Thursday, September 19, 2013

Riot Fest 2013

First day I dressed as a lady ringmaster. It was called Riot Fest and Carnival but I'm not sure many people got the carnival theme. As you will notice in the back right hand corner of this photo is a Bad Religion flag. They are old but still put on a hell of a show!

Two bands with tubas! Above is Environmental Encroachment. Also please take note of the amazing juggler in front of the tubas. That was his third costume change of the show. He started out in a suit, tie, and Mexican wrestling mask. Below is DeVotchKa! 

And last but not least Peter and I getting very wet on the last day of the festival. Rain at an out door festival usually weeds out the weak but this seemed to bring the punks more alive. We were standing in front of Chuck Ragan when this was taken. But moments later we crossed the lawn to another unknown to us band where an older man was dancing "Rob-style". (wildly failing the arms and legs about while barely keeping your footing on the ground) It's quite hard to do. You have to be willing to have your body always in some state of flux. Nearly falling down every 30 seconds is part of the dance. We tried to capture him but alas he was moving too quickly. Rob if you're reading this that man was you in 20 years.

Monday, September 16, 2013

A Hedgehog On The Mantle

My parents recently sent us this little one. Her name is Miley Cyrus in honor of all the twerking Miley has been doing lately! Peter and I attended the Riot Festival this past weekend and it was a blast. I took many photos but with a film camera so I have to get them developed first. It will be a few days until I get them up on the old blog here.

Highlights of the weekend were Environmental Encroachment, Violent Femmes, Kitten, and DeVotchKa just to name a few. Also yesterday we discovered a new band called Chuck Ragan. They were country punk rock equipped with a lap steel and a violin. It was extremely enjoyable and I look forward to purchasing one of their albums soon. More to follow later in the week with photos...Happy Monday YA'LL!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Pedal Fest

My second visit to San Francisco was near the end of July where Peter and I visited Oakland for a bike festival. It was held at Jack London Square. Jack was a native San Franciscan and a mighty outdoors man. In case you're not familiar he wrote The Call of the Wild, White Fang, and numerous other rugged type books. I'm sure he would approve of a bohemian/punk rock contingent gathering in his namesake square to celebrate exercise and being one with the wilds of Oakland traffic.

Oakland was a quite hippie college city. Reminding me a lot of small towns in Texas that have large colleges that make up half the town population. It gives way to a lot of free thinking and experimentation when half your community is barely legal age to vote and just started doing their own laundry. New ideas and ways of life emerge so suddenly like tulips in spring time.

There were a number of dare devil riders. Mounting large wooden boxes and jumping on one bike wheel from one to the next. Then of course the usual BMX bikers. These are past times you will never see me indulge in. They are far too dangerous and scary to be fun for me.  But you could catch me driving one of these just about any day of the week.

This behemoth was pedal powered and would most definitely take two people to operate but Peter had to take the photo. I should also mention I had to wait in line behind 5 children to get into this seat. Why do I so often find myself in the same line as other's offspring?

I would also ride one of these but unfortunately they were just for show at the festival. These date back to somewhere around 1870 and if you can't really tell by the photos they are high wheel tricycles. They were mostly ridden by women and dignified gentlemen such as doctors or clergyman. Due to the standard bicycle design of the time, the familiar "High-Wheel", having a large front wheel and small back one causing a lot of forward falls which ladies and gentlemen would like to avoid. This action actually coined the phrase "taking a header". The other piece of interesting information about high wheel tricycles is that a lot of their mechanics were used when designing cars later on. Rack and pinion steering, the differential, and band brakes are just a few things that were originally used for tricycles. It's a wild world we live in people, that this rickety bit of metal machinery used to be someone's main mode of transportation and how far people moving technology has come.  

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Me oh my Magic

Peter and I attended The Magic Cabaret last night at Greenhouse Theater. It was a very impressive close-up magic show. Close-up magic, also known as micromagic and table magic, is magic performed on a table or tray not more than 10 feet away from the audience. We were given a brief history of how this form of magic became know as Chicago-style magic within the magicians community here in the city throughout the 30's and 40's. If you weren't a magician in Chicago during that time you would probably not refer to it as such. The show mostly consisted of slight of hand, and flourishes.

Although there were a few tricks that made me actually believe in magic. At one point one of the magicians brought two people from the audience and had them write down a time and a name on a card, without looking at the cards, he then studied the women and or touched their hands and guessed both the time and name. It was clear from the women's reactions that they did not know this man and one woman was visibly disturbed by his ESP. I have no idea how he did it. The other trick was at the end everyone in the audience was given 4 cards. We were asked to bend the cards in half and tear them down the middle. We then were instructed to do a series of things with the cards that included trading with neighbors in the audience, throw them at the magicians, place one piece beneath a shoe. After about 20 commands we were all left with two pieces of card and when turned over they were the two halves of the same card. It worked for every single audience member and was spectacular! Next time you are in Chicago you should definitely make an effort to catch this act.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

BU-BYE Summer

Obviously I've been very busy the past two months. I spent almost all of August in San Francisco working at Steve and Kate's Camp with Peter. July I was visiting him for two long weekends and spent a weekend in Texas with my bestie Ashley getting her ready to move up here. Once she got here I was busy helping her get settled in and showing her the city so not much time for checking in on the old blog here. Also a lot of my free time was spent on Facetime with Peter over this summer but the stories will come out slowly over time.

The past weekend (the final weekend of summer) we had our good friend Jason in town from Michigan and we, as always, had a blast. Peter and I had to pack a lot of summer into one weekend. So Friday we went swimming at the Humboldt Park Beach. Saturday we worked on the backyard and had friends over for a bar-b-que and bonfire. The fire pit is working beautifully. Sunday we had Peter's parents over for dinner to see out new chandelier and hear about summer. And finally Monday was a trip to North Ave beach for a big picnic.

Below are the very few pictures I took this summer in San Francisco.

Peter and I biked across the Golden Gate Bridge. It was quite the experience. So windy we almost got knocked off our bikes!