Fragile Soul

So, you know that (at least) one of your friends is a creative soul, that among other things, they are a musician. You listen to a few recordings, maybe a video, and get a song stuck in your head. Then, they win a contest and end up hosting an open mic night. You know the music is decent, and you want to be a supportive friend, so you make plans to attend the event, son in tow.

Then, you think about how performing in front of friends may be a bit of a jarring experience. You start thinking about the things that may be going through their mind, like...are they just going to be polite and say you sound great or are they going to hit you with the "Sorry man, but you might want to find a new hobby..." line? Honestly, I expected a good show and if it was bad, I wouldn't have said a word because although I'm pretty upfront, I'm not without common courtesy when evaluating artistic expressions. Thankfully, I didn't have to contemplate either scenario.

Pablo Baldetti
Whether nervous about performing in front of friends or not, Rodney Golson and Pablo Baldetti, performers of Fragile Soul gave a stunning performance that I hope and expect to see again and again. With eyes fixed on a remote spot, Pablo left the Acorn and landed somewhere in a soothing world of rhythm all his own, leaving the audience to admire the ease with which he strummed his guitar like a comfortable old friend. In the meantime, Rodney closes his eyes and moves his body with inflection as he creates a scene of hopeful love and self-reflection, owning the dark side of man while offering the surreal plea to be seen with fresh eyes, a plea that so many of us have uttered using far less graceful methods.

If it sounds beautiful and uplifting all at once, it's only because it was. I honestly can't think of a better live musical experience for my son to have enjoyed as his first public one. I applaud my friend and his musical talents and I want to add something that I feel is especially important in today's technological world.

This experience wasn't about voice-overs, or more electronic sounds than true musical talent. There weren't any fancy backdrops or light effects. It was just two guys, on a stage, doing what they love and being kind enough to share it with the rest of us. The world needs more of that. But, I encourage you to judge for yourself.
Rodney Golson

Check out some of their music on Bandcamp, and then head over to the Fragile Soul Facebook page to keep up on when you might be able to catch a glimpse of them.

If you are part of the gamer world, know someone in the gamer world, or have been in any way exposed to technology in the past 6 months, you know about the Fallout 4 release. The post-apocalyptic game has all but dominated the minds of open role play gamers since its conception. One local LARP just decided to jump in and celebrate the release with a few demonstrations of their own.

Wasteville is a post-apocalyptic LARP based in Westville, IN. Unlike other LARPs that rely solely on melee weapons, Wasteville also incorporates NERF guns of all shapes, sizes, and modifications.

"What's that? It's cold out and these people are going to stand outside and shoot each other with NERF guns?" you ask.

In return I ask you, what is the one thing that would be even better than an open role play post-apocalyptic video game? Why push buttons when you can actually pull the triggers? What kind of a gamer are you anyhow?!

In all seriousness, you're going to be standing in line anyhow. You may as well be entertained by some post-apocalyptic LARP demonstrations. And if you've never been to a LARP and this seems like it might be a cool idea, then you have a chance to gather all the info you need to attend the next one. In the meantime, you can enjoy the in-depth and humorous role play and battles from a reasonably safe distance at Best Buy in Valparaiso from around 10 p.m. and through the actual release of Fallout 4.

Hint: You can still re-order and pickup tonight as well.

Edit: The owner just informed me that there may not be a battle since he had some cancellations, but he will still be there in garb to share information.

As many of you know by now, Melanie Greer was shot by her husband on August 1st, 2015. So far, she has made a recovery that is nothing short of amazing, but she still has a long way to go. In speaking with Melanie, I learned that she is considering going back to work soon. I get it, she's eager to get on with her life, but at the same time, now should be a time of recovery and reflection. Yet there are still bills to pay and children to take care of. That's one reason I am holding this giveaway

The funds being raised for Melanie and her two boys are going to be applied toward cost of living and meeting medical needs. Personally, my hope is that we can raise enough money for Melanie to stay home a bit longer and look after herself and her boys. As you can see by the scan, the situation is a bit delicate and scar tissue plays a significant role in her recovery.

This is a woman who even now is still optimistic. She has a positive outlook and a can-do attitude that many people wouldn't even be approaching at this point. Let's help her maintain that attitude by raising enough funds to give her a bit of cushion to fall back on.

I'm offering two tickets to the fundraiser, to be held at the VFW in Knox, Indiana on September 19, 2015 from 4:00 to 11:30 P.M. with an AYCE spaghetti dinner made from locally grown foods. There is also going to be a DJ, dancing, 50/50 raffle, giveaways every half hour, an auction and more. If the only thing holding you back is a lack of funds to buy the tickets, get them here. If you have tickets, but you know someone who doesn't enter the contest for them.

Entering the contest is easy. All you have to do is share the flyer in the picture at the top of this blog or the link to the Facebook event page, which you can get by clicking on this link to the Melanie Greer Fundraiser Event. Come back to the comment section here and post a link to your wall so I can see that you shared it. I'll use a random generator to pick a winner of two tickets and announce the winner here and on Facebook. It's that simple.