What Have I Been Doing with My Days?

I keep getting asked that question, and I really have no idea.

Yesterday, I inputted in an excel spreadsheet all the artists performing at the four music festivals I have tickets for (Lollapalooza has unfortunately not announced their lineup yet, won’t until April 21 and that would be number 5), sorted them correctly alphabetically (no The’s or A’s at the beginnings of names unless it is actually said) for each festival, then compared who was performing where and if there were any repeats. Now when set times are announced, I can make actual educated decisions about, well, perhaps if there is a conflict at this festival, I have a chance of seeing this band at a different festival. Or, this is their only performance.

This is what I do for fun. I play with excel spreadsheets. It helps me learn my new Excel 2007 version, since it is rather different from previous versions. And since most other people I know who are using Excel don’t use this version yet, I’m kinda on my own figuring it out. Some really basic simple things I used to know how to do, I no longer have a clue how to do, because I haven’t figured out where to access it. So it is very good practice. Maybe my expertise at Excel 2007 will get me employed.

And this is what I can tell you about the overlap of the four festivals Coachella, Sasquatch, Bonnaroo and All Points West:

Crystal Castles, The Knux and the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs are the only three bands to play at all four festivals.

Fleet Foxes, The Gaslight Anthem, Girl Talk, Silversun Pickups, St. Vincent, The Ting Tings, and TV on the Radio are all playing at three of the festivals.

While A.A. Bondy, The Airborne Toxic Event, Alberta Cross, Animal Collective, Band of Horses, Beastie Boys, Ben Harper and the Relentless 7, The Black Keys, Blitzen Trapper, Bon Iver, Booker T (with and without the DBTs), Cage the Elephant, Calexico, Chairlift, The Decemberists, Electric Touch, Erykah Badu, Etienne de Crecy, Ghostland Observatory, Gogol Bordello, Grizzly Bear, Jenny Lewis, Lykke Li, MSTRKRFT, The Murder City Devils, M. Ward, My Bloody Valentine, Neko Case, Nine Inch Nails, of Montreal, Okkervil River, People Under the Stairs, Ra Ra Riot, Santogold, Shearwater and We are Scientists all play at two of the four festivals.

That leaves everyone else playing only at one of the festivals, so a more urgent need to try and catch them if I have interest in seeing them perform. But some I’ve seen before, and some I have no idea what they are like, so that leaves me to begin my research about the bands I don’t know, and to prioritize which ones I want to go see. Because if I enjoyed them before, maybe I want to see them again. But I also like to open my ears to bands I don’t know. Such a conundrum. Thus the reason for research. That and arranging where to stay, or what to get for camping, or taking care of my car to enable all that travel.

It’s exhausting all the work I need to do to be a music festival groupie, ya know? To be a prepared music festival groupie.

And in the meantime, I screwed up my perfect chance to be a Bonnaroo Pre-Festival volunteer, as I didn’t get my payment in on time (was waiting on a check to make sure I had the money to cover it) and all the positions got filled. But fortunately for me, since they couldn’t transfer the ticket I was purchasing through the payment plan over to the volunteer group (i.e., I would be buying two tickets, and only getting refunded one when I finished my volunteering gig) I still have a ticket, with no volunteering obligations attached. All my concerns about missing the bands I want to see thus erased. Just not the financial situation I had been hoping for. And I am still waiting to hear if the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, the following weekend after Bonnaroo, will have me as a volunteer. This time I am not purchasing anything until I hear back from them, as I don’t have to drive through Colorado to get home. It would just be nice to have a place to stay for a few days down time before continuing the trek home, and this certainly seemed pleasant enough. I especially like the prospect of a Bluegrass combo performing only Radiohead songs.

So this, plus the classes I take, the weekly phone calls I am on, the volunteering I do, the arranging in advance of travel details, and purchasing tickets and following up on unresolved details, and keeping track of my finances, that’s what I do with my time. I’m also researching cars, so if and/or when my car dies, I have a backup plan of what car to purchase next. Because I like to have backup plans to my backup plans. It has come in handy previously!

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