Saturday, February 19, 2011

Brad Paisley Concert II

If you read the write up on the concert in the Roanoke Times, you will know that it was a big hit. Especially because all the musicians showed up and it was not necessary for me to pinch-hit. It was the kind of concert that set the bar pretty high for all future concert going.

I am embarrassed to admit that I did use the ear plugs. Hey, the guys up on stage had them. so why not those in the audience! In fact that could be part of the junk, I mean souvenirs, they sell...Paisley ear plugs. I pulled them out occasionally to verify, yep, too loud. How Old Ladyish is that??? I did pull them out when he used his acoustic guitar, so is that OK? I also left them off for the whole encore. Come on you have to be surrounded by all that sound for at least part of the time. The trick is to know how long you can get the whole experience without losing any part of your hearing.

I won't give you a play by play, just know that Jerrod Niemann was good, Darius Rucker was great and Brad Paisley was glorious. Lee said it looked like his mom never had to remind him to practice his music when he was a kid! He also switched out guitars for just about every song. One roadie just for guitar wrangler!

One thing I like about Paisley's music is that it is funny, clever, witty and touching, sometimes all in the same song. Rucker also included a few of his most touching songs and I don't know why he isn't headlining his own shows, but was glad to see him. One thing I noticed was that there was not a lot of Black people there. I wonder what is inherently white about country music these days. It is not racist as far as this white person can tell. Any ideas?

So all in all a great evening. We parked early and walked to the Hotel Roanoke for dinner. It gave us lots of time to move around before sitting for a looong time, have a great meal and still have a great parking space for getting out of the Civic Center. The only down side of the whole evening was on the way out. I stepped off the curb and my ankle just gave out. Down I went. Nothing really injured but sooo embarrassing. Good thing I don't know any of those people! I know there was a lot of drinking going on, based on the sticky footing and puddles of beer, but I didn't have any. I was suffering from old lady ankles, hips and eyesight. And that is not something I can get over in the morning, like a hangover, damn it all.

It doesn't look like I will be able to use these ear plugs again. They fell victim to the animals that inhabit the house and control our every move. A kitty soccer game knocked them to the ground and the dog picked up the fumble and tried to eat the evidence.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Brad Paisley Concert

Lee and I are going the Brad Paisley concert tomorrow. He bought me the tickets for Christmas. I am taking off early from work so I don't have to rush and we can have dinner in town. By town, mean Roanoke, not, Buchanan. Ordinarily I hoard my vacation days like a miser. I go see Mom twice a year, so that uses up most of it. The rest of the days I use for when the kids are in town.

So I am going to leave work early and make an event of it!

When I was younger and played guitar a lot, I used to fantasize about being at a concert and one of the guitar players would get sick. I knew all the songs! I could fill in! Sort of like a pilot that has to fly the jet home and save the day...only less critical and more fun

In reality, I think Brad Paisley can handle things all by himself and I don't have to worry that I might "crash" the concert.

I can just sit back and enjoy. That is, if I remember the ear plugs. The last concert left me with ringing in my ears for hours. I'm going prepared this time!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


I am so excited. We bought a Nookcolor. I am using it now so this will be short as the keyboard is not conducive to lots of typing. Because of this lovely gift, I can't get mad at him for his comment this morning.

We were discussing my new diet and weight loss. I had lost 10 pounds and have a BUNCH to go. He mentioned he wanted to lose 8. I was understandably upset with the disparity in midlife issues for men and women. I gain a bunch of weight and can't sleep and my memory is shot. Men buy a convertible Corvette and date 20 year olds.

"Have you seen 20 year old boys, " I asked ? How is that a fair trade off, I wondered. Lee had a perfect comeback for which I have no response.

"Have you seen the new Corvettes?" he asked.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Book Review and eReaders

Oh, my gosh, oh, my gosh! Scott Sigler commented on my blog. I would respond to him but I can't. So here is my response. I love the fact that he commented on my blog. I am glad he didn't critique it for glaring errors. Even better, he is coming out with a new book in the series, Pandemic. It is not for some time, though, so it gives you time to read the first two and build some anticipation. I sent both books via Amazon to my brother Roland for his birthday. He works for the Department of Energy and has a long commute by train into DC. He was also on the trip to Tonga and read The Puppet Masters quite a few times, so I know he will love it.

This series screams out to be made into movies. If someone hasn't optioned it, maybe they should. When I win the lottery (my fall back financial goal for retirement) I will do it myself. I took some screen writing in college! My English major daughter Trista (UCLA summa cum laude)who then went to England for her Master's could do the editing. Okay, this series screams out for a movie or two done by professionals. And I'll leave it at that. Except for the fact that it is written in such a way that I can see how it would be adapted to the screen very easily, hopefully WAY better than The Puppet Masters was!

While we spent 2 hours today clearing more rusty oil barrels and wires out of the gully..the Super Bowl starts late on this coast...most of this weekend has been spent researching eReaders. Every time I go somewhere on a plane I have to take a book a day and a couple extra. This is in case I get stuck in an airport or I don't like one or two I brought. In addition, it was just decided by the consortium of libraries in Roanoke and Botetourt counties that they will purchase ebooks that can be downloaded to just about every eReader except Kindle. Now that I can get free books I am getting excited about an eReader.

I read about a book a day. I get a lot from the library, but I buy a lot, also. Because I read in such volume buying new does not make sense. I spend $30 to $50 a month on used paperback books. I like to buy them because I read everywhere. I read while doing dishes and vacuuming. I read while taking a bath. (Is it bad that I read when I iron? I do it when I shift the item being ironed to a different spot or change garments. I know, the kids always tell me that I can do any job more quickly if I am not reading, but the fact is I like reading more than these other jobs and have a hard time putting down the book to get to it ...just one more chapter..) I read while Lee drives. I don't read while I drive, though. I like a small paperback to fit in my purse so I can read whenever the opportunity occurs. I like the books small and portable and cheap in case I ruin them in the water!

Now that I can get free books, an eReader makes sense. I will still buy a lot of paperbacks and get hardbacks from the library, but for travel I love the idea of an eReader. I also like the idea that I can keep up with email and my blog when out in California. I checked and found that my old library in California has ebooks, so I can fill up out there, also. Or even grab one from Barnes and Noble via the Internet.

My dilemma was, do I get an eReader or an iPad. The iPad was larger and therefore heavier, but way more versatile. On the other hand, I can't get interested in games or a lot of the options, so I can take or leave that. I went to Best Buy and tried out all the available options and spent a lot of time Googling (is that a verb, like FedEx a package or Xerox a page?)to find out what other people think. I heard that iPad will have built in camera in the next generation. I love that idea. Then it will be easy to Skype with Trista in England, Tara in Northern Virginia and Travis and Vanessa in New Orleans. So I will wait until then and get one next year or so. In the meantime I will get a Nookcolor based on the reviews and my needs. But I will NOT be using this for the books I read in the tub!

Here is what I really want. I should probably tell Barnes and Noble so they can get cracking on it. If libraries can lend you an ebook and have it magically disappear in two weeks, and I don't want to keep a book I download from Barnes and Noble, why can't they offer a service kind of like Net Flix? The books I only want to read I pay $2 or $3 for and the disappear in two weeks. If I need more time I "rent" them for more money. I want the author to be paid for his work. I want the publisher to be paid, but if I don't get the printed paper and I can't lend or resell the book then why should I pay more than the cost of a paperback? It is cheaper for the publisher, who gets the lion's share of the book cost.

When this happens I will buy tons more books online, kind of like watching a pay-per-view movie. Watch it once and then it goes away. This does not mean I won't buy books to keep. I still do that even though I work in a library and spend more than enough at used bookstores. Books are also a favorite gift to give and to receive. But I would use it way more if I could do so at a reduced rate for a one time read and I expect it will happen when all libraries offer free ebooks and the bookstores have to compete.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Is Spring Around The Corner?

It is Groundhog Day. First I have to say Happy Anniversary to Travis and Vanessa!

This weather all over the east is overcast and gloomy. So naturally, that great prognosticating Punxsutawney Phil has predicted and early sPring...okay, that is all the alliteration I can provide!

I am inclined to believe him. This morning at the barn, while ankle deep in mud and other noxious substances, I heard geese! I looked up and there were two sets of three geese flying in formation and honking merrily.