WHAT’S ROUTINE ABOUT A MARATHON TYPE MRI SCAN?

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375 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

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

400 Crunches

400 Leg lifts

200 Squats

200 Back flexes

1:10 hours of yoga over 2 days

Weight repetitions went up on Thursday.  I want to see them at 400 a week by mid-June!

 

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

I exercised to “Alter Bridge” the album “Walk the Sky”

 

4 day week since Monday was the long weekend, I didn’t do any exercise on Monday.  Today, up at 6:20 am, exercised, shower, then guitar until I need food.

Welcome back to the program!  You’re here so if you like what you see, might as well subscribe?  Either on Facebook or with your email in the bottom right corner, it’s really that easy & it’s free!  I know you want to tell your friends, go ahead! 

I’ve had 5 or 6 MRIs since Tuesday February 5th, 2008, but nothing like this one.  Get some of your prefered beverages, some snacks & gather ‘round.

I went to bed Monday evening around 10:00 pm, knowing I have a routine MRI scan Tuesday evening.  I’m EXTREMELY claustrophobic and I know that MRI machine is tiny (switched to X-rays in early 2010, first MRI since then).  I’m in bed until 11:00 pm wide awake & worrying more as the minutes pass.  I get up, have a snack & watch some recorded TV.  I finally go back to bed just before 2:00 am.  Get up at 8:00 am, hoover my tiny breakfast, exercise, have a snack, post my blog, & hit the shower.  Get out of the shower, have a small lunch then watch the 1:30 hours of late night talk shows I record every night (Kimmel & Colbert).  Into the computer room, little facebook & email, followed by a VERY SATISFYING 2 hour guitar practice, I felt like I progressed 4 ½ months in those 2 hours.  Got all of my left hand, fingers, & arm to do what I expected them to do all along.

I know my MRI is at 5:45 pm, so I stop drinking my 3rd liter of water around 3:30 pm.  We leave our place at 5:00 pm to drop Brewster off at my sister-in-laws place that’s 2 minutes away.  We go through the Covid-19 procedure at the hospital and we’re in the waiting area for my scan by 5:35 pm or so.

Kim stayed in the waiting area while I went in for my IV followed by my scan.  I’m thinking “This is sweet, we’ll be out of here by 7:00 pm since everything is on time.”  The nurse puts in my IV for the dye that shows up in my scan to see everything clearly.  He’s pretty laid back, we’re laughing & having a good time.  By this time I’m relaxed & feeling fine claustrophobia’s gone.

I get my ear plugs in that they give every patient (MRIs are LOUD), they give me a set of headphones since they have Spotify & ask me what I want to listen to.  They have classic rock playing as the last patiet requested.  I just asked them to leave it there, less hassle I figured.

The head phones playing a Spotify playlist must’ve been turned up to “11”, once the machine starts making noise, you can’t hear anything else!  Aytomated voice says “Please hold still while the table moves.”  “The next scan will take X minutes”  a scan took anywhere from 30 seconds to 5 minutes.

I’m about to be shoved into the tiny machine and the nurse asks me if I need anything before they start, I reply “Nope, I’m good to go!”  Then he says “Yeah you’ll be in there for about an hour & a half.”  I thought he was joking as he clamps a plastic mask to the board to hold my head still (hard plastic mask with an opening for my face only).  They’re about to start, my shoulders barely fit the machine but I’m fine after my EXTREME mood boost from my guitar pratice!  The first thing they tell me through the headphones is to hold still for the photos.  PhotoS as in plural?

I’m rockin’ out to Rush, Led Zeppelin, Van Morrison, Foghat, Lynyrd Skynyrd, etc., then Blue Oyster Cult comes on & all I can think is “I WANT MORE COWBELL”!  In my head I’m rockin’ hard!  2 things instantly come to mind when I hear this song.  The first is this skit, the second is when the last group I was in was on the radio right after this song.  My phone rings at like 9:30 pm on a Friday & it’s Todd, our drummer at the time shouting “MORE COWBELL” no hello or anything, yeah he called the wrong number first!  This was before cell phones were so popular.

After 2 hours of not moving a muscle, they pull me out as Tom Petty starts, I’m thinking “One doesn’t just stop an MRI when Tom Petty starts?”

I assume that I’m done, NOPE!  After a 5 minute break, I’m told that I have another 30 minutes or so left.  Back in the tube I go!  I’m finished an hour later.  I asked the nurse that pulled me out if they serve a rum on ice, & some pretzles after that, she laughed & replied “You’d think we should, that was a long one.”  Quick stop at the washroom & we’re in our vehicle at 9:10 pm.  Pick up Brewster, drivethru at McDonalds, come home to hoover supper, watch “The Ellen Degeneres Show” and call it a day at 10:45 pm.  I’ll get my MRI results in a week or 2.

Eventhough I know I still have to save for that final PRS guitar, just after such  GREAT guitar practices (I feel like I progressed 4 months in 2 hours) I now feel that I’ve earned it, like I can now allow myself to buy it & not feel any shame or guilt.  Especially after  great workouts all week, great guitar practices, & having to not move at all for 3 hours that gave me a small bruise on my chin from the mask.  Most days start for me between 7:00 – 8:00 am and go non stop until 10:30 – 11.00 pm.  I’ve been more sore & tired this week than I’ve been since I lived in the hospitals, but I also feel as though I’ve ramped things up in a GREAT way.

I’m assuming after almost 11 ½ years of being cancer free that I’m fine.  I can’t tell you much other than my story, but I can say this.  Life is WAY too short to take everything seriously.  Even in what could be considered an intense situation, figure out how to relax a bit & keep it light.  If I had taken my life seriously since Tuesday February 5th, 2008, I’d likely still be a very bitter person.  Sometimes you just have to laugh!

I woke up late on Wednesday around 9:45 am.  I stretched before I exercised things cracked & popped even though I didn’t know they could make those sounds!?

This seems a little early to be happening, although I don’t know what the situation is in Maryland, if it’s too early, I have no problems waiting for my ordered guitar.

I’ve decided to save up for the PRS S2 McCarty 594.  There are 5 model lines/price ranges of PRS guitars.  3 of them are the most common.  From the most expensive down there’s the Core line, S2, & SE.  You’ll see the SE (65% made by hand) models in stores in Canada they go for around $1350, in the USA because of the dollar they go for around $700 completely built in Indonesia.  The S2 line is right above the SE line.  An S2 (75% made by hand) model in Canada is around $2300, in the USA they’re around $1300 hardware and other parts are from Indonesia but assembled/built in Maryland.  The Core line is twice the price of an S2 model.  The Core line is entirely built in Maryland, hand carved & 95% made by hand.  All PRS guitars are stained by hand.  You can pretty much take the American price, add $700 + tax to get your local Canadian price, on average.  It all depends on what the stock market does, the provicial tax rate, & the guitar desired.  My ordered S2 semi-hollow is more than $2300 & the S2 McCarty 594 will be less than $2300.

One day if/when we find a house my amplifier will get a used upgrade, until then I’m good!  So this whenever we move and this is cheaper as a used amp “Best Solid State Amp of the Decade” by many reviewers, especially the “Know Your Gear” www.youtube.com channel.  REALLY SMART GUY!

https://www.long-mcquade.com/154076/Guitars/Guitar-Amps/Boss/Katana-50-MkII-Combo-Amplifier.htm

It’s pretty & practicle, as close to a Vintage Gibson Les Paul as I’d like to get & probably $1500 less!  PERFECT AS IS!

 

First single out for the new album by “The Pretty Reckless”

 

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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

WHY SO MUCH GUITAR TALK?

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 “Tool” the album “Lateralus”

I exercised to “Haley Williams” the album “Petals for Armor”

 

Welcome back to the program!  You’re here so if you like what you see, might as well subscribe?  Either on Facebook or with your email in the bottom right corner, it’s really that easy & it’s free!  I know you want to tell your friends, go ahead!

 

Remember how I said on Friday that I was going to watch guitar videos on www.youtube.com for a while?  That lasted about 30 minutes, I wound up playing guitar for about 6 hours of the day.  At least it was a productive practice!

I tried guitar hack #5 below & it works!  I bought one bottle of beer to try out the strap lock hack, that strap’s not coming off.  I play sitting down obviously but I use a strap as an insurance policy.  I don’t want to drop a guitar.  No, I’m not getting 2 beer per guitar, 1 more bottle should do since I have actual strap locks on my other heavy guitar the rest are good as is.  Skip ahead to the 2:30 minute mark to see this genius idea!  A real set of strap locks will set you back about $30 with this idea you spend $20 here, get 2 beer & one strap lock!

I practice guitar so much because I’m trying to get back to 7 years of playing able bodied now with the effects of brain cancer after 12 years of not playing.  Practice over the weekend then I got up at 7:00 am on Monday, had breakfast, fed Brewster, gave him his pills, exercised, showered had a snack, & then practiced from 11:45 am until about 6:00 pm.

I’ll admit that I’m overly obsessed with guitar since I started playing so let me explain this.  Other than just being alive & cancer free, I really didn’t have much to look forward to the next day other than hanging out with Brewster & waiting for Kim to get home.  Don’t worry about not being great full for being healthy & alive every day.  It’s still something I don’t think about every day.  I just expect to be OK when I wake up every day.

Once I was out of the hospitals & my therapy programs it was & sometimes still is “OK, so what now?”  I don’t look forward to exercising 5 days a week, but after I do it I feel REALLY good.  I’d get bored just watching TV after I exercise.  Now that I have a hobby & something I really enjoy working on, things are much different.

I did it before & took it for granted too without realizing how much I’d miss it when it was taken away from me.  Playing guitar is something I can do that is exactly the same as it was before.  This is a case of “Absence makes the heart grow fonder”.

Imagine you most favourite thing is taken away from you for 12 years.  You’d likely gush about it too if you could do it again.  That’s me right now.

I don’t know of many guitar players that have a set number of guitars to own, other than what their spouse tells them?  I’d have to stop after these 2, that’s MY limit, not KIM’s.

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

SE Paul's Guitar - Aqua

If it was up to Kim she’d be OK with the one I have on order.  So in 2 years or more I’ll be using MY gift money for the final guitar & I think she wants to save for a new “bicycle”?  She wants me to get an adult tricycle, I used one in my rehabilitation, those are expensive & not how I want to spend my money.  I liked mountain biking, but I can’t do that yet with no balance.  MY cash is going to a guitar that I can play.

For me it’s about different look, feel, sound, & inspiration each guitar brings.  I no longer play each guitar I own every day.  It’s more of a question of “What kind of music do I feel like playing right now?”  I choose the guitar that sounds best suited for that style at that time.  I felt like playing mostly metal guitar on Sunday so I played my Explorer mostly & practiced some other stuff on my acoustic.

A PRS doesn’t sound like a Les Paul, an Explorer, or a Telecaster.  It’s made to sound in between a Fender & Gibson.  The one I’ve ordered & the one I’m saving for are both different.  I don’t want any guitar that sounds, feels, or looks the same as another.  I played flute and to me a flute sounds like a flute.  With a change of guitar, everything should sound & feel different.  However the player wants to make that change is up to them, pickups, body style, effect pedals, etc.  I can’t get the same sound out of one guitar to the next.  Variety is what I’m looking for.  Will I have a full range of musical variety with 6 different electric guitars?  Nope!  6 guitars are good for me though, the next person might want 3, and the next person might want 30?  I’ve thought long & hard about it & 6 electric guitars sounds great to me!

Why have I decided to go with PRS guitars?  LOTs of attention to detail & the owner, Paul Reed Smith, has been making guitars since he was a teen & lives by a list he made called “The 21 Rules of Tone”.  If he makes each individual part on a guitar resonate as loud & as long as possible, the less it will absorb the sound of the string vibrating.  That goes for each part of the guitar, the body wood, nut, tuning pegs, bridge, fret board, the neck wood, screws, etc.  If the manufacturers at PRS are paying attention to the screws on a guitar can you imagine how much attention they’re paying to everything else?

Paul Reed Smith will go into a music store to do a clinic or Q & A.  He’ll ask someone to get a PRS guitar and any other guitar they’d like not made by PRS.  He then let’s the person pick an amplifier.  With no effects they will plug the guitar into the amp and play one open string & time how long they can hear the note for, this is done on each guitar separately.  A PRS averages 44 seconds, most other guitars last on average 35 seconds.  There was a 1960s Fender Stratocaster that kept up to the PRS but that was it.

Vintera 60s Stratocaster, Pau Ferro Fingerboard w/Gigbag - 3-Tone Sunburst

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

If the guitar I’m saving for goes out of production by 2022 or 2023 when I go to buy it, which I don’t think it will.  I’ll continue to save for the next best thing, which unfortunately costs more.

https://www.long-mcquade.com/162916/Guitars/Hollow-body-Electric-Guitars/Paul-Reed-Smith/S2-McCarty-594-Thinline-Electric-Guitar-with-Gigbag—Frost-Blue-Metallic.htm

Or as a last resort this.  These 58/15 pickups have a very similar sound & include the TCI technology.  In both of these guitars.

https://www.long-mcquade.com/162880/Guitars/Electric-Guitars/Paul-Reed-Smith/S2-McCarty-594-Electric-Guitar-with-Gigbag—Whale-Blue.htm

I don’t want to spend that much on a guitar, so we’ll see what’s out there or if it’s not a PRS that interests me, I’ll stop all together.  I was a Gibson/Epiphone fan for years, I still am.  I have 2 Epiphones & Gibson’s are WAY overpriced if you ask me.  Paul Reed Smith is a genius mad scientist!

After 7 months of practice on guitar for 1:30 hours a day for an average.  I’m back to where I was after 3 or 4 months without the effects of cancer….on most things, not all of them.

As I headed to the kitchen for a snack Kim says to me “You should get paid for all of the work you put in!” I didn’t say anything but I thought to myself “Well, I get paid just under $28,000 a year.”

I don’t need to talk about what’s going on in the world, I’m not qualified for that.  You’re better off watching your local news or National news.  Being quarantined has not changed anything for me, & I’m fine with that.  I get to work on myself!

 

Dave Grohl describes the new Foo Fighters album as David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” album

https://loudwire.com/dave-grohl-foo-fighters-new-album-david-bowie-lets-dance-record/?fbclid=IwAR3TF7KSCrhMric0_Idjlf-6peJhY0jY_NNTsIPaWodz-3OTHh19nahb2Fw

Finally “Alter Bridge” released a lyric video for the song “Metalingus” off of their debut album from 2004!

 

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 ERIC Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

“SLOW IT DOWN”

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 “Tool” the album “Aenima”

I exercised to “Alter Bridge” the album “One Day Remains”

 

Welcome back to the program!  You’re here so if you like what you see, might as well subscribe?  Either on Facebook or with your email in the bottom right corner, it’s really that easy & it’s free!  I know you want to tell your friends, go ahead!

 

PLEASE REMEMBER AS I SAY THIS THAT I AM IN NO WAY A FIGURE OF AUTHORITY, HEALTH OFFICIAL, POLITICIAN OR ANYTHING ELSE!

 

This may not be popular opinion but I think a TON of Federal governments have failed during this pandemic, not all of them, but most.  The biggest failure in my opinion was this “gradual opening”, I think it would have been better to keep doing what we were doing.

If you’re one of the many that is at work or returning to work soon, please remember that the distancing rules still apply.  Remember that these rules are to protect you & everyone else.

It’s almost summer so this certifies that even during a GLOBAL PANDEMIC indeed everybody’s going crazy!  “Let’s go out & enjoy the sun even if we DIE!”  I guess opening a window or hanging out on your balcony/deck/patio/back yard isn’t an option for some people?

If health officials say it’s too early, why do we have them if nobody listens to them?  “Good grief, listen to the people we hired to advise us on these types of situations, are you CRAZY?”  Total logic…..right out the window!

Places are opening & what I was hoping wouldn’t happen is happening.  Its 5:10 pm on Monday, May 4th.  I just watched a few minutes of news.  Health officials predict a spike in Covid-19 cases in 2 weeks.  Why?  The general public was given an inch & took a mile.  No masks, public places full, & no distancing among any number of people in any group.  This gradual opening has already failed.

Think about it this way.  Some math here for a second.  We started at 0, no knowledge of an outbreak & it escalated to currently 3.64 million cases internationally.  So we’re NOT reopening at 0, we’re already at a 3.64 million.  When places start to reopen, the probability is that the number will increase from where it is since we now know the virus exists without a fool proof cure.  Instead of not knowing & starting at 0, we’re reopening at 3.64 million knowing there’s a virus but not knowing exactly how we got to 3.64 million cases.  Even if we got the cases down to 0 we’d be right back where we started & the number would still increase without a cure.

Sorry if I come across as insulting your intelligence.  I’m trying to break it down as simply as I can for whoever is reading this.  I hope this helps, this is as close as I can get to the way I see it in my head.

I’d like to say I’ll see you in July but as far as I know, there’s a good chance we will all be in quarantine again?  Please be respectful by being responsible?

I’m pretty sure I have a serious addiction problem.  My free time is always spent either playing guitar to build up my hand/finger/arm strength, watching guitar players on www.youtube.com, or digging up whatever I can find on the 2 PRS guitars, the one I’ve ordered and the one I’m saving for.  I just spent 2 hours with Kim looking for something to watch on a few streaming services, nothing interested me since it wasn’t guitar related or I knew Kim wouldn’t like it.  I’d rather be practicing guitar until the muscles in my hand hurt, fingertips are fine since I have very thick callouses on them.

I grabbed my acoustic on Monday of last week and realized how HORRIBLY weak my left hand was/is.  It’s like my hand reverted to ground zero again, I guess that just means more sweating it out playing guitar.  I’ve been playing my acoustic almost exclusively since then to clean things up & get them as close to perfect as possible & it’s coming along, little bit frustrating until I do the same thing on electric & wonder why one sounds awful & the other sounds good.

I spoke with our building manager shortly after I started playing again.  I asked him if anyone had sent him a noise complaint about us.  He asked why & I told him it was because I was playing guitar again.  He told me not to worry & do what I please between 8 am – 10 pm.  I only play from about 1:30 pm – 8:30 pm, then I unplug for the neighbors.  That being said, there’s been more acoustic playing here lately.

Guitar interest has completely taken me over.  I lay awake in bed just thinking about what I want to work on the next day & end up staring at photos of the guitar I’ve ordered & the final one I’m saving for.  This room is no longer referred to as our “computer room”, it’s now called “the guitar room”.

As far as I’m concerned, my future order of the less expensive PRS guitar is on hiatus.  Brewster went to the vet on Friday for a checkup.  Another month of his water pills and a 2nd pill for the rest of his life, for blood pressure now.  Now he’s on 3 pills, but the water pill is temporary.

Kim doesn’t see it really affecting us financially.  When we found out I immediately told Kim “If I have to stop saving for the other guitar, that’s fine.  Use whatever is needed for him”.  She says were OK, but she knows I can wait to order a guitar.

 

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 ERIC Grohl

We’re all Global Citizens,

Chris

“Be kind to one another”-Ellen Degeneres

#PLANKTHATSONG

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

Facebook subscription https://www.facebook.com/A-Million-Miles-Away-Blog-1597618270456002/

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

350 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

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

400 Crunches

400 Leg lifts

200 Squats while balancing on my toes.

200 Back flexes

2 days of yoga

4 short planks

Walking distance – 420 meters = 1377.95 feet

There won’t be any stairs during this virus stuff.  I don’t really want to touch a public railing or clean them before & after I’m done.

I fell asleep to “Queens of the Stone Age” the album “Villains”

I exercised to “TOOL” the album “Lateralus”

I made the font size larger & now the spellcheck doesn’t work?  Sorry in advance.

It’s Tuesday evening as I write this.  Before I posted Tuesday’s blog, I slept in, & didn’t excersise until after I posted the blog.  I exercised to “Chromeo” on Monday & “Foo Fighters” afterwards on Tuesday.

I played my “Fender” Telecaster Tuesday evening & quickly learned the rhythm to this…

…none of the fast licks but the main riff & verse/chorus.  I opted on Tuesday to learn different bands/sounds on each guitar instead of just going from 1 album by 1 band.  Different stuff to learn with each different artist/band.  I found a set list of cover songs from my first band in University.  I’ll go through that to start.  Not all of our songs are on there, I’ll add to it as I go, I think we ended up doing about 40 cover songs & wrote 7 of our own?

I guess I’ll call this a ‘retraction’?  I said that P90 pickups were double coil pickups, they aren’t.  They’re slightly larger, louder single coil pickups.  You typically see single coil pickups on Fender Stratocasters.  Gibson created the P90 pickup to be louder, have a different sound & look since they were on Gibson’s first solid body guitar a 1950 Gibson Gold Top Les Paul.  Double coil pickups were made later on.  They were created to remain at the same volume level as the P90 but included the second coil to add the volume & reduce the hum, that’s why they’re now commonly called “Humbuckers”.  Here’s a Gibson Les Paul 1950 Gold Top with P90 pickups…

Les Paul Standard 50s w/P90 Pickups - Gold Top

Best PRS SE on the market, aqua it is, I’m saving up!  If Kim decides on a trip, the money goes there.  The SE model was introduced to the SE line in 2019 & modeled after Paul Reed Smith’s Core guitar, it’s not going anywhere.  If I could afford a $5000 + tax guitar I’d get the Core model in Violet Blue Burst.  That would take me a decade or more to save for & Kim might kill me if I tried to!!!????

https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/electrics/model/pauls_guitar_2020

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

1 acoustic & 6 electrics are enough for me.  A PRS S2 on the way & an SE in the future & I’ll keep rockin’ n’ ROLLIN’ until I can’t anymore!  Your seeing these guitars a fraction of the amount of times I’ve looked at them!

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

I don’t necessarily switch guitars constantly.  The feel, shape, & sound of a guitar tends to dictate what comes next.  Example; my no-name brand green Les Paul aka “Kermit” feels & sounds great for most modern rock & a lot of grunge.  My Fender Telecaster aka “Ian” sounds best with blues, country, or most pre-1980 rock music.

Nope, I don’t need or want these guitars!  I’ve got my 7 string “Kiichichaos”, no-name Les Paul “Kermit”, Epiphone Explorer “Grohl”, semi-hollow Fender Telecaster “Ian”, an ordered semi-hollow PRS S2, & one day a PRS SE “Paul’s Guitar”.

All of these above are guitars I either don’t like the look or sound of, that’s why I’d say they’re not for me.  I find a floyd rose bridge to be more of a hassle/extra work on a guitar.  I’ve played 2 in my life & broke a string both times within 2 minutes.

Any & all youtubers I’ve been watching have helped me TREMENDOUSLY in relearning guitar after almost a 12 year hiatus!

If you like checking out guitars as much as I do, I recommend checking this blog out.  https://guitarbrat.music.blog/

 

Good things don’t change over night usually.  As with my exercise & guitar playing.  Practice, repetition & persistence are essential for the desired outcome.  Best thing for most people to remember ‘There’s always someone doing better’.  That’s what keeps me going!

I went walking this morning in our parkade.  WOW were my calves sore just standing up.  I guess the change in how I do my squats was a good thing?

When I find that somethings not working the way I had hoped, I take a different approach to it after multiple attempts.  I try to learn from my failures.  That doesn’t necessarily mean everything was terrible.  Take the positives with you & throw out the negatives, then adjust accordingly.

Example; My leg exercises aren’t helping my calves.  My thighs are doing well though.  I changed the way I do my squats this week to benefit both areas.  Only time will tell if I get the desired results?  I won’t know tomorrow, probably by the end of the month or a couple of weeks after that?

There’s no short cut that I know of for what I’m trying to do.  There are no instructions on how to overcome the effects of brain cancer.  I’ve got to continue to get better at what I’m doing.  I can’t just throw my hands in the air, walk away, & say “Ah, good enough!”  I literally can’t “walk” away…I should have said “roll”.

Since everyone is stuck at home, you might as well use this time to do all of those little things around your house that you never have time to do.  Don’t do them all at once though!  Spread them out, who knows how much free time you’ll have?  If you’ve already done most of the stuff around your house, was there anything else on your list to accomplish?  Don’t most people want to lose weight and get healthier?  Now’s the time!  What else do you have to do?

Call, text, Facebook, Tweet, Instagram, Skype, video chat, or email someone to participate with you.  That will make you accountable for meeting your goal that day!  Contact them before & after, have fun with it!

I know I yap about guitars a LOT, but there’s a reason for that.  I’m home with Brewster 9-10 hours a day.  I eat, exercise, shower, watch very little TV, & play guitar.  Until this past September I didn’t have much to look forward to the next day after I finished my exercises.  Now I have this hobby I LOVED doing back in my life for the first time since the beginning of February 2008.

I was watching this on “The Ellen Degeneres Show” the other day & did it Thursday (4 takes since I kept messing up the words) before I did my weight exercises.  I challenge Mitch Fraser, Cameron Rorquist, Sukhdeep Sandhu.  I’m only supposed to tag 3 people, but if you’re reading this, I challenge you.  If a 40 year old physically handicapped guy can do it, so can you!  I tried to sing a few different songs but messed up the lyrics the video is my 4th attempt.

My video is on the Facebook page.

 

The new album from thrash metal group “Testament” is GREAT!  “Titans of Creation”

EXPLICIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

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

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’S HEART MEDICATION HAS STARTED

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 had to listen to some “Foo Fighters”, “Alter Bridge”, & “Big Wreck” after writing all of this.

I fell asleep to “Foo Fighters” the album “Concrete & Gold”, followed by “Big Wreck” the album “The Pleasure & the Greed”

I exercised to “Alter Bridge” the album “One Day Remains”

 

I’m back to it this week.  I guess my body either needed a break or took longer to recover than I had anticipated?

Little bit past the age of 14 human years & as of this past Friday night Brewster’s on heart medication every 12 hours & a humidifier from Amazon.ca has been ordered.  We needed a humidifier for the guitars but this sped up the process.

A little after 9:00 pm on Friday we were watching TV.  Kim stopped everything to listen to Brewster, who was on the floor in his bed by her.  His breathing was weird, he sounded very congested.  Kim took him to the vet ASAP.  He had X-Rays done, temperature, & blood work.  His heart is enlarged, it’s pushing on his trachea causing him to cough, & his congestion was due to fluid in his lungs.  He has 30 days of medication for the fluid in his lungs, then the rest of his life on heart medication.  He goes back in 3 weeks for a checkup.

They didn’t get home until close to midnight.  I stayed up by the phone hoping all was OK.  All is well, he’s getting older though.

I’ve decided against upgrading my guitar amplifier.  20 watts through an 8” speaker is already louder than I’ll need now that I play at home.  Being in a condo at the moment prevents me from turning the volume up past 2 ½ out of 10.  I turned it up to 3/10 one day to see what one of the guitars could do.  Even that was too loud for me!  Amplifiers are much more efficient than they were when I was playing live.

I don’t like having a guitar I don’t play.  I have one I don’t play for a few reasons, I’d sell it to get a 35th anniversary PRS SE McCarty https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/electrics/model/35th_anniversary_se_custom_24_2020 which is the cheapest PRS guitar built overseas but still $1300 Canadian + tax, if I lived in the USA it would be around $500-$800.  I prefer the colour on this but it’s not happening for many years if it ever does.  I assume these won’t have another appearance either.

I RARELY, if EVER, play the semi-hollow Fender Telecaster.  Very much made for blues or country music which I really don’t listen to or play.  It used to be all about the Gibson or Fender brands.  PRS or Paul Reed Smith has become well known for the company’s attention to detail & excellent craftsmanship after 35 years.  Gibson & Fender have both gone bankrupt in the last decade but have comeback without really changing anything.

I’ll be getting my 2nd guitar of the year in August (hopefully), & I’m still learning/playing the 7 string quite a bit.  The 35th Anniversary SE has totally different electronics from anything I own though.  Different pickups and 16 different electronic combinations/sounds.  I’m not going to have $1200 just sitting around to spend on a guitar so it’s likely a ‘NEVER GOING TO AFFORD IT’ situation.  I’ve looked at other guitars that just don’t suit my desires.  Guitars I’m not into or guitars I’d not play since they’re similar to what I have or will have by the end of August, which now seems “So far away”.  I wouldn’t just buy a guitar for the sake of buying a guitar!

A trip & hopefully a house have to happen first anyways.  If we can’t find a house this year, I give up on the house idea for a few years (not buy a guitar), Kim’s cool with taking a break from it too for a bit.

The Fender Telecaster is a treasured piece of art here & I keep it for sentimental value.  It was given to me by one of my very close friends while I was in my rehabilitation program.  I love the body shape of a Telecaster.  I love the dark wood stain body with the pearl pick guard.  It’s also autographed to me by one of my 3 favourite artists, Ian Thornley of “Big Wreck”.

I find the neck of a Fender very uncomfortable.  The fret board is maple like the rest of the neck, the tuning pegs are odd & I’m just not a fan of the single coil pickups in it.  I can get the “rock” sound out of it, but I really have to adjust the way I play it.  It looks so good though, for that and sentimental reasons it’s hung on the wall as a piece of art that never gets played.  It’s a guitar I can’t part with.

Fender makes about 9 different neck radiuses.  I’ve tried 4 & haven’t liked one yet.  It is a VERY nice looking guitar though!  Ideally I’d get a different neck bolted on with different tuners & different fret board, I’d also have a Humbucker pickup in the bridge position.  At that point I might as well buy an SE for what it would cost?  I’ve convinced myself that as a stay at home guitarist, making no income, a PRS SE is unaffordable.  I’ll have to hear my PRS S2 first to see IF I’d ever consider getting another guitar in the VERY distant future. I’d look at a PRS SE first, the most affordable PRS on the market & likely shy away due to the price tag.

Dave Grohl, Ian Thornley, Foo Fighters & Big Wreck have been my favourite musicians & bands since they started.  Myles Kennedy & Alter Bridge have been added to the top of my list when Alter Bridge released their first album in 2004.

I watched a youtube video with lead guitarist, Mark Tremonti, of Alter Bridge who has a signature PRS model.  He gives a guitar away to an audience member at the end of every live show now.  I just want the opportunity to see them live!

So why didn’t I order the PRS SE 35th Anniversary McCarty?  I figured if I’m going to buy what is likely my last guitar, I want something completely different.  What features do I not have that the PRS I ordered does?  It is semi-hollow, the different pickups split between humbucker & single coil pickups, it has a tremolo bridge & bar, it’s a different yet distinct body style, yellow to red sunburst finish, & it has locking tuners.

The guitar I ordered is not a super expensive “Core” model or a least expensive SE model.  It’s in their S2 line which is built at the American factory with a few cheaper parts from the factory oversea, where the SE is built.  PRS implemented this S2 line to have a guitar at a different price point.

Hopefully I’ll find a part time online job in the meantime, something simple like data entry?  I’d still like to exercise in the mornings for a couple of hours.

As far as a house goes we have to sell first & find a place for us in a set amount of time.  I really don’t see this working out in our favor?  May destiny prove me wrong please?  We’re only looking for a one level bungalow in Regina with 3 or 4 bedrooms, it has to be out there somewhere? 1 or 2 of the spare rooms would be used as an office(s). Kim wants an attached garage so my wheelchair doesn’t have to go through the snow, & I can’t work on finishing a basement, so that would be ideal.  As far as I can tell that doesn’t exist in Regina?

We did put up some artwork in the living room.  8 vinyl Foo Fighters albums in frames.  Just awaiting the delivery of the “Wasting Light” record.  Hopefully it comes this week?  This album was released in April of 2011 as I was beginning to walk with my walker, well relearning how to walk, very shortly after I learned how to stand in my rehabilitation program while holding on to something for balance.

As for concerts, they’d better be in Regina, Moose Jaw, or Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  Foo Fighters & Alter Bridge in Alberta, Saskatchewan, or Manitoba.  I’d like to see TOOL in either Alberta or Manitoba this year but I saw them 3 times on their last tour, 2006, 2007, & in Regina in 2010.  Alter Bridge are looking at doing some shows in western Canada for the first time, fingers crossed!

I’ll shut up about guitar.  It’s the only hobby I can do physically other than TV, movies, & listening to music.  I could ramble about Blue Jays baseball if you prefer but I can see that going over like a lead balloon!

 

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

ONLY I CAN FIX ME

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!

260 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

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

600 Crunches

450 Leg lifts

300 Squats while balancing on my toes.

300 Back flexes

32 stairs up & down.  8 with the railing and my cane which was not pretty!

179 meters = 587.27 feet walking distance with no rest periods.  Quality not quantity!

2 days of yoga

I fell asleep to “Metallica” the album “Master of Puppets”

I exercised to “Foo Fighters” the album “There is Nothing Left to Lose”

I learned a good chunk of the Foo Fighters song on the 7 string & I’ll tackle the main riff & verse of the Metallica song shortly.  I’m doing most of this by ear & memory.  I’m sure some of it will need to be looked up.

 

Here’s the Canadian Red Cross website if you’d prefer to donate please.  My birthday is over, I did extend the Facebook donations until Feb. 13th though!

https://www.redcross.ca/

 

I could easily sit around & complain about anything.  I’ve been there & done that.  Nobody is about to swoop in & make everything OK.  So it is what it is.  I’m in a wheelchair, I have an iPatch.  My eye has to fix itself, it’s a nerve problem that I went to see a specialist about & she couldn’t guarantee anything.  I’m in a wheelchair, nobody else can fix that for me.  My therapists gave me the tools & knowledge of what to do & got me to a point where it was up to me.  Everybody can help & does help, I have to put their knowledge & assistance into action & apply it.

Here’s an example.  When I go walking I have to think about am I standing up straight, are my heels hitting the floor first, is my stride too big, are my feet the proper distance apart, am I kicking my walker, etc.  I’m at a point where Kim doesn’t have to hold me but she’s there to help me make sure I’m remembering to do everything properly.

When I do stairs it’s completely different.  She’s there to make sure I don’t fall.  Nothing is perfect about my form, it’s about building my leg muscles to walk up & down the stairs properly.  I tried doing stairs with the railing & a cane once, that didn’t work out very well.  I’ll try it again a different way until I can get into a decent form and practice that.  Nobody is going to do that for me, they can suggest other ways to approach it, I have to try it & see if it’s a possibility.

We live on the 3rd/top floor of a condo.  There was an evening the elevator wasn’t working & I had tickets to see “Big Wreck” in concert.  I was standing at the top of the stairwell holding the railing & Brewster’s leash.  An older woman came in to use the stairs.  She had a broken foot & was complaining about the elevator & how it affected her evening.  She made it down the stairs & I’m sure it hurt and wasn’t easy.  I could hear her talking to Kim at the bottom of the stairs who had carried my wheelchair down for me.  Kim told the lady she was carrying my chair.  “Oh!  He’s in a wheelchair?  That’s his?”  I wasn’t going to miss “Big Wreck” because of a broken elevator.  Whatever plans the lady had, she wasn’t about to sit around and complain about her broken foot and the broken elevator.  We both had things that required more effort to do than we originally thought.  The world’s not perfect, we all have to deal with something.

I didn’t even think of this on the day, I’m editing this on Thursday right now.  February 5th 2008 was a Tuesday.  That was the day I passed out at work.  I was a printing press operator.  I had nearly finished setting up what I think was my 2nd printing job of the day, so it would have been in the morning.  Two of my co-workers came to see me as I was making some adjustments to the colour.  They both commented on how pale I looked.  I felt fine & thought nothing of it.  Within 5 minutes I had everything ready to go & I laid down on the catwalk of the press.  I knew something wasn’t right.  I called for one of my co-workers, who had taken over my press for me, to call 911 for me.  The Paramedics were there ASAP, I was still conscious.  I couldn’t stand up to get into the wheelchair they had for me.  They wheeled me out the front door on a gurney into the back of the ambulance.  Somebody had called Kim at work.  She came into the back of the ambulance just before we left from my work.  As she entered the ambulance I said to her “Don’t worry sweetie, everything will be OK” then I lost consciousness as soon as I finished the sentence.  From what I’m told I was talkative until I went into emergency surgery for the bleeding mass in the back of my head.  4 or 5 weeks after 2 days of 3 brain surgeries, I came out of a coma that the doctors said I had a %5-%15 of ever coming out of.  The story’s not done yet, but that’s how it started.

Well Kim & my in-laws swooped in & took care of my oops.  She ordered the Epiphone Matt Heafy custom 7 string Les Paul for my birthday.  It came in on Tuesday and she gave it to me that evening after supper & helping me with stairs.  What she said to me was the best gift I could receive.  She told me she was proud of me & how much work I’ve been putting in to my recovery!

After almost 4 hours of playing the 7 string on Wednesday I can confirm my suspicion…..IT IS ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE!

I’ve ordered a PRS guitar already that should be here in mid-April.  No we’re not rich.  I saved up by asking only for money, a watch, & a few minor guitar related things for Christmas & my birthday.  Kim of course helped me save as well.  Her overtime cash was spent on the 7 string.  I was constantly kicking myself about it when it went out of production 2 or 3 days after I placed my order for the PRS.  That is the end of my guitar purchasing.  I have an acoustic guitar & once the PRS comes in that will make 5 electrics.  All different body styles, colours, sounds, & tunings other than the 2 Les Paul body styles & 2 black Epiphones, 1 is the 7 string.  Yes I play all of them for as long as I can after my exercise every day.  If it’s ever a possibility to rent a Dave Grohl signature 335 Gibson hollow-body, a Chris Shiflett signature Telecaster deluxe (that I’d likely fall in love with), or if I ever see a Telecaster with a single coil pickup in the neck & a humbucker pickup at the bridge, those would be my rentals.  I love Foo Fighters so the Chris Shiflett (lead guitarist of Foo Fighters) Telecaster would be AMAZING to try!

If they made them & I couldn’t even imagine spending over $5000 on a guitar, I would have ordered a full on PRS McCarty 594 in a semi-hollow body.  This guitar, but semi-hollow!  This is likely just over $6000 in Canada already!  This one does 16 pickup combinations, the one I ordered will do 6 and it is semi-hollow.

I am more than happy with what I have now!  Even playing one of these is a VERY distant pipe dream!  I used to play guitar & after more than an 11 year hiatus due to cancer, I’ve started again & forgot how much I missed it.  I’m SO lucky to be able to get my life back after surviving brain cancer.

There’s a photo of me with the guitar & a video of me doing stairs, just to exercise my legs.  Tried doing stairs with a cane & railing, I’m not there yet, I need more strength & practice.

 

HOLY CRAP!  A  TOOL Lego set!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

https://loudwire.com/tool-lego-set/?fbclid=IwAR0ep8Arx4sw9f0ObMjmDZRp0v8Fy2SFg91-tWaVsOghFrS7yzXdPL62-YE

New Lamb of God album out on May 8th

Also great news to hear is that Megadeth front man, Dave Mustaine, is cancer free after a battle with throat cancer.

Another couple of tunes from the upcoming album by Haley Williams of Paramore.  I would think by now she’d have a release date announced?

 

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

FEELING STRONGER & MORE DETERMINED EACH DAY!!!!

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

Facebook subscription https://www.facebook.com/A-Million-Miles-Away-Blog-1597618270456002/

Email subscription www.amillionmilesawayblog.com

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

I went for 3 days of weights & yoga instead of 2 this week just to try it.  Regularly scheduled programming for the next while.

375 Curls w/ 20 pound dumb bells

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

400 Crunches

300 Leg lifts

200 Squats while balancing on my toes.

200 Back flexes

150.5 meters walking distance = 493.7 feet

3 days of yoga

 

I fell asleep to “Alter Bridge” the album “Walk the Sky” followed by “Tool” the album “Fear Inoculum”

I exercised to nothing.  I didn’t sleep more than 2 hours for a reason you’ll read about later.  It’s WAY too early to listen to music.

 

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 or donate to your country’s Red Cross.  It doesn’t have to be just for my birthday, whenever you can spare the cash!

https://www.redcross.ca/

 

I’m sure I’ll get tired & a little grouchy at some point.  Not yet though!  I like this & being able to play/practice my guitar gives me something other than exercise to look forward to the next day.  Life’s much better than it was last year or even a weeks into December.  Whenever I made my decision to push myself more.  I didn’t realize it, but I was firmly planted in a rut.

I tweaked a small muscle in my back while doing curls on Wednesday.  Nothing too serious, I made sure to stretch it better before my exercise on Thursday & kept stretching.  The more I keep it active, the less it seems to nag at me.

My biggest worry about this exercise is my left arm & hand are still quite shaky.  Until I get them used to being in a certain position, usually resting partially on something they still shake.  Even when I play guitar.  Before I’d just pick up a guitar & play, now I need to warm up just to play rhythm stuff, I always considered warming up a thing for lead & solo players.  It is getting better though.

All of these little mile stones adding up to me getting my life back, exercising harder, playing guitar, cooking (poorly), being helpful with house hold chores, walking with my walker, practicing stairs, etc.  I actually started to sing a bit again with a guitar in my hands.

Exercise is going great & my body feels better than ever.  I had chicken wing size calves before & now it’s like “Oh, Hello there lil’ muscle.  I haven’t seen you in over a decade!!!”  Even my humble man boobs are transforming, which is pleasing.

If I haven’t gained weight in muscle already, I’d be shocked.  There will be a video of me walking with my walker on Facebook.  Sorry about the Facebook only photos & videos.  The brace on my left leg is called an Ankle Foot Orthotic I have drop foot & I hyper extend my leg since cancer.  Never mind my shirt or what it says, it’s just what I happened to be wearing that day.  It from a “Lamb of God” concert I saw in 2006.  This song was the title of the tour…..

I’m really not looking forward to seeing one of my doctors in May for a few reasons.  I have to go for an MRI this time.  Not a big deal depending on which one they send me to.  I’m EXTREMELY claustrophobic.  The MRI machine at the hospital is VERY small.  My shoulders are too broad to shove my head & spine into that tiny, glorified X-ray machine.  The other one downtown at a radiology lab is much bigger & a fear free experience.

Another reason is that I’ve had it with her calling me FAT.  No wonder she was suspended, & I didn’t say a word to make that happen.  How do I respond to that when I have to go there?  “Sorry I’m not 5’0” tall & need 3 dozen cheeseburgers?”  I loved when she yelled that I’m fat down the hallway as I was leaving.  I might just walk in & say “Do I have cancer again? OK, see you later”.

I’m sick & tired of these RIDICULOUS ‘routine’ cancer checkups.  YAY, please poke me some more, I miss it so much.  This is how a rare cancer survivor gets treated?  I’m a statistic that comes up in a chart now?  Yay, I’ve always wanted to be a number!

Here’s what has been driving me crazy all week & was the reason for me not sleeping & second guessing myself to a point that I feel sick.  There was no right or wrong decision in this scenario, but I made the wrong one, if that makes any sense at all & it will cost us $1100.  I ordered the wrong guitar.  3 days after I ordered the super nice, fancy guitar the other one Epiphone ceased production on the 7 string I liked.  Had I known this was going to be the case, I would have ordered my only 7 string guitar & saved the extra cash for a trip with Kim.  Instead I ordered the PRS 6 string guitar.  If the 7 string wasn’t going out of stock soon, this wouldn’t be an issue.  Instead I’ve been doing what I do & overthinking my decision in whatever way possible.  I know this sounds ridiculous to others.  Other than a house or vehicle minus books & tuition for university & technical school, this is the biggest purchase I have or will ever make.

I ordered this guitar for 1/10 of the price of our brand new 2019 Toyota RAV 4.

https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/electrics/model/s2_custom_22_semi_hollow_2020

Instead of this for less than half the price of the other one that will soon be extinct (below).

https://www.long-mcquade.com/22227/Guitars/Electric_Guitars/Gibson/Matt_Heafy_Les_Paul_Custom_7_String_Electric_Guitar.htm

I’ve worried myself sick every night this week about this decision & it’s not helping at all.  These are both fantastic purchases.  I’ve researched both of them & decided these would complete my guitar purchasing.  There are so many other guitars out there but those are the last 2 I’d like.  I ordered the fancy expensive one too soon & feel a large knot in my stomach growing bigger every minute.  I could maybe cancel & change my order but we’d lose our deposit of over $200.  Kim likely won’t let me make a future guitar purchase anyways.

I got my first guitar in 2001 & was good enough to play rhythm guitar and sing 4 months later.  Things are harder/different now dealing with the lack of hand muscle.  My rhythm is fine, my tempo needs to pick up just a bit.  Practice, practice, practice!

I’ve never even thought of myself as a good guitar player.  Most times I think to myself that I haven’t even earned the right to own any other guitars?!

The entire guitar conversation has become a daily conversation in my head.  If I mention it out loud, Kim might hit me in the head with a frying pan?

 

I really like the new “Pearl Jam” single.  Full album to be released on March 27th!!!!

 

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

MY FAVOURITE ALBUMS OF 2019 & A BREAKTHROUGH 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 “Queen” the album “A Day at the Races”

I exercised to “Black Sabbath” the album “Heaven & Hell”

 

I had a list of albums that I grabbed this year, & it disappeared.  These are the albums of the year that stuck with me & are VERY memorable for me.  When I say “metal” do me a favour & don’t freak out about the vocals.  I don’t think I bought an album this year with ‘growling’ or ‘screaming’ on it.  A lot of metal vocalists are very well trained at their craft, even the ‘screamers’ out there.  It’s hard to do that.

I’m sure there were more albums that I bought, but these are the ones that caught my attention the most.

 

PLEASE REMEMBER THESE ARE JUST THE ALBUMS THAT I HEARD & LIKED.  FEEL FREE TO VOICE YOUR OPINION ON ANY MATTER HERE!

 

“Opeth” the album “In Cauda Venenum”

Yeah it’s a progressive rock/metal/soft-rock album from the Swedish group.

 

“P!nk” the album “Hurts 2B Human”

You know who she is more than likely.  I do like her previous release “Beautiful Trauma” a bit more, but there was nothing wrong with this one!

 

“Dream Theater” the album “Distance Over Time”

Progressive metal out of the USA, no this guy doesn’t growl or scream.  He’s a classically trained singer.  Usually someone says “metal” and everyone else freaks out about the vocals being scary.

 

“Alter Bridge” the album “Walk the Sky”

Based in Florida.  6th album & living in Western Canada, I’ll never see them live.  I think they’ve done the Montreal & Toronto tour twice since 2004.

 

“I Built the Sky” the album “The Zenith Rise”

Instrumental metal that REALLY shocked me, in a good way.  I’ve never heard anything like it and this is their 5th release.  I’ve got this album & I’d like to get 2 other albums by them.

 

“TOOL” the album “Fear Inoculum”

The only reason this wasn’t my favourite album of the year was that it’s just SO long.  “TOOL” is a band that you listen to & focus on nothing else, like most music is meant to be heard.  There are so many layers to this album & 6/10 songs are well over the 10 minute mark.  I’ve only had time to focus on it once.  It’s not an album full of singles either, it’s an album.  “Fear Inoculum” is roughly 7 minutes longer than their 1999 album “Lateralus”.  The difference is that “Lateralus” has 13 songs opposed to 10 on “Fear Inoculum”.  I can listen to 7 songs on “Lateralus”, come back later & listen to the rest.  I don’t like doing that with “Fear Inoculum”, I want to listen to it from start to finish with no separation.  I don’t have 1 ½ hours to focus on an album every week?

 

“In Flames” the album “I, The Mask”

Another Swedish metal band.  If you want to call these vocals “screamy” go ahead.  They’re called a “Swedish melodic death metal band” emphasis on the ‘melodic’ portion though.  He sings with an odd tone.

 

“Big Wreck” the album “…but for the sun”

I thought this was just my favourite “Big Wreck” album, turns out it’s one of my favourite albums of all time by a Canadian band not well known outside of Canada.  They’re a rock band & if you’ve never turned on a rock radio station in Canada or if you’ve lived under a rock since the late 1990s, you’ve never heard of them.

Honourable mentions. Billie Eilish’s “When we all fall asleep, where do we go?”, “Of Monsters & Men” the album “Fever Dream”, Mark Morton “Anesthetic”, & “Jimmy Eat World” the album “Surviving”.

As for future out of province concerts, I’m going to scale that WAY back.  Too much money I don’t have.  There had better be a show in Calgary, Alberta or Winnipeg, Manitoba & no more than 2 out of province shows a year, if that.  Hopefully there are more shows here in Regina or 2 ½ hours away in Saskatoon.  I’ll go to Moose Jaw (45 minutes away) if they ever get an act that intrigues me.

 

“Paramore” news…

YAY!

What else to expect in 2020?  Chevelle, Lamb of God, Megadeth, The Pretty Reckless, Stone Temple Pilots, Into Eternity, Third Ion, Foo Fighters, Evanescence, Testament, Trivium, and more?  Most of these are rumored releases.

 

HOLY SMOKES!!!!  “Stone Temple Pilots” already have a preorder for their acoustic album “Perdida” for full release on February 7th.

25th anniversary for “Foo Fighters” & from the looks of their Facebook page they’re recording or might have already?

Gave my guitars a good workout yesterday.  After 3 ½ months of 45 minutes to 3 hours a day, 5-6 days a week I’m pretty much back to where I was on guitar when I got sick.  6 Foo Fighters songs down, added in parts I’ve never attempted, very close on 2 Metallica songs, a few other simple songs down, new chords, a handful of other riffs too.  All rhythm & hooks, I’ve never played guitar solos.  Feels so gratifying!!!!!!!  I forgot how much I missed it!  You have no idea how happy I am with this!!!!!!  I was so happy I almost broke down with tears of joy!!!  Just a few seconds behind the real tempo but just a little more polishing to do.

I’ll figure out how to put some videos on here.  Something you should know first though.  I LOATHE photos, videos, and audio recordings of myself.  Take the amount you don’t like them of yourself and multiply that by 100,000,000,000 and you’ll be almost where I am.  It probably won’t happen often, especially since I don’t own a phone or any type of camera.

Well, exercise is done for the day so that means perfecting a few songs on the guitar until… “Star Wars” Episode 9 tonight with my pop!  He got me into this mess with VHS, now I’m getting us out of this mess at the theater!

 

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

BUSY WEEKEND UPDATE FOR A CHANGE  

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.

Facebook subscription https://www.facebook.com/A-Million-Miles-Away-Blog-1597618270456002/

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

 

Music throughout the weekend “TOOL”, “I Built the Sky”, “Sevendust”, & “Chromeo”

 

To clarify Friday’s post; Things in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada are taxed heavily!  7% Government Sales Tax aka GST & 7% Provincial Sales Tax.  The majority of stuff we purchase in Saskatchewan is 14% higher than America & our dollar fluctuates $0.75-$0.85 on America’s dollar.  Canadians pay a higher price on most things other than health care.  Example;  My father bought a 66oz. of Bacardi White Rum while renting a house in Arizona for a month, he left it there because almost full because it was cheap.  If it was here I could see that at least $80 or more.  Messed up since we didn’t get to vote in the USA federal election, nor did anyone else other than Russians.

 

Friday we watched the last however many episodes of “Atypical” season 3 on Netflix.  Kim’s parents came to town about mid-day on Saturday.  We all had supper here Saturday evening, James fixed a few issues I was having with my computer.  Too early for me for Christmas movies, but there was one playing Saturday night.  I missed it while getting things arranged on my computer.

Sunday morning Kim & Sherry hung out with their mom & went shopping.  Me & my Homeslice (Brewster) had breakfast, hung out & I finally had a bit of time to watch part of “The Cure” blu-ray, who I just got into believe it or not.  Kim got home around 2 pm.  I needed a refill on some medication & Brewster needed another appointment at the vet at 4 pm, he had an ear infection.  We picked up my refill at a pharmacy near a Dairy Queen.

There was a guy asking if we could get him something to eat, so of course we did.  He told Kim he didn’t want money, just something to eat.  We grabbed him some food & it was freezing outside.  I asked Kim if we could ask for a hot drink for him, but we were already through the drive-through.  Kim gave him her mitts & I offered my toque, he said he had a toque & declined.  I felt bad for him, he looked like he was still in his early 20s.

After that it was off to the vet.  Not good news.  Brewster’s ear infection was/is deep down by his ear drum.  He needed to stay there for a few hours since he needed to be sedated.  “Should we resuscitate him if he has heart failure due to his murmur?”  I can’t believe that was a question?  OF COURSE!

I was waiting in the car, since we didn’t think it would be anything major.  Kim came out to tell/ask me what to do.  Whatever it takes to make him feel better was the answer on both of our minds.  I thought nothing of it until after supper.  Kim was quiet & my mind was racing thinking the worst, “Was that the last time I’d hold him?  Is he going to go down because of an ear infection?”  I worried myself sick.  I was so relieved when we got the call to pick him up.  He typically NEVER barks, Kin said he was barking his head off when she went in to get him.

He’s home and he’s fine.  He had a lot of water & was growling at me before we got home for his food.  He’s pretty intimidating, all 12 ½ pounds of him.  I think he’s almost done his bronchitis medication (Kim gives it to him) & he’s doing much better.  Kim says to me “He’s already cost us as more than a guitar you wanted!”  Better to have some cash for a rainy day than a guitar, always better to keep Brewster healthy & happy.  Easy call on that one!  We both said if he needs $5000 of health stuff, we wouldn’t blink, that’s as true now as it was in 2006 when we got him as a pup.

Kim & Brewster went to bed while stayed up to do more stuff on my computer & watch some recorded TV from the afternoon.

3:30 am & up to feed Brewster at 9:30 am, I should go to bed earlier!  Brewster’s tired today too.  He was up & down all night drinking multiple bowls of water & of course peeing.  Kim went to have coffee with her parents, then off to get groceries afterwards.  I got up & didn’t really stop until noon.  Kim got home with groceries, I made my vegetable juice & finally hit the shower.

 

I don’t think Trump will have problems with immigration.  I think fleeing Americans could be his biggest problem if he’s not impeached?

https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/trump-takeover-courts-supreme-court-mconnell-federalist-society-menashi-909799/?fbclid=IwAR1iL0QGxSFlTHStpvtQThWQYjOXlpLvZ73kj2TLBHDOM5A3aHHOo6ZeSZU

Unreleased song from “Prince” album ‘1999’

New “Taylor Hawkins and The Coattail Riders” video and album released on Friday, November 8.  Taylor Hawkins is the drummer for “Foo Fighters” and has 3 side projects where he plays drums & does lead vocals.  He also does the backing vocals in “Foo Fighters”.  This is from the third album released by “Taylor Hawkins and The Coattail Riders”.

YAY new “Sepultura” song!!!!!!

All of this crap happened & it could have been worse if no one was checking what Trump was doing?????????????

https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/nikki-haley-top-advisors-trump-didnt-know-what-he-was-doing-910444/?fbclid=IwAR3CxPcbdkKp2MeVG7ONBYuHa4ZZTuwxVGZEmKIrN6IDYrlarLwKDluQ4As

 

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