1. XRA Fest Day 1 as a warm-up: Zany and typical Either/Or, seeing Alexander The Great for the first time since the Away With Vega last show, and seeing pal Frank Schweikhardt play full band for the first time.
2. Darrin treating me well as usual: door unlocked, blow-up mattress bedded and ready, and a nice birthday card and handmade journal.
3. DATS! WITH KAILEE COOPER!
4. All the emotion twisting birthday messages. First text award goes to Cody Davis.
5. FREE DONUTS FOR BREAKFAST
6. Some wonderful constant conversation with Sara.
7. Oliver Winery with Darrin and Sara: free samples + a bottle of Soft Rose there + a bottle of Hard Cider Wine to go + cheese and crackers + feeding big carp + NATURE + laughs and love
8. Boxcar Books were having a used book sale for the Pages to Prisoners Project. Things I got that I'm most stoked about T.S. Eliot "The Waste Land and Other Poems" for two bucks, Amy Hempel's Reasons to Live/Flash Fiction Forward by Tom Hazuka (I own these, but for a buck each I couldn't pass them up: GIFTS), and an old Ploughshares Fiction issue edited by Lorrie Moore for FREE.
9. The Village Deli for a sweet Chicken Melt and Hot Chips.
10. The Bishop for PBRs and XRA Day 2 good times with Sara, Sarah Lucas, and Aaron Lucas.
11. An always fun set by Osteoferocious
12. A cool set by Bro. Stephen and friends including a slide guitar. Relaxing!
13. Birthday dedications from Rodeo Ruby Love.
14. Shirtless, sweaty dancing and shouting for RRL. I've been waiting for almost eight years to sing a Zack Melton-written song on stage with cool people like Frank Schweikhardt. AND IT HAPPENED. PATIENCE.
15. Realizing how much people as varied as my parents to my XRA friends to Sara to Sarah/Aaron to Kailee to my Muncie friends like Jeremy and Layne care about me.
16. Speaking of Zack and Frank, both of these dudes were extra nice and friendly too me which made me feel good.
17. I've seen Husband&Wife probably 30 times and I've never been disappointed.
18. H&W played a lot of old songs including "Heroic Symphony..." and yes, I got a little weepy.
19. Sleepover at Sarah's parents.
20. Steak-N-Shake lunch on way home with Sara
21. DISC GOLF BASKET FROM PARENTS
22. I DID NOT MAKE ANYONE MAD I THINK/I NEVER FELT AWKWARD