Saturday, January 28, 2012

Waiting on the rapture

It's official.  Here in my house, tacked above my computer in my bedroom, there is one ticket to the Glendale Arizona Radiohead concert. (Ok, officially- it's B's ticket because I bought hers and she and Matt bought mine and Matt's -Matt and I are sitting together in the lower bowl and B will be in the general area, but in the upper bowl, so we have to switch tickets-)  But still................having the ticket in my hands feels as good as mine (and if anything should go wrong with mine and Matt's ticket- I'll fight her for this one- I'm not above that.)

I can hardly believe that what started 12 years ago, is going to culminate into me finally getting to be there, watching the greatest band on earth, play their music right in front of me.  12 years ago, I was hanging out, listening to music (lots of The Cure) and in the span of 2 months, had 4 different people tell me that I should check out Radiohead, they thought I would like it.  Two of those people were good friends I trusted quite well, one was a work mate, and one was a boy I went out with once.  I was moving to NY then, and when I got to NY, and made it into a music store, I bought OK Computer (that was the one I was told to start with).  I popped it in my cd player and well, to make a long story short- it changed my life.  I couldn't believe how good it was.  I bought The Bends.  Blown away again.  At that point, I couldn't buy any other RH albums, because I couldn't get those two out of my player for long enough to do so.  That lasted a few years, then I bought Amnesiac.  Basically for about 6 years I really listened to little else (and that is being generous).  For some reason, I didn't want to buy all their albums at once.  I wanted to get to know them in time, so that's what I did.  I bought them one by one through the years.  Then when I caught up with the band, I started getting the B sides. 

I lived in this world for a long time.  Not keeping up with what was going on currently with the band.  Just soaking them in at my own pace.  When I had caught up, they were starting to tour for In Rainbows.  That year was a terrible year for us.  There was no way in the world we could have handled me taking a road trip to see them play somewhere.  I may have been able to go if they came to Salt Lake, but no.  As I followed the tour, I got more and more disappointed that I wasn't there.  I should have been there.  I couldn't be there though and it broke my heart.  The last date they played, they played in Santa Barbara, and they webcasted the entire concert in real time.  I had it up on the laptop and watched while Rob slept beside me.  I took turns cheering and crying and clapping while they played.  It was wonderful really.  I also vowed that the next time they toured, I WOULD be there.  Whatever it took, I would be there.  There was no way around it.  I was not going to go through that again.  I belonged there.  

Flash forward to now.  They started announcing tour dates.  They left big gaps and nothing back east, and no California.  So I impatiently and nervously waited while tickets went on sale.  After sales started, they announced Seattle and California.  Seattle sounded right to me. Sounded awesome.  Matt had never been there.  Radiohead's website presells tickets a few days ahead of time.  For Seattle, they did that the day of my niece's wedding and there was no way to try.  They went on sale to the public on sat morning and were gone in seconds.  I wanted a GA ticket, I wanted to be right in front of the stage.  So, we waited for the California shows to sell.  Presale- gone in seconds, later sale- seconds- and I mean literal seconds.  We sat at our computers refresh, refresh, refresh- sale- gone.  Right out from under us.  It was a mad house.  Radiohead fans everywhere are up in arms.  Fans were actually staying up all night hitting refresh only to have then sell out right before their eyes.  What's worse, tickets were appearing on resale ticket sights by the hundreds, for 5 to 10 times the ticket price amount, directly after.  I don't know what happened, but it was not cool.  It wasn't fair.  Something went bad.  On the fan forums, there is a very ill wind in the air.  And it does suck, that is a nasty disappointment and frustration that I understand.  They tried to have most tickets "paperless" which means that the person that bought the ticket has to present the exact credit card they used and their id at the gate to get their tickets.  This is to prevent what ended up happening.  Somehow the scalpers have found a loophole and were able to secure tickets and take advantage of us fans that are really, a pretty fierce, loyal lot.  We recognize the genius and we live for it and we want to be there to see it happen.  Fans are trying to blame someone, and ticketmaster is getting some major wrath for this, the band is getting it's share too.  I don't think for a minute that the band is happy this is happening.  But I hope that the fans raise a big enough stink about this and let the band know how they feel.  Maybe I'm just optimistic, but I really think that something can be done next time, and avoid all this.  If you follow up with the band at all, you will know that they are firmly against corporate greed.  They went independent from their record company and now release their own stuff, how they want.  They pioneered a new way to buy CDs with In Rainbows, asking people to "pay what they want".  You could name your own price to get their cd.  Cool eh?  People that can do all of this and be so innovative, I think, can figure something out- and not have to go through sites like Ticketmaster and let the true fans buy the tickets at actual ticket price.  I really hope they come up with something, cause I fully intend to be there next time too.

I was referring to mostly the other fans in that last paragraph, cause I was lucky and was able to come up with a do-able alternative and have a happy ending.  I found out that for whatever reason, the tickets in Glendale were much cheaper to buy on these secondary sites then any other tour date, so we decided to do it.  I cruised a lot of ticket websites and found the one that had the best reputation and a 100% guarantee on the tickets you buy there.  We went to purchase floor seats and found out that they tacked on an extra 55 dollars in fees.  We regrouped.  I would have done it, but got a really sinky feeling in my gut thinking of Matt and B having to add over 100 extra dollars and they are fans, but maybe not over 100 dollar fans tacked on to two already double priced tickets.  We figured out that we could get decent seats (very decent seats) on Jonny's side of the stage for quite a bit less.  Then we couldn't buy 3, only 2 or 4.  So.............B offered to sit somewhere else, and let Matt and I sit together since we are the bigger fans and she might as well get an even cheaper seat in the upper bowl.  Yeah- B's awesome.

I am perfectly happy with this.  I am also bringing some binoculars. :)

In light of all that has happened and the catastrophe of the ticket sales, I think to the most recent Radiohead song they have released.  It's called The Daily Mail, and it's lyrics remind me very much of this whole thing.......................................

The Daily Mail

The moon is a rock on a mountain
The lunatics have taken over the asylum
Waiting on the rapture
Singing we’re here to keep your prices down
Feed you to the hounds
To the Daily Mail,

You made a pig’s ear, you made a mistake
Paid off security and got through the gate
You got away with it but we lie in wait

Where’s the truth? What’s the use?
I’m hanging around lost and found
And when you’re here, innocent

Fat chance, no plan
No regard for human life
Keep trying, you’re not right
You’re fast to lose, you will lose
You jumped the queue, go back again

President for life, lord of all
The flies in the sky, the beasts of the earth
The fish in the sea, you’ve lost command

Am I the only one that sees the irony?

What is making this whole thing even better, is that two of my sisters -Cat and Sue are coming along for the road trip and also to baby sit my kids while we are at the concert.  Rob can't go, which pains me a lot. I would love to have Rob at my side for this, but he can't miss school.  He will get the full report though, oh yes, he will.  It is going to be so much fun, what a road trip!  I am so excited.  The ides of March didn't turn out so well for Ceaser, but I'm sure looking forward to that date.


October, 2010:

Me: I hope Radiohead does that when I see them in concert. (Note I said "when" not "if".  If Matt can see the Pixies, I WILL see Radiohead).

Matt:  You will totally see them. And it is going to rip your face off and eat with a side of dope sauce. I will be there for sure. 

excerpts taken from This Monkey's Gone to Vegas 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Thank You

I want to tell my daughter's crossing guard thank you.  Since September, I've seen her twice a day, said hi, shared a smile, and watched her take her job seriously.  Then, a few weeks ago, school was out and I stood across the street from the school, watching my daughter waiting at the curb with some other kids.  Scout saw me and knew I was there and couldn't wait to cross and run over to me and tell me about her day like she always does.  But she stood there, waiting for the guard to tell them it was safe to cross the street.  All the cars were stopping, and she put her sign up and started across the street.  

The car in the first lane wasn't paying a bit of attention, and I watched as that car hit my daughter's crossing guard.  I watched her hit the hood and then fly off the car and land in the street.  It was the scariest thing I have ever seen.  I knew my daughter was still waiting at the curb, but my first impulse was to run home 3 houses away to get my phone to call 911.  Rob was there with Elles and I told him what just happened and we both flew out of the house back to the school.  The crossing guard was lying on the street and had a few people around her, tending her.  Scout was in the exact same place, crying.  I ran to her and scooped her up, horrified at what had just happened, what I had just watched, what my daughter had just watched a few feet from her.  A little later came the horror of what could have happened, how bad it could have been.  

Then came the police and the ambulance.  Then came the next horror to me- I realized that the crossing guard's own children go to the school and hang out at the same corner waiting for their mom to get off work.  That's when I noticed a little boy crying, trying with all his might to unlock his mom's phone so he can call his dad.  I went over to their car and tried to comfort him and help him.  Her other children were upset, but sitting in the car.  The little boy's sister took over trying to unlock the phone.  We ended up using my phone and at this point I didn't know the status of the crossing guard, or what to say to the dad.  I walked over there and the crossing guard was conscious and they told me that he had been called by the school office.  I told her I was with her kids.  I went back and told them that their mom was ok and that their daddy was coming and relieved that I didn't have to make that phone call.

Rob took Scout home.  I had to stay because I was a first hand witness and had to sign a statement, etc.  The dad didn't show up.  I started making inquiries and found out that there was a mix up and he really hadn't been called.  I chickened out again and had the lady that worked at the school office call him from my phone.  By that time the crossing guard was being loaded onto the ambulance.  The woman that hit her never got out of her car, never talked to anyone. 

Her family lived close and the dad happen to have the day off (he is a fireman), so he arrived quickly, but wasn't able to see his wife, the ambulance was already gone.  He was then able to comfort his kids, and I wrote down everything I remembered from the accident and sped home as fast as I could.  By that time, Scout was feeling much better, she and daddy had a good talk about what happened.  What ever he said to her was the right thing.  I spent the rest of the evening restless and recovering from various degrees of shock which ended with quite a headache.  Scout spent the evening bringing up feelings and thoughts about the accident which included bouts of anger towards the person that hit her.  I tried to tell her that she didn't do it on purpose but was in big trouble for doing that.  I walked Scout to school the next day and inquired in the office how the crossing guard was doing.  I was told she hadn't broken any bones, but had a lot of soft tissue damage and will be back to work in a few weeks (if her husband lets her).

I am so glad things turned out ok.  I am so relieved that it wasn't worse then it was.  I will forever play that scene in my mind, and never forget what that was like.  I've never seen a person get hit by a car before.   I've thought a lot about what happened and like Scout, I can sometimes feel anger towards the woman that hit her.  That crossing guard was doing everything right.  School had just gotten out.  There were kids everywhere.  The flashing school zone lights were flashing.  The cross walk is one of those big ones, with extra safety curbing, and green stripes.  There are reflector poles on either side.  The crossing guard had big, colored cones out in the middle of the street.  She had a orange vest on.  She had a huge stop sign in her hand.  I am angry that you can make such a grievous error such as not paying attention to all of that and hitting a crossing guard with my child (and several others) so close.  The fact that that can happen, I saw it happen, there are people out there that can cause that to happen, scares me so much. 

So I want to say again, thank you.  Even though I feel like we've gotten to know each other a bit this year by smiles and saying hi, I hadn't even learned your name.  But thank you for taking your job so seriously.  Thank you for keeping our children safe.  Thank you for following the rules and making sure those kids are safely still at the curb until you know for sure it is safe to cross.  Thank you for putting yourself on the line for our kids.  At Christmas, we gave you an inadequate gift card and some chocolates with a note that said, "thank you for keeping Scout safe".  Little did I know, just a couple weeks later, how much I would mean that.

Tell your son that I am sorry I was so shaky I had to ask him 3 times what his dad's number was.  The fact that he could tell me it correctly 3 times with all that was going on, and being so scared for his mom, is amazing to me.  What a kid.

Tell your husband I am sorry I hesitated in calling him the first time.  I was too afraid to call this complete stranger and tell him that his wife was just hit by a car and he better come down to the school to be with his kids.  I was scared I would say something stupid.  I was clear headed enough to know that in my state of shock, I might not make the best word choices, but I should have manned up and done it anyway.  I am the reason he didn't get to see his wife before you went to the hospital.

And finally, to the woman that hit her, I don't know quite what to say.  I know we all make mistakes, but I really hope that you and everyone else learned something that day.  According to some of the kids waiting to cross the street with my daughter, you had your phone in your hand.  We all get a little distracted from time to time, but we just can't let ourselves get so distracted we don't notice we are in an active school zone.  I don't know if you were dialing a number or texting, either way........ you are so, so, so lucky this didn't end up worse.  I don't think my daughter's small little body could have taken your car like the crossing guard's did.  But I just can't even think about that.  She is safe, and she is doing well and hardly brings up what she saw that day anymore.  But I don't think she will ever forget it.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

What Emily's Been Watching Nov/Dec

In true end of year fashion, I totally dropped the ball. BUT in true new year fashion, I have made an effort to write down my movies as I watch them so I don't forget. Speaking of movies, I have been a busy little movie watching bee this month, so my Jan list will make up for this list where I can hardly remember anything I saw.  I have been inspired by end of year best of lists and my need to catch up on last years movies, combined with a chest cold that has messed with my energy levels cruelly.  But I guess that is all stuff for next month (or the next week or two).  So here are the movies I can remember watching these last few months (If anyone remembers me watching something I forgot or if you saw something with me, speak up and I'll add it)--
Also........ I am going to be pretty brief and not get into them too much.  Basically, I just want to get this post done and out of the way.

SOURCE CODE (2011)  [PG-13]  action/thriller.  Rob and I actually sat down together and watched a movie.  A very rare event these days with school.  I found this movie interesting and enjoyable.  It is a good one to watch when you want some action combined with a mystery that has you trying to figure out how it is all going to end up.  Not a thinking movie with some great moral you will think about for a week, it is more just cleverly put together and interesting while it's on.  Has a pretty good little twist ending too.  I could give a little explanation of the plot, but I just watched the trailer, and it explains everything I would have, so just watch that if you want to know.  Yes, I'm in a lazy mood.   Emily recommends this one for it's pure entertainment value, for when that mood strikes you.

THE MUPPETS (2011) [PG]  comedy/family.  I come from a family that appreciates The Muppets.  We have all been life time fans.  So, when Jason Segal made a muppet movie, we made it into an event.  We went together over the Thanksgiving week.  My mom, dad, brothers Matt and Ben, Matt's wife B, and sisters Sue and Cat and Cat's son Booker.  Plus my two girls (Rob had a conflict, but he isn't as into them as the rest of us).  Anyway, we had a great time.  The movie was a lot of fun, the muppets were funny, the songs were enjoyable and catchy.  They did a fine job trying to relaunch the muppets into society again. The muppets have been scattered and are urged to reunite by a super fan (who is also a muppet but happens to be Jason Segal's brother (no explanation given on how that worked.  None needed though if you ask me)  So they travel around gathering muppets from where they have been for the last 15 years or so (Gonzo is a successful business man, Animal is in therapy. and has been conditioned not to say the word "drums') My favorite part though, was looking over at Elinor on Sue's lap with her eyes big as saucers seeing her much loved muppets in giant form before her.  She was in heaven.  I also enjoyed how the movie repeatedly broke the 4th wall- it was a great device that kept me laughing (as did gonzo's arm that wouldn't stop winding for the last half of the movie- Scout and I still laugh at that).  Emily recommends this movie especially to the old muppets fans- it was made for us.  Kermit sings Rainbow Connection again if you need more endorsement.

SUPER 8 (2011) [PG-13] sci-fi/thriller.  Another movie made for nostalgia seekers around my age.  This movie was made by Steven Spielberg and JJ Abrams.  Abrams wanted to make a movie that brought back the feel of the old child adventure movies of the 80s, such as Goonies and Stand By Me.  I think he definitely succeeded on a certain level.  Some parts of it really felt like those old movies, other parts not so much.  I really liked it and was glad I saw it.  It was cute and pretty good little story.  I loved the movie the little boys were making, it amused me very much.  The train crash was pretty exciting if not entirely believable (I mean, there is no way all that would happen to a crashing train)- but hey, it made for an exciting few minutes.  Emily recommends this one too -especially if you have a fondness for those old 80's movies, if you do, you will probably get a kick out of it.

LIMITLESS (2011) [PG-13] sci-fi/thriller.  Saw this one in Wyoming with much of the fam on The Phister's giant couch.  I was not prepared to be interested at all, in fact- I was prepared to use it as nap time.  Instead I was sucked in and watched the whole thing.  It's about a guy that takes a pill that opens up the parts of the mind we normally don't always have access to.  It made him incredibly smart in all areas of life, then would wear off.  He ends up with a giant supply of them and lots of stuff happens.  That's about it really.  It was shot with overly vivid colors and my mom couldn't get over Bradly Cooper's eyes no matter how many times we told her they were color enhanced.  That is a lot of what I remember of the film.  Emily recommends this movie if you happen to have it playing in front of you.  I think it is pretty forgettable, so don't rush out to see it or feel like you need to make a lot of effort to see it.  But if it happens to be playing in front of your eyes, you will probably find it interesting enough to watch. 

Wow, that is a weird list.  Not only are they all from this year, they are comprised almost entirely of sci-fi thrillers.  Not typical, but an enjoyable time at the movies I had.


-I also rewatched Sherlock, my niece Adri has wanted to see it and knew I'd be good for a watch, so we Netflixed it over Christmas and she loved it.

-The fam watched Young Frankenstein on Christmas day too (that is the Pugh fam by the way).

-My late night Netflix choice du jour has been Fraiser.  I've never watched the entire series back to back and am finding a fair amount of episodes I have never even seen.  I LOVE Fraiser, in my top few favorite shows of all time and Niles is probably my third favorite tv character ever (behind Rob and Laura Petrie).  Funny, I have never liked Cheers, but Fraiser totally does it for me.  I love the smart humor and Fraiser's pompishness and just about everything about Niles.

Buffy update:
Finished season two and a lot of three.  Having a great time with it and watched some massively enjoyable episodes.  Interested to see where this thing goes.  (I'm further along then that as I write this, but wasn't at the end of December).


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