asking for help


(continued from yesterday) I also think that when I try to cut down on drinking and snacking, my BP also goes down (as well as the weight). This is what happened this week when I skipped my evening martini on Wednesday and Thursday.

I had an excellent talk with Dr. Birky yesterday. I even had a little  list like I sometimes prepare for my conferences with Rev Jen. I came back up to Holland  and practiced organ for a bit.

Barb Phillips came by the house earlier. Her work as a nurse/care taker brought her to the Holland area for a couple of nights. She lives in Kalamazoo and is a life long friend of ours. She was scheduled to work from 7 PM to 3 AM last night so she stopped by our house in the morning for a little rest before her evening gig here in town. She was up by the time I got back from practicing. The three of us went out for lunch and Barb treated.

After lunch I began messing with my books. I have been culling them with some success. But I also had the idea of organizing books on the first floor a bit better. I began by culling my huge collection of cookbooks. I did this to make room for all the poetry anthologies I own (about two shelves worth). Having moved them out of the poetry shelves next to my chair this made room for a shelf of books that I would like to have on this floor altogether, namely some lovely books that I consult from time to time like Aristotle and Plato mixed in with books I plan to read soon.

The only reason I’m mentioning this is that when I was working on moving the books around, two shelves collapsed and books and stuff went everywhere. Barb and Eileen came from their kitchen card game and asked if I was okay and could they help. I said i was okay and didn’t need any help. I WAS frustrated however. This frustration level rose as the shelves kept falling when I attempted to fill them with books.

Finally I went in the kitchen and asked for help to clear everything back from the shelves so I could hammer them together. Barb and Eileen graciously did this. I began nailing the silly things together. I had difficulty nailing on the left side, being right handed. I remembered that Barb was left handed. “Ever nailed anything before?” I asked her. “Sure!” she said, “I helped put in a roof.” I asked her to come in and nail a nail on the left side of the bookshelf.

“Asking for help” can be a bit boy counter stereotype. When my BP starting elevating intermittently Eileen asked if there was anything she could do to help with my stress. This is tricky. However, it is something I aspire to: Asking for help when I need it.

So my weight and BP went down after skipping martinis two evenings in a row. However, in the midst of my frustration with the bookshelves I decided last night would be a martini night (no whiskey). This morning both BP and weight continue to fall slightly.

This morning I put the Sweet Child album of Pentangle on while I showered. As I listened to the familiar lineup of cuts on the first side of the record, it occurred to me how influential it has been on me.

The first, although credited to group composition by all of the performers, uses market cries that make one think of an English market. It reeks of traditional English folk music. The second song is the African American sorrow song, No More. The third, “Turn your money green,” is by Furry Lewis. I have performed this blues song many times. The fourth, “Haitian Fight Song,” is by the jazz musician, Charles Mingus.

Later on this side they perform a dance by the 16th century French composer, Claude Gervaise; “La Rotta” a medieval dance; and “The Earle of Salisbury” by William Byrd.

There it is. Jupe’s preoccupation with electicism in music plus musics that he loves. I think I picked up this album at K Mart in Flint when I was in my mid teens. I used to buy albums by their covers. That was how I discovered The Doors and Leonard Cohen.

You may remember the dude who fixed my harpsichord. He was kind of an Ann Arbor Early Music snob. So it brought a smile to my face when he tried out my harpsichord playing “The Earle of Salisbury” by William Byrd.  I wish I had said something about Pentangle to him.  It’s hard not to suspect that this guy about my age first heard that piece on that album.

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