January 8th, 2007

If I Could Settle Down

After bravely getting on the school bus Friday for the long drive out to Colossal Cave for her "Cowboy For a Day" winter break event and, more bravely still, riding a horse all by herself for the first time, Skylar was rewarded yesterday with an hourlong ride at Pusch Ridge Stables. Although nervous at first, she maintained her composure and went on to have a great time. Given the expense, I opted not to ride myself. But I did enjoy the atmosphere, not to mention the fact that the owners have one of those calendars full of President Bush's gaffes that counts down the days until his departure. I also got to pet a nice black cat who reminded me of the wily Coal from our neighborhood and watch him get playfully chased by a dog named Billy, who bore a strong resemblance to tensleep's Caeli, who may have been the cutest puppy I ever saw. As I was documenting the riders' departure, I felt something brush against my legs and looked down to see Billy looking up at me:

Although cats are my pets of preference, there's something about a friendly canine greeting that can pierce the thickest gloom. I had the strangest sense, as I gave Billy a rub, that he had come over to me with that purpose in mind. Overall, the whole ranch experience was so restorative, even though I didn't go on the ride, that I found myself having odd fantasies of moving to the middle of nowhere and occupying myself with farmhand tasks. Of course, since I can barely hammer and screw, my fitness for that life is questionable. Still, it's nice to dream.

For the Record

I do not like the Southeastern Conference. I do not it with the Tigers. I do not like it with the Bulldogs. I do not like it, no I do not. Not with Volunteers and Razorbacks. Not with Gamecocks and Rebels. I do not like the Southeastern Conference. But I especially dislike the Gators.

Hard To Believe

I can't believe that the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback went 4 for 14 for a grand total of 35 yards. The Buckeye offense looked completely unprepared. And the coaching staff failed to make any meaningful adjustments as the game progressed. My one consolation is that my father-in-law, who was looking forward to this contest, didn't miss anything. I'm going to go visit him in the ICU right now and can declare, with a clean conscience, that this was a good BCS Championship to sleep through. After the first quarter, it was all downhill. That had to be the most boring second half I've seen in years. Thank the Almighty for that Boise State-Oklahoma game, which I'm presently duping over my memory of tonight's debacle. Again, though: Heisman winner Troy Smith threw for 35 yards. How is that possible?

Stephen Malkmus + The Jicks (with Janet Weiss!)

A friendly reminder that Stephen Malkmus of Pavement fame plays at Plush tomorrow night. And now Janet Weiss from Sleater-Kinney is playing the drums in his band. When I saw Malkmus play solo acoustic in Portland this past September, he was in fine form and debuted several new songs that sounded even more intricate than his previous compositions. I bet they'll shine live, too.

I can never predict turnout in Tucson, but the Devotchka show at Plush in December was so crowded that, arriving shortly before the announced starting time, I was unable to see or hear much of anything. It would be wise, in other words, to get there as early as possible, if you want an optimal concert experience. You also may want to purchase your tickets in advance online, but will have to do so before midnight I believe. Here's the link, if you're interested. Since I may not be able to attend the show at the Marquee in Tempe on Wednesday and will definitely not be at the Flagstaff show on Thursday, much to my chagrin, I'll be on my way as soon as my partner returns from visiting her dad in the hospital, the very place I'm headed in a few minutes. We're getting to know Northwest Medical Center very, very well.
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    Give It A Day - Pavement - Wowee Zowee: Sordid Sentinels Edition (Disc 1)
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