Calvin Johnson, Babies and Cheap Trick

Last weekend was an unrelated medley of baby birthdays, baby showers, adventures with babies, weird walks and 70s rock casino style. Yeah, I know. Sounds perfect, right?

We’ll start our story in Olympia on Friday night, where I finally got to meet 6-week old Margot, the beautiful daughter of Forrest and Roussa. Forrest is the fine fellow who developed my new website. I brought over some monstrous Quality Burritos while Margot, only slightly bigger than the burrito herself, napped pleasantly (except when I held her, of course) while the adults ate dinner and caught up. Saturday began with Ruby’s 1 year birthday party at the Olympia Mansion (which I had no idea even existed). Ruby is the daughter of Kim and Matt, some of the nicest people you’d ever wanna meet! Matt is one half of The Maxines, one of the best Olympia bands to see live in town. Ruby was quite lovely in her pink party dress and it was nice to catch up with the Oly radical parent-scene.

Later that afternoon, in honor of Evergreen’s 40th birthday party, Calvin Johnson of K Records and Beat Happening fame, hosted a walking tour of downtown Olympia. The tour primarily focused on how Evergreen has changed the landscape of downtown since the 1970s. Calvin pointed out all the Greener businesses, past and present, and how each business contributed to the radical DIY community that Oly is most famous for. Perhaps the most transcendent moment occurred as we rounded a corner on a sleepy little block, to find a sitar-playing 20-something, who looked as though he had been transported directly from the 70s. Of course, Calvin couldn’t help but dance.

After the tour, I stayed downtown and hung out with Sarah, Beth and toddler Ryer. We walked around and spent the rest of the afternoon at Percival Park, chasing the kiddo up and down slides and all over the lawn.

On my walk home, I took a photo of one of my favorite Olympia sites, the abandoned train tracks under the 4th Ave bridge, which in the past year or so has been painted the colors of the Rainbow.

I hate Scotch Broom but I love giant poppies! They usually pop up in our yard but there have been no signs of them this spring. This picture was taken down the block from us.

Saturday was such an amazing, bizarre day, I couldn’t just call it a night. Cheap Trick was playing at the Little Creek Casino in Shelton and, after online cajoling by the amazing Sarah Utter, I bought a ticket through the casino website and left the house 20 minutes later. Cheap Trick did not disappoint. They played all the hits and near misses; I was definitely into their stuff from the 70s since that’s where my Cheap Trick fandom starts and ends. Sarah, however, is a die hard Cheap Trick fan and you can read about her star struck experience on her blog! This was probably one of the most entertaining shows I’ve seen in a while and the people watching was truly extraordinary. If you’ve never caught Cheap Trick live, check them out on tour this summer with Areosmith. Ha!¬†Robin Zander is an incredible front man and yes, he can totally still hit all those high notes! These photos were taken from the bleachers, so excuse their questionable quality.

Sunday, I went to Portland to attend a baby shower for old art school buddy, Brian and his wife, Melissa. First though, I had brunch with friend Paul, whom I haven’t seen since our spring break cross country road trip this past March. Trials and tribulations of moving aside, he seems to be doing well. After the baby shower, I wandered around Portland, buying a couple used CDs at my favorite used music store, meandering through Laurelhurst Park, window shopping along Alberta and finally stopping at Voodoo Doughnuts (the magic is in the hole!) before driving back to Olympia. Most magical weekend of 2012? Yes, I think so.

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