Somewhere there is an industrial designer that has this object in their portfolio of design goodness. I have to give a tip of the hat to the one that does. I know what it is like to get assignments you don’t really want to do, or assignments that aren’t really sexy. Assignments that pay the bills, but leave you scratching your head saying, “Did I really just do that job?” I have a feeling the industrial designer that created the housing for the “Complete” Air Care System, gave this job their all, but at the end of the day chalked it up to beer money. None the less, this little plastic box does look rather nice bathed amber light against an orange wall and red ceiling. Oh and the Complete Air Care System did make the bar bathroom smell a little less horrendous.
Last year on Easter Sunday, my wife lost her sister after a lengthy illness. One of the things that we kept after the funeral was this beautiful orchid. Normally the orchid, when it blooms has two or three flowers that open at one time and last for about 3 to 4 weeks on average. About 8 weeks ago, our orchid blossomed with 5 glorious flowers that have remained strong and vibrant all this time. Today when I was home sick, and not feeling like doing much of anything after a giant coughing fit, I stopped and spent about 10 minutes looking at it and thinking of Jan. It’s kind of hard to think that she has been gone for a year now. So this is my 365 project post for the day. It seems rather fitting to me, as we roll into Easter weekend for the first time without her.
I actually went in to work today against my best judgement since I am still suffering from a bronchial/sore throat thing. I lasted 3 hours and went home to sleep for 3. On the way out of the building I passed one of the many electric carts that still roll through the back halls of the building. A lasting reminder to the manufacturing and printing past that has anchored Hallmark for the last 100 years. Since this is one of the only two photos I took for Instagram today, it gets the post.
The first time I saw the band “X” was in Los Angeles in 1981. It was at some bar downtown. No place famous and to be honest, I can’t remember the name of the place. It was small, it catered to local punk rock bands, it was easy to get into with a fake ID, and the place was smoke drenched. Beer was cheap, X was raw, and the crowd was young. Over the course of X’s life as a band I saw them probably ten more times on both coasts, in the Midwest, in venues large and small.
One of my favorite shows was when they played the Uptown Theater, in Kansas City. The Replacements were playing next door and if you showed your X ticket you got in for half price. A group of us had driven in from Lawrence and crammed our way to the front of the stage between Exene and John Doe. My friend Pete Laufer at some point put his half drank beer on the end of the stage and between lyrics, Exene reached down and took the beer, finishing it.
After the X concert had finished we had all gone next door to catch the replacements show, and to our surprise X showed up as well. While we were standing at the bar waiting to buy more beers, Exene comes over and hands Pete a full cold brew. She said to him, “thanks for the beer next door. I owed you one.” then she turned and went back to John Doe and DJ Bone Break and a crowd of autograph seekers, and mega fans. That was 24 years ago this month.
Tonight I saw John Doe at Knuckleheads Saloon, in Kansas City. He is older, The show was just him and Jill Sobule, all acoustic. He played a few X songs, covered “I’m In Love With a Girl” by Big Star, and gave a heart-felt performance. At age 57 or 58 he still puts it out there and gets the crowd going. A lot has changed since 1981, but the honesty of the show I saw tonight hasn’t. The image above like my memory is a bit fuzzy, but it captures the mood, and the energy of the show tonight.