20 September, 2007

Can you tell me something about chivalry?

First off, it bothers me that this word "chivalry" closely resembles the word "cavalry" but that's really not relevant at all. I believe that the man should hold the door for a woman. I believe the man should help the woman carry heavy stuff, and take on a larger (or total) share of the burden (though plenty of my previous female hiking partners will probably call me on that one - but remember, I just said "I believe..." not "I require...").

I also believe that a man should treat a woman on the first date. And I realize this is probably some type of sexism, and probably also only meaningful in some historical sense when women didn't actually have jobs, and the man was trying to prove that he intended to support her by buying her a fucking cheeseburger and fries at Arnold's Diner.

What I disapprove is when a woman doesn't even lift a finger toward the bill, and doesn't say thank you, and doesn't even offer anything. On the first date... on the second date... and guess what? There may be no fucking third date, because I don't get it. I will pay for every meal you eat for the rest of your life if you always offer to take turns, or split, or if you seem genuinely flattered or appreciative. It's not about the money. Believe me. It's about some bizarre backwards sense of entitlement. And it does not show the type of character that impresses me.

Of course, this whole rant was completely hypothetical and not based on any sort of real-life events ;)

(that was a RARE occasion where I felt the winky face was necessary, though I generally despise all emotes other than the generic smiley and unsmiley)

08 September, 2007

It's all fucking good

Yes. This is my favorite expression:

"It's all good!"

No, it fucking isn't. If you say that to me, I will scratch your face. The thing about IAG (as i will refer to it, because the mere seeing of those words causes me rage), is that people say it in a few particular contexts, and it is applicable/honest/tolerable in none of them.

For example. Scenario 1. I just drank 6 24-ounce cans of Foster's and then I backed over my neighbor's pitbull. My neighbor, Earl, is sitting on lawn furniture on his FRONT lawn - and by "lawn furniture" I mean a plaid polyester sofa that has a squirrel's nest in the back of it. Earl, seeing his dog's cerebrospinal fluid running down the gravel driveway (he doesn't think "CSF" when he sees this fluid - he thinks "Dog Juice"), and Earl says to me "Man, you really got him! Well, IT'S ALL GOOD. Buster was getting old anyway, and I done didn't want to take him to the vet for that head of cauliflower he had growing out of his shoulder anyway.

In that case, I don't know if the use of IAG is ironic, wistful, or just completely recited by the pullstrings of evil aliens who enjoy manipulating the minds of the vapid.

Scenario 2. Chad played tight end for the Washington State Cougars in 1994, and is now only 100 pounds heavier than the 235 that he weighed in his senior year during which he set the school record for catching 57 passes for 1120 yards. He is at the Jack in the Box drive-thru in Fife, where he now lives with his wife (Steffy) and their 3 kids (Zach, Zack, and Kortneigh). (please note that they do not LIVE at the Jack in the Box - I realize the sentence was a bit stilted, but that would just be SILLY). So he orders his 3 Bacon Deluxes, and an order of fries. The headset princess on the other end of the line, Katelynne, says "do you want regular fries, or curly fries"? Chad says, "Oh, I don't know. Curly, I guess... IT'S ALL GOOD".

Grrr... at least in this case, there is the slight possiblity that he means, "I don't mind, I like both". But for some reason, I still think the evil aliens have concocted this IAG phrase to take the place of the simpler, more 80's, more edgy "Whatever" that worked well for so long.

I don't really have anything else to say about the IAG. You probably thought I was going somewhere with it. But I just needed to get it off my chest, after seeing it posted on someone's MySpace profile.

07 September, 2007

Not ready for the NFL

Well, last night I had my first tryout for the NFL. And I will not be making the team.

The story starts 3 days ago when my good friend, who will go unnamed, lets a giant fucking moth into my house. I said "Get it out". But it went under the washing machine, and the conclusion (of which I was not confident) was that it would die under there.

A day goes by, and no moth. So I figure it's dead. But then 2 days ago, I am sitting at the computer and I hear a fluttering noise. And this thing is like a fucking bat, it's so large. Large moths like this really creep me out, because I do not like things that move in pseudorandom directions. Because the law of averages says that something pseudorandom will occasionally move directly at you. So I pick up a book to try to hit it, and the book accidentally goes flying out of my hand and smashes into the wall, but no moth. Then it flutters toward my computer, and by the time I come back with "the broom" it has disappeared. I know it is near my computer, but it is not revealing itself, and I am freaked out.

You're wondering what this has to do with the NFL. Just wait.

So I figure, okay, the moth has died behind the computer monitor. Another day goes by. No moth. Then last night, I go to bed in my (new) bedroom, and I turn out the lights and lay down.

Then I hear the fluttering noise. What the holy fuck?

I turn on the light, and I see the moth high up on the vaulted ceiling near the window. I get the broom. My first swing misses, and the thing is now flying around the room. I am flailing about with the broom trying to hit it. And missing because its motherfucking pseudorandom path, much like the "serpentine" that Alan Arkin's character does in "The In Laws", is doing a good job of messing up my aim. Then it's flying towards me, and I briefly turn to run toward the doorway of my room to get away from it and regroup for another attack.

And suddenly, I am on the floor, face down, and in a phenomenal amount of pain. Suffice it to say, I now know what a wide receiver feels like when he's running for a pass and gets his legs taken out from under him. In my "sprint" to escape the moth, I did not see my 80 pound guitar amplifier that was directly in my path. And as a result of not seeing it, the corner of said amplifier got me just above my right knee, on the tendon, and sent me airborne.

When I hit the ground, I was in such pain that I did not know if I had caused serious injury, but fracture seemed like a distinct possibility, which was further supported by the fact that I felt slightly nauseous and was completely out of breath for several minutes after. After a few minutes, I felt around down there and realized that I hit it just above the kneecap. I think if I had hit 1 centimeter lower, I would have done serious damage.I finally get up, and I see the moth lying dead on the floor. I don't know how this happened. Perhaps the moth also flew into the amplifier and was merely stunned. But for good measure, I whacked it a few more times with the broom and then got rid of it. Think Woody Allen with the spider in the bathtub in the movie "Annie Hall".

When I went to bed, I had a very hard time relaxing at first because the knee was still throbbing and today it is very swollen and has slightly limited range of motion. So, from now on, I will ask that if you let a moth into my house, YOU get rid of it before you leave. Because I'm getting too old for this shit.

05 September, 2007

Here we go with the Dad dreams again...

I'm starting to get used to this. It isn't surprising, or upsetting anymore. We all know that my "Dad" is "me" in the dream, so let's have a look-see and figure out what this one means...

So this time, my Mom and Dad are both in the dream, but of course my Dad is receiving the brunt of the attention. I'm very angry and yelling, as usual. And there are two main issues.

1. I'm yelling at my Dad and asking him why they never give a hard time to my brother or sister, only to me. Why do they not expect anything from them? Why do they not yell at them? It's always me. And I'm swearing at him, and you know. I am even sort of being physically violent with him in the dream.

2. Additionally, in my dream, I remember yelling "How can you say that I'm weak!?" And I go on and on about how he has a fucking nerve calling me weak, etc. So... nothing new here. My Dad is me. I'm feeling like I need to measure up to a certain standard that my brother and sister are not meeting, and I feel pressure to achieve this. Probably fear that I can't keep achieving it. How exciting.

Then the weak part... I guess that's probably a follow-on from my "Goodbye Corolla" blog that I wrote last night. I think I feel weak right now because I am still not over anything from anything. Every wound I've ever felt, and every loss I've ever experienced is always just a thought away, or a movie away, or a song away, from being brought back up to the emotional surface to recur like it was yesterday. And I guess I'm beating myself up for being weak. There's this struggle inside between accepting myself and judging myself. And I've created my Dad as the judger in the dreams.

04 September, 2007

Bittersweet goodbyes

What a weird week of transitions. Tonight I sold my car. To the first person who saw it. Lucky for me, because it didn't take much effort to unload it. And all things considered, I received a fair payment for the age and condition of the car. It's just strange saying goodbye to it. It was mine, and now it's not. Three days ago, it was my means of transportation, and now it's someone else's. Someone named Anthony.

What a wangled teb we teave.

I remember buying it. I was living in Edgewater Hills, a gigantic apartment complex along the Framingham Reservoir overlooking Route 9 in Massachusetts. My Jetta was getting old, and unreliable, and I had started working at Raytheon in June of 1993, and I guess this was a year later - funny, I didn't think it was that long. Now I'm confused. Hm... I know my car was purchased by me at the end of the model year, not the beginning, so it had to be 1994. Anyway, this is what happens when you get old.

Maybe I did buy it in 1993? Hmph. It would make more sense with the other history surrounding it. So, I got the car, and I think I remember feeling weird that time too. I ended up driving out to Amherst to give Luisa my old car, which actually was sold to me by Luisa's sister, Wanda, back in 1991 (the 1985 Jetta). There was this continual musical cars routine that went on in that family. Wanda sold me the Jetta, bought herself a Hyundai. I gave Luisa my Tercel. Then the Tercel died, and she bought herself another Tercel that was even older than mine. Then I think she had the Hyundai. And when I bought my Corolla, she got the Jetta. Then she married some architect whose name was Cheney, long before that was a swear word. I don't really remember any of this as well as I thought. I think Luisa drove to Framingham, and we drove separate cars so that she could get the Jetta from me, and then she gave me a ride back? I don't know. This isn't making any sense to me. I just remember, I think, that this might have been the last time I actually *saw* Luisa. I have never told you anything about Luisa. Bet you're curious, huh?

So the acquisition of the Corolla is sort of tied up in the same memory as the end of Luisa.

The Corolla took me from Boston to Seattle in 1999, when my life went from Engineer to Biologist. It took me away from family, friends, relationships (but not Ozone), into the Great Unknown. It was a scary time, and for those 8 days, the Corolla was my only home. I spent many days in downtown Boston in the late 90's, when I was dating Sarah (another one you haven't heard about), waiting in the car on Beacon Hill for her to get ready. In fact, one vivid memory is of the night that we got in a car accident in Central Square in a torrential downpour. There was this road that was 2 lanes in one direction, and 1 lane in the other direction, and I was in the left lane, and got into a (minor) head on collision with an out-of-state driver who couldn't see the lane markers and thought she was on her own side of the road. Didn't total my Corolla. But Sarah and I got into a huge fight. We had already been arguing, and the rain was somehow messing up our plans, and then the crash, and like a big asshole, I think I blamed her. I had (and maybe still have, though I'd like to think, less so) a tendency to get really angry at myself when I do something wrong, and to "address" this problem by being fucking nasty to everyone around me - especially loved ones. Ask any loved one, and they'll attest.

I really have become much better - it's one way in which I have evolved, I am happy to say.

But that night, the big fight, and poor Sarah (who wasn't particularly nice, or smart, herself) didn't know what to do. All she knew how to do was stonewall when I got like that. She didn't yell, she didn't usually initiate battles herself, she was just the master stonewaller. So the Corolla has lots of memories from that era.

I don't know why I am mentioning that. Maybe the accident.

I don't feel like talking about the rest of the history right now. I'm just feeling a bit strange having said goodbye to that car, because along with it went pieces of my life. Memories that are now replaced with a shiny new black car that has no personality of its own, and means nothing to me.

But the interesting thing about just how fast we humans adapt is that when I got in my Corolla to drive it over to where I was making the sale, it already felt foreign. The clutch felt really stiff. The seat was strange. The shift was in a weird position. It felt tight and small and old. And it's only been 3 days. My Mazda is my car now. And my brain already knows it, even if my mind doesn't.

This was another weird week for me in general. I realize I'm lumping things into one blog here, but either you're gonna read it as one blog, or you probably wouldn't read it if it were 6 blogs, so there you go.

I have this tendency in my life to keep having major things happening in clusters. Maybe that happens to everyone, but it feels much harder when it happens to me, because when it happens to me, it's me.

Back in 2006, I ended a long-term relationship, finished my Ph.D., took a trip to Europe, moved to a new residence, and started a postdoc, all in the span of a few short months. In 1999, I quit a job, did 2 internships in areas completely unfamiliar to me, moved across the country, started graduate school, and made a whole new set of friends, in a span of a few short months. In 2007, I ended an engagement, moved, and started a new job all in the same month. And now, again in 2007 (much less significantly), I ended another (short) relationship, bought a new car, said goodbye to an old car, and (more significantly) started dealing (poorly) with news of my mother being unwell back in Boston. Every time another round of changes occurs, I feel like I become more and more adept at dealing with them. But I am not sure that I am emotionally processing them better, or if I am just not processing them at all. Probably the latter.

I'm not asking anyone for sympathy or advice, honestly. That's not why I am writing this. I am writing this for me. And you get to see it because you're here. Part of this is my own processing machinery, and part of it is that I guess everyone has their issues, and maybe if I write about some of mine, good or bad, then it makes everyone else feel a little more connected? I probably shouldn't give myself that much credit. I don't think it comes down to voyeurism as to why people read it. Not even necessarily entertainment either.

Okay. Enough for now. I feel like Dumbledore with the pensieve. It's getting late, Harry, and that is all that I am going to show you tonight.

01 September, 2007

Bumbershoot 2007... my way

I really don't want to write a blog about Bumbershoot, because it feels like a blog that 800,000 other people are probably posting right now as we speak. So I'll at least try to make mine different.

My day began today by picking up my new car. I think I already told you about this earlier. But it is still surreal. I haven't unloaded my old car yet, but I took a deposit from someone this morning, and it looks like I've made a sale. The thing is, because I still have my old car, I am thinking "Maybe I should just drive the Corolla tomorrow"? What's wrong with me?

By the way, I'm putting the fucking quotes inside the punctuation from now on. But that's another story.

So, my day... everything was a little behind schedule, and for some reason, today did once again feel like the first day of the rest of my life. I am not sure why. I should be getting used to this by now. But I'm not.

There was a guy who was going to come and look at the car this morning, to purchase it. And it turns out that it is a kid who looks like he's 17, along with his Dad. And they drove here from Bremerton. And they were late. By about 30 minutes. And it was messing up my Bumbershoot plans, which really consisted of seeing one band that I really wanted to see, and that band went on at 2:15pm.

So this is an interesting story. The Dad, I kid you not, weighed at least 500 pounds. And from previous history, I know that people tend to underestimate the weight of morbidly obese people, if anything. I talk to them for a bit, and the Dad informs me that they thought that banks would be open today, but they're not, and would I be willing to take a check. My first inclination was sort of, no and yes. Yes and no. I am willing, but it's just not prudent, so in spite of trusting him, I hesitate. At that point, I decide that I am almost wanting to talk him out of purchasing the car. I tell them about every problem I know with the car, and I state the exact severity of the suspected CV joint issue, blah blah blah. And they're still interested.

Then they want to take it for a test drive. But that presents a problem, because the kid doesn't know how to drive a manual transmission yet. Which means Dad needs to drive it.

With my seat moved ALL THE WAY BACK, this guy got into the car with about as much difficulty as I would have getting inside a filing cabinet. And I am not exaggerating. I was worried that either a) the car would tip over to the left, or b) the wilting suspension would completely collapse and I would have no car to sell. But they did their drive (I couldn't bear to go along), and came back happy enough. They never heard the CV joint problem, which surprised and concerned me. I still am not sure I should sell this car to these people. But they said they already called a mechanic for an estimate. I can't overthink their decision for them.

He asks me what it would take for me to hold the car for him until they can come back over with cash... I said give me a deposit. So he gave me $100 cash, and we're done. I probably would have just taken the check on the spot, but at this point, everything is happening so late, and there is a 1:30pm bus coming in 10 minutes to take me to Bumbershoot. I decide that if we try to do the title and registration transfer and all that shit, I will probably miss Honeycut. So I say to come back with cash. They leave. I park my car just around the corner (we met at the Shell station near my place). Then I go to the bus. And of course, every fucking person in the world is going on this same bus through Capitol Hill. I realize, it's 2:00pm and we're just crossing I-5 on Pine. If I stay on this bus, I will miss the show. So, I look out the window, and I think "the Space Needle can't be more than a mile away... if that". I exit the bus at 9th and Pine. And I run. In hiking boots and jeans.

And I got there and located Dan and Tina (and Sue and Andy, with whom I played music [along with Mark] last night) while the announcer was introducing Honeycut. Any later, and I miss the first song.


Bart Davenport (of Honeycut) and the band put on a great show, as expected. There was a decent crowd but they competed with The Shins (who I could care a rat's ass about), so it was not as many people as one might hope.

But I'm not talking about the show, remember? Because that's what everyone else is probably doing.

After the Honeycut, I was hungry. I watched Dan jump around like a kid in the giant fountain, and then we saw some belly-dancer types who were moderately entertaining, but it was a tough call as to whether the limiting factor was their dancing skill or their beauty, but something was limiting my viewing enjoyment. Maybe it was that I was hungry. And I knew what I wanted. And I found it.

Piecora's, you are my Mecca.

Not only was it great, but it was also CHEAP!!! Yes, affordable festival food! In fact, I would assert that the price was probably cheaper than if you bought it at the restaurant. All slices were $3.00. I am sure cheese is cheaper, but I bet slices with toppings are more than $3.00. This is proof that though there are few good things left in the world, there are not zero good things left in this world.

(brief pause as i google talk with rebekah... and I'm BACK!)

After the pizza, Dan and Tina had to go and locate their son, who was loaded up with quarters and happily indulging at the arcade. I elected to stick around and watch the next band. Magically, I ran into second group of friends - Jenn and Vijay. They had made their way over to see the second band with me (coming from the Shins show). None of us liked The Saturday Knights. For some reason, I remembered this band as being better than they are. I think it had something to do with the fact that I saw them at the Fremont Oktoberfest 2 years ago, and had a large amount to drink. But they were not interesting to me, and it was packed because people were all out of the Shins show now. Blah blah blah again.

So Jenn and Vijay went away to go stand in line for some comedy thing, which at the time did not sound that compelling to me. I decided to wait for/meet Dan and Tina after they collected Sawyer. But 10 minutes turned out to be an hour. I went into the Center House to get the hell out of the sun, and get a beverage. That turned out to be a Snapple Lemonade AND a Vitamin Water Citrus. I think I was very thirsty. I only had to pee once after that, and you'd think that not to be the case, so I must have been very dehydrated. I bet you're glad I told you that? See, I told you I wouldn't write a typical Bumbershoot blog!

Then, in the Center House, I realized they were playing music that sounded familiar. First I heard the song "Breaking Free". Then I heard the song "I Got Nerve [sic]". You might say, "what the hell are those songs"? And to that, I say, "Aha! I know something you do not know"! (now I confess I am spitefully putting the punctuation outside the quotes, because I wouldn't normally have done that - call it being a rebel! What can I say?). Anyway. Why do I know those songs? And why do I know where they are from? Well, because I lived in the same house as a 10 year old girl for a year! "I Got Nerve" is by Hannah Montana! And "Breaking Free" is the big hit song from the Disney movie "High School Musical". I have seen the Hannah Montana show, and I have seen the High School Musical movie! I am culturally literate in ways you ain't even begun to imagine!

And the sad part is... I like both of those songs. They're catchy. What can I say. I should note that this was a recording, not the actual artist performing the songs. If you want to see Hannah Montana, you need to pay a LOT of money so you can watch her lip-sync with no band (I know this too, because we did just that! Like $45/ticket to see her at the Key Arena last year). It was not my favorite show ever. But I did feel lucky to be a part of that experience. So it definitely had a plus side to be the "chaperone" for kids having their first real-live concert.

Anyway, back on track. Am I ever on track here? Would you want me to be?

I am pretty disgruntled with Dan and Tina at this point for taking so long, and this is no secret, so I don't feel bad writing it - but I certainly didn't let on that I was bummed - I just didn't really feel like being at Bumbershoot by myself! I could be at home by myself and it would be the same, but with fewer people! (And, better music!)

So I decided to go see what Jenn and Vijay ended up doing. And it turns out they are doing something quite cool. This guy Greg Proops (?) who is apparently famous to anyone who is culturally literate at a level beyond 5th grade, was the comedy act they were in line to see. And they let me join them at the beginning of a VERY LONG line. Only about 2/3 of the people in line were able to get a seat. So Greg Proops did his talk show, and you will be surprised to know who his guests were for this Bumbershoot talk show. You'd be very surprised, as I was.

Janeanne Garofalo
Colin Hay
Whitney Pastorak

Now, I'm sure you all know who Janeanne Garofalo is. And I had always heard she was short. And indeed she is very short. maybe 5' if not less than that! But do you know who Colin Hay is? I did, but neither Jenn nor Vijay knew until I told them.

Hm... let me think... Who can it be now?

I'll give you a hint...

It's someone from... a land... Down Under?

I realize that all of these hints are probably a bit of... Overkill?

I know I am making to big of a deal out of this... I realize... It's a Mistake?

Okay. Are you getting it yet?

C'mon. Someone post a comment here and tell us who this mystery guy is!

So yes, this was quite a treat. Actually sort of gave me the opportunity to check off another one of those boxes in the "Things I Would Like To Do or See Before I Die". Incidentally, I will be checking off another of those items later this month when I go to see DEVO at the Puyallup Fair. I should note that right now I have one extra ticket for this, and since previous-prime-candidate-to-be-invited is now seemingly out of contention, I invite you to express your interest.

As for Whitney Pastorak. She runs some type of literary magazine, and she acknowledged herself that it was a rather hard follow coming behind those two very well-known individuals. But she was fine.

So, then we wander around. Get some wine at the "Wine Garden" because apparently there's a difference between a "Beer Garden" and a "Wine Garden". The difference is simple. The "Beer Garden" has 9235 people in line to get inside. The "Wine Garden" has 8 people in line.

I have a paper cut on the first knuckle of my left middle finger, and it hurts (I'm just trying to keep you in the moment here with me).

This is really going to be a quite a fucking project for you to even read this blog. Ha! You're addicted. Admit it. I knew that it wasn't all robots reading this shit. I did remove my "hit counter" which isn't really a hit counter at all. Someone told me about this tool that would tell you what IP address or state or country is accessing a page - though technically it didn't pick up blog hits, just page hits. Plus, I decided that I don't really need to know about this, and also don't want to scare away shy or anonymous viewers. So your anonymity is safe with me now. Actually not with me. It's safe with Rupert Murdoch. Doesn't that make you feel better?

Back to the show.

I gave Jenn my flannel shirt to wear because she was cold. I am not sure why I just told you that. I could delete it, since it seems like a non sequitur, but it is really quite sequitur, nothing non about it, since I was telling you about the "Wine Garden" (I'm gonna put quotes around that every time, since it was really not a "Garden" at all, but just a fucking metal fence on a plot of grass, with trash cans, drunk people, and obnoxious moronic security guards protecting us from ourselves).

My favorite thing about the "Beer" and "Wine" "Gardens" at these festivals is the "fence moat" that they always construct. It's like a special buffer zone. There's a fence. And then a gap. And then another fence. I wonder, is this so that people cannot jump one fence to get in? Is it so the security can patrol a well-defined perimeter? Is it so you cannot reach far enough to hand beverages over the fence to minors? Or is it just to fuck with us and insult us so we feel like cattle? I think they should dig a moat and fill it with burning tar and pitch, and possibly have the guards equipped with pitchforks. Actually, that raises an interesting question. Were pitchforks originally used for pitch? And if so, how would that work? Because it would seem to me that having a pronged implement would be far less useful for pitch than say a shovel or, even better, some type of giant ladle.

Actually, now I am not even really sure I know what pitch is.

But back to the show.

I want to know who's reading this, so I'm gonna ask you a question, and I want you to tell me the answer. If you have a MySpace account, you can comment here. If you don't, just email me.

Here's my question:

Which band name do you prefer?

a) Open Casket Wedding

b) Carpal Tunnel Vision

I have another one, but I am not including it in the multiple choice because I *know* you'll all pick it as your favorite if I give you the choice. So, to be clear, the choice is between the two listed above. Do not choose the next one that I am going to tell you. So, the other band name I have stored for future use is "Sonic Hitler Youth". But you can't pick that one.

If you want extra credit, you can tell me what style of music you would think is appropriate for a band with each of those three names. Maybe I will buy you animal crackers if you amuse me. Or maybe I will buy myself animal crackers, and bite the heads off of each and every cracker, and then put them back in the box and give THOSE to you.

Why do they call them "crackers"? That fucking pisses me off. They are cookies. And they always have been. Saltines are crackers. If you had to group animal "crackers" with either Saltines or Oreos, which would you group them with? That's a rhetorical question. You do not need to send a response to that one.

Are you with me?


Finally, back to the show.

After the "Wine Garden" we decide promptly that Bert Jansch is boring (sorry Andrew). And we move onward. I should mention that right before the Saturday Knights, I ran into my friend George for about 15 seconds, and we vowed to meet later. Did we? Keep reading.

So from "Wine Garden" we decide to meet Dan and Tina at an indoor theater (Children's Theater?) to see something called Rude Mechanicals. This was a group of 5 people armed with business clothes, 5 overhead projectors, and the entire catalog of "Get Your War On" comic strips. They did a multimedia agit-prop (as they named it themselves) extravaganza that largely was based on the comic strip, and used much of the dialog from the strip verbatim. It was good, but fairly intense, and maybe 20 minutes longer than it needed to be. I had a good time, and Dan and Tina definitely liked it. Jenn and Vijay not as much, and this was based on it being a bit over the top. It was interesting because it wasn't an issue of it being in opposition to their beliefs. More it was about the style and the manner of the delivery. It made me think, actually.

I am an angry liberal, and I like to get together with other angry liberals and rant. But not everyone is like that. And just because they aren't, doesn't necessarily mean that they think the opposite of me. They raised a point that it's one thing to have constructive useful commentary or to try to effect a change, whereas it's another thing to just be angry and bitter and aggressive and bitch about things. And I realized that maybe we liberals do tend to get together and act mighty proud of how much better we are, and how much smarter we are, and about how the system is so fucked. And while I might believe all those things, and personally enjoy being a part of those ranting sessions, is it really serving any purpose?

How many people have had their ideas converted by listening to the rant of someone else?

I don't know.

So the Rude Mechanicals were rude, but entertaining for the most part. But I'm a ranting angry liberal, so don't ask me.

After this point, the night started to fall apart, and I potentially fell into no-man's land. But it worked out okay I will tell you in advance.

Dan and Tina went to get Sawyer from the arcade (again!) and to go watch Devotchka. Having learned more than zero Russian, it irks me that everyone calls this band "Devotchka" just like it's spelled. That is NOT the way it is supposed to be pronounced. It should be pronounced as if it were written D'yeh-Vahtch-Ka. And when I tell people this, they say to me "Oh, I've always heard it as devotchka". So apparently, living with 2 Russians for a year doesn't give me any sort of say on whether it's De or D'yeh. Oh well. I tried. I can lead Lashadka to water, but I can't make it drink, if you get my meaning.

Jenn/Vijay/I go to Sky Church at EMP because George and Heidi are supposed to be there. And they are. The band sucks. I don't even remember which band it was, and I am going to look it up right now, so I can bitch about them to you. Okay. They were called "Grand Archives". This is what the website had to say about them:

"Recording in Seattle this summer, Grand Archives plans to release their first album in early 2008. Mat Brooke, Jeff Montano, Curtis Hall, Ron Lewis, and Thomas Wright have made a name for themselves with their thrilling stage presence and their impeccable harmonizing."

Okay. Let me translate that for you. They were boring as all hell, and they had HORRIBLE vocals. I think it's just a typo. It wasn't supposed to say "impeccable harmonizing". I think it was original "pestilent harmonizing" or maybe "imperfect harmonizing". Nobody in that band had a good voice, and they all sang. If that's what they mean, then okay. You know a band is not great vocally when they need 5 people to sing 2 part harmony. But the fans LOVED them. Somehow, people were singing along with the songs, even though the band supposedly formed this morning at like 11:15am.

Jenn and Vijay bailed, and I hung out with George and Heidi for a little bit. They filled me in with the goings on of our various acquaintances. And then there was a debate as to whether we go to 6 Arms, or if they take a ride home. The verdict was take a ride home. I leave with them, thinking that I will walk home. This is not a great idea. Probably 4 miles. I already passed up taking a cab with Jenn and Vijay because I was not ready for the night to be over. So now I am outside, and alone, and without transportation. I call Dan and Tina, and they say they are still at D'yevatchka (I'm sorry, I can't help myself), and I decide I should better go find them and a) have my night not be over yet, and b) potentially beg them for a ride home). Miraculously, after much trial and error, I get back into Bumbershoot and I do find them! And quite easily, even though it's dark and there are still thousands of drunk people. In fact, earlier we saw a girl completely comatose on the pavement with people attempting to pick her ass up off the ground. We watch the last 2 songs, and then Dan and Tina save my ass, and give me a ride home.

Thus ends my Bumbershoot for 2007.

Funny, I keep thinking it's 2008 now because I just bought a 2008 car that I'm afraid to drive. But that will be another blog.

I'll leave you with a final haiku:

Fuck this Bumbershoot
It's just a whole lot of hype
Won't go back next year

Or maybe I will... we shall see.

In case you're curious, you just read 3789 words. Including this.