Wednesday, March 15, 2006

SxSW 2006: Day One and The Rock

So, the yearly disaster that is SxSW started on Monday, really. Last year was a beautiful accident, which I documented here, for anyone interested/willing to read. This year, I’ll be doing the meat of my daily journal-type-shit on Austinist because, quite frankly, I really enjoy it when all the anonymous dickhole commenters crawl out and say really ridiculous shit like “hey asshole, this writing is really stupid, plus you’re a dumb gay”. They’re so brilliantly witty, that it makes my clenched fists tighten yet further.

But the first two days so far, Monday and yesterday, I’m gonna fuckin’ write here because this is where I like to spill my guts to no one in particular. Into the void, one might say.

Plus, my hit count on this blog went abysmal since I’ve seized-up on posting here, so I feel totally comfortable with the resultant anonymity. The ten of you who read this won’t judge. Except you, mom. But you were always a hater, so we’re cool like that.

Let’s do this shit. Right? Right.

On Monday night I was a bit intimidated by the whole thought of doing what I did last year, again. It really is abusive to the system. Drowning useful lucidity with waves of liquor, for hours on end, only to eat some really awful food at four in the morning before drifting into a booze-hammered five-hour nap, for three…

-- Fucking cell phone. Man, I’ve been trying to type this for four hours now. FOUR HOURS and I’ve got FOUR measly paragraphs done, and there’s no fucking story yet. Phone. Keeps ringing. But I’ll stop answering. Fucking cell phone. --

So Monday was the Consumating party. If you’ve never heard of Consumating, that would be because it’s fairly new and is overshadowed something serious by the myspace disease. That, and it’s been a word-of-mouth sorta viral marketing campaign to date. Like, links on blogs (ahem, even lame blogs). Ben Brown, ½ of the Consumating creation team threw a party in honor of Consumating at The Velvet Spade. My favorite word coupling was involved: open bar.

So I intended to get sweaty fucked up, while my girlfriend intended on going home early so she could do real, productive work. Such is the ironic way of relationships.

And we both achieved our private goals. The open bar did me well, as I stayed double fisted the entire night, up until the open-bar tab was closed out. Then I was single fisted, and missing more cash than expected.

There was lots of drunken conversation between strangers, and strange conversation between drunkards. I got to see lots of people that I don’t normally run into, which can be almost awkward. Especially if I haven’t seen them in a while and I’ve managed to drink myself into the “pretty tossed” stage of boozery. Because I get all huggy and shit. Not that I don’t want to hug people all the time, because I do, but because when I’m stone sober, I understand how uncomfortable it makes some people, so I keep the hugs to a minimum.

But when I’m drunk, I just don’t fucking care what everyone else is crying about. If I’m down to hug, then hugging is what fucking happens, damnit.

So some of these people hadn’t seen me in a year or so. They were obviously unsure as to whether or not we’re even friends anymore, really. Which is ridiculous in my mind, but I understand how some people can get touchy about not being contacted on an hourly basis. Better yet, that they think I hate them because I don’t “reach out” and “make an effort” to contact them more often. Again: utterly ridiculous, with an added element of silly hypocrisy. Anyway, all friendship-fires got rekindled, and hugs got distributed.

Did I mention that I was pretty fucked up? Because I was.

Ben Reed sent me a text from next door at Deville: “Frodo’s here”. That’s all it said. Fucking Frodo is back for some SxSW action! I ran into him a couple of times last year, at the Fader parties. Never said a word to him, because a) I don’t know the guy, b) he was usually asking me to get out of his way so he could get past, and c) he’s a really, really fascinatingly tiny fellow. Like, nymph tiny. Like… a fucking hobbit. Dude’s mad petite.

Plus, I knew if I talked to him that I’d call him Frodo, and that’s really lame. He’s heard it a billion times, and it was never funny to begin with. But I just know I’d be “that asshole” who’d say it anyway, just because I can’t seem to wrangle my id.

Moving on.

So the open bar at Velvet Spade closed out, and Ben Reed came over from Deville and offered that we join him for drinks instead. So we did.

Halfway through my beer, Ben mentions that earlier in the day he had seen a n’er-do-well in the parking lot beneath I35 and 8th Street, writing on a rock with a marker. What was fascinating about the whole thing was that the bum was laying down to do this, in broad daylight, and he had a fake leg. The idea of this was completely insane to me. What would posses a one-legged homeless man to lay down in a parking lot and wax poetic on a chunk of rock? What could possibly be that important or interesting? Would it have to be interesting, if the circumstance in which it was written was so fascinating?

I had to see whether or not Ben was bullshitting me, so we went looking for said bummetta stone. We walked from Deville to the freeway, to the exact spot where Ben claimed to have seen the stone.

And there it was. A triangle of crumbling concrete, presumably lifted from a curb somewhere, with a paragraph of nonsensical bum-scribblings which concerned some confusing story about a frog and a scorpion. I kept referring to it as a proverb, while Ben gave it the fable label. In retrospect, the term “fable” is much more fitting, in the Aesop tradition.

Whatever it is, Ben intends to photograph it and pass the physical rock on to me. I want that rock. It’s quite possibly the most interesting thing I’ve come across in the past year. I don’t why I picked a year, but it seems like a safe bet.

Fuck I’m much more hung over from last night than I thought. And I barely even described what went on Monday night… but, fuck it. Next, is the Tuesday breakdown…

Gotta get that rock.