Wednesday, April 25, 2007

When Reality is Not Real?

What happens when reality TV is no long real? Does it just become a sitcom? Do you remember so long ago when reality TV was a fresh breath to the stale programmed humor of the sitcom. Well it seems that in the quest to get the laugh, to hook the viewer more reality TV shows are turning into scripted, pre-planned sitcoms. Not real.

My next post will take a look at one show that has fallen into this trap, Gene Simmons Family Jewels on A&E.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Union Pacific Steam Engine 4466

Beautiful Evening in San Francisco

This is just one of the many things that are so beautiful about living in San Francisco. Last night GameLink had a company outing to see the SF Giants ballgame. AT&T Park is a great place to watch baseball, open air right on the bay. It was a clear night, not too cold and most importantly the Giants won! This is how to watch baseball.

Old Sacramento and Santa Cruz

Last weekend my parents were out visiting and we had a great weekend of day trips. Last Saturday we drove up to Sacramento and visited Old Sacramento. Very cool old west town. Beautiful old west buildings, lots of shops, food and right on the river. There is a railroad museum that has active working trains. I was fortunate to be able to watch the roundhouse as they pulled out an old diesel engine as well as a steam engine. Being only a few feet away as they were running was very impressive. These are beasts! There is also a paddle wheel boat that is now a full service hotel that would be a great getaway for a weekend.

Sunday we drove down to Santa Cruz to visit the Beach Boardwalk. Alot of fun with many rides, shops and food right on the beach. It was a beautiful day to be on the beach. While out on the wharf we saw a number of sea lions as they were migrating. I definitely want to go back, spend the night and enjoy the rides and more food.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

My Tattoo is Finished

Last night after work I finished my tattoo. My appointment was at 6pm and took another hour and a half, for a total of 3.5 hours of work. It hurt like a mother again, especially on my ribs. Right on the bone as a teeth clincher! I found it worked best to just close my eyes and take deep breathes, try to get myself into some deep mental zone. When that worked I couldn't feel anything. Jeremy, the artist, liked the finished tattoo that he took pictures for his book. This photo was taken just minutes after he finished. I will post another, better, photo in a day or so.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Mark St. John RIP

Kiss Guitarist Mark St. John Passes

By Newsferatu, Writer
Thursday, April 5, 2007 @ 1:30 PM

KNAC.COM air personality Junkman just checked in with the following sad news:

"Just got a call this afternoon stating that my friend, former Kiss guitarist Mark St. John, died this morning from a cerebral hemorrage. He was 51.

I have known him for a long time. I roadied for his band White Tiger, and just spoke with him at the recent NAMM show.

As soon as I fid out more info I will let you know. My heart goes out to his family. A very sad day.



Mark St. John was born Mark Norton, in Hollywood, California, on February 7, 1956 and serves with noteriety as KISS' shortest lived guitarist. During a hectic and disruptive period of two years KISS would change from Ace Frehley to Vinnie Vincent to Mark St. John and then finally to Bruce Kulick, on guitar, with St. John lasting less than eight months. His parents moved to Garden Grove, CA in the early 1960's where Mark was initially more interested in sports than music. In an interview with KISS Strike, Mark recalled, "I played all sports, in fact I played sports before I got into music. Especially basketball, I mean I tried all sports but basketball is what I excelled in. And when I got into High School we started playing CIF with other teams from L.A. and they were all black and I felt that I wasn't a very good basketball player. I mean they just slip and slide all over you, they jump higher and they run faster and you felt belittled after the first five minutes and I gave it up after that" (KISS Strike 46). Growing up in Southern California Mark didn't start playing guitar until he was a sophomore in highschool in 1972 when he also started to grow his hair longer, undoubtedly part of that age-group's rebellion from their parents and society. Initially guitar playing started as a hobby but within a year Mark had become quite serious about it. The techniques and the styles. As to why he started plaing guitar, Mark recalled, "I guess because the guitar was the new thing happening - it was the sound. I'm from a generation that went through a whole different thing in music, like a culture-type thing. It was the voice of the people. It was a source of rebellion and the guitar was one of the biggest things. I remember watching television and seeing the Beatles and the Rolling Stones on the Ed Sullivan show. They didn't have tubas, they had guitars and everyone was going crazy and that put a spark in my mind... The guitar is rock 'n roll. That's what it's all about. From the 50's on, the emphasis was on the guitar sound. Everyone was trying to make the guitar sound like other instruments, but it's not so easy to make other instruments sound like the guitar. The guitar is what's happening" (KISS Force via Otaku). Mark has a brother, Michael (born 1964), who plays bass. The two would be in bands together following Mark's tenure in KISS. They also have one sister (born 1960).