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Posts Tagged ‘Omaha

Mood: Mostly bad
Music: sHeavy-Spy vs. Spy

The following is the third and final installment of my “award-winning”, road trip-alogue:  Anna of Green Cornfields; or How I Wrote ‘Summa Vaca ’09: Burn Midwest Burn!’ The previous installments can be found here and here and here (jk).

So, there I was, frantically fleeing Iowa towards a date with Omaha destiny.  As I mentioned before, I actually like Omaha.  I lived there for four years during high school and junior high and it somehow managed to charm its way into my blackened little heart.  There’s a lot to dislike about Omaha and Nebraska (Nebraska Cornhusker football, beef eaters, corn, that f&@*ing speeding ticket, etc.) but there’s also lots to love (Nebraska Cornhusker football, The Old Market, Nebraska beef, Saddle Creek records/Conor Oberst, Cellophane Ceiling, Elliot Smith, Homer’s, The Ranch Bowl, Drastic Plastic, Matthew Sweet, Sokol Hall, etc.) .

Since Omaha and I are old friends, I wanted to, you know, drive around, see the sights, scratch the lottery tickets, smell the smells.   Well, the show started at 8 and I didn’t get to town until like 5:30.  I had the problems leaving Des Moines (what is it about me, packing, and leaving on time?) and I felt like a nap before the show.  I could have done a little sight seeing before leaving town next morning, but apparently I felt more like drinking a lot the night before and waking up late the next day.  C’est la vie.

I checked into the hotel, The Magnolia…

web front

…and had one of the nice young fellas park my car and take my bags to my room.  I was funny on that trip.  I’m usually a frugal sort of gal, but I didn’t feel like having to deal with bags or parking at all the whole time I was there.  Even though it’s a nicer hotel, it doesn’t seem like they were accustomed to that…like I got a “Ohhh, kay” when I called the front desk asking to have my car brought around and bags brought down.  That, and the fact that they charged me $12 for overnight parking, made me think a little less of the place.  The people were nice though.

After a short nap, I got dressed and did my makeup.  This was my first, post-transition concert and I was having the kittens about what to wear.  In the bad, old days, I would have worn some cargo shorts and a band t-shirt.  After a lot of fashion show, I decided on a heavier eye makep, pair of nicer jeans, a Melvins t-shirt (represent!), and my black Chucks.  So, it wasn’t a radical departure, but I felt like I looked ok.  After pysching myself up for a few minutes, I left my room and drove a few miles to Sokol Underground, et voila!

Gymnastics after every rock concert!

Somehow, I managed to be late and miss most of Eagle Twin.  They were loud and heavy and not unlike Sunn O)) (even more like Khanate), but I was a bit disappointed.  Sunn O)) takes care of the heavy and loud so well that it would have been nice to have some counterpoint to all that heaviosity.  Here’s some video…

Ok, I know the sound quality isn’t great, but that’s kind of what they sounded like…slow, droning, sludge.  When I was filming the first part, I was standing right next to an 8′ tall PA/FOH speaker stack and the sound coming out of it was scary loud.  I’ve been to a lot of concerts and have stood right next to a lot of FOH speakers and that was the first time I’ve ever feared for my safety.

Sunn O)) was up next…

Ok, you watched the video the video and I watched them do it live, but I’m still at a loss for how to describe the experience.  Here’s some illustration…

-they kept the three smoke machines on the entire time

-the sound from the amplifiers was louder than Eagle Twin, but more clean

-they only played one song for…I don’t even know how long.  It felt like at least 90 minutes, but it could have been two hours

-unless it was one of the quieter, creepy as fuck passages,  you couldn’t hear the vocalist at all., but he barely stopped singing

-I’m pretty sure I entered a trance at one point

-it felt like my ears were stuffed with cotton for hours after the show

-we never saw any of the performer’s faces until after the show

-there was no encore…at the end, we all kind of stood around, clapping occasionally.  They weren’t coming back, but it’s like we were trauma victims in shock and needed to be told where to go

This is going to sound hokey and weird, but we communed with each other in a way that was far more profound than the usual transformative, live-music experience.  We bathed in unhealthy doses of perfect, pure sound and journeyed to distant planes and the edges of every map.  It was prayer and meditation cloaked in the guise of avant-garde, doom metal.  So, um, yeah…I liked it a lot and I’ll definitely see them when they come to Denver.

Still though, the live show experience might be passing me by.  I was prolly the oldest person there by five years and the oldest woman by ten.  I went alone and left alone.  A lot of Jagermeister and Pabst Blue Ribbon (turns out, I’m a hipster after all!) helped me feel better about being there, but it’s not as fun as it used to be.  Maybe it would be more fun if I had someone to go with, but since most of my friends are married/shacked-up/lame/fucking jerks/have horrible taste in music/imaginary, I doubt this will change any time soon.  Maybe I should just move to Chicago, Becca?  We’ll see…

That’s about it (ja, I know, 10,000 words later).  I drove back the next day without incident…had a Runza.  I was kind of worried about mah kitteh since I’d left her alone for five days, but she somehow managed to survive and greeted me warmly upon my return.  I went to bed about an hour after arriving home and dreamed of you, gentle reader.

I am so sick of writing.  Goodnight!

Mood: Monday, y’all
Music: Spacemen 3-Feel So Good

I really like the band, Sunn O))) and have been wanting to see them for years.  But, since they’re snooty metal art hounds, they only seem to play in hip, sexy cities like…New York City!  Tokyo!  Tel Aviv!  Paris! I always figured it would be a long time/never before a trip to one of those sexy cities and a Sunn O))) show aligned.  So, I was shocked and delighted to see that they had deigned to play some shows in the lowly Midwest and in a city that’s sort of close to me and to my heart…Omaha, Nebraska!

Once I saw that, I planned out a mini vaca in a matter of hours.  My father lives in Des Moines, IA (which is like three hours from Omaha) so I decided to make the drive out to see him then swing back to the Big O for the concert on Monday.  I’ll leave the Friday after next and drive all day to Des Moines.  We’ll hang out and celebrate America’s birthday, then I’ll drive to Omaha for the show and stay overnight Monday.

This prolly isn’t a great time for a vacation, but whatever.  It’s been a long time since I did anything fun for myself and it will be really great to see my Dad and the band.  This is the first time that my Dad will have seen me since transition, so it’s going to be kind of weird at first and I’m the nervous.  But, I’m sure that will pass minutes after I get there.  I’m so happy and together these days, it’s hard for people to not be charmed to death by my…happiness, togetherness, and death-inducing charm.  And bless his little heart, Pops seems really excited and is already making plans for our time.  I’m excited too.  I haven’t seen him in a couple of years and he’s been really supportive of my transition.

I haven’t written much about my parents and their reaction to the news of my transition.  The short version is that my father has been very sweet and has really been trying to make an effort to accept the new me.  Mom is…incommunicado.  We spoke at Christmas and I have received, maybe two, terse emails from her.  And I’m not sure why she’s had that reaction.  She isn’t extremely religious and is fairly liberal, politically.  So…what’s motivating this?  Maybe she feels like she failed as a parent?  Whatever, it’s all pointless speculation until she actually tells me what’s going on.  Lord knows when that will be and I’m not sure what I can do to improve our relationship in the meantime.  So, I’m very much looking forward to renewing my relationship with at least one of my parents.

K, back on topic…so, Sunn O)))…

…is kind of hard to describe.  They’re basically doom metal slowed down to the point of ambient, diaphragm-crushing abstraction.  The reason I want to see them so badly is because their shows are more like a physical, rather than musical experience.  They usually perform in black robes and pack a smaller venue with dry ice smoke, a single light source and many gigantic bass cabinet guitar amplifiers.  I think the result is like swimming at the bottom of a very deep, frozen lake and witnessing an ancient summoning ritual.  Or, kind of like…

So, I’m excited (and frightened) but it should be an unforgettable experience and a very interesting way to end Summa Vaca ’09.

Mood: Filled with Friday!
Music: Current 93-A Gothic Love Song (For N.)

Here’s summer vaca teaser #2.

Let there be Doom.

Let there be Doom.

an introduction

Hi, I'm Anna and I love cheese!

This blog is a chronicle of my life and a catalog of happy ephemera. The About page has a little bit more information, but, remember, none of this is really's just a supplement, a thumbnail sketch, a mostly anonymous Intarwebs placeholder. I'm way better/less wordy in person. :-)

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January 2022