(older entries, separated by genre or date, are listed at the bottom of this page.)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Partying With Ron Paul

Well, sort of.

After going to the Rick Santorum rally, we wondered why we hadn't gone to Ron Paul's, since we actually like him. He had been in Nashua and Manchester, and Josh had considered trying to go to the Primary party, but figured we couldn't get in. After looking into it, he decided to go for it, and, after debating a little, I decided to join him. After all, I had never been to a primary party- you know, the stuff you always see on TV where the candidate makes a speech to their supporters or decides to throw in the towel. I always thought it was weird how many people went to the "celebrations" of the people who didn't stand a chance. What are they celebrating? 

Well, now I'm one of those people, and I get it.

Josh and I amidst a LOT of people

Here's the view I saw when I walked in- just tables of people sitting on laptops, watching numbers, tweeting, etc, in the middle of fans/supporters fighting through more fans/supporters. To my left was a bar, which weirded me out until I remembered that this was a "party." What better thing to get people riled up and in the mood to cheer than booze?

We got about as close as we could get to the stage, and to my left was a billion cameras- just a wall of media all taking the same video and the same pictures. We stood next to what we decided were Swedish supermodel sisters. They were super into us.

"I want the fat one with the beard"

It was quite the atmosphere in there- chants would suddenly burst out of nowhere, such as "President Paul!" and my favorite, "END THE FED." It was odd at first, but then quickly awesome. It was hard to not get caught up in it- just people waiving flags and chanting to destroy the federal reserve. A DJ played the songs you'd expect at something like this, including several plays of this, which is apparently Ron Paul's unofficial anthem. I hadn't heard it, but Josh was super into it. 

It was all pretty neat.

I wanted to punch the obnoxious hipster with the blue glasses so bad

Obnoxious media kept pushing their way through us- you couldn't move anywhere and these people were carrying ridiculously huge cameras and trying to get that hot interview. They approached a guy behind me because he was tall, and after joking about how he was easy to find and him saying he didn't want to be interviewed, the idiot reporter just started asking him questions with the camera on. After he made a mean face and turned away, she got a guy wearing a Veterans For Paul shirt. I felt pretty weird taking a picture of myself while a TV interview was happening right behind me. Such is the world of primary parties.

Eventually, after some waiting (we got there too early), Ron's whole entourage got on stage and this guy talked:

I'm not sure who he was, but he was great. He made jokes, was very laid back and real, and just talked about the campaign and Ron Paul. It was all what you'd expect- that they hadn't slept in forever, that it was a long road, that we're gonna show them, etc. Then someone else important spoke and was a bit boring. Then ole' Ronnie himself came out to insane cheers. 

I was instantly struck with just how old he looked. It shouldn't have surprised me- he's not THAT made up on TV, but still- just seeing him in person was like "wow, he really is a 76 year old man." But as soon as he started talking with that squirrely voice of his, stuttering his way through some jokes (thanking a newspaper for not endorsing him) and getting fired up on the things he gets fired up about, I forgot his age and the fact that he doesn't stand much of a chance of winning. It slowly became clear to me that he probably isn't stupid and knows that he isn't going to win. I started to feel that this was more about sending a message and starting something- that he has already gotten millions of people talking about things that nobody was talking about a decade ago, and that he got young impressionable people to think differently about money, taxes and foreign policy. If anything, he's made a different, less party-oriented way of thinking much more mainstream. 

It was great to listen to him and see how psyched people got about the things he was saying. He's not perfect, and I don't agree with him on everything. I'm not going to even pretend that I know his stance on everything or fully understand some of the things he's talking about. But what I do understand, I can get behind. It was great to listen to a politician speak and actually believe what he was saying, actually trust him, and not see him as "another politician" (see my last post), but more of a revolutionary- someone who is starting something that is much bigger than him and could actually change things in the future. This wasn't a "well, I placed second, that's pretty good!" celebration- this was more of a "there is hope for the future" celebration.

Clearly, I got caught up in it, and soon enough, Josh and my joking, "everyone else is doing it, let's join in!" chants became a lot more real. What was an interesting, "good blog content" event became something that was actually really cool.  

It's fun to imagine the sounds that are coming out of him

The only annoying thing other than being surrounded by 28398 people and it being 23872832 degrees in there was just how many pictures and video were being taken at all times. I was doing it too (and even took some for the super short lady behind me), but this was my view most of the night:

Here's the whole entourage. I thought the chick on the far right was pretty hot.

He's clearly saying "EEEEEEEEEEEE!!!"

When it was done, most people seemed like they were going to kick around for awhile. Josh and I got the hell out of there as fast as we could. 


This is how crowded it was:

As we left, Josh shook some guy's hand and had a brief chat. I figured he knew him. Josh said that as he was walking out, he saw the guy looking at him, speaking to someone on a walkie, saying stuff like "him? ok, yea, I see him." He then introduced himself as someone from NPR (I guess they like weirdos), and started in with an impromptu interview. He led with the hard-hitting "so what brings you here?" and Josh pretty much immediately declined the interview. I told him he should have said something stupid or something along the lines of "well, did you see that guy who just talked for 20 minutes? His name is Ron Paul and this is his rally/primary party. I like him, so I wanted to hear him speak." He just wanted to get the hell out of there and head to our other destination for the night, a little place called Five Guys Burgers and Fries. 

The closest one we have is an hour away, and we figured if we couldn't get in to the party, we could at least get Five Guys. Turns out the gods were in our favor, and we got both. Soooo good. A perfect ending to an interesting and surprisingly pretty cool night. 

currently listening to: Final Days Society- "Ours Is Not A Caravan Of Despair"

Hanging Out With Rick Santorum

Well, not really. 

The day before the New Hamsphire Republican Primary, Josh came home from wherever he was and said "dude, I think Rick Santorum is next door."

"Huh? Why is Rick Santorum at a crack house?"

He said that he had read earlier that Santorum would be visiting Somersworth on a campaign stop, and after checking online, he had in fact stopped here- not at the crack house, but at the American Legion at the end of the block. Josh asked me if I wanted to go, and after seeing that it was scheduled to start in 15 minutes, I said why the hell not and went. 

Let me just say this right off the bat- while I generally align myself with more conservative viewpoints (at least in terms of size/power of government and anything relating to money and taxes), I wouldn't call myself a fan of Rick Santorum. It was basically a case of "he's on TV, he's running for President and he's a 2 minute walk from where I'm sitting in filth and staring at the internet. Why not?"

Have you ever been to a campaign rally? I hadn't. And now I have. And let me tell you- they're not really much to get excited about. 

American Legion Post 69, with quite the crowd and anticipation

I noticed immediately that a good 25% of the room was media- either people with enormous cameras or nerdy looking kids with notebooks and press passes. The rest of the crowd was middle-aged people, the front half generally interested in Santorum, and the back half quite possibly there for the same reason we were. A woman sat on the floor behind me, with her kids crawling all over my feet. She paid pretty much zero attention to anything and aggravated the hell out of me for having her stupid kids an inch from getting stepped on for the entirety of the event.

Rick was of course late (only 10 minutes though) and walked in to cheers and a lot of camera flashes. He launched into a speech about what he stood for, what he would do, how he was going to change the world, how it all starts in small towns like this one, blah blah blah. At one point I asked Josh (who I consider the expert on politics in my life) if anything he was saying was different from any of the other GOP candidates. Nope- all generic stuff.

He got some laughs and a few cheers. He spoke well but didn't really inspire me to change my opinion of him. After 5 minutes of him saying what he wanted and ending with "why can't we have that?" I said "because it's not possible" slightly too loudly. But I got a laugh from a stranger, so I felt good. 

blurface! Look at how miserable his kids are!

Something I noticed that's worth mentioning- it's 2011 (it was when this happened at least), and people still haven't learned to silence their phones in public places. You're in a political rally with a presidential hopeful in a room full of media and you don't silence your phone? Seriously? The best part was that one of the people who didn't turn off their phone was standing in front of me. When he turned around to leave, I saw that he had a media pass from the freaking BBC. Way to be professional pal!

My pal Rick then said he would be accepting questions. The first question was something along the lines of "if you were elected, what would you do about No Child Left Behind?" He launched into a solid 8 minutes of talking, all saying what it was, how it came about, his thoughts on it, etc. I asked Josh why the hell he was talking so long, and he responded with what should have been an absurdly obvious answer- he's talking super long so he doesn't have to answer any more questions. So... he's filibustering himself? Yup!

Sure enough, after 8 minutes of talking to get to "I'd repeal it," he said he could only take a few more. Some stupid kid next to us asked that since it appeared that the government was working hard to help kids who struggled in school, what type of incentives would they give to kids who did really well in school? 


At this point I got to see something awesome- people are ASSHOLES. So many people grunted and talked amongst themselves, saying how stupid of a question it was, it was a waste of time, etc. Some people flat out shouted from across the room what a stupid question it was. "How about a real question! HARUMF!" It was awesome. Rick just said "well, if you're in the top of your class, what more incentive do you need?" to lots of cheers and angry looks at the punk in the back of the room. Clearly this dirtbag kid just wanted the government to give him free ipods or something for getting good grades (wouldn't be surprised if it happened!). Piece of garbage.

The next question went to some stupid old lady who stuttered her way through a 3 minute "question," starting by saying Santorum wasn't her first choice and babbled her way through talking about him taking money from people blah blah and how much money did he take from blah blah blah. I don't even know what the hell she was talking about, and the room HATED her. "GET TO THE QUESTION!" "RIDICULOUS!" Some real mob mentality. But hey, I can't blame them- they probably had real questions and Mr. 10-minute answer only allowed for like 4 in the entire 45 minute meeting that he was 10 minutes late too. Oh well.

He gave a last little speech to get people psyched and headed out. Josh and I were quite sick of standing, but figured if we were this close to the possible president (haha), we should get a picture or a handshake if possible. So, we battled through the horde, and I got this sweet shot of him giving the politician HEY THERE PAL point. Josh even got a handshake and pretended he was a big fan. Josh said he had very rough hands.

We headed out among the crowds and saw people being stopped left and right to get interviewed for the local news. SHOCKINGLY, Josh and I were ignored (thank god).

Santorum won 9.4% of the votes. I wonder how many came from good ole Somersworth? I do appreciate the stop Rick, but I'm sure you very quickly saw why nobody else bothered coming. 

I can now say I've been to a campaign rally/stop. It was interesting in many ways, but not really caring about the candidate definitely made it more of an experience than anything I actually cared about. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Year's Eve + New Year's Resolutions

Growing up, New Year's Eve was a holiday where I got to hang out with the crazy half of my family, dancing, running around and having a blast until super late. The family I visited was a bit of a mess (lots of alcohol was involved), but it always ended with us holding hands in a circle and singing Auld Lang Syne, whether I knew the lyrics or not (still don't). That party kind of stopped happening, and New Years became me watching Dick Clark with my parents. Woo! As I got older, I had a few fantastic years where EVERYONE was there and we partied early into the morning. Sadly, as with most thing, as we all get older, New Year's Eve has kind of become the holiday that people either spread out for, or just don't celebrate at all. I seem to do something different every year, with different people or by myself. Last year I went to Chawdogg's house, and although it was fun seeing 5 or 6 people there I hadn't seen since college, seeing fireworks, and having Chawdogg's mom awkwardly kiss me, there were a ton of people I didn't know and it was a bit blah. Dan, Naro, Sara, Kevin and Gina all partied at some bar last year, and decided to do it again this year. I was pretty set on doing this as soon as they said they were doing it again, and I was happy to know that they'd be going to the same bar they went to last year, which was apparently the Coat of Arms in Portsmouth- the only bar I've been to (and like) in Portsmouth. Dan invited a bunch of people from his work and to the shock of the world, Mysterio and Masha came up all the way from CT to party with us. We had a great time and I took waaaaaay too many pictures. Here are ones I like.

The night started off weird, with Sara getting a tattoo. 

maybe getting another tattoo was on her 2011 resolutions list?

Then we headed to the Coat, where we got the perfect table, way at the end, next to the dart boards. This meant I played a lot of darts against Naro, who brutally kicked my ass. 

he's surprisingly damn good

I like this way of taking pictures.

So did Kevin.

Here's Kevin serving up some goodness.

We played Apples to Apples, which I had never played before. It was super fun. I destroyed everyone the first time, then Naro destroyed everyone twice as bad as me the second. Kevin further proved why Kevin + a camera= hilarity.

This may be my favorite.

Gina and I always take excellent pictures.

Especially when I'm holding the camera.

Here I am being arty:

and giving Kevin enormous nostrils.

I don't think Mysterio was screaming here, I think he was yawning.

I don't know who these people are, but they seemed to be having a lot of fun.

Some dancing happened:

And then, noise. Never, EVER give us things that make noise. Especially Kevin and me. We can't control ourselves.

Here's Gina and me having a noisemaker fight.

We didn't do much. We hung out around our table and just talked and laughed. It was awesome, and for someone who wants to reconnect and spend more time with friends, it was perfect. The Coat was great too- they gave us champagne at 7:30 for Chinese New Years (but not at midnight, which was odd I guess), it was packed but not ridiculously so, the bartenders were insane and somehow friendly and calm the whole night, my cheese fries were delicious, drinks were reasonably priced and tasty, and they had a 90's hip hop DJ who kept things entertaining all night. To be fair, he kind of sucked though, since I was super into rap in the early to mid 90's and I heard like 8 songs I knew-. It's a bunch of drunk white people in a bar in NH on New Years dude- play the hits.  

I kept it pretty reasonable all night, which is even more weird since this was my first New Year's as an ex-straight edger and this is stereotypically the "get destroyed" holiday. Good thing I don't follow stereotypes! After trying a few weird drinks, I rang the New Year in with a very classy and delicious white russian, good friends, some awkward kisses, getting really messy with chips and salsa, and for some reason, Black Sabbath. The DJ decided that after 4 hours of rap, the only thing that made sense at new years was Black Sabbath. I don't know- maybe it was his homage to the upcoming end of the world, but it was odd. 

Naro and Sara headed home, and the rest of us headed back to Dan's apartment. After drawing inappropriate things all over his car, I drove home as I had sobered up and was the only one volunteering to drive. We had a brief stop for Dan on the way back to his apartment,

and then I played Call of Duty under Dan's name, split screened with Kevin, and then Mysterio. We were TERRIBLE, but you're welcome Dan, I still leveled you up some. Everyone headed to bed and I decided I was way too hot and had way too bad of a headache to be able to sleep, so I headed home at 4 in the morning on roads with a billion cops on them. 

Mysterio and The Masha

It was a solid New Year, and if they decide to do it again next year, I'm probably in. Let's hope more people want to get together next year too (if the world doesn't end). Here's to not being old farts in 2012.

Sorry Dan and Masha, I guess I didn't get a picture with everyone.

Oh, here's a sweet "Happy New Year" video I made:

"Happy New Year!" from Mike Alexander on Vimeo

2011 was obviously a pretty amazing year for me- one of the better years of my life. How could it not be? I quit a job I wasn't happy at anymore, moved out of a basement I wasn't happy in anymore, and did everything right afterwards. I moved in with 2 of my best friends, dedicated my life to enjoying life for once, and started a blog to document it all. I reignited a lost love for writing, found a love for photography and exploration, have started bringing back a love for art, and am beginning to find music again. I started being less hung up on bullshit, I became more positive, more loving, more honest, more free. Now, I just have to keep it up. Whether 2012 brings a new job or a continuous emptying of savings to live a vacation, and whether it brings yet another move in September, I will keep up the awesome. I want to stay the way I am but get better, and I want to keep this blog going, whatever it may mean in the future. 


I don't usually make New Year's resolutions, and if I do, I certainly don't tell anyone- telling people you've made them is a surefire way to never do them and have people call you on it when you don't. I don't like setting myself up for ridicule and failure to make empty promises because "it's something you do." Or at least that's what I say. But come on, we all make them. 

And if I have a blog that thousands and thousands of people (me) read, why not throw a few up here. 

1. Do more things with, have more fun with, and reconnect with friends that I miss and don't see enough, mainly the blue zoo crew. I'm going to try my best to birth more events this year- the idea being that if it's a huge event, everyone will go, it will become a tradition, and eventually, it will be something we can all look forward to. 

2. Record a song a month. Where to record is a problem, but I have some possibilities. Music is something I need badly in my life, and I finally have everything I need (minus knowledge and drive) to record.

3. Start a "postal service" project with Hilton. He was my musical partner for years, then he moved to San Diego. It's time for us to start mailing each other tracks and making some epic jams.

4. Finish my Dongus Bologna album. 

5. Complete 1 art piece a month. I tend to not do art for long periods of time, get super into something, then leave it sitting there. I want to be able to say "DONE" on 1 a month. That should be a reasonable goal. I'd also like to try and just do more art in general, even if it's just crappy sketches.

6. Get the balls to spend a lot of money on a nice camera. Whether a nice camera means I find a job involving photography or not, I have developed quite a love for photography, and it's time I take it more seriously.

7. Ridiculously organize and drastically cut down my CD collection by at least 200 CDs (I probably have over a thousand). I have started this process, and it is going to be a long one. 

8. Projects: I have a few projects I've been putting off forever. Winter without a job should be the perfect time to do these. They include digitizing VHS tapes of classic stuff (homemade movie type stuff), digitizing cassette tapes (absurdly classic audio recordings), etc. In a time where it's this easy to digitize stuff and hard drives are pretty cheap, there's no reason for me to still own stuff like this in their original dated form. 

9. Get to 2011 by the end of the year on my "best of" lists. I started doing my top 10 best albums for every year awhile ago, and stopped at 1992. I got busy and 1993 kind of sucked, but I need to get through the bad stuff to get to the entertaining stuff. I'd love to be able to start having one every year, but I need to get caught up first.

10. Be more awesome, and live the dream. If I'm gonna call other people on not hanging out and doing cool stuff, I need to make sure to continue being what I want other people to be. And the things I love, I need to do more of. Fuck living a boring, meaningless life. Live a life more awesome.

currently listening to: Stay Ahead Of The Weather- "We Better Get Goin' If We're Gonna"

Ending the Year With Thursday and Caspian

This year (I'm still doing posts from 2011, so pretend it's 2011) ended pretty awesomely, with Thursday playing their 2nd to last show ever (at least in the US) the day before Caspian played their 9th annual Last Night on Earth show, always on New Year's Eve eve. I headed to Mass to go to both, and both ruled.

I was pretty bummed out for the Thursday show though. I was going to buy a ticket, but kept putting it off. Then, out of nowhere in November, Thursday announced that they were done, and their current tour would be their last. I freaked out and bought 4 tickets (for 100 bucks), assuring that whoever wanted to go with me would be able to go, and if they couldn't, I could sell the tickets- maybe even for a profit. Then Hilton moved to San Diego and didn't come back for Christmas like he thought he would. Then Dan had to be with his family. Then Talluto just decided last minute that he didn't want to go. Lambert bought tickets and Kevin couldn't make it happen. And after 3 posts on facebook about the show, nobody wanted to go. Or, they wanted to but had to work the next day or something lame like that. Not only was I bummed out that fans of Thursday just didn't go because they didn't feel like it, but people wanted to go but didn't because it meant they would be out late and would be tired the next day. Ughk. I've said it before, but it looks like this isn't going to stop bothering me anytime soon. You only live once. If a band is playing their 2nd to last show ever on a Thursday night, it's probably worth it to go and be tired for 1 day. You'll never see them again! (until they reunite in a few years, hopefully) It makes me truly truly sad how many people seem to want their lives to consist of nothing but work and sleep.

It also bummed me out that people just didn't want to go, or people who may have were too far away. Seeing Thursday always brings back lots of great show memories. I've always had great times at their shows- they're always perfect with tons of energy, and we've always sang and screamed our throats out in sweaty air guitar hilarity. I wish I could have had some of the people I used to see them with next to me. Underhill, you really should have flown back from Colorado. I needed you at the end of "Cross Out The Eyes."

The other thing that made me truly sad about the night was that the show didn't even sell out. Granted, if I had gone earlier, I would have been able to sell my ticket to someone on the street, but since it was like 20 out and the opening bands sucked, I wasn't interested. But just the fact that a legendary band that's been around for like 12 years can't sell out their 2nd to last show is pretty bad. I guess they made the right decision in hanging it up. I blame the producer of their last 2 albums for making them impossible to listen to, American Nightmare for playing a reunion show the same night, and the fact that most of Thursday's fans are probably a lot like my friends- either uninterested in concerts or uninterested in staying out late on a weeknight. Too bad.

The show was great though. Instead of not going to shows anymore, I just show up absurdly late and only watch the bands I want to see. So I showed up right as mewithoutyou were starting, instantly found Lambert (an old friend from Apple who goes to a billion shows) and his friend and my other show-buddy Jeff. We chatted it up and then saw a truly great performance by Thursday.

They definitely didn't play like it was their second to last show though- they played a lot of new songs and the show just didn't have that "this is it, this is the end" feel that you want out of a show like that.  I've seen that at The Receiving End of Sirens' 2nd to last show (where they cried on stage and played a song twice because nobody wanted them to leave the stage), and it was beautiful. But nevertheless, it was a solid set of hits, and they sounded fantastic like always.

good ole Geoff.

The view from upstairs, with a sweet light and the soundboard

I recorded a bunch of songs to send clips to people who couldn't be there (like Underhill, in Colorado) and to just have for myself too. Only, I really didn't want to not sing while filming, so I just sang and screamed like the phone couldn't hear me. Oops, it could. It picked me up sooo well. I assembled a compilation of some off key singing, some half decent note-hitting, and most of my screams. Why? Because I think it's hilarious. Maybe you will too. ("Paris in FLAAAAAMES" at 2:23 is my favorite)

"Me "singing" and screaming to Thursday" from Mike Alexander on Vimeo

Goodbye Thursday, I'll truly miss you. "Full Collapse" and "A City By The Light Divided" are truly incredible albums, and your others are all generally awesome too. I saw you 10-12 times, and you always remained on my "this band is incredible live, don't ever miss them" list. Please come back in a few years, if only for a few one-off reunion shows. I'll go and scream my heart out.


I got to Tobin's at like 3:30 in the morning, ate some McDonalds, and passed out. I visited the mall the next day to eat some mall food (which I horribly regretted), shopped a little, hung out with Katherine a little at Tobin's, then headed back towards Boston to go see Caspian. 

I've seen Caspian probably over 15 times (I stopped counting), which is more than I've seen anyone else. They are one of my favorite bands and definitely my favorite live band. They always destroy everything (including me) live. From being an immense fanboy, I've gotten to know them over the years, and even had the distinct honor of sharing a practice space with them back when Hilton and I (and later Underhill) had a band. Caspian is very special to me. If you know me and don't know that, clearly we've never talked about music.

When I moved to Mass like 8 years ago, I saw that Seneca (a now broken up Boston band who were incredible) was playing a show at the Middle East, which at the time, was a place I had seen only a few ridiculous shows at (including Sunny Day Real Estate, Jim Adkins solo, and Poison the Well upstairs where I guy died). I had found Seneca a week before moving to Mass and was psyched to see that they would now be a local band. I saw that they were playing with a band called Caspian and remember distinctly the first time I listened. "Hilton, you need to come listen to this band, they're playing with Seneca and this is amazing."

So the first time I ever saw Caspian was in the front row, upstairs at the Middle East, at the 4th Last Night on Earth, with Constants (who also play every year), Seneca, and Junius. It ruled. Since then, I don't think I've ever missed Caspian, and I haven't missed a LNOE show. I've gone 7 years in a row, and at this point, I really can't imagine ever doing anything else on December 30th. It's the perfect way to end the year. This was my first without Hilton being there, which was a bit sad, but at least Sean, Tara and Alyssa went, even though, fitting in with the theme of this year, that's like a third of the amount of people who went last year. Pbbbttt.

It ruled though- Caspian's set was one of the best I've seen, and in the top 2 or 3 best sounding sets they've played. Insane lights too. It was just all around awesome. Their set was actually pretty close to the one I suggested on their facebook too, which ruled even more. My neck was extremely stiff the next day from headbanging, and I got completely lost a few times during the prettier songs. 

Here's a new song if you're interested. I taped it (just for the audio, I could barely see the stage) to send to Hilton, since I'd heard it a month before and I was fairly blown away by it. I love this song, it's definitely the best I've heard of the new stuff, but I'm sure there will be rivals once the album comes out.

After the show, things got a little ridiculous. Sean had found a full box of cigarettes in the bathroom and couldn't stop bragging about his untouched, full box of "toilet cigarettes." So, to mark the occasion and promote the hilarity of toilet cigarettes, some pretty horrible pictures happened. Sean got mad when I posted one on his facebook, so I'll just post them here. 

seriously Tara, only 3? pbbbttt

Here's me trying to make out with Tara (and cigarettes):

The blurriness makes it almost look like she's avoiding me, but we all know she was into it.

And here's Sean not letting the joke die, and smoking (he doesn't smoke) 3 at a time outside while a weird guy has a conversation with a painting behind him. 

sooooo much smoke

He loves them. 

A great couple of shows to end the year. 

currently listening to: Jeniferever- "Silesia"

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fatsquad Christmas

For the last few years, Rich, Josh, Hilton and I (the roadtrip crew) have had our own little Christmas where we get each other a solid amount of stuff. This year, since I live with Rich and Josh, we got each other more stuff than ever, which was all under the tree for several days, which meant lots of anticipation. I headed back home 2 days after Christmas, we got buffaques, watched some wrestling, and commenced with the giving and receiving. It was pretty awesome. Here are some highlights. 

I got 2 sweet ducks:

Josh gave me Turtle Beach headphones. These are headphones for video games. Yup, I now have GAMER HEADPHONES. I made fun of them for having them back before I played, but you know what? They're pretty damn awesome. 

I also now have a print and probably soon to be t-shirt of a sweet art print Josh made for our GAMER CLAN, The Grim North. It's terrifying and extremely bad ass:

I tried to do art for them, but I spent a long time on one and couldn't get it right, and ran out of time for the other, which looked terrible immediately. I guess this wasn't the year for me doing art. Maybe next year. 

I got Weasel some snacks. It was weird going into a pet store to buy presents for my dog roommate. He was pretty psyched about some of them. Doggy potato chips!

whaaaat? Those are for meeeee???

Rich got him a totally bitchin' American flag hoodie. How cool does he look?! Sadly, his tiny legs just got stuck in the sleeves (which was hilarious), but man does he look cool.

Josh got Rich a wicked sweet portable coleman grill. Even if no camping out every happens, we are absolutely gonna be psyched he has this for next year's full day at fernal

Since moving in, I've become an avid wrestling fan. As dumb as most of it is, I love it. It's so entertaining. Rich talked a lot about how much he loved The Rock's new shirt, so even though he thought he was getting a shirt of a guy he hated (because I told him he was for weeks), he got exactly what he wanted.

I think my favorite moment was giving Rich a case of Shipyard Applehead beer.

Rich's favorite beer is Pumpkinhead, and has been freaking out since the moment he heard they were going to make a beer like it, but with apples instead of pumpkins. It was available only in Mass at first, and he was super mad he couldn't get it. I obviously wanted to surprise him with some on our Christmas, but it didn't look like it was going to happen. Before leaving Maine, I called Shipyard to ask if they had any. They said no, they probably wouldn't for a few weeks, but I could get it in a sampler pack, and even though I couldn't get a pumpkinhead pint glass, I could get an applehead one. Good enough. I had to do a lot very fast to leave my house in time to get there before 5, when I assumed they were closing. I was flying there, panicked and checking my phone every few minutes to see how much closer I was. Portland traffic screwed me over, and I was screaming in my car at 5:04, a quarter mile from the brewery. Turns out they actually closed at 6, so the open flag made my day. And then I opened the door to see an entire display of Applehead, making me even more psyched. I made sure to give him the glass first, and as he was being excited about it, said "you can't drink it yet, but at least you have the glass" or something. So even when I gave him the present and it was clearly beer, he had no idea. "WHERE DID YOU GET THIS!?!? HOW!?" It was fantastic. A Christmas beer-acle. 

After that, I gave Josh a present that had been either under my desk under a curtain, or buried in my closet behind shirts for the last month and a half: A super awesome mounted deer head.

look at how much Irwin loves it!

We had seen it at an antique store for a pretty reasonable price, and he was pissed he didn't have enough money to get it. I went out the next day and bought it, putting it in my trunk and making up some lie about how "my trunk was so full of crap that I wasn't even gonna try" when I went grocery shopping with him later that day. I had to sneak it in while Josh was sleeping. A few days before Christmas, I went back to that antique store with Josh, and he was super bummed out that the deer was gone. "You gotta strike while the irons hot man" is all I said. I love when that happens, but I thought for sure that he assumed he would be getting it. But his response of "FUCK YOU" when we gave it to him (Rich paid for half) showed me that he really was shocked. And psyched. 

I did well- I got candy, some gift cards, a cardboard guitar, some DVDs, Josh Gates' book I forgot he was even writing, and a ton of comics I've already started reading. I also got something pretty weird, which ought to be quite awesome and make my life much more interesting:

I doubt anyone reading this other than Joe knows what Alpha Brain is, but it's basically a vitamin supplement that is supposed to improve focus, mental drive, determination, etc. We heard about it from Joe Rogan's podcast and tweets, and what excited us about it is that it's supposed to give you extremely vivid, detailed, and eventually/hopefully lucid dreams. It's a tad sketchy because it's fairly unknown and you can only buy it online, but it sounds pretty legit. My mom was terrified at the idea, but I'm ready to have some epic dreams. Rich told me he was thinking of getting it for Josh, and I said "get it for all of us!" This led to me assuming I'd get it, and then somehow forgetting entirely about that very interaction. So getting this was genuinely surprising and exciting. They've already started it, but I haven't. I'll be starting it in a few days, and I'll be tracking my progress here. This blog is gonna get interesting.

Definitely a solid post-Christmas Christmas with the roommates.