2019-10-12 Great Day’s and Girls Only Getaways

I ended my post a few days ago with “Tomorrow’s Gonna Be Great.” And indeed it was and how did I know that? How?

On Wednesday evening when I was walking the treadmill and thinking and writing I was sort of in a sour mood as I had been running around all day and did not accomplish much. The things I did get done were not very satisfying. I guess I was thinking (or hoping) that the day to follow was going to be better. Perhaps more self-fulfilling prophesy than premonition. Whatever it was.. the next day (Thursday) was really great.

Of course because it was great, I didn’t have time to write about it and the day that followed that (yesterday) was pretty stellar too and super busy. No time for treadmill or writing or even just sitting and thinking about stuff. Is that why the past two days were so great, because I was busy and had no time to spare? I would say maybe a little bit, but for the most part no.

Yesterday is still so fresh in my mind and far overshadows the day before that. It all started a few weeks ago when my Z sent me a text message about a concert she wanted to go to on October 11th. Skillet is one of her favorite bands (in her top 5) and she begged me to go but the closest show was in Kansas City. KC is about a 2.5 hour drive (2 to the outskirts where the Airport is) and so it is a pretty quick little road trip for us. Not that the road trip part of it mattered, because we both love road trips so even if it was 7 or 8 hours we probably would have gone. I actually briefly considered the Oct 10th show in Chicago. That would mean she would have to miss school though which would be bad parenting (not that I haven’t bent those rules before in certain circumstances).

The reality is, my time with her at home is really getting short now and a year from now she will be off at college. I want to take advantage of any opportunity I can to spend QT with her. The fact that she is 17 and still thinks of me first when doing this sort of stuff is pretty great and I knew it would be a good trip for just the two of us. I actually had other plans I had to cancel (the Phil Collins concert in Omaha), which I was really looking forward to (because I’m an old nerd), but it was totally worth it.

As it turns out, with Parent Teacher conferences this week the kids had a 4 day weekend so there was no school Friday. This meant we could leave at whatever time we wanted and take our time and make a whole day of it. I had several things to take care of in the AM before leaving (work and also the last harvest of the season before the temps drop to freezing) and after that we got on the road.

I knew I would not want to attempt to drive back to Omaha after the concert so we booked a room at the Holiday Inn Express. We arrived just in time for check-in. Shortly after that, we made a quick run to target for a few things (because every good road trip needs a Target run) and then it was back to the room to get all dolled up for dinner and the show.

The concert was in the heart of downtown KC in the power and light district at the Arvest Bank Theatre (super cool vintage venue). Doors opened at 6 and the show started at 7. There were three bands total and though I dig concerts, the music at this one was not really my thing. The first two bands were extremely loud. I never was a big heavy metal fan and they were both rock approaching metal. Even Z covered her ears for a lot of those first two acts.

The band we came for, Skillet, was a little closer to something I might typically listen to and therefore more enjoyable. She clearly enjoyed it, beaming from ear to ear when each new song she recognized started. It was a medium sized venue, so there were really no bad seats, but we were in the very top section, with all the other people who don’t stand during the show. We were at the end of a row so she had a perfect view of the stage. It was so great to see her so happy.

The whole thing lasted about 4 hours, which included us getting half way to the car before realizing the sweatshirt we bought was the wrong size and had to walk back to exchange it. I’m not sure what time we arrived back at the hotel but I was wiped out and ready for bed. I fell asleep as she was messaging with a few of her Cali friends and someone who was in a time zone where it was only like 2:30 PM – good grief where in the world must that person be?

The room was too cold and the pillows were just all wrong for me and so I did not sleep well at all. I was actually awake at 5:30AM and contemplating sneaking away to the hotel exercise room to walk and write. I didn’t though. I just turned the heat up and laid there for a while. Eventually I pulled out my laptop (yes, the new shiny) and .. waa-la.. here we are.

If it were up to me, we would be going down to take advantage of that “free” HIE breakfast right about now, but she’s still fast asleep.

I suppose I could climb back in bed and see if I can remember why Thursday was so great or what was so different about Thursday compared to Wednesday. Some days I think it’s just a mood or a vibe. Today will probably be good because we get to drive back to Omaha and then I get to spend the rest of Saturday with my fiancé without any obligations. Keep those great days coming!

Cheers to the Weekend!

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-07-27 NYC Day 2 – A Wicked Good Time

The kids don’t wake up until noon which gives me plenty of time to write and walk to the corner market to refresh our depleted food supply. Yesterday I finished all my write-ups for residency and getting that submitted will be a load off of my mind. I also moved all the pics from my phone to my laptop in order to make space which is running out. Bad timing for that.

The main event yesterday was a trip to the Gershwin Theatre to see the musical Wicked. We went to the matinee showing and, as expected, it was incredible. Of our crew of 6, I was the only one who had seen the show before. I’ve actually seen it twice before at the Orpheum theatre in Omaha. That’s how I knew it would be a hit with, at the very least, my darling daughter. The boys all came away very positive about it as well. The entire production is an experience to behold. The costumes are fantastic, the set and special effects are elaborate, and the cast is over-the-top outstanding.

Everyone typically loves Elphaba, but I love Glinda. Her character goes through an amazing transformation as much as Elphaba does and she is left with the task of maintaining the illusion of Oz for the “good” of the people.

The consensus among our crew is that the Defying Gravity scene/song was the best. It embodies the moment that the Wicked Witch comes into being and rises to a new height – literally! Bravo for the special effects, light illuminated through smoke in beams around the Witch as she rises. It is the end of Act 1 and the musical could end there and we would all be satisfied. But there is more to the story and the second act does a wonderful job bringing everything full circle and wrapping it up.

My favorite songs are “What is this Feeling”, “Popular”, and “Thank Goodness”, though it is tough to choose favorites. I was moved to tears several times including when the characters were first on stage when they arrived at the school (because I knew what was coming) and in the end when the two leading ladies hugged each other before the cast took a bow. Glinda is so good it makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time.

***

By comparison, the rest of our day was pretty average, I mean, if you can call walking around Time Square average! After the show most of us went to a bar joint a few blocks from the Gershwin Theatre called “House of Brews” for burgers and wings. It was crowded and overpriced. The food was sub-par and our waitress was terrible. I didn’t order as I wasn’t that hungry and it was a good thing as we had plenty of food to go round. I had about 1/6th of Jim’s cheeseburger and it was the best of what we had ordered. If I had to rate it, it would be a 3.5, but it is not worth a full review.

We were thinking of going to the Met but the crew really wanted some chill time at our home base and we never really worked up to going for that. Instead Z and I walked back to Time Square which turned out to be more of a Pokemon hunting and battling expedition than anything. We never even made it to the Disney store or Forever21. Just as well, playing Pokemon Go is free. On our walk we noticed that almost every block has a Starbucks, and there is a packed line at ALL OF THEM. I guess it takes a lot of caffeine to fuel the 2 to 4 million people on the island of Manhattan (depending on the day of the week and time of day).

The boys were watching Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure when we arrived back. After that, the kids were all “bored” and I was spent. I could not have gone out again, but promised Z I would go back out with her this evening (even if it means I need to take a nap first).

I had an amazingly long night’s sleep last night.. a whopping 9.5 hours. That’s longer than I have had in months. I’ve also had no shortage of food and snacks so far this trip and my appetite has returned and I am sure all those pounds I lost during residency are also returning.

“Dancing Through Life”,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-03-31 Do What You Want, Not What You Don’t

I’m walking on the treadmill in my new house and my sweetie is working out beside me. He subscribes to amazon music or maybe you get that with A Prime membership and he downloads new stuff and makes these workout playlists. It’s usually turns out pretty good and i get to hear something different than the tunes I’m always spinning from my own playlists. Right now it’s Weezer, “I’m just being honest”.
New stuff from Weezer?! Who knew?!
Yesterday was a good day. We did everything we wanted and nothing we didn’t. It feels good to let go of my constant worry over time and just waste a little bit on things that are inconsequential. I mean, seriously, what’s the point of working hard on stuff all the time if there’s no relief, no balance at some point?
There are an endless number of things on life’s list of “things to do” and if we never do the thing we want to do then we’re doing it wrong. So yeah, I have work to do today and another deadline that will have been missed if I don’t spend a few hours (on a Sunday) finishing the SQL and cranking out a new cut of the export file. But chances are very good that I’m gonna say “fuck it”, and jump in the car to head west and see if we can catch some glimpse of the great Nebraska Sandhill Crane Migration.
Maybe we’ll get to see something super cool and maybe we won’t, but it sure as hell sounds way more enticing than beating my head about trying to figure out the best way to pull in SDFs from tables without effing up something else in the process. Yeah, going on a mini road trip to try to get a glimpse of one of the most bad-ass natural phenomenon in the United States sounds like a much better use of our time today. It is Sunday after all which is supposed to be a weekend day. If we do get to see something awesome, I’ll be sure and write more about it tomorrow.
Anyway, that’s it for today because I gotta get on with doing all the things I want to do and nothing I don’t. Here’s the rest of today’s playlist of new music in case you’re interested (pretty good so far)…
“Adrenaline” by Simple Creatures
“Olympians” by Andrew Bird
“Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish
“18 Days” by Saving Abel
“I Wasted You” by Flora Cash
“Running Scared” by The Stumbellas
“Over My Head” by Judah and the Lion
“Kiss Off” by the Violent Femmes (which is so not new but a nice bonus song)
“Waves” by Dean Lewis
Jam On,
~Miss SugarCookie

2018-11-17 Hey Mr. DJ – What’s Up?

This morning I woke up around 6 and that would normally be fine, but I didn’t go to bed until close to midnight. That equates to less than 6 hours of good sleep. I was doing great for the week and then, WHAM, it all went down the drain because of one night. In any case I’m at the gym early and it’s Saturday so the kids won’t be up for hours. I’m totally sick of all my play lists and feeling really uninspired. There’s nothing worse than an uninspired poet. 😜
My go-to in this situation is to give up the reins to the Universe and see what I will be served up from the master shuffle. I can’t go too wrong because the set is still limited to music on my phone — all my favorite artists and albums. So far, the Universe has not disappointed me. It’s been Cake and Snow Patrol and Pearl Jam. (Just accidentally spelled Pearl “Perl”, such a nerd). I’m feeling better already.
Now I have a serious work rant brewing, but “ain’t nobody got time for that”. I’ve been whining and complaining too much lately. I mean what hourly person – ever – complained about having too many hours??! But enough about that, how about that new Fantastic Beasts movie?
The kids and I had dinner and a movies night last night and we are pretty solid Harry Potter fans so anything that has to do with the wizarding world is a must see. My memory for movies is really poor. I see them for entertainment value only and don’t ever retain much of the characters and plot after. As is the case, I didn’t remember much from the first Fantastic Beasts movie so I went into this one cold.
Sometimes sequels do a good job of filling the audience in on important plot items from the first movie. If done correctly, you could watch a sequel without even having watched the first movie and not be lost. This movie either did not do that well or was just generally confusing. I’m inclined to think it was the latter as there were things I was still confused about toward the end of the movie.
I mean, the general plot is pretty basic. Bad guy escapes detainment by the ministry of magic (that’s not a spoiler, yo, cuz there would not be a movie if this didn’t happen) and they need to recapture him before he gets to some other important character who is connected to another prophecy. Oh, by the way, they refer to this prophecy as poetry and I dig that! Anyway, that was the stage that was set. Beyond that it was a lot going on from scene to scene that my brain struggled with.
The special effects were bad-ass of course but unless what you are seeing makes sense, you kind of just go “uhhh cool??”. It is not lost on me that this is #2 in a series and so if there are questionable characters introduced that we don’t yet understand or areas of the plot that did not get resolved, it’s because they are setting up for #3.
Again, if you do that too much, it leaves the audience unsatisfied with the movie as a singular unit. I know I left feeling unsatisfied. It wasn’t just me. Talking with my kids on the way home they were confused about it too. I mentioned the prophecy which was a major plot element and in my daughter’s head, she mixed that up with some other “prophesy like” things that were also mentioned. I said all that business about the Phoenix was foreshadowing, and then we had an argument about it (teenagers 🙄).
To be fair, she was partially confused because what takes place in the movie precedes the Harry Potter story by many, many years. She didn’t connect that the Dumbledore character was a younDumbledoreor. I can see where that would throw everything off. Was it a good movie? Yes. But it definitely left something more to be desired. More resolution maybe. More explanation or connecting the dots. I dunno. I think when #3 comes out, we should watch the first two again, just to prepare. I’d watch it again anyway to see if I catch something I missed the first time around. So there’s that.
My personal DJ started out great a half hour ago but the last few songs have been total “skippers”. Hmmm, what’s up with that? 🤔
In other news, we are rolling into the end of the semester and I have like 10 days to finish my last packet. I really only just had a conversation with my mentor about my last packet a few days ago. This weekend I plan to do a fair bit of reading and research for my final essays and revisions based on feedback. I’d love to roll into the upcoming holiday week/weekend with some of that all wrapped up and off my mind.
I solidified my decision this week to skip a semester of school because of my workload and the pending move. There are things I want to do really well, and I recognized after this semester’s constant struggle that trying to do all that AND move would probably push me off some edge. I want to take my time and enjoy this transition. I don’t want to have to split my time and consequently not be able to put my whole attention to any task in front of me. That includes school. When I go back in the fall, I want to be able to devote a lot of attention to that.
I talked to my MFA program coordinator about alternate pathways that would allow me to take classes and I think that’s something I really want to do. There is no way I can do that this spring so the timing for going back in the fall will be perfect. By then the move will be ancient history and I will have minimized my work hours back to 20 a week. 👍🏻👍🏻
Ok, now my DJ is serving me all kinds of crap and I’m not cool with that. And here I thought there wasn’t that much garbage in my library?! It’s that or I’m just not in the mood for Adele or Dave Matthews or John Mayer. Yeah, Mr. DJ, it’s not you, it’s me.
I’m not breaking up with you over this though, I’ll still be back for more tomorrow! 🙂
Spin Me Right Round,
~Miss SugarCookie

2018-10-06 Hell Yeah, That’s My Jam

I’ve seen some good concerts in my day. I’ve also been to some seriously crappy ones and some take-or-leave-it gigs. Last night was one of the better ones. My friend Leah and I took a little road trip to Lincoln to see Fall Out Boy at the arena downtown. It was a great time.

It was a good reminder how much I dig live music. First off, I’m not a seeker of new music, I often leave it to fate to serve up something awesome I’ve not heard before. The “pre-game” show featured a group called Machine Gun Kelly and it’s no surprise I hadn’t heard of them before, but they were good. As I sat through the songs at the end of their set (we arrived about halfway through that), I could feel the beat of the bass reverberating inside of me and was all like “hell yeah!”. That’s the stuff. As a poet you would think I would have better words to describe how it made me feel, but “hell yeah”, pretty much sums it up the best.

It’s something special when you can feel connected to music you have never heard before and just be moved by it. I would totally spend money on their tunes. It kinda makes me regret missing the opening act, I think there was one, but we were having dinner downtown and it took for-ever.

In any case, MGK was a great primer for the sick FOB jams. They played a good mix of old stuff and new and since they’ve been fans of mine for so long, I knew just about every song. The typical concert accompaniments, lights, screens, fire, smoke, etc were good and not overdone. It was just the right amount of flair to not distract too much from the songs or artists. Much better than the shit-show we saw at the Pumpkins concert where I was disturbed by the creepy video going on behind the stage.

The band and the songs didn’t disappoint either. It’s actually not tough to do with such great music. Song after song that elicit memories and feelings. Though we were fairly high in the arena, we were still on our feet rocking out. We were in the front row of our section and I’m sure it pissed people off behind us when we stood up, but I was channeling my boyfriends on stage in “not giving a fuck”. I can’t remember what song it was, but they had vid behind one of the songs which was entirely compose of clips from film and tv and even video games where someone was giving someone else the finger. It was awesome. And then all of a sudden there it was again, that “hell yeah” coursing through my veins.

Unlike most concerts I’ve been to, the lead singer was not the talkative one during the show. It was the guy who is the bass guitarist. I think that’s what his role is, you think I would know since he’s been writing songs for me since like 2008.

His main message to the crowd was that “you, each individual, is worthy” and can do whatever they want. He shared a bit of history about the band in being rejected by studios and labels over 20 times before some company took a chance on them. You can read the outcome in the almighty Wiki. He also randomly bought people beers and called People out of the auduence to come jam out by the stage. That was cool. The lead singer, by contrast, never said anything. Apparently the two of them are the originators of the band and there have been change ups of the other band members over time. The Wiki would know more about that too. I’m not very good at random music facts I guess. I just know what I like.

Fall Out Boy is definitely in my top ten. If there was any question, yesterday sealed that deal. Lincoln was great too. We got lucky with parking and had a good dinner (“hell yeah” I had a cheeseburger). Getting out of town after was even not as bad as expected. 👍🏻 Despite arriving home just after midnight, I was too amped up to fall asleep until some time in the 1 o’clock hour. That made for a short night.. 4.5 hours – ouch!

No rest for the wicked I guess. Today I have Saturday full of adulting which started at 6:45 when I had to get up with Z and take her to the school for ACT testing today. That meant I was at the gym early for cardio which is good because mid-morning I’m headed to Jim’s because we are going to pick out carpet for the house. Fun fun. I find it strange that I’ve made it this far in life and have never had to pick out carpet? 🤷‍♀️

Anyway. That’s it for this SugarCookie today. The weekend is waiting. 😘

Thank You, More Please,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-10-05 Bandwagon’s Full, Please Catch Another

I’m nearing the end of this cardio set and I’ve spent almost the entire hour writing down (typing in) brilliant lines from random Fall Out Boy songs coming up in this morning’s Shuffle. Today it’s all FOB cuz I’m preparing myself for the concert tonight. It will be total immersion all day today and Hopefully I’ll be more in the mood for a quick little road trip. Why on earth they would come all this way to see me and then NOT show up in my city. Seems like poor planning. I should talk to their manager about that. 😜

It’s nice to listen to the complete collection from an artist because then you start to detect their themes and, if you listen chronologically, the story arc of their inspiration. Is it a fine design of an artists mind or just a product of their honesty? The world may never know.

I find myself skipping over all the songs that sound like love songs. Any “me and you” song is not what I’m really after. I’m not into that beat. I’m more interested in the tormented artist, the life gone wrong success story, the one where they tell the truth. It’s the “Hum Hallelujah” and “Thriller” that gets to me, moves my mind to places it likes to sink and swim in. Add a little bit of “Wilson (Expensive Mustakes)”, don’t give a fuck what you think attitude, and I’m in Love.

I’m listening on shuffle cuz ordering things chronologically feels like it might be too much work. After all, I still have other things I have to do. Sure it would be nice to sit all day with my music library creating master playlists for the future me, but I’m too busy writing postcards to the future me, addressing them all to house numbers in ghost towns.

“We keep the beat with your blistered feet

We bullet the words at the mockingbirds singing

Slept through the weekend and dreaming

Of sinking with the melody of the cliffs of eternity

Got postcards from my former selves saying, “How you been?””

Fall In and then Fall Out, Boy.

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-08-21 It’s Not Even Halloween Yet…

And I’m already Smashing Pumpkins. (Ok, that should probably be past tense now since the concert was last night but whatev). William came to town to see me and decided to put on a show for the masses who are old enough to remember the Siamese Dreams Of their youth. I gave him the green light on that like 20 years ago but so much time has passed that I’ve truly forgotten how madly in love with me he was. Ahhh, but those were the days. Am I right?!

I guess I also never realized how strange he was. That dude is weird. Must be nice to be that way AND despite that have enough talent to carry on for so long. I just hope in 25 years after my fame has come and gone I can still sit on stage for like three hours and pull in that kind of cash. I can see him getting low with the dough and nudging his band buddies saying “hey guys, we should tour.” And just like that.. Waaa-laaa.. more 💵💰🤑❗️

The show was way too long for my taste and I enjoy the music he wrote for me but the rest of it I could have done without. And what’s with all the super strange video playing behind the band? That was weird squared. Some would call it art but I would never stand in front of a slow-motion weeping Marilyn Monroe with glitter eye shadow and black tears reaching up to a creepy-red robed religious statue for 2 hours in a museum so I certainly don’t want to do it during a concert. Just play the damn songs already.

At the beginning of the concert everyone was standing.. they opened with a few great tunes. Then it waned in the middle and got depressing and everyone sat down (thank the Universe). Of course they wait until the end to play the biggest hits. Once I heard “Today”, I was ready to jet. F the back stage pass he sent me back in March, I’d seen enough. As Jim and I were exciting the event center, they came on with “The World Is a Vampire”. I looked at Jim and said, “this is a good one too. Let’s get outta here”.

Today I might send William a message letting him know that if he really wants to see me, he’ll need to arrange a more intimate setting. Or maybe I won’t. Best to let those Siamese Dreams die in the past where they belong. Goodness knows we don’t need it when melancholy and the Infinute sadness will live on forever.

Rock On! 🤘

~Miss SugarCookie