back to the basics

August 2, 2007

what’s up! i’ve spent the last four days basically hanging out with yellowcard during their stay here in melbourne. on sunday we went to the footy (to see a rather insipid essendon somehow get up against the crows) then into melbourne central for an old-timey steak dinner. on monday night, i met the guys at their hotel, we grabbed dinner in hardware lane at some italian place before heading to pugg’s for some fiercly competitive buck hunter and more than a few james squire golden ales. am i their best customer or what? i hold annual events there and have taken celebrities there the last two times they have been in the country. i should be earning some kind of commission. last night was the gig itself; rhys and i met ryan mendez at the metro, bought coopers longnecks and got some dumplings in chinatown. we headed back to the venue – but not before more beers – got our tickets sorted, then got a surprisingly warm reception from the band members backstage. we watched the gig from the side of the stage, drinking the coronas that the band didn’t want.


this photo was literally taken during one of their songs. after the gig, we went back to the band’s hotel and chilled in the lobby, again drinking their beers on account of the bar was closed already. if the staff cared, they didn’t seem to mind. we talked and laughed for about an hour before heading down the street to an amazingly seedy strip club. i guess we were being led by these few girls that singer ryan had met. we stayed there for many hours, getting more and more and more drunk until about 3am when somebody made the executive decision that it was time to leave. rhys, my brother and i were all so drunk that none of us can even remember saying goodbye to the guys in the band, let alone mendez himself – a sure sign of a successful night.

on paper, it was basically the best day ever for me: reading books, seeing movies, drinking nice beers, eating cheap asian food, hanging out with my good friend rhys and a guy who i have huge respect for in ryan mendez, free entry and backstage access to the gig, and literally millions of beers afterwards. the only downside to the past four days is the hit my bank account has taken.


we talked about all kinds of things; mostly bagging out bands like good charlotte and fall out boy, of course, but i like to think there was a little bit of substance in there too. i’m not so sure i could handle that kind of life, though. there’s just too much culture i want to experience here in melbourne, such as the film festival, for instance, and the guggenheim exhibition. if i was in a touring band, i would never have the time or the means to do things like that. it’s glamorous to a point; a band is forced to eat, sleep, travel and hang out together, and without fanboys like myself to entertain them in exotic foreign places, i can imagine things would actually get kinda lonely. i mean i’m 21 and i’m already saying i couldn’t do it; these guys have been going non-stop for the last ten years. i can’t imagine not being able to just stay home some nights and read a book or chat on the phone or watch some mindless tv.

before heading to the gig, rhys and i took the opportunity to see this awesome documentary at the film festival. the cats of mirikitani is the story of jimmy, a homeless artist from new york city, and his drawings. this guy is incredible; his art, while not technically outstanding, is so unique and authentic, and created with such passion and care, i had an amazing respect for him from the moment he appeared on screen. he suffers from none of the popular misconceptions of homeless people either; this is a guy who would probably afford a place to live, but doesn’t – someone who could sell his art for modest sums of money, but doesn’t. he wants for nothing from the outside world. a true philanthropist, and despite being mistreated or simply ignored for most of his life, nothing makes jimmy happier than to create his art and share it with the world.

this is a seriously heartwarming movie; if you can manage to see it at the film fest i would definitely recommend it, because i’m not sure if the opportunity will ever come up again in this country.

i’m going to sign off now; as you might expect, i have the worst hangover ever and i can’t see it letting up. i’m going to go make myself a cup of white tea and try to read some pop philosophy and think about how awesome my week has been so far. i had made copies of the veronicas, blueline medic and the vasco era for mendez, as well as a copy of kenny, but in the midst of the madness i forgot to give them to him.

take care.


4 Responses to “back to the basics”

  1. Louize said

    im jealous
    you know it.

  2. lea said

    haha yellowcard.

    and they made you miss hanging out with me!!

    stupid yellowcard. stealin’ my friends.

    that is all.

    until next week. xo :)

  3. ricie said

    why are the band photos in black and white? tell your brother to embrace colour, it’s a scary world i know, but a vibrant one.

    i really wanted to see the mirikitani doco. dammit. and i missed Teeth tonight because my stupid mother had to come home tonight.

    and why are you reading alain de botton? don’t you have 250 pages of hemingway to get through? I’m half way through the vonnegut! hurry up i’m waiting to start norwegian wood! (and when did you buy that alain de botton anyway? oh wait, now i remember. and he’s too smart for it to be deemed pop philosophy. pop philosophy is like…that “Blink” book. a step up from self help, but that’s about it. de botton wrote this travel book that i wanted to get on the 30% off but i missed the boat on that one)

    as if make copies of the veronicas for your celeb friend. as if try to lower his opinion of you. because that’s what giving people copies of the veronicas does. by proving that you have copies of the veronicas.

  4. Tanya said

    Hey Darren,

    Sounds like you’ve been having an awesome time. Didn’t end up going to Pensa’s but still managed a good night out xo

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