Rocky Mountain Ramblings

Goodbye Little Green & My Month of Uber January 31, 2018

Filed under: Ain't Life Grand,Buscapades,Uncategorized — rovinglady @ 8:41 pm

Friends! Hi!  Once again, it’s been way too long since I’ve written a blog.  But hello! It’s happening, and it’s about my lack of transportation this past month and how in reality, everything worked out in my favor.

One day in late December right before Christmas 20017, my much beloved 1998 Honda CRV broke down in Denver not too far from my house, and it turned out to be that car’s last hoorah.  Little Green, as I liked to call my pine green love bug on wheels, made it to 241,000 miles (almost), and f’n kicked a$$ the whole time I had it.


The day I got LG 08/31/2015

I got Little Green (LG) days before Dick’s 2015, which means I had it for 2 years and 4 months.  My parents actually got the car for me and had it “shipped” to Denver.  For realz mom and dad, thank you so much.  It was probably the best car I’ve ever had.  It never let me down.  It always started and got me where I wanted to go – it made it to three Phish Dick’s, several camping adventures in the mountains (including the one when mice decided to build a nest in the blower motor), snowboarding, hiking; and even when LG broke down, she allowed me to park her in a safe spot overnight and take Uber home and take care of the ‘broken down car thing’ the next day, when it wasn’t dark and 0 degrees out.

LG2 dicks

LG packed and ready to roll – Phish Dick’s 2017

LG broke down right before Christmas 2017.  I was told by my mechanic that it needs a new transmission, that it isn’t worth fixing and I should look for a “new” car.  (Easy for you to say.)  I’ve learned it’s pretty hard to shop for a new car when you don’t have a car.  It takes forever to take the bus places, and why should I pay Uber or Lyft to bring me to look at some shitty car I’m most likely not going to buy?  I only want to buy a car that’s convenient for me, a car I like, and that has good internet reviews.

You want to know what car has great internet reviews?  A used Honda CRV – just like I had.  I have learned that older Honda CRVs really hold their value.  An ’02 can still go for $5-6000, depending on mileage/condition.  My budget is less than that, and though I could take out a loan, I just don’t want to.  So my shopping options have been limited.

It turns out used car dealerships aren’t open on Sundays, which most weeks only leaves me Saturdays to car shop, but if I want to have the car checked out by a mechanic to ensure I’m not buying a lemon, I need to do that on a weekday.  Add that to me not having a car, and that I injured my knee and couldn’t really walk for about a week, and you will realize I haven’t been doing too much car shopping.

But it’s back to to it tomorrow!  I made an appointment to look at a CRV through a private owner via craigslist, and then I might take the bus down south Broadway and get off whenever I see a used dealership I want to check out.  Doesn’t that sound fun!?

Did you know some dealerships make you have your own car insurance if you want to test drive a vehicle?  Luckily I still have Little Green, sitting in her parking spot outside my apartment building, and she is still insured.  I refuse to sell the car until it’s replaced.  If I get another CRV I might be able to switch the tires and/or radio headset, and that’s what I’m holding on to.  (That, or sentimental value.)

So what I have I been doing the past five weeks without a car?  Utilizing all the city’s options!  I’m back on the bus! I was taking the bus to and from work, which is rather affordable at $5.20 for a day pass that gets me around Denver until 1:59AM each day; I just have to dedicate a lot of my time to sitting on and traveling to/between buses.

I’ve also been taking Uber quite often, which was supposed to be the point of this blog but it kind of went astray.

I’m a fan of Uber.  I know it has kind of a bad rep on the internet, but I prefer Uber over Lyft.  I find the rides to be cheaper most of the time, and I like that I don’t feel pressured to sit in the front seat.  Also, they always e-mail me promotions, which is really the reason I use Uber as much as I do.

Wouldn’t you know, that on January 3, 2018, I got (another) Uber e-mail promotion to pay $5 on the spot and then have discounted rides via Uber for 28 days.  What perfect timing.  Yeah, it sucked that my car died, but Uber really pulled through with discounted flat fares for the whole month of January.  I used it occasionally in the beginning of the month, but once I injured my knee I started taking it everyday, including to and from Urgent Care in the snow storm (on crutches) to have my knee checked out.

My “Month of Uber” has been amazing.  It’s great having someone pick me up for work and drive me home after, all at the click of a button.  Plus, my drivers have been amazing.  They are all so friendly and kind, and if I don’t feel like talking, we don’t talk.  But if I do feel like talking, we talk the entire ride.  It’s been really cool meeting so many different people as they drive me around, and I’d like to think they like meeting me, too.

A few special drivers that stand out to me are: the guy in the band Eminence Ensemble, the older man from the US Virgin Islands who has eight kids and ten grand kids, still uses military time, only sleeps 4 hours/night and absolutely refuses to babysit or spend more than a few hours at a time with his grand kids, and the few Uber shares where we picked up riders and it turned in to an entertaining commute. (The woman who got off her Tuesday afternoon blind date, the girl who made us sit in traffic in downtown Denver for 30 mins and I didn’t know if I’d make it to Sancho’s happy hour but the driver was cool, and the gal who was getting married and told me flowers can cost around $20K).

Tomorrow I will go back to riding the bus and shopping for shitty, used cars.  I can’t actually afford to take Uber to and from work every day if I don’t have a promo. But all I would like to say is, it’s been fun.  In fact, I’d even consider driving for Uber part-time, that’s how much of a good experience I’ve had with it this month. I also hope to find a new (used) Honda CRV…tomorrow.


July 2017 – the day DeadMau5 moved in

I think that’s about all I’ve got right now.  Peace out.



Blog Life! Twenties, curls, interviews and dumpsters April 27, 2017

Filed under: Blog Life! — rovinglady @ 6:22 pm

It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog.  Too long.  Google didn’t event use auto-fill when I was typing in the WordPress page, and that is sad.  I used to write mad blogs, and I’m going to try to do that again.  My Buscapades blogs were definitely the best, but I don’t ride the bus much these days, so I am just going to write about day-to-day life, starting with today.

Today I had an interview for a “real” job that I actually think I am a very good fit for.  I wanted to be prepared and look nice for my interview, so after researching hairstyles for long hair and job interviews, I decided I better go purchase a curling iron.  I picked up a curling iron and hairspray at Wal-Mart and went to pay for it at self checkout.  When I stepped up to the self checkout counter I saw the unmistakable image of Andrew Jackson out of the corner of my eye.  I looked down and saw that sure enough, there was a twenty dollar bill, folded in half, lying on the ground, halfway underneath the self checkout station.  I quickly bent down, scooped it up, put it in my purse and continued paying for my hair supplies.

As I was checking out I was thinking to myself, “I wonder who lost the twenty dollar bill? Should I give it to the self checkout clerk? If I keep it, will I lose something in return?” I decided to tell my conscience to shut up and keep the money and use it to buy groceries.

However, after I finished my transaction and walked past the self checkout clerk, I noticed she was ringing up a man for fried chicken and that he seemed to be searching his pockets hard, as though he lost something.  I stalled and tried to hear if he was going to tell the clerk what he was looking for, and he and I ended up walking out of the store at the same time.  I saw that he was still heavily searching the cargo pockets of his sweatpants, so I asked him, “Did you lose something?” And he said, “Yeah, I lost my twenty.”

“Well, I found it,” I said, and I reached into my purse, grabbed it and handed it back to him.

“Thank you!” he said, and asked where I found it.  I told him, I said “you’re welcome”, and we carried on our separate ways.  That’s it.  That’s all the happened.  There was no hug or tears or sign from the universe that I did the right thing, but I know I did because I felt good about it.  I felt like a good person who did the right thing, and I hoped those feelings would carry with me to my job interview.

When I got home from Wal-Mart it was time to start getting ready for the interview.  First I ironed my outfit, and learned the hard way that the pants I ironed were made from a “do not iron” material.  I didn’t have enough time to throw a different outfit together, so I wore the pants anyway and figured no one would stare at the spot that looked like it may have melted a little bit.

I then moved into the bathroom to use my brand new curling iron.  I haven’t really curled my hair in something like ten years (probably more), and I know that my hair doesn’t hold a curl, so I took my time and made sure to use lots of hairspray.  I curled half of my hair and thought it looked very nice, then moved on to the other half.


fresh curls

The curls on the first half of my hair had already started to fall out while I worked on the second half, and my whole head of hair was looking a lot less curly by the time I put on my jacket to walk to the bus 30 minutes later.

no curls

leaving for the bus, not curly

I brought a mirror in my purse and checked my hair on the bus en route to the interview, and the curls were completely gone.  Curling my hair was a waste of time and money, and I smelled like I used hairspray as a perfume.  I told myself it was OK, and that at least I tried.

I’m not so sure how the interview went.  It was in a big office building in the middle of downtown, and I think I really want the job.  As I already mentioned, I think I’m very well qualified for the position and have relevant experience, I’m just not sure how I did in the interview.  I can write a good cover letter and resume, but when it comes time for the face to face interview, I am not so sure about my interviewing skills.  I don’t think I expressed my interest and relevant experience enough, and the woman asked me what my salary requirements are and I totally drew a blank.  I wished she’d told me what the salary would be.  It’s kind of an entry level, assistant position, and it’s not like I’d be leaving a professional job and salary to take this position, so if I want the job, I’d take what they offered me.

Oh, well.  Once again, at least I tried in the interview.  I put in a lot of effort, and hopefully my resume displays the things I neglected to say.  But if you’re reading this, maybe you can keep your fingers crossed for me that I get a call back.  She said they hope to make a decision some time next week.

Just when you thought this blog was going to end, I have one more little story I can tell that happened to me today.

After I returned from the interview I brought my bike out the backdoor of my apartment building and there was an older man going through items in the dumpster, which is right next to the backdoor.  It was the second day in a row I’d seen him doing this.  Yesterday I thought he was a homeless guy, but today when I came outside he said hello to me and asked how my asthma is doing.

“My asthma?” I thought to myself, because I DO have slight asthma, and it’s actually been worse than ever lately, but how the hell does this guy know that?

“Oh, it’s OK,” I said.  “Why do you ask?”

“Because I remember you saying you have asthma, and I know this time of year can be tough, with so many things in the air.’

“Oh, yea,” I said.  “I have an inhaler, so I can use that if I need to.”

“Well that’s good,” he said as he was checking the pocket of a red women’s jacket someone put in the dumpster.  “You wouldn’t believe the things some people throw away,” he said.

We shared another moment of small talk and I joked that the women’s jacket would look good on him before I biked away.  It dawned on me that I think he is actually my neighbor and lives two doors down from me in the building.  I believe he owns a white pickup truck which is always filled with items he must find in dumpsters around town.  I remembered that one time I passed him in the hallway and I was wearing tie-dye pants and non-matching floral print shirt, and he told me he liked my outfit, which was kind of funny because it wasn’t a very good outfit.  I think I was doing laundry.

But anyway.  That’s all I’ve got for now.  Hopefully I wrote another blog soon.  Thanks for stopping in.  CIAO!




Re: Pizza in Denver April 29, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — rovinglady @ 9:08 pm

If Denver is going to insist on growing at a dynamic rate, all I request of the city is that it gets an actual GOOD pizza place. I’m sick of being disappointed in my meal when I go out for pizza on a Friday night.  I often get pizza at Fat Sully’s or Atomic Cowboy or whatever the name of that place is, and almost every time I go to the location on S. Broadway I walk in with high hopes, but am usually left disappointed and wondering why I spent so much money on my experience.

I find their pizza slices to be too large, too thin and topping selection is quite weak.  It’s awesome food for if you’re drunk, or if you’re from some state in the country that isn’t known for having good pizza, but if you’re craving authentic, east coast, very delicious pizza, don’t go there.  The slices fall apart in your hand.  They serve gigantic slices, but they are so big that if you add even a single topping, the crust disintegrates as you’re eating it.  It’s not worth it.  I rather have a regular sized slice and get the toppings that I want.  But this place doesn’t even have all the toppings that you want.  It’s printed on the box that they have a “perfect slice of New York pizza”, but I don’t think that’s true.  I don’t even think the owner is Italian, because an Italian pizza-shop owner would have fresh mozzarella as a topping option, and actual whole leaves of basil, not a few shreds worth, sprinkled about the slice.  He would put more than seven miniature chunks of sausage on your slice, and actual cut up cloves of garlic, not a dusting. He would slather the huge slice in your topping of choice, and not start ⅓ of the slice up and scatter the topping on the remaining end.

I’m not saying it’s the owner’s fault, because I know it’s probably the kitchen employee’s fault.  And I feel bad about saying this because I have a friend who works at the Colfax location, and I have no beef with the Colfax location, it’s the S. Broadway restaurant location that has repeatedly let me down.  Tonight I spent $30 and don’t even think that my experience was worth it, at all.  Though, I did have two beers, which I enjoyed, as well as salad and pizza.  They had what I would consider to be good music playing, and they have a nice beer selection.  The family style salad is quite tasty.  They also have a bunch of of board games you can bring back to your table.  I like the environment and the vibe of the place, which I why I keep returning, I just wish their pizza satisfied my pizza desires a little more.

It makes me wonder, why doesn’t Denver have any authentic, awesome Italian owned pizzeria restaurants?  I really took them for granted when I lived in Morris County, NJ.  I even worked at one, and though I knew the food was tasty as fuck when I worked there, I didn’t realize then that those little hometown joints don’t exist all over the country.
All I want in Denver is a really good pizza, sandwich and Italian food restaurant option.  I don’t know if those types of Italian people live in Denver.  I guess I don’t blame them, because it might not be their scene, but I wish someone would fulfill my desire…and I don’t want it to be me!  


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Filed under: Ain't Life Grand — rovinglady @ 9:09 am

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Phish Dick’s 2015: Please, Be Kind. September 8, 2015

It occurred to me during Phish’s Sunday night “THANK YOU” encore at Dick’s that perhaps part of the reason Trey Anastasio played with Dead50 was so that he could train under their leadership on how to make a community feel more banded, more connected and more uplifted by spreading a peaceful, positive message, giving thanks, and playing a unifying song that makes people feel stronger, like “United We Stand”.


After Friday night’s show I saw a status update from a Deadhead friend who said the people on Phish lot are mean and rude and that he didn’t have a very good time.  At first I wasn’t sure I agreed with his post, until I coincidentally experienced people be rude to me on Phish lot the very next night.

First I walked by a guy who had a table set up with glass pipes and he asked me if I wanted to buy one and I said no.  He responded with a nasty attitude and told me to “keep walking, then.”  First of all, I was still walking, and second of all, there was no reason to be nasty to me just because I happened to walk by his booth and didn’t want or need to purchase a glass pipe from him.

About thirty minutes later I had a girl be a bitch to me because I bought a burrito at the stand next to hers and she didn’t like that I stopped to take a bite of the burrito in front of her stand and she came out and commanded me to “go eat my burrito somewhere else.”  I had just put condiments on my burrito and had only been standing there for about 30 seconds when she rudely asked me to move.

I realized then that my friend was kind of right; the scene contained some unconscious, non-friendly people, which of course happens everywhere, but shouldn’t.  I think the Grateful Dead always made valiant effort to fill their fans with good words, lyrics, messages and vibes, and I think this is something they told Trey Anastasio – that he needs to ensure his band carries on the legacy and uplifts their fans to feel like better, kinder people than they were yesterday.

The Phish scene will never be the Dead scene, and that’s OK, because it is what it is.  I think this was also made evident to me in the camp site, when people were listening to Hanson and 80s music that I had to get away from, and when some idiot sat down in our camp and started talking very loudly about how he thinks Donald Trump is the best candidate for presidency.  I asked him to take his conversation elsewhere and he responded by telling me that I probably don’t even vote, and I don’t know what I’m talking about.  He pissed me off more than anything the entire weekend, he made my heart beat fast and he made me want to be mean back to him, but I kept my mouth shut, because deep down I know that anyone who has to talk at a louder volume than anyone else to make sure his opinions are heard is really the most ignorant person in the group.  Plus, of course I fucking vote, and I’m an organ donor, because that’s what Bob Weir and Phil Lesh asked of me years ago when I fell in love with their music.

Phish definitely knows how to throw a party, and I love dancing to their grooves, and I think I see that they are trying to take their power to the next level and unite their fans.  Hopefully their message spreads, they stay healthy and continue to play together for another 20 years so I can attend their 50th anniversary concerts one day.


Joe Russo’s Almost Dead at The Ogden February 16, 2015

I saw Joe Russo’s Almost Dead at The Ogden Theater in Denver last night, and it has recently been considered by some to be the greatest Grateful Dead cover band of all time.  The band is cast with some very outstanding musicians, and it definitely brings a new energy and perspective to the much-loved tunes that have been played for years.

Google photo stock

Google photo stock

While JRAD tries to stick to traditional sound during each song, the jams and improvisations are incredibly unique and progressive.  “It’s like a modern day ‘Space’,” I commented during one instrumental portion of the show when Russo held his drum sticks above his drum set, making it look like he was creating sound, even though it was coming from Marco Benevento on keys.

Tommy Hamilton simply shreds his role as lead guitarist, and I think his sound gives fans insight as to what Trey Anastasio might sound like when playing with The Dead this summer. Hamilton’s vocal cords don’t really resonate with those of the late Jerry Garcia, which is something I am accustomed to when seeing Dead cover bands.  “It’s not about the vocals with this band,” said Chris, after I commented that both guitarists, Hamilton and Scott Metzger, read lyrics off their music stands, and of course he was right.  So much talent rains out of this band, you can’t help but be blown away by their sound, and at least Metzger does a pretty good impersonation of Bob Weir on vocals.

The band’s namesake, Joe Russo, was front and center on drums, beating away all night, pouring all his energy into every song.  He played so hard, in fact, that part of his drum kit disassembled during “Shakedown Street” toward the end of the first set.  The band had to stop playing, and the house tried to cover for them by putting a “Shakedown Street” remix on over the speakers as the band walked off stage without appropriate or well-deserved applause from the audience. The band snuck back on stage after setbreak and picked up the Shakedown jam right where they left off, and Chris and I tried to regain our spots in the center of the first tier, but the crowd was too thick and we spent second set a little further back.

Stage left of Russo was bassist Dave Drewitz (from Ween), and he brought some awesome new licks and flavor to the classic songs.  I can only imagine how awesome it would have been to have seen him play side by side with Phil Lesh this past New Year’s Eve in New York, because last night my face got rocked and my spirit refreshed from spending a few hours in the presence of such talented instrumentalists.

Just like when I saw JRAD in Denver this past October, after the show ended people raved about the band, saying they put on a better show than Furthur, or any current Dead cover/tribute band.  While I do agree that Furthur does not have the same youthful energy as JRAD, I can’t say that JRAD is better.  Nobody can be better than the original artist, that’s not the way the universe works.  The cover band wouldn’t even be on tour if it weren’t for the OGs.

While leaving the venue last night a man behind me said, “Fuck The Dead’s 50th anniversary shows in Chicago, I’m going on JRAD tour,” and I thought to myself, “Good.  Go on JRAD tour. You’ll be one less person to fight for tickets in Chicago, cause that’s gonna be that real deal Grateful Dead shit.”

I left the JRAD show feeling great.  I was very happy to go out, see friends, dance my booty off and have my musical horizons expanded to a new level, but man, now all I can think about is how I need to see Phil Lesh in the flesh as soon as possible!


Re: Trey Anastasio Playing With The Dead January 27, 2015

There’s been a lot of talk about Phish’s Trey Anastasio playing with The Dead in Chicago this July, and I would just like to say that I think he will do a fantastic job playing lead guitar at the reunion show with Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann.  Trey is a very talented and intelligent person, and some may even call him a musical genius.  But more than being a musician, Trey is an artist.  He is creative and theatrical.  Proven in his second set performance on 10/31/14, Trey has the ability to take new material, study it, create something new from it and share it on stage; and he loves it.

Surely all the musicians involved are already practicing hard for the three-night run, including Trey.  This will be much more than a comfortable performance for him.  Trey will probably dedicate the next five months of his life to learning new material and new ways of playing, which he will then perform for over 60,000 people, all of whom are expecting a lot from him, but some of whom will turn around and talk shit about him.  This ain’t no time to hate, though.  Art often requires stepping outside your comfort zone. When’s the last time you tried something new?

The July 4th weekend is about the about the four living members of the Grateful Dead, Phil, Bobby, Mickey and Billy, playing together again, and they invited Trey to take part.  I think Trey will shred the fu*k out of Jerry solos with a huge grin on his face.  With Trey’s guitar licks bouncing off of Phil’s bass bombs, Bobby’s vocals, the drumming and the dual keys, we are going to be in for one of the funkiest treats of a concert any of us have ever experienced.

If you’re laughing that I said “Bobby’s vocals,” you can keep that to yourself.  When I saw Bob Weir and Ratdog at The Ogden in July 2014, I imagined life from Bob Weir’s point of view.  He is old and rich and doesn’t have to continue playing music for fans in the same cities he’s visited many times before, but he does it because he loves it. He gives us what we need and crave – energy and music, and we give him what he needs and craves – energy and love.  So what if he messes up some of the lyrics to songs from time to time?  He’s 67 years old and is a renegade of the lifestyle that so many of you try so hard to keep up with.  People age.  Respect your elders.  “Bob Weir Controls The Weather”!

This “Fare Thee Well” event is going to mean so many things to so many people, all of whose lives have been altered by the musical creations of the Grateful Dead.  Ticket requests are already at 360,000, prior to internet sales, and that’s pretty crazy.  I actually went to the post office in Denver twice on the day of mail order, once to send in my own request, and once to ship an item I sold on E-bay, and I saw at least ten other people sending off mail order requests, most of whom looked older and more professional than me and were requesting the max amount of tickets.

It looks like it’s going to be a tough ticket to secure, as it should be (I guess).  Fifty years is a long time span to gain fans over, and a lot of us know that Grateful Dead is the real shit.

I wish everyone luck with tickets and hope to see lots of familiar faces in Chicago.  May the best envelope win!