Weekend War Stories – April 20-22

Friday: Due to an inability to make science work all week and the rainy weather, Anita and I hit up the pub on campus at approximately 2:30PM. We were joined by Pete and Nate later that evening (by evening I mean between 3 and 4PM), had some beers and some conversation, then relocated to El Torito after convincing Pete to abandon a transformation he was in the middle of (for those non-science folks, he was putting some circular DNA into bacteria). Why El Torito? Because Nate’s lab was dropping 65K on a real-time PCR machine, so the company’s sales reps bought his lab members (and friends) some food and booze. After several appetizer platters and two margaritas, I headed back home for a pit stop before going over to Anita’s to fall asleep while watching Life of Brian. An exciting evening, indeed.

Saturday: Putzed around for awhile in the morning, then headed up to LA to visit my high school friend Craig before he graduates from USC with a masters in journalism and leaves for his new job in Erie. We caught an early showing of Grindhouse at the Vista theater near his house. Awesome theater (I saw V for Vendetta there last summer), awesome movie. If you like visual stimulation at all, go see it. Then we had all sorts of plans to go out to some club called Area (I know less then nothing about trendy places to go out in LA, but apparantly Justin Timberlake frequents this place), but after finding out that it would take us about an hour to get there and that parking would be ridiculous, we bailed and just ended up hanging out at his place for the evening, which is pretty typical for us.

Sunday: Had an amazingly huge breakfast at the House of Pies, then took the subway (!) to Amoeba Records. I can’t believe I hadn’t forced him to take me there on any of my other trips. Even more amazing is the fact that Craig’s lived in LA for a year and a half and had never been there. I ended up buying six CDs (mostly from clearance) for a grand total of…$25:

  • Greg Laswell – Through Toledo
  • The Boy Least Likely To – Bits of the Best College Radio Party Ever (Advance)
  • Peter Bjorn & John – Writer’s Block (finally…)
  • The Oranges Band – On TV
  • Sam Champion – Slow Rewind
  • The Morning Benders – Loose Change

Two of those bands (Sam Champion and The Morning Benders) I had just heard about on Stereogum, so they were fortuitous finds. And I really like them both. Sam Champion has a sort of Ben Kweller resemblance, which makes me happy. And The Morning Benders play great Beatles-esque pop. After Amoeba, I packed up my stuff and drove home. Put in a call to an old friend on the way home and was lucky enough to be able to catch up with him. Then it was home time, which meant laundry time.

All in all, a pretty tame weekend. It was nice to get out of the city, even if it was to a technically bigger city. Craig lives in Los Feliz, though, so it doesn’t really have to feel like LA if you don’t want it to. At any rate, I’m refreshed and ready to try to make science work for me again this week.