adrian is rad



Filed under: — adrian @ 1:06 pm

I’m in the Charlotte airport on the way to london. I have a few hours here. I’m going to a cousin’s wedding. I won’t be bloggong a lot. (hopefully).

I saw low and pedro the lion last night at great american music hall. good show. low was interesting. lots more distortion and stuff, keeping with their new album.

I got 2 hours of sleep last night. I didn’t remeber to bring the british money my dad gave me and I don’t have cuff links for my french cuff tux shirt.


mmm sugar.

Filed under: — adrian @ 4:44 pm

Yesterday, while out running errands, Andyl and I were at BevMo just across from El Mercadito Latino in Redwood City. I decided to go in to see if they stock Coke in glass bottles made with sugar (instead of corn syrup). They do. I bought 6 @$1.19. I now have 3 left.

It’s so good. I like the glass bottle. I like the way it feels in my hand— the cold glass with condensation. I like the way it feels on my lips. I like the way it tastes; it’s crisper and less syrupy. I like how it reminds me of cokes I had in bottles in South Africa (and, to a lesser extent, Germany and Tanzania among other places).

An article about Mexican Coke vs. American Coke.

Other things that I like in glass bottles or with sugar instead of corn syrup:

yes, to answer your questions, I am apparently a total hippie.

on scare tactics in the american right and left

Filed under: — adrian @ 2:46 pm

some things people are scared of and have been exploited in recent politics:

  • another terrorist attack
  • reversal of Roe v. Wade
  • a draft
  • their children being taught something other than what they believe in the classroom

the office

Filed under: — adrian @ 12:10 am

I saw the premier of the american adaptation of the Office the other day. Quite good. I’ll have to check out the rest of the episodes.


picksburg n ‘at

Filed under: — adrian @ 1:25 am

Dis jaggoff on sa’urday night live jus did a picksburg accent n’ at! Dat is sumpin dat I nevr thought I’d see. Right der in one of dem sketches! Did yunz guys see dat?

Problem was, he was drinkin a bud, not an arn, and hes sez steeelers not stillers. But he did talk plenny bout Cowhr.

[Update: Check ‘is aht. An article in da Picksburg Post Garzette jus ’bout dat sketch!]


Paddy Keenan at the Plough and Stars

Filed under: — adrian @ 11:23 am

Last Friday, the 18th, I saw Paddy Keenan at the Plough and Stars in the City.

Here’s a nice bio/ interview of Paddy if you want to know more about him. He’s an uilleann piper, and one of the best. The guy who introduced him at the Plough and Stars called him the best piper that ever lived. I don’t know. Seamus Ennis was really good.

Uilleann pipes are the irish sorts of bagpipes. Much more social and less loud/ militaristic than the scottish sort. And more difficult to play. Wikipedia will tell you more about the uillean (pronounced ill’ ee-an or ill’ an) pipes.

The Plough and Stars is a great place to see irish music. Lots of Irish there and not a lot of the stupid people who go to see the Chieftans and start clapping at the slightest sign of a reel.

Paddy was there with Tommy O’Sullivan, his touring partner and guitarist. Tommy did a few songs but the bulk of the night was focused on Paddy.

Paddy is just amazing. He has such tremendous technical skill on the pipes. He can start a reel out fast and then speed up even for the last time through. He can do all this while playing the regulators as well. He can also improvise in a tasteful manner and play the low whistle like a champ.

Paddy had a few guests on for a couple songs. There was a guy playing lap steel (dobro), which was more interesting than good and a guy playing bodhran, which was nice to hear.

I got a practice set of uilleann pipes a few years back. I should break those out and see if I can do something with them. It’s a gorgeous sound.


damn, I am lookin sharp today

Filed under: — adrian @ 4:53 pm

I am just downright sexy!

I have one of my dad’s old navy blue V-neck sweaters, a light blue t-shirt peaking out in the V and at the waist. Khaki cords and some blue leather adidas kickers round it off. I feel like just looking in the mirror all day.

Watch out, world, here I come!


Filed under: — adrian @ 6:07 am

The title is me singing along to a Rachel’s song.

Because I’m on the radio, as I type this!


rock n roll.


Indie Rock Marching Band

Filed under: — adrian @ 5:16 pm

I have been thinking about this for a while and I got reminded by Gwen Stefani’s appearance on Letterman backed by a marching band.

For those of you who don’t know, I did marching band for four years. I sort of hated it, but I was also damn good at it. I like indie rock. I have for years. Put those together, and boom! You got a promising concept here.

[Here’s a decent primer on marching bands if you’re unfamiliar with stuff.]

This is my idea: approximately a 30 piece ensemble, definitely a bass drum or two, and a snare or two. probably snare-mounted high hats. Maybe a quad or a quint. Definitely a glockenspiel. It’d probably be brass heavy. A couple trumpets and trombones. A tuba holding down the bassline would be cool. A sax or two. Flutes and clarinets could probably be skipped. Eh, maybe a clarinet or two would be cool.

All common instrumentation thus far. It’d be cool to have guitar with one of those wireless do-dads. A bass might also be cool, but if the tuba/ sousaphone can do it, that’d be better. Other things that could have pickups and a wireless do-dad: ukulele, banjo, 80s-style guitar pianos.

Singing: I think there’d have to be a lead singer, but also plenty of chorus/ backup parts by the people on the field. Thinking about this for the past few days, it might be cool to have the singer be the conductor on the platform out front. My most recent thought would be that there wouldn’t be a conductor (phasing shouldn’t be a problem with a <30 person band) and everyone would do formations. (I did mention that, right? that everyone would do formations. Probably not super complex ones, but it wouldn’t be one of those band that just walks on the field, plays and walks off. There’d be no pit.) The time could be led from within; this would make speeding up easier, I think. So maybe the guitarist is singing and playing and marching with everyone else. The problem with that is that people like looking at the singer/ lead man while the thing is going on. hmm.

Uniforms: there’d have to be uniforms. I don’t think just t-shirts and jeans, but also not normal marching band uniforms. maybe jump suits? there’d have to be some hat, too. Marching bands have hats.

Songs selection and styles: indie rock. I think a lot of it would be post-rock. It’d be important to do mostly original songs, but some covers would be alright. Imagine a nice build going on the field while they are all stationary, then the drums come in and the mass of people start coming toward you and changing formations and stuff. I think it’d be pretty sweet.

Excuses for not doing this right now: it’d take a lot of time to start up and there aren’t people in the area that are that interested in indie rock bands. I think if I lived in an area with a higher concentration of people of my interests, it’d be easier. Like Cambridge, MA.


valley of DEATH

Filed under: — adrian @ 11:00 pm

I spent the weekend in Death Valley with Dylan, Andyl, and Dale. We’d heard that there was the best wildflower bloom in many years, some saying 50. When Andy originally suggested Death Valley, I thought it was about four hours away. Turns out that it’s about ten, maybe nine if you don’t stop for any breaks. California is quite large and there aren’t any direct routes there.

How do you fit twenty hours of driving and wildflower viewing and sleeping in a weekend? Well the last thing gets knocked a bit. We ended up leaving at 4:45am on Saturday; I’d gone to see Paddy Keenan on Friday night (to be blogged about later) and had ended up going to bed at about 1:30 and waking up at about 3:45 in the am.

We got to the park after stopping for breakfast and at the jerky guy previously mentioned on this here website at about 2pm or there abouts. We stopped in Stovepipe Wells, trying to figure out if we should camp there or go on–we didn’t get an answer from the rangers whether Sunset was already full so we decided to go on. We ended up finding a spot in the Sunset overflow tent campsite, which is basically a gravel parking lot. A flat parking lot with a nice view, but if you’re going, bring a mattress pad. Andy and Dale regretted they didn’t.

After registering for and claiming our tent site and setting up the tent, we headed off to some dunes that we’d driven by on the way from Stovepipe Wells to Sunset. Dylan has a bunch of photos online of our adventures climbing the dunes. We ended up making it to the top of a maybe 100 foot dune. It was quite a nice view over many dunes and into the mountains. We saw a muted sunset from up there and then made our way back to the car.

My big plan as soon as I saw the hills behind the Sunset campground was to get some PBR and go up into the hills a bit after dinner. Turns out the general store at Stovepipe Wells didn’t have any PBR, so we got giant cans of Foster’s.

Who could predict what would happen when we got into the hills and started in on the beers? I can. I will tell you what happened.

We invented a new sport. Competative rock stacking. The rules will be goverened by the IFRS (International Federation of Rock Stacking). The short of it: you must stack reasonably sized rocks as many high (serially, no parallel stacking) as you can. Dale won a tight contested match against Dylan 12 to 11 with a questionable rock 1.

We ended up going to sleep pretty early and waking up around 6:30. After breaking camp, we did a quick hike at Natural Bridge and a stop at Badwater Basin (lowest point in the US!) we hit the motherload. There are a couple areas between Badwater Basin and Salsbury Pass that are just spectacular, especially near the mill ruins and one right near Salsbury Pass. Fields entirely yellow, like velvet from afar.

I’ll develop my films in the next couple weeks and get them online.


really good jerk

Filed under: — adrian @ 1:24 pm

just before the 190 on 395, there is a man named gus who advertises really good beef jerky for 75 miles before.

his claims stand up.

the apparently best wild flower bloom in 50 years in death valley is on now and I’m about 50 miles from it. I’ll be back in the bay area sunday night


tan on the back of my thigh

Filed under: — adrian @ 10:25 am

I know I’ve been swimming enough when my lower back and back of my thighs are tanned. I checked out my backside in the mirror at the pool yesterday and sure enough: a light tan, but there’s a distinguishable lighter area where my swim suit sits.

I’ve been keeping up three times a week since early January. My old standard used to be five times a week but I hurt my elbow last year and decided in order to recover, I ought not to swim two days in a row. I’ve been swimming with a brace on that elbow.

It’s aching at the end of swims. This isn’t something new. That’s part of the reason I don’t swim on consecutive days. The other day I got some muscle aching in my right arm. That’s encouraging; I take it to mean that the muscle is the weakest link, not the ligament at the elbow.

Some people can run for days or bike up all the hills in the world. I can swim. I was never the fastest, but I could swim farther than you in four hours, especially if you’re Maggie. (ha!)

But, yeah, I’m swimming again. It’s nice. The water is so comfortable for me.

[note one: all of Stanford’s pools are outside and heated. Yes, we swim in them even during the “winter.”]

[note two: I mention maggie because she challenged me to a four hour swim-off a couple years ago. It never happened but she basically conceded after I swam 3.5 miles in two hours to see what I could do.]

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