Raggin' Piano Boogie

 

 
HIS SPIRIT LIVES ON! ... BONER, THE PIANO DOG ... November 27, 1994 ... February 20, 2010

Use the links to the left to read a past Month or Year... and then there is always your Backspace to return to a past page.

April 19, 2019

Bonanza Road, Las Vegas, Nevada

I have been waking up depressed, really depressed. That is very, very unusual. It has been for a few weeks now. I do come around through the day. Thank God I have made commitments for myself like today, the creating of music for around 600 people using the mission center for dinner. My apartment complex is raising my rent... alot and I don't even know where the regular rent money is going to come from. Oh, for the days past... it was a good ten years. A woman wrote me an email. She said she never knew music could be so spiritual. It was not my music it was her music that I showed her how to create and experience for herself with just a few notes. I love that I can give that musical love of self to others. Everyday I fluctuate between thinking, as I go down should I just disappear and leave people wondering with hope... or should I show the process to the end, as it is what it is. There is practically no desire to ask people for contribution anymore.



Then I think what would be most helpful. The answer is to hold my head high with dignity and just show it as it is. No one stays on top forever. It feels like I have lived the top of my life but then again who knows. Today being Good Friday I remember being ten years old in church on my knees sincerely trying to force myself to cry because of my sins and how my unworthiness created the crucifixion of Jesus. Then as a young man on every Good Friday I began to act out on my sins and unworthiness acording to how I identified with them. Then as an adult after a lot of work to find my truth in spirit, I came around to understanding my worth through Jesus. Today I am full of gratitude that I escaped the self deprivation of unworthiness that I was taught because... that is what everyone else around me had been taught, and all that they knew.

April 18, 2019

Bonanza Road, Las Vegas, Nevada

Today in 2007 has been on my mind for over a week as I struggle with how to create sustained financial support to keep going. Two days after the Virginia Tech gun massacre, the student government called to ask if I would bring the Traveling Piano to lend support until the end of the semester. I'll never forget them saying that Bon Jovi, Dave Mathews and Tim McGraw had just called but all they could think about was the love and joy that Boner and I brought to the campus when we passed through on the way to Mexico. The point here is that they could trust me in having no attached agenda with my work... no associated fees, tips, commercial affiliation, etc... I had been heading for Los Angeles at the time and turned around to travel 2000 miles back east.



This change of direction inspired me to sell my house and everything I owned to keep going... without financial agenda. Some people say... why not go back to performing or put a tip jar out, etc... They do not realize how that would change the dynamics of what the Traveling Piano is and why it has been a success for the last twelve years. The student government of Virginia Tech realized the importance of why I work the way I do. That is why they made the request. Music and the truth of spirit heals the world. The specifics can be found on the April and beginning of May blog links found on the 2007 menu link to the left of this page.

April 17, 2019

Red Rock Canyon, Las Vegas, Nevada

Mo and I headed out to Red Rock. We need to get in as much springtime as possible and especially now while everything is blooming. The dessert ground in astonishing and extraordinarily green and full of white dessert cactus blooms with every other color under the sun. We be in heaven. We met two guys who I told I'd share the Traveling Piano with if I ran into them later. Well, they showed up and we met another two guys from Morocco and Algeria. They all got onto the Traveling Piano for some fun.


April 16, 2019

Owens Avenue, Las Vegas, Nevada

For most the the day it rained and looked like doing my usual Tuesday commitment was going to be a no go. But then... at the very moment I usually leave to go, the rain stopped. I went back and forth about going because I figured the people who go and serve food on the streets would not be there. That did not stop me because when I am committed, I'm totally committed. Everyone showed up. The truck gets parked on dirt and got filthy from people getting in and out. The muddy sand here in Vegas sticks to everything and drys like a solid rock. Anyway, I feel glad to have accomplished my work today.


April 15, 2019

S Main Street and Utah Ave, Las Vegas, Nevada

It is important to know that people care for strangers in the world. I went around the corner from where I live and introduced myself to the owner of a new auto repair shop. I said I needed a tune up but have no money. Her reply in knowing nothing about me except that I work to create a sense of community, and work without fees, tips or commercial affiliation... "no problem, I'll take care of it for you." Anyone who knows me, knows the payback through gratitude is going to be triple the value of a cash payment! While we were there we met several other neighbors. One guy said he remembers me from over two years ago when I used to play on the street corner across from my apartment complex but never got a chance to stop by.



He heard the music from inside his house and had to come running as he new in an instant it was the Traveling Piano outside. Afterwards Mo and I headed out to the field where we go every Monday night. The street was becoming a tent city and the tents were in the way of being able to set up and distribute food and resources. The priest that organizes the gatherings response was... maybe we all will just move a block down. I find that response amazingly respectful and accommodating for those trying to survive on the streets. In reality though, I know the police will probably do a sweep there before next week. As soon as homeless people gather in one spot they are forced to move and find another spot.

April 14, 2019

Jessica Ave and Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, Nevada



I woke up really tired but I made a commitment for myself to go to a neighborhood place where people living on the streets hangout to get some grub and just relax. My personal commitment is for every second Sunday of the month. Mo and I almost did not go but I pushed myself and I'm glad I did. With the other commitments I have made for myself there are little perks of incentive like at the mission center... a real piano, at the field I can pick up some food, same at Veterans Village and across from the Salvation Army, just another good spot. This place is organized by Mexican's and that is my incentive for going there... to lend support and create music for people of another culture wanting to contribute to the entire community, unconditionally.I do not understand why I am so exhausted. Maybe it was the intense enjoyment of yesterday. I'm posting pictures of one of the places we found called Rogers Springs. A small warm spring oasis in the dessert.


April 13, 2019

Stewards Point, lake Meade, Nevada



We were transported deep inside the Traveling Piano's journey, the Flight of Peregrinating Musical Exploration today. It felt like awe inspiring times of past years. Wide open spaces, roads lined with flowers, mountains, water... I even had the thought, I want more of this." I had mentioned a few days ago that it felt like even though I was experiencing nature to the fullest, and that I have had enough. Along with Lake Meade we found an oasis in the desert. The sunset, the people... it just went on and on. The oasis was a nature pond with running water from the mountains that even had fish in it! The Lake Meade area, unsupervised and unrestricted... we parked up and looking out over the water at sunset was magical. We explored. The people around camping, not many, were as astounded with my music as I was. We drove back in the dark. It was only an hour outside of Las Vegas but on the east side. We usually hang out on the west side because I always think how there is nothing but bland rock on the east side. You need to drive about five miles in and then... just... wow!


April 12, 2019

Bonanza and D, Las Vegas, Nevada

I woke up in a really bad state of mind this morning that of... no one likes me... I'm not worth anything... I'll never be anything... I can't be as good as... I'm a loser... I'm angry... I just can't... I have no one in my life, etc... really, it can ridiculous. I suspect being older, poor and flying with no net has something to do with it. Anyway, Mo and I went to the mission center as we do every Friday. As I began to interact with people through the time, create music, have small personal therapy sessions with friends there... by the time I left, all was well and it has turned to a good day. Many people want to applaud me there big-time during the dinner but it just doesn't feel right so I time everything so they can't fit any in, lol.



A friend of mine living on the street got his monthly support money and took it right to the police station to pay the $95 fine he got for jaywalking from a cop hiding around a corner. The policeman was out to catch homeless people jaywalking as they get chased off of sidewalks from other policemen. My friend paid the ticket so he would not have to go to jail which... was the intent for the ticket aside from harassment. There are unfortunately corrupt and inhuman cops not getting called out from within their own brotherhood, who are getting paid off or just enjoy acting out with personal hate to send homeless people to the courts and then to jails so all involved can profit from taxpayer money that goes to support the basic survival of those in need.

April 11, 2019

Bonanza and D, Las Vegas, Nevada

Mo and I spent time at the Las Vegas Mission creating music as we have done for over a year now. Earlier in the day I was a bit worried. Mo, under the weather could not take in water or food. He was gagging like he needed to throw up but could not. It seemed like there was an obstruction in his throat. I had about five more observations present and from the past day to run towards, to try and understand what was going on... none positive. His just laying on the bed with a look of trouble on his face that I know, it seemed like he was dying. Seemed like I should get ready to die if he's going to. Or, how can I face life for the sake of others and show them how to keep going, keep going. He barely got a piece of bacon down his throat and could not get down small pieces of cheese. It was hours past his usual eating time. I remembered how he got sick for a few days many years ago when I thought he ate a scorpion and was going to die. He needs water because he dehydrates fast. Then... I stopped all the thinking and said the serenity prayer. God grant me the "serenity" to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.



Then, with a conscious effort for "serenity" I was able to get in touch with a willingness to accept a power greater than myself and everything that goes with that knowledge and experience. And, I do have the courage to change the things I can by getting honest with myself that even with all the troubleshooting, projecting and analyzing of the situation going on in my head... I know nothing! I actually in reality... know nothing! I could be blocking the answer in thinking I can figure it out on my own when in reality I could be creating something out of nothing! Observe... plan for a doctor and go that route when it feels right, I thought. That means, when I am not in a fear based, knee jerking state of mind. There... some truth of spirit to work with. A bit more calmed down... with some wisdom... the thought to take a morsel of his food coated with bacon fat and give it to him came to mind. He took it. And then another and another, until he took a tablespoons worth at one time. That was enough stimulation, he went over to his dog bowl and finished the rest on his own and drank some water. Now... he's resting, still feeling under the weather. But... it is all more about me, eh? Stay calm, aware and be ready to take action through calm awareness when and if needed, Danny Boy!

April 10, 2019

Lake Meade, Las Vegas, Nevada

I may have had the most beautiful day ever, in nature. Mo and I with the Traveling Piano headed out to the Lake Meade area east of Las Vegas, Nevada to hike, create music, have people discover us and commune with nature. Amazingly, I don't think I had ever been on road we were on. I was heading for the Valley of Fire but it was just so beautiful i did not get half way. We stopped at every single pull out to take a picture. When I post them to the gallery, they will be among the best ever. I'm sure everything will change to pure dry desert colors in a few months but today it looked like the earth was covered with a rich, green vibrant moss.



Mo and I took a nap in it and I just spent time experiencing the miracle of nature and that i can still see new and different and awe inspiring creation. The road was bordered with yellow flowers. In some spots they were blue. There were large swaths of red and pink cactus everywhere. My God, the gratitude I have for life experiences like this is just overwhelming. At the end of the day I had to create some music to honor the nature. A few people found us and they almost blew away into heaven with the sounds as they were transported into a world of natural, pure music and nature as one. And lets not forget the novelty finding a piano on the back of a pickup truck with a dog on the piano and me... in the middle of the desert. Lol


April 09, 2019

Owens Boulevard, Las Vegas, Nevada

There was some heavy shit going down today as we created music across from the Salvation Army while friends nearby served dinner to people living on the streets. The wind was blowing hard. There were a few people doing hard drugs that wanted to play some piano. I let them while being very careful and keeping it short. Then there was a guy who got hit real hard... enough to bring an ambulance to the scene as he was not feeling good at all. I watched him stagger around for a good ten minutes. There are people used to this kind of activity, and I do not ever want to get used to it. Then there are the majority of people living on the streets, they are petrified. Some know it and others just try to pretend its not happening but at the same time... they know how afraid they are.




April 08, 2019

Mc Williams and G Street, Las Vegas, Nevada

At the field tonight for the very first time ever I did not get the opportunity to create any music. From 5:30 pm to 9:00pm people wanted to get onto the piano seat and mess around a bit for themselves... create a distraction and release some personal spirit, creatively. Well, that is what the Traveling piano is for! Every Monday night in this spot is like a gathering of friends, all kinds of people from all walks of life. I woke up in the afternoon rested, said a mental gratitude list to get myself into the correct mindset and of course a successful day will always follow naturally. I've recently been going through a major disappointment concerning a friendship. No, not disappointing... devastating. It was only the third or fourth time in my life I have ever read someone almost completely wrong.



I think I may be mad at myself more for having made the mistake of having expectations and delusional support... then mad at the person for being who they really are. I must stay constantly aware in life that no one will ever be able to fullfill expectations that I cannot fullfill for myself. And whatever expectations that I need help with or cannot create security with... I must turn those issues over to the trust and faith I have in the God of my understanding. There... beyond a question of doubt... I can be solid in every way. The pictures I am posting today are from my neighborhood. The other day instead of driving out into nature for a hike, I walked around town taking pictures of flowers on the streets.

April 07, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

Today was meant to be a hiking day but deep down I also wanted to work with the Traveling Piano somewhere different from the usual. My wake time as usual was too late to travel any distance so we ended up going to Calico Basin just outside the city. As soon as I parked in the lot, a family showed interest in the truck, a few were singer, songwriters and the fun began. It was a big family out for a photo shoot. After they left another family was having a lunch from their car, a family from Mexico. One of the boys was taking violin lessons so... they were next. Then, I just felt so good I had to create music in the spot by myself for awhile... just for me. When I was done a mom with her two kids and grandma stopped and we had a long very in depth philosophical discussion on living life and how it works especially in a spiritual sense... along with music of course! Mo and I got a little walk in which was enough. Earlier would not have worked anyway as the sun was too hot and the temperature too warm. Wow, thats the first time I've said that this year. It is just a reminder to get out into nature before summer hits because... Mo can't take any heat anymore, he's too old. Me too! Funny how the Traveling Piano "work" happens every time mostly from a subconscious place in my mind.


April 06, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

Mo and I did a super long walk through downtown today, like at least three hours. It was a beautiful day. The weather is perfect. I'm having a problem with the desire to extend myself with the Traveling Piano. I get in these ruts, patterns now with my five commitments or so a week and to do something new and different well, it takes a lot of oomph. I do want to get out into the general community more. This blog writing is feeling confusing to me. It is like I'm just trying to find things to say and that I am going around and around saying the same things over and over while kind of contradicting myself. In the end as always... it is what it is. Not having to please anyone, being able to be totally myself, having total control over my life even with the responsibility that goes with that... what a great, great gift for my life! I worked hard to have it this way and would never have had it any other way.


April 05, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

We played for the mission dinner today.There were not so many people as usual... about 300. Its the beginning of the month and people are using their social benefits. It is not like people who live on the streets want to use the mission center or social benefits... they use them in order to survive. Thank God the help exists. Afterwards Mo and I walked through the First Friday Festival down the street from where we live while thinking... I could make an easy two grand here for the night but I just can't do it. I just can't do it. There are many reasons that most people cannot or will not understand. I've been through it all in this blog. Something different must develop for me. I really think it is about working with someone other than myself for a huge common goal. If it is not possible, I'd just rather die... or keep doing what has been working... barely. Dying would not be a bad thing, lol! But Mo has to go first because I have committed myself to stewardship for his entire lifetime. For the Love of Community with no fees, tips, commercial or organizational affiliation onward Mo and I go with the Traveling Piano.

April 04, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

We were at the mission as usual today. The appreciation from those that use the place is enormous. Always I must say, not the people who run the place. They could not care less. There are a lot of people with mental issues that come and sit with food in front of them but they don't eat. I can feel they are there for the consistency Mo and I provide and for the music but I also know how much I mean to them. Really it is spirit using me as a vessel, working through and with me. If I accomplish nothing more in life, this has been enough. I'm sure I've said it before, I've already lived way past my wildest of dreams... dreams I was not even consciously aware of. I think we all need a new kind of hope for life. It has to do with living in the present moment and being excited about that. Of course, I've always been about the present moment at the same time. I always am thinking about the future, planning, trying to figure it out but in reality... I do live in the present moment. Having this blog as a history of my actions, behaviors and thoughts... it just feels good to know it exists through a manifestation other than in my mind. I suspect once I am gone, it will all go with me... it is what it is.

April 03, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

It feels like I am losing my significance. There is a reality concerning looks and age in the working for money world. Restructuring my life in relationship to making money again... I facilitate constantly with the idea of it being fun verses, I don't want to do it to the point that I'd rather be dead. I've always considered myself mediocre and sometimes really good when it comes to art, music and work but still... mediocre. So, these days I've been trying to think about how to make money off that fact. In asking myself what do I excel in most, what do I enjoy doing most, what am I at the top of the game with as in the best in the world... I come up with... being my most authentic self. That has ben my life long hobby and enjoyment and what I have consistently worked on more than anything else. So, one of the questions I have for myself is... how to I make money with that, do I want to and should money be made off of my authenticity? Up until now the answer has been a strong no. And now, daily... it vacillates. I see artists that are so amazing, (which feels like I could never be and it is what it is) and then those who successfully sell the idea that they are amazing (which does not appeal to me) and then those that sell themselves into being actually amazing. (which I doubt is possible for me at this stage of life) I could find someone to prop me up in the world as amazing. (but do not know if I want the responsibility and work involved)



It is ok to be mediocre with my work and I certainly have accomplished mediocre success more than most... lol. So, do I escape life now while I have a mediocre significance or shoot for a higher level of existence or just wither away? Mo and I went for a hike today. We enjoyed it to the fullest all except for an encounter with another dog who attacked him because of the owner who lost control of it. Mo cried, like enough that I thought he was in major trouble for a few minutes. He tried to run away but in the process of trying to protect himself and get away, bit the other dog. That was the first time ever and he was traumatized from it. Then there was a tump loving, border wall loving, gaslit guy I got into a conversation with. His last line to me was... "your a good talker, you should be a preacher." As I left, I thought how all that is needed is to speak the spirit of truth. The trick is in knowing if you are being honest with yourself through the truth of spirit verses your self-centered mind or the self-centered minds of others. That has been and continues to be a life long practice for me. It comes from questioning everything and knowing when to stop questioning, when enough is enough to know one hundred percent of my authenticity.

April 02, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

I had a sort of different kind of day today. It was warm, sunny and breezy. Usually, I don't get going outside until later in the afternoon and we were out before noon. Mo and I walked to city hall and voted in the local election and then stopped at Starbucks. A few weeks ago I found two gift cards on the ground in Mount Charleston when we were hiking. Twenty five bucks worth of free coffee!!! I had five bucks left so I purchased a tea drink and sat outside to watch people move around. Kids from the nearby high school, city officials, local business people... I rarely sit and people watch like that. And, I would normally never pay that price for a glass of ice tea or sit outside a Starbucks! Then I did some errands. I found potting soil and plant pots at the dollar store. The plants in my room have out grown their containers.



I used to grow an amazing about of house plants, fruits, veggies and flowers in the old days when I owned my house and had a big yard. Spring was just always an awesome time. So now I have four plants in my room. If I could fit more I would. Then I went to the movies and saw Dumbo. Tim Burton's film making is always my favorite and his music partner Danny Elfman for his movies, is a master. So, a day just taking it easy, trying not to think about the fifteen bucks I spent and how I need to get going again concerning funds. I was thinking about how one the guys in the pictures I posted today, for a year he and I have seen each other weekly and we both nod with acknowledgement as he passes by. Finally, we connected. He got up onto the piano seat for some music! Now, we are bonded in friendship. Onward...

April 01, 2019

Las Vegas, Nevada

We were at the field tonight as with every Monday night and when I left it was like, what just happened? There was a lot of energy flying with only half the usual amount of people. I had one young guy on the piano who I found out was very mentally ill and unstable, like beat the piano into the ground with uncontrollable excitement unstable. And he was a strong kid! Having shown him attention he began to attach himself to me and want to interact a little too much and strong... like banging hard on the piano keys while I was playing and giving me scary face looks... real scary. Ha, but I have experience with all this and was able to stay in control... very aware and carefully. I've been thinking about a guy Mo and I ran into in our neighborhood a few nights ago.



It was in the middle of the night, we were taking our walk and the guy was standing on the sidewalk with his belongings, very flustered. He had been sleeping deep into the field we were passing and someone else set up camp near him. They were making sounds that made the guy feel unsafe so he scrambled with what he could grab to get into the light. He was 90% blind and could not see his blanket in the field and asked for help to get it. That was a trust moment but, we all went back in and got his blanket. He was such a nice guy, old, clear headed... black skinned and almost blind, living on the streets. Wow, if people knew the fear people living on the streets are in almost all the time and how difficult life is for them and how they feel powerless to do anything but basic surviving... well, it just breaks my heart.