Inbetween Days

For Stacie’s birthday, we went to a vegetarian Indian restaurant in Cary, where we struggled with the menu (well, aside from Srav, Stacie, and Rachel) and ended up with huge amounts of food, in various different shapes and sizes; Stacie’s dosai in particular could have easily have doubled as a diggery-doo. After attempting (and failing) to eat our way through colossal amounts of Indian food, we went on to the perfect post-dinner venue: crazy golf! At 10pm!

It’s been a very long time since I played crazy golf, and I wasn’t very good at it back then, either. I surprised myself more than everybody else when I started out being quite good. Unfortunately, it was more luck than judgement; in most sports I can never learn how to repeat doing the right thing, so I varied from jammy to incredibly bad. I ended up finishing joint first with the birthday girl though (she likes it when you sing Stacie’s Mom. No, really, she does. That look of death that she gives you is an exchange of thanks, or so I’m told).

So that was Wednesday (with added chocolate cake and Collin being his amusing self. Oh, and apparently Simon is a very British name). Thursday was a lazy day again, hanging out with Srav and Stacie at the Apple Store again, before being dropped off in Borders (by myself! KID IN SWEET SHOP!). The night was swallowed up by a huge storm; huge crackles of thunder seemingly inches away from us, and lightning that lit up the sky just like day. And I was in the laundry room at the time. Eep. Thankfully, it didn’t last too long (and American washers and tumble driers still suck by the way), but we didn’t do too much else last night, aside from watching a few episodes of Six Feet Under with Collin (and me remembering how much the show depresses me).

But today! Well, not too much either, so far. I did meet up with Kavi this afternoon though, which was lots of fun. She’s spent the last year in Japan, so I haven’t seen for a long time. Bunches of hugs and animated conversation about her last few days overseas (including a drunken karaoke session and The Club With Three People). Sadly, I probably won’t see her again on this trip, but it was good to spend a few hours with her at least.

currently playing: ABC — The Look of Love

A Moment of Silence

I note with some regret that the new edition of Elizabeth Wurtzel’s Bitch has a new cover.

currently playing: Orange Juice — Rip It Up

HIGH VOLTAGE! (I apologise, truly)

On Tuesday night, a fence behind Cat’s Cradle was energised by a nearby power line that was struggling under the strain of everybody’s air conditioning needs. There was a BOOOM!, and central Carrboro plunged into darkness. Panic! Riot! Looting!

But no, everybody was very restrained, even when we pointed out that the cheesecakes in Weaver Street Market were just melting away. In the event, we did the only thing acceptable: we went to a bar in Chapel Hill and started drinking. And we learnt that a crash course in American life can be gleaned from watching VH-1, that Transformers melt in the sunlight, and that Fuse has a chalkboard in the men’s toilet, but not the women’s.

Following from afar: has Pete Doherty gone on a machine-gun rampage yet?

More to come, including crazy golf at night and…oh, I forgot, I have been requested to point out that, on Monday, a guy in a petrol station recognised Laura’s Liverpool 2005 Champions t-shirt. He mentioned something about Michael Owen, which made me think of Bonnie’s cackling laughter the day after Liverpool won the Champion’s League…

Also, I think it’s wise to spend at least part of today giggling at Ian Paisley, who has just been checkmated…hohoho.

currently playing: Bloc Party — So Here We Are

Why We Keep Starting Fires

We should get t-shirts made: “I survived the Carrboro blackout of July 2005”…

currently playing: Saint Etienne — Jack Lemmon

Not Only, But Also

Today, the heat index has been 120˚F. You may kill me. If the heat doesn’t first.

In order to escape, I did the only sane thing I could in the circumstances; I went shopping. I always feel a little guilty when I go on my epic clothes shops on holiday, coming out with huge bags of stuff, but as I seen to have inherited the sale gene from my mother, I never buy anything unless it's on the sale rack (hurrah for JC Penney and its seemingly perpetual sale!), and stay away from the stupidly expensive stores. So I've done all my clothes shopping, unless I see something nice at Club Nova (and yes, new socks!).

But anyway, yes, it's hot. It's been a fun couple of days; I was Ian-napped on Sunday night, heading out to watch Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, before going to Durham to eat at the goooooooodness that is Francesca's in Durham. We then lost Hannah, but continued on our quest to find karaoke. Thankfully, for all concerned, we failed, although we did have an interesting meeting with a security guard who: mistook Laura for a boy, was very concerned about licensing laws, and who warned us all about attacks that had taken place recently, but reassuring the girls that because I was there, they'd probably be okay (it was all I could do to not burst out laughing).

Then we went to Hell.

Hell, of course, being a bar in Chapel Hill. Ho ho ho. Had you going there for a moment. Okay, perhaps not. I discovered that I suck at air hockey, and treated the bar to Joy Division and The Buzzcocks. Because I'm not predictable or anything.

Yesterday! Lemurs! Apple Store! Another Apple Store but with apples you can eat! Swimming! A knife in a tree! Spider-webs! The Incredibles! And enough Chinese food to last a week, it seems…

currently playing: Kenickie — I Would Fix You

I'm edible too. But that's called cannibalism, children

The problem with Charlie & The Chocolate Factory is that it’s actually a fairly boring story; Charlie finds a Golden Ticket (after a too-long process of looking for the ticket and not finding it - thankfully the film cuts out a small part of the book here), turns up to the factory, and then does very little while the rest of the children vanish. Charlie is then declared the winner and gets the factory. The only thing that holds the book and other versions together is how fun the ride is; seeing all the sights, watching the other children get their comeuppance in spectacular ways, and just how crazy Wonka can be.

So, happy to report that Johnny Depp’s Willy Wonka is madder than two boxes of frogs. Lots of wonderful, trippy designs, odd Oompa-Lumpas who go metal, psychedelic, and funky at the drop of a hat, and the cotton wool room. The four of us who went to see it (Laura, Naomi, Hannah, and myself) spent most of the time giggling at the silliness. Not bad, then; a couple of annoying niggly niggles (why use ‘dollars’ when it’s so clearly set in Britain? Why change Mike Teevee so he’s actually clever now?), but fun.

Oh! And includes a cameo from The Actor Kevin Eldon. Which is why I laughed when nobody else did…

currently playing: Sleater-Kinney — Burn, Don’t Freeze

Violet, meet Abe, Abe, Abe, Abe, and Abe

Sarah Vowell is my new hero. Let us all worship at her feet…

currently playing: Annie — The Wedding


One of the few GOP stickers you'll see in Carrboro…

Bits & Pieces

No indie karaoke last night in the end, but apparently I’m not quite off the hook yet.

There’s loads of stickers around the town advertising a band or website with the image of Myra Hindley, which seems a little weird; there’s probably little shock value from that, considering I guess that most people here won’t know about the Moors Murderers.

My feet have once again broken out in blisters, with extra blisters on top of those. You know, you’d think that I’d learn, but nooo. Today, I’m wearing chunky socks which seems to make walking bearable.

Panera Bread has wonderful hot chocolate.

Squirrels don’t like having their picture taken.

I saw somebody coming out of University Massage yesterday. Ewwwwwwww.

I’ve only seen the UNC campus be so empty once before, and that was on the Fall Break. It’s like a ghost town, albeit a ghost town under heavy construction. The fountain is still running, although I’ve resisted the temptation to run through it.

Singing A New Engand and Regret at the top of your voice while walking down the street is guaranteed to get you some odd looks.

It’s going to be 40˚C on Tuesday. This will probably mean that Bonnie is going to put a price on my head, but I’m more concerned, right now, with how to survive the day itself. I think I might decamp to Southpoint and stay in the cool air of the shops and movie screens until the temperature dies down to something reasonable.

currently playing: New Order – Mesh

Collin, "Fetch" Isn't Going To Happen

Anyway, after waking up late in Naomi’s apartment yesterday, we decided to head to the Spotted Dog, where Laura works, to see how she was handling the morning & afternoon after. Oh, and get something to eat of course. We made plans to go see Charlie & The Chocolate Factory later (and drool at the Apple Store, naturally), but these fell through after everybody else either had other things to do, or passed out through lack of sleep. So yesterday was a lazy day; through the magic of Kinko’s I managed to recreate the half of Stacie’s birthday present that I’d left at home, and a bit later on, I watched Mean Girls with Christa, Hannah, and Collin, before chasing a cat around a housing estate (trying to catch it, but failing miserably).

The comic shop has moved! I went behind the Bank of America complex as normal, only to find an empty shopfront. The usual thoughts of ‘oh no, I’ve killed another comic shop! And I liked this one!’ went through my head, but as I walked back to Carrboro, I found a new comic shop on Franklin Street. I went inside, and hurrah! The old owner! Apparently they moved four months ago; the new location doesn’t flood, and as they’re now on Chapel Hill’s main road, they’re getting more walk-in traffic. Good news there then, even if the new location feels a tiny bit smaller.

Finally for today - two years ago, I left a bunch of mix CDs dotted around Chapel Hill, with my email address on. I got one reply from a girl, Rachel, who found one of them. Since then, we’ve become quite good friends, chatting over the internet inbetween work and classes. She goes to university in a different state, so she hasn’t been around when I’ve been visiting. But it appears that we were in the same shop during roughly the timeframe yesterday, which is a little spooky…

currently playing: Dexy’s Midnight Runners — R.E.S.P.E.C.T.