Raiders of the Lost Rickenbacker

22 09 2010

Ok, take the next left, and then an immediate right and you can't miss it.

Some of you stalkers may remember the recent trip Priscilla and I took to Denver Colorado for UMS.  After getting in the car at about 10PM, Priscilla and I drove out of Denver, and didn’t stop until we’d reached home, sweet home, St.  Paul, MN.  I was getting out of the car, and decided we’d better get the guitars before we went inside to collapse and sleep for a day.   I opened up the back of the Element and there was only one guitar. “Oh, we don’t have my bass…”

My baby! See where Frank ran out of room, and finished his name sideways? ...wait, you can't it's behind the mic stand. ...but that's what it looks like.

Priscilla broke down crying, which was very sweet of her.  My Rickenbacker, 4003 bass is my most prized possession.  Aside from the fact that, that’s just an awesome bass, mine was made more awesome by Frank Black when he signed it.  He was a complete dick the entire time I interacted with him.  I approached him as he was clearing some things off the stage at a small show at The Warehouse in LaCrosse when I was still in high school.

Me: Frank?

Frank: *silence*

Me: Frank?

Frank: *silence*

Me: Um, Frank?

Frank: *sighs* Yeees?

Me: Can you sign my bass?

Frank: I’d need a marker

Me: *waves hand already holding out marker*

This was probably the most pleasant of the three brief conversations I had with him that night.  Despite him being a jerk, AND his musical downward spiral (I was quite found the the FIRST six solo albums.  Now he’s got, like, forty or something- each progressively worse from what I could tell.  This was on the ‘Frank Black and the Catholics’ album tour.  That was a SWEET album.) it is still my favorite memento.  But as Priscilla cried, I was far to delirious from driving 15 hours to care about anything at all, and I stumbled inside.

Grief stricken, but determined, Priscilla went online to try and find what might have happened.  As luck would have it, a local Denver band found it and had already sent us an email.  When I woke up, we had to figure out how we were going to get this bass back.  I couldn’t ship it, because it was just in a gig bag, and I wouldn’t trust shipping it anyway.  There was only one thing to do- journey back west.

Our good friend Stephy, and new pal Brittany stopped somewhere in Wyoming for no reason that I can think of. Stopping in Wyoming is probably the most dangerous thing that happens in this blog...

Our good friend Steph went and got the Rick from the Denver band and took it home for safe keeping.  Then, on one fateful morning in September, we both set off, from opposite ends of the Earth, on a mission to reunite me and my bass!  Where should a historic reunion like this take place?  In the place the Natives believed was the sacred center of the Earth, and the white man marked as his territory with four famous severed heads, like some overly artistic dog peeing on a fence.  That’s right, Mount Rushmore!

Actually, that’s a lie.  We did go there because Steph brought her friend Brittany along, and she’d never seen Mount Rushmore.  But, we actually met beforehand at the hotel where we were staying ten miles away… Which is where I got my bass back. After that though, we did go to Mount Rushmore.  And once I had my bass back, what more could I ask for?  More bears please.  That’s right, back to Bear Country USA!

Bear Country also has Caribou, but they have less add space devoted to them...

So, it just so happens that we hit a ton of bugs with our car on the way to South Dakota.  It also happens that bears actually like to eat bugs.  …I didn’t ask them why.  But this combination turned out to be interesting.  We might as well have strapped a dead deer to our car as far as one hungry bear was concerned.  After he was done picking the grill of our car clean, he got up on his hind legs and plopped himself on top of the hood of the Element and began chewing on our windshield wiper.  It was probably the coolest thing that has ever happened to me… THEN, Bear Country USA came to our rescue by sending a scrawny teenage worker to chase the bear away from our car by clapping his hands and saying, “Shew!”  They apologized to us, and gave us out money back because there were scratches on our car.  …I didn’t tell them I would have paid extra to have a bear chew on my car…

People have asked me if I was afraid after seeing these photos.  …seriously? As if!  I’m not afraid of this little guy- it’s not like its a maneater like… oh say, a killer whale! *drum roll*  But, what happened next scared the crap out of me.  After the ride through the park we got out and walked through baby land.  (The part of the park with all the baby bears and other little critters) When, out of nowhere I felt something hit my chest hard, like some punk five year old whipped a pebble at me.  …but it wasn’t a pebble, it was the scariest bee I’ve ever seen.  If you can identify this thing then I owe you a beer.  Remember when I was getting attacked by horse flies that I thought were bees? This was like some sick joke by mother nature.

 

Evil has a name. It's this guy's name. ...I don't know what that is, specifically... so I'll just call him, 'Evil.'

I grabbed my shirt and pulled it away from my frail human body, and out of range of the massive stinger on its butt.  Then I worked up the courage to try and flick it off of me.  Just when I was about to make my move, Priscilla freaked out and told me not to- clearly afraid of what this thing would do to retaliate.  Just when we thought all hope was lost and the bee would have to ride home with us we heard, “Oh for Pete’s sake…”  Some small children’s mother walked over and fearlessly shewed the bee away.  I was surprised when it didn’t kill her.  I went up to the little boy she was with and told him, ‘Your mommy just saved my life, isn’t she brave?’  And he looked at me like I was a freak.  After that adrenaline rush it was time to go to Deadwood and ‘heckle’ pedestrians.  At least that’s the ‘official’ story of what happened…

Anyway, it was a weekend of triumph and knowledge.  I got my base back- that was great, but I also learned some things.  Some hotels charge by the person.  But when someone asks you why you need three keys when there are only two people staying in the room, keeping a cool head can save the day.  …that and using the back door the entire time you’re there.   I also learned that you can blow out your rotors really quickly in the black hills.  What I haven’t learned is what in the hell landed on my shirt.

 

I was thinking about going back with a screw driver to make the claw marks more badass, but I decided to leave it.

All for now!

 

 

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Stuck in a room full of naked girls …again.

28 07 2009

WARNING: HARRY POTTER SPOILERS WITHIN

There are somethings that everyone experiences once or twice in their life; getting trapped in a room full of naked women is one of these things.  I clearly remember the first time it happened to me.  I was eighteen years old and employed as a pizza delivery boy.  I was on a routine run out to St Mary’s University in the mutant little town of Winona, MN.   It was the summer time, probably in July- on a day not unlike this day.

When I pulled on to campus there weren’t any people around, which made sense because school wasn’t in session.  I made my way to the dormitory on the pizza order; it looked deserted.  I rang the buzzer and then waited.  Nothing.  Just when I was going to take off, something magical happened.  The door was pulled open by…  a hot chick in a bath towel.  She was very excited to see me, and lead me into the dorm hallway- and there they were- dozens of other hot chicks wearing nothing but towels.  (I know that many of you already think I’m full of it, but, I’m totally not.  Why God let this happen before the invention of the camera phone, I don’t know; you’ll just have to take my word for it. )

I look a little awkward there... I had no idea how bad it would get.

I look a little awkward there... I had no idea how bad it would get.

Now, the normal reaction you see when some random guy walks in on a herd of feral women running around mostly nude  is pretty negative. Guys, am I right?  But, these where no ordinary feral women.  They were a giant troupe of all girl soccer players staying on campus all weekend for an all girls soccer tournament- meaning there weren’t ANY dudes there at all.  They were like starving derelicts attacking me like I was the dumpster behind a Perkins.  “Oh, Mr. Pizza Boy, came hang out with us!”

“Pizza Man, get your picture taken with us”

“Over here, us too Pizza Inferno”

“No, pay attention to us! Pizza Stallion!”

“We hunger for your loins Darth Pizza Boy- Take us now!”

I’m pretty sure I started crying at some point, weeping tears of joy.  They were all hot like Hermione, and I could tell they were interested in my magic wand.  But then, like always, some uglies ruined it all.

Creepy Miss Hermione trying to freak us all out with her 19 going on 11 body...  *shudders*   -Picture curtesy of the internet

Creepy Miss Hermione trying to freak us all out with her 19 going on 11 body... *shudders* -Picture courtesy of the Internet

“Blarg narg ahooga, Pizza Guy! Get over here now- We feed now!” …I kept crying.  Three breasts from down the hall forcefully dragged me away from the sirens like some horrid high school soccer version of Cerberus into their hellish dorm room. They took their pizza, tipped me poorly, and kicked me out.

Later that evening, another call came in from the same address for more pizza.   I stole the order from another driver, desperate to recreate the magic.  It was no use, even the Half Blood Prince couldn’t have conjured that moment back up, not even if he was wearing his prosthetics from Galaxy Quest! More ugoes had ordered this pizza, and they met me outside the building. I would have to wait ten more years before this would happen again… (foreshadowing)

This is the owl bra.

This is the owl bra.

So, for those of you who follow my sweet band maudlin, you know that we like playing bizarre shows. The more weird the better as far as I’m concerned. (As long as the weird part has nothing to do with the compensation…)

We were asked by Donette, a peach of a  young lady who claims to wear one of our buttons on her lapel, to play a show to help raise money for Susan G Komen Breast cancer research. Charity and flattery both go a long way for us, however, throwing in a boob themed “Racktacular” with burlesque show and an art bra contest really pushed us over the edge.

It was a great show, and things were going well.  We were hanging out, we were talking it up, and then we decided to go into the green room.  When you’re famous you’re probably hiding  there from fans, when your us you’re down there looking for free things.  Sure enough, there were beverages and snacks… and changing girls.

The next girl actually bit her finger instead of the glove and had to go to the ER

The next girl actually bit her finger instead of the glove and had to go to the ER

The burlesque troupe from Lili’s Burlesque were also using the space for their costume changes.  There was a little partition between the cookies and liquor and the area where the girls were getting read for their show.  There wasn’t a whole lot of space and I just kind of tried to not look past the cookies.  Jason snapped a picture of me with the ladies, and then went upstairs to get ready to take more pictures of the art bras.  Priscilla and I sat downstairs in the green room a little longer… which turned out to be a little too long.

Before we had thought about when we were going to leave, it was time for the girls to start.  They all filed up the stairs and waited in line to model the art bras.  The way the club was set up, we’d have had to walk right past them and the stage to get back into the audience, and it didn’t seem like that would be appropriate.  Priscilla said she was going to try it anyway.  She deceivingly said she would go up the stairs and see if there was a clear path and then come and get me if there was.

She went up the stairs and never returned.  …but the Lili’s girls did- and in a frantic hurry.  One by one they came running down the stairs, some starting to shed the little clothes they were wearing as they went.  They went towards the cookies and then came running back with new lingerie on.  I was feeling awkward long before this, but now I was feeling really awkward.  I positioned myself facing the stairs with my back to the cookie/naked parts area.  I was pretty sure that they were all probably thinking, ‘why is this douche still here,’ but I could really find a good opening to run up and escape.  Finally, I mustered the courage to ask a woman sprinting past undoing her bra.

Not sure what kind of bra this was... blue?

My mom is going to yell at me when she sees this one

“Um, can I sneak up the stairs to get out of here, or should I just wait here?”  I’m sure my voice was cracking like Harry Potter’s on a  first date. “No,” was the reply.  …Now, to be honest, I had no clue what that even meant.  I went back to my space on the couch and tried to focus on twittering on my phone. [mrmaudlin -follow me!]  Eventually, it was all over and I bolted back upstairs.  By then it was time for our set, so I went right into setting up.  Ironically, I didn’t even see most of the art bras until after the show when they were hanging up at the silent auction.  …I did see lots of girl butts running up stairs though.

Here are the bars without the hot chicks...

Here are the bars without the hot chicks...

Maudlin played a pretty hot set, and when it was all over we all decided we should end the night at Weber World.  …only Jason had decided it was time to let his dog out to pee.  So, he left the club with the only vehicle big enough to haul our gear fifteen minutes before the place closed and said he’d be right back when the dog was relieved.  So we waited.  And waited.  …and waited.  Eventually he came back and we all climbed around in the new fuselage room until like, four or five.

I have an art bra on too. ...but it's under my shirt.

I have an art bra on too. ...but it's under my shirt.

So now it’s time for a new part of my blog that I’m going to call, “In Review.”  …basically I’ll briefly review several things I’ve recently seen, heard or done.  Ready?

The Talented Mr Riply: Finally got around to seeing this one because Target has it on sale for $2.99.  …This whole movie is basically one giant documentary about how huge Matt Damon’s teeth are.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Wizard: Hermione still doesn’t get naked in this one, and Harry Potter hasn’t been killed, bludgeoned, or cruelly maimed yet either.  I’m hoping for the best with the next one.  Still, you can’t  really dislike a children’s movie where a goth gang throws and old man out a window to plummet to his death can you?  I can’t.





Three show weekends are always a hoot! …er.

10 07 2009

It started out where all great weekends start- Hooters.  I go to Hooters all the time because I love the taste of their wings!  …ok, that’s not true.  I don’t frequent Hooters, and the one time I ate there their food bit.   However, Jason and I were downtown Minneapolis at the 7th Street Entry for a last minute show for the United Way and we were hungry.  Jason claimed that the chili was good there…  I didn’t buy that, we went in anyway.  We ended up getting wings … they sucked.

"Sam"- Professional D-Bag Handler shown in a typical pose, pretending to be enjoying herself.  Me- shown pretending to look at the camera.

"Sam"- Professional D-Bag Handler shown in a typical pose, pretending to be enjoying herself. Me- shown pretending to look at the camera.

Our server, Samantha, (Who was a little under dressed I might add) turned out to be a professional douchebag handler.  …She didn’t tell me that persay.  However, I told her I was going to call her “Sam” and requested that she get her picture taken with me for no reason, and she pleasantly agreed, so I knew something was odd.  Normally I would expect that she would act all creeped out and then spit in my food, but, when I saw her move on to the next table I could tell she had been professionally trained.  The men there were all much older, and much, much more out of shape than we were, making jokes and comments twelve time as lame as anything we said.  And she pretended she enjoyed that as well.  That’s the mark of a bonafid pro.  Kind of America’s Geishas really.  Geishas in hot pants.

So, anyway, then we went back to the 7th Street Entry for the United Way show.  It was odd because it was a 5pm show.  Rock The Cause had asked us to play, when the United Way asked them for help securing acts for their happy hour show.  Also answering the call were The Notties.  It was a pretty standard deal, we got up there and figuratively showed people a little bit of our butts poking out from our musical hot pants.  The crowed figuratively leered at us.  …or something like that.  But, Maudlin was just getting starting on this fine Friday afternoon.

After we finished our set we raced across the metro to the mall in Minnetonka to the Hot Topic for the last in our series of Hot Topic shows we were playing all over the Twin Cities.  If you’ve ever been in a clothing store, and if you’ve ever seen a band play, just put those two things together.  All told, by 8pm we had played two different shows.  This is earlier than  we’ve ever been done playing one show on a Friday night, let alone two.  We decided to celebrate.

We went to Scott’s place.  …and I forget what we did.  I think we went swimming there and listened to the douche from the spare room tell us his favorite vegetable was Cheetos. …I hear this weekend he left a saw on the ground by the pool and Scott stepped on it… Anyway, I’m sure we did some other fun things, and then moved on to the next day.  On Saturday we went to Debuque for our third and final show of the weekend.

Dubuque, a city in Iowa, a state ajasent to several other states no one has heard of.

Dubuque, a city in Iowa, a state adjacent to several other states no one has heard of.

Dubuque is Jason’s home land.  A vintage river town on the banks of the Mighty Mississippi, she sports more idiots on water craft than imaginable, and we were three of them.  Jason’s mom was also turning 60, and we participated in a surprise party.  Our show was at The Silver Dollar Cantina.  The manager, Michelle is a kindly spunky lady who was desperately in need of smokes when we arrived.  I helped her out by running to the oke dokee- some kind of inbred gas station chain- I was instructed to by her menthols.  She smokes them, even though they’re awful, because then no one wants to bum smokes from her.  A wise woman.

Priscilla standing on Jason's parent's house boat

Priscilla standing on Jason's parent's house boat

Our pals in Little Man opened up the show while the staff laid gifts of fish tacos in front of us.  …it was a brave move to put fish in tacos, combining two foods that have the same sexual innuendo attached to them… When it was our turn to play Jason got a little nervous because his mom was there, but she loves him unconditionally, so he lucked out. He also performed a few rare Jason Nelson originals as an encore to our performance.

The following  day we went back out on the river.  Given my track record with watercraft, you can guess that I nearly died.  Fortunately you have to hit something harder than water to cause permanent damage.   Also, urine washes out of swim trunks quite easily, so no irrevocable damage was done to anything other than my pride.

Priscilla eating on Jason's parent's house boat.

Priscilla eating on Jason's parent's house boat.

Then we drove home.  That was two weeks ago I think… June  27th.  And the next week Priscilla and I were scheduled to take a trip to the wild west, which we did, but I need to start a new blog for that…

David

"I'll have the breakfast buffett and a quart of oil" ...only in Iowa.  ...This is a picture from the dining area of Marina Restarant.

"I'll have the breakfast buffet and a quart of oil" ...only in Iowa. ...This is a picture from the dining area of Marina Restaurant.





How do you spell Rumpelstiltskin?

23 06 2009

I hate how you can’t really advertise your true feelings anymore.  The internet turns even the most mild blogger into a gossip whore.  I can’t even talk about how I hate my day job and I want a new one because  it’s likely that someone I work with will read this, and let me boss know, and then all the work pot lucks will be awkward.  Not to mention, that dude I called a douche is probably going sneak up on me and say something designed to intimidate me.  The world is more dangerous than ever.

The Alarmists seen in natural habitat.

The Alarmists seen in natural habitat.

So I try to keep things positive.  These guys do that too. If they mention you, they like you.  If they don’t, they probably just wont mention you.  That’s a sound, friendly approach.  But what about everyone else?  Should we never be able to talk about things that we think suck?  Should we be afraid to let people in our vicinity know that we don’t like their work?  Should people even get upset if someone doesn’t like what they do in the first place?  Who knows, but I do hate my job.  I don’t hate The Alarmists though, so lets talk about them.

I don’t know Eric Lavold super well, but I do know him and his cohorts Drummer Boy Schwandt and Bassist Brian who are also in the bands White Light Riot and So It Goes respectively.  All great guys.  So, when I was told that the City Pages peed on them, I wondered what was up.  A friend alleged they had recently called them poop heads, and ass clowns who couldn’t play instruments.  …or something like that.  It’s sparked a huge debate about whether or not The Alarmists suck and/or whether or not the City Pages sucked. Also how in the hell do you spell the Star Tribunes music guys name?  I had to know the truth, so I decided to investigate.

Like all important people in the Twin Cities, I had an advance copy of The Alarmists new album, The Over-head Left to listen to. I also went to the release show, and then I read all these articles AND all the blog comments on the City Pages site.  Then I read Chris Rachmaninovschneider’s interview in the Star Tribune.  I’m pretty much an expert about now,  so, I will tell you all the truth.  But before I act like I know everything, let me first drag out this story by adding in personal experiences that are unrelated.

As I mentioned, the entire cast of Maudlin showed up to the show.  The first bit of evidence that I collected came when I saw the Rock The Cause table in the Varsity Theater.  As you may or may not know, Priscilla and I sit on the board of directors for Rock the Cause.  If you’re not familiar with how we help the community and music scene, please take a look.

Eric Lavold approached Rock the Cause with an offer.  Bands approach us with offers all the time.  Some of them are good ones, some are a little self serving.  Some would be really difficult and some more realistic to do.  Eric’s offer was both generous and easy.  At a time when our org could really use some extra cash, he offered to let us accept donations for digital downloads of the new album on our site and keep 100% of the proceeds.

Priscilla and I arive in Dinky Town, Jason documents.

Priscilla and I arrive in Dinky Town, Jason documents.

This might not seem like a huge deal to you, but the amount of work, money, and liability that goes into RTC putting on an event to raise money is huge.  This required nothing of us other than we upload the song.

The comment was made that The Alarmists drama may have over shadowed their music.  Why can’t someones generosity and good nature over shadow the drama surrounding their band?  I guess because People magazine would go broke, with the City Pages along with it.

Craig Grossman of Green Room Music Source, The Alarmist booking agent (also our agent) and Scott Herold, CEO of Rock The Cause hang out at the show.

Craig Grossman of Green Room Music Source, The Alarmist booking agent (also our agent) and Scott Herold, CEO of Rock The Cause hang out at the show.

The crowd at the show was great, and the bands selected where right on too.  Maudlin had a great time running around and mingling.  I let my agent buy me a drink, and Eric’s dad tried to buy Priscilla a drink because she adjusts his glasses at work, but Craig beat him to it and bought her a drink too.  Primarily we like Craig as our agent because of the drinks.  Anyway, Jason bought himself one too many drinks and then ran around taking pictures for posterity.

Jason getting his drink on.

Jason getting his drink on.

The Alarmist show was actually really good.  The new line up is great.  Someone on a blog made a comment that all the new musicians couldn’t stack up to the old ones, and made special citation of the drummer being included.  Their old drummer was very good, but complaining about Mark Schwandt’s drumming is pretty retarded. Aside from being a solid show, it was more raw than the album and had a more personal feel to it.  I enjoyed it quite a bit.  It actually made a few songs I was a little luke on from the album really grow on me.

Me forcing people to listen to me.

Me forcing people to listen to me.

The Album itself is certainly nothing at all to scoff at.  I can see how it differs from previous releases with less edge, but it adds a more haunting feel- actually reminds me a bit of Chris Isaac on some tunes.  (course I was just watching True Blood so…[At least, when I first wrote this pharagraph I thought that Chris Isaac wrote that song, but today Barb Abney *cough cough name drop* corrected me.  Some random hillbilly wrote that song. ]) The vocals are more stripped and personal.  They bring out a great contrast against synths soaked in reverb.  There are some dark sounding melodies and hooks, but the album still feels hopeful even if melancholy.  Something for a rainy day if you’re not the kind of person that gets super depressed and hates rainy days.  I definitely favor the first half of the album with tracks like, “Rhyme and Reason,” “Car Crashing,” “Flutter and Fly,” and “Hollywood’s Not My Home.”  Not feeling songs like “The Country” or” We Belong” as much, and I flat out do not like “The Elusive Mr Albright.” …not sure what the motivation is on that one.

Over all it sounds very much like a liberation or a rebirth than a swing and a miss.   These guys knew exactly what they were going for, and while it’s not going to thrill everyone, I think it will win a lot of people over.  As to whether or not The Alarmists will take over the world, who knows- and who cares.  They’ve already carved out a place for themselves, they’re making music that’s rewarding to themselves and still have an audience to listen.  That is what success is.

The Alamists at their CD release show at the Varsity Theater

The Alamists at their CD release show at the Varsity Theater

I believe in real criticism though, real honesty.  If there isn’t anything bad, then, of course, nothing is really good.  It’s just all double plus ungood. We don’t want that.  I’ve met Andrea from the City Pages before, and even if she hadn’t been talking with me about my band being good, I still would have thought she was really nice.  Not at all the kind of person who seems out for a vendetta.  The City Pages article is pretty scathing, but, if it’s honest, then it’s not meriting retaliation.

Chris Rumpelstiltskinschneider said that The Amarmists are big enough to take a hit.  They are.  His own article in the Strib praises the album and gives a great inside look at what’s going on with the band and what’s transpired.  It’s hard for me to not take a step back and see the two biggest papers in town arguing about a band and think, “Any press is good press.”  Ultimately the controversy made listening to the album more fun for me.  …Although, if it was my album getting shredded I would release angry bees into the office of the offending party.  Not killer bees, just kind of having a bad day bees.

My biggest complaint with local press has always been what they miss, not what they criticize.  There’s so much music here in Minneapolis, and way too much for everyone to go out and see what every band has going on.  A scathing review here and there is a service.  Just like letting people know about a new great band, and keeping up with what the bands we’ve all heard of have been up too.  The more reviews the better, good ones and bad.

Still The Alarmists, only the lights are a different color now.

Still The Alarmists, only the lights are a different color now.

So what are my conclusions? People may have differing opinions about whether The Alarmists new album is good, just like people have many different opinions on how to spell Chris Rasputinschnieder’s name- and that’s ok.  Because, in the end, there really isn’t a right or wrong answer.   And, if that conclusion offends you, blame this guy.

David





Nothing Says Valentines Day like Friday the 13th!!

15 02 2009

Chicks… Priscilla was telling me she heard some radio DJ curmudgeon saying that Valentines Day is just a holiday made up so men would have to buy women crap to get laid; that it was legalized prostitution.  To which I replied, ‘How is that different from the rest of the economy?’  …which I said as a joke.  She thought it was funny, and she totally did me later that night.  Anyway, I’m pretty into holidays in general, so I can get into the spirit of Valentines Day.  The point isn’t that its contrived and that it puts all this insane pressure on you to perform wanton acts of romance and over spending- the point is that its a designated day for doing something special for that guy or girl who makes you so nervous when she looks at you ‘that way’ that you want to wet yourself and puke at the same time.   I mean, I took St. Patrick’s Day off too. For everything a season; and this, my friends, is the season of love.

I took Friday off, because, Friday the 13th sounded like a good date for dental work and a hot date.  I started going to this new dentist who’s great, and not at all sadistic like the others I’ve been going to. Very good experience, if in need of dental services, check them out here. So, after my face was all disabled and drooly, I went home to sleep it off and prepare for my night on the town with the Mrs.

Now, I’ll admit, I’ve been a bit lacks with the romantic adventures lately… as in the past few years… But, I’m starting to step things up a notch again.  Hard work.  The thing is, it’s not about prostitution as so many contemporary radio personalities have suggested; its about the effort.  Its about what lengths you’ll personally go through to make someone else feel appreciated.  Whether you’re dropping cash like you hope to live in a one bedroom apartment your whole life like me, or just taking the time and imagination to make things perfect without any budget to surpass at all.

Double Tree Hotel is famous for force feeding patrons baked goods, whether they want them or not as I found out.  I, myself, like cookies, but when the front desk dude handed a lady with a stroller and both arms full of crap six cookies for her and her kids, it looked like bad timing.  I had both hands free and waiting for cookies. Oatmeal Walnut Chocolate chip… mmmm.  They are really good. This is why I picked this particular hotel in downtown Minneapolis for a romantic evening: cookies.

Once the parking was straightened out we scoped out the room.  Pretty decent, had a little living room with a couch and a pantry/coffee area with some over priced wine you could use if you wanted.  Kind of like the dollies in a uhaul.   There was a whirlpool as requested.  Later we tried it out… but I think the water was too hot, cause we sat there for a minute and then both felt sick and had to leave… And a bed and some tvs… pretty standard hotel stuff- except for the cookies.  But before we could settle into doing married couple things, we needed to hit the town.

There are also sorts of restaurants downtown that I’ve never tried, we settled on McCormick and Schmitds… or something like that.  Fish place.  Following my romantic plan, rather than getting reservations, we just went out the day before Valentines, so that nothing would be filled up.  So, we were able to get in.

I don’t think I really like lobster.  I’ve had it at a few places where I’ve paid lots of money for it- so that should mean they’re making it right… and I don’t know… doesn’t do anything for me.  I had a small steak too. That was good.  The best thing?  The clam chowder… plain old, five dollar a bowl, claim chowder… I should have just had a lot of that. Would have been much cheaper and better.  But anyway, very romantic eating, we talked and ate fancy things.  But, fancy things to eat alone, do not a fancy night make.  We needed a party.  But, not just any party would do, we needed a Weber party.

Scott Weber is a very interesting eccentric.  He lives in one of the apartment complexes he owns, and he’s transformed half the building into this party palace with themed rooms and secret passage ways… it’s pretty nuts.  Check the video.  This is a bit old, so there’s a lot more stuff there now… Anyway, he was having a Valentines Day party, so we checked out of the real world and entered his for a while.  Lots of folks were there.  There was partying.  Laurel Ogren showed up.  Laurel is my favorite party favor other than myself.  Scotty Herold was there to affirm it was the place to be.  It was, in a word, magical.  So, after a time,  we made our exit and went back to the room to do the married couple things that you guys are far to young to hear about.

In the morning we went estate sale shopping after some more married couple things.  We stopped at this little cafe where the food sucked and was over prices near w7th and grand… but they had the most hilarious tee shirts.  “The Bible talks about St. Paul, but it never mentions Minneapolis.”  Ha!  I love it.  I wanted one, but didn’t feel like wasting anymore money there.  …but if someone else wants to get me one???

Anyway, so, then later we ended up our at Club Jager with some friends.  …And I’ll list them.  These were the friends we were out with- all of them.  Adam “Mr Figs” Newton, Jedi knight and friend to Caption Solo.  Brian Beck.  He likes soccer.  Pat “Secret Pirate Jerk” O’Brien (who’s name I misspelled two blogs ago… here’s my retraction…) and his lovely wife Jessica, same last name. We were all dancing and talking and partying like crazy, and then we were starting to get a little bored around 1am… so, I’m thinking to myself, ‘wonder if there’s something up at Weber’s  again’ So I texted him…

ME:Weber, what’s up, party number two tonight?

WEBER:**********, Richfield

ME: cool,who’s place?

WEBER: mine. come over.

So… this was kind of believable because I know he owns more than one place, but I was pretty sure he just lived in the one and rented all the others, but, because we’re all the adventurous sort, off we went. After I nearly killed everyone attempting to follow me the, we arrive at this quaint little home.  There are all these little bags that say ‘happy Valentines Day’ with candles inside lining the walk up to the house.  We knock on the door and some guy I’ve never seen before answers with this horrified ‘ohgodpleasenomoreguests’ look on his face.  And then Weber comes matching up from behind. “There with me, come on in guys” We go inside and there’s this nice little party set up, but clearly everyone had already left.

Someone was packing up wine glasses and getting things in the trash.  It was hilariously awkward. They graciously offered us everything they had, and we dove into the chocolate fondue like ravenous wolves descending upon a crippled moose.  Weber, naturally, conversed with us normally as though we had all the time in the world.  I can still see Pat standing in the middle of the kitchen.  Just standing uncomfortably… I was laughing the whole time.  Eventually we made our awkward goodbyes and hurried out, me with a small plate of food.  The meatballs were great.  Also, I double dipped in the fondue.  Don’t tell.

And that was that.  Our Valentines Day adventure.








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