So, okay, yesterday afternoon I allowed some retail clerks to get the better of me (see earlier post). But really, I most enjoy celebrating the good things in this town, of which there is no shortage. The day was beyond salvaged by 200 Two Steppers at the Texas State Capitol, an event that kicked off the Fusebox Festival and was the creative collaborative genius of two of my favorite Austin artists, Allison Orr and Graham Reynolds. As the name suggests, the choreographer and composer assembled 200 Two Steppers to dance, and WHAT AN EVENT it was. Hundreds of folks gathered to watch-- I think they should've called it 200 Two Steppers and 3,000 Photographers.
The weather was absolutely perfect. Christina Mars, lead singer for the Asylum Street Spankers, lent her magnificent pipes as did Dale Watson. As Graham said, "This is my first country gig. Not a bad setting or band for a first country gig." Understatement of the year. The music, the dancing, the crowd's enthusiasm-- all perfect. And all of us were invited to dance at the end, which we did. Warren and I made a particular spectacle of ourselves, giving the impression of having fourteen left feet between us. And I'm pretty sure, on a dance floor packed with pointy boots, I was the only one wearing Vibram Five Fingers.
Afterwards, I had the pleasure of meeting Allison's dad, whom I thanked for bringing her into the world. This was my fourth chance to catch one of her shows, and she single-handedly brings more joy to more Austinites on a regular basis than anyone else I can think of. Well, okay, double-handedly as she and Graham often work together. Their Trash Project, in case you missed it, was especially moving.
Below, some pictures from the event. That one of the guy on the ground-- don't worry, he didn't get trampled. Just one of the many photographers I spotted contorting themselves to get the best shot. Thanks Allison and Graham and Christina and Dale and all the dancers who made this brilliant event happen. Oh, and afterward, Warren and Dave and I headed over to Texas French Bread @ 29th & Rio Grande for dinner. I'll be writing up a full review of that for JetBlue soon. But let me offer a teaser: it was GREAT. Local, organic, seasonal menu-- 85% of the food they serve at dinner comes from these parts (they import the olive oil and parmesan). It wasn't very crowded but it should have been. Check it out.