Making stuff as a founder of Avocado. Former music-maker. Tuna melt advocate. Started Google Reader. (But smarter people made it great.)

Lawrence, Kansas or Paradise

Minutes after snapping pictures of a massive cloud shaped like a hydrogen explosion bathed in spectacular dusk light (and several hours after leaving our the site of last night's show) Citizens Here and Abroad were unanimously in assent: Lawrence, Kansas was one of the best places on Earth.

Little Bohemia. Midwestern hospitality. Critical artistic thought. Diverse and interesting people. And a 24-hour internet cafe next to the venue. We ask for so little. Just all that and a good Greek restaurant. And cheap rent. And good record stores. And parking. And a good reason to walk places. And beautiful scenery. Oh, and at least 5 venues which can reasonably expect good shows. (Though it hurt our draw, probably, a Pinback / Enon show and a bill with The Distillers were playing at 2 other venues that night.)

The next night is Oklahoma. But how will we enjoy it? It's been said before but "How Can We Stay on The Farm After We've Seen Paree"? [wha-??]

(And 3 hours earlier...)

Crap. It might as well be communication to the Mars Rover: I'm on a conference call with the Blogger team while we race down the highway toward the next show. This happens to every band, right? I have to cover my ear to distinguish Jason's voice from the screams of anguish and surprise emanating from the precarious ad-hoc car theater setup that's running Kill Bill Vol. 1 while we talk.

I hear some news. Blogger is running a trial giveaway of Gmail accounts. Cool. I can barely hear anything. I think I promise to re-write the entire user interface from scratch or something. Cell phone cuts out. I'll check my bug list later.

(And 3 hours earlier...)

Holy crap. I press Send. After a few seconds, I'm returned to the list of email. It takes a while to dawn on me that I just did "It." I look around. I'm sitting in a near-empty internet cafe in Lawrence, Kansas and I don't have anyone to tell. What? "It", in this case, is getting Gmail working on Safari. When Adrienne arrives later, I ask her to take my picture in front of the cafe. Maybe I'll send it to the Google engineering team later. Using Safari.

(And 6 hours earlier...)

This crap is sweet. Scott put his shirt on his head and started dancing around. Prashant The Bartender hands me a gin and tonic on the house. Leslie invites us over to stay. The band we played with was excellent. These are the citizens of Lawrence, Kansas and as far as we can determine everyone in Lawrence is extraordinarily nice. I want to check the back of their necks for bits of pod. What a nice night and we just finished playing what might have been our best set of tour.

(And 3 hours earlier...)

No crap. We just arrived. The weather is perfect. And...omigod...there's an internet cafe right next to the venue. Fortune smiles on college towns. The router at the café doesn't actually serve an IP address via DHCP for some reason. A patron(!) let's me into the back room to reboot everything. Is everyone that nice here?

(And 2 hours earlier...)

Well...crap. Where in the hell am I going to find internet access in this wheat field?
posted at April 20, 2004, 8:20 PM