Thursday, July 4, 2013

Beethoven, Beatles, Mancini, Mantovani, and the Chairman of the Board---

Not every blog post has to be so SERIOUS (cue ponderous music).  Sometimes you have to lighten up, Francis.

First, Happy 4th, everyone!

Second, before anybody asks, no, I am NOT a hoarder.  I just have lots of…collections, yeah, that’s the ticket, collections.

So after wasting time on the patio this morning, (I love my patio and treasure every minute I spend out there, just wish I had someone to enjoy it with)








This one, I ‘shopped; can you see where?  If so, tell me…

I spent some quality time learning just how much I DO NOT know about Photoshop Elements 11.  It’s a tremendous program, chock-full of great things to do with your pictures—and I failed at some of the most simple.  Well, practice makes perfect.

So I cleaned the kitchen (ugh), washed a couple of loads (double ugh), and tried to decide which of my myriad long-term projects (I’m an Aquarian; we start 1,000 projects and finish NONE) I might have a shot at even trying to make progress on.

Ever since I bought my first Magnavox (ok, I’m queer for shoes—and Magnavox—and a couple of other things which shall be mentioned later), I’ve been accumulating albums.  I seem to have lost my own album collection in the multiple moves (or did I?), so I set out to replace.  At first, I was doing Half Price Books (they always have a nice selection).  Then, some relatives sent me a box of theirs (kind of scary?…); then I re-discovered Goodwill.

Goodwill, which has like 50 stores across Metro Houston, is a junk paradise.  They’ve got some of everything.  I’ve found a set of soup bowls to match my china, another set to match my everyday stuff; I’ve found clothes (I’ve got no problem with used clothes as long as they’re high-quality, clean, and decent—some people get rid of them because they’re “last year’s stripe” (more on that in another blog).  I even found an amazing thing:  a crystal “diamond” from the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce (there were TWO of them, one for me, one for Nathan!  At the Goodwill Store on Katy Freeway in Houston, Texas!  Bizarre!). (If you have ANY idea what these are, let me know in the comments!  It’s a solid 5” across and weighs at least a pound.)  It has a place of honor on my desk in its own little jewel box (in which it came).


Lousy picture; I was trying to get the etching to show up…

Goodwill (at least most of them) also has ALBUMS.  You know, Granny will go to the Home and the kids will come in to clean it all out and say, “Gawd, throw those in the trash!” “No, give ‘em to Goodwill and get a tax writeoff!”  Goodwill has them for $0.99 each, except when they’re on sale for $0.50.  I check them carefully; all of them are “used”, but if they’ve got big scratches, etc., I’m not going to want them even for $0.50. 

My musical tastes are extremely varied, so whatever I buy is varied as well (and depends on the selection).  I’ve got practically all of the Rat Pack’s records, except the Chairman.  His are collectible and harder to get and more costly.  I also have ALL of them on CD (yes, all).  The Chairman (Frank Sinatra, the Chairman of the Board), Elvis, and the Beatles were seminal talents in the history of music, and I happened to be around for all of them (got to see Elvis in concert!  during his white spandex pantsuit/many sequin/300 lb era, but he still put on a show, and yes, they really did say, “Elvis has left the building”).  On the Maggie, I love things I hated as a kid—101 Strings, Ferrante and Teicher, and my Granny’s favorite, Mantovani.  I still love classical and opera (always).  I’ll even like the occasional country star (wait for it…Buck Owens and the Buckaroos.  You heard it here…).

Goodwill has all of these at one time or another in one location or another (it’s helter-skelter—just depends what came in that day).  So, as I pass by a Goodwill, I’ll dash in and spend $10 or $20 on records.  Some are real gems—Anna Moffo in the 1959 *Living Stereo* recording of “La Traviata”, considered a classic—$0.99, looks brand-new); others are, ahem, “K-Tel presents:  TV Themes of the 70’s!!!”. 

Tragically, I’ll bring them in (vinyl + Houston summer heat in the car = landfill), but just stack them in a corner.  One of my never-to-be-completed projects.

In order to keep my friend from calling the show “Hoarders”, I decided TODAY IS THE DAY on the albums.  I have a “little den” that I am optimistically terming “the music room”.  Built-in bookcases (house was built in 1976, which I actually like).  I squared my shoulders and bravely marched in.

I’m embarrassed for you to see this picture, partly because of the mess (I had to clear those shelves to put the records there) and partly because of the record collection…but here it is, all TEN (10) FEET OF IT. (I measured).


Now to catalog it (this will take another 2 years…).

I love comments but hardly ever get one!  If you have a stupid collection, in the comments below, tell me what it is (misery loves company).  Or, just let me know you read the thing (thank you, all 6 of you who read me).  I feel like I’m writing this in a vacuum, but I guess I can look on it as a journal…).

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