May 22nd, 2013
We stopped in the Frederick Douglas Resource Center on King Street on Rochester’s west side for a Black Power art exhibit on Saturday night but it turns out it was more than an art opening. The admission was fifteen bucks and we only had about fifteen minutes so we said we’d stop back. I love the building and all that they have done to one of Rochester’s oldest neighborhoods. Madison Park is looking good with the statue of Susan B. and Frederick as a center piece. Our friend, Shirley Zimmer, lived on King Street many years and the neighborhood looks a lot better than it did when used to visit her. I hope it is not just an illusion. I think this is the same street dj, Roger McCall was killed on when someone held him up.
Speaking of hold ups. My nephew was walking only a few blocks from his home in Brighton on Rochester’s east side when some guys pulled up next to him and his friend and asked if they knew aha time it was. Our nephew’s friend reached into his pocket to pull out his iPhone and the guys in the car pulled out a gun. They rode off with the phone.
May 21st, 2013
With lots of trial and error in my attempt to get the lines right in the bottom half of the enlargement of the drawing above I wound up with heavy handed clunkers. I played them down and had them thin but too much the same. My third attempt got them right on (as seen in the enlargement) but my painting teacher called me out on them again. I had focused so much on only the bottom half of the drawing that the lines were great but out of touch with the rest of the piece. They “had too much zip.” So roughed them up to suit the gruff nature of this young lady.
I kinda like this song because you can hear me setting up my drums while Peggi, Bob and Ken played most of the first number without me.
Margaret Explosion – Sax Object
Margaret Explosion “Sax Object.”
May 20th, 2013
One of my favorite things to do is meeting my parents for dinner at Nick’s Sea Breeze Inn. Nick is always a delight, the food is good, we can usually get a table by the window and look out at the amusement park and the walls are cover with memorabilia. Nick went to high school with Scott LaFaro, the bassist in the Bill Evans Trio so there’s photos of him and Nick worked at club in Geneva, just outside of Rochester, that was on the circuit back in the day so there’s autographed pictures of Duke Ellington and Louie Armstrong and this wacky copy of a Sofia Loren painting.
My mom and I both ordered the manicotti last night and we were talking about the the new Wegmans which was having it’s grand opening on Sunday. My dad asked if we wanted to stop in there so we drove up and had to park across the street. Their new parking lot is not big enough! It is pretty amazing that they were able to tear down the old store and half of that city block, build an entirely new store and reopen in three months time. The store looked great like a European market with a huge fresh fish department, bakery, and a staggering amount of prepared food from Sushi to macaroni salad. My mom and dad were picking out their Great yogurt while we watched a toy train circle overhead. Funny, there was a toy train circling overhead at the trendy market cafe we ate at while we were in Barcelona last year.
May 19th, 2013
We were to late to buy figs at the European Cheese Shop last week so made a point to get to the market earlier this week but first Peggi had to go to her yoga class. We stood in line for twenty minutes before scoring two bags. Next mandatory stop is Flour City Bakery where bought their last cranberry oatmeal cookie, a loaf of artisan bread and a giant sticky bun to split in the morning.
It was a beautiful Spring day, perfect for garage sailing, but all I wanted to do was get down to the basement and work on my drawings. We passed this scene on the way downtown and just had to stop on the way back to take a photo, a crazy garage sale featuring this goofy bed, a professional punching bag, a bay carrier and a chrome wheel.
May 16th, 2013
So it used to be sort-of-safe to plant your garden around Memorial Day and now it’s closer to Mother’s Day so we waited for it to warm up a bit and then pounced. We planted tomatoes, spinach, eggplant, red peppers, jalapeños, zucchini, parsley, oregano and basil in our neighbor’s garden. He has all the sun and a big fence to keep the deer out. Plus, he’s an expert on everything.
Who the heck booked the Lilac Festival bands? Dreadful. Speaking of dread and warm weather, Kevin Patrick has a perfectly timed reggae post on his site. And the Big O has a James Brown show from ’73.
May 15th, 2013
I was so happy to find it raining this morning. It was so dark we had to turn the lights on to read the paper. We were planning to meet the neighbors down at the pool to take down a dead tree and the rain would put that off. I really grew to like rainy days when I was working construction. The days off were so cozy.
Ah, but the sun was out by eleven and we headed down there with our work gloves on. Rick came down with his video camera and Phil climbed a ladder and tied a rope around the tree about fifteen feet up and then Jared pulled the rope taught with his tractor in the direction that we wanted the tree to fall. We cut the wedge with a chainsaw in a perpendicular orientation to the direction of the rope and on the same side of the tree as the direction we want it to fall in. The wedge is cut approximately a third of the way through. On the other side of the tree we cut straight in, again perpendicular to the direction we want it to fall but six inches higher up than the wedge was. The tree is only held up by a wedge in the center and a gentle tug on the rope encouraged it to fall into the open wedge and land right where we wanted it.
Margaret Explosion tonight. Here’s a song from last Wednesday. Pete LaBonne play piano.
Margaret Explosion – Ballad of John Gilmore
Margaret Explosion “Ballad of John Gilmore” from April 2011.
May 14th, 2013
My father was telling me he saw Charlie Rose’s interview with “W” and “Charlie couldn’t get him to admit to anything” but he did get him going on painting. “He’s one of us!” my dad said.
George told Charlie, “Right now I’m looking at your tie and thinking about how I would mix that color. So much for Bush’s black and white worldview.
May 13th, 2013
We met my mom and about half of my immediate family down at Vic & Irv’s for Mother’s Day. My mom likes their milkshakes and their onion rings are the best but the rest of the food is a little rough. My dad ordered fried bologna with onions and cheese.
I had some ginger tea to settle my stomach. A few slivers of ginger root in the bottom of the cup is the way to go but we didn’t have any ginger so I used a Yogi tea bag. My fortune read, “Happiness comes when you overcome the most difficult obstacle.” I thought it was the journey that mattered.
May 12th, 2013
We bought some duck eggs at the Public Market yesterday but I didn’t have the guts to to try one this morning. Instead I had a large chicken egg that we bought at Wegmans, one with a stamp on it that says “Use by June 9.” The organic duck eggs from Shannon Brook Farms are in a reused box that still reads “Best If Used By April 22.” The duck eggs are supposed to be creamier and that contain more protein.
Maureen bought me a kite for my birthday. She teaches fourth graders and called with her kids on the line. When I answered they sang Happy Birthday to me. Now that’s a gift! She brought the kite to painting class and I groaned when she gave it me. It was nice and everything but I don’t like the whole idea. There’s so much junk in the world I’m neurotic about the whole gift-giving thing. That said, what a cool gift.
We took it down to the marsh on Hoffman Road. Most of the trees down there have died from too much water so there is a good patch of open sky. We held it out and it took off. There may have been too much wind today because it crashed a few times. I remember adding cloth knots to kites’ tails back when we were kids in an effort to keep the thing oriented right and that may have helped. With today’s gusts we were never able to get the whole roll of string unwound before the kite would nosedive to the ground. We used to get those old paper kites up to the end of a roll of string, tie the kite to a tree and ride down to Bowmans to buy more string, ride back and put that thing up out of sight.
May 10th, 2013
Wednesday was a funny night. People expected a big band version of Margaret Explosion but Pete was the only special guest able to make the gig. His piano playing was great and worth the free admission. We packed up quickly and drove out to the Lovin’ Cup in Henrietta to catch the the tail end of Wreckless Eric and Amy Rigby’s set. Eric seemed out of sorts and off his between song, free-association game. He kept looking over to the noisy crowd gathered around the bar. Twice he asked if they could turn the tv off. “You don’t go out to watch tv.” The edge added to the excitement for me and musically they sounded better than ever. I love how they trade songs and support one anothers’. I love it when Eric sings high harmonies to Amy’s voice and I loved it when they smiled at each other and kissed in the encore. This is way post punk stuff.
Peggi talked to Amy after the show and Amy told her they felt like they had to do some different material because they’ve played here so often. How many times has it been, six or seven? We’ve been to them all. Eric even did his “Men In Sandals” fashion send up even though Tom Kohn, the one that brought him here, was sitting at the merchandise table in open toe footwear. Their three song encore included a beautiful version of Tom Petty’s “Walls Fall Down.” We learned that before we got the club the bar had a beer tasting and some those idiots stuck around for the show. Eric told them to “shut the fuck up” and someone who had come to the show chimed in only to get thrown out by the club owner.
Watch their brilliant video and see them next time at a better venue.