Archive for July 2007


Buffett Chronicles

July 31st, 2007 — 10:53am

Buffett Day, 2007. Where do I even begin? I had patiently waited two years for this concert, as Jimmy took a disappointing hiatus from Alpine Valley in 2006, and last year (in retaliation), I took a hiatus of my own to attend my good friends’ Jill and Ryan’s wedding in Green Bay. Every year, from the moment Jimmy announces his summer tour dates, the anticipation builds and builds until the day is finally here. And then, before you even know it, it’s all over. This is the story of my eighth Buffett show at Alpine Valley.

We all arrived at Guilford HS before 11 a.m. to load the bus with all of our coolers and food. Shortly after 11 a.m., we were on the road. Our driver—a cheery, white-haired, grandpa-like fellow, was thoroughly entertained with our debaucheries, and he and I became good friends by the end of the day. When we finally arrived at Alpine Valley, we pulled into a prime spot in the bus lot that was just a few rows away from the main amphitheater entrance. All of concert goers from the surrounding buses were vying for space, and we quickly started stacking a wall of beer cases to ensure ours. Behind us was the infamous slip and slide, and to our right, a few perverted men were hosting a game in which daring individuals could step into a tiny jail and take a spin for the chance to kiss, show their boobs, etc., before being released. There was also a Jello wresting pit located just down the way. Only at Buffett.

It was great to catch up with friends, and I thoroughly enjoyed many Coronas and Brigham-mixed drinks, namely the “shark bowl” and “sweet heaven.” I am pictured with the “shark bowl”, sans shark, above. Eventually, I met up with my new friend Royce, and toured the lot with a few of his friends and mine. From there, we went into the show. I spend most of the show dancing on deck six, which was probably the closest spot I’ve ever seen the show from. Following the concert, I wandered back to the bus, where I apparently devoured a bag of Cheetos and then crashed in exhaustion. The ride home was a little bumpy, but I had the seat all to myself! Another year’s concert has come and gone, but there’s always next year’s to look forward to!

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Pictures from Buffett Day

July 31st, 2007 — 5:37am
Kristin, Anne, and Beth
Beth and Adam pose for a pic as Luke expertly attaches a fin to our bus.

Our spot in the lot: Next to slip and slide fun.

The girls of Buffett.

The boys of Buffett.

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Buffett Day

July 27th, 2007 — 9:12am

Tomorrow is Buffett Day—quite possibly the best day of the year. One of unparalleled debauchery. Which are altogether too few and far between these days. And so I really embrace Buffett Day. And for one day each year, I don’t hold back. I get a little crazy. A little dirty. But that’s Buffett, my friends. I cannot wait—for that one particular harbor.

With forty of Guilford High School’s finest Viking alums packed in a bus, a fin on the top and dozens of coolers stocked to the brim and chilled with ice, we’ll leave our alma mater’s parking lot promptly at 11 a.m. We’ll crack the beers, toast to Buffett, and be on our merry way. Alpine Valley or Bust. Surely we’ll be one of the very first buses to arrive, and again, we’ll toast to that. With leis around our neck, coconut bras strapped to our chests, and grass skirts wrapped loosely around our hips, we’ll catch up with old friends and inevitably meet many new Parrot heads. Brigham will start mixing his signature drinks, and Jenny will serve an assortment of heavily spiked Jello shots. Seven hours later, we’ll stumble to the amphitheater, where we’ll be reinvigorated by Jimmy’s sweet island songs. We’ll dance the night away and sing every word. And much later, we’ll stumble back to the bus, realizing that the fun never ends. And who would want it to? It may take hours to get our bus out of the crowded parking lot, and there’s always the bus ride home.

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Alas, The End of Summer is Inevitable

July 27th, 2007 — 6:21am

And yet, once again, we find ourselves at that slightly depressing point during the summer when we’re like, damn, the summer has gone by way too fast. And although I certainly don’t want to rush things any faster than need be, it might be time to start talking about fall fashion. I seem to have a recent obsession with dresses. And this wrap dress from Banana Republic is my current top pick. It comes in classic black, as well as both a brown and gray herringbone print. So professional and perfect for work, yet also appropriate for a variety of other social functions. Not that I ever have enough of those to go to. I just collect dresses and hope I’ll have something to wear them to eventually. I think you’re actually suppose to have an event in mind before selecting an appropriate dress. But this, obviously, is not the way I do business. For me, it’s find the perfect dress, then pray for an appropriate event. And like I said, I never have enough of those, which is actually probably a good thing. So, I get my use out of ‘em by wearing them to work and continually becoming annoyed when people ask, why are you all dressed up today? That has always been my pet peeve. Because I want to be, damn it.

So yes, I purchased the dress in the gray herringbone print, which one of our flaming assistant managers assured me I could wear through March. And that’s like more than half the year, so I figure it will give me great mileage. That’s really my favorite part about working at BR—whenever I go in there to try on clothes, I have like five personal shopping assistants to help me put together outfits. This is why you should never, never go shopping alone, unless you want to waste a boat load of money on clothes that might not look good on you. Never trust yourself. An honest opinion goes a long way in getting you in clothes that look great, which ultimately give you the most bang for your buck.

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Last Night’s Concert

July 26th, 2007 — 8:38am

Last night I took my parents to their very first Concert on the Square, which was sadly the fifth and second to last concert of this summer’s series. The concerts are performed by the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra and directed by Andrew Sewell. Last night’s concert featured oboist Naomi Bensdorf and the musical theme “Eye of the Storm,” a risky prophecy that was luckily left unfulfilled. As always, the ambiance was perfect, and the music magnificent.

My parents came in early and picked me up from work at 3 p.m. so we could head directly to the capitol square to find a prime spot for our blanket. Three is the earliest that concertgoers can begin reserving spots, so we found a great location left stage. From there we went home to mix together peach sangria, and then headed to St. Vinny’s on Willy Street, which is our favorite place to look for used books. As the Web site attests, St. Vinny’s “probably has the best used book section you will find in any thrift store in the country.” After purchasing a few finds, we had dinner at Eldorado Grill, which I had never been to before. It’s an upscale Tex-Mex restaurant on Willy Street. I’ll save the details for a future post, but the food was excellent. And finally, we drove to the square and located our spot among the sea of picnickers and blankets. There, we enjoyed a dessert feast and sangria while we waited for the concert to begin. It was a perfect summer night for a concert, and I’m glad that my parents were finally able to join me for one of my favorite Madison treats.

2 comments » | Family Fun, Madtown Lovin'

Tour Party

July 25th, 2007 — 8:13am


Last Friday we had a Tour de France party at the office over the lunch break. It was great fun. Everyone was assigned a team, and the idea was to bring a food or beverage from the country associated with your team. My team was T-Mobile, so I brought brownies. Because that’s German, right? Usually I’m much more creative, but this time I was admittedly disappointing. Here are some pictures from the party. Love the yellow jersey cookies and the Gerolsteiner water.

Speaking of the tour, yesterday’s breaking news was that Alexandre Vinokourov, a double stage victor of team Astana, tested positive for blood doping, and Astana has pulled out of the Tour. It’s also highly suspected that Michael Rasmussen, the current yellow jersey leader of Rabbobank, is also doping. Which proves my earlier point that they’re all dirty birds. Why would I even bother watching the tour? These are the only reasons I could come up with:

1. The dramatic crashes.
2. The historical significance and traditions associated with the tour.
3. The breathtaking scenery and challenging course.
4. Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen, and Bob Roll.
5. Hot men in spandex with shaven legs (because I’m quite possibly the only female that actualy prefers this look).
4. The crazy-drunk, camera-happy spectators.

But, even so—I don’t watch it.

Comment » | Racing and Training

And Here’s the Pie

July 24th, 2007 — 12:52pm


Here are pictures of the peach pie I made for last Thursday’s picnic. The recipe comes from that great cookbook I found in Duluth—Betty’s Pies Favorite Recipes, written by the ultimate pie-making legend, Betty Lessard. It’s Betty’s favorite, enjoy!

Fresh Peach Pie

1 cup sugar
5 Tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 1/2 cups sliced peaches
1 1/2 Tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a 9-inch pie pan with pastry (perhaps I’ll share my favorite in a future post).

Combine the 1 cup of sugar, flour and cinnamon, mixing well. Lightly mix in the fresh peaches and pour into the pie shell. Dot with butter and cover with a top crust. Prick the top crust and sprinkle with sugar.

Put the pie into a 400 degree oven and bake for 40 to 50 minutes.

Comment » | Kristin's Kitchen

By the Light of the Moon

July 24th, 2007 — 5:44am

Last Thursday night, I went to see the Shakespearian comedy Much Ado About Nothing at the American Players Theatre in Spring Green, Wisconsin, which is about forty-miles west of Madison. It’s a classical outdoor theatre that lies amid 110-acres of rolling, wooded acres near the Wisconsin River. APT’s repertoire consists primarily of plays by Shakespeare. For this, its 28th season, which runs from early June through early October, the company will also perform Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice and Timon of Athens, as well as George Bernard Shaw’s Misalliance, and Tennessee Williams’ Night of the Iguana.

The setting and mood before and during an American Player’s show is truly magical. Before each show, it’s tradition to relax with friends over a pre-theater dinner in the picnic areas surrounding the theater. Shortly before the start of the show, a trumpet beckons patrons to take their seats. During the show, the dark sky lights up with hundreds of dazzling stars, which make for a transcendent experience.

I went to see the show with colleagues from my division at work. We picnicked beforehand, and I brought my first homemade peach pie, still warm from the oven. It was gobbled up in a hurry, and many of my colleagues offered their accolades. This, of course brought a smile to my face. I very much enjoyed the show, which although predictable, was funny and offered strong performances by Michele Arnold, who played the head-strong and infinitely witty Beatrice, as well as the gentleman who played Don John, the wickedly funny evil step-brother, whose name, unfortunately, I cannot recall. Although not always the greatest fan of Shakespeare, I do love the experience at APT, and hope that I might be able to make it back later this summer for Teneessee Williams’ Night of the Iguana.

Comment » | Madtown Lovin'

Calling All Friends and Family

July 24th, 2007 — 5:01am

As you’ve undoubtedly heard, Friends and Family Days at Banana Republic is quickly approaching. Scheduled for Friday, August 3–Sunday, August 5, it’s an invitation-only opportunity for friends of employees to receive a 30% discount at any Banana Republic store, Banana Republic Factory Store or BananaRepublic.com. This is big time. If you would like an invitation, please e-mail me here with your address, e-mail, and phone number, and I will get an invite out to you immediately. Happy shopping!

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Katie Muth Prints

July 23rd, 2007 — 6:30am
“Making Cookies”
“Farmer’s Market”

“Streetlight Smooch”

Serendipity (2001)

I’m a new fan of the work of Katie Muth, a Toronto-based independent artist and printmaker. Above are my favorites from her current collection. The top two would look fantastic in my yellow-ish kitchen, perhaps in the vacant space over the oven. The prints detail two of my favorite activities—baking and farmer’s market shopping. Joy. I also had to include the third print, “Streetlight Smooch,” because it just reminds me so much of my all-time favorite movie—Serendipity. John Cusack (Jonathan Trager) and Kate Beckinsale (Sarah Thomas) united at last. Beautiful.

Comment » | Crafts & Design

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