Sunday, September 30, 2007

Charlottesville Vegetarian Festival

More appropriately billed as a alternative lifestyles or socially-conscious lifestyle festival, yesterday's Charlottesville Vegetarian Festival offered a chance for the area's many green and nice organizations to gather and present their ideas and wares. The parking lot (above) featured most of the vegetarian eats. Limiting myself to walkable restaurants most of the time, it was a chance to enjoy Maharaja, which offered a combination platter. Lee Park accommodated the multifarious booths and tents. C-ville Republicans and the local chapter of the NRA were not present. There were, however, primitivists, dog adoption opportunities, earth-conscious products, and Amesty International. Most of the people there were thin, many fit; all enjoyed the beautiful early fall weather.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Bob Dylan - 9/27/07

Through garbled lyrics, a ban on cameras (hence the blurry shot), and an underinvolved crowd, Thursday night still offered a great show. Having missed Amos Lee altogether, the latter half of Elvis Costello's set felt more appropriate to the seated crowd. Dylan arrived on the stage amidst a strange introduction in a purple shirt/tie combo, black suit, and large-brimmed gray hat. The style of Modern Times was applied throughout the set. At times Dylan threatened to break into melody, but mostly he just growled and snarled. Seeing him a year ago, this has been the state of things at least since then. All said, he is a living legend and having another chance to see him live within walking distance from my home was well worth it. Lyrical highlights were Hard Rain and Ballad of a Thin Man, though the groove of Levee's Gonna Break sounded the best.

Set List:

1. Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat (Bob on electric guitar)
2. Don't Think Twice, It's All Right (Bob on electric guitar)
3. Watching The River Flow (Bob on electric guitar)
4. Blind Willie McTell (Bob on electric keyboard and harp, Donnie on banjo)
5. The Levee's Gonna Break (Bob on electric keyboard, Donnie on electric mandolin, Tony on standup bass)
6. Workingman's Blues #2 (Bob on electric keyboard)
7. Tangled Up In Blue (Bob on electric keyboard and harp)
8. A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall (Bob on electric keyboard, Stu on acoustic guitar, Tony on standup bass)
9. Highway 61 Revisited (Bob on electric keyboard)
10. Spirit On The Water (Bob on electric keyboard and harp, Tony on stanup bass)
11. Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again (Bob on electric keyboard)
12. Ain't Talkin' (Bob on electric keyboard, Donnie on violin, Stu on acoustic guitar)
13. Summer Days (Bob on electric keyboard)
14. Ballad Of A Thin Man (Bob on electric keyboard and harp)
15. Thunder On The Mountain (Bob on electric keyboard)
16. All Along The Watchtower (Bob on electric keyboard)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Bobby D.

As the show approaches, the C-ville (Sept. 18-24) featured Bobby D. on its cover with a long rambling historical exposition. Unfortunately, the article chose to focus on Dylan's apocalyptic vision with lyrical examples from different periods of his career. This one-sided interpretation ignores the light-hearted sarcastic Dylan of Motorpsycho Nitemare. As expected, a C-ville feature article is not the place to present the nuances of a complex subject. Why make it the place to put forth a thesis about Dylan's darker musings by dissecting his lyrics? Just go and listen to the music. It'll blow your mind. Isn't that enough?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Spry's Barbecue

Only days ago the "opening soon" sign appeared. Without completely scrubbing the Northern Exposure from the building - the large subway map still exists next to the bar - Spry's is open for business, and Mr. Spry is the real deal. Hailing from South Carolina, he now resides in Louisa. As owner and chef, he brings authentic Carolina Barbecue to West Main Street. Staffing is short at the moment, but service was still prompt. The pulled pork Carolina Barbecue Sandwich was the best I've had. The french fries could use some work, a little cool and soggy, but for now I'll chalk that up to just opening. Guinness is one of four or five beers on top. Price for one: $13. Life is good.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Bring it on! Just as Rev Soup II and Christian's II were welcomed to the Corner, now there is going to be BBQ in the old Northern Exposure space. Carolina style, the vinegar based variety, is making its way to far West Main. What will become of the ugly Northern Exposure mural adorning the western side of the building? It doesn't really matter because barbecue is coming to the neighborhood.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Large Green Caterpillar

What is this large green caterpillar? I think it is in the sphinx or hawk moth family, but I don't know which one.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Mono Loco

Just before the free Trolley dives across the mall at 2nd St SW, it passes Mono Loco to the right, which occupies the SW corner of the 2nd St SW and Water Street corner. For a few years now, they've been serving up "nouveau-Latin cuisine", as described on their web site. Describing it as a Charlottesville south of the border experience, similar to Continental Divide's but with a more extensive menu, means more in the provinces.

There's a bar and a small indoor eating area. The largest and more popular place to eat is on the canopied patio. The website claims two outdoor patios, but it's really just one big one.

The Mushroom Tamale platter was all tamale and not enough mushrooms. The cabbage slaw makes the locos tacos de pescados worth coming back for. The Mojito tasted good, but it was light on the booze. There's a requisite selection of Mexican beers.

Mono Loco home page

200 W Water St
Charlottesville, VA 22902
(434) 979-0688