Supercalifragilisticexpialiuhoh!

Aside

Feburary 2013, Oakland CA. First rehearsal.
H – I’m so happy you’re here man! I can’t believe it.
G – Me too. It’s unbelievable! Here we are. Long time in the making.
H – Yes, long time, I mean, I know we’ve just been scheming for a year and some change, but I feel like we’ve been silently scheming this up since we were kids.
G – Indeed. Long time in the making. (long pause). Soooooooo….
H – Sooooo?
G – So!
H – Agreed.
G – We make a show now? With songs and …. stuff?
H – Yes. We make a show now. With songs and …. stuff. And moments…. and fun! I want fun to be at the heart of this. I want us to have fun making the fun for them to have fun with. Fun!
G – So we should save our goth gore bubonic plague nuclear wasteland show for a different venture?
H – YES!
G – Fun!
H – FUN! fun fun fun fun fun
(Long pause).
G + H, together – Let’s do this!

April 2013, Oakland. 42nd rehearsal.
H – Now, when we break from the kazoo there do you think it’s too much if I make like I’m trying to lift my nipple up to my tongue to lick it? Or should I just give my finger tips a sexy lick and touch my nipples, like, you know, give them a little rub with a come hither look?
G – Hmm… that’s a good question. Maybe…. Let me see just the nipple touching? on 5,6,7,8 ——– Ok, that’s pretty good. Now let me see the nipple lift with lick? 5,6,7,8 ——— Ahhh! Definitely the touching. The lift is too much, a bit traumatizing.
H – Ok. So, we go from Kazoo to the nipples and then right into big stomping with wide hands like we’re slapping an elephant?
G – Wooly mammoth!
H – So be it.
G – From the top?
H – From the top!



September, 2013, Oakland. 59th rehearsal.
H – Good summer?
G – Terrific. You?
H – Lovely, thanks. That dress rehearsal back in May went pretty well! I think we’re almost ready for our tour!
G – I felt real good about it too and I do think we’re ready. I just have a couple things I want to add, is that cool?
H – Sure! What’d you have in mind?
G – A series of scripted introductions, one giant baseball cap the size of a person, an extensively choreographed fight sequence, a fake corporate sponsor and accompanying jingles, a sung announcement before each show tailored to the specific host, a musicological lecture with original slides that gets interrupted by a magic routine, and entirely new lyrics to half our songs.
H – (passes out)
G – Hubby, wake up!!!
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Late September 2013, Oakland. 86th rehearsal.
G + H – refrigerator leap frog eczema steamship fig tree drywall norway grandma bubbles ceasar chavez aluminum feikas heineken florida graveyard tickle party supercalifragilisticexpialidocious towel mushroom orchid milk and cookies Ira Glass feelings lotion toenail -
H – Wait. I think we need to change toenail. I don’t think it flows well, and it just kind of grosses me out.
G – Well we just changed it to toenail, but I think you’re maybe right……
(15 minutes go by in deep silent thought)
H – Tapioca?
G – Perfect! Also, I was thinking about pronouncing aluminum the british way ya know? Ah-loo-min-ee-um?
H – Why?
G – Don’t know.
H – I think it’s distracting.
G – Agreed. Ok. From the top with Tapioca and lets go double time from supercal.
G + H – refrigerator leap frog eczema steamship fig tree drywall norway grandma bubbles Caesar Chavez aluminum ficus heineken florida graveyard tickle party supercalifragilisticexpialidocious towel mushroom orchid milk and cookies Ira Glass feelings lotion tapioca insecurity hero polaroid baseball silver cannon rodeo pigeon wedding tonsil garden soapy Hindenburg fever mustache overalls salmonella lazy susan schizophrenic popcorn cumulonimbus nascar subway pelican office jesus pancake porcupine, laptop, philatelist, hurricane
H – Should we hold hurricane at the end for two dips or three?
G – Three!


October 2013, Oakland. 123rd rehearsal.
H – Could you wear an undershirt maybe?
G – Ehh?
H – It’s just that when I go in there and we are doing our spins I’m getting a fair amount of your abdominal sweat all over my face.
G – I just don’t think my character would wear an undershirt.
H – Alright i’ll deal with it.

October 19th, Oakland. First day of tour.
G – Inflatable hammer, roses, whiskey bottles?
H – Check.
G – Blowdryer, birthday candles, bouncy balls?
H – Check.
G – Edible bugs, christmas lights, academic papers?
H – Check, check and check!
G – I think that about does it. Should we hit the roa – wait, musical instruments!?
H – Check.
G – Let’s go!
Pile of show stuff

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Tour, Day 3. 6:30am in the Subaru leaving Arcata CA en route to Portland OR
G – So what did you think?
H – I would have to say that is the nicest wood stove heated geodesic dome nestled into an ancient redwood forest that I’ve ever played in.
G – How bout that shower ay?
H – That was the warmest outdoor shower in an ancient redwood forest that I’ve ever bathed in.
G – How bout this home-made breakfast sandwich to go?!
H – Gid, I have to tell you, this is the best breakfast sandwich to go I’ve ever had while leaving an ancient redwood forest.
G – Me too man. Me too.
H – I think that song Bella wrote is gonna stay with me for a long time ??? 



G – It’s without question one of my favorite songs.
H – I hope she lets us cover it some day

Tour, Day 5. Eastern Oregon.
H – (gesturing frantically)
G – Uhhh… What’s up?
H – (points to his throat, makes an “X”
G – Wait what? Oh no! Don’t tell me that! I do not wan’t to hear that hubby.
H – (nodding somberly)
G – You lost your voice?!
H – (slams heel of hand into forehead)
G – I told you, you needed to go on vocal rest! Ok…. I guess… just no more talking ever or sounds of any kind? ??? What are we going to do now?
H – (shrugs).
G – Well, this is going to be interesting. Here fix this accordion it’s all messed up.
H – (gestures with a thumbs up) IMG_1321

Tour, Day 6. Echo, Utah.
G – Well, the map says we’re here, but there is nothing here. No service, either. Ah! There’s nothing here dude.
H – Well.. Let’s just keep driving up the road and see if we find something or someone we can ask.
(2 miles later….)
G – Ok I think this is it. I think this is Echo
H – This is not Echo, man. This is a motel, gas station and train tracks.
G – I know, but I think that might be what Echo is. Maybe he lives in the motel or gas station? Wait. There’s another house down the road there. I think that guy in tie-dye waving at us and filming us with an iPhone could be him. (they approach)
H – Reverend P? Are we in the right place?
Rev P – Yeah dudes! What’s happening! Welcome welcome welcome. Oh man I’ve been so excited! Welcome welcome!
G – Great to meet you. This place is wild.
Rev P – I know right? Echo Utah baby! I’m so pumped for your show I’ve been telling everyone. Don’t know how many people are coming. Might be as many as 100 people!
H – Holy shit! How many people live in Echo?
Rev P – Forty six.
(he gives us a tour of his beautiful home and land sandwiched between the train tracks about 30 feet from the house and hwy 80 on the other side. A freight train roars by 100 coaches long shaking the house.)
G – How often does a train come by?
Rev P – Between 30 to 60 times a day. I don’t even notice anymore though. When I bought the house 25 years ago the ad in the paper simply said “MUST LOVE TRAINS”. Let me show you your room.

Hubcap rev P arms up celebration

Tour, Day 7. In the Subaru leaving Boulder, CO.
H – Did you see those kids in the front row when I fell down?
G – Yeah. They seemed…. concerned.
H – Dude, I think the one kid was crying a bit, I think he thought you really killed me.
G – Well then he’s a little bit stupid. We’re pretending. We’re in a show.
H – He was like 4 years old!
G – Well…
H – I mean do you think we should change that part for the kids?
G – No. They can take it. It builds character. IMG_1413

Tour, Day 10. Boulder, UT, morning of show.
(That story is for another day)

Tour Day 11 – Las Vegas, NV. Post-show.
G – That was a lot of fun.
H – So much fun.
G – I’m thinking though…maybe we should put a line of red tape around our stage area if there are more than a couple kids
H – Those kids had a lot of energy and … curiosity.
G – I completely agree. They also seemed like they wanted to physically devour every instrument and object we had.
H – That’s true. It was almost like they were ravenously starving and thought our banjos were made of candy or burgers
G – I know. Did you see that kid in the blue onesy? He was actually gnawing on the accordion. He almost chewed through the bellows.
H – Ok we put a line of red tape down and we tell them it’s an invisible laser shooting upwards that is ver dangerous so they should keep their distance?
G – Something like that. All i know is we’ve got way too much kid saliva on our stuff right now.
H – Fun show though.
G – Yeah great show.

Last day of tour. San Francisco, CA, corner of a musty garage in the Mission.
H – Do you smell that?
G – I’m trying not to.
H – I think it’s all this mouse poop.
G – I think mouse poop is fine to smell just don’t eat it, you’ll get Hantavirus.
H – What’s Hantavirus?
G – It’s what you get when you eat mouse poop.
H – Who eats mouse poop?
G – I dunno man, I just know not to eat mouse poop.
H – Yeah I know that too, but I don’t need any special reasons why I shouldn’t eat it. It’s a very intuitive thing to know about.
G – I don’t see how it’s intuitive to know about Hantavirus.
H – No not Hanta…I mean… Never mind, let’s just keep cleaning.
(Our host descends with a team of housemates to clean with us. They bring chairs and benches and lights. frantic texts have been sent inviting more people per the hosts’ approval and sixty-odd people have gathered in this transformed and glowing garage. We have frantically and messily consumed emergency papusas in the yard. The garage door remains open for any passerby’s to join. One homeless man will be so taken with the show that he will emerge afterwards with a broken picture frame to solicit the performers’ autographs. It’s dark save for a bare spotlight hung from the ceiling pipes and  christmas lights around the room. G + H whisper to each other last-minute notes)
G – Let’s make the rose bows a bit shorter and we gotta stay back for the dip
H – Ok. do you have your coils and your pick?
G – Yes.
H – Let’s take our time before the second bugs so we can breath. I think the steps are easier if we have calmed down.
G – Agreed. You have both kazoos? Are these floor mats ok? I’ll lower your face down after I knock you out.
H – Yeah got kazoos, floor mats are good and it looks and I think we cleared the poop.
G – Alright let’s do it.
H – Have fun bud.
G – Have fun.

My first music video & announcing the brand new Gideon and Hubcap Show

First off, I have just launched a Kickstarter campaign for an exciting new project! See what it’s all about here! Watch the video! Perhaps it entertains you for a moment. Any support at all is much appreciated. If the spirit moves you, forward it to friends, post on Facebook, write the link on fancy stationary and mail it to your great grandparents etc. The campaign is for my first music video for my song Few People, a joint venture with film maker and all around performance comedian guy-person Ewen Wright of Cool Cat Productions. I laugh just looking at him! His idea for the music video was so ridiculous and fun I had to say “yes yes hooray.” Home shows are still going strong. Here are a couple images from the last 200 shows.

In February, I relocated to Oakland, CA to create a new two man house show with my long time friend and collaborator Nate “Hubcap” Sloan. In two days we will launch our first home show tour through the American West. I am stupid excited. It has been a most unusual and encouraging experience to work and collaborate with Hubcap. At times I have felt creatively isolated in being a solo performer. I’m not complaining! This is a wonderful life and path I’m on and I’m perpetually thrilled to further explore it, but working with Hubcap has been refreshing and illuminating. It’s made me realize that as much as I love sitting by myself and banging my head against a wall until something comes out, collaborating is funner! I’d even say it’s funnererer! We have been fluidly supporting ideas, tearing them down, celebrating them and throwing them out, improving, infusing, composting etc. We often giggled like school children, we worked, we exhausted ourselves, we annoyed each other and after enough of all that WE MADE A SHOW! It’s been fun and hard and wonderful and worth it, at least for me. I think Hubcap’s had a not-miserable/helluva time too.

This year has been one of discovering collaborators. This February I begin working full time on a new commission from The Foundry Theater of NYC in collaboration with the Foundry’s stupendous artistic director Melanie Joseph. For a while I was terrified of this project. I thought Melanie had probably made some confused mistake and it was just a matter of time before she realized. Building this latest show with Hubcap, my first real collaborative creating from scratch, has turned my fear into furious excitement for what’s to come, both with The Foundry and beyond.

Ewen also helped Hubcap and I with some fantastic sound design for The Gideon and Hubcap Show. In edition to Ewen’s magic we’ve had help from the resplendent painter and fabric artist Laura Bernstein, illustrator extraordinaire Iris Gottleib and dance man French Clements. You can browse our upcoming tour stops here and if you are east coast we plan on bringing our two man venture to a house nearish to you at the beginning of April for just 3 shows.

Tales from a two man journey soon….

Sammy The Snail And Face Rolfing

This morning I was driving my car down a road in Upstate New York and a squirrel, a chipmunk, a bird and a rabbit all ran/flew across the road, from right to left at the same time. The bird a dash in front of the chipmunk and squirrel. The squirrel and chipmunk side by side and the rabbit directly behind them. A very strange moment for me. I found this to be very unlikely. I cannot stop thinking about it. If anyone would care to offer a possible explanation in the comments section or to me personally It would be much appreciated.

I’ve been back east for two weeks since I finished my Back To The Other Side Tour. Twelve shows from Oakland to NY in 12 days. It was a challenging tour for me. The hosts were superb, the audiences attractive and the refreshments varied, but my drive times were too long. Many 9 hour drives with a show at the end. Wasn’t too good for my carbon footprint or my spirit, but good news is I can just….. not do it that way again!

At the top of this blog is a video of a famous snail in a famous shower in an unknown town brought me a great deal of joy. When people ask me why I do this I speak of my potato sorters and horse surgeons and now I will speak of Sammy The Snail. I was so thrilled when, after my show, Karen invited me to her shower to meet Sammy. Apparently life expectancy for this type of snail is 3 years and Sammy has been climbing all over Karen’s shower for 4 years strong. He goes on field trips to the kitchen and guest bathroom. Here is a view from the backyard of my hosts in Joseph OR, just next to where Sammy lives.

Joseph OR

Joseph OR

While passing through Portland I was able to stop at Stumptown Printers the old school new groove printing worker collective that produced my last album cover and has provided the blank covers for the 1,000 people CD project. It was really special to meet the humans I had asked all kinds of dumb questions to on the phone. They showed me their beautiful print monsters, we took a couple pictures, I did a few magic tricks and hit the road. I could have watched them pull levers and set type all day long.IMG_0679

They are the real deal. Just look at this thing that does stuff!

In Minneapolis my host Joe gifted me his accordion he’s had since he was 10. He even won some awards with it in his tweens playing polkas. Joe is an actor and director who lived in Chicago for many years and then moved with his family to Minneapolis where he’s been a mailman for 10 years. Growing up on the Upper West Side there was a mailman named Dennis who would rhyme to his deliveries. I learned some of his rhymes passing him by in middle school. Eventually he would see me coming down the street and say, “Hey hey hey it’s the mailman today.” I would finish his line with a big 7th grade grin, “And I soytenly do have a package for you!” We would hi-five as we passed. I was very surprised to learn that not all mailmen rhyme.

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A royal gift

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Trifle in the foreground

Joe, his wife Nancy, a radio journalist, and their daughter Coco were wonderful hosts. After 10 years as a mailman Joe is returning to acting and directing in Chicago in the coming year. I hope some day to get cast in a show of his playing his accordion. I find most of my hosts through referals and audiences putting contacts on my maps, but Joe found me. He reads the New York Times to blind people on the radio each Saturday and always picks a feature. He picked my feature! He was intrigued and invited me to come play at his house or join his family for Thanksgiving. Now that I’ve tasted his risotto and also his lemon trifle I’ve decided to spend the rest of my Thanksgivings with Joe, Nancy and Coco. IMG_0766

IMG_0658My first two hosts of the tour both appeared in the film Eraserhead. My host third in from the right played in this band. Other hosts’ jobs this time included private investigator, agave waste product fertilizer specialist, a childrens theater director, a costume designer, a knitting store owner, a Shakespeare to prisons bringer and director, a career facilitator and coach, a grant writer / bookstoreist, and of course a male sexuality discussion group leader. I also played for the summer theater players of Minot, ND and in a home filled with monkeys in Chicago.

My second show in Minneapolis was at the home of the lovely Dave and Amy and Lucy and Zoey. Dave had asked if the show was cool for kids and I said sure as I have had lots of kids at my shows. Lots of kids spread out among my shows. When all 50 guests had arrived about half of them were under the age of 11. I did some heavy breathing. I sometimes have found that when there are a ton of kids they can get excited and kind of ….. well…. just completely lose their minds, gnaw through each others’ limbs and light the curtains on fire. I warned my hosts this might happen and let them know that I welcomed whatever came my way. I thought about how to keep these kids’ attention. I changed the show a bit, added a few more magic tricks, some extra flash, some sparkle, some poof, sped things up and I was able to hold the room, kids included. I was stunned and delighted.

The family had a dog. Let’s call him…. Marzipan, as I can’t remember his name and that feels right. When we woke up the next morning the dog was acting a bit funny. He just looked odd as if he’d just eaten a pot brownie for the first time and was trying to sort out the experience. Eventually we noticed he was kind of walking like a very old man and gazing mysteriously into regular objects as if he could see bejeweled elvin kingdoms inside. I looked around the room and found a small clump of saran wrap. Oh no! Sure enough Marzipan had eaten a rather potent pot brownie my other host had given me. Luckily Marzipan had built up an immunity to chocolate over his years of mischief and did not die (chocolate being dog poison), but he did stumble around enough to warrant a visit to the vet. Thankfully Marzipan is doing well. The doc sent him home with a prescription for 5 hours of Xbox and a pepperoni pizza.

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The 1,000 CD Cover Project has been going strong. With 200 covers out so far, 40 have already been returned. This project has taken a great deal of organization and maintenance, but it’s all well worth it. It has been such a joy to see how folks have been interpreting their chosen design prompts. The challenge from my end is to always find a better way to invite people into the project, make sure they understand the details and then stay on top of them and make sure they don’t forget. Sometimes folks see it as just a piece of paper in an envelope, but I try to remind them when they take one and sign up that it’s really a tile in a large massive piece they are designing. Out of 200 released unto the world only 2 have been lost so far which is pretty good. Thank you, cover friends! Here are just a few examples of covers folks have sent in. Click below to see bigger.

I am currently planning my Back Again To The Other Side Tour beginning August 10th NY to Oakland. Once in Oakland me and my debonair accomplice Hubcap have a month and a half to finish up our show which will shortly be named and announced. We’ve had a blast working on it so far and are very excited to tour it through western homes the second half of October. USA tour tea towels are still in the works. As always if you would like to sign up for the 1,000 People CD Cover Project from afar just shoot me an email at itstruemynameisgideon@gmail.com and we will get you squared away.

Potatoes, Bone Chisels, Steel Freighters and Tea Towels.

It’s been three weeks since I finished my To The Other Side Tour, 25 homes from New York to Oakland, in a month, across 5,000 miles of Amerka in a Subaru. I was moving rather expediently and didn’t quite feel up for maintaining my Internet presence during the trip. Sometimes I look at this machine and just want to vomit, I want to vomit all over it so I won’t be able to use it anymore and I’ll be forced to communicate by messenger paper airplane (as the post office is on its way out) or telepathy, which I think it’s clear we are evolving towards. Of course other times I look at this machine and love it deeply like it’s family or a limb or a lover or a favorite sandwich.

Drives ranged from half an hour to nine hours. I loved my time in the car. I had my snacks, my radio, my notepad and recorder to keep me busy and I had my self-celebration, ego, doubt, fear, excitement, confusion, sadness and gratitude to keep me company. I found my mind much more active during long periods in the car than on the bike. The body is so still in the car. On the bike I’m panting and pedaling and balancing, I feel more vulnerable and often think about when this uphill will end or how long the downhill will last. I tried to find a stillness, but it was a real challenge. The car was this shell of stillness, lightning through the wilderness and the sprawl. The car came to feel like some empty brain that I would fill with my thoughts each drive. I spent 81 hours driving from January 5th to Feburary 2nd, but I tell ya I could have happily spent…. 85 hours!

I met some solid youngins on this trip, some delectable newborns (is that creepy? delectable? I don’t care), and some precocious toddlers. Some folks even let me hold their tiny new children. I didn’t drop even one! Look at the amazing physicality displayed by this little angel. I believe this routine came from little Micah’s hip-hop class.

My favorite comment and compliment I have received so far came from a little boy named Tyler. He was four and sat at perfect attention on his mom’s lap for my whole show. She told me afterwards that at one moment, in between songs, her son looked up at her and said, “How does he do it?” He paused and then asked, “Can I do it?” She said, “Yes, you can.” That put a smile on my face that was too big for my face. The smile did not fit and was sliding off the sides! That would have been enough, but his dad said he asked Tyler if he liked the show when it was done. Tyler took a moment to think about it and said, “I kind of loved it.” I carry that “kind of” with me.

In Windsor, Canada, I got to visit my host Tom’s freight yard where he loads trains with peanuts and safflower seeds and sometimes massive beams of steel. I exhausted him with an endless stream of questions. I knew about freight loading and transportation as much as I knew about potato storage and horse surgery. When I was visiting the yard they were loading several cars with steel. Tom’s business is moving towards more steel transportation as it is the perpetually reliable commodity. They loaded gigantic beams onto cars with an indoor crane system which had buttons, gizmos and hydrolics galore. Once the beams were loaded, the team of nine guys working went to town shrink-wrapping the load with giant flame throwers (I suppose they were supersized blow torches, but I think flame thrower sounds more dramatic). They hosed down the plastic with fire and it shrunk to the load like saran wrap to a bratwurst. I got to do some flame hosing myself for a bit. Shit was crazy!

 

On this tour I began the design for my next album cover. The design should be complete within 2 years! Maybe earlier. Some of you already know about this project and many of you are already participating. It’s called the 1,OOO PEOPLE CD COVER PROJECT and it will be complete once I have 1,000 participant-collaborator-designers. I’ll be explaining it in detail in my next blog for those of you out there who would like to be a part of it. If you’d like to know more right now or find how to participate click this. Check out the first returned CD cover from Madison WI.

In Alamosa I played at Mike and Barbara’s place. In the morning Mike invited me to his potato sorting facility. I think he expected me to politely decline, but I couldn’t have been more excited. I know as much about potato sorting as I do about horse surgery. We wrote down some directions and I met him out there. The directions to get “there” were something like: take your first left at the light then go a long ways through the nothing till you get to an almost nothing and then hang a right just till you pass nowhere and we are the third building in with the blue door. Barbara told me Mike was happy to have me as he often offers folks a tour of his potato world and people seldom take him up on it. What is wrong with people?! I don’t understand. I think he was phrasing his offer wrong. He should have been asking people “Would you like me to BLOW YOUR FRICKEN MIND?”

Inside this large warehouse was a matrix of conveyor belts, tubes and water flumes. They were still putting the new system together and were dealing with a flood when I came in. Flooding is a regular occurrence while figuring out how all the pieces fit together. Mike took me through these catacomb-like hallways of corrugated steel into the storage rooms. There in the cool dark were piles of potatoes as big as buildings! They had 50 million pounds of potatoes, enough to satisfy the potato needs of 300,000 Americans for a year. That’s right – we eat about 165 lbs of potatoes a year. We eat a six-foot tall person worth of potatoes a year. Imagine a six-foot tall man in your pantry made of potatoes and then imagine taking a bite out of him for 365 days until he’s gone and then you get another potato person for your pantry. You don’t have to imagine this, just if you want to. If you are uncomfortable imagining slowly eating a potato person in your pantry just imagine eating a lot of potatoes over a year…..which is something you do. You eat a lot of potatoes is what I’m trying to say.

There was a man shoveling potatoes from the pile into this flume that floated the taters through the hallways, under the this and thats and onto the sorting belts and size bobbers and doo dads and swirly loopers. They sell the good lookin ones to Walmart for 5 bucks per 100lbs and Walmart sells those 100lbs for 50 bucks. Walmart buys so many potatoes that they pretty much control the market. Potatoes that are funny lookin go to the starcher where they dehydrate em and then they end up as mashed taters in cafeterias and the like. When they go to the starcher it’s something like $1.80 per 100lbs! A lot of those potatoes are totally fine but they got a funny shape so the retailers don’t want them. Turns out we have a very specific and particular well-rounded shape in mind for our potatoes. I learned about the 4 different sizes of potatoes, the gas they run through the piles to keep em from going green and the cool air they run through the bottom of the pile to counter the heat the potatoes are still producing, being organic matter and all. I think about my potato morning often and think of Mike every time I take a bite from my potato man.

Towards the end of the tour I was lucky enough to witness a horse surgery on a yearling mare named Sweety. My host ran a horse surgery joint. Sweety had broken a small bone in her ankle and new bone had grown around the break creating a cluster of unwanted bone mess. The night before the surgery my host was filling up syringes with horse tranquilizer on the couch in the living room, ya know just your basic nightly pre-work duties. With a tiny broken bone in the ankle you might think you could just fish it out while the horse is looking the other way or slap a cast on that baby and call it a day. They took Sweety into a padded room, tranquilized her, hoisted her on a crane into the surgery room, hooked her up to an IV and a breathing machine, opened up her ankle and started chiseling away. Yes chiseling with a hammer and chisel! It was awesome. Sweety was out cold. There were about 6 people in the room to do the job and monitor her. They gave me booties and a hair net. It was just like those medical dramas, but with a horse and a horse crane and not much romance.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better I joined my host to “collect” a stallion. Collecting a stallion is a fancy name for wanking a horse’s gigantashlong into an AV (artificial vagina). This AV can be adjusted for tightness and warmth by adding water into the outer pouch. The hotter the water, the warmer – the more water, the tighter. They study what the stallions prefer and are able to cater the AV to each stallion’s wank…. sorry, collection. I missed getting a shot of the AV and the BIG moment cause I was trying to pick my jaw up from the ground. After getting the horse all randy by letting him smell a jar of mare’s urine, they led him over to this large object (they called it a fake horse but it’s just a big padded oval on legs) and the horse mounts it. As he mounted it my host and her assistant grabbed the shlong and put it in the AV. In about 5 seconds it was over with the flip of a tail. That’s how you know he came, his tail does a little flip. We took the goods to, ya know, the splooge lab and analyzed it and mixed it with nutrient rich solution that keeps it healthy till it finds its way to the inside of a lady horse. This horse had some good, healthy sperm so everyone was happy. It’s like my pappy always said: “A healthy collection of horse sperm is like a lemonade stand on a hot August weekend. The price is right if ya know who to call.”

Lastly I have new tea towels available! I have second editions from the New Zealand Way Over There Tour and brand new NYC Staying Put Tour towels. These custom dish towels are maps of my tours with all my hosts. If you would like one or many send at least $12 and at most $50 per towel to itstruemynameisgideon@gmail.com through paypal.com. It’s super easy and super safe. International orders please add an extra $6. Mark the payment as “gift” and include a note in the payment with your address and how many of which towel you fancy. Towels with all the shows from this pasr To The Other Side Tour will be available in the coming months. If you would like to pre-order those please send some dollars and let me know how many cross-country towels you would like and you will receive them shortlyish. Here are the two towels I have available now. If PayPal doesn’t suit you for any reason, you can send a check with a note to Gideon Irving at 464 Hudson St. Oakland, CA, 94618. I’m in Oakland for a while working on a few new projects.

A reminder to anyone with ideas I am always accepting possible house show host contacts. I’ve been collecting them on my maps at shows.

OK. Take care and don’t forget to be safe!

Two Men Prepared

To The Other Side

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The Staying Put Tour came to a close on October 24th. Steve Heller who writes for The Atlantic was at the last show and he did a piece on me that came out today. Thanks Steve! I’m currently booking my To The Other Side Tour for the month of January. Twenty five shows in homes from NYC to San Francisco where I’m heading to develop some new work with my old friend Hubcap. Please get in touch if you’re interested in hosting the show for a night or know of someone who might be. I’m currently accepting possible host contacts for USA and anywhere in the world. Planning for the global tour has begun.

The last host’s show was set up in honor of Catman’s 100th birthday. Catman is the feline member of my hosts family. It was my very first cat birthday show but it certainly won’t be my last as I had a helluva time. There were paintings around the house of Catman, Catman balloons, and even cupcakes with Catman’s face on small paper flags sticking out of the icing. I kept looking for Catman himself. I found him later in the evening resting in the master bedroom watching CNN, perhaps he doesn’t much care for Stove Top Folk.

I really enjoyed touring NYC and I look forward to doing it again. Next time I’m hoping to  expand outwards to the five boroughs. My shopping cart Bob, named by a young lady in an audience early on, held up pretty good. My friend and collaborator Israel Collado is the 21st  century MacGyver of handy men. Seriously I once saw him fashion a phillips head screw driver out of a tablespoon of mayonnaise, a toothpick and a sewing bobbin. He turned my regular shopping cart into a bi-borough speed chariot capable of nearly all up and downs and twistabouts I encountered. My Roller Blades Fredricka and Douglas, also named by an audience child, were falling apart about half way into the trip, but I unloaded a couple tubes of super glue in the trouble spots and they were tip top once again.

I pushed Bob and bladed Fredricka and Douglas across 91 miles of Manhattan and Brooklyn, over two bridges and through 5 rain days. I wore down 3 rubber stoppers on my blades and had to change one tire. I played 29 shows in 33 days, performed for 674 people and dragged my cart up and down 16 flights of stairs. I received 9 “That’s how to travel!”s and 15 “What the fu*#!?”s as I zoomed by folks with my speedy day glow beast. I honked my clown horn and waved at over 50 befuddled children. Four people thought my name was “GIDEON.COM”, cause my sign on the side of my cart says “MYNAMEISGIDEON.COM”. I ate a shocking number of tacos and an appropriate number of dumplings. My smallest audience was 5 and my biggest audience was 53. People wrote down 150 possible house show contacts on my maps including contacts in 13 countries. I had 11 barters for CD’s and tea towels my favorite being an exchange with a cheese and charcuterie (I didn’t know what this word meant either) specialist.

STAYING PUT TOUR TEA TOWEL WITH ALL HOSTS INCLUDED IS COMING SOONISH!

I played in the homes of a vocal coach, filmmaker, tech guru, composer, docter, educator-dancer-writer, nurse-playwrite, chef, musician-movement builder, sound engineer, psychiatrist, dramatist, farmer, urban planner, artist’s assistant, hedge funder, project manager, abortion dula, director, custom chuppa…ist, radio producer, digital activist, animator, interior designer, musician actress and rock star. I couldn’t have asked for better hosts.

On this tour I got to test my limit of consecutive shows. In New Zealand I tested my physical limit with a max of 136 kilometers over 12 hours with a show at the end. That was my point. I felt that was the most I could manage in a day. In NZ I never played more then 9 shows without a showless day in between. On this last tour I played 18 shows in 17 days. After 15 I was pooped. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while you know how I like to poop myself. My body felt most strange and curious at show 15. I was sitting in a chair feeling like I had no more sound left in my body, but all these people were looking at me and I was able to just dig it out. It’s the same lesson I learned on my bike on the previous tour. There is almost always a bit more. Almost always some deeper reserve to tap into. I say almost cause there is that other point of course where there is nothing left, where despite all intentions you reach and the reaching is all you have. There is nothing to grab hold of. That place is still an idea to me. I’m not sure what the value is of experiencing that feeling, not so sure I’d like to try it out…… but it does intrigue me. I want to know where my walls are.

The Old Grey Lady

To those of you perusing as a result of the NY Times piece welcome! Just to put it up front I am always looking for possible hosts all the time everywhere in the world. If you think you maybe might like to host a show some day, even if you’re just curious, shoot me an email itstruemynameisgideon@gmail.com and I’ll tell you more about it. That goes for anyone abroad too. The impetus for a tour in another country can be just one host, one show in one home. If that audience and group can connect me to another home or two more homes down the way then the tour has begun. I’d love to go everywhere and anywhere. At some point in the near future I’ll be going everywhere in the US so if you fancy to be a part of this journey let me know.

I was feeling a bit down on myself at the begining of this tour for not being on top of press. It’s a lot of moving pieces to make a house tour happen and I just didn’t get around to sending my press release out. My plan was to blanket the field repeatedly until I got someone’s attention. In a city of nine million there was really no telling if I’d be able to catch someones ear. A lot of things are happening in this town. Then I realized what I really want is a little something in the Times. It’s a lot to ask, but I thought if I can just keep poking them they might give it a go at some point. The day I made that decision I found Corey Kilgannon.

I could have been sending the times a press release for years, but I bumped into Corey on Riverside Drive on the Upper West Side. He asked me what I was doing and I told him it was a traveling music show going home to home. He asked if it was a religious thing (I get that a lot with Gideon. People think Bibles, then they think Beatles). I told him it was not a religious thing and we had a little chat before he told me he was A REPORTER FOR THE NY TIMES!!!! I thought maybe it was a joke some friend was playing on me and then I saw the press pass in his car we were standing next to. He came to a show a few nights later and was one of 8 audience members in the tiny living room of my friend Maureen and her pooch Yummy Plum.

Corey got the hot seat about 2 feet in front of me. When someone is that close it’s almost like they are performing for me. Performing their attention or laughter or emotion or applause. There is a certain threshold of too close for someone in a home. He was right on the edge. I like that edge for myself and the other. It’s exciting. Doesn’t happen often but when it does I really notice. It’s very ….. cozy.

I’ve been collecting possible hosts from audience members at the end of the evening on maps I put up. My maps are slowly filling with various scratchings, numbers and emails many of which will turn into connections and real humans in the near future. The other night a woman named Kristin gave me three contacts in Norway. Now I’m dreaming up a tour of Norway by Dogsled team through the dark winter. I can’t think of a better time to play peoples homes then when it’s dark and not much is going on. Try and bring a little sunshine. Dogsled is the way to tour!

Today I travel from one side of Williamsburg to the other (oy vey what a commute!). Tomorrow to Crown Heights.

Rain does what it wants. Not what I want.

Aside

Rain does what it wants. Not what I want.

Three weeks in to the Staying Put Tour! Hauling a shopping cart of stuff up five flights of stairs aint so bad. There is good food and good fuel everywhere I look and my commutes are mostly short (30 mins – 2 1/2 hours). The first week was a challenge though. Due to scheduling difficulties my first three shows were not so linear. 171st and Broadway all the way down to Bank St. then all the way up to 163rd! In that first week the cart was breaking down regularly. Wheels were wonky, steel was bending, my packing system was deplorable at best and control of the cart was a challenge. Things were so bent out of shape on my way to Bank St. that I walked the cart from 125th all the way down. Took about 5 hours with stops along the way to try and problem solve. My friend Israel Collado has been my collaborator and savior at times with the cart. He refitted it with big ol wheels and cut the sides out for my signs. After considerable tinkering and head scratching It is  working like a dream. Like a dream on a cloud bathed in golden sunlight soaked in angel breath.

My friend Vivian said “Gid I got the bicycle when you were going across New Zealand. That made sense to me, but what is up with the shopping cart and the roller blades?”. At first it was just an idea. I liked thinking of different ways to use my body to get from place to place. I just did a bike trip so I wanted something different. The modified cart and Rollerblades occurred to me and sounded like fun. Then I realized it’s completely practical and utilitarian. I don’t have a car and I can’t go up and down the stairs to the subways. It’s a great way to get around expediently with a lot of baggage. So long as the cart is not breaking down (this has only happened 5 times in 21 days) it rides like a dream. My friend and I painted the beast day glo for safety and flash and put the name of my website on the wooden sides. I thought it couldn’t hurt to be pushing a walking billboard around a city of nine million.

People do look at me, but only for a moment. You gotta be riding on the back of a day glo Terradactle to get a real double take in this city. Some have told me I look like a homeless guy with a website. Oh well. I put a considerable amount of pre-thought into this mode of transport, but there were still unforeseen challenges.

1. NYC roads are built on a slope for drainage. The only flat part of the road is the middle. That is where the cars go and where I do not go. I ride the cart along the side of the road and therefor and perpetually veering off to the right and into the drains. SOLUTION = Ride on the sidewalk when possible (much flatter), ride on the left side of the road whenever possible to veer to the left for a while and compensate musculaturial dis-evening and last but not least petition the city to change all their roads for a more comfortable shopping cart tour next time.

2. The rain! My original plan on rain days was to wait under some awning for dry spells and move fast in those moments. Start early and wait for the rain to stop, cause rain always stops. Apparently I had a faulty understanding of weather patterns. On my very first rain day the rain began and continued. I gave myself 6 hours to make a 1 hour ride and I spent many hours waiting before I realized my faithful dry spells will not always exist. SOLUTION = My beautiful brother and sister in love brought down a tarp, we sloppily dressed the cart and I carried on. It wasn’t pretty but it worked. My papi always said “A soggy banjo’s like a lump of dough without an oven. What’s it good for?”.

3. The rain! Turns out the smooth wheels on rollers blades slip on the wet ground and have very little traction. SOLUTION = baby strides.
Today it is sunny. I’ll be carting from Bed-Stuy to Williamsburg.