We’ve seen fire and we’ve seen rain

The incompetence of the Biden White House never ceases to amaze me.

This morning, the August inflation report confirmed what everyone outside of D.C. knows.  Prices are rising.  The economy is struggling.  The Reduce Inflation Act has done the opposite.

So, of course, Biden held a rally on the White House lawn to celebrate the “success” of the Reduce Inflation Act.  Before Joe started ranting, James Taylor sang Fire and Rain.  Why, I don’t know.  Biden then came out with his stupid aviator sunglasses on and started yelling about this and that.  I get the feeling that Biden was trying to do what he thought Barack Obama would have done in the same situation but Obama, for all of his faults, understood the importance of appearing  calm and in control.  Biden came across like an old man yelling at a cloud.

CNN did something that previously would have been unthinkable.  They cut away from Biden and started talking about the sour economic reports.  In the past, Biden’s entire speech would have been televised and we would have been told that it was one of the best and most empathetic speeches of old Joe’s career.

Today, no one has time for that.

In Memory of Charlie Watts

Charlie Watts, the drummer of the Rolling Stones, died today at the age of 80. He passed away peacefully in London, surrounded by his family.

This one is hitting me hard. Charlie Watts was one of my drumming heroes. He was also the underrated glue that held the Stones together, the steadying influence that controlled the chaos that Mick Jagger and Keith Richards released on stage. He was a key member of the band but, because he was so self-effacing, he was often underrated. In many ways, he was the perfect drummer. While the lead singer and the lead guitarist prowled the front of the stage, Watts stayed in the background and produced the beat that propelled the Stones’s best songs.

Not only was Charlie Watts one of the best drummer, he was also perhaps the best dressed drummer to ever grace the stage. By most accounts, Charlie Watts a gentlemen, through and through, one who stayed loyal to his wife despite the temptations of the road and who often viewed touring as member of the world’s most dangerous band with a bemused wit. Reportedly, he was the only member of the band to openly cry when they first learned that co-founder Brian Jones had drowned. In the documentary Gimme Shelter, while Mick Jagger remains detached while watching the Hell’s Angels kill Meredith Hunter while the Stones perform at the Altamont Free Concert, Watts is clearly upset by the violence unfolding on the monitors before him.

Charlie Watts, R.I.P. You shall be missed.

Lockdown Journal: 4-1-20

I guess it’s time to face the fact that this site is going to pretty much be a quarantine journal for the foreseeable future.  As much as I would like to write about other things, everything is dominated by COVID-19 right now.  I remember that, for years after 9-11, it was rare that anything happened that was not, in some way, compared to that terrible day in September.  It will probably be the same with COVID-19.

I feel like I aged several years over the month of March.  April probably won’t be much better.  By the time this is over, I’ll probably feel like I’m old enough to start collection social security.

It’s going to be tough.  There’s no point in pretending otherwise.  I’m lucky enough to be sheltering-in-place with people who I love but I have family all over this country and I worry every day about them.  I’m hoping that being able to write out my thoughts here online will help.  I realize that these thoughts will probably only be read by a handful of people but that’s not a problem.  Right now, I don’t need a big audience.  I just need a place to vent.

Finally, Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne died today from the COVID-19.  Among the songs he wrote was the title song for That Thing You Do, which I still consider to be one of the best rock and roll films of the 90s.  Today, let’s end things with a little music:

Neil Peart, R.I.P.

I was sorry, today, to learn of the death of Rush’s drummer and lyricist, Neil Peart.  I had heard that he was sick but it was still a shock to learn that he had passed away on January 7th.

I would be lying if I said I was a huge Rush fan, though I appreciated the fact that they were, from a political and philosophical standpoint, more interesting than many of the other bands of their era.  However, when I was in college, my best friend Jay absolutely loved Rush.  I spent the entire summer of 2003 hanging out at Jay’s house and, whenever I hear anything by Rush, my mind immediately flashes back to those days.  Rush provided the soundtrack for one of the best summers of my life and for that I’m thankful.

Neil Peart, R.I.P.