The first fall weekend -- with an open Cactus Club!

Well, I'm starting to see advantages to fall. For one thing, I'd forgotten just how gorgeous the colors are at sunrise, and how you don't get these colors any other time of year.

But Brian drove by the Cactus Club last night while running errands and he reports that finally, finally, finally, it looks OPEN! Brian says the sign said "open" and there looked to be a lot of cars parked. Yay! As buildouts go, I've never seen one that went perfectly on schedule, but this one was especially plagued by unexpected crap. So I'm glad to see that Eric Uecke can now open his doors and finally start ringing up the cash register! I dropped by after work to see if it was really true, and it was! The back room, where bands play, still has some work, so we're still looking at another week at least before they fire up the PA and start to rock. But I arrived in time to see the finishing touches --artwork going up on the walls -- and it looks great. It's not the ol rock and roll dive (as much as I liked that ol rock and roll dive) it was. Now its a nice, upscale joint I can hang in while waiting for a favorite band to hit the stage. I ordered a beer, and headed off to christen the newly remodeled bathroom with a "Self portrait in rock and roll restroom" and Chris Lehmann did the honors in the men's room. So now that it's open, drop in and put some money in Eric Uecke's cash register and have him pour you a top shelf drink.

The South Side/Bay View is going to be the place to spend this weekend.

The Bay View Bash is this Saturday. Now there's a street festival that's grown wonderfully since its inception a few years back. Plenty of good bands will be scattered up and down Kinnickinnic Avenue: I'm looking forward to finally catching Decibully, and I always enjoy a set from the Buggs. This will give me another chance to check out Knit Delicate, and give them a chance in a context other than the last time I saw them. I think bicycling is going to be the way to do this: because a few blocks away in Humboldt Park (a good bike ride, but a rather long walk, and what promises to be a painful parking cluster would rule out driving) is the Global Union Music Festival. That goes through Sunday, and my pick includes Haale (from Iran) on Sunday, and 17 Hippies (From Germany, this should be good) on Saturday afternoon.

So yes, I have accepted that it is no longer summer, and am embracing fall. Mostly because it's killed off those dang mosquitoes, and the weather has been crisp and beautiful, perfect for these two festivals. In fact, the bright spot is that this is perfect leather weather, and on my last excursion to the Kenosha outlet mall, while it was hazardous to my wallet's health, I wandered into the Wilson Leather outlet. Hazardous indeed. I got a new wallet, for one thing! And we were about to walk out when I spotted the coolest, most badass jacket that I was ever going to see for only $50. It's not heavily lined, it has no pockets, but it looks good and sometimes its fun to sacrifice function for form. It will be wearable for a grand total of maybe 14 days of Wisconsin weather. And the next two weeks look to be those 14 days.

Editd to add, because THIS JUST IN: that set from the Buggs will include an appearance by Melaniejane on cello. Hmmm. That's going to be something else.


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