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PMD

My allergies are starting to act up again.

And I have a bug bite on the middle finger of my right hand. (I hate my right hand. It's prettier than my left hand and serves no purpose. But if it were gone, I'd be pissed. I'm always pissed. Dammit.)

Went to see Purple Monkey Dishwasher last night. Was gonna meet Dan and his "friend" at Shin-Nagata station, but ran into Michelle, Steve, and Eriko at Sannomiya. They were totally lost, trying to figure out how to get to the right station. Good thing I came along. I hadn't had anything to drink that day. Steve was cradling his (3rd?) Heineken on the train and Michelle was guzzling her (2nd?) Yebisu. As we were getting on the train, we ran into Dan and "his friend from college," Tammy. She was pretty cool, although I didn't get to talk to her much. She was originally from Ecuador, but moved to the States about 8 years ago and she has no accent at all.

Ew. Some wax just came out of my ear. Nasty. I'm oozing out of every orifice, I swear. This cold is horrible.

Anyway, Eriko opens up an Asahi Blue (Aqua) on the train and starts dripping foam all over the floor (we were on the JR at that point) and then hands the beer to me, like I'm gonna drink it in public like that. I told her in Japanese that I was too embarrassed to drink it そのまま, so she wrapped it in her wash cloth (note: people in Japan carry around their own wash cloth so they can dry their hands after going to the bathroom 'cuz most facilities don't have paper towels or hand driers). Like that made it any better. After we got off the train, I had some, but it still felt weird. You can't just lose good, ole-fashioned Marcus training (it's considered barbaric to eat or drink while walking). Anyway, at the station, we met Dan's German friend Daniel. Mika and her friend Kathy were there as well.

I have to say, it was pretty sad that I ended up being the navigator, knowing my lack of navigational "skillz." But I compared maps and got us there alright. It was hard to find, though, because it was like a mini-mall in a shopping arcade. We took the elevator and it was a nice building with a slick lobby. Derrick, Un-hi, Mary, Toshimitsu, and Sara were there. Everybody got all their tickets and stuff in order, then we filed inside (although we all had to pay an EXTRA Y500--in addition to the Y1500 we paid for the tickets in the first place--to buy this "optional"--"optional" is Japanese for "don't buy? you die"--drink ticket that said "drink tick" on it). Some of the other bands came out and saw all of us going in there and were totally floored (it was a really small venue). There were about 15-20 people in there, and the group playing was these two guys. Both were on acoustic guitars and one--the cuter and obviously more talented one--had a harmonica on those little stands you can get that go around your neck. Anyway, they played ballad after ballad after ballad and I wanted to scream. They got pretty sad applause after each song BECAUSE THEY ALL SUCKED AND THEY ALL SOUNDED THE SAME. I think if the better one lost the other guy and picked up a percussionist, he might do better.

The "concert" had started at 6pm, but we ended up not getting there 'til 7:30 or so. So we listened to Super-Suck (I think their band name was "Leave the Nest" or something) for half and hour. (I was starting to look for sharp objects to jab into my ears.) Then Sara's band got up there and Sara was wearing her band shirt ("Tysuke, He Bites! Purple Monkey Dishwasher") and this gray pleated skirt and knee-high white socks with red piping and black loafers and it was this weird "school-girl cutesy rocker" thing that was kinda scary.

They started off a little shaky--their bassist, that guy who always seems drunk or on drugs or something, needs some rhythm lessons--but they got back on track and they were REALLY GOOD. Their bassist needs a little help, but other than that, they were great. Also, Sara needs to loosen up a little and move more when the songs break for solos. The best thing, though, was their guitarist. He was really fucking amazing. I mean, this guy was GOOD.

Repeat: he was GOOD.

Yeah, he distorted the noise a lot--Dad has one of those things, but I forgot the name of it--but I could tell that he was really playing. He was hitting all these tight notes together and he was all over the neck--and he was relaxed--but he wasn't sloppy. He's not Jimi Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughn, but he was definitely up there. It was a breath of fresh air after having had to listen to countless sucky guitarists.

Unfortunately, this was his second and last performance. I asked Sara what the problem was, and she said that the two of them had problems. And so finally he decided to drop out of the group and nobody put up a fight to stop him.

After the performance, everybody demanded an encore, but--as Dan told me--they had already played all the songs they knew. So they gave a fairly good encore by playing that "Excuse Me While I Kiss the Sky" Jimi Hendrix song.

Just made a refried-beans-sandwich. Better go exercise so I can eat it.

Will get back to writing this.

-A

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