Friday, August 29, 2008

t-shirt to be worn by two people at the same time.

Sean Sumler and I using the t-shirt to be worn by two people at the same time at a Syrup performance during Weird Wednesday at the Twilight Cafe in Portland (08/27/2008) photos by angela.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


If I was a better writer I might delve into some profound insights or have some witty comments about everything that happened. Instead I'm just going to share the facts of what happened from my point of view. I'll spare some of the messy details and the boring ones as well. If you really want to know more I might be obliged to share some thoughts over a cup of coffee sometime. For right now I just wanted to share what happened on Syrup's Get Money 2008 Pacific Northwest Tour. I'm getting film developed and Sean has some pictures as well that will surely get posted somewhere.

8/11- Tour Kickoff show at Sorority House in Portland W/ Mattress, Tunnels, Dude War, and 666. Awesome show. This was where we had our first show as a band so we have a sentimental attachment to that house. We always have a really good time there. All the performers were really good. It was also the official release of our new tape 'His Yo Yo Self Veda'. People got sweaty which means we did something right.

8/12 - We left Portland Tuesday afternoon after loading up on bread, peanut butter and Clif Bars. It took us about two hours to figure out how to get 4 people and a full band's worth of gear into my Geo Tracker. It happened successfully. We got into Olympia in the early evening and hit the Grocery Outlet for some super cheap food. They had pints of ice cream for a dollar and a pound of goat cheese for three dollars. So cheap. The house we were playing at was the Finger Complex. We played with Apoc, Ron Hexagon, Phonatic. Tim Curry Bear who set up the show wasn't able to play due to it getting too late and not wanting to upset the neighbors. Ron Hexagon was amazing. He had songs about Pizza and VHS tapes and other quirky stuff. So much fun. Phonatic had glowsticks and danced to Beyonce. It was kind of a mismatched show but it was still a lot of fun and people were receptive. We hung out with some pretty cool Olympia kids until early in the morning. Hondo rode the Night Train. I hopped on for a little while too. Philip and I slept under the apple tree in the front yard. Sean slept in the papasan chair on the porch. Hondo slept on a futon inside and thought we were weird for sleeping outside.

8/13 - Woke up early and left Olympia in the morning to drop off our gear in Seattle and head for the Canadian Border. Anyone who's tried to play music in Canada is surely aware of the difficulties with crossing the border as a band. We opted to not bring any gear so as to appear as simply four dudes on vacation. It worked. The canadians let us in, but it meant we had to borrow guitars, drums and amps at the show. More on that later. When we got into Vancouver we met up with Jeremy from Shearing Pinx/Isolated Now Waves Records at his record shop. The shop bought some of Philip's OMS-B merchandise and we shot the bull for a bit. We met up with Bill from Stamina Mantis/Thankless Records at his house and played with some awesome bright white cats, lounged and ate pizza. Hondo went to the skate park while the rest of us lounged and played with cats some more. Eventually we started rounding up the gear that we had to borrow from various practice spaces. The venue is called the Cobalt and is beneath this low rent, shady hotel in one of the sketchier parts of Vancouver. The club itself was converted from an old strip club and now functioned as a bar for hardcore punk shows as well as weekly 'weird' music shows known as Fake Jazz Wednesdays (what we were there for). We had a few drinks, hung out for a while and talked with friends. We had kind of an awkward rough night as far as our set went. It's tough playing on borrowed gear because as nice as someone's equipment might be, it's still different from what we're used to. Sean and I both managed to break strings. Philip's drums were swimming around all over the wavy floor. We had written a setlist but for some reason decided not to follow it at all adding to everyone's confusion. It was probably the most avant purple thing we've ever done. Went back to Jeremy's house and headed to the park with Jeremy and Ora to drink wine on the jungle gym while dodging the sprinklers, riding the zip-line, and talking until we were all spent.

8/14 - Philip and I woke up early and took a walk down Hastings St. towards downtown. Hastings St, if you are unfamiliar with Vancouver, is the skid row of the city. We were offered various types of drugs and witnessed all types of smoking and shooting up not to mention, more than a few people wanted to sell us Playstations. We ran across an anarchist bookstore that bought one of the karaoke videos Sean and I made which we were pretty excited about. We dropped Hondo off at another skate park and got together my friend Georgie to head over to the Emily Carr Institute. Emily Carr is the art school in Vancouver that Georgie went to. It looked like it had some good facilities from what we could see. Georgie took us to her favorite sushi joint which was pretty amazing. It was fairly cheap and really fresh and tasty. Philip's caterpillar roll looked just like a caterpillar which was kind of gross and amazing all at the same time. Jeremy and Ora were planning on going camping that day but had decided to stay and hang out with us since we all turned out to be having a really good time together. We all got back together to head out to the lake outside of the city. Georgie brought her friend's dog Berzerker. The lake was incredibly pleasant despite the characters we ran across. It felt so good to go swimming. We witnessed a group of guys comparing their love for and subsequent addictions to internet pornography and how it has affected their lives. There was some trashy drama/romance going on between some other people we sat next to. Georgie swam out into the middle of the lake and Berzerker swam out after her. After the lake we got more sushi (this time even cheaper than before) and hung out in the yard at the house until bedtime.

8/15 - We all woke up feeling pretty well rested and got ready to hit the road. We had to drive down to Seattle and didn't want to miss our obligations due to border traffic. It took us a while to get back on the freeway but after asking a few people for directions we got it figured out. The border wait was pretty hot and grueling and we were all glad when it was over. We saw a dude hanging out at the border wearing a shirt that read "the grass is always greener on MY side." We were pretty sure he was from the States. Once we got across the border I realized that I had left all of my food in Vancouver at the house we were staying at. I was really bummed since I still had a few days' worth of Clif Bars, bagels and peanut butter (pretty much our whole diet for tour except for Sushi and Pizza. We got into Seattle and proceeded directly to Dick's. We enjoyed some bags and cups of Dick's then headed to the Park on Capitol Hill. We randomly ran across Ricky from Pleasureboaters who we had played with a few months back in Portland. After shooting the shit for a while we set off for the Montessori House where the show was that night. Some friends (Megan, Courtney and Patrick) drove up from Portland to come to the show and we met them at the house for BBQ and chill out time. We were all really looking forward to playing our set with our own equipment because of what happened in Vancouver. Our friends Explode Into Colors from Portland were also set to play the show with us which we were all super excited about. We hadn't really seen them in a long while so it was good to catch up. They're such an amazing band it really makes me so happy every time I see them play. They asked Sean and I to help out with backing vocals on one of their songs which was super fun. We played with two local bands which were both really amazing and super great people. Pillow Fight Fight was killer and I was really glad we were able to play with them. The show was downstairs in their bike workshop which was small and cramped and so hot. The heat made everyone's set a lot more fun and intense. We did the usual hanging out after the show and sat on the lawn until the early morning. There was talk of watching Clueless and/or Singles, but neither of those actually materialized. We all just ended up falling asleep.

8/16 - I woke up pretty much with the sun. It was already getting really warm in that living room with five people all sleeping together, but by about 6am when it started to get light outside the living room started baking. I could not sleep anymore in that room so I decided to take a walk around the neighborhood. I looked at the old houses that were separated by new condos and apartments that were still under construction. I checked out the fancy art deco hospital down the street and found a park next to it with great views of downtown Seattle and Puget Sound. There was this group of probably thirty pigeons that were being very interesting that morning. They were sitting on the ground and all of a sudden would start flying these figure eight patterns above the park for about 30 seconds and then land on the telephone wires next to the road. About a minute later they would all take off flying again and fly a similar pattern and land back on the ground again. This repeated probably a dozen times until they finally settled down into the trees next to the hospital, at which point I didn't see or hear from them again. I was done collecting my thoughts and realized it was getting later on in the morning so I headed back to the house to wake people up. Sean was stirring and I got him up and we walked to the store for Sean to get some juice and garlic bread. Eventually everyone else got up and we got our things together, said our goodbyes, and hit the road. Sean, Patrick, and I rode back together and we left right away while everyone else stayed in Seattle to hang out for part of the day. The drive was hot and quite unpleasant but it felt good to be so close to home and at the end of a great trip.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Busy Month

The rest of this month is going to be busy. Tomorrow is Syrup's tour kickoff/cassette release show at the Sorority House in PDX. Then we head North to Olympia, Vancouver Canada, and Seattle. Once back from tour I'm volunteering with the Time Based Arts Festival (TBA for short). I missed it last year but this year has some amazing looking artists participating. Plus I get a free pass. It starts September 5. I start school at PNCA on the 2nd.

Sunday, August 10, 2008