The Great Storm and a little punk at The Getaway

So I have mixed feelings on this past weekend. There was a big thunderstorm that knocked out power to my area for about 36 hours. It was also 90+ degrees and really humid out, so that just made for a fucking miserable Saturday with no air conditioning and no way to charge my phone/computer/iPad. Pretty much everything was affected by the outages, including the water company, and the cell towers nearby by my house. So I had no signal at and around my house and no internet.  I had no way to get information; it was like freaking 1990.

The cell tower issues remain as we speak, but thank gods I’ve got the internet back.

Streetlights were out all over and people were driving like madmen.  Down stoplight means a four-way stop, right? Doesn’t it??  The answer is…maybe, as long as someone behind you isn’t intent on barreling through the intersection at 50 mph. The egregious errors on the roads were many, and I can’t really get into it because it gets me so angry I might chuck this laptop through a window.

I stopped by the Wheaton Mall (all restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations were without power and closed in my neck of the woods) to cool off, get some food, shop for some stuff I didn’t need and hit up an ATM. All the former done, I set off to get some cash since I was going to a show that evening.  Now, the first ATM I went to was out of money.  So was the second.  I heard a disappointed man with his wife and kid in tow walking away from an empty ATM say, “the system is breaking down.”  He may have meant it as a joke but there was a tremor of fear in his voice.  I anticipate this is the shit all those dudes watching Walking Dead have been training for, and to be frank, they failed spectacularly.  It was a madhouse of desperation out there, and I was in want of nothing more than a smoothie. I will, however, be putting a wind-up generator with an in-built radio (like the one Frank used in 28 Days Later) to charge my electronics on my Christmas list.

So that was the bad.  On to the good.

Saturday evening I went out to my very first small, local punk show since getting back into the DC area.  I met my high-five fantastic friend Jess at The Getaway in Columbia Heights. It’s close to the metro and they make a mean Old Fashioned. The music space is upstairs (they have an elevator – more than I ever got in San Francisco) and the room is hefty in size.  Live shows are newly introduced at The Getaway, so the crowd was somewhat minimal.  The vaulted ceilings make for a bit of a diluted sound, but with a packed floor it would probably have made the show sound like it should, like it was in a basement in Petworth.  But with the extra space around every body, it was almost like it wasn’t loud enough, though the real issue was that it didn’t sound intimate enough.  Still, conditions didn’t detract from the objective quality of the music itself.

I came to see The Absurditiez, a fairly new band in the DC area (only their third show) playing a brand of punk that’s hard to classify.  They were super-tight for being in their nascent stages.  Their music was gruff, melodic and overall quite enjoyable.  The second band was called Black Checker.  My friend Jess described their sound as if Blink-182 and The Beatles had a love child. Not 100% sure if she meant that as a compliment, but I found their sound to be universally appealing.  This is the kind of band that teenagers getting into the punk scene could take their mothers to see and say “it’s really not that bad – see mom?”  The last band was called The Incorrigibles.  You’re just inclined to like a band called The Incorrigibles.  I didn’t hear too much of their set because I was already on my way to a new location, but they seemed more ska-ish than the first two bands.  I’ll check them out again in the future so I get a real feel for them.

So that was my 50/50 weekend.  I got power back Sunday morning, though my cell tower is still hit-or-miss.  We’ll see if my workplace isn’t a godless hellscape when I show up Monday, but I’d give my weekend an overall positive grade.

Hope your weekends were positive too, followers.

Yours in rock,


About ckstackhouse

Author of suspense books, creative consultant, blogger on culture and publishing.
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