The past two weeks have truly been the Die Hard of road trips: every time you think it can’t possibly surprise you and get more exciting, it does. And machine guns. Lots of machine guns.
We can’t possibly fit everything into one post without boring you to tears, so here are some of the highlights (after the break)
San Francisco show: big thanks to the rabid crowd who came to the Swedish American Hall to see us do our thing, and to Adam Savage for opening up with 20 minutes of first-rate stand-up comedy. If he hadn’t told us it was only the third time he’d ever done it, we’d never had known. Dude is a natural. (We hate him for that.)
w00tstocks 2.0 and 2.1 – Seattle and Portland: holy effing crap. It feels like this thing is on track to becoming a monster of Cthulhu-like proportions, and very soon. The crowd of 1,000+ nerds, geeks, and other former outcasts was gung-ho from the very first moment, and they NEVER LET UP (even in Portland, which ran nearly 5 hours—never to be repeated!) Same went for all of the performers. If you weren’t there, you missed:
- Wil Wheaton setting the perfect tone as Secretary of Geek Affairs, and reading one of our favorite stories of his, accompanied by Yours Trulies.
- Sketch comedy group LoadingReadyRun (LRR) firing the crowd up with a combination of live performance and videos.
- Molly Lewis continuing her march of awesomeness, uke in hand. (And in Seattle, also in the hands of surprise guest Kristen Shirts!)
- When Hank Green wasn’t making the audience laugh like hell, he was charming the snot out of them. Just days afterward, he even wrote a rap about the w00tstock experience.
- We’ll never see cats the same way again after B. Frayn Masters‘ hilarious presentation about a new feline dating service.
- Mike Selinker and James Ernest of Lone Shark Games did something puzzling in Seattle, complete with world-class juggling, and continued it in Portland in video form.
- Matt Fraction brought down the house in Portland with a funny and thoughtful presentation about his history with comics and comic book writing. Amazing.
- Stephen Toulouse, the Xbox Live community’s chief enforcer (aka “Stepto”) became the most unlikely of rock starts with his dramatic reading from the Book of Enforcement (aided by two somewhat familiar-sounding monks).
- MC Frontalot and his band brought their explosive brand of nerdery to Seattle and, predictably, rocked it HARD.
- Drummer Jason Finn of the Presidents of the United States of America served as Resident Real Rock Star, lending his talent and aura throughout the night.
- And of course Adam Savage delivered big time with a mix of comedy and special narrated sneak peeks and outtakes from Mythbusters.
- We performed, too.
- A whole buncha short films, including the w00tstock-exclusive “Moments with Wil”
- Super-special thanks to Chris, “Dammit” Liz, and all of the on-loan PAX Enforcers and other awesome volunteers for helping make everything run like an android’s dream.
Extra Bonus: after the Portland show, most of us hung out at Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade, where we all regressed as we played video games and pinball from every period of our ongoing youths. Bonus element: beer!
For a more thorough inside view, Tally Heilke from the LRR machine wrote a terrific article. And of course there are pics and videos all over the internets, soon to be somewhat collected at w00tstock.net.
Nerdist Podcast / Hanging Out in L.A.
Thanks again to Chris Hardwick for having on his podcast, which was an EPIC night of comedy music at Largo. It was great hanging out with him and Mike Phirman and getting to see them perform some as Hard ‘N Phirm, plus seeing writer-actor-comedian Thomas Lennon‘s hilarious blues character.
Oh, and did we mention that one of our dreams came true? Yep, we and the other guests got to perform “Weird Al” Yankovic’s “One More Minute” onstage with him. Yeah, we know! We can’t believe it either! Al was also extremely fun and pleasant company backstage, and more than gracious when we occasionally slipped into lateral-lisp fanboy mode. Thank you!
PLUS: while we were in L.A. we got to hang out on the set of The Guild. And while you can imagine (and you’d be right) how much fun it is to hang out with with the cast, the hidden secret (SPOILER ALERT!) is that everyone on the crew is just as fun to be around. So thank you to Felicia, Kim, Sean and the gang for allowing us to bumble around, and we hope we didn’t bollox anything up too badly.
We also managed some extra hang time with Mike Phirman at his jealousy-inducing garage studio, and did quite a bit of nefarious plotting with Wil over more than a couple of beers. Mwah-ha-ha!
Down in Dixie with JoCo
As if all of that weren’t enough, we then whipped across country to meet Jonathan for a run through Richmond and Raleigh. Tired as we were, the crowds were every bit as charged up as at w00tstock, and they were appropriately rocked.
Finally, stuffed full of BBQ and love, we staggered home up I-95. We will spend the next 7-8 days in our hyperbaric chambers, recharging our electrolytes and prepping for our Great Canadian Onslaught coming up Memorial Day weekend. Stay tuned…