Woops. I was supposed to fly out of Richmond on the 22nd, not the 23rd. That makes the total cost of my trip to the east coast double what it should have been. I paid twice both ways. I am stoked because I get to kick it in New York for two days, ride bikes, and practice kung fu on rooftops. Blessing in a three hundred dollar disguise.
THE TOUR WAS SO AWESOME!!!!!!
Every day was a different kind of pleasure.
We played with our old friends, Polka Madre, a gypsytastic ensemble that totally rocks and knows how to party! I practiced my spanish in the schoolbus they traveled in while we drank whisky out of a bum jug. I go ape shizzy for klezmer rock punk stuff. And to top it off, WE PLAYED WITH A MARCHING BAND!! If you know me, you know that this is super exciting. I didn't stop moving the whole night. Our man JC set the whole thing up, and he played "Shoop" and I rapped along before our set. Then the next morning we went to The Modern Diner and ate great greasy grub, then took a picture just like we did two years ago. We always laugh a crap ton in the parkinglot there. We got back to HQ and played a game of memory dance chain and took off towards Philly.
This hot hunk of a man lives in Philly and I couldn't wait to see him. It was a long trail over bridges and through the tolls. We stopped in NYC to pick up Japuncles Ian and Riley, and caravanned towards the city of brotherly love. The show was incredible!!! We rushed in, played a sweaty show, Cutthroats crowdsurfed and provided bottles of liquor. When Japanther played, the water pipes from the ceiling busted and it was like someone supersoakered the whole basement. Here is Santana crowd surfing amidst the water.
Here's the Dan's (whose house it was. The Dan's Party) holding up the pipes:
from sigur.rosenthal on flickr.com
Monday! Monday! Monday!
At this point the weekend was over but our weekend continued. I was anxious that no one would show to the show as it got later, but I forget that NY is a late night city. In one five minute time period, all of my friends from all over the country showed up at once. I got tackled by two Oaklandians while two Utahns were honking and screaming my name. When I got around to everyone with a huge hug, six bike homies showed including the secret hunk who said he wasn't coming to NY. I was so shaky. I spent the whole day forgetting about him and feeling empty, and BAM! surprise. Of course it all happens at once. I had to freak out and hide behind the van for some five element qi gong. Homies from Seattle, homies from Richmond, lots of blokes came out of the woodwork for the show.
Inside, Riley had installed his conceptual art series of life size drawings of the Golden Girls wrestling the Sex and the City chicks. That was the backdrop for the show.
images from dirty dirty finger on flickr.com
We went back to Lori40's house and fell asleep with cold fried chicken in our bellies.
I haven't been to Ohio since I was 2 years old, so I was interested to check it out. We sure were tired from playing hard four days in a row, but we put on our whore make up and tightened up our tour version of a Sprockettes song to perform for the 80's night dance party. We had good times catching up with old friends, and I got my first shower of the week.
Oh my goodness!! We roll up to the Bike Haus in the Golden Nugget and there is already a big party with couches outside, a grill in process, and a keg underway. These kids have so much flava! A group of them had just been exposed to extreme bike culture via B.I.K.E. the movie and their attendance of the Slaughterama. They had made a bike gang because they were sick of being called fags on their bikes. Then they saw the movie and one of their friends told them about his homies The Cutthroats and Evil Fool's Day. They came out and were totally blown away. Their energy was fabulous. First song into our set, the crowd broke the keyboard cord. Thrash city! I was really stoked because we had never been there before, but the kids knew our songs!! Mad Love!
We woke in the morning with some mermaid coffee and hightailed it for Shannon and Zach's old town. Somewhere in Kentucky we get a call saying that we don't have a show at all. We devise a secret plan to show up anyways, act oblivious, and try to get on the bill. We show up and the booker shuts us down. We even left Zach in the car for the full femme effect. We talk to the manager and blame it on our pretend booker. The manager is the owner of The Claremont. Yes, the legendary strip club, and they can throw us on the bill. Shannon is so stoked, and we send word through a connect in Richmond to get the myspace word out. No show to a legendary venue. Tight! We got to put our whore make up on next to actual strippers. Shannon got to try on a skirtbelt thang to sexy up her outfit. We took shots of SoCo with the girls. The show was hilarious. Shannons mom and dad were there, stoked, and probably had kinky sex later that night. Emy channeled her inner stripper and was taking the stage to town. It was great.
We all went on a shopping spree in little five points the next day. I got a huge crystal and a cd. This is the first cd I have bought in like five years.
We are set to play this show in an airplane hangar and the sweet kids reminded me of Portland real bad. Stinky farm punks rule. They made us a huge pot of spaghetti and we let everyone spray our stencils on their clothes. The first band gave me the warm fuzzies-I-want-to-cry-because-life-is-beautiful-lip-quiver thing. It just solidified my belief in RAD America. After the show we went to the Phag Pharm to stay on 30 acres of beautiful green country. We wake in the morning to a full spread of grits, eggs, biscuits and gravy, and coffee. We took a walk to the family graveyard and Zach got attacked by red ants. It was so refreshing to be away from the noise and chaos of the city. After a quick look around the town we headed out for our last show in Asheville.
It was raining and the sky was flashing red lightning. We showed up to the venue and there was a big bonfire and a screening of "The Colossus of the Rails" movie venerating the cowboy hat train moniker guy. I had him sign my book and Zach bought two of his stencils. We played a full octane show. We had so much to give. It was our second to last show ever and we had been amassing positive power the whole tour. I kept looking up from my keyboard and seeing huge smiles and being able to play harder and dance higher. The kids really liked our show, and many lamented our demise. I got to see Kirsten from Utah as a surprise and oh boy that was great!
Around 1am we pulled out into the fog for a night jaunt back to Richmond to relieve Zach's mom of babysitting duty. I slept the whole day. So did most of us, except the super mom Noelle, who took Starlet to the Children's Museum after driving all night. Trooper!
Our last show and I felt hollow. How could such a cool part of my life be about to close? I had grown so close to everyone in that van, staying up late with the parents, and realizing that all my bandmates are the people who have been there for every cool crazy thing I have done. We have good mojo together. Well, at least we get one more blast. Polka Madre returns, bleary eyed from a four shows in two days jam in NYC. We drink a Sparks together and set up. The place is super small, and we have to set up in front of the doors, so as people showed up for the music, we had to let them in from back stage and shove them into the audience. It was neat. It was like they were in the band for a second. We played pretty well. I tried to keep looking up and soaking in the lovely faces that would be in my last show ever memory file. Then Polka Madre played and I ended up dancing on the bar in my high heels and prom dress. It was RAD! Then Noelle got my attention and it was obvious that she had talked to all the people around her, because she wanted me to crowd surf and everyone was looking at me with their hands up. I loved it! It was so exhilarating. I haven't really crowdsurfed since I was a teen. Tah dah. The end.
Now I'm about to go to New York for a couple of days for bike adventures and the gateway home. I am so stoked, because The Deralieurs are playing a show in two weeks and I still have to learn the choreography.
Life in the Fast Lane.