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Thursday, October 13, 2011

What We Did On Our Summer Vacation
or Rhett Miller and the case of the lesbian hair...not that there's anything wrong with that

(Part 2b of 3)

Okay, so when we last figuratively spoke, Geo and I were venturing south to Annapolis on the death trap known as I-95. I hate this highway. It doesn't matter on which part of the eastern seaboard you drive, there always seems to be bumper-to-bumper traffic consisting of the most inept motorists who inevitable muck up the flow by crashing haplessly into each other like bumper cars at Kennywood.


Anywho, we decided to drive to Maryland right after the concert so as not to miss the 1pm Rhett show (1pm?!? Who the hell has a rock show at 1pm anyway, and an all-ages show to boot?!?) or the special Ram's Head breakfast with $2 Bloody Mary special.


Speaking of winning, we met up with Steph and three of her delightful friends, Michele, Melissa and Sheila, putting Geo in the position of lone Y chromosome at the table. Just the way he likes it, right Honey? We sat on the patio where the staff was raffling off junk, er...I mean, collectibles to lucky patrons. Guess who is the proud owner of a big-ass bottle cap tray?

"You're a bottle cap away, from pushing me too far..."

Go Steph! Go Steph! Go Steph!

We made her carry that monstrosity into the venue herself, because that's how we roll. Tough Love, baby. Tough Love.

Anywho, the room was not as full as it would have been had the show started at 8pm instead of 1pm, but there were a fair number of cool parents present with their progeny to witness the best performers around. The kids were having a great time.

I love how children just react without worry of protocol, embarrassment or ridicule. They have a boundless joie de vivre. I envy them. If they want to sing, they sing. If they want to dance, they dance. If they want to make your life a living hell by pitching a right-royal fit in front of the Queen of England, they do it. They are who they are, fearlessly.

How did we as adults lose that sense of elan?

This little cherub could only contain herself for four songs before she just had to leap from her Mom's lap and busta move to a spirited rendition of Victoria. At one point I thought for sure she was going to jump on stage with Rhett.
party on, Viv!
Completely adorable!

A lover of children, Rhett took time to spar with the youngsters to comedic effect. Seriously. This conversation is HILARIOUS!!

Unlike the night before, the stage was less than two feet above the floor and literally right up against tables in the front row. This level of intimacy lent an air of familiarity with the audience. He changed up his original setlist to fulfill a couple of requests from the crowd including another rarity, Curtain Calls, from a shy little girl in the front row.

The setlist from this show was outstanding. A terrific mix of deep cuts, rarities, popular favorites and one amazing cover. The night before, finding out we and Steph were going to see him the next day, Rhett invited us to send him requests for the setlist. Geo and I sent him three suggestions, Stephanie sent two. We all thought he'd pick one or two total. He played all of them.

All. Of. Them.

Again, do you see why I love him. He's just the bestest.
(Me: Gush Gush  You: Gag GAG)

Geo's old favorite, Pt. Shirley:

Geo's NEW favorite, Manhattan (I'm Done):

One of Steph's favorites, Weightless:

Several months ago, Rhett announced he would be releasing a CD of covers he recorded in 2005 or 2007 maybe. Ever since Steph discovered her absolute favorite Wilco song, California Stars was on the CD, she's been jonesing to hear Rhett's interpretation. With cheat sheet on the floor, Rhett sang it for her.

Dream fulfilled. She had tears in her eyes. Of course there wasn't a dry eye at the table (except for Geo) when he sang his latest heart tugger, Picture This. We gals were a puddle.

I know I shared this song in the last post, but I like it. So sue me.

Michele, Melissa and Sheila have been to a number of Old 97's shows, but never experienced the blue-eyed one perform alone. It was fun to watch Melissa in particular be converted into a solo fan over the two hour afternoon. Somehow I think this will not be her last show.

Once again, he patiently greeted everyone, took photos and hugged a few chillins before climbing in his get-away car and heading for his pastoral Hudson Valley hamlet.

The perfect capper to a perfect week away from our daily grind.

Here's the uber fun setlist because I'm a ginormous dork and a half:

The El
Dance With Me
The Grand Theatre
Help me, Suzanne
Terrible Vision
Curtain Call* (request from little girl in the audience)
Cryin' Drunk* (request from said girl's momma)
State of Texas
Like Love
Picture This (new song possibly on next solo record)
Visiting Hour
Pt. Shirley
Manhattan (I'm Done)
Champaign, IL
Ray Charles* (request)
California Stars (complete with backstory)
Lonely Holiday
Melt Show
Our Love
Barrier Reef
Murder or a Heart Attack
Time Bomb

So what does all this have to do with lesbian hair?

I got my auburn locks chopped prior to vacating our zip code. As you can see in the above picture, it's pretty damn short. But when I let it curl, it's not just short, it's Dana-Carvy-Church-Lady-Lesbian short.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

So all of us in this photo are standing around outside of the venue chit chatting before we go our separate ways. Facing the street, I noticed two tipsy girls, arm-in-arm with flowers in their hair pinched from one of the many planters lining the street, stumbling towards our group. Girl #1 is trying to steer Girl #2 clear of our posse. Girl #2 locks eyes on me and dragging her buddy, beelines straight for me to hand me this.

Dude. Turns out I'm a babe magnet.

Yuuuuup. Lesbian hair.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

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