Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Robbery That Wasn't

My wife had a scare this past week which is a roundabout way of saying that I also had a scare this past week. She took our son to school and then went to her English class and after leaving went to the store to buy some sillao which is soy sauce. She prefers the Peruvian kind if she can get it. Once she got to the store she discovered that her purse was missing and she went into a panic. Convinced that somebody had stolen it out of her car at the school she raced home and woke me from my fitful slumber to deliver the bad news.

I asked her where she had last seen it and she said she had it at the Hobby Lobby the night before but she knew that she had left it in her car afterwards. Leaving her purse in the car has been her standard procedure and many times I've spoken to her about how it's inviting someone to steal it. Now I told her that she needed to go back to the school and call the police to file a report. As she left I started compiling a list of who we had to notify and what we had to replace. Important things like the credit card company and the bank were at the top of the list but other things were important as well. Her drivers license, her social security card and more were all in there.

She didn't come back to quickly so I was sure that the police had came and were taking her report. After a bit longer she showed back up with a sheepish look on her face and I knew that it had been found. At the school she found out that her car was parked in a blind spot for the cameras so that was no help. Once the police came and took her report she decided to go to the Hobby lobby store that she had been to and, you guessed it, they had her purse.

The night before while there our son had needed help zipping up his coat and she lad laid her purse down  to help him. She the proceeded to walk out not realizing that she hadn't picked her purse back up. Against all odds nothing was missing which was a major blessing. After it was all over we were able to laugh about it but I made sure to make clarify the dangers in leaving her purse in her car like that, not that I think it will make any difference. Perhaps at least she'll make sure it can't be seen.

The truth is there really isn't much anyone could get from robbing us, we're that bad off. Of course in our current predicament financially anything we lost would be hard to overcome. Later that night I started thinking about how little interaction I actually have had with thieves and robbers in my life. In my forty-eight years on this planet I can only think of two instances when something along those lines has occurred and both have been since I married my wife. Does this mean I assign some kind of blame to her? Of course not, it just worked out the way it did.

The first was right after we got married. We were living in her apartment intending to only stay until we found something better. She had already had a problem with someone with a key entering her apartment and stealing small amounts of money (mostly from a cup of coins) but we thought we had fixed that problem by keeping the front door locked and installing a padlock on the back door. That way only we had the key to it. It worked for a while until one night after coming home from work we found that the thief had jimmied the lock open in the bathroom window, crawled in, and made off with her laptop as well as the camcorder we had bought to film our wedding with. Then he or she had left through the much larger bedroom window.

To top it off her jerk landlord refused to believe that it had happened from one of his employees (relatives) and basically accused us of faking it. It was all I could do to restrain myself from punching him out and I think he realized he had crossed a line so he dropped his point and left quickly. Needless to say my wife no longer felt safe in that apartment and we got out as soon as we could.

My second encounter with a thief occurred in the house that we bought and currently live in. It was somewhere around three years after the previous break in and my wife came home with our then less than a year old son to find that we were the victims of a burglary. Some scumbag had busted our door in and grabbed what turned out to be mainly things that had sentimental value. He was in and out more than likely in less than five minutes.

The hard to take thing is that our neighbor saw the perpetrator exiting our driveway with what turned out to be one of our pillowcases stuffed with our belongings. She give the info to the police and they did basically nothing, probably because she didn't see him leaving the house and couldn't one hundred percent identify him. I know, it's a garbage excuse from them but honestly I didn't expect much in the first place. The powers that be in Tulsa have more important things for the police to do, like give out speeding tickets.

So there you have it, my life experience with getting robbed (so far). Two burglaries, no holdups, no car break-ins and nothing stolen from my desk at work, at least that I can recall. After all, I am getting old and my memory isn't quite what it used to be. That sound you hear is me furiously knocking on wood hoping that I haven't jinxed myself.

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Friday, March 29, 2013

I Must Write

Wow, even more new stuff. This was the last one written and is the shortest. I guess my creative spurt was fading fast. As was Washed Away this one came out and I did not go back over it so roughness prevails once again. As always I'm sure Tommy will get ahold of these and shrink them down to their essence. This ones exists somewhere in between the other two. Monotony was very personal, Washed Away was very general and then there is I Must Write. It's how I feel many a night or day. Some days I am able to get it down and others, well, life intrudes and wins out over creativity at times. That's life.

I can’t get any sleep tonight
My head is filled with ideas
Swarming through my eyes
My brain won’t relent
Writing as fast as possible
Still there are parts that I forget
To lie still and do nothing
Goes against the grain

My mind is inflamed
Of what or where could be
Half dream half guided story
Imagination has taken over
Am I wishing for this misery
Entertaining creative fancy
Cognitive powers on full charge
To exist I must write

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Washed Away

 Right after I finished Monotony I started this one. It seems my mind was not yet finished creatively. While Monotony was very personal this one is me writing very objectively, very generally about something that just sounds cool to me. I have not gone back over it as usual so it is rough on places.

Washed Away

Filled with white hot anger
Spilling over the brim
I can’t control what I feel
Can’t control who I am
Confess your truth once more
Before I end your pain
Deep dark secrets revealed
Makes darker the stain

Yelling and wildly thrashing
I call out your name
Seeing the past and future
Who else can I blame
Born into procrastination
It’s my familial right
The decision already made
Don’t want to escape my plight

Blinded by a lack of ambition
I dreamed of far better
Waited for the door’s knock
Cursed by the blackened letter
A vision of all that’s wrong
The melody of our shame
Held together on repeat
Crashing through my brain

My dreams have been washed away

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


While at work tonight as I listened to some music I was overcome with the desire to take a break and write. Knowing that I wouldn't be able to concentrate if I didn't do this I acquiesced to my muse. Wow, I'm sounding pretty snotty there. Anyway, I gave in and this one came out in about five minutes after which I went back over it and added a few words here and there and this one was born. I'm sure that when Tommy gets a look at it things will change but until then this is it.I'll just go ahead and say it's not about what you probably think it is.


You call me in again
Have me sit down
Proceed to inform me
Everything I’ve done wrong
Gritting my teeth and
Shaking my head
I wonder why this is so
Another tired day of sorrow

Complaints duly registered
Minor none major we see
Yet here we sit once again
Grownups or children
You tell me your truth
Then I’ll tell you mine
Can’t seem to do good
Always placed out of line

Days locked into blind step
They all bleed into one
Keep my head bent low
And strive to push on
Every day filled with this
No end appears in sight
How many years I’ve missed
Something better than this

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Monday, March 25, 2013

If I'm Being Honest

Just something that came out today, first draft as always. Seems to be I'm writing a lot of lyrics lately. Coincidence? I think not.

If it all ended today
If you walked away
What could I say

Place the blame all on you
That wouldn’t be the truth
Everybody has their problems

I’ve got my share
But who really cares
It leads to nowhere

I’m just drifting along
Am I really working it out
Or just writing another song

I can’t say…..if I’m being honest
If I’m being honest…..I can’t say

How can you love me
When I’m not even
The person I want to be
How can I love you
When I’m not even
The person I want to be
Lurching forth blindly
There’s never been a plan
At least none I can understand

My heads full of ideas
But I don’t know how
To make anything of them

I don’t want to never
Bring any of them to light
Have them die by fright

I’m held back by the fear
Of losing what I have
The end result becomes the same

I don’t know what I want anymore
I don’t know what I want anymore
I don’t know what I want anymore
I don’t know how long you’ll wait
I don’t want you to hate me

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

There Should Be A Lesson To Learn Here

My wife wanted us to go together to some of her favorite stores last night so that she could look at some things. Now when I say things I simply mean that I didn't know what she wanted to look at and even after going with her I'm still not sure I know. This is an area where we clearly show that we have two very different parts of our personalities and she doesn't seem to grasp the idea that perhaps it's not such a good idea for us to try and do these things together (or more correctly "her way"). Her way entails her telling me she wants to go to a store as we pass the entrance and I'm in the far left lane going about forty miles an hour. Then she gets upset at me because I dare to question her about cutting over two lanes to turn into the parking lot. If I were to pull a move like that on my own she'd be yelling and screaming at my horrible driving.

She enjoys going from store to store idly looking at things that she doesn't have any desire to buy. She also enjoys going to look at things that she would like to buy even though we don't have any money to spend. She says this is just to keep up to date on prices, etc. I'm the complete opposite, I only want to go when I have the money to spend AND there is something that is needed. I do not enjoy going from store to store either. My preference is to go to one store and if I think it's a good price then that's as far as I go. I am a man after all. Invariably this leads to a fight disagreement between us and her telling me how boring I am which tends to tick me off. Then the mood is destroyed for all. Great night out huh?

After almost eight years of marriage every so often she still thinks it's a good idea for us to go do these things together. I on the other hand quite strongly disagree. I feel that this is something we should not do because one of us (me) doesn't enjoy it. If the situation were reversed you can be sure that I would not want her to accompany me doing something that she does not enjoy. I've told her that many times. She's asked me why I just can't pretend to enjoy myself and go along with things. The answer is that I cannot be fake, I can't act like I enjoy something or like someone when I don't. Why would I want to be miserable doing something that bores me to tears or even worse, why would I want to make somebody come along that would be likewise bored. Life is too short for that.

For example, once my family was taking my mother to a concert, a mainstream country concert. Even though I detested this kind of music (and they all knew it) I went along because it was for my mother. I guess I felt guilty that I wasn't being a good son if I didn't go along. I hated every second of the time I was at that show. Do you think my slouching in my seat with this look of pained irritation on my face helped anybody else enjoy themselves? Not bloody likely. No, I couldn't sit there and pretend that I was having a good time. I just can't fake it and I don't want to be around people that do fake it because it only will lead to them bringing down your good time. Who wants that?

I would much rather you know for a fact that if I am there then it means that I enjoy doing this thing, be it a concert, someones presence or whatever it is. That way there is no repressed feelings of resentment, no simmering anger barely held in check, no smart ass comments to be made at anothers expense. My way lets everybody know where they stand so that there shouldn't be any hurt feelings by any of the parties. To me it's not worth fighting over why you don't want to go along with the program. Don't make it a big deal and it won't be a big deal. So if I'm not at your party or whatever then please realize it's because I'm just not a party person and let it go.  Life is much simpler that way. There's enough crap going on without adding to it by getting offended for no good reason. Make the world a happier place by being real.

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Friday, March 22, 2013

I'm Not

Another idea that is very rough, only partially explored but it's all I've got at the moment. Kind of self explanatory. It's about taking a job you never really wanted, making good money and having some good things come of it but being unhappy in how that has affected what you are allowed to do and say as well as the fear of losing what you have, or what you think you have, in order to reclaim something of what you were while retaining all of the good things in your life. Scary idea.

I'm Not

Looking back into the past I see that
I’m not living the life I imagined I would
I’m not the person I thought I’d be
Is that what happens when you don’t have a plan
When you’ve lost the drive you thought you had
In retrospect perhaps it never really was there
I daydreamed of a life of simplicity
Where I didn’t wear the uniform of society
No dress shirt and tie to strangle me
No position of authority to hold me down
No responsibility for the work of others
Now I’m not doing the things I think about
I’ve lost the sense of humor I once held
The wit and the spark of laughter held back
Limited by the rules of engagement
It’s not where I envisioned ending up
Can I ever make it back to that person
Wile retaining something of who I've become

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

First World Problems

Another rough draft of something I came up with this week. Not sure I've nailed it down but the idea is in there somewhere. I call it First World Problems even though the only things listed are really found in Third World countries, at least for now that is. It's kind of a reverse thing.

First World Problems

I didn’t wake up today dreading
The fear of what could come
No dogs hung from a street light
No menacing messages attached
no electricity to light my way
because the plant blew up again
Nobody in my neighborhood
Disappeared into a van
Never to be seen alive again

My first world problems don’t include
The fact that my house is four poles
Covered by plastic walls and a tin roof
No running water, no heat, no air conditioning
Nature gives all that is available
I wasn’t abandoned by my family
Or made to work instead of school
Scraping by to have enough to eat
Grateful for the crumbs that fall to me

My first world problems don't include these

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Where's My Spring Break?

This is shaping up to be one of those days, weeks, years for me. Spring Break has started and all of the kids are out of school for one week. That’s right, they get to enjoy a week of no school. Even if they don’t get to do as much as they want they still don’t have the stress of getting up early and slogging their way through school for a whole week. That’s a good thing. Since it is such a good thing then I have one question. Why don’t adults get this benefit?

Think about it. Who needs the time off more? Kids who got time off in the fall AND about three whole months in the summer or adults who get time off when they can get it approved from their boss? That’s provided of course that they can afford to take time off and actually do something relaxing. What’s the point in taking time off from work only to have your wife decide that since you’re home then you’re available to get all of those chores done that she’s been saving for you? That is not a vacation, believe me I know. Often it’s equal to if not an increase in your stress level.

This phenomenon of adults getting time off actually does occur in some countries. Many European countries not only give you the paid time off but they also have paid holidays. Some even basically shut down so that everyone can take time off from work. One of my previous employers gave us Federal holidays off with pay and if it was your holiday to work you also got a paid day off during the week. I loved that about them. My present employer offers no such thing. Instead sick days, vacation days and holidays are all lumped together and you accrue a certain amount each pay period. The amount you accrue actually is very close between those two companies.

Of course it was even better when I was in the Army. You accrued thirty leave or vacation days a year. All Federal holidays you were off and if they holiday fell on a Thursday or Tuesday the weekday after or before became what is known as a training holiday. Unless of course you had a duty assignment you had to pull. Think of it, every Thanksgiving you had a four day weekend that didn’t affect your vacation time. Theoretically you weren’t supposed to go very far from your duty station so you wouldn’t have any problems reporting back to your next scheduled day of work. That theory of course didn’t stop anyone from doing so. It was a great way to save up vacation time and then cash it in when you get out of the service (like I did).

Unfortunately most of us adults in the U.S. get left out in the cold when it comes to getting break time from work. The mentality here is to work, work, work and then work some more so that you can save up to go on vacation. Unfortunately most people never actually get to take that vacation. I can count on one hand how many times I’ve taken a real vacation while I’ve been with my present employer. I’m sure I could find a bunch of studies that would show how important it is for workers to take time off and get rid of their stress by taking a break but I’m too busy to do that right now. I’ll just look forward to the vacation I will (hopefully) be taking this summer. Three weeks off and you won’t be able to reach me by phone. Sounds like heaven to me.

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Death From Above

A strange thing happened yesterday while I was driving my family to my best friends house. We had gone to a mall so that I could look at some shoes and were on our way to a birthday party for Tom's daughter. Not just any birthday mind you, it was her sweet sixteen birthday. As I was rushing East on Highway 44 in Tulsa to make it on time (we didn't) a bird came flying in at an odd angle and dive bombed us, smacking into the left side of the grill. I saw it happening and tried to avoid it but when you're in the left hand lane going at least sixty miles an hour there isn't much you can do.

We took the extremely loud hit from this kamikaze bird and kept driving hoping that no serious damage had been done. To our car I mean because there is no way a bird could survive a hit at that speed. It was also impossible to pull over and look for the bird either, the traffic was way too heavy to even think about it. What's sad is if the bird had been about two miles further up the road it never would have happened. That was where traffic ground to a halt and then slowly moved forward for several miles. Why? Because there had been a minor accident but both cars were pulled off of the road and a police car was sitting next to them so every car felt the need to slow down to five miles an hour in order to see what had happened. Rubbernecking at it's best.

Still that's not as bad as what happened to me once in Maryland. My roommates and I were on our way home from work at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in D.C. and suddenly traffic slowed to a standstill all because a car had broken down and was pushed off to the side of the road. There wasn't even anybody in the car or around it. Pretty sad if you ask me. I don't know why people want so badly to know what has happened even when it's clear that absolutely nothing has happened.

Anyway, we got to the party and our car was okay. It went well and I was able to discuss a few things with a few people, get some information about some things I need to do (more on that intentionally vague topic later) and then Tom's band showed up so that they could practice. This time though Shane brought out a singer to jam with them. A female singer. Now don't get me wrong, there isn't anything wrong with female singers, I just wasn't so sure how their music would sound with a female singer. It's very loud and can be quite aggressive. After hearing them jam on a Led Zep song I can attest that this female singer can sing very well. Just as they were trying to improvise on a new Clutch song I had to leave to go to work (just got back) so perhaps I'll get another chance to hear her doing Alloy songs. If only they had been able to record something.

Ah well, that's how life goes. One minute you're speeding down the road and the next you're colliding with a maniacal bird that has bad radar. Then you're off to a birthday party followed by some heavy metalish music. What can you do? Just keep your head down and try to move forward. Persevere. Advance. Keep trying. That's all I got tonight, I'm tired and ready for bed. It's time for my brain to shut down (too late). Until next time.

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Ten For Tuesday Episode 26: From All Over

Episode 26 is ready featuring a lot of cool music from Argentina, Peru, and the U.S. mainly. I also talk about the connection between the bands Death and Rough Francis and the documentary "A Band Called Death" which I have yet to see but it sounds fascinating. Scott Mosier (one half of Smodcast) produced the film. On to the music:

NOFX - Ronnie & Mags
Argies - Senales Difusas
Will Hoge - America
Something Fierce - Empty Screens
Olaya Sound System - El Monte
Van Stee - Color In The Paper Planes
The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary
Nirvana - Breed
Rough Francis - Waiting
Death - Freaking Out

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

New Lyrics - The Direction That We're Going

Another first pass at some new lyrics that I started a few days ago and just got back to today. The first two verses and the first two lines of the third verse are pretty much the way I came up with them last week other than shifting the order of a few of them. The rest came out today. I kept going until I felt I had said all there was to say on the subject. There may be more coming later though. Just a feeling.

I have to wonder at the direction we’re going
About the choices we have to make
Zero tolerance for kids playing children’s games
Soon enough you’ll send them to fight your wars
What kind of twisted message are we sending
Do you wonder why they’re so confused
The lessons being pressed upon them
In the name of holy social appearances

This is no longer the land of freedom
It’s become the land of everyone offended
Why do you want to put your adult fears
On those that just want to be young
So quick to look and place your blame
Never thinking of the consequences
What kind of people will grow from this
Do you think this will really affect change

I grew up in the land of the free
It’s become the land of free to do as you’re told
The land of not responsible for your own actions
Place the blame and play a political game
Attack the branches yet never the root
The problem keeps on growing sprouting anew
You can’t see because of the blindfold you wear
Hiding from the sight of common sense

A five year old schoolchild isn’t a terrorist
A six year old doesn’t always mean what they say
They come from a place of total honesty
No ill will intent in the language they use
Get rid of the one size fits all policy handed down
Stop reading the press release and take a stand
Use your brain stop relying on what someone else says
Use your brain, use your brain, use your brain

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.

Monday, March 11, 2013

All Episodes Of Ten For Tuesday Are Now Archived

The day has finally come! Today I moved the latest episode of the Ten For Tuesday podcast over to the Internet Archive so from this point forward when I upload a new episode on Podomatic it should also be uploaded on the Internet Archive shortly thereafter. It took a little while but I finally got it done. Next on the agenda is to backup the notmovingpictures podcast and eventually I'll get around to putting up episodes of my old radio show, The Ska Beat. At some point I also need to do a database for the music that I've played

Interestingly enough the episodes on Podomatic seem to be downloaded a lot more on the Archive. Not all mind you but overall. The most has been 44 which I know isn't much by most peoples standards but I'm not most people. The simple fact that 44 people have seen fit to download something that I put together blows me away. Hopefully this will help build an audience that likes some of the music that I like myself. If notmovingpictures builds there as well I'll be over the moon. There are more creative things coming down the road from me some of which may surprise you but I don't want to speak of them until they are actually done.

Look for some new lyrics to come, I've got one that is partially done that came to me the other day and I haven't had a chance to get back to it. It concerns the ridiculous pattern of recent times of young children being suspended from school because they want to play children's games. You'll see what I mean. Until then...........................

Written and Published by Don Leach. May not be used without permission from the author.