Everything Old is New Again- Music

The local news had me stop in my tracks this morning- not for a shocking headline but for the sound of a new song. The music chosen to play into the commercial break was fabulous! I opened Spotify on my phone, and identified these fabulous musicians: Mariachi El Bronx. Not new, but new to me.

Here is Sleepwalking by Mariachi El Bronx

Their sound was so familiar but I couldn’t place why. An online search delivered a mix of options that finally made sense after I read an article from 2009 by The Guardian: “The Bronx- How Punk Rock Went Mariachi.” In a nutshell, if you grow up next door to David Hildago of Los Lobos and two of his kids are your best friends, fabulous music just may happen and multiple bands can be formed.

Here’s Mariachi El Bronx performing live for Seattle’s KXEP radio station-

It’s too bad that I missed them playing at The Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach this May. But, guess who is playing the San Diego Fair tonight? One of my all time favorites: Los Lobos.

Branching Out is Back… with a PSA: Get Yourself a Shingles Vaccine

There are too many new things out there that I want to try, from recipes and restaurants to tourist spots and theatrical shows. Guess I’m going to have to continue my adventures of the new and novel into 2016!

Let’s begin this year with a GREAT tip on a new experience that I recommend you DON’T try: Shingles. This is not fun. Luckily, it’s a super mild case that is only annoyingly itchy and stings a bit… and on my leg- NOT my face (dangerous!), NOT horridly painful (thanks be to GOD). Did I mention how lucky I know that I am? And thankful??

What’s Important to Know

  • If you suspect your bug bite is not, in fact, a bug bite (like I did), see your doctor right away- shingles symptoms and duration can be lessened with anti-viral medications (I waited five days… dummy).
  • Wondering if any topical sprays or ointments help with the pain? I did too, here’s what I found than helped… only one thing- Solarcaine Aloe Extra Burn Relief Spray, or it’s Generic Store Brand Version. I think it is the pain reliever “Lidocaine” that is what makes it help.
  • Shingles aren’t exactly contagious, but if someone who has never had chicken pox comes into contact with the blisters on an active shingles outbreak, it can cause them to contract chicken pox. Talk to your doc to know for sure!
  • Friends are saying that they know kids as young as two-year-olds who have had shingles, as well as others in their 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s. Just because the commercials show retirees talking about the shingles vaccine doesn’t mean that they have cornered the market on this painful condition.
  • I still don’t understand if I can get another outbreak of shingles… some websites say yes, others say no… I’m going to ask my doc if she will let me get the vaccine early (I’m not quite 49 and the recommended minimum age is 60).
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The ONLY spray or ointment that helped with the pain is this one with Lidocaine.
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None of these topical treatments helped with the itch and pain EXCEPT the spray on the left- CVS’s generic version of Solarcaine Aloe Extra Burn Relief

So, here’s your Public Service Announcement: ask your doctor about whether or not a shingles vaccine is right for you. Really really REALLY.

 

 

 

 

 

The Force Awakens… Thirty-Eight-Year-Old Memories

 

When I was ten, my brother and I went to the movies to see the first Star Wars. We weren’t big theater-goers in our family, so this was a great treat. We were completely blown away, having never seen anything like that before on the big screen. Plus, I was only ten and hadn’t racked up too many “wow” moments… so relatively speaking, this was definitely a wow-able moment.

I’ll never forget a couple years later, sitting with junior high friends at lunch while a friend mentioned that there were two more Star Wars movies coming out! I can’t speak for the average kid, but this was huge news to the super-awkward completely clueless types like me. She probably didn’t realize how big a deal it was to tell us that (spoiler here, people) not only was Darth Vader Luke Skywalker’s father, but Leia is his sister. Put this into perspective- 1979 was a dark time for the casual fan- with no constant barrage of trivial information available to us via the intertubes. Either you read original Star Wars books or you had inside information. And when pressed, this pretty humble lunch mate admitted to us how she had such awesome inside info… Mark Hamill was a family friend. Luke Skywalker was her source. Talk about instant Cool Points!

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(from PopCultcha.com)

I still don’t go to the movies very often. Thirty-Eight years later… can you imagine how much fun it was to sit in the movie theater with not only The Husband, but The Boy, The Girl, and The Boyfriend and watch another big screen Star Wars movie?

It was All That And A Tub of Popcorn.

When They are So Exited to Receive Volunteer Requests…

…that their reply comes back in all caps:

“YES YES YES, WE NEED HELP!!!
LET ME KNOW WHEN YOU WOULD LIKE TO COME TO THE NEW BOXING GYM AND I WILL GIVE YOU A 15 MINUTE TALK ABOUT WHT YOU WOULD BE DOING.
AWESOME!!!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR EMAIL!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS!”

My first thought is to reply and let the boxing coach know that I will wait until between the Christmas and New Year’s holiday’s have passed, but honestly? I think I might try to get over tho the Rock Steady Boxing classes right smack in the middle of all this hubbub.

I have a feeling that finding ways to help out somewhere is a lot more interesting than standing in line at the mall.

“Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, it’s at the end of your arm, as you get older, remember you have another hand: The first is to help yourself, the second is to help others.”
Audrey Hepburn

 

On “CBS Sunday Morning,” Friends, and Coincidence

At a gathering recently, a friend and I referred to the same news clip that we each had seen on TV. It seems that another family looks forward to the same news program that The Husband and I have been watching for a couple of decades.

CBS Sunday Morning has been a great way to pass an early Sunday morning. The stories and news clips are great viewing for kids of all ages and we always discover something new. A few weeks ago, we learned about a therapy program designed to help patients with Parkinson’s Disease.

Quite surprisingly, it turned out that my friend is also interested in this program. We took the hint that Coincidence was throwing our way and promised that the very next morning we would drive out together to one of the local boxing and fitness facilities to start asking our questions… I’m glad I have a friend who gave me the push I needed to send off an email and ask about helping out. Hopefully, I will hear back from our Rock Steady Boxing coaches and there will be volunteer positions open.

Watch the above video and ask yourself this: where can I volunteer my time, offer my talents, or donate my treasure? Do you feel called to help out somewhere or with someone? There are so many ways to help everywhere, you just have to get out there and ask. Maybe look for Coincidence?

Dat Tree -or- If Mamma Ain’t Happy…

Last year’s Christmas Tree was too small, I decided. So were the previous trees we have brought into our living room. As a matter of fact, we’ve never had a really big tree in the house before. I arrived at this decision based on only one fact: the trees are too small because I’ve not been able to put up even half of the ornaments the family has made or collected.

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The tree is in the middle of this pic… see? Doesn’t look that huge, right?

The Husband and The Boy were helplessly dragged into doing my bidding, and I bid the purchase of a Twelve Foot Tall Christmas Tree. I swear it didn’t look as big at the tree farm, growing next to a couple other big ‘uns.

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Has The Boy gotten smaller or The Tree gotten bigger?

Aaaannd here it is:

The amount of profanity that was uttered in my living room in the course of getting this tree erect is matched only by the amount of times we laughed at the ridiculousness of its size. Another frequently sworn oath was “Never again!”

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The Roomba has quit.

Happy, the Valentine’s Day Roomba (don’t be jealous of the depths of romantic gifting in our home), has put in his official 48 hour notice.

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Dat Tree!

Let the ornamentation begin! I hear that today is National Cocoa Day, someone bring me a mug of hot chocolate as we decorate this bad boy. It’s not too much to ask, is it?

 

On Jealousy, Campus Exploration, and Good Entertainment

“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts…
Shakespeare, As You Like It

I’m pretty jealous of my friend. Her daughters attend the relatively local and highly desirable San Diego State University. They have joined a performance club that meets once a week, and tonight we were treated to their Showtunes Showcase. From torch songs to comedy, these fabulously talented students dished out some great entertainment.

The Husband and I ditched the two high school boys and went off looking for the Experimental Theater on campus… getting lost… twice. We’ve never visited anywhere on the campus except the basketball stadium (Go Aztecs!). When we finally arrived at the right building we had missed the first of a dozen songs, but immensely enjoyed about a dozen more show tunes. Wow! What an amazing group of students! Seriously, if you have a university or community theater near you, get out and get viewing! I can’t believe we haven’t done something like this sooner.

Seeing these girls, friends of my girl, reminded me how close she came to attending SDSU and it makes me sad… I miss The Girl. But, as The Husband reminded me, I’ll probably be sick of her malarkey after only three days this Christmas break.

I’m looking forward to her malarkey.