It’s been an interesting couple of days here in paradise… errr.. uh.. ski heaven. I mentioned last time how I learned that Cox Houston (the station I was “let go” from) hired a new PD to take over the station. I knew it was coming, and actually assumed he was one of the possibilities for the job.

Radio is in a funky cycle right now. The downsizing has led to few jobs and many titles.. meaning, the ones that are left seem to be doing more with less money and time to get it accomplished. This of course leads to burn-out and more long-term problems on several levels. The greed is keeping the companies from expanding back to “pre-resessionary” positions. That’s true in many industries not just radio. BUT!!! Not skiing… the snow is still cold and slippery.

This week we went to the Commgap Christmas party at the Garden restaurant in downtown SLC. The food was good and the view was cool. It over looks Temple Square. One of lelani’s new employees was there with her husband, out of the blue he blurted out, “so, who’s the boss?” We all pointed to Lelani.. he sat back, feeling a little sheepish.. The conversation was light and friendly through out the dinner, then one of the other employees wanted out attention to make an announcement… “we’re pregnant..” she said. That makes two of them.. two out of three employees.. Yup! Must be in Utah…

Again, another surreal moment.. we left this party hearing about everyones plans for the future, celebrating another successful year at Lelani’s company, as we go home to our little apartment.. I’m not complaining, just interesting how things have changed over the last couple of years.. and I expect will continue to change. We have so much “stuff” piled here and there STILL.. that I feel like we have moved into one of those scenes you see on TV about hoarders.. you, know ones that have trails or paths through the house? Only you don’t have garbage stacked up, we have drums, Christmas tree, boxes that still need to go to storage, bags of extra blankets ready for donation, extra chairs that don’t fit at the now over-sized table…. just interesting to step back and look. I will say this… I haven’t really had a bad nights sleep since we’ve moved here. I NEVER slept well in Houston. I swear the house was haunted… many times i would wake up in the middle of the night hearing voices, or thumps. Of course I do have to factor in the stress I was under too. Oh and waking up at 4am to do a morning show, starts to take a toll. Not to mention the thyroid thing… Anyway, it does feel better here. Now if we can just the Sugar Land house and be done with that financial burden.

The amazing thing about being out of work, is how the bills don’t reduce as quickly as I had hoped it would. Sure we’re spending less on utilities, but we still have all that stuff in Houston to continue paying for plus all the new things here. THANK GOD for Bob Marley on the stereo and Nag Champa…. “every little thing, gonna be alright..” actually playing right now on the stereo… hang on.. gotta sway a bit to duh music mon…

This week I got a letter in the mail from the Utah Workforce services informing me that I had 5 days from the date on the letter to register in Utah to remain on the unemployment payroll. The letter showed up one day before the deadline.. of course. I got online and tried to register… but the server was down.. I kept trying to change/update my info and then it would kick me out. So Monday I went in-person and talked to the nice lady at the front desk.. she really was nice. This is a difference I didn’t expect.. in Texas, the first pre-requisite to work for the state is that you “must be a people hater”.. I actually read that in their handbook. Utah cured this by giving all state employees a 4 day work week. Sure they start at 6 am, but who’s going to even bother stopping by that early?? So they do what other jobs here in Utah do that have extra days off, LIKE TEACHERS.. they bring food and sit around and chat.. bitching about their jobs and schedules, while not really doing any work. The teachers here have had the long standing tradition of needing “prep” days. Which always seem to fall on a Friday close to holidays.. yup.. do the math. Long weekends.. When we lived here 5 years ago, I added up all the non-student “prep” days the teachers took in a school.. it added up to almost a full month. Again.. must be in Utah. This I believe is the UEA’s answer to the locals not wanting to pass a ‘head tax’ that would help improve teachers salaries. I’m slighting teachers, that’s a job I wouldn’t really want.. BUT come on. You knew what this was going to be like before you spent 4 years in college learning how to follow the same lesson plans year after year. BTW.. my dad was a teacher, actually PHD at USU.. he never got Fridays off, or “prep” days.. what the hell!?! Now retired, and a bit bored.. he applied to a school district in Utah County (yes, that one) and was told, “you’re over qualified..” seriously? Who wouldn’t love to hear the wisdom of a retired PHD in a middle school or High School? I guess he scared them down there.. My Dad have published books, raced boats, taught former Governors, served on national and state boards to improve building codes, worked with the National Geographic Society, traveled the world and raised 5 kids… one is actually a ski instructor and former radio superstar, and world class smart-ass.. Yes Utah has some quirky things.. but what state doesn’t. Just interesting to see with new eyes.

This week I started my first in a series of concerts with Jon Schmidt. We played Ogden on Tuesday night and tonight we play a private party at Thanksgiving Point. Next weel we have 3 sold-out shows at Kingbury Hall in Salt Lake.

My drums at rehearsal in Ogden at JS show.

This is such a blast to re-connect with music. My first love was music “and it will be my last” as the song goes. Sorry ladies.. I play with some pretty amazing musicians too. Steven Nelson, Rick Baldison and Jim Funk. Jim wrote the song Luther Vandross and Kenny Rogers made famous, “Buy Me a Rose”.. he’s married to Jesse Clark Funk, another Utah artist. I’m very lucky blessed to be asked to try and keep up with these players every night.. Jim and Jesse are trying to get signed again in Nashville, this time with a country album..

At Brighton I have been teaching a lot of clinics to instructors. It’s still a little slow, so we take advantage of the down time to ski and teach each other about things like movement analysis, teaching techniques and just plain fun in the snow.. and we’re been getting a lot of nice soft powder.

Brighton at 4pm.. night skiing lights

Notice the tour bus in the picture? This is actually a common sight at Brighton. Artists come up to ski/board the white when in town.. away from the cameras and bright lights of the “other side” of the mountain.

today Emi is trying out to be a “peer instructor” which isn’t an instructor at all, they actually follow the classes of the 4-7 year olds and help ride the lift and do bathroom breaks so the class can keep going.. yeah gophers . BUT, she gets a pass and gets to be around the best skiers on the mountain. This can also be bad.. but I already have my spy network in place to keep an eye on her when I’m not around.. just to keep her out of trouble.. you know.. preventative.

Well.. gotta go make cookies. I was charged with this earlier. Lelani is skiing today to. Fresh powder last night.. and here I sit AGAIN!! Got some great runs yesterday though.

Yes.. skiing is life… more on this later…………