Our Musical Monday

Last Monday we had tickets to a unique concert experience.  A very cool musician was starting a Supper Club Tour – performing in people’s homes all across the United States with the concert-goers bringing the supper.  He is wrapping up the Midwest portion of his tour this weekend, I believe, and then starting the West Coast portion in Des Moines (Des Moines = West Coast? Who knew?) in October.  He asked for people to open their homes for the event.  I wanted to volunteer either my parent’s home or my brother’s home for a concert spot but decided that my life is chaotic enough – so we just made it our mission to get tickets.

Tickets obtained (the show was sold out!) so we needed to figure out what to bring for supper!  I finally thought of cheesy potatoes and Marissa agreed that was the perfect Midwestern potluck food.  Then that day I realized that the bow-tie wearing Jeremy also warranted a little bowtie pasta salad!  His handmade bow-ties were part of his merch, after all.

The address of the venue was emailed out on Sunday and ours was an art studio downtown Rochester – not a home but a cool space.

Fagan Studios for the Supper Club Tour

We arrived and found our names on the guest list (no tickets issued) and tried to find space for our food!  What an incredible amount of food! When lining up, it was hard to decide what to eat, as there were four full tables of deliciousness to choose from.

Supper: Table 1 of 4 = good stuff!

We got our yummy food and then Jeremy began playing.  He played for 90 minutes, which just flew by!

Singing one of his smart and quirky songs, I’m sure.

I asked about his writing process, because that always interests me.  I know I’m a writer-wanna-be.  He says he will just obsess about a lyric or a melody until he’s done with it or sick of it.  He finds deadlines to be helpful and wrote a beautiful song for his wife.  On Valentine’s Day.

Here’s the lyrics to one of his songs that I like:

Beautiful Children lyrics

Warm house, cold hand
I was standing outside,
Trying to find your doorbell
At 2 am
Ran all the way,
Hope that you weren’t sleeping

You rubbed your eyes
Gently with the palm of your left hand
We talked a while
And you told me how much you appreciate me
and I knew that it was time for me to stay or leave
So I started walking home,
Sawing teardrops in the snow
We’ll be friends forever
But i’m afraid that you’ll never love me

You met someone
At the show when you went home for the weekend
And he makes you laugh
Somehow I remind you little of him

Two perfect hands
A part time job that says that he loves children
I lost my tongue
Until now you never felt that you missed anyone
And even tough it’s early,
You think it could be love

Another heartsick lullaby
But i can’t seem to make you cry
We’ll be friends forever
But i’m afraid that you’ll never love me

Does he love you?
Does he love you?
I hope he loves you
If he doesn’t,
At least you’ll have beautiful children, beautiful children

He played a couple of new songs, including “Someday Someone” and “I Want to be Your One Night Stand.”  Very fun and clever. Afterwards we got our photo taken with him and bought some Merch (from him, not a Merch Girl – another of his songs).

Good times

We had such a great time.  And the cheesy potatoes were a HIT as the pan was empty when I picked it up!  Not many people can say that.

Looking forward to our next Musical Adventure – as soon as next Saturday!  Glen Hansard at First Ave…

Ah, life is good.

Mid-Summer Movie Update

A Night at the Movies (film)
A Night at the Movies (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since my last movie update, when I talked about the Independent Film Festival, I have seen a few movies.  Not as many as my marathon summer last year, but the ones I have seen I have really enjoyed!

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Five Year Engagement – In May I saw this film and it was good.  I love Jason Segal and Emily Blunt and it was a fun movie, which wasn’t predictable.  A plus, in my books!

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel – What a treat this was!  We definitely skewed the age demographic a bit, as there were many people 60 and over, but it was so fun.  It was a great audience with people talking back to the screen and making jokes, and the movie was a delight.  Loved the sights!

What to Expect When You’re Expecting – I wasn’t expecting this to be as good as it was!  I thought it would be a predictable meaningless movie, but it was more than that.  Worth seeing, even if you aren’t Expecting!  It was funny and touching.  Good stuff.

Rock of Ages – And this was fun.  Just silly fun.  I know that I smiled throughout the whole thing, sometimes in disbelief at Tom Cruise’s character, and sometimes at the silly lines and predictability of the show, but it was a good time.

People Like Us – I didn’t know what to expect with this one, but it was really good as well!  A nice story; again, an unpredictable and well-told story.  There were moments of discomfort, but the resolution was worth it.

To Rome With Love – Woody Allen movie set in Rome.  I was at the 10:00 PM showing, and that sometimes is a different audience.  This time was no exception.  There were three gentlemen who sat in the back and conversed with each other, loudly, in another language, throughout the entire show.  I weighed whether or not I should say something and eventually decided to chalk it up to ambiance in the film-going experience.  This movie had several story lines running through it and some I liked more than others.  It was fun and beautiful.

Moonrise Kingdom – What a fun movie this was!  Silly and sweet and laugh-out-loud quirky.  I really like Wes Anderson movies (The Royal Tennenbaums, Rushmore) and this one does not disappoint.  It was really good.

Magic Mike – Ah.  With the girls, this was a lot of fun.  It certainly didn’t live up to everyone’s expectations, as it turned out to be a pretty realistic and gritty view of the life of a male stripper, so the comedy was hard to find.  But the scenery was great and the company was perfect.

In theaters now I would like to see Brave, Safety Not Guaranteed and Take This Waltz.

On DVD I hope to see Friends with Kids, and Salmon Fishing in Yemen.

I just watched Jeff, Who Lives at Home and The Newlyweds, and really liked them both.  I also have almost finished the NBC series “Smash.” I have the season finale to watch and I keep putting it off!

That’s my May to Mid-July movie wrap up!  What have you seen that you have loved this summer?


Sense of Adventure: Saying YES

Cover of "Yes"
Cover of Yes

One of the things on my list of 40 things was to say YES more (right after saying NO more! Different reasons…).  Saying YES (to me) means being open to spontaneous adventures and experience and doing things outside my comfort zone.

Sunday my friend Sarah texted and asked if I’d like to come over and get my photo taken for a photo project to be exhibited at the Rochester Art Center.  I didn’t get ready in time but during a walk we found the photographer and it happened.  It wasn’t hard to say YES to having my picture taken but when the camera was walking towards me I did feel a little intimidated.  And it was an in-your-face-photo, so I thought he probably only got my eyes in the frame, but I guess the macro lens captured my entire face.

In Your Face

The photographer was asking random people and having a hard time getting people to say YES to having their photo taken so he was looking for people he knew to bring his numbers up.  Why would someone say NO to  having their picture taken?  Was it the thought of someone getting too close?  The thought of having it hanging on a wall outside of your home?

Well, I said YES and I’m excited to attend the opening of the exhibit tomorrow night*** and to see all of the other Rochester people who said YES.

Off to read!

*** I always write my posts the night before and set them to publish in the morning… so the art exhibit opening is TONIGHT – Thursday!  The exhibit runs for a while, but tonight is the opening night.  Just a clarification!

40 Things (30!)

The Passage of Time
Image by ToniVC via Flickr

Following along with Boof’s 40 Day Challenge leading up to her 40th birthday, day 30!  Her topic is:

30) A favourite sensational novel

I wasn’t quite sure what Boof meant when she chose this topic – a book that makes a sensation when published? a book that has a storyline so sensational that you can’t believe it? a book everyone is talking about?

So I googled it.

And got a lot of hits for “sensation novels,” British novels written in 1860-1880.  (See Wikipedia definition summary: The sensation novel was a literary genre of fiction popular in Great Britain in the 1860s and 1870s, following on from earlier melodramatic novels and the Newgate novels, which focused on tales woven around criminal biographies, also descend from the gothic and romantic genres of fiction. Typically the sensation novel focused on shocking subject matter including adultery, theft, kidnapping, insanity, bigamy, forgery, seduction and murder.)

Well I’m pretty sure this is what Boof meant, as I’ve seen her talk about some of these books and she is British, and I’m also pretty sure that I haven’t read any books of this type.  There was a list of books in this genre and the closest to anything I’ve ever read was “Great Expectations,” except I haven’t read it.  I’ve read Charles Dickens.  🙂  Crime fiction is not my favorite type of fiction and I don’t read too many books written pre-1900.  One book that I loved (that doesn’t fit this in the true sense of the term or at all, really) was “Time and Again” by Jack Finney – a story about time travel to New York City – 1880.

Goodreads summary:  First published in 1970, this highly original cult classic tells the story of Simon Morley, a young Manhattan illustrator who is selected by a secret government agency–presumably to test Einstein’s theory that the past actually co-exists with the present–and finds himself suddenly transported back to the New York of the 1880s. Written with style and elegance, this bold, visionary novel provides “Mind-boggling, imagination-stretching, exciting, romantic entertainment.”– San Francisco Examiner.

I loved this book and was excited when the sequel was written in 1995.  I believe I have that one on my bookshelves.

Harry Connick, Jr. - Oh, My NOLA

#30 on my list of 40 things was: Go to see Harry Connick Jr. in concert, which I did on April 5, 2007!  Deadra and I both have loved Harry Connick, Jr. since his early days – his music and his goofy acting career.  Will and Grace – loved it!  Hope Floats – how fun!  When Harry Met Sally music – superb!  I have a LOT of his albums so was glad that he toured during the time that I was working on this list and we were able to see him at the Orpheum in Mpls.  Good times with good friends and good music.

Off to read!

40 Things (23)

Pippi Longstocking (book)
Image via Wikipedia

Following along with Boof’s 40 Day Challenge leading up to her 40th birthday, next topic is:

23) A book that is a most treasured possession

Because of the flood, many of my childhood books were destroyed so anything that I have from my childhood is treasured by me.  It’s kind of funny, because I’ll be at my brother’s house and find a book that somehow ended up at his house but was inscribed to me and I’ll just steal it back to my house, thankful that it survived.  So I now own my Pippi Longstocking book as well as a Child’s Book of Prayers.  Yay!

Some of my favorite books were in high bookshelves upstairs, so I am still thankful that I have them – like “Now We Are Six” and the poetry books I compiled in high school.  When cleaning out my flooded house, the gravity of it all hit me when I picked up my book journal and threw it away.  I kinda lost it then.  Books that were surrounding my bed were all a loss – imagine that TBR pile disappearing!

How depressing that is!  I also treasure books that I’ve had autographed recently.  It was fun to read the books, discuss them with the author, and get them autographed by those fantastic women.  Good stuff.

# 23 on my list was to: Go to local art galleries.  I make it a conscious choice to visit art galleries and museums whenever I can.  I also do my best to support them in my small way by making purchases there for gifts or for myself.  I can’t afford big art but I can buy hand painted cards or earrings.  As I have said before, the first art museum I went to was eye-opening and made me wonder why I hadn’t been going to them all my life!

Off to read!

40 Things (10)

Creepy Woods
Image via Wikipedia

Following along with Boof’s 40 Day Challenge leading up to her 40th birthday, day 10 (not sure I’ve ever posted ten days in a row before!):

10) A book that gave me the creeps

Hmmm again. I tend not to read books that give me the creeps. “The Giver” gave me the creeps (don’t like dystopia anymore) and I remember reading “Amityville Horror” as a teen, and that is memorable. Whenever I see a lot of flies in a room, I remember…

I don’t like to feel creeped out or grossed out or scared, so I really choose not to “feed my head” things (books, movies, TV) that would make me have any of those feelings.

On my list, #10 Watercolor – a class? just for fun?

Again, pathetic. I did some watercolor classes in the past and have dabbled in it a bit, but never to much finesse. It is relaxing and fun. I wonder where my watercolor/art tub went… I think I loaned it to someone before the flood and haven’t gotten it back yet!  Must call her…

I took a Chinese brush painting class and spent quite a lot of money framing my “masterpiece” of that day, but it doesn’t match my decor at this point so it is in the closet.  Ah, well.

Off to read!

School Library Days

Here Come the Littles
Here Come the Littles Image via Wikipedia

I read a lot of book blogs and someone posted some questions about memories related to school and books.  I have a lot of memories about reading when younger, so I’ll answer a few of the questions – and hope you will too!

  • What’s your favorite bookish school memory?
  • Did your teacher read aloud to you? Do you remember what book it was?
I vividly remember Mrs. Karnath reading aloud “The Call of the Wild.” I know she read a lot of books aloud but that’s the only title I can remember right now. That was 5th grade!!
  • Do you remember what books you checked out at the school library?
I was just telling my niece that my favorite book that I would check out over and over was “No Flying in the House.” It was about a girl who realizes that she is a fairy and can fly around. You can tell if you’re a fairy if you can kiss your elbow. 🙂 Years later I went to the elementary library and looked for this book and it was gone. I haven’t searched for it online … yet. I also remember reading all the books about the Littles – little people who lived in the walls and had tails. I never read the Borrowers, but think they’re similar genres. And Trixie Beldon books were favorites with me and Maureen.
I loved the library and going there.
I didn’t start going to the public library until after college. It was always such a dark and quiet place with a crabby librarian, so it didn’t feel inviting at all.
  • What was one of the first book reports you did for school?
  • Do you have a favorite book or author that you first heard about from a teacher or school project?
  • Do you have a not-so-pleasant bookish memory from your school days?
How about you? Any answers to the above questions? Any great memories of reading in your school years?
Off to read!