It's that time of year again- Whitman's Four Day. So Becca caught a ride over to Portland with Danielle and a few other Whitties. When she showed up early in the afternoon, we had collected a pretty good gathering of people in our apartment: me, Dar, James, Lauren, Will, and Dar's friend Marisa from work. We gave Becca about two seconds to turn around, and then we all jumped into Jarvis and Will's car (newly christened Chupathingy whether he likes it or not) and headed to Chinatown. We went to our favorite dim sum place, then wandered around downtown obtaining cash and caffeine. Marisa ditched to get some sleep (silly Parry Center employees and their weird hours), and the rest of us headed for Sauvie Island, after some minor navigational fail and getting stopped by a cop. ...While looking for a place to turn, we accidentally ran through a red light. Luckily the dude was nice and let us off with a warning. Also luckily, he did not see us turn the wrong way into a one-way street earlier. Goddamn downtown streets.
Anyway, off we went to Sauvie Island, enjoying the awesome train graffiti on the way over (someone stenciled DO NOT HUMP on one of the cars). We pulled into the giant cloud of dust and cars that is The Pumpkin Patch's parking lot, then dived into the crowd. Oh man, that place is just lacking some rides to be like the county fair. There were people everywhere, and tasty foods, and cute farm animals, and face painting, and hay wagon/cow train rides, and an awesome market for all sorts of vegetables but most especially squash. We were there for The Corn Maize, though. We bought our tickets and dived right in. Lauren went to work immediately taking random turns and trying to get us as lost as possible. We decided we would find our way to the center and then split into two teams and play Marco Polo. We promptly split into two teams: Lauren, James, and Will on the Blue Team, and Dar, Becca, and I on the Red Team (SUCK IT, BLUES!!) Those of us who are Red vs. Blue obsessed picked characters to be, and then we were corn maze larping. I was saddened by my inability to be Caboose, being on the Red Team and all, so I became the next best thing: Donut. To the horror of everyone involved, I'm quite good at being Donut. So anyway, there was a lot of silliness, what with the Red vs. Blue larping, and Dar, Becca, and Will prodding us with corn, and all of us breaking into song at random intervals. Eventually we got tired of wandering around aimlessly, so I took charge of navigation and led us quickly through the rest of the maze, larping the whole time (In your face, wrench!). We had amusing encounters with unicorn dude, who was using his unicorn powers to navigate the maze, and at some point Becca and Dar ditched us. The "center" turned out to be pretty close to the end, and obviously our teams were all fucked up by this point, and really the maze was too big for Marco Polo, so we gave up on that idea. We got to the exit and I called Dar and Becca on my cell, only to find that they were in the path next to us. They took an illegal shortcut and we left the maze.
We spent some time saying hello to the chickens, ducks, goats, cows, and ponies, then Will had to ditch. We bought some cider and candy corn and a pile of squash and some roses and $2 zucchini the size of the world, and by that time it was after 6 and mostly everything was shutting down. So we headed back into Portland to catch some Burgerville deliciousness and wait for it to get dark. Then it was time for the haunted corn maze, the Field of Screams. The line was about two-and-a-half hours long, which was RIDICULOUS. We had sing-alongs and played hand games, and I taught Becca how to do the Jitterbug and 40's Charleston. At some point we started talking to Alex and Doyle, the adorable gay boys in the line ahead of us. We became buddies, and when we FINALLY made it into the maze we all stuck together. James and I were the stoic manly ones, while Becca was embarrassed to discover that she screams at a very high pitch. The monsters did a great job hiding in shadowy corners and leaping out at us, and the requisite chainsaw guy was terrifying as usual. ...Except that he managed to separate me from the group and get in front of me, so kind of followed from behind and watched him chase everyone else, which was kind of funny.
Anyway, a good time was had by all. It being quite late, most of us went to bed, but Dar hooked up with Marisa and Sonya and went downtown for drinking and donuts.
Becca, Dar, James, and I went downtown again. Dar and James went off to Saturday Market while Becca and I checked out a guitar store. Becca pondered all of the shiny shiny electric guitars for a while, and then she pondered the acoustic guitars while I played all five of the songs I know on the 'ukulele. We met up with Dar and James at Saturday Market, tried on some hats, and went to the communist sandwich shop, The People's Sandwich of Portland. This is, btw, the source of the BEST FOOD IN THE ENTIRE WORLD. Omg. I got the Hammer and Pickle sandwich, which contains ham and pork and swiss cheese and mustard and pickles, and it's all toasted and delicious. And they make their own pickles, and the bread in all their sandwiches is Dave's Killer Bread. Becca and James both got Hot Italians, which have all sorts of tasty Italian meats and pepperoncinis. Dar got this amazing salad with spinach and red onions and grated cheese and THE BEST CROUTONS EVER and this delicious vinaigrette. All the sandwiches came with THE BEST POTATO CHIPS IN THE WORLD. They slice up a potato right then and there, toss it in the fryer, season it, and hand it over. If you have not had fresh potato chips, still warm from the fryer, than you have not truly lived. The curly fries are the same way. They carve up two whole potatoes, fry them, and put them on your plate in a giant tangle the size of your head. And they make their own ketchup and it is SO DELICIOUS OMG. ...And all the sandwiches also come with Tootsie Rolls. ^_^
Call volume was reeeeeaaaaal low, and I was sleep-deprived and only expecting it to get worse, so when Francis called for volunteers to leave early, I took him up on it. So I took off around 1 and caught a bus home. As soon as I got home Natascha called me and told me I'd been laid off (because, you know, call volume has been so low). Soooooo I'm jobless again, whoo. On the plus side, this means I can party and sleep!
So Lauren picked me up around 7:45 and we went downtown for the ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead concert. We moseyed into Dante's a little after eight and snagged a table. We chatted for a bit and I had a highly alcoholic gin and tonic, and then the opening band Future of the Left started and we went to go stand in the front of the crowd. They were Welsh and pretty rockin', although I wish I could've understood any of the singing/screaming. Also, they were obviously new to the Northwest, as they were deeply frustrated by the apparent lack of enthusiasm from the audience. I did my best to dance enough for everyone, and eventually the bassist took matters into his own hands and leapt down into the crowd. He jumped around a bunch, and head-butted Lauren in the shoulder (here, have a bosom full of sweaty, shaggy bassist hair! :D), and booty-danced with me a bit. It was awesome.
There was some downtime then so we wandered over to drool over Conrad's prints and tell him how brilliant he is. We agonized over how beautiful the art is vs. how we really can't justify buying any of it, and Lauren ran into a childhood friend. Conrad disappeared at some point, so decided we ought to head back over to the stage. The lady standing next to us chatted with us a bit; apparently she went to high school with Conrad in Kailua, and had recently found him on Facebook. And then Trail of Dead came out on the stage and it was just a never-ending tsunami of AWESOME. They started with
Eventually the show ended (;_;), but I got to shake Conrad's hand as he left the stage, and when we went outside Jay was there having a beer and a smoke, and I congratulated him on an awesome show, and he said he'd seen me dancing and I was awesome too. ^_^ <3 <3 <3 ...See, when you're in the Northwest and no one dances except you, because you're from Hawaii and also couldn't possibly be prevented from dancing short of removing all your limbs, you get noticed by the band. XP AND THEY APPRECIATE YOU.
So anyway we stumbled through the streets almost entirely deafened, found our car after some trial-and-error, and went home.
After GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP OMG, I bussed over to Lauren's for some Aphelion work time. Dar picked us up a bit after 4:30 and we headed off to Eugene for our second concert in a row, Gogol Bordello. Because we are just that hardcore. ...Can you imagine I was planning on going to work this week? Anyway, we got there quite early again, picked up our tickets, got patted-down by TSA, and headed straight to the front. The opening band was some guitar and drum duo from Montreal, that I didn't bother to remember the name of, because they were LAME. After they went away, and after a much much much too long pause, Gogol Bordello came out on the stage and SHIT WAS BANANAS. I mean, okay, I've been to a punk concert before, Flogging Molly was just as mad, but... HOLY SHIT. I spent the first half of the concert fighting for my life. Dar and Lauren got pushed away by the crowd, but not too far. I could still see them if I looked. As for me, I grabbed onto the barrier with both hands and braced myself. I may be tiny, but I'm strong, so I wasn't trampled too badly. Even so, I got squished any number of times, and got elbows and hips and knees thrust into my kidneys. I do hope the girl in front of me appreciated me. She probably had the softest ride of the whole concert with me watching her back. Anyway, eventually the crowd chilled just a tiny little bit and I was able to enjoy most of the rest of the show. Oh man, Gogol Bordello has crazy stage energy. I can't even begin to describe. They are just fabulous at interacting with the crowd. I really enjoyed letting go, jumping up and down and yelling my head off like a fucking animal with the rest of the crowd, beating my fist into the air and watching the crowd-surfers sail overhead. And let me tell you, Start Wearing Purple was a freaking religious experience.
When the show ended and we escaped the crowd my hair was a rat's nest, my bra strap was nowhere near my shoulder, and I was soaking with sweat. When we got back to the car I downed an entire Talking Rain in one go. My hands still feel bruised from pressing against the barrier, holding up my weight and about 100 other people. ...But it's aaaaaallll goooood~. :DD
...Soooo, yeah. I'm still kind of recovering from all that. I'm trying to take advantage of my time of joblessness and get shit done. ...So far I've been moderately successful. But omg I've been getting so much sleep. T_T It's truly wonderful, let me tell you.