garden talk: it takes but a few days for a green habanero pepper to change into a red habanero. the sort of intermediate orange-green pepper from yesterday is today completely orange. and the orange pepper is now red. pepper plants are pretty when they turn red. i have a childhood memory of seeing a pepper plant dotted with little red chili peppers, almost like they were christmas lights. i think the plant i saw (at my grandparents?) was more for ornamental purposes rather than for consumption. the habanero plants i have, they're almost like miniature bonsais, instead of growing tall, they remain short with many branches. my father is also growing some habaneros as well (besides the ones i gave him, which are growing in their backyard in belmont), cultivated from seeds he got from costa rica. those costa rican habaneros have yet to produce any peppers. and remember my jasmine? it's still alive, despite losing most of its leaves. every few weeks it flowers profusely (without any intervention on my part), so whenever i get the chance, i go outside and take a sniff. hopefully when i bring it in during the winter it can start producing more leaves again, although it doesn't seem to be losing anymore (which is a good sign).
the next few hours were spent in repose, my body twisted into an awkward pretzel on the couch, watching television, eating watermelon seeds, drinking a smoothie, filling in some lost weblog entries. manny dropped by briefly to bring the pair of heart concert tickets he'd won but couldn't use. rob came back home right when i was about to leave for the concert. i asked if he wanted to go, but he had no interest in heart, despite seemingly to know a song or two.
so alone i went, tickets obtained too last minute to find someone to go with me. on the train i realized i forgot my earplugs, so i got off at downtown crossing to buy some from cvs. i figured it's better to be safe than sorry, especially if the music gets loud and i want to save what's left of my hearing. the concert was at the fleet pavilion, and when i got there, they actually searched my bag, and when the girl saw the camera, she said i had to leave it at the camera check (this didn't happen at the emmylou harris concert a few weeks ago). if i had a smaller camera, i could've hidden it in my pocket and smuggled it inside. or a recording device, if i wanted to make a bootleg.
the seats were kind of far but i'm not complaining too much since they're free. my problem wasn't with seeing the stage as it with more to do with head obstructions. the opening act was anne mccue, sporting an "after school special" t-shirt, sounding like a folksy rock & roll guitarist/singer. she was okay, but people paid to see heart, and took the time during her performance to get food and drinks, so there were a lot of empty seats. after she finished playing, there was about 10-15 minutes intermission for the stage hands to set up for heart. people quickly came back. once the wilson sisters appeared on the stage, there was a roar of applause and everyone stood up for the first few songs, real loud numbers, none of them i recognize.
let me first tell you the demographics. heart first started in the late 70's, 3 decades ago, so most of the hardcore fans are in their 40-50's. it's weird watching a 50+ year old rocking out to music, like watching your parents dancing. but i rather see that than watching twentysomethings rock out: young rockers make me feel resentful while old rockers inspire me. an older couple in front of me were grooving to the music, the blonde wife with the biggish hair gyrating in such a fashion that i was actually getting turned on. to my far left was a pair of stereotypically similar looking middle aged gay men (short hair, tight clothes). they were *really* into heart, and were sort of dancing so hard in place it looked like they were tied down. the taller of the two stood in a rigid a-frame pose, bobbing his head, shaking his ass, and instead of clapping, he had this habit of reaching his hand out, as if he was petting the music sonically. i probably spent half the night watching those two. over the sea of people leading up to the stage, occasionally i'd spot fists pumping in the air, and every so often i'd see the classic overhead clapping in unison to the music. once in a while i'd take notes (observations), hoping that if anyone saw me, they'd think i was maybe a music critic, instead of some loser who went to go see a concert by himself.
my own experience with heart all came from the late 80's, when they came out with their bad animals album. i got the tape and fell in love with almost all the songs. when their videos would play on MTV (actually, at that time belmont didn't have cable yet, so if i was watching MTV, it was probably in another town or state), i'd pause to watch the entire video, transfixed. this was back when nancy and ann were both really hot, and probably every red-blooded american boy had a thing for heart. nowadays, nancy has aged gracefully, but ann could lose some weight (although she's still attractive, in the same way ricki lake and carny wilson are attractive, but if ann lost some weight, she'd be back to being totally hawt again). i expect and demand a certain level of hotness from all my rockstars!
so i figured tonight i'd rekindle some old 80's nostalgia. little did i realize, about 80% of the songs they played i didn't recognize. they played only one song from bad animals, "alone". i took out the earplugs for that one, recognizing the song immediately just from the initial few bars of music. a lot of people came for the old stuff as well, so when the sisters said they'd be playing some songs from their new album, there was a massive exodus of people leaving the pavilion to either get food, smoke, or use the bathroom.
they also played "these dreams," one of the few songs i actually recognized. the last song they played in their regular set was "magic man," and that's when i got a whiff of mary jane. the couple in front of me snickered when they smelled it too. then everyone left the stage, and it was so obvious what would happen next, i didn't even bother clapping, as if they wouldn't come out for at least one encore. they performed "barracuda" for their first encore, then left the stage again to wild applause, before coming out for their second and last encore. they did a cover of led zeppelin's "black country woman" and finished out with a song i didn't recognize or care to remember. those waiting for a third encore had their hopes dashed when the lights inside the pavilion all turned on.
okay, so where's "all i wanna do is make love to you", "there's the girl", "who will you run to", and "easy target"? granted, they're all songs from bad animals, but they're good songs, and they were the ones i came specifically to hear. curse you, heart!
first thing i did was to retrieve my camera (the camera check woman told me earlier that she'd only be there 20 minutes after the concert then she leaves). i wanted to take the shuttle bus back to south station but there was a huge crowd, so instead i just walked it back to the train station, which was crowded with college kids returning to school, wheeling around with a traveling suitcase. as soon as i got home, i downloaded all the heart songs i wanted to hear but didn't, just to get that desired fix, like the 80's junkie that i am.
i also watched the red sox beat the mariners again. is it lame of me to say this, but i believe this could be the year. of course i say that every year, and i still remember last year, and if it weren't for one "little" thing, we'd probably be defending our world series title this season, but statistically, isn't this 2004 team doing a lot better than the 2003 team? and i can't believe all this is happening without nomar. other than the yankees, i see all our challengers as inferior. the oakland athletics? you mean chokeland? they were a lot better last year with tejada and foulke, but those players are gone. even the yankees though, the 2004 yankees is definitely a lot weaker than the 2003 yankees. offensively they're impressive (i'll give them that), but they don't have the pitching to back that up (last year, clemens and pettite, this year, who?). anyway, i believe!