Tag Archive: birthday


Disclaimer: No American in their right mind (aside from Miss Piggy) should ever refer to themselves as “moi.”

Yesterday made two weeks at my new job. So far I pretty much have all the same complaints that I mentioned in my last post. I put in slightly over 50 hours last week, which was pretty exhausting. But at least the paycheck will be nice. My feet have mostly gotten used to the hours, but this was my “long” week (only one day off) and no matter how you slice it that’s rough. My next day off will be Thursday, but I’ll have next Sunday off, so it won’t be quite as bad as last week.

On Tuesday I had an interview at an animal hospital. I think it went really well, fingers crossed. She said the next step would be to set up a “working interview” where I’d meet with some of the higher ranking people and then shadow an assistant for an hour or two and observe everything they’re doing. Evidently in the past they had a pretty high turnover – they’re an emergency animal hospital, and I guess a lot of people didn’t realize they’d be seeing dogs and cats that were hit by cars and had other life-threatening issues. So they decided to start doing these working interviews so people could see exactly what they were in for and weed out those who probably couldn’t handle it. I think I could. Especially if it gets me out of retail. They’re looking for mostly second shift, which is from 4pm to midnight – essentially perfect for my body clock. It would most likely start as part-time and transition into full-time. If that’s the case I can see if my current job would let me cut back to a few days a week so I can do both. If not then I’ll go with part-time and make it work until I either find a second job or transition into full-time hours. She said that someone would contact me in a few days to schedule my working interview, but as of today (Monday) no one had, so I called up there on my lunch break. I spoke with someone who said he would talk to her sometime today and they would call me back either tonight or tomorrow night. Nothing yet, so hopefully tomorrow night I’ll hear from them.

This past Thursday, in addition to being my day off, was my birthday. The big 3-5. Or as I like to refer to it, my “seventh annual 29th birthday.” Nothing too eventful happened. I did some grocery shopping; a card came in the mail from my parents; I watched a movie; I got birthday wishes on Facebook from people I haven’t had actual conversations with in 15+ years. Fun times.  When I returned to work on Friday I bought myself a little present – a purple Silvertone Strat copy that we had for $129. We get a 30% employee discount, and a part of me has missed having a guitar with a whammy bar, so I figured why not. I spent a big chunk of last week tuning all the guitars and seeing how they play, so even though this guitar was pretty cheap I had a good idea what I would be getting myself into. I really like it, even though I doubt I’ll use it that often. But after the past few months, I feel like I deserve a little treat.

In other news, I finally settled upon a concept for my piece(s) for the “Rock Show” at Zapow. I have a collection of oddly shaped frames that I’ve been waiting for just the perfect time to use, and I think this might be it. One large one will be a painting of a Marshall amp head. A small one will be a drawing of a humbucker pickup. And a small frame with three small openings will feature a “pedal board” consisting of three classic effects pedals. Basically, taking my recent technology theme and applying it to the technology used to make rock music. I figure everyone else will be doing portraits of rock stars and cartoons of head bangers and band logos and whatnot. I need something that will fit with my distinctive styles, and I think this works perfectly. Now all I need is time to work on it.

And that’s pretty much where we’re at right now. Time to wrap things up and force myself to sleep so I can be up before the sun tomorrow morning. Oh joy!

 

Boredom…

I’m in a weird mood tonight. I’m not tired. It’s too late to go anywhere. I can’t seem to get motivated to finish a painting I started earlier. I’m bored, but I’m not sure why, or what to do about it.

Most of the past week has been rather low-key for me. Yesterday I went to World Market and Big Lots, managing to find a few things I needed, a few I didn’t, and some random birthday goodies for Katie. Her birthday is Wednesday, but I probably won’t be seeing her again until her party on Saturday. She hurt her back, so I haven’t seen much of her at all in the past week, and she’s heading to Atlanta to visit her dad tomorrow. While the introvert in me enjoys the alone time, I’d gotten rather used to seeing her almost every day. For some reason I just had a flashback to “I’ve Grown Accustomed To Her Face.”

Saturday night I went out to the Bywater with my neighbors. While we had a good time, every time I go out I’m reminded why I don’t like drinking out. I didn’t have any cash on me so Angela paid my cover in exchange for a drink. The drink I bought her plus two for myself ended up costing $18. I could by a pretty nice bottle of booze for that. Makes me wonder just how much money bars take in every night. Then I start daydreaming about buying a bar. And naming it “Puzzles” of course.

Work has been mostly uneventful. Last night I randomly got an earache, and when I woke up this morning it was still there. It eventually spread to my sinuses, and when I took something it left my sinuses for the greener pastures of my forehead. Eventually everything felt normal again. I have the next two days off, and I’m pretty sure this crazy weather will bother my sinuses again. Yay!

I can’t think of much else interesting to write about. Perhaps I’ll find the motivation to finish my painting. Or I might just sit here until I finally get tired. Whichever comes first.

 

The other day was my neighbor Angela’s birthday. She decided going out and celebrating on a Friday night would work better, so that’s what we did. We decided on the Bywater, which meant we had to get one of our other neighbors, Dustin, to come along, since he’s the only one with a membership. They wanted to go around 8:00, which meant that I needed to drive to work instead of walking so I could be home with enough time. Unfortunately, downtown was an absolute mad house, and it took me over 20 minutes to get from the parking garage to my apartment. Knowing I wouldn’t have much time to eat to begin with, I got a to-go order from Chai Pani. Thanks to fighting downtown traffic, my food was cold and Angela was bugging me to hurry up the second I walked in the door. Fun times.

We got to the Bywater and hung out for a while waiting for others to show up. My roommate said she would be coming later with Joshua, who just recently fell and broke his hip. Angela had a friend who was supposed to be coming as soon as she could convince her boyfriend’s parents to let them leave. And after she got off work Michelle was supposed to be coming. We roamed around and started drinking. I had a hot apple cider made with spiced rum and butter schnapps that was pretty much amazing, then followed that with a concoction of more rum, root beer, and bitters. We were approached by yet another neighbor, a guy named Rob who plays upright bass and sometimes makes his way to our end of the complex to say hi. I ended up seeing a guy I know named Eric, and I briefly chatted up a girl with blue hair.

Angela got progressively more intoxicated, which was entertaining for all. Dustin wanted to leave because he has to be at work at 6:00 AM, but for some reason he didn’t think to drive. Since I’d only had a few drinks and my tolerance is ridiculously high, Angela let me drive her car to take him home. When I got back, Sofia and Joshua had arrived, and Michelle was calling me asking for a ride. When I told her I was already there she decided to drive. Sofia and Joshua didn’t stay much longer because she has to work early, and soon it was just me, Angela, and Michelle. For most of the night I’d been holding Angela’s stuff – keys, cigarettes, phone, ID, you name it – because she didn’t think to wear something with pockets, and was obviously too drunk to keep up with anything. She leaned over to tell me something and spilled her beer right down my back. My shirt got wet around the collar, but the big thing for me was my new blazer got wet. I hate the smell of beer, so when Michelle decided that after the band finished we should head to the Southern, I decided to come home and change and attempt to wash my blazer enough to make it smell nice again. I’d really like to wear it tomorrow on my non-date, so I hope it’s dry in time.

So I’m in my pajamas, my shirt is in the hamper, and my jacket is wet and hanging on the door. I have ridiculous heartburn from sinus problems, drinking, inhaling smoke, and having to shout over a bluegrass band all night. A week of screwed up sleep schedules is catching up with me and I can’t stop yawning. And oddly enough, I’m kinda chilly. Overall it was a pretty fun night, but perhaps it’s time to go to bed?

 

I just got back from the show. Even though I’m physically tired, my brain is still wide awake, so I might as well write a blog about it…

The day began with me doing a little shopping. First I went to Target and used a coupon I have for 5% off a whole day of shopping. I bought a pair of Converse, in the hopes that they will be more comfortable for standing in one place all day at work than athletic shoes, which seem to only be comfortable when you’re moving around. I also got a pair of shorts, some Sudafed, and a CD by a band called Walk The Moon. I’d never heard of them, but it looked really cool and was only $7.99, so I decided to check them out. I listened to a few songs on my phone and was sold. They’re kinda dancey, maybe like a cross between Foster The People and The Killers, but with a dash of punkish guitar, and some really sweet falsetto vocals. It might not ever be one of my favorite CD’s, but I’m pretty sure it will get plenty of spins whenever I’m in the mood for something fun.

After Target I went to Amazing Savings. I chat a lot with the girls that work there, and when I told them it was my birthday they gave me 10% off. Not too shabby. The highlight of my grocery purchase was undoubtably a frozen treat that basically amounts to a Rice Crispie Treat but with chocolate ice cream in the middle. Why did no one think of this sooner? I came home and listened to some music and did a little doodling and then got ready for the evening.

I met up with James and Nici outside of Doc Chey’s, but evidently they’re closed on Wednesdays. Sarah was running a little behind, and just as I was about to call to tell her they were closed she came walking toward us. I was still in the mood for noodles, so we opted for The Noodle Shop right down the street, which was pretty good. We all split a crunchy squid appetizer which was incredible. I got the chicken Pad Thai, which while it wasn’t amazing, was pretty good. Sarah paid for dinner and James and Nici gave me their usual random WTF-inducing Dollar Store birthday presents, which this year consisted of a box of Fiddle Faddle and some silly string. They left after dinner and Sarah and I headed to the Orange Peel.

We got there pretty early and just hung out for a while. A girl approached us and asked if the seat next to us was taken. We started talking and she mentioned how she’s here in Asheville for a summer internship and doesn’t have any friends, so she always ends up going to concerts alone. We chatted some more and exchanged numbers and talked about the possibility of going to see a show sometime. Midway through the opening band’s set she left to go to the bathroom and I never managed to track her down again. I sent her a text, so who knows, maybe she’ll make good on that and we’ll go to a concert soon.

The opening band was called Delicate Steve. Horrible name aside, they were pretty good. Their sound is an interesting mix of jam band, spacey prog rock, and a little of the Vampire Weekend style ethnic yacht rock. For the most part they were instrumental, and on the few songs that did have vocals they were mixed so low you couldn’t hear them. Their lead guitarist was absolutely incredible, using all sorts of weird sounds and tones in conjunction with blues based soloing and some slide work. The rhythm guitarist switched to synthesizer for several songs, and they had a lot of loops and samples thrown in for good measure. A few songs sounded like The Mars Volta, while others were closer to the sort of stuff that you would expect from a band opening up for Yeasayer. I’m not sure how well their sound would translate to a recording, but live it was a great experience.

During the intermission I made my way closer to the stage, while Sarah hung out in the back. When I had gotten about as close as I could I decided to just settle in and take in my surroundings. I noticed two girls, one of whom immediately caught my eye. She was extremely short with curly brown hair, with a bright red streak in it. She had a beautiful tattoo of what looked like a hummingbird on her back, but it was hard to tell because it was partly covered up by her shirt. I kept my eye on her throughout the show and decided that when it was over and I wouldn’t have to scream above the music I would say hello and tell her that I liked her tattoo and then hope for the best. However the very second the music stopped her and her friend headed straight for the back and I lost them. Oh well, maybe I’ll write a “missed connections” ad on Craigslist 😛

So by now you’re probably wondering when I’ll quit rambling about nonsense and talk about Yeasayer. Okay here goes…

Yeasayer put on a very fun, high energy, larger than life type show. There were crazy laser lights and giant mirrors, strobes and colored spotlights that blinded. The vibe was absolutely huge, it reminded me a lot of the Bear In Heaven concert I saw a few months ago. They played a pretty good mix of songs from their first two albums and songs from their upcoming disc, but they tended to focus more on the dance and rave oriented songs and shied away from ballads and their more middle eastern sounding stuff. Their new material sounds really solid, with a few unexpected sounds. One song featured a very prominent bassline and some weird percussion. Another new song was built around vaguely Latin sounding bongos, but then out of nowhere the song was taken over by keyboards that sounded like they were ripped straight out of “Closer” by Nine Inch Nails. I found it rather curious that their percussionist was standing the whole time, usually letting loops and synths take the place of the kick drum, and focusing instead on snare, bongos, and various pads and triggers. The primary singer also played a little percussion here and there, banging on a synth drum and shaking a tambourine when he wasn’t dialing up sounds on an analog synth or wandering all over the stage. The other singer usually played guitar, switching to keyboard on a few songs. When he played guitar it was usually so buried in effects that it didn’t even sound like a guitar. The same can be said for his vocals, as he often sang through a harmonizer and various other effects. There were a few songs where the two singers formed a three-part harmony with the bassist, recalling their early days in a vocal quartet. After a rather lengthy set they performed an encore consisting of two new songs and two old songs. The crowd was heavily into things from the very first note, and the band played off that energy. While it would be difficult to say that they “rocked” in a conventional sense, their performance was intense, fun, and full of great grooves and top-notch musicianship. The songs from their debut album were given new life and room to breathe, the songs on their second album sounded much better live than on CD, and based on the new songs they played, I’m eagerly anticipating their next album.

So yeah, that’s about it. Now to wind down and attempt to get some sleep before waking up dreadfully early for work. The End.

 

At some point during the writing of this entry, assuming I put my usual care and time into writing a novella of an entry, the clock will strike midnight. While I wasn’t technically born until sometime around 7:00, nonetheless the new day will be the beginning of a new year for me. Continue reading