7/2/15- Day Off!
Last night Eddie texted me and Ryan to tell us about a last minute television publicity that had sprung up for Thursday afternoon at 1 p.m.
Ryan and I began getting ready, even though we were uncertain whether the event would happen due to the heavy rainfall and the fact that the big top was nowhere near being finished.
Sure enough, I had finished my make up, and I was just about to put my clown nose on when Alexa texted to tell me the television station had canceled the interview due to the weather.
Ryan and I were both upset that they waited until the last minute to cancel, which caused us to waste our make up and time on a day off, but there was nothing we could do.
Our only option was to get away from the circus and enjoy the rest of our free time.
Our first stop was a Half Price Books, which is usually a sure cure to keep me from going on an anger induced rampage.
I didn't find any books I wanted, but I did find an awesome Gremlins coffee mug.
We had lunch at a dim sum restaurant. It wasn't the best dim sum we've ever had, but then again I don't remember there being a city called Omaha in China.
I took Ryan to the Old Market area of downtown Omaha that I had explored a bit last night. We revisited the antique stores I had been to; in addition to all of the great treasures inside, Ryan enjoyed seeing all of the hand lettered signs in the different shops.
We checked out a great used book store that I had wanted to visit last night, but couldn't because it was closed.
The shop had such an amazing selection of titles that I could have easily spent a week thoroughly browsing through them.
I picked up the biography of Jim Henson that came out last year, as well as a book on Minsky's burlesque.
We worked up quite an appetite from all our walking and perusing, so we had ice cream at Ted & Wally's, and a cup of coffee from Scooter's.
Both were highly recommended establishments, but Ted & Wally's was especially superb. I had an ice cream flavor called "Float Like A Butterfly, Sting Like A Bee" that was orange ice cream with bee pollen, orange peel, and pound cake. Mmm mmm good!
While we were downtown I happened to spot a free paper that had "Weird Al" Yankovic written across the top.
"Weird Al" is the king of parodying popular music, and I've been a big fan since I was eleven.
I rushed over to read the paper and discovered that "Weird Al" was performing in Council Bluffs tonight, only two miles from the lot. What luck!
He was performing at Stir Cove, which is an outdoor concert venue at the Harrah's Casino consisting of a big grassy hill leading down to the main stage.
The venue was packed, and everyone who wasn't standing in front of the stage had brought lawn chairs or blankets to sit on.
We didn't realize it was an outdoor concert until we got there, so we just had to deal with having wet pants for the concert's duration. (The grass was wet from this morning's rain. We didn't wet ourselves. Well, I did.)
I was so happy I got to see "Weird Al" perform live. He puts on one hell of a show; he made a costume change after almost every number, and while he changed we were all entertained by hilarious television, music video, and movie clips starring or referring to Al.
This tour is promoting his newest album "Mandatory Fun", and although he performed several songs from it, he also pulled out many of his classics and fan favorites, such as "Fat", "Dare to Be Stupid", "Amish Paradise", and many more.
After the concert Ryan and I decided to check out the casino while we waited for the crowd leaving the venue to dissipate.
We each played a dollar on slot machines, and we both lost 80 cents of those dollars. I felt so alive!!!!!
As we were sitting in my truck waiting to leave the parking lot, we were treated to a nearby fireworks show.
That helped pass the time as we sat and waited for an opening in the line of cars leaving the casino.
It took forever to get off the casino grounds; I couldn't believe how many people were still leaving an hour after the concert. There was a steady line of cars that whole time.
Ryan and I had dinner at the Hooters near the lot to celebrate the end of an awesome day off.
7/3/15- 6:00 and 9:00 p.m.
This morning I woke up at 6:30 a.m. for our radio publicity. Ryan and I were interviewed a couple of times between 7 and 8 a.m.
It was a very easy PR; even though the station was in Spanish, the DJ let me speak English, and he translated everything for the listeners.
After we finished our interviews Ryan and I went to an art store to buy more supplies for the dog props we are building.
Once that was finished I crawled back in bed and caught up on the sleep I missed out on thanks to this morning's publicity.
Later in the afternoon we loaded our props into backstage, and then we were ready for opening night.
I was pleasantly surprised at the turn out for the shows tonight. I honestly wasn't expecting many people because this is the first time Vazquez has played this market, and when you hear the names Omaha, NE and Council Bluffs, IA, your first thought usually isn't a large Latin American population.
7/4/15- 6:00 and 9:00 p.m.
This morning Ryan and I began celebrating America's independence the best way we knew how: by shopping at an Asian supermarket and then watching "3 Amigos", a movie about Mexico....
Again I was pleasantly surprised by the turnout for the first performance. July 4th is usually a terrible business day for the circus, and yet we always have multiple shows on that day, no matter what circus we're with.
The second performance was much more in line with what I was expecting: an incredibly small crowd (even using the word crowd is a stretch), and it seemed by their lack of enthusiasm that they would have much rather been barbecuing and watching fireworks than watching a circus.
Speaking of which, I was able to sit outside the lot's perimeter fence and watch fireworks during my downtime in the 9:00 p.m. show's second half, and after work Jose Alberto invited me and Ryan over to his trailer for a small 4th of July cookout that he was holding.