Monday, September 17, 2007


Did a little old school partying this past weekend down in Austin, Texas. If you've never been there, you're missing out on the world's largest collection of white people with really bad tattoos. Quite a collection I should say. They actually have a motto down there they seem quite proud of: Keep Austin Weird. It's on hats and t-shirts and mugs at the airport. They fancy themselves a little different - and compared to the rest of Texas, they are most certainly that.

My reason for being there was Crowded House. Just a month after seeing one of my favorite music artists at the (Crowded) House of Blues in Chicago, I was back for more...this time in the scalding Texas sun at Austin City Limits, a now-famous 3-day music festival that's basically like a corporate-sponsored Woodstock for Generation whoever. Lots of live music, beer, pot, deep fried food, and really bad tattoos. Not the good bad. The bad bad. I'm pretty sure half of them were made at home using a hot skillet and a ball-point pen.

Crowded House rocked, by the way. Again. They even made rain, believe it or not. In the middle of a sunny, steamy hot summer day they managed to conjure up a little liquid from heaven. And it happened during the song "Fall at Your Feet," which features the chorus line: "Whenever I fall at your feet, you let your tears rain down on me." And as we sang along, it actually started to rain. It was more than a little moving - borderline spiritual in a way. I'm sure the beer also helped in this regard. The band immediately recognized their accomplishment and changed their set to squeeze in the tune "Weather With You." Everywhere you go, always take the weather with you...

As a side note to my recent adventure, I wanted to share a little bit of Americana with you. Flying from Chicago to Austin was going to run somewhere between $434-$900 round trip - unless, by some quirk in the system, I flew Northwest Airlines northwest to Minneapolis first and then down to Texas. That cost was $288 after taxes. Sold!

During my layover at the Minneapolis airport, I decided to check out the restroom where Senator Larry Craig was arrested for his wide-stance tap dance routine. I was going to snap a photo of the crime scene for your files, but decided against taking photographs in a busy airport bathroom for fear of meeting the same ironic fate as the Senator himself. I'm pretty sure the other patrons would not have been comfortable with me shooting digital pictures while they did their business.

The best I could do was this shot of the outside of the restroom. I also should note that the stall next to the one Craig was arrested in was closed for business. They'd wrapped the commode in garbage bags and roped off the stall with yellow tape. No joke. Perhaps the Solicitor General wanted to dust for prints.

After snapping this photo I went in and sat down for a few minutes, fucking with fellow travelers by tapping my foot under their stall a few times once they sat down. Try it some time - at your own risk, of course.

No comments: