After we got the basement completed, we were able to rearrange furniture in such a way that our turntable now has a place in the living room. Among Brendan’s 45 collection is a set of 80s singles that includes Nena, Men Without Hats, DEVO and Weird Al. And then there are the Motown singles. It’s awesome. Our LP collection is a bit of a mish-mash including records I saved from my Dad’s purge several years ago, Beatles albums I purchased at thrift stores and other miscellany. Powering the turntable is my old stereo from college. Which also gives us a place to play actual CDs and TAPES! I think I have more nostalgia for tapes these days than I do for my records.
My dad had this one tape titled – 90 Minutes of Good Music. It was a mix compiled of tracks he had taped from records including Jimmy Buffet, James Taylor, CCNY and others. At one point I had it in my possession but since it was one of his favorites, I had to give it back. I did though, in 1998, make a copy of what were my favorites of his favorites. And today, I found it! I don’t know if Dad still has his copy of the tape (probably not) and I don’t recall exactly what all was on it anyway. But at least part of it survives.
There’s also a pile of CD mixes that have been just sitting on the shelf. Since our cars both have a hook in for the iPod, we rarely use them anymore. It’s like a little time warp, really. What songs was I obsessed with in 2002, 2003, 2004?
I’m dorkily excited about all of it. Of course, there’s no way that we’ll be getting out the entire CD collection again (it has all been digitized afterall), but I like the idea of curating a little selection.
We have been pretty darn busy over the past month.
We took the kids to see The Muppets just after Thanksgiving. Bridget really loved it (and so did Brendan and I), and now we’re watching The Muppet Show! thanks to Netflix. Johnny would have made it through the whole movie quite nicely had the previews not gone on so long. He loved Ms. Piggy and her karate chops.
We went to a fancy holiday party at the National American History Museum. It was pretty awesome. Saw the Jefferson Bible and Brendan totally geeked out. The next morning we were (some of us more than others) reminded that we are not in our 20s anymore.
We did a little bit of decorating, but not too much until…
The basement got finished! Brendan and I put in a lot of time putting up walls (him) and painting and painting (mostly me, but also him) and getting trim up (him). And still more painting. Carpet was ordered and installed just in time…
.. for the MuskoX-mas celebration at our house. And though I mis-read the directions on how long the ham would take to heat up, it was still very successful.
Now we just have some final preparations for Christmas. I think our artificial tree looks pretty darn good.
Last Sunday, Brendan and I and some friends went to the Gold Cup matches at RFK. First was USA vs Jamaica; second was El Salvador vs Panama. We had some seriously awesome seats. Row 9. Between midfield and the 18.
We planned to arrive at Lot 8 at about noon to tailgate, pickup our tickets and relax prior to the 3pm start. By the time we got to the entrance from 395, the police had blocked it off. That meant we had to cross the river, take 295, cross back over the river, go in the Benning Road entrance, call my brother who has experience getting to Lot 8 from Maryland (for DC United matches), go around RFK and finally make it to Lot 8 (it’s the best for tailgating).
The party was in full gear.
Tickets were sold out, and of the 45,000 fans that filled RFK, the vast majority – it felt like 40,000 – were Salvadoran fans. They know how to have a good time. It was a sea of blue. After grilling and hanging out we made our way into the stadium and to our (did I mention they were awesome) seats.
We’ve been to a lot of matches, but I think it was the closest we have been. It was a really great time. A lot of cheering and yelling and bouncing. At half time, Brendan went to get some beverages and came back with a photo of himself and Stu Holden. JEALOUS!
It was really great to see the US put in such a quality (and hard) effort for the full 90 minutes.
We were having so much fun, we decided to stick around for part of the second match. As a good portion of US fans departed the lower bowl, Salvadoran fans filled in. The stadium erupted as they sang their national anthem. It was really moving.
In the end, we stayed for most of the first half, but decided that we should leave early as it’d be a crazy scene either way. If El Salvador won it’d be jubilant and if they lost (as it turned out they did lose in PKs) still a crush.
As we drove down the access road to 395, it became clear as to why they had closed the entrance. There were cars parked along the sides everywhere, and in every direction. Clearly, had we stayed, it would have been quite a mess trying to get out. We made it home in time to watch extra time and the penalty kicks.
Needless to say, it was awesome. (Salvadorans know how to party!)