hit to run out a single. (Even in my fantasies I can’t hit the curve) then I stole second, moved to third on a bad pick off attempt and then went home when the center fielder was slow in retrieving the ball.
None of it is locked up. The seats are covered and lying on the bottom row I’m certain you can’t be seen from the street or even close up.
To pass over looking at a baseball diamond and remembering and imaging life there would be as good as I could ever hope.
I only worry about my puppy. I would love to see her again but that would be too selfish even for me. By now she must be settling into the fact that I’m not there. To see her and then leave would be cruel.
I don’t know how long I can hold on. I have to write to the two jobs that are still silent. A yes or a no is needed by me! It would probably make a difference. I’m just tired.

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