Tags: pics

Snow White

Small World, Chapter Infinity

A few weeks ago, Joe and I took two rowdy Canadians to see the Adam Ezra Group…a couple of times. By the second event, we were exchanging hugs with the band like we’d known them for years and getting on each other’s Christmas Card lists. Their tour took them from DC down to Florida and Georgia. They swung back up north during their final leg on their way home to Boston, so Joe and I saw them again last night at 8×10 in Baltimore.

It was just like catching up with old buddies–we magically found a parking space and got to the venue early, so we shared hugs with Adam and caught up with Turtle on how Spring Break was and what had been going on in our lives since we’d last (and technically first) met. The news on my part was relatively mundane…I was in the middle of scribbling down my acknowledgments for Sunday, and I’d recently found out that somehow my dear friend Sherri also liked AEG, having discovered them completely separate from me. It’s always fun when that happens.

The set was fabulous, as usual…and though I was disappointed by how few people had shown up on a Thursday night, in a way it was like getting my own private showing. I chatted with complete strangers (they were at my private party, after all) and danced my heart out. The floor at 8×10 apparently has some kind of funky springs underneath it that my knees enjoyed. I sweated my butt off and totally didn’t care.

After their set (and after I stepped outside to cool off and let my hair dry a bit), Joe and I went down to the basement (just like the Basement Song) where the swag table was to chat with Adam and Josh and pick up a CD for Adam to sign to Sherri. I handed Adam the CD and the Sharpie and we talked about my friend who’s this big paranormal romance author, and I spelled her name out, and he signed the cover…and then as soon as he finishes, something in his brain clicked. “Who is this for again? Her full name?”

“Sherrilyn Kenyon,” I said.

“Holy shit! How do you know her?”

“I lived in Nashville for almost 12 years. She’s one of my best friends. I wrote the Companion for her Dark-Hunter series. Wait…how do you know her?”

“Last year we got a call from our publicist telling us she was going to use our song ‘Kill Like This’ for one of her book trailers. Was it…Infinity?”

“Yes! Infinity! The young adult book! Holy crap, I had no idea! When I see her at the end of the month, I’m  going to ask her exactly how she and I both fell in love with the same band at the same time. Crazy, right?”

Adam took the CD he had just signed and threw it away. He grabbed another one off the table, opened the shrink wrap, and began to write a small novel that included at least as many expletives as it did exclamation points. I laughed as I read over his shoulder. “Okay, here,” he said when he was done, “and give her this too.” He gave me a huge hug. “Maybe we’ll get to meet her in person some day.”

“I’m sure you will,” I said.

Adam looked at me for a long moment and shook his head. “God, it’s a small world, isn’t it?”

I agreed. “I guess we were all just destined to meet each other at some point.”

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If you haven’t discovered The Adam Ezra Group yet, now’s your chance. They have quite a few more tour dates on their schedule, and since they’re still sort of “underground” at the moment, the venues are still intimate.

If you’re looking up songs to check out on YouTube, I recommend “Half a Hero” because it’s fun to dance to (and should have been on the Kickass soundtrack), “Another Sunshine” because of it’s brilliantly connected lyrics, “Vision” (also fun to dance to), and “Scandal”, which totally belongs on the TV show “Justified.”

Also, if you have five free seconds and are so inclined, click over to the FedEx Underground Music Series site and “become a fan” of Adam Ezra Group — they’re in the running to win a trip to Memphis and a recording contract…and they actually have a shot. Do your part — support indie artists!

And for the Dark-Hunter fans who might have missed it (like me), here’s the Infinity trailer from last May, featuring AEG’s song “Kill Like This.” This is a great example of a successful book trailer — makes me want to go right out and buy the book again. It also holds a special place in my heart for the guy who shows up 19 seconds in. Some of you know him as Bubba, or Evyl Ed. I know him as the only man with a will strong enough to constantly challenge me on Words With Friends, even if I do win 98% of the time. (Love you, Eddie! xox)

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

Snow White

Blossoms & BBQ

We had a great time with Dickie & Mandy last night. The arrived around 3pm, thus forcing me to stop cleaning and have fun. (Hooray!) We chatted for a while with refreshment, discussing what to do before our 9pm reservations at Hill Country (and the sekrit Adam Ezra performance). Nobody seened to care, so when Joe asked for my vote I didn’t hesitate in recommending Georgetown.

It was the most beautiful day we had all year. 75 degrees with a breeze and fantastic. Traffic wasn’t even that bad. We walked down by the water, back up M street past the crazy line for DC Cupcakes, and then back down to the water again for more refreshment.

There aren’t any leaves on the trees yet, but some of the blossoms are blooming. The Potomac was filled with rowing teams and private crafts and port authority skiffs. The sunset was lovely, and the full moon rose big in the east. And right around 7:30, we headed into the city to find parking before the show. We found a huge garage only three blocks from the restaurant with no problem. There was a huge line at the restaurant…thank goodness for reservations! They let us in early, and gave us choice seating downstairs, right in front of the stage (and the speakers).

It was an amazing show. The food was finger-licking good. Sitting next to the speakers turned out to be a great thing, since many people still felt pressed to try and converse over the music. The band played in three sets with breaks in between, which was awesome, because then there was an opportunity to go check out the swag table and visit the restroom without feeling rude.

The room being what it was, the band just hopped off the stage and came out to mingle with the crowd. I coerced Joe into buying me a shirt (who denies a princess?). He gave me $20 and let me go check out the swag. So I’m looking at the t-shirts, deciding which one I want, and the guy next to me turns aorund and says, “Hey, how are you doing?” And it’s Adam.

“Hey! Thank you SO much for being here,” I started to say.

At which point he just gave me a huge hug. YES, I was a starry-eyes fan girl. Still am. Not ashamed one bit.

I explained to Adam that we’d tried to see him twice before when he came to the area and missed it for one reason or another. And we almost missed him THIS time, since he’s playing in Virginia tomorrow — which we found out about a week after we bought the Enter the Haggis tickets. (The show’s late, though, and close to the house, so we still might try and stop by.) I introduced him to Joe, bought my shirt and had it signed by everyone. All the guys are great. Mandy & Dickie got some CDs and had them signed too. It’s just really hard not to love this band. Especially since their songs are amazing.

For the very last song of the night, Adam and the boys went unplugged and came out into the almost-empty restaurant. Adam sat on a table with his guitar; Turtle grabbed a chair and used the table top like his bongos. And we all sang–of all songs–John Denver’s “Country Roads.”

Mom and Dad probably don’t realize I remember this, but back in Vermont, when I was about four or five, we went to some event where everyone was welcome to sing along. Mom passed around typed pages with all of the song lyrics (which I could read, of course). My favorite song was “Country Roads.” Apart from all those British baby songs my grandmother taught us, “Country Roads” was the very first song I learned how to sing. It still has a special place in my heart. And never before have I seen a band EVER play it live.

You couldn’t have written a more perfect day. It’s the first time Mandy’s ever been to the states, and I was so glad we could show her a great time. I didn’t even mind driving back home through downtown DC. (The princess is always the designated driver.)

I did mind, however, that the parking garage was closed.

We walked around the block until we found a call box, which Joe used to exchange harsh words with some guy who hung up on him twice before calling us a cab from Falls Church. (Cabbies in metro DC have no idea where Ashburn is.) The verdict? We wouldn’t be able to get the car until 7am, and we had no desire to hang out in downtown DC for six more hours. So we took the cab home. Ugh. (That offer to write a story for someone for $80 is still on the table…just drop me a line.)

It’s always an adventure with me. But it was still an amazing night. And now I’m going to take a nice, long, hot shower and get ready for another one.

What are you all doing this weekend?

(Click on the pictures to see the rest of the “DC with Dickie & Mandy” album. More pics from today & tonight forthcoming…)

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

Snow White

Caption Winner

Last week I posted a picture of my parents from Xmas for a Caption This Photo Contest. Thanks to all you joksters who jumped in with your two pennies…you guys are a laugh riot!

My all-around favorite caption, of course, came from my sister…it was sort of a play on the dead baby jokes she and my brother collect. But I try to keep this blog PG-13 and fist-fight free, so it’s exempt from the running. (Plus, it’s MY SISTER. It shouldn’t count.)

Check them out if you need a chuckle this morning — there were the requisite fart jokes, some that crossed the border into morbid and disgusting, and one that was even a sort-of play on AlphaOops ( total points for originality, Robert B!). The ones about sock monkeys and tiaras also get cool points for being…well…cool.

It was a tough decision, but I think my favorite posted on the blog was from Bracken:

“Hey Uncle Fred, do you know what happened to the can with Grangran’s ashes? I thought I left it next to to instant cider mix.”

Thanks, Bracken! I’ll email you today and get your info so I can send you a copy of Dark Faith! Congrats!

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

Snow White

Caption Me!

In catching up on things that never got finished during the holidays, I was going through some Christmas photos and came across this:

It just begs for a caption contest, doesn’t it? Give me your best shot — post your best caption (or captions) for this in the comments on my website (let’s say…by Valentine’s Day), and I’ll send a copy of the Dark Faith anthology to the one that makes me laugh the most.

I rarely post these caption-needy pics like this — the last one I put up was the famous John & Krissy Scalzi pic from Penguicon in 2009. They are a lot of fun, aren’t they? I really should do these more often!

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

Snow White

The Year of the Rabbit

My thanks to Timothy Bradley, who posted this link on Facebook for me. How can you go wrong with a bunny in a cape and tiara? This is going to be a fantastic year for everyone!

(Okay…I can’t seem to get the embedded player to work. Click here to watch: The Year of the Princess Rabbit)

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If you’re in the mood for more Eastern Rabbit mythology, check out my poem “The Rabbit in the Moon” at Everyday Weirdness.

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And please — keep the Princess Bunny photos coming. I’m totally getting a kick out of them. (Secretly, I’m hoping Leanna sends over some pictures of Persebunny!)

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

Snow White

One Spectacular Birthday

When Leanna and I first came up with this crazy idea on the streets of New York City, it sounded silly. Sure, I could ask a bunch of my friends to wear tiaras on my birthday…but would they? Was this going to be the dumbest idea in the history of ideas? Was I going to regret my 1-11-11 birthday for the rest of my life? What kind of disaster had I set myself up for?

But once the idea was out there, I didn’t have time to change my mind. Christmas happened, and then FGB’s family Christmas, and then New Year’s, and then Greek Christmas, and then suddenly I was in Florida and it was my father’s birthday and we were eating lobsters at the table and they were begging me to open my birthday presents. The plane landed back in DC a little over 24-hours before the 1-11-11 deadline, and I was too worn out to care if the dynamite I’d lit blew up or not.

The fireworks started to sizzle the night of the 10th, as my birthday rolled around to Australia and India…and then it exploded.

At last count, before Facebook gave up, over 350 people had posted on my wall. There are 136 (and counting) photos in the Tiara Birthday Spectacular Album, and I’m still hunting them down all over the internet. (If you don’t see yours there, please email me!) I spent hours yesterday and today putting the album together. It is nothing short of amazing. There are people of all ages and sexes, in person, animated, or photoshopped. There are animals, both real and not real, from dogs and cats to lizards and bunnies (and those are all live). There are people I’ve known for years and people I’ve only met online. There are family members and there are complete strangers…but they all have one thing in common: I love them all. And every single one of them — to a person and animal — unique and spectacular.

I’ve also realized that 1.) it takes a real man to wear a tiara, 2.) my friends are incredibly inventive and original, Q.) they have some gorgeous tiaras and 82.) I don’t have a pink feather boa. Apparently, when one owns a tiara, one often owns a pink feather boa as well. Who knew?

I’m going to go ahead and chalk up this birthday as a win. I hope you all had half as much fun as I did yesterday. And thank you, all of you, so very very much, from the bottom of my Royal Heart. xox

(Click the princess to enter the Tiara Birthday Spectacular Album!)

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.