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Location: Midwest, United States

I floss daily, brush after every meal, and trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries.

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Saturday, August 19, 2006

Lollapalooza Report

Ah, we are home. Finally. It has been a great summer, and the traveling we've done has offered much in the way of lovely scenery, good times, and quality people. But seven weeks away from home is too much. I am so happy to be sleeping in my own bed and cluttering up my own house.

(I ran into a teacher from my department at school and as we inquired about each other's summers, we found that both of us were exhausted and had tried to cram too much into too little time. "How do people who aren't teachers do manage without the summer off?" I asked him. He suggested that people who don't have the whole summer off probably don't try to cram as much in. I don't know. But I'm trying to avoid getting beat up by remembering not to complain to people with year-round jobs about how fast summer went and how tired I am from trucking around the country.)

A couple weeks back, O. attended his first rock show at the Lollapalooza festival, but then we flew off to the Northwest to visit my mom and stepdad at their Washington home and I never got to report on the eventful day. So I'm filing my Lollapalooza report a bit late. I'll make up for my tardiness by keeping it short and offering pictures.

In short: it was an excellent day and good fun was had by all. My Old Man, Little O, and I met our friends Big O. and Other E. at their home in the Ukrainian Village, and we all set off on the el train for Grant Park. We made it in time to find decent seats for the Shins, who played a great but somewhat too quiet set. They all wore olive drab and bantered jocularly with the audience between songs.

Lolla shot 2

Note O's earplugs. The Old Man and I are responsible rock and roll parents.

Despite my urge to truck across the park to check out Of Montreal, we stayed in the "Bud Light Stage" area in an attempt to improve our seating in time for the Wilco set. As a result we were subjected to the entire set of Poi Dog Pondering, who played the facing stage. Though I remember them from the early nineties as a lighthearted pop band with a penchant for tin whistle solos, they have morphed into (or perhaps been reborn as) an extremely cheesy R&B band whose white middle-aged guy singer seems to favor sexy lyrics exhorting listeners to lift up our skirt or expressing his desire to kiss us deeply with his passionate tongue. The set ended just before my ears began to bleed.

While my Old Man and O. milled around near the Poi Dog debacle, Big O. and Other E. and I found a nice spot fairly close to the stage, but off to the side, where Little O. was less likely to get trampled.

Little O. was definitely pumped for Wilco to play. He had that shiny excited-kid expression on as soon as the band hit the stage, Jeff Tweedy sporting a shaggy beard, a straw hat, and a lime green sport coat (which ensemble made him look oddly like scruffy Uncle Walt, my cigar-smoking Appalachian uncle). O. sat on my Old Man's shoulders for most of the set and clapped wildly after each song. It was beyond cool exchanging a meaningful wide-eyed glance with him as we simultaneously recognized the opening strains of one of his favorite songs. Unfortunately, Wilco didn't play his very favorite song, "Misunderstood," but he didn't seem to mind. They played a set full of many of his other favorites.

Lolla shot1

That's my kid, the tall one in the red shirt off to the right. And if you look close, you can just make out Jeff Tweedy's lime green sport coat.


Blogger Elizabeth said...

I frickin' love that O's favorite Wilco song is "Misunderstood." I've long favored "Being There" over any other Wilco album, so I applaud him for his sophisticated taste.

4:55 PM  
Blogger Mrs. T said...

My kids love "Theologians", but haven't had the pleasure of seeing them play live. Rock on, O!

9:06 PM  
Blogger E. said...

"Theologians" is one of my personal favorite Wilco songs.

I recall that soon after O. started fixating on "Misunderstood" (this was back when he thought "Wilco" was a guy) he asked me "Mama, why did Wilco say cigarettes taste so good?" That was a hard question to answer while simultaneously attempting not to implant some latent desire to smoke in my tot.

11:36 AM  
Anonymous sweatpantsmom said...

Props to you for taking your kid to Lollapalooza. We've only made it to a Hilary Duff concert.

8:09 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Welcome back (belatedly)! Okay, so I pretty much do everything belatedly now.

Um, so, can I admit this? *whispering* I am a Wilco virgin, but they seem to be quite popular across the blogosphere with people I like. Where should I start?

Lisa/Mama Blah Blah

9:22 AM  
Blogger E. said...

Hey Lisa Blah! Well, my personal recommendation for beginning would be "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot," the album before their most recent one. Though the most recent one, "A Ghost is Born," is also great, and might be a good place to start if you like your rock quieter. On the other hand, if you like your rock a little raw around the edges, the live album ("Kicking Television: Live in Chicago") is great, and w/ 2 CDs full of songs from other records, it will give you a good introduction.

How's that for a long answer that doesn't just give you the basic suggestion you asked for?

And I have no judgment about anyone not knowing a band I listen to. There's so much music out there that's worth checking out, who can hit it all? I'm all kinds of virgins, in that respect. Lately I've been feeling like I've got to try out this Matisyahu guy. And I've been feeling for a couple years now that I need to know Nina Simone better than the little bit I do.

10:11 AM  
Blogger NYC TAXI SHOTS said...


8:20 PM  

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