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The One Replacement


Tman
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This is a bit cathartic so please bear with me while I tell this story. After losing everything including all of my guitars on November 9th, 2018 in the Southern California Woolsey Fire, I decided to hold out on guitar replacements because I wanted to save everything possible to build a new house. Just (finally) got permission to build a new house last week after so many agonizing and infuriating delays. Hopefully a new house this time next year.

I decided to buy one replacement from insurance.

The morning of November 9th my wife and I were in San Diego at a conference for her clinic and when we found out that people were being evacuated for a fire in the area around our house we called her father, who was living with us at the time (believe it or not he lost his house exactly a year before in the Sylmar fire),  and asked him to get our passports and I asked him to get my prized 5 star quilt J-200. He had no idea how to figure out which one was it and I was kidding anyway thinking that once again, nothing would happen. He told us that well I see some smoke but nothing else, should be ok. I had only my clothes for a 2 day trip and my laptop with me and we were in my wife's car. Her father texted 2 hours later and said, "Phillip's car is on fire. The house is burning and I can't get in." We texted, "GET OUT and GET BRYNN!!!". Brynn is our dog. He left right then and drove alone with Brynn down PCH in the thick of it. He got Brynn, the only irreplaceplacable thing. Screw the passports and anything else. The 2 people that died in the fire were a mile from our house on Mulholland drive at the same time.

I've been given 4 very special guitars by my colleagues since the fire: A Gibson Made to Measure Custom Gold Top  Les Paul (that I designed), a Stratocaster Elite, a Telecaster Elite, and an MIM Strat with Fender Custom Shop Vintage 65 pickups in it. I saw a 5 Star quilt 2008 J-200 on Reverb, one of 26, with a certificate signed by Ren Ferguson. The one that I had that burned had a thin neck. This one was described as having a thin neck. I had to have it. It was owned, for investment purposes, by a "Physician who doesn't play." Well I am a physician that "does play." So there you have it.

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I cannot imagine -would not want to even try -the pain and suffering of you, your family and others in these times.  As you said, the only irreplaceable, important thing - was your dog.  So, the best outcome of the worst possibilities resulted.  Enjoy your new  J200.  Play it like you would your old one!  Every day!  

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Thanks for the replies. At this point it is learned helplessness but having a top notch J 200 to play makes life so much better. I tried to upload a better picture of the quilt. The size limit of photos is difficult to work with. I even read the work arounds (imgur, etc.) and still can't get it work correctly.

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My goodness, I can't imagine what you and your wife have been through, and her father twice! Your positive outlook in the face of such disruption and loss is something to be admired. Cheers for finding a replacement for such a treasured instrument, especially such a hard to find variation. I hope it gives you as much joy as the old one did, and it, your new home, your family, and sweet Brynn stay safe for years to come.

Red 333

Edited by Red 333
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What a terrible thing to live through, Tman. I hope that rebuilding your lives is going to be less of a mountain to climb that it sounds. Your new SJ200 looks incredible...and I'm sure in time it will grow to be "your" guitar and you won't look back. As a fellow dog owner I am so happy that Brynn was rescued...looks like cats don't have the monopoly on the whole "nine lives" thing! 😊

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Great looking dog and not too shabby a piece of wood either!

We go through fire scares here in southern Australia every year and we have many days called Black Saturday etc - a hot galeforce wind blows through and destroys every thing in its path.

So we reluctantly try to accept that we may need to just....grab the dog and run...leave it all. I give it a lot of thought and hope it doesn’t happen. Dealing with the insurance people getting my flooded carpet replaced and my garage roller door repaired took 6 months and a long line of people traipsing in and out and I just don’t think I have the fortitude to deal with them and...rebuilding. So all the best and enjoy that maple!

 

BluesKing777.

 

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Thanks Jinder and BK777. One thing I should have said in the original post is that before the fire we decided to downgrade our home insurance policy to save on the payments. What a bad mistake. I highly recommend insuring yourself to the max that you can handle because really bad things actually can and do happen sometimes. 

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1 hour ago, Tman said:

Thanks Jinder and BK777. One thing I should have said in the original post is that before the fire we decided to downgrade our home insurance policy to save on the payments. What a bad mistake. I highly recommend insuring yourself to the max that you can handle because really bad things actually can and do happen sometimes. 

 

Some insurance is better than none - in our last really horrific inferno, won’t go into details, many people had none. The govt now has made it compulsory.

That said, it is raining and thundering and I better check the flood insurance. Oh, that is right, they wouldn’t give us any, flood zone as well as fire zone. 

BluesKing777.

 

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22 minutes ago, BluesKing777 said:

 

Some insurance is better than none - in our last really horrific inferno, won’t go into details, many people had none. The govt now has made it compulsory.

That said, it is raining and thundering and I better check the flood insurance. Oh, that is right, they wouldn’t give us any, flood zone as well as fire zone. 

BluesKing777.

 

You better believe we have earthquake insurance too. 

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Hey, Tman! I remember reading about your ordeal last year and seeing the photos of what remained of your home. My prayers went out to you then and are coming to you again to wish you luck and a satisfactory resolution to your endeavors. I'm glad that you, your wife, her dad, and your dog are all safe and I hope that you are doing well and able to find contentment. I'm also glad that you were able to find a replacement for that most wonderful guitar...certainly a rare beauty. I have always wanted a J-200 and yours is truly exceptional! May the future bring you all that you wish, deserve, and desire! Peace!

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21 hours ago, Murph said:

It's always fascinated me how much we grow to love our dogs.

In my case that growth occurs in a time warp. It takes me all of an hour (who am I kidding,  it's more like five minutes) before I am capable of making a lifelong commitment to a dog.

Tman, I am very sorry for the extent of the loss that you and your wife encountered on that fateful November day. However, I am also incredibly relieved to know that this loss did not include your father-in-law nor your dog Brynn. Given the rarity of the J-200 model that you lost, it is really great that you were able to find a most fitting replacement. The new guitar looks fantastic by the way, although I will say that it does pale a bit by comparison to Brynn.

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