“…ON AGAIN, OFF AGAIN, ON AGAIN, OFF…”

No such thing as a stupid question!  Feel free to ask me on Facebook or the website!

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I fell asleep to “Nothing But Thieves” the album “Nothing But Thieves”

 

The house is off of the market come the end of March.  No such thing as a wheelchair accessible bungalow under $380,000 in Regina now anyway.  It was here in October but I haven’t seen one since.  My biggest source of stress is gone…for now, it’ll likely show up next year?  “There’s a showing tomorrow afternoon, leave the house.”  Yeah it’s super easy to do when you’re physically handicapped & can’t drive!

Feedback after a showing, “I didn’t like the paint.  The cabinets were too dark.  There was too much empty space.”  That was all in the photos on the website, why did you bother looking at it?  Thanks for wasting our time & your time!

I’m going to save my money for Brewster’s medical bills a trip with Kim eventually, and when the right time comes along (which is NEVER) this…

https://www.long-mcquade.com/124878/Guitars/Electric-Guitars/Paul-Reed-Smith/SE-Paul-s-Guitar—Aqua.htm

…because that’s what I want.  I’ll stream my music, BLAH, & continue to cut other good things out.  How am I going to pay for it?  Don’t have a clue?

I was supposed to have a doctor appointment for some routine refills on Monday.  It was cancelled instead & sent by fax to the pharmacy.

People still think it’s OK to leave the city instead of going home.  Not my problem, when these people get back, stay away from everyone!  BE A GLOBAL CITIZEN!

 

“I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

ARE YOU BORED?  READ THIS TO PASS THE TIME!

www.youtube.com links are there for a point of reference if you don’t know what I’m talking about.

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Do you have a question about stage 4 brain cancer?  Ask if you do!

300 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

180 Shoulder raises/Chest presses w/ 10 pound dumb bells

600 Crunches

600 Leg lifts

300 Squats while balancing on my toes.  (I fell…again…on Wednesday)

300 Back flexes

2 days of yoga

 

I fell asleep to “Tool” the album “Fear Inoculum”

I exercised to “Big Wreck” the album “…but for the sun”

 

I do go to bed around 9:30 pm, however I don’t fall asleep until around 1:00 – 2:00 am.  I’ve been getting out of bed in the middle of the night watching guitar lessons on www.youtube.com or practicing song parts on an unplugged electric.  Just trying desperately to tire myself out.

I have trouble sitting still.  My brain is constantly thinking about what to do next.  Just when I think I’m caught up, I find something else that I should do.  Kim tells me to relax & watch a movie or some TV, honestly I don’t know how to relax, and I’m restless.

I watched a bit of TV this week, a hospital drama with a story about a cancer patient.  Immediately after the guy found out, he started crying his eyes out while hugging his wife.  All I could think was “Yep, I’ve been there”.  Then they spoke about how the patient & family live before they know about the cancer & after they know.  I couldn’t relate to that, I didn’t know.  I blacked out & a month later I woke up in the ICU.  It was a very weird experience, I knew something wasn’t right but I didn’t know what had happened or why I was wherever I was.  That month in a coma flashed by in the blink of an eye for me.

Everybody else is alert and worrying, meanwhile the person they’re worried about is clueless.  It’s weird when everybody is worrying about you & you don’t know why?  All of that garbage you her about cancer survivors going through & coming out OK on the other side.  I’ve been through a lot of it, but I’m still not all the way through it.

Best thing I can say about the coronavirus is, if you feel sick don’t worry about the outcome.  Do what you’re told to do & everybody around you will take care of the worrying part.  Remember that this virus has the highest death rate of 4% in China.  My brain cancer had an 85-95% chance of a death rate & was supposed to come back in 2013, it didn’t & I’m here.  Anybody with the virus is already ahead of me!  Stay positive & take care of yourself.  I know it’s easier said than done, trust me.

So people are worried about being quarantined for 2 weeks or a couple of months.  I’ve been quarantined since 2008.  I can’t drive.  On an average week I leave the house for maybe 3 hours?  I can’t get onto our balcony with my wheelchair.  If I want some fresh air I open the balcony door.  I don’t even get the luxury of driving to work.  I open the bedroom door & I’m already there.  I already don’t leave the house much.  Being quarantined for a bit isn’t that bad.

Just when I think this selling our condo deal is over, a place down the hall sells & we’re back in limbo.  Are we staying on the market or are we off?  I think we’re going to keep it on the market?  The place that sold was very similar in size, we’ll see what happens…

Sorry about the guitar babbling.  It’s a deep rooted passion of mine actually my only real hobby.  Guitar is what I like to do for my ‘me’ time.  So regarding the quarantine we’re all doing to keep as many people healthy as possible, welcome to my life!  I get up, have breakfast, exercise, shower, eat a little more, and avoid TV then play as much guitar as possible.

With my left arm being slightly weak from my cancer, I’m a bit slow along the fret board.  After a really good play through of a list of I gathered Wednesday night, I can say that it was a REALLY good day on the guitars.  Nothing I’ve ever played live before all newer songs, to me on a guitar.

Weird thing is I could play & sing this before, I can play it now & my arm has to move quite a bit for the verse & intro?

I figured this song out too.  It’s all up & down the fret board.  Never played or sang it before I always liked it though.

My amplifier & 4 effect pedals are in good shape & will keep me occupied & happy.  I’m pretty lucky that my current 4 electrics were all gifts.

Well this is a better picture of exactly what I ordered in January that should be here in August.  This will be the first electric guitar that I’ve ever paid for, the rest were gifts.  This is a PRS S2 made in Maryland, USA.  We saved for this for quite a while.

S2 Custom 22 Semi-Hollow Body Guitar w/Gig Bag - McCarty Sunburst

All PRS guitars have a high gloss finish to them!  The other 2 I’ve shown photos of were bought before 2003 and are likely under $700.  I bought a bunch of effect pedals (5) I think for $120 each, a Wah pedal ($240), my acoustic ($500), & my big amplifier with 4 X 12” speaker cabinet for a total of $1200.  Not everything was a gift but the important stuff was.  This was all purchased when I was still living at home & had a disposable income.  That’s somewhere around $2100 of gear that was given away (I have some of it).  Nobody knew if I was going to live or die.  Once I survived nobody knew how long I’d be in rehab or what I’d be capable of after.  I was bitter for a bit when I started to play, in the end I’m glad someone put it to use.

I picked “Kermit” out of a flyer, when Kim & I were dating I took her to the music store to show her the cracked floor model of “Grohl”.  My Fender Telecaster was an unexpected, thoughtful gift out of the blue while I was in rehab, I was cancer free but very weak.  My 7 string was a gift from Kim since I just felt sick that it went out of production 3 days after I ordered my PRS.

This is out in Canada this year.  More electronic options to switch between, different pickups, different bridge, different tuning keys, & a different colour.  I hope something similar is around in 10 years?  This is the ‘low’ priced PRS SE made oversea.  Kim helped me save for the PRS S2, the more expensive one (above), then bought the 7 string for my birthday at the end of January with her overtime money.  I’ll be saving for this myself with many other priorities ahead of this purchase.  I wouldn’t even think about it if it wasn’t completely different.  Yes, I research these big purchases of mine.

There’s a different PRS that will do EVERYTHING.  I don’t want that guitar or any other for that matter.  Something that does everything takes the fun & difficulty out of it for me.  What, all of a sudden my practicing is useless?  This would finally complete my collection.  I know I said that before but I couldn’t & don’t need to justify another purchase after this.  There is such a thing as too many guitars, for me!

SE Paul's Guitar - Aqua

Here it is 2:00 am Wednesday night & I’m reading reviews about how great the value is for what you get from the PRS SE “Paul’s Guitar” (the guitar above) and all of the different tones & sounds you can get from it.  That doesn’t help me in any way!?

Here’s what I’m practicing on the 7 string at the moment.

I was going to tune each guitar differently, then I realized something.  The purpose, for me, is the different sound I get from each guitar.  Maybe when my ordered guitar gets here I’ll tune “Kermit” to flats again?

I seriously freaked out when 2 of my guitars fell over the other day.  I rolled my chair as fast as I could to see if everything was OK!  As far as inanimate objects go, you can take anything you want other than my guitars.  After irreplaceable people in my life, guitars are next.  They’re all look different, sound different, & are sentimental in their own individual way, they’re also all out of production & literally irreplaceable.  After playing through each guitar, 1 or 2 songs on each a few times through.  I just wanted to play more & get better on each individual guitar.

Each guitar is unique.  I’ll be playing something, take a short break & think to myself “I should practice this song now.  I’ll have to grab that guitar, it sounds better on that one!”  If I want to play a rock or grunge rock song I grab “Kermit”, if I want to play something pre 1980 I grab my Telecaster, if I want to play metal I grab “Grohl” & if something involves low B string then I grab the 7 string.  They each have a distinct sound & feel to them.

Any ways this was a gift from a very good friend while I was in my rehabilitation program.  This is the semi-hollow Fender Telecaster signed by Ian Thornley, the lead singer of “Big Wreck”.  I play it more now.  It has a great 1970s rock feel.  Really good for playing stuff like some “Led Zeppelin”, “Lynyrd Skynyrd”& “Kansas” etc.  I call this one “Ian”.

_MG_3122

 

YAY a new tune from “Nothing but Thieves”.  Longer than I’d expect from a rather unknown/newer band.  They only have 2 full length albums & a short 4 or 5 song EP out.

 

If you’re getting this through Facebook, give it a like or other reaction, or share it.  That’s the only way of promoting this site, since I’m not profiting from this in any way.

 

 “I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl 

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris             

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

BREWSTER IS SMALL BUT A DEMANDING OLD MAN

No such thing as a stupid question!  Feel free to ask me on Facebook or the website!

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I fell asleep to “Stone Temple Pilots” the album “Purple”

I exercised to “Dave Matthews Band” the album “Under the Table & Dreaming”

 

Canada got its country wide address from our leader on Monday regarding the virus.  I figured I should mention something about it.  Stay home, stay safe, don’t be a hero until called upon, let the professionals dictate the plan of action.  Don’t freak out, it won’t solve anything.  There’s a time to question authority, this isn’t the time.  Most importantly BE A GLOBAL CITIZEN….FOR EVERYONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  We’ll check with our neighbors to see if they need help with anything every few days.  

 

It’s shortly after 6:00 am Sunday morning.  Brewster is my child but also a mama’s boy.  Kim’s on a girl trip with some friends at a spa, his mama’s not home.  He sleeps all day, eats & then wakes me up at 5:00 am to get up on our bed.  I stayed up until 12:30 am.  I get up, throw on some clothes & brush my teeth as he’s growling at me like it’s the end of the world.  I wish he could talk, all he wanted was up on our King size bed.  So here it is 6:22 am, I’m wide awake & our 12 pound Bichon/Shi-tzu is curled up in the middle of our King Size bed asleep.

I’ve noticed the past 2 or 3 weeks that I tend to go to bed earlier & sleep in a little bit later.  It used to be I’d go to bed around 10:30 or 11:00 pm and get up before 8:00 am.  Now it’s 9:30-10:00 pm and sleep until 8:30-9:00 am.  I don’t know if my age is catching up with me, if I’m more tired from a more intense workout, or if it’s finally the effects of cancer wearing off & now I sleep more.  I was on some HEAVY sleeping pills while I was in my rehab.  Strong enough to take down a horse for 4 days, me maybe 2 hours if I was lucky.  Sucks being that tired every day when you have a full day of physiotherapy the next day.

We watched “Bombshell” Friday evening & on Saturday I watched “Willow” that I haven’t seen since ‘Laser Discs’ were a big deal.

I was appalled…again…by the events that took place in 2015 at FOX.  Absolutely disgusting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You’re likely bored with me blabbing on about guitars by now.  They’re brand new to me again but I know more about them.  For me it’s reconnecting with an old friend.

Paul Reed Smith is a guitar player, builder, and began fixing guitars in high school, so I fully believe he knows what he wants out of a guitar & knows what any guitar player would want!  I’m sold on that company!  If I had the cash & was beginning to get into guitar, I’d eventually get 3 PRS SE models & one random acoustic hybrid.

I was going back to buying CDs, but the more I think about, it I’ll switch to streaming music from iTunes, I hate streaming music with a passion!  I’ll save my pennies for a “Paul’s Guitar SE” in the “Aqua” colour if it’s still around.  Decision made, this could take a decade or more?  I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t think it was worth it.  Brewster’s health, hopefully a house sooner than later, & a trip for Kim before a new guitar happens.   Kim helped me pay for the more expensive PRS S2 I ordered, so fair is fair (I have no desire to travel, I just want to be with my wife).  Why, you ask?  I’m not a very interesting guy, but my tastes are expensive.  My AWESOME wife, rum, & guitars.

There’s a PRS guitar that does even more cool stuff, it’s not something I’m interested in though, as are any other guitars.  All this really means is that I’ve made the decision to get it for the different pickups, bridge, more electronic options & colour difference.  So instead of saying “probably not” in the future, I’ll say “hopefully so” in the future.  I do have a rule about having too many guitars though.  If a guitar sits un-played for more than 2 days, there’s no need for it!  Right now the 4 electrics & are used daily, acoustic probably 4 days a week as I’m watching TV.

I bring in under $40,000 a year at the moment.  My RDSP which triples the $5000 limit I’m allowed to contribute annually until I’m 50 is locked in & untouchable until I’m 60 (20 years).  Saving for an “inexpensive”/”low end” $1300 PRS SE could take quite a few years.  It’s still in the distant future but it’s no longer a maybe for me. 

January 25th, 2008 was the last time I played on a stage.  It was very fitting in retrospect.  We played for free with all of the funds going to a charity that helps with medical needs for the disabled.  My family ended up receiving $11,000 from that charity to put towards an $18,000 wheelchair van Kim & I used for 3 years.  I lived in the hospital full time & sometime in 2009 (after my birthday in January) I moved to the Wascana Rehabilitation Center where I eventually was able to go home on the weekends, to eventually going home overnight after my physio & other therapies were done by 4:00 pm.

As for a house, well we’ve had a lot of showings but no offers at all & despite that there’s one possibility on the market for us.  I’m not holding my breath on getting a house.  It’ll happen when it happens.  We talked about it last night.  With what’s going on in the world right now, the house contract ends at the end of March & we’re off of the market then.

Kim is likely very happy that sports in general have been suspended & the baseball regular season has been postponed until mid-May at least.

2 of my guitars took a little tumble today, nothing too drastic just cosmetic scars.  My Epiphone “Grohl” Explorer is missing a small chunk of the body & my new 7 string has a little dent on the back of the neck.  I tuned them up, played them & nothing to worry about.  My Fender Telecaster is the only electric out of 4 that still looks new other than the autograph.

I may have bought my acoustic guitar before this but this is my electric Epiphone Explorer from Kim in our first year of dating on Christmas of 2002.  Meet my “Grohl” (he’s photographed with a Gibson Explorer on Foo Fighters’ 3rd album, There is Nothing Left to Lose).  My guitar has a nasty scratch on the back of it, I guess all that means is that it has been played a lot, & it was my backup or differently tuned guitar to “Kermit”.

https://images.app.goo.gl/dRkktL75thXGLSJu7

 

YAY, new “Lamb of God” tune!!!  Album out May 8th.

 

If you’re getting this through Facebook, give it a like or other reaction, or share it.  That’s the only way of promoting this site, since I’m not profiting from this in any way.

“I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

END OF MARCH, ON OR OFF THE MARKET?

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Do you have a question about stage 4 brain cancer?  Ask if you do!

150 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

90 Shoulder raises/Chest presses w/ 10 pound dumb bells

600 Crunches

600 Leg lifts

300 Squats while balancing on my toes.

300 Back flexes

1 day of yoga

 

I fell asleep to “Big Wreck” the album “…but for the sun”

I exercised to “Alter Bridge” the album “Fortress”

 

Nothing wrong with this place, selling a condo suite in Regina is all but impossible right now.  We’d like to move just for the reason that we are just very isolated here.  Nothing against anybody here but, were around 20-25 years younger.  Truth be told we moved here out of necessity after living with my parents for 2 ½ months.  This place was still being built.  Our old house was REALLY not wheelchair accessible.  This place was basically custom built for my wheelchair.  3 foot wide doors, big open concept, special made spot off of the island for me to have a meal, walk-in en suite shower, large main bathroom, etc.  Biggest issue for me is an 8’ X 5’ balcony with no shade that I have to crawl onto or walk out onto with Kim’s help.  The lip at the bottom of the door frame is too tall for my wheelchair to roll over.  I’ve been out of our suite once in 2 weeks. 

I didn’t realize it on Tuesday, but I’d like to move too.  EVERYTHING was brand new here as of 2013.  We even bought better appliances than they offered us.  Surround sound is already built in with the rear speakers flush to the roof.  Fact is condos aren’t selling in Regina since building companies continue to build 100s of cookie cutter cheap condos in new areas for around $170,000 and most of them are vacant.  I don’t know if it’s because of our place not selling or what it is but the wind disappeared from my sail Wednesday afternoon, & as of Thursday afternoon it’s not back yet.         

Everything before this was prewritten.  No clue right now as to what our decision will be on the condo sale.  We talked with our realtor Tuesday evening & he left the decision completely in our hands.  He had a list of condos in the city that haven’t sold.  After hearing that we decided to leave everything as is.  Contract ends at the end of the month & we really can’t lower the price.  So all of that & the added fact that there isn’t much, if anything, out there for us.  All of this said we had a viewing last week, one Thursday evening & as we got home Kim got a text from our realtor about another this afternoon.  Kim & I need to chat & hear whatever feedback will come to make our decision.  We already agree that we can’t afford to lower the asking price.

Kim was EXHAUSTED Tuesday evening from some overtime, so practicing the stairs didn’t happen.  Wednesday it just never popped into our minds & Thursday I was lazy & did nothing.  Then I had to get out of here for the house viewing.  That explains the low exercise total for the week.

I can’t sell a guitar EVER!  I’ve got them for many reasons other than each one sounds different.  Each one feels different & makes me want to play a different way.  The biggest difference is between my Explorer from 2002 and my 7 string Les Paul from Kim this year with the exact same pickups.  Body style makes a MUCH bigger difference in the sound than I ever thought.

If I was starting to learn guitar today, I’d likely buy something VERY cheap.  No wonder it’s all over the internet that guitar driven music is dead, over $1000 for an “inexpensive” guitar, a PRS SE (SE stands for Student Edition) what kind of “student” has $1300 to spend on one guitar???????  That alone would turn me off!  PRS offers their private stock which you can make a guitar whatever price you like over $1300, their Core line which is around $4000, CE line which are bolt on necks, S2 line was introduced in the mid-90s for a mid-price range, then the SE line with less finish/colour selection at their lowest price of $1300 since that line is made in Korea with cheaper labour, parts, & thinner layers of expensive wood.

I ordered an S2.  Made at the factory in Maryland, same thickness of wood as the Core line, more colour options than the SE line (which only came in a dark charcoal & I already own 3 black guitars including my acoustic), originally the switch on the SE didn’t look convenient but has changed for the 2020 line, & cheaper parts from the Korean factory which are modeled after the parts made at the American factory.  I paid more, but an SE “Paul’s guitar” has different pickups, bridge, & twice the amount of pickup combinations on the guitar electronics.  Mine will be AWESOME anyways.  I’m assuming the Coronavirus will delay the shipment of my guitar (again) from late August until who knows when.  Oh well, nothing anyone can do about that.

I promise there will be no talk of another guitar.  I did the math and what I’d have to sell to pay for it, is not worth it!  I’d either have to sell my brand new 7 string & a few $100 out of pocket or all of the other 3 guitars.  Neither one of those scenarios would EVER happen.  I’m more than happy with what I already have & will have!  Instead I have named my electric guitars, even the one yet to be made.  I’ll show you a nice photo of just a guitar with its name on the next few posts, one electric at a time.  When I get my late August arrival, we’ll see it for the first time together & I’ll let you know its name then!

Kim tells me that naming my guitars is stupid?  She named our fresh water fish, by the way NKOTB are dead….no really, we had them & they died.  Every vehicle we’ve had has had a name?  How are guitars any different?  She told me to name our red 2019 Toyota RAV 4, she didn’t like ‘The Flash’ so my 2nd and final choice was “The Streak” it’s either something you don’t want to see in your underpants or you can sing the song?

Anyways this is “Kermit” because it’s green.  I was tinkering with the idea of calling it “Forever 21” since that was my 21st birthday gift but I had to stick with “Kermit”.  I demanded a lot from that guitar, so it wasn’t easy being green!

_MG_3114.jpg

There’s a good chance you won’t see me playing a guitar on here.  Social media can be terrible, especially if you look different, such as having an iPatch.  I’ve got enough anxiety issues now as it is.

When I picked up my guitar again late last year, I went down a worm hole learning stuff I didn’t know before.  Like 5 different minor & major scales, bits of how to solo & shred superfast, arpeggio sweeps, etc.  Then I just stopped, since I wasn’t gaining any ground.  I thought to myself for a minute “Wait…I never played this kind of stuff before, I’m a rhythm player.  I should go back, learn my chords & riffs/hooks.  That’s where I live, that’s my area, I’m not a lead guitarist” I did just that on Tuesday & WOW, I really gained a LOT by scaling things back.  I learned what I should & about 5 new to me songs and have been practicing them this week.  Chords & riffs, back to what I’m good at but mostly newer songs.  I’ll keep practicing & speeding up a few of the scales, but this feels normal to me, playing more recognizable parts of a song.  About 4 Led Zeppelin tunes, a Foo Fighters tune I’ve never attempted, an Alter Bridge tune, an Ozzy Osbourne classic, & some older stuff I used to play.  Most of this from memory or by ear unless I get stuck, then it’s “HELLO INTERWEB!”

 

I will say that “Haley Williams’” 5 song EP ‘Petals for Armor’ is absolutely FANTASTIC!  Only problem for me is it’s too short, I want more!

 

If you’re getting this through Facebook, give it a like or other reaction, or share it.  That’s the only way of promoting this site, since I’m not profiting from this in any way.

 

 “I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl 

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris             

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

MANSPLAING WHY LESS IS MORE FOR ME. 

No such thing as a stupid question!  Feel free to ask me on Facebook or the website!

www.youtube.com links are there for a point of reference if you don’t know what I’m talking about.

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I fell asleep to “Ronnie James Dio aka Dio” the album “Angry Machines”

I exercised to “Trivium” the album “In Waves”

 

Here’s the Canadian Red Cross website if you’d prefer to donate there for my birthday.  Donate whatever amount you like whenever you like please?

https://www.redcross.ca/

 

We did have our “niece” over on the weekend for a sleepover at “Auntie” Kim’s.  Our “nephew” came over with his mom to pick up his sister.  He’s not 2 years old until the spring but he likes my wheelchair and his “Uncle” Chris.  Follows me into the bathroom, I lock my wheels, he’s behind my chair at the doorway, & all I hear is “Uncle…..uncle…..uncle….uncle?”  Then he just wants to push his sister around our place in the wheelchair.  How can you say “No” to that!  Too cute!!!!!

Haven’t really spent money on music, grrrr.  Tried to add more streaming music the other night and it tells me this is “Not available in your region”, & that’s why I’d prefer to use iTunes or even better purchase CD’s.  “Hello streaming music I’m not a fan of you but let’s make this as pleasant as we can.  You do your job, and I’ll keep quiet”.  I’ve been listening to older rock and metal.  TONS of older stuff by “Megadeth”, that I’ve owned for quite a while.  I’ve been getting into “The Cure”, “Dio”, more “Queen” & I now listen & own all but one album from “The Darkness”.  My brother can’t stand them.  I use to play or sing their first hit at band rehearsal just to pester him.

This high voice is about all I can do now.  My falsetto’s there, my real voice…..not so much.  I might start answering the phone like this, apparently it’s easier to understand?!

“Queen” & “Dio” are the 2 main worm holes I’m going down right now.  “Iron Maiden” & “Testament” I’ve had for a while now & often go back to.  The music I listen to seems to go in waves. Pop, blues, disco, funk, rrrroooocccckkkk, & mmmmeeeettttaaaallll.

The entire guitar deal is that my left hand & arm are/were pretty much useless.  Exercising & getting to a point where I had the hand muscle to form any chord was HUGE.  Sure I can whip off some impressive licks if you don’t know any better.  Thing is I’m still pretty green.  I knew a lot, I’ve learned WAY more.  My hand works.  I’ve got to speed my hand & arm up just a bit to get up to tempo.  I need to get certain parts of a song back into muscle memory.  It’s all there & most of it is VERY close.  My right arm & hand weren’t affected by brain cancer.  My strumming, rhythm, & guitar picking came back fine after 3 ½ years of therapy.  I’m sort of physically new somewhat & I’ve advanced, but I also know more of what I used to do & even what I could tackle next.  I’m a weird middle of the road beginner at this point, that’s what I’d call myself on guitar.  I’m just SO happy that I can make things sound like an actual song.  Yes I play/practice a LOT!

Why would I like to own 5 electric guitars?  I see many stay at home players with dozens of guitars.  I don’t need or want that many, I’m not that versatile.  The reason for multiple guitars is different tunings and/or sounds.  Excuse me while I mansplain my reasons.

Just watch enough of the www.youtube.com video to get a good look at the guitar, you don’t need to watch the entire video.  I’ll put up links to the Facebook photos of my guitars on here & the photos on the Facebook page for this blog.  Hopefully the links work if you don’t have a Facebook account.

My 3 electrics all sound different & are in different tunings.  The Fender Telecaster is very much geared towards country & blues music (tuned to standard E) with single coil pickups.  Same body style & pickups.  Different colour & model.  Mine is a much darker wood grain, & it’s my autographed guitar.  I learned some blues sounding chords to play it.  Foo Fighters “For All the Cows” sounds great on it!

My Epiphone Explorer is in a different tuning (Eb) & set for rock & metal music (active EMG pickups extra $200).  Same colour, style, & brand.  Different model & pickups were changed to EMGs ASAP.  Dave Grohl used to play a Gibson Explorer that was the initial reason for getting it.  It’s now my main guitar.  Epiphone is a more affordable version of Gibson, cheaper parts & wood.

My Les Paul knock off is extremely heavy (the weight of 2 Gibson Les Paul’s) & it holds lower tunings very well, so it’s tuned to D instead of the standard E (stock & loud humbucker pickups).  Same body shape, darker green, & probably different pickups.  Mine is not a Gibson or Epiphone brand, much more inexpensive, as heavy as can be, also mine has a metal plate on the back where the neck/fret board is bolted to the body.  I don’t have Grover tuners or a coil tap switch.

The other 2 I’d like are different in other ways.  7 strings instead of 6, different EMG pickups (I paid $200 to switch my Explorer pickups to EMGs), love the shape of the Les Paul & I’m gonna make it happen!  The PRS is a definite go with different pickups, semi-hollow, love the shape, locking tuners, Tremolo Bridge & bar, etc.  Definitely getting the PRS, and the more I watch demos of the Limited Edition 7 string Epiphone that 2nd place is by a hair.  At least I know what I like.  They’re both pretty & practical.  A non-guitar player likely won’t get this.

I should be able to order the PRS guitar by the end of March, then I’ll start saving ASAP for the Matt Heafy 7 string limited edition Epiphone and Kim’s dream vacation to Hawaii.  Half of what I save will go to the guitar, the other half will be saved for Hawaii.  You may think a guitar is a waste of money & that’s fine.  I spend my money mostly on music or music related stuff.

I survived cancer, my wife has been more than cool with this situation despite the times where I’ve been a mess mentally, our extended & immediate families have been great & I can’t rave enough about how great our friends have been, despite me being a complete wreck at times!  We’ve been cash poor since February of 2008.  We’re not trying to catch up to the rest of the world like we were, we just want to feel comfortable in our situation.

Yeah, I’m becoming obsessed with these 2 guitars.

The PRS guitar, I’ll order in the spring, then wait 90 days for it to get here.  If it wasn’t for us living in Canada + the 11% tax between the federal & provincial tax, I’d have it already.  The Epiphone Les Paul 7 string would take 2 days to get here.  Half the price of the PRS guitar but VERY different.  I’ll be saving for both that guitar & a trip to wherever Kim wants to go.  It will likely take me longer to save the cash, so I likely won’t get it anytime soon.  No we’re not going into debt for any of this.  We’re saving by cutting back on other things, such as iTunes (yeah I’ll be using that streaming garbage), coffee & tea from Tim Hortons, etc.

This year, more so than others, I’m all about quality over quantity.  On the guitar side of things, 5 different electric guitars would each serve a different purpose.  My acoustic guitar is for perfecting the imperfections masked by the guitar amplifier.  My exercise is the same mentality.  Each individual exercise serves a different purpose.  Less repetitions with more focus on the quality of the repetitions.

I’m going to pick 4 songs that I’ve learned & make them perfect.  Rhythm, tempo, & technicality, while continuing the finger exercises that got me to this point.  Lead guitar doesn’t really interest me, but learning more about guitar will help me.  Always something to learn!  If I could sell a guitar I would but there are unwritten rules that I have for myself as to why I can’t sell a guitar.  A) I can’t sell my first guitar.  B) An autographed guitar.  C) My main guitar given to me by my wife (girlfriend at the time).  D) I can’t sell my only acoustic guitar.

Now we just need to move so I can turn my guitar amp past 2 on the volume nob.  Ah condos!

 

DC movies are reinventing themselves to be more realistic, a bit darker, while maintaining the aura of a comic book movie.  I’m in!  Margot Robbie plays “Harley Quinn” so well!

I watched “Joker” with Joaquin Phoenix twice since Saturday.  Hands down as movie of the year for me.  Definitely not for kids.  Rated R for a reason.

 

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“I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

1ST OFFICIAL POST OF 2020.   EXERCISE BEGINNING January 2, 2020

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(20 pound dumb bells) 400 Curls

(10 pound dumb bells) 200 Shoulder raises/Chest presses

800 Crunches

600 Leg lifts

400 Squats

400 Back flexes

Walking & stairs start on the weekend (time permitting) or on Monday.

I fell asleep to “Trivium” the album “Silence in the Snow”

I exercised to “Dio” the album “Sacred Heart”

 

Here’s the Canadian Red Cross website if you’d prefer to donate there for my birthday.  Donate whatever amount you like whenever you like please?

https://www.redcross.ca/

I could ask for donations to the Canadian Cancer Society that our team of 10 people raised $75,000 over 3 years for, while I was in the hospital.  I’m asking for Red Cross donations since they’ll help with more than just cancer.  I can’t ask for donations to 15 different organizations.  I figured I’ll try to cover as much as I can with one organization?

I’ve changed my exercises as much as I could to benefit me more.  There are fewer repetitions in a week, but more difficulty in each exercise.  For example I’m using heavier dumb bells for my weight exercises.  20 pounds in each hand for curls & 10 pounds for shoulder raises with them coming together in front of me to exercise my chest.  Once I end up doing 200 repetitions/day consistently, I will increase the weights & decrease the repetitions.

My squats are lower for a longer amount of time & 50 of them 3 days a week are on my tip toes to work on my balance & calves.  My crunches are being held for a longer amount of time as are my yoga poses & leg lifts.  Fewer repetitions but far more intense exercise.

Different muscles are a little more tender than usual the next day.  These lower repetitions take just as much, if not more time to complete each day.  I expect to put on a few pounds of muscle or at least see a shift from fat to muscle.  Who thought me being 226 pounds would look like my clothes were about to fall off?

In other news, I stumbled across a Facebook poll asking if I was for or against legalizing public nudity.  Knee jerk reaction, I said ‘Sure, it’s just as harmful to me as legalized marijuana’.  This was before Christmas and I’ve been rethinking my answer ever since.  Sure it won’t bother me, I’ll head out in my underwear & a T-Shirt.  It could affect anyone negatively though & here’s why.  There are a TON of people out there that will take advantage of this by sexually assaulting & raping those that seem to be ‘easier pray’ by wearing less clothing.  That’s what I quickly realized was the problem with my answer.

I have more music in my collection, most of it is rock & metal stuff.  Not sure if that’s worth sharing with others.  I might do a bit on the Tuesday posts when there’s nothing new that I’ve purchased.

I’m watching demos on the Epiphone Matt Heafy 7 string custom.  Damn me & my taste in guitars.  That would complete my guitar collection.  Yes, as I’m relearning to play songs I knew & newer songs I’ve never tried before.  I’ve been learning much more stuff & practicing at least 45 minutes a day if not more, my fingers are much more independent than they’ve ever been.  What gets my goat the most is, we’ve saved enough money for this Epiphone but the PRS guitar is a midlife crisis/once in a lifetime purchase & we’re half way there.

Truth be told, my midlife crisis was going to be a Porsche.  Well that all changed in 2008, & playing guitar seemed out of the question until October of 2019.  I’m sticking with the PRS despite not owning a 7 string.  Even though both serve a different purpose.  The PRS is sort of an all-in-one guitar with added stuff I don’t have & I don’t own a 7 string or anything with a kill pot.  They’re both more cash than at least three of the 4 guitars I own.  Mine are all under $1000.  The Fender Telecaster was a gift I got while in the hospital & is likely just over $1000.  The only guitar I’ve actually bought for myself was my acoustic that I play multiple times a day.  Damn it I’m specific/picky!  That would truly be it for me.  I look at guitar gear as ‘less is more’.  Right now I play each guitar but mainly the Epiphone Explorer I have.  Used to play shows with my Les Paul styled knock off, I always brought my Epiphone as a backup and eventually used it live in a different tuning.

Matt Heafy is the writer & lead vocalist for the metal band “Trivium”.  My 3 favourite metal bands are “Lamb of God”, “Trivium”, & “In Flames” they have been for the last 14 years.

My left hand was the issue, but even I have noticed significant improvement since I started playing again, so has Kim.  My “Time is running out”.  PRS for now, since Kim wants to go to Hawaii next year.  Save, save, save, & save some more.  We don’t travel.  I’ve been outside of Canada once, to Boston with Kim who was there for a week for training, I tagged along in the summer of 2006 or 2007.

A house popped up on the market Wednesday.  A house about the same size of our suite, front porch, wheelchair accessible back deck, built in 2000, & a partially finished basement.  Looked very promising from the photos.  WAY over our price range listed at $389,900.  I did what I always do.  Stayed awake, worried & over thought things.  Finally fell asleep around 3:30 am or 4 am.  I finally just told Kim yesterday “I don’t even want to know about a house unless it’s in our price range and if ours will ever sell.”  The stars & moon have to all align & everybody’s chakra has to be in the perfect spot to sell this place from the looks of things.  I’ll sign another contract to sell the place, although I don’t understand how that will change anything.

As a comparison, we were among the first 6 suites to move into our new building on December 18th, 2013.  Our suite is very similar in size, a difference of maybe 50 sqft, but way below that price.

 

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 “I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl 

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris             

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 18, 2019 (HOLIDAY UPDATE)

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I had no intension of taking a break, exercise wise, over the holidays.  I changed my mind after the week off in November.  My sleeping pattern does not like all of this stress.  So I was awake half of the night Sunday, slept in Monday, felt lazy & tired ended up doing nothing.  Went to bed at 9:30 pm Monday night.  Got up to pee at 2:40 am, couldn’t fall asleep.  Got out of bed @ 3:20 am and did some stuff in the kitchen quietly.  Felt really tired around 8:30 am, crawled in bed.  Showered, had lunch & it was 2:30 pm.

All of this is not good for me.  My mind hasn’t known how to relax in the last 3 years or so, & it’s getting worse.  When I was in my rehabilitation program I was severely depressed & was put on an anti-depressant/sleeping pill to combat the negative thoughts in my head so I could sleep.  I’m not having negative thoughts now, I just feel like I have so much to do, but my body doesn’t want to keep up.  With the house being listed, its holiday season, & I put stress on myself to get as much done in a day as possible, I’m tired, a bit grumpier than usual & generally feel like I’m just wasting days by not exercising.

I hate having our house listed.  I’m physically handicapped with no driver’s license but when someone wants to see our place, Brewster & I have to disappear for the 30-45 minutes someone’s here.  Much easier said than done.  My parents are in town until they go on a trip about a week in to the New Year.  Then Kim will have to get us out of here.  With her being on contract, she doesn’t like to take time off since she doesn’t get paid if she’s not at work.  With all of that going on I’m more stressed than ever.  I’m not depressed or crying (like I was in my Rehab program), however I do feel anxious all of the time.

I guess we can add the fact that my brother has another surgery coming up shortly after Christmas.  The first one wasn’t enough.  I worry about him too.  He had back surgery for bone spurs on his shoulders that were causing his arms & hands to go numb at random times, 5 months of disability & some of that doing physiotherapy.  He went back to work for 2 weeks of shortened shifts & he’ll be heading to Saskatoon for a 2nd surgery, this time through the front of his body, because the numbing sensation came back.  Between my dad, mom, brother, & I, we’ve all had some type of surgery.  My parents have both had eye surgeries, mom’s had one knee replaced & soon another, my brother is dealing with his back surgeries, & I’ve had 3 brain surgeries.

As for the house being on the market, at this point I’ve lost all hope of the stars aligning for us to sell & find a new (wheelchair accessible) place in Regina in our price range.  They’re completely gone at the moment.  Our contract is up on December 31st.  I told Kim “Do what you want.  I’m out, I’m not looking.  If I need to disappear, that’s not my problem.  I figure we could be here for 5 more years, & I just don’t care.  We have nowhere to move to.  The entire reason we put this place up for sale was for a forever home that sold 3 weeks after we hit the market.  The contract at that time was to remove our place from the market if our dream house sold, & it did.  I’m out.  I’m not going to stop you or our realtor from looking, I’ll willingly see a house you find, but I’m not searching for something that is likely not there at the moment.  I’ll start house hunting online again in March”.  We’ve lowered the price once & that’s as low as its going.

As of today it is 6 years to the day that we moved into this condo.  Nothing wrong with this place, we’re just much younger than the average resident here.  My parents are young & I’m guessing they’re younger than the average person here?  I’d like to move, but I don’t see things working out for us in the near future.

We signed our mortgage papers at the bank on Monday, my name is on it but Kim handles the money here.  I saw what our mortgage payment is each month, & I’m thinking that guitar I was going to order is better off at the factory.  Kim disagrees still?  I don’t know what I was thinking to begin with now.  I cancelled my football tickets for next year, which is what I’d prefer to happen in for many different reasons, then wanted to buy a really nice/moderately expensive guitar?  The guitar’s still up for discussion despite me having a decent portion of the money already.

Everyone’s Christmas gifts have been purchased & are wrapped under the tree.  That stress is over.  What’s bugging me now is that I have possibly 30 years of exercise to cram in ASAP.  Even then I’ll likely be using a walker.  I’m disappointing myself.  Especially if I’m sitting around, doing nothing but thinking of what I need to do.

As for eating & drinking over the holidays, not much has changed in that department.  We drink store bought non-alcoholic light egg nog.  I occasionally put it in the few coffees I have a week & I’ve had 2 glasses of ½ egg nog, ½ skim milk, with a shot of Kahlua.  After the 8(?) Holiday sweets I’ve had so far, I’ve determined they just make me feel sick & I don’t need them.  So I’m basically still drinking a minimum of 3 liters of water a day, 2 eggs a piece of fruit & homemade vegetable juice for breakfast, lettuce wraps w/Turkey deli meat for lunch & a small meal at supper.  I also have 3 small snacks a day.

In the spirit of trying to help people out I’m helping a couple people learn guitar with me.  I know what to do, just have to get my left hand used to it again.  No I’ve never charged anyone.  I was ‘teaching’ two friends before cancer, so I figured I’d help a couple people out again.  I don’t charge anyone because A) They’re friends/family   B) I’m just a singer that learned guitar to be more comfortable on stage, my knowledge is very limited.  I’m happy to say that I can tell that there’s progress every day.

I was always a rhythm guitarist, but I’ve been doing mostly individual finger exercises & different scale patterns on the guitar to strengthen my hand.  It helped!  Things are getting much better!  Figured out the main guitar riff for this, wasn’t able to play it before cancer, I probably didn’t try enough.

Right hand rhythm works fine, left hand fretting needs some work, but it’s getting there!  More guitar practice as things are becoming more familiar with it.  Practice on the acoustic then play it on the electric.

One good night of sleep & today I got up on time, had a good workout and was able to manage my time better!  I plan to keep exercising next week, it will likely be a day or 3 of shortened exercise, 25th & 26th anyways.

 

What have I been listening to?  Pretty much anything but Christmas/Holiday music.  Still just not ready for it?

 

If you’re getting this through Facebook, give it a like or other reaction, or share it.  That’s the only way of promoting this site, since I’m not profiting from this in any way.

“I feel good about the good things, & bad about the bad things”-David Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres