Nick Swardson, Lynn Shawcroft and Ken Burns walk into a bar

On the afternoon of April 30, 2006, Johanna and I were in the bar at the Marquette Hotel where we’d been vacationing to attend the Mitch Hedberg tribute at the Orpheum in Minneapolis. Based on the vast knowledge of comedians and hotels we’d amassed from Mitch’s jokes, we assumed the comics were probably staying at the Doubletree — or Quadrupletree — as Mitch called it.

We’d figured out the hotel’s bar was adjacent to a fine dining establishment that had fancy macaroni and cheese the bar would sell during happy hour, so we spent a lot of time there. We’d been there for a while when the bartender noticed he’d forgotten to turn on the big screen, so he asked our feedback on our viewing preference. I encouraged him to pass the sports channels, where he landed on the Ken Burns Civil War documentary. I’ve always loved to make jokes about the sad letters and flute music, so I encouraged the barkeep to turn it up.

We were eating our macaroni when Lynn Shawcroft took a seat at the barstool next to mine. Whoa, this was Mitch’s wife, touring partner and stellar opening act, and I couldn’t think of anything to say. We’d flown from Texas to be there, but all I imagined was that she’d probably enjoy a few minutes to herself before the show started in a few hours. Johanna was nudging me incessantly to say something, but I just basked in the moment, being there with the one person in the world who connected me to Mitch more than anyone.

I watched Ken Burns, I had a beer, and I knew that I was inches away from someone really special. That’s when Nick Swardson appeared behind me wearing a hoodie and jeans, “Do you mind turning on the game, I’d like to check the score?”

“I’m sorry sir, but my guests are involved in this show and it wouldn’t be fair for me to change the channel.”

Nick ordered a drink and went and stood behind me in the hall, watching the game on a wall-mounted flat screen. He was really into the game, and Jo and I spent the rest of our afternoon watching two of stand-up’s most interesting people enjoy some ‘me’ time before the big show. Even though we were clearly the most important people in that bar.

Nick was a perfect gentleman, even though I thought it was absurd that a bar didn’t show a big sports event in favor of The Battle Hymn of the Republic and a lonely letter to my dearest Eloise. But we were there. We still love Ken Burns. And the show was great.

Here’s a strange review: http://english.ohmynews.com/articleview/article_view.asp?at_code=330678

Advertisements

Top ten 2017 in progress

Julien Baker 

Lana del Ray

Brand New

Thrice

Joywave

Arcade Fire (Begrudgingly)

Portugal. The Man

Bleachers

Harry Styles

Amy Shark

Sylvan Esso

Judah & the Lion

Album Name of the Year: “The boy who died wolf” – Highly suspect

Already leaving, Jester’s Folly

Some lyrics by Greg from Jester’s Folly

This is what I meant to say: I remember the scent that day, hanging in the air.

I like to watch her drink all the rain. This kind of happy, I could never feel again. 

And so it begins again. My love, sweet rapture, gonna take all my sin. 

Pick a park where we can meet. You make me happy feeling. I don’t wanna make you wait. I’m already leaving. 

You’ve got to remember. If you don’t try this one on: Will you make a movie with me? So I don’t have to lose you. 

Greg was my roommate at UT Arlington in 1998. Our band was called Lachrymethod with members Gary and Jarod. I honestly don’t remember their last names. I think about him from time to time. If you’re connected with both of us, send me a note. 

UX lessons from Dominos iPhone app: What I do

Dominos is my favorite pizza app. User experiences and apps are what I make, so here are a few things I’d change. 


Entry screen call to action is “checkout.” I always push this button when there’s nothing in my cart. The red button should be disabled or say “menu” or “coupons” when the cart is empty. 


Which leads to this screen. Problem is, “continue” takes me back to the empty cart “checkout” screen, not the menu or coupons. 


This “cheese it up” modal is great, but clicking yes could add $2 to your order. Problem is, not knowing could irritate me if I wasn’t expecting the upcharge, or I might REALLY want extra cheese and assume it adds $5 and pass. 


I’ve already confirmed my address at the beginning of this process, so taking up a full screen’s worth of real estate with some things I can’t change and other info that’s probably accurate considering I chose my address wastes my time choosing a card for the transaction. 


I can also only delete expired cards from the choices, most of these cards have been replaced on our end, and I’d like to delete them. 


After ALL this, I have to enter my Dominos password to checkout. If you’re going to require a password, do it at the beginning, and figure out a way to bypass it with a thumbprint. Considering how complicated this app can be, I’m not too worried my 4yo is going to accidentally order a pizza or a nerdowell is going to hack my phone and order a pizza. 


And last, this tiny flip phone icon at the bottom of the screen calls my store in case I have any last minute changes. A great feature. Problem is, I thought this icon let me use my phone as a walkie talkie. Stick with a hyperlinked numerical phone number for accessibility purposes. A developer should rarely assume I know what a flip phone icon means.