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One Man Band

I drove Veronica to her osteopathic session, again. The doctor, originally from Spain, is in fact a gypsy. He chats away with Veronica quite animatedly, but with me, is very economical with his words.

He has divided the very large front room of his house into an office and a waiting room. The two of them, already chatting away animatedly, went off through a door in the partition for their session. I sat down in the improvised, spacious foyer to wait and write.

There was some sort of a music box, a small white electronic device, seamlessly repeating the same basic melody over and over. So, while I could hear that there was conversation between Vero and the doctor, I could not make out anything that was being said.

Strange as it seemed then, strange as it seems now, I found that tune quite soothing. It calmed the part of my brain that is always taking things in; the part that is always considering, watching, worried about what will happen next. It trained my mind, like staring at a candle.

The human brain is always on the verge of being overwhelmed. We love patterns, because then we've got it figured out, can give it a rest, stop monitoring, go onto something else. Maybe there were also magical vibes in this gypsy's house. Whatever the cause, my writing process was greatly focused. I churned out some inspired prose, and felt uplifted.

When I got home, I started looking on Youtube for what I had been listening to on the osteopath's music box. It's there somewhere, I'm sure. But so far, I haven't put the right words into the site's search bar. And I've stopped looking, because I found another repetitive musical format. They call it looping.

The musician records a basic rhythm, and then plays that recording over and over. That in place, the musician then records a short ditty on an instrument, and keeps that recording looping along with the basic rhythmic. Repeating this process using various instruments, he builds up a whole orchestra, looping away, while he plays lead, improvising over it all.

Looping music lacks the predicable utter simplicity of the osteopath's music box, but, largely predictable it has largely the same effect, calming my chattering brain waves, disabling that sometimes helpful, usually nagging, survival-oriented watchfulness: "Everything ok? How about now? You sure?" It feels ridiculous to only be discovering these things so late in life.

It took a crisis in my lower back to wake me up to the reality that I am sitting too much. Recently enlightened on this point, I built myself a standing desk, putting a coffee table on top of another table. Then, because standing still for any length of time fatigues the legs, and because it gets me to the proper ergometric height, I pulled my mini-trampoline under it. It absorbs the shock of the concrete floor and keeps things moving.

So, there I was, the other day, working away at my standing desk, swaying as I shifted my weight from leg to leg, circling with my pelvis, not exactly dancing, but bouncing ever so slightly, rhythmically, along with the looping orchestra, feeling alright, when it struck me that, when it comes to my Lokkal project, I too am a one man band.

That a local social network, the basis of Lokkal, is a great idea has been affirmed for me by a star of the high-tech firmament. Think of Lokkal as the telephone Yellow Pages (and the White Pages) robustly reborn for the 21st century. Think of it as an illustrated table of contents to our city, a digital town square, like Facebook (or, better, like Instagram), but local, just for San Miguel.

I keep hoping for another person to come along and play an administrative role, because this great, ambitious idea is also a lot of work. Employees, I have. Employees are fine, but I want someone to function as a partner.

With all the concern about helping society and the planet, you would think that there would be people lining up to lend a hand in creating a more wholesome internet platform, that builds community, strengthens the local economy and resists globalism. But I find myself advancing on my own.

I've gotten better at it, more efficient at keeping all the plates spinning, better at orchestrating my one man band. And the project itself has matured. Now, anyone can see in ten seconds what I've been talking about (and working towards) for five years, the world's first city-wide, local social network.

Like that old saw that a bank doesn't want to lend money to anyone who really needs it, now that I'm focused and swaying and bouncing along by myself, I think that the right people will come into place, not only to help me keep these plates spinning, but to put some others in motion; first we take San Miguel and then we take the world.

It's empowering to realize that I've got the ability to do it on my own. A one man band will work in a pinch, but playing along with recorded loops is not nearly as inspiring as being in a real, live band.

I invite you to join and curate a bit of the community: shoe stores, restaurants, happy hours, an event, NGOs, art galleries, children's activities, animals, deserts, the Tuesday Tianguis... If civilization is to survive, we need a healthier internet. If you want to introduce a world-changing technology, San Miguel is a good place to start. You really can make a big difference, doing something that interests you, in your spare time. Email me at the address below, and I'll show you how.

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Dr. David presents Lokkal, the social network, the prettiest, most-efficient way to see San Miguel online. Our Wall shows it all. Join and add your point of view.

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