Thursday, June 14, 2012

Wenatchee. Bless You.*


“Gonna taint your wagon, gonna taint it good.” Joe

“Spider roll, spider roll, binds your colon and takes its toll.” Chuck

“It’s like eating ground up wasps.” Chuck describing eating figs

Fauna: Bald Eagle (the bird), Painted Turtle

We left Spokane with multiple warnings to not speed through the hinterlands of Washington and found ourselves in rolling farmland that looked not quite unlike Ohio. Somehow you can just see farther out here and you can trace the exact shape of the clouds on the terrain. We came to a T intersection with Wenatchee to the left and the Grand Coulee Dam to the right. John took a left so I began chanting, “Coulee Dam, Coulee Dam” until he turned the van around. About a minute into the new direction we came around a bend into one of the prettiest views I’ve ever seen. I’m not sure exactly what it’s called but basically it’s the Columbia River for about 27 miles after the dam with high canyon walls. It was good enough that we immediately pulled the van over to look. Joe and I went rock climbing and got on top of a bluff of sorts where I took a picture, which I will post, but is unlikely to do it justice. As we were descending we heard in the distance Chuck call out, “I found a rib cage.” To which we replied, “Of course you did.” Have no idea what kind of animal it is but it had spikes so we’re thinking dinosaur. We hung it on a post next to the road as a warning.

We continued on to the Steamboat Rock State Park. About where the Grand Coulee Dam is now, some forgotten period of time ago, the glaciers ended and there was in effect an ice dam. When it broke the flood carved away much of the valley, in particular the basalt lava rock which apparently covers much of Washington. For some reason the Steamboat Rock survived in the middle of the river and continued to defy repeated floods. All of which to say is it’s wicked fucking cool.

As we were leaving the park John said, “Well we didn’t make the dam. “ To which I responded in no way shape or form with a hissy fit but with more of a dignified, reasoned treatise in which I explained there was no way we were going to be 10 miles away and not go see the Godd%#**ed Motherf*^ing Grand Coulee Dam. After a brief vote strictly observing the Roberts Rules of Order it was decided we did indeed have enough time.

I’m aware of all the destruction to habitats the Columbia River Dams have wrought but I can’t unbuild the Coulee so I might as well enjoy one of the biggest  concrete structures in the world. The spillway was open, which apparently is rare enough that the locals I talked to could point out the specific times it’s been running in the last 28 years. So we were kind of lucky to see it in action and the foamy water pouring down the spillway looked like some living thing. Like if lava was really just a nice lemon glaze sliding down the world’s largest angel food cake. Mmmm…. lemon glaze.

Anyway, we spent about five minutes there and busted it out to Wenatchee. Which we learned was pronounce When At Chee. This show was put together by two of the nicest people in the world who came and saw us repeatedly at SXSW in Austin and sold us on the many charms of coming to Wenatchee. They undersold it as it turns out because we had just best time. The Café Mela was kind of a classy wine bar coffee place with people using the word barista in casual conversation. It also had a full stage, lighting, and an excellent sound guy. They fed us amazing food and there was an appreciative crowd already somehow wearing our shirts. After the show, where I feel as if we finally started playing like we’re supposed to, our hosts made us welcome in their home. Real beds and showers, an awesome pug who will be featured in our next video, and most importantly a lesson on how to make a superior margarita. This could be a game changer.

Tomorrow is Portland. Hope someone shows up.

*Because it sounds like a sneeze


  1. Ain't Wenatchee grand? I miss the Pacific Northwest. I hope Portland worked out.

  2. You guys played the sickest show! We really appreciated being able to share the stage with you guys. I hope the rest of your tour is a blast and be sure to come back to Wenatchee soon!

    Poor Folks, Live Well