Rock Band Casualty

So in spite of the fact that I missed out on eating a whole pig at a bonspiel this weekend, I was able to ad-lib a pretty decent alternative weekend. Drive to Chicago on Friday to hang out with my buddy John. We went to a place called Hopleaf for dinner, and I had moules-frites, very yummy, accompanied by a couple of Belgian beers (Tripel Karmeliet and Kwak, with Goose Island Bourbon County Stout for dessert). We went back to his place after and played Rainbox Six Vegas 2 and Rock Band for a little while. OK, so we were up till at least 1:30am (Central) playing. And I have the blisters from playing the drums to prove it. Fun though.
On Saturday we went to the Cubs game. Those rooftops have seriously gotten ridiculous. A couple of them even have luxury boxes built-in. Fun time, Cubbies actually won almost in spite of themselves. Afterward, we headed to Goose Island down the street, and I had the Dead Goat Porter (nice and chocolatey) and the Cubby Blue (with blueberries, not bad). Back to John’s for more XBox and more blisters, plus the Final Four beer tasting.
Drove up to Michigan on Sunday morning and met up with the family at Zingerman’s Roadhouse for brunch. Grillades and grits were delicious. Then it was off to the Tigers’ game for the nightcap. A bit chilly, even though they claimed it was 50 degrees. I managed to find a Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy (citrusy, I could dig it during the summer) at a beer stand, after bailing out from the beer hall after choking through the smoke for a few seconds. Come on Detroit, let’s go smoke-free like Wrigley! We stayed long enough to watch the Tigers give up 6 runs in an inning (followed by the now obligatory “Fire Millen” sign to send up a cheer), then headed home.
After a quick IHOP breakfast, I left Michigan at 10am, only to find the Pennsylvania Turnpike completely closed from exit 75 to exit 161. The detour naturally took us on a two lane road that narrowed to one as we drove through a 5 stoplight town. So instead of getting to curling at least an hour beforehand as planned, I arrived 5 minutes early after wolfing down a quick burger. Naturally, we won our first game only to lose the second, and I stumbled through the door after 1am and collapsed in bed after a long day.
Still, it was well worth the trip, and I had a very fun birthday. Thanks to all who helped make it a good one.