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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

Recently, the following events transpired in this order

  1. When I tried to use my debit card laaaate Friday night (Saturday morning) at a restaurant, the guy said it was declined.
  2. I asked them to try again.   He did, and it was declined again.  The guy said it’s been happening to a lot of people that night and it might be a glitch. I finished my transaction with another payment method.
  3. I thoroughly enjoyed my food.  Like, a lot.
  4. Next day I called my Credit Union to inquire about this issue, and they said the account looked fine and it was probably a glitch.  I noted with satisfaction that I had remembered the restaurant guy using the same technical jargon.
  5. Later that day I tried using my debit card online and it was denied again.  I’m pretty sure I sighed loudly and with emphasis.
  6. Called the Credit Union back and said it happened again.  They said that my card had been called in “stolen”.
  7. I was like, “dude.  wait, what?
  8. They said someone called in and reported my card stolen. I let them know I did no such thing, but it’s probably better if it stays that way and I work on getting a new one.  They said they’d transfer me to the fraud department to discuss further.
  9. I was transferred to a department that was not open on the weekend. HEY!
  10. So I called back and they said “oops”.  They followed up the “oops” with “sorry, I transferred you to the business hours number; let me transfer you to the after-hours number”.  I liked how they used the semi-colon in their statement so I could identify it for later blogging.
  11. I was transferred to a department that only accepts voicemails on the weekend. HEY!
  12. Left a voicemail; got no response.
  13. Got a call on my cell phone from a number in Miami, FL in (786) area code.  It was an automated system that said “Hello.  This is blahblahblah credit union (not mine).  We understand you’ve received your new credit card.  Would you like to activate it now? Press 1 if so”.
  14. I pressed 1, but was already suspicious.
  15. Sure enough, the automatron asked me to enter in my new 16 digit credit card number.
  16. I hung up with aplomb.
  17. Waited until Monday, called in to the Credit Union and we had a good chat about the experience.  They offered to take the block off the card if I still needed it, but I, in my infinite wisdom and a display of extreme mental dexterity deserving of an Oscar, decided to keep it blocked and just get a new one.
  18. They said I didn’t even have to wait the 7-10 business days to get a replacement, because now my Credit Union has the ability to print up new cards right inside the branch!  I’d only have to wait a few minutes and I could be off to the races.
  19. NOTE: the above race-based comment is not meant to offend anyone of any race, creed, color or national origin.  It is, however, meant to offend people of equine descent.
  20. I went in Tuesday morning to take care of this presto-chango gimme-a-new-card-in-minutes service.
  21. NOT
  22. Turns out the extra “discount package passport modifier” aka Password Unlimited feature I have on my debit card restricts replacements to mail only.  So there will be no presto-chango for me on my card.
  23. The Credit Union keeps the card to shred and I’ll just do without for a couple weeks while I wait for the replacement to come by mail.
  24. I get to work, EXCITED about the Jon Anderson concert for Tuesday night.  I’m like, super jazzed about seeing him in concert.
  25. I check my email for my ticket information, because I couldn’t remember if I had bought a ticket by email that required printing, or if it was Will Call.
  26. It was Will Call.
  27. (foreshadowing should have kicked into gear by now).
  28. I look at the terms for Will Call.  They state that you must have a photo ID that matches the name and address on the order, as well as the credit card used to place the order.
  29. Ouch.
  30. So I call the ticket place to check on this, given that I had to surrender my card due to fraud.  They said “no problem, you can just bring in a statement or something that lists the card number and your name.”
  31. I was like, “FAIL“.
  32. Argh.  I realized the problem now was — this is a debit card, aka “check card”.  It’s not a real credit card.  I don’t get a statement that lists the credit card number.  I only get a statement that lists my member number.
  33. I call back the Credit Union and ask what official documents they offer that would satisfy the ticket place’s demand for my credit card number.  They say nothing has that.
  34. However, I talked with the same lady to took my credit card to shred and let me know she hadn’t shred it yet and if I’d like to come back and get it, I can.
  35. I was like, “EPIC WIN“.
  36. I retrieved the card during lunch and had a tasty low carb meal from Jack in the Box.  While the culinary detail may not be important to the story, the non sequitur rules dictate the price of tea in china.
  37. I went to the Paramount Theatre for my concert, ready to get my ticket.
  38. When I got to the window, the teller asked “Last Name?”
  39. I said “Hall”
  40. She gave me the ticket.
  41. No ID.  No credit card.  No paperwork.  No signature.
  42. No kidding.
  43. Ok, enough of the backstory.
  44. The YES fans milling about in front of the Paramount before the doors opened were easy to engage with in conversation.  I even re-met one of the guys I talked with during the Dallas YES show last year.
  45. What a show!  THANK YOU JON ANDERSON FOR A WONDERFUL PERFORMANCE.  In case you were wondering, I was the one who shouted “… we just love you a little bit more!” when talking about how great Austin is compared to the other cities he plays. (it’s a lyric reference to his “Everybody Loves You” solo track).
  46. An excerpt of his final song is included below for your watching and listening enjoyment.

I’m a little surprised at how small the video is — it makes it look like I was way in the back.  This was taken with my iPhone, and I’m pleasantly surprised at the quality of the sound.  The acoustics of the Paramount are stellar and I’m glad some of that came across with this video.  Maybe there’s a way to zoom in on the video (let me know if you have suggestions) and repost.

If you get a chance to see Jon Anderson in concert, grab the opportunity.  There are only a few more spots on this tour left, and then supposedly he’s touring with Rick Wakeman in Europe.  Check out more info at his website.

There are a ton of people doing this meme, and I’m not one to do memes very often, but I actually kind of like this one.

Think of 20 albums, CDs, LPs (if you’re over 40), that had such a profound effect on you they changed your life. Dug into your soul. Music that brought you to life when you heard it. Royally affected you, kicked you in the wazoo, literally socked you in the gut, is what I mean. Then when you finish, tag 15 others, including me, make a donation to Any Blogger Can, sit back and drink a brewski, watch your favorite DITL. Make sure you copy and paste this part so they know the drill.

Here are mine. Except I did 22 albums.

And I’ll warn you ahead of time that I seriously doubt the existence of any human being out there with even five of the same albums as me. Shoot, I bet there isn’t anybody with even THREE of these on their list. What can I say? I’m very weird awesome in my own way.


Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

There are people who say they like this album, or were “changed” by it, and then there are the rest of us who really were. You know who you are – the kind of fan that lists an album because it’s cool to list an album. If you can’t sing every lyric, every studio-added sound effect or murmur and can’t sing out the rooster parts or actually played the end of the album in the infinite loop, you don’t count.


Yes – Tales from Topographic Oceans

We start the eclectic. This is a double-album with only four (4) songs total. Yes, one song per album side. I told you I was weird awesome.


Mannheim Steamroller – Fresh Aire II

I could list several of the Fresh Aire series because I immersed myself in all of them at one point or another, but I’d have to say Fresh Aire II was my first and most potent.


Mannheim Steamroller – Fresh Aire III

There was this one song, Mere Image, that I played dozens of times per week. Yes, it was that fetching. I still do sometimes. I even dreamed up my own music video to the song and still want to make it come true. It has a wistful nostalgic energetic make-you-cry-after-dancing feel.


Olivia Newton-John and ELO – Xanadu soundtrack

I made my own homemade version from the DVD because the many of the songs had versions on the actual published soundtrack that were different from the movie and that devastated me to no end. I hate it when movie soundtracks do that!


Steve Vai – Passion and Warfare

There’s a song on there that kind of feel like dueling electric guitars and I frequently would daydream about my brother and I performing this on stage. Alas, he is the guitar player and I’m the guitar hero.


Michael Jackson – Off The Wall

So shoot me. Wait, I already shot myself for this one.


The Moody Blues – On The Threshold of a Dream

This is one of many tastes I picked up from my dad, who had this and the next album on vinyl. I would put it on and be amazed. When I discovered headphones it sent me to the next level. This is one of those albums that you put on, close your eyes, and let the sounds take you over. In fact, a lot of my picks are sensual albums – you don’t just put them on in the background or flick on the radio to listen. They are to be enjoyed specifically, not as the soundtrack to your daily life.


The Moody Blues – In Search of the Lost Chord

Om.

Tracks 7 through 12 are the ones to get lost in.


Steely Dan – Citizen

I had to put in the “Everything” compilation album because once I discovered the ‘Dan, I consumed every song they had and played this collection on repeat for about a year.


Metallica – Master of Puppets

It was hard to choose between this and Ride the Lightning but I listed to Master of Puppets a tad bit more. Plus, it has Orion on it.


The Statler Brothers – Old Testament and New Testament

I had the double-album set. I can still list all the disciples because of this album.


Simon & Garfunkel – Bridge Over Troubled Water.

My first CD, ever. I got it for my 15th birthday.


Yes – Going For The One

This is another one of those that will be unique to me, and guess what? Awaken? intense 15-minute long song.


Celtic Woman (custom rip)

This is another one where the released soundtrack differed from the video release (DVD) so I ended up ripping my own MP3’s off of the video so that it would match. I’m linking you to the DVD instead of the CD since it’s the one with the music I love. The CD actually took off a couple of tracks!


Rush – Hemispheres

It’s hard to choose just one because of Grace Under Pressure and Signals and Power Windows and AFTK and 2112 and… and… and… But this is the one I sank into deeply and didn’t come up for air for weeks.


Jon Anderson – Olias of Sunhillow

I don’t expect anyone to understand this one. But, man oh man. I love this album. It’s like the Lord of the Rings put to music but without J R R Tolkein.


Jonathan Coulton – Thing A Week series

Can’t list one of the TaW albums since I got the whole collection and put it on repeat. Definitely changed my view of self-published music in a very positive way. This guy is my hero.


Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin II

Again, this is an artist that has so much to choose from, it’s hard to pick just one album. I choose it because my dad had it on vinyl and it was my first Zep album. I wore that puppy out once I heard What Is And What Should Never Be. This is the first time I actually made a tape that was just entirely one song repeated over and over from the album. I did this to save on battery life on my knock-off Sony Walkman because rewinding took up too much battery.


Don Harriss – Elevations

As a senior in high school, I’d sometimes put this CD in, lay back, close my eyes and simply float. Especially on track #2. I seriously think I floated a few times while wearing headphones. Too bad they weren’t wireless back then. I think it was the wire that stopped me from hitting the ceiling.


Ozzy Osbourne – The Ultimate Sin

I remember freshman year in High School – as a band geek *and* a computer geek, I wasn’t all that popular, but that was fine with me. In fact, instead of being popular I was more of a target. But there was this one time when my walkman and collection of tapes was “confiscated” by The Current Cool Guy in the gym along with the “let’s see what Dork-Man is listening to, shall we?” verbal introduction to a humiliation assault. As he went through picking out The Ultimate Sin, Black Sabbath’s We Sold Our Souls for Rock and Roll, Van Halen’s 1984, Motley Crue’s Theatre Of Pain, Led Zeppelin and Rush, he said aloud “wow, for a nerd, you listen to some really cool music” and handed me back my stuff and went on to the next nerd. Later that week he borrowed The Ultimate Sin from me and I was left alone the rest of the year.


BONUS ENTRY! The Simpsons – Songs in the Key Of Springfield

Let’s go crazy, Broadway style!


Whew. This was harder than I expected, but I stayed true to the meme.

So.  Did anyone have even more than one that they shared with this list?

Yeah. Didn’t think so.

(Bonus topic: I spent more than an hour on this post.  It meant a lot to me.  However, I anticipate a very low comment turnout.  I’m finding that the more important (ie, personal) a blog post is to me, the less other people will care about it.  Sometimes the stupidest shortest post generates the most interest.  There seems to be a direct inversely proportional relationship between the amount of effort I put into a post and how interesting it is.  However, I will post it anyway because I’m one of those “this blog is about ME” people.  At least for now I am.)

HA! You thought this was going to be about Obama, didn’t you?  In fact, some of you who know my political leanings were probably thinking this was going to be an obama-bashfest or something.

Well, I’m sorry to disappoint.  I have something else on the brain today.  And to be frank, I hope I don’t stoop to bashing someone I disagree with.  If I start doing that, call me on it, will ya?

Here’s what I’d like.  Can I trouble you to sign a Petition for getting YES into the Hall of Fame?

I’ve added a little banner over to the right side that points you to sign an online petition to get YES inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  I was signature #5540 – it’d be great if we could get the word out and make that number climb.

I’ve been moved by the Progressive Rock band YES since the late 80’s when I discovered them in High School.  On this one particular Sunday evening, I was driving my parent’s white Ford Econo 150 van down Anderson Mill road in NW Austin.  KLBJ-FM, the local rock station, started one of those “tribute shows” or “let’s play a lot of an artist” radio shows and the focal artist was YES.  I was completely blown away by the music – they played Starship Trooper, I’ve Seen All Good People, South Side of the Sky, Heart of the Sunrise – and the Wayne everyone knew up until that point was simply gone.   In fact, since that moment, he’s been unable to speak in the first person when writing about YES.

Soon thereafter, he spent any spare change he had getting obtaining the essential YES albums: Fragile, The Yes Album, Close to the Edge, and more, more more!  Flea Markets having any album collections were not prepared for the intensity with which Wayne would throw himself into the music bins, searching for any other artful displays.  This fantastic, perfect band had so many albums released already!  And without allmusic.com, wikipedia or fan blogs to rely on, Wayne just kept searching for gold.  And gold he found – and Platinum (some 2x and 3x Platinum).

Right as Wayne was falling in love with YES and all the little solo off-shoots and incestuous relationships between the band members and other bands such as Asia, YES released their album Big Generator.  “Hey,” thought Wayne.  “This is real different!”  It seemed to Wayne that everybody and their brother dissed the band, saying it wasn’t anything like their classic stuff and divisions arose between the ranks of self-proclaimed YES fans.  You were either a “Trooper” or a “Generator” depending on if you liked the stuff pre:90125 or post.

Wayne was torn.  Torn nearly in half, because – DANGIT it’s all good!  Sure, it’s different, but it’s all, so, incredibly, gooooooood.  He would spend hours listening to any album (yes, even Tales from Topographic Oceans, the double-album that only had 4 songs total – one song per album side).  There was one point in which Wayne owned more than 40 different YES or YES-related albums/cassettes or CD’s.  I don’t mean counting the “mastered edition” of Fragile as separate from Fragile.  I mean 40. different. albums.  Solo albums.  Remixes.  Side projects.  A rare collectors video of Jon Anderson with Indigenous People of South America.  ANYTHING.

This past year, YES announced a 40th anniversary tour and planned to stop twice in Texas.  Wayne was already rarin’ to go to both concerts, no matter what the cost, no matter what the consequence.  And then Jon Anderson, lead singer of YES for 95% of the YES Albums (he wasn’t on Drama), became ill and they had to cancel.  The only sadness in Wayne’s heart that compared to not being able to see them once again live was the thought of this energetic, positive and altogether incredible human being named Jon Anderson being ill.  Wayne mustered up all the energy he could to send Jon’s way and encourages all to do the same.

YES has continued to release fantastic studio masterpieces over the past 20 years, and Wayne is one who hopes they don’t stop for a long, long time.

Wayne still spends hours with his Zune MP3 player shuffling through nothing but YES music.  It’s one of the few playlists that can boast “never skips while playing” because Wayne never hits the “next song” button. 

He never has to.


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