" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

October 28, 2016

Sing & Don't Cry

Wreck & Ruin? Hell Breaks Lose? Sing & Don't Cry?-)
Life and music are all about timing, emotion and personal meaning, which just about sums up the phenomena of synchronicity, as well. 
The empty bottle of tequila on my desk

I have an empty bottle of tequila that has been sitting to the side of my computer screen for quite some time now, not because I planned on keeping it as some kind of memento, but as a reminder to me to write a post about Cate Kennedy's wonderful book 'Sing & Don't Cry', about Mexican culture and how it changed her thoughts about life by seeing how the Mexicans lived their lives and what was important to them as they lived it.     
I had bought the bottle to drink while reading Cate's book, in an effort to immerse myself in Mexican culture.
I was eating Mexican food, watching my DVD 'Frida', about the great Mexican artist and reading about 'Day of the Dead' festivities.  
Listen to Cate read passages from her book in these pod-casts on Australia's national radio station by clicking on the red link below - 
Sing and Don't Cry by Cate Kennedy
I had read a passage in Cate's book about a bottle Victorians (lachrymatory) would place their tears in and give them as gifts to loved ones.

Tear Bottle: Pewter Basket Roma

Rattling Bones? 2016: The Year of the Monkey?
Shark Week in the Year of the Monkey
2016: The Year of the Monkey, has been one emotional roller-coaster for me, as if you have been reading through the posts on this blog for 2016 you would know.
I've basically been living in hibernation like a wounded bear licking it's wounds for the last year, apart from three brilliant road-trips across the east coast of Australia.  
#28: Introspection and Accidental Initiations?
Death and change (the death of old relationSHIPS/wrecks and ruins?) have been major themes for me this year.
Blowholes, Shipwrecks and Hearts in the Sea
But here is a series of "coincidences" that ties this "Sing and Don't Cry/Day of the Dead/Year of the Monkey" theme together for me and should give me a chance to finally throw the tequila bottle in the recycling bin.
Keith Urban walking past after singing at the 2016 NRL grand final
It all started with a throw away comment to a friend in England who I wrote about a few years ago in this post, when I spent a day on the Gold Coast with him and his partner at a theme park -
Aussie Sync Summit...Kind Of. And You Just Couldn't Make This Stuff Up If You Tried
I had shown him a picture of the sun rising over Cronulla beach on the day I was heading back home to Brisbane after spending the day before celebrating in Cronulla the Sharks grand final win over the Melbourne Storm.
I wrote to him, "Ironically a serve Storm ripped through Brisbane ripping a roof off a house in the suburb I used to own a house in. 
I hope my unit is still OK when I get back in a few days time. 
I'm leaving Cronulla this morning for Armidale tonight."
 PsoNik wrote back, "Long drive! If you go through Tamworth take a pic of the big guitar"
I thought that was funny, as I was thinking about stopping at the Golden Guitar in Tamworth to get something to eat and maybe pick up a copy of Keith Urban's new CD, not that I'm a big Keith Urban fan, it's just he had sung at the Sharks only ever grand final win and I was there, so it would be more of a memento of that day, more than a CD I would play for fun.  
The DVD I bought at the Golden Guitar in Tamworth
When I  got to the Golden Guitar to buy Keith's new CD they had sold out, but I stumbled across two CDs I would probably never found if I wasn't looking for Keith's new CD, which I knew I probably wouldn't play much more than once anyway.
Right above Keith Urban's older CDs, which I wasn't interested in buying was a CD of 'The Seekers' greatest hits.
A weird CD to come across in a predominately Country and Western music store, as 'The Seekers' are an Australian folky/Christian type group.
But the thing that hit me was the first song on the CD,  
'I'll Never Find Another You', is the song my mother chose for my father's funeral, not even a month ago.
Interestingly, when 'The Seekers' released that song as a single the B-side had, 'Open Up Those Pearly Gates' on it.

I've never liked that song, and like it less now.
That song will head (literally into my head) into my  
"Clockwork Orange Effect" songs, like Phil Collins version of 'Groovy Kind of Love', which was my wedding waltz.
I couldn't watch this show without thinking of 'A Clockwork Orange'
I bought that CD for my mum, but the CD that really made my stop worth while in Tamworth was Shane Nicholson's new solo CD.

I had taken my wife up to Toowoomba (my father was born in this town BTW) overnight one year to see Shane and Kasey sing their 'Rattlin' Bones' album and I bought the stuffed monkey you see hanging from my curtain rod further up on this post off Kasey's mother, who was serving in the merchandise shop during the interval and playing guitar in the band on stage with the others during the show. 
The last CD featuring Shane I had bought was 'Wreck & Ruin', which he wrote with his (then) wife.
I loved the artwork on that CD cover, but I didn't really care much for the songs.
It wasn't like the songs on 'Rattlin' Bones' to me and was a bit too hill-billy in tone for me, not to mention that my marriage was on the rocks by then and I didn't really care for relationship songs at the time...and still don't really.
I had sort of lost touch with Shane's career after the 'Wreck & Ruin' album came out and didn't realize that he and Kasey had split, but it wasn't that hard to tell from reading the titles of his songs on his new 'Hell Breaks Lose' album. 
I took the albums to the counter and asked the lady there if she knew if Shane and Kasey had separated and she told me it had happened a while ago.
Shane Nicholson and Kasey Chambers separate after eight years of marriage
I could relate to a lot of those titles on his album and hope that they sounded as good as they looked when I got back home and played them...and they did.
It's one of my favourite CDs at the moment and I play it quite a bit. 
It's a shame they split, as they seemed like a happy family...but don't they all?-)
Good luck on the "Secondhand Man" status Shane, but I'm my own man from now on and am staying well away from that marketplace, as I'm in no hurry to get back on that horse.
Keith Urban plays the NRL grand final in the Year of the Monkey and there is a monkey on his DVD?!
Keith Urban's DVD is made by 'Monkeyville' Est. 1967?!
1 Hour....and 42 Minutes?-)
42 Minutes of Synchronicity
But what really blew me away on a synchronicity level when it comes to the 'Year of the Monkey', and my team the Sharks winning their first grand final in 2016 was Keith Urban...the guy the NRL booked to play before the grand final...has monkeys all over his DVD and inside the cover of the DVD has a company logo of 'Monkeyville', established in the same year the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks were established...1967.
But the synchronicties don't stop there, because Keith Lionel Urban was born in October, 1967, the same year the Sharks came into the NRL.
Maybe I'll keep that empty tequila bottle now, as I noticed that there is a 67 on it.
 I also thought it was rather a coincidence that my friends in America held a "Sync Summit" this monkey year and had designed this shark themed poster above and the musical guest were a band called 'The Hard Way'.
And what's one of the songs on Keith's DVD?
'The Hard Way'.
I picked up the above CD case in the Big Guitar shop wondering which artist made this CD, but it was a sign warning customers not to pinch anything, as you were "being watched".
That reminded me of a post that I wrote that has become relevant in the last week for me, as in that post I comment about the 'Day of the Dead' poster I saw in Canberra -
Do You Ever Get the Feeling You Are Being Watched?
That's the poster pictured above and the relevance is the date on it.
As I wrote in a post linked near the bear card up above, I've felt like I needed the unit I've been living in for the last 14 months, so I could get the divorce "monkey" off my back and I hadn't planned on moving, but my lease is up where I'm living and the landlord has put the rent up $10 a week, so I decided to look around and found the same type of unit that I'm living in, but in much better condition and for $30 a week less, so I applied for that unit and got it and move in on Nov 5th.
The Year of the Monkey has been one weird ride and I'm just wondering what  
2017: The Year of the Rooster will bring...not more 'Wreck & Ruin', I hope?-)
2017: The Year of the Rooster?!
Just keep swimming singing...and don't cry!
I'm hoping for some peace and quiet and that the Sharks can win once more in 2017, the Year of the Cock;-)
Up, up Cronulla!
Go the Sharkies!!!


October 27, 2016

Weird Woolongong Skies

Some would call these artificial clouds "chem-trails"
When I was looking for my photos of the Kiama Blowhole and lighthouse, which I used in my last post -
Blowholes, Shipwrecks and Hearts in the Sea
I came across some photos I had taken in Woolongong the next morning while going for a walk around WIN stadium home of the St.George Illawarra Dragons.
When I got to Woolongong that night after driving most the day from Eden I saw a sign on the stadium advertising the next four home games in Woolongong for the Dragons.
Two of those teams, the Cowboys and the Storm, my team the Sharks would have to play in the semi-final (Cowboys) and final (Storm) to win their first ever NRL title in the 49 years the Sharks had been in the NRL.
Weird thing too is that the St.George Illawarra Dragons were founded on September 23rd, 1999 and September 23rd just happens to be my birthday and the day the Sharks would beat the Cowboys in Sydney to go into the grand final against the Storm.
The semi-final against the Cowboys would be the reason for my third road-trip for the year.
In fact, seeing the Sharks play was the reason for all of my road-trips this year.
My Happiest Birthday Ever
Looking across to WIN Stadium from my motel room that morning
I had never been to a football game in Woolongong and there wasn't one on when I was there, but I was staying in a motel across the road from the stadium, so I decided to get a better look of it by taking a stroll around it in the morning.  

These patterns on my motel's walls caught my eye for some reason;-)
Where have I seen this pattern before?-)
Oh, yeah, my blog's avatar picture
Looking out of my motel window to blue skies over Woolongong city
Looking out my motel window before going on my walk around the stadium the skies were clear and blue.
Looking back at blue skies over my motel as I walked around WIN
Even when I started my walk around the stadium and down to the beach at the back of it, the sky was nice and blue, mostly.

Blue sky and the nice beach behind WIN Stadium
The beach behind the stadium looks very nice when you look straight out to sea, or north to the lighthouse, but the spell is broken when you look south towards an ugly industrial area belching smog into the sky.
But then when I took a closer look into the sky I noticed the factories aren't the only things making pollution form clouds into the blue.
There are  planes flying at high altitude everywhere over the sky forming clouds...of what?
I turned my back to the planes and headed north around the stadium being thankful the planes hadn't made their way over to that side of the Woolongong sky yet.
But those planes soon filled in the blanks.
By the time I had rounded the stadium and was heading back to the motel the sky was just one white mess.
As I walked back to my motel and saw the trails overhead I was glad to be heading out of Woolongong that morning and up to Armidale where the skies would be clearer.
I was just hoping my motel wasn't going to hit me with a cloud-cover charge along with the $20 fee they slugged me with to park my car in the basement overnight;-)