Wednesday, December 24, 2014

My Providential Degree

Tangential Timelines At The Crossroads

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California and Sacramento Streets, Redding, CA

I have recently completed the Marian Sauer graduate course in developing and defining higher standards of creativity and intellectual achievements while learning to make the most of meager means.

I consider this accomplishment to be a gift of infinite value. I can count myself among the very fortunate people who have been encouraged, inspired and instructed by Marian over the last 75 years.

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Yellow rose in the rain

Kismet, fortune and the tides of the cosmos brought me into her sphere of interconnecting disciplines. We will begin this wondrous life changing series of events on a sunny afternoon as I found myself riding my motorcycle over Los Laureles grade from Salinas to Carmel Valley Village.

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Raindrop bejeweled

The year was 1989 and I was about to meet the most dynamic, joyful, remarkable person in my life. Through an intricate combination of people and perfectly timed circumstance I discovered my other half. (See Aristophanes speech in Plato’s Symposium).

We were introduced to each other as Chris Sauer and Phil Michaels, neither of which were actually our given names. She had chosen Chris as an expression of her independence and I had chosen Michaels as my performing name in 1975 so as not to be confused with a young songwriter from Oklahoma.

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The sun shone today

Chrissy and I were a perfect match. She changed my perceptions and expanded my view of the world. I was her genie who, for the rest of our life together, made her wishes come true. Some people would visit us just to feel the love that radiated from our combined spirits.

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Fresh snow on Shasta

It took nearly 10 years until Chris’s mother and I discovered we could make music together. She auditioned me to play guitar for a job with her on piano and Leona Derheim on alto sax and viola. The LMP Trio was formed in 1998. We went on to record 16 CD’s and performed throughout the Bay Area until 2011 when Leona retired.

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Now open...Joseph’s Coat rose

With the right combination of proficiency and talent, sometimes magic happens while playing music together. And so it was with Marian that we came to know and recognize some part of ourselves inside each other.

In 2005 things changed. Crissy’s life tragically ended while crossing the street in our hometown of Carmel Valley. I sank into a vat of despair that nearly put an end to me.

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Wings open to the sun

It was Marian who bit by bit, year by year, gave me hope, taught me to care, and let me know I am loved. Because of her dedicated program of support, direction, and encouragement I am a happier, healthier me today. I am back on my life’s path of spiritual enlightenment, and I can feel joy again.

Marian has been my mentor and best friend, as well as mother-in-law and musician of professional caliber. Playing with her hones my chops in order to play each song with the same level of respect and commitment. She believes in me. That inspires and drives me to always be the best I can be.

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Mount Lassen from the Treehouse

Around the beginning of this year Marian told me we were nearing the time when I would have to carry on without her. For the past couple of months I have been proudly reporting that I can make it okay on my own, if I have to. That time has come.

I started writing this blog in 2008 as a journal to share my experiences and thoughts with Marian after I moved up to Redding. It has grown from that into an part of my existence. In addition to Marian, my friends and readers around the world find information, art, amusement and perhaps inspiration when they visit Phil’s Place. Thank you.

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Sunny red rose

Rest assured, Marian, I will keep the same standards of journalism and continue to post beautiful pictures. You will live on in my heart along with your daughter who lives there, too.

Today’s Video;

Love Is Eternal

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