Sunday, April 29, 2018

Veg Fest 2018!

Today is one of my favorite days of the year. Today is VegFest.

When I first started volunteering and attending the Detroit-area VegFest, it took place in a school. There were maybe a few hundred people who showed up, and I remember speakers standing at podiums that were in front of children's toys.

Wow, times have changed. Now it's at a convention center, and it is HUGE!

Like last year, I volunteered with Attorneys for Animals.
Shout out to Meg and Krishna for taking this not-at-all-staged photo with me.
And like pretty much every year in the past, I had to get a picture with my carrot buddy Daniel.

The food was incredible. Despite trying to be a bit healthy. I totally splurged on vegan Ben and Jerry's, a coney dog from the Russell Street Deli, and macaroni and cheese from GreenSpace.

File these under "why I weigh more now than I did two months after giving birth":

It just feels so incredible to see people who are interested in plant-based living all coming together. I always get so inspired there! If you haven't been before, I highly recommend it!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Vegas! And even more VLOGGING!

This weekend was just what I needed! I was craving some serious sun, and I also wanted to see my brother since I hadn't seen him since Thanksgiving. Since I was lucky enough to get booked into some gigs in Nevada and Arizona, I packed my bags and flew to Las Vegas (where he lives).

My trip started off with a trip to the oh-so-delicious VegeNation. My brother had vegan quesadillas, and I had the mock chicken gnocchi pot pie. Both were pretty amazing!

We walked around downtown for a bit before I met up with Keith Lenart, and we headed to Laughlin, Nevada for our gigs at the Edgewater.

I always dig playing the Edgewater. The shows are fun, the casino is right on the water, and they give way too many free buffet coupons.

On Saturday night, we had the night off, so we drove back to Vegas to see Lionel Richie, who was absolutely fantastic. Keith even got us an upgrade on our seats, so we got to feel like VIPs for the night.

After the concert, we hung out with a couple of other comisc who live in Vegas. This is us with Geechy Guy having a little Michigan comedy reunion at a karaoke bar in Henderson.

After our show on Sunday, we got to see a great ABBA tribute band, ABBAcadabra (and we even got to hang out with them after the show).

On Monday, before our show in Pinetop, Arizona, we took an impromptu trip to the Grand Canyon since I had never been. We were running late, so we only had 15 minutes, and since I wasn't prepared, I'm pretty sure I was the only one wearing flip flops. But, it was still absolutely breath-taking. Unfortunately, my camera crapped out on me, but I did get a couple of shots. And I made a quick mental note that I must return soon.

Proof I was there.

Oh, and I also vlogged my adventures, so if you'd like to watch, it's here. I apologize in advance for the complete overuse of 80s-esque electronic music for the first minute or so.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Performing in Minnesota and more VLOGGING!

This past weekend, I got to see the new Goonies in Rochester, Minnesota. For a long time, Goonies was one of my favorite clubs. I was so bummed when they closed, but so excited when they reopened!

The drive there was pretty uneventful. The weather and traffic both cooperated. So, yay!

The weekend was super fun. I worked with the hilarious Grant Lyon, and I got to stay in a nice extended stay hotel.

The "just like home" theater at my hotel. I'm pretty sure if it were truly just like home, it would be a 12 inch tv/dvd combo with no access to the internet. 
I didn't take too many pictures, but I did do my second vlog! Forgive my shaky camera and unforgiving light.

The drive home was quite another story. I feel like that's the way it works in the winter: one leg of the drive will be perfect, and then to balance it out, the other way will be the worst, fear-for-your-life weather you've ever experienced.

And that's exactly what happened! It took me five additional hours to make the trek home! I had planned to get home in time for the Super Bowl. Not so much for the game (honestly, I had no idea who was even playing in the darn thing), but I wanted to watch the commercials and half-time show, oh, and eat all of the amazing food Dan whipped up.

But, alas, I had to settle for watching Pink sing the National Anthem on YouTube and eating left-overs. At least I got home in one piece.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

$20 autographs

What a fun time this week! Not only did I get to be on a podcast (which ended up being video recorded, so yay for me having the forethought to not show up in sweat pants), but I also got to do three fun shows in Michigan. As much as I love the road, sleeping in my own bed feels pretty darn nice, too.

Nothing major to report this go' round. The weather was good. The crowds were fun. And the beer was free.

Anyway, here's the podcast.

 And now, onto some pictures from the shows.

With all the funny comics.
With some sweet audience members.

P.S. When a guy in Manton, Michigan pays you $20 to autograph him in Sharpie, you do that.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Myrtle Beach!

The Carolina Comedy Club in Myrtle Beach is one of my absolute favorite clubs. Not only are you right near the beach, but they have some of the best staff I've ever met in my life. A lot of them have become friends over the years, which makes me feel so lucky.

When I was pregnant, I figured it would be no big deal to simply bring the babes with me to my gig, and seeing as my mom and I love to travel together (see some of our trips here, here, and here), I thought I'd ask her to come with as well. Then, she could watch the baby during my shows, and we could adventure during the day.

That's kind of how it went.

We decided to fly down there, and the baby did pretty well on the flight, especially given that we had to wake her up at 2 am to get ready so we could make the 6 am departure. She slept most of the first one, and even dug the three hour lay-over in LaGuardia (since there are no direct flights to Myrtle Beach from Detroit). She was a bit fussy on the second flight, we but not terrible. Shout-out to Spirit Airlines for giving us our own row each time! They might charge for every little thing including carry-ons, but the flight attendants were so nice in giving us an empty row at the back as to not disturb the other passengers.

Made it! After nearly 12 hours of travel on 2 hours of sleep, I arrived!

The shows were tons of fun! I worked with Andrew Rivers, who I hadn't seen since I performed with him in Iowa. I didn't get a picture, unfortunately. But, trust me, he was there.

I also got to see my good buddy, Dennis Bellamy. Not only is he one of my closest friends, but he's also a super hilarious comedian! I first met him when he was open miking, and he has come so far and is kicking royal butt now. Again, I forgot a picture with him, too, but I did take this one of him on stage.

On Friday, one of my good friends from high school and former debate partner's (yep, nerd alert right here) dad came to the show. I had no idea he had moved down to South Carolina, so it was great to catch up with him.

During the day, three generations of Brindles checked out Murrell's Inlet, and we also explored the boardwalk on the beach.

Ocean in the background. Not a bad view, eh?
Debating about whether I need one of these for my house.
Murrell's Inlet.

And what trip would be complete without checking out some local vegan fare? This time, we went to Bombay on the Beach (an excellent Indian buffet) and Kindbelly (this is the tofu scramble there).

On Saturday, we went to the women's march.

Baby's first protest.
So excited to run into these awesome ladies!

We showed up without signs seeing as we flew in and couldn't really fit posterboard in our carry-ons. Luckily, there were several women who gave us signs.

This march was particularly special because 2017's women's march marked two days after I found out I was going to be a mom.

The flights home were pretty uneventful, although definitely exhausting as traveling with a three-month-old just is. When we finally made it back to Michigan, we took a quick trip to Taco Bell, then my bed and I had a lovely reunion.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Performing in Canada and VLOGGING!

So, I'm trying out this whole vlogging business. And I made a video about my adventure to Ontario, Canada this past weekend. If you'd like to watch, it's here:

Monday, January 8, 2018

Flat tire in -28!

This weekend was...well, an adventure.

But, first: a bit of a back story.

On Thanksgiving weekend, I traveled to Greensboro, North Carolina to perform at the Comedy Zone down there (it was my first time there, and it was such a beautiful club). No more than thirty minutes after my arrival at the hotel, one of the other hotel guests didn't see my car and backed into it in the parking lot. Shout out to the guy who did it since he had the decency to knock on my door, apologize, and give me his insurance information.

He ended up causing $3,000 worth of damage, but I was able to drive the car home (insert sigh of relief here). So, upon returning to Michigan, I took it to a local body shop to get fixed. Luckily, the guy's insurance company covered a rental car, which I was able to pick up at the body shop.

When I picked up the rental, I immediately noticed it had a low tire indicator light on. So, the mechanics tried to fix it, but couldn't identify which tire was triggering the light. Thus, they gave me another rental, and I was on my way.

Okay, and now onto the main part of the story.

On Friday, I had a gig in Brimley, Michigan. For those unfamiliar, it's in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, right on Lake Superior. I've had a few adventures there before, and I got to work with my friend Dave Dyer, so I was pretty pumped to be playing there. Oh, and did I mention you get to eat at the buffet for free? Because that may have been the part I was looking forward to the most.

About seven miles outside of Brimley, I noticed my tire light went on. Thinking it was due to the change in weather (it was, after all, -17 degrees there), I continued onto the gig. Well, first I called two friends to freak out.

After the show, Dave agreed to look at my tire. As we approached my car, we could both see it was completely flat. Panic quickly ensued as I had to return to the lower peninsula the next day for another show, and there were no Enterprise (the company I rented from) rental car locations even remotely close to where we were.

Dave was so kind throughout the whole situation. Not only did he offer to change my tire for me, but he also calmed me down when, after being on the phone with Enterprise for nearly an hour (my phone cut-out four different times, necessitating me to tell my story to three different representatives, none of whom grasped that I couldn't just bring the car into a nearby Enterprise location, which is the only thing they advised me to do) they told me it would be three more hours before they could even send someone out to put the spare on (which, still didn't help much since I couldn't make it all the way home on the donut as I was over 250 miles away).

Finally, I pitched the idea of me just fixing the tire myself. Well, not myself, but I mean, bringing it into a shop and getting the work done out of pocket. The Enterprise representative agreed.

Luckily, the guys that put the spare on showed up around midnight as opposed to 2 am, which is what I originally was told. By this point, it was -28 windchill, but they got the new tire on quickly, and they also told me there was, miraculously, a tire shop in Brimley!

What? A town that appears to only have a post office, gas station, and grocery store, actually had a tire shop? I couldn't believe it!

The next morning, I called the place before it even opened. And miraculously again, someone answered. I explained my plight of having to be downstate later that day, and the employee said "bring it on in; I'll get it looked at right away."

So, I drove three whole miles over to the shop, and $15 later, I was out of there with a patched tire!

Although, I'm still pretty mad at Enterprise seeing as the tire shop folks said "none of these tires are safe to drive on snow with." Apparently, they were all worn and none of them were in good shape.

But, alas, I made it home!

HUGE shout-out to the awesome employees at Mark's Tire in Brimley, Michigan. And a big thank you to whatever tire angel was watching over me that day.