Friday, July 25, 2008

1/2 Party

So we pulled off the last-minute party to celebrate spending half our lives together, Cath and me. People came. Their hearts were only half in it. They brought half-pizzas and half bottles of wine and had a so-so time.

J & B follow the chalk time-line of our lives that Cath drew. It was missing a lot of detail, so I wonder how much of it she actually remembers.
Every time Sarah Jane sews herself a new top, she has to buy a new phone to match it. It's a fact.
Eric, posing like he's some Three Rivers Festival superhero. What strange powers he must have.

We decided to let Smokey drink; it was a party, after all.
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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Cute Overload

I swear, on my honor, that five minutes ago I just witnessed, out my own kitchen window this morning, the above baby rabbit and (at least what appears to be) a baby chipmunk playing. It was more than mere playing, actually, it was out and out frolicking. They may have even gamboled a time or two. I almost dropped my bagel with the last of the cream cheese on it (but didn't thank god). It was, needless to say, so cute. I will never be able to eat rabbit or chipmunk again. From now on, I am a rabbit and chipmunk vegetarian.
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Sunday, July 20, 2008


Not a ton of photos this year because I thought my camera's battery was dead when it was actually user error, so bummer for that. This was a better Saturday than last year's, all told, and that's mainly because of Animal Collective's set. That band--good lord. I think they're the only relevant band making music these days. Other folks make nice stuff to listen to, but A.C. is just on a different level. Can't believe I didn't get to hear "Brother Sport," though.
Day started out with the sweetest of rains, so gentle, like it didn't want to trouble you with getting wet, and then it left and the clouds just kept the sun off you for much of the afternoon. Cath and I were ready with our parkas and hats, though, just in case. Later in the day, Cath got to meet the designer of the Califone t-shirt she's wearing here, just by chance.
Apart from the music, this festival is all about ironic t-shirts and tattoos. I wonder if some day kids will get ironic tattoos. Most of the "clever" t-shirts just make you go "ugh," especially the hand-scrawled tank-top that read "This shirt is not ironic." Whoa--what a head scratcher that one is. Two shirts made me laugh: (1) 20-something guy wearing a shirt that said "#1 Grandma"; and (2) a shirt that said, simply, "Pot." Not that I condone drug use, but that is funny.

Almost all the tattoos I saw, including the one above, were ugly. I think tattoos need to be simple, in clean lines, iconic. Those like the one here just get too busy and from afar end up looking like bruises.
These two guys were sitting next to us before the A.C. show started. One of their friends found them and asked what happened and one answered "we fell." I think they thought they were at Burning Man, where antics like this are taken as evidence of . . I'm not sure what, but it's something the cyber-hippies out there would appreciate.

Did a fair bit of lounging around at stage B, playing Gin with these cool card Cath bought. For the record, these were my favorites sets of the day:

1. Animal Collective. I need to devote my life to seeing these guys live as many times as possible. That, and being a good parent to my kids, but really the latter. Kids will raise themselves.

2. Caribou. They played pretty early, and not as long as they could have, but I really liked the way they all faced each other and the drummer-facing-drummer drumming. I didn't expect him to be able to make his music translate live, but it was pretty dang great to see and hear.

3. Ruby Suns. Lots of this had to be looped or played-back or whatever, and I really wish he had brought one more band member there to flesh out the live sound. But still, the beats were really great and some of the harmonies, too.

4. F*** Buttons. Two guys with suitcases full of electronics facing each other across a table, but totally dynamic. It was cool how they cut their last song on a dime and then just walked off the back of the stage.

5. Atlas Sound. Dude was totally nervous at the beginning, but it was great for the 20 minutes or so I saw before we had to go to try and get a good position for A.C.

I missed some good stuff, like Dizzee Rascal and The Hold Steady, but there were more tough decisions this year than there were last year, with more good stuff going on at once. A great festival though, with lots of nice folks everywhere you go.

And I can't believe I missed out on running into Nathan and Joe. I was completely looking forward to watching A.C. with them especially, but after seeing them briefly during Caribou, I lost them and never saw them again all day. Shoulda had their cell # with me. Next year, we'll plan it better.

And Joseph, if you're back from Ghana yet, I only had one key--it takes two keys to open your apartment. No big deal. You can just pay us half the cost of the hotel room we ended up getting. (jk--not sure how I messed that up)
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Half a Life

Cath and June, last visit to Julierette's

Oh, I love this picture of my wife. As of Wednesday, we've spent half our lives together. It sounds important, but you never hear of people, or even Hallmark, recognizing the achievement in any way. We had the idea to celebrate this milestone by organizing a "half-assed party," but we never got around to it.

Sitting here, remembering and all, I can't believe all the fun stuff I've done with her, my Catherine--like the time we went to that one place, and then there was that one other place, too, and also that time that we just stayed home. I mean, dang.

I've been thinking lately that we should have just gotten hitched that very first summer we met when we were still dopey teenagers--how amour fou that would have been. But I have been saving the fou. There will be lots more fou.
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Thursday, July 10, 2008

In for Pitchfork

Seeing the schedule/ times for Pitchfork is what finally helped make up my mind--I don't know how I waited this long to pull the trigger. Saturday looks to be better than last year, easily, and presents a couple of tough decisions with Fleet Foxes and F* Buttons playing at the same time and Dizzee Rascal overlapping with Ruby Suns.

Anyway, one call to my folks to confirm baby-sitting and I got our two tix. Can't wait.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

More Michigan

I know there has been a high photo-to-text ratio here lately, but summer photos tend to speak for themselves.

Cousin Sarah, with Dilly Bar

June, tree

Birk: Lord of the Flies trainee

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Cousin Henry's poker face

Cousin Will, up a tree

June. Windy day at Sturgeon Bay
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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Austen countdown

Pride and Prejudice sure seems to get most of the attention, but to me, it's not in the same league as Sense and Sensibility. The narrator isn't nearly as sharp, doesn't have the same wit, despite the famous opening line. Elizabeth just doesn't do it for me quite the way Eleanor does and Sense has more sweet suffering, I think.

So here is my ranking as of today:

1. Sense and Sensibility
2. Emma
3. Pride and Prejudice

I won't let myself read another one until next summer, so this ranking may hold for awhile.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Wrapping things up

4th of July in tiny Sugar Hill, N.H.

Hitting the Franconia library's book sale on the way out of town

Freakish booth at this creepy flea market I visited in Vermont
This last photo . . . wow. I can't believe people sell this stuff out in the open like this. I don't even know what to say.
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Friday, July 04, 2008


The sleeping loft/study/changing room

The closet

Tent art
Andy Goldsworthy does these cool "rain shadows" when it starts to rain, but you can imagine my surprise when I packed up my tent today and discovered that it had the same idea. Such an inspiring, arty place this part of New Hapshire.

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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

At The Frost Place

Driving through New York
Driving through Vermont
Shara McCallum's great reading on Monday night

Lunch break.
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