June 24, 2012

Italy 2012: Travel and Day 1

The weeks leading up to the forklift exhibition install have been gnarly.

A new line of forklifts is about to debut and the company party planning has been in full swing. There have been many, even daily, rehearsals for the Hammerslag Singers a capella group. Our Hawaiian band has been rehearsing for a gig in the late summer with a hula halau. I've been in non-stop meetings lately. The girl band has been rehearsing for Slagapalooza. It's too much.

Sun: Grand Mamoo sleepover
Mon: Hawaiian language class on day of anniversary
Tue: Lady band
Wed: Hawaiian band
Thur: Too tired to celebrate our anniversary. Where are my priorities?
Fri: Flop on sofa
Sat: Rehearse with hula halau. Get dressy. Go to forklift party. Perform. Take first bus home
Sun: Flop on sofa. Pack. Get on plane. Golden State to Frankfurt > Verona> Mantova

We flew United. I would like to point out that they collect a fair amount of money but the ride was janky. The seats were difficult to operate and didn't fit my body. The food was really sad. I expect that in economy and totally go with it. I expect more when I'm in business class. Usually my fave part of the flight.

Frankfurt airport was vast. It took 5 minutes for the bus to get us from our terminal to the very modest plane. Although we got off to a bad start when the lavatory door sprung open during takeoff and I, in the first seat, had a front row view, the rest of the trip was fabulous. Love you, Lufthansa. Had one of the best plane meals ever, for this teensy flight. Can it please be asparagus season when we come back at the end of the week? White asparagus with strawberry puree and sesame mayonnaise. Asparagus mousse. Asparagus in aspic. It was insanely delicious and gorgeous.

Verona airport is so small that only three planes were there. Nobody stamped my passport. I entered a whole different country and didn't get a stamp? That seems odd.

Once in Mantova, we stopped by the restaurant that serves as the HQ for our hotel. Piazza delle Erbe, our home base for the week, was a lovely cobblestone courtyard with outdoor seating for various restaurants.

My room was fabulous. You could have roller skated in it. And dig the Panton chairs! 

We kept moving and went to dinner at a place with frescoed walls and ceilings. Some of our offerings were curry chicken, this prosciutto volcano

pigtails (aka taralli

and my interesting fish that was mixed with a relish that could have been made out of cactus.

Then to bed.

And up again for a few hours. Didn't get my sleep cycle set until later in the week.

June 10, 2012

Tainted Love

From Wednesday:

I didn't want to break the spell.

The band is in the livingroom tormenting each other by playing videos via Apple TV.

I have to work tomorrow.

I snuck off and am in bed. It's like falling asleep in the middle of a raging party. Except for the middle-aged low-volume part.

Finals Week

That's what this week has felt like, and the end is now in sight.


Monday: presentation to a vendor on behalf of another department. 'Olelo class
M-F: Hammerslag Singers Rehearsals
Tues, Weds: Three Letters rehearsal, Hawaiian band rehearsal
Saturday: Rehearse with the halau. Yearly forklift release party and Hammerslag Singers performance.
Today: Fly to Italy

Here are some photos from the forklift party. First, mrguy's suave cufflinks. He wore his new suit and looked like James Bond. So suave!

And why did I polish my boots and break out my diamond and pearl cocktail ring? I trudged up a dirt road in order to take a photo with my ladies and a Clydesdale ;)

Did I mention that the whiskey tasting line was also too long? Better that way, I think!

I admit that I wore the ring because I thought it would look awesome on my finger as I tried my hand at a little archery. Sadly, the archery line was too long for me to accomplish that goal before dress rehearsal. Besides, mrguy found the perfect cool, quiet spot for us to hang out in. Seems like a lot of my colleagues from Systems did, too. My people! Perfection.

Now I am fairly relieved and have been relaxing on the sofa. 

After a week of various types of performance, all I have to do is pack and get on a plane.

I should get up now.

June 3, 2012

Interviewing, Japanese Style

Last week I was interviewed for Japanese television by a puppet who spoke to me through his interpreter.

They like their forklifts over there in Japan...

June 2, 2012

Holiday in Hawaii 2012

Another record named Holiday In Hawaii for my collection:

Judy Time

It's one of those fun days again, when mrguy and his friend fishfruit were hard at work in the man room making horrible sounds. He's been hoarding sounds for years, and periodically will come over to our house so mrguy can disembowel and then sew them together. One memorable occasion a few years back the components were backwards Joni Mitchell and a coffee maker. Another time it was the sound of his old refrigerator mixed with the sound of fishfruit's infant daughter snoring. He has fans and they eat this stuff up.

While they were doing their thing I was visiting with curly and her baby son. He is completely adorable (for a baby). Curly showed me the best trick: when she puts on the LP Best of Judy Ongg, the baby breaks out smiling. They call it "Judy Time".

When I got back I got to hang out with the boys for a while. Mrguy told a story I'd never heard, about how his old band sent a demo tape to a club in San Francisco. It was returned to them, graded. The club owner had sent them a critique of each of their songs with a letter grade. Speaking of which...

For a few years I had a bandmate whose brother-in-law owned the local free music newspaper. Demo tapes would flood in every week, and the ones that would have been tossed otherwise were offered to us poor musicians to use. We'd record our rehearsals on them, and I'd use some for my answering machine tapes. I'd listen to any I kept.

John Komlenich, if you're out there, I still lament the loss of your demo tape. "Emma" and "No War" were very weird and I loved them dearly.
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