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Good Times, Wheels, and Trains

I had a great weekend. It was of the sort that you can never really plan, that you never expect, but nonetheless comes, and it enjoyed as well as almost anything can be.

It began when I handed off the oncall pager on Thursday, and proceeded into a minor evening. Cole answered the open summons I announced about free beer. We talked for a while and rounded off the beer drinking with some competitive Wii. Then Brad picked us up and we met up with Wayne, Amber, Richard, and Holly out at the Red Balloon for some karaoke. While it was fun to be out with such an unlikely group, the karaoke itself was actually pretty lame. A group of selfish people sent an advance party to stake out table space for more than a third of the bar's seating capacity, and severely reprimanded anyone that had arrived on time, so they thought, for a seat, that attempted to take a load off in their sacred area. We let it roll off and enjoyed the High Life and our eventual turns on the stage.

I helped myself to a personal day on Friday, as the October sun was shining, and because my workweek up until that point had been a little slice of hell. After a relaxing morning and early afternoon, I showered up and met Jeff at the Power Plant Brewery in Parkville. I arrived first, so I busied myself with a plate of bangers and mash, and a coal car sundae. Jeff arrived, and we both derived a lot of glee from the outstanding Pumpkin Ale they had on tap. Jeff's friend Jeff joined us after a measure, and agreed with our assessment on the Pumpkin Ale. We adjourned to meet Damon at Paci's in North Kansas City, where I decided to leave my car and catch a ride back home with Jeff(I'll leave it to you to guess which one.)

Paci's was warming up for an early Halloween party, and before we left it was inundated with costumed partygoers and various merrymakers. When it started to get crowded, the four of us made a beeline for Grinders, where I hadn't been in ages. They turned out of have a Pumpkin Ale on tap as well, that was almost as good as the ones we had at the Power Plant. Damon bid us good-night from there, and we made the quick trip over to the Loca venue, where a combination art show, gallery opening, organic produce sale, and record-spinning spectacle was taking place, courtesy our friends Anna, Nick, Josh, and Chris. We helped ourselves to some cheap beer and shook our bodies on the makeshift dance floor.

It's a great space, and an even better idea. I really hope it works out for them, because its success would be a tremendous boost to the creative minds that have made Kansas City a nice place to live, and would propel it into something that nobody can quite imagine yet. Jeff the other left after we'd been there for a short while, and Jeff and I went home by about 1am or so.

On Saturday I caught up on How I Met Your Mother and The Office and discovered, one year late, the outstanding show, Heroes. I spent a lot of time in my underpants in front of the computer. At about 10pm, Becky picked me up for the evening out, which involved some 80s music being expertly(and sometimes not so expertly) spun at Jilly's. There she and Liana and I played some Silver Strike, and awaited the arrival of Craig, Amber, Terra, and Heather. While we were there Liana invited me to come to Village West with them the next day to audition for Wheel of Fortune, and I invited them to see The Darjeeling Limited later that day.

After Jilly's, Craig and Amber and I went to the Quaff for a couple more pitchers and some hostile "family" bouncers. We ran into Tony there, as he played Silver Strike with a friend. Punctuated by amplified shouts of "DRINK 'EM UP!" we talked about the future of Kansas City, and how each of us thought it might come to be. We left and said good-night, and I slept happily until my unsilenced phone started blowing up with text messages at about 9:30am. Liana picked me up at about 10:30am, awesomely handed me some buttered cinnamon-raisin toast, and spirited us up to near 152 and North Oak to pick up Becky. After a quick stop for some coffee we made the long, long trip out to Village West, on the edge of the universe in KCK.

The Wheel of Fortune stuff has already been noted here, so I won't go anymore into that, except to say that we had a great time. Liana kept saying, "I can't believe I didn't get picked," as we drove off. After dropping off Becky we headed to North Kansas City so I could get my car. To my dismay I had left it unlocked all weekend. From there I went to Nick and Anna's place to watch the Chiefs game. After a short time I was falling asleep where I sat, so I begged Nick's pardon and took my leave. I went home and took an hour's nap before getting up to pick up Becky and Liana for the Darjeeling Limited.

If you have a free evening any time soon, go and see this movie. I was assaulted by a broad range of emotions throughout the film, as is the style with Wes Anderson movies. And though neither of the women had heard anything about it, they both reported they loved it too.

And so now, my long eventful weekend has drawn to a close, and I am ready to get a good nine hours of sleep before I go back to work tomorrow.

10:17 PM, Oct 21, 2007

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