Friday, October 20, 2006

David Sedaris in Cedar Rapids

Last night we saw David Sedaris in Cedar Rapids. It was my anniversary gift to Shannon (paper tickets). It was fantastic, even better than I expected. He read four things, all recently written, I think (I hadn't heard any of them before). One started with making coffee with vase water because of the water in their apartment always being shut off at inopportune times, diverged into buying pot from a guy in a trailer while home for the holidays, then returned to coffee-making. Another was about working in/observing at a morgue. The first one was about trying to squeeze a story (about a mouse burning down a house) into any conversation possible. There was also a fictional story about a baboon grooming a cat (like at a salon), and their bigoted conversation.

He was just as entertaining speaking extemporaneously and answering questions. He complained about nonsmoking hotels and didn't have enough good things to say about Tokyo. We took this as a sign that our desire to go to Japan is justified. He illuminated its appeal for shoppers. Paraphrasing: "There are all these shops - you come across this little thing that looks like it was made by an elf, and you have no idea what it is but you have to have it." He was so over France.

There were some good questions. One, about his stories being edited for the New Yorker, led him to explain the definition of a "rusty trombone" (which was to replace a line that the New Yorker found distasteful).

There is more, maybe I will edit this entry when I think of it.

At the beginning, this 16-year-old kid with floppy hair walked out and said his name and age. He said David told him he would give him $20 if he would introduce him. He also said a word of promotion about a bakesale for some worthy organization at his high school that he was a part of. It was charming.

posted by Bryce at 1:50 PM / 0 comments

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Recent happenings including the start of year 2

Two weekends ago was our anniversary. We went to Wisconsin and had adventures picking apples and driving around cranberry marshes. Shannon has a good telling of it. I will add that on the day we came back, we hung around Prairie Du Chien a little bit, had lunch and went to a toy store, where I bought replacement marbles for my Frigits set. We also stopped at a hip store in McGregor, which had great toys and books as well as hornets aplenty on the third floor.

This past weekend my parents came to see us. (Shannon covered this too.) They came from Milwaukee, where they had visited my sister Joy. We had a good time; they stayed in our recently renovated (read: painted) guest room. We caught them how to play Carcassonne. We went to a festival called Osborne Heritage Days, where we had buffalo stew (yum) and homemade root beer (yum!). Later we hung out at Shannon's parents' house, where all the family was. It was lots of fun. My dad watched two Cardinals games the two nights they were here. The second one was a disappointer.

They left Monday morning, then I had a job interview at a daycare. It was fun to sit in with the 2-3 year-olds. I think it went pretty well. I'm still applying to other places as well.

Yesterday we took an impromptu trip to Waterloo and saw The Departed, which was very good, if nerve-wracking. We ate at the Chinese restaurant and it was delish as always. We bought some gifts for people at a store nearby.

posted by Bryce at 8:54 PM / 0 comments

Wednesday, October 4, 2006

Annie Warbucks weekends

Last weekend was the opening of Annie Warbucks, in which I have a bit part as a servant, at the Elkader Opera House. You might know Elkader as the only town in the US named after an Algerian freedom fighter. All three shows went very well and played to an almost packed house. Tonight there is one more rehearsal, then the next three nights are the final three shows. Shannon have the songs stuck in our heads and we can't stop singing them.

Sunday is our first anniversary. We are going on a two-day trip to Wisconsin. It's incredible to me that a year has gone by already, but it's been really amazing, and I can't wait to see what our next year together will bring.

posted by Bryce at 1:41 PM / 0 comments