Saturday, June 28, 2008

Summer Concert Series - Rascall Flatts

Well, we went to see Rascal Flatts and Taylor Swift on Sunday. Talk about a crazy concert. When we go there, there were were more people at the Superpages.com center than I have ever seen at that place. Also, the most number of skirted 19 year old drunks.

The concert started with a duet of dudes that were boring. Taylor Swift came out pretty quickly afterwards and played all of her hits. The great thing about seeing Ms. Swift was the fact that there was a guy at the concert with his girlfriend that was getting so into the music that he was singing along with 'Tim McGraw' and 'Slammin' Screen Door'. No, it wasn't me but I was right behind him.

Rascal Flatts put on a hell of a show. It literally started with a bang as they had a screen where a meteor was shown flying towards the screen and when it hit, sparks flew and the band came out. Damn, they have a lot of hits. It was an awesome concert that I didn't expect that much of.

The only real problem that we had during this concert was that there was a large amount of 19 to 21 year olds who couldn't hold there liquor. Between 15 and 20 girls started drinking before Taylor Swift came on and didn't stop. They started on a blanket in front of us and there were a few of them that wouldn't stop cycling out to go get drinks.

When Rascal Flatts came on, their friends joined them and they were so loud that we could barely hear. They kept taking over our space and one of them was so close to me that I got some of her sweat on my arm. For some reason, they started a brawl that broke up a big portion of the group. They were still being annoying though so we finally had to move.

Here's a question. Why the hell would 20 people spend $30 to stand around and talk? Why not just throw a huge party with a cover and be done with it? Teenagers are stupid.

That is all,

Newt

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Things that go Bump in the Night

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness. On Monday morning, Diana and I got a scary wake up call, literally. Hazel and Duncan started barking about 5 a.m. and took off running downstairs and out onto the patio. This isn't that uncommon of an occurrence but this time they didn't stop after a few seconds.

Diana woke me up and had me go downstairs to check and see what the commotion was. I headed downstairs and didn't see the dogs, they were running in and out of the dog door. I looked out the peep hole and, swear to God, there looked like three people were standing outside the front door.

I checked a couple of times and what I think I saw were three people standing almost in a line. My first thought was that they were staring down the street looking at a different house, like maybe they had run from somewhere and were hiding. I ran to the kitchen to get the flashlight and when got back, I turned on the front porch light.

I also went around putting lights on and checked the back patio to see if someone was out there. The dogs kept running outside and I ended up locking them in. Once I had the front light on I checked the peep hole. I was doubtful that I really saw someone. I looked again with the lights on and there looked to be a man standing next to the pillar on our front porch. I immediately yelled, "Who's there?" and "Is there someone there?"

I had a flashlight and I flashed it through the windows. I peeked through the blinds but I never could see anyone. I checked the hole again and still saw the man. He didn't move and wouldn't say anything so I knew it wasn't one of my neighbors in trouble. I said something else to try to scare him away but he just stood still, almost like a ghost.

After a while, I didn't see the man outside so I double checked all of the rooms, garage and the doors and windows and we went back to bed. I checked around the house once the sun came up and couldn't see any signs of break in. I can't be sure that I saw anything for 100% and I consistently doubt my own story. Our peephole is scratched, there was no sign of break in, and I never got a clear look at anything.

Needless to say, the alarm company is coming out on Friday to activate the alarm system. One scary wake up is enough 'cause my fat ass standing in my boxers with a flashlight is a far cry from a uniformed officer in terms of protection.

That is all,

Newt

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Summer Concert Series - Death Cab

Tuesday continued the SCS 2008 with a Death Cab for Cutie concert and all I have to say is "Ha Ha Thomas. In Your Face!!!". Diana was out of town so I had to go to my back up wife, Erin, for company. To start off my "date", Erin and I went to a Hibachi grill for dinner. That turned out to be a bad idea. Not because the food was bad but because it put us behind so late that we missed most of the opening band, Rouge Wave.

We did actually make it to see the last two songs and those were pretty good. We also got up as soon as it was over and hit the shirt table where I stood in line for 10 minutes to get my lovely new shirt celebrating the greatness of DCFC. My "date" got us beer and we went back to our seats.

So, here is a funny little story. I have been feeling a little bit older due to going to these concerts and seeing all of these younger concert goers enjoying themselves. Not only does it make me remember being that age but it also causes me to realize that I am getting older. So, I guess you can say that I am the creepy old guy at the concert and here is the proof.

Erin and I were sitting in our seats and I looked over two chairs at a girl who had bought and was wearing the girl version of the shirt I had just purchased. I thought this was a funny coincidence so I looked over and said, "Hey, I like your shirt." She didn't realize I was talking to her but our eyes met and it hit her that I was looking at her so she said, "What?"

I said again, "I like your shirt" and she got very uncomfortable and said, "Oh...thanks." I realized she didn't understand what I meant so I said, "No, because I have the same shirt. See?" This didn't seem to make her more comfortable so I just said "OK, sorry. Just ignore me" to which Erin threw in, "Just ignore him, he talks to everyone." Talk about uncomfortable.

Luckily, the concert started and I was able to forget the incident with all of the freakin' awesome music. Best concert I have hit so far. The music was consistently great, very small amounts of time between songs, and they played all of their hits. This is the concert that I tried to see 4 years ago in Houston and luckily it was worth the wait. So Thomas, when you finally do see DCFC, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

That is all,

Trinity

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Summer Concert Series - Flashback

So, I have been talking about all of my concerts this year and thought I would go back and discuss something that happened to me and my HLM, Jessica and Natalee when we had the unfortunate luck of going to a Death Cab for Cutie concert in Houston back in college.

Back in the day we got the opportunity to go see DCFC in Houston at a dive bar. We bought tickets months in advance, drove 11 hours to Houston and stayed at Jessica's parents house. That Saturday, rain hit. Not pouring rain but a drizzle that was consistent and didn't want to stop. We headed for the concert around 5:30 or so and stood outside in an alleyway for over an hour while Mother Nature urinated on us.

Just before the doors were to open we saw movement at the front of the line. Finally, we were going to get inside where there wasn't rain. Yippee. Then disaster struck. Like a game of phone, people began to say that the concert was cancelled. Were they lying as a joke? Was this some plot to move up in line? Could the Gods be that cruel?

SERENITY NOW!!! A transformer blew and the bar had no power. The band could not play. It was like that song "The Day the Music Died." How could this happen? We were cursed. In defeat we had to walk away. It was a cruel world.

We made the best of a bad situation and took in a show at the Houston Improv that had Pablo Francisco and a couple of other no name funny acts. It was enjoyable but disappointment leaves a bad taste in your mouth that even laughter can't get rid of. The car ride back to Lubbock was one filled with disappointment.

This story has a point that will be apparent in my next post.

That is all,

Newt

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Summer Concert Series Part 3

Well, the Concert Series continues. We went to see Chicago and the Doobie Brothers on Sunday and this is the first outside event we have been to so far. It was held at Superpages.com Center(Formally Smirnoff Music Center) and it was fairly warm outside.

The opening act was some weird Latin singer who sounded like Enrique Iglesias and Josh Grobin's love child. Not so much. The Doobie Brothers were the middle act and I have to say that they put on a pretty good show. Below is a video of the old ladies who must be die hard Doobie Brothers fans. Sorry for the tilt but I thought I would be able to turn the video and I can't.

video

One of the more interesting things was the fact that there was a lady that had to have been in her 70's and when the music started, she was up dancing. She started drawing a crowd and it got pretty big. Erin took video but, lets just say Erin is no Spielberg and I didn't want to put it on here for fear people would start getting sick.

Chicago was a slight disappointment. You could say that they weren't "My Inspiration". The initial set was mostly stuff no one knew with a couple of semi-well known songs. They played a few of there hits but decided those had to be mashed together so we would get 2 song mash ups instead of the total song. The encore was the best part because along with the hits, they brought the Doobie Brothers out and started playing with them.

All in all, it was worth the $10 we spent for the tickets.

That is all,

Newt

Monday, June 16, 2008

Four!!! the love of Pete

I really broke out of the mold that is my norm and on Friday I went golfing for the first time. A coworker of mine works weekends at a really nice country club here in Frisco called Stonebriar so a few of us from work decided to go shoot 18 holes on Friday.

Let's start this off by saying the only times I have even hit a golf ball were when I went to putt putt, shot that one ball through my neighbors window, and when I have hit golf balls at a range in Midland once. To put it mildly, I was no Tiger Woods.

But, I was invited and a guy I know had a set of clubs I could borrow so Thursday I went to the golfing range by the house and shot some balls, I went and got a hat that I bought for the game but really just wanted, and on Friday I teed off.

Guess what, I'm not that bad. I had a rule to play quickly because being inexperienced and playing when people were right behind you was cruel to others around me. I actually skipped three holes throughout the course of the game just so we could stay ahead. I figured since I was only playing for fun and was just seeing what I could do, it wouldn't hurt to just skip a few.

In the end I shot a 104 with three skipped holes. My highest number was 11 shots, I never made par, and I lost about 4 balls. It was a good day. I played a $200 a round golf course for free, got my own cart, and had a hell of a lot of fun. Who knew?

I have to give my clubs back but after talking to my dad today, he let me know that there was a set in the garage in Midland so all I have to do is buy a putter and some drivers and I will be ready to go again. I think we are going to try to play over the 4th. For a sport I couldn't stand watching on TV as a child, I really enjoyed myself.

That is all,

Newt

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Digital Crime

So, I have been having this ongoing discussion(argument) with this guy from work who constantly uses a bit torrent site to watch movies that he doesn't pay for and some that haven't even left theatres. He also does this with music. His argument is this...

"I download them and watch them once and then delete them. The movie studios are making enough money that me doing this isn't hurting them."

We have gotten into countless heated debates about this because I am of the opinion that not only is this breaking the law, which he doesn't deny or argue, but that morally it is wrong. Here is my stance...

"While I understand that sometimes you watch a movie or buy a CD that is bad and you feel you have wasted your money, that does not give you the right to steal. Also, movie studios and music labels do have tons of money flooding in but just because someone is rich, it does not give anyone the right to steal from them. We can't have standards of law for different classes of people. Just because someone has more money doesn't give you the right to take their property."

I know this is very Republican of me but I don't understand why people feel it is their right to take this. I do think their is one loophole to all of this and that is media sharing.

If I buy a CD and let someone copy it, then that is my property that is being utilized. While I understand that also hurts the music industry and movie sales, at least this is something that I have initially bought. Truthfully, I only allow one or two people to share music with me and most of the time that is not buy burning media but buy copying it for listening use only.

Am I wrong on this? Maybe for the sharing stuff I am. I don't know. I will say that I know I am right in the movie download thing but I am not adverse to admitting that I am a tad bias on the sharing topic. I just don't understand when people started to feel entitled to stuff that wasn't theirs. By the way, I really need to issue an apology to KMart for stealing all of those trading cards when I was younger.

That is all,

Newt

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Misadventures of Duncan and Hazel - I'm Pooped

A couple of days ago I was sitting at home with Duncan and Hazel and smelled something funny. I looked over and what did I see but Duncan nibbling on something behind the coffee trunk. I knew they didn't have any food and I was perplexed when I yelled "Duncan" and saw that sitting between his paws was a turd. Not much of one really, just about the size of a Rolo. I had to go pick it up and throw it away. I can only imagine what preceded this event.

Hazel: Yo, yo, yo Dunc-Man, what are you doing outside when it is so hot?
Duncan: Well Hazel, I am slightly hungry and, well, do you remember a few days ago when we were given those bones? Well, I have really been craving another one of those and I found a piece of your poop that seems to have the same flavors and...well you figure it out.
H: Are you eating my $#!+???
D: What do you think I'm doing? I'm not proud of myself but I am an over eater. Mom and Dad haven't been home much and it makes me sad. When I get sad, I eat. Then I feel happy again.
H: But Dad is home. Why you sad now?
D:....Just leave me alone.
H: You like the taste don't you? You like to eat $#!+ don't you? You just made up that sad story so I wouldn't judge you. You are a disgrace to the canine race.

A slight pause is taken as Duncan reflects on what was just said. Finally, he begins to respond when he sees Hazel's ass in his face.

H: Here, why don't you just go to the source? You can pretend it is a soft serve machine. Sorry, we are all out of cones. HA HA!!!
D: That's it, I am taking my snack in the house where you can't behave like this. Dad probably won't even notice since he is watching the talking box.

Well, I did notice but there is no telling how long it actually took me. Needless to say, it does confirm my suspicions that Duncan's breath doesn't naturally smell like poop.

That is all,

Newt

Summer Concert Series Part Deux

Well, if you read my last blog, and who didn't, you know that the VAUGHN SUMMER CONCERT SERIES 2008 has officially kicked off. So, Thursday night, my lovely wife and I journeyed to the heart of Dallas to see one of the bands the kids are all listening to, Augustana.

Now, I originally heard of Augustana when I was listening to Kidd Kraddick one day. I have since stopped abusing my self in this way but there was the one benefit from it as I heard of this band. They played an acoustic set on his show and I liked the sound of it so I bought the album.

They are now on tour for album number 2 and the tickets were $15.50 so I was all for going to the show. Apparently so were a lot of lesbians and people under 21 as the majority of the people there were underage or rug munchers (affectionately).

The concert opened with an Irish gentleman named Paddy Casey that was a one man guitar show. He was hellishly hard to understand when he talked but he had an awesome voice and did an acoustic cover of "No Diggity" that was great.

Wile Sweet Orange was up next but I don't recommend them. Their instrumental music was great but I couldn't stand the singer and his mike was turned up so loud that all I walked away with was a ringing in my ears.

Augustana is probably best known for their radio hit "Boston" that got a lot of play last year. They did an awesome job and I would recommend them highly. I am pretty sure the lead singer did a couple of lines or some other narcotic before he went on stage because he was constantly adjusting his hat and had a weird habit of smoothing out his hair. Who cares though because the entire band put on a hell of a show. The most amazing thing was how versatile the entire band was musically. They jumped around on instruments, most of them sang, and they looked good while doing it. I would have bought a shirt but it was cash only.

I always like going to the House of Blues and this visit was no exception. If you haven't checked out Augustana, I recommend them for some light listening.

That is all,

Newt

Summer Concert Series 2008

Well, it is officially summer as the Vaughn 2008 Summer Concert Series has kicked off. We actually started this one off with a double dose of music and theatre. On Wednesday, Diana and I took in the Broadway musical "The Drowsy Chaperone" and followed that up Thursday with a little trip to the House of Blues Dallas for Augustana.

The Drowsy Chaperone was one of the most interesting musicals I had seen just from the way the story is told. It begins with a lonely, depressed narrator who is so down that he decides to listen to an old recording of a play titled "The Drowsy Chaperone." He would start the record and then give a play by play of the show throughout. His comments would range from, "The music is lovely in this but I have to warn you, ignore the lyrics" to "I have to go pee" and all the while you could see his love for the show. Of course, the show was actually being performed on the stage.

What was most interesting was that the narrator interacted with the play as it was being performed. The performers never acted as if they saw him but he constantly paused the record and moved in between the actors to tell us interesting tidbits about them. He also joined in on some of the songs, which was hilarious.

The best gag that was employed was the use of the record as a storytelling device. It would skip and the actors would get caught in a loop of the same song, the narrator would stop the record and replay pieces of it to show the audience something, and at the intermission(of the record, not the show as there wasn't an intermission) he accidentally started the next act with the wrong record and we were shown some old Japanese musical that had a song called "What is so interesting about Asians."

That is part one of the Summer concert series. It will continue tomorrow. If the "Drowsy Chaperone" comes to town, go see it would you?

That is all,

Newt