Saturday, July 31, 2010

More Paper Crafts

I got a bee in my bonnet today to do some of what I've heard called "paper quilting." Here was my inspiration:

Yes, yes. Laugh at me if you need to.

I imitated the cover fairly closely, but I couldn't do the whole thing and fit it on a 12"x12" scrapbook page. Still, I'm pleased with how it turned out:

I'm leaving the white parts blank, instead of trying to replicate the eyes, mouths and plaid bits of the album cover.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Scrapbooking Keane

I know I mention my scrapbooking hobby from time to time, but it's never been shared on the LPB much. I guess there are several reasons, but two in particular stand out: 1) I share my photos on the blog long before I ever get prints made, delivered and archived in a scrapbook, and 2) it's impossible to scan a 12"x12" page on my scanner, so...why bother?

Today, I scrapbooked the prints I ordered from last week's Keane concert, and I'm quite proud of how it turned out. So I took a picture of each page and I'm going to post them now. As with any pic I post on the blog, you can see a larger version by clicking on it.

Page 1 stands alone. It has my original OMG OMG blog post when I found out Keane was coming back to California, my ticket, and a review of Night Train from People Magazine.

These two pages face each other (hence the coordinating background papers). On the right-hand side, a pic of Fran Healy (of Travis) and Ingrid Michaelson, the opening acts.

The Richard pages! The quote says, "If I could only save one, I'd save neither." It's something Tom said when asked who'd he'd save if Tim and Richard were in peril. The captions on the pictures say, "Where's Richard?" and "There he is!"

The Jesse (JQ) and Tim pages. The quote on Tim's says, "I want an eleven out of ten, cos I'm so sexy." This is something Tim once said when Tom was asked how he'd rate Tim.

Two pages of Tom. It's hard not to get a lot of pics of the frontman. The quote is an infamous quote by Richard, on how he felt when Tim first suggested that Tom be let into the band: "The idea of giving someone who is already the loudest person you know a microphone was not something I was particularly keen on."

Two of my favorite Keane songs: "This Is the Last Time" and "Somewhere Only We Know."

The left page has some random group shots and random lyrics, as well as the set list from the concert. On the right is the blog post about my now-infamous t-shirt.

The next two pages are devoted to meeting Tim and Richard. On the Richard side, there is a question from an interview Rich did: "Could you be any more sick of the lazy comparisons to Coldplay?"

Richard: (Takes a deep breath) Ah, it's just nice having another record out...I dunno, it's always inevitable. I have a copy of an old magazine...and on the cover it says, "Radiohead: The New U2?" Y'know? So fuck comparisons.

And finally, the last page:

Devoted, of course, to the 5"x7" print of Richard with his arm around me and a very large caption. : )

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The OMG Nerd Strikes Again

Yeah, I Tweet. Sometimes. Anyway, I follow Richard from Keane on Twitter, and sometimes I even reply to him. Today, he re-Tweeted (RT) my question to him, and my heart fluttered like a little 12-year-old girl. I think I may have squealed out loud.

I'm such a nerd.

Between this and his "I like your shirt" comment, it's amazing I haven't spontaneously combusted from the excitement.

P.S. If you're curious about Richard, Tom and the drum challenge, click here.

The Year So Far

Oh, and Happy Blog-o-versary!! Yesterday marked SIX years of The Wild and Absolutely True Adventures of Meg. Of course, I've been having Wild and Absolutely True Adventures for almost 32 years, it's just the last six years I've been recording them here.

I could do a recap of those six years, but I've done that before, and today, I want to talk solely about 2010 so far.

By all definitions of the phrase, "that sucks," I think a lot of people would classify 2010 as a bad year for me. Let's face it: I lost my job, dealt with a very stressful work situation, and even had to talk to a union attorney at one point because my rights were stomped on by one boss. It was highly stressful, and had this happened three, two, or hell, even one year(s) ago, I would have been one giant ball of mess.

Here's the thing, though--so far, I'm looking back at what has passed of 2010 and thinking, "What a great year!"

It's not the drugs talking--in fact, I am free of all medications, thankyouverymuch. No more anti-depressants, and while I still have a few anti-anxiety pills lying around just in case, I haven't used on in months. Instead, I run. I don't stress eat anymore. I go to the gym. My mind is clearer than it has ever been.

2010 has been an amazing year. Sure, I lost my job, but I also lost 50-something pounds. I dealt with a bad boss, but I also had an awesome trainer pushing me along (sometimes literally; you should have seen us with his hand on my back, pushing me through difficult runs). My future is definitely uncertain at the moment, but I'm just not letting it get to me. Much. Sure, I have moments of vague panic and "Oh, God, what now?" but for the most part, I am able to shut my racing mind up by going to the gym or going for a run.

In what has passed of this year so far, I have become a whole new Meg--leaner, smaller, more confident, healthier. My whole wardrobe has changed. I've become a runner. I sang a solo with Chorale. I fostered four adorable kittens. I've had plenty of beach time.

I met half of Keane. I'm still floating, a week later. After all the craziness and job drama, seeing Keane was a needed respite. Meeting Tim and Richard was icing on the cake.

So yeah, I lost my job. I have no idea what's coming. But it's been a GREAT year, and as hard as it is to sit here in Limbo, I'm also kind of excited to see what comes next.

Monday, July 26, 2010

California Dreamin' Part 4: Mission San Juan Bautista

On my way home from my interview in Monterey (I felt really positive, so please keep those fingers crossed, and good vibes coming!!), I decided to visit Mission San Juan Buatista.

Like every other California 4th grader, I did my mission report back in the day, complete with a cardboard-and-popsicle-stick model of San Miguel Archangel. But until last year, as a 31-year-old woman, I had never visited a California mission...which seems kind of bizarre. But then, I managed to reach the ripe age of 30 spending at least 25 years of my life within a few hours of Yosemite National Park without seeing that, so...

Yes, folks, it's true: I've lived in England twice and haven't even seen half of my home state.

So today, on my way to Monterey, I saw the signs for San Juan Bautista (Saint John the Baptist) and thought, "Heh. Maybe on the way home..."

And that's just what I did. After eating my picnic lunch in my car sitting in a parking lot near the beach on a very cool and overcast day, I headed back towards the San Joaquin Valley, making one small detour.

The town of San Juan Bautista is small, and a large portion of its downtown area is historic (and therefore very fun to photograph). The mission sits at the edge of the town near the Camino Real, which was a road used to get from one mission to the next.

Mission San Juan Bautista is larger than the only other mission I've visited, Sonoma. The lady in the main visitor's entrance informed me that Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo" was filmed there, but I haven't seen that. Suppose now I'll have to rent it.

I parked my car near the mission and walked around the small downtown area first. It's tiny and a wee bit run-down, but the businesses there seem to be doing okay despite San Juan Bautista's proximity to...nothing much. I got a nice crop of sign pictures to add to my collection.

Random sidewalk mosaic...

 The mission itself is a working church--it is not part of the state park system. When I got there, the main church was being used for a funeral mass, but it opened shortly after that and I was able to have a look around.

Even though I'm not remotely Catholic, and I have a few beefs with the Vatican regarding how they treat women, women's issues, LGBT and priests who molest children (don't get me started, please), I still have an appreciation for the history and pageantry that goes into Catholocism. From a purely scholarly standpoint, it's quite fascinating...and I felt a wee bit of Catholic guilt for wearing a tank top into the church. I didn't get struck by lightning.

But then I figured that I've never murdered, committed adultery, molested a child, and I've led my life with a pretty strong moral code for being Pagan God and I are good.

A small chapel.
The wood showing through the plaster on the walls.
Very old wood your step.
My music history professor at CSU Chico, Dr. Rothe (he always wore Birkenstocks, usually with Mickey Mouse socks, even on rainy days) tried to teach us how to read medieval music notation. He was unsuccessful.
This is carved from wood (looks sort of like stone in the photo).
This cactus tree was enormous.
A hen and about eight chicks! They were so cute, and Mama was clucking all over them.

The main church was quite lovely. I turned the flash on my camera off because I figured I could be forgiven a tank top, so long as I wasn't obnoxiously letting the flash go off all over the place. Without a flash, some of the pictures aren't as great as they could be.

Soldiers killed in action.

After wandering through, I left the mission and wandered around the outer garden, near the Plaza made famous by Alfred Hitchcock's movie "Vertigo." From there, it was a short walk back to my car, with a quick detour down one block of shops I had skipped the first time around.

I stood here, looking at the view and thought, "Damn, I love California."
You can't go in the cemetary, so I took these through the gate.
FABULOUS old tree!
And yet, I still love California...*sigh*
Looking back at the mission.
Seeing as how we're not an east coast state, or say, England, having a building this old in California is actually quite impressive...

I'm glad I stopped--the missions are fascinating, and a major part of California history. Now I have a desire to see more of them, if not all of them. If I get the job in Monterey (please, please, PLEASE? I won't wear tank tops in church anymore!!), I'll be in a position to see more of them.