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Father’s Day Weekend: Six of the Best


1) The Gemini Dance Party.
Love that the Bearsville Theater is hosting some proper dance nights – and love the crazy variety of people who come out for them. Even more happy that Jaymz Nylon is up from Brooklyn to spin this one. But some of us only have so much time to spend on the floor (especially with gammy legs) and unfortunately, after a solid hour of groovy deep house, he loses it. Anthony Molina from Mercury Rev is waiting in the wings to follow him, to bring it back home, but Jaymz holds on, playing record after record that no longer holds anyone’s attention. I know the feeling: when you enjoy playing music, you don’t want to stop playing it. But sometimes, for the benefit of the crowd, you should.

2) Green Night at the Arts Upstairs.
Predictable perhaps that the Phoenicia gallery should make ‘Green’ the theme of its latest monthly art show. But I presume they ran through red, blue and orange already. What’s surprising is how few people come in armed with politically inclined artwork. In a way, I’m relieved… I enjoy instead looking at an iron-welded chair, some good green landscapes, and some paintings by Jowe Head of Swell Maps. And I thank Thomas and co. for noting my last post and getting some other wines in, in addition to that Yellowtail commodity. I also get talking to a nice English woman who’s initially embarrassed to say she’s from Croydon – but then what do you expect of someone who switches their allegiance from Crystal Palace FC to A***nal just because they move across London? My view of Croydon? If it’s good enough for Kate Moss, it’s good enough for me.

The Horse Whisperer? Chris Trapper plays the aptly-named Noteworthy Stable.

3) Chris Trapper at the Noteworthy Stable.
Way up in Windham, there’s a resort called Cuomo’s Cove, off the main road, that hosts weekly open mike nights at its ‘Noteworthy Stable.’ I’ve never been there. A week ago I see posters up around the villages for an actual gig: Chris Trapper, formerly of the Push Stars. I know the name of the Boston alt-pop band, if not that of the singer. Checking out his web site, I’m not enthralled by his music but he’s placed enough songs in movies and TV shows to suggest he’s doing something right. And we’ll be out of the area soon, so we may as well see the venue while it’s still close by.
The review? Well, the Noteworthy Stable is accurately described. Depending where you sit, you can see more horses than you can people. I’m serious. And unfortunately, there really aren’t many people here to bear witness – maybe a few who are staying the night on the resort and not more than a handful who’ve driven in for the show. The bar, meanwhile, serves Bud or Bud Light on tap, and when I nervously ask about the wine, I’m told there’s Yellowtail red or white – and a white zinfandel. Anyone remember that scene in the The Blues Brothers? “We play both kinds of music here: country and western.” Chris Trapper gamely makes the most of it, asks if anyone’s filming the horse eating hay behind him, does his best to keep the few of us focused and entertained as he runs though songs like ‘Wish I Was Cool’ and ‘Boston Girl,’ switching from acoustic guitar to electric to ukelele in the process. When he finishes his passable set, that mere handful of traveling people follow him straight to his CD table. This, I guess, is how the modern musician makes his living: just like the old-fashioned minstrel. Still, I doubt if the local grapevine will be buzzing this week about this latest off-the-beaten-track venue. And I doubt if I’ll be back.

4) Father’s Day care package.
Campbell draws me yet another ski card. It shows us trying to ski/board Hunter in summer and then says how he’ll go skiing with me anytime. I ask if he wants to go to Chile with me today. He says no. The wife gives me a care package of energy bars, granola, coffee and pure cocoa chocolate to get me through the book. I search the bottom of the bag for the good wine and Jana Cova DVDs, but I guess she’s holding off on them until I finish.

the Denim hauler: Now that’s what I call recycling

Love that crazy sound system

And you have to admire the guy’s passion

5) Antique car show at Tannersville.
What’s a Father’s Day weekend in Hicksville without an antique car show? We stumble across this one in Tannersville by accident, and rather than drive around the village on our way to the lake we stop to take it in. There are, it has to be said, enough beautiful cars on show to make you long for the days when we didn’t feel guilty about owning one. Without doubt, our vehicle of the day is the Denim Hauler, which is wrapped from fender to fender in blue jeans – and loaded with am unbelievably killer sound system to boot. For those who think that’s taking the custom concept just a little too far, the pair of 1923 Ford Bucket Ts run a pretty close second.

Of course, now I can’t get The Who’s ‘Bucket T’ out of my head…

…But were they really singing about 1923 models? I doubt it. Isn’t this beautiful?

6) Kayaking on the lake.
What do I really want for Father’s Day? To take a boat into the middle of the biggest lake I can find and park it there. At North-South lake, Campbell and I rent a two-person kayak and do just that. I use my paddle to row, he uses his to steer. Hey, whatever works. We take in pretty much the whole of the North-South lake shoreline, stopping off to visit some goslings en route. It’s beautiful, it’s relaxing, it’s hard work, it’s peaceful. Now I understand why people go fishing – and it’s not to catch fish.

By the time I drove round to where the goslings had been feeding, they were sleeping, the fuzzy little things.

No Escarpment Trail run for me this year; I will have to admire the course from afar.

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