Archive for the ‘Birmingham’ Category

TCR Tragedy.

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

After heading out to Barber on Saturday, I skipped over to the Zamora temple to watch the Tragic City Rollers take on the Columbia Quad Squad. Unfortunately for the home team, Columbia was at the top of their game. So here we go…

One of the more interesting sights hit me during the warm ups… Columbia’s Chris Tease seemed to be the only one in white shorts, and had a message for anyone behind here. I still don’t know who is being referenced with FREE ROY.


Quickly, enough, it was time for the team introductions, and I lost all thoughts of Roy when TCR’s Divine Intervention came rolling out. Apparently, I’ve become a fan of hers.

Divine....wouldn't you say?

And then….it was time for the bout to begin. Here’s the first jam just underway at the whistle.


Columbia’s Crystal Cutt makes her way up through the pack…

Cutting through...

Electra-Block Therapy (immediate foreground) managed to skate past, and I wound up with Crystal Cutt essentially in my lap.


Columbia’s Beastie ‘B’ finds out that if you don’t like concrete, you shouldn’t get into derby…


Don’t try any funny stuff while Sweet TNT is watching…

So sweet.....

Divine Intervention leaves Columbia’s Mel Anoma in her dust…


Make your own caption for the next pic:

Fly, little buddy....

Columbia’s Pitbull takes a dive over the top, as her teammate Roy G. Biv leads the way in sliding across the floor…

Over the top...

Crystal Cutt and TCR’s Dixie Thrash share a moment on the floor…

An intimate moment...

The lovely Divine takes a fall. :(

A sad sight...

Psycho B gets the lead jammer spot…

Leading the way...

It’s great that after the two teams beat up on each other, when it;s all over, they’re still friends.

There's an obvious joke here, and I hope you don't make it..

Christopher Davis from View Of The City gets the best interview he possibly could- the lovely Divine Intervention and her mom! Christopher even teased mum about her screaming talents…which caused Divine to step out of frame to avoid getting her eardrums hurt. :)

Mom's talented...

And one parting shot. I won’t tell you what they were talking about. It’s more fun that way.

What the?

It was a fun night…and if you haven’t gone to see TCR, you should!

Lots O’ Ham Ahead….

Friday, May 21st, 2010

If you’re in the greater Birmingham megalopolis this weekend, there’s lots on tap. First, the events that started today, and continue all weekend:

      Imagicon is on at The McWane Center, Old Car Heaven, and a few other locations. It’s a sci-fi and fantasy con featuring performances, parties, and workshops on a variety of things ranging from anime to costuming to…..hard science! I hope to drop by to gawk at the guys dressed as Lord Vader, who are passing out form the high heat we’re expecting this weekend.

That’s hardly everything this weekend, though….

      Saturday night after barber I hope to stop by to see the Tragic City Rollers take on the Columbia Quad Squad. It’s been a while since I went to a roller derby bout, and hopefully, this time I won’t arrive an hour late like I did last time.

So…if you’re not in the ‘Ham this weekend, you should be!

The Lessons of Do Dah Day.

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Sorry these pics are a bit late. It’s been a busy week. Last Saturday, my dear friend Kate (whom I hadn’t seen in far too long) came into town, and we went to one of the silliest-named fests ever, Do Dah Day. It’s actually a very good fest, as it raises money for The Greater Birmingham Humane Society. Unfortunately, there were some things going on that weren’t entirely humane to the dogs or the humans. Let’s get started with the nine lessons of Do Dah Day.

First, a human being makes excellent furniture for a large dog. Don’t try to fight it. The dog will win.

Human Furniture

Second, dogs have two expressions – overwhelming joy, and nothing at all. Even with an arm in the way, I think you can guess which one this is.

Happy happy joy joy!

Third, you should never dress your dog like a hot dog. Even they know it’s not clever at all.

Hot more ways than one.

Fourth, you should also never dress your dog like a hooker. It was really disturbing that there were two dogs in the same outfit. This is horribly humiliating for them on at least two levels.

Hooker hound.

Fifth, don’t show off canine cremation urns when the bowsers are about. They get really creeped out by it….

Canine cremation urn.

Sixth, it’s for drinking, not for swimming.

Drink or swim...

Seventh, never get the same hairdo as your dog – especially if it looks better on the dog.

Dog 'do...

Eighth, one-eyed chihuahuas can be every bit as creepy as two-eyed chihuahuas.

The curse of the one-eyed chihuahua...

And finally, dog spit is good for the skin. Just let ‘em at it.

Spittle spa.

If you’re ever in town on Do Dah Day, definitely stop by. The music is good, the people are good, and of course the dogs are good. In fact, they’re some of my favourite people.

Dueling demonstrations.

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

I’m a couple of days late with this, but it’s been a couple of busy/eventful days.

Tuesday morning, I was out having a coffee and reading, when I ran into my friend Rev. Jack Zylman. He mentioned he was there for a Birmingham Peace Project event, so I followed him over. A group of BPP folks were there to welcome marchers headed north to draw attention to the plight of the poor.

Peace Project

A photographer from the competiton showed up, and interviewed Jack….but there’s something else happening in the background….

Jack Interview

On another street corner, PETA had nearly naked women in a shower, to promote a vegtarian lifestyle…

Dueling demonstrations!

Fortunately, I have a good lens. Here’s a closer look.

Nearly naked PETA ladies

I was going to head over to get some shots of the showering ladies, but things got interesting on our corner. A city worker showed up and asked if Peace Project had a permit for a protest. They explained it wasn’t a protest, but they were merely gathering to wait for the marchers. He seemed satisfied with that, and asked only that people spread out so they didn’t block the sidewalk.

Do you have a permit?

Shortly after we fanned out, we saw smoke coming for a drain grate in the sidewalk. A fire truck rolled up shortly after, but first turned to go toward the PETA folks (wouldn’t you?). Eventually, they came over and inspected the drain. A fire extinguisher solved the problem.

White smoke...they've elected a new Pope

Our next visitor was a guy with a bag of burgers. He apparently showed up to offer them to the PETA folks. (It was at least his second PETA event. Last time around, he offered them fried chicken.) Of cours,e the peta folks refused- bt there were some hungry non-vegetarians in Peace Project. Here, he’s trying to get rid of his last burger.

Free burger...

I finally decided to go across and visit with the ladies. I noticed they had a visitor, as well. Apparently, this police officer’s only job is to videotape demonstrations such as this.

Camera cop

It turns out, my timing was bad. Just as I arrived, the ladies were suiting up (note the robes inside the shower) to break down and leave.

Shower's over

BTW, the PETA folks were really nice people. I never did catch the name of the following lass, but we chatted for a bit, and I found she’d been at the previous PETA event in Birmingham. Maybe we’ll meet again. Either way, it’s very rare that on my second meeting with a young lass, we part ways with her in a bathrobe. Gotta fix that.

Rolling up to go...

And this is free? Yes, please!

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Tabla and sitar and sarangi, oh my! Tonight, the Birmingham Museum of Art host a free concert of Indian music- and even threw in some good Indian snacks (provided by Taj India) during intermission. This is the sort of thing I love to attend: events that show there is culture in Alabama.

The initial bill was Pandit Ramesh Mishra, Pandit Joydeep Ghosh, and Pandit Subhen Chatterjee. Unfortunately, the volcanic ash cloud over Europe stranded Pt. Ghosh and Pt. Chatterjee at an airport in Germany. Fortunately, that meant they were replaced with five awesome Indian musicians, all residing here in the metro. Culture AND local talent? They could charge for this….

First up, an awesome father & son act…


Next up, an equally talented local trio. I didn’t manage to get them all in one shot.



Finally, the man we’d all been waiting for…and he was brilliant!


Number one son also got to play with Pt. Mishra. Dad apologized in advance for his tabla skills. Nothing to worry about- your boy did just fine! Pt. Mishra seemed very happy with his new-found precussionist.


All of the locals seemed to be apologetic for the quality of their playing (especially in the presence of a talent such as Pt. Mishra), but I’d be happy to have them play for me any day. Well done, guys!

Dragging Birmingham into the 20th century.

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

I just watched a local news anchor interviewing a guy about what Twitter is. Yikes. It’s been huge for a good long time now. How can one not be at least mildly familiar with it by now? I even see Twitter’s popularity fading a bit already. Once more, Birmingham brings you last decade’s news!

Overheard at J. Clyde…

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

“I want a Mary Poppins!” – Shana

Good people on the move.

Sunday, March 21st, 2010

I had a chance to stop by Good People Brewing Company (the name is no accident) on Saturday. I was there for a small, informal beer tasting to celebrate my friend Joseph’s birthday. The tasting turned out to be in two locations, as GPBC is on the move. This is the current brewery, below street level in Five Points South (complete with Free The Hops president Stuart Carter jokingly scolding Joseph):

No more snorting the yeast, young man....

We didn’t get past two beers before we went on the move to the future location of GPBC, which is down by Railroad Park. Note that it’s just slightly larger, and this picture doesn’t even take it all in.


Joseph found a tricycle, and took off with a sack full of world-class beers in tow.


He eventually came back, and we sampled the brews. We also got to try a beer GPBC hasn’t yet rolled out. Hopefully, you’ll get to try it soon. The move is in two weeks or so- and after that, I expect some really big things from the brewery. GPBC has blown away lots of people already, and it just keeps getting better.

The wearin’ of the green…or the black…or the red & blue…

Sunday, March 21st, 2010

The magic city finally got around to its St. Patrick’s day celebration on Saturday. Some folks might say the city was late, but I look at it a little bit differently. The city is trying to keep in the current tradition as it is in Ireland- in which you have a week of activities, including parades (more on that in a very short moment). Also, you can’t really blame organizers for waiting until the weekend. There probably wouldn’t be too much of a crowd mid-day on a weekday.

When I got to the parade, the first thing I saw was rather odd. I’m still not quite sure what Darth Vader and a bunch of Ghostbusters have to do with St. Paddy’s, but it was amusing to watch.

Vader and the gang pass on pizza...

My amusement faded quickly, when the metal cover in the following picture tossed me on my bum on the sidewalk. (Here, it’s still sitting at a cocky angle, celebrating its victory over me.) I’m fine, but my SLR and both lenses got scraped up. Darth Vader threw me an evil look, but that’s the only kind of look he has.

Evil!  Impolite and evil!

Oh yeah….I’m also not sure what Spiderman has to do with St. Patrick. :)

St. Spidey....

The Tragic City Rollers don’t really have much to do with St. Patrick’s day either…but I’m not going to argue too much on this one. :)

GOing green is kinda cute....

OK, so on to the more traditional stuff. You’ve gotta have pipers…

St. Paddy's pipers...

…and fiddlers…

Fiddlin' around...

…and dancers…

What goes up....

…and parrots. Wait. Parrots? Well, it is green- and that seems to be the only requirement.

St. Patrick was a parrot....

It was a fun time, with a little oddity. That’s just the way I like it.

Overheard at J. Clyde…

Friday, March 19th, 2010

“If you lick my face, I would owe you fried chicken and watermelon.” – Freddie

(Tonight, black-on-black comedy was the best kind. Guys, thanks for giving me some good belly laughs!)