DC and chocolate

We started the weekend off early with a trip to the Firkin & Hound, an English pub clone in South Riding. Our fave local Todd Wright was playing there with his solo mix of originals and covers. Our friend Linda was there, and we caught up while we watched. For whatever reason, we missed the rain on the way there and back. Friday was light, watched some TV and made Hot Pockets for dinner (they’re closer to sandwiches if you slice them open). Later we played Wii together for the second time – fun when you’re playing against someone.

Saturday I got an early start, swung by Annandale to pick up some Skins tix I found on Craiglist on my way to Clarendon. I hopped Metro, and headed down to the Mall to the National Book Festival. I wanted to catch Terry Pratchett, and got there just in time. He mostly did a q&a, but as usual had hilarious answers, including an account of cowriting Good Omens. Plus I learned that a live-action Hogfather is available on DVD (only region 2, though). I decided to wait in the autograph line, which was a little nuts, took almost 90 minutes to get to the front of the line.

I headed back to Clarendon, headed over to my fave CD store before enjoying the bands and atmosphere at Clarendon Day. I had to get something to eat (especially when I found they had Magic Hat at the beer truck), and just like last year, stopped at Eleventh Street Lounge for a snack. This time I had deep fried deviled eggs and duck wraps (like egg rolls with duck) – yum! After I finished, I caught the end of these united states (not bad), but I was there to see The Sketches, a local power pop band I hadn’t seen but had been meaning to (I’d seen the singer before). They were nice, I picked up their CD and headed home. I rustled up some salad and leftover ribs before we headed to Fairfax where friends were hosting a chocolate fondue party. I was glad I just had dinner, so was not tempted to graze constantly. It was good to catch up with the friends that were there, and stayed a bit longer than planned.

Today was pretty lazy, took Illa for a walk, finished off some eBay auctions, read the paper, and watched some TV. I made pasta for dinner, then hopped online to surf. Next more TV, and probably some Wii. The copy of Wario Ware that arrived last week, turned out to be single player, so I’ve only played it once, I’m on the lookout for good 2 player games. I think I’ll also pick up the new Dance Dance Revolution – definitely looks like something we’ll sweat with.

Lyrics insights

A friend had a quiz on his blog about numbers in song lyrics – naturally I participated (answers here). One question, about Bryan Adams’ song “Summer Of ’69”, made me conduct a search. I remember a story that the title was supposed to be “Summer of ’73”, but it didn’t scan. I looked, but I couldn’t find corroboration. Instead, I found the site of cowriter Jim Vallance, who has information and comments about songs he’s written. He’s most known for songs written with Aerosmith and Bryan Adams, but he’s also written for Ozzy Osbourne, Heart, Alice Cooper and Glass Tiger (yes, their big hit).

I’ve given into the console

No, not Halo 3, I finally purchased a Wii (although there was a marked lack of enthusiasm from Jill as she was trying to get me one for my birthday. Sorry, babe, technology was on my side). I haven’t bought a console since I got the original 8 bit one (I still have it in it’s original box), but the Wii caught my attention by offering game play I wouldn’t be able to sit down for (of course it already has a name). I find it so hard to find motivation to exercise, and I figure if I have games that won’t let me sit down to play them correctly, that will help (there is evidence it will).

So far, I’ve tried baseball, tennis, and bowling, all pretty fun, although I think baseball makes you swing too late. May try some more tonight. I’m also eagerly awaiting future hardware and software, including Wii Fit (there’s got to be a snowboard game for it soon), an updated Dance Dance Revolution (you use your hands as well) and of course the obvious use of motion sensors.

Concert bookends

We started and ended the weekend with concerts. Friday I raced home and we had leftover pasta before heading over to Jammin’ Java to see Robbie Schaefer (from efo). He had a good set, played some new songs, but most notably brought Daniel Brindley (from Brindley Brothers/Luke Brindley Band) up for a number of songs to play keys. That added a nice texture, hopefully he might come out to some of Robbie’s solo dates in the spring. We watched two episodes of Tell Me You Love Me, the new HBO show, when we got home, and it was pretty good – relationship troubles mixed with nudity.

Saturday was pretty lazy for me, watched some TV, read comics, grilled ribs. I did start assembling an eBay auction that I finished Sunday morning, after I took Illa for a long stroll. I watched the first half of the game as I cooked fajitas, then listened to the end of it on the radio in the car (dang it), as we headed in to the city to catch Genesis at the Verizon Center. I’d timed it precisely as they’d gone on the previous three shows at 8:20, and that worked… not at all, as there was some kind of power problem, and they were delayed by 30 minutes (we dubbed it the beer vendor conspiracy, as half the crowd immediately filed out). Happily, that was the low point, the concert went off without a hitch.

The show was an interesting mix of progressive songs from the ’70s (mostly in medleys) and their pop hits from the ’80s. I had seen the setlist and was mostly prepared, though I don’t think Jill was. I really like “Ripples”, from A Trick of the Tail, as far as older songs go, and I think our favorite of the pop era was “Follow You, Follow Me”. Jill was not aware before recently when I listened to a lot of Genesis that I can replicate Phil Collins’ eerie laugh from “Mama”, and I found out I can make her crack up by doing it, so I didn’t miss my chance during the concert. I wouldn’t have minded also hearing “That’s All”, “No Reply At All”, “Illegal Alien” or “Misunderstanding”, but it was a good show.


Go here and here to see a collection of the world’s great libraries (via Dave). Maybe one day mine will look like one of them. At least I already own the original of this, so I’ve got a good template.