Got back, alive and well, on the 11th at 12:45 p.m. (i.e. 15 minutes to 1 p.m.), in 15 minutes ahead of schedule.

British Airways from Zurich to Heathrow in London, leaving at 7 a.m.

Heathrow stopover times about 2 hours, then on to LAX.

Fifteen hour flight which goes across the normal polar route that most European trips go through, but then suddenly cuts in through northern Canada, and then drops down to cut across the Dakotas and the Rockies and then keeps moving in a southward arc until we are crossing Las Vegas, Nevada (not a very pretty sight from the air, I must say - it really puts it in proper perspective, without all of the nonsensical hype and glitz), where the captain announces that we are 20 minutes from landing.
Seat belts on, seats forward, and all personal items secured, and no bathrooms during descent.  Those were the orders which we were are given by these rather pushy Brits.  Seriously, it is a really good airline which I have flown on any  number of times and have always been treated good, if a little forcefully, but for me, and others like me, that is probably a good way for them to be.
Maybe it is the "voice of experience" which I am hearing.
So far as security is concerned:  Switzerland, almost none;  Heathrow, very overzealous to the point of annoying many who are complaining out lout about it - had one bratty little boy who was taking the greatest delight in making persons wait who had flights that were just about to leave, as he and the others took incredible amounts of time to do very little there was lots of complaining going on, which they had all learned, far too well, to ignore;  finally because I was one of the one's he was toying with I mumbled to myself about his next performance review and that I was going to see to it that I had input into it;  WOW!, that stopped him in his tracks as his attitude did such an "about-face" as to be downright astonishing;  seems like you just need to know the right "magic" words, after all;  Los Angeles, coming in to Baghdad;  WOW!  I have never seen so many cops in LAX;  ever!;  I have been going there regularly since I was a small child;  I have been there when high security precautions are being taken;  I was there during the high security of the Olympics: I have been there when all hell is breaking loose and every single cop in the place is running around;  yet I have never seen anything like this;  I could only think that it must be training;  every single huge video monitor screen showed a cop, in uniform, talking to you, the audience, except that the sound was not on any of them;  and the last several times I have been through there a little dog comes and sniffs all of the baggage as you try hard to remember whether there would be any reason for there to be any kind of "smellable" contraband on your person or in your luggage;  the dog took a great interest in my jacket, which was hanging over a pile of suitcases, last time;  he just liked the smell of me, as it turned out;  I was quite flattered.

At any rate, I came in hyper-kinetic, which means ain't no way I am going to sleep.

So, I instead begin my infamous office cleaning.

I say infamous because it takes weeks to clean up my typical mess, which is created by working around the clock, rather feverishly, for weeks at a time, as I just toss everything around and don't return anything where it belongs, until I am up to my waist in a pile of stuff going, Gee, I can't find so and so.  And so and so.  And so and so, too.  Oh, oh.

Then I am forced to face the music. 

Mr. Chaos now has to turn into Mr. Orderly.


The two just do not go all that well together in one cranium and body, I must say.

And as anyone who has known me since I was much younger knows that this is nothing new.

It is a lifelong habit caused by my extreme lust and zeal for life.

I just like to do way too many things, constantly.

And, so far as I am concerned, NEVER enough!

So, I must carry on in this completely disoriented cleaning state until I literally fall over and pass out.

Laying down and trying to sleep will work for a few minutes, but that's it.

Over the years I have tried every drug known to man for insomnia and related problems.

Nothing has ever worked except the method which I just described.

Oh, and by the way you should add a heavy Mexican meal to the mix, after eating very lightly for long periods of time, and voila, cocme 7 p.m. last night I finally laid down, not by choice, but because simply had to.

Oh, the joys.

Woke up and got up several times during the night and then got some more sleep.

Until about 8:30 a.m., then got up.

It is raining here, and it is Friday the 13th, which has a paralyzing fear over me, because of a number of experiences which have, quite unfortunately, badly scored my amygdala, such that I have an autonomic response, whether I like it or not.

And I can assure you that I DO NOT like it even a little bit.

It becomes and internal war between reason and another type of reason which can be equally or even more compelling so that you go back and forth over and over again, completely unable to arrive at any rational conclusion about the matter.

So, here I go.

I am about to step out into it, just knowing that I am about to be wiped out.

And I never know it just a little bit.

No, I've got to know it of a certainty.

Which is very disconcerting.

Especially when nothing happens, whatsoever.

Delayed wipe out?

You ask yourself.

Is there even such thing?

Who knows.

So, I am called to go pick up a computer in a neighboring town about twenty miles away.

Oh, great, now there is thunder.

Like I really needed that.

Hey, this may be going to be fun after all?

Today I am hoping to set up a computer which is for montioring markets.

Tomorrow I am meeting with a tech in Los Angeles who is going to assist me in finally finishing putting together the very amazing DVZ String Orchestra sampler.

I hope to tell about this, and why it is so important, very soon.

But, not right now.

This is an amazing invention which a fairly wealthy longtime and very successful and prolific film composer paid literally millions of dollars out of his pocket to get the code written for.

In effect, as he told it to me, he said to the programmer, this is what it needs to be able to do.

Then they would write the code, which he and others would test out and then improve upon.

Finally, he has the "orchestra in a box" which I told about our dreams of a number of posts ago.

Only he doesn't know what to do with it.

And it is so unbelievably complex to put together that you cannot even believe it.

I am very experienced at such matters and built the system based upon specifications given to me personally by the man who designed it.

It requires two computers communicating with each other through and Ethernet modem.

There are approximately ten software sets which must be loaded and then integrated with one another.

Finally, after all of this "product testing", it occurred to me that there was no on/off switch.

I called up and talked with this other tech person with whom I had been dealing once we began putting the software in, and explained to him the problem.

He responded by directing me to a section of the manual which I then restudied and then reduced to a series of written commands, which took up fifteen, count them, 15 pages.

I said, This is supposed to be the on/off switch?,  You've got to be kidding me."

Oh, oh, after forty days and nights, of around the clock (quite literally) work my health was now giving out with a vengeance as a little cold turned into pneumonia-like symptoms fast.

Time to stop and take a break.

Which I did for about one year, and am now back at it, finally, again.

I will explain the ultra-importance of all of this in another post, I hope.

There is much more here than meets the eye, at first.

I have been keeping a close pulse on this since I first met the composer at West Los Angeles Music store several years ago.

West Los Angeles Music supplies all of the professional musicians of the Los Angeles area.

It is the ONLY place which can, or does.

That is because the overhead is extremely high.

They host  numerous events where Los Angeles musicians of every different stripe and color and interest may get together to compare notes

I was there for an entirely different reason.

To meet with manufacturer's reps from Roland company and Avid/Pro Tools, in order to get the two of them together in one room to solve a problem I was having of getting Pro Tools to communicate with my Roland synthesizer.

One of the few times you will see the software manufacturer in the same room with the synthesizer manufacturer.

We had a lot of fun figuring out that none of us had any idea what was going on, other than that someone managed to hussle a $500 little portable recording machine and drum machine off on me.

Sometimes I am just way too accomadating.

But, after all was said, we realized that the problem was unsolveable.

At least by us three idiots.

New code must be written.

That is always the answer.

And so, we will see with the new Version 10 whether this problem has finally been rectified.

Tis strange, but true.

It was as I was leaving I say a rather portly elderly gentleman banging away on a keyboard.

Just out of curiosity I asked him what in the world he is trying to sell.

From there, to here.

So, upon getting back form Europe, the first thing which I did was call up the company to find out what it is going to take for me to bring my computers to one of the designers of this program and show me where I am going wrong, and help me to make it into an on/off switch not requiring fifeen pages of commands.

After hooking up with the same tech with whom I had been working before, I finally had to explain to him, with some exasperation that;

I am a musician.

Musicians are notorious, when it comes to electronics.

We want an on/off switch.

And nothing else.

We do not want to screw around with the software and hardware.

We just want to play music, as uninterrupted as possible, given any particular technology (and we go through a lot of them, always ont the cutting edge).

I need a switch.

What is it going to take to make that happen.

So, I am going over to his home tomorrow morning and we are going to see if we can figure out how to do just that.

I hope to find out how the company and promotion efforts, etc. are going, as I have been way out of the loop for the past year.

And, so, there you have it for the moment.

I am about to head out the door into the rain, and yes, more and louder thunder.

But, being a "child of thunder" myself, I am, very foolishly probably, right at home in it.

If I get hit by it, remember that.

It will probably happen sooner or later, as I cavalierly walk around in it as I become the movable human lightning rod.

Well, moveable until I get hit, at any rate.

Gotta go.

It's been fun.

More to say later, I hope,


Ventura, California, USA
9:48 a.m.