Last weekend Ellen and I escorted Mike and Kevin
to a performance in San Francisco. The drive there was a breeze- we left Kevin's some time between six and seven in the am, made a few pit stops, and ended up in downtown around 1:30PM. A word of advice- taking the 152W to the 101N might be a few miles off course, but it'll save you the frustration of the clusterfuck that is taking the 5N up to the bridges (and the tolls incurred therein), not to mention some killer scenery.
After we arrived in the city, we made our way to the venue- these chicks' warehouse apartment in Mission District- lugged everything upstairs, and enjoyed free beer and vegan dogs (which led to the classic moment in which our gracious host, Carol Anne
, dumped a BBQ full of ashes into a paper sack and nearly burned down the deck. Mike noticed, but being Mike, said nothing. Melted part of my shoe!). As Mike and Kevin prepared and sincerely regretted not sleeping the prior evening, Ellen and I made our way over to Aquarius Records and some boutiques in the area.
During a pit stop earlier in the day, Mike, Kevin, and myself indulged in some not-quite-ripe peaches that might or might not have been doused in pesticides. Mike and Kevin didn't finish theirs. I did, and almost instantly it felt as if a fist had forced itself down my esophagus and into my small intestine. To make matters worse, Mike had accidentally given me Klonopin in a Knight Rider cassette case that I discovered upon arrival, resulting in a toiletbowl full of swirling Klonopin, plus one or two to chew on, plus more beer, plus not bringing a jacket, all of which means I was not in the best state of mind/health. Neither was Mike, who insisted that Knight Rider go on first, if at all. As the audience barely trickled in, Mike and Kevin played an abbreviated set that, due to some alchemy on the part of Erin Allen, was about the best they have ever sounded. The girls throwing the show recorded the performance for a potential DVD they might or might not be releasing some time in the near future, maybe. After that I hung out with Mike in Ellen's car for a while (missing Erin Allen's new project, Work
, in the process), returning for awesome, energetic sets from Dadfag
and Connie Fucking Francis
that, in terms of sheer audience exuberance rivaled the best of Pehrspace (which is now in danger of being shut down because of noise complaints- this Monday's festivities will be held at Women), which was unfortunate in that I was drowsy, cold, and still had yet to pass the painful peach that continued to plagued my swollen gut. Luckily I coughed up the peach, the chunks of which looked like a sun-ripened heart drying on an altar beneath the wary eye of an Aztec deity, and after a few more beers we made our way over to Carol Anne's apartment, where she graciously made beds for us in her room. We were initially going to take the bridge over to Oakland to crash at Erin Allen's place, but as the show ended late and looking up the street view of his place on Google Maps had me considering what I should include in my last will and testament, Carol Anne's offer of a place to crash was welcomed most greedily.
In the morning, Ellen and I showered and we all made our way back over to the warehouse apartment for french toast, country fried potatoes, and mimosas (accommodating doesn't even begin to describe these peoples' generosity). On our walk there we accompanied a huge Latin-themed parade- Mayan dancers, karate demonstrations, floats celebrating Cuban music by flouting a pregnant Asian woman (?) or Jimi Hendrix impersonators flanked by small children in eerie sub-Booji Boy masks. The parade was effective in keeping us in SF a little longer than we initially intended, meaning more time to hit up some amazing thrift stores and an overrated burrito joint before heading back around 4:30PM or so. The drive back was beautiful, with absolutely no traffic and some bizzaro local radio stations providing the soundtrack. We pulled up at Mike's apartment around midnight and by two in the am I was in bed snoring (a factor that kept Mike from sleeping the previous evening- oops!). Best of all, with Mike and Kevin providing most of the gas (one tank either way) and other amenities, the trip cost Ellen and I next to nothing, the only real cost being the further realization of how soul-crushing and depressing a place Orange County is and how for the same cost-of-living we could be dodging bums on our bicycles in a place where we'll never be at loss of things to do and while the drugs are even more plentiful we won't need them because we won't be bored but if we do want to do some mushrooms we'll know people and won't have to wait in some strip mall parking lot for an hour because even drug dealers are just a little less shady in SF and there aren't any strip malls to begin with and I can come home in the evening to the loft Ellen and I share and order whatever inexpensive ethnic food tickles our tummies and it'll be hella chilly which is the perfect climate for someone who sweats as much as I do and I always assumed as a kid growing up half the time in Northern California with my grandparents that I would one day live there and be a university professor sipping tea at my favorite cafe and arguing for the humane treatment of the African-American homeless vet outside of said cafe but as soon as I'd get in my car I'd roll up the windows and lock the door and try my best not to make eye contact and fuck, maybe this really is just a case of the grass being greener on the other side but it really IS. Going from Orange County to San Francisco is a Kansas-to-Oz eye-opener that has left three out of four of us that went on the trip severely bummed out for the better part of this past week (Mike was glad to be home, but again, Mike being Mike).
Highlight of the trip: Sunday morning during breakfast, with Mike waiting for a lull in the gabbing to ask the prematurely silver-maned Erin Allen "Hey Erin...Do you have an iron deficiency?" and proceeding to milk the entire conversation for maximum discomfort. Mike at his caustic best.( PicturesCollapse )