...being the observations and navigational extracts
from the ongoing expeditions of San Francisco Piano Pop trio
True Margrit

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Chapter 3—Lady Luck

The 2010 March into Spring Haiku & BBQ Tour (a novella)
Chapter 3—Lady Luck

(March 13th)
In the morning the first thought in our collective brain is about Frank over at the GRIZZLY ROCK CAFE bragging about his breakfast...in particular, his signature recipe for sausage AND bacon gravy. We head over to the cafe in order to check it out. We are not disappointed. Andrew’s chicken fried steak is the size of a village (and it fact takes village to eat it--we all have some). It is smothered in a gravy that is indeed deliciously sausagey & bacony. Wow. Our server (who is a bit Jennifer-Aniston-esque) puts Gary’s pancake down on the table. It is not perfectly round, but instead looks like a cuddly beast of some sort--we all admire its adorable ears.

Gary says, “Oooh, cute. A Mickey Mouse pancake.” The waitress practically stamps her foot in indignation.

“Where are you?” she demands. Uh oh. We have angered the Jennifer Aniston of California’s central valley. It takes us just a moment & then we all realize the pancake represents a bear, not a mouse--we are at GRIZZLY ROCK CAFÉ. Of course. Haha.

Waitress indignant
That's no Mickey Mouse pancake
Recall where you are

As we are taking our leave we admire the slabs of tri-tip which Frank piles on the smoker in the patio. Dude. He is not messing around.

Down the road we go, hauling proverbial ass, through mountain passes , past windmills, through the tumbleweeds, and miles and miles of desert. Around dusk we start passing the isolated outposts, the neon oases, with rollercoasters and casinos that soon give way to that ultimate monument to compulsive behavior that is Las Vegas.


Vast expanse of sand
The light beam from the Luxor
Can be seen from space

We stop by the home of this evening's hosts (Brendan & family) & briefly chat and get a suggestion for somewhere delish for dinner. Brendan sends us to an excellent Chinese restaurant not far from our club. When we get there, Gary & Andrew are amazed there are no slot machines. But the truth is, not every business in Las Vegas caters to gambling. Just 99%. In any event, the food is superb. We are lucky we know Brendan--we would never have found this eatery.


We arrive at our venue--Boomers Bar--just in time to join in a debate with the sounds guy and other bands about the lineup for the evening: who when why how. For whatever reason, it shakes down that we are to go on first using one of the bands
(DEVILCAR's) drum & bass setup. This suits us just fine. It's not getting any earlier. We hurriedly get our asses up on the stage and roar into out set. The stage itself is adding some pretty extreme resonances in the lower frequencies blurring out everything but the bass, but we just barrel through--what the hell are you gonna do, right? There are three bands waiting to play. It's not brain surgery. We rock the tunes. I jump on the keyboard. The crowd thickens continually (like a good sauce) and warms to us and our ways. And then it's over.

I'm feeling social and a teeny bit inebriated, so I'm strolling about offering the email list to all takers. One guy hands me his beer while he signs up. He hands back the list & I walk off sipping his beer. He hastens to my side and regains his beverage--oops, apologies! Well, can you blame me? Your beer is better! I got this crappy PBR.

Sign up on our list
I will gladly hold your beer
Sorry I drank some

We enjoy Devilcar's set and then we load up the truck. But do we go home & get a well-deserved night of much sleep? Nay! We head to The Strip. The irresistible pull of neon draws us bugs to the shiny pretty lights. We wander like lost souls in various rings of Hell for a few hours. Ersatz cityscapes and sunsets, blinking lights and tinkling bells, tourists and coeds, and hookers and gamblers and drinkers. The charms of Vegas. We head back to Brendan's where we all fall into a proper stupor for a few hours.

Brendan makes three beds
In separate rooms no less
Snore on! Who will hear?

Tomorrow is a travel-only day. Piece of cake, right?

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