Monday, September 28, 2009

Ojai Pirate Faire Highlights

This weekend started and ended with a bang, happening at the Pirate Festival in Ojai, CA, and right on expansive Lake Casitas. Oddwood has been playing together for barely one year, and so much has spawned from the fun times, cute girls, and rum intake.

We have reached what I define as "rockstar status" now, becoming somewhat famous in Southern California, and now Tuscon. Within the Rennaisance and Pirate Faires, we have become the new legendary act, with women (both the cute and the not-so-cute) constantly hitting on us, hanging out around us, or further inflating our already over-inflated balloons of ego.

And as for our personalities, they have changed drastically, morphing into the true rockstar persona (hopefully for the better instead of for the worse). My own ego has expanded greatly, which I would have never imagined happening due to this band. I even feel this writing is tinged with a slight egotism. We make tasteless, beyond-R-rated jokes, do pretty much whatever we want (i.e. making a lot of noise in restaurants, trashing hotel rooms), and just enjoy having the freedom and tenacity of youth. We receive free or cheap everything (drinks, food, overnight stays, etc), and I greatly appreciate the kind attitude we give back in return.

What separates us from past rock legends is, perhaps, common sense in the Internet Age. Everyone in our band controls alcohol intake, and partakes in virtually no drug use. We be careful not to cause too much chaos wherever we go. We're basically a bunch of musically-talented nerds who reference internet memes (jokes), toilet humor, videogames, films, musical instruments, and other relevant cultural references for intelligently-worded, quasi-philosophical conversations. We generally crack each other up the entire time we are together as a band.

I've seen some incredible reasons why I love this band and everyone in it. We expelled more performance energy over both weekends than that of a nuclear bomb. We had an ongoing battle to recover our Oddwood flag from one of the faire guilds that stole it, which lead us to night raids on their camp to steal their mascot stuffed penguin, Humphrey, as well as a bunch of smaller ones. We proceeded to hang all of them by nooses on-stage, which lead to more antics when their entire guild rushed the stage. We had women and ale aplenty, and celebrated Ian's birthday. We hung out with the remaining members of The Pirates Charles, our fellow friendly pirate band, who has been around since I first started performing at Ren Faires three years ago. We dressed down to pirates in loin-cloths one night (aided by rum), to perform a night show. I crashed through a wooden stage wall, and fell through another cloth wall at a few performances, ending our show with a literal BANG. I wrestled a bunch of people to hang on to Humphrey the penguin, eventually having a wing torn off. We jammed, ate a lot of bacon, avocados, and bread, and drank water, pirate punch, and a multitude of alcohols. Fun times.

We picked up a new guitarist, bringing the current Oddwood member count to 7, although since Mike wasn't at Ojai for both weekends, we had 5.5 (Burleigh, our new guitarist, was still learning songs while performing, and traded btw. guitar and bongos). If Nick rejoins the band upon his return from Europa in late November, we'll be back up to the original 8-head count. We still managed to rock hard sans members.

Happy birthday, Oddwood! And readers, check us out here.  Harle!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Plans for Argentina!

So, I am finally ready to commence a trip/trek/journey/adventure to Argentina. Also known as the land of tango, delicious beef, horseback riding, leather, gaucho cowboys, giant glaciers, capybaras, all-night-life, and fun culture, it's just the place for a start out of the U.S. of A. on my own.

I just bought my ticket yesterday, a round-trip leaving from L.A. to Miami, and from Miami to Buenos Aires, on Oct. 27th. I'll be gone a whopping six weeks, or 42 days to be exact! First thing I'm going to do when I get through the aeropuerto and down into Buenos Aires (known hereon as B.A.), is eat. Lots and lots of beef. Probably not good for me, but what is really good for us these days?

Any way, I really don't know what to expect on my journey through the incredibly large country (the 8th largest in the world, only 3/10ths the size of the U.S., seen here.) Nonetheless, it's a LOT of space to cover. I figure I'm probably going to remain in the northern half, but I may make a trip down to Patagonia if the funds allow.

Why Argentina?
Glad you asked. This picture, or something like it, is probably what did it for me:

Torres del Paine, in Patagonia, Argentina. Stock photo.

That is indeed Patagonia, in the southern half of Argentina and Chile. With that in mind, I decided: well, instead of looking at pictures, why not just go? And that's why I'm going- on a whim.

So after extensive research into overall costs, it'd be more effective to stay near and around B.A. for this first world trip. I may even (and probably will) stop into Uruguay for a visit or two, and hopefully Bolivia to go to Salar de Uyuni.

Until then, this is Drew Peters.