We woke up at Alexandra’s, where I took the most luxurious shower of my life (bathrooms with two showerheads and no curtain, surrounded by mosaic tile and prescription shampoo? Yes please). We ate day-old pastries that Muddy Waters so graciously gave us the night before, and then drove baaaack to Claremont to play at Pomona College.
Pomona is apparently the smarter hippie version of Pitzer. Unfortunately for us it was a Sunday, so even though our indie-pop-psychedelic-jazz-blues music often excites the ears of said Pomona folk, these bookworms must’ve all been in the library focusing on their studies and missing out on the best concert of their lives.
Still! We lured a decent sized crowd right on the campus quad, with special guests Mandy Schwecherl (my cousin!) and her friend John. It was great to have my family come and see me, and it made the show even more fun to play. After our gig we planned to meet up with Mandy and John for dinner and drinks right after we quickly stopped at the cafeteria to filter some grease for our car.
Yes, grease. I don’t know if I have explained this, but our van runs on vegetable oil. Yes. The luxury of this is two-fold: our van costs about $135 to fill up on diesel; on veg, we can go the same distance-if not further, for little to no money. Secondly, diesel emits sulfur and a bunch of other nasty stuff. It’s bad for the environment. Used vegetable oil does not contain any sulfur, and emits only 15% of the nasty stuff that diesel does. And we’re recycling.
However, the aches and pains of running a van on veg are also two-fold, if not three or four-fold. Mainly, it’s the filtering process. We can’t just throw used oil full of French fry particles and crispy bacon bits into the tank—we have to filter it. We purchased a fancy filter that collects dirty oil from a pump, but every time we tried using it on the road, our pump would blow a fuse. Fast-forward to when we were trying to meet Mandy and John for dinner, and we had a vat FILLED of grease we wanted in our van, and a broken pump that refused to let us filter the grease quickly and efficiently. We had to go back to our old-school method, which means pouring the grease into a sock-filter ourselves, and then watch the grease slowwwly drip into a bucket, which takes five times as long and can get pretty messy.
Di Desmond and Ian Levine)
Long-story short, we got some grease, brainstormed about other ways to fix our pump, and met Mandy and John for sushi. We devoured practically every fish in the sea while enjoying a few sake bombs, and then made a quick stop at the liquor store to pick up beer and Andre (?) before crashing at a Howard Johnson’s.