Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Times Like These...

It's important to remember who really ROCKS. What I love about the Foo Fighters is that they not only rock hard, but they are also legitimately talented musicians who don't need to rely on distortions to make their music sound full. With real musical and compositional skill and a sense of harmony and melody, their music has a mature sound. Though they are definitely a rock band, they push the boundaries of the genre and unabashedly do sweet acoustic renditions of their older songs, not in and of itself unique for a rock band. What makes them stand out is that they notably write several songs meant for acoustic instruments -- violin and piano included -- songs not meant to rock hard. The end result is a band that plays to the quiet and the riot of the human experience. They are, without a doubt, my favorite rock band.

daN and I had the honor of seeing them last night. Now, I had seen them twice before and didn't think twice about seeing them a third time on a Monday night and taking the following day off from work in order to facilitate its ease. They are amazing live. If you don't believe me, just remember that they've won a few grammies over the years, one of which is repeatedly "Best Hard Rock Performance." (This year, they also took "Best Rock Album.") And it IS. For one thing, they are funny. They definitely milked the "two grammies" thing, showcasing their grammy-award-winning triangle player with a great triangle solo.

The Foo paid tribute to what helped them get where they are: their acoustic collaborators who lowered on a stage from the ceiling onto a platform midway through the audience. Rather than having a lot of switching back and forth between instruments, the main band simply played an acoustic subset. The instruments were all set on the second stage; the band simply ran down a raised walkway that joined the mainstage and the supplemental stage, and joined their extra acoustic musicians. IT was COOL.

The whole thing allowed for a show with a nice flow to it. They opened rocking hard, and they closed rocking hard, but they had some quieter and high energy acoustic sounds in the middle.
Another thing I like about seeing the Foo Fighters is that they really do play a good mix of music from every album. Between the variety and the arch of music, the set list was wholly satisfying.

About their rock: all I can say is that they rock. Honestly. I don't know how to say it better than that. David Grohl is a sexy rock god, to quote one of daN's former employers. 'Nuff said. If you enjoy rock, see them if you can. It's worth whatever you pay.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

No Real News

Nothing really to say, except that packing on the weeknights requires a lot more gumption than I had even given it credit for. daN's Mum is visiting this weekend, and it will be great to see her. She's a lot of fun. We're going to Maine next weekend, which should also be a lot of fun. That is, we'll be going into Maine if it's not absolutely shooting ourselves in the feet to do so. We do have about seven boxes packed, but you wouldn't know it to look at our place. We still have a lot to do. But here's the thing: we're not going to pack our plates and silverware yet. That would be dumb!

So it will have to happen the week before we move. And that's that.

In other items, yesterday I went into the Origins in Fanueil Hall to say hi to the girls who work there, and they were so happy to see me! Or at least, they acted it. We had a good little time. And they gave me a facial! I didn't even buy anything. They would like me to spread the word that they like pampering people, and that if you would like a free facial, you should go there. I enjoyed myself. It was a nice little retreat.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Packing, etc.

I'm taking a break from packing by having an afternoon snack and zoning out in front of the computer.

I will say this: there is nothing to make you realize how much you have to do like starting. Nevertheless, this time is easier than in past years because I've done a great job of doing clean-outs and routing weeding as I've gone along. So even though we've been here for nearly three years, it's not as bad as it could be.

The kitchen is going to be a nightmare.

...and when all is said and done, we do have more stuff than we had when we moved here.

P.S. 3:10 to Yuma is a good new cowboy movie. You should watch it. But not just before you are hoping to sleep.

That's life.

In other news, the weather has been very odd today. We had a spurt of sunlight in the morning, and then it rained for a while, and then there was this violent tornado of snow, and then the sun came out again. Now it's back to snowing.

The Weather is having fits. It's fascinating.

But i'm ready for Spring.

Monday, February 04, 2008

What you could call some major updates

It would be really easy for me to focus on any one thing right now, given how much has been going on, not the least of which is the defeat of the Patriots by the Giants last night. That was quite a game, complete with heartbreak in the last 35 seconds of the game when the Giants scored their winning touchdown, in the last minute when Brady failed to complete a pass to Moss in the end zone, when .... i could go on, but I won't. The sting is fresh, but not so fresh that I can't take on some perspective: I am a New Englander. That means that the bitter poison of defeat is a taste with which many of us are familiar, but that poison has been on the shelf this whole season. In fact, we've been lulled into this false sense of security and have grown weak and perhaps more susceptible to the poison's designs since the Red Sox and the Patriots have done so well overall. We, dare I say it, are no longer used to the disappointment, instead got used to winning. *gasp!* Let's have some perspective on the matter: maybe it's just a game and maybe it isn't, but this is what it means to be a New England fan. Many people have come to hate the Pats and the Sox because they are the favored teams. But ya know what? I loved them when they were 0 and 17, not just when they were 17 and 0. And still calling them my team after a gutwrenching game like last night's is why I am a Pats fan. They put up a good fight against those Giants.

Oh yeah, and daN and i are moving on March 1. The last few weekends have been a bit hectic, what with looking for a new place to live, breaking it to the landlords that we're leaving (they took it well, but asked us to stay until May. Fuck no!)

1. Where is it?
-- On Walk Hill Street in Jamaica Plain across the street from a gorgeous old cemetery (quiet neighbors -- they're dead), which also means that our place faces PINE TREES!

2. How long of a walk from the T?
-- It's five minutes or less from the Forest Hills T stop on the Orange Line.

3. So, what's it like?
-- Well, kinda like this one, only with some major "quality of life" differences:
  • It's on the second floor of a house that was insulated last year, so it's MUCH warmer and will be cheaper to heat (and uses GAS rather than us having to fill a Hoover era oil tank).
  • The kitchen is a real kitchen with counter space galore, a breakfast bar, a vaulted ceiling with skylights (Mr. Plant, who has grown tall in recent years, will be happy), and - get this - a dishwasher!!!
  • The rooms: living room, kitchen, dining room, two bedrooms, and a bathroom with full bath. All hardwood floors. Laundry is in the basement. The rooms are all a teeny bit smaller (except for the kitchen), but that is vastly made up for by the more useful floor plan.
  • It has light switches in the rooms, and the kitchen and one bedroom have ceiling fans.
4. What about the bathtub? Last time I took a shower at your place, I couldn't help but notice that my shoulders are broader than your tub, and it makes it hard to face the stream.
-- The tub is full sized, and, from what the new landlord tells me, has jacuzzi features!

5. Wow, those are some major upgrades! Is it much more expensive than what you're paying now?
-- It's only $50 each more per month than this uninsulated, oil heated, first floor apartment with a half-ass kitchen that is a 25 minute walk to the T.

Did I mention the huge back porch?

Given that we have another bedroom, the futon will live in bedroom number two, helping that room to function as guest bedroom. What will it be doing while it's not housing guests? It will be my YOGA ROOM! YAY!

Also, given that futon will function in said guest bedroom, I procured a matching couch and loveseat in cream suede microfiber from a lovely couple on craigslist for a mere $400! You're lucky to get ONE decent looking couch for that price, let alone TWO! Anyway, those will go in the living room, and we'll be able to sit on a real couch when we're watching a movie.

So, we had to rearrange our current apartment on Saturday to accommodate this new furniture for the next month. That's why we were tired on Saturday.

We were tired YESTERDAY because, though it was supposed to be our day of rest prior to the big game and the ensuing week, our toilet overflowed in the morning and was utterly unusable until around 3pm. Yes, I had to go to Dunkin Donuts to take a shit yesterday morning. Then we had to invent errands like buying a $50 super plunger, recycling plastic bags at Stop'N'Shop, and getting air in the tires, all strategically planned around using their toilets. Our landlords were nonchalant about the whole thing: "Just give it a few hours. It will be fine. It's just an old toilet." I have IBS, and I can't just WAIT A FEW HOURS. At any rate, they were right -- it was mostly OK after a few hours. But it ruined my day.

So, I'm kinda tired...but i'm good. It's a Monday night, and I think I'll go for a stroll with my darling love daN. I'm excited to move to JP, though, and sad to see Somerville and this apartment go. It will find new wonderful tenants. In the meantime, I shall keep my eyes on Free Bowling nights at the Milky Way in JP.