I often blog thoughts that arose as I was doing other things. The Redroom blog is an outlet valve. Writing helps me think and articulate what I think.
I fixed my Bose CD20 this morning. A six disc player, twelve years old, part of my home stereo, it had quit changing the CDs, emitting a sustained buzz when asked to do so, and would not play CDs. My first thought, encouraged by my wife, was give it a good whack.
That didn't help.
Next, being a lazy but experienced consumer, I thought maybe I would replace it. Not the whole sterero, just that CD player stereo command center. Apparently that's not possible, or at least my research was inconclusive enough to make me believe it' not possible without buying a new system and adding my old speakers into the new system. I'm not quite that big a consumer.
After that, I wondered if others could fix it and searched the Intertubes for that. Yes, people could fix it for $200 to $300 plus parts and shipping. My searching also uncovered other forums, though. Through careful excavation - none courtesy of Bose itself - I discovered what is probably the problem and how to fix it. This morning found success.
What interested me as I dissambled and re-assembled the piece was how tidy the Bose was. I've taken apart many computers, radios, stereos and phones to find out what's going on in them or attempt to fix them, and this struck me as one of the most impressive designs. I couldn't stop from comparing it to the Dell tower computer I fixed earlier this year, replacing the power supply. I bought both the Bose and the Dell back in '99, but the Dell was like a dinosaur compared to the Bose.
Testing the Bose meant putting CDs into the cartridge and trying them. I grabbed some from nearby and put in them in, random selections. I didn't even know what they were. First up was Zucchero and John Lee Hooker singing, "I lay down with an angel," from Zucchero's album. Switching discs (it works!) brought up The Traveling Wilburys, "Everybody, got somebody, to leeeannn on, put your body, next to mine, and dreeeeam on." Next up was the Eurythmics, and Annie Lennox asking, "Would I lie to you honey? Now would I tell you something that wasn't true? I'm asking you sugar, would I liiiieee to you?"
Each song and album delivered me, for a moment, to somewhere else. I picked up Zucchero's album while visiting the SF Bay Area after moving to Ashland, Oregon, in 2005. I heard a song from the album a few months before, while I waited for my wife to come out of store. We were at a store to pick up a piece for our breakfast room blinds, part of the fix up our Half Moon Bay place and sell it project.
Annie Lennox and the Eurythmics album, "Be Yourself Tonight", was picked up in Germany in 1987, shortly after we arrived there, a gift from me to my wife, who loves the album, using it to energize herself for cleaning, and including it as part of our travel package whenever we do road trips. We also picked up The Traveling Wilburys in Germany, in 1988, when their first album came out. I loved the line up and they story behind it, of these musical stars hanging out and chatting, having dinner, and then coming together to do an album for fun. And in a weird twist, going back to my CD player and the Eurythmics, The Traveling Wilbury's album was recorded at the house and garden of Dave Stewart, the other part of the Eurythmics duo.
The loose albums I picked up were from the last road trip selection. They were sitting inside the stereo cabinet, not in their jewel cases, but naked and exposed. My wife does not like returning the CDs to their cases, even though the cases are organized and stored in alphabetical order, by artist. It's something that must be accepted and lived with, but I enjoy it about her. It's her quirk, one of a thousand, that makes her one in a million.
Switching the player to the external CD player, a Sony turntable type that houses 200 CDs in eight sections, the selection that came up was Stevie Ray Vaughn & Double Trouble, "Texas Flood", with one of my favorite songs, "The Sky Is Crying". I lived in the bay area the year Stevie Ray Vaughn died in a helicopter accident after leaving a concert in Wisconsin. I'd had several SRV albums for years and played them, but for some reason my wife only discovered SRV around 2004. He and BB King became two of her favorite performers. An album she played over and over again one year, and another road trip regular, is "A Tribute To Stevie Ray Vaughn", from 1996. Hearing SRV and those other guitarists and musicians play changed the way she listens to music and thinks about it (her words). It still cracks me up that I can play something like The Allman Brothers Band "Live at The Fillmore East" and she'll ask, "Who is that playing?" I originally bought that album in vinyl the year I met her, 1971. I bought it in December of that year, when I was fifteen years old and in high school, and have had it as a record, cassette tape or CD ever since. That same year, I moved in with my Dad, who had just returned from a tour in Germany the year before. He retired and joined my wife's father in a venture to open a new grocery store in southern West Virginia.
My Dad and I lived in a mobile home that year. We moved down there in August and moved into our new mobile home in September. It burned down in October, forcing us to move. He bought another one a month later, and we moved in at the beginning of December. Three years later, I graduated high school, joined the Air Force and left home. A year after that, in 1975, I married my wife. Somehow, we're still together.
Satisfied and pleased with the morning's work, I shut the stereo down and headed out to write and ponder the many small connections of life and living.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com