3.28.2010

2 people, 1 path, no pants

Molly and I are celebrating our one year (count ‘em 1 …) anniversary tomorrow! Crazy that it seems both so recent and so long ago. I am very lucky to have such a wonderful partner who shares my philosophy of life and complements me where I lack. 

In honor of our special day, I thought I’d take a stroll back to the day, one year ago, and relay a bit of what was, hands down, the best day of my life.

Here’s a link to a slideshow from that day and the lyrics to a song we rocked that night. Thanks again to all our family and friends who have supported us on this journey, and especially the Durbin-sons, whose wedding kick-started ours.

I love you my sweet mermaid!

“Two people, one path, no pants”
molly - strictly business that's how it started
we came together and never parted
jeremy - you served me drinks at the black and white (party)
i took you home and we "talked" all night. 

m- you weren't my type, i wasn't yours
but when it rains you know it pours
j- you cut right threw me just like a reef
and now we fit like a puzzle piece 

refrain -
seized the moment, took a chance
two people, one path, no pants

m - gave you my heart called off my mens
said sorry boys let’s just be friends 
j- i got two redheads that’s all i need 
sorry ladies that’s enough for me 

m- creative banter and show and tell 
writing projects and movie reels
j- sharing bylines, singing songs
creating artwork all night long

refrain -
seized the moment, took a chance
two people, one path, no pants

m- durbinson wedding on a nag's head beach
j - thats when my mermaid showed herself to me
j-  you stole my heart, you stole my friends
m - i knew we'd be together in the end 

m - few months later and we're on our way  
m – we just got married and skipped engaged 
j - independent, yet we share a life 
j - i'm your marito and you're my wife 

refrain -
seized the moment,  took a chance
two people, one path, no pants


3.20.2010

Sprechen Sie Englisch?

At times our German gets the better of us. Jeremy and I embarrass ourselves on a daily basis by attempting to do everything we can using the little Deutsch we know. And many times the questions we raise in our German voice are often answered in English. I digress.

So our German isn’t the best, however (and I’m not bragging here) our English rocks! We can articulate ourselves many times over using said language. We can say the exact same thing 12 different ways; we can, in fact, talk and have real conversations. And what better way to show off our language skills then to teach young minds how to appropriately (and inappropriately) speak in our mother tongue.

Yep, you guessed it – we are teaching! Jeremy and I are responsible for the German youth, twice a week for 45 minutes. Jeremy takes the beginning of the week and I bring up the rear with a Friday class.

The first day, (Tuesday) we both ventured into the private school to introduce ourselves to the class and chat with our new “boss” about logistics. (Apparently the German government likes to usurp the common taxpayer with paperwork as much as its American counterpart …)

Upon entering, the class of 15 and 16 year-olds giggled uncontrollably. I think it was Jeremy’s boisterous reply of “hi!” to their “hallo.”

We introduced ourselves, explained our situation and what we would be doing over the next six weeks. We then began to converse with the students, asking them to introduce themselves and to name a hobby or place of birth, anything really. At times the kids got nervous and other kids coaxed them (in German) to speak and not embarrass the rest of the class. I must say, for kids so young, they have a strong desire to learn and be understood. It’s refreshing.

I showed up Friday (my first official day of teaching) expecting a lesson plan from the German teacher. Here’s where the communication breakdown comes in, as there was no lesson plan. I was the lesson plan. I walked in the classroom and greeted the 15 students. The teacher then walked out proclaiming she would “see me in 45 minutes."

What?!?!?!?!?!?!

Crickets chirped. I had been thrown to the wolves, alone, and the wolves were hungry. After a two second wave of panic, I began to teach.

Surprisingly, the day went off without a hitch. The few English words the children didn’t know I could pick up in German and explain.

We talked about music, movies, boys, friends, vacations and school subjects. They told me their favorite colors, talked about their siblings and what they planned on doing after high school. We discussed various conversation scenarios and exchanged pleasantries. The 45 minutes flew by and I was happy to be with my new gum chewing, braces wearing, bangs over the eyes, awkward teenage friends. This was my class.

Although I cannot predict what the next six weeks of class will be like, I’m sure our conversations will evolve from “I like the color pink,” to “The nobility of the first king of Bavaria was only holding Germany back from becoming a major power in the world. In my opinion the Social Democratic Party should have united against the aristocracy.”

… Or, um, something like that.

3.16.2010

Folk you, Elvis


I think Jeremy and I share an equal amount of mediocrity when it comes to our musical talents.

Where he often fails, (ahem, singing on key), I pick up the slack (not well mind you, but on key nonetheless). Where I fail, (every ukulele solo I’ve ever attempted) Jeremy shines!

This mediocrity, along with our awesome band name (the buddymollys, of course) has taken our talents internationally – all the way into the hearts of audience members in Vilseck, Germany.

After numerous jams in our living room, we decided to audition for a talent show. We weren’t expecting much, just a way to overcome our stage fright and bring the sound of the ukulele into the hearts of strangers. And what better way to do both than to share a stage with those who can’t cut in the big bad world of music either. Ahhh.

Come to find out - it’s much easier performing to the audience of one Sky dog in your living room or singing with a choir of liquored up friends in the local pub.

Sitting on the cold, vast stage leaves you calling for the warm embrace that only your mama can provide. (Where were you Linda?!)

Saturday, the night of the talent show, snuck up on us a bit. The morning of, we practiced our two songs again, messing up in various places, forgetting the words, but shrugging it off … not much we could do about it now.

In the talent show line-up, we were sandwiched between intermission and an Elvis impersonator. After nervously peeing collectively 9 times the first hour of the show, we were as ready as we were going to be to play in front of the 300 folks in the auditorium.

When our queue song (appropriately Joan Jett’s “I love Rock-n-roll) came on the loud speaker, Jeremy and I walked slowly on stage, our ukulele’s tucked under our arms.

After announcing to the audience that we were going to “Folk their world,” we started our folky uke version of “Ice Ice Baby.”

I’m pretty sure the crowd was stunned and it took them a few lines to realize I was, in fact, singing Vanilla Ice. The cheers came and as we ended the song with an appropriate “word to your mother,” the crowd gave us a standing ovation.

This gave us the confidence we needed to rock out to Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the USA” for our second tune. When Jeremy belted his line that “the Jay-Z song was on,” the crowd sang along.

I can honestly and bipartisanly (I’m aware this isn’t a word…) say, we were the first contestants to get the crowd rocking.

The cheers continued as we sauntered backstage to hang with our groupies and sip Cognac. We rode the wave.

The next act, Elvis, rode a wave as well - ours. Oh Elvis. Let’s talk Elvis. Elvis (not his real name) had a great voice, he sounded somewhat similar to the actual Elvis (his real name, yes). Elvis look-a-like was dressed in flashy clothing and held (although did not play) a guitar while gyrating his hips. His entourage gathered around the stage in awe, cheering. He had talent, but arguably not his own.

Alas, the buddymollys were no match for aforementioned gyrating hips, as Elvis took home the gold, (and the Ipod, damn it).

After the decision, the judges mentioned how they almost came to blows in the back while deciding between us and Elvis. How Elvis pushed his way in front is still a mystery. But we snuggle up to second place, happy, yet I-podless, still.

The highlight and redemption of the night came a few moments after we ho-hummed back to our seats to collect our instruments. Two young high school hipsters came up to us, shook our hands and said, rather calmly, “Folk yeah.”

Folk, yeah, indeed.

3.08.2010

..... ..... ..... ..... Liver, please ..... ..... .....

Molly and I are in recovery mode after one of our best weekends here in Germany. It was one of those weekends where you wake up feeling somewhat nervous because you just may have slept with someone’s wife or thrown poop at your neighbor.

We didn’t do either (I’m pretty sure) but definitely had a gay old time.

We hosted a small gathering of pretty much everyone we know (approximately 12.5 people) Friday, and rocked the house, literally. A few people brought guitars and everyone else chimed in with ukuleles, bongos, a harmonica and even a wooden xylophone. The crazy thing was the music got better as the night wore on …

At one point, Blue, our friend’s dog, opened the door, let himself and Sky out, and somehow got into the neighbor’s house too.

The next day five of us went to a Bockbierfest in Sorghof, a really small town just outside Vilseck.

According to legend (and the flyer a co-worker sent me), in 1650 some beer-brewing monks weren’t sure if they should be drinking beer during Lent, so they sent a keg of bockbier to the Pope. By the time it arrived, the beer had soured, and the Pope got sick when he drank it. He decided people should drink bockbier during Lent as penance so … 350 years later we were in Sorghof representin’.

The video below will give you a little flavor, but imagine six rows of tables in the church fellowship hall with music (accordion & guitar) at one end and dancing at the other. Except this church serves really strong beer, brats and sauerkraut.

Thanks to our German class we could pick up one word out of every 20-30 words, but we’re blaming that on dialect issues. We definitely got a healthy dose of German culture and had a blast laughing heartily at jokes we couldn’t understand even when translated.

video