Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Weekend in Iowa

This past weekend, I headed off to Iowa for some shows.  Like my fancy new luggage? Who knew that in addition to making cheap as all get out furniture, IKEA gives away free bags (well, by "gives away free bags," I mean "has employees who don't look while you're taking their bags")?

The drive there featured a brutal snow storm.  A big shout out to Chuck Palahniuk's "Damned" (which I listened to on my iphone) for keeping me entertained during the weather.  Despite the drive taking four hours longer than it should have, I made it to the show safely!

A stage decoration at the show (with a slightly pornographic looking mouth that randomly blows smoke):

I worked with the very funny Tim Sullivan, and even got a chance to work out at the hotel gym.  It was my first time running since February 2nd.  It felt great, but let me know I have A LOT of work to do before racing in my first 15K in March

And as if one mirror pic wasn't enough, I'll leave you with this (my outfit that I watched the Academy Awards in).  The Oscars make me get all fancy. 

I may or may not have done a mock red carpet interview in which I forced my cat to play the role of Giuliana Rancic. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013


Ever since I returned from Nicaragua, I've been battling a sinus/ear infection. This was my life for about six days:

The thought of shooting water up my schnoz doesn't exactly thrill me, but I was so sick that I would have put molten lava up there for some relief. On Friday, I finally broke down and went to the doctor and got some antibiotics (yay prescription drugs!), and they started to kick in yesterday.

Just in time to perform at the Pix Theatre in Lapeer, Michigan (with Dave Bell and Dwayne Gill)! My ear was still massively clogged from my infection making it nearly impossible to hear the crowd. I still don't know whether they laughed or not. Here's hoping for the former.

Despite still being under the weather, I had a blast at the show, and I always love me a stocked green room fridge. And as a nice bonus, one of my old friends (who I hadn't seen in years) came out and it was great to catch up with her!

Although now that I feel better, I don't really have an excuse to shovel soy ice cream into my face while watching Intervention episodes with my cat. Bummer.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


I have returned from Nicaragua!  There is so much to say about the trip (and I will when I A. get my taxes done, B. recover from this nasty cold that I picked up on the plane).  But, for now, here's a little video I made of my time there:

Monday, February 4, 2013

Nicaragua - Day 3

We woke up early and walked around town for a bit before stopping in a local cafe for a cup of coffee  After we were full of caffeine, we made our way over to the Revolution Museum.  If you'd like to know more about the revolution, I recommend this book.  Unfortunately, what U.S. residents are taught in history class is not exactly accurate, as we quickly learned.

When we entered the museum, we were quickly assigned a tour guide.  The museum doesn't give tours in English, so we both had to work hard to understand our guide.  I'm sure we missed a good portion of what he said, but we soon realized just how personal the revolution was to him.  In fact, his brother, who had been a university professor, left his teaching position to join the fight.  He was later killed on the rooftop of a building within eyesight of the museum.

Our guide walked us through the various rooms of the museum, taking time to explain in great detail all of leaders and events in the struggle.  At several points during our personalized tour, he pulled out various magazine and newspaper clippings about the revolution that he had saved over the years.  Overall, our tour lasted over two hours.  I was so thankful that he took the time to explain everything to us, and that he was patient with our Spanish comprehension skills (which rival those of a two-year-old).

After we returned from the museum, we were fairly exhausted.  So we spent some time taking advantage of our hostel's hammocks.

Looks like we weren't the only ones who were tired out.

We then enjoyed mojitos and met some new friends: Mario, a sassy and witty man from Guatemala who speaks English with a British accent and spent the last several years traveling the world, and Tor, a sweet and reserved guy from Norway who moved to Nicaragua to learn Spanish and ended up falling in love, starting a family there and working as a bartender at the hostel.  We giggled into the wee hours of the morning and discussed everything from surfing to politics to electronic music videos.

It's nights like these that make me fall in love with travel over and over again.  I adore meeting new people and learning about their lives and journeys. 

Of course, having a strong drink in hand quite endears the experience to me as well.  

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Nicaragua - Day 2

We woke up and took advantage of the hotel's free breakfast.  I was so excited for our trip that I barely slept (despite being up for nearly 24 hours) as my under-eye bags indicate.

At breakfast, we met a few fellow Americans who lived in Leon, and they gave us some great tips for how to get there as cheaply as possible.  We ended up taking a cab to the UCA bus station where we picked up a microbus to Leon (I believe we paid less than $2.00 per ticket). 

We arrived in Leon and took a cab to our hostel.  Our cab driver was quite the character.  He drove like a maniac and tore through the cobblestone streets like a bat out of hell.  He couldn't find our hostel, so he threw a coin at a man hanging out on a street corner (the said man then quickly pointed us in the right direction).  Thankfully, that's not how he handled our change when we paid him.

When we arrived at the Latina Hostal, we were greeted by Aleska, who worked the front desk.  She couldn't be sweeter and quickly showed us our room and gave us a tour.  We also had the pleasure of meeting Chela, the dog who lived at the hostel.  Our room wasn't fancy, but the bed was comfortable and the bathroom (which we had to ourselves) was close by.

The bathroom didn't have hot water, but since the weather was in the 90's everyday, the cold water was actually quite refreshing. 

Our first order of business was to check out the sites of Leon and hit up the city's vegetarian restaurant, Cocinarte.  So we walked around for several hours, worked up quite an appetite and then chowed down on some amazing vegan curry.

I was intrigued by the revolution monument (the one that features the red and black FSLN flag), and I look forward to learning more when we take our tour of the revolution museum. 

In the evening, we met Alejandro, who works maintenance at the hostel.  We ended up sitting in the courtyard chatting for hours in Spanish.  We missed a lot of what he said, but the fact that he could understand us when I spoke back made me feel quite pleased (and that my time pouring over my google translator was worth it).

A major portion of our conversation revolved around what happens when one consumes too much alcohol.  Perhaps this is why we understood each other.  After all, acting our vomiting is probably quite universal.

Nicaragua - Day 1

Right after my show in Michigan's upper peninsula, I rushed home (okay, fine, I went to the buffet to take advantage of the free food first) to make my flight to Managua, Nicaragua.

We got the tickets for free (praise be to the holiness that is a frequent flier mile) and enjoyed two fairly painless flights there (the first was from Detroit - Fort Lauderdale, and the second from Fort Lauderdale to Managua), thanks in part to having Bud Light on the plane.

Happy that we crammed all our stuff in carry-on luggage and didn't have to pay fees!

Once we arrived, we made it quickly through customs and headed to our hotel (which was conveniently located right across the street). 

Since it was 3 am by the time we arrived, I took advantage of what would be my last hot shower for the week (more on that later) and quickly crashed.  What a wild first night!