Weekly Rochester Events #275: With Catherines, The Sequel Was The Best
Thursday, April 15, 2004In all the time I've been doing this site, this is the first time "tax day" fell on a Thursday. So, in honor of that, I wanted to share a link sent by a friend of mine: I think everyone should take a break to play with Subservient Chicken.
Speaking of taxes, I got some of the rebates back from my purchase of TaxCut from H&R Block. Basically they sucker you in by offering rebates for the federal, state, and electronic filing instead of just offering cheaper prices. Now, when I say some, I missed out on one: the $5 rebate on the federal software. I bought the software back in February, got it in March, installed it, and did my taxes early—which naturally means that I was expecting an income tax refund. Well, after that painful process, I didn't want to think about taxes, so I put it aside for a while before sending in the rebate forms.
If I may put it kindly, H&R Block is so committed to following the rules to the letter and to saving money, that they will even reject their own rebate forms if you don't exactly follow the instructions. In my case, the rebate was postmarked 39 days after I bought the product, and the rebate form clearly states that I had to do it within 30 days after purchase. How kind of them to send a letter and all my paperwork letting me know that was the case (which I assume cost them less than $5 to do.) Anyway, I thought I should mention that as a service to anyone else trying to get a software rebate. I was going to go as far as buying "taxcutrebate.com" or "taxcut2004.com" to spread the word (neither of which are registered) but I figured that would be overkill ... plus that would cost even more money.
Among the things I was doing in those 39 days, I was gung-ho on cleaning things up—especially to go through old folders of paperwork and figure out what to scan and keep and what to throw out. Well, that has passed so I now have piles of half-finished sorting—but now I got on this new kick to build things. In the last couple weeks I made a cistern system, a furnace-blower fan, a trailer for my bicycle (made from an exercise machine and a baby stroller) and I'm working on a portable laser effects device, an automatic Venetian blind closer, an electric sidewalk ice chopper—and most of those things have been made from stuff I got out of the trash.
Now, the nightmare of all this is that next week is the Annual Spring Clean-up where you can put any bulk items between the sidewalk and the curb and the city will take them. That is, if the city sees it at all because I'm starting to want a junkyard full of stuff to take parts from.
We'll see if I have any restraint left.
Speaking of restraint [gosh, isn't this going along nicely?] I got done with excessive drinking last Wednesday at On the Rocks (1551 Mount Hope Ave., formerly Michael's and before that Trios) where I had a couple beers and a couple shots ... a lot—for me at least. By Thursday I just wasn't interested in drinking more even though I was permitting myself to do so. I got back to my six-drink weeks pretty comfortably and with it, a modestly uneventful week for a change.
I guess the most exciting night was Tuesday. I got to Village Gate Square (274 N. Goodman St.) a little earlier than the band, so I stopped in at California Rollin' "just for a couple pieces of sushi." I really wasn't up for a full meal and I wanted to live cheap. Well, I discovered a new treat: they have this "$8.50 bowl" which is basically a bed of rice with shirashi on top (shirashi, a new term to me, apparently translates as "scattered sushi" or something like that ... basically slices of fresh fish.) I suspect the chefs overdo it a bit, but regardless, it's a cheap way to get some sushi: with taxes and a $1.50 soda, a $1 Sapporo (a Tuesday special) or a 96¢ sake (a Thursday special) it still comes in under $11—tip your server well.
From there I went out to the The Bop Shop Atrium to see The Billy Bang Trio do some spectacularly innovative jazz with him on violin, Abbey Rader on drums, and Todd Nicholson on bass. I think I'm going to have to get the CD on that one (which reminds me that the RantMusic CD I got at their show last week, "Kamikaze Syllables" is incredible as well ... I'm betting it will be a benchmark for the "new" progressive rock sound in the next couple years.)
I also got out to The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) to see Tim Kelly who did this mellow acoustic solo stuff. Next was The Wills Wilde who morphed again ... this time starting with Ken doing solo electric guitar work (and validating any bragging rights to great guitar work) then adding Ian on cello, Cara to sing, and finally Paul to add some electronica and effects. Last up was the out-of-town band The Slats who finished things off with this great punchy, power punk-rock with Devo and rap influences (my only complaint being that they seemed to ramble a bit too long—repeating parts of the songs too many times.)
Well, enough for this week, and as Freetime Magazine's Michelle Picardo puts it, BYE!
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On this day ... April 15
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