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Jaw Breaker

Posted in Buffalo Tom, Family, Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, Hurtin' Unit on July 29th 2007 by Randy Reichardt

.: My holidays are coming to an end. I’ve been off for two weeks, choosing to stay in Edmonton and keep a relatively low profile. Last weekend my parents visited for three days, and we had a great time. Friend joined us on Friday and Saturday for bbq’s, and on Sunday night my folks attended a band rehearsal so they could see and hear us play. My Dad took a number of photos with my Canon A630 camera, and you can see them here.

On Wednesday, I went to the dentist, ostensibly to have work done on the lower left second molar – the last tooth before the wisdom tooth. When I arrived at his office, he told me that because the lower left third molar – said wisdom tooth – was beginning to emerge from the gum and was visible, it had to be removed before he could begin the crown. I waited while his receptionist called the dental surgeon, assuming an appointment would be made for a later date. I was caught off-guard when she put the phone down and said to me, “Can you go today”? I thought for a moment and said, “I suppose so, sure.” Forty-five minutes later I was in the dental surgeon’s chair, and he was freezing me for the procedure. It didn’t take long, but it wasn’t much fun. I learned afterwards that he had to cut the gum open, and then break the tooth up in the jaw and extract it in pieces. I needed extra freezing four times. I left with a very sore jaw and a swollen face and lower gland that in total was quite uncomfortable. I was given prescriptions for two pain killers and one antibiotic. It took about 36 hours before I began to feel some relief, and the swelling started diminishing by Saturday.

I wasn’t aware the wisdom teeth are normally removed in one’s teenage years. Being considerably past that stage of my life, I can’t even begin to imagine what this experience would be like if I had to have four removed at once. Ugh.

BTW, I can report that I am really enjoying the new Buffalo Tom album, Three Easy Pieces.  It’s so good to have them making new music again.  And in this article, it is revealed that drummer Tom Maginnis works for EBSCO – good God, there’s a library connection between the band and I!  (Even weirder, Bill Janovitz sells real estate.)  I so love this band.

Making Creative Noise in the Basement

Posted in Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, Music on February 7th 2007 by Randy Reichardt

.: I am the guitarist in the Edmonton-based band, Hardy Drew & the Nancy Boys, and this is a basement video of us playing the song, “Heavy Early”, written by drummer David Leigh.


-40C Is -40F

Posted in Books, Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys on December 3rd 2006 by Randy Reichardt

.: We’re knee-deep in snow and have been freezing our butts off in sub-zero temperatures for the past few weeks. Edmonton endured a few days of temperatures in the -30C range, which felt like -40C with the windchill factored in. -40C is equal to -40F; that’s where the two temperature scales meet, so yes, it was feckin’ cold indeed. For the most part, I’ve been dragging myself to work, surviving each day with enough energy to return home and sleep rather than head to the gym.  Driving can be a nightmare, but thankfully the City of Edmonton has been able to increase the number of contracted snow cleaning services in the past couple weeks, so at least the roads are passable. The 7-10 day forecast is for temperatures to return to average figures for this time of year, which is around -5 to 0C, much more tolerable.

.: The past few months I’ve been reading more than I have in years. When at the Y, I work out on an upright cycle, and read a lot there. The titles I’ve read recently include:

The Amorous Busboy of Decatur Avenue: A Child of the Fifties Looks Back by Robert Klein
The Anarchist in the Library: How the Clash Between Freedom and Control is Hacking the Real World and Crashing the System by Siva Vaidhyanathan
The Areas of My Expertise by John Hodgman
The Beatles: The Biography by Bob Spitz
The Film Snob*s Dictionary: An Essential Lexicon of Filmological Knowledge by David Kamp with Larwence Levi
Hip: The History (P.S.) by John Leland
In Praise of Slowness: How A Worldwide Movement Is Challenging the Cult of Speed by Carl Honoré
The Keep by Jennifer Egan
New Rules: Polite Musings from a Timid Observer by Bill Maher
Queenan Country by Joe Queenan
The Rock Snob*s Dictionary: An Essential Lexicon of Rockological Knowledge by David Kamp and Steven Daly
Sloth: The Seven Deadly Sins by Wendy Wasserstein
The Stanley Kubrick Archives edited by Alison Castle
The Truth (With Jokes) by Al Franken

I am currently reading Down and Dirty Pictures: Miramax, Sundance, and the Rise of Independent Film by Peter Biskind, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Presents America (The Book): A Citizen’s Guide to Democracy Inaction by Jon Stewart, Ben Karlin, David Javerbaum, et al, and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I’m maintaining my own library catalogue using LibraryThing.

.: HDNB played a gig last week at The Fox in Edmonton, in the -40C atmosphere of a late Sunday evening. Kudos to the 15 hardy souls who braved the mean-spirited weather to come down and watch us play a couple sets of tunes.

.: My secondment at NINT has been renewed until January 2008. 2008…would you believe I will be eligible to retire in 2008? I can’t believe it, either.

.: The province in which I live, Alberta, has a new leader, Ed Stelmach. Stelmach won in a runoff vote on Saturday to become the new leader of the Progressive Conservative Party and the next Premier of Alberta. It was a stunning defeat for the big business candidate Jim Dinning, and a rebuke of the ultra-right wing, US-born and bred candidate, Ted Morton. Any Albertan could vote if he or she was a member of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta; a membership cost $5.00. Predictably, thousands of people in the province joined, as did I, just to be able to vote, and in the end, to elect Stelmach and defeat Dinning and Morton. Stelmach is a moderate, something this province hasn’t seen in decades, and he appears to be a decent human being, unlike the retiring buffoon who is our current Premier. I will celebrate the day Stelmach is sworn in, because we will finally be free of Ralph.

Snow Too Early

Posted in Food and Dining, Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, Music, NINT, Snow on November 14th 2006 by Randy Reichardt

.: Edmonton received a big dump of snow on Oct 29, and instead of melting a few days later, it has continued to snow. Yesterday another 10cm covered the region, and the temperature hit -10C today. In other words, it’s miserable weather, and based on recent winters, way too soon for my liking. The City of Edmonton hire private contractors to clear snow from the main routes, but in the booming Alberta economy, most do not respond quickly when called to clear Edmonton roads, because their graders and front-end loaders are usually working elsewhere. So predictably, most of main thoroughfares in Edmonton remain covered in snowy oatmeal. I took a few digital photos of the campus as I left work this evening.

.: The saying that you don’t know how much you miss something until it’s gone snuck up on me today. Imagine my surprise then, while shopping for produce at Sobey’s this evening, I saw a fresh bag of this on sale. I was thrilled! I was not aware that border restrictions on imports from the United States had been relaxed somewhat in late October. Now I can make my favorite kind of salad again.

.: On a work-related note, my secondment at NINT has been extended until January 2008. BTW, the new nano-word I learned this week is nanoscratching. Don’t ask.  A friend recently asked me how the “nanobrarian” work was going.  I checked Google, no results.  Well, maybe now there will be! 🙂

.: The band has a gig on Sunday, 26 November 2006, at The Fox. If you’re in town, come on down and enjoy some tunes.


Posted in Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, Music on October 23rd 2006 by Randy Reichardt

.: It’s been a while since the last post. I’m taking time to work on a new template, but continue to hit roadblocks because I don’t understand php. It’s very frustrating. Meanwhile, check out the MySpace site for Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, which is under continuing development.


Posted in Guitar, Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys, Music, U2 on October 2nd 2006 by Randy Reichardt

.: After maybe seven weeks away from any form of exercise, I’ve been at the YMCA the past two days, getting in 40-45 minutes of cardio on the upright cycle. I’ve been in a rut of some sort, unable to find the energy or drive to work out. I’m hoping I can sustain it indefinitely for now. Since I switched to the upright cycle, I’ve been reading while working out. I’ll get back to this later.

I’ve stuck to my resolution to not watch any new television shows this fall, and surprisingly enough, the sun continues to rise in the east every morning. Imagine that. Right now I’m watching Bono and the boys on a DVD borrowed from the library, of the 09 and 10 May 2005, Chicago, performances from their Vertigo tour. This was the same tour I saw twice in NYC last October. The DVD quality is quite good, and includes songs U2 didn’t play in NYC, at least at the two shows I saw, such as Zoo Station, which rocks on the disc.

I’ve ordered three CDs from Amazon, and was prepared to order a fourth, but it wasn’t available for immediate delivery, so am postponing its order for a few weeks. I haven’t bought a new CD since Donald Fagen‘s Morph the Cat was released earlier this year, so to have four new discs from artists that matter to me appear almost simultaneously is amazing. The artists in question are TV on the Radio, Los Lobos, Pete Yorn, and Shawn Colvin. I’ll order Colvin’s disc in a few weeks to coincide with the release of the second season DVD of Harvey Birdman, the most brilliant cartoon I’ve seen in years, which I will order as well at that time.

I’m still working with the band, aka Hardy Drew and the Nancy Boys. It’s still fun, and I get to make lots of loud noise in David’s basement while we rehearse and work on tunes. I think my lead playing has actually improved, which is very cool, considering it was 40 years ago this month, October 1966, that I started guitar lessons in St Boniface, Manitoba, at the age of 13. Time flies when one is having fun, right?