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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Muscles McBloodgun's LiveJournal:

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Monday, September 26th, 2011
2:23 pm
That was a great wedding and a great weekend. Fantastic!
Monday, November 15th, 2010
3:29 pm
Two weekends ago, I travelled down to Louisville, KY to hang out with my family down there and to go to the Breeder's Cup. I'm not a horse racing fan. Don't really care about it. And I'm not a gambler. So, really, the point of me going was just to hang out with the family and have a little fun, which we did.

We got to Churchill Downs around 1:30pm on Friday. It was a very chilly and overcast day, threatening to rain all day long. It never did, but that chill never left the air. We were outside for 7-8 hours in this weather. It wasn't too bad. I never felt TOO cold as I did come prepared. My dad is huge in to horse racing, as were the other people I went with. For every race, the 6 of us picked a horse to be on a SuperFecta and all chipped in $2 each. A SuperFecta, if it comes in, pays out quite a bit. During one of the races, our horses hit and we won $1900, and each took home a portion. That basically paid for the trip for me and the rest of the day was a lot more fun because of it.

Telling that story leads to this one. I got very sick being out in the cold for that long. I haven't been sick in quite awhile, but come Sunday evening, I knew I was in for it. I tried and tried various remedies to free myself of the bug, but the sickness stayed with me all week long. It wasn't horrible, just a basic cold, but enough to be annoying and keep me indoors the entire week.

The weekend comes, and The Banana Convention has a pair of shows to play. I'm still a little sick on Friday, but well enough to make it. Advil was my friend. We were the "house band" for both nights up at a casino in Traverse City, which means three one hour sets. After the first set, my voice was starting to crack and my throat felt very dry. It didn't really HURT, per se, but I knew it was going. It didn't help that in between sets, they had a DJ blasting bumping house music. Not only is that a stark contrast from what we're doing as a live band, but to talk to anybody I had to yell over the music. After about 10 minutes of doing that with somebody after the first set, I realized how dumb that was since we had another two sets that night and three more to do the next, and I stopped.

I made it through the rest of that night, fine, but my voice was in bad condition at the end of the evening. I hung out a little bit with the band after the show that night, but drank very little. Only had two beers, whilst the rest got their drink on.

I wake the next morning and my voice is gone. I can't even talk without sounding like Peter Brady trying to sing "Time To Change". I limit the amount of talking I do all day long. I drink lots of warm water and lemons (I hate tea). I went to K-Mart and got some cough drops and other medication. None of it worked. My voice was shot, so I could not do much singing at all for the Saturday show. We made do with my condition by either taking out the songs that I have lead on completely, or having somebody else sing them. Luckily I'm not the lead singer, but not being able to sing at all really made me realize how much singing I actually do in the band, as far as various back up parts and things like that.

I found that if I talked in a very low, Barry White-esque kind of voice, I was able to do so with no trouble, so I did that on a few songs, which was pretty funny. To us anyway. By the end of the night, though, I could barely talk above a whisper. And afterwards, I decided that since our shows were now complete, that it'd be fine if I drank a lot, so I did.

Funny thing, though. When I woke up on Sunday expecting to be totally voiceless, throat was in better shape that it was the prior night. It was still bad and raspy, but way better than Saturday. In fact, if my voice was in the shape it was on Sunday, I probably could've made it through all my songs for Saturday's sets. So weird.

I'm assuming that my voice being gone had less to do with my singing and yelling the night before and more to do with whatever illness I had for the entire week. It's like it worked it's way out of my system through my vocal chords, and it just happened to hit on Saturday. I'm sure the singing and yelling didn't help at all, but we've done hundreds of all night shows before and I've never lost my voice to that extent.

Either way, my voice is hovering around 90% today, and all that's left of my sickness is a bit of a tickly throat and cough that a Halls every 60-80 minutes or so is able to take care of easily on it's own.

And that's been my last two weeks. The End
Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010
5:35 pm
For the fourth time in the past year, I've been moved to another new department at my job. I wasn't asked if I wanted to make the move. I was told it was happening. I have been thrust in to this new position, which is way over my head and skill level, and am basically being told to sink or swim. Right now, I not only feel like I'm sinking but that I'm totally drowning. I'm only two days in, but I feel awful about the job and the work that I'm doing. I spend half of my day frustrated and upset, staring blankly at a screen filled with letters and numbers and have no idea what any of it means. It's not a good feeling. The only saving grace is that all the other people who were thrown in to this position with me are feeling the same way, so I know it's not just me. I know, with time, that I'll pick it up and it will get easier. But for now, it's just maddening and I hate it.
Friday, July 9th, 2010
6:51 pm
Been a LONG time since a post. LJ is pretty deserted lately.

The Banana Convention is doing pretty well, lately. We came in 2nd place in the Finals of the Battle of the Bands contest I mentioned a few months back. With that, we got some money and recording time with Joey Callahan of Radius Recordings. That's exciting. After that, we got news that we'd be playing at the 2010 PrideFest in Milwaukee, WI, which is one of the biggest LGBT Festivals in the country. Then we again got accepted to play at the Detroit stop of the Warped Tour this summer. And just recently we were one of 12 bands selected (out of over 900) to perform in the Slurpee/7-11 Battle of the Bands in Chicago. So things with The BC has been pretty exciting lately. We're also currently involved in a voting thing to open for the Barenaked Ladies in Detroit mid-August. If you could, please head over to http://www.myfoxdetroit.com/generic/contests/fox-rocks-barenaked-ladies and vote for us. You can vote once an hour, so keep it up! :)

Outside of band stuff, my life has been pretty OK, I suppose. The job continues. Had a major change a few months back where the department I had been working the last few years downsized and me and one other guy got moved back to plain old inbound tech support duties. That sucked at first, but I'm realizing that, while the work load is a little bit heavier, I like the job a little more.

The family stuff is good. Just got back from 5 days in Vegas for the 4th of July weekend and my brother's 40th birthday. That was lots of fun. Too bad I can't really talk about it. Seems that what happens there has to stay there. Sorry. Thems the rules.

Me and the lady have been doing pretty ok the last few weeks. We've had our rocky patches, and I still have some reservations about a few things, but overall we do pretty well together. We'll see where it heads in the next few weeks/months as she just got a really great job, but it's out of the area, so we'll be going from living together for the last year and a half to a long distance relationship where we only see each other every weekend....maybe....schedules permitting. That could be a good thing or a bad thing for us. We'll see where it goes. She's still in Michigan and will only be about 2 hours away.

Not sure what else to report. It's been a pretty fun and productive summer for me. And there's certainly more to come.
Thursday, April 15th, 2010
12:04 pm
The Banana Convention is playing a show with Mini KISS

We have arrived.....
Monday, April 5th, 2010
11:18 am
Getting a new roof put on my house. Well, not a completely new roof, but getting new shingles put on. Costing me $3000. Over the next year or so, I'm going to be working on getting all these things fixed up on the house to make it presentable for resale. There's hardwood floors through the entire house. Thinking of ripping up all the carpet and having just the hardwood floors. Need to get some windows replaced. Eventually need a new furnace. Walls need to be repainted and fixed. And a bunch of other little things. I'm talking several thousand dollars worth of repair and updates. And I'm going to be taking my time and doing these things when I can afford them. But they all need to be done and when they are all done, the house should be in great condition to sell so I can get out of it. And maybe then possibly get myself out of Michigan.
Friday, March 26th, 2010
2:00 pm
The Banana Convention is performing at a local indie pro-wrestling show later this evening. That's gonna be awesome.

The end.
Thursday, March 18th, 2010
3:42 pm
My roof has been leaking for quite awhile now, mainly in my bedroom right next to the window. It's caused quite an ugly sight where the plaster on the ceiling has completely fallen away to the cement and looks horrible. We finally got around to looking in to getting it fixed. I could just get the "band-aid" treatment and patch up the holes in the roof where the leaking is happening for $600, replace the roof in just those areas where it's leaking for $1200, or replace the whole roof for $3200. I'm replacing the whole roof. It will add more value to the house when I go to sell it, and it will look prettier

On top of that $3200, the transmission on the Banana Van crapped out in January and I just finally got that looked at, and the 3rd and 4th gears are completely burned out so the whole transmission needs to be rebuilt. This is going to cost $950.

Yay! I love spending money I don't have!! I haven't done my taxes yet, so I'll get a little return from that, but not $4000 worth of a return. Blargh

and so it goes.....
Friday, March 12th, 2010
12:35 pm
I was recently interviewed by a Kansas radio station about The Banana Convention. If you want to listen, here it is:

http://www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/talkCast.jsp?masterId=23251&cmd=tc

The interview lasts around 15 minutes, and then he plays 3 of our songs after the interview

The end
Monday, February 8th, 2010
12:40 pm
So The BC won a Battle of the Bands this past weekend. Yay for us! It's a pretty big BotB, and not your typical local, crowd participation kind of thing, which we shy away from. It's put on by the Leelenau Sands Casino and actually had professional judges. That's why we wanted to do it. Anyway, yeah, we won this round and now go on to the finals on May 1 against 7 other bands who win their rounds. If we win the whole shebang, we get a good amount of money, some studio time with a "big time" producer, a few show dates at the casino, and an opening slot for one of the national touring acts that comes through there as well. If interested, you can go to www.rockyourwaytothetop.com for info.

Honestly, I'm not sure if we'll win the whole thing. The event seems tailored toward the heavier rock/metal kind of bands. However, I thought the same thing this past weekend and we won that. Sticking out with the kind of music and performance we do when compared to those heavy bands can either be a help or an hinderance, and on Saturday it was a help. Hopefully it will not be a hinderance come May 1.
Friday, February 5th, 2010
1:53 pm
Hiya. I'm trying to drive a bit more new traffic and unique visitors to The Banana Convention's ReverbNation profile, so if you get the chance and are bored or something, please check out the link below and click on a few things. And if you're feeling REALLY frisky, go to our actual band page there and become a Fan or something. Thanks!
TBC on ReverbNationCollapse )
Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010
3:25 pm
A few weeks back - two weeks before Christmas, actually - I received a notice for unpaid taxes from 2005. I'm not sure how that is, but I'm sure I somehow messed something up when filing and it's just now catching up to me. With it being two weeks before Christmas and the bill being for over $400, I was unable to pay it in full at that time. I tried several times to call to try to set up a payment option at the phone number that was referenced in the notice, but every time I called I got an operator recording that nobody was able to take my call and to go online to michigan.gov/treasury for options.

I went to that site and it's so poorly set up that I could not navigate through it to find anything at all about setting up payment options or anything like that. So, I sent in what I could pay at the time, $100, and a note stating this was all I could pay at the moment and that I'd like to set up payments. Weeks went by and I heard nothing, until recently when I received another bill for $412, as it had a $92 penalty/interest charge on it. So out of the $100 I previously sent in, basically only $8 of that was counted toward the taxes.

I tried calling the number on the notice several times again, and again got the operator recording every time that nobody was able to take my call and to go online to michigan.gov/treasury for options. I searched the site again and only found this email address, so I'm hoping that whoever is reading this can help me set up payment options. I can not afford to pay $412 at the moment, and can't afford to pay $100 only for $8 to be counted toward the balance.

I found an email address on the site and sent an email outlining all this above and asking for help. I wonder if I'll get it?
Friday, January 15th, 2010
5:10 pm
Tuesday, January 5th, 2010
5:41 pm
2009 Recap
I started out 2009 firstly playing a show at White's Bar on New Year's Eve. The Banana Convention were the first band on the stage that night, and as soon as our set was over, every one of us got out of dodge as we all had our own plans for the evening. Mine included getting in my car with Stroebel and driving 3 hours up north to see Heather at a party she was at. Stroebel and I were traveling up I-75 as the clock hit midnight and the year ticked over from 2008 to 2009. Neither one of us got a kiss, for your information.

The major change in my life in 2009 is that Heather moved in with me, giving me a live-in girlfriend for the first time in 5 years. We weren't all that super serious when it happened, as it was more of a move of necessity than anything else. She lost her job and was kicked out of her house at the same time in early February. Rather than keep her homeless and sleeping in her Jeep, I had her come stay with me. Mostly against her will.

In January, I got the bad news that my old friend Darrold passed away, which was just a few weeks after my Uncle Butch died, so that wasn't a very fun few weeks

The Banana Convention played and toured all over as we played a total of 53 shows in 2009, which averages out to 1 show per week. Of course, we spent 10 days on the road in August for our East Coast Tour, which was amazing. There was a span between mid-April and the beginning of August where I literally did not have one free weekend. Between shows with The BC and family stuff, I did not have a weekend to just do NOTHING for about 15 weekends in a row. Crazy, but fun!

The Family Canoe Trip/Blue Harvest Fest/Campowowalk weekends were all wonderful and super fun, as usual. And, yes, I KNOW I still haven't uploaded all the pictures from all those things, but they ARE coming. I promise!

Oh, and how can I forget my trip to Portland, OR that I took in October!? That was amazing. Portland is a beautiful place, and made even more so by my best friend Sara living out there and us staying with her the whole time. I'm already looking forward to heading back there sometime in 2010.

Then winter came and everything has calmed down and I've not done much of anything since snow has hit the ground. My New Year's Eve celebration was pretty tame. Started early at my house drinking a few beers while watching some 'Rasslin on the TeeVee before heading up to White's at about the 10:30 mark to check out a friend's band, A Machete Fight. Once they were done, I promptly left the bar and went to Fletch Bohanski's pad where he, his lady, Cheney, Miranda, Pooder, and I drank and watched the ball drop in Times Square. I stuck around there a bit longer before heading home and my head hit the pillow before 2am.

So, that was my 2009 in a nutshell
Friday, December 18th, 2009
5:06 pm
Bells Will Be Ringing
Here's a song we decided to learn last night at practice. Took a little less than an hour of practice before we did this recording, and we plan on playing it tonight at our show at White's Bar:

http://www.thebananaconvention.com/musicmedia/MUSIC/BELLS.mp3

Enjoy, and Merry Christmas from The Banana Convention
Tuesday, December 8th, 2009
2:10 pm
Nothelfer Family Get Together
Had the best weekend in a long time with my family.

Friday night, The BC played in Bay City and, while we didn't have the biggest crowd we've ever had there, it was still full. Best of all, my dad and brothers came out to the show. My brothers Marty (from Ishpeming) and Matt (from LA) were in town as we had the big family Christmas this weekend. It was a fun to kick off the weekend playing a show and having my family there.

On Saturday we had the big Nothelfer Family Christmas Party, which included all aunts and cousins and everybody. So much fun, and lots and lots of food. We played some family games and then went out and did some Christmas Caroling a few blocks around our neighborhood. That was a tremendous experience. I don't think anybody in our family, really, are "carolers", but my Mom really pushed for it and we all went out and did it and had a blast. It helped to have a few bottles of liquor stashed away to "keep us warm" ;)

My Dad dressed up as Santa and at one house was this little boy who was SO excited to have Santa Claus right there in his front yard! His eyes were so big and he was so happy. That made the whole thing worth it. Another highlight was caroling for an older lady who cried. I couldn't tell if she was crying because she was happy we were caroling for her or because our singing was so bad. Actually, she was very touched by it, and Heather spent a lot of time with her after we were done. We moved on and caroled at two more houses while she was there talking with her. Turns out her husband had just passed and she's been pretty lonely and we really truly did touch her by doing that. It meant a lot.

After the family party ended, all my brothers and several cousins headed up to the Farmer's Home Tavern in Hemlock where EVERYBODY got trashed. Well, I didn't as I was driving home that night, but I had a few and still had a wonderful time. Besides us, there were maybe 10 other people in the bar and we completely ran the place. We played the jukebox all night long and sang along to every song. Loudly. We were the table of people I likely would've hated had I gone to that bar to just sit and have a few drinks, but fuck it. We were having a grand old time.

The next day was a smaller family get together, just immediate family. Since Marty and Matt are rarely in town, we did Christmas with them and with our nephews. This was a much more laid back affair, but still very nice. Later in the evening, we played a game of Spoons, which is a card game involving....well.....spoons. Not going to take the time to explain it, but when the Nothelfer Boys are involved, even card games are a full contact sport.

Heather was blown away by how ridiculous and crazy my family is. We've been together a year now, but she's not really and truly experienced a full on Nothelfer Family get together. She didn't believe families like this really existed. Well, we do, and I know I am tremendously blessed to be a part of it.

Hundreds of pictures were taken over the course of those three days and I hope to start getting them uploaded later this week. Once I do, I'll be sure to post a link for those interested.
Wednesday, November 25th, 2009
2:03 pm
2009 In Movies
I'm a movie whore. I love going out to the movies. Even in this day and age of high-def home theaters and surround sound systems and torrents and illegal downloads, nothing compares to actually going out to the movie theater and getting an extremely oversized and overpriced bucket of popcorn, an equally large carbonated soda beverage, sitting in the uncomfortable theater seat, sticking to the floor from the mystery substance beneath my feet, and leaning back and taking in the entire experience. Read more...Collapse )
Wednesday, October 14th, 2009
6:59 pm
Heading to Portland, OR to see Sara this weekend and to celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving with her. I'm excited. Not only do I get to have a delicious turkey dinner and see Portland for the first time, but I get to hang out with Sara for a few days. Yay!
Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009
11:11 am
33rd Time's The Charm
I had a pretty good Birthday, despite a pretty rocky start. Heather and I had a HUGE fight on Thursday night wherein we basically broke up for a few hours/overnight. We talked more on Friday and somewhat patched things up. Things aren't perfect and everything is not smoothed over or anything, but we're not broken up and are going to ride this a little longer and see where it takes us.

Spent a majority of the day on Saturday, the 19th, in Hemlock with the family and that's always a good time. To make it better, though, many family members from Kentucky were in town and I got to see my Aunts and Uncles that I don't get to see that often. We did the parade for Sawdust Day, then went home to hang out there and had a pretty amazing dinner of BBQ and all the fixins. We sat around the bon fire for a few hours drinking and talking and playing silly games and just laughing and having a good time. That was great. I left Hemlock a little after 11 and me and Heather and our friend Laura went to White's Bar for a few drinks before we headed home for a few more drinks with Pooder and friends.

My actual Birthday day was pretty uneventful. Heather and I basically sat around the house all day doing much of nothing. Was nice to just relax like that. Around 10:30, she and I headed back to White's where we were met by friends and where I got pretty sloshed as my friend Chris got me a "Stop Light". A "Stop Light" consists of three shots taken back to back to back - Lime Vodka, Tequila, and Hot Damn. Ugh. He did that to me last year on my Birthday too, and we all know how last year ended up. ;)

After a little over an hour at White's, we headed to another bar - The Scottish Inn - because I was really hungry and wanted one of their delicious sandwiches. Unfortunately, when we go there, the kitchen was closed, so no sandwich for me. There's not much else I really remember from being at the Scottish cuz that's when the Stop Light really kicked in. No idea how long we were there or anything we may have talked about, but we left there and headed to Taco Bell and then to Chris's place to eat up before we went home.

I took yesterday off from work and again, we did much of nothing. We went out to see the movie The Informant, which was decent but not amazing, then we came home and got Chinese takeout and watched TV.

And that was my Birthday weekend. :)
Wednesday, September 16th, 2009
2:13 pm
It's my 33rd birthday on Sunday. Big whoop. No plans to go anywhere or do anything. I love celebrating other people's birthdays, but mine has never been a big deal. My family has never really done much of anything for birthdays. Last time I remember having a party was when I was 11 or something. It's just never been a thing. But I like to treat other people's birthday's like a big thing. Guess nobody's ever made a big deal of mine, so neither have I.

I did have a hell of a time on my last birthday, from what I remember. But that was more because we had a show that night and my birthday was used as an excuse for the show. Then people bought me way too many shots and I got so drunk I don't remember much of anything. I was apparently on a breast grabbing spree that nobody seemed to care about. I guess ladies were perfectly ok with me grabbing at them, and some even offered themselves up to be groped. Too bad I don't remember any of that.

I haven't drank that much since that night. I don't think I ever want to drink that much again. It's not a good feeling to wake up and not really remember anything and be told stories of things you did with no recollection. Some people laugh at themselves when it happens to them. Not me. I was kind of upset with myself for it. Needless to say, there will not be a repeat of that this year.
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