Friday, October 30, 2015

Hickory Head Horror Story*

The Hickory Head Hermit a.k.a. Mike Firesmith is a blogger that I like and follow.  A writer who blogs may be a more apt description.  This week he has been posting his annual Hickory Head Horror Story Serialization called Christa and I've been thoroughly enjoying it. I know the finale will be posted tomorrow, but if you have some time it is a fun read, it has drawn me in well!  The whole thing is at his site here, or, for convenience,  I've listed and linked them in order below!

10/24 Christa:  The Beginning
10/25 Christa:  The Trap
10/26 Christa:  To Hide A Murder
10/27 Christa:  In Time
10/28 Christa:  Found
10/29 Christa:  Before The Storm
10/30 Christa:  Blood And Sand
10/31 Christa:  The Dam Breaks

11/2 Christa:  Epilogue


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Latest LIVE Listening Pleasure 21 - Garbage

Garbage had a homecoming of sorts at the Orpheum Theater here in downtown Madison on Sunday night and my wife and I were there to see it.
20151018 006b

The band Garbage gets back to Madison every few years, last time was in 2012.  I did not see them then, the only other time I went to see them they played at the Memorial Coliseum here in Madison.  Thinking back, that must have been in the early 00's.  Of course, they recorded all their early stuff here in Madison at the now defunct Smart Studios (- think Nirvana's 1991 breakthrough album 'Nevermind' - it was recorded there with Butch Vig, Garbage's drummer and overseer, producing).

20151018 013bThe band is celebrating the 20th anniversary of their debut album, Garbage.  It has been recently remastered and released along with many of the b-sides from that era.  I almost ordered it but there wasn't anything new on it, just remastered, and that wasn't enough for me.  I do like Garbage, especially because they are from Madison here, but I'm not fanatical about them and they are not what I normally listen to and these days I pick and choose who I spend my money on.  We paid for two tickets to the show, there's our support.

We arrived about a half hour before showtime to a mostly packed house.  We knew the show had sold out in advance, general admission mostly, and even a few more tickets were sold on the day of show.  Many of the only seats that were left available were behind the sound and light boards.  I figured that we would ride out the first band in the seats then move to the floor for Garbage.  (The first band was not worth remembering, at least for us.)  Well, by the time the first band was done the place had completely filled up so we decided to stay in our seats.  When standing, a camera only slightly obstructed our view.  If we were on the floor it would have been the backs of peoples heads obstructing our view, especially for my shorter wife.  On the plus side, my wife did sometimes watch the video that was being taken of the show on the little screen in front of us by the light board, see picture on the right.  Maybe it was being recorded for DVD release.  Now, that I would buy.

I experimented a little bit at this show.  First, I took more pictures and video at this show than I ever normally would.  I did not know how the video was going to turn out so I wanted at least a few good pictures.  Also, at prior shows that I have recorded songs I was much closer to the stage, within feet of the performance usually.  Up close works great for my little digital camera that I like to use for video, but it doesn't zoom in.  I did figure out that night - and for the first time ever even though I've had this camera for many years - that it will zoom for video but you must first zoom before recording and cannot change the zoom until it is in standby mode again.  Still, knowing that probably won't change my recording habits that much.  When I zoom in the quality and pixels goes down.  I also want to point out that this was probably the brightest show I've seen.  There seemed to be lots more lights on stage pointing out than the other way around.  At times I had to just look away and wait for it to dim.  Really.  Due to that, some scenes the camera just could not capture but for a glare of light.

This first video is for the song 'Kick My Ass.'

I also tried to take a video with my phone, first time trying to take a concert video on my phone and it turned out pretty good!  The zoom sharpness is surprisingly better than my old digital camera, more than I expected.  I still like the camera for when I can get closer, but I'm glad I gave the phone camera a try.  I did miss the end of the song, however.  I've had space issues on my phone lately so I simply ran out of space to record.

Here's the video taken with my phone, 'Only Happy When It Rains.'

It was a good night out and we had each taken Monday off after the show.  It is probably a good thing that we got the tickets months ago because otherwise it would have been tough to just get up off the couch and go.  This concert was only 10 minutes from home in downtown Madison.  In February we have tickets to a Nightwish concert in Milwaukee.  I hate to travel, and I wouldn't for just any band, but it may be my only chance to see this Finnish band live, so I must go.  I must also get a hotel yet!

*Reminder to my email readers, you must visit the site to view videos.  There is a link at the bottom of the email.

**One last update before I post this, apparently the video was broadcast out to Yahoo LiveNation.  You can watch the whole concert in professional multi camera video with quality sound at this link!

Previous LLP Posts...
LLP 1 - Pain
LLP 2 - Nightwish
LLP 3 - Die Antwoord
LLP 4 - Pain part 2
LLP 5 - Andrew Bird
LLP 6 - Nightwish part 2
LLP 7 - Paramore
LLP 8 - Newsted
LLP 9 - U.D.O.
LLP 10 - Nightwish Imaginaerum Movie
LLP 11 - Kiss
LLP 12 - Rick Springfield
LLP 13 - Hyrax
LLP 14 - In This Moment
LLP 15 - Faster Pussycat
LLP 16 - Sebastian Bach
LLP 17 - Cradle Of Thorns
LLP 18 - Amaranthe
LLP 19 - Lindemann
LLP 20 - Halestorm
LLP 21 - Garbage

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

New Fridge!

20151010 019It's almost the middle of October and I haven't posted much of anything lately.  Well, I could do a This-And-Thats post but it would probably be rather short.  I could rant about the Wisconsin Badgers pathetic offense or rave about the undefeated Green Bay Packers, but I'm not a sports writer.  So about all that's left that has happened lately is getting a new refrigerator.  So be it!

We've had the fridge ordered for about a month now, waiting for it to be in stock and delivered.  The old fridge was, well, old and was starting to have some issues.  We could have called a repair man and possibly have gotten it fixed, but ultimately decided now was the time to upgrade.  We got exactly what my wife wanted; a black french door fridge with the freezer drawer on the bottom - and an ice maker for me!  We had the plumber out last week to install a water line for the ice maker since the old one didn't have that luxury.

We had delivery scheduled for Saturday and got the call on Friday evening that the refrigerator would be delivered between 4 and 6 pm.  The next day we were at the Harmony Bar and Grill for a late lunch and when we were finished, around 1:30 we got the call that they would be there in about 20 minutes.  I know they are always early, but they made some good time that day (and he told me later we were their last delivery).  We scurried home quickly and what happens first thing but the spring on the garage door breaks!  Spend some money and then have to spend more money, my luck!  Anyway, we got the fridge emptied into coolers before they arrived.  They had the old one out and the new one in and set up and were gone by the time the football game started at 2:30.  Perfect!

Cosmetically, the new LG fridge matches the Kenmore dishwasher very well, about exact.  But now, well, I saw my wife standing in the kitchen the other night and so I asked her casually if she was looking at the new refrigerator.  No, she said, she was looking at the old stove.  Gasp!  Not yet, not yet!  This fridge was not cheap, replacing the stove can wait for a while, quite a while, we have other big things like a new roof to think about next year.

20151012 004And tomorrow the garage door guy will be out to fix the spring so I can use the big door again.  I do know it is something I could most likely do myself, but I never have and when you get that spring wound it's got lots of scary power.  Yeah, I'll just let the pro do it.

A side by side comparison of the old and new fridge is after the break, if you're interested.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Garden Blog Updates

I realized that I have not posted here in a bit, but things have been busy at work and nothing exceptional has happened otherwise.  I did post a pictorial tour of the plants in our yard over at the garden blog yesterday.  And my lovely wife posted over there today.

My wife has a different view than I and has been adding bits of what she has prepared with the small harvest we get from our garden.  You should head on over there and read her posts, leave her an encouraging comment, too!

Our garden blog is linked in the right column, or click here!