Time--2017 A to Z Theme

My theme for the 2017 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge was "Time". The posts are of a more philosophical, contemplative, and even autobiographical bent. No time management tips in this theme, but stuff intended to make you think.

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Come Back after I Go (#BOTB Results)

Et Tu, Arlee?

      I'm soon going to do that which I never thought I'd do regarding this blog.  I'm going to take a break.  Seems like a lot of bloggers have done this or will be taking breaks for the summer.  And now me.

        No big deal really because I guess it's not really that much of a break.  After all I'll still post for #IWSG on July 5th and August 2nd.   And in July and August on the 15th I'll still take part in Battle of the Bands with results posts for each posting a week after each Battle.  So it's not like I'll be disappearing and actually I'll be posting pretty much as I have in the past month or so.  However I will presumably be back in some expanded form by September and hopefully that will be my blog and not my waistline.

         So I guess I'm not really going to be all that inactive on this blog. But I will be offline a lot more than I have been.  After all, it's summer.

         What kinds of things are you doing this summer?   What is the longest complete blog break that you've ever taken?    When it's raining where you are, does it feel like it's raining all over the world?

Battle of the Bands Results

       Last week's Battle was Aretha Franklin versus Barbra Streisand singing their renditions of "Lover, Come Back to Me".   I've grown to dislike Streisand in recent decades, but not because of her singing.  Listening to her version of this old standard I recalled how much I used to like her singing.  On the other hand, I've never been a big fan of Aretha Franklin.  I had no idea that she sang more in a jazzy style before she started singing soul.

       Like some voters also expressed, Aretha's delivery of "Lover" was a pleasant surprise.  Although I liked both versions a great deal, I thought Aretha edged out Barbra for my vote.  The total vote outcome came out much the same way with Aretha taking a few more votes than Barbra.

Final Vote Tally

Aretha Franklin            13

Barbra Streisand          10

I'll Be Back

         My next appearance here will likely be Wednesday July 5th with a post for the Insecure Writer's Support Group.  That's my plan at least.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Lover Come Back to Me (2017) (#BOTB)

Lover Come Back (I Kind of Miss You)

         I'm missing an old lover of sorts.  It's not a person, but partly a state of mind.  Of being.

          In a sense I'm missing the internet while it's also blogging the way that it used to seem.  Is it just me who's lost the magic?   Or is it because the community and the participation is shrinking that some of the excitement and novelty has worn off?    Several bloggers who were very active a few years ago are not so much now.  Some just don't blog any more.
           Best if I let summer pass before I start back into blogging full steam.  And that's assuming that I can get stoked for full steam.  Besides, the internet has become a stranger, meaner place that it seemed like it was when I first discovered the magic of being online.  Maybe I've just found out for myself a darker part of social media that was always there and I just hadn't fallen into the mire.

         Don't get me wrong, but I'm hooked.  I'll be checking in on email and other social media things at least up until mid-August, but I just might not be on as much.  And I'm not going to disappear over summer, but I'll be doing other things.  And when mid-August arrives then we'll see what will happen next.

          Does the "magic" of the internet seem different to you in recent years?   How did you first stumble into the cyberworld?   Do you still have hope for blogging? 

Battle of the Bands

   Battle of the Bands is the blogging event started by Far Away Series and now hosted by StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands.   This event happens twice each month on the 1st and 15th.   The premise is simple:  Listen to the songs presented below and then in the comments vote for your favorite and tell us why you liked it.  Then visit the links listed near the bottom of this post for more Battle action.

 Lover Come Back to Me

     Holy déjà vu, Batman!  (R.I.P. Adam West)

     A year ago on this same date I used this same song in a Battle of versions done by Gaucho and Brenda Lee.  It's such a great song with so many outstanding recordings done by numerous artists that I thought it was worth revisiting.  In fact, considering the multitude of great versions of the song, I could make this particular Battle a yearly event for years to come.   So bear with me as I revisit this lovely song in a couple of jazzed up versions by two very well known female vocalists.  If you want to refer back to my first Battle using this song in order to learn the background of the song then please click here.

Aretha Franklin   "Lover Come Back to Me"  (1962)

Barbra Streisand   "Lover Come Back to Me"  (1964)

Time To Vote!

o you have a preference between these two choices?   Hopefully you have an opinion of some kind. Which version do you like the best?  Do you prefer "The Queen of Soul" or the other singer?     You don't have to know about music to have an opinion since it all comes down to your own personal taste.

        Please vote on your favorite by letting us know your choice in the comment section and tell us why you prefer the version you chose. Then after you've finished here, please visit the other blogs listed below who may or may not be participating this time around. And if you've put up your own BOTB contest let us know that as well so we can vote on yours.

Here are some other places where you might find BOTB posts:

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands



'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

The Doglady's Den 

Angel's Bark  

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 

Winner of this Battle Announced on Wednesday June 21st.

       That announcement post could be my next post unless I get a hankering to do another one before then.  Gosh, I guess summer's really here!   Whatever I do I hope you'll try to stay with me.  And I guess you'll probably want to see who comes out the winner of this grand battle of two iconic divas of our time.  

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

"I Quit!" #IWSG (#BOTB results)

        For most of us, finishing a marathon is more important than winning the race.  For me this is only a metaphor of sorts.  In real life I probably couldn't even run a hundred feet, but I guess it would be possible for me to finish a marathon just by walking.  It might take a couple days, but I think I could finish a walking marathon.  Maybe.

Insecure Writer's Support Group

Join us on the first Wednesday of each month in Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Support Group--a forum of writers who gather to talk about writing and the writer's life. For a complete list of participants visit Alex's Blog
The question for June is:

 Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

            I never quite think in terms of quitting, but I might take a break.  At various times in my life I've just stopped doing something for a while.  Like writing for example. I've never completely stopped writing, but sometimes mostly reserved writing for mundane record keeping or notes to self.  

         For me, blogging has been a bit of writing salvation.  I've got so much other stuff that I intend to write, but find myself distracted by life.  But then, that's the way it's always been for me.   The nice thing is that I always have plenty to look forward to and every day is another adventure.  And now I can blog.  That's something at least.

Battle of the Bands Results

        Originally in my previous Battle I was thinking of using a version of "Begin the Beguine" by Artie Shaw, Tony Martin, or Ray Coniff.  My mother used to have a Ray Coniff album with that song on it so I heard it plenty.  She loved Ray Coniff and I enjoyed hearing his music too.  I haven't been able to find many of those recordings of Ray Coniff's older stuff from the fifties or sixties on YouTube, but then I haven't looked for them in a while.

        Then in my search for versions of the song I ran across Pete Townshend's rather surprising recording.  I knew that I had found my first competitor for Battle.  As I looked for a worthy competitor I came to Sheryl Crow's fine rendition.  That left me with my own voting dilemma.  Both versions are so different and so good that I could have voted either way.

       In my analysis Sheryl Crow's performance has everything I usually look for in a recording--slick arrangement, polished delivery, and intelligent instrumentation to back up well sung vocals.  This is my kind of music.

      On the other hand, Pete Townshend's recording was like sitting late in the evening with a small audience in an intimate setting with the famed Who guitarist serenading us with a private concert.  It's all a bit roughshod, but it's genuine.  And he stays with the original melody.  This is why my vote goes to Townshend.  It's real, honest, and I like hearing it.

      In the end though, Sheryl Crow delivers the most votes for a healthy win.  Her version left Townshend's in the dust right out of the starting gate.  I guess I shouldn't have been too surprised. But that's okay.  Sheryl's take is excellent.
Final Results

Pete Townshend     5

Sheryl Crow          18

Next Battle on Thursday June 15th

             There might be another post before the fifteenth of the month.  I'm taking summer as it comes and going wherever it takes me.

          Have you ever run a marathon?  What do you do when you lose interest in a project or a passion?   At what point do you realize that you can't go home again?