Saturday, April 5th, 2003
I managed to make it to paintball this morning for Scott’s bachelor party, despite being up late last night and horribly misjudging how long it would take me to get to the place by bus (it didn’t look that far on the map!). I’d been paintballing once before, and have the scars to prove it (literally – have a look at the top of my wrist sometime), but that was outdoors and this place was very much indoors. The field was a large sand-covered warehouse with a variety of buildings, walls and abandoned cars set up for cover. I got there late enough that the exclusive time booked aside for the bachelor party was over, and it was now a free-for-all with other patrons. What this meant was two teams of two dozen or so a side, the majority of them gun-toting 13 year olds. Think about that for a minute. A lot of these kids had their own guns. I find that unsettling.
From the first blow of the whistle, it was chaos. You start off immediately pinned down by opposing fire – mind you, the other side probably feels the same way, but that doesn’t really ease things much. In the dim light, it’s nigh impossible to tell your teammates from the opposition – hell, my one kill was from the other guy pretty much giving himself up. I’m camped out behind a building, he dashes behind the building directly ahead of me, not seeing me, and is directly in my sights. Only problem is, I can’t tell if he’s got a bandana or not (not means he’s meat – I’m Skins). He spots me and shouts, “Don’t shoot, I’m bandana!” Thanks. FFFAP. Easy peasy, but I got my payback in the next game when I tried to make a dash to the lower level and got nailed in the head, chest and gun. It was not pretty. All in all, I think I prefer outdoor paintball. There’s more opportunity for strategy and stealth – indoor is bedlam.
A nice score last night en route to the Delgados show – a used copy of Jeff Mangum’s (mastermind of Neutral Milk Hotel) Live At Jitter Joe’s. Recorded in Athens Georiga in 1997, between the releases of On Avery Island and the magnificent In The Aeroplane Over The Sea, this is about as raw and basic a live album as you’ll find. Recorded by Apples In Stereo mainman Robert Schneider, it’s little more than a single mic placed in front of a man with an acoustic guitar. The tape hiss and crowd noise (including a jubilant baby) really add to the cozy ambience of the recording, but its the songs that really make this worth having. As an extra bonus, there’s also a Quicktime movie of the entire show which shares a similar aesthetic with its aural counterpart – Mangum is shrouded in shadow for pretty much the whole show.
In other Elephant 6 news – Beulah have finished recording their new album with Roger Moutenot. They also state that, “as concerned citizens and patriots of this great country, profusely apologize to the rest of the world for the impending war and moronic actions of our leader. It’s just embarrassing, plain and simple, and we encourage all of you to protest in whatever way you can”. Thanks guys (he says “impending war” because the note was posted on March 19).
np – Beulah / Handsome Western States