Daily Update: Saturday, July 11th, 2015


Today is the Memorial of Saint Benedict, Abbot (died 547).

Born about 480 in Nursia (now Norsia), Umbria, today’s Saint was the twin brother of Saint Scholastica. He studied in Rome, but was dismayed by the lack of discipline and the lackadaisical attitude of his fellow students. He then fled to the mountains near Subiaco, living as a hermit in a cave for three years; legends reported him to have been fed by a raven. His virtues caused an abbey to request him to lead them, so he founded the monastery at Monte Cassino, where he wrote the Rule of his order. His discipline was such that an attempt was made on his life; some monks tried by poison him, but he blessed the cup and rendered it harmless. He returned to his cave, but continued to attract followers, and eventually established twelve monasteries. According to legend, he had the ability to read consciences, the gift of prophesy, and could forestall attacks of the devil. He also destroyed pagan statues and altars, and drove demons from groves sacred to pagans. At one point there were over 40,000 monasteries guided by the Benedictine Rule, which can be summarized as “Pray and work.” He is the Patron Saint of people in religious orders, agricultural workers, civil engineers, monks, spelunkers, schoolchildren, and coppersmiths, of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, and of the cities of Norcia (Italy) and Heerdt (Germany); his aid is invoked against poison, witchcraft, erysipelas, fever, gall stones, kidney disease, and nettle rash.

Before work I redid my foot with the KT Tape©; I am glad that I did not spring for the KT Tape Pro©, since I am using the tape at the rate of two strips per day (out of 20 in the box). At the Pre-Shift Meeting after we clocked in, Richard won a Free Break, which he gave to me. (Thank you, Richard). Richard started off as the Relief Dealer for the second Let It Ride table, Let It Ride, and Three Card Poker. He then became the Relief Dealer for Let It Ride, Three Card Poker, the second Mississippi Stud table, and Mississippi Stud, before he became the Relief Dealer for Mini Baccarat, Pai Gow, and the $5.00 Minimum Bet Blackjack table. I started out as the Relief Dealer for the second Three Card Poker Table, the second Mississippi Stud table, and Mississippi Stud, then was on Three Card Blackjack; when that table closed I was moved to the Mississippi Stud table. On my breaks I did my Book Review for this weblog and for my Goodreads and Facebook accounts for The Handsome Man’s Deluxe Café by Alexander McCall Smith via WordPress for Android. I then talked to our Shift Manager about what the Scheduler had told me about getting August 3rd and August 4th off, and he said to go ahead and make my travel arrangements, and he and the Assistant Shift Manager will make sure I have those days off. I then did my Daily Update for yesterday, Friday, July 10th, 2015 via WordPress by Android.

On our way home Richard stopped at Dollar General for some cat food to tide the cats over until we go to the store on Sunday. Once home I set up my medications for next week (I have two prescriptions to renew on Monday), then read the morning paper. I then went to the Adoration Chapel, where I did my Weekly Hour of Eucharistic Adoration; during my Hour I started reading the July 6th – July 13th, 2015 issue of my Jesuit America magazine. I then took a nap, but woke up at about 6:00 pm to do my Daily Update.

Tomorrow is the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, and the Optional Memorial of Blessed Louis Martin, Husband (died 1894), and Blessed Marie-Azélie Guérin Martin, Wife (died 1877), and Parents (who will be Canonized by this time next year). Tomorrow is the last day of the tw0-week pay period at the casino, and on my breaks I will either start reading Lock In by John Scalzi or not read it (and thus not go to my Sci-Fi Fantasy Book Club meeting on Tuesday evening). After lunch I will sit down and order my plane tickets and arrange for a rental car for my trip to go see Nedra; I will leave on Monday, August 3rd (although I am considering leaving on Sunday, August 2nd) out of New Orleans to Nashville, then flying home from Nashville to New Orleans on Thursday, August 6th. (And it is a three-hour drive from New Orleans to my house, not counting traffic. Since we are in the flatlands, it does not matter if it is July, January, or any other given month, it will take me three house, not counting traffic.)

This Saturday afternoon brings us a Parting Quote from Thomas Erdelyi, Hungarian-born American music producer and musician. Born as Erdélyi Tamás (some sources give his name as Tamás Erdélyi) in 1949 in Budapest, Hungary, he was the son of Jewish professional photographers who had survived the Holocaust by being hidden by neighbors. The family left Hungary during the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, and moved to the United States in 1957. Initially settling in the South Bronx, the family moved up to the middle-class suburb of Forest Hills in Queens, New York, and Erdélyi changed his name to Thomas Erdelyi. In high school he played guitar in a mid-1960s four-piece garage band, the Tangerine Puppets, with a schoolmate and guitarist, John Cummings. After leaving school he started working as an assistant engineer at the Record Plant studio, where he worked on the production of the 1970 Jimi Hendrix album Band of Gypsys. In 1974 he was slated to be the manager of the Ramones, which had Douglas Colvin on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, John Cummings as lead guitar, and Jeffrey Hyman on drums. Soon after the band was formed, Colvin realized that he could not sing and play his bass guitar simultaneously; with Erdelyi’s encouragement, Hyman became the band’s new lead singer. Colvin would continue, however, to count off each song’s tempo with his signature rapid-fire shout of “1-2-3-4!” Hyman soon similarly realized that he could not sing and play drums simultaneously and left the position of drummer. While auditioning prospective replacements, Erdelyi would often take to the drums and demonstrate how to play the songs. It became apparent that he was able to perform the group’s music better than anyone else, and he joined the band as their drummer. The band also changed their names; Colvin became Dee Dee Ramone, Cummings became Johnny Ramone, Hyman became Joey Ramone, and Erdelyi became Tommy Ramone. He remained as drummer from 1974 to 1978, playing on and co-producing their first three albums, Ramones (1976), Leave Home (1977), and Rocket to Russia (1977), as well as the live album It’s Alive (1979). He wrote “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” and the majority of “Blitzkrieg Bop” while Colvin (Dee Dee Ramone) suggested the title. He and Ed Stasium played all the guitar solos on the albums he produced, as Cummings (Johnny Ramone) largely preferred playing rhythm guitar. His final show as a Ramones drummer was at the Johnny Blitz benefit event at CBGB’s in New York on May 4, 1978. He was replaced on drums in 1978 by Marc Bell (who changed his name to Marky Ramone), but handled band management and co-production (as Thomas Erdelyi) for their fourth album, Road to Ruin (1978); he later returned as producer for the eighth album, 1984’s Too Tough to Die. He produced the Replacements album Tim (1985), as well as Redd Kross’s Neurotica (1987). On October 8, 2004, he played as a Ramone once again, when he joined Christopher Ward (C.J. Ramone), Daniel Rey, and Clem Burke (Elvis Ramone) in the “Ramones Beat Down on Cancer” concert. In 2006 Erdelyi and Claudia Tienan (formerly of underground band the Simplistics) performed as a bluegrass-based folk duo called Uncle Monk. He joined songwriter Chris Castle, Garth Hudson, Larry Campbell and the Womack Family Band in July 2011 at Levon Helm Studios for Castle’s album Last Bird Home. He was the last surviving member of the original Ramones (died 2014): “There are a lot of similarities between punk and old-time music. Both are home-brewed music as opposed to schooled, and both have an earthy energy. And anybody can pick up an instrument and start playing.”

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