Archive for April, 2010

Blankets for all

Posted in humor, music on April 18, 2010 by finerstacy

Muncie’s Springfest was the real deal.   I was lucky enough to see Michael Jackson in his prime with an unknown Sheryl Crow singing back up and James Brown a few months before he died.  I saw Bruce Springsteen give an earth shattering and “short” show of 3 and half hours.   I have played so many small clubs across the United States, to the tips of Tunisia,  that I know when it’s good and Springfest was better.    Yes, we have our heroes that leave us speechless, but I think what I found this weekend was a community of musicians, fans  and crew being so cool to each other.   The official staff at Springfest was so kind.    I was actually trying to see if someone would be a jerk to me and no one was.  NO ONE.  Even as we were running sound for the tremendous band the POST SCRIPT, and I had a run in with an audience member  who was criticizing  the mix, we ended up hanging out, talking AND he helped us later in the evening with late night jam.    And when bigger local bands like the always impressive Midwest Hype finished their set, they came to show their friends support by visiting the smaller stage.  Yes, it was awesome, the food, the falafels, oh the falafels.  I think And A Pickle fueled  Ethan James’ late night jam fantastic on the bass.

But, let us not forget the temperature and the fashion statement of the spring that it brought.  BLANKETS!    It was so cold that I saw cool cats, not the Twin Cats although they are very cool, in fleece blankets, wool blankets, baby blankets!!?!?!? draped around their bodies like Superman just out for a leisurely stroll in  Metropolis.   I saw children clinging to their parents’ legs in hopes of  another comforter or a croshayed hat.  I saw Will the bad ass conga player from Afrodisiacs talk to me with a straight face as he was wrapped in a pink flowered duvet and I saw Colby from Sour Mash and Matt from the Post Script set up a stage in matching blankets as if they were Tony Soprano’s men setting  up for a night of debauchery.   And now that I’m back home and starting to get feeling back in my fingers I will always be reminded of a weekend of great music and people whenever I look at Ethan’s baby blanket hand made by his grandmother.   Now that’s rock and roll.

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leaf jumping

Posted in humor, mowing on April 10, 2010 by finerstacy

That’s what we do in Indiana, we mow our lawns.  I love spring.  Everyone is coming out from  their mother nature induced hibernation.  Kids are outside screaming.  Moms and dads are smiling because they no longer have to scrape the ice off their windshields and somewhere up above the gardener gods are smiling because they know business is in session.   Everyday from dawn till dusk, you can hear your neighbor’s mower singing its song.   “Highway to hell”,  that’s for the guy down the street with his tricked out John Deere riding mower.  You know the one with the Harley Plates.  I love those guys,  because no matter how hard you try  or how many people you hire to do it for you that guy will always have the better looking yard.    Every corner is trimmed to perfection.  The walk way to the front door is strategically  placed with not one single weed showing  it’s ugly head as you enter the home.  I also love the parents who have tricked their kids into leaf duty.  “Hey Johnny, if YOU rake the leaves I will let YOU jump in the pile before YOU put them in the bags.”  Now to me that is a fair trade because short of winning the Superbowl nothing is better than jumping into a pile of leaves.  I remember age 9, I would be swimming in my leaves, backstroke, sidestroke, front stroke, no floaties required and then run next door and swim in the Stern’s leaves and then I would be at the Smith’s (all names have been changed to protect the innocent  from any yard work wrong doing  allegations). ” Yes, Mrs. Smith, I saw you had little Johnny rake your leaves onto our yard.  More leaves for me.  So my lips are sealed.”    It was my Atlantic ocean right in front of my house.  No sand between my toes just worms between my fingers  and enough leaves to make collages for a lifetime.  I knew my mother always wanted another piece of artwork for the fridge and nothing says genius like five leaves smothered with Elmer’s glue slapped on an orange piece of construction paper.   “Wow, Stacy, that is really special and very different from the last collage.  Not as many sticks, a lot less dirt and very will organized.”  My mom, always knew how to make something from nothing.  Looking back, those collages where one step above the turkey  hand designs you made during Thanksgiving on a paper plate with finger paint.  But this is the point in life when you begin to believe in yourself.   This is the point when the tooth fairy stops being real but the possibility of making your own magic is not only possible but probable.   You get to be in the school play instead of watching it.  Even if you are only cowgirl number six from the right in Oklahoma.    You get to play the guitar instead of just listening.  “Wipe out” never sounded so good as when you are playing to your friends.   Maybe I never got the lick right but I felt I was right there with the Surfaris  getting ready to hit the next wave.  Here in Indy the music of the grass cutters is still alive and well.   “65 love affair” is my theme.   I have opted for a push reel mower that still has 1960’s technology and speed.   I get to watch each blade of grass take its last breath before it gets recycled and eaten by the birds.  How green of me.   Maybe I can’t get the perfect lines  and the dandelions have made it very clear who is boss,  but at least my highway to hell is paved with leaves.   Surf’s up!

Finer will be performing at Taste of Brown county on Saturday April 24th.   No leaves will be ingested during this performance.

Bulldogs can dance

Posted in basketball, music, soccer on April 6, 2010 by finerstacy

I am not an athlete, but I was so proud to be a Hoosier last night.  The Butler bulldogs were incredible.  Duke was great also.  Yes, they came out on top but I love a team that doesn’t give up.  There was not one moment on the floor last night when Butler ever looked defeated, bored, or ungrateful.  They just played ball all night. Nothing phased them. Yes, the game got physical, but there was never any “I deserve this” attitude.  It was more of a “let’s get this done!” type of game.  I am sure it stings like bee right now and their hearts are hurting, but the whole state and country is still in awe of their poise, grace and yes competitive side.  Thanks for a great run Bulldogs!

Now, every time I have seen a bulldog hat here in Indiana I have done a double take.  My town Hewlett,  where the Hewlett High school bulldogs reign has a great tradition of high quality basketball  teams, football teams,  and soccer teams.  Actually one of my brothers played on the state championship team for soccer.  So somewhere in the back of my mind,  I always felt I had a shot to be in it, to be competitive.  I saw videos of Pele floating on the field.  He made it look fun and easy.  I would jump over the ball and think if Pele can do that, so can I!  I would do one move over and over and say “Hey, watch my Pele move,” even though I had never seen him do it nor did I know whether the move was effective. I just knew it was fun, felt good and kind of made me look like I knew what I was doing.  I would practice in the yard, do drills, run sprints, and had a great growl.   If you listen closely enough you can still hear the echo of my grunts as a much better player out scored me.  “That will teach her!  If I make noises maybe that goal won’t count!”  In elementary school every Saturday was like an adventure to the same three fields where are our parents would cheer us on, teammates would critique each others shin guards and we would enjoy our post game victory/loss at Mc Donalds.    One weekend we were playing at the number 6 school field and I was lucky enough to be in goal.  Really, they put the shortest, smallest, least coordinated kid in as the  goal tender.  It must of been the growl, very deceiving during the selection and coaching process.  It had such a ring to  it that I think it might have made me vibrate and “look” bigger and stronger.   So there I was about 4’1, stylish shorts, flowing locks of stick straight hair and eyes like a hawk. I actually had great focus so I knew when danger was coming, I could sense it like a fox.  That moment before the eagle swoops in to claims his fish, I could see it a mile away.  So when a girl was coming left, I would always go right, because she was just tricking me…right?  Or when a ball was high in the air I would a do football kick off return fair catch signal as if that was going to help dissuade our competitors from moving in.  I did really try, I guarded the goal like that hawk.  Every inch of it mine, the net,  the white chalked dirt lines and the bars, all mine.  Oh yes the bars where mine.  They were so much mine in fact that when I did  finally get a great save, I hugged the ball and did the best punt return kick ever! The ball went straight up in the air, not out, but up and hit the bar, went over my head and scored a goal for  the other team.   I saw all of the parents hands hold their heads in disbelief like a stop motion scene from The Fantastic Mr. Fox.   One group  “Oh!”  came out as the ball  made it’s home in my home.  The referee was too kind and didn’t count it as a goal.  Maybe he was scared of my growl, maybe it was because I had openly had a crush on him all season.  Either way  I still remember that slow motion feeling of   extending my leg, the ball leaving my foot,  entering the air and thinking “Wow! This is awesome!  I can be a champion and have winged bangs, all at the same time!”    But as the ball hit the floor and splashed its way through out the  net,  Only one thought came to mind,  Hey I really do look like Pele doing that!  Hey we all have to start somewhere.

Come see Finer at Birdy’s next week.   No soccer balls will be hurt or mishandled during the show.