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Mike Randle


July 2 2002

That title at the bottom of an e-mail I got from a fan in Oslo who went to Roskilde. And I thought it was quite appropriate because, this has been , maybe, the best summer I’ve had since 1996, which was when Arthur went away. Now, THAT was a real BUMMER, man. But now, better horizons have shown themselves in the form of wonderful travels and musical globtrotting (am I high or jetlagged?)…yeah, whatever, huh!!!! Well, got an e-mail from Chapple this morning so they’re all back fine (with the exception of Rusty, who’s in Sweden for another week doing lord knows what..) and pretty soon, we’ll get ready for this USA tour, which will be fun and interesting.

We’ve all toured the states more than a few times and it’s nice to know we’ll be visiting a lot of places we’ve been to before. I always kept little notebook diaries of every city, restaurant and even every hotel (including the employees names!) I ever stayed at. Yep, I am that nutty. But it’s also nice to have this things as a reference because they are also nice historical points of interest and it’s nice to have the freeway exits written down! No roundabouts this way, lads! Just straight USA lines going north to south and east to west. Very simple (and if you’ve ever been to Nebraska you’d know why…)…ok enough of that..oh, speaking of dissin’ I got an e-mail from a bloke named,”Neil”, who lives in Milton Keynes and felt that I was offending some of the people in his town and said I was wrong to do that. Well, he’s right. I apologise for offending SOME of the Milton Keynes people; that was not my intention and I promise, the next time we play there, I will make every humanly possible attempt to offend EVERYONE in Milton Keynes.

Now then, on the the USA. In every city I ‘ve been in, I tend to have little places that stand out to me. Take San Fransisco, for instance. One of my fave deli places, TOMMY’S JOINT, is there. Whether you want a classic Reuben or just a mile-high ( 1.62 kilometers) piled pastrami sandwhich, this is the place. As a matter of fact, their slogan (which sits as a sign next to the name) says THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE THIS PLACE SO THIS MUST BE THE PLACE. Vegatarians, please avoid. the sell ostrich burgers as well as buffalo sausages, ok? But also, the EDINBURGH CASTLE, which is a Scottish pub (duh), is not far…like a few blocks away…for that JUST RIGHT pint of ACHOR STEAM lager. And also within walking distance is the LUSTY LADY. Not the classiest place in the world, but the 25 cents peep show (about 2 danish Kronas) is still a deal in my book.

From there, we hit Eugene and Portland Oregon. Can’t say much about the first one, cause I only breezed through it but Portland is the place. I always have the best times there and, it seams no matter where you go, there’s Dim Sum, Karaoke and Widmer’s Hefeweisen on tap. What more do you need? And if you want to take in some loud punk rock, check out the Satyricon club. Portland rules.

Then we play Vancouver, which I ‘ve never visited but I hear it’s great. If anyone reading this knows Jason Zumpano, tell him I lost his number and to e-mail me if he’s coming to the show. Anyone who hasn’t heard any of the ZUMPANO CDs…shame on you! From there, we hit up Seattle, where we will no doubt see David fairweather..one of Arthur’s closest friends, a good friend to the band and he also came on our ’96 european tour. I’m sure the girls in Malmo, Sweden remember him! (just kidding, DF!) Seattle is where Arthur’s long ago buddy, Jimi Hendrix was from. I don’t have too much to say about seattle except I can never find anyplace to get coffee there… (note to the Norwegians: that was a joke)…my foundest memory was when Daddyo and I were hanging outside talking to one of the guys from The Presidents of the United States of America (remember that band?)..and these 10 boys (must have been 12 years old each) chased another kid and kicked his ass. i ahve no idea what the kid did…but it took 10 kids to kick his ass.

From there, we head to Minneapolis, the land of lots of beer, sweet mid-western girls (farmer’s daughters?) and home to the 1st ave club, where Prince filmed Purple rain. Not only is this daddyo’s hometown, but this is a awesome city on it’s own. I really like it and since it ain’t winter, it’ll be even better! there’s a great late-night Pizza-slice place right around the corner, for those midnight mad-mad muchies too. Then, we say goodbye to Minn. and hit Chicago, the land of traffic jams. it might take you 3 hours to go 10 miles in Chicago. Chicago traffic makes Central london (at 5pm) look like the INDY 500. But I love Chicago…truly one hell of a town. Lots to do, lots to look at, and hopefully, we’ll take in a Cubs baseball game if we’re lucky.

After that, we play in Detroit and, other than the great greek food in the greek section (or the german food not far from it), we’ll probably be lucky if we’re not car jacked. So expect us to hit the ground running and haul ass to Cleveland. Speaking of Cleveland, Ray davis once called it “Sleazy Town”, which I would take as a complimant if i were them. I dig this town. they have a beautiful ballpark in Jacob’s Field and , if you are down with hot wings, you gotta try BW3 wings. Also, HOOTERS is right by the river so you really can’t go worng in Cleveland.Plus you get to say, “HELLO, CLEVELAND” right before you go onstage.

Ok, so I covered the first 9 cities of this American tour. In the next diary, I’ll pick up where I left off, which would be Toronto, one of the best cities in north America. Hopefull, by the time I write the next diary, Dubya will not have invaded Candana for being in some axis of evil or something like that. Barley hanging on to sanity…

Mike Randle


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