Monday, July 04, 2005

3rd of July

Hope everyone had a great 4th of July weekend. For the past few years, I've been hired as the grill cook for a ginormous block party in Huntington Beach. Last year's party got out of hand: over 1000 people showed up and the line at the catering grill never got shorter than 10 people deep for 10 hours, nonstop. Made great money, though. This year, the party committee held a stealth party on July 3 and kept it low key, so only those actually invited showed up. Much less stress for me, and much more fun time hanging out and partying.

A great block to live on

Every single family on this block is out front, grilling and hanging out. The neighbor across the way works for a Temecula winery, and gave free tastings of their champagnes and chocolate port. A volleyball net strung across the cul de sac helps keeps cars out, as does a quarter pipe that the skater grommets hit throughout the afternoon. Neighbors know each other's names and what the kids are up to. Dogs wander from yard to yard, and are greeted by name wherever they go. It's that kind of neighborhood that makes me proud to take part in the festivities each year.

Grampas Grass has some chops

My friend Christopher hires the bands, so when I cook at his house, I have front row seats. Grampas Grass lit the fuse on their Bob Weir meets Allman Brothers jams for a solid 90 minute set. Singer Lisa Blue's voice ranges from a soothing coo to boozy rage: going from "there, now baby, it'll be ok" to "ok baby, pack up and and get out" in the course of one song. Her cover of Me and Bobby McGee suggests Lisa Blue had her own share of hard living that connects her very personally to that song and the lady who first made it famous. Check them out if they're playing near you.


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