Buffalo Theory

One night at Cheers, Cliff Clavin explained the”Buffalo Theory” to his buddy, Norm…

“Well ya see, Norm, it’s like this. A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members…. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. That’s why you always feel smarter after a few beers!”
Props to Beuks for the find.
~m 

Nano Shuffle

I put my Nano on “shuffle” tonight and wrote a little bit about the 5 tunes that randomly came up. Check it out.

*Michel Camilo – Just Kidding (from the album, One More Once)
What can I say? I have a new favorite piano player.
This tune has intense tight, screaming horns and is not for the jazz squeamish.
Camilo’s piano solo is the quintessential jazz solo. Amazing.
The man plays right-handed octaves faster than a frickin’ machine gun.
One of you guys better be listening to this guy after all I’ve said and posted about him.
Truth be told, I want someone to pinch me and tell me I’m not dreaming.

*Los Lobos – Colossal Head (from the album Colossal Head)
I’ve listened to these guys forever.
Raw, unpretentious and innovative, LL wrote the proverbial manual on how an electric guitar should sound in the studio.
If you’ve ever witnessed two musicians arguing over the difference between tube amplifiers vs. solid state you’ll eventual hear this: Solid State sucks!
The guitar sounds on Colossal Head totally support this statement.

*Fourplay – Kid Zero (from the album X)
Bob James (keys), Larry Carlton (guitar), Nathan East (bass) and Harvey Mason (drums), need I say anymore?
Alright, I guess I should.
You’ve heard all of these guys play more than you could ever imagine.
Believe me.
Kid Zero is a very cool song for all you smooth jazzers out there.
The hidden gem on the album is Michael McDonald’s vocal on “My Love is Leavin'”, an old Stevie Winwood tune off the album Chronicles. Schweet.

*The Tubes – I don’t want to wait anymore (from the album The Best of the Tubes 1981-1987)
I’ve loved this song forever.
Hardcore Tubes fans hated it because of the way it sounded.
It was produced by a musician named David Foster, another serious keyboard idol of mine from way back. (again, you’ve heard this guy before, you just don’t know it)
My playing resembles his in many ways. Ask my wife.
This tune sounded nothing like the old Tubes. It was a few years later that they hit the pop charts with “She’s a beauty”, another Foster produced mega-hit.

*Gonzalo Rubalcaba – Here’s that rainy day (from the album Solo)
Not exactly sure what to say regarding this one but if you like jazz piano and have yet to hear Rubalcaba, you ain’t lived.
Period.
They guy is a frickin’ piano machine.

I had fun with this.
I’ve also posted an Amazon link for every album.
Click and scroll down the page for a quick listen to each tune.
There’s some real nice stuff here.
If there are a few tunes you think I might like, leave a few titles.
I’m always looking for new stuff to keep the musical boat afloat and make the train ride just a bit shorter.

~m

Pringles in the can

“When I write, I usually take a can of Pringles potato chips and eat only 13.
Any flavor will do. If that doesn’t satisfy me, then I eat 13 more.
While I’m eating, it gives me a good way to stop and look at what I wrote, and to concentrate on correcting my mistakes.
This is my lucky way (and an excuse) to write a good story while eating a good can of potato chips.” —Michele Jenkins

While searching for a post image I found THIS
Phriggin’ Pringles . . .
Have a great weekend folks

~m

She blinded me with science

I’ve been non-existent on the blog as of late and I do apologize.
Life gets real busy sometimes and I’ve no idea how to slow it down.
Accept it and put up something resembling a post, I guess.
Found this sitting out in cyberspace and thought of my daughter Sarah.
Off to work.
I’ll be by for a visit very soon.
Hope everyone is well . . .

~m

A DIALOGUE WITH SARAH, AGED 3: IN WHICH IT IS SHOWN THAT IF YOUR DAD IS A CHEMISTRY PROFESSOR, ASKING “WHY” CAN BE DANGEROUS
By Stephen McNeil

– FROM THE ARCHIVES –

SARAH: Daddy, were you in the shower?

DAD: Yes, I was in the shower.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: I was dirty. The shower gets me clean.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why does the shower get me clean?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: Because the water washes the dirt away when I use soap.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why do I use soap?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: Because the soap grabs the dirt and lets the water wash it off.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why does the soap grab the dirt?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: Because soap is a surfactant.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why is soap a surfactant?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: That is an EXCELLENT question. Soap is a surfactant because it forms water-soluble micelles that trap the otherwise insoluble dirt and oil particles.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why does soap form micelles?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: Soap molecules are long chains with a polar, hydrophilic head and a non-polar, hydrophobic tail. Can you say ‘hydrophilic’?

SARAH: Aidrofawwic

DAD: And can you say ‘hydrophobic’?

SARAH: Aidrofawwic

DAD: Excellent! The word ‘hydrophobic’ means that it avoids water.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why does it mean that?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: It’s Greek! ‘Hydro’ means water and ‘phobic’ means ‘fear of’. ‘Phobos’ is fear. So ‘hydrophobic’ means ‘afraid of water’.

SARAH: Like a monster?

DAD: You mean, like being afraid of a monster?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: A scary monster, sure. If you were afraid of a monster, a Greek person would say you were gorgophobic.

(pause)

SARAH: (rolls her eyes) I thought we were talking about soap.

DAD: We are talking about soap.

(longish pause)

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why do the molecules have a hydrophilic head and a hydrophobic tail?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: Because the C-O bonds in the head are highly polar, and the C-H bonds in the tail are effectively non-polar.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Because while carbon and hydrogen have almost the same electronegativity, oxygen is far more electronegative, thereby polarizing the C-O bonds.

SARAH: Why?

DAD: Why is oxygen more electronegative than carbon and hydrogen?

SARAH: Yes.

DAD: That’s complicated. There are different answers to that question, depending on whether you’re talking about the Pauling or Mulliken electronegativity scales. The Pauling scale is based on homo- versus heteronuclear bond strength differences, while the Mulliken scale is based on the atomic properties of electron affinity and ionization energy. But it really all comes down to effective nuclear charge. The valence electrons in an oxygen atom have a lower energy than those of a carbon atom, and electrons shared between them are held more tightly to the oxygen, because electrons in an oxygen atom experience a greater nuclear charge and therefore a stronger attraction to the atomic nucleus! Cool, huh?

(pause)

SARAH: I don’t get it.

DAD: That’s OK. Neither do most of my students.

Sad Song

 

I feel like a sad song
One that feels as I do right now
no rhyme, no reason; just overcrowded staves of emotional chromaticism making no sense, no reason, no rhyme

I feel like a sad song
One that sounds different than the one I’ve sung for so long, too long now
out of time and tune, out of my mind with more questions than the distant answers found on the worn pages of a fake book, my book of life

I am the sad song
One deep inside the why’s and the what ifs of a book; moments in time, this book of liars, of blue tears
of grace notes unnoticed and songs unsung, a song of the heart still waiting silently to be found . . .

~m

Back Seat

I tried to write some “flash fiction” on the train today while limiting myself to less than 200 words but still telling a tidbit of a story story. {alright, actual count 202}
I’m posting it but still not sure if I actually like it.
You be the judge.
At any rate, it did make me write.
And sorry, it doesn’t end well.
***************

Fingers of moonlight caressed the deserted roof parking lot as she hurried to her car, the clip-clop of her stiletto heels blending seamlessly with the hum of the city below.
She’d stayed late, perhaps too late; a vain attempt to alter her nightly routine.
He was mean and jealous these days and she had the cigarette burns and bruises
to prove it.
After he first saw her dance, he immediately called her over.

I want you, was all he said.
He always got what he wanted.

She fumbled with her keys, hands shaking and out of breath, the tip-off call to the police still fresh on her mind.
He would be looking for her soon . . .

Once inside the safety of her car she pushed the ‘lock‘ button and let out a brief sigh of relief.
Turning the key she heard the incessant whirr of an engine that would never start.

God damn it, she thought, what the fuck do I do now?

The last thing she heard was the metallic click of a Zippo lighter from the back seat.
And people on the street looked up . . . listening to the steady sound of some distant car horn.

~m