Sunday, August 31, 2014

Sometimes A Sweaty Gross Old T Shirt Is Actually The (Black) Key To World Of Excellent Friends And Music. You Can't Always Get What You Want, But You Get What You Need, by Allison

I had the most fabulous, totally fun and excellent evening of music,
under twinkly lights,
surrounded by friends and awesomeness last night.

Like, just one of those transcendent nights -
 where all is well and life is good . . .
I guess cheesy stuff you'd put on a T shirt?

Except I would not wear that T shirt.
Because I have T shirt laws and they are:
Band T shirts, only.

But in the circle never ends wisdom thing?

Or Rolling Stones wisdom of you can't always get what you want,
but you get what you need?

Or, sometimes good things happen when you harass people at the gym,
 and try to buy their ratty old T shirts in boot camp class? 

(I realize that is not an actual thing, in general.
 In my life, it is a totally true and valid truism.)


Years Of Absurd Over-Sharing And Chatter About Music,
What I Think And Why Pays Off!, by Allison

Ok, so I have always been self-proclaimed, very dedicated PR and Promotions person for any bands or music that I like.
(I had a clipboard in middle school, full of Duran Duran facts.
There are witnesses, who are still my friends -
AND are Duran Duran fans to this day, so there! I am right.
I am always right, really.)

That is nothing new.
But a few years ago, for some reason,
probably insanity or sleep deprivation or brainwashing mind tricks?
I left the civilized Pilates studio at my gym,
which had very challenging Pilates classes I loved,
plus you didn't have to wear sneakers -

(Note: I hate sneakers.
Tennis shoes.
I am reluctant and recalcitrant in wearing them.
Which is sad, considering daily,
I wear them more than any of my delightful army of excellent shoes.
Sigh. I digress.)

And I entered the Thunderdome.

I didn't realize what I was doing,
 or I would have run the other way,
 as fast as I could in my newly acquired ugly stupid gym shoes.

But no,
I had heard this "360" class was fun and cool and I should try it.
I was tricked.

The name isn't scary, right?
Like, It's not INSANITY 90 TIMES XX HELL ON EARTH, or such.
I know to avoid those.

360 seemed kind of introspective and aspirational.
I am an idiot.

I go in, and am told by Very Serious Trainer to tether myself to the railing.

I am honestly baffled, because nothing he said made any sense to me at all.

He tried again, with "Tether yourself to the railing, for suicide sprints and bear crawls."

Not helpful.

That sounded REALLY unfun.

That is why I didn't want stupid gym shoes.
Can I go back to Pilates, please?

I am somehow tethered to a railing and everything else is a blur, except I lived.

And, I felt kind of like a badass when I was able to walk(ish) out of that room,
having done things I had never heard of or would agree to do,

Plus, there must have been brainwashing that I didn't realize,
 because I was still trying to process why I was hitting a tire with a stick.

I went back!
And eventually, was shocked I could do some of this crazy stuff.

But, the reason I do stuff at the gym and not at home?
I am inherently lazy and will find something, anything, to do other than exercise.
That is why books and music exist.

Group exercise is helpful,
 because I am amongst other people suffering,
also wearing stupid gym shoes,
and I am not allowed to pull out my Kindle and hide in the corner.

One of the drawbacks, however,
to the benignly named, totally awful 360 classes is this:

No chatting.

You can't catch your breath,
and Very Serious Trainer does not care if you tell him you are sweating from your eyeballs.
(That happened.)

So, though I was now in a group of people willingly being tormented,
 there wasn't any time for conversation.


Plus afterwards?
You just want to leave,
limp or whatever - get out of there.

One is the loneliest number,
you know.
Ask any elevator Musak.

And so I couldn't continue with this "no talking or making friends or I have a funny story" thing for long -

So Hurray!
As with most things in life,
I was saved by music.

Or more specifically,
 a dude who came to class in an old, ratty, iron on Black Keys T shirt.
One of the first ones.
From Akron.
Iron on old band T!
Band I love!
I summoned enough oxygen to completely freak out this poor dude,
 by trying to bribe or beg or buy his disgusting T shirt,
as the real, old iron on Akron Ohio T's are like unicorns.


Of course, as most reasonable people would,
that guy completely ignored me.
And never came back again.
But silver lining?
The friendly, happy,
almost absurdly cheerfully Zen
(I did not know that was a thing until I met him,
but it is a thing)
dude from my 360 class?
Named Paul?
Was like "Oh, you like music?"
Open the floodgates.
Get this?
He not only travels for shows,
 and is as content and happy to talk and share and expound upon music as I am,
but also?
He Field Of Dreams, Music Edition
 and bands come and play.
Good bands, from all over.
There are twinkly lights,
and excellent crowd,
and really good musicians.
I am not sure how he does it, other than,
the whole thing is kind of magical,
who wouldn't want to be a part of it?
(Note: Paul is also the only person I know who will see a show in Chapel Hill with us,
and then agree that it is a fabulous idea we should go see them in Charlotte the next night.
He somehow remains bright-eyed and in good spirits afterwards.
I internally and externally pay the price for my music gluttony.
I'm fine with that, just jealous I cannot rally like he does. )
And last night, we saw a fabulous band, Barnaby Bright,
at the Backyard Stage of Paul's house,
in the end-of-summer twinkly shimmery kind of an evening in which I am not grumpy over the hot since it is coming to an end -
And the band?
They were awesome.
Really talented, excellent musicians with all sorts of stringed instruments (guitar, banjo, ukulele, maybe more) and keys and harmonium!
They were fabulous.
Fabulous night of music, Barnaby Bright are amazing
And you can hear them and find them at,
and here's their "Old Coats" video:
Last night we heard a killer version of Billie Holiday's "Fine and Mellow," had a blast, got to talk to the awesome band -
Am total fangirl !! Me with Barnaby Bright after their awesome show

All thanks to Fabulous Awesome Music Friend "He Built It, And Thank Heavens It's Music Not Baseball!!" Paul.

Lesson of the Day:

It's Totally Ok To Freak Out A Dude At The Gym By Trying To Buy His Old Black Keys T Shirt, Because You Might Meet Awesome Friend And Have Fun Forevermore.

(Also, Dude You Freaked Out Will Most Likely Never Come Back To Your Gym So No Awkward Social Situations!)