...from the Road.
December 14
Cafe Diem, Ames IA
Getting There.
  Somehow driving anywhere in Iowa seems to take longer than it actually does.  That being said I think that we made pretty good time amongst all of the semis and 70 year old farmers driving 20 year old pick-up trucks... Who better than our nation's displaced family farm owners to remind us that driving isn't just about getting where you're going.

Travelling Music.
  Patty Griffin - Silver Bell
  Bill Mallonee - Fetal Position
  Hawksley Workman - (Last Night We Were) ...the Delicious Wolves
Encounters with the Police.
  Apparently the whole farmer's lesson didn't take because I got pulled over like an hour away from Cedar Falls.  I was going pretty fast.  After the policeman asked for all of the usual stuff (aka: driver's license, proof of insurance, where ya going?) he said the completely unexpected, "Ok sir, please get out of the car and follow me..."  I thought that he was going to make me walk the line or something but instead he had me get in the passenger side of his car while he checked out my stuff.  Needless to say, it was weird.
  After a while I asked him about it.  "Oh yeah", he said, "this is normally how we do things down here".  Later on that night I asked some Iowa natives about this situation and they swore that this has never happened to them... hmm, something doesn't quite add up here.  Anyway, he was nice enough, and I'm sure that Hamilton County is enjoying my fine money and the $27 worth of surcharges and court costs...

  Ah, McDonald's.  Someone's gotta support our nation's super corporations.
The Gig.
  Another gig where we were pretty much right on with each other musically; which is good because i basically played guitar like a sludgy drain pipe.  It's amazing how quickly motor skills will fall away if you don't keep up on your practicing.  Besides the usual standards, this gig came complete with spur of the moment renditions of Sherry's two sexual frustration songs (displaying her ability to get into character and write about feelings that she's never experienced I'm sure), "Piece of Ass" and "I Hate Girls".
The Iowa Factor.
  Maybe this is just Midwest rivalry but I swear that this is a real Iowa thing.  Most of the audience seemed to be truly enjoying the music (as confirmed by several people's comments afterwards) but not one person in the whole crowd ever clapped at the end of a song...  What's up with that?
My theory is this must be some strange Iowa culture thing, like how burping after a meal = my compliments to the chef in some countries.

Musician's Mathematics.
     folk music + Iowa = 0 clapping
     low-paying gig + speeding ticket = "financially non-viable"
     folk music = "financially non-viable
Coolest Moment.
  The exact moment when realization flashes over the first audience member to recognize our psychotic/melancholy rendition of Britney Spears' "Hit Me Baby" is always priceless.  At this gig, two of the stoic non-clappers actually shouted out!  God bless Madame Spears (and whoever really wrote that song).

Note to Self.
  Purchase and integrate a laugh track into the next Iowa show.

The Box Score.
  Despite the law enforcement set backs and the awkward absence of auditory audience feedback... good music (and Britney Spears) prevail again.
"i fear this love reaction... just like you said i would"