Monday, August 30, 2010

AT&T Sucks

Back in the day I used to love AT&T. They were my buddies. I could count on them for the finest products and the best service in the world, I was happy, loyal customer. Then they changed to Cingular and decided to discontinue my pre-paid calling plan and shift me to a pre-paid plan with far less cellular coverage. Considering what I was paying for minutes I deserved premium coverage. I was so upset I stopped using AT&T for years. Then I reluctantly came back to AT&T to use the iPhone for the moblog. I figured maybe they had evolved back into the AT&T of yesteryear that I loved so much, NOT! What ever happened AT&T? AT&T sucks, it turned into a selfish, heartless telecommunications giant, that limits me.

How does AT&T limit me? I have an AT&T mobile broadband setup and it has a 5GB monthly cap on it. Well, as a blogging technomad on the move I can tell AT&T 5GB per month is not enough for me to do this photo/video moblog on the road and work on my websites too. I wish I had signed up for the mobile broadband with AT&T early on when the unlimited plan was truly unlimited usage. Of course I missed that window of opportunity and hopped on the mobile broadband wagon too late. Now I reach my usage limit in like 2 weeks and that's trying to conserve bandwidth. What am I supposed to do till next month when I get my 5GB allotment of bandwidth? Twiddle my thumbs? Whatever... In the mean time, my friends and family that were grandfathered in with their early unlimited bandwidth plans rub it in.

Do you own an iPhone? Don't you dare lose it, because it may take a week and a half to 2 weeks to replace it. We lost our iPhone and thought we'd just swing into an AT&T store and replace it with the new iPhone 4. They laughed at us, seriously they had these smug looks on their faces and laughed at us, like we were crazy, expecting to just walk in and replace our lost iPhone. We stopped in like 4 AT&T stores and it was the same story at each store, they are not in stock,  which means you must order one and then purchase a cheap phone in the mean time if you want to get any calls. That's right, if you lose your iPhone you buy 2 phones. Plus if you're roving technomad's like us, where do we have it shipped to? AT&T has no exact date for shipping so who knows where we'll be 11/2 to 2 weeks out. We'll just have to have it shipped to our post box in Tahoe and have them express it to us but that adds even more expense and time till we get the iPhone back up and running.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Snow Ridge Jam Fest 2010


With a week to kill until moe.down, I let Jack talk me into going to Jam Fest 2010 at the Snow Ridge ski area in Turin, NY. We were here last year for moe.down X on Labor Day weekend. This year moe. moved their annual Labor Day music festival to a new location, in Mohawk, NY at the Gelston Castle it's next weekend and we have tickets thanks to Kristen and Adam who sadly couldn't make it this year due to work and were forced to sell us their moe.down XI tickets.
So what's the scoop on the Snow Ridge Jam Fest 2010? Well, we had a great time! The turnout however was really low, I mean really, really low, I doubt whether there were more than a few hundred tickets sold, and it looked like they were prepared to handle several thousand festival goers, which is what moe. typically draws, but despite the poor attendance they were professionals and the music, helicopter rides, fireworks and everything went on as planned and it was excellent weekend festival, even the weather cooperated nicely throughout the weekend.
We actually got invited to share a booth on vendor row by our new found friends Jana and Joe. Jack set up a few rocks but mostly he just traded with other rock hounds since real custies were few and far between. It was a nice setup, we were just a few thousand festival goers short of making money. Thank goodness these two technomads have our affiliate marketing online income to help smooth out the rough spots of life on the road.
Why such a low turnout of festival goers the Snow Ridge Jam Fest? I mean they have had a Labor Day festival here featuring moe. for the past 10 years and they could always count on several thousand people showing up. I'm sure a number of factors combined to result in the disappointing turnout in Turin, NY. Most importantly was the fact that there wasn't an act on the schedule that draws festival goers out for the weekend. Rusted Root is good, but for what ever reason they simply don't have the following that some jam bands have. Now had they secured Widespread Panic, String Cheese Incident, Further or the like, they would have had a huge turnout.
The staff and security at Snowridge was nice too, unlike the security at previous moe.down festivals these folks did a good job.
Donna the Buffalo
Particle keyboardist, Steve Molitz

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Little Falls, New York

We are visiting with friends Jay and Carrie in Little Falls, NY. They have a lovely yellow home with a nice garden in the back. When we pulled up Jay was installing Pyle speakers in the truck cab.
Jay and Kerri's house in Little Falls
jay installing stereo

jack and kerri
mexican feast at jay and kerri's
Carrie cooked an awesome authentic mexican dinner for the party they were having
joe & janaJoe and Jana in Little Falls

caroline herkimer diamonds little falls ny
On Wednesday Jack and I along with Jay, Carrie, Joe and Jana went to Caroline's. She lives in a brightly painted old school bus on a mountain just outside of Little Falls, NY. We helped her with trash removal bringing several bags of garbage down off of the hill and then went up the mountain in search of Herkimer Diamonds. Herkimer diamonds are an extremely beautiful variety of quartz crystals. They are exceptionally clear compared to most quartz crystals. It had been raining in recent days and thats the best time to search for crystals just laying on top of the ground and sure enough, Jack and I found many nice Herkimer Diamond specimens.

the viewThe scenic view from Caroline's
trail to herkimer diamond mineThe trail up to the Herkimer Diamond mine
jack digging for herkimer diamonds carolinesJack digging for Herkimer Diamonds at Carolines
IMG_0227.jpgJack reaching back in a hole for Crystals
looking for diamonds at carolinesLooking for Herkimer diamonds at Carolines
After diamond hunting at Caroline's we headed back to Jay and Carrie's in Little Falls to see what we had found, I scored a sweet stash of Herk's. as did everyone in the group. Nothing too large but I was happy.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Gig in The Sky Festival

Vendors at Gig in The Sky

gig in the sky festival
Phish summer tour has just ended and we are in Windham, NY for Gig in The Sky  Festival, a small 4-day music festival featuring music by the Everyone Orchestra, EOTO, The JGB Band and much more. With the help of the promoter "LC", Jack and I got an actual permit to vend this weekend and set up our full thing. The festival turned out smaller than we were thinking but that made for a fun weekend of intimate music.

Jack in the Booth at Gig in The Sky
Jack and Jeff
Jack and  General Store Jeff

JGB at gig in the sky festival
JGB at Gig In The Sky Festival
everybody orchestra
Everybody Orchestra featuring Michael Kang of String Cheese, Al Shiner of moe.
Tosh 1
Tosh 1
Michael Travis Eoto at Gig In The Sky
Michael Travis of EOTO
festival schedule
gig in the sky schedule

LC freestyle extraordinaire
gig in the sky bon-fire
Bon fire
main stage
Main Stage

jgb guitarist
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Friday, August 13, 2010

Phish at Deer Creek

It was a long grueling drive from the Phish concert in Telluride Colorado to the Verizon Wireless at Deer Creek in Noblesville, Indiana. Why couldn't Phish make a few more stops on the second half of summer tour? Whatever it is what it is and we had to leave right after the Telluride Phish show to make it to deer creek in time for the concert in Indiana. The drive went fairly good, we drove straight through and pulled into the official Deer Creek campground the morning of the concert. Pat the Ragin' Cajun, Pizza Mike and the other bigger vendors were already set up so we grabbed a spot across from Grilled Cheese Paul down the line. Around 2:30 or 3pm we went to the main parking lot and set up our stuff. We got a good space, but it could have been better since we were right next to the dumpster. The weather was much better than last year when the venue was evacuated on account of lightning.
verizion wireless

Deer Creek Ampitheatre
deer creek campground
shakedown st. in the parking lot

phish deer creek photo
Phish Deer Creek
page deer creekPage Side Rage Side
phish at verizon wireless in indianaPhish in Concert at Verizon Wireless
phish merchandise booth at deer creek
Phish Merchandise Booth at Deer Creek

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Long Haul

Trip Log 15,000 miles. We have just crossed the halfway point for our goal of the summer of driving over 30,000 miles in a summer. Leaving Telluride last night right after the show was the only way to make it to Deer Creek in time to get a good spot on Shakedown.  From downtown Telluride, it's 1,402 miles and about a 26 hour drive. We have driven non-stop except for gas and food all the way across most of the country today. We have about 460 miles to go before we make it all the way to Noblesville Indiana. Deer Creek has always been a very chill scene and there is a camp-ground that is off the hook for the late night partying in between the two nights coming up tomorrow and Friday. We are driving through Iowa and there is a lot of flooding. I have never seen houses and barns flooded like that.

It was a crazy thunderstorm last year for the Deer Creek Phish show. The lightning was exploding into the sky at what almost seemed like they somehow timed the strikes with the music. The storm got so intense they told everyone that was not under the Pavilion to go seek shelter in their cars for set-break.  It ended up being almost two hours later when they let everyone go back in the show.

I am excited to have 2 nights in Deer Creek this year. It should be even more fun than last year with the campground party in-between the shows.
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Monday, August 09, 2010

Phish Telluride

Downtown Telluride
Jack had fast fingers and we got really lucky on the day tickets went on sale for the Telluride Phish shows and scored two tickets from Ticket Horse along with camping in Telluride Town Park. We pulled into town after a long drive from the Phish Concerts in Berkeley, CA. Last time I was in Telluride it was for the Grateful Dead in 1987!

Telluride Town Park Camping Space
We pulled into the Telluride Town Park campground and we were given 45 minutes to find a spot, unload our gear and park the van off-site. I found a nice pull in camping spot and nestled in for the 2-day Telluride Phish fest. We went over and got our wrist bands. Right before the concert started we found a note on the van that we would be towed at our expense if we didn't move the van. We left a nice note asking for forgiveness. Apparently it worked because we were fine all weekend, actually the camp hosts at the Telluride Town Park Campground were very nice considering the sheer number of fans attending the concerts. Phish concert began at 6:30pm. I sparked up the Weber grill and cooked up some cheese hotdogs and Bushes Best Baked Beans and got in line early for a good spot for tonight's Phish concert in Telluride Town Park.
Phish Telluride Gate Line
First thing we did when the gates opened is head for the event merchandise tent to get our Phish Merit Badge. Then we got a good spot for the concert. Hope you enjoy the photos from Telluride.

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