greetings from Escanaba, Marquette, Ishpeming, etc.

It's good to be back in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, the land of my birth, childhood, and youth.

Here's a shot of "Old Ish," the native American mascot of my hometown, Ishpeming. Ish stands in the center of the town's main drag, keeping his eye on the hooligans across the street at the Tee Pee Bar, and the Congress Pizza place. I walked downtown last night with Dawn, Paavo, Svea, and my Mom, for my regular pilgrimage to Mama Mia's restaurant, and we stopped in the shadow of Old Ish, to pay our respects. He's looking good these days. Freshly painted. They stuck him there in the late 1800s, and he's holding up well.

Right now I'm down the road in the "big town" of Marquette, utilizing the free wi-fi at the local bagel place. Dawn's on campus of Northern Michigan University working in the Augsburg Fortress Bookstore at the ELCA Synod Assembly for the Northern Great Lakes Synod. Sort of the Justice League meeting of all the Lutheran Pastors up here in the UP area. Paavo and Svea are playing with their Grandparents.

Where have I been for the past few weeks, in this low-blog period? Well, just hangin' at home, mostly. Taking care of the kids, wrapping up Paavo's school year, and beginning a series of home/cleaning projects.

On the musical front, I've finished up pretty much all the songs for a new album (hopefully to be released in July). I sang a few last lead vocal parts, played bass and Wurlitzer on an awesome new song co-written with the brilliant Jeff Krebs (who I just visited this afternoon), and took my completed recordings to various mixing engineers in the Twin Cities who are mixing my tunes for ultimate rockability. Met with my favorite painter Kelly Newcomer who will help me with album art and design.

Saw the movie Iron Man last week with Dawn, and we enjoyed it, giving it a healthy grade "B."
I've been surfing the cable TV the past few days at my in-laws' and parents' houses...I just can't figure out Keeping Up With the's boring! Nothing happens! I enjoy that E network show "The Soup"...pretty snarky and funny. Watched the first 3/4 of a movie on AMC (or TBS or something)...the underwater thriller "Sphere" starring Sharon Stone and Dustin bored and couldn't finish it. I'm dying to watch some music videos, but there are no channels on TV that play them. I guess you gotta watch YouTube these days. Spent 2 hours watching "The Office" marathon on NBC last night, and thought it was funny, but not as funny as the early seasons. I've watched more TV in the past three days than I have in the past three months.

Tonight my Mom is cooking a ham. I'm gonna sit in front of the tube and change my guitar strings. It's good to rest and relax and just exist.


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