Monday, March 31, 2014

march thirty-first

Five for March 31st:

JB. Saturday may have been a little on the chilly side, but the park was packed with all the usual suspects coming out of hibernation. Felt great to skate something that wasn’t a mini ramp, and with some dudes I haven’t seen for a few months.

March. Another has come and gone, and it was a pretty good one overall. Got some bike rides in, the trees are starting to blossom, buds are coming up, the park is getting cleaned, and our garden has been tilled and is ready for this year’s vegetable crop.

Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare. Being a huge fan of the original RDR, I’d been meaning to pick up a copy of this game for a couple years now, and finally did so over the weekend. When I’ll get a chance to actually play it, however, is anyone’ s guess.

Cool stuff. Cardinals opening day, new issue of The Skateboard Mag, Ted Drewes with Jane and Lisa, Michael Jackson’s Beat It vocal demo, two generations of Chuck Taylors, sopapillas, Sumatra on autobrew, free pair of Creature rails.

Machacek Library. Our neighborhood library is an interesting building, almost like a fortified, windowless concrete bunker built into a hillside. I’d love to know some history on the building, there’s no way it was built to be a library.

Friday, March 28, 2014

march twenty-eighth

Five for March 28th:

Bird watching. Jane is all about it. With Clifton Park right behind us, there’s all manner of ducks and geese flying over the house, birds camped out on the power lines, and chickens in the neighbor’s back yard. It’s a veritable zoo.

Bikes. Got two good days of riding in a couple weeks ago and absolutely nothing since due to crummy weather or kid-transportation obligations. Hopefully back on the saddle Monday for what’s looking like a sunny, 75-degree day.

Epicly Later’d. With the exception of the John Cardiel episode, the six-part Ed Templeton Epicly Later’d is the best one yet by a long shot. Last part went online yesterday, go watch them all.

Cool stuff. 45 Minutes of Paul Stanley stage banter, new pack of Pike Place Vias, best Onion article in months, popcorn Friday, playing drums with Jane.

Weekend plans. Mellow one coming up, with super nice weather. Fish fry, housework, spring cleaning, scoping out bricks, JB skate session, hitting the playground, BMX, and fiery scrambles are all on the list of potential to-dos.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

march twenty-seventh

Five for March 27th:

18 month sleep regression. It’s apparently a thing, as we’re learning.

Local music eventage. This year’s Lo-Fi Cherokee (4/12) is looking to be super awesome (our LFC shoot and subsequent after-party at Foam were definitely some 2013 highlights), with Record Store Day weekend (4/18-4/20) and Midwest Mayhem at City Museum (5/15) just around the corner as well.

Ballpark Village. Somehow, it looks even lamer and more watered-down than I was expecting it to. I’ve never missed the old Busch Stadium more.

Cool stuff. Rodney Mullen – A Beautiful Mind, sticker sheets for Jane, Stunt Rock movie poster, Attila the Hun’s tomb discovered, chocolate chip cookies at work.

Donut love. This article proves what I have been saying for years: World's Fair Donuts are severely overrated. Also, St. Louis Hills Donut Shop continues to get no love despite being better than everything on this list. Also, Schnucks makes a damn good donut, and I'm not afraid to say it. Also, donuts are awesome.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

march twenty-sixth

Five for March 26th:

World Series. An anonymous (and informal) poll of MLB players predicts the Cardinals will win the next one. Who am I to argue?

Tuesday. Highlights included an impromptu lunch with Lisa at Mi Ranchito, Jane nodding off on my lap before bed, skate session at Ramp Riders with Andy, Chris, and Jesse, a late trip to Steak n’ Shake, and a much-needed full night of sleep. In that order.

Home ownership. Apparently our chimney cap blew off when we had some heavy winds and is currently sitting on our roof. It’s always something.

Cool stuff. New furnace filters, Thrasher Omar Salazar Instagram clip, 24-hour Powell NOS blowout, router relocation.

’73 Sequoia. There is a part of me that legitimately wants to leave my office right now, drive to Carbondale, and buy this.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

march twenty-fifth

Five for March 25th:

Breakfast Club. Generally speaking, I try to avoid “this makes me feel old” clichĂ©s whenever possible. But this makes me feel old.

Rough night. Jane had her worst night in probably six months last night. We’re not sure what it was- overstimulation before bed, night terrors, diaper rash, who knows- but she was up shrieking like a banshee until about 3 am. She was fine this morning and there were no signs of sickness, so hopefully it was an isolated incident.

It begs the question. Would it be considered cheating- or, perhaps, bad form- for a drummer in a Def Leppard tribute band to use both arms? You’ve got to think there’s at least one die-hard Rick Allen fanatic out there tying one arm behind his back for a gig.

Cool stuff. New toy trucks for Jane, Pollo Yucatan, hide and seek, hazelnut coffee, drumming to Powerslave, mini-ramp session tonight, insane Kevin Staab bootleg.

Gnarly weather. Woke up to a nice dusting of snow and frigid temperatures this morning. I made this to celebrate the occasion. This upcoming 60-70 degree weekend cannot get here quickly enough.

Monday, March 24, 2014

march twenty-fourth

Five for March 24th:

Front step removal. To my surprise, this big project I was thinking might easily take the better part of two days to accomplish was all but finished in the span of Jane’s first nap on Saturday morning. Getting them put back in might be a different story, but glad to get the job started.

R.I.P. Oderus Urungus. I’ve lost times of how many times I’ve seen Gwar over the years. From the early days of Kevin’s mom dropping us off at Mississippi Nights to working with them many years later when doing artist relations, they were always one of the most fun bands to see live, and also a very cool group of dudes. It’s a sad day for metal.

No fish fry. Beautiful evening weather on Friday made the idea of sitting inside a catholic school gymnasium eating fried fish sound like medieval torture, so we opted to grab some Greek food on the patio at Olympia. More expensive, but worth it.

Cool stuff. One thousand posts today (!), new issue of Transworld Skateboarding, 26 Reasons to Appreciate the Hidden Gem of St. Louis, homemade lasagna, Clifton Park cleanup day, donuts, abandoned space gun, 31" Star Wars Shock Troopers at Target.

Skating rules. Missed the Saturday trip to YAP, but managed to squeeze in a couple of hours at Ramp Riders on Sunday with the crew before heading out to north county. Felt super comfortable and thought I skated pretty well. Maybe it’s being there in the daylight? Also busted out the slider bar for a quick parking lot dork-around over on the Hill.

Friday, March 21, 2014

march twenty-first

Five for March 21st:

Screw the high road. Can we stop pretending we're above celebrating Fred Phelps' death, or that we're somehow reducing ourselves to his level by doing so? I will gleefully announce how happy I am that he's dead and if given the opportunity, I'd piss on his grave.

75 Degrees today. I love spring. Yeah, I know there’s some colder weather moving in, but I don’t care. I’m finished with the weather breaking my spirit for a few months. Keep your dourness to yourself.

999. Monday will mark the thousandth post on this blog. One thousand posts. Who would’ve thought? Hopefully it’s good. I make no promises.

Cool stuff. Ed Templeton Epicly Later’d parts 4 & 5, getting paid, Miss Vantastic: Queen of the Road, wagon rides, lunch skating, Deez Nuts on national television, Seoul Taco.

Weekend plans. Busy one: Tonight is Fish fry #3, Tom and Emily’s party, and Bruiser Queen at Heavy Anchor (with Kevin on bass). Front-step demolition and skateboarding tomorrow. Who knows what else.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

march twentieth

Five for March 20th:

First day of spring. Perhaps only the birth of my daughter counted as a more anticipated event than the end of this winter.

Thursday morning. The bad: had to leave earlier than usual for an 8:00 meeting and barely got to see Jane. The good: there were scones, danishes, and free Mad Libs desk calendars.

Kevin James Schneider. Big news day for my oldest friend and band mate of 20 years; who apparently is not only now engaged to his long-time girlfriend, but is also going to be playing bass with Bruiser Queen! Congrats.

Cool stuff. Treadmills with built-in flatscreens, Aldi Corona, unreal Wheel of Fortune solve, Chrome Ball Sean Malto interview, classic 80’s wrestling action figures, flatland season.

Art. I will freely admit that I have certain habits I’m unable to break when it comes to drawing. Even though I don’t take it seriously, I almost want to take a figure drawing class just so I can rid myself of them once and for all.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

march nineteenth

Five for March 19th:

Two-dollar Tuesday. Back in full force last night. They know us at SoHa these days, which is kind of funny to me. I guess it’s cool to be regulars at a neighborhood place in walking distance of our house.

Last day of winter. Finally made it to the technical end of what I would consider to be the longest and most brutal winter of my lifetime. Bring on the spring.

Upcoming shows on the radar. The Faint at the Ready Room, Holly Golightly at Firebird, Black Flag at the Blue Note.

Cool stuff. K-cups restocked at work, gym tonight, Nuggets collection, Mr. Show, coloring with Jane (and watching her try to figure out stickers).

CCS. I remember when the California Cheap Skates catalog was one of the coolest things on the planet earth, and you would count the days till it came in the mail. Now it is seriously one of the douchiest, most depressing mall-brand pieces of glorified toilet paper that exists. I wish I could wipe this iteration of it clean from my memory.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

march eighteenth

Five for March 18th:

Payout. During the entire duration of the band, we never paid ourselves- the money went straight back into the band for anything from recording costs to merchandise to travel expenses. However, since we broke up, getting a few payouts from the remaining band fund and the profits from the last show has been, admittedly, pretty nice.

Bread Company. Sometimes an asiago bagel and cup of dark coffee before work is just what the doctor ordered.

St. Patrick’s Day. Made the mistake of driving through Dogtown last night on the way home. What the hell was I thinking? By the time I turned onto Clayton and saw the first of many face-painted, green-shirted drunks stumbling around, it was already too late.

Cool stuff. Breakthrough evidence of the big bang, mornings with Jane, KDHX photos from the final show, Walking Dead on Amazon via Chromebook for $2, Kevin Tucker vs. Tom Knox Thrasher letters-section battle from 1996 revisited.

Working out. I have been completely dropping the ball on getting to the gym lately. In fairness, I’ve been pretty busy, but there’s no real excuse. Getting back to it this week.

Monday, March 17, 2014

march seventeenth

Five for March 17th:

Last show. Honestly could not have asked for a better final show for the band. Saturday was amazing. Jam-packed house, high energy, singing, dancing, two encores, free drinks, great weather, tons of friends. It was truly awesome. Pictures here, in case you missed it.

Playing music. What the future holds, I don’t really know, but I am excited for some time not having band commitments on my plate. If I play anything, at least for awhile, it’s going to have to be in the context of getting-together-to-jam sort of atmosphere with no expectations other than dork around and have fun.

Fish fry #2. Hit Epiphany for the second fish fry of the year. I forgot how clearly superior theirs is over Joan of Arc’s. Better fish, better mac & cheese, better sides, and also cheaper. Maybe St. Cecelia’s this Friday?

Cool stuff. My girls, friends in town, spring starts Thursday, portraits of metal musicians before they hated each other, Battlestar Galactica, popsicles, having a functional laptop, Psycho Stick bootleg, February eBay Watch.

Skating. Met up with Andy, Chris and Barry at Ramp Riders for a session yesterday following a week or so of self-imposed skate exile. Good times were had and Andy threw down some of the gnarliest lines I’ve ever seen.

Friday, March 14, 2014

march fourteenth

Five for March 14th:

Last jams. The final Blind Eyes practice wrapped up around 10:30 last night. It’s honestly unbelievable to me to think that we won’t be meeting up next Thursday, or ever again, to play these songs. Last show is tomorrow night, as you know. Be there or be square.

Press gang. Kevin Johnson did an interview with Seth for the Post Dispatch about the last show. It’s online now, and will be in print in Go! Magazine tomorrow.

Talking up a storm. Jane can pretty much get all the way through her ABCs now, but sometimes forgets the last few letters and caps it off with “EIEIO”, which kills me.

Cool stuff. Epiphany fish fry, breaking out the BMX, sweet roll breakfast sandwiches, free Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings poster, Tony Hawk bio for $1,

Superstitious minds. I haven’t set foot on a skateboard for over a week because I figured if ever I were going to do something to hurt my foot or ankle, it’d be the week before our last show. Better safe than sorry.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

march thirteenth

Five for March 13th:

No ride. Unscheduled early meeting and my needing to pick Jane up from school today means riding in didn’t happen as was semi-planned. Alas. It would’ve been a miserably cold ride anyway.

Band practice. Unless you count running a few songs at soundcheck on Saturday, the last Blind Eyes practice ever is happening tonight. Absolutely crazy.

Sick as a dog. Ol' Henry had a rough day yesterday. Don’t know if it was something he ate or what, but I’ll just say that the first thing I did when I got home last night was give him a bath and disinfect his crate. Luckily he seems to be back to normal now, and- truth be told- he needed that bath anyway.

Cool stuff. Ed Templeton Epicly Later’d part 2, Arrested Development revisited, another good Instagram update, four boxes of Girl Scout Cookies, Micronauts, lunch with Lisa and Tom at Mi Ranchito.

Bob Burnquist's floating ramp. There are some dudes that are just so next-level that they almost don’t count as normal humans anymore. Bob Burnquist is one of them.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

march twelfth

Five for March 12th:

Cold snap. Riding is out for me on Wednesdays no matter what, so this little bout of cool temps isn’t really cramping my style. Hopefully back on the bike tomorrow, taint-pain be damned.

Daily gnar. The kitchen upstairs at my office always features a delightful potpourri of freezerburn, microwave lasagna, and death, so I generally avoid it at all costs. However, it’s where the Keurig is now located, so braving it has become a daily occurrence.

Not shocking. Everyone who is going on about that "watching complete strangers kiss for the first time" video like it's some sort of amazing revelation obviously never spent any time at the Rocket Bar.

Cool stuff. My baby girl is 17 months old today, riding bikes, Mi Ranchito, loaner boom stand for the last show, new flash drive, listening to Jane sing the ABCs, Aldi-brau.

Home improvement. Came home last night to find Lisa’s dad had completely rebuilt our front steps, for which we will be eternally grateful. The steps that were there were a teetering, barely-functional mix of wobbly, uneven, crumbling concrete bricks that were certainly a safety hazard. Super relieved to have that project finished.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

march eleventh

Five for March 11th:

Day 2. Cannot overstate how good it feels to be riding again. Way nicer weather this morning than yesterday, with a high of near 80 for the ride home. Made it in to work in 35 minutes, which included a necessary stop at Starbucks.

Out every night. Nice little blurb (with accompanying photo) about Saturday’s show in the RFT. Are you gonna be there?

Ben Raybourn “Welcome” video. To quote Thrasher: “Ben is on a psychotic skate mission to ride the deepest pits and terrain ever. It's almost like Earth is running out of spots gnarly enough for him to ride.”

Cool stuff. Fresh box of Pike Place Roast K-cups, new pair of riding gloves, veggie stir-fry, stair repair, pre-spring Clifton Heights Park, new toothbrush, playing follow the leader with Jane, Buffalo Killers at Blueberry Hill.

990 posts. Ten to go till I hit one thousand posts, which, at least in my experience, is a pretty tremendous accomplishment in the world of blogging. Here's to a thousand more.

Monday, March 10, 2014

march tenth

Five for March 10th:

First ride of the year. Super amazing ride in to work this morning. Chilly, but nothing some full-fingered gloves and a hoodie couldn’t handle. In years past, the first ride after the winter left me feeling pretty beaten down, but this one was cake, like I never left. The 75 degree and sunny ride home will be life-affirming.

Wired. Picked up a sweet new Chromebook yesterday, at long last. We desperately needed something at the house that wasn’t an iPhone or a laptop from 2002.

Fish fry #1. Our old standby, Joan of Arc, ended up being the location for our inaugural fish fry on Friday night. Jane had a blast people-watching, and the mac & cheese was top notch. This week: Epiphany.

Cool stuff. Barbecuing, free cupcakes at Firebird, taking Jane to the playground, cleaning up my bike, Walking Dead, frozen yogurt gift card usage, Southwest Diner, charity k-cup.

The end of the line. My last week of being in the Blind Eyes starts today. It’s been a great ride. Come celebrate our grand exit on Saturday at Off Broadway!

Friday, March 7, 2014

march seventh

Five for March 7th:

On the rise. 60’s today, up into the 70’s next week, and daylight savings starts on Sunday. Planning on riding in on Monday morning for the first time in I don’t even know how long. Beyond excited for spring.

Fashion victim. I realized, a bit after the fact, that I have a sort of Indiana Jones look (sans-sable fedora) happening today. While I was perfectly happy with it when I left the house, now I’m not so sure it’s working. I think it’s the brown pants.

Countdown to zero. Really good practice last night. Ran the set front to back for the first time, sounding good despite a few hiccups. I know I sound like a broken record, but it’s crazy to me to know that these are some of the last times I’ll be playing these songs.

Cool stuff. Getting paid, Kevin Schneider poetry slam, building forts with Jane, last of the Starbucks k-cups, egg soufflé, Nuggets revisited, Twitter mockery.

Weekend. Fish fry, finally getting my car back, a free show at the Firebird, skating, taking Jane to the park, and generally being outdoors are all on the radar for this weekend.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

march sixth

Five for March 6th:

Down for the count. Came down with some sort of nasty 24-hour sickness on Tuesday night that completely wrecked me. Feeling a lot better today, thanks to a full night of sleep and consuming some actual food after 26 hours.

Things I missed while sick. Grabbing lunch with Tom, the first fish fry of the year, hastily organized skate session at Ramp Riders, three hours of work.

Practice. The second-to-last Blind Eyes practice ever goes down tonight. Definitely getting real now. Sad as I am to see the end in sight, I’m super excited for the show. Should be a fun one. Seth did an interview for the Post Dispatch that should be out soon, I’ll link it when it comes out.

Cool stuff. Spring-like temperatures, good Janey drop-off, Interpol Antics, where Lisa gets to lunch, the abandoned secret cinema of the Sinai desert, bank-to-curb next to the Walgreens on Manchester, Jeremy Klein "Candy Bar" reissue.

Instagram. Their updates are always good ones with few issues, which is welcome when it comes to apps I use all the time. The newest update lets you scroll through and preview pictures you’re about to post on the same screen, without going back and forth like you used to, which I hated. Well done.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

march fifth

SFS is closed today on account of I feel like absolute crap. Be back soon.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

march fourth

Five for March 4th:

March 4th. I’ll always remember some pep rally in high school where some guest speaker was talking about how someone he knew who was languishing in the hospital finally died on March 4th, and he thought it was the dying person’s way of telling him to “march forth”. I'm pretty sure he could actually hear me rolling my eyes.

Skateboarding. Super fun Monday night session at Ramp Riders with the usual suspects last night. Switched my wheels over to some softer Satori 99s last week, and have been digging it. They’re not as fast as what I’m used to, but way grippier, which is nice on that slick masonite.

Keurig. Mentioned this briefly already, but it’s worth repeating that the addition of a fully-stocked Keurig coffee maker at my office might be the best thing that has ever happened at this place in history. The fact that a steaming cup of Sumatra awaits me any time I want it is giving me a new outlook on the workday.

Cool stuff. The ultimate Rickroll, Knife Fight in the news, homemade chili, January eBay Watch, Ed Templeton Epicly Later’d, girl scout cookies.

Fish fry season. What *I* consider to be the official start of spring begins tomorrow. Hitting our first fish fry of the year at Epiphany, and hopefully another on Friday. My goal is to get to one every week. We shall see.

Monday, March 3, 2014

march third

Five for March 3rd:

Exit interview. Go grab a new issue of Eleven Magazine (they’re everywhere) and check out what is likely the best article/interview with my band that has ever been written, with some accommodating artwork from Sleepy Kitty. Very flattering stuff.

March. Starting off on the wrong foot with another blast of winter. At least we didn’t get the 6 inches of snow they were predicting, which I guess is a plus. If this isn’t it for the year, I think I will legitimately lose my mind.

JB. Andy, Bryan and I hit up JB for some marginally chilly, but totally worthwhile outdoor skating on Saturday. Felt so good to be outside rolling around on something that wasn’t masonite.

Cool stuff. Snotty kisses from my baby girl, Cadbury mini eggs, Kentucky Knife Fight at Off Broadway, avoiding Mardi Gras, Monday night Ramp Riding.

Urban Chestnut. Their new location in the Grove opened over the weekend, and we met up with Mary and Keith on Saturday to check it out. Super nice, impressively huge facility with great food and an enormous beer hall with tons of seating. We'll definitely be back.