Friday, September 26, 2008


To paraphrase Robert Klein, get a bigger shovel next time.

Tonight's winner, by an easy margin, Obama.

McCain looked nervous and kept repeating himself. Obama looked confident and added to it by frequently looking directly into the camera to talk to the viewer. McCain didn't do that once.



"Thank you for your application for the above mentioned posting. We appreciate
the time and effort you devoted in applying for this position.

The entire selection process takes at least 8 weeks. You may hear from us if
you are selected for an interview."

You mean, if you want to talk to me, you may NOT contact me? How will I know? I'm not clairvoyant. I can see you just sitting there, wondering, "where's Tuerff? We TOLD him that we MIGHT call. Or we might not. He should just know he's supposed to be here!"


I attended the open stage at Fiddler's Dream last night for the first time in a year and a half. It was good. I may do it again soon. I stopped going after I resigned from the Fidd's board after hosting it pretty much non-stop for eight years. It's bigger and more popular than ever, so that's good.


Before my friend Carrie (see previous posts below) took off for good to Maine, she stopped by the house. Knowing her botany background, I took her out to my mystery garden and asked her to identify some plants that were growing like crazy but I didn't know what they were.

"That's easy," she said, "eggplants."

I wasn't sure because no flowers were a-poppin' on these plants.

Until today.

It's eggplant. BIg ol' purple flowers.

Never doubt a botanist.


Thursday, September 25, 2008


The even spelled my name right! Hell, the fact that they bothered to mention my name at all, given the fact that I have the third smallest set of tits in the show...



I have mentioned previously that my friends Keith and Carrie O'Brien recently moved to Maine. Well, I got a reference call from a dairy in Maine yesterday, inquiring about Carrie, and, moments later, she got the job! Quality control. So both are now firmly employed in Maine. Congrats.


It's fall, so it's time for fall planting. I put in a row of Japanese Cabbage (this grew really well last fall) and collards for the iguana. Just three days after I planted them, they started coming up. Must be the fertilizer I put in the dirt...


Monday, September 22, 2008


I try not to get too into politics here, but my friend, the Rev. Curt Miner, sent me this and I think he has a point. So if you're NOT a Sarah Palin fan, read on...

Hey everybody...

PBS has a poll that asks: Is Sarah Palin qualified to be VP? You don't have to give your name or email address in order to vote. It's very simple. It's something you can do in two clicks - Check this out please, and fast.

The Right is having people vote that Palin is qualified. So far, they are beating us. Quick, please vote, honestly takes 2 seconds. Don't give them poll numbers they can use against us...

Let's turn this around!!!

Here's the link: http://www.pbs.org/now/polls/poll-435.html

Just click & vote. NOW.

Peace ..... REV CURT =)>

We now return you to the usual meaningless patter around here...


Sunday, September 21, 2008


Check out this neat site I just found:


You can find out if you're the only you in America! Or, if you're not, how many more of you are running around...

Plug in famous names from history! It's fun!


Played the Grand Avenue Tavern Acoustic Showcase last night. I didn't see ANY of you there but I had a good time and an attentive audience anyway.


My son just turned me on to a very neat band called "Feist." Go to Youtube and check out their neat video for a song called "1,2,3,4." Then, check out the version their lead singer did for Sesame Street. Very cool. Not as cool as Stevie Wonder on Sesame Street, but...


Friday, September 19, 2008


I just got back from seeing a concert featuring the ASU Wind Ensemble and the ASU Symphonic Band, who in various incarnations performed six modern compositions from six different composers, five American and one Dutch. It was a fine show and totally free, at Gammage Auditorium.

The show opened with the 25-piece wind ensemble playing FZ's Dog/Meat. For those of you who don't know, this is a medley of two Frank Zappa instrumentals entitled "Uncle Meat" and "Dog Breath (in the Year of the Plague)." They work quite well together, which is why, I presume, FZ fused them together for orchestra.

Since the much larger symphonic band took up the bulk of the stage, the wind ensemble (except for the percussionists) began their performance in the depths of the orchestra pit, and as the first notes of the song were played, the group arose on a pneumatic lift -- dressed to a person like hippies, circa 1968. No tuxes and black dresses here, but wigs, headbands, jeans, sandals and bare feet. Even the conductor wore a t-shirt with a "Rolling Stone" logo on it.

I don't think the old fuddy duddies in the audience "got it," as far as the wardrobe was concerned, but the band played the piece well and got a tumultuous response when it was over.

Instrumentation for the piece included three percussionists, two pianos, a banjo player, an acoustic guitar, harp, three violinists, one cello, and quite a few horns.

The whole show was very enjoyable. It's nice to see that people will come out to hear music that challenges them, as many of the pieces did. (The piece by the Dutch composer, named Andriessen, was especially off-the-wall and intense.)

After the show I headed down to a Tempe open mic that I hadn't been to in a long time since gas became two million dollars a gallon. Everyone was glad to see me, I cracked everybody up with my set and I had a good time.

What did YOU do Thursday night?


Wednesday, September 17, 2008


First House
Christmas In Arizona
That Fiddle and Banjo Crap
Baby Boomer
A Piercing Song
Little Star Treks
Catch Phrases
Clerical Error
Sun City Sinners

With the holidays on the way, I expect "Christmas" to make its move back into the number one spot soon...

By the way, I have absolutely no idea how many downloads of each of these we're talking about. I could find out but it would take some time and I don't care.

We're talking maybe scores of downloads. The very low scores. Two, max.


That said, you're looking at what will pretty much be most of my set at the Grand Avenue Tavern this Saturday at 7. I'm opening the acoustic musician's showcase that night and YOU need to come see it! 24th Avenue and Grand!


Monday, September 15, 2008



YOU will not lower/raise taxes. You will work with Congress and the Senate to lower/raise taxes.

YOU will not improve education. You will work with Congress and the Senate to improve/further fuck up in the guise of improving education.

YOU will not see to it that every man, woman child and dog higher than 16 inches tall has the right to find a good-paying job. You will work with the Congress and Senate to...you get the idea.

The only thing YOU can do is tell the troops to get the f**k out of Dodge. Or Iraq.

Face it: YOU can't do SHIT on your own. For God's sake, one of you say something that makes me want to vote for you.

Let me rephrase that. Mr. Obama, say something -- ANYTHING -- that isn't just a good idea. Explain how you're gonna do it. Explain how you're going to get the House and Senate to buy it. Then I won't feel cornered when I vote for you in November. (I wouldn't vote for McCain if he WERE running for dictator. I know people who know him very well and THEY won't vote for him, either.)


As I have mentioned before I am a Luddite when it comes to personal technology. I have a Virgin Mobile Phone which I keep in my car basically for emergencies like flat tires and I lost the shopping list, Janice -- what am I supposed to buy?

Anyway, the other day I thought maybe I'd take my cell phone -- which I've had for two years, and which I still have no idea what the phone number is -- and see what else it does. My wife's phone takes pictures (WHAT A STUPID IDEA.), downloads music (DITTO), texts, whatever the fuck that is (JUST CALL ME FER CHRISSAKE) and monitors U.S. missile installations along the west coast.

Once I learned how to access the features button on my Virgin phone (which took me about 30 times of pushing random buttons on the phone, which invariably kept turning it off), I found an option called "features," which had, near the bottom, "Internet." Okay, I can access the internet if I want to. IF I want to pay 15 a month or $1 from my current prepaid balance to try it for 24 hours.

24 hours? I didn't last 24 minutes.

So I get the dollar trial. It pulls up a Google search window. Now there's a problem.My phone has no keyboard. (I've seen those; the keys are the size of rice kernels so they can't possibly be practical.) My phone has (like most real phones in the known UNIVERSE) ten keys, eight with letter combos on them. Apparently this is fine if you can spell everything you need with the first letters on each number: A, D, G, J, M, P, T, W. You can't access any of the other letters.

For example, I decided to Google "Tom Tuerff". So I push the "T" key and sure enough a T appears in the window. So I figure if I pushed it once and got a T, if I push it again I'll get a "U".

I got another T. And another. And another. Great. I can search the word "TTTTTTT."

So apparently I can search Google on my phone as long as I'm only looking for random letters, or intent on discovering all I can about such compelling subjects as "Map," "Pam," Jag, Wat, Tap, Tad, etc.

Even if I could figure out how to do this, it seems to be a colossal waste of time which would be better spent walking or driving to a COMPUTER and LOOKING UP WHAT I WANT.

Do people REALLY type messages to each other with these things? Don't bother doing that with me 'cause I wouldn't know how to access it, much less respond to it. Phones should be for MAKING PHONE CALLS. Period. The end.

I'm gonna go put my phone back in the car where it belongs.


I'm playing a gig tonight at the Peoria Library Auditorium. The bulk of the people who attend are from retirement communities and I bet they don't even have COMPUTERS. Much less cell phones that send messages and access the internet, which most of them believe to be a high-tech fiber fishing accessory.

7 p.m. Acoustic. Not even any scary amps. Be there.


Sunday, September 07, 2008


They've only been official candidates for a few days and already I'm sick of both of them.
McCain's acceptance speech the other night was BOOOOORING. Predictable. Ran out of gas. Now all of a sudden, HE's the change candidate?

If I ever run for president, I'm going to pick a platform that nobody else will try to emulate. I'll get a purple tattoo on my nose and become the ONLY Candidate to advocate purple tattoos on your nose. And education.

Some years ago, before he got sick, Frank Zappa toyed with running for president and the Libertarians took him up on it. However, after looking over their platform, they appeared to be too extreme even for FRANK ZAPPA, who at heart could be best described (as one person termed it) a "sensible conservative." An outspoken critic of the Republican party (he actually had to give up a powerful position with the Czech Government because the Reagan White House threatened not to do business with the newly-formed Czech Republic if they worked with Zappa), Frank would have made an interesting candidate. Some years ago on the FZ usenet group, someone posed the question, what would life be like with President Zappa?

I felt the need to chime in. (I realize that what follows is only funny to those of you who know every tiny smidgen of info there is to know about FZ, his family, the scores of musicians who played in the Mothers and FZ's political leanings, but take it from me -- this is VERY FUNNY. Zoogz Rift even said so...)

"Well, for one thing, the word "fuck" would be used in sitcoms and other TV
shows quite liberally, since Frank would have probably said "fuck" on TV so
many times that it would be like saying "Hi!"

He probably wouldn't have changed the gun laws; nobody ever does.

He would have offered Daniel Schorr a cabinet post, or at least press

I think he would have discovered a lot that he didn't know about the economy.

We would be doing more business with Eastern Europe.

Vice president Gore (Tipper) would give speeches at charity events with
comments that poked fun at when she and Frank were at odds.

His tours would be shorter.

He would be very trustworthy of certain people in his staff, yet fire people at
will. Interviewing for a job in the White House would be painstaking and hard.
Chief of Staff Kaylan would have his hands full.

Ditto for his appointees to the court: Justice Volman, Justice Colaiuta and
Justice Des Barres.

First Lady Gail Zappa would accidentally popularize the muu-muu as a formal

Zappa's incessant smoking would make him very popular with the tobacco states.

Smokers would increase "because the President does it!"

White House Balls would be the stuff of legend.

Musical unions wouldn't make any great progress during his term.

He would ultimately get caught pooching Attorney General Ruth Underwood."


The Schedule for the Prescott Folk Festival (first weekend in October) has been released. I will be playing in the big building at the Sharlott Hall Museum Complex at noon Saturday. BE THERE. Apparently, someone other than the someone else who originally was in charge of putting together the festival this year is now in charge. Many of us were a bit taken aback that the original new person, wanted to make all day Saturday an "Arizona-theme" day, where anyone who wanted to play Saturday had to have Arizona-based songs in their act. No one I talked to liked this idea. And apparently neither did the organizers, who apparently changed the person running it. Near as I can tell.


Down here in the Valley, it's starting to be nice in the early morning, even though it's still godawful hot in the daytime. But we're getting there.


Monday, September 01, 2008


Okay, let's see if I got this straight: Johnny Mac goes ON AND ON about how Obama has no experience. Then he picks a woman running mate who has about as much experience in government as I DO, a woman who was born two days after the BEATLES showed up on the Sullivan Show, a woman who claims to be an ULTRACONSERVATIVE, but never mind that her unmarried 17 year-old daughter is pregnant and on and on and on...

This is gonna be SUCH a landslide...


Problem is I'm not sure if I like that. Obama says he's for change but he won't get specfic. As my wife points out, Hitler was for change too. And boy, did things change...



"Rip This Joint" by the Rolling Stones. No, I have no f***ing idea what he's singing. That's not the point. You will boogie all over the house. This song will tempt you to drive poorly if you listen to it in your car. I love it!

"All Nite Long" by Ruben and the Jets. Not the Frank Zappa album, but the real band called RATJ.

"Gringo Honeymoon" by Robert Earl Keen. I wish I could write songs like this. But I can't, so I listen to guys who can.

"Banana Republics" by Steve Goodman. Ditto.

"Rats in My Room" by Leona Anderson. Because you gotta have something funny. And this goes beyond funny to just unbelievably bizarre. (And you're reading the words of a guy who has the album "An Evening with Wild Man Fischer" on his iPod.)

The first Santana album. The one with the lion on the cover.


Fall is coming, and with the coming of fall I am reminded of when I was living in Wisconsin as a kid. As you might imagine, a considerable amount of corn gets grown in Wisconsin -- not only the white and yellow stuff but the weird stuff that you don't really know what to do with it -- "Indian Corn," they call it -- the multicolor stuff.

But you can also get popcorn on the cob, and one year, I remember my dad brought home a whole freaking BOX of this stuff. We popped a few on the grill before it got too cold in the autumn, then the stuff sat in our garage through the winter. Oddly enough, it still popped fine the next year. That's durable popcorn, I guess.

Not sure why I'm writing about this but now I want some popcorn.


What exactly DO you do with Indian corn, anyway?


My friend Nancy Freeman got a tattoo the other day -- a black hawk. Not a Blackhawk, although a photorealistic representation of Bobby Hull or Stan Mikita WOULD have been really cool...

Or even the logo, like this guy got:

You can see Nancy's tattoo at http:nimuejohn.livejournal.com/


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