Why the title?

"Pioneers take the arrows"

Oh, wait. I should be upbeat and taking arrows doesn't sound like an upbeat thing to say.

So, let me amend that statement.

It was courage and vision that led the pioneers to leave behind a comfortable, settled life and trek West to begin a new life in a new place. Many of those from the East that went West found a strength within themselves that they didn't see while they were in their old life. Instead of being one of those that just kind of went along with the others in the old life, they became leaders and visionaries in their new lives.

The sentiments of that last paragraph come from a favorite author, Louis L'Amour, in many of his books. So, I can't really say that it is an original thought from me. However, what he said is truthful.

Welcome to being a pioneer. Look ahead and ignore the "barking dogs" that give you negative opinions and comments. Louis L'Amour also spoke of the barking dogs.

In some of his stories, it was usually a father or older man telling a young boy how it was that when the Westward bound Conestoga wagons rolled through towns, the dogs came out to bark at them. His character then told the young listener that the barking didn't stop the wagons from going on to their destinations.

Following the advice of the Louis L'Amour characters, may we all forge ahead with our plans, after carefully considering all consequences and leave the "barkers" behind.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Glutton for Punishment

Even though the temperature outdoors has moderated a lot, 60 degrees today, I still find that I have spent most of the day in the house. Since there is a contingency contract on the house, and presuming (hoping) that it will soon sell, I need to finish the job I started over a year ago in digitizing all my 33 1/3 rpm LP’s. So, other than a short time outdoors finishing off shoveling some snow off of the sidewalk and putting the slides back out on the Mobile Suites, I have been in my office at the computer.

While I have been pretty much stuck in one place, it hasn’t been without some benefits. The mundane process involves listening to each side of an LP to verify if there are any “pops” that I need to try to edit, washing the LP on both sides with clean water, and then starting the recording. I have a set of components that includes a stereo receiver, a turntable, a twin-deck tape deck, and a VCR. Whatever source I use then goes into the audio components of the computer and I use a program called Goldwave to actually digitize the music. Later, I’ll “burn” the albums to CD’s which will play in either the automobiles or in the home stereo.

The day has been spent recording Kenny Rogers and Neil Diamond. Definitely good listening. Coming up after Neil Diamond is Anne Murray and a band for the “Old Timers” out there. How many of you remember The Ventures? If you do, don’t tell anyone….you’ll date yourself.

In the listening, I came across a title that would fit those in the full-time RV lifestyle. While the lyrics themselves don’t necessarily apply, the title of “Forever in Blue Jeans” by Neil Diamond would apply. At least it would in my case. I’m not much of a “shorts and T-shirt” guy. I guess growing up where there are Rattlesnakes and other biting creatures I find that jeans are much better protection.

Jo and I have always loved music, and I grew up with my mother playing a record player just about every day. I even dabbled in learning to play a guitar for a while. I was able to do some playing, but I would never call myself good. But, my mother and I used to get together to play together. She played an accordion and a violin and I played the guitar. At family get-togethers, when we got out the instruments, my sister and her husband would leave, but Grandma and Grandpa would always stick around.

One reason I’m not much good with musical instruments is that I can’t read music. What I do is mostly by ear. I used to play some selections of Johnny Horton as solos, such as Whispering Pines and All for the Love of a Girl, but mostly with just chords on the guitar. Picking the melody was more difficult and done entirely by ear. Needless to say, there weren’t many of them that I could do.

Singing???? Don’t even ask. When I do sing, it is primarily in church, and I sing in a pretty high tenor voice. I even was told last Sunday to not quit my day job. One time, Jo had gone to California on business and called back to let me know she had arrived. Since I wasn’t at home, she left me a message on the answering device that I had one of the most BORING answering machine messages EVER. So, I changed it. In the message I mentioned that the wife had said the message was boring. So I sang the little ditty about being kind to our web-footed friends because a duck was somebody’s brother. That was what prompted one of our church Elders to inform me to keep the day job.

I tried to digitize my VHS tapes as well. Jo bought me a computer program that lets you play the video on the VCR and digitize both video and audio. The issue with that is that the DVD’s are limited to about a 2-hour movie.

I had also digitized two music DVD’s by Yanni, one done live at the Acropolis in Greece and the other one performed at the Taj Mahal in India and the Forbidden City in China. Everything seemed to be fine until I went to play them back. About 30 minutes into the video, everything seemed to speed up and sound cruddy.

So, now I am concerned about any of the movies that I had already digitized. I guess I need to go watch them to see how they came out. A few of them are not available on DVD’s, so I can’t just purchase them like I can most of the others. The ones I really want to make sure I can keep are movies based on a couple of the books by Louis L’Amour.

I took a break from writing and recording LP’s to watch one of the movies that I had previously recorded with the software Jo bought for me. While the music videos of Yanni didn’t work out well, at least one of the ones I worked before is fine. It was done in 1956 and starred Tab Hunter and Natalie Wood, and it was one of the Louis L’Amour stories.

The Burning Hills 1956

So, now I need to watch a few more that I had previously done. But, at least it is encouraging that some may be in good shape for viewing.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.