POPROCKS.COM
The online home of Jess Barron

Web content and community expert, writer, editor, blogger, and internet video producer.
Bio | Resume/CV

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In 2004, a guy who I don't know named Jeremy Abbate saw my website and wrote a song called "I Wanna Be As Cool As Jessica Barron." It still amuses me. Here's the mp3 and here are the lyrics.

Archives (slowly being reconstructed):
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See how this site looked in 1998
Poprocks.com screenshot from early 1998
and how the place looked in 2000.
Poprocks.com from June 2000
Yahoo counted me as a "cool person" from 1997-2001. How far have I fallen?!
Yahoo counted me among the "Cool People" in 1997-1998.
The internets have come a long way, baby...

November 25, 2009 Pumpkin Pie Fail
Tonight I discovered the possible reason why there are always two frozen pie shells in a package.

When I (hastily perhaps) grabbed the first pie crust out of the freezer, I didn't notice that I pulled the crust right out of the aluminum pie tin. As I held the crust in my hand, I thought it looked a bit different, but figured that must be because it was whole wheat and organic. Feeling great about using an organic whole grain crust, I poured the batter into crust, and placed it on a baking tray and into the oven at 425 degrees.

It's a good thing I put a baking tray underneath (thanks to my Mom for giving me this brilliant advice!), because when I turned on the oven light to check on the pie a few minutes later, I saw that the dough had seeped through a crack in the crust and filled the entire tray.

Pumpkin pie fail. This MUST be why they put two pie shells in the package (to account for pumpkin pie fail). What can I say? I'm a woman of the computer age. I have better attention to detail for handcoding HTML than for baking. The second pie came out great, thankfully.

My friend Dave sent me the link to this cookie sheet/plastic cutting board cookie fail, which also made me feel a bit better. At least I didn't get any plastic melted inside my oven. Nothing was irreparably harmed by my pumpkin pie fail.

This is only my second major Thanksgiving pumpkin pie fatality. A few years back, I had baked a beautiful, perfect pumpkin pie to bring to Jeff and Hillary's for Thanksgiving. The shiny masterpiece was sitting on the countertop cooling and I needed to run out of the house for a quick errand before driving to their house for the feast. When I returned home, I found the pumpkin pie on the floor in the kitchen with the whole center eaten out of it. A trail of crumbs and pumpkin chunks, led me to a guilty-looking dog named Bocce. She had somehow jumped as high as the counter to pull down the pie. Her tiny Italian Greyhound stomach was big and round and full of pumpkin.

It's a good thing I love that dog, because I love me some pumpkin pie. Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll. Please try to take a tip from me and remember to keep your crusts in the pie tin. Happy eating!

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posted by Jess Barron @ 12:28 AM
November 2, 2009 The (Frog) Princess and the Pea(pod)
Maggie was a Frog PrincessIt's hard to believe that I blogged about our Halloween costumes this year, and neglected to mention the dogs' costumes. What good is Halloween if you don't get a chance to dress up dogs in costumes? Any excuse to dress dogs up in outrageous outfits must be visually documented. Searches for "Dogs in costumes" needs to give "Funny cat viral videos" a run on Google trends, right?Bocce was a Peapod for Halloween

This year, we dressed Maggie and Bocce up as the (Frog) Princess and the Pea(pod). Bocce was a Dalmation puppy sidekick to my Cruella De Ville for her first Halloween in 1998. This is Maggie's first time dressing up.

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posted by Jess Barron @ 7:27 AM
December 20, 2005 Items I am Bringing into Canada...
I needed to fly to Toronto this week for work to visit our Canadian Yahoos! and concoct our plans for global domination. Then on Wednesday, it's on to Boston to visit my mom for Christmas.

bocce reclines on the bed at the four seasons in torontoSince I have one of those skinny velvety sugar glider-type pocket dogs (a.k.a. Bocce the fruit bat), she goes home with me for Christmas (and everywhere else). She was in the Virgin Islands with me earlier this year, as well as New York City, Florida, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Why should Canada be deprived of her bony translucent alien presence and her winning personality?

"You better make sure she'll be allowed into Canada," my mom said in a phone message.

I was already all over the internets researchin' this exact topic. According to the U.S. Department of State's Tips for Travelers to Canada, "millions of U.S. citizens visit Canada each year" and some of these citizens are dogs. Currently there is no quarantine on the import of pet dogs to Canada, but "if you have several dogs you may be asked to provide certification that they are your personal pets and not for resale." I also needed to be sure to bring her rabies vaccination certificate.

I was curious to note the other items that I was allowed to bring into Canada:

  • Cheese: Except if packed in wey, 20 kg/person to a maximum of $20
  • Baby formula: Commercially packaged
  • Seeds: Small seeds: 500 g/person, large seed (such as beans): 5 kg
  • Cut flowers: Except coniferous foliage/green cones. Must not be for propagation.
  • Fresh fruit – tropical: 250 kg/person
  • Fruit and vegetables - frozen, canned or dried: 20 kg/person
  • Some fresh vegetables: Root crops are regulated. Contact CBSA
  • Herbs, spices, tea, coffee, condiments: Allowed
  • Baked goods, candy, etc.: Except those containing meat
  • Fish and seafood: All species except puffer fish and Chinese mitten crab (Eriocheir)
  • Leather goods and skins: Fully tanned hides and skins
  • Wood, carvings: Must be free of bark, insects

    So, I packed up my suitcase full of cashmere sweaters and long underwear (did I mention that it's 18 degrees in Toronto?) and some fully tanned hides and skins (nutria, of course!) some tea bags and wood carvings. I left all my baked goods and candy containing meat at home, though.

    The great news is, Bocce made it through customs (though flagged in red letters as a "Dog"), and she's now reclining on the bed at the Four Seasons. Neither of us is certain we can brave the 18 degree (!) temperatures to venture outside.

    Have you ever had any interesting experiences with Canadian customs or crossing the border between U.S. and Canada? Have you ever been to Canada? Are you Canadian? Declare yourself!

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 6:50 AM
  • October 31, 2005 Can You Distinguish Substance from Fluff?
    Dear fans of math and logic puzzles, I have some questions for you to ponder. If Jess Barron was in New York City for 4 nights and slept no more than 3 hours-per-night (for a grand total of 12 hours of sleep in 3 days):
    1. How many fellow journalists did she exchange business cards with during the ONA conference?
    2. How many cocktails did she consume?
    3. How many hours did she spend in the post-midnight pre-dawn hours running around the city with co-workers and friends?
    4. How many seconds was her face in lights on the enormous Reuters billboard in Times Square?

    I've been pondering these questions for several hours myself on the plane ride back to the West Coast, and the only answer I can determine is A LOT. If you can provide more specific or accurate answers, perhaps you should consider applying to Mensa. Or perhaps you should stop stalking me.

    Contrary to the popular belief of my co-workers (Dave Carpenter, for example), I do usually like to get 6-8 hours of sleep per night under normal circumstances. My body wants that much sleep, and on some greedy nights my brain would probably be happiest with 9-10 hours of sleep. But the problem I run into again and again is that there is generally so much I want to do and sleep merely gets in the way of my ability to get it all done. There are so many people love spending time with, there is so much work I want to accomplish, and there are also numerous personal projects. As a certain boy famously told me back in February 2002 "You have -- as we say in the office -- 'a tendency to overcommit.'"

    It's become ever-increasingly true, and it seems like I'll never stop trying to stretch the space-time continuum. My professional work-type duties while in New York included:
    My dad's advice when I told him on the phone about the podcasting panel, "Just don't drink too much the night before."

    In addition to these professional obligations, I had planned to see my longtime friends Jeff and Lee and also possibly meet Jeremy Abbate who wrote a song called "I Wanna Be as Cool as Jessica Barron" after reading my blog without having ever met me. Of course, there were other friends and people I wanted to meet (including Brooklynite Ted Gesing who created the infamous and much-loved Nutria documentary), but I figured it might be prudent if I focused only on these three. Even though neither one of them has yet to compose a single song in my honor, I gave my scheduling priority to Jeff and Lee since they've been my dear friends for 16 and 10 years, respectively. (I met Jeff when we ran against each other for a student government position in 1989. I met Lee while traveling in Turkey in 1995.) After they've put up with me for so long, it's the least I can do.

    I arrived at JFK at 5p.m. on Wednesday, and called Jeff and Lee during my cabride to the hotel (the Hilton on 6th Ave). Jeff took the subway to my hotel and we hungout in my room and raided my mini bar, concocting what seemed to be some really strong gin and tonics. Though you will actually be charged on your bill for the snacks and liquor you take out of your hotel room mini fridge, breaking the plastic seal on the door still feels more like "raiding" to me. It brings me back to hotel stays during barely-chaperoned junior high and high school class trips when we would physically break the cheap locks on the mini bars and spend the evenings getting drunk on the little nip-bottles we didn't quite understand how to combine and mix.

    Jeff suggested the idea of eating at The Odeon in the East Village which he (and Citysearch) described as a place that had "a decadent heyday during the hard-partying '80s." Since I can hardly resist anything that's decadent, hard-partying, or from the 1980s, I announced that I was game. Lee called to say that he and his girlfriend Brett would meet us there for dinner. The food was decent. I had an heirloom tomato and goat cheese salad (my two absolute favorites) followed by an entree of broiled scallops. Jeff had a steak. We debated and discussed San Francisco versus New York City versus Los Angeles.

    After dinner Jeff and I went to the Stone Rose Lounge, a big airy bar inside the Time Warner Center with high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows. We drank $17 martinis until about 2 in the morning. When arrived back to my hotel room, I couldn't sleep. Throughout the evening I kept calling the West-Coast-to-East-Coast time difference the "West Coast Advantage" to my friends, because it enabled me to easily party until dawn, but as I sat propped up on pillows in bed checking email on my laptop until 4 in the morning, it was clear that it wasn't quite an advantage. Especially since I needed to be at the Associated Press office by 8:45 a.m. for an all-day Flash class to learn how to build automated slideshows with audio soundtracks.

    Wednesday night (umm, that'd be Thursday morning) I slept from 4:30 a.m. - 7:30 a.m., and I was still 10 minutes late for the class.

    Though I generally have a strong aptitude for picking up computer applications, it was quickly apparent that I was the worst student in the Flash class. I had to ask the teacher to explain everything and show me everything personally one more time. I was pathetic. And, sadly I can't honestly blame my remedial status on the lack of sleep and amount of drinking. Between timeliness, layers, keyframes and tweening, Flash is a complicated program, and it can easily explode your head. Or, at least it can easily explode my head. I wasn't familiar with being the slowest student in the class, and consequently it was a very difficult day.

    When I got back to my hotel room a little after 6 p.m., Lee called and told me he made 8:30 reservations at Bread Tribeca. "I made reservations for 4 of us," he said, "So you can bring one of your friends."

    I was starving, and I wanted to make the phone calls to see if Sam or Dave had arrived in New York yet and extend an invitation to dinner, but first I needed to close my eyes and attempt to extend myself an invitation to an hour-long nap. I set the alarm on my cell phone, took off my clothes, put on a t-shirt and curled up under the covers.

    As exhausted and drained as I was from a day spent inserting keyframes and creating tweens in Flash class, I closed my eyes but could not sleep. Still, I was determined to keep my head on the pillow. At 6:45 p.m. my phone rang, and I jumped out of bed to answer the call. It was my friend Sam who works on content programming for yahoo.com. He had arrived at the hotel and asked if I wanted to go grab some food. I invited him to dinner and quickly got back into bed to try to catch that elusive nap before it was too late.

    Twenty minutes later my phone rang again. It was Dave from the Toronto office. He had already arrived and headed out to dinner by himself, but suggested that we meet up later for drinks. I tried for a third time to nap, but quickly gave up and turned on the TV and started changing back into my clothes.

    Sam, Lee, Brett, and I had dinner at Bread Tribeca. The food was decent. I had cauliflower puree soup as a starter followed by linguine with clams. We also shared a few bottles of red wine.

    After dinner Dave called and said, "I'm at a really fun karaoke bar in the East Village called Second on Second, you should come over here." It was approaching midnight, and as much as I love karaoke -- I wanted to head back closer to the hotel. I honestly every intention of getting to bed at a sober and decent hour. With that in mind, I asked Dave to meet Sam and me at the W hotel bar because it was the only thing I could think of.

    During our cab ride to the W, Bill and Chris called. Bill was out with colleagues and asked me if I had talked to JB yet. I told him I hadn't but that I had left a message. I also told him that Sam and I were heading over to the W. Chris and the Yahoo! News team had just finished dinner and were wandering around Times Square near our hotel. I told them we were in a cab headed for the W. They said they might meet us there. Dave found Sam and I at the W, but by y 1:30 or 2, we hadn't seen Bill nor the Yahoo! News folks. We were wondering what to do when Bill phoned to say that he and JB were at a bar called Faces and Names near the Rihga hotel. We left the W to walk over to Faces and Names and phoned Chris and Ron on Yahoo! News to let them know. By 2:30 we were all hanging out together at Faces and Names.

    By 3a.m. there was talk of heading back to the hotel. JB, Chris, Sam, Dave and I started the walk back, but were immediately seduced by the bright white lights of a neighborhood pizza place. JB ordered us a pie to go, then he and Dave went into the bodega nextdoor to pick up some beer while we waited for the pizza to be ready. We carried brown bags of pizza and beer back to the hotel and decided to continue the party in JB's room. I headed to my room to get Bocce since she had been cooped up in the hotel all day.

    We ate pizza and drank beer until around 4 a.m. when we were kidnapped and gagged by guerilla marketers for Yahoo! News' Kevin Sites in the Hot Zone. Bocce liked the pizza, but didn't necessarily enjoy her time as a walking Hot Zone advertisement. At 4:30a.m. Sam and Dave headed to bed.

    JB, Chris, and I took the dog outside for a walk, and Chris snapped action photos of me picking up Bocce's poop. Can you say poop-arazzi? I thought you could.

    After all that excitement, Bocce and I decided it was time for bed.

    The next day I attended some panels and prepared for my own. It went fairly well (you can listen to a portion of my talk), though afterward I wished I had talked more about content for podcasts than mostly just focusing on the how-tos.

    After the ONA-sponsored cocktail hour where I met Mark Fiore, some folks from CBS News, Anj from Yahoo!s Toronto office and many others, we all headed back to our rooms to freshen up and then bundle up and agreed to meet up at 8:30 at South's in Tribeca where we would have some more drinks before our 9:45 dinner reservation at 66. While back in my hotel room, I decided to don my Jackie Kennedy outfit which I had packed in case an inkling of Halloween spirit hit me. Post-cocktail-hour I felt it was a great idea to wear a bright pink suit and pillbox hat even though none of my other compatriots were dressed in costume. This is how I roll.

    Lee and Brett met Sam, Dave, Anj and I at South's. Then Bill showed up carrying an unopened container of marshmallow Fluff that he said he had brought for me. "I hope you're not implying that our Yahoo! Broadband Portal content is fluff!" I said giggling and grabbing the container of Fluff.

    After a while, the Yahoo! News crew (Neil, Ron, Oren, Chris, Sarah, and Peter) arrived at South's, and we all walked down the block to 66. Jeff and his boyfriend Daniel were sitting in the lounge drinking cocktails when we arrived.

    Sam -- who was just meeting Jeff for the first time -- commented: "It was obvious that Jeff had known you for years because when you walked into this chichi restaurant dressed as Jackie Kennedy and carrying a giant container of Fluff, he wasn't the slightest bit surprised."

    At 10p.m., we found out the hard way that NYC reservations for big groups rarely start on time. At 10:30 p.m. we were drinking ginger margaritas in the lounge area and noshing on appetizers as we waited for our back room to be ready. By 11 p.m. (I think) we were seated for dinner at three tables in our own room. I was seated at the end of a table surrounded by my NYC friends. Daniel and Jeff were on my left, Lee and Brett on my right.

    Before any of the food started arriving on the tables, Bill instigated the idea that he and I would open the container of Fluff and offer it around to the other tables. "Would you care for some fluff?" I said as I did my best 1960s stewardess impression. Our hard work and dedication paid off. We were triumphant. We managed to get nearly every person to try a spoonful of Fluff -- and several brave souls plunged their fingers right into the container. Others used chopsticks.

    The barbarous and uncouth "Fluff course" of the meal mortified my black-clad NYC friends. Living in San Francisco for five years (and going to Burning Man five times) definitely enhanced my already overactive capacity for absurdity. If a group of twenty of my co-workers are giggling and sticking their fingers into their mouths -- in my mind it was a great ice-breaker. It was the least I could do.

    Dinner ended sometime after midnight. Lee, Brett, and Daniel headed home and many of my co-workers decided to call it a night, but Jeff, Anj, Dave, Oren, Sarah, Ron, Chris, Mic, Peter and I ventured to Second on Second. We arrived, got ourselves some drinks and put our name in for karaoke to do Def Leppard's "Pour Some Sugar on Me." Unfortunately the stack of song requests on the KJ's podium was enormous and we left to head back to the hotel before our name was called.

    This time the late night after-party was in Ron and Chris' rooms. We drank beers from the mini bars and chatted as music played from Chris' laptop. He played Echo and the Bunnymen and The Smiths at my request. The TV was on playing an endless loop of Larry King interviewing commentators about the Libby indictment with the volume turned all the way down. It seemed certain that Chris and I will become fast friends. And Anj and me too. Even though we just met -- she and I were having a great time hanging out together. Sam, Dave and I are already pretty tight after working together for over 2 years. (Dave and I have even partied in London together on a work trip...)

    On Saturday I attended a bunch more panels. My favorite was Digital Visual Storytelling, though the Saturday afternoon panel "Journalism 2010: Who's leading the way?" (which our own Neil Budde sat as a panelist on) was also quite interesting with its now-seemingly-obligatory and impassioned blogger versus "dinosaur" bashing. Afterward we went to the Reuters-sponsored cocktail party.

    Then we headed to a bar in the East Village, where we smoked flavoured tobacco out of a giant hookah.

    For dinner we went to Il Bagatto (on Jeff's excellent suggestion). I ate with Daniel and Jeff while unfortunately my starving co-workers (Sam, Ron, Anj and Chris) and their entourage of young journalism students were kept waiting at the bar for almost an hour (unacceptable!). Luckily, they made lemonaide from lemons and befriended the perky bartender (she gave Jeff and Daniel three olives each in their martinis!)

    After dinner we wandered around the East Village spotting (and accosting) folks in Halloween costumes. There were even more Ali G's this year than last year (this Yahoo! one was my favorite). Then we went to KGB for some drinks amid Soviet paraphernalia. We got back to the hotel around 2:30 and I took Bocce for a walk and then went to bed. I seriously needed some sleep.

    On Sunday morning I packed and checked out of the hotel, and took a cab to Park Slope Brooklyn to visit Jeff and Daniel at their apartment and meet their Great Dane puppy Ace. Ace is beautiful. He's sleek and gray. He's also HUGE! He weighs 125-pounds and is still growing. Jeff and Daniel say he will soon be 50 pounds larger. Unfortunately it was difficult-if-not-impossible for 12-pound middle-aged Bocce to play with a teenage dog who was ten times(!) her size. Jeff and Daniel made us brunch of pumpkin pancakes, eggs, bacon, and Daniel's homemade (from scratch!) pumpkin pie. It was awesome. And then I got in a car to head back to JFK to fly home.

    I'm sorry I didn't meet my personal songwriter Jeremy Abbate, but I'm psyched that I ended up getting my photo displayed in lights on the huge Reuters screen in Times Square (thanks Sarah!)

    P.S. Almost all photos I'm linking to in this post were taken by Chris Sarah, Ron, and Jeff as I left my camera behind this time...

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 11:20 AM
    October 19, 2005 'There are places so dirty that we have to wear gloves.'
    If my packing made Bocce nervous, the movers made her go completely ballistic. bocce and the cactus
    She was outraged and barked non-stop for the first 2 hours they were working in the house. I kept her locked in the upstairs bathroom, which unfortunately has a glass door so she was watching and giving her "This-is-an-outrage!"-bark as they removed all the contents from the house. I think she thought they were robbing us. Eventually, all the ferocious barking took its toll on a dog who is acclimated to a life of incessant langor, and she surrendered and curled up on my bathmat in an exhausted heap.

    I didn't let her out until the movers were finished. It was best that she didn't witness the fast and furious dismantling of the household by three people we had never seen before. I wanted to shield her from the upheaval.

    As the shelves and furniture were removed an embarrassing abundance of dust was revealed on the hardwood floors. Dust bunnies, dust kittens, dust tigers, dust dragons -- we had a whole dust menagerie. "I'm sorry! I'm never at home to do housework," I said to one of the movers. "Is this place totally disgusting?"

    "No!!" he said, becoming animated. "This place is not bad at all. There are places that are so dirty that we have to wear gloves." He made a sickened face.

    "Ewwww! Really?! That's gross!" I said, feeling terrible for him, but suddenly feeling much better about my own dust menagerie.

    I swept and vaccuumed after they removed most of the big pieces, and hours later after they left with all of my stuff in a giant truck on its way to Los Angeles, I let Bocce out of the bathroom where she had been locked away. She sniffed around at the empty house, nails clicking on the hardwood floors as she slunk around looking for a nonexistent cushy surface to curl up on. When she realized that Big Plum (the purple velveteen couch) and my bed were both gone, she looked perplexed by the empty house. I scrubbed clean the kitchen and upstairs bathroom, and began to pack my car full to the roof.

    When the Beetle convertible was almost packed to the roof with the remaining boxes, I realized that the cactus plants were left up on the ledge in the upstairs bathroom. I didn't want to leave them behind, so after the car was packed full, I lodged them in the front seat between Bocce and me in the car. I left San Francisco at 7:50 p.m., driving East over the Bay Bridge with a very nervous thin-skinned dog perched precariously atop a shaky stack of clothing aside of an extremely prickly plant. She looked at me dubiously as we began the long drive south.

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 7:55 AM
    October 18, 2005 Doggie 'Dark City'
    Moving to a new apartment is stressful, even with professional movers who are supposed to pack everything up for you. For instance, there are things you may not want your professional movers to pack up and handle. Perhaps you might want to pack the contents of your lingerie drawer yourself. Then, there are those hundreds of loose CDs lying around the bedroom because you've been ripping them to your PC and transferring them to your iPod. And if you share your place with housemates (as I do) you might have stuff that's mixed together that you need to separate out -- such as all the plates and silverware and DVDs of Twin Peaks, Seinfeld, and the Simpsons and games for the Playstation.

    So, I spent all my "free time" (read: the 6-8 hours each day when a normal person might sleep) for the past three days trying to go through the house -- locating things and boxing some of it up myself.

    When objects are being moved around and put into containers in the middle of the night, Bocce -- the small nervous Italian Greyhound creature -- knows that I'm packing. She's seen it many times before. We've lived in 7 different places in her 8 years -- Providence, RI (with Damien); Somerville, MA (with Ellen); Cambridge, MA (with Ellen); Los Angeles (with Jeff and Hillary); and 2 different Dogpatch live/work lofts (with Gareth) and the current dilapidated Mission Victorian (with Owen, Ric, and Sye). Additionally, I've gone on hundreds of trips all over the country and Bocce has gone on most of those as well. She's been on cross country flights at least 30 times. She's also been to exotic locations like St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. So, whenever she sees me packing late at night, she thinks she's either going to the kennel or she's getting on a plane. And though she doesn't really mind either of these things, the uncertainty seems to make her nervous. She may be wondering if she's going to be left behind.

    Three days of packing has taken its toll on her. Furniture and books have been moved to unfamiliar places and Bocce is dubious about the piles of boxes creating a new wall in the living room.

    She hides under the covers on my bed, nervously shivering. And I imagine that big moves like this are like some version of a doggie nightmare, akin to the movie "Dark City," where every night while the human population of the city is drugged into a deep sleep -- the alien overlords reconfigure all the buildings and city layout and change around entire households of people, importing new friends and family members from the existing pool of people. Yeah, moving is totally like "doggie 'Dark City.'" Her whole idea of reality will be 100% changed in less than 24 hours.

    Has anyone moved with pets? Any horror stories? Also, did you see 'Dark City?' What did you think? The images and ideas in that movie stay with me, particularly the idea about escaping to Shell Beach.

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 8:47 AM
    July 20, 2005 The Phoenix from the Flames...
    I'm about to take off to drive up to Portland with Andy and August to go to the Phoenix Festival up in Washington. We're gonna meet Esther and Jason up there and camp in the ambient chill area. On Friday night, it's all gals on the decks -- Ladies Only DJ night.

    Bocce's coming too. It's her 3rd Phoenix Festival. She's not a huge fan of camping, because she gets a little bit cold at night. But she loves it during the daytime when she can lay around in the sun or inside the tent.

    Here are my photos from the Phoenix Fest in 2002
    and here are some photos from 2004.

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 11:56 PM
    May 16, 2005 Jess and The City
    I'm in New York City for the week to meet with ABC News for work. Bocce and August and I flew in on Saturday and stayed at Mindy and Erik's place on the way Upper West Side near Columbia. (I think it's called Morning Side Heights?) We saw a teeny tiny baby squirrel in the park. We went to Erik's architecture school year-end party and then went to the East Village to meet Lee, Brett, Will, Daniel, and Jeff. On Sunday we packed up Mindy's car, so that she could leave for Carnegie-Mellon, and then we went to Lee's place in the Lower East Side (which is confusingly layed-out and furnished exactly like his old apartment in SOMA), and we drank a jug of red wine. Then we travelled to Park Slope, Brooklyn to Jeff and Daniel and Lance's compound where we sat at the silver table in their backyard garden and grilled steaks and drank Rasberry Lambic and more wine. Bocce humped Odie (Lance and Mark's dog) who is male and part Collie and much larger and was completely indifferent to her advances.

    This morning, August and Bocce and I took the F train to Coney Island where we saw Astroland and The Wonder Wheel and the Cyclone, and a clam bar. Bocce didn't want to go on any of the rides. August ate two hot dogs from Nathan's with sourkraut and onions, and I had cheese fries with ketchup.

    Now we're about to head to the Paramount Hotel on 46th Street, which I stayed at in 2001 when I was travelling for Microsoft to meet with Viacom to discuss interactive music television projects we were working on for UltimateTV. They have a pretty interestingly-designed lobby, and they allow small dogs.

    On Wednesday I'm going with my work peeps -- Dave, Jen, Heather, and Arleen to the Good Morning America show, but we don't know what the topic is yet.

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 3:38 PM
    December 22, 2003 Jeff's 30th Birthday in LA
    "I wanna be your Thurston Moore
    wrestle on the bedroom floor.
    "
    -- Sleater-Kinney "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone"
    jeff andy and me
    I just got back to SF from Los Angeles around 1a.m. this morning, completely drained. Earlier that afternoon I had dropped Jeff off on his flight from LAX back to JFK, and then hopped back onto the 405 heading north. If you subtract the total 14 hours spent driving up and down California -- I spent 19 hours this weekend in Los Angeles, and somehow 15 of those were spent awake. I think Jeff enjoyed the celebration. He kept trying to keep it low-key, and then I would announce loudly, "It's Jeff's 30th birthday -- aren't we gonna kick it 'till dawn? Who's in on this?!?" Doesn't he understand that "low-key" isn't even a remote possibility when I'm around?

    After dinner with Paul, Anne, and Raj at The Galley in Santa Monica, I kidnapped Jeff and Andy and fed them Sparks and other stimulants and drove them up on Mulholland Drive at 4a.m in my rented convertible with the top down and heat on full-blast. Sleater Kinney's "Call the Doctor" was blaring from the speakers as Jeff and I screamed along with the lyrics. As we drove down Beverly Glen, we came down the hill to Belle & Sebastian. Then I drove east on Sunset Blvd through Beverly Hills and into Hollywood so that Andy could take a photo of the neon Yahoo sign.

    Jeff, Andy and me (and Bocce!) slept on one inflatable mattress on Hillary's living room floor. We slept across the mattress the wrong way so we could all fit, but our heads and feet were hanging off. They're both over 6 feet tall, so I don't think it was very comfortable for them. I went into the fetal position in the middle, so I was perfectly fine. I had a dream that night that we were sleeping in a rowboat out in the middle of a lake.

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    posted by Jess Barron @ 5:52 PM