Life

I have a certain image to uphold. Okay, I am just a college student majoring in musical composition by say, but there is another side to my life. I am a spinmaster by night. I have an alter ego with a persona all its own. I try to dress the part in the appropriate clothing. But sometimes you have to go further just a bit, like wearing the right watch for a DJ gig at a super-trendy club. I know that this is the time to put on my coolest G shock watch. It is all part of the job to me. The club denizens who is the real thing and who is not. They go all out to deck themselves in the latest trend. You wouldn’t be caught dead in some nerdy outfit. The music apparently isn’t everything.

I am up to date in my Casio S Series dark metallic collection. It is a new look with an understated sheen so it has glam all the way and can carry you to any casual or dressy event. Got a party coming up? Get this baby on your wrist. The colors are so rich, perfect for the season and beyond. I personally like the dark navy, the burgundy, and the evergreen. There are others with trendy names like riverside blue, lush meadow, and dusty cedar. You can wear it to the gym and keep it on for a night out with friends. It is structured and sophisticated for the active, contemporary woman. If that includes a DJ, well, I’m included.

My watch is equipped with g-shock technology. This means water resistance, magnetic and shock resistance. I love the auto LE$D light with afterglow world time that reaches 29 time zones (wow, are there really that many?) and 48 cities. It boats of five daily alarms and one snooze, plus a stopwatch, countdown timer, and 12/24 formats—all within the lovely case.

It is known as a touch watch that never breaks. I can be an aggressive spinmaster and my watch will not fail me. I said it was water and shock resistant, but I have to add that it is gravity resistant, low temperature resistant, and vibration resistant. Nothing has been left out. It is packed with all the best Casio innovations and technologies including internal components protected with urethane and suspended in timekeeping modules within the watch structure. I know this watch has evolved from its inception, so by now I have the best and most functional example. I believe it is a Japanese brand based in Tokyo with a US subsidiary in New Jersey. You get the best of both worlds in terms of leading manufacturers. Casio, of course, is known for calculators, keyboards, mobile devices, label printers, cash registers and other consumer electronics. While the watch is the only product I have used, I no doubt will try others. For the moment I am just touting what I think is their most exciting offering. Thank you Casio for making such creative and exciting watches.

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I love to get together with friends and likeminded people who enjoy music as much as I do. We try to meet in coffee shops, someone’s rec room, or my hot tub. It is good clean fun and a great place to share stories. Fortunately, I have one large enough for multiple friends. Who doesn’t love a good soak in warm whirling water, plus being doused by fabulous jet sprays. I got a good unit with all the bells and whistles so we lack for nothing. Most of us where headphones and listen to the tunes of their choice. Summer is the best time to indulge in water recreation, but even in winter with the temperature turned up, we relish our time in the hot tub.

It was hard to make the decision to buy a hot tub as most people would rather have a swimming pool. I don’t have a big yard and it made sense to install something more on the diminutive side, although my research into the best hot tubs shows that they do come in larger sizes. You can spend whatever you like as there are deluxe models and I went mid-range. I am sure that the hours of communal fun will more than make up for the expense. My friends like the tub so much that I practically have to throw them out when it gets late. I am sure our cheerful voices wake the neighbors. I should invite them over to prevent any complaints.

Our conversation easily turns to music no matter where we are. As a DJ I have many odd stories to tell about venues I have played. At one party, everyone came dressed as cartoon animals and it made for a rollicking time. People act goofy when they are in costume, especially when there is a competition for best outfit. I get to witness all kinds of behavior at my gigs. There are times when it is a celebration for a birthday or an anniversary and things get festive and joyful and more on the serious side. I like big groups and they often make requests, but usually I am on my own and do what I like. I try to match the mood of the event and keep within the spirit of the people attending.

Meanwhile, I am back in the hot tub for a quick relaxing soak. This time I am alone as I didn’t have time to contact anyone in my group. I am listening to music and getting mentally ready for bed. I reflect on the previous evening and how well it all went. I met some special people who may join my coterie. One of them was a DJ himself. We share ideas and thoughts about the profession. He will surely be the next one I invite to the hot tub. I have outdoor speakers so I can play some music I am sure he will like. It’s better than headphones. We can talk as we listen and while away the evening with a cold glass of wine.

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Bored during the summer when all your friends are away? Not me. I can always get a DJ job. I am getting a bit of a reputation and have been known to accept two or more gigs a week. I make time as I love the role of spinmaster. I spent many hours learning the trade. I have photos to prove it and letters of recommendation. I am always looking so pass the word. During the summer, my venues are often outside. I love the summer nights when it is warm enough to wear shorts and flip flops. I am not a fashionista so this suits me just fine.

I recently accepted to work an outdoor party in someone’s backyard. They had a great big pool and an inflatable pool slide for kids and childlike adults. When I arrived, everyone was already at it. It was going to be an evening of water recreation. People were in the heated pool sipping exotic drinks that were also resting on trays attached to the pool’s side. The kids were too enthralled to be eating but a barbecue was going strong and hamburgers would be on the menu.

It was amusing to see the kids landing on an unsuspecting adult after they had descended the slide. Splat! It was comical because the adult was totally taken by surprise. This didn’t stop the same kid from going at it again and he was getting to be a nuisance. He loved splashing a lot when in the water and didn’t try to do proper swimming technique. I started my work and adjusted the music to the mood of the moment. People were free to make requests if you could tear them away from the inviting water of the pool. It was a lazy night with everyone doing what they wanted. Some just lazed on lounge chairs with a paper plate filled with a hamburger and grilled corn.

The evening wore on and nothing changed. The kids never tired of the inflatable water slide. Finally, the party host said that it was time to put it away. It was carried to the garage and the kids retreated to inside the house to watch TV. The adults were grateful and could communicate better in the new-found quiet. They now paid complete attention to my music. I was the center of attention, not the water slide. I tried to make it worthwhile and hoped that at least some guests would remain for a few hours more. They did. I find these backyard parties are so appealing that they last into the late night.

I made a bunch of money on this job and soon I would be off to the next one. It was in a club so the atmosphere would be so different. It is loud, dark, and crowded. You do what you have to. Meeting expectations is my forte. I want to be so good that I am hired back in no time.

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I got a call about doing a gig about an hour from here recently. I told them I’d have to check my schedule and that I’d get back to them within 15 minutes. I knew I wasn’t booked for that day but I’d never heard of the promoter or the venue, so some investigating was in order. I looked up the address they gave me on Google Maps. It appeared to be a scary old warehouse, the kind you would see in a horror movie where people get murdered. I did see some good things online about the promotors, though. Reliable, fun parties, stuff like that. While I’m not a great fan of driving all that way, especially at night, it paid well and it could be some good exposure for me. I called two friends and asked if they’d like to tag along. Both were free, so I called the promoter back to accept. We ironed out the details, then I was emailed a contract to sign and that was it.

The night of the event, my friends helped me load everything into my car to make the trek over to the site. The place looked super creepy and the wind was picking up, making the evening turn cold. I was just glad that we got there before the sun set. TBH, I was also glad that my friends were with me. We snapped a few selfies from the parking lot and posted them online. We joked that it was so people would know where to start the search if we went missing but none of us were really laughing.

Then it was time to face the music and enter the building. That’s when everything changed. There were black lights and multicolored twinkle lights everywhere. The walls were covered in murals done in a graffiti style. A huge dance floor took up most of the middle of the warehouse, and there was a small platform in the front all ready and waiting for me. There was a bar running the length of one whole wall with mismatched stools along it, their seats just waiting to be filled. I can’t even explain it. If there is such a thing as abandoned warehouse glam in interior design, this place is it. My two friends started running around like crazies, taking pictures with their phones and freaking out over the walls. There was a space heater on the other side of the room that had a sticker on the site that said HeaterHound.com, and it made the whole place seem comfortable after the chill of the exterior. I was impressed with how well it could heat such a large area. There wasn’t even a draft. A guy in a suit came over and introduced himself as the one I had spoken to on the phone, and we got to work setting everything up before people started arriving.

I got the music going as a steady stream of people flowed in. Everybody was dancing and having a good time, and it was a great night. I spun a few cool dance mixes of slower songs that people really seemed to like. The night was over way too soon. Once it closed down for the night, we started packing everything up and they turned the space heater toward the open doors to warm us up again after all those hot, insulating bodies vacated the room. It fortified us for the cold trek back to my car.

I would definitely work at that place again, and for the promoter. It was totally fun, and getting paid to DJ is a pretty awesome deal!

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When I get time off from DJing and my other obligations, I like to spend time with my dad. We usually do things that interest him more than me, but I am game. I will do most anything to have contact these days as both of us are super busy. As I get older, sessions with him are few and far between. So when he mentioned shopping for a new gun and a gun safe, I was on board.

Why a gun you ask? It’s simple. His favorite sport is hunting and we live near an area where it is permitted by law. I also have experience in this area and know how to wield a weapon. I also know about the importance of storage when you are done. You can’t be too careful about locking firearms up. Horror stories abound about kids who somehow get access or robbers who see an opportunity to strike.

Hunting trips are the highlight of my year with dad. I have plenty of other things I do with friends. I go for small things like quail or rabbits. I am not into deer or larger prey however. Shopping for a new rifle seemed natural to me given my dad’s hobby. I liked the idea of a larger in wall gun safe so we could store extra valuables in a water and fireproof entity.

After surveying the scene, dad made his choice. He was more at a loss about the safe. How large should it be? What brand is best? What should we spend for top quality without breaking the bank? Would his collection grow over time? We both agreed that it was likely and selected a 24-weapon size made of 10-guauge steel and sporting an electronic keypad and extra key lock. I didn’t need access really but he thought I should know the combination, and no one else. Okay, I thought, if it is for security purposes, I will take responsibility for the gun safe in the event of an emergency.

Meanwhile, I was more excited about the possibility of hunting. We enjoyed our shopping trip and agreed to book some additional time. I love being outdoors in the crisp fall weather and taking in the distant mountains and woody expanses. It is so refreshing and inspiring and one of the greatest way to escape from the grind.

There is a lovely place with a little stream that we love to picnic by. I was in charge of the food, of course. A half day is enough to enjoy the glories of the sport. I know you have to be in the right spirit. Hunting is not for everyone, but frankly I grew up doing it and don’t give it a second thought. If you don’t yet know if it is an activity for you, try it out with some friends and see for yourself. You might be pleasantly surprised. But don’t forget to learn about guns and storage. They are not secondary considerations.