Cute Friends and Live Music and STOP CHANGING THE DANG RULES WITHOUT TELLING ME

So, Thursday night. Decemberists. And being outside. And enjoying Decemberists. And being outside.

These are my two homies from the Senegal study abroad. I don't know if you can tell, but these ladies are very happy to be in America. Also they have excellent taste in music. Which explains why we're all at this concert. Seriously, these girls SAVED MY LIFE in Africa. I owe them big time.
I don't know why I choose to surround myself with crazy people. I like them--I like them a lot. The two girls on the right are sisters. The girl on the left is a former classmate, and a friend of the sister in the middle, and a co-novelist with the girl in the sunglasses from the previous photo. Small world. These girls like the Decemberists, too. The sisters even have an accordion to prove it.
This pretty much sums up my view for most of the concert. We moved from sitting on a sheet off to the side to weaving our way through the crowd toward the center. It definitely sounded better from where we were, but I'm pretty much doomed to smell armpits for the rest of my concert-watching career.

It was around this time that I tweeted the following, and a friend replied:

I really have accepted my fate. Sometimes I still wish, though.
So, I pretty much coveted the guy in the cherry picker the whole time. Can you see how thrilled he looks? Maybe he needed to use the bathroom or something. Maybe he wanted to see his wife and kids. But I cannot comprehend his not wanting to be at a Decemberists' concert. He's clearly not watching the concert. He has the best view! I wish I had an explanation.
Okay, occasionally I would catch fun glimpses of the band members. I listened hard to the instruments, and often I wished I could have been able to see the fiddler or the bassist or guitars riffing with each other. The band seemed pretty cool. They made fun of crowd surfers and they bossed us around quite well. Huge crowds are hard to contain sometimes with all the free admission and beer and pot. But the band did a bang-up job.

Speaking of pot, I tweeted this observation. The same friend replied and further confirmed my luckiness that he’s my friend:

So I texted Francis, and asked what he did to his keyboard. He replied, "Tea. I did 'tea' to my keyboard." I visualized this, and it was a pretty vivid image, most likely because the contact high was SO FREAKING STRONG.

We met a guy named Dennis who came with a friend. He introduced himself and extended his hand to shake, but we sort of brushed him off.

After the concert, we went to Denny’s, where our waiter was named Moe, which was short for Mohammed, and he sounded a lot like Barack Obama. Coincidence? I think not. He was a one-man show. Not only did he wait tables, he also was the cashier and he might have done all the cooking, too. And we spent a fair amount of time doing Barack Obama impressions on the way home.

What we also did? Acted high. But mostly we weren’t acting. Except we had to tone it down in Denny’s because undercover cops were also at the restaurant. It wasn’t possible to stop giggling, and I think we managed to order all the breakfast items on the menu. And half a sampler platter. Poor Moe.

Okay, so that was fun.

Yet, I have a small complaint.

Go to this website, and scroll down to the rules about food and beverages. Is it clear on whether one can or can’t bring food into the park? It doesn’t say we can’t bring food into the park. I brought food, and when we got to the entrance, I found out that food wasn’t allowed. And maybe I yelled, like, LOUD, and maybe no one cared, but come on, people, at least provide a clear policy on such things. I can go to a concert in Central Park, NYC, and they’ll have similar rules: no coolers, no glass containers, no outside alcohol. I can bring outside food; EVERYONE can bring outside food. They encourage it. Yes, I know that Pioneer Park isn’t Central Park. But Pioneer Park also doesn’t have to worry about the kind of attendance Central Park does. Pioneer Park should be able to handle food. I stood in line for an hour last month waiting to see Yo-Yo Ma with a book, a plastic bottle of water, and a Chipotle burrito. Free concert, even. Everyone knows what the rules are.

So, Twilight Concert Series people, don’t make like you’re Stephenie Meyer or the writers of Lost and change the rules whenever you feel like it. Or if you want to change the rules, make sure such changes are also on the website. It’s not a lot to ask.

But, thank you for bringing the Decemberists to Salt Lake City. For free.

So We’re Still in the Poetry Unit

And when the instructor begins the class by having us to listen to the Decemberists and Radiohead and Andrew Bird, I almost cry.

This is so cool.

School is great.

Lyrics to the songs whose names I caught below. How do the formal elements tie into their meanings?

“Fake Plastic Trees” – Radiohead

Her green plastic watering can
For her fake Chinese rubber plant
In the fake plastic earth
That she bought from a rubber man
In a town full of rubber plans
To get rid of itself

It wears her out, it wears her out
It wears her out, it wears her out

She lives with a broken man
A cracked polystyrene man
Who just crumbles and burns
He used to do surgery
For girls in the eighties
But gravity always wins

It wears him out, it wears him out
It wears him out, it wears him out

She looks like the real thing
She tastes like the real thing
My fake plastic love
But I can’t help the feeling
I could blow through the ceiling
If I just turn and run

It wears me out, it wears me out
It wears me out, it wears me out

If I could be who you wanted
If I could be who you wanted all the time

All the time…
All the time…

“Measuring Cups” – Andrew Bird

Get out your measuring cups and we’ll play a new game
Come to the front of the class and we’ll measure your brain
We’ll give you a complex and we’ll give it a name

Get out your measuring cups and we’ll play a new game
Can’t have the cream when the crop and the cream are the same
Liquid or gas no more than the glass will contain

When you talk about the hand of glory
A tale that’s rather grim and gory
Is it just another children’s story that’s been de-clawed?
When the tales of brothers Grimm and Gorey have been outlawed

I think they’re gonna make you start over
You don’t want to start over
Put your backpack on your shoulder
Be the good little soldier
Take your places now
‘Cause we’re all predisposed

Measuring cups, play a new game
Front of the class, measure your brain
Give you a complex and we’ll give it a name

When you talk about the hand of glory
A tale that’s rather grim and gory
Is it just another children’s story that’s been de-clawed?
When the tales of brothers Grimm and Gorey have been outlawed

Put your backpack on your shoulder
Be the good little soldier
It’s no different when your older
You’re predisposed
That’s all for questions now
The case is closed!