Fun Weekend

I had a lot of fun this weekend!


Friday night I went to a They Might Be Giants show in Northampton, MA with Sarah and Krista.

We got a great spot on the dance floor right by the stage. Poor Sarah had just come off working a 12-hour shift at the hospital, though, so she was barely able to stand. And I may have overdone it with hopping and bopping to the music – since the operation I have been largely sedentary, aside from short walks and occasional walking up stairs at work, so by the end of the show my side hurt, and my whole body felt like lead, really tired.

They did two sets during the show, the first was their 1990 album Flood – all the songs, in order, the whole album. Lotsa good stuff there. It was great, and some minor flubs were entertaining, as well.
After messing up the beginning of “Hot Cha” a couple times, Flans said something like “I was having this terrible dream… I was up on this stage for some reason, with spotlights on me, and everyone was staring at me…”

The second set was an assortment of songs from various albums, including one song from an upcoming kid’s science album being released through Disney. It was a response to the factual inaccuracies in the song “Why Does the Sun Shine? (the sun is a mass of incandescent gas)” called “Why Does the Sun *Really* Shine? (the sun is a miasma of incandescent plasma)“.

I took a bunch of pictures and some video.


Saturday Sarah and I were going to go to a Halloween party, but were still tired from the show the night before, so decided not to go. Instead we went to the mall – Sarah wanted some new shoes, and I ended up getting some new shoes too. Then we drove to my house.

We nearly died on the way, it was dark and raining with heavy wind, and at one point traffic came slamming to a near-stop because, against the guard rail in the median, sticking out into the fast lane, there was a car pointing in the wrong direction. Looked like they hydroplaned and ended up facing the wrong way. They really should have put their hazards on but were probably still to freaked out to realize that, though they survived the spinout, they were still in a very dangerous spot.

Once we made it home, we watched “The Warriors” with Adam. Adam and I hadn’t seen it before. It’s a very silly movie, with some bad acting, and they added some weird comic-booky transitions for the recent DVD release, but fun to watch and make fun of. Cybergen players, check it out for rough yogang ideas. =)


Sunday Sarah, Adam, Tanya, Paula, and I went on a chartered “Fun Bus” that Tanya got us tickets for – it was a bus ride to Foxwoods casino with a bunch of people, which included drinks and snacks on the way there and back, and a lunch buffet at Foxwoods (which was pretty good) and keno tickets (I didn’t win anything). We also watched “Don’t Mess With the Zohan” on the bus… stupid movie, with some funny bits here and there.

At the casino, we played some slot machines, a couple spins of roulette, and bet on some horse races. It was actually pretty fun, except for the cigarette (and cigar) smoke. Bleh. I still feel a little ill from it. It’s like a nature preserve for smokers… smoking is banned most places, but there you can still see the smoker in their natural habitat, puffing away, with occasional calls of “huuurch! hurrrrrch!” (deep phlegmy coughs).

Then when we got back from the casino we went to Unos for dinner and then stopped at Toys R Us on the way home, where I bought some Legos.

Now it’s late and I’m off to bed.

Comings and goings

Yesterday I drove to Sumerville (on the outskirts of Boston) and met Snooj at Good Time Emporium, an arcade/bowling alley/bar. I met Snooj and Kyle there.

From there Snooj and I went to eat at the 99 (Kyle stayed at the arcade), we were running late so had to kinda scarf our food down.

Then we drove around Sumerville looking for parking, and then walked to the Sumerville Theatre for the They Might Be Giants show.

I was a bit worried because we got there like 25 minutes late (the Sumerville Theatre directions recommend taking public transportation, since parking is so hard to find), but luckily there was an opening act, we got there just as they finished and had 15 minutes or so to relax before TMBG came on.

It was a good show, we had seats just about as far back as possible, balcony, last row, but we could see ok. They played a good variety of songs, and came on for two encores. During the intro song everyone was invited to stand up, and everyone remained standing for the whole show, which was fine, but I think Snooj’s legs got tired, he had been playing In The Groove 2 (spiritual successor to Dance Dance Revolution) for a while beforehand at the arcade.

After the show we went back to the arcade, played a few games. I played some Police 911 (quite a workout, it’s a gun game where you physically dodge for cover by ducking and moving your body side to side), Fast and the Furious (with motion seat), Tetris (kicked Kyle’s ass), and Soul Caliber 2.

Then it was time to drive back home. Snooj and Kyle followed me, since they were coming by to crash on the couch and floor at my place. Got home around 2am, got to bed about 3am, then had to get up at 4:45am and drive Adam to the Logan Express bus in Framingham. Got back home around 6am, slept until 9:30am.

Made Hastings Cakes (hollandaise flavored) for everyone for breakfast, hung out with Snooj and Kyle until 11am when they had to head out.

Now I’m finishing up my packing and Dave was nice enough to agree to drive me to the Logan Express in Framingham at 4pm.

I’ll catch the 5pm bus, get to the airport around 6, giving me plenty of time till my plane leaves at 8:30.

Then I’ll get to Vegas at about midnight Vegas time, which is 3am EST.

Busy busy busy is what we Bokononists whisper whenever we think of how complicated and unpredictable the machinery of life really is.”
-Cat’s Cradle, Kurt Vonnegut

-Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne


So Friday night I went with Sarah to see They Might Be Giants. I was kinda nervous, because I haven’t seen them live before (if it was a bad show, would it taint my view of my favorite band?), and also because it was at a dance club in Boston (The Roxy) and I’m not much of a dance club kinda guy.

My fears about the dance club were allayed as we waited in line outside. The doors opened at 7, and we got there around 6:30, so we were standing around awhile. The other people in line were very nice and laid back. I heard people making programming jokes and a guy came up and gave us a CD of his band (“Fish Crackers: a Space Rock Opera”). I should have realized that a crowd of TMBG fans would be cool people.

Then the doors opened, the security guy looked at our IDs with extreme skepticism (Sarah’s ID is a NY driver’s license with a picture of her age 16, and my license is a picture of me with a fatter face, full beard, and giant cop sunglasses), begrudgingly stamped us with an “over 21” stamp, and we went upstairs.

For extra redundancy, everyone with an “over 21” stamp then gets a wristband once they get upstairs. As we got ours, we noticed John Flansburgh’s parents checking in. I remembered that John and John, despite being New Yorkers now, were originally from MA.

The Roxy is a pretty neat club, done up in a mixture of baroque and art deco styles.

Once inside, we waited around on the dance floor for the show to start. An eclectic mix of generic music played. Then, at 7:45, the curtains parted and the show began.

I was not disappointed.

They played songs from across the TMBG spectrum. There were conversations with the dead, horn players with backstories and experimental names, audience interventions, philosophical banter, confetti, and all-around fun.

Here are the songs they played, at least the ones I remember them playing. There are probably some I left out.

In not the correct order:

The Cap’m
Damn Good Times
Upside Down Frown
Take out the Trash
I’m Impressed
Museum of Idiots
E Eats Everything
XTC vs. Adam Ant
Alphabet of Nations
Dr. Worm
Drink! (with audience substance abuse intervention)
It’s Not My Birthday
Don’t Let’s Start
Withered Hope
Memo to Human Resources
Walk This Way (only the beginning, due to undead protests that it “wasn’t rocking hard enough”)
Istanbul (with an extended sax intro)
With the Dark
Particle Man (with a surprise twist ending)
Bee of the Bird of the Moth
Narrow Your Eyes

I glanced up a few times at the balcony where Flan’s family was, they looked like they were having a great time. I wonder if they go to shows often…

At the end, there was an encore, then after the encore, even as cleaning guys were coming out and the show was clearly over, there was still more cheering, so John and John came out one more time. They were actually being kicked out (a disco was starting in a few minutes) but they had time to do a quick song. It was cool to have one song with just the two Johns on stage.

The show was around 1 hour and 45 minutes, which seemed like just the right amount of time (since we were on our feet the whole time).

Sarah and I saw Neil Cicierega (Lemon Demon) standing a few feet from us in the audience, but we were too shy to go up and say hi. He looks even thinner in person than in photos.

Then on the way home there was torrential rain and we nearly died, but came out the other side intact.