George Hrab at House on the Rock!

I originally posted this at Minnesota Skeptics

 Skeptical musician/humorist George Hrab will be performing at House on the Rock Resort March 31st. The Chicago Skeptics have set up this special concert, and skeptics from all over the midwest are invited. Earlier in the day a lot of people are going to tour the nearby amazingly cool House on the Rock. I cannot do justice to how incredibly bizarre, eclectic and fascinating the House on the Rock is. I visited this past summer for the first time and cannot wait to go back.

Jennifer Newport from Chicago Skeptics has this to say about the George Hrab concert: “While the ticket price is $20, if this seems out of your range, feel free to contact me…sliding scale/grants available. This is all about trying to get a bunch of midwestern skeptics together for a fun event!” More details about the concert, HOTR visitor information and lodging options can be found at www.chicagoskeptics.net (this is also where you buy concert tickets) or at the Facebook event page.

Please note: The HOTR tour and the concert are separate events. If you head down that way you can do one or the other or both (or neither).

One of the (IMHO awesomest!!!!) rooms at HOTR.

So start planning your car pools, load up your mp3 players with skeptical podcasting and music, and get ready to rock at the Rock! (I apologize for that. It’s been a long day and it’s late).

George Hrab at House on the Rock!

Go Buy Tim Minchin Tickets!

Hey Twin Cities friends!

Did you know that TIM MINCHIN is going to be doing a rare live performance in Minneapolis on July 16th at the Pantages Theater???

Photo Source

Are you going? Do you already have tickets? I have tickets!

If you haven’t heard of Tim Minchin, hell’s bells, go YouTube him! He writes, plays piano and sings about rationality, sex, common sense, boobs, prejudice, sex, skepticism, boobs and religion…to name a few. Also boobs and sex. Oh, and he wrote the music and songs for a musical stage adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Matilda with the Royal Shakespeare Company. He’s a hell of a showman and comedian, and according to his website he has an enormous…sense of occasion. Yea, a man of many talents.

I’ve posted this before; it’s one of my favorite Tim Minchin songs:

I know, right? AWESOME! So get out of here – go buy tickets! They’re only $28 if you buy at the door, $40 to buy online (thanks for that kick in the ass, Ticketmaster).

If you’re in Portland, Seattle, Austin, Anaheim, San Fran, Atlanta, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Washington D.C. or Montreal, Tim Minchin is also coming your way in June or July. Check out his full calendar here.


Go Buy Tim Minchin Tickets!

Marian Call in Minneapolis(ish)

I’m going to see her tonight!

I only recently heard about Marian Call through Twitter, and again through her performances at W00tstock.  I joined her Facebook fan page not too long ago, listened to her music for free through her website and bought her CD Got to Fly via iTunes.  Have I mentioned how much I love the internet and social networking?

Anyway, Marian Call sings folksy, acoustic-type music with a heavy emphasis on geek culture and humor.  She’s known for her fan music about Firefly and Battlestar Galactica.

She’s a biiiiiig geek, and I <3 that.

The cool/scary thing about the performance tonight is that it’s going to be at Dunn Bros. in Roseville.  I love small shows like this.  People are being encouraged to bring their own chairs, and with such a large geek/nerd contingent in the Twin Cities (W00tstock Minneapolis sold out like *that* – imagine me snapping my fingers there), I have no doubt that there will be a lot of people standing.  Which is good, and I’ll have a chance to get (really) up close and personal with my fellow geeks.

I should definitely do a deoderant re-apply before I get there.

Anyway, my bit o’ geek for the day is that I’m taking off early to go hang out at Dunn Bros. so I can try to get a decent seat.  Also, this is an excuse to leave work early and continue re-reading The Demon-Haunted World in remembrance of Carl Sagan’s birthday.  Carl Sagan died in 1996, but today he would have been 76.


Update with PHOTOS!

Marian Call was awesome.  I actually did arrive about four hours early for the show, but a couple of my other friends also showed up around then.  I didn’t get much reading done in Demon-Haunted World, but we all hung out, played on our computers and had a grand old time.  One of my friends actually crocheted me a Jayne Hat in a little less than two hours in honor of the show and Marian’s Firefly fan songs.

Marian was friendly and chatty, the crowd was waaaay smaller than I expected (I’m bad at estimating, but…maybe 50 people?) and very well-behaved, and the sound was good.  This was probably the smallest, most intimate concert I’ve attended.  At the mid-show break and after the show Marian hung out and spoke with the audience and took pics with people.  Everything was very laid back and enjoyable.


Marian in Saffron garb for It Was Good For You Too



One Nation, Under Jayne!


Photo by @belmikey and posted with permission.  His complete set of pictures from the evening can be found here.

Marian Call in Minneapolis(ish)

w00tstock v2.3 Minneapolis 2010


Image Source

I swear, I had a grin on my face from 7pm when I found my nerd friends in the Guthrie lobby, until 12:15am when the w00tstock performers took their final bows and all of us nerds spilled out into the quiet Monday night downtown Minneapolis street – all of us complaining about having to go to work in 6 hours or so, all of us agreeing we would have stayed for another 6 hours of w00tstock if they would let us. 

This was w00tstock version 2.3, otherwise known as the Minneapolis 2010 w00tstock show.  The show claims to be three hours (or more).  Wil Wheaton started the intros at about 7:30pm, and final bows happened at about 12:15am (after a 19-minute-or-so rendition of the The Captain’s Wife’s Lament).  Allowing for a 15-minute intermission,  that’s a four-and-a-half hour show!

I guess w00tstock could be described as a nerd/geek variety show.  There were musical performances by Paul and Storm, Molly Lewis, Trace Beaulieu and Bill Corbett from MST3K), video interludes, and Wil Wheaton did a reading from his new book The Happiest Days of Our LivesThere was stand-up comedy from Tim Bedore and from John Scalzi, a physics lecture (with the maths and everything!) from James Kakalios, and some nerd proposed to his fiance in front of the entire audience.

This is one of the better quality videos that I have found on youtube from the performance.  This is Adam Savage performing I Will  Survive in the voice of Gollum.  While he was on stage, Adam – like a true nerd – had a random nosebleed, and since I guess he felt like he was in good company, he just shoved a tissue up his nostril and kept going.  That’s nerd pride!

These are some of my pics from far, far away.  The quality ain’t great (read: pretty darn not great in some cases), but they’re what I got.


Lord of the Rings Photoshop (Adam Savage, Storm, Paul, Wil Wheaton), Physics Professor James Kakalios with his Trivial Pursuit card and Paul, Trace Beaulieu, Bill Corbett and Storm singing together.

The whole gang together to sing a New National Anthem, Adam Savage on stage, and Neil Gaimen makes a suprise visit to deliver a single pirate “Arg” for the Captain’s Wife’s Lament.

This is a fairly decent video of Molly Lewis recorded in the day prior in Chicago (w00tstock v2.2 on Sunday 6/6/10).  The image isn’t great, but the audio is pretty smooth.  Molly is singing an awesome song called “An Open Letter to Stephen Fry”.  I never want to have children, but she makes some pretty persuasive arguments for child-bearing as a service to the greater good. 

It was a fabulous show, and I hope to be able to go again when 3.0 is released.  This is a version upgrade I will always buy!

All photos are released in accordance with Creative Commons and are available for anyone to use provided they abide by CC.  Photos were taken and uploaded to this blog by biodork.  Some photos have been cropped to improve photo quality, but images remain otherwise unaltered.

w00tstock v2.3 Minneapolis 2010