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About thirty miles out of Lincoln, I called Josh Hoyer. The reception was lousy, so the ensuing communication was a combination of half finished phone conversations and text messages. He guided me to the Super 8 Motel, where a room was reserved.

Since I was there a day early, I'd agreed to pay for the room the first night. The Zoo Bar would pick up the tab for the second night.

The parking lot was almost totally covered with ice. I wasn't confident about the van's ability to deal with that. The last van I owned was a Ford Aerostar, and when you got it in snow and ice, you might as well be steering a snow saucer. I slid all over Park City, Utah in it once while on the way back to a motel from a gig, and another time slid sideways into a motel parking lot in Williams, Arizona, after having been caught in a storm on Interstate 40.

I parked and entered the lobby to check in. The college-aged young man behind the desk was nice, if a bit abrupt. Hey, I wouldn't want to be working the night shift at the Super 8 Motel either.

I found a relatively ice-free parking spot near my room, and lugged my stuff up. Anvil guitar case, suit case, etc. I turned on the television. It said it was one degree outside. I dunno. Maybe I'd morphed into a wuss. But one degree Fahrenheit somehow seemed unreasonably cold.

I called Josh to tell him I'd arrived safely. He said to let him know if I wanted to check out some places around town later. I took a hot shower. Watched a little television. Called him back. Told him I thought I'd just hang around the room tonight. Thanks anyway. He totally understood. Truth was, I don't think a bomb scare would've gotten me to go out. One frickin' degree.

I ordered a pizza. Ate half, and saved the other in the fridge for breakfast.

The next morning there was ice on the motel room window. But the sky was clear. The projected high temperature was twelve degrees. I took my time getting dressed. I made a pact that I wasn't going anywhere until the ice on the window, which was right under the heater, melted a little.

About 10:30 I could see out the window. Kind of. The van was dutifully sitting in the parking lot below. I felt bad for it. I didn't know if it would even start. I imagined it to be just a frozen hulk of steel.

I had to get a battery for the pick-up in one of the guitars. Which meant, of course, a trip to the heart of America. Or the spleen. I had to go to Wal-Mart.

So I walked out to my frozen van. Got in. Turned the ignition key... and it started right up. I put a piece of brick in front of the tire, that I carry for just these occasions, so it doesn't roll when I put it into neutral. Did I mention the handbrake doesn't work?

I went back into the room for ten minutes or so, letting the engine idle and the heater run.

I braced myself for a trip through Lincoln, not knowing what to expect. I drove gingerly through the parking lot, gunning it a little on the ice to see what happened. The traction was great.

I made a right hand turn onto the main street, went over a bridge, and into downtown. You could see it was a train town, a real town that got down to work. Chock full of old brick buildings. With plenty of bars to drink in after you were done. Best of all, the streets were clear of ice and snow. Turns out they know how to deal with winter in Lincoln, Nebraska. Go figure.

Wal-Mart was... well, Wal-Mart. First, I accidentally walked into Sam's Club. Oooooh. Big mistake. Because I didn't have the handy dandy extra special Sam's Club card. So I wasn't actually allowed in there. Soooooo sorrrrrrry. After being lightly reprimanded by a security person, I went into Wal-Mart proper. And found the correct battery. And also bought a couple of avocados for lunch. Can you imagine? Ripe avocados in Wal-Mart in Nebraska in the winter? What a country.

I drove back to the motel. Inserted the battery into the guitar pick-up, and re-installed said pick-up into the guitar. And ate the avocados.

I called Josh. He had set up a radio interview at the local public broadcast station that afternoon. We decided to meet up at The Zoo Bar first.

Did you ever have a dream about some place before you actually went there? That happened once with the Roxy Theater in Hollywood. I had a dream that I was in this place, and John Lennon was sitting at a table. He didn't acknowledge me or anything, I just kind of walked by and John Lennon was sitting with some other people. The Roxy has this kind of terraced interior. And the first time I went in there, I recognized it right away from that dream. I had a dream about Peter Sellers one time, too. After he was dead. It was in Musso and Frank's Grill. But I'd been in there before, so I recognized it. Anyway, Peter Sellers is walking toward the men's room, and I make some comment, and he laughs. And he comes over, and has this tray with different colored ribbons on it. And he puts the tray in front of me, and tells me to pick one. And I do. I can't swear to it, but I think I picked a royal blue one. He smiles, tells me to keep it, then walks away.

I could go on with this kind of nonsense, but I had a dream before I left California about this place that looked a whole lot like The Zoo Bar. But after I woke up I figured it was in Louisiana or Mississippi or some place like that. Just because it's got that vibe to it. A long shotgun style building, old and musty and full of good juju.

Josh got a vodka tonic. I had a Diet Coke. I met the owner, who was real nice. He thanked me for coming. They had posters advertising the show that night up on the front window. I checked out the stage setup. And then we finished our drinks and headed over to the radio station.

It was in an old historical building, up several floors. There was a panoramic view of downtown. Josh is talkin' to the receptionist for awhile, and then we walk over to the booth where the disc jockey is. He's got some Delta blues goin'. He steps out of the booth. We introduce ourselves. He says oh man, I totally forgot you were coming... I'm doing this whole show on Mississippi blues today. I tell him don't worry about it... I've showed up for interviews before where the disc jockey forgot I was coming. He says yeah, well maybe, but I don't do that. He feels really bad. Then he explains how this is his last show. And he just found out. So now he's got to go back to driving a truck. And now I feel bad for him. And he says man I don't know what to do, because you're here with your guitar, but I've got this show going that's all Mississippi blues. And I say hey, how about I do a couple of Robert Johnson songs? Cuz last I checked Robert Johnson was from Mississippi. He laughs. So we set up the microphone, and then he interviews me a little, and then I do these Robert Johnson songs. And then he winds up his radio show, and he thanks us for stopping by, and I tell him it's an honor to be on his last broadcast.

It was, too.











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Comment by David Vidal on March 26, 2010 at 3:10pm
I remain totally Lost regarding Lost. But I think that everything that exists is just different vibrational rates of the same thing. Light. Matter is essentially "frozen" light. So of course angels, and I suppose devils, and flying saucers, etc. can and probably do exist. It's all just a giant Festival of Light. Then, unless I misunderstood Einstein, which is entirely possible, when you reach the actual vibrational level of light, time/space cease to exist. Thus everything that ever was or will be just is. Allowing precognition, time travel, etc. on the lower vibrational frequencies. Which makes a lot more sense to me than a Big Guy with a Long White Beard pulling a rib outta Adam...
Comment by wiffledust on March 26, 2010 at 8:02am
well that might explain the folks who talk about a silver cord. according to alot of afterlife people there is some kind of silver cord that we're either attached to this world by or attached to "something" by. i'm not sure about this. but i do think we get so bogged down by what we can see as opposed to what we can't see. back to quantum physics for a moment. one thing that isn't debateable anymore is that we are all vibrating energy. the "reality" that we see when viewed over and over and over again under a microscope doesn't really exist. apparently when energy vibrates at different frequencies it becomes dense to a degree to become hard enough to see. so we see a table. we think it's this big hard mass of something in the room. but under a microscope, it's empty space. it's vibrating energy only. so is our hand. in other words it's not exactly "there". not in the way we think it is. it's not "there" any more than the sounds your guitar makes are "there". which is incredibly fascinating if you think about it. so then that leaves the question what else is "there" but vibrating so quickly that we can't see it at all? a thought? an angel? another parallel universe? and do dreams allow us to cross these dense barriers? ok that's alot of questions for this early in the morning. does LOST answer any of these???
Comment by David Vidal on March 26, 2010 at 1:50am
There's a theory that personal intelligence/consciousness actually is centered in the solar plexus region... the brain is kind of a processing center... and just like our umbilical cords connected us to our mother, we have a kind of psychic umbilical cord that connects us to a larger consciousness. I think that connects with what you're saying... or maybe I'm Lost....
Comment by wiffledust on March 25, 2010 at 2:59pm
i have been reading how consciousness actually exists outside of our brains. it is very possibly something we "tap into". there are alot of studies that back this up. not weirdo studies. real studies. it would explain people leaving their bodies when they have near death experiences, psychic experiences, remote vision, deja vu, etc. think about something simple. study after study shows that humans know that they are being watched even when the one watching is behind us. why is that? we can't see them. they are far enough away that we can't feel their body heat. ...take something more complicated. physics, quantum physics says that particles that are separated actually communicate with each other across distances. i'm not kidding. so let's say you smash a table to bits. part of those bits go to new york. part to go to california. they actually still communicate with each other. if you bang one in new york, the one in california reacts. cool, huh? what was that about LOST?
Comment by David Vidal on March 25, 2010 at 2:20pm
I've got to plead ignorance about much of this stuff. But I do know the theory that there are at least 7 dimensions. And if you think of the difference say, the third dimension makes, giving us depth... then imagine what number four must do... let alone 5, 6 and 7. Our conscious minds seem only capable of easily processing 1, 2 and 3. Yet our subconscious minds, and our superconscious minds (which are probably tapped directly into Universal Consciousness, or may even be Universal Consciousness) are aware of those dimensions, and factor in information gotten from them. Sheesh. That's a long, convoluted answer to a simple question. No, I don't watch Lost : )
Comment by wiffledust on March 25, 2010 at 9:36am
edgar allen poe said it too? i don't watch LOST, helen. but i'm a believer that string theory is a definite possibility. string theory suggests that 12 parallel universes can exist at the same time in quantum physics and would be the unification theory behind einstein's last work.
Comment by Helen on March 25, 2010 at 9:22am
"All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream." - Edgar Allen Poe

Do either of you watch LOST? The idea of knowing about places or people before you see them reminds me of LOST and the whole alternate realities/parallel dimensions idea.
Comment by David Vidal on March 25, 2010 at 1:34am
Midsummer Night's Dream pretty much sums it up... I don't know what it means, either. But I think the idea that we have these linear lives wherein all that we do is rationally controlled somehow... well, that just doesn't feel right to me. There's bigger forces at work, that we intuitively sense are there, but can't quite put our finger on.. and they become apparent when we walk into some place and recognize it from a dream we had... and stuff such as that. The dreams I spoke of are as real as if they "actually" happened, and in some ways had more impact on my life than things that happened in the waking state. Then there's dreams of flying, and time travel and such. I was talking to my friend Erin Alden about flying in dreams, and how there are these barriers, and how you go through them without running head on into them, and she says yeah, and shows me the exact technique you use to get through them. I mean, there's a technique, and she knew it, and we'd never talked about it before...
Comment by wiffledust on March 24, 2010 at 9:02pm
that's weird that you say that, because i think that too. i remember the first time i read "a midsummer night's dream" in high school or college that i had an "ah ha" moment with puck's "no more yielding but a dream" speech. i'm not sure what a dream within a dream IS, but it feels right
Comment by David Vidal on March 24, 2010 at 8:06pm
I think it means that life's a dream within a dream, actually...

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