Confusing Italics

September 28, 2014
Adam Thomas

Lost in all this ‘the NFL is a terrible institution’ hullabaloo seems to be the fact that ESPN–who is going all out guns blazing on the NFL and their mistakes–is not the best source of journalism in the world.

For instance, I read their big old Ray Rice Outside the Lines expose and was pretty impressed by it all. It seemed like they had done their work and cross referenced everything but then, the bomb dropped this week that the text messages sent from the Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti to Ray Rice in the report were erroneously reported.

Here’s how it reads from ESPN’s report:

Minutes later, Rice’s phone buzzed. he could scarcely believe what he was looking at–back to back messages from Bisciotti. Rice read them aloud so everyone in the room could hear them:

Hey Ray, just wanted to let you know, we loved you as a player, it was great having you here. Hopefully all these things are going to die down. I wish the best for you and Janay. 

When you’re done with football, I’d like you to know you have a job waiting for you with the Ravens helping young guys getting acclimated to the league. 

You read that and you think two things: 1.) Bisciotti is trying to blackmail Rice with a job offer by sending him two texts out of the blue so he keeps quiet about some things and 2.) Those words are exactly what were sent in the text messages.

Unfortunatley, there are two problems.

It turns out that Ray Rice initiated the conversation with Bisciotti and that the text messages read differently than what ESPN wrote.

Here they are in full thanks to Deadspin:

Monday September 8, 7:44 pm

Ray: I understand the decision but I am thankful for what you have done for me and my family. Me and my wife will continue to work on us and being better but I just wanted to say thank you for giving me a chance

Steve: I’m sorry we had to do this. I still love you and believe that you will be a great husband and father If you ever need to talk just call

Tuesday September 9, 10:27 pm

Steve: I just spent two hours talking to Ozzie. It was all about you. We love you and we will always figure out a way to keep you in our lives. When you are done with football I will hire you to help me raise Great young men. I still love you!!!

Ray: I know it’s a rough time for all of us I love all of you and that will never change for life!

Steve: I will help you make it a great life indeed. I give you my WORD

Ray: That means the world to me and my family we greatly appreciate you and thank you.

Now, while the ESPN report does get the gist of the texts messages correct, they clearly manipulated the situation to make their case against the Ravens appear stronger than it seems to be and it does raise some doubt about what else they messed up in their story.

Also, the Ravens owner seems like a sleaze ball, like he should be a WWE manager or something walking down the aisle with the Million Dollar Man’s theme music. Everybody’s got a price.

On to the picks!

Last week, I went 1-2 (although I did call the Chiefs and the over on the Eagles/Redskins game) which makes me 3-3 for the season (hooray?).

This week I like:

Chiefs +3.5

Packers/Bears OVER 49.5

Det/NYJ under 45.5

That’s right, forget picking the games. I’m going with the Over/Unders!

Enjoy the games!

Comment

Win Free Agency in the NFL and you Lose

September 21, 2014
Adam Thomas

Watching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers get absolutely shellacked by the Falcons on Thursday reminded me that back in March, I couldn’t escape articles talking about the revamped Bucs roster and how they were the undisputed ‘Winners’ of Free Agency.

From Yahoo: “It’s hard not to like a talented Bucs team getting more talented with some nice additions, namely Alterraun Verner, Michael Johnson, Anthony Collins, Clinton McDonald and Evan Dietrich-Smith. Can’t say too many teams have done more. They can win 10 or 11 games under Lovie Smith and be this year’s Kansas City Chiefs.”

From NFL.com: “Lovie Smith’s influence should be like a warm spring thaw after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ wintery 2013 season. The Bucs revamped an already solid roster without losing many pieces. The signing of Alterraun Verner more than made up for cutting Darelle Revis. Verner came much cheaper and is a better fit in Smith’s system. Adding Michael Johnson to the defense gives Gerald McCoy a Bash Brother to hunt quarterbacks with. Scrapping the offensive line for upgrades at every spot was a stroke of genius. If Josh McCown can recapture his 2013 magic, the Bucs could surge to the top of the NFC South.”

From Profootball Focus: “The Bucs already had a lot of talent on the roster, but they have filled a lot of holes before the draft rolls around with some impressive moves.”

Sports Illustrated had more of the same, with the declaration at the top of the article that predicting free agency winners is like handing out NFL Draft Grades in that both sets of reactions usually turn out to be at least 50 percent wrong. So….why do them?

Who knows. But one thing is for sure: The Bucs suck. They are 0-3 and have been blown out by the Falcons and defeated by two backup quarterbacks: Derek Anderson and Austin Davis (WHO?).

They are “competing” with the Jags and the Raiders and possibly the Giants for the first overall pick in next year’s draft.

Which is a shame because they spent $121.5 million in free agency, the biggest contract being $43.75 million to Michael Johnson who is currently injured.

So yeah. Out of all those awful teams, I feel the worst for the Bucs. They spent so much money and brought in a new coach so they are going to be stuck with these pricey, bad players and coach for another season. At least the Jags and Raiders can cut bait with their coaches after this season (if not before).

Anyway, enough depressing Bucs, Jags and Raiders talk. Let’s get to the picks!

Last week, I went 2-1 (boo!).

This week I like:

Chiefs +4.5 (I think the Chiefs get their first win this week)

Eagles -6.5 (also, I like the Over of 50.5 points.)

Packers +2.5

5 Comments

Roger Dodger

September 20, 2014
Adam Thomas

So about that Roger Goodell press conference…what a dope. That was the only thought that was going through my head while I watched Goodell sputter his way through the press conference like me during my sophomore year of college when I had to give a presentation in all Spanish. “Uh…es un necessario…uh…es muy importante….”

Goodness gracious, how did that man ever become commissioner? Just look at this garbage:

Q: The atlantic city prosecutor’s office says they don’t have any trail for the documentation. Can you give us the trail of how you did the investigation so people can know what you put into it?

A: Certainly. Our security department works with law enforcement. They are fully cooperative. We gather almost entirely all of our information through law enforcement. And that is something else we are going to look at, Rachel. Is that the right process. Should all of our information be gathered simply through law enforcement? We understand and respect what they go through and the job they have to do.

Just in case you guys weren’t sure, Goodell would like to remind you that the NFL works with LAW ENFORCEMENT all the time and really respects and loves and cherishes the job that they have to do. What a pandering schmuck. His answer is basically, “is it our facult that we love cops so much? Maybe…”

Also, let’s watch as he talks about the Ray Rice situation, completely absolving himself of any blame and then skirting away when pressed for details like the red headed cyborg that he is:

Q: What exactly did ray rice tell you happened in the elevator and how did what you thought in your mind happen in the elevator differ from what we saw in the video?

A: Judy, a couple of things. First off, i said we got new information from the first time i met with him to my initial discipline, which three weeks later, i acknowledged was not sufficient. It was clear there was an act of domestic violence. But it was inconsistent with the way he described what happened. When we had that new information we had the ability to say we are going to interject and we are going to take additional action. That is what we did. There was new information that developed because we had not seen that second tape that became public roughly 10 days or so ago. That was not consistent with what he said.

Q: Commissioner, what did he say? What did he tell you happened?

A: The one issue with this is this is now a matter of appeal. As you know the nfl p.A. Has appealed this. It is a matter that is going to be taken up with appeal. Without prejudges, i have to respect the appeals process.

Q: You keep talking about transparency. Why can’t you tell us what he said?

A: It is inconsistent with what he told us, what we saw on the video. We have an appeals process. That information will come out.

JUST ANSWER THE QUESTION!

And of course, the question–I think from Rachel Nichols–about the integrity of the NFL’s own half-assed investigation into what exactly happened with the tape was awesome:

Q: Commissioner, you mentioned robert mueller’s investigation. I’m not going to discuss the integrity of the ex-director of the fbi. The law firm that he works for is a law firm with extremely close ties to the nfl. You guys paid that law firm to help you negotiate some television deals, the president of the ravens who will be key in this whole investigation worked at that law firm for more than 30 years. Why hire someone with even the appearance of inpropriety and how do you expect us to accept everything?

A: I respectfully disagree. You are questioning the integrity of the director of the fbi. Yes. That firm has represented us in the past. They have also been on the other side in litigation against the nfl. So this is a highly respected individual, the longest serving director in the fbi. part of the idea of this is to restore public trust.

Q: So even if he does a flawless investigation isn’t there an element here of your leaving the door open for doubt?

A: Well, rachel, unfortunately we live in a world where there is a lot of litigation. A lot of law firms and maybe people have had some interaction with us in the past. Robert mueller has not. The law firm may have. We are hiring robert mueller, his credentials to do an independent investigation reporting to the owners and i’m competent that will be the case.

Q: Did he interview you yet? Did robert mueller interview you yet?

A: That is something that robert mueller is going to have to announce. We are not disclosing or involving. He is running an independent investigation. He will meet with anyone he wishes any time he wishes. He will get cooperation from me and anybody in the building. I’m not making comments about the investigation. He has full access. If he feels he wants to speak to anybody.

And of course, TMZ sports putting the screws to Goodell:

Q: Adam Glen with tmz and tmz sports. I have to go back to your video and curiosity to see the video. You suspended ray rice after our video. Why didn’t you have the curiosity to go to the casino yourself?

A: Two things. We suspended ray rice originally after seeing the first video. When the second video came out last week, that is when we increased our discipline because that was inconsistent with the information we had. It was new information. One of the things i said in my statement and i have said repeatedly here, that is part of what we want to do with all of our experts. Outside, internal, is try to figure out how should we investigate these issues. In the past we have been almost completely reliant with law enforcement. We do not want to interview with a criminal investigation. In particular here when you are dealing with a casino in new jersey there are more restrictions because it is overseen i believe by the attorney general. We have to be very cautious in not interfering with a criminal investigation. We’ll evaluate that. Should we do more to get more information. I would have loved to see that tape. Should we do more —

Q: Mr. Commissioner, we found out by one phone call. You have a whole legal department. Can you explain that?

A: I can’t explain how you got the information. Only you can do that.

Yeeeeeeeeeesh. This dude is clueless.

Picks will be up tomorrow!

1 Comment

Suspending Disbelief

September 14, 2014
Adam Thomas

So…the NFL, amirite?

Jeebus, what a terrible week. The whole Ray Rice fiasco now Adrian Peterson is an accused beater of children.

The weird part about the Adrian Peterson story is that it prompted about a billion, “If hitting your kid with a switch is illegal, then my mom would be in prison!” har har har jokes on Twitter, which is…interesting.

For one thing, everyone making that joke needs to realize, their mom is not Adrian F-ing Peterson. Peterson is chiseled, and wrecks grown men for a living, just imagine what he would do to a FOUR YEAR OLD CHILD with a switch. Actually, you don’t have to imagine because the pictures are all over the internet, and please bear in mind, those pictures are a week old.

For my bachelor party, I got shot like 35 times during a Bachelor run with 20 some paint ball guns. That hurt like hell and I threw the biggest (debatable) tantrum of my life afterwards, but even those welts were mostly gone after a week. The Vikings made the right call deactiviating him for this game.

Just read this excerpt from CBS Houston:

According to police reports, the child, however, had a slightly different story, telling authorities that “Daddy Peterson hit me on my face.” The child also expressed worry that Peterson would punch him in the face if the child reported the incident to authorities. He also said that he had been hit by a belt and that “there are a lot of belts in Daddy’s closet.” He added that Peterson put leaves in his mouth when he was being hit with the switch while his pants were down. The child told his mother that Peterson “likes belts and switches” and “has a whooping room.”

Egads.

Also, the Panthers owner cried hysterically about how seriously he takes domestic violence but is still allowing his star player–and convicted woman abuser–on the field Sunday because, well, winning trumps crocodile tears.

(Update: Apparently Jerry Richardson reads theHeadrush cause Greg Hardy has now been deactivated. Good job Panthers).

So anyway, happy times in NFL land.

Here are my 3 team teaser picks with the lines from Delaware Park:

Lions +2.5; Patriots -3.5; Cardinals -2.5

1 Comment

Wednesday Quick Hits

July 9, 2014
Adam Thomas

1.) Man, Brazil….what can you say? That reminded me of my senior year when we played St. Marks and got shelled 9-0 under the lights of good old Newark. I remember at one point it being about 5-0 and I joked with one of the defenders, “Hey, you think you guys can just take it easy on us?” And he sneered at me something fierce. 4 goals later, and I knew the answer.

There is no sympathy for the devil but you gotta feel bad for a country who spent millions (billions?) and built stadiums solely to hold this tournament only to watch a European or Argentinian entity walk away with the trophy.

They must’ve felt like Phil Collins in that Bone Thugs N Harmony video. What did I do to get here? What happened to me? I wrote the soundtrack for Tarzan!

Moving on…

2.) If I were Lebron, there is no way in hell that I would go back to Cleveland after what their owner wrote about me, and if he thinks that we will all forget about the decision and the “not one, not two, not three, not four…” nonsense by going back to Cleveland, then he’s got another thing coming.

If I were Lebron, I would double down, hold the Decision 2 and then proudly announce, “I’m taking my talents to Philly!”

But again, I’m not Lebron. And he is weird. So he’s probably going back to Cleveland (I know this because Chris Broussard told me so during Sportscenter).

3.) By the way, I reference the Bone Thugs song because it’s on this CD I found that I made over at Randy’s house the summer after our senior year of high school. Other songs on the CD? Poppin’ Tags, In Da Wind and Throw Your Hands up by 8-Ball and MJG. Daaaang that song is awesome.

4.) WWE better put a belt on Bo Dallas and soon. That dude has got Intercontinental Champion written all over him. I am a BOliever for sure and can’t wait to see that fool work his way into the main event scene.

5.) For today?  I’ve got Netherlands 2-1. Of course, I had yesterday’s game as a 1-1 tie and Brazil winning on PKs so…take that with a grain of salt.

1 Comment

Firefly 2014 Review: The Origin of Bro Alley

June 24, 2014
Randy Neil

As a Delawarean, I felt it was my duty to attend the 2014 Firefly Music Festival.  For 3 years now, Red Frog Events has hosted the huge music festival in Dover, Delaware and I’ve made it to all three.  They’ve nearly quadrupled the size of the inaugural event , which has come with its perks and problems.  The atmosphere has changed a bit, the “bros” have become a bit more “bro-ey”, but Firefly still stands to be one of the most enjoyable summer events for Delaware.

This year, Firefly changed its format to a 4-day event as opposed to a 3-day in the prior two.  While the expansion was greatly welcomed, the first day’s shows did not begin until 5pm, unlike the other days which began around noon.  Some could argue that the line up for that Thursday didn’t boast any widely known acts.  I tend to agree with that notion, but there was still some worthwhile music to enjoy.  Every year the music acts have run later and later (the first Firefly’s shows stopped around 12am every night).  Just like past events, Red Frog will learn that Bonnaroo tends to schedule correctly and they should emulate that, especially when it comes to having an empty day during the festival.

This was the first year I actually purchased a campsite, so I can’t really compare the experience first-hand, but it seemed like things were a bit more organized.  The grounds had almost doubled in size and a secondary northern lot with a designated entrance was added to make things a little less hectic.  How much walking and waiting it saved me was hard to say.

Now, if you can imagine the ominous notes from the original Law & Order sequence, I will take you day by day through the line up that I was able to see, starting with –

Thursday

Waiting around for the events to start became a bit demoralizing.  As I mentioned before, the shows didn’t begin to 5pm and there wasn’t really anyone noteworthy to enter for immediately, so the wait became a daunting task.  A man can only drink so much alcohol in the hot sun without losing his mind or losing his soul.  I often compare music festivals to voluntary refugee camps and that felt the most appropriate on Thursday.

Our neighbors were, for the most part, respectful and decent human beings.  The festival community atmosphere was abundant, although across our row of cars became what I will constantly refer to as, “Bro Alley.”  Your typical Corn-Hole, Kan Jam, Keystone Lights, and EDM music were all present, but that was expected.  Bro Alley came to fruition because of 4 unique New Jersyans (who’s accents ran wild) touting American flag shorts and shape-ups.

They had set up a game of Polish Horseshoes in the middle of this grass field across from our row of cars and spent a majority of the morning, afternoon, and evening inviting fellow festival-goers to participate.  Not much harm there.  What made these guys so particularly douchey is that they would introduce this game to a new participant, explain the rules, then proceed to pummel them, figuratively and verbally.  While I lay resting under the EZ-up of my lot, I would abruptly be startled from my daze to the screams of “OHHHHH EAT A DICK SON!!!” and “USA!” chants.  Not a single person left their game happy.  Go figure.

It was time to head into the festival.

First up on the docket was Courtney Barnett, an Australian grunge singer.  The show went well, but some of her songs came off a little monotonous.  That could have just been the alcohol and sun making me so irritable.

I moved on to Amos Lee for a brief period before making my rounds to Local Natives, the main headliner for Thursday.  It was hard to fathom that Natives was large enough to warrant the Thursday time-slot, but they didn’t disappoint.  Nothing seemed to blow me away, but I knew better shows were in store the following days.

Placed outside the festival in the campsites were “Hubs”, which had a few merchandise tents, food trucks, and shower stalls.  You could charge your phone or get free water, too.  Red Bull decided to place a few stages within the hubs, but I never got to see anyone in them.  Thursday night, however, after the last show let out, I decided to walk down and see what the “post-festival” activities of the Hub were.

I walked towards the Red Bull stage the featured some pretty good electronic music.  It was hard to tell who was playing, but a crowd had gathered to cheer and dance.  I walked up to the crowd of about 200 who were raising their hands, clapping, and pointing towards the stage.  It was hard to tell who the DJ was because of the strobe lights and smoke machines.  When I was finally able to see the stage, I was blown away to see that the DJ was…. no one.  There wasn’t anyone on stage.  At all.  Not sure what else people would do to enjoy the music in that scenario, but it was tickling to see so many drugged-out hippies dancing to a person that wasn’t there.  We dubbed him “DJ Mystery.”

Friday

Finally, I could wake up (in the blistering sun at 7:30am) with some hope of seeing music relatively soon.  I could be entertained.  This boosted the morale of the entire camp, which was desperately needed after almost 48 hours of not showering and being covered in sweat, dust, and sunscreen.

Sadly, this was short lived.  My hopes of seeing Mean Lady (Newark, DE’s only representative in the festival) were cut short because of my friend Sweede’s arrival to Dover Downs.  He was staying at our campsite, showed up late, and needed to be accompanied from his car to our campsite.  Simple enough, right?

Well that trip was over 3 miles from car to campsite, and we escorted over 2 cases of beer and clothes in the hot sun on that trip.  What was supposed to be a 30 minute excursion turned into 3.5 hours and we missed a majority of Friday’s daytime activities.  Harsh toke, bro.

When we finally got situated and in the festival, Iron & Wine were playing on the Main Stage.  Not really my cup of tea, but people seemed to enjoy the show.

Next up was Portugal the Man, which was really impressive.  I knew a lot of their songs and they did a good job.  I was happy to see the show, but left early to get a shot at a good spot for Chance the Rapper.

Chance was great.  He came out with a ton of energy.  The live band and soulful rapping was a great fit for the sunset.

Later that night was Foo Fighters.  Everyone told me to go see Dave Grohl perform and I wouldn’t regret it.  I didn’t.  I’m great at hating things that a lot of people like, but I just couldn’t do it.  Foo Fighters put on a great show for 2 hours and impressed me.

I chose White Denim as my late night show after the headliner.  I picked these guys because they came off like a southern progressive rock band with some pretty intense visuals and long, drawn-out jam sessions.  It was either that or Girl Talk, and to be honest, the novelty of mashing two genres of music together as a DJ wears off pretty quickly.  The guy looks like sort of a douche, too, although I hear he spent his early career studying to be a bio-engineer or something pretty noteworthy like that.

Saturday

Finally, I could dedicate the entire day to music worry-free.  Bro Alley had been relatively tolerable the past few days due to the festival activities and spirits were high.  The cloudy, overcast sky made the temperatures much milder and more enjoyable.

First up was New Sweden.  Delaware’s “best Indie rock band” three years running did not disappoint.  It was great to see Delaware making such a great representation in the festival.  Their folky music was a perfect beginning to the day and the general atmosphere of the festival-goers was pleasant.

I made it over to catch Geographer as well.  If you aren’t familiar with them, well neither was I.  I decided to take a chance on a new band per a friend’s recommendation.  As someone who uses a loop pedal and synthesizers, it was interesting to see how that would translate to a live show.  It really didn’t.  Their drummer kept up with the BPM structure really well (most drummers don’t sync up with a metronome during a live show, this guy did it on the fly), but there are better versions of this band.  See Starfucker or Millionyoung.

After that was… get ready…. Third Eye Blind.  I pretty much had to attend this show, mostly for nostalgia purposes.  What I didn’t expect was that nearly 20,000 other people seemed to feel the same way.  A lot of people.  Young people.  People that were 5 years old when “Graduate” was released.

Stephen+Jenkins+Entertainment+Weekly+Party+oePFyGKZ2DFlThe show was pretty much what I expected.  His new songs were terrible, he was egotistical, he had a hard time hitting a lot of the notes, his band line-up had changed immensely, and it was corny.  I felt corny, but as Sweede said during the concert, “There are a lot of happy white people right now!”  True that, Sweede.

The most ridiculous thing from the show (aside from frontman Stephen Jenkins saying to the crowd, “Thank you for loving us!”) was that for the final song, Jenkins kept praising himself in the most egotistical, yet passive way.  He would say things to come off humble, but still sound arrogant as hell.  Literally, for their last song, Jenkins said, “We love you guys!  We do this for the fans!  We honestly come out here with no set list and just play what you guys want to hear!”  He hadn’t played Jumper yet.  He was also reaching for his acoustic guitar while saying this, and then asked, “So what do you guys want to hear?  Huh?  What’s that?  Jumper?  You want to hear Jumper?  Wellllllllll, okkkaaaaaaaaaay… I wish youuuuu would step back from thaaaat ledge my friiiieeennddd”  Like, yeah, no shit you were gonna play Jumper, guy.

What happened after the Third Eye Blind show was unexpected. The show let out and something turned.  The atmosphere had gotten really aggressive and unpleasant.  Something about Third Eye Blind had made every one in attendance almost mad with rage.  Swarms of people were walking around, slamming into each other, snidely cursing and frantically rushing like ants on a hill.  There was no order.

The large group people who decided to return to the campsite, including myself, were annoyed and uneasy.  You could feel the agitation in the atmosphere.  This year, unlike prior years, Firefly staff were tasked with the burden of scanning people out of the festival.   Sure, this could help Red Frog track festival-goers behavioral patterns even more for marketing purposes, but it clearly should have been dismissed as a crazy notion from the start.

There were thousands of people trying to leave the festival and they were expected to wait and be scanned one at a time?  A huge crowd gathered by the exit and drunken madness ensued.  A few bold people started to rip down the fence and sneak through.  Security guards were frantically yelling, the crowd was yelling, and all I could think was, “Damn you, Third Eye Blind.”

Naturally, once the organization broke down, security guards gauged the situation, and just gave up.  Red Frog would be wise to eighty-six that idea next year.

After the much needed break, I headed back into to the Festival to catch Cage the Elephant.  They put on a great show, and soon after I moved on to Tune Yards and Imagine Dragons.  Both were also good shows.

Later that night I was able to catch Beck from the 3rd row.  He put on an amazing show.  I’m not going to lie, I don’t own many of his albums.  I know a lot of his hits, I love his album Guero, but it easy to enjoy the show regardless.  Beck was an amazing front man and it is easy to see why he earned the unique reputation of elite rock personnel.

Right after was Outkast.  Another amazing show.  It was pretty incredible to see Big Boi and Andre 3000 reunite, along with a special appearance from Sleepy Brown.  They played a lot of their classics from Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik and Aquemini, as well as a lot of the big hits from the 2000’s.

I wanted to stay around for either Pretty Lights or White Panda, but by that point my body was just too sore.  I had walked miles, pushed through crowds, and danced a ton.  Some sleep was needed.

Unfortunately, I never got it.  What I got was a restless night of heat, noise, and confusion.  Bro Alley was in full force Saturday night.  A lot of people decided to treat Saturday as the last night so everyone in the campsites around me were pretty much in full-party-mode.

I actually didn’t mind it too much.  This sort of thing was expected and I had built a huge tolerance for human nature during this period, but it still was hard to sleep throughout the elements.  What was worse is that eventually, a lot of people stopped partying after a while.  Bro Alley did not.  Bro Alley had a lot of molly and cocaine (which, I can confirm, thanks to their continual yelling of this).

Other campers were getting annoyed.  Even the people parting til 4 in the morning were annoyed.  I could hear a mutiny brewing.  I had to make the trek to the portable restrooms a few times throughout the night, each time more unique as the night went on.  A crowd kept lingering around the “King Bro’s” car, dancing to terrible EDM.  They had glass eyes, glow sticks, and zombie dance moves.  It was ugly, and it pushed on until the sun came up on –

Sunday

The campers next to me had enough of Bro Alley and decided to complain.  According to Red Frog, the campsite’s quiet hours were from 2am until 6am.  It was about 5:30am and King Bro’s subwoofers were in full effect.  A group of security guards came over, but they eventually ended up taking Fireball shots with the crew rather than quieting them.

The campers next to me were pretty pissed, but they just ended up loudly complaining on the outside of my tent for a few hours about respect and consideration after they had just finished partying until 4 in the morning at a music festival.  Oh, the irony.

I think I slept from 8am til about 8:45.  At this point, though, I didn’t care.  Like I said, it was expected, and Sunday’s lineup was enough to keep my spirits high.

First up was Dan Croll.  This was a great show that I had been looking forward to.  His light surf-rock-esque music was a good fit for a day opener.

I moved on to NONONO which also didn’t disappoint.  I had become familiar with them a few months ago (before the Garnier Fructise commercial, I swear).

I decided to take one last day break to pack up before the afternoon/evening shows began.  Unfortunately, my Rastafarian friends would have to go alone in seeing Ziggy Marley this afternoon.   Jah will provide.

I made my way back in to the festival to catch Washed Out.  Sure, I discovered him through Portlandia just like everyone else, but I had gotten a few of his EPs and looked forward to the show.  Nothing too impressive, but that sort of music doesn’t lend itself to a concert very well.  Even the front row look sedated a bit.

The final two shows I decided to see were Phantogram and Childish Gambino.  Phantogram was great.  The duo did a great job performing.

So did Childish Gambino.  I was able to get about 15 rows back for the show.  I remember learning about Donald Glover’s rap career a few years ago during “Camp”, and I knew there was something talented about him as an artist in spite of the ridicule of my friends.  No one really calls him “the guy from Community” anymore.  Sure, I felt old with the congregate of under-age teens surrounding me (one girl announced it was her 19th birthday), but I still enjoyed it.

All and all, the experience was amazing.  I met a lot of amazing people, the atmosphere was good, and I was able to cherish it with some of my closest friends.  The summer music festival experience is so unique that it really has to be enjoyed at least once.  Will I camp again?  Maybe.  When you live 30 minutes away it’s really hard to ration why one would deprive themselves of so much human decency.

And to you, Bro Alley – in the words of Silky Johnson – I hope all the bad things in life happen to you, and nobody else, but you.

 

Firefly-2014-Lineup

 

Comment