Old Dog, New Tricks

I grew up in Richmond, Virginia. When I lived there, it was a pretty poor excuse for a major city. Sure, there was all that history, the beautiful old buildings, the James river and the greenery. There was soul food and plenty of places to get pancakes. But if you wanted ethnic food, your choices were Olive Garden or Chi-Chis. The vegetarian option most places was vegetable sides and rolls. If you wanted to see a major band that wasn’t Christian or Country, you usually had to drive to D.C. There were, in fact, 4 country radio stations but no modern rock station. Every other car on the road sported a gun rack, a rebel flag, or both. There was a pretty cool small punk rock scene and that was definitely where I spent my free time. But other than that, it was pretty difficult to locate any culture at all.

I lived in Richmond (well…OK…the suburbs thereof) for 11 years. When I graduated from high school, I couldn’t wait to get out of there. I went to college as far away as I possibly could and still live in the continental U.S. I visited several times a year until I graduated and never really noticed any progress. So once I started living my adult life, I hardly ever had reason to go back. I took my friend Faye as my date to my dad’s wedding in 2002. Our hotel was downtown. When the wedding wrapped up at 11, we weren’t ready for bed so we hit the town. It was a Friday. But the town was empty. We went into a bar where a man was playing acoustic guitar. We were the only people in there besides him and the bartender. We ordered drinks and sat down in the back. We clapped in between songs and then regretted it because he started talking to us. From stage. After every song. Eventually, he asked us for requests. We finished our drinks and left. We wandered around for a bit longer before deciding to see what was on pay per view back in the hotel.

When my friend Frank chose to move there, I thought he was nuts. He insisted it was a cool place. Frank is a pretty hip guy, but I had a hard time believing him.

This past weekend, my dad retired from his company after working there for 22 years. They loved him and threw him a big party. He’s been working, in some capacity, since he was 14 years old. He raised 2 kids, and then, when he finally shuffled them out of the house, he re-married and got 2 more kids. My husband and I went to celebrate his well-deserved break. It was held at the Art Museum. The food was amazing. There were speeches and lots of leaky eyes. There was a D.J., dancing (mostly done by my dad and step mom) and an open bar (mostly utilized by yours truly). It was a terrific party.


My step mother leads the charge on The Electric Slide

But that my dad had touched this many people, that they admired and respected him so much and were sad to see him go, that they could throw such a terrific party in his honor, were not the surprising things. What surprised me, was that Richmond is no longer a lame place to live.


My old man gives a speech…makes everyone cry.

It’s actually really cool there now. REALLY cool. On Friday before the party, B and I wandered around. We had sweet tea and sweet potato fries at Gutenbergs, a cafe with several vegetarian and vegan options. We did the Canal Walk. We checked out the Poe Museum (inside the oldest standing house in Richmond, est. 1737). We had lunch with my dad and aunt at Millie’s Diner, another menu full of vegetarian options. I took pictures of an old train, old buildings and lots of murals. That stuff was all there when I lived there, of course. The preservation of old buildings has long been my favorite thing about the city. They really have a respect for history there. I wish Seattle would take a queue from them sometimes.

On Saturday, we hung with Frank. He took us to yet another cafe full of vegetarian options. Then he rattled off, like, FIVE things going on that day that sounded cool. Unfortunately, they were all outdoors and the weather had other plans for us. It hardly ever rains in RVA but when it does, it pours. And pour it did. We decided to go to the store and get some BBQ ingredients in the hopes that it would let up. If it didn’t, we could still BBQ and eat inside. If it did, we could wander around or maybe hit one of the day’s outdoor events.

When we left the grocery store, it had stopped raining and the sun was out. We dropped off the groceries and went for a walk down Carey street. It was always the coolest street in Richmond, but it wasn’t always so diverse. In addition to the boutiques and movie theatre of old, there are now indie book stores, knick knack shops, gourmet ice cream (chai and mexi-chocolate flavors!) and a huge record store. We spent some time at Chop Suey, a hip bookstore complete with cat. Got some aforementioned ice cream and headed back to the house.


$2 movies at the historic Byrd theatre.

And then it rained again. So much so that we couldn’t make it the remaining 3 blocks without getting drenched. Fortunately, there was a bar right there and they didn’t mind that we had dripping ice cream cones. We had a beer and waited out the rain. Then we returned to Frank’s incredibly cool row house for some porchin’. God, I love porchin’. Our next house absolutely must have a porch on which we can place a couch or a swing. It’s imperative.


Porchin’ it.

After BBQ we headed out to an event that was, thankfully, indoors: the Found! Magazine show at Gallery 5. The founders of Found! were there, reading their favorite found notes, letters and receipts and singing songs inspired by said found words. It was a pretty incredible show. (And guess what! They’re coming to Seattle this summer!).


Indoor BBQ.


Found! Magazine show.

After that, we returned to Frank’s place to shoot pool, listen to music and chat with him and his awesome girlfriend, who had returned home from work at the liquor store. She had some terrific stories about said job. We also dug into my earlier impulse buy of a Carvel’s ice cream cake. Sadly, there was no Cookiepuss, (OR Fudgy, the Whale), but it was delicious nonetheless.

All day long I marveled about how much fun I was having. I mean, when I lived there, I had fun sometimes, but it wasn’t easy. This was effortless fun. Throughout the day, I saw fliers everywhere for things I wanted to do if only I was staying longer. Cure cover bands, 80’s and electro dance nights, readings and art shows. It was like Georgetown had been transplanted to the South. I suppose it had to happen sometime. A city can’t live in the past forever. Cheap rent attracts poor, creative types, some of whom are vegan and many of whom sport sleeve tats. I’m really happy that it happened to RVA. It’s no longer the stagnant, backwards place I grew up in. It’s even somewhere I could see myself living again (if I could get past the unbearable summer heat and mosquitoes).

Perhaps the biggest sign of change (after their blue state showing in the 2008 election) is that, in December, they are banning smoking in public places. It won’t be like in Seattle. You’ll still be able to smoke right in front of doors. Furthermore, “private clubs” will still allow smoking so a lot of bars will probably turn private, using the Utah model of $1-5/year membership fees. I bet elementary school children don’t even go to Philip Morris for field trips anymore.


It’s toasted!

Yes, Virginia is now a blue state with smoking bans and vegan restaurants. Things are looking up for America. And I’m so happy that RVA is doing their part. I was filled with pride this past weekend. Pride for my (current) dad and my (former) home state.

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Memorial Day Camping Recap

Esswine is an amazing spot outside of Granite Falls, WA. It is well worth the $60/night price to reserve a private campground which fits up to 25 people and several cars. Dogs welcome. A stone’s throw away from a peaceful river and short driving distance to many transcendent hikes.

We were unable to check out the ice caves due to a road closure, so instead we hiked the stone train track ruins of the Old Robe Trail. This was some serious Indiana Jones shit.

We scaled rocks and fallen trees, crossed streams on logs…
oldrobetrail

…and walked through tunnels.
oldrobetrail

The trail was alongside a rushing river most of the way. It felt exciting but still safe. It ended right after the second cave, dropping off into the river.
oldrobetrail

And oh my god, was it beautiful.

The rest of the time, we played Bocce Ball, ate our weight in camping treats, smelted aluminum in the fire to make treasures and giggled our way through the weekend. What a great group of people! What a kick-ass spot! What a delightful way to kick off the Summer of Love.

smelting

Granite Falls also seemed like a pretty cool little town. One of these weekend, we have to go back, get a motel room, and absorb the local color via their several taverns, one of which boasts Friday night karaoke.

Summer Aught Eight!!!

Summer Paid a Visit

This past weekend in Seattle was absolutely gorgeous. B and I made a point to be outside every possible moment because, wouldn’t you know it, it’s raining again today. And will do so until Friday. But then we will presumably have another lovely weekend, just in time for out annual Memorial Day camping trip. Anyway, here’s how I spent my summer weekend. Continue reading

Weekend Recap

Friday
Brugos and I rested and then went to dinner at Tutta Bella for a friend's birthday. It was really good even though the atmosphere was vaguely Spaghetti Factory-ish and our 15-year old waiter was kind of silly. (He made a point to tell us how VERY EXPENSIVE the artichokes on our Antipasti were and he had a really hard time opening a bottle of wine. Come here, sonny. Give that bottle to grandma.)

After dinner we were the yuppiest looking people at El Chupacabra. Their juke box has the Misfits on it. Fuck yes.

Saturday

My dad was supposed to arrive at 11:30am. He was only going to be in town for 24 hours anyway, on his way to California for a business trip. He got as far as Phillie before his flight was CANCELED. The next available flight out was 8:30pm. He would arrive in Seattle at 2:30am. He would not be able to attend the paintball excursion at Fort Lewis for the aforementioned friend's birthday. This made me very sad, but in retrospect, he mightn't have liked paintball. It's brutal. I have one hell of a fuckoff bruise on my arm. It looks pretty awesome. Brugos' neck bled from one hit. I'm not very good at paintball, but I did aid our otherwise underdog team to one victory. I was on the front lines. It was the only time I actually hit anyone. The rest of the time, I got hit. A lot. It also hurt. But running around in the woods in olive green with a paintball gun is FUN. And great exercise. I certainly couldn't do it every day. And it confirmed my suspicions that I would last about 5 minutes in a real war. But I recommend doing it at least once. Even if you think you're a pussy. Because I'M a huge pussy.

We paintballed for 6 hours. Brugos and I went home to shower and rest, with the intention of going out again later. After my shower and some food, I started to feel nauseous. I then threw up. I felt a little better, but not much. I lay on the couch, on Brugos and couldn't move. I assume now that I was dehydrated. But I still couldn't make it out. Just as well because the evening's birthday activity was Big Boy Poker. Brugos left and I stayed in and watched Starship Troopers, having flashbacks from earlier in the day.

Sunday

My dad, finally arrived in Seattle and somewhat rested, came over and we went to Serephina for brunch. I had the most amazing fritatta ever. It contained truffles, so you know it had to be good. People don't fuck around with truffles.

After breakfast, we went to the EMP/Sci-Fi Museum. It's pretty cool to see things like the Power Loader from Aliens and props from Dune, but both “museums” aren't so much histories of music and sci-fi respectively, but histories of Paul Allen's interests. And it really shows. But hey, it's only $15 now to get into both. So you might as well check it out once.

We went to Guaymas for a drink and snack before my dad had to catch a plane to Cali. I hadn't seen my dad in 4 years. We're not estranged. Just busy. But I didn't realize how much I'd missed him. I'd missed him a lot. He's a really good man and a great father. He made some mistakes. Mistakes are inevitable. But parenthood has got to be the most difficult job a person can have. And my dad figured it out pretty well. I can only hope, that should I become a parent, I could do the same.

With my dad off to the airport, Brugos and I had the evening to ourselves. So we went to see Sunshine (see review below) and spent the rest of the night talking about it. It was that good.

Weekend Recap

I haven't done one of these in a while. I had a really great long weekend though. After spending a lovely, sunny 4th at 2 different BBQs, Brugos and I packed up the 'Stang and headed to the coast for a couple of days of beach camping.

Our trip got off to a slightly rocky start when the direction flew out of the car. Therein lies the problem with convertibles. But we'd read them and could (mostly) remember them and we figured signs would help us the rest of the way. After we made a wrong turn, I felt REALLY bad about losing the directions. But we turned around and were soon on the right track again.

When we finally arrived at La Push's Second Beach (the internet claimed it was the best of the 3 options), we parked the car and strapped on our hiking packs. We had to hike about half a mile down to the beach. Because we had all of our food and water for the next two days on our bodies, it was kind of a rough hike. But it was mostly downhill. When we got down to the beach and scaled the driftwood, we saw our new temporary home. It was truly breathtaking. It was also, miraculously, still warm and sunny which mislead us into thinking it would stay that way. We pitched our tent (we're getting really good at doing it quickly) and lay some rocks inside it to keep it from blowing away. (It was THAT windy). We then set about building a lean-to with driftwood to hopefully block some of the wind. Unfortunately, driftwood is much heavier than it looks and our lean-to ended up not making much of a difference. It was, however, a blast to build. And quite cool looking, if I do say so myself.

We ate dinner (everything we brought was dehydrated so we'd only need to boil water for cooking) and then sat around the little fire we built for a while, playing Uno. The view was amazing. Those rocks jutting out of the water look almost other-worldly. The whole scene was really quite romantic.

The next day, we awoke to a rather windy and cold morning. Given how sunny it was the day before, I thought surely the clouds would burn off. They never did. But Brugos and I are pretty much used to camping in inclimate weather anyway. We bundled up and set about exploring the beach. First, we went out to the big rock that was no accessible due to low-tide. We saw hordes of starfish and muscles doubtless unnerved by their exposure. Then we walked from end to end of the beach, enjoying the scenery and laughing at the post-apocalyptic looking communities other campers had set up. Someone had written Jacob in the sand and we hypothesized that Jacob was the hard but just leader of their community. We were in his territory now and we must abide by his laws or suffer his wrath.

The other end of the beach was much more isolated and we climbed the rocks and sat down in solitude for a bit before heading back to our tent to cook dinner. We whiled away the time playing cards. We couldn't really remember any 2 person card games so we kind of made up rules to Gin Rummy and Go-Fish. Yes, we couldn't even remember Go Fish very well. It was that kind of camping.

Saturday we woke up to mist covering the water. It was warmer than the previous day, but still a bit chilly, so we kept our sweaters on, ate breakfast and packed up. We weren't looking forward to the uphill hike back to the car. Luckily, we didn't have to lug the water anymore. Sadly, that was the only thing we'd brought that we used up and was also heavy. Our dried soups, though now gone, were pretty insignificant in weight. Luckily, there were benches along the way for the more grueling portions of the hike. That was nice of them. Half a mile seems like an eternity when you have a heavy pack.

Our next destination, for which I'd also lost the directions, was the Olympic Hot Springs. There is a commercial hot springs near by called Sol Duc, but we wanted to go back to nature, baby. So at Sol Duc, we asked directions to the natural springs. Their directions weren't very clear and the springs weren't listed on the map they gave us. So we drove on. We were briefly stuck in traffic as they cleared a head-on collision off of highway 101. After we got through, we stopped at Granny's Diner to fulfill my love of roadside diners. Our waitress was a somewhat maniacal young lady who was amazed at how much water we were drinking and who wandered around the restaurant commenting loudly on everything. Turns out she's from whatever town we were in outside of Port Angeles. I guess being a small town girl makes you kind of crazy. Also, for some reason, it took 45 minutes for them to prepare a veggie burger and a bowl of chili. We were on Granny's time. No matter. She knew where the springs were. And while we waited, we got to meet some goats, chickens and a cat with the biggest thumbs I've ever seen. They all lived out back.

Bellies full, we drove to the springs. It was an 8 mile drive up the mountain and then another 3 mile hike from the trail head. Maybe it was because of our after-lunch smoke, but the hike up to the springs was an eternity. We thought we'd never find the things. We also noticed something weird about the people who were passing us on the way back to the car. The closer we got to the springs, the more “swimmy” people looked. By the time we got there, we were passed by people with towels, and one completely naked hippie girl. Oh yeah, the springs are closing optional. Ew. Brugos also pointed out that whenever we seem to find a hike grueling, we are always passed by smiley old couples who seem to be doing fine. That helps us cowboy us a little.

We smelled the springs before we found them. We staked out a nice private one, stripped to our swim suits and climbed into the hot, smelly water. I know it doesn't sound very romantic, especially since our springs kind of looked like the outlet for a sewer, but it really was. The hot water felt really good.

We got out and made the trek back to the car which, of course, felt much shorter going back. Then we headed home, satisfied with our nice Northwestern Couple excursion!

See pics of our adventures here!

Weekend Recap

FRIDAY

Brugos and I met The Gang Which Has So Many Members It Desperately Needs an All Encompassing Nickname at the Big Time Brewery for some drinks before we went to our respective movies. They were going to see Day Watch at SIFF. I'd seen Night Watch and mostly enjoyed it, but Brugos hadn't seen it, so we instead elected to see Knocked Up.

But first, we made use of the incredibly wonky shuffleboard table at Big Time. That thing is filled with dips and dents and slants left. Also, someone went a little crazy with the wax. The board is surrounded by a big white mote of wax beads in which pucks can be easily lost. I started in on the house wine. The Day Watch crew left to get in line and Brugos and I played one more game of wonky shuffleboard before heading off to our movie. We stopped at Safeway on the way to get some mini wine bottles for the movie. We arrived at the Metro nice and early which was good because it turned out the movie wasn't AT the Metro, but at the Guild. Luckily, the Guild was only about half a mile away. We made it just in time.

We both loved Knocked Up. See my review below! After the movie, we stopped briefly at Al's to play some Medieval Madness. We realised we were a little too drunk to be any good. We learned that some of the Day Watch party were at The College Inn, so we headed down there in time for last call.

SATURDAY

So since I'm no longer a poor college student, I REALLY need to stop drinking the cheap wine. I can afford the nicer stuff and I know my body would appreciate it. But at least my hangovers are keeping me on my toes. On this particular morning, I was not nauseous or throwing up. Instead, I was incredibly dizzy and felt like I could topple over at any moment. I helped Brugos steer the car out of the garage so that AAA could finally come and tow it to the mechanic, and then I somehow cooked a breakfast and lay down on the couch. AAA was able to jump start the car so that Brugos could actually DRIVE to the mechanic. This was good news but it also made both of us kind of angry because months ago when the car died at 2am on a Tuesday outside Clever Dunne's, ALL we wanted the mechanic to do was to try and jump the car but he wouldn't do it. He said he knew it was the distributor cap and that jumping it wouldn't work. So we had to wait for a tow. We got home so late that night. But apparently, a jump WOULD HAVE WORKED FINE. What a dick.

Anyway, by the time Brugos got back from the mechanic, I had gone upstairs and, I guess LITERALLY passed out. Ordinarily, I am a very light sleeper. I should have heard Brugos come home. I should have heard him come up the stairs to check on me. I DEFINITELY should have felt him poke me. I was unaware of any of this. I woke up on my own and went downstairs for water and was completely surprised to find him home. But I did feel infinitely better, which was good because we had a big day ahead of us.

Last year, we'd gone Urban Golfing around Capitol Hill. This year, the party was in Georgetown. We had a nice big team assembled and, best of all, we had RAD costumes. Brugos had the idea that we should dress up like the Hi-Hats, the mime gang from The Warriors. It was a pretty simple costume. Red shirts with stripey sleeves, black pants, black hats,, suspenders and mime makeup. We did the sleeve stripes with gaffer tape. I did a stylized girl version of the costume with a black skirt and a cute, girly hat. We got our makeup on at Erik and Fi's. We all looked awesome.

The Urban Golf is rain or shine. Last year it was a bright, sunny day. This time, it was drizzling. It wasn't too bad though. Georgetown is a really cool area. I wish it weren't so far off the beaten path because it would be great to hang out there more. It's very industrial and there's arty junk around every corner. There are also some train tracks which ended up being the downfall of Urban Golf.

All the Urban Golfers got a lot of attention at every bar. In Capitol Hill, people dressed in costumes is (no pun intended) par for the course, but in Georgetown, you've got a lot of working men who definitely look at you funny. They seemed entertained by us though. And us mime's got the most attention. Though toward the end of the day, I was kind of tired of people miming AT us.

My favorite hole was at a park. The hole was inside the empty kiddie pool. After I sank my putt, I made a bee-line for the giant jungle gym with the awesome slide. Others followed. The jungle gym also had a zip line on it which was a lot of fun to use. The funniest part about the park was that it appeared that not too long ago, someone had a major hamburger bun fight. There were buns all over the ground.

The flaw in the Urban Golf course they'd created was that we kept having to play near the train tracks. The working train tracks. The train operators didn't like this one bit. They called the cops. We moved holes. They called the cops again. By the 7th hole, we were told that we weren't allowed to play the 9th because it was too close to the tracks. We ended our night at Stellar Pizza, eating some dinner and playing in the photo booth. We also ran into Carly and Scot who were, naturally, surprised to see us in our costumes.

After the golf, Erik was nice enough to drop me, Brugos and Darsh off at the Brunswick Towers for some poker. Darsh was fresh from having TWO Irish Car Bombs IN A ROW at the bar next to the car. We'd only gone in to use the bathroom.

We played two games and I won a little money in the second one! My poker skills are definitely improving. I win a little bit most every time I play now. I'm ready for Vegas!

Brugos, Darsh and I got a cab back to the U-District and called it a rather early night. It was only about midnight when we got home. Of course, we'd been drinking for 10 hours…

SUNDAY

Cleaning day! After which Brugos and I watched My Super Ex-Girlfriend. We still aren't sure if it's a good movie or not. It MIGHT be a farce. Or it might be an awful film. Either way, we laughed a lot.

Want to see pics of us dressed as Hi-Hats rampaging around Georgetown? Sure you do!

Weekend Recap

FRIDAY

Brugos, Brad and I began our evening at Tangletown, enjoying the strange paintings of children and monkeys and our very Jael-esque hostess. Then we retired to the Bettie Page for a game of Catan and a movie. The movie was Who Killed the Electric Car?.

SATURDAY

The weather forecast had called for rain and gloom, but a bright sun woke me and Brugos from our slumber. At noon, arrived at our doorstep. Since it was bright and sunny outside, we decided to venture down to the Cheese Festival in the Market. As we waited for the bus, Brugos realized that sunny doesn't always mean warm, and began to regret wearing shorts, a short-sleeved shirt and sandals.

Once at the market, we decided to eat a sensible lunch before stuffing ourselves with cheese. We opted for the Bolivian restaurant with the big deck and plenty of tables. We soon understood that there were plenty of outdoor tables because the deck was elevated and windy. Still, every once in a while, the wind died down and we appreciated a moment or 2 of blazing sun and a view of the water. While we waited for our food, Brugos decided he couldn't make it through the day in what he was wearing and ran over to the tourist shop to buy the least touristy sweatshirt he could find.

The food was pretty good, but the menu was somewhat lacking in vegetarian fare. I'm not sure I would go again to pay $9 for a salad, even if it was a very delicious salad. However, it did leave me with plenty of room in my belly to stuff with cheese!

We dutifully queued up in what appeared to be the line for cheese samples. However, as we neared the table, a Cheesefest official informed us that there was, in fact, no line. It was a Cheesy Free For All. We were encouraged to use whatever means necessary to elbow our way to the free cheese. This plan seemed to lack foresight, given how many hundreds of people were milling about the Market at that moment, but if that's what we must do…

And we were not deprived of cheese. Sure, there were plenty of varieties we never even saw through the throngs of bodies, let alone got to try, but after about 30 minutes of pushing and stabbing (with toothpicks, of course), we were satisfactorily stuffed with cheese. I do hope that next year they decide to organize it a little better, however. I would like to have been a little more selective about what I tried instead of tasting whatever I had access to. It would have been easy to do. Just have everyone systematically weave around the tables in a line and perhaps give them a ticket if they like a certain cheese. They can later use that ticket to find the cheese in a festival tent “store” at the end of the line. Just my suggestion. But I suppose queuing up isn't very American, now is it?

Next, we decided to work off the cheese by wandering around the Sculpture Park. There were a few more additions since Brugos and I were last there at the grand opening. I must say, however, for the most part I find the sculptures fairly uninspired. How is rusting metal on a pole art? What about logs and metal? Or wavy rusting metal? The only sculpture I really like is the silver tree that looks like a real tree. It's still nice to walk around outside though.

We found ourselves at Shorty's by the window, enjoying some rare (especially at Shorty's) sunbeams and an afternoon drink. Boozer met us, fresh from shopping and going to a non-traditional Bride Expo of sorts at Vain. She was mostly there for the free cupcakes. After a while, the dark clouds we had seen off in the distance caught up with us and dumped rain. Mark asserted that in 5 minutes, the rain would stop and it would be safe to catch a bus. We timed him. He was right.

Boozer headed back up the hill and Mark, Brugos and I went back to the U-District to eat some dinner and plan our next move. We ended up at Veggie Veggie, a vegetarian (go figure) Thai restaurant next to Thai Tom on the Ave. I was particularly excited about the prospect of trying their fake prawns. I ordered them in the garlic fried rice. I did not realize that when they said “garlic fried rice” they meant that garlic would be the main ingredient. HOLY CRAP. My first bite was shocking. I love garlic, but I'm not inclined to just munch on heads of the stuff. That's what this tasted like. I was very hungry and ate it anyway, knowing that my breath would pay for it later. It was one of those meals that made me glad I wasn't on a first date. The prawns themselves weren't all that bad. They had a rubbery consistency, as I remember shrimp to have. They even went to the trouble of painting red striped on each one. Brugos said if they'd really wanted attention to detail, they should have added a soy poop vein.

Detailed shrimp aside, we were all kind of underwhelmed with our food.

We headed back to Bettie Page and made some phone calls. Eventually, we decided to meet Steve and Cat for drink at the Bier Stube. When we got there, it was crowded but not overly so. As we waited for Steve and Cat, however, the place filled up with students. It wasn't long before we were fending people off of the saved seats. When Steve and Cat finally arrived, it was taking forever to order a drink so we decided to finish up the drinks we had and Plan B-it back to Bettie Page after a trip to QFC.

It was one of those rare nights where the conversation alone was interesting enough to keep us going into the wee hours. I can't remember what all we talked about. There was much wine involved. I know there was talk of 80's sitcoms, the actual Jump The Shark episode of Happy Days, and many poop stories. I didn't say we were intellectuals. I just said the conversation was interesting. Around 3am, Cat and Steve declared it bed time, and we took our leave of each other's company.

SUNDAY

I awoke at 7am and my head made me aware that I was hung over. I drank some water and went back to sleep. At 10, Brugos and I were up for good and tooled around until Mark woke up. It was took late for him to eat breakfast because he was scheduled to have lunch with Faye at 1, but he joined us anyway at the Wayward Cafe. This vegan cafe around the corner is very DIY (you basically have to do everything except cook the food), but the food is amazing. Mark ended up getting some hash browns to tide him over. I pocketed a big chocolate chip cookie for later.

Mark and I chatted about funny cat behavior (give us a break. It's what people do when they don't have kids) until Faye arrived to take him to soup. Mark's a blast to hang out with. Hopefully some day he'll stick around longer than 24 hours.

Brugos had some work to catch up on, so I was left to my own devices. I decided to wander down to the UW street fair. However, the rain made me tire of gawking at hippies rather quickly. I returned home to eat my cookie and watch The (British) Office before falling asleep on the couch. Yes, I was still hung over. I awoke an hour or so later to find Brugos finally done with work. We ate dinner and watched The Science of Sleep (not as good as a Charlie Kaufman/Gondry project, but still entertaining) before experimenting with some sleep ourselves.

NEXT WEEKEND: CAMPING!