Monday, December 7, 2009

holidays in vegas

Don't really have time for an update, because we're in Vegas, but we're thinking of everyone and wanted to wish you all some love with this, our number one song of this holiday road trip:

Proof that Dan's iPod has absolutely EVERYTHING. (And that we might need some social contact with people other than each other).

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

later gators

Sunday, November 29, 2009

feel good inc?

It all started when Dan's friend Adam sent us a DVD in the mail of some documentary that Christian wanted Dan to see. In the package, presumably to provide some sort of stiff backing to the disc, Adam included a piece of corrugated cardboard, onto which he had drawn, without much thought I'm sure, a cartoon smileyface and the words FEEL GOOD. This piece of cardboard had its first funny-strange moment when it arrived in the mail exactly as Dan was yakking all the contents of his food-poisoned stomach into the upstairs toilet. We said "heh Adam says 'feel good' Dan!" and watched the DVD, and the piece of cardboard was cast aside in the livingroom.

A couple weeks later, my uncle Pat contracted a mysterious illness that made him super lethargic. He didn't know what it was or how to kick it, so he came over to the Big House to watch some West Wings and eat his mom's bologna sammiches on white bread. He was sitting on the couch feeling crappy when he noticed a piece of cardboard sitting behind the lamp on the side table. He picked it up and shouted, and I mean shouted: "Who drew this picture of my dad telling me to feel good!?"

My late grandfather, Jack Brickley:

It's possible that the similarities might not strike you immediately. Especially if you didn't know my grandpa Jack. But it really does look like him! The downturned eyes, the short nose, the broad smirk! Who are you, Adam?! Are you part of some interdimensional conspiracy of souls to make people feel good?

Anyway, Pat started feeling better and Grandma got all teary-eyed and huggy, and now the cardboard cartoon is propped against the lamp, beaming down upon the livingroom. Pat is making plans to have it matted and framed. Thanks Adam! (And welcome to a spot on the King's wall). Moreover, thanks to Grandpa for having the kind of character that can manifest in anything, even in six lines drawn on cardboard, and make everyone feel good.

Monday, November 23, 2009

can't get my head out of doors

Dan told me he spent his whole bonus nap yesterday (bonus nap = while I take a shower in the morning) feeling abruptly sad about leaving, looking around our spacious bedroom, remembering life without this sense of space. I was feelin him. Now that we only have ten days until we leave, we've stopped being homesick; instead, we're getting pre-emptively homesick for Indiana. Sheesh. "Travel broadens the mind / Till you can't get your head out of doors." (Hey that was my first Elvis quote yet on this thing).

But if my head must be stuck in doors, I'm glad the doors are as beautiful as these.
Pat just sent me this photo with the subject "Now that's an office." True dat, Pat. I'm in there as I type this, actually, and I'm very very aware of how much I'm going to miss this when I'm back in the office of the Masonic Ave house listening to Igby whine outside the door and looking out at the paint-peeling wall of the airshaft, and the descending column of fog, and the reusable feminine hygiene products laid out to dry on the hippie neighbors' windowsill.

Then again, friends. And family. And dancing. Dear god, dancing. Can we all go to Leisure or Soul Night or something really old and familiar that might not even exist anymore and get ridonculously sweaty and pull some muscles and sing along so loud to Ain't Too Proud to Beg or whatever that we can barely croak out our cross-streets to the cabbie? THX.

Friday, November 20, 2009

the cure for homesickness

Rachel and Christian came to visit! It was so fun! Guys! I can't even tell you how fun it was! We did practically no work the whole time and just laughed and drank wine and ate food and omg we are sad they are gone now.

Here they are being all like "woah this house is beautiful / Indiana rules":

Their reaction to our surroundings made us remember how much we loved it during our first several weeks here -- not that we don't still love it, but with the combination of homesickness and the natural taking-things-for-granted-ness that always builds up, the thrill had somewhat faded. It was invigorating to watch them exclaim at the huge house, the sense of space, the remarkable amount of architectural beauty, and of course the awesomeness of the uncles/grandma.

The first night we went to Tim's studio for beer and geez ("geez(sp?)" = Tim's name for his particular genre of music, generally but not exclusively made by people over 40, i.e. "geezers"). Then we spent a weirdly warm sunny afternoon running around Fountain Square, a 50's-style 'hood with a wonderfully preserved old theatre and diner, bowling alley, lots of vintage/antique places, and a bar called Radio Radio which obviously rules.

We wandered through the nethers of the art-studio complex by the Big Car Gallery and stumbled upon this monster made of, I dunno, whiteout?, but Rach wasn't skeered:

My uncle Pat had a party, so we finally got to see his house in all its glory. There are no words, really, and the pictures definitely do not do it justice. How do you describe a party at the home of an insanely generous and witty bachelor who calls himself "The King" and built a karaoke stage and a bar in his home and has nine-foot paintings of Madonna that he commissioned himself displayed on the wall? You just can't. Somebody needs to make a sitcom or reality show about my uncle Pat and his roommate Jay. Seriously. It's just way too hilarious and awesome not to be enjoyed by the masses.

Then we went to Chicago for one night, which was a lot of driving for a little stay, but it was really fun to be running around a big city again.

And then Dan got food poisoning from the restaurant in Chicago. Aaaand it was his birthday dinner. We arrived back in Indianapolis just in time for Dan to have one night of complete hell, and then it was over. We spent the day lounging around the fire, watching movies, and playing Catan while rain poured against the windows. (Note the transfer of the Catan Winner's Medallion from Dan to me WOOO.)

Their last night here, Rachel and I sat on the couch and had a long awesome talk while Dan and Christian went to Tim's studio to sip tequila and record what Tim called a "space jam," which apparently doesn't put anyone but me in the mind of some Bugs Bunny / Michael Jordan movie from the nineties. Dan and Chris were both super inspired by the night, mostly by Tim's laid-back and less-cerebral (i.e. un-Lyon-esque) approach to music-making.

And then they left and Dan and I were both hit with a TON of actual work. Like, I immediately began twelve-hour workdays. It sucks because their whole visit was so invigorating (that's just the perfect word) that we wish we could transfer the energy to creative stuff. Sigh/reality.

More soon about our plans for the short remainder of our trip and the drive home. Thank you Rachel for taking pictures!

Monday, November 9, 2009


California, we miss you! Public transportation and sidewalks and Malcolm (sorry Igby, not you) and all of our friends and family, we miss you too! That Girls/Cass McCombs show at the Great American, we really missed you! Vietnamese sandwiches and Herbivore's fake chicken! The ability to wear contact lenses without our eyes becoming insanely red!

What do contact lenses have to do with California, you ask? WELL. Since one week after arriving in Indianapolis, I've been unable to wear contact lenses (and I've worn contacts all day every day with no problems since I was 12). My eyes get really red and bloodshot and emit a strange goo. I saw an optometrist twice, and he said everything looked okay and gave me some different lenses to try, but nothing worked. Internet research revealed that it could be the result of a "change in environment" (allergies to pollen, water, etc) or it could be a "normal resistance to contact lenses experienced by women over 30" (I do qualify for this category albeit by the slimmest of margins). But then Dan started noticing the exact same symptoms. WTF? We're both stuck wearing our glasses all the time, which is kind of a pain. My personal theory is to blame the midwestern water, which tastes and feels and smells really quite strange -- much worse than tap water from other places I've lived, including LA and NYC. Either that or our eyes are allergic to the feeling of being relaxed and inspired? Anybody have any experiences or information about this problem?

Anyway. For contacts and many other things, we're getting really homesick. Luckily some heroic visitors have come to alleviate the pain. My dad spontaneously bought a ticket on Priceline last week and arrived less than two days later. We let it be a surprise for Grandma (she dropped two handfuls of silverware when he walked into the kitchen). Then we took some time off to try new restaurants with him, drink some delicious Dad-approved beer, and watch the World Series (and by "watch" I mean play Rock Band and pinball at Pat's while the game played on another TV upstairs). And this week, starting Thursday, Rachel and Christian are coming! Um YAY.

In other news, we've decided to delete the Tuscon portion from our trip. I have to be back in CA a bit earlier than anticipated because of a work presentation, plus our Christmas party date is creeping up earlier -- there just wasn't going to be much time in AZ to make the change of location worthwhile. Plus, we've settled in here so nicely; water aside, we're really enjoying it here. It seems to make more sense to stay put, keep our momentum going, and then drive straight across the country home in December.

I haven't been taking many pictures but here's Pat's cat lounging on his pinball machine and an autographed copy of Ted Nugent's World Bowhunters Magazine, Issue #1, spotted at a flea market.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

two years ago

A couple nights before Halloween 2007, my friends Jesse and Lloyd threw a party with the theme "Come as You Were in High School." I wore an Elvis Costello shirt, cutoff jeans, black tights, and Doc Martens. It was a blast. Near the beginning of the party, I met a very handsome gay man named Dan.

As it turns out, Dan was coming from a more generic Halloween party and was not, in fact, gay in high school. He couldn't get my number because his spandex shorts did not allow for a cell phone, but he gave me his. I texted something cute and never heard back and assumed that was that.

Luckily we ran into each other again on the actual night of Halloween, when I was Captain Fun and Dan was Brian.

Dan explained that he'd accidentally given me his brother's phone number, and then he told me all about his sensitive singer-songwriter music and his awesome job making ringtones and his brother's band that was about to be signed by an indie label. *SWOON*

Tonight we have no costumes but we're gonna go to Pat's and hand out candy and play Beatles Rock Band. Happy anniversary us. (And congrats to my cousin Sarah who's getting married today! Wish I could be there.)