RUSH

At my age I never thought I would take the time to listen to a rock band, but I did. A few months ago I was in conversation with a friend at a pre-COVID gathering and we discussed road trips. The friend suggested I read a book by Neil Peart. “Who?” I asked. Please spell the name. Being really deaf I couldn’t’ make out the sound. P E A R T he spelled. “Just like it sounds,” I said. “Who is he?” He is the drummer for the rock band RUSH. “Who are they?”

Geddy Lee Neil Peart Alex Lifeson

“They were popular back in the eighties and nineties” was the reply.

“I never heard of them.” I made a note on my phone and several weeks later I ordered the book from the library. Then COVID hit and all things went into hiding including the library. A week ago, I got notice from the library that I had a book waiting. I was surprised when I picked it up that it was by Neil Peart. I had forgotten that I ordered it.

The book is called “Far and Wide, Bring That Horizon To Me,” by Neil Peart. I am now educated on who he is and what RUSH is. I can’t believe that after so many years I am still in the dark about this band. The book is a celebration of the band’s fortieth year together, their last road tour, and Neil’s last big motorcycle trip. The interesting thing about Neil is that he can’t stand spending his life on a tour bus while on tour. To make his life interesting he charts road trips in between concerts and rides the route on his BMW motorcycle. He has one travel companion who rides with him (Safety in Numbers).

To honor their forty years together RUSH did forty concerts on the R40 tour. The rationale was that the members are aging, and afraid that if they didn’t do it now they wouldn’t be capable of doing it later. Aging does have a way of changing minds and joints, and such. There is nothing like a guitarist with arthritic fingers and a drummer with tennis elbow. Then again it might have led to a completely new sound.

As I searched for photos of Neil and RUSH on Google Images I spotted a caption citing Neil’s obituary. What? I just found out about the guy and he died. Yes, he died this January 11, 2020 at age 67, four years after he published the book I just read. He must have learned of his brain cancer shortly after that last road trip. The Glioblastoma took him out of our lives. His goal in life was to be a person that people looked up to. I know I am one of his converts. I want to lead my life as he did, always learning, always seeking new information, always exploring the back ways of the world.

Give ’em the Loan!

2009-buick-lucerneAs angry as I am at GM,  Ford, Chrysler, and the UAW, I have decided to speak up for the bridge loan. It is so simple, yet I almost blew it. If these companies suddenly go out of business, we will be forced to buy foreign. Think about that for a minute. Where will all those cars and trucks come from? The US car companies make about  four million cars in the USA each year. If their plants are no longer producing, who will build these cars? Easy you say, Japan, Korea, Germany, Italy, Sweden, etc. Well folks, these companies all have their own markets. They would never be able to ramp up to build an extra four million cars overnight.

So your beater finally died, and you have no other choice than to buy another car. You go to the local Toyota showroom and discover that a Camry costs one hundred thousand dollars, and you are placed on a waiting list. Not to worry, you amble over to the used car dealer to discover that a used Chevy with one hundred thousand miles is commanding twenty five thousand dollars. What the hell is going on?

It takes several years to build new car plants. The extra sales placed on the foreign car companies would strain their resources. There would be a severe shortage of cars for several years after the “big three” have been buried. The shortage plays into the hands of the economists old rule that the price is dictated by suppy and demand. Fewer cars, more sales equals higher prices.

Do we really want to see car prices triple, or do we want to see the “big three”  live on?

As much as I hate the UAW, and the even dumber GM management for their stupid tactics over the last forty years,  I would sooner see the big three survive.  Let’s give them the loan!