Monday, March 21, 2016

SXSW;B-Day Update

Howdy! Happy Spring! I love Springtime!  Spring is great in Austin! 
We just wrapped up a week of Spring Break, South by Southwest, and my birthday!
It was a fun week!
Amy worked for the majority of it, but she took Friday afternoon off, and we had a really nice weekend together.
I have some vacation days accrued, so I took some of them off to enjoy some music during SXSW and just get some time away from the office.
On Wednesday and Thursday I took my bike and headed downtown to hear what I could hear.  As usual, I pretty much headed downtown at noon, and headed home at when the sun started to set.

On Wednesday I saw:
The Kickback at The Gingerman
Andrew Watt at Brew Exchange
Karma Killers at Brew Exchange
Band of Heathens at Dogwood
Jon Dee Graham at Dogwood
Jeff Crosby at Dogwood

On Thursday I saw:
Johnny 8 Track at Guero's
Luther Dickinson & The Cooperators at SX San Jose
Eve and the Exiles at the Continental Club
The Accidentals at Snack Bar
Denny Freeman at Lucy's
Shinyribs at Lucy's

Karma Killers were a standout.  They were sort of punk rock/funky Clash, but with guys who can sing.  High energy stuff.  I liked them.  The Accidentals were a pretty young band from Traverse City, Michigan (they bemoaned not being old enough to hang out in some of the bars where they play), but they were really good musicians.  They played violins and violas, had good harmonies, and one of their members was wearing a Neil Gaiman: American Gods shirt.
Of course, Shinyribs were predictably great.  The crowd, packed into the small space at Lucy's, got really into them.  They're always so good.

Karma Killers

Band of Heathens

Jon Dee Graham

Luther Dickinson & The Cooperators

Eve and the Exiles

The Accidentals


So Wednesday and Thursday involved a lot of music.  Saw some by myself, but also met up with Mark, an old friend who is a defense attorney.  He has an office down near West 6th Street, so we drank a couple of beers there between shows on Wednesday.  He was also on South Congress some of the time when I was hanging out over there, so I ran into him there as well.
It was fun.  I like seeing daytime shows during SXSW.
On Thursday morning I went to see 10 Cloverfield Lane.  It was a good movie.  The three main actors in the film, John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and John Gallagher, Jr., all put in excellent performances.  Goodman, in particular, did an amazing job.  The polite veneer over the constant menace was both recognizable and really scary. 
The movie has a lot of twists and turns.  Sort of Hitchcock meets The Twilight Zone
I really enjoyed it.
On Friday Amy took the afternoon off.  We went to lunch at Hyde Park and then went to see Zootopia.  I really enjoyed that movie, too- probably on about the same level at 10 Cloverfield Lane, but for entirely different reasons.  Zootopia is a clever, witty, well-conceived and well-executed movie about a bunch of evolved animals who live together in a big city.  Where once the species used to prey upon each other, they now live in harmony- at least until a series of crimes begins to threaten their society.
The whole thing is a big, not-so-subtle metaphor for race relations, but the plot delivers more nuance and subtlety within that metaphor than I expected to get out of a cartoon animal movie.
Plus, it has extremely imaginative world building, and it's really, really funny.
I recommend it!

So we both enjoyed the movie.

On Saturday we met up with friends (and friends/family Ryan and Jamie) at Pinthouse Pizza for some beers and food in celebration of my belated 43rd birthday.  It was really fun!  Friends came from work, from my band, from Amy's office, from Amy's former office, and just old friends that I know from around town.  It was really good to catch up with people that I hadn't seen in a long time, and it was fun to get to catch up with work friends in an environment where we weren't squeezing conversations in between job duties.

Travis County Attorney's Office Crew:
Bill, James, Me, Robert
John, Ruben

(a few of Amy's co-workers/friends of ours)

Amy and I

So that was Saturday.  I spent a long time at Pinthouse Pizza.  I got there before 1:00 and was there until like 7:00 or something.
Mom and Dad had Raylan for the day, so thanks to them for giving us the chance to catch up with friends while not having to wrangle our kiddo.  It was nice to see a bunch of people at once since it's harder to get out these days.

On Sunday we ate breakfast and went grocery shopping.  Amy went to an exercise class with friends while I had a good time hanging out with Raylan.  I even managed to feed him lunch and get him to eat some actual, solid food!  Raylan was 11 months old on Sunday.  Amy and I spent some time hanging out with him in the yard, and we snapped a few photos...

(How big is Raylan?
Apparently he is "sooooo big!")

("Dad, you are killing me with the camera.")

("No.  Seriously.  I'm taking that thing away from you...")
On Sunday evening I went to band practice.  Felt good.  We rocked it out.  Frank didn't make it because he was Spring Breakin' too hard.
Amy made a really tasty Thai spring roll dish Sunday night.  Very good.
And that was the weekend and the week.  It was really nice.

Hope you guys are enjoying your spring!

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