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  1. #1
    Good Enough
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Yes, the activity here has certainly slowed down as of late, much of which can be blamed on VH, but not all. This is OUR board, not the band's. We will only get out of it what we put into it. I'm as guilty as the next guy of simply posting for a sheer lack of having much of anything else to do. The VH silence is dragging us all down, and that is a shame.


    Why do I care so much about the band? Many reasons, but one dominates all the others...

    When I was 14 or 15, I began getting sick. Nobody knew what it was, but it was having severe effects on my life. I was born and raised to be a baseball player, and suddenly I was no longer able to compete. This destroyed my relationship with my father/trainer/coach/etc (he played many roles), beyond any hope of sincere repair. He held me personally responsible for getting sick. Once a 4.0 student, I began not caring about school. (don't worry- I did graduate an honors student [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img])

    I DID take an interest in music; the school band was the only part of school I cared about. I was a relatively new VH fan, but enough so that I wanted to play the guitar. Maybe at first I wanted to be another Eddie, but I learned from him to be myself on the instrument. It became a BIG hobby for me.

    When I was 16, I was diagnosed with thyroid disease (Graves' diseases, to be exact) After trying medication and having it get worse, it developed into cancer. It's not cool to have cancer at age 16; it's even LESS cool to KNOW you have cancer when you're 16. AT the time of peak hormonal instability, I was given what could turn out to be a death sentence. The adolescent mind doesn't handle such things well; I turned into an old man FAST. Honestly, the only thing that kept me interested in living was music-listening to it, playing it, writing it, etc. THAT came from Van Halen.

    Through several radiation treatments my thyroid was destroyed. They could not put me on replacement meds until the radiation had run its course. That meant that, for about 6 months, I was going to be literally on the verge of death. I developed a temporary form of muscular dystrophy, which eventually left me unable to walk, have sex, chew properly, speak clearly, keep my eyes open, play the guitar at ALL, and I had a hard time breathing.

    What kept my spirits up long enough to keep me alive was the thought of someday being able to play guitar again. It meant more to me than anything. After I was finally put on meds (replacement thyroid hormone), I SLOWLY regained the basic muscle abilities that we need to live. I had gained about 60 pounds in 2 months, and all of my muscle went to garbage. Once the picture-perfect athlete, I had become a slug. Earlier, I had developed a LOT of guitar technique from all the practicing I did...that was all gone. I had to start anew.

    I did restart, and it is STILL taking a long time to relearn some of the things I used to be able to do, but I keep going. At the time, guitar music (GOOD guitar music) was still all over the place, so I had a lot of inspiration. I took it very seriously; after all, it's what kept me going all that time. I have a GREAT respect for the guitar, and good music in general, as well as Eddie for all his accomplishments.

    With this lack of VH activity, and the HUGE effects the grunge, rap, and country trends had on the industry, the guitar is an undergound art. It's depressing to turn on the radio and feel sick because of the 'players' I hear. The instrument obviously meant a lot MORE to me than it does to most of them.

    A new VH release, especially one with Roth, will certainly spark an interest in the instrument again, ideally opening some doors for (excuse my lack of modesty please) good players like myself to have a CHANCE at doing it for a living. Every day that goes by without any new Van Halen news is one more day I lose. Although there are no signs of cancer in me NOW, there is always that chance that it could come back in another form and kill me when I ain't lookin'. On those days when I don't feel so hot, of course the worst possibility crosses my mind: 'what if?'

    VH helped pull me through the first time, and I wish they would come back before I have a second run-in with powers beyond my control. So I take VH a little more seriously than most. The effects that their next cd could have on the music world are potentially enormous. I have become a teacher, which I don't really think I can do for long, because the kids today are just so damn depressing. They are miserable while they have EVERYTHING, and it makes me sick to see that. Maybe if VH comes back with a vengeance, if nothing else, maybe it would spark enough interest in guitar again that I could teach THAT full time, as at least I'd have something in common with those kids.

    In the meantime, I come to this board nearly every day. Why? Because there are HUNDREDS of other people here who love the band, the same band that helped sustain me through my (knock on wood) worst. It's refreshing to have that kind of company for a change; it's a far cry from what I'm used to. Regardless of what the topics are, how stupid, heated, childish, disgusting, offensive they may be, I still have common ground with the person that posts them.

    It's not everyday you can actually find a REASON to want to discuss puppy dogs and rainbows with a group of 'strangers'. It's even cooler when we discuss Van Halen.

    This is not the news desk; Grant has that covered. It is not the 'official' site; Brad has that going on. It's BECAUSE of the fact that this is a pure fan site that I like it. It has no practical 'function' like the other 2, it is recreation. In my life, believe me, some good old fashioned recreation with a group of people you have something in common with is a VALUABLE commodity, regardless of the lack of news.

    These boards will only die if we let them, much as I would have died if I had let myself. The common thread (pun not intended) of myself and this board is the existence of Van Halen, and the profound effect they have had on some of our lives. I don't really care right now about a release date, a lineup, a singer, an amp, etc.; I just like having you guys to talk to, no matter WHAT it is about.

    This is almost like a talk radio show-marvelous technology is at our disposal. Instead of reaching to new heights, we try to see how far DOWN we can drag it. We can do better; I've seen it here. Every American ideal is realized here. Whether or not you are an American is irrelevant. This board is here, a LOT of people have put countless hours, dollars, and expletives into it. I would hate to see it all go to waste.

    So instead of everybody getting depressed, bored, frustrated, whatever, just keep in mind a few things: in the world, there are relatively few people with the luxury of having PC's to play with, or having such a wide variety of music to listen to, or TV's, radios, FOOD, clothing, cars, HOMES, etc etc etc. There are others, like myself, who have been or are sick, and learn to appreciate the odd little quirks life has to offer.

    Let's not drag this place down with everything else; life is too short for that. So please, before you all run off and desert the boards, think of how nice a place this really is. Even if you (like me) have barely a dollar to your name after paying your endless stream of bills, you can come here and temporarily exist in this place. Just for fun....some relief...a bit of music...some good and bad conversation...and a celebration of how good your lives really are compared to how they could be. Stick around; things will only get better.

    Thanks! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]


    Please commence with enjoying yourselves here once again ASAP; I've seen/heard enough whining to last me a lifetime.

    [ April 05, 2001 at 09:42 PM: Message edited by: AbeVanHalen ]
    Don't bark at me...<b>I</b> didn't name ya.

  2. #2
    Beloved Glenn's Avatar
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    02.13.15 @ 08:56 AM
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    Donor

    Sometimes a person just nails it. This is a stunning example.

  3. #3
    Banned!
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    01.11.08 @ 09:17 PM
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    Profound post, Abe. [img]smilies/cool.gif[/img] Yes, it is indeed nice to share stuff like this with people we've never met, let alone seen a picture of. If VH were never to have existed, this board wouldn't be here. Who knows what I'd be listening to. I can't imagine my life without VH or this board. Brett's done a hell of a job on this place. Great site, so we cannot just abandon Brett's baby just because of VH. It's not his fault. That is probably one reason he put up the Non-Music, Music-Only, Guitar Room and Musican's Corner forums...so we can talk about non-VH stuff. So let's all stay here. I agree some people come here too much, but there's also the chance of not coming here enough. So before I ramble on too much, I give AbeVH a big Amen. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] Plus a million more to VH for helping people out when they need it. Hope Eddie and Co. don't let us down soon!

    [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

  4. #4
    Imperial Fascist Overlord Down In Flames's Avatar
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    Abe, your post knocked me out.

    That was beautiful. It's a great post at a great time, for so many reasons. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

    I didn't know you had been so ill. That you fought through all your obstacles is a testament to you're strength. I knew we were lucky at the links to have you, but now I know just how lucky.

    Complainers beware - You've got nothing to complain about...
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    "You are the McCarthy of this board. The witch burner." - strungout, on yours truly

    "Only Eddymon would claim victory during a FOUR game losing streak." - OLO

    "Did I not say, 'I think we should shoot him!' I did. Double rainbow on this end. I require a high five. Out."- track 5, on the delicate art of banning

    "If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire..."

  5. #5
    PM Goo with your concerns OLO's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 01:36 AM
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    Great post ABE!!! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

    Thanks for sharing your story. I totally agree with you this board is far from dead, slow maybe but far from dead. You will find that its the same people posting over and over with a few newbies here and there. We have created a new community at the LINKS and that rocks. I have never met anyone from the LINKS in person but feel like I know some of you kinda well.

    Its nice to have a place like the LINKS to come to and share information about anything, give feedback and so on. All you have to do is look at the Non-music forum to see that this board is far from dead. The links has become far more than a VH message board, its become a online community.

    Once VH say's something its going to be mayhem here. [img]smilies/cool.gif[/img]
    ((Just My Two Cents))
    And thats about what its worth.

  6. #6
    Baluchitherium
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    05.12.06 @ 06:39 PM
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    Wow fantastic post Abe! Very very inspirational! Thanks man I think the links needed a post like that right about now. I am truly inspired
    I am awesome

  7. #7
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.13.17 @ 11:55 PM
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    All I can say is.....Wow.
    Webmaster
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    Tons of Van Halen!

  8. #8
    Eruption
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    02.27.09 @ 02:39 AM
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    I gotta say, that's a fuckin' INSPIRATIONAL post man. I'm with you 100%. The majority of people have no reason to complain yet they do. I'm aware, and grateful (even more so now) that I'm living a blessed life, no matter how tough I perceive my life to be, things could be a helluva load worse. That's why I choose to celebrate everyday and be thankful for what I have.

    And on the links. I've surfed all round this web thang, and there is NO other place like it. There are no people in the world that can talk shit like us Van Halen fans, makes clockin' in to my 9-5 a breeze, 'cos I know I can shoot the shit with y'all all day long.

    I ain't about to let it die!
    It'll all end in beers...

  9. #9
    Hot For Teacher
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    T H A N K S ! ! !

  10. #10
    Sinner's Swing! Rick S's Avatar
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    06.23.17 @ 09:49 PM
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    thumbs up abe...rock on dude ,you da man!
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    Deftones , now and forever and only second to VH.

    Dave or Sammy ?.........pffffft Eddie.

  11. #11
    Good Enough Van Gully's Avatar
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    09.04.17 @ 05:32 AM
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    Abe with this post and the one on pork recipes in Non-Music, you have officially become one of my heros. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
    "Gully, watch yourself. I am dead serious." - Brett Norton, Emperor of VHLinks.com

  12. #12
    Eruption
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    02.27.09 @ 02:39 AM
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    Pork recipes?

    Why didn't I see that?

    I'll be right back...
    It'll all end in beers...

  13. #13
    Little Dreamer
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Maybe you just need some new blood! I shall do what I can. TDR, you still around, the lounge is QUITE the snore!! [img]smilies/sleep.gif[/img]
    Gotta love it...

  14. #14
    Eruption
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    02.27.09 @ 02:39 AM
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    Hey BG! I was wondering if it was you... Right. I'll be right over.
    It'll all end in beers...

  15. #15
    Eruption
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Seriously Abe, this the exact kind of stuff that makes me extremely grateful for the lack of problems I've had with my life thus far. I was recently reading Jason Becker's story on his website (jason becker's story) and it touched me in a very similar way to your story. Dude, its people like you who I have the upmost respect for in this world - who can be struck down with such bad luck but somehow remain with an amazing amount of hope. I can't see myself doing the same to be honest and I have a great deal of admiration for those that have this hope and use it to fulfill their goals as you did.

    Now, I don't know about anybody else but I'm off to practice guitar! [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img] [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

    [ April 06, 2001 at 04:01 AM: Message edited by: Romeo Delight ]
    RD<br /><br />"Rock 'n' Roll is my second favourite thing in the whole world" - DLR (1983)<br /><br />"We don't go for perfection, we just go for spirit." - EVH (1981)

 

 

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