Print Story Notes from the field.
Diary
By technician (Fri Nov 14, 2014 at 08:04:38 PM EST) (all tags)
0) If yer in 'Murica, you tip at least 20%.


  1. I've been to a lot of drunken festival type things. In the last week, I've been to two. One, a music fest that used to be cool before you heard about it, was a disaster and full of angry feelings. The other, a total sausage and polka and beer fest, was as fantastic and happy and amazing as always. In fact, the later (Wurstfest in New Braunfels) is where I see the most alcohol consumed per person out of anything I've ever attended en masse, yet it is always super happy and peaceful and fun.
  2. Speaking of Wurstfest: every year for the last six years, I've left early from work on the Wednesday during Wurstfest's week to attend with various folks. When I did this the first time, there were four of us. This year, we rented two 12 person vans and had 19 people total. Most years, I buy a shedload of drink tickets and consume enough beer to drown a dwarf. This year I wasn't drinking, but bought drink tickets and handed them out to people; not drinking was jst as fun as drinking. Most years on the way out I give someone my leftover drink tickets or pitchers of beer. This year six strangers over the course of the night bought our group pitchers of beer. Most years we buy more food than any group should eat in one sitting. This year, two of the food vendors not only recognized us, but gave us food for free (new stuff that they'd just started selling). Contrast this with any very large festival. Wurstfest is seriously the nicest, happiest place in Texas during the week. I may have to fly back to do it again in coming years, keep it a tradition with our friends.
  3. Speaking of FunFunFunFest: Austin has a festival every other week. For music, there are three Big Deals. There's the Austin City Limits music festival (we all call it ACL), there's South By Southwest (SXSW, not just music but damn there's a lot of music) and there's FunFunFunFest (only recently large enough to warrant attention from the masses) which is normally hardcore and nostalgia acts. My wife has been to FunFunFunFest all nine years it has existed, all three days it happens. I've been four times. This time was definitely my last; I'd sort of decided that two years ago and didn't go last year. This year nailed it: I'm not made for music festivals that involve more than 1000 people. That said: Radkey, Peelander-Z, Amon Amarth, Alt-J, Sick Of It All, The Fat White Family, and anything involving Jello Biafra or W. Kamau Bell: all good.  The Fat White Family was a remarkable performance, easily the best rock and roll I've seen, ever. Take the Stones from the last 60s, mix with Iggy and / or the Stooges, and add a lot sex. Still, FunFunFun used to be gritty, hardcore smaller or medium-sized acts and/or nostalgia acts. There were maybe four hardcore punk acts, and a handful of metal acts (versus tens of both in previous years). I miss the local and obscure bands. I don't need to see Judas Priest, thanks. Slayer, though, was pretty awesome two years back.
  4. Speaking of everything else, I am going to miss Austin. It's been home for a very long time. I have months to see all the things, though. I plan to.
Hope this finds you well.

Yours in Christ,
technician

< It's breakfast for dinner! | 2014 >
Notes from the field. | 19 comments (19 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
You sound like Frodo by marvin (4.00 / 1) #1 Fri Nov 14, 2014 at 11:39:54 PM EST
'Dear old Frodo!' said Pippin. 'Did you really think you had thrown dust in all our eyes? You have not been nearly careful or clever enough for that! You have obviously been planning to go and saying farewell to all your haunts all this year since April. We have constantly hear you muttering: "Shall I ever look down into that valley again, I wonder", and things like that.'

Locals ignore everything local by wumpus (4.00 / 2) #3 Sat Nov 15, 2014 at 10:30:07 AM EST
wise locals see things before it is too late. While I've seen most of the Washington DC sites (being from Baltimore, it was an "out of town" trip taken every year or so), I hadn't seen much of the Civil War battlefields. I had this vision of moving to Texas and trying to explain that my memories of the Gettysburg battlefield largely consisted of Danny Dunn* banging on the piano at 2am (it was an indoor Boy Scout trip in January). Eventually I hiked over pretty much all of them (the big POW camp is pretty much "you can't get there from here" and intended as much to trap any confederates stupid enough to try to break them out).

Wumpus

* not his real name, but since there was a favorite juvi lit series of mine with that title character and my patrol leaders names including both names, both are mostly remembered under that name.

[ Parent ]
The plan is by technician (2.00 / 0) #4 Sat Nov 15, 2014 at 01:03:01 PM EST
to do the touristy things, and also go to the places that I remember liking, and take pictures, video, etc.

Things like the trail around the lake in the pre-dawn dark. With a camera in hand and dark clothing, jumping out in front of runners to capture their (suprised? delighted?) faces, how could I go wrong?

[ Parent ]
Soooo by dev trash (4.00 / 1) #8 Sun Nov 16, 2014 at 09:05:20 PM EST
You're going to hang out on that bridge and wait for bats to fly out?

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I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOUR BALLS! ->clock
[ Parent ]
wrong time of year by technician (2.00 / 0) #11 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 07:32:38 AM EST
But we have done that this year.

[ Parent ]
I grew up less than a mile from by dev trash (4.00 / 1) #16 Tue Nov 18, 2014 at 09:41:52 PM EST
The largest little brown bat colony in PA ( don't worry white nose wiped them all out ) it is a site to behold.  these were coming out the belfry of an old church.

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I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOUR BALLS! ->clock
[ Parent ]
There's something basic in my personality by riceowlguy (4.00 / 3) #2 Sat Nov 15, 2014 at 07:54:19 AM EST
that just wants to argue with people, particularly when they state things as factual that are matters of opinion.

I always tip at least 20%, and when I saw your declarative statement that you have to I was like "don't tell me what to do."

Well, I don't really say "have to," by technician (4.00 / 1) #5 Sat Nov 15, 2014 at 01:35:51 PM EST
to be argumentative.

It could be seen as an observation.

[ Parent ]
20% is for GOOD service. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 2) #6 Sat Nov 15, 2014 at 09:42:12 PM EST
Mediocre to crap service merits 15% (or less) in my book.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

for real by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #7 Sun Nov 16, 2014 at 09:02:57 PM EST
Why should the waitress make rent this month because she had a crappy day.

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I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOUR BALLS! ->clock
[ Parent ]
Her $3 shortfall is not my problem. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 1) #9 Sun Nov 16, 2014 at 10:21:50 PM EST
Them's the breaks.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Yes it is by Dr Thrustgood (2.00 / 0) #13 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 10:25:34 AM EST
You're part of the system which creates the problem in the first place. Don't try and shirk responsibility :-p



[ Parent ]
In hindsight, I am a trouble-maker. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 1) #14 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 05:01:03 PM EST
In currentsight, even.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
counterpoint: by the mariner (2.00 / 0) #17 Wed Nov 19, 2014 at 11:23:42 AM EST
wages and rent are tightly coupled. if your policy of systematic higher tipping is implemented, the waitress will see a concomitant increase in rent.

just another example of good people bein' good on the internet.

[ Parent ]
That's an interesting point of view by riceowlguy (4.00 / 2) #18 Wed Nov 19, 2014 at 11:30:41 AM EST
If you mean "the system whereby certain service jobs are compensated largely by tipping", I don't recall ever voting to put such a system in place.

According to you, if I don't tip the person the going rate, they won't make rent.  But if that's the case, what's the point of having tips?  The only reason for having tip-based compensation is to be able to reward good service with a higher tip and to punish bad service with a lower tip.  I would much prefer that people be paid a straight wage and then not be faced with a moral dilemma every time I pay a restaurant bill (or order a beer at a bar).

It's also well documented that compensating employees based on tips is discriminatory, since pretty white women get far better tips (from everybody, not just white men or even men of all races) than anybody else.

I suppose I could choose to patronize only restaurants that specifically tell customers not to tip, but as far as I can tell that would limit me to fast food joints and Panera Bread.

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reasons for tips by aphrael (2.00 / 0) #19 Fri Nov 21, 2014 at 05:44:45 PM EST
> The only reason for having tip-based compensation is to be able to reward good service with a higher tip and to punish bad service with a lower tip.

That depends on whose perspective you're using to find the justification. From management's perspective, it makes sense to outsource paying the employees, because it reduces costs and improves customer satisfaction.
If television is a babysitter, the internet is a drunk librarian who won't shut up.

[ Parent ]
FunFunFunFest by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #10 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 06:39:28 AM EST
Army friend who's just back from Jalalabad reports that shorter than average people should avoid the mosh pit there. If you saw a 5'6" guy with Army hair and not drinking crawling out of the pit, that was probably him.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

Depends on the act. by technician (2.00 / 0) #12 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 07:34:51 AM EST
Some have fans who know how to behave in a pit. Sick Of It All did a wall of death, which was amusing.

[ Parent ]
The mosh pit in Jalalabad sounds like a bad idea. by ammoniacal (4.00 / 2) #15 Mon Nov 17, 2014 at 05:03:55 PM EST

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Notes from the field. | 19 comments (19 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback