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Arizona Lou


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Sun Nov 1 = Sometimes I wonder if I'm OK. This morning I perused 190 different fonts until I decided to use Comic San MS bold italic for the venue-specific information on my custom tour posters. What a job, but now it's done.
- This afternoon I ran across my tiny Plantronics Explorer 102 Bluetooth headset, on the floor hiding between my cable modem and printer base. Thank goodness I can now forget my plans to replace it.
- An attempt at comedy was driving the 22-mile round trip to The 44 in Glendale ... twice. The first time was to wait 45 minutes and find that the show had been canceled. The people at the venue knew nothing. The second time was to retrieve the T-Shirt Case which I had left there on the first trip.
- On the way home on the first trip I did my semimonthly grocery shopping at Winco Foods. After putting the groceries away and chilling here at home a while, I made the second trip. You either use your brain or your feet (or gas, in this case), they say.
- Got to bed at 10:21.

Mon Nov 2 = This morning I started copying my backup external USB hard drive to another one for
George & Cindy
my younger brother and his wife sold their house in Mesa, Arizona and are now in Christopher Creek.
to take home as the off-site backup for my computer
- Because they might be coming over, I swept and mopped the kitchen, vacuumed the house and cleared off the kitchen counter and island. To keep my plumbing happy, I poured a pan of boiling water down the kitchen sink with a disposal-powered hot water chaser like I do every month.
- We met at Whataburger at Shea and the 101 for a visit and a bite to eat.
- Then, back home, it was posters time. I pretty well perfected my methods, took notes and made templates. Now all I have to do is plug in new venue information and stick in my opener if I have one, or an emblem of the venue if I do not. Voilá posters good for up to six feet high, down to low resolution for the Internet as shown here.
- This evening I ordered a 6-Pack Set of JUGGLING Balls for Beginners. They should arrive Wednesday, will be a little smaller than my Dollar Tree squishy balls, about the same weight, but will supposedly have zero bounce and not roll around :)
Juggling Balls
I am sure I will have as much trouble with them as I do with my squishy ones :(
- Got to bed at 10:08 :) <

Tue Nov 3 = This morning I made two more large-format venue posters.
- Anne, my daughter, phoned. She will be flying in from the east coast on Saturday. We worked out an itinerary. I will pick her up at PHX, she will go to the variety show I host at Urban Beans, then we will drive out to Fountain Hills for supper and a visit with
Rose Anne
My X wife who lives in Payson by a lake
- After an early supper and the gym, I impulsed and made a transparent background for the Juggling Balls pictured above. I learned that with GIMP 2, dragging the white background with the Color Selection Tool increases the selected background. With not enough, everything had an ugly white fringe. Too much, parts of of the arms and hands disappeared.
- Got to bed at 10:27

Wed Nov 4 = This morning after breakfast I impulsed... on juggling and found this excellent article on hand size, selecting your balls etc. at Renegade Juggling and also found:
                There are at least 8 reasons you should start throwing things. (from Wired)
1. Juggling boosts brain development. Research indicates that learning to juggle accelerates the growth of neural connections related to memory, focus, movement, and vision. The beneficial changes persist even after weeks without practice.
2. Juggling is egalitarian. It doesn't discriminate by age, size, gender, or athletic ability. A ten-year-old is as likely to be a fantastic juggler as anyone else, something not true of marathon running, boxing, or drag racing.
3. Juggling builds hand-eye coordination in ways that improve reaction time, reflexes, spatial awareness, strategic thinking, and concentration. This helps improve confidence as well as athletic ability. It may, if juggling enthusiasts are to be believed, even promote reading skills.
4. Juggling gets you moving enough to increase your oxygen intake, not so much that you sweat profusely.
5. Juggling can be stimulating as well as calming. While learning more complicated juggling skills you rely on left-brain processes, carefully focusing and analyzing the steps. When practicing skills you've already mastered you rely on right-brained processes, relaxing into a more fluid, intuitive motion. To get the most out of juggling, make time for both.
6. Juggling puts you in charge, since you can make it as easy or difficult as you choose. Start with three balls and master toss juggling. To amp up the challenge increase the speed, add more balls, change patterns, or incorporate a bit of bounce juggling. You can also change props, learn trick juggling, try multi-person juggling, add comedic patter, heck, even hold a flaming torch in your mouth if you're well insured.
7. Juggling teaches a growth mindset. You learn from mistakes, noticing how effort and increasing experience bring you ever greater mastery. As Dr. Dweck explains in the ground-breaking book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, this approach is a vital formula for success in school, sports, business, and personal relationships. Might as well learn it while dropping the ball.
8. Juggling is ridiculously fun.
- FedEx mis-delivered my T-Shirts to the front porch... again. Looks like I need to reiterate to Design A Shirt to NOT USE FEDEX! I got the new shirts processed with stock rotated so I now have a total of 80 T-Shirts from xS to 6xL.
- I did not get away in time to stop by a gym, but stopped by Fry's for my annual half gallon of eggnog on my way to El Charro Hipster for their comedy open mic. Arriving about 6:20pm, I was 25th on the list for the 7:00 show. While waiting for my turn I went out to my van and took a 1:23 hour nap. The audience liked my gym routine - especially the Towel Boy part.
- On the way home I stopped by the East Bell Rd Esporta Fitness. I spent most of my workout time inviting two young employees at the front desk to my Stand Up Live appearance and talking about investing for their financial future and offered Gray $50 to start a Roth Ira. I finished off with a five minute partial slow heavy legs workout before they closed at 11:00pm.
- I have been saving a little time by not doing things out of pure curiosity lake weighing myself several times a day. Weighing takes only a few seconds, but mounts up and takes away from my concentration.
- Got to bed at 12:09

Thu Nov 5 = Late afternoon I took my usual Thursday preemptive nap: 1:23 hours.
- This evening on the way to JP's Comedy I stopped by the Tempe LA Fitness for a short slow heavy finish to yesterday's legs workout then same for my arms.
- The JP crowd of 19 enjoyed my Gym set. My cell phone went off about half way through my set. Since it was a new phone I made fun of it and of myself for not knowing how to turn it off. I put it back in my pocket still, making noise for the rest of my set. After my set I went out back and figured it wasn't the alarm or the timer, but SleepBot. Some how it had set itself for 8:30pm on weekdays, although it went off at 9:30pm.
- Got to bed at 11:19

Fri Nov 6 = In this morning's project, I added eight more to my Fan email list; and added Sozo Coffee House to my comedy schedule the day after Thanksgiving.
- This afternoon I took my van through a touchless automated car wash.
- This evening I modified the pockets on both of my new cargo shorts, specifically for MY electronics and redid my Urban Beans poster to include, "Asside Theater presents..." I turned out a real cool poster, to me, that that was a waste of time because the venue already had a poster that I didn't know about.
- Got to bed at 10:34

Sat Nov 7 = Big day today, getting ready for hosting the variety show at 3:30pm at Urban Beans in central Phoenix.
- On the way I picked up my daughter, Anne, who flew in from Maryland for a short visit, so she got to see the show.
- After the show we scooted off to Fountain Hills for supper and a visit with
Rose Anne
My X wife who lives in Payson by a lake
. After supper Rose Anne took Anne and I took Shea Boulevard... home.
- Got to bed at 11:01 :( ...but sleeping a phenomenal 6 hours before having to get up to pee - just one time!

Sun Nov 8 = Most of today was spent finalizing and timing my five minutes for Stand Up Live in downtown Phoenix tonight.
- It was a good show with some very good comedians. Three tried their comedic legs for the first time
- After the show I saved about $6.80 by getting only two gallons of expensive gas ($2.499/gal at a Scottsdale Shell) and then filling up at At a Phoenix ARCO ($2.159/gal). Both
Top Tier gas
a higher standard than the EPA minimum, keeps your car engine running cleaner and is worth the possible additional 3ΒΆ/gal
- Got to bed at 11:18. When I get up to pee I spend about two minutes practicing my JUGGLING. One ball at this point. Each time I end my practice sessions by trying the two-ball exchange and a three-ball toss. Well, tonight about 5:30 in the morning after my pee'n'practice I caught first ball with a two-ball toss, and my first ball with a three-ball toss: major event!

Mon Nov 9 = I was checking Kindle online and found updated versions for seven of my books, so downloaded the updates. Now I certainly will not run out of things to read. I am starting by rereading Brag!: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn without Blowing It by Peggy Klaus.
- It was cloudy at solar noon so I lay out in the sun at about 1pm when it was sunny.
- You know you're not enthusiastic about what needs to be done when figuring your mileage and cleaning your toilets takes precedence over emailing comedy clubs.
- On my new Pixel 4a phone, I set up RV Parky to only show me Walmart and other stores with free overnight parking on its maps.
- This evening I took care of number two and did a short slow heavy torso workout at Planet Fitness gym.
- All the rest of my Wemo automatic outlet controllers quit working except for the one controlling my white noise fan. Some of them wouldn't even turn on manually.
- Got to bed at 11:39 :(

Tue Nov 10 = I drove 24 miles each way to meet
George & Cindy
my younger brother and his wife sold their house in Mesa, Arizona and are now in Christopher Creek.
in Fountain Hills. We had a somewhat short visit, mostly about juggling. Also gave me my previous backup external hard drive.
- On the way home I stopped by the Fountain Hills Goodwill. I did not find the little table I was looking for but did find a good pair of new Nike shoes - first good pair in several years... and my most expensive shoes yet.
- This evening ordered a little 8 x 11 x 24" shelf unit to go to the left of the toilet in my master bathroom so I can keep my juggling balls on it at night. That way they'll be handy for my brief nocturnal practice sessions. This winter that little toilet room will be warmer than practicing in my 67-degree bedroom. Burrrr.
- Got to bed at 10:28

Wed Nov 11 = Last night during a JUGGLING pee practice, for the first time, I caught two balls with a three-ball toss.
- This morning I fired up my high tech cup warmer at 130° F for keeping warm and sipping my water. Also, to add some solar heat to the house, I removed the sun screens from four of my south and west facing windows.
- Tonight's comedy was at El Charro Hipster with a gym stop on the way.
- Got to bed at 10:48 :(

Thu Nov 12 = This morning neither of my Echo Dots could find the Internet until I power cycled both of them several times, and power cycled my cable modem and router and then restarted my computer.
- I took a two-hour preemptive nap.
- Until the fourth Dollar Tree, I didn't find more 2.5" 120g squishy sticky bead balls to use in learning JUGGLING so I bought five. Here at home, I discovered that the ones that had lost their stickiness could be rejuvenated by rinsing them off with water.
- After the Dollar Trees, I stopped at the Anytime Fitnessgym in Gilbert for a short slow heavy arms workout and Fry's Food across the street for a bag of spinach to eat before the comedy open mic at JP's Comedy Club.
- Got to bed at 10:51 :(

Fri Nov 13 = This morning I started phoning printing companies in Dallas and Louisville. Since I plan to have show-specific publicity kits (including large posters) sent to venues across the US, it would make sense to have them printed and shipped from a central location. Also UPS and FedEx have main hubs there.
- My toilet-side shelf unit arrived. It wasn't difficult to assemble. Now I have an official place for my extra toilet paper and my juggling balls so they will be handy for a few minutes of practice when I get up at night to pee. I even put gaffer's tape over a sharp corner to protect a ball if it hits the corner.
- My excursion out this evening was to Office Max for an 11 x 17" poster for my Casa Grande Boy Scout Benefit Show and to the Moon Valley LA Fitness gym for a short slow heavy torso workout.
- Got to bed at 10:40 :(

Sat Nov 14 = I thought I'd never get the Elmer's spray adhesive to use in mounting the poster to some Dollar Tree foam board I had around the house. I ordered the adhesive twice at walmart.com for store pickup, but due to changing my route and schedule, I ended buying it at the 48 St & Bell Walmart and canceling both online orders. Sorry, Walmart. I found that there is no way to change the pick-up store on a Walmart order.
- I stopped by the Colonnade LA Fitness to deliver six T-Shirts to a couple of staff members, then went on my way with no time for a workout.
- When I arrived at Urban Beans I got the poster mounted with the help of Anthony.
- The variety show I hosted went well. We had a good audience of 32 for music, poetry and comedy. Although the show started about 10 minutes late due to PA problems, we ended on time for the next event there on the patio: a Hootenanny spearheaded by Eddie Detroit.
- Got to bed at 10:18 with no CPAP for tonight.

Sun Nov 15 = Still trying to get rid of my spare tire (some say it is a donut but I call it my truck tire). This morning I weighed 129.6 lb. The past few days my scale read 131.6 lb. I'll continue with my 60% diet for a few more days in case this morning was a fluke. My goal was to be down to 130 lb by my birthday, Nov 28th. That's two weeks. I want my abbs to show better, but if they don't show at 130 lb, I'll give up on the project since 130 is the lowest healthy BMI and weight for someone of my hight.
- My Amazon Echo routines have not been working and some of my devices have been working intermittently. It's a bummer when you have to walk around the house and manually turn lights and things on and off. I got most of them working by cycling them on and off with phone through the Amazon app.
- A tedious project this afternoon, since I did not think of it earlier, was adding PG-16 to the five tour posters I have made so far. Just goes to show that it does not pay to do things too far in advance. Good thing I did not have 30 posters to change.
- Got to bed at 10:17

Mon Nov 16 = I put in to participate for a Royal Caribbean test cruise. Little chance of getting it, as I am one of over 100,000. I checked with other cruise companies by phone and online and and came up with a big fat zero.
- Wearing my graphics hat, I phoned a bunch of printers in Louisville and determined that none was as good for disseminating my posters as is Office Depot.
- Seinfeld Challenge video was my evening project. I probably made 30 takes before I was mostly satisfied with the result of Jerry's Knife Through a Shoe. I didn't end up with as much interaction with my virtual audience as I wanted, but had already spent too much time, as it is a long shot.
- For tonight's treat I had 5.5 lemon-yogurt covered almonds.
- Got to bed at 11:20 :(       but got up for only one pee :)       Instead of reading my Kindle, I went over the entire sequence for the Friday one hour show I'll be doing.

Tue Nov 17 = Around solar noon I lay in our beautiful Phoenix sun.
- Other projects were to work on resolving my checking account and to start packing stuff for my one hour show: Fri Nov 20, 2020; 7:00pm; VFW Post 1677; 111 E 2nd St; Casa Grande, AZ 85122
- Someone from
The organization I support and through which I take non-driving seniors shopping and to their doctors' appointments
stopped by and gave me an apple pie to show their appreciation for my support :)
- This afternoon I got the components made for my garage-ceiling sun screen holder. Next will be painting the two boards and mounting the brackets on the garage ceiling. That will involve some tricky measuring.
- Got to bed at 10:40

Wed Nov 18 = I got my checking account resolved... almost. My check register was $12 low. Last month it was $6 low. Next month maybe I can figure out what's happening.
- Before leaving on today's trip this afternoon, I made second lanyard with a special stainless steel hook to fit the Sony ICD-UX560 recorders I use as a body mics for my comedy appearances. For about a week I have been unable to find the first lanyard I have been using for years... both adapted from lanyards for the C Crane Witness.
- I stopped by the Colonnade LA Fitness for a poster trim, shower and short slow heavy legs workout. Then treated myself with a Protein Frosty on the drive to the El Charro Hipster Open Mic where I used Black and talked about my Casa Grande Boy Scout fund-raiser Friday evening.
- Got to bed at 10:46

Thu Nov 19 = I submitted a Hashtag for Jimmy Fallon's #NewThanksgivingTraditions.
- I went through, out loud, my full show sequence... in about 3.5 minutes :)I almost strained my brain doing it, but it is good from a mental activity standpoint and also for my comedy.
- This afternoon's preemptive nap was interrupted by Alexa and a neat phone call from
My nephew, George's son who is an engineer for a high-tech company
. I tried to make up for that with a nap in my van by JP's Comedy.
- Comedy, this evening, was very interesting. It was my first time at Adventurous Stills in Tempe with an audience of 12. Adriana, the host, bought one of my T shirts after her top kept creeping up during her amazing hula hoop dance.
- For JP's Open Mic I did the opening for myself I'll do tomorrow in Casa Grande. I was tired with a little headache so left early to get home for a good night's sleep before my big show tomorrow: Fri Nov 20, 2020; 7:00pm; VFW Post 1677; 111 E 2nd St; Casa Grande, AZ 85122 - Hour Show
- Got to bed at 12:08 with no alarm set so got plenty of sleep. I'm starting an experiment of not using an alarm and seeing what happens.

Fri Nov 20 = This was to be a big day for me, doing a full-length hour show in my home state of Arizona for the first time. I know I put way too mental energy into it, but that's the way I am. It was a big day, and a neat day.
- I got my van loaded up early with all my merch, show stuff, gym bag and computer so had a little time to relax and fix a broken stage-light spring clamp before leaving for the 64 mile drive down to Casa Grande. In retrospect, I could have left earlier and stopped by a gym here in Phoenix on the way. As it was I did not get in any gym today.
- Because they asked me to start the show early, I lost some focus and neither set and started my Garmin Vivoactive vibration timer nor counted the number of audience members. It was one of my best veterans audiences yet. Attentive during my whole 58-minute show. This annual fundraiser for the post's Boy Scout Troop 919, which included a spaghetti dinner and my comedy, raised over $800. I didn't sell any merch.
- I didn't even get drowsy driving back home.
- Got to bed at 10:20. I got up at 3am to put the high capacity Canon camcorder battery on charge, which I forgot to do before going to bed. I had used the battery for the entire Casa Grande show and did not want to leave it in a discharged state. In order to get the battery and its charger, I had to go out to the back of my van and unload my Comedy Stuff box. Of course, while I was at it, I also unloaded the merch box, mic stand, stage lights and spare cable/connector bag. Back to bed about a half hour later after a small pee.

Sat Nov 21 This morning I started uploading and processing last night's videos. I worked on it some more in the evening
- This afternoon we had a good Urban Beans variety show with one with Spoken Word (that was me), four Musicians and 10 Stand Up Comedians. Nathaniel, one of the Urban Beans owners, appreciated that I had made an 8.5x11" Keep It clean sign which I almost needed to hold up for two of the comedians.
- On the way home I had a good poo, shower and short slow heavy arms workout at the Colonnade LA Fitness.
- Got to bed at 10:28 :(

Sun Nov 22 = As a people pleaser, 7 bad things that happen when you're too nice (and how to avoid them) by Damon Zahariades was in my email box this morning. The bottom line: Don't apologize for saying, "No," as it only reinforces the idea that you're doing something wrong, when you may just be avoiding being taken advantage of.
- Today I got the hour video from Friday's show processed. I did the final production in H.265 (HEVC - High Efficiency Video Coding) which makes a much smaller file with no degradation in quality compared to H.264 (AVC - Advanced Video Coding, but takes a lot more computer horsepower and a LOT longer to process (4:11 hours per hour of video for HEVC vs about :35 minutes per hour of video for HVC). File size of HEVC varies, but is about half that of HVC.

- Before bedtime I did my monthly blog rollover in 13:44, almost a new record.
- Got to bed at 10:18 with no alarm set. Every time I got up, it was to pee (and practice my juggling skills a few minutes). This morning I got up, of course needing to pee, but after a whopping 11:04 hour night. `

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Mon Nov 23 It makes sense, but I didn't know about reheating pies, pie weights and blind baking crusts until I did some Internet research this morning.
- I finally got Venmo set up on my cell phone so am looking forward to selling my next T-Shirt with it to see if it really works.
- Last summer I helped my daughter, Anne get a fire pit for the family. With the cold weather now, it is time for them to use it. Here they are by the fire, Anne not in the picture because she is taking it. Brooke has the torch that she made.
Granddaughters & Father Brooke
- I have lost some things and then, after much fruitless searching, found them, accidentally, in strange places. 1) I went without my ICD Body-Mic lanyard for about a week, made a replacement and then found the old one in a little crevice between my van's passenger seat and the console. 2) I looked all over for, it seemed like, hours for one of my juggling balls that disappeared during a practice session in the kitchen. I finally found it in the right-hand sink drain where the strainer basket would go had I been using one. 3) Still hiding somewhere is the ChenFec digital recorder with which I listen to all my favorite podcasts.
I had an Aha moment after researching a replacement for the ChenFec to order and making a chart of possibilities. I decided to try the old Sony ICD-PX312 voice recorder I have been using for doing my shopping lists. It works perfectly. I saved money, time and like the way it works better.
- Got to bed at 10:09 with no alarm set.

Tue Nov 24
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