Thursday, February 24, 2011

Time to hit the road.

Dear 27,
Finally getting back on the road. Finally.

A long overdue playlist to go with a long overdue weekend.

Monday, February 21, 2011

But there is something that I must confess...

Dear 27,
There's been a whole bunch happening and, as you, my most loyal readers, have reminded me, (and as the title suggests, I'm willing to confess that it is in fact true) I'm not capturing a lot of the fun. A list always helps. So here's an update.

1. Jimmy Witherspoon.
My parents got me a record player for Christmas (a most-awesome gift) and on my day off a couple weeks ago I stopped by ZZZ Records to pick up a few pieces of vinyl to add to my now-growing collection. I browsed the "8 for $8" section (while the shop-owner's sweet little daughter commented on my boots, then proceeded to "nuzzle them" and said the word "hypothesis") and got some great stuff (Tapestry, Talking Book, Picture This, etc). I bought "Stormy Monday & Other Blues" without knowing anything about it and it's been in heavy rotation ever since.

2. Typeface, the movie. The Des Moines Art Center did a free design-double-feature this weekend and my friend Emily and I caught Typeface, a movie about the Hamilton Wood Type Museum and the art of letterpress. By the end of it my desire to letterpress increased by about 350%, I was ready to drive to Two Rivers, WI tomorrow and really wanted an ice cream sundae.

3. The Des Moines Public Library.
So I need to write a paper about Sol LeWitt (arguing that there have been/are primarily left-brained artists-- exciting stuff I know), figure out who scotch club is now named after, why he is important and probably quote some of his poetry in my next email, and present in a couple weeks at Pecha Kucha Night in Des Moines-- obviously I go to the Library. (Milestone for the list-- I've finally hit double-digits in books read.)

4. Best of 2010. I'm still getting emails and playlists and updates from mixtape participants. Check out Greg's mix that he's shared! (If you haven't received your mix yet-- email me.)

Got an awesomely-nice email from Nick at the Atlas in Iowa City saying that I'm now a member of the birthday club (You should too. Click here. Free buffalo burrito on your birthday? I'm in!)

R.Kelly quoted in a blog title, again. This is a problem.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Down and Derby

Dear 27,
I've seen Whip It and I had a couple birthday parties at Skateland. So I knew a little about old-school roller skates (you know, the ones with four wheels) and I knew that derby girls wore fishnet tights, mouth guards and that Juno played a jammer.
Tonight about 2,500 people filled the fairgrounds for a Derby bout...and it was unlike anything I'd ever seen. The Des Moines Derby Dames came out on top.  And that Stella girl, she was a gamer.
(photo credits to the talented documentarian, Jenni Pullen.)

PS- there was a celebrity sighting. John Pemble's hair was there.

In my vast travel experience...

Dear 27,
Time is getting away from me. While my Valentine's day (and many days following) were spent curled up on the couch, without cable and with many congestion medications, I did manage to see a great show pre-coldfest 2011.
Will you be my Valentine?
When Tim and Will suggested I go see Best Coast in Omaha, I'll be honest, I wasn't too excited about the music part, but I have devoted this year to adventures, and having only been to the Qwestcenter and never to the "actual city" of Omaha, I bought my $18 ticket and was ready to go. After watching this video of Freddie Gibbs and the Best Coast lead singer, I was a bit put off by the gal and the band and the  beachy beats. But Best Coast played a great set and damn it was a fun night. And the lead singer was darling (and probably high).
In addition to checking out the Crescent Moon per Larry's suggestion, Julie took us to Nebraska's Premiere Cigar Lounge, Jake's where I had the worst (but very highly recommended) bourbon I've ever tried, George Stagg and was asked if I was of Native American descent. Omaha did not disappoint.
The weather was beautiful, my concert companions were delightful. A midge-free evening, indeed.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

So a dragking and a pianist walk into a bar...

Dear 27,
After January granted me 31 blissful days, February has had a tough act to follow.
So far, it has yet to disappoint. After a bigtime Bulldog win (and a super fun trip to the Twin Cities-- Thanks L&E for graciously hosting me at Casa de Barrett), I hurried back for "the best party of the year in Des Moines."* Lots of dancing, including a seriously well-choreographed "Proud Mary" tribute by the one and only Tone. It was a blast.
The adventures haven't ceased in February's week two. Jenni and I made another post-work trip to Iowa City for the love of music. Fitz and the Tantrums played a soulful, dancey, tambourine-seasoned set at the Blue Moose Tap House. (Iowa City people, this is what was formerly known as the Q Bar. And there are no long pool tables. There are now tall boys, a half a moose that's decorated with ladies undergarments and a stainless steel bathroom.) Fitz and the Tantrums boogied all over the stage in suits and put on one hell of a show. 

Before hitting the old-Q-bar, we met some great people at the Atlas and had a whole world of fun with Emily and the man in Cedar Rapids Opera with the orange-and-blue-diamonded-socks. (Hi new friends!!) There were new Valentine ideas drawn on napkins, discussions on the merits of social media and the world's most delicious buffalo chicken burrito. Live Show #13 officially crossed off the list.

More to come in February... 

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Dear 27,
I'd forgotten #5 was even on the list. "Enter a Contest."
I have entered many "drawings" before, but it's been awhile since I've entered a "contest." (Once I won a coloring contest when I was 6 or 7. That's probably what sparked my love of the arts. Or my love of winning.) I recently entered a contest (then promptly forgot I'd entered said contest) simply because it seemed easy and sort of un-winnable and took no effort. I saw this on the Pearl Hotel's facebook page:
You loyal blog readers may recall back in October I stayed at the lovely Pearl Hotel and crossed #7 off the list. I loved my stay, took lots of pictures and submitted my favorite snapshot (which was taken through the peep hole on the door of my room.)
Well wouldn't you know it, I WON! Yes, the prize is happy hour for 10 people. A sensational prize. Especially sensational to someone who dwells in San Diego. So of course, there are a couple issues (the most obvious being I don't live in California. And there's the fact that I don't have 9 friends in San Diego-- yet.) 

But I'm still a winner. Now I must convince the totally hip Pearl People to let me cash in this happy hour on my next trip to sunny San Diego in March...
Anyone up for a road trip?