Wednesday, August 20, 2008

East Coast Swing

Well, I've got about 10 hours to catch my flight to DC. Barring any alarm malfunction (set for 6:30 am, just checked), I think I'll make it.

Here's a quick rundown of what I'll be doing out east:

  • Get into Baltimore tomorrow around 4:30. (Hopefully) catch the 5:08 MARC train to DC.
  • Meet up with Marin, eat, hang around, go see Vicky Cristina Barcelona sometime in the evening. (I haven't been this excited about seeing a movie in like a month!)
  • Get up, go to delicious bagel place down the street
  • Take a tour of the XMU studio
  • Head to Philadelphia
  • Eat cheesesteak
  • Go to Phillies/Dodgers game
  • Get up, go to Vermont
  • Go to wedding
  • Go to reception, hope for open bar
  • ...
  • Profit
  • Get up, start heading south
  • Maybe stop at a beach
  • Maybe meet up with a friend in Balitmore
  • Arrive in DC
  • Wake up really early
  • Catch MARC to BWI, again really early
  • Fly back to KC
  • Go to happy hour for a girl leaving company
  • sleep
  • Back to normal life

See you all in a few days!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Stuff I know - Olympic Edition

  1. I had a babysitter that could be Mike Phelps's brother. It's kind of uncanny how much they look alike. He was also a swimmer.
  2. Shawn Johnson is from Iowa. She does gymnastics pretty well, I hear.
  3. I have watched about 4 minutes of Olympic coverage, and most of that was a Chinese boxer, while I was working out. That's what happens when I don't get any tv stations. But I'm also staging an Olympic protest, since they're getting rid of baseball and softball. Those assholes. I mean, you've got 2 BMX events in there. Seriously. And the ridiculous rules that they've instituted for extra innings???? I am very bitter about this.
  4. I heard the Opening Ceremonies were neat, but parts were faked?
  5. Roger Federer lost. To James Blake! This seriously put me in a bad mood for a bit. Donald Young is the only American tennis player I can root for.
  6. I was told Amanda Beard didn't make it out of the preliminary round. That's also disappointing to me. She and Cat Osterman are my Olympic crushes.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

This band is unstoppable! | I should be on the KC tourism board

65daysofstatic - "Retreat! Retreat!"
(website | myspace)

When 65daysofstatic first came up on XM, I knew I had recognized the name, but couldn't place it. A quick Google search showed me where I had heard of them - they were on tour with the Cure, a tour that came through KC, a tour that made me struggle with the decision of buying a $60 ticket for a concert in a venue bigger than I would have liked, for a band that I would have rather seen 10-15 years ago. Not that I don't love the Cure, I think their shows back then would have possibly been sweet (not to mention a little cheaper, and hopefully smaller). Had I known how much I would come to love the opening act, the decision would have been that much more difficult (I still think that Poor Flenker, especially in those early KC days, would have passed on it, but I would've been much more upset about it at the time).

"Retreat! Retreat!" was the first song of theirs that I heard, it grabbed me by the face showed me an epic, lush soundscape (holy shit I should write for Rolling Stone). As soon as the song ended, I was on their site, listening to everything posted, going to their myspace, and taking it all in. If you want some epic instrumentals that occasionally straddle the border of noise, electronic, and progressive rock (emphasis on ROCK!!), this is your band. I recently picked up their album The Fall of Math, their first full-length, released in 2004. How have these guys gotten unnoticed by me for so long? Damn, ain't that a thing. They kind of remind me of a less math, more electro version of Dillinger Escape Plan, pre-Mike Patton. Whatever the hell that means.


In other news, things in the life of Flenker have been good. Very good, in fact. It'd be a little better if the Royals would play well more consistently, but I'll be content with what I've got. The weather's taken a nice little dip into the 80's, I've been to a good number of Royals games, I've had friends and family visit, and have some plans for the future. Next weekend (21st-25th to be precise), I'll be heading eastward, to a mini-tour of the East Coast. I'll be flying into Baltimore, taking a train to DC, then heading to Philadelphia on Friday with Marin, catching a Dodgers/Phillies game, then we'll be continuing onward up to Vermont on Saturday for a wedding. Then back to DC on Sunday, and KC on Monday. It'll be quite the whirlwind trip!

The weekend after that, Labor Day weekend as we call it here in the States, I'll be heading back to the lovely state of Iowa, to see more friends and family, and, almost as important, as I feel like they're part of my family, the Iowa Hawkeyes!! It's the first football game of the season, against the powerhouse of Maine University. Tickets are all set up, I'm ready to go!

So yeah, things are going well. I'm making new friends around town, running into old ones from years ago, getting some travelling in, and fitting in some sports. Plus, I've been playing my sax and guitar more, the little sausage shop that I'm falling in love with is going to be out grilling some cheddar bier brats tomorrow, I've got some hell of good beer in my fridge ($18 for a 4-pack, but freaking worth it, possibly my most favorite beer ever), and found an awesome place to check out downtown.

Yesterday, after some $1 tacos and a $2 margarita in downtown KC, I was driving home, stopped by a record shop and picked up 65dos's album (as well as MGMT's album, pretty solid all the way through, I must say. It was cheap and I love their song "Electric Feel," so I feel like it was worth it), stopped by what has become my favorite coffee shop (unfortunately it's about 10-15 miles away, not super convenient for me to go to all the time), and thought "goddamn, I love this city." Everyone should come here and check it out. I mean, we've got the second most fountains in the world, behind Rome (I had thought it was Paris until tonight, so for everyone I've told Paris was #1, I apologize), some parks, some awesome sections of town, amazing barbecue joints, and best of all, FLENKER!!!

So let this serve as an open invitation for anyone and everyone to come down! I've got a futon and an air mattress, and lots of room!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The awesomest video I've seen for a while

And, just for good measure, a good song to listen to afterward, maybe to help avoid getting that last one stuck in your head

Acid House Kings - "Say Yes if You Love Me"

Yes, I do love you

Monday, August 11, 2008

Things that have happened to me in the past week-plus

  • Went to 6 Royals games in 8 days
  • Ate at a few different BBQ places
  • Got my ass handed to me at an office poker tournament
  • Went to Lawrence for Taco John's
  • Ate probably the best bratwurst I've had in my life at a tailgate
  • Drank lots of beers at a tailgate (including a smoked beer)
  • Got a visit from pops Flenker
  • Managed to work out twice
  • Ate near my body weight in popcorn
  • Have listened to a lot of pretty excellent music
  • Didn't do laundry

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Apres moi, le deluge

What have I been up to in the last ten days? Pretty much alternating between being kind of busy and very lazy.

Let me take you back to last Thursday (the 24th). I was minding my own business, surfing the web or whatever it is I do at home, when I heard what sounded like water, lots and lots of water, flowing from somewhere. I went over to the area from where the sound was coming, only to nearly be drenched in a stream flowing from one of my ceiling light fixtures. I immediately called the apartment management, put down a tub, and waited for maintenance. Then, I noticed water spewing out my bathroom vent. A pot was placed here. A little stream started shooting out from the wall, where water had bubbled the paint out to the size of a large bubble of water behind paint. Another pan. I checked out my room, and noticed 3 holes in the ceiling, from whence (is that how whence is used? I feel like I should know this. . . but it sounds fancy, so I'll leave it) water poured. I was almost out of receptacles. I moved my bed into the corner, started piling stuff on, grabbed all of my stuff out of my closets (did I mention the water coming from somewhere in there? yeah), and tried to move as much stuff as I could into the now relatively arid living room. That's when I noticed the water flowing down the doorways. Had it meant to look like that, it would have been kind of neat. But, seeing as how I had not opted for the indoor fountains, I was pissed. Another call to management was made, seeing as how no one had shown up yet, about 10-15 minutes after my first call. This was not a thing that I really wanted to wait around to get someone over to check out.

The dude came, was kind of shocked by the vast amounts of water that was now falling (about 1/2" standing in the bathroom, stepping on carpet in the area caused a splash), then went upstairs to find the source. Apparently, the tenants above had moved out, but forgot to cap their washing machine line, or something like that. Whatever the cause, I had the Oceans of Fun, western location, forming in my domicile. The water line to the above apartment was turned off, and, about an hour later, the carpet guy came, and started sucking out water, then set up some loud fans, and a dehumidifier that pumped out about 80 degrees of heat. Right outside my bedroom door. Oh yeah, and my A/C was not working, either. When it rains it pou. . . you get the idea.

So that was Thursday evening.

Friday, I had the day off, and, not wanting to deal with anything at my apartment, I went to the IMAX theater to re-watch Dark Knight. Definitely worth the $8 matinee to see it. Then, pretty much right after getting out, I headed to the airport to pick up Marin. Because my apartment was in great condition to host a guest. Actually, I'm extremely glad she came, because had she not, I probably would have had some sort of freak out.

Marin and I didn't do anything too exciting over the weekend, we went to see Wall-E (very good movie, cute and all that), ate at some good places, went to a ball game (Royals lost, there was about an hour rain delay, but still, baseball is goddamn awesome, so it was a good game), used the pool at the apartment complex (the outdoor one, not the one that formed in my bathroom), played some Wii, and somehow managed to get some sleep in the hot, noisy bedroom (insert joke here).

Since she left on Monday, my apartment has pretty much gotten back to normal as far as not having a 98% humidity inside, and the air conditioning has been fixed. Right in time for this "Excessive Heat Warning" we've had here since Thursday I think, and it's supposed to last until Tuesday night. What does an excessive heat warning mean? It's really freaking hot. Like, 97+ degrees with 70%+ humidity. For nearly a week straight. And what do I decide to do today? Hey, I should go sit outside for 5 hours! I went to the Royals game today (bringing me up to I believe 9 games here for the season, 10 including the one in Denver), and watched the Boys in Blue win a good one against the White Sox, my least favorite team in Major League Baseball. It was awesome. And "officially" 95 degrees at game time, climbing from there. But hey, it was a good game, I got to see one of my favorite non-Royals player in Ken Griffey, Jr. play, got a sweet camouflaged Royals hat, and probably sweat off 3 pounds.

Anyways, I'll try to get some pictures from Marin's visit (once she sends them to me), and maybe catch up on some Flenker Thumbs Up, and maybe a few bands to listen to. Maybe I'll try to actually keep up on here. Who knows!

Alright, it may be nap time. Oh wait no, it's ice cream time. Definitely ice cream time.