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Thoughts and musings by members of the Arrogant Worms

Monday, April 18, 2005

More Prairie Tour 

St. Albert, AB - Apr 10
2 shows in one day. This is certainly more work than we're used to but we valiantly rocked twice with the help of two sold out houses and Chuck Guite. His name came up about 40 times. Hurray. We dragged out a really old song that pre-dates my membership in the band. I seem to recall that it was recorded for C'est Cheese but not used on the final cut. It's called Prescription Drug Song. It has a lot of words so that may be why we don't do it. It's hard enough to remember the words to the songs we do all the time. Many brain farts on this tour. Anyhow, the Arden Theatre rocks. We love it here.

Athabasca, AB - Apr 12
When we were here before I bought a book about Donny Osmond. I was hoping to find one about Marie on this trip but no dice. Other than that, it's good to be back. This time we were presented with Pea Butter by our fine promoter. It's like peanut butter without the nuts. Who knew?

Grande Prairie, AB - Apr 14
Today was the first sign of inclement weather with some snow flurries spotted. We have been enjoying some outstanding weather in the warm double digits so far so the snow seemed especially hurtful.
The day before in Edmonton was a day off and we went eating and bowling with some friends. No one did particularly well at bowling but we all excelled at eating.
The show in GP was good fun. I couldn't remember the last show we did here so it seemed disingenuous to say it was good to be back. Apparently the last show at some bar didn't go that well so I was right to forget it. This one was great though. A full house of lunatics made for a fun night. The theatre itself was quite funky in that it was shaped like waves. Not a straight line to be found. I'm still freaking out.

Edmonton Day Off - Apr 15
We had a good drive from GP to Edmonton with the requisite stops at Tim Hortons. For our night off we made plans with friends to watch bad movies and eat bad food. First up was Glitter starring Mariah Carey. We actually watched the whole thing. It is dreadful. The main thesis of the movies is that Mariah Carey is great. I learned a lot.
After some pizza, wings and pop tarts we watched Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla. I think it was good but I fell asleep on the floor for a few critical minutes. We took a little break and flicked around on the TV and came upon a monkey movie. Jack the monkey played hockey, skateboarded and befriended a runaway boy. Richard Karn who was Al on Home Improvement played the skateboard shop owner who adopts the boy aftern knowing him for about a day. Don't think that happens in the real world but then again do monkeys make pancakes in the real world. The pancake scene was the best in the film. We think the movie was called MVP.
The final movie of the night was Battlefield Earth starring John Travolta and other Scientologists. Mike lasted 15 minutes and I gave up after about 40. Trevor lasted the longest at about 60 minutes. Only halfway. It was poor.

Winnipeg, MB - Apr 16
We switched venues in Winnipeg and moved our dogs and ponies to the Manitoba Theatre Centre. Nice place. After the Junos and the Comedy Festival, we assumed that Winnipeg would be napping but around 500 or so came out for a great night. Either Trevor or I ended up with Keanu Reeves' dressing room at the theatre. He was there a few years ago doing Hamlet. To whoa or not to whoa.

Virden, MB - Apr 17
And the last night of the tour was a doozy. A packed house at the "aud" welcomed us to Virden for the first time. We smorged before the show on some very fine Chinese-Canadian food. For the unenlightened, a smorg is a smorgasbord buffet meal especially popular in Western Canada. It's a battle for the fresh egg rolls and we apologize for body checking that lady. She retaliated by taking the last lemon square.
Both Mike and Trevor won food items in roll up the rim at Tim Hortons on this tour. I had a previous muffin win in Chatham but was shut out on this tour. I think I've won on muffin in three years. Whatever. We're home now. We can make our own muffins.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Touring the plains 

Saskatoon - Apr 6
Another magical night in Saskatoon at the Broadway Theatre. The evening started with a trip to H.E.L. Music to borrow a guitar for the show. Once again, Mike's guitar didn't arrive with Mike on his flight to Saskatoon. The good folks at H.E.L. were great and a lovely teal guitar was acquired. It performed well. The crowd in S'toon was large and loud as usual. Nice.

Trochu, AB - Apr 7
The rock and roll capital of Alberta is Trochu. This town loves to rock. Our show was sandwiched between Trooper and April Wine. Hello! It was a very fun night and we were well taken care of. We stayed at the mighty fun St. Ann's Ranch. A must if you're ever in Trochu.

Moose Jaw, SK - Apr 8
The longest drive of the tour was next heading for Moose Jaw. This tour has a bunch of dumb drives and this was the dumbest for sure. We have gotten soft over the years. It's a good thing we were driving a grampa car (Buick Century) because we age with every drive. Our old lazy bones were invigorated by a fun crowd in Moose Jaw and a fine dinner at Nit's. Trevor had the red sauce. Good times.

Lloydminster, AB/SK - Apr 9
It's the border town of Alberta and Saskatchewan. In the past we've only ever stopped here for coffee. Now, thanks to our Saskatoon promoter Robert, we can play Lloydminster. The crowd was a lot of fun and the show marked the debut of Mike's new song called Pressure Washer. I sang the chorus wrong but it went well otherwise. It was also the first time on the tour that we mentioned the name Chuck Guite (gee-tay). Mr. Guite is at the centre of the government sponsorship scandal in Canada and is a funny name to say. We like funny names. Chuck Guite. Say it to yourself.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Cool? 

What could be cooler than standing outside of a 7-11 in Kindersley, Saskatchewan, checking your email on your wifi enabled pocket PC?

Nothing. I cannot think of anything cooler.

The First Shave 

Not the first shave ever which is an important event for any boy. No, the first shave of the tour. The prairie climate is significantly dryer than that of our Ontario home. Thus, when we come west there can be a drying factor on the outer layer of skin. I'm sure there's a good technical term for it. The outerdermis.

I fear the first shave. It feels like an entire layer of skin is being shorn from one's face. Now perhaps that could be a good thing. Maybe the next layer is prettier than this one? It's the unknown.

I just shaved. I'm still ugly. But less hairy. If I haven't shaved my daughter calls it "Picky face". I no longer have picky face.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Sleep deprived in Saskatoon 

Saskatoon, 2:39pm.

Okay day 1 of the tour and things are starting off
great

Living where I do often means that I require an extra
flight to get to wherever and they usually go through
Pearson Airport. It also means that I need to get up
that much earlier. Today my flight was at 6 am. Then I
had a flight from Toronto to Saskatoon leaving at 8:55
am. This gave me almost 2 hours to spend at the
aforementioned Pearson Airport. It also gave the
Pearson Airport ground crew 2 hours to get my 2 count
them 2 bags from one plane to another. Guess where
this is heading?

Upon arrival in Saskatoon, I was paged. Being paged at
an airport can be kind of cool; one gets to strut
across the floor boldly exclaiming, "Yes that is me I
am being paged because I am very important!" Of
course, it can also be bad because why else would they
need to contact you (i have not recently purchased any
lottery tickets)? Off I boldly strode to the baggage
counter where the very friendly man asked me if the
flight attendants had spoken to me. Though still
convinced of my importance I told him no, noone had.
"Why my good chap?" I didn't call him "chap" but I
think I will try to use the word later today. Because
one of my bags didn't make the connection. Just one?
So there was time to move one but not the other? Yup.
And that would be your oversize item. "That would be
the guitar that fits well into standard baggage
guidelines but let's continue this merry conversation.
When will it arrive (by the way, this conversation is
taking place at 10:30 am local time)?"
At 10:20 pm. Are you playing tonight?
Well, I'll be finishing up around then. Won't be
expecting an encore because we pretty much suck as an
a capella group. Are you sure this couldn't happen
sooner?
Well, if we route it through Calgary we can have it
here at 7:10 pm.
Hmmm, I ponder. So we're now going to ask the ground
crew which couldn't get it on one plane to re-tag the
bag, put in on 2 different planes and then have it
found here in Saskatoon and immediately shipped to the
Braodway Theatre in perfect working order. Sounds like
a bit of a stretch.

So off I went in search of a guitar. My other bag was
already there and in my possession. So I have a fuzz
pedal and 2 short cables. And lots of clean socks and
underwear. None of these are really effective musical
instruments. At least not that I can play...

This is not my first bad travel story. This is not my
first bad travel story this year.
However, it is the first this month.

The year started with a trip to Whitehorse. Via
Toronto. Via Vancouver. My flight was late to Toronto.
The Toronto flight was delayed. We missed the
connection to Whitehorse but because this wasn't Air
Canada's fault they wouldn't pay for a hotel room for
the night.
This is a debatable point, once the plane was loaded
we were delayed due to thunderstorms; but if the
flight had boarded and left on time we would have
missed the thunderstorm. Let's just split the
difference and say that it was entirely their fault.

The next afternoon we were ready to leave for
Whitehorse. Yes, there was only one flight per day
because the 3 flights were now one because the
Canadair jet can't land when the temperature is below
minus 40. Fortunately, that's rare in the friggin'
Yukon. But again, not their fault. They've been
counting on Global warming, massive reductions in fuel
prices, their workforce to agree to minimum wage and
lots of people buying their crappy food that you have
to pay for now. Not their fault. Should have flown
Jetsgo.

Ha ha

This flight departed only a few minutes late because
of bright sunshine in Vancouver though we were
informed that if the temperature in Whitehorse dropped
below minus 47 we weren't allowed to land. However, it
was presently minus 45 so things are fine. They have
Ice Fog in Whitehorse. It's fog and ice all in one.
Sounds like a drink; or a Scandanavian dance band.

We landed, we made it to the show, the hotel had heat,
and our flight the next morning was cancelled so that
now I would get to spend another night somewhere
because I would miss any flight to Ottawa.

I've had other flight fun since then! But I'll save it
for another blog. Some advice though, if you see me on
your flight make some other plans. Things in your
travel life are about to change!

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Upcoming tour date corrections 

I just realized that I sent some poor information to webmaster Jeff for our tour in the Prairies that starts next week. I messed up and the Lloydminster show disappeared. Jeff will make the changes but just to be sure those few days go like this:

April 7 - Trochu, AB ... Trochu Performing Arts Centre
April 8 - Moose Jaw, SK ... Peacock Auditorium
April 9 - Lloydminster, AB/SK ... Vic Juba Theatre

The rest of the dates are good to go. Sorry for the confusion. Sorry to the good people of Lloydminster for the oversight. My bad.

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