Vacation is sweet, but the east cost is freaking hot and humid. I try and combat this by sleeping in as late as possible. I really enjoy the night time though, strolling around comfortably in shorts and sandals. My parents are clearly feeling mostly recovered, cause the sniping never ceases. I’ve been yelled at at least once a day. My crowning achievement was when I accidentally tipped over a long florescent bulb that deftly exploded into a million little glass bits all over the kitchen.
Last night we took Josh out for a bacheloresque party around the town. We re-labeled all of our childhood establishments to their former and proper name. We played suicide at our grammar school, threw a Frisbee in the park, went on a w-a-l-k in the woods, peed in the Rudden’s backyard (they were gracious enough to offer us a beverage afterwards), tried to get a hack between five people, and circled the ping pong table for quite a while. We visited store 2-4, and a woman told Josh that his hat was “slammin” (he was wearing a pirate hat all night). She then told the cashier that he should wash his hands cause she was probably covered in Poison Ivy.
He’s now officially ready to get married.
I’ve had a very culturally fulfilling weekend. On Thursday I saw Bruce Hornsby with Christian McBride on bass and Jack DeJohnette on drums at the Palace of Fine Arts. The concert blew me away. I’m already in awe of Hornsby. He’s got ridiculous piano skills, really a cut above almost anyone I can think of. To top it off he’s got his voice, which he could base his career on alone.
I’ve come to believe that its essential that an artist of that caliber stretch his musical wings to stay happy. He assembled a band of monster jazz players, and they knocked it out of the park. He sang only two songs. The rest were all instrumental, and were both freaking stellar and extraordinarily playful. They played some material that they had composed and a bunch of standards/covers that I hadn’t heard of. Its clear that Bruce is a true scholar of music. I had been looking forward to this show all summer, and it didn’t disappoint. He even brought out Bonnie Rait for the encore. Good times.
The next morning I flew to Boston. On Saturday, my bro and I met up in Boston for some pool and mohitos. He took me to Match for dinner, which is a fancy mini-burger and martini bar. The food was unbelievable. I actually ordered more food (lobster burger) after I ate my dinner, which is unheard of for me. It was that good. I also had a martini, which turned out to be two martinis since they give you a small shaker with the leftover drink in it. This means I was freaking smashed when we left and stumbled the two blocks to the Berkelee Auditorium, where we saw Herbie Hancock with his latest assembled band.
Let me take a moment to rant here. I went across the street to Sto’ 2-4 to get some water (a necessity at this point) and munchies for the show. I walked into the theater and a security duder rips through my bag, finds the food and starts berating me. WTF? In SF, when you go to a fancy expensive jazz show, they do not search your bag. I can understand doing this in a club, but this totally shocked me, and the security guards was a getting in my face about it. I far prefer the SF laid back attitude.
Anywho, the Herbie show was very avante guard. It was a quartet this time (the drummer seriously blew me away), but it wasn’t the high energy groove fest that my sloshed brain needed to stay engaged. It was all over the map, some times extremely quiet. The saving grace is that I think Herbie did far too much acid in the 60’s. He really liked to talk before they played every single song. He talked for like 3-4 minutes every time, and the monologues often got very rambling and awkward. This pretty surprising for someone who’s been in the performing business for like 40 years. Anyhow, it gave me ample opportunity to hit the water fountain after every song, and not miss a single note.
Its good times being back home though. I’ve really missed my folks. They’ve gone through all sorts of negative medical shit this summer, and it sucks being 3000 miles away. Its good to hang with my bro, see my in-laws, and catch up with friends.
Biggie ups to Dave Siegel and the Boneless Children’s Foundation on their CD release show last night at the Bottom of the Hill. Some random Stanford people whom I haven’t seen in about a decade came out of the woodwork for this show. They all celebrated Dave’s unfaltering commitment to his special brand of art rock. Zappa would be proud. Well, at least I am, and for intensive purposes I’m Zappa re-incarnated. At least for this blog post.
Overheard: “I’m starting to understand the secret to a long term relationship: to give in. Whenever we get into a tense heated argument, I ignore my stubborn instincts and take the blame and apologize. The funny thing is that I later realize that I really was at fault.”
We’ve been blessed with having Tom in San Francisco for the last week or so. Although he hasn’t been the constant presence on our couch that I wish he could of been, we’ve seen a fair bit of him in different contexts. We finally had him to ourselves on Sunday afternoon, so we dragged him to Jerry Day, a free concert at Jerry Garicia amphitheater (a small open amphitheater nested in the hill of a park in South SF) featuring the JGB. They even played my favorite song – “Walking in the Mission”. We enjoyed ourselves thorougly along with all our hippie brethren. Well, Stiners, Rachel, Brian and I did. Tom mostly looked bemused.
On Tuesday, I took Tom to 12 Galaxies for the premere of “The Smiling Man“. It was a free event featuring a full 7 piece jazz band in (fronted by my friend Ann on vocals) between screenings of the movie. We arrived in the middle of one of the screenings, so we ducked into “Doc’s Clock”, where we monopolized the free shuffle puck table until the band started up. The Jazz Band = solid. There were only like 25 people there. Only one homeless dude took advantage of the lack of cover. He was real enthusiastic.
Today, I went to check out the Creative Commons Salon at Shine. Taking a page out of the book of Stina, I showed up a wee bit early. This enabled me to meet the hosts, who were able to direct me to people of interest. That, and aquire some free drink tickets. I had a good time, talked to some cool folks, and learned a thing or two about whats going on in the open source community.
Notice the theme of these events? They all cost me nothing, and yet entertained me greatly. I suppose this is the advantage of living in a major city.
Our summer seems to have really tapered off all the sudden. We’ve opted out of certain activities due to Stiner’s back – like Stacey and Crow’s camp out wedding last weekend. I hope it was magical, and was sad not to join in the festivities. Our trip to celebrate her dad’s 60th in Colorado has also been canceled for other reasons. So it’s both strange and welcome to have a mellow patch in our typically frenzied summer.
One of things I’ve been focusing on is my body/back. I need to step it up around the house, do most of the lifting, and such. I’ve had re-occurring back issues for the last decade or so, and now the activities that I usually avoid are the ones that I need to take charge of. Thus, I’ve decided to start doing Yoga twice a week to supplement my bi-weekly work outs. Its something I’ve had in mind to do for a while anyways – our current situation has spurred me to take action.
I’ve now been to a total of 3 classes at Bija yoga. I went to an intro class last week prior to Galactic, and decided to commit to 10 classes at the studio. My experience so far:
I did a morning class today, and for the first time, I could feel my body thank me for going to class. That was most encouraging.
At the end of class, we do a silent meditation pose for a couple minutes. We are supposed to let our minds focus on our bodies and not dwell upon thoughts. At one class, the instructor kept telling us to let the [something in yoga] wash over us. For some reason, I kept substituting the [yoga phrase] with “tuna melt”. This led to a fit of silent giggles during our meditation. I think I failed the lesson.