Pickin’ ‘n’ Grinnin’

Wow, this old blog is WAY overdue for some updates. Blame it on Facebook. I’ve been back in the habit of posting regularly there multiple times a day, especially since the COVID-19 social isolation. I consider it my job to post happy and joyful images and the occasional attempts at humour or ‘deep thoughts’ to share my life here in Happy Hollow with those who may not be so fortunate to sit and waste time in such a sanctuary. And since the quarantine has not effected my lifestyle one iota, but to make it a health strategy for the rest of the world, I feel it is my duty to share and help if I can.

I also post pictures almost every day to Instagram. If anyone actually visits this blog, and likes what you see, and want a more regular daily dose of the good stuff, please follow either or both social media accounts. (the other ones in the link bar seldom get updated unfortunately)

Another development in life here in Happy Hollow coincidental to the seclusion of the virus crisis, is that I decided that it was finally time to pick up the guitar and start learning to play again. I’d started back in college and practiced with intense dedication for a long time, decades maybe. But eventually gave it up realizing, and accepting, that I just wasn’t getting any good, no matter how hard I worked at it. Just facing facts that I didn’t have the talent for it. Didn’t beat myself up or feel like a loser. Just decided to let it go. What I didn’t realize, and wish I had, was that it didn’t matter in the long run that I sucked and always would. I did want to play with others and maybe in public, and I simply realized that was never going to happen. I wasn’t even going to be able to play the styles and instruments I’d dreamed of no matter how hard I tried. Somehow the fact that I enjoyed playing for myself didn’t factor into that decision.

Most regrettably, I sold all my instruments. I had started guitar because I wanted to eventually play pedal steel and other slide guitar styles. As a master plan toward that end, I had acquired, in addition to my beloved Yamaha FG160 steel string acoustic, an authentic nickle plated brass Dobro Model 36, a Gibson Les Paul ’57 model reissue circa early 70s, and a funky old lap steel along with a classic Fender VibroChamp Amp.

What in the world was I thinking!?

Once the decision was made to give it a go again…online shopping and a credit card making impulse purchases easy and effortless…packages began to arrive at my humble abode in Happy Hollow at Beersville & Cigar.

It’s been a couple months now and I am having a blast and spending, as before, a lot of time pickin’ and grinnin’ when I should probably be otherwise engaged.

George seems to be ambivalent or at least undecided as to whether he approves. On the one hand he often goes upstairs to ‘his’ bed when I pick up the guitar to play. On the other hand, sometimes he will start to howl or make other musical noises when I pick it up. Once I begin to strum he will go into full howling mode and will continue as long as I strum any particular song. I like to consider it him singing, although the thought does occur that he is protesting my own attempts at playing and singing and is trying his best to dissuade me from doing so.

He seems especially fond of the blues and even seems to be in key and on the beat, and certainly the right frame of mind. I have learned to anticipate which of the above choices he will make and have my phone on the nightstand before I pick up my guitar ready to hit record on it if he looks ready to sing.

And so without further ado, here are some of his blues stylings for your enjoyment.

Howlin’ Dog Blues

Country Blues

June 13 Blues

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