1) Mediocre pancakes: The jury isn’t out on Chelsea Royal Diner in Brattleboro, VT. We did make the tactical error of getting the “whole wheat” pancakes with blueberries and real maple syrup. So the results weren’t what they should’ve been. Last week’s pancake pursuit, Elmer’s Store in Ashfield, MA, was so good that we’re going to go again.
2) Janelle Monae is Prince, David Byrne, a host of other iconic frontmen and women of their time. I saw her at a crappy college show in a gymnasium plagued by silly sound. She spent twenty minutes painting a painting of a woman’s backside during a song (*A thing, apparently. Super funny in this case). I felt mixed about the album (talented, but too shaggy), the idea of a college show wasn’t appealing, but man, it was so worth it. She killed it, and all the kids ended up dancing by the end. Really one of the best shows I’ve seen this year - and I’m sure she’d say it was one of her worst shows! It was so fun.
3) The “Elaine Benes” style trickles down to mall stores so that 18-year-old college girls in September all look like Kelly Kapowski. 90s ahoy! And drunk 18-year-olds in September have some signature moves: enter into the gymnasium with hands and arms up in the air, hips gyrating, and squealing like it’s so amazing to have run into people in your college at a college event. Totally amusing to watch on an anthropological level, and I felt very thankful for the self-confidence that comes with age.
4) Eli “Paperboy” Reed opened for Janelle Monae, and he’s a neo-soul type that’s impossible to not make fun of. Particularly since he lacks charisma and doesn’t come off like someone who’s ever had sex before. And there was one song called “Explosion,” a single entendre of a song, where he mutters, at one point, “all over your FACE!” We slouched in the bleachers for his set.
5) Had an Adrien Brody sighting at his mom’s photography opening upstate. He was pretty chilled out, and it was sort of endearing to see him in good son mode.
6) Saw a writer I love, Nick Flynn, read inside a church in Vermont. Have you read Another Bullshit Night in Suck City? You should, if you haven’t. It will change you.
7) Reacquainted myself with a piece of Vermont paradise, the town of Brattleboro, which is like my personal vision of the Gilmore Girls’ Stars Hollow. It was nice to go to the great coffeeshop and drink maple syrup lattes and perfect carrot cake.