Friday, October 31, 2008

Strange Times

I went to an Of Montreal show here in Copenhagen last week. While there were some technical difficulties and the band was clearly tired, they put on a great show. I had never seen them before, and it was a pretty interesting experience. After the show ended, I got to meet a couple of the guys out front. They were just hanging out among the crowd as people exited the (shitty) venue, smoking cigs and talking to each other. Strangely, almost nobody from the audience approached them. I went up to them and chatted for a bit. They told me about their long European tour (that night was apparently their last) and gave me a setlist. Nice guys. I asked them if they thought Obama had a chance of carrying Georgia, where the band is from. They didn't think so.

Since then I had been studying for an exam that took place yesterday. I've been taking a class on plant genomics (fascinating, I know), and it has now ended. Exams in Denmark are remarkably less stressful than back home. This is mostly because they are open book, open notes. I couldn't believe it when they told us that, but apparently that's the norm here. No wonder everyone is so happy.

This weekend I am going to Amsterdam to visit some friends and attend a hip-hop festival called Rock the Bells. This usually only happens in California, but it has gotten so popular in the last couple of years that they added a European segment to it. Last year I saw Rage Against the Machine, Wu Tang Clan, Public Enemy, and many others at this festival in San Fransisco, and this year's lineup is just as good. The main acts that played in the states were A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Nas, Mos Def, and The Pharcyde. Tons of other acts played too, including a new favorite of mine, The Cool Kids. Unfortunately, the European tour is a lot smaller. Tribe isn't going to be there on Saturday, but De La, Mos Def, Nas, and Pharcyde will.

I've been looking forward to this for months and months, but a couple of days ago it was announced that Sterling, the cheapo Danish airline, was declaring bankruptcy. Apparently the largest investor was some Icelandic guy, and the financial crisis forced him to pull out. My ride to Amsterdam suddenly didn't exist anymore, and I thought I was SOL. I went as far as to tell my friend in the Dam to return my ticket or try to sell it. Luckily for me, some last-minute heroics by my little sister saved my weekend. She bought me a plane ticket on a much more stable airline, which will count for my birthday present (and Christmas, and my next birthday...). Thanks sis. In return she will be getting an awesome hockey-related birthday present very soon.

As for the election, I am getting quite giddy. With mere days left, things couldn't be looking better for my guy. The tightening in the polls that happens nearly every election during the last few weeks doesn't seem to be happening, and Obama is widening the battlefield every day. McCain is playing defense in places no self-respecting Republican should be playing defense. Even Arizona might be up for grabs. Talk about an embarassment. The McCain campaign is more uncoordinated than ever, and many people on both sides of the spectrum are already looking at 2012. My focus as of late has been on the Congressional races. Top dog conservatives are in serious trouble all over the place. This could be the end of the Republican era for decades to come. Good riddence. Maybe this will help the Republicans understand that having a party where almost all of the leadership consists of old white men isn't the best way to appeal to an increasing-diverse America. Maybe people like Bobby Jindal will step up and transform them. Or they will hand the keys to Sarah Palin and we can all sit back and watch the party self destruct. We can only hope.

No comments: