the Quiet City reminder

Just a reminder to be here Thursday for the Halloween bonus of a free first chapter of the Quiet City.

It’s gonna be spoooky!

👻

Like, follow and have a look around the blog for more information!

Thank you for stopping by and reading!!!

Sincerely,

Tom Pogson

The Quiet City – post Thanksgiving catch up

A very special location

Happy belated Thanksgiving to other fellow Canadians. Just getting going again after a very busy weekend with not just cooking a turkey but also a wedding and getting ready for the Cookeilidh Celtic band’s next season.

Presently I am doing outlining of the remaining chapters. I had put this off as I wanted to let the book flow naturally from one section to the next but as I got to about Chapter three I realized that it wasn’t going to work.

There are lots of little parts and things that connect one person to another so you really have to map it out, so the train has stopped for a while as the tracks are being laid down. The book is presently sitting at just 34 pages which is still quite early and when I’m in transit I have done some reading and editing of that. My parents, who have always been my executive producers before have also gone over it and know the basic structure. My mom Joan Pogson is also working on a historical work about the “Scuzzy” which was a steamer that use to go up the Fraser River, through the Hell’s Gate Rapids, to deliver supplies to the miners.

Like I said before, this kind of thing runs in the family.

This is my Dad’s (Jim Pogson) book from his and his father’s (Roy Pogson) time in BC Hydro. My grandfather was head of BC Hydro for Vancouver Island and workled for the company back when they were the BC Electric company that also powered the streetcars.

Was studying more about those streetcars powered out of their station on the corner of Store Street and Pembroke and Discovery near the harbour. Eventually these cars did serve incoming passenger ships as well with signs saying “Downtown” prominently displayed on a front window .

You can definitely imagine the car emerging from the back entrance first thing in the morning to pick up commuters.

While some of my photos are admittedly shots from online there has been more and more actually going to locations to try to imagine how it all wouled work. I teased at some things going on around Johnson and Douglas on the book’s Instagram page and while I can’t say what I’m planning…

Douglas and Johnson

Interesting nearby alley

…I can say that that alley will have a connection and that in absolute honestly the intersection of Douglas and Johnson was the site of Victoria’s first graveyard.

To the best of anyone’s knowledge the bodies were moved to Pioneer Square on Quadra Street beside Christ Church cathedral.

There’s also other great locations worth checking out on foot such as…

the site of the David Spencer arcade before the fire of, you guessed it, 1910 and…

the Brown Jug saloon which almost to make up for it’s exciting, rough and ready history has turned into a very classy Birk’s jeweler’s.

The blogs are going to be more like this with letting you know little bits of where I’m at, with one final exception.

I will be releasing something very special at the end of the month so definitely stay tuned!

Anyways, back to work for me! Brewing more of my favorite tea, Tulsi ginger turmeric as it’s a wet day out there.

Have a great day yourself and thanks for catching up!

Please like and follow!

Cheers,

Tom Pogson

Beecher Bay

The man who caused the 2016 election and potentially 2020.

Ever read a run on sentence? Like a really bad one? Like a really, really bad one.

Like imagine if you had a twelve year old tabby cat that is rather spry for its age and when you were not looking at about eleven after five the cat went outside and you couldn’t find it and you ran into your neighbors and they said they didn’t see it they did want to ask you if you had seen that really interesting show on television about how their cousin Brian Williams from Albany, New York was going to be part of the US Bobsled team but was actually or at least nearly dropped because he didn’t use the proper sanitary box for his November 5th urine sample and so you decided to go get a beer with them at that new place, you know the one with the red umbrellas that overlooks the Inner Harbour around the corner from where they are still cleaning up the harbour from what use to be a paint factory and everyone is up in arms about because the contractor involved in it which is called Big Beaver Construction that seriously makes everyone laugh anyway…

You get the idea. Hard to remember it was actually about a cat.

That is part of the plan set up by Steven Bannon when he met Donald Trump at a function long before what would be Trump’s second run for office. They were going to do the media equivalent of a run on sentence and now we are all living it.

It’s why when you talk about what “he did” a week ago or what “he tweeted” feels like a different era.

It was planned.

Taken directly from Bannon’s Wikipedia page…

Bannon told journalist Michael Lewis in February 2018, “We got elected on Drain the Swamp, Lock Her Up, Build a Wall. This was pure anger. Anger and fear is what gets people to the polls.” He added, “The Democrats don’t matter. The real opposition is the media. And the way to deal with them is to flood the zone with shit

So essentially, for the base he created straight forward simple talking points that they could get behind. For the media he instructed Donald to keep the media hopping with one specific thing after another specific thing, causing everyone to run defense.

Remember the mallet game at any Chunk E Cheese? It’s like that.

On multiple occasions Bannon made reference to The Camp of the Saints which is a novel published in 1973 by author and explorer Jean Raspail. Not only is this book more blatantly racist than Mein Kempf (and becoming frighteningly popular) but it also anti immigration to say the least as it speaks of the western world being swarmed by “Indians” who kill, rape and worse until the last white person is gone.

As such the idea that this former editor of Brietbart Magazine, which Bannon proudly calls alt-right, would be the source of ideas like “the wall” and “fake news” shouldn’t surprise anyone.

The constant stream of one thing after another is a perfect deflection game, on top of the anti Clinton deflection which they knew they would get supporters to then join in on, a strategy that still continues just as voraciously now despite Hillary Clinton being out of political life entirely since December of 2016.

The influence of Steven Bannon on the current administration, despite him being physically gone can not be overstated.

The character of Sir Humphrey Appleby from the BBC comedy series “Yes, Minister” explain it perfectly…

As such the far more effective thing is counter intuitive. I mean, you’re reading from the guy who slammed social media and is now here after more pushed reactions.

Oh yeah, I was counter-tweeting and liking my side this morning too. I’ve had times when I’ve made a point to not engage as it sets me off and kills my own productivity.

Sound familiar? This is it…it’s hard to do anything like that.

We have to, myself included, get to the point when we know that it’s all about getting your reaction. It’s interesting when you read our news or BBC because you start finding about news you never knew about because it isn’t the Pennsylvania Avenue Soap Opera.

So my advice is to make your own point, ignoring completely the Bannon-built apparatus. Make decisions about how you “can do for your country” and go straight there. If you are running (a) holy cow! Thank you for reading and (b) drop the anyone but Trump thing. Tell us what you are going to do. Say what your plan is in your manifesto. It comes down to that one hard as he’ll thing. Ignore Trump.

Just that. Leave Camp of the Saints, Bannon and Brietbart where they belong…

Forgotten.

Cheers,

Tom

Thank you for reading! Please follow me and feel free to surf around my blog! 🌅

5 Ways to Cool Down this Summer

Here we go again. Now you can get air conditioning at about $500 a machine. But failing that here’s how to make it to September!

It’s been almost a year since I first posted this and I wanted to update it and put it out since the temperature made its first steps past 21 degrees here in Victoria BC.

One thing you can immediately do is make decisions as to what passes your lips. While proteins are still great the last thing you want is anything heavy or involving cranking your oven block to 450 degrees. Salad, fruit and smaller light meals are definitely the way to go when the temperature goes up. They are also water based, fruits and vegetables, so you’re up one straight away.

But as summer has already kicked in here, and I imagine elsewhere, let’s get to what I would call…

one

Keep the motor cool

Now this comes from just years and years of working outdoors in summer heat, the wackiest being when I tried doing roofing on a crazy custom house when I (no joke) had to leap part to part like being atop a castle. But, I digress.

Caffeine and alcohol (sorry but true…) are diuretics which essentially means they will take moisture out of you. Now both of these have their place but, and you probably know this is coming, but fundamentals are key.

You should be drinking 8 glasses of water when it’s cool out. I’m talking winter. As such you want, just like making sure your car has it’s coolants, enough water to keep you internally cool. I have two easy to clean steel water bottles and those are way easier to use, and remember to use, than cup after cup. If you do use plastic have a look at the bottom just for fun. There will probably be a little recycling symbol with a number. The higher number you can get, the better, as it means it will be easier to keep clean.

If you want to really geek out and be sure that you are hydrated (and maybe don’t bring this up with the gang buuuut…) Keep an eye on your, well, pee. If it is solid yellow you definitely need to drink water. Like now. Like lots. If it is clear then you are good to go.

One thing of course is you will want to ease back in the last 30 minutes before a road trip, or next thing you know, you’ll be looking for gas stations.

two

airflow

In the morning the sun rises on our east facing windows (hard to believe, right?) so what we’ve come to do is darken those just a little more will an extra sheet, allowing still for any breeze to blow around there. This helps to keep the greenhouse thing from happening.

Later they can come down and the focus is on allowing any cross breeze from to occur. It’s a little crazy if you’re in an apartment, but if you find the hallway warmer, well, open your front door for at least 30 minutes to allow for the air to flow through the building.

Then there’s your fans. In the case of a house you can do the thing where you point it facing out as you are blowing wind straight across from one side to the other. For apartments aim it in so you’re pulling the cooler outdoor air in and keep another window open for the rest to escape. There is the classic of putting ice behind a fan. You can try it but in truth, it’s a boat load of work for very light results. Unless you’re got like a big slab of ice. In which case, I’ll be right over.

three

Silent running

Honestly, the whole trick is to keep it all as simple and minimal as possible. My mom on holiday in Tuscany said she was getting warm so she had it recommended that she chill under the trees with a mineral water and white wine mix. I know what I said before, but it was an instant cool off. Turn off any extra stuff running, including excess lights as every one of them gives off heat. Get low as heat rises and chill, both in style and also physically. If you have one of those raised beds, make a little place to sleep in your lowest place. Think of it as summer camp. This is actually a classic First Nations thing, moving from the Winter Village to the Summer Village. The Summer Village near here was an small island out in the Salish Sea. They knew what they were doing.

four

baths, big and small

You should absolutely keep clean as much as you can of course, as sweat and body oils will help you warm up when you aren’t really looking for that. But, if you are home, feel free to indulge in extra cool baths and (holding your nose) get your whole head under there. In the same way you would lose heat through your hair and head in winter, this is a spot that also keeps you warm. You might even consider keeping your hair on the shorter side in summer, but that’s your thing.

five

clothing thoughts

Obviously keep this as minimum as possible. Most restaurants will be ok with dressing lighter in summer, but check if you’re not sure.

But the principal points here are to stick to nice, breathable cottons and to keep the palette on the lighter side of life. Keep the black clothes hung up until night time, as black absorbs sunlight and heats you up while white repels it. It’s not Labour Day for a while yet so you’re good to go.

Hope these help and I’ll see you tomorrow for more blogging fun.

To add to staying cool, you can’t lose with the classic Groove Armada vibe.

Groove Armada – Back to Mine (full album)

Cheers!

🏝️🍻

Tom

😊

Don’t Poke Murphy

I just had to.

Let me explain. No, there is no time…let me sum up. 😉

I had some pretty impressive success with the last post, especially outside of WordPress, talking about how things had gone with my weight and quitting smoking. I’m always looking for things to talk about and that is true. Things were so ridiculously bad back then, which was so annoying because at the time I had just finally become a full time writer and musician so I was like really?!? Lol! I read everything you could Google about chronic nausea, sought out doctors, ran, exercised, meditated, and even drank gross weird things. I do a stripped down version of that now as those grant funded days are a thing of the past unless something changes. Anyways I am very glad I did that and am frankly scared to let things slip back, which keeps me moving. I actually had the pay version of the Calm app which was great and I genuinely kind of miss that. Still got to figure out how to include that again. I’m a musician so I’m all about patterns.

Random point, I’m writing this on my smartphone as always and I love the fact that when I put down “I’m a” it suggested “graverobber”. Little badass for my new MotoZ phone which I haven’t been honesty that crazy about, though it does have fm radio.

Which brings me to the title, which would make a good album title. Murphy’s Law, which is said to be based on this quote by Augustus de Morgan

It is found that anything that can go wrong at sea generally does go wrong sooner or later, so it is not to be wondered that owners prefer the safe to the scientific …. Sufficient stress can hardly be laid on the advantages of simplicity. The human factor cannot be safely neglected in planning machinery. If attention is to be obtained, the engine must be such that the engineer will be disposed to attend to it.[2]

Mathematician Augustus De MorganJune 23, 1866

Through grapevines and Chinese whispers (the latter needing a new expression considering it’s etymology) it has become Murphy’s Law of “What Can Go Wrong Will”.

I poked the spirit of this thing.

Result. Crap sleep because my tummy acted up and lost the entire day of blogging, hence Friday off. Least I kept that simple.

Nevertheless I am very grateful for the level of support on here and abroad for this. I was hoping maybe someone had been struggling with the same thing because I know how crazy making chronic nausea can be, especially when doctors act baffled.

I reset my alarm and though tomorrow is a longer day, I might be able to get one there or at least Monday. Sunday is pretty much the social media quiet valley of the week so not posting on Sundays is kind of fair enough. I am hoping to reduce the Sunday impact of the additional work I took on. I need the money but you need actual down time as well or the machine wont run right.

And that’s an album cut on Don’t Poke Murphy.

Speaking of today’s writing music is another classic from over 10 years ago now. Well I did mention Abba, so…

Iron and Wine – Our Endless Numbered Days

I used to work as a Barista for just years and back then it was this, Coldplay, Jamie Cullam and Jack Johnson.

Speaking of I really appreciated what NPR Fresh Air did with their 2016 Anthony Boudain interview. Like with Freddy Mercury I’m sorry I only discovered him now because of how he talked about his life being opposite of “Normal People”. As a Barista, cleaner, musician and even a writer I don’t know how often you feel like life’s biggest observer.

I’m drinking coffee in a duck blind.

Cheers Anthony,

Thanks for reading everyone 🙂

Tom

Retrospect

Since I’ve gone past my first one hundred posts and one hundred follows it does make sense to look back.

This really kicked off between a Uvic school thing and the Ollie and Emma project. I actually just flipped back and I yeah it’s been a heck of a journey to this point, with many posts I’ve forgotten about but I definitely have a sort of theme which is creativity, specifically talking about it. I don’t think it hurts that me and my mom are the weird creative types that talk my dad’s ears off whenever we are in the car, not just about this subject but generally.

Back when I was first self employed as a writer/pitch writer/musician I had all this extra morning time before I’d head to the shared office so I began just researching creativity since to me that was my product, plowing through almost every book in the library. There’s a potential blog for later… favorite books on creativity. Got three in mind all ready, but I’ll leave it for when I can really compile it. Considering this subject can get sometimes…well…”artsy” I want to make sure I’m actually giving you guys something I’d value. There’s so much fluff out there that I want to contribute a little more than that, or at least make it entertaining. Even voyeuristic into what I’m doing. Hey, totally cool. To me that’s like we went for coffee and you asked me questions. I’m a ADHD goofball like I mentioned before so I’d probably give you a moment by moment play by play of my morning if you let me.

Best not do that.

I also (here I go…lol) like the idea of this thing called tompogson.com (which makes me seem like a weird golf caddy clothing line) being about an overarching experience of being a creative spirit. From where I write this I can see most of my music gear, writing, books and even the visual art stuff I mentioned yesterday. There’s no rule stating what you are or are meant to be. One of my favorite little quirks of the band Depeche Mode was that for ages you never saw them on albums and not only did the liner notes not say who played what, but they’d flip the order of names around so for months I thought the singer was Alan Wilder. (nope.) All creativity is your playground and you can just experiment.

Though in a music situation you do feel safe behind your main instrument. Safe isn’t a bad four letter word or something. You can jump from safe to the deep end and back. Safe can get you to the edge.

Now jump.

Ok, I’m going way too global metaphorical axiom wacky now.

Have a great day guys and thank you all for reading this and going on this journey with me!

Ooh! One idea I had was I could put it what I was listening to this morning, since I usually work to music. Now it’s usually Low Roar or Harold Budd so I’ll start with L.R. but I can make it kind of a fun thing to add something different each day (it will be stuff you can work to so less on the metal side for me. If that works for you then that’s cool 😎

Because We Have To – Low Roar

Cheers,

Tom

Niagara made me cry

I still have a weird relationship with the falls that lasted ever since I saw this image. It was so long ago that I actually don’t remember because I was very small.

I was about 2 or 3. I was in Chilliwack, British Columbia when it happened.

I’ll pull out…

I don’t know how I ended up on page 133 staring at Niagara’s brink in this big volumn by the Canadian Automobile Association in 1976 but I did and it freaked me out so bad I cried and my father actually tried holding me while I looked at the photo (Still didn’t work).

The book is great if you can find a copy. It essentially goes from what it groups as “Atlantic Canada” and continues went through every National Park starting with Terra Nova National Park which is just west of St John’s on the Island of Newfoundland. The photography is of the time of course, but still quiet good, especially for that one photo that later on, when I flipped through the book would try to flip past quickly.

More recently, and I think due to stress, I had these waking dreams of going right up to that brink and being swept over but never actually falling. I’d just replay that over and over until I’d get out of bed. I tried neutralizing it by watching things on the falls or even the movie Niagara with Marilyn Monroe (where she does the walk that apparently many people have tried to emulate. Couldn’t find a meme of it but I love this shot…

Anyways all any of this did was make it more visual as I tried to be sensible with questions about it’s point of no return, and “oh so they can turn the spillways on and cut Horseshoe Falls down by fifty percent to help ground a boat out?”. Eventually I tried to write it out as I was trying to create more material this year. “Precipice” was born.

Original Song – Precipice

Haven’t had the dream in a while but I’m still fascinated by it and I’m conflicted about if I would ever want to go. I almost want to go and face it down, whatever the hell that is lol. I mean, how would I know I conquered the falls? Do I walk right up to it like a 50 gangster in a pinstriped suit and go “Ok Falls… Listen here, see?” Would a barrel be used (I think they are actually illegal now.).

Or would it just be randomly unpleasant for me and why go? There is lots of interesting stuff in the area, like the Thousand Islands, Niagara-On-The-Lake where Stephen Fry is presently taking up residence, or the Scarborough Bluffs on the shores of Lake Ontario which look like clay and glacial debris forming something from the Grand Canyon.

Has anything freaked you out so you just had to take it on? I think my fear of heights comes into my falls thing too, but yeah have you decided to take skydiving because of your fear? It’s all “false evidence assumed real” so if your skydiving (and naturally pull the cord as per instruction) or you visit Niagara (and stay on this side of the railing) you will get through it like anything.

If you feel crazy brave enough to tell us put it in the comment section below.

Cheers,

Tom

Love, Sex and other things blown out of proportion

I know…oh, behave!  But this subject seems to need talking, more and more as things get confused.  In some less-known tribal communities in the present day everyone walks about either nude or mostly nude and the number of sexual assaults or sexual challenges are through the floor non-existent.  These people still “do it” and I can’t imagine it doesn’t still feels good but it is simply a part of life.

If nothing else mankind’s fascination with this subject is the stuff of legend…both love and sex. Both are the subject of songs, poems and while they are connected…love is seen as the softer, magical thing and sex is like it’s darker seedier side that dare not speak it’s name.

Then there’s the recent Incel thing which first makes you laugh until you realize how serious they are and how angry that gets people. It’s the same reason that I think “Friends with benefits” and casual stuff of either side doesn’t work. There is still powerful emotion going on. Indeed with the writing of this I have to steer the ship somewhat carefully as I want to explain that a) it’s all going to be ok and b) no, I don’t discount how you might feel.

I really believe that there is someone for everyone and that even if it takes a while before that 1st time, it will eventually happen. Physically there is no kind of person not attractive to someone, it’s simply that we have put certain looks and body types up as the it girl and it boy. Go back a few hundred years and larger people were it as that, like in African cultures, suggested wealth. One of the challenges is of course the thing both you, dear reader, and I are staring at right now. Now of course I love my ability to make use of devices and technology to put out content and connect but it is still over a synthetic machine. We are social animals in the first place. We are tribal and family centric beings, even though many families have problems so your families may not be of a “traditional” set up (may instead be a group of friends, step parents, something else). As such we need to actually be out with other beings in a physical sense. That is the one thing no app can ever, ever do is recreate the physical presence of other people. It’s been “adult material’s” one failing since Playboy first hit the shelves, it can never recreate the actual size perspective, warmth and so on of (for men with this, in traditional sense) a romantic partner. Hey but if you need that until the real thing comes along, “whatever gets you through the night…”

It’s so funny with sex advice and love advice you see all over magazines and now online as well though. I take the line from a terrific British comedy and recently played with it in a song about how this idea could really make it all work. I’m a sucker for hippy like liberalism, I fully admit (are all hippys liberals? Another discussion for another day I suppose).

Anyways the comedy is called May to December

And the quote from it was “You make yourself happy by making the other person happy.”

Just that.

What’s great about it is that it’s not about what you want, other than seeing her/him smile. Knowing you made his/her day. I think the other thing is then the joy of building something like a family.

I grew up a few friend nerd by the way so if this is you please believe me when I say that you’re not a lost cause. What helped me? Other people. But in order for that to happen, I went to work, started playing that bass I just got in bands (you don’t have to by the way, this is my example), got involved in other stuff. This probably made me less an impossible mess around people. Things weren’t easy. Still aren’t but I like what that one woman said about men she would date…

“Men are like wine. They have to be crushed and go through it a few times before they are something I want to have dinner with.”

She’s a comedian, so calm down…I don’t mean you need to be beat down but experience does come from learning with comes from bad judgement so use this phone to find out what you can do today outside of your four walls and get yer shoes.

Trust me, the friends, love and yes, the sex, will be worth it.

Cheers,

Tom

Man’s Search for Workspace

There’s a strong possibility that it’s all just procrastinating. I used to romantically think that I should work on things in the least fancy possible locations because then it was..well..romantically unfancy I suppose. Like if I did my writing or reading in a McDonald’s then I really meant it. Kind of like busking in the roughest area of town. Seems a bit Vincent Van Gogh out there. As I said in a previous post I have done writing on buses and that is true, but its usually the back of a fairly comfortable one with earphones in.

Victoria used to have some amazing late night locations back when there were 24 hour cafe’s. Cafe De La Lune was on the corner of Douglas and Pandora, across from city hall and sported a comfy second story that was perfect for writing. Then there is Qv’s on Government that made for lots of late night work while listening to “Warm Beer, Cold Woman” by Tom Waits. I think I ran into someone from the song there. She smoked menthol cigarettes like Waits said, but I dont remember much else that night. Didn’t turn into anything that seedy (though part of my imagination is fascinated by anything like that.)

I can’t really work at home. On music I mostly can because its more physical I think and active and there’s headphones and shiny blinky lights. Lots of stuff to keep a now forty four year old Adhd’r humming along. But with anything like this I feel like I like to be near activity, though not actually in it. I know, right?

This has lead me to search high and low for just ages, trying to find the best places. I even rented part of an office once with a former cowriter, and i do miss that. I like the idea of a downtown office but as anyone can imagine, the cost would be mind blowing. That was the corner of a room and it cost us a combined hundred and thirty in a building that the police had once raided due to extreme drug problems.

Its like wanting to be near the energy of downtowm but still keep it locked out. Otherwise you get situations were it tries to get involved with you and then you instantly regret your decision.

“What is that…homework?”

And now your a man with a coffee, putting away books to explain why you spend your time off work doing homework when you dont go to school.

Yay.

Do you have any favorite places to work? Maybe you do work at home, or have a perfect time that’s never failed you.

Ironically this is written at home early on a Sunday with Cece asleep next to me.

So maybe I’m growing into the homebody role. Ooo I sure hope so.

😁

Cheers,

Tom