Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Meet Me In St. Lou-ey, Screw Me...

...meet me at the fair...

At least, that's how we used to sing it in Music class. Aren't 6th graders clever? Now, I have a soon-to-be-7th grade daughter. The reminders of how "clever" I must've seemed to my parents are painfully embarassing. Ah, well...I'm aging with such grace!

I spent the weekend with the family in St. Louis, MO. Let me just say that I love that town. There are many, many things to do with the family, and it's relatively inexpensive, and incredibly easy to get around. At least, that's been my experience. Yours may vary, I suppose.

We stayed at the Hyatt in Union Station, which is a very convenient location. We went to the St. Louis Zoo (approximately 5 minutes from our hotel...well, that is, after waiting 30 minutes for the ridiculously understaffed Valet Parking crew to retrieve our vehicle). St. Louis has a great zoo. Parking was $9, and admission was free. Yes, I said FREE. It was hotter than (something very hot) and HUMID beyond imagination. Baby Emily (11 months old) LOVED the penguins.

The St. Louis Science Center is another of our favorite stops (also about 5 minutes from Union Station or the Zoo). Parking was $7, and admission was free. (There's that word again!) We did have to pay for the Omnimax movie "Walking on the Moon". But, it was well worth it.

Anyway, the original point of my post...

It just so happens that, unbeknownst to us, the 7th Annual RibAmerica(?) Festival was happening downtown (approximately 3 blocks from Union Station). Live music on Saturday evening included Candlebox and Puddle of Mudd. We strolled through, apparently *just* after Candlebox had finished (I tried to summon a feeling of regret for missing them...I was unable to summon any feeling at all). Admission was nominal. However, food tickets were pricey, and the number of tickets required for each food/beverage item was insane. We left almost immediately, with the wife and girls walking back to the hotel while I lingered in the adjacent park. I just had to hear Puddle of Mudd for myself. I mean, there was live music to be heard. I had to give it (them) a shot.

I'm straining for something clever to type. All I can muster in the limited time allowed is "Puddle of Muddiocrity". Sorry. It's not that they were completely unlistenable. Not completely. With the appropriate amount of beer intake, I might be giving a glowing review. Alas, I was stone sober.

I knew nothing about the band beforehand. However, I did end up recognizing several songs in their set...something about "I can't control you/You can't control me"...or something like that. I think that's also the one where he loves the way his girlfriend smacks his ass. Then, there was "You take it all away" (repeat seemingly without end). I'm not going to look up the actual song titles. The lead singer attempted some banter with the crowd. I particularly enjoyed his LAME attempt at rebelliousness (I think that was the point?) as he relayed, "I just wanna let you guys in on a little secret. You know you can stick a lighter in your pocket and get right through the airport security." Only the absolute drunkest members of the audience could muster a half-hearted cheer. Brutal.

The final encore song was, of course, their "masterpiece": "She f*ckin' hates me...la la la la". I made the solitary walk back to the hotel in somber contemplation.


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