Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Silversun Pickups w/ Sea Wolf at the Ogden Theatre

Silversun Pickups

It's been several long months since my last live music outing, and I was especially excited to see sspu again. The opening band was sspu's Dangerbird labelmate Sea Wolf, which I know I've heard of before but was probably confusing with another band. As I asked my friends last night, can we please call a halt to bands using wolf in their names? Anyway, Sea Wolf didn't grab me right away, but about three songs in, they started rocking harder. I wasn't really paying too close of attention to the lyrics, but some of them were a little awkward. I'll have to listen to them some more before I can tell whether I like them or not.

Silversun Pickups were awesome, though. They played almost everything from Carnavas, but I was a bit disappointed there was no "Melatonin." I LOVE that song. But the show was great, especially when they went from "Lazy Eye" right into "Common Reactor." So crazy good. The encore was mostly stuff from their EP, which is pretty awesome, too. But they began with a cover that surprised and delighted.


Edit: Cass's pictures and video turned out much better than mine. Check out her post on Wyoming Beat.

Monday, July 30, 2007

What book am I

Hey, I got one of my favorite books!

You're Mrs. Dalloway!
by Virginia Woolf
Your life seems utterly bland and normal to the casual observer, but
inside you are churning with a million tensions and worries. The company you surround
yourself with may be shallow, but their effects upon your reality are tremendously deep.
To stay above water, you must try to act like nothing's wrong, but you know that the
truth is catching up with you. You're not crazy, you're just a little unwell. But no
doctor can help you now.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Weekend culture

On Friday, I went to see Alonzo King's Lines Ballet. I didn't know much about the company, and I was really pleasantly surprised with their work. The company they brought had four men and four women, and both ballets used interesting groupings and a really innovative movement vocabulary. The first piece, Migration: The hierarchical migration of birds and mammals was very cool, though the music was really hard to listen to. The choreography was interesting and I was impressed with the dancers. I really, really liked the second ballet, The Moroccan Project.

The Lines Ballet was here for the summer dance festival on campus. As a dance junkie, I was sad to miss the student showcase on Wednesday because of my evening desk shift, but I did have tickets to both Friday's ballet and the final gala show on Saturday. But I ended up chucking the second performance to spend time with friends at a completely different kind of cultural event.

Me at the derby
Here I am enjoying the action

Last night I experienced my first demolition derby. Last week's heavy rain muddied up the fairgrounds, slowing the action quite a bit. I was a little disappointed because I was expecting more action-packed crashing about. The photo ops were a bit limited, so I only snapped a few. Still, it was a fun enough evening and a real change of pace for me.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Blue Monday

It's another Monday, but thanks to music blogs like lamestain, I've been listening to old favorites like Love Battery and Flop all morning. I was pretty happy to read their entry on Flop and to get Drugs/Action in mp3; I have it on vinyl, but am living sans record player right now. Other music blogs I'm currently loving include Detailed Twang, Merry Swankster, Seattle Powerpop Blog, and of course Wyoming Beat and KEXP.

Yeah, this post has nothing to do with New Order.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


While looking at restaurant info on Citysearch, I came across their "Best Spots to Kiss in Seattle" list, which I found underwhelming. I agree that the Bainbridge Island ferry is a good choice, but the rest of the list was mostly full of restaurants. Boring. So, this bored librarian spent her lunch putting together her own list. I widened my radius a bit, moving north from Seattle to include some Snohomish County favorites from my teen years. After all, those were prime make-out years, right?

1. Howarth Park (Everett): Water, sand beach, railroad, pedestrian bridge with viewpoint, beautiful view of Mount Baker, wetlands trail. Lovely.
2. Granite Falls (Granite Falls): Not the biggest falls around, but points for proximity to my hometown. Easy to get to and pretty.
3. Rucker's Tomb at Evergreen Cemetary (Everett): A classic. I found a flickr user with a set of awesome photos of the place.
4. Bridal Veils Falls (Index): Who doesn't love waterfalls? And these are stunning.
5. Legion Park (Everett): On a bluff overlooking the bay, super pretty and right in town.
6. Fremont Canal Park: Sure, it's overrun with joggers, but the it's a nice place to walk and feels a little secluded even though it's right next to the busy part of Fremont.
7. Gasworks Park: Specifically the sundial, specifically at night. The old gas works are creepy cool, too.
8. Kerry Park: It's a cliche for a reason. Probably the prettiest view in all of Seattle, with sculptures. Within walking distance of ice cream and good coffee.
9. University of Washington quad: Pretty year-round, but especially so during spring and summer, when the grass is dry enough to sit on.
10. The once and only Cafe Paradiso (R.I.P.): Now a Cafe Vita, and still pretty cool, this was the only coffee house that ever rivaled my affection for Bauhaus. It was a better kissing spot, though.

Moral of the story: I think I like parks.
EDIT: I realize now that Kerry Park is on both lists. Like I said, I know it's a cliche, but it's pretty.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

vacation catch-up

More of the sunset at Jackson Lake

My trip to the Tetons and Yellowstone last week was really nice. The purpose of the trip was to visit Mary Ann, a friend from work, at the university's research station up at Jackson Lake. I hadn't ever been to NW Wyoming, but I've long heard it's gorgeous. I arrived on Thursday a couple of hours before the weekly barbecue and seminar. The speaker, Bob Smith, and his topic, the Yellowstone Caldera, are insanely popular, so tons of people showed up. It was fun to pitch in and help keep the food replenished and direct people to bathrooms and recycling bins. If there's one thing I know, it's hostessing.

The talk was really interesting, and I learned some cocktail party-worthy information about Yellowstone and the Tetons. After the guests were gone and everything was cleaned up, my hosts, Bob and his wife, and assorted friends gathered on the dock for wine. Some of the grad students and kids who work at the station came down soon after. The sunset was gorgeous. I couldn't stop taking pictures because the sky kept changing and getting prettier and prettier. Unreal. Sitting there at the water's edge made me homesick and happy at the same time.

Grand Canyon of Yellowstone
Grand Canyon of Yellowstone

On Friday, I went to Yellowstone with Mary Ann. It was pretty, and we saw lots of animals. Because it's summer, and it was the weekend following July 4, it was pretty crowded. When we were at Artists' Point, which is so amazingly beautiful, I noticed a woman talking on her cell phone and bitching about something. How can you go to Yellowstone and ignore the view in favor of your phone? The crush of people was annoying, but I had a really fun time chatting with Mary Ann and looking at everything. She took me to her favorite sights, which was really cool. I was surprised how much I liked the geysers and mineral pools, and by how many there were just at the couple of places we stopped.

River and Mountains
View of Grand Teton from our raft on the Snake

On Saturday, Mary Ann and Hank took me on a rafting trip down the Snake River. It was a scenic stretch and it was fun to see animals and have Hank talk about them. We stopped on a bank for lunch and I waded around a bit. The only thing that kind of sucked is that in addition to adding to my bug bite collection, I was dumb and only reapplied sunscreen to my (already burned) upper half, so my lower legs and feet got toasted. As somebody who grew up on the water and rowed in high school, I should know better. I think I burned a different part of myself every day for the past two weeks. Still, I really had fun going out on the water. Hank showed me how to row the raft, too, which is completely opposite everything I'm used to from crew. I just had to get used to going against my instincts and just think of it as rowing backward.

After brunch and some window shopping in Jackson with Mary Ann, I left for home on Sunday afternoon. The drive home was just as gorgeous as the drive up there, even though it got stormy. In fact, I was kind of glad for the drop in temperature. If you're really interested, you can see the whole set of pictures from my trip. No road photos this time; holiday traffic and mountain passes kept me from recklessly driving while snapping.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


I wish I had a steaming cup of coffee as big as my head I would smell it savor it before sipping from the warm china rim white saucer to catch the drips and the melted chocolate stick they give me but I never eat even though it’s dark not too chalky like the Kinderegg German toy surprise waiting for me in the mailbox from a friend in Toronto for American children aren’t smart enough not to choke on the bubble-gum machine prize hidden inside so I must get my fix from our northern neighbor who spells things with extra letters and says grade 8 instead of 8th grade seeming so exotic and so familiar all at once with her funny handle and nobody sees the face of the other anymore but I talk across the wire across the continent to an ear that only hears letters and punctuation marks as I type but write on a piece of real paper with a stamped envelope giving evidence that I really lived by a packet of saved letters tied up with green ribbon on his shelf somewhere east of Broadway in a basement apartment I will never visit again at least not in the daylight but maybe after an evening of shared pleasantries over another giant cup of coffee we’ll come to an unspoken agreement that I should come back if only to collect my Burroughs and Cohen so long ago borrowed so that our separation will be final with no lingering reminders of me to tempt him to call and expect to meet me at a diner in the middle of the nowhere night only to find that my line is busy I am talking to somebody else who meets my words with more words not silence and knots of charged particles and atonal sounds and riots of similes no it is more civilized now I am years older and I have almost forgotten how to drive fast with no headlights because I am wishing for my big cup of coffee to drink all by myself.

Monday, July 02, 2007


I jam-packed my weekend, and it was fun. Maybe I should do more of that. Two things on my agenda were firsts for me since moving here. On Saturday, a friend took me on a hike. It was nice to get outside and get a little exercise. I don't spend enough time appreciating how pretty it really is here. Instead of focusing on what I miss about home, I could be taking advantage of what I have here.

The second new thing was having people over to my place. A few friends and family have come to stay with me, but until Saturday, only one person I met here has been over. The people I socialize with all live right in town, so it's always been easier to just hang out at their places. It's only an extra five or ten minutes to get out here, though.

As spontaneous as I'd like to believe I am, it's way too easy to get stuck in a routine. When that routine is me staying in my house all weekend, maybe that's not so healthy. After this weekend, I almost feel like myself again--the self I thought I left behind on the coast.