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exponential July 28, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 7:40 pm

the as-brief-as-possible details of my weekend working for the Xponential Festival as a driver, shuttling artists and their equipment and their crews around between mt. laurel, nj and the camden waterfront, and the philly airport:

thursday i only had to go pick up “Pedro” from Los Straitjackets at the airport at about 1am. on the way to the hotel, he wanted to stop for food, so i took him to the crystal lake diner. on my way back home, crossing the walt whitman bridge, i did the dumbest thing ever: i forgot my bridge toll. this is the first time in my entire life i have done such a thing. they made me pull off to the side after the toll booth, and wait with two other poor schlubs until a “public safetly officer” came. to do what exactly, we were not told. after waiting almost 40 minutes, a cop finally pulls up and says, “you have to go back to new jersey. follow me.” he then led us around the loop and back onto the bridge going the opposite direction. i had to go all the way over to admiral wilson boulevard to find a gas station that was open where i could get cash, and also fill up the tank of my 15 MPG chrysler town and country. i didn’t get home and to sleep until around 4am.

friday, i only had one pickup to do. i had to take 4 guys from the robert cray band from camden to the hotel so they could shower up before the show. they talked about weed the entire time. it was pretty funny.

saturday, i had to drive Pedro back to the airport, and then pick up a guy that was playing the trumpet for They Might Be Giants (TMBG) at 30th street station. i had been hoping for one of the Johns, but they drove themselves down from nyc, apparently, as i saw them pull in a little later at the artist checkin booth. i ended up not having to do anything else for the rest of the day after that, so i hung out with my pal, serena, who was volunteering at the festival, and watched John Gorka, some of Pete Yorn (boring), and all of TMBG. they were so incredibly super fun, i irritated the crap out of seuss later by telling him about it. hard to believe that i’ve been a fan since 1992, and was only just seeing them for the first time. also, i wouldn’t have thought that singing along to a song about the number 7 could be so much fun: “we want cake! where’s our cake?!”

sunday was pretty hectic by comparison to the rest of the weekend. i had to pick up the band Donna the Buffalo at the hotel and bring them to camden. (i have to mention here that the other drivers and i had been having a hell of a time with the police who were in charge of keeping people from driving up where we needed to drive. they apparently weren’t instructed that there were authorized vehicles full of performing artists that should be let through. the night before, one of them had very grudgingly waved me around on the wrong side of the barrier instead of bothering to move his vehicle.) when we got to the police barricade, i waved my badge, pointed to the big white paper in my window designating me as authorized, and went around and up. the cop went apeshit, honking his horn and racing after me with his lights on. so here i am, sitting at the checkin booth pulled over, with a band who needs to get to the stage trapped in there with me. nothing i said to the officer was anything he wanted to hear, and he threatened to take me downtown to book me for driving on the wrong side of the road. later, when i had to drive one of the band members to the airport, he told me the band was impressed with my refusal to take crap off that asshole cop.

oh, and when i went to the hotel to pick up Donna the Buffalo in the first place, there was a band-looking group sitting out front, so i asked if they were Donna. when the guy turned around it was John Linnell from TMBG, and i promptly became a goofy blabbering idiot.

anyway, later i had to go pick up a lot of gear and crew members for Peter, Bjorn & John at the hotel. that crew was really awesome. one of the dudes was wearing the wolf-howling-at-the-moon shirt of current internet obsession. i got an English guy named Jules in my van. he was psyched to listen to Bon Iver and Elvis Perkins with me on the ride. just at the end of PB&J’s set later, there was an incredible fast downpour that swept in. i had been hanging out in the broadcast tent, which looked like it was going to blow away. then i had to drive back with the crew and the gear to the hotel. i had another English guy named Eddie in my van. also a very cool dude.

i spent a lot of time telling all the people i drove around about Camden and Philly and why on earth they were playing a concert in a ghetto. also spent a lot of time talking about tv shows, diners and dive bars, and surprisingly little time talking about music.

my final drive of the night was a bunch of crew members for Guster. we left Camden at about midnight. and my final drive of the weekend, on Monday afternoon, was driving one of those same guys to the airport. i’d say the weekend’s events were well worth the $500 i got paid. (oh, i also saw a guy who was so drunk he fell on his face, and with blood streaming out of his mouth and nose insisted, he was fine, just fine.)


fire July 3, 2009

Filed under: natural disasters — jadelaide @ 3:39 pm
Tags: , , , ,
our house boarded up

our house boarded up

so, let me preface all this by saying that there are two drunk people who smoke in their apartments that live in our house. we are in a 3-story house with six apartments in it. we are on the first floor in the rear. the drunk man, joe, is on the second floor in the front. the drunk woman is on the third floor in the rear. last week some time we had to call the police on the drunk woman because she was in her apartment ranting about how she was going to burn the house down, and then she moved on to screaming at people on the street for an hour or so. we were inspired to get better renter’s insurance. i just got the paperwork yesterday in the mail. the drunk man, joe, has never been problematic. just pathetically wasted to the point of barely being able to make it up the steps on a regular basis.

anyway. last night we were celebrating the fact that i’d finished a big photo editing project by going to dinner around the corner at the new bar. we had come home a little before 8pm and had been in the apartment about 15 minutes when the fire alarm went off. it is piercingly loud. the dogs went a little nuts, but i managed to collar them all up while seuss was looking out into the hallway to see what was going on. the drunk lady was prancing around and screeching that there was a fire. seuss and our friend greg, who was hanging out with us, took the dogs out the front, while i ran to the back and crammed the cat in her carrier. i went out the back and up the alley, and by the time i got there, i could see the smoke pouring out of the 2nd floor front apartment. my neighbor grabbed the cat carrier from me and took Finn into her apartment. i was on the phone with the landlord screaming that the drunk set the house on fire, while seuss had gone back in to make sure everyone was out.

the fire trucks were there in about 3 or 4 minutes. they are only a few blocks away. i grabbed the dogs and brought them into my other neighbor’s house. seuss came out with his messenger bag with our hard drives in it. he had gone up to the second floor with the fire extinguisher (he used to be a volunteer firefighter) and found the drunk man standing in his doorway in his underpants, in a drunken stupor, saying his bed was on fire. i’m guessing seuss had to pretty much drag him down the stairs, otherwise he couldn’t have gotten out so fast. everyone else was out, all the pets were out, thought the drunk lady’s cat scratched her and ran off. hopefully she’ll come home.

some of the culprits

some of the culprits

the firemen went in the front with their hoses and upstairs. they broke into the basement to turn off the electric. they broke out all the guy’s windows and water was spraying out them. they threw all his bedding and a ton of empty budweiser cans out the window. it’s all over the sidewalk still, and there is a ton of glass in the alley. we can’t clean any of it up till the insurance people look at it, we’re told.

so, there are at least 4 or 5 fire trucks out front. the whole street was blocked off. all our neighbors, some we don’t even know, were offering to help us, and take us and the dogs in, but we were well taken care of by our neighbor sarah, who had the dogs. the guy who owns the pizza place made us come in and get things to drink. the drunk guy got taken to the hospital, presumably for smoke inhalation. the drunk lady took off to stay with her kids downtown. the poor guy who just moved in a month ago and lives right above the fire was  hanging around waiting for friends to pick him and his cat up.

drunk guy's bed

drunk guy's bed

at about 2:30 am our friend shana came over to take us to her place with the dogs for the night. we noticed that the landlord was still at the house, and there was a guy there starting to board up the windows. the electric had been turned on. seuss went in there with the landlord, and looked at the guy’s apartment, which is totally destroyed. miraculously, none of the other apartments are. ours, since we are in the back, doesn’t even smell like smoke. the apartment above the fire reportedly stinks, but nothing got burnt. same with the 3rd floor rear. not sure about 2nd floor rear yet. she probably has water damage at least under her door and on the hallway-side wall. the front apartment under the fire is unoccupied, and seems to have minimal water damage. we are all REALLY LUCKY. if seuss and i hadn’t been home, i have doubts that there would have been so little damage. the 3rd floor guy didn’t even hear the alarm, he just heard seuss hollering in the hallway. if we had come home a little later, our pets would have been trapped in here, because the fire people wouldn’t have let us near the place. i am so very grateful that we were home.


i just really needed to share May 20, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 6:55 pm
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i was just looking at the amazon listing for PoopFreeze, and couldn’t help but laugh at the  “Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed” list which included a Large bag of bones for Halloween, the Guardian Angel original Korean Hand Therapy acupressure device (which looks more like a sex toy), the Brown Betty brand of pubic hair coloring, and an inflatable party sheep.


a wave o’ pugs March 6, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 8:16 pm
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this morning, i was chatting with a couple of people in the main office about dogs. one of the IT guys, who has three pugs, was showing them off. then he tried to convince me that pugs “originated in the old west” where they were used in groups of thousands to bring down buffalo.  i related this ridiculous tall tale on twitter, to hilarious responses:

“And as the clouds opened, a great plague of pugs descended on the earth, ravaging the land, leaving no buffalo remaining. It’s true! I read it in Pugalations! 23:2-23:17″

“What you don’t know is that they were originally german shepherds that became smooshed and shortened from buffalo stampedes.”

Trying to imagine a swarm of pugs, 1000 deep, bearing down on a lone buffalo. The barks. The snortled breathing. And the eyes! Dear god, I forget about the eyes! I’m going to have nightmares now of ridiculous numbers of pugs attacking me tonight, chewing me down from the toes, eyes pointing all over.”


the sadness

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 8:10 pm
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i’m suffering from a combination of the dragging-on of winter, PMS, chihuahuas moving away, and clients of seuss’ being put to sleep. i would prefer to be at home on the comfy couch reading watchmen, or my newly mooched detective kate martinelli story. instead, i am at my desk, doing news searches for researchers in our center and drinking cold coffee. hurry up, lunch time.


purge March 5, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 8:07 pm
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i am getting rid of books. it’s not nearly as painful as i thought it would be. it’s actually kind of satisfying. i’m bringing in piles of about 20 every day to work and putting them on our freebie table. they’ve been going like hotcakes! so if any of you penn ladies want free books (mostly mysteries) come on by my building.


10 things i’ve done that i think you haven’t October 27, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — jadelaide @ 3:45 pm
Tags: ,

1. raised 5 dogs for the seeing eye.

2. had my first beer ever at the hofbrau haus in munich.

3. brought a pig heart to school for show & tell.

4. had surgery on my cervix.

5. got in a fistfight on the street with a stranger.

6. gotten stuck in a swamp on an ATV.

7. ridden through fishtown on an illegal, lawnmower-engine-powered minibike.

8. tried to sell a gore-tex coat to a television news personality.

9. seen a dead body lying on the street.

10. allowed someone to photograph my hairy armpit.