Saturday, August 8, 2015

Friday, July 31-Monday, August 3: Melrose Park, IL


7/31/15- 6:00 and 9:00 p.m.

This morning I went to Trader Joe's and spent over $100 on groceries, which proves that I should never go food shopping while hungry.

After last night's boffo business, I was disappointed in the size of tonight's crowds, especially for the 9 p.m. performance.

Ryan and I were cracking each other up after the last show while we were interacting with the public.
Ryan walked over to a man and his very pregnant wife in the front row to congratulate them and let them know that Ryan makes an excellent name for a baby.
When he walked back over and told me what he said, I asked, "What would you have done if she wasn't pregnant?"

A woman holding her toddler aged girl came over to get a picture with us. She said of the girl, "Tiene miedo", which translates to "She has fear."
Miedo sounds incredibly close to the Spanish curse word for poop, so being the comedy genius I am, I replied, "That's funny, I don't smell anything."


8/1/15- 6:00 and 9:00 p.m.

This morning Emma and I went to see the movie, "Paper Towns". Emma invited me to go, but I went into the theater completely oblivious to what the film was about.
I ended up enjoying it more than Emma did; it wasn't a great movie, but it was better than "Pixels". (Which isn't really saying much)

After the film Emma and I grabbed a couple of Gene & Jude's famous french fry topped hot dogs for lunch.
As we were heading back to the circus we passed by a Burger King that had a man in an enormous cheeseburger costume dancing around in front of the store.
As if that visual wasn't funny enough, the man was giving it his all and doing dance moves I never dreamed possible while dressed as a fast food item.
I'm going to remember that the next time I complain about my job.

We had fun audiences tonight; they were a great improvement over the Friday night crowds.


8/2/15- 2:00, 5:00, and 8:00 p.m.

This morning Emma and I went to Panera Bread for breakfast. It wasn't as adventurous a choice in restaurants as we usually make on our Sunday outings, but I didn't want to deal with tricky parking, and I knew we could sleep in a bit more and still get our food at that restaurant without dealing with an enormous crowd.

While we were eating, a man who seemed to have ATHD disorder sat down behind us and was constantly moving around, talking to himself, and making random noises.
When he heard Emma talking with her British accent, he began saying cockney things like, "'Ello guvner", and at one point he started mimicking things I was saying too.
It was way too hard to carry on a conversation with him sitting close to us, so we got up and moved to a less distracting part of the restaurant.

After eating I dropped Emma off at an Enterprise to pick up her rental car. Her mother is visiting for two weeks, so Emma wants to have better mobility to show her mom a good time in the Windy City.

There was so much strong wind today that it made cleaning our water mat a real pain in the butt. Even in the backstage tent we couldn't keep the mat from folding in on itself every time a strong gust blew.

Unfortunately the almost constant breeze was not cool and refreshing, it just blew more hot air into the tent. Therefore, the air conditioners had a hard time keeping up to cool off the inside of the tent, which made the audiences pretty miserable.

During the second half of the last performance there was some beautiful lightning going across the sky. Shortly after work the storm to accompany the lightning hit and there was a torrential downpour.
No wonder it was so humid today!


8/3/15- 7:30 p.m.

Today I went to have lunch at Johnnie's Beef one more time before we leave the Melrose Park area. Besides that, I spent the day cleaning, packing, and preparing for our night jump.

We had a good sized crowd for our final show in town, and I got a nice surprise right before it started. Emma had her mom bring over goodies from England for me: some Galaxy chocolate and Jelly Babies, my favorite!

Ryan and I were able to leave about an hour after the conclusion of the show. It was a 10 mile jump to the lot in Chicago, but it took us about 20 miles because we took a route that kept us from going down any residential streets.

We played the lot in Chicago last year, so I know the area well. Unfortunately, I was paying too much attention to where the other trailers were parked and not enough attention on where the entrance gate was, and I ended up driving past it.
I had to loop around and take a detour to get back on the route. My new path took me under a low overpass that had me worried I'd take my air conditioner off my trailer, but luckily I made it under safely.

When I got back on the correct road, I was stopped by an extremely slow train crossing the street just several yards from the lot.
Ryan caught up to me while I waited, and we ended up waiting almost forty minutes before we could cross the rail road tracks.
The slow moving train stopped right in the middle of the road for awhile, and then another train went past it. That train then started slowly backing up.
Finally both trains got out of our way, and we were able to proceed to the lot.

I went by the lot very slowly so I wouldn't miss the gate again, but when I came to it, I saw that it was closed and chained up.
I saw that two trailers were already on the lot, so I figured the gate on the next street must be open. Ryan and I turned down that side street only to find that gate was also closed.

By this point I was incredibly frustrated, so I asked Ryan to call Pompeyo or Carmelo and ask how they got on the lot.
They replied that the gate was not locked, only closed and chained. That infuriated me, as we then had to take another detour to loop around and get back on the route again.

When I finally got onto the lot, the first thing I did was ask why the gate was closed. The answer I got was "They told us to keep it closed."
I don't know who "they" are, but I severely questioned the judgement of closing and appearing to lock up the entrance to a lot that people are driving to at night.
Grrrrrrrr.

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