News for September 2007

Do you know the Muffler Man?

I live on Juno Lane.

That’s right folks, I put a brand new muffler on my car!  And no, Bill, it’s not made out of plywood.

The civic has been a bit louder than normal for awhile now, but 3 days ago Jodi came in and said, “I think the muffler’s gone.”  Well almost. It was no longer attached to the rest of the exhaust system so yes, it’s muffling ability was seriously hampered by this, but no it was still hanging by two hanger things.  Between Jodi’s comment and my investigative research I stopped by the Groveland Tap (on my muffler free bicycle) and mentioned this problem to Micah Taylor as he mourned the absence of Bell’s Oberon as the seasonal Bell’s selection.  Through his tears he explained that he too once had a Honda Civic with a loud muffler and he fixed it with clamps, a pop can, and copious amounts of duct tape.  This sounded doable to a mechanic such as myself and so I approached the car with an empty pigseye and a roll of duct tape only to find the horrific dissmemberment I earlier described.  I’m no mechanic, but even I could recognize the severity of this situation.  My thought process continued as such:

“Heck, it’s disconnected.  It’s not like I can break it.  Might as well try and take it the rest of the way off.”

“Heck, other than snapping off two rusty bolts, that came off pretty easy.  Might as well see if I can buy a new one.”

(At auto parts store) “Heck, they have it in stock I might as well buy it.”

And so on, until after all heck broke loose and a 16 hour hiatus as I stopped to think about the proper installation of a spring bolt, when I started up the Civic and listened to the pur of brand new muffler.  And that’s why they call me the muffler man.

Posted: September 27th, 2007
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in my head

zombie. zombie. zombie bie bie

 cran raz

no blogs lately ’cause i’ve been writing in my head.  that’s right a little bit of ye olde mentally telepathy.  so hopefully you’ve been receiving my mental blogs.

no? you have not evolved to that place? well then, a couple brief updates.  recording at singsaas lutheran was absolutely fantastic and bonus of boni, scott jibben was doing the recording.  I love scott! Bill took some photos so i’ll get some of those posted someday…

yesterday was the best sunday in ages.  great church service, great sunday school, great lunch, great pontoon ride, great supper, great scotts.  (jibben?)

look, i totally updated you by telling you everything, and nothing.  it’s like the wonder bread of blogs.  eat up!

Posted: September 24th, 2007
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The Money Never Runs Out

My friend (and friend to many a lutheran indie musician) Mark Jackson has a Josh Ritter poster hanging up in his kitchen that Josh autographed “Mark and Josh, The Money Never Runs Out Tour”  Josh is Lutheran and Mark is a leader and educator in the Lutheran Church and when Josh was a youngster he participated in events that Mark lead.  Now Josh is a big rockstar and Mark is a proffesor at Trinity Lutheran College in WA and they’re buddies and they get together when their paths cross and that’s great.  But it has nothing to do with this blog.  I just like ‘the money never runs out tour’  Now it could be that this was some famous tour by some great 70’s rocker that I’m totally unaware of, or it could be that it’s a wholly original tour name by Mr. Ritter.  But  either way it makes the important point that the first step in touring is naming it.  Once you name it, you grow it.

So tommorrow I’ll get in Bill Singsass’s Blue euro van (the mystery machine) and along with Martin Marty (THE) and Steve Abenth we’ll go down to a small town in South West MN, set up some gear in Singsas Lutheran Church (see the connection) and play hymns and old gospel numbers while Bill’s cousin and an engineer press record.  Then on Sunday we’ll come home.  I’m totally looking forward to the experience and because it involves an overnight stay and playing music it’s a tour.  And so it must be named.  So at lunch the Houge family came up with some options.

Nate: Saints and Sinners Gospel Road Tour (boring)

Jodi:  Embrace the Holy Mystery Machine Tour (better, focuses more on the eurovan than the rock and roll)

Lydia: #1 The Holy God Scientistic Church Tour (I’m not sure what scientistic is but it sounds a bit cultish)

#2 Good for Sewing Animistic Car Tour (Animism?  Apparently there was a unit on world religions in preschool this week)

#3 Clock Time Church Hour Tour (What?)

#4 Scientistic Night Time Silent Church Minutes Tour (Bringing back ‘scientistic’ after realizing how much it made us laugh.)

Okay, so clearly my 4 year old is on crack.  But I’ve gotta admit, her tour titles are way better than mine.  In fact, she may have trumped ‘the money never runs out.’  durn you 4 year old! alway one upping your old man.  you’d think by now i’d be used to it.  apparently i’m slow and dumb.

Posted: September 14th, 2007
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hot hot hot

the houge’s biggest life changing purchase in recent life is a little hot pot that boils water in what seems like seconds.  It has changed my life.  Not like Jesus did but close.

Posted: September 11th, 2007
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I just went to the webster site to check the spelling of luddite and I was about to click on the icon to hear it pronounced but then I was afraid the volume would be super loud on Jodi’s laptop and I’m not sure how to turn it down and people would hear the computer calling me a Luddite and I’d be all confused and embarassed looking and it would be painfully obvious that the computer was right.  I am a Luddite.

But I don’t want to be one.  Or maybe I do and I don’t want to admit it.  Since moving back home we’ve been living with one cell phone, no landline and no internet at home.  And I love it.  The only thing I like more is turning the cellphone off.  than I love love it.  Dare I say, “I Lyle Lovett.” 

But I’d love to be like my friend Jason or Micah.  They’re the technological equivalent of having a friend with a truck when you buy an appliance.  They’re both IT geeks in the best ways possible and have helped  me out of many a quandry when I didn’t know what the frag I was doing.  (like that? ‘frag’ I think it’s a bad computer thing so I’m going to start using it pejoratively.  Or maybe it’s a good thing and my using it will be like how I tried using ‘snap’ for good things.  “You’re totally on time! Snap!”  That was an embaracing two year habit in retrospect.  Maybe I shouldn’t use frag.  Friends don’t let friends use frag.  this is your brain, this is your brain on frag. oh frag it all.  or don’t)

 In other news, I’m playing with the Saints & Sinners (formerly known as Martin Marty and the Martyrs) over at Luther Seminary tonight.  We’ve got a fun setlist of songs from Neil Young, The Rolling Stones, and the old red hymnal, not to be confused with the new cranberry hymnal.  And yes, we will play some Skynard.

Posted: September 6th, 2007
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