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Lou Pickney's Online Commentary

Radiohead 2003

Sunday
October 5, 2003

The band Radiohead put on an excellent performance last night in West Palm Beach, Florida. Those guys have a unique sound, with enough rock, piano, and electronica to please a wide variety of music lovers while keeping a different enough edge to maintain their place as one of the best bands in the world. They'd been on my must-see list for some time, and it was excellent to have had the chance to see them live. If there was any complaint to be made about the performance, it's that I would've liked to have heard "Black Star" and "High And Dry", but those songs are several years old and not in the current playlist.

Radiohead
Radiohead sounded great in concert on Saturday night.

From a location standpoint, we landed a great spot in the grass seats, centered right up with the stage. The acoustics at the "Sound Advice Ampitheatre" (or whatever the place is called) were excellent; it reminded me of the layout of Starwood (with whatever corporate name it has now) to the east of Nashville. It's hard to think of the last time I've heard a concert with such a crisp, clear delivery of the sound.

It was also great to meet Jamie, who the morning show AP at WTSP. I very much enjoyed telling stories about the Executive Meddler. I'll just say that it sounds like absolutely nothing has changed with the horrid situation there. It was fun to tell stories about the EM's "secret files" and her hourlong personal phone call to Oregon during breaking news and the many daily torments and bizarro scenarios I had to go through under her reign of hostility. There's nothing quite like recalling some of that to make me appreciate being in the wonderful work situation I have now. Night-and-day difference.

The drive to and from West Palm Beach was much longer than I had expected. What didn't help things any was getting a brutal headache about midway down. With my medicine back in Tampa, I was stuck having to endure the pain as best I could. When the sun went down and the temp dropped a little, finally the agonizing pain went away. But that was several hours later. We stopped at a gas station and I landed some Advil, but Advil vs. one of those headaches is hardly a fair fight. And you can't just waltz into a Hess Express or Shell station and buy somas or migranal to go with a Diet Vanilla Coke and a bag of chips. Education the hard way on that one -- note to self to travel prepared, even for one-day trips. Thank god that the headache went away during Supergrass' set (who, by the way, put on an excellent show as well).

It's very interesting to see how rural the land is between La Belle (the interstate exit just north of Ft. Myers that we took off I-75) across southern Florida to West Palm. Miles and miles of farmland. To amuse ourselves, Scott and I made note of things like the incredible number of plants at Yoder (this big farming place) and the humor of the unintentionally funny Rib City restaurant. I really need a digital camera for occasions just like that.

The ride back featured a situation that felt like the scene in Boogie Nights where Buck Swope ends up the sole survivor in a cafe robbery shootout. Scott and I stopped at the "Jiffy Mart" Marathon station in South Bay, Florida. The scene would've been funny had it not had a hostile edge to it. The guy behind the counter was completely incompetent, failing to return my credit card (I had to tell him THREE TIMES that I needed my card back before he finally clued in) and then failing to turn on the pre-pay for Pump #7 until I re-entered and curtly reminded him to do his job. Adding to the situation were the unsavories hanging out there, including a rather agitated young man buying a large knife. No, I'm not kidding. This shady quickiemart also sold weapons. Lovely. Not that I was worried about getting jumped... but there's a LOT of dark, empty land out there at 12:30 AM in south Florida where one could be stabbed, robbed and left to die. Theoretically. So, believe me, leaving was a relief.

Long conversations with Scott are pretty cool, as he tends to put as much (if not more) thought into things as I do. For example, we lamented the misuse of the word literally (i.e. Jim Ross in Smackdown: Shut Your Mouth saying "Rob Van Dam is literally a human highlight reel") and contemplated what might be going on with the "grow lamps" with this big farming company named Yoder (which for some reason seemed funny at the time). Good times on that -- it made the miles go by faster. And hats off to Scott for doing all the driving, letting me play the role of lazy friend in the passenger seat.

Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez
Pudge Rodriguez lead the Marlins past the Giants.

One of the many reasons I love WheresGeorge.com is because you can sometimes run across interesting things by chance as a result of entering, marking and spending bills. I entered this bill six months ago, and it ended up in New Orleans, Louisiana (which happens to be one of my all-time favorite cities). The guy who entered it had info on his website, which I visited... and which has a hilarious collection of spoofs of the "Family Circus" comic strip (called The Fambly Cirkus). It might offend some of you, but it made me laugh my ass off.

As I write this, the Red Sox have forced a decisive Game 5 with the A's, to be played in Oakland tomorrow night. The Yankees lead the Twins 6-1 in what could be the series clincher for the Bronx Bombers. I'll be cheering hard for Oakland (which has some injury concerns with its starting pitching), though a Yankees/Red Sox ALCS would sure be enticing. Right now I'm pulling for a Yankees vs. Marlins World Series matchup, if for no other reason so I can drive down to Miami and see the Yankees play in a World Series game. That would be really, really fun. As it is, I've contemplated going down to Miami for an NLCS game with Florida vs. the winner of tonight's Cubs/Braves game. I've never attended an MLB post-season baseball game.


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