Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sunday evening post

No coffee or tea to accompany this one. Yet. Mm, maybe I'll make some iced tea later.

I hope everyone had a nice Valentines Day. Mike worked a double shift today, so we actually celebrated the last couple of days instead. We used our hotel points to go to Portland Friday night and stay in a very nice room downtown. We walked over to an Italian restaurant, which turned out to be a super-nice yet affordable, REAL restaurant. Not the diner food or weird foodie restaurants we've been used to thus far in Oregon. I had 2 vanilla cream sodas which were awesome, and some butternut squash ravioli which was so-so, as most bnut squash ravioli is. It's actually very hard to make it flavorful. I learned this through actual taste tests, but I also found this out from the America's Test Kitchen cooks, and I believe pretty much everything they say since they test every recipe about a hundred different ways. Pumpkin ravioli is better, if you can find it.

Our hotel was next door to the Portland Performing Arts Center, where we have previously seen Lindsey Buckingham and Dianne Reeves. On Friday night, the show was Cheech & Chong. Just the thought of this was a major letdown over Dianne Reeves from last year's Valentines Day, but it was the only act playing so I decided to be a good sport about it. At least Cheech is on LOST, my favorite TV show of all time. I am not really familiar with their comedy, so Mike had to tell me later that they did not do any new material at all. And he complained that their skits weren't funny. Maybe they were edgy and funny when they were new. The show opened with Tommy Chong's wife attempting to do some comedy, but it was juvenile and she only had one subject (same subject as Tommy Chong's comedy). Then she brought out the guys, and I admitted it was fun to see them as icons. They talked a little bit about how they met and started their act, and then did a few skits from way back when.

My favorite part was when they did some musical numbers. Cheech said that before they were comedians they were musicians. In fact, I guess Tommy was a rather established musician, playing with a Motown band, very unusual for the time. And oddly enough, Cheech was a fan of Tommy's band and songwriting 2 years before he actually met him. In the one non-comedic performance, Tommy played guitar and Cheech sang a song that Tommy had written for Motown. It was a song about an interracial relationship, and evidently has been covered numerous times by numerous famous artists since Tommy wrote it. Cheech said he was very moved by the song and he always wanted to sing it, but Tommy didn't want him to since it wasn't comedy.

After that they took turns doing some solo comedy. Cheech showed he had other subject matter than Tommy's. He sang Born in East LA and did some metal knockoff song in a pink tutu which made the crowd go absolutely wild...I'd never seen the character before but it was obviously a well-loved character of his, so I enjoyed it very much simply because everyone else was having so much fun.

In the end I had more fun than Mike, who was very disappointed and gave the show a grade of C-. Also I might mention that the tour is called "Get it Legal", but they had nothing compelling to say about getting it legal and no plan at all. I think Mrs. Chong even said their goal was to "get it legal in one year" but then did not elaborate whatsoever on how they planned to do that. Unfortunately I thought this kind of made them look like idiots. I've been to plenty of shows where the artist was pushing some kind of agenda, and they would have a petition or a fundraiser going on in the lobby, or at the very least make some kind of stirring speech begging you to do some specific thing when you got home. It didn't seem like C&C had any intention of trying to get it legal at all.

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