Thursday began not with a bang, but a whimper. Nursing a tremendous hangover from the previous night, I weighed my options for the day. I could attempt to travel with a pounding headache, or I could take a little hair of the dog and power through.
So with a couple or three beers under my belt, the trip began. An uneventful, on time flight to Ontario, followed by a required In N Out stop, soon found us kicking the party off and breaking the hot tub in. Maybe the straight vodka shots that night were a foreshadowing of events to come. Maybe it was just a Thursday night.
Friday – Woke up with my serotonin levels crashing through the floor. Woke up pissed, miserable, and extremely anti-social. I tried to not take it out on my travel companions, and they tried to not bother me.
We used our patented “supersekrit” back road to get to the event and made great time to the festival. Over the course of the day I watched sets (or partial sets) from Busy P, Adam Freeland, Cut Copy, The Breeders, Dan Le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip, The Raconteurs, Aphex Twin, and Pendulum. Collectively, we decided not to stick it out for Fatboy Slim.
I couldn’t keep myself hydrated at all. I was cramping up throughout the day, and was generally miserable. As the rest of the crew kept the party going, I crashed out when we got to the rooms.
Saturday – Felt better upon waking, but then had to deal with “departure time drama”. Some members of our merry crew had a late night and were pushing for a later time, others were adamant about not missing certain bands. In the end, we reached accord and saw 120 Days, Boys Noize, Bonde Do Role, Kate Nash, Death Cab For Cutie, Kraftwerk, Portishead, M.I.A., Yelle, and (of course) Prince.
Health was fairly good throughout the day, just some annoying cough developing from the dust
Sunday – Well that annoying cough turned into a full blown outbreak of bird flu. I was laid up, and despite the encouragement of the crew to toughen up, I opted for a bottle of robo and slept through until Monday morning.
Prince – God damn that man is a genius. He opened the show with 15 to 20 minutes of his “other” music, meaning that Morris Day opened up with a couple of numbers followed by Sheila E. Prince was on stage the whole time playing, but was giving them all the attention. Then he launched into some of his old classics. When he did the Radiohead and Beatles covers it was all over for me. Seeing him in a crowd of ~60,000 other fans was an experience
Dan Le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip – Intelligent U.K. Hip Hop by a Matisyahu lookalike and an electro genius behind the laptop. These guys connected with the audience instantly and even during a spoken word piece, the crowd was transfixed. I saw them on the day that I was “in a funk” and their second song (Magician’s Assistant) almost overwhelmed me emotionally.
The Breeders – After all this time The Deal sisters still have it. Their performances of Cannonball and Happiness Is A Warm Gun were amazing.
Over in the techno tent, Busy P and Boys Noize were unbelievable, even getting me to bounce around through all the heat and cramping. Aphex Twin started out with what some would call slow housey tracks, but by then end, the electrodrone was turned up to infinity and was mind blowing.
Disappointments – Portishead wasn’t tuned right for the main stage and their tracks just felt too overpowering. Death Cab came on a bit late and played almost exclusively new tracks. They were good, but come on folks, play some for us older fans.
All in all, we all made it home safe (actually not sure about Arjo as he isn’t due to arrive in Norway until 5am Tuesday PST), we were all still speaking to each other, and no punches were thrown. I declare victory!
(pics will follow on my flickr stream tomorrow)
good bye – for now
Once again, Team Sparklemotion dominates our Monday Bar Trivia night.
We had more than a full crew last night: our alternate showed up, a guest, and one of them crazy foreigners we know. Sadly, Sparklemotion was torn asunder and from the pieces arose Sparklemotion 2: Cellar Door.
Unfortunately, some of our more worthy competitors were short on people or flat out absent. It, however, doesn’t make our victory any less sweet.
But… now’s your chance. Our whole crew is going to be missing next week to go to Coachella. Go on down to Chez Jose and get your feet wet. We’ll be back on the 12th to challenge you.
Yesterday, I started a project that I’ve been wanting to try for years. Vodka infusions. I guess the delayed gratification of it has always been the stumbling block – knowing that the work you do today can’t be enjoyed for weeks.
But, after reading Infusions of Grandeur, my whistle was wet, and I got motivated. Using their formulas as a base, I started three infusions. Cantaloupe, Lemon-Lime, and Caramel. Why those three? Their ready times are nicely staggered from 1 to 3 weeks. Plus, if you’ve ever had a cantaloupe martini at the Brazen Bean (RIP) you wouldn’t ask.
I started with Hood River Distillery (HRD) vodka. Cheap Cheap Cheap. At about 6 bucks a fifth, you cant get much cheaper. However… I ran it through a Britta filter 4 times before using it. From everywhere I’ve read, including Mythbusters, vodka websites, etc., doing this will immensely raise the quality of it.
The first infusion I made was the cantaloupe. I took a half melon, wedged it, cubed it, and dunked it.
The next was the lemon lime. The recipe I was following called for the zest of one lemon and one lime, with a couple slices of each. However… that recipe was developed for a sipping shot. They thought that more flavor was too sour. I want the flavor, especially since I want to use the vodka in a cocktail more than as a shot, so… I used two lemons and two limes. Its amazing how aromatic the zest from 4 pieces of fruit can be!
Finally, I made a caramel infusion. Infusion may be the wrong word. Basically, its dissolving the caramel in the vodka, and as such, can be ready in three to four days. The moment the vodka hit the candy, the solution started turning a milky white. The nice thing with the caramel is that it cant over-infuse.
So, given that next week will be tied up with Coachella, we should have some tasty infusions for the next couple of weekends.
Was this really necessary?
The New Yorker took a handful of their classic one panel cartoons (eg. On the internet, no one knows you’re a dog) and turned them into 10 second animations.
Most of these cartoons are best when they’re mulled over, considered, played out in your head. Giving them the YouTube treatment basically turns them into throw away jokes. Granted – none of these were knee slappers to begin with, but still.
So, keep that in mind XKCD… We don’t need stick figure animations of bell curves and equations.
The game starts at 7pm. Bunch of swag for early birds, plus its Thirsty Thursday. (I know they renamed it Miller Lite Thursday, but given the odds of me drinking a Miller Lite, lets just stick with Thirsty Thursday).
Also, tonight is Timber Jim’s Retirement party. You know, the crazy guy who climbs the timber, bangs the drum, and leads the singalongs.
See you in 107
Sparklemotion is back and on top of the heap! With a four person crew, we manage to reign supreme at bar trivia – again.
For those who are keeping score, we managed to stick with Mirror Pond tonight, although I did sneak in a Blood Orange and Jalapeño margarita to kick in the afterburners for the last two rounds or so.
Once again, its all about team makeup. No one person on the team dominated the answering. We all knew most of the ones we answered correctly.
See you next week, suckahs!