Sunday, March 25, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 31-32 (Chicago, Ohio and Brooklyn)

Day 31:

So I drove down to Chicago Raw  in the French Market.  The French Market is AMAZING.  It's such a total tourist trap and I do not even care because I loved it.  Chicago Raw had the best raw "veggie burger" ever.  I tried that as well as their "egg salad," which ended up making me a little road sick. I also, of course, picked up a tira misu.  All the nuts I've been downing through all this stuff has been making me feel a little funny in the tummy, though.  Too rich or something.

I'm listening to a really amazing book on tape right now called The Pillars of the Earth that my friend Tom lent to me.  It's pretty nerdy-- about building a Cathedral in Medieval England, but it is a total suspense page turner.  Might be the best thing I've listened to since Ready Player One.  (Which is about 80s video games) This may in fact be the nerdiest paragraph I've ever written on this blog.  I promise, I also read and listen to nonfiction and best sellers and classics.  Apparently I just don't enjoy them as much as I do books that make any reference to D&D or activities that inspired D&D.

Anyway, I rolled up to Columbus Ohio, which is basically Ohio State with some housing nearby.  I stopped at Whole Foods and ding ding ding we have a winner.  Worst Whole Foods ever award goes to Columbus, Ohio.  Sorry y'all.  Didn't even have a prep foods section.  Did have a beer bar.  Well, not so much a beer bar as 3 taps.  Bought some Kiwi berry things (seriously, why are these not the most famous and best loved fruit in the world?) then hit up the Worm Zone.

The Worm Zone was an odd place.  The owners were puppeteers (are we noticing a pattern on this tour?) and had a lot of cool art on the walls.  It was raining pretty much the whole drive from Chicago to Columbus, so we didn't get to check out the Ravine like I'd hoped to.  The bands I played with were definitely the most eclectic of tour, and the audience...

I'll say this, it's usually tough to get people to participate in dancing.  These guys were just like, mirroring everything I did from the minute I started dancing, so when I actually gave them moves, they were getting sweaty and stinking up the place like a middle school gymnasium.  Seriously, best crowd of tour award goes to COLUMBUS.  You rule, Columbus!  Videos of Columbus bands will be on Youtube shortly-- without the joy of a decent wired connection or the luxury of 8-9 hours to sleep and let things upload...not a whole lot has gone up.

After Worm Zone, I headed to Marty (a Durham friend)'s apartment.  She had made up a blow up bed for me with sheets and a blanket and comforter and EVERYTHING, and her sassy cat Sebastian -- (Sea Bass) who is SO FAT and I don't even really like cats but we are in love and going to get inter-species married and kill mice together-- slept by my side all night.  Marty also bought me some bananas and avocado for the road which was super sweet.  We watched a few episodes of Archer (I feel like all I do on this tour is watch Archer on other people's netflix, hang out with Puppeteers and stalk whole foods) then passed out.

Day 32:

Off to BROOKLYN. What should've been a 10 hour drive was accomplished in just under 8.  So having arrived early in Brooklyn, home of the hipster and vegan supposed mecca, I hit up a raw vegan place.  Which was closed down.  No big, tried another.  Also closed down.  Last attempt (which was hard, apparently at rush hour the traffic situation gets a little tricky) was CLOSED by the time I got there.  MISERY.

I just decided to throw in the towel on the whole awesome meal right then thing and wait until I got home (FORESHADOWING!).  I arrived at the PW house very early...before even most of the roommates at the house were due home.  No matter.  I sat down, I ate celery.

I was lucky enough to perform with WOJCIK again.  For those who forgot, she plays grungy 90s style guitar rock with a pretty rich alto on top.

Lisa Liu performed as Magnetic Islands, and was an AMAZING guitar player, technically stunning.  The songs were reminiscent of meandering jams, but well constructed, at least at the beginning.  It bore some resemblance to free jazz and made me super happy and stimulated and alive feeling before my set.

While at the party I also ran into Nikki McCleod, who plays steel drums and played with Pink Flag last year at the Tom Tom magazine party in Brooklyn.  The crowd was subdued, particuarly compared to the down for whatever kids in Ohio, but I was grateful to be home and even more grateful to be able to pack up and be at the crashpad by midnight (rest for the weary!).  Of course, a lot of the awesome got murdered by the fact that when I walked into my parents house the refrigerator, usually overflowing with produce I can't afford was BARE.  There was half a banana and a mealy looking apple in the fruit bowl.  Oh, mom, we gonna talk.

Til soon, kids.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Raw for Lent Day 29-30 (Lincoln and Chicago)

Day 29:

Woke up in Lincoln around 10am and decided to try and get my body moving, so I strapped on my sports bra and sneakers and went for a run. It was only about a mile or so, but it was really pleasant, even though it was a little drizzly. After the run, I took a shower and Nate and I went up to Yia Yia's pizza to meet up with Jim (Shipbuilding Company) and his fiancee Ellen. While there, we ran into Darren (The Show Is The Rainbow, Bad Speler) and hung out for a little bit.

After lunch, I hung out with Jim and Ellen, then took Cathy up on her offer to let us see We Need To Talk About Kevin. The movie was a broken narrative. The premise circles around a mother and her son and their contentious relationship that is exacerbated by...well I don't know if the spoilers are out yet, but Kevin does something awful.

After the flick, Nathan ran me to the coop on South St and I picked up some bell peppers, kumquats, bananas and apples, then I headed to Zoo Bar.

The early show was still going on, so I wandered past the Bourbon...and there was Darren again. He let me into the show and I saw a couple of songs by Shipbuilding Company, who were sort of a prime example of the genre I like to call "Arcade Fire rock." Lots of descending chord progressions at moderate tempo, fogerty-esque guitar tricks and a reedy voice at the front. I don't have any real malice for the Arcade Fire or the 8000 bands that are capitalizing on their success, but I am not altogether too excited by mid-tempo big-sounding rock unless it's emo as fuck (see earlier entries on WWPJ).

I headed back to my venue, Zoo Bar, and got unpacked. The venue had been promoting the show with the wrong bands on the promotional flyer (Pink Flag, Low Horse and Pharmacy Spirits) and it turned out to be Mildred Bonk who were experimental noise mostly...a lot of feedback and effects. The sound wasn't really coming through on my phone.

Next up was Fuchsia Minutia, who are a very mathy, noisy little act. Their set is essentially organized chaos, but the sheer virtuosity of the players is pretty impressive. Word on the Lincoln street is that these guys do the best cover songs ever. I believe that they are probably really good.

I played 3rd, the was followed by the Pharmacy Spirits, whom I kind of adore. They're sort of like a spooky version of a band that's really into the beach boys. Or a Christian Death cover band that has never heard a Christian Death song in their life. Regardless, there is some sort of sunglasses-at-night coolness to the sound and I drive around listening to it sometimes and enjoy it. This song pictured is called Teen Challenge. I apologize, again, for the quality of the sound on these guys, this room was just a tin box basically and loud as hell.

After the show, we packed up and I went over to the guys from Fuschia Minutia's and hung out until (woefully) 3:30AM.

Day 30:

My notes for this day were:
"Chicago bound. Stayed up WAY too late in Lincoln. Chicago traffic. Rain."

My day was basically the wasteland that is Iowa. Iowa takes FOREVER to drive. I also rolled into Chicago at...oh exactly rush hour, which meant that I got to the skyline then sat in traffic. And it was raining. These were two days of just straight soggy shoes for me (foreshadowing!). Anyway, I got to the venue about 30 minutes early and it happened to be next door to an asian restaurant, so I got a cucumber salad and an avocado salad and used the nice clean asian restaurant bathroom.

So, musicians, folks in general, do you ever have one of those events you have to attend where you walk in the door and go "Oh Man..." and not in the good way? That's kind of how I felt walking in to Ultra Lounge. I was the first person some time. I bummed around for a while until Vortis and the sound guy showed up, then loaded in.

Vortis were the punk rock mixtape that your friend Mike/Steve/John/Chris gave to you when you were 15 along with some safety pins and a Misfits patch. The group formed under the idea of the Vortis, which was a turn of the century idealogy that supports the idea of living with an adolescent clarity.  Their songs were upbeat, fun and bled one right into the next.  The energy was lost on the crowd of 5-6.  At the end of their set, per a discussion, I got up there and completely butchered "Oh Bondage Up Yours" by X-Ray Spex.

The Funs - cute, and fun.  Nothing I've never heard before (Just think about all the 4-track recording lo-fi artists in the late 80s no-wave underground and you got it), but they were still very sweet, fun to listen to and brought a great crowd of kids to the show.  Violent, bouncy, dancey kids.  I wish I were still so enthusiastic.  Really I do.

At the end of the night, I went back to Tina and Liz's place and climbed into their baby's ikea loft bed (and seriously, if I weren't starving myself to death right now that thing would have COLLAPSED under me, every time I shifted my weight, it let out a terrible shriek, threatening to drop me), and promptly passed the fuck out.

Only to wake up at 7am for the drive to Columbus.  With a cold (SOGGY SHOES!).  This is really gonna help with the high notes.  Videos to be attached later.  Can always be searched via my youtube account, though!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 27-28 (Oklahoma and Lincoln)

Day 27:


Can we talk about how in love I am? So I went to the Route 66 laundromat to get some clothes going, then went to the fancy shopping center where Matthew Kenney OKC is. And holy shit. I was not expecting the food to be as good as it was. Which is silly, but true. It was SO GOOD. I ordered first the black and white dumplings which are filled with some sort of kimchee creamy paste and served in coconut dehydrated wrappers and over a creamy miso sauce. Then I got the "lasagna" which was so filling I had to take a little home.

I killed some time by doing a little laundry and going for a jog, as well as wandering around the Penn mall. I drove around the rich area on a golf course, then found myself back at Claussen Curve for more Matthew Kenney! For dinner, I went ahead and ordered a dragon roll, which was fake sushi, the "tortellini" with creamed spinach and tira misu for dessert. I should've ordered dessert sooner. It was so good. My favorite thing from dinner was the was wrapped in the same coconut thingy with creamed spinach and a tomato-y sauce. Dessert was tira misu and it was divine. Lastly, everyone says that the restaurant is "expensive" but the appetizers are 6-9 dollars and entrees are 9-13 dollars. I think, especially given that it is all raw, this place is a STEAL.

Show was meh, and I don't want to talk about it. I basically packed up and left right after I played which is mad rude but there were only about 7 people there and they were obviously not vibing me and I was obviously not going to get any dollars.

Day 28:

Went to Matthew Kenney once more for dumplings again and a salad this time...caesar, although in hindsight I should've chosen a salad that had actual veggies in it, instead of a salad made of romaine hearts and a false cheese and fake croutons. Directly from there I got on the road to Lincoln, NE. First off, while driving through Oklahoma, I saw a ton of what I perceived to be tornado-ettes, and by that I mean like, this close to turning into twisters. I could be wrong, though. Maybe it's just the wind whipping and the rain, but the clouds were like 30 feet off the ground and turning into little points and it was trippy.

So, I-35 doesn't go to Lincoln...and neither does any other respectable highway, so I got on Scenic 177. Let me tell you about scenic 177-- scenic is the right word. There is pretty much nothing there. I would drive like, 70 or 80 miles in cattle grazing pastures and corn fields, then through a town that resembled, more than anything, Mayberry USA, and I know that's funny coming from a North Carolinian who has actually been to Mt. Airy (the town on which Mayberry is based), but it's like...the real world versions of that...the towns have pretty much one or two streets and one of the five or six I passed through had a Dairy Queen, but that was pretty much the only chain I saw anywhere (and I am including gas stations). I was sort of uneased in the one town I did stop in (someplace in Kansas) and was glad I got gas just outside of OKC.

So I rolled up into Lincoln and after a minor hitch, found myself rolling in places to stay. I pulled out my copy of Eating the Dinosaur and waited on my friend Nate (Polaver, Fuchsia Minutia) porch for him for all of about...5 minutes. We went inside, hung out, met his unfriendly but ridiculously ugly-cute dog, then walked up to 12th street for Taco tuesday. I was pleasantly surprised to see that these tacos offer a vegan option for sauces like sour cream. In the middle of the heart land!

Following tacos, I went over to Duffy's to holler at my friend Ian (Machete Archive, Low Horse) who is a bartender there. Duffy's was kind of a shit show because of the super cheap PBR and the fact that it was UNL's spring break. I'm sure the NCAA Women's tourney wasn't the draw. So I had a water there and Ian suggested I try out O'Rourke's. Yes, it's that O'Rourke's, Kasher fans. So I went in, sidled up to the bar and got myself some agua...

The bar that O'Rourke's most resembles is The Green Room in Durham, NC. Now a lot of people think they know what it's like because of Bull Durham, but that's a different bar altogether. It's not terribly rough anymore, just a place that doesn't have any frills or patience for pretension. No dim lighting. The bar is kind of shitty and tore up, but they're not trying to hide that. The bathrooms are always clean and stocked, so it's clean enough for this guy. O'Rourke's had the same pretense, just alcohol and TVs and a little semi-enclosed smoking patio in case you don't want to go all the way outside. Very nice, O'Rourkes! While there, I ran into Saber (Machete Archive) and we shot the shit about movies and TV shows to watch (I have a whole list for when I get home!), then I walked home to Nate's and crashed out super hard, even though I was supposed to wait up for Ian. Oh well!

My computer is being a jerk, so pictures will have to come later.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 22-26

Day 22 - SxSW!

Departed San Antonio around 10am, after visiting the alamo.

Arrive austin about 11am, to set up for the show. Played first to open the showcase. Tons of awesome bands--

Acorn Bcorn - straight up old school kinderwhore style riotgrrl music, reminiscent of Babes in Toyland a little, Marina's voice more sonorous than Kat Bjelland's. Interesting set up-- side by side kits played with the feet primarily.

The Back Pockets - Weirdness to the power of 10. Came dressed like they were going to a Woodstock themed party at Studio 54. Set up an elaborate in front of stage thing. While the band played, a guy danced around fucking with the audience and pretending to be ascientist. The music was pretty eclectic, mostly like someone really likes the big builds in Arcade Fire. Would be at home in the Elephant 6 family. Overall, recommend seeing them. The show is worth it and the singer's voice alone is mesmerizing for at least 3 songs.

Agent Ribbons - HOLY TWEE batman! Agent Ribbons combines sweet 50s doo-wop chord progression with saccharine sweet vocals bemoaning all the liars the singer has
met. A duo, the guitar does more work than you'd think it should, especially given the relatively simple styling, and the drummer's call-and-response back ups make it so you don't even miss the bass.

TacocaT - Oh, TacocaT. Why is this band NOT on K records? Can we get them on K? They're adorable, fun, light and giggly. They are twee-rock, with irreverent lyrics about things like getting a new issue of Cat Fancy, smoking pot out of a vaporizer and the venerable (in girl band circles of late, anyway) Tanya Harding. This band is soul-related to EAR PWR for those who are familiar.

Christeene - I do not, still, 24 hours later, totally know what I think of Christeeene. When I first saw him, I was like "What the fuck?" granted, we were at a queer show, but he was wearing a fright wig, smeared make up (courtney love circa heroin) and had bruises painted all over his body. Then he climbed on stage and revealed some bizarre underpanties contraption. The show, though, was intriguing. The dance moves were fun and the backup dancers ridiculous and the rap would make Lil Kim blush. I don't think I would ever purchase this music, but my new friend Joey said I was in for a treat. If you like haunted houses, penises (there was a lot of penis, not gonna lie) and just draw dropping weirdness, then you just may like Christeene.

Went over to Whole Foods new love affair. If I were ever here and not raw, I would probably gain 8000 pounds. They have a RAW station. It's almost entirely raw and it has apple pie and they carry those Hail Merry tarts that are the best thing I've tasted in a very long time. Like, if they get them in NC, I will eat them. From the raw station, I got a broccoli cashew salad and avocado kale salad. They were both good but I think I preferred the broccoli cashew.

After dinner we wandered over to see Last Year's Men, who played great. I procured me a tee shirt with which to rep them on the road and at home, then we bounced to the BrooklynVegan showcase and caught Screamales, who were fine.

We left during Andrew WK.

Day 23:

Whole foods for raw falafel and raw tzitiki, broc cashew salad, another Hail Merry raw tart (meyer lemon) and coconut water.
Day party trek started with meeting up with our friends Lost in the Trees (Orchestral Folk Pop) who we had just missed due to ill timed eating/walking, then we headed to the Paste magazine party for We Were Promised Jetpacks, whose show was PACKED but epic. Big guitars, big scottish voice, little, young, scottish dudes.

They were immediately followed by Blitzen Trapper, who were loud and otherwise not noteworthy. We decided to walk to Cheer Up Charlie's to catch the Love Language, some other hometown buds, who played an amazing set. Upbeat, 60s influenced guitar and key pop with some noisier elements, then we wandered all the way back to Waterloo for Lucero, who are not my cup of tea but I respect the hell out of the band. They're country-twinged bar rock, and have a far reaching influence.

We went to the Mohawk for the Jagjaguar/Dead Oceans/Secretly Canadian party. The first band was not worth talking about, but!

Gardens and Villas were an erasure-esque synthpop band whose lead singer had a quiver full of FLUTES! (This fills me with glee) They were poppy and fun.

Bear in Heaven went next and I learned...that the lead singer of Bear in Heaven, an amazingly catchy synthpop band, has NO RHYTHM. It was hilarious, and the songs were great as always.

We bounced after Bear in Heaven, and I ate some Kale chips at the hotel.

Day 24:

MY SHOWCASE! I ran my first ever SXSW showcase for Permanent Wave, Tom Tom Magazine and Break Yr Heart up off the North Loop. It went as follows:

Attia Taylor ( - keyboard and vocal loop songwriter

WOJCIK ( - hard hitting guitar songs with a rich alto voice

LAM! LAM! ( - this is my little pet project, electropop

Spooky Qs ( - queer songs about amazing things (the new record is ENTIRELY repurposed protest songs!)

Shondes ( - poppy, theatrical folk rock, with an edge and electric violin

Jeepneys ( - groove heavy, world music influenced with live guitar and live rototoms

Inches to Pixels ( - rockabilly feeling four piece with a raging female drummer

Seashell Radio ( - folky boy/girl duo with the ability to rock!

Duck Fight Goose ( - shanghai chillwave

Red Light Cameras ( - pop punk songs about giggly topics, like bicycles and juice

This show was presented by

The Permanent Wave (
Tom Tom Magazine (
Break Yr Heart (
MonkeyWrench Books (

After the show (where I scarfed a couple of raw bars) I met Kyle for some whole foods, which was a HUGE meal for me-- happy "tuna" salad (which was AWESOME), an avocado, a raw tart and a pint of cherry tomatoes. We wandered down to try and get into the Merge show, but couldn't, so we just decided to go home. I was pooped.

Day 25: Saturday, or, the big one

We got a little bit of a late start and hit whole foods for the first meal; I went ahead and tried actually ordering a "to go meal" from the raw "restaurant" (station) in Whole Foods. I got the pizza, which was almond and flax crisps topped with raw marinara, spinach, mushrooms and macadamias, nutritional yeast and garlic and came with a side, so I got the broccoli cashew salad. I also got some fruit salad, a kombucha and I tried a "lemon cheesecake cup" from the raw cafe which was totally vile. We headed over to the Deville and Mohawk, whose day parties were mad busy. We tried to get in elsewhere and finally ended up seeing, well, a lot of nothing. We stopped by Bull McCabe's Austin and watched a little basketball, then we went into Beerland and saw Terrible Twos and Bass Drum of Death, and they were both pretty rad. We then headed to sidebar but the band was ridiculous so we bounced.

I headed back to the car to grab a sweater and some Raw bars, then went directly to Red 7 to wait for my boys to start. First act I saw was called Odonis Odonis, and they were pretty noisy guitar feedy stuff, with a synth pad drummer.

Up next was some band whose name I forgot but they were not memorable.

VELVET TEEN then got up and shredded. Velvet Teen are a 90s/early 2000s rock and roll band with great guitar interplay, a little synth backing occasionally and lots of energy and good time. The only downside was that I was standing behind that couple who were like, bro-ing out and fist bumping the whole time.

Next was Breton, whose set ended literally 3 minutes after VT's but sounded really good so I plan to check them out. Then came Twilight Sad, a scottish band who were sort of cure-ish, and built up decent grooves but overall kind of dull. The power went out in the middle of their 2nd to last song which was pretty lame.

Jetpacks came on at 12, and I stayed for a few tunes,

but then decided to bounce to make sure I got over to Braid. Braid are an emo/post-hardcore band from Champlain, IL. They are also one of my favorite bands of the past few years. The show was not super full when I arrived, only $5 and I got a great spot up front. The boys were bantering like an old comedy team. It was truly a joy to watch them, and they played tons of awesome tunes, including almost every single one I wanted to hear. I really wanted to stick around and try to talk to them for a minute, but we had to get up at 7:30 to get Kyle to the airport.

The walk back to my car was ridiculous, by the way. I haven't ever in my life been asked if I wanted to party more times.

Day 26:

I dropped Kyle at the airport, filled my car with gas and went to Whole Foods to grab some more provisions for the road. I picked up one more Hail Merry tart, some apples, some bananas, some kiwi berries, cherry tomatoes and some of the hail merry treated nuts.

I met up with my high school friend Emily who now lives in Austin and we reminisced about the weirdness that was high school for us. I lost track of time a little and before I knew it it was almost four, which meant I really needed to get on the road. I mainly just noshed on my fruit and nuts from whole foods and arrived and got settled in OKC. I was way tired and crashed out pretty much AT 10pm.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Raw for Lent: Days 20-21 and TOUR!

Day 20: Monday

So I got up eaarly, around 7:30 AM and got on the road to New Orleans. I realized the time zone changes, but I was already up so I headed out to the road. A big shout out to Curt and Lauren who were as hospitable as
hospitable can be.
The drive was scenic and pretty to start with; in the mountains of Georgia. Atlanta looked lovely. I decided to pull off and try the "Raw Life" cafe in Montgomery, Alabama. It was in a small house in an obviously formerly residential neighborhood. When I walked in, nobody seemed to be around, but the place was
mostly tidy. There didn't appear to be a ton of options, so I surveyed what looked best and settled on the broccoli salad. It was chopped broccoli, peppers and onions in what tasted like garlic tahini dressing. It was tastier than I had anticipated it being and I ate it pretty fast.

Montgomery was just about the halfway point to NOLA. I continued on the journey, snacking on the rest of my kale chips, an apple, my last banana and my cherry tomatoes.

I arrived at the Mudlark about 2 hours early, so headed across town to what was supposed to be a NOLA juice bar/raw place, but was a hair salon. Grrr Happy Cow. I ended up going to the mediterranean place across the street called "Mona's" where I paid $5 for a salad that would probably fit in my hand. I even put my hand down for comparison. For the record, no, it wasn't a bowl.

The Mudlark is a pretty amazing building. It started as a green grocer in the 1800s and then added a frycook element. It has a sort of Pinhook meets theatre vibe. It is also decorated with very groovy handmade paper mache puppets, created and built by the building's owner Pandora Gastelum and her creative partner Amanda Stone. I attached a picture of my favorite-- naturally a horse, but there were tons of them hanging up in the room where I stayed. Some, namely the fruit bats, were a little creepier than others.

The show was pretty good but sparsely attended. I played with a band called Vio/Mire from RI/ME that had two cellos. The guy's voice was reminiscent of Conor Oberst's, and his lyrics also recalled Bright Eye's heavy handed metaphor. I have some video of a couple of songs. The singer/songwriter, Brendan, also had an AMAZING old school organ that was like, 36x30x12 and opened up in the back and used what seemed like accordion guts to make sounds.

Day 21: Tuesday

I had sort of fitful sleep in New Orleans, but woke up early to drive around some. Pandora, my gracious hostess, sent me to a juice bar called Satsuma that was actually operational, but was sadly out of cucumber. I ordered a "green drink" which was supposed to be Cucumber, Apple, Fennel, Kale, Lemon and Celery. I traded Carrot in for the cucumber, and it was good. I had been developing a starving headache, I think, and this quelled it some.

I drove around the french quarter and up the Esplanade then decided to skip the museums and just head to San Antonio. Louisiana was quickly gone and into Texas I rolled.

Texas is gorgeous. I mean, as a horsey person, even in the gatory/oily parts (btw, I totally should've gone to the "hold a baby gator" farm. oh, americana), the sheer vastness of the fields begs to be reconciled. You can just imagine galloping them. You can not imagine how long they go on the way they do. It's like the desert, with trees and grass.

Anyway, around 2:30 I rolled up into Houston, who, according to Happy Cow, has 3 raw restaurants! I drove to the first, The Vegan Cafe, whose entry on HC promised Raw options and delicious ones at that. First off, I waited around until about 3 (because the app doesn't have hours on it) and then the very nice lady told me that she just didn't get enough business for raw and stopped making it. So I punched in the next place, only a mile away! Pat Greer's Kitchen. Well, it was in a house. And the door was closed. So I drove on. Turns out, Pat Greer's open kitchen closes at 3. Boo. Finally, I just got frustrated and went to a My Fit Foods and bought Pat Greer's pre-packaged meals. I got a veggie burger meal and an "asian fusion" meal which was really a salad with some spices added. They were both alright. The burgers were a little heavy for me. Once I added cherry tomatoes to the salad, it was totally alright. I also snacked through the day on a Pur citrus bar, a fiber raw organic bar, some kumquats and an apple.

Finally, I arrived in San Antonio at around 6pm, to my friends Doug (former drummer of tEH vODAK and current drummer of the Baby Moons) and Amy's house that they recently purchased. It is SO CUTE. My first act after friendly hellos and whatnot was to get my dirty self into a shower. They ate dinner and I inhaled the rest of my salad from Pat Greer's, then we headed out to a bar called The Mix to meet up with my friend Lauel, from the band Mrs. Howl. We had a few drinks, then came home and are trying to crash out by 12:30. Hooray friends in San Antonio!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 19

So today was unofficial day 1 of tour. I got up after staying up way too late last night practicing my dance moves and the SPRING FORWARD (d'oh) and finished packing, then got a new key made for my friend who is going to check on the house when I'm gone, picked up my laser imaged CDs as well as some listening food-for-thought (thank you so much Mel T at 307 Knox!) stopped at the Durham food truck rodeo and picked up some of the Triangle Raw Foodists pad thai and blueberry tart. These two items were delicious. I really can't overstate how much I love spiralized zucchini as a pasta substitute I have to get some of those macadamia nuts and try to make that nooch and mac sauce.

Finally, at 4pm, after debating whether to bring a back up electric or an acoustic, and changing out 3 times, going over my checklist twice, I got on the road. As I approached Asheville, I realized I forgot a pillow, but oh well! I have a towel. I hung out with Curt Rat Jackson until his fiancee, Lauren came home. She is in a new band with some dudes in a Tom Waits cover band called Asheville Waits? I think? Anyway, we ate some mango and played some mario and now it's midnight, I have an 11 hour drive to NOLA tomorrow and must leave no later than 8am to make it there at a reasonable time.

Photos of awesome things forthcoming!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 18

So I got up and went to teach. I didn't really have enough time to get much in the way of food, but ran by Trader Joe's and picked up a cantaloupe and an avocado. I dropped the dogs off with my friend Andi, then came home and screen printed about 70 tee shirts with my friend Molly.

I cut up my cantaloupe, then went over to visit my friend Missisppi's new baby. Picked up some pills and toiletries, treated myself to salad bar and Bubbie's sauer kraut for dinner.

I packed up, practiced the set a little, had some almonds, then went to bed. Getting ready to leave now.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 16-17

Thurs, Day 16

Barn day means FUN! I got up early and snarfed an avocado while Sean and I did the pre-lim on my car before the big trip, then ate half an apple on the way to the barn with Cat and gave Jazz the other half. He was a pretty fresh boy; bucking a little, crow hoppy. We only were able to get over two jumps, so we tried trotting, then tried cantering, trot, canter.

When I got home, I whirred up a fake V8 juice:
2 slicing tomatoes
4 stalks celery
1 romaine heart
juice of 2 limes

and drank it at work. After work, I picked up some more kale, zucchini, banans and a kombucha as a treat for myself. I ended up snacking on a banana and putting chips, kale and zucchini to bake.

Friday, Day 16:

Got up and hit the gym first thing, then got new back tires for the car. When I came home, I set the rest of the zucchini chips to go, unloaded the kales. This time I did a nooch and EVOO kale chip with lacinado (the dinosaur) kale...holy crap the nutritional yeast plus the lacinado so MUCH better. It's easier to get this kind of kale covered, and it lays flat in the dehydrator.

Anyway, snacked on the nooch kale chips on the way to raleigh to buy screening supplies, then came home, cleaned out the car and then went to work.

I also solidified the SXPW showcase today! Woohoo!

Worked super late, and tonights snack was the zucchini chips. I read somewhere that you only need to leave them in for 2 hours, but mine were like 10, and they were pretty much perfect, so be warned. Kale chippiers are liars! :0

Anyway, I have an early day and am exhausted, so off to beddy bye for this guy!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Raw For Lent: Day 15

So this is pretty much 1/3!

I started the day off with an avocado and trying to take care of as much pre-tour prep as possible...getting my car checked out, getting my tires rotated (THEY ARE BALD WAH!)

At home, made a juice to carry for the day-- two grapefruits, some grapes and then chia gel, unspun, mixed in, for the nice seedy texture. I also set up some kale chips going in the new dehydrator, and they are done and they RULE. Well, they should be saltier/oilier but the pockets of salt and oil are pretty good. Any suggestions for good kale chip recipes would be appreciated.

We came in second at quiz, and nothing to report otherwise. Happy Wednesday, all!

Raw for Lent: Days 13-14

Monday, Day 13:

Monday meant some more yoga, but I bailed. I ended up finishing the recording for the LAM! LAM! tour and getting my screens set up and considering paint color, then hit the gym. Food was...a banana. An apple. A noble attempt to eat more kale salad both before and after work, then a grapefruit and a handful of almonds for dinner/pre-bed snack.

Tuesday, Day 14:

Today was a barn day! Sadly, Shep, my trainer, doesn't think Jazz is ready to do lessons, so I rode Newman, my old love. Newman is still a totally awesome horse; just am totally amped on Jazz. Regardless of a little misbehavior (apparently, Newman has not been ridden again since I last rode him!) and silliness, he was a very good boy and listened well.

After riding, I decided to finally pull out my Sun Warrior and made a shake of almonds, water, chia gel and frozen strawberries, which I put in my bag for work and drank there. I forgot how congealed the Sun Warrior shakes tend to get. Or maybe it's the Chia doing it. Whatever, I choked it down but the shake wasn't as filling as I remembered said shakes being, so I ended up stopping at Whole Foods and picking up some new stuff. I got some more kale, zucchini, tomatoes, apples, a little guac and these "Brad's Raw" chips.

So reviewing the Brad's Raw Chips. I decided to go for the "cheddar" version because I wanted something to eat with guacamole and figured the nacho type chip would be the best for my needs. First thing, these chips are EXPENSIVE. Like, $8. Ouch. But, they are good. Some of them are better than others (like, in the same bag), because the slightly thicker ones, while sturdier, have that sort of chewy fruit leather texture as a opposed to the light crunch of the thinner ones. Overall, my impression was that they tasted like slightly spicy, healthy wheat thins. And ya know, that works for me. Hell, it's probably even worth the $8 splurge every so often, like tonight, when I just want something quick and easy and tasty. Or when I'm craving the bready crunch. Also, they supposedly give away free chips and prizes (HELLO I WOULD LIKE SOME FREE CHIPS THANKS!) if you join the mailing list or like them on facebook. So overall, I'd say the company is not totally evil and the product is good, but this is definitely a once-in-a-while indulgence because of the price, so stick to your sun warrior and apples and bananas if you are cheap like I am.

BUT that said, I did just totally splurge on a food dehydrator so I'm gonna make some kale chips and zucchini chips and maybe fruit leather yayyyy.

On another note, I don't often get into politics, but feel it is necessary to start to raise awareness for something that is a really important issue here in the state of North Carolina. The civil and human rights of people in same-sex partnerships in the state of North Carolina are currently under a huge threat. Amendment One proposes to make the same-sex marriage ban in North Carolina part of the state constitution.

Just to be clear, same sex marriage is ALREADY illegal in the state of North Carolina.

This bill would essentially lay the groundwork to invalidate existing same-sex arrangements like custody, estate settlements without wills, visitation rights at hospitals and prison and could even be used to overturn restraining orders or convictions based on "domestic violence."

If you would like to know more about the amendment from a fairly unbiased source, you can see the BallotPedia Page for Amendment One. If you would like to contribute or get involved, Protect All NC Families is an excellent organization doing fine work. The best thing you can do, though, is tell anyone you know in North Carolina about this upcoming issue.

Regardless of how you or your family feels about same-sex marriage, remember, it is ALREADY ILLEGAL in the state. This bill is not about banning gay marriage in NC, but is about the LEGAL marginalization of a minority group. Replace "gay" with any other minority group and you'll know how to vote. We are beyond this as a culture.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Raw for Lent: Day 10-12...or almost 1/4 the way.

Today I ate pretty okay... it was a dark and awful day so my yoga motivation kind of died again. I got up and had a banana and the rest of yesterday's kombucha. I got my motivation and spun up a mega-batch of green smoothie so I can eat tomorrow.

Green Smoothie:
1 pink lady apple
5 stalks kale
2 slicing tomatoes
1/2 red bell pepper
1/2 cucumber
juice of 2 limes
juice of 2 lemons
2 carrots
1/2 c parsley
1/2 c cilantro

I'm not gonna lie, trying to kind of bite the Green Rx formula. Next time definitely some celery and grapes to sweeten a little. The citrus juices in here are a little bit souring, but it's not too bitter from the greens. :)

Work Friday was definitely a trial of my patience but I got off early, then stayed up way too late watching Puissance trials on Youtube. Oh my horse problem is really a problem.

I took the rest of the juice to work in the morning and also bought a pineapple at lunchtime, because drinking every meal is really not particularly fun. After work, I ran home and changed, then dashed over to Full Lotus for a salad with baby greens, spinach, cherry tomatoes, figs, sunflower seeds, pepitas, goji berries, sprouts and the same ACV/cayenne dressing. Clarissa dressed the salad so it would wilt a little before I ate it, which was lovely. I ended up getting off work crazy early and meeting up with Kitchen Island Show Print to trade dollars for a screen and drop my cardboard for their screening. After the lousy Duke/UNC game, I went home to a handful of almonds and a crash at about 11:30pm.

This morning I slept about 14 hours...body is still not getting quite what it needs. I'll probably have to pull out the Sun Warrior soon to make with the protein. I'll give you the straight dope. After about 10-12 days of raw a few things happen:

1. You are no longer hungry all the time.
I don't know if this is the official amount of time it takes for your stomach to unstretch or for me to hit a raw groove, but yeah. It's always around now that I'm like, "Hey girl, don't forget to put some calories inside you!"

2. The first sort of noticeable hit of weight loss occurs
After about 10 days of mega-cut back calories, practically no salt and no preservatives, your body just lets go of tons of bloat and water weight. I generally drop about 10 pounds by this time, about 5 of which are real weight and 5 of which are probably retained water because I eat tons of sodium usually. I'm not proud, but it's true.

3. The crabbies go away
When I say the crabbies, I mean you get the sort of raw high where you feel amazing mostly. I kicked this in the teeth by staying up until 4am Friday night/Saturday morning before a 15 hour workweek, but you get clearheaded and once you start something, it's easy to stay focused.

The get all the narsty crap out of your intestines the first several days, then you're done, right? NOPE. All the toxins stored up in your skin and your glands and whatever else decide to work themselves out next, now that you're burning clean fuel. As a result, I usually break out BAD. Like, cystic boil style stuff. It is the worst, but then it is done and my skin gets to be amazing for about 3 months.

5. The first blah hits
Along with the weight loss and the zits and the yeah okay I'm generally with it, part of the loss of hunger is loss of appetite. A lot of the raw nut cheese recipes stop appealing to me around this time and my stomach starts to get sensitive. I tend to not want more than a few bites of any one thing and have to force myself through everything. This is the phase during which small fruits and veggies (bananas, kirby cukes, cherry tomatoes, pink lady apples) become super useful.

Anyways, I pulled out my emerald kale salad that I made Friday and about six bites in totally lost my taste for it. I decided to hit the Triangle Raw Foodists truck. They had already sold out of their "Pad Thai" which sounded really appealing to me, since if I had my druthers and the ability to properly metabolize carbohydrates, I would probably live off Thai noodle dishes. The TuNOT nori rolls are good but a little rich for me. I kind of hate that all raw food people make everything with tons of nuts and oil, making everything kind of hard to swallow and fatty. Is it crazy that this year I am craving mostly whole raw fruits and veggies, less mixed together? Everything tastes so good on its own... Anyway, I also got their banana cream tart something or others and those were to die for. I think I probably just like anything sweet, but I think raw food definitely translates more easily into desserts. Fatty and oily and sweet are partners in crime.

Now I'm doing some late night laundry and watching Monk. I'm going to have to put away the rest of the kale salad and instead eat some golden cherry tomatoes and maybe some nuts if I can convince myself to eat them.

I'm considering ordering the Dr. Cow Tree Nut Sampler as a fast easy snack to have available. Does anyone know how long they keep in the refrigerator, or if there are any that are just not worth buying? It has been probably 15 years since I've had any cheese at all.

Also, any advice about how to help your skin not be a crazy volcano is appreciated. :)