Thursday, July 28, 2005

Dust In The Wind

I heard it in a car commercial recently. This morning I think. That song certainly does not make me want jump off the couch and go buy a car. Gee, all we are is dust in the wind. I think I'll go buy a Subaru! More like makes me want to slit my wrists. Strange choice.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Utch is in a Good Mood This Week Because

He sold his car today. He asked for a few hundred more than he expected to get and got exactly what he wanted for it. Nice work! Thanks!

He also got a new pc at work this week after asking for almost a year. He believes he only got it because there was no other choice. He was working yesterday and clicked on something and saw a flash followed by a loud POP! followed by a burning smell. This scared the crap out of Utch. As he picked up the phone and started dialing someone to help with the situation it went POP! again followed by more smells of something burning. He then unplugged everything and made the necessary phone calls. Luckily his hard drive was fine and put into the new pc so he didn't lose anything.

Utch is also still high off all the great music performances experienced over the weekend.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Lolla Part 2 / Late Night Ramblings

Day 1.

Saturday morning. Up at 8:00 AM. Had a nice sized breakfast, did not drink coffee, went to the store for water and other important items, showered, and left the apartment by 10:15 to meet Amy at the train. Made it to Grant Park around 11:00 to stand in line for our wristbands. Lines were long but moved quickly and we were inside in no time. Got our beer wristbands, took a look around the concession area and then crossed the street to the Planet Stage, which was located across the street from the location of the other 4 stages. The band we checked out was Hard- Fi from west London. They were pretty fun and had folks dancing outside at noon. Pretty impressive. They had a bit of a Clash feel and did a pretty cool version of Seven Nation Army. Not as cool as The Flaming Lips version, but still pretty cool.

Next it was off to the heart of the festival where the other 4 stages were. The bands playing were The Warlocks and M83. I knew nothing about either of them. Watched a little of The Warlocks but kept moving towards the stage M83 was playing on. From far away I heard some very Pink Floyd/Radiohead kind of sounds which sparked my interest. They sounded pretty cool but became less interesting as they went on.

A little after 1:00. Time for the first beer. And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead was up next. Probably one of the best sets I saw that day. Their very energetic usually performed in a club set went over really well with the big festival audience. Jason was even more amped up than usual, slurring over his words during in between song stage banter, jumping around like a madman, and running off stage into the audience. I loved it! Also of note, we had other folks to meet at this point and made our meeting place the right side of the sound board during this set and it turned out to be a great spot. As there were lots of different groups of friends wanting to meet up at different points, but obviously not everybody wanting to see the same bands through out the day, we made the right side of the sound board the designated meeting place for every stage. It worked well through out the weekend.

Next it was off to Kaiser Chiefs. I like Liz Phair, who was playing at the same time, but had seen her before and had not seen Kaiser Chiefs. From what I hear I made the right choice. This was another high energy set from a band I've just recently started to listen to. I was impressed. The singer's voice was almost gone and he announced that he had left it in Washington DC the night before. He still gave it his all and probably killed it completely by the end. Other highlights were a guy and girl being pulled from the audience to sing Oh My God, the lead singer asking who was playing across the way and if "someone could tell her to be quiet; we're trying to work here", and I personally wanted to the steal the bass player's look. Ha ha!!

Next was Brian Jonestown Massacre. I know there were a lot of people wondering if Anton Newcombe was going to keep it together or if there would be a freak out or fight with the audience or with his band and probably were disappointed that he kept it together. Although the outburst towards Dashboard Confessional, who were playing across the way, was hilarious. He called them Bon Jovi and "You're gonna be my new form of birth control. I'm gonna put a picture of you guys next my bed. Don't quit your day jobs mother fuckers!" I think I quoted that correctly. Close enough. Seeing ex-guitarist Matt Hollywood on stage playing tamborine was unexpected. No Joel though.

I did not watch Cake or The Bravery. It was time for a break and a snack at this point.

Next was Blonde Redhead and Billy Idol. Blonde Redhead were REALLY good. We watched half of their set and it was very hard to pull myself away, but I had to walk over to catch some of the nostalgic Billy Idol set. After all, this is a festival about seeing as much music as you can and want to, right? It was fun. A very much enjoyed rain started right when White Wedding started which seemed perfect.

Did not see much of the Black Keys. Caught some of Primus while trying to get a good spot for Pixies and then some of us decided we didn't like that spot and moved to the right of the sound board.

What can I say about Pixies? It was the first time I'd seen them and they did not disappoint. Another one of my favorites of the day even if nostagic. They went from song to song with no breaks except for a small one before encoring with a great version of Where Is My Mind?

Weezer closed out the day and played a fan friendly set. It was a nice way to finish the day. Drunk and singing along with thousands of others.

Day 2.

Well, I should have probably gone home after the show Saturday, but I was drunk and fired up and stayed out until 3:30 in the morning. Woke up hours later sitting up on my couch, lots of lights and the tv on, a half eaten burrito on my lap, and napkins and hot sauce on the floor. Huh..wha.. oh.. It gets better. I started eating the burrito again. Not by picking it up though or using a fork, because the fork was on the floor too. No, I started taking bites with a knife! Eventually I grabbed one of the pussies, tucked him under my arm and went to crash in bed for 2 or 3 more hours.

Got going a little later Sunday but still made it down to catch most of The Ponys set. They were good, but I was still pretty out of it and it was hot. Besides the hangover though I was mentally and for the most part physically prepared(lots of water) for the heat and tried not to complain or announce the obvious, but got a kick out of it every time someone else did and kept thinking of this part from Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy:

"One of the things Ford Prefect had always found hardest to understand about humans was their habit of continuously stating and repeating the very very obvious, as in It's a nice day, or You're very tall, or Oh dear you seem to have fallen down a thirty-foot well, are you all right?"

Kasabian was next. They were good and I like their songs a lot but felt kind of bad for them. It's really hard to get people dancing in that kind of heat at 2:00 in the afternoon. Still, good stuff.

For Dinosaur Jr. we got up as close as we could. They were fantastic! Lou Barlow seemed to be having a good time. J. Mascis had really long grey hair and looked like he'd been stored in an attic. He looked dusty and cobwebbed and used the very minimal amount of energy between songs and only spoke to say "hello" in the beginning and "thank you" at the end. But the energy screamed out of his guitar as he blasted through a set of songs with a fury of brutal, beautiful, blasting guitar assault. Their set was between 2:30 and 3:30. This was probably the hottest point of the day. People started passing out around us. It was pretty scary. There were secrurity people with a hose filling up water bottles and cups for as many people as they could. Between seeing and hearing some heroes reunite, the incredible heat, and people passing out all around and all the excitement involved, this was a very emotional part of the day. It was weird and uncontrolled and behind sunglasses.

As I drink beer and type I realise this is getting very long, isn't it?

Took a much needed break in the shade, watched a little of Satellite Party featuring Perry Farrell and Nuno Bettencourt which was sort of interesting but not very memorable, took another break for food and to sit in an air conditioned bus and then headed over to where the Arcade Fire would be playing .

The Arcade Fire. Ok, I could have gushed and gushed about this band before seeing them live. Well, I have done that. They were hands down the best performance I saw all weekend. Fucking amazing! Perry Farrell intruduced them as he did with a lot of the better acts. He called them the "hottest band in the country right now and the reason they were was because they proved that they were not afraid to be unique." Believe every bit of hype you're heard about this band. They are the real deal.

I checked out Spoon next but nothing was going to top what I had just experienced. I like them but would have preferred seeing them in a club.

I watched the first few songs of the Dandy Warhols. It was a bit too slow for me at that moment so I walked over to check out the Killers for a bit. Although I like Hot Fuss, they didn't quite do it for me live so I walked back over to the Dandy's after a couple of songs and was glad I did. Right when I walked up Anton and Matt Hollywood(BJM) had just walked on stage to jam with them. It was pretty damn cool. Anton was up for one long song and recieved a huge applause when he left the stage as they continued on and flowed into the next song while Matt played on through that one as well. The rest of the set was really awesome. Amy, who is a superfan, said they always start out really slow and trippy. I guess I'll know for next time.

Deathcab For Cutie. Pretty much everyone I knew who had been at the festival had left by this point. I tried to tough it out a little longer, but Deathcab are not the kind of band to give you that 2nd, or better yet, 9nth wind, so I left after a few songs.

So all and all Lolla was a success. Very well organized. Not a ton of ground breaking music but a lot of good stuff still. Great weekend. Long post. Thank you.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Lolla Weekend

I have so much work that I really can't give a full recap/review right now. So it will have to wait until tonight. I will say that it was fantastic. Yes, it was hot. Very hot. Yesterday was very challenging and punishing. During Dinosaur Jr people seemed to be dropping all around us. Very scary. But musically it was very rewarding and it made me feel proud to be among all the troopers. All for the love of live music. There were some musical moments that brought tears of happiness to my eyes(Dinosaur Jr, The Arcade Fire). But we'll get into all that later.

On a different note, The Cubs took 2 out of 3 in St. Louis this weekend. Right on!

Friday, July 22, 2005

Hell of a Ride

Here's a story in the Daily Herald about my friend who I've mentioned here before that had the kidney transplant. He's had one hell of a ride. His mom was sending hospital updates almost daily over the last 2 months and it got pretty scary for a while and I felt so bad for him and all he had to go through. I've known him for like 20 years or something and I'm so happy for him right now.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Confusion Is Sex

This post really doesn't have anything to do with that. Well, yes it sort of does. Fuck! Hep! Yeah!!...ZOINK!!%^&*&)&..HHHHEEEEYYYYY!!!

Ok, sorry about that. Work is making me a little batty. Had to get that out of my system. OK, where were we? Ah yes, Confusion is Sex. There have been some cd cases in my cd rack with missing discs. Some of them for quite sometime. You can imagine the frustration when you are playing dj and in a groove and pull out what you're going to play next and open it up and suddenly remember that you don't have it anymore. Well, I burned copies of some of those discs last weekend. I listened to Confusion is Sex - Sonic Youth last night while putting the laundry away. Hot damn! I almost forgot how good it was. Great shit!

I was going to type something else though and now I seem to have forgotten. Lollapalooza weekend just about here. I've been very much looking forward to it. I've already decided that it is out of my budget to be doing this this weekend but I'm not going to sweat it. After all, there will already be plenty of sweating going on. All for the love of live music.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

But I Don't Have a Burger Rack on my Bike Jim

Ok, we'll get to the concert in a minute. I was hanging at my friend Jim's on Sunday. We drank a bunch beers in the afternoon and eventually grilled up some real phat cheeseburgers. Correction, 2 burgers with cheese and 2 without. We ate the 2 with cheese and were very full afterwards. A little later that evening when I was getting ready to leave Jim said "we need to send your other burger home with you. "But I don't have a burger rack on my bike Jim" I said. Jim said "Why not?", and I said "Well, I don't know." I decided to use the bathroom before leaving and when I came out Jim was standing by my bike holding the burger wrapped in foil under the bar just under the seat and wrapping black electrical tape around it. Awesome! A burger rack!! It made it the whole very hot long ride back and recieved a few chuckles too, or maybe it was just me who was being laughed at. I had hoped someone would have asked what it was but they didn't. Jim took pictures. I think I did too. I'm not going to promise to post them though because I seem to be really bad about saying I'm going to post pictures and then forgetting to.

Friday I raced out of work right at 5:00(this never happens), stopped at home to drop of my bag and grab the bike and raced over to Dawn and Adam's. The limo was picking us up at 6:00. I got there and cracked open a beer and drank about half and the limo pulled up. The car was stocked with beer and a half carafe of vodka and a half carafe of scotch. It was a great way to travel to a show. Unfortunately it took a very long time to get to the show. We had hoped The Black Crowes were going on at 7:30 but I guess they started at 7:00. We didn't get there until after 8:00. After standing in the bathroom line, the beer line where $in and I were told we needed our hands stamped, on to another line to get that done, and back in line for a beer, we heard and watched on the tv screen showing the concert at the beer stand as The Crowes finished Remedy and said "Thank you; good night!" Shit! I got over it pretty quick though. It seems like the shows have been going really well for them this tour and I have no doubt they'll be through here again on their own tour and a better venue. Tom Petty made up for it all though. He was great! There were some songs I would have really liked to have heard that he didn't play, but the guy has one hell of a library of good songs to choose from. Every song was a hit. So besides a few frat boy dipshits in front of us, I just took in the 40,000 people singing word for word along with Tom Petty for a couple hours, sucked down beers, and enjoyed the hot summer night. We were all happy.

When we arrived at the concert Adam and I were the last ones out of the car and noticed that we had drank all the beer including the ones we brought. Like I said, it was a long ride. We were talking about the beer while walking away right after the driver had told us where he would be after the concert and gave us his card and he yelled out "What kind should I pick up for you?" We were both drinking Old Styles and just held up our cans. After the concert the car was stocked with beer again. Good shit. We also dipped into the vodka and scotch on the way home. Partied more after being dropped off and was home by 5:00 AM and listening to a very drunk Danny Doom singing almost an entire Rolling Stones song on my voicemail left an hour earlier. I laughed and passed out. Work was a bitch on Saturday.

Friday, July 15, 2005

I Got a Head Full of Serpents and Mouth Full of Spiders

You know, I wanted to type when I first got here but my desk seems to be the place people want to stop and talk and talk and talk. That is all fine and stuff but, well, I think I lost my rhythm.

Ok, so tonight I'm going to see Tom Petty and The Black Crowes. I've been looking forward to it. I've never seen Tom Petty and have always liked him. Who doesn't really? The Black Crowes I saw once years ago open up for ZZ Top, before they were kicked off that tour for not wanting to be sponsored by Bud Lite. I believe on stage Chris Robinson said "tonight's music is brought to you by the Black Crowes and NOT Bud Lite." Guess ZZ Top didn't like that and they got the boot. Nice work Chris. Much respect.

Anyway, we will heading out in style tonight. Dawn has hired us a limo so we can booze it up all the way there and all the way back and not worry about driving drunk. It's also Adam's birthday. Happy Birthday Adam! I'll give a review of the show tomorrow or Sunday or whenever I feel like it.

Now, enjoy some Friday fun:

IDIOTS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD: I live in a semi-rural area. We recently had a new neighbor call the local township administrative office to request the removal of the Deer Crossing sign on our road. The reason: "too many deer were being hit by cars" and he didn't want them to cross there anymore.

IDIOTS IN FOOD SERVICE:My daughter went to a local Taco Bell and ordered a taco. She asked the person behind the counter for "minimal lettuce." He said he was sorry, but they only had iceberg.

IDIOT SIGHTING:I was at the airport, checking in at the gate when an airport employee asked, "Has anyone put anything in your baggage without your knowledge?" To which I replied, "If it was without my knowledge, how would I know?" He smiled knowingly and nodded, "That's why we ask."

IDIOT SIGHTING:The stoplight on the corner buzzes when it's safe to cross the street. I was crossing with an intellectually challenged coworker of mine when she asked if I knew what the buzzer was for. I explained that it signals blind people when the light is red. Appalled, she responded, "What on earth are blind people doing driving?!!

IDIOT SIGHTING:At a good-bye luncheon for an old and dear coworker who was leaving the company due to "downsizing," our manager commented cheerfully, "this is fun. We should do this more often." Not a word was spoken. We all just looked at each other with that deer-in-the-headlights stare.

IDIOT SIGHTING:I work with an individual who plugged her power strip back into itself and for the life of her couldn't understand why her system would not turn on.

IDIOT SIGHTING: When my husband and I arrived at an automobile dealership to pick up our car, we were told the keys had been locked in it. We went to the service department and found a mechanic working feverishly to unlock the driver's side door. As I watched from the passenger side, I instinctively tried the door handle and discovered that it was unlocked. "Hey," I announced to the technician, "it's open!" To which he replied, "I know - I already got that side."

They walk among us..............scary!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

This Just in!!!

Man, I'm going to have to take the rest of the afternoon off because of this breaking news. I just don't think I'm going to be able to focus because of it.


I've been a real busy little monkey

So no real blog entry here. But, here are som pictures for 4th of July weekend compliments of Amy. Enjoy! Some of them are hilarious!

Friday, July 08, 2005

A Lot to Digest in One Week

Another birthday for America, the retirement announcement of Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, a shredded pork bbq sandwich, another parking ticket, Italian beef sandwiches, the decision to put my car up for sale, another friend's birthday party, journalist Judith Miller going to jail, some pork chops, potato salad and cole slaw, the terrorist attack on London, knowing that ex-girlfriend and I ARE actually cool with each other, more changes to the "rock opera," my workload seeming to double in volume, another friend who had a kidney transplant being admitted again for severe pain and intestinal problems, bills bills bills, a total Cubs collapse with an 8 game losing streak, and a bagel breakfast sandwich. Wow! That's an appetite. Ok, let's wash that down with some coffee, a couple of big glasses of water and maybe we'll throw a little beer in the mix.

While all that is digesting let's have a little tale of food coma. Seems relative. After lunch yesterday I headed to the elevators to have my after lunch smoke. The elevator door opened; I walked on and pushed 18. The light went on and then off. Huh? I pushed it again and the same thing happened. What the hell!! I reached to do it again and realised, you're already on the 18th floor stupid! Now that is a food coma.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Panic in the Streets of London

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Another Year Older America

Nice work! I roared into your birthday weekend like a lion. Like a raging beast! I ended your celebration weekend like a lamb though. I started roaring on Thursday, paused for a little sleep and a work shift on Friday, then roared and raged into the night and early morning with Steve, Jim, and Rhonda, slept a little, and then roared more through the next day before eventually making it to Skid and Amy's birthday party, which I can honestly say was one of the best parties I've been to. At the party I roared and raged even louder before finally cooling down at home as the sky started to lighten. Sunday I stalled as long as I could before finally driving out to the suburbs in the afternoon for a party at my mom's. I felt bad because I was pretty out of it and not all that social. I told my mom that I thought I had talked so much the night before that I ran out of conversation. I actually did try to carry on conversation and wasn't trying to be anti-social; I was just having a hard time doing more than having quick small talk and then drifting off. I spent the night out there, was still a space case on Monday, went to visit a friend, had some food at the ribfest during a small window of the day that was not raining, burned lots of music, then drove back home in the pouring rain. I came home to some hungry, stinky, and very happy to see me kitties, got mad at another Cubs loss, cracked open a beer and nursed it, put on some music, and enjoyed the many firework displays in the neighborhood that went on for hours while nursing about 3 or 4 more beers. Today I feel pretty good. I have a lot to do this week.

Friday, July 01, 2005

It's Time For Another Segment of...

FRANKENSTEIN WASTES ANOTHER MINUTE OF YOUR TIME. You watch Conan O'Brien, right? Sometimes, maybe? You know what I'm talking about? GRRRR...GRRRRR!! After nights like last night, the morning at work is like TIME FOR ANOTHER MOMENT OF...UTCH a.k.a...NICK RITZ a.k.a...SLURRON the INTOXICATOR a.k.a...KING OF THE DULL THUMP a.k.a...BURT JOHNSON WASTES ANOTHER HOUR OF YOUR TIME! After a visit to the cafeteria, a visit to the coffee room, a visit to the bathroom, a visit to all the e-mail accounts, a visit to myspace, and typing over here, an hour of company time completely evaporates. I want to thank all my unpaid legal advisors last night for your guidance. Between you and a trusty pair of blue blockers for protection, we survived. A few cars were threatened by the oncoming swerving bike and I on the way home, but instead of waking up in a ditch with little kids throwing fish at me, I woke on the couch to two pussies staring at me. It appears folks are wearing jeans today. Guess I didn't get "the memo." Then again, I don't own a pair of jeans. OK, I'm going to go get another cup of coffee and waste more company time. Thank you.