Dallas Dopefest - a whole lot of shakin' goin' on...

The first of the August get-togethers started at Goldfinger’s (a greek restaurant) last night. In an amazing display of punctuality, nearly all of us were at the restaurant by 6, and our last person was there only a few minutes later!

Attendees were:
Myself
Balance
Falcon (woohoo - it’s an interstate dopefest!)
Beaker
Grace (damn, must not have tied the knots tight enough)
Chef Troy
JimB
Brood McEto & his lovely girlfriend, Christy
Aglarond
and for a delightful surprise -
beatle!

With eleven (count them, eleven!) dopers conversation flowed around the table, sometimes being general, and sometimes splitting. As such, there are no minutes, but I hope anyone who can actually remember being there posts their thoughts.

After several Dallas dope-fests without a camera in sight, we ended up with three photographers this time, so there should be pictures soon (I’ll have to use up the rest of my roll on the kitties!)

After a delicious supper, we were treated(?) to semi-live music, (a bazouki, I think, player with a tape)which had our end thinking he was playing greek versions of old pop songs and trying to figure out which ones they were. Then my lovely teacher gave a rather fiery performance.

After that, we caravaned to West End. Unfortunately, the bars there wouldn’t allow under-21ers in at all (jerks) which was a problem since Christy is only 20. After some discussion, we separated into two groups - Brood, Christy, JimB, beatle, Aglarond and myself went to Joe’s Crab Shack for drinks and conversation, and the rest went to the karaoke bar for drinks and karaoke.

As usual, I had a great time with my SDMB friends. I’ll try to remember more when I actually wake up
and a lovely performance by my

All I can remember this afternoon -

Oops, disregard those last three lines.

I recall Zyada’s profound comment on her motivation in learning to bellydance:

“I like sparkly.”
Deep, no?

I also recall comments on who had glitter where, and speculation on how long it would be before all of us were at least a little be-glittered. (I found some on my shirt later, Zyada; the path it took to get there eludes me.)

Zyada and I discussed Loreena McKennitt’s blend of Arabic and Celtic music; shortly thereafter, her teacher danced to “Marco Polo” (much to our delight).

Zyada’s teacher informed Brood that he needed to shave (pics forthcoming, I hope). I encountered retsina for the first time, and wondered what it tasted like before they added the Pine-Sol. Chef Troy kept the kiddie table amused, but I only caught occasional comments–most of which led me to believe that I didn’t really want to hear more.

More will no doubt follow as we recover from sensory overload and return to our regularly scheduled madness.

Another Dallas Dopefest came to end. I sat at the kiddie table with Chef and Beaker. I think everyone realized that we were the ones that would spill our drinks or start a food fight. Because of where I sat, I didn’t get to talk to Brood McEto, Christy, Aglarond, Beatle, or Zyada much. I wish I’d had more of a chance to visit. Maybe at the next gathering.

Troy was to my left and he was, of course, charming. I’m amazed at the man’s ability to turn the most innocent statements into a sexual reference or come-on. :smiley:

JimB provided the best line of the night. When everyone was discussing who was going to be singing at karaoke, he looked at me and said “I’m not interested in singing. I’m just here to drink lots of beer.” The man knows how to make the most of a gathering. :wink:

Brood McEto is dang sexy with that shaved head. The man also blushes (you’ll see the pictures later). Christy must be a saint. She hung right in there with the dopers and didn’t run screaming into the night.

At the other end of the table, Falcon and I laughed like two patients in a mental ward. Especially when the Greek singer sang *My Way[/i) with an obvious Elvis flair. All he needed was the jumpsuit and karate pose.

The evening came to an end when I looked across the table and noticed that Beaker was asleep. Well maybe not asleep but her eyes were definitely closed. That was my cue to call it a night. She gave me a ride back to my car and we headed home.

I’ll post my comments in greater detail later, but notice that Grace said of herself and Beaker, “We went home.”

I feel that we need more detail about those lost hours.

Its clear I missed one hell of a wonderful event :frowning:

Hopefully I’ll get this car nonsense sorted out and be at the the next one for the Razzoo’s party!

-SS :frowning: :slight_smile:

I wish I could say we had wild lesbian sex but all we did was go to sleep. Beaker slept upstairs and I slept with the hub downstairs. :frowning: :smiley:

There’s always next time, babe [cocks eyebrow in seductive Chef Troy manner]

Oh, and I apologize for just sneaking out this morning. I wanted to get in as much driving as I could before it got hot. I couldn’t find a pen to leave a note thanking you for the bed, shower, etc.

Last night was a lot of fun. I was worried that we’d all have an uncomfortable evening full of long, ackward silences. However, we quickly got into the swing of things. I was down at the end with Chef and Grace. Chef told us a hilarious story about his first time getting drunk. Unfortunately, it’s one of those that requires wild gestures and facial expressions. So you all will just have to come to the next Texas fest to hear it.

I haven’t the foggiest idea what people at the other end of the table discussed as the music drowned their end of the table out.

I’m curious, did Chef Troy and Falcon get a ever get a chance to karaoke? What did you sing?

Well, the traveling Falcon show is once again back in DC. I had a WONDERFUL time meeting everyone…as I told Zyada, this was one of the groups I really wanted to meet in person.

Dinner was fun, as I mainly kept myself amused by talking to the kiddie table. Which was a lot of fun…except for that whole Grace sandwich thing. :wink: And then when everyone looked at Grace and I funny for laughing hysterically over the Greek Elvis. (BTW…Grace, you missed it! A guy sang “Suspicious Minds” for karaoke!!!)

And then we adjourned to make COMPLETE fools of ourselves singing. Luckily, beatle managed to join us before I went up there…I still think I wasn’t that good, but the guys onstage liked the tattoo. And then we proceeded to mock everyone else who went up. And believe me…there was PLENTY to mock.

And then the bar closed, and we all parted ways. And I slept through the entire plane ride home.

I suppose it’s time to jump in here, too. I had a great time, meeting some out-of-towners, Falcon, Beaker, Brood and Christy, and Beatle, plus the first time I had met Grace. I was setting at the transition seat between the kiddie table and the grown-up table, next to Chef.

You could tell Chef was in his world with Grace, Beaker and Falcon paying attention to him. I did notice his smooooothness kinda get a little frayed when he tried to put money in the waistband of the belly dancer’s skirt. After dropping the money on the floor once and and trying several more times, he finally succeeded. In his defense, I don’t think that part of her body ever stops moving and also, he might have been faking it just so he could keep trying.

A couple of comments on the restaurant, I only found about a quarter of the menu that I could even read, but the steak & shrimp were good and the mandalin (or whatever that was) player played really long songs.

By Grace

There was also a phrase after that, something like “but, I’m not going to drink enough that I start singing.”
I didn’t get a chance to get my ‘special dance’ on her dance card, but maybe next time.

See, Zyada, we can still have fun even if you let some other women attend.

Jim

If you’re curious about the “children’s table” - I made a reservation for 11 people. To seat our group, they had put a large round table and small, shorter square table together. WTF? Those at the smaller table designated their table as the children’s table.

It had seemed like a great idea, and Grace had even contacted me last week, but I had stuff I had to address Saturday here in town, so I didn’t even bother with replying to the planning thread(s). Well, come Saturday, we got to a point of making no further progress without input from absent parties earlier than expected and @ 1:20 I decided, “Hell, I can still make it!” At 1:30 I was gassed up an rollin’. It took an hour just to exit Houston, but I-45 rocked along at 80-85 mph and, despite about 60 miles worth of construction zones (no kidding), I made it to my hotel about 5:45 and caught a cab (good thing you mentioned Caligula’s as a landmark, Z, the cabbie had never heard of the restaurant).

I was surprised when I walked in @ 6:10; not only was it quite easy to figure out who the Dopers were (only occupied table in the place), but at 10 past, I was the straggler. Fortunately, as I’d told no one I was coming, there was one seat left, next to Zyada and Agralond.

As noted, it was difficult to talk to everybody, especially after the place started filling up and we had to compete with the Greek pop star for moveable air (I think one of those tunes was Radar Love without the bass). But the food was great and the conversation developed once we all realized we were in certain talk zones and just weren’t going to get to talk to everybody. Since I’ve been curious (just hate to mess with haircuts) I asked and got the straight skinny from Brood McEto on shaving your head - now I know. Grace has made me worldly regarding IMs.

And the belly dancing! Whoo! I hadn’t seen live belly dancing since I last went to a bar down on the docks ~ 19-20 years ago. It’s neat to watch a talented performer in a situation where you are supposed to be fixating on her body parts. I liked the heavy metal brassiere, too.

With dinner done, we headed to the entertainment at Dallas Alley, where we’d planned an assault on a karaoke bar. Sad to say, the bar required age 21, and one of our complement was not, yet. So we split into two groups, with Z, Brood and Christi, Ag, Jim and myself going to harass a waitress @ Joe’s (all age) Crab Shack. That gal had the dearest East Texas twang - sounded just like my Quitman, Texas college girlfriend. I must make it back, soon. We tipped her.

And the yackin’ was good, but not as board-focussed as previous gatherings. I liked everybody, and I wasn’t that drunk. Our age range spanned 31 years - I love that! - I get to talk to folks I don’t often get to spend that much time with - and so do they!

We closed the bar and the party split for various homes (Brood and Christy actually hit the road for Waco), so I decided to find the other Doper party. I got to the karaoke bar in time to see Falcon and Cheffie perform (separately). Whoohoo! More guts than I could summon!

We stayed 'til the bar shut down, mocking (er, I mean, singing) along with all the brave karaoke stars (including one Jim Morrison hopeful - I don’t recall Jim M. having his Fruit of the Looms on when he made the papers). I bid Cheffie, Balance and Falcon adieu and bagged a cab for the hotel. I can’t accuse the cabbie of taking me the long way - when we got to the freeway entrance we discovered the police had closed it off with flares due to a bad accident. My hack just drove through’em and said he knew what he was doing. We snaked past the emergency vehicles and I got to my hotel in time to witness a bit of the police ejecting a lodger for excessive noise. She said it wasn’t fair.

Having left Waco a bit too early, we (Christy and I) made it to Goldfinger’s about 15mins before Zyada. We arrived about 40mins early for the whole deal, and spent about 5 mins in the ‘Tienda la 99c’ next door. I decided that Christy and I needed to leave shortly after the nice oriental gentleman offered his help. 6 feet from us. Eyeing our hands. Not smiling. Made me uncomfortable, as though he was expecting us to take something, and in some sort of reverse psychology way, made me feel like if I’d stayed there longer, I would have… the drunk guy outside with the cane nodded to me as we made our way to the restaurant.

Once inside I realized I needed a beer. Then after the waitress at the bar informed me that I needed to pay 6pack price for a single, I realized that I needed to cherish this one. Fortunately for me, Zyada showed up, markers in hand, as I took my last gulp.

We made our way to the table that resembled some sort of strangely shaped key to me. Soon everyone showed up, and surprise beatle showed up only a few minutes after we all got there. Not too long after we were all seated, I found that the teeth of the key (table) made up the kiddie table. I was relieved, because even at 26, I still occupied the kiddie table last Christmas.

I found that I was not the only ‘Lefty’ at the gathering. I found that ChefTroy and JimB were also. JimB is a more astute lefty than I. He actually made a beeline for the leftmost outside seat at Joe’s (Peace Love &) Crab(s) Shack.

My girlfriend (still has the roommate from hell) really enjoyed the majority of the evening. Save one ill-timed and misplaced comment by the everloved ChefTroy. It was unfortunate that the karaoke bar was a 21+ affair. I wanted also to lay my golden (balden?) voice upon the crowd. Appearantly, something not quite legal had taken place there, and therefore they’d placed the rapidly printed (No One Under 21 permitted) signs. Much to our chagrin. This, obviously, was a surprise to everyone involved. I think Chef was especially annoyed, and upon finding out that we weren’t all allowed in, became a bit hostile. I feel his pain. Imagine my dilemma when going to bars and wanting to bring my girl…

As beatle (the peacemaker) has already posted, six of us made it over to Joe’s. I found this much more fun than singing ever would have been. I had beer at this point and became a bit more vocal than at the restaurant (water.) Plus I could hear everyone, and not just some guy singing foreign lyrics to domestic tunes.

I had a grand time. I hope everyone else did also. I just wish we’d had more time together. (Four hours at the restaurant would have sufficed, if that volume knob had been a quarter turn counter clockwise.)

My only regret was not getting to spend more time with balance, Falcon, beaker, Grace, and the brash ChefTroy. I did get to spend time with some great people, who, believe it or not had more in common than you’d think for a 30+ age difference…

I’d like to make more of these “Dopefests.” But, I think I’d be disappointed if there weren’t 10+…

ps… “…smoke beer and drink crack.”

Well, I came off better in Brood’s recap than I expected to. Brood, buddy, I hope you know I WAS kidding when I called your lovely girlfriend a great big pain in the ass. grin I was actually referring to the situation. I suspect you’re referring to the other remark I made, however, and I hope you’ll convey my apologies to Christy. It was a capper to a series of frustrating things that had smacked me around over the last couple of days, and you two kinda caught the explosion of all of it. You didn’t deserve it. Mea culpa. Hope you’ll still let me feel your head sometime. :wink:

And now, onto my own beer-soaked memories of the DopeFest:
[ul][li]What a bunch of good-looking, fascinating folks. Except that Aglarond fellow, who despite being skinny enough to build a ship in a bottle without special tools felt justified in implying that your ever-loving Cheffie constituted a crowd all by himself. :mad: I HOPE you were talking about my multiple personalities. Falcon looked like she should be on a bamboo throne being worshipped by islanders. Beaker’s photo on the SDMB people pages doesn’t do her justice; she’s what my dad would call a “handsome woman” - she certainly plucked my bi little heartstrings (Beaker, you know everyone experiments with heterosexuality in college - no one will think less of you for it - so what do you say? No? Okay). Beatle has a sleek Harvey Keitel thing going on. And Grace… well, let’s just say that if Grace had given me the slightest encouragement in the car, we never would have made it into the restaurant. Instead she kept talking about her husband. Sigh.[/li][li]Goldfinger’s was about like I remembered it, even though I haven’t been in there in nearly fifteen years. One thing that was missing from the last time, though, was the greek guy who danced while holding a table in his teeth, set with a complete service for four, without anything falling off. (That’s okay, though; I wouldn’t have traded Table Boy for Zyada’s belly-dancing teacher for anything.) JimB was right on the money with his explanation for why I was apparently fumble-fingered when slipping a dollar into the belly-dancer’s outfit. I was just prolonging the moment. Really. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.[/li][li]Karaoke was a hoot and almost worth behaving like a jerk beforehand. Beatle mentioned that Falcon and I both got up and sang, but he didn’t mention how we did. We were both awesome, and I mean that in the classic sense of “inspiring awe.” Falcon charmed the audience with her warm contralto and mesmerized the hosts with her tattoo. I sang “Wicked Game” and managed to make every woman in the bar think I was singing directly to them - except Falcon, who seems to be immune to my magnetic personality (or maybe she was just hiding desperate longing behind a stoic exterior). [/ul][/li]
All in all, a very successful DopeFest; certainly the biggest one I’ve ever been to.

(Beaker? Last chance - no? Okay.)

Ok. Time to throw in my comments. I don’t have a lot to add, but here it goes. I had a great time as always, and was especially impressed with the turnout. I’d never been to a dopefest with so many. I’m fairly certain I will never see a more prompt group.

Anyway. I’m not THAT skinny. I’m 6’1" and 155 lbs. The joke about Chef constituting a crowd by himself was a low shot, however funny. It would have been funnier, but he beat me to the punchline.

I spent the majority of dinner speaking with Brood, Christy, Beatle, and Zyada. The music was loud enough, that I couldn’t make out most of what was happening at the kid’s table. Jim kind of bounced back and forth between the two.

Dinner was excellent, even though I’m still not sure about some of what I ate. I was informed on a couple of occasions that I didn’t want to know what I was eating. Ignorance is bliss.

After dinner, we all hit the West End. You can all gather what happened there from previous posts. I went with a few of the others to Joe’s Crab Shack for beer. There’s no way I was going to get up and sing. I only sing in my car when I’m alone. :slight_smile: Trust me, you guys are lucky you didn’t have to listen to me. We had a great time chatting at Joe’s about…well, I don’t remember. This was after several glasses of wine and a few beers. Not sure of the count. I’d forgotten about the smoke beer and drink crack thing. I’d commented that beer was great for weight gain and crack was great for weight loss. So, if you smoke beer and drink crack, you’ll be ok. As you can see, it didn’t come out right and I quit drinking.

Going home, I got to sit in traffic for a VERY long time because of 2 wrecks. I was in the left lane and quickly realized there was no way I was getting over. All in all, though, it was a very nice night and unfortunately I won’t be able to make the next 2 this month. I’ll see about posting pictures of the BBQ Cookoff, though. I know you’re all dying to know how it turns out.

I have a question for all you Dallasites…
How is 65 on the interstate thru town is way too fast, but 65 just south of town is way too slow?

Chef, I was a bit envious of your charm, and had my girl not been there, I probably would have been right next to you showing a little charm to the ladies myself :wink: I guess you were overcompensating a bit, because Christy didn’t find you a bit charming at all.

I understand, tho. I was set on belting out a tune or two, and was a bit let down/embarrassed that I wasn’t able to go.

Maybe next time we should travel down Waco way? The places are less crowded, There are more 18+ places to go. Almost no traffic. Just a suggestion…

I’m looking forward to doing it again, and hopefully we’ll get another big turnout. I’ll not be able to make the rest of this month’s festivities, but I don’t think that’s a problem, seeing as I doubt I’ll have any bellydancers rubbing my -need to shave- bald head.

Hey, beatle… did I get the sig right?

How dare you people have such a great time while I was 300 miles away fixing my mother’s damn computer?

I demand a replay. :slight_smile:

When’s the next git-t’gether?

-The Jew

Pics?

If your looking for the Hootie gives a boob shot picture, I have to tell you that she phoned it in, so there won’t be any pics. I’m not kidding, she called Grace at the restaurant, but Grace didn’t pass it along to the rest of us. However, she did give the phone to Chef. Who, after a few minutes, took the phone in the direction of the restroom and came back a few minutes later. He never explained.

Jim

Now that there’s a crowd here, the residue from my paralytic stage-fright is clearing up. I did not sing at the karaoke bar. I had almost psyched myself up to it, but then the cigarette smoke hit me. I don’t react well to smoke–instant sore throat, among other symptoms. I tried to clear it up with a nice cold drink, but no such luck. I was reduced to kind of a harsh croak long before Falcon and Cheffie took their turns. (Fortunately, as I would no doubt have been on the mockery list even in full voice. :slight_smile: ) Both Falcon and Chef sang beautifully, and I was content to sit back and applaud them.

All in all, I had a great time. I would have liked to talk more with everyone, but noise levels and time didn’t really allow it–maybe we’ll choose a quieter place next time. If enough of us show, maybe we can take over a pub at Hawkwood in a couple of weeks.