Tagged: Brooke Jackson-Glidden

Playlist: Our favorites — Brooke Jackson-Glidden

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Features Editor
@bufoodist

Choosing twenty or so “favorite” songs almost feels like unusual punishment. So, instead, I gave myself a new task: Make myself into a playlist.

The result is an odd combination of Motown, contemporary indie rock, classic folk and of course, a splash of funk. The songs themselves have little to nothing to do with one another. But each of them represents certain parts of my past: people, moments and facets of who I’ve become (for better or for worse).

I grew up with Aretha Franklin and Etta James. My mother, a second-wave feminist with a profound love of belting black female soul artists, had Lady Soul and Miss Peaches on in the house 24/7 in the early days. “RESPECT” in the morning and “At Last” at night. Etta was there for my first crush with “Something’s Got A Hold on Me,” and Aretha was there after my first breakup with “Ain’t No Way.” Even now, “Ain’t No Way” stops me cold, not only because she has a ridiculous set of pipes, but because she emotes vocally unlike anyone on the planet… except for maybe Etta James.

My love for Bob Dylan came from my father. Like Dylan, he encouraged me to pay attention to the world around me and find interesting ways to express what I observed.  Both men showed me how much I could change over my life, and how predictability, in certain ways, was overrated.

I’m far too young to be nostalgic, but certain songs are on this playlist because they evoke memories I’m scared to lose. “Maybe This Time” echoes through the brownstones on Commonwealth, my roommate and I singing Liza at the top of our lungs on Friday nights. “Ball and Biscuit” skips in my purple, spherical boom box, The White Stripes’ Elephant sitting in my lap: my first CD I purchased with my own money. The ridiculous Leslie Hall, in her gold spandex’d glory, dancing with my managing editor on a cold Cambridge night.

“Thirteen” and “Trouble” sound like being in love for the first time — as cheesy as that is to say, I can’t think of any other way to say it. “White Winter Hymnal” sounds like driving in northern Oregon and the smell of cold mornings hidden under pine trees. “The Dark of the Matinee” sounds like spontaneity and “Paper Hearts” sounds like pretention.

Songs haunt me like ghosts, but that doesn’t seem to be a bad thing. If I’m living in the past, thank God music is the way I get to do so.

Budget-friendly recipes for off-campus residents

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

One-pot meals, like stews, are great options for college students living off-campus./ PHOTO VIA Flickr user Pelican

One-pot meals, like stews, are great options for college students living off-campus./ PHOTO VIA Flickr user Pelican

If you are planning to live off campus for the first time next semester, it  can be difficult to budget how much to spend on food, especially when there is no dining hall to swipe into (unless one of your generous friends guest-swipe you in). Once you figure out how much you can spend, you should probably figure out the best way to make the most of your groceries. 

Go-to, easy recipes with very few ingredients will help you stay under budget and keep you from breaking down and ordering Chinese. After a long day, having a meal waiting at home is not only smart, it’s cost effective. I’ve compiled three types of meals and even more recipes for the college chef – most of them one-pot and easy to make.

1. Make a stew, soup or curry on Sunday and eat that throughout the week

One-pot meals with multiple forms of protein are smart for weekly dinners, and can often involve shortcuts (a can of soup, tomatoes or red beans). There are thousands of food blogs that offer these sorts of recipes, but for those vegans or gluten-free foodies out there, this chipotle black bean stew is filling and tastes better the longer it sits. Meat-eaters can try out this hearty jalapeno popper chicken soup.

2. Make large batches of oatmeal or steel-cut oats for breakfast all week

Foods like steel-cut oats are filling, cheap and easy-to-make: You can buy four packs of 24-oz oats online for under $20. This oatmeal recipe is from the recipe site NoshOn. It teaches you how to make oatmeal ahead of time, so you have easy breakfasts all week. You can take them on the T, bring them to class or eat them over some last-minute homework.

3. Buy a rice cooker and get creative

Rice is cheap, and it serves as a filling, warm, gluten-free base for a lot of casseroles and three-ingredient dinners. Try pouring soup or jarred sauces over rice, mixing in curry paste and coconut milk or even sticking to Sriracha or teriyaki sauce. As you start to develop your inner college chef, you can get more creative with whatever’s in the pantry. To start off, try out these recipes for Mexican rice, Bourbon chicken and rice or a classic Jambalaya.

Not sure about making the jump to off-campus housing? Try out some of Boston University’s apart-style housing available.

Muse: MTVU Woodie Awards

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Features Editor
@bufoodist

Let’s be honest: MTV has sort of lost its spark. Maybe it’s because mainstream music generally falls flat once you enter college (or leave the eighth grade). Maybe it’s because MTV rarely plays music anymore.

Regardless, the mtvU Woodie Awards, which celebrate the music “college students love,” may revive MTV’s image in the eyes of the pop-apathetic 20-somethings who haven’t watched an MTV music video since The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus and Lupe Fiasco dominated the airwaves.

The Woodies, a “people’s choice” anti-VMAs, will feature acts that are hard to disregard, including hip hop goddess Iggy Azalea and hipster gospel preacher Jack Antonoff. Azalea was nominated for her video “Bounce,” in which she tours the streets of Mumbai in ornate saris and gold spandex atop an elephant.

“It’s a very surreal video,” Azalea said in a phone interview. “Because the song didn’t have a narrative element to it, I wanted that escapism.”

Azalea released the music video for her song “Fancy” Tuesday, and is set to release her next album next month.

Azalea has been on the scene for the last two years, after moving to Miami alone when she was 16 and emerging as the girlfriend of rapper A$AP Rocky. The artist exposed her past in her single “Work,” released last year.

“It’s my journey into adulthood in that song,” Azalea said of “Work”. “That’s the part of my life being chronicled.”

Growth is everything to Jack Antonoff, member of the Grammy-winning band Fun. Antonoff is currently working on a solo project, performing his latest single “I Want to Get Better” as Bleachers.

“It’s about desperately wanting to get better at stuff,” Antonoff said. “I think that’s a more clear version of happiness that people can relate to. It’s not exactly being happy, but wanting to be happy…My only hope for Bleachers is that [he] reaches the people who need it.”

Azalea and Antonoff join artists like Bastille, Childish Gambino, James Blake, Disclosure and Lorde at the award show, which will air on March 16 for national audiences. Voting is still open for all of the categories including best college radio station, for which BU’s own WTBU is nominated.

MUSE: Top 10 Teas for Cold Weather

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Features Editor
@bufoodist

There's no better occasion for tea than wintertime in Boston./ PHOTO VIA Flickr user Siddhesh Mangela.

There’s no better occasion for tea than wintertime in Boston./ PHOTO VIA Flickr user Siddhesh Mangela.

Teatime is upon us: When the cold weather rolls in with the turn of the semester, there’s nothing like grabbing a fuzzy blanket, opening your laptop and curling up with a hot cup of tea.

Tea is a magical product. It can wake you up or calm you down. It can make your stomach ache go away or relieve your headache. And unlike its cousins, hot chocolate and apple cider, it happens to be calorie-free. One sip and you’re off to your happy place.

We’ve compiled our favorite teas of the season for any tea-worthy occasion, from breakfast to bedtime. So whip out your favorite mug and start brewing.

1. French Breakfast Tea

Brand: Mariage Frères
From: France
Type: Black
Tip: Mariage teas are loose-leaf, so make sure to steep using a tea strainer. Spitting out little twigs will ruin your morning zen.

2. Darjeeling Tea

Brand: Twinings
From: United Kingdom
Type: Black
Tip: Let this tea steep for five minutes and then remove the bag. Otherwise, it will become too strong. Also, don’t add milk – it will cloud over the delicate flavors of this classic blend.

3. Earl Grey

Brand: Kusmi Tea
From: France
Type: Black (also available decaffeinated and infused with citrus)
Tip: Make sure you buy this tea in bags – they use the old-fashioned method with mesh bags, which is as close to loose-leaf you can get without the hassle.

4. Yorkshire Gold

Brand: Taylors of Harrogate
From: United Kingdom
Type: Black
Tip: Make sure you let this bold tea hang out for five minutes and then add just a splash of milk. It can hold up against a little bit of cream and it will taste just smashing.

5. Chai Tea Latte Concentrate

Brand: Tazo
From: Oregon
Type: Black
Tip: Heat up a cup of this Portland classic with just a bit of milk: It’ll taste a bit like the Chai Latte you pick up at Starbucks.

6. Gypsy Rose Organic Tea

Brand: Zhena’s Gypsy Tea
From: California
Type: Black
Tip: Rose and honey are naturally a nice pair, and a simple spoonful will mellow out the bite that comes from over-brewing black tea.

7. Raspberry Quince

Brand: The Republic of Tea
From: California
Type: Black
Tip: Even though this tea is technically black, it tastes milder and more robust, like a red tea. With just three minutes of brew time, you’ll have a very mild, easy-to-drink tea.

8. Cinnamon Spice

Brand: Harney & Sons
From: New York
Type: Black
Tip: This tea is available for purchase with convenience points at the Barnes and Noble bookstore. Its complexity of flavor comes from orange peel and licorice, paired with the aforementioned cinnamon.

9. Peppermint Tea

Brand: Celestial Seasonings
From: Colorado
Type: Green
Tip: No need to add additional sweetener to this peppermint tea – mint has natural sugars which mature as the tea steeps. It tastes particularly delicious with a cookie, however, and it happens to be Girl Scout cookie season!

10. Sleepytime Vanilla Herbal Tea

Brand: Celestial Seasonings
From: Colorado
Type: Blend (decaffeinated)
Tip: Sleepytime tea, which combines chamomile, lemongrass and vanilla for a sweet, mild flavor, is perfect for curling up at bedtime. Feel free to leave the bag in – this tea hardly ever gets too strong.

MUSE: North End for Dummies

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

What better way to eat your heart out?/PHOTO VIA Flickr user Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism

The North End: a tiny slice of Europe just a T ride away. You know it’s there, but the appeal of delivery and the unwillingness you have to get out of bed keep you from actually spending the $2 to visit Boston’s Little Italy.

The North End is actually a college student’s best friend. With delicious food at this price, you’ll never order Domino’s again. Or maybe you will but either way here’s our quick-and-dirty guide to eating cheap in the North End:

GET A LOAF OF BREAD: Bricco’s Panetteria

Hidden in an alleyway off Hanover Street, Bricco’s bakery serves up the best baguette in the North End. Crispy-on-the-outside, fluffy-on-the-inside, still-warm-and-toasty bread is yours for under three dollars, and you know it’s fresh — you can see that heavenly ciabatta coming out of those fire-burning ovens as you order.

DRINK SOME COFFEE: Caffe Dello Sport

Caffe Dello Sport is one of the secret gems of the North End, with straight-from-scratch cocoa you can see those beautiful servers shave straight into your mocha. Make sure to visit Caffe Dello Sport on a game day (Italia, obviously) — the place is crawling with locals and it’s quite the scene. Grab a latte or a drink and enjoy that classic Italian American Ambiance.

EAT A CANNOLI (and not the one you think): Maria’s Pastry

Everyone’s heard of Mike’s Pastry. The line stretches around the corner, and the cannolis are good – but not worth an hour out of your day. Modern, down the street, now boasts a line that rivals Mike’s as the official Mike’s replacement. Maria’s, which rests on the edge of the North End, makes a chocolate-dipped cannoli that might beat Mike’s without the wait. And come December, don’t forget to pick up a homemade Panettone, an Italian Christmas tradition.

TREAT YO’SELF (and don’t break the bank): Giacomo’s Ristorante

Giacomo’s almost always has a line, but if you suck it up and eat like a grandma (as in, at 4 p.m.), you can get into Giacomo’s with little-to-no wait time, and trust me: it’s worth it.  At $16 a plate, you get more than enough of the most refined, silky, homemade lobster raviolis in a garlic cream sauce I dream about at night. Not to mention, all bottles of wine are $18 — and you can take those suckers home with you after the meal.

MUSE: Starbucks Butterbeer Latte

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

Why not warm yourself up to a butterbeer lattte?/PHOTO VIA Sarah Fisher

Why not warm yourself up to a butterbeer latte at Starbucks?/PHOTO VIA Noemie Carrant

The muggles of the world are having a mild aneurism over the new discovery of Butterbeer Frappuccinos and Steamers at Starbucks, but the secret gem of the holiday season are the warmer alternative: Butterbeer Lattes.

Butterbeer, in the Harry Potter books, is a foamy, warm beverage that tastes “a little bit like less-sickly butterscotch.” Until now, Butterbeer was only sold in the wizarding village of Hogsmeade (don’t you dare tell me it’s fictional), but now you can have every Potterhead’s favorite drink in the form of a Frappuccino or latte.

As a self-proclaimed Potterhead who may or may not have made a Hogwarts dream journal at age 10, I felt obligated to adapt the various recipes for Butterbeer-themed drinks into the perfect concoctions for the holiday season.

Although Butterbeer was consumed cold in Harry Potter when served in bottles, I think that Butterbeer lattes are optimal for the cold weather. However, for those who are interested in something chilly, here is my adapted recipe for a Butterbeer Frappuccino:

BUTTERBEER FRAPPUCCINO (Grande):

  • Crème Frappuccino Base
  • 3 pumps of caramel syrup
  • 4 pumps of toffee nut syrup
  • 1 pump of cinnamon dulce syrup
  • Whipped cream

So, how does this equal Butterbeer? Easy: caramel is made by heating sugar until it breaks down, and then adding heavy cream. Toffee, on the other hand, adds butter. The alleged “butterscotch” flavor of Butterbeer would require the combination of caramel and butter. The cinnamon-dulce syrup cuts the sweetness of the cream and adds a little bit of magic to the mix.

This adaptation varies from the main recipe circulating online, mainly because they suggest three pumps of each flavor and none of the cinnamon dulce syrup. Having evenly distributed syrups results in a muddled, sweet cream Frappuccino. Plus, the toffee should be more prominent than the caramel: the process of making butterscotch is closer to that of toffee than caramel, mainly because butterscotch requires butter (duh).

But in the freezing cold winter winds of Hogsmeade (or Boston, I guess…), a young wizard like yourself needs something warm and tasty to drink. With finals coming up, you can’t afford to take a trip to Starbucks without pounding down some caffeine. This adapted Butterbeer latte recipe will re-energize you for another round of studying. Who doesn’t need a little magic to get through midterms?

BUTTERBEER LATTE (Tall):

  • Latte
  • 3 pumps of caramel syrup
  • 2 pumps of toffee nut syrup
  • 1 pump of cinnamon dulce syrup
  • Whipped cream

Again, the main recipes recommend equal distributions of syrup, but for an enchanted latte like this one, you need to go full engorgio on the caramel and chill out on the cinnamon dulce. Because the espresso already cuts the sweetness of the toffee nut and the caramel, the cinnamon dulce should be less prominent than the other syrups. Also, the caramel syrup should be more prominent in the latte, because the chocolatey quality of the coffee mimics the flavor the toffee nut when combined with the caramel.

Overall, there should be less syrup in the latte than the Frappuccino, because the chilly shake has a higher water content with the addition of ice.

Make sure to accio some Butterbeer as soon as you can — you can only knock back this Hogsmeade classic while the toffee nut flavor is in season.

MUSE: Monsters University Gears up for DVD release; MUSE chats with Pixar producer

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

The monsters behind “Monsters, Inc.” and “Monsters University”/PHOTO VIA Flickr user Michelle O’Connell Photography

“It seems crazy now, but I played basketball and I was going to be either professional player or in the Olympics,” Kori Rae said in a roundtable interview. “That was my goal from childhood. But then an injury in college changed that and I had to figure out what to do and where to go from there.”

After a period of drifting and some self-introspection, Rae landed at Pixar 20 years ago, and worked among some of the other great Pixar minds to create childhood classics like “The Incredibles”, “Up” and “Monsters, Inc.”

When she and Pixar storyboard artist, Dan Scanlon, began their discussion of re-entering the world of “Monsters, Inc.” for “Monsters University“, they decided very early on that it was time to introduce the somewhat controversial theme that Rae faced many years ago: The possibility that, even with hard work and determination, sometimes dreams don’t come true.

[SPOILER ALERT BELOW]

Mike Wazowski’s dream didn’t come true. Wazowski was always an assistant to James Sullivan, the scarer, not a scarer himself. So, as the “Monsters, Inc.” team decided to focus on Mike as a character for a prequel, they had to figure out how to tackle the touchy subject of failure – a subject even more terrifying for all of the “Monsters, Inc.” fans now entering their college years.

When Pixar released “Monsters University” in theaters last June, children and adults alike had to face their fears of failure the way Mike and Sully did; as scary as that prospect may be, the film still raked in $82 million in its opening weekend, leaving it only second to “Toy Story 3″ as the most successful opening weekend for a Pixar film.

“The beauty of Pixar films is that we can tell those stories that seem kind of adult, but we can tell them in a way that appeals to kids,” Rae said.

The DVD and Blu-ray, to be released on Oct. 29, include features that treat Pixar like a college campus, with 101s in storyboards and Music Appreciation seminars with Randy Newman. Rae specifically mentioned the “Paths to Pixar” feature, which profiles various producers, artists and directors who never intended to end up at Pixar.

“We have animators who were doctors, an attorney, a production designer who wanted to be a baseball player in Japan, things like that,” Rae said of Paths to Pixar.

“That’s what we feel the theme of this movie is kind of about – When something gets in your way of that one thing you think you’re supposed to do or who you’re supposed to be, remain open and see what’s around the corner, because usually, in most cases, it ends up better than you ever imagined.”

The film also becomes On-Demand on Oct. 29.

Die Antwoord: Bizarre With A Purpose

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

Die Antwoord is a force to be reckoned with./PHOTO VIA Flickr user Kris Krug

When Lady Gaga decided to tour South Africa in 2012, she landed on an opening act she thought would be appropriate for the area: Die Antwoord. Die Antwoord was a somewhat-successful local rap group with a “similar” bizarre image.

Die Antwoord disagreed. In response to her offer, they released an acidic response video where a lion eats a meat-dress-wearing Lady Gaga (Lady Gaga wore a dress completely made of meat to the 2010 VMA’s). But more importantly, front-woman Yo-Landi Vi$$er shed important light on the blatant privilege and appropriation of Lady Gaga in general.

Adorned in blackface, Yo-Landi wore yellow eyes with dollar signs pupils and berated the pop artist for assuming they would jump at the privilege to perform with her. In her Afrikaans-English fusion of a language, she talks about her upbringing as an impoverished child in South Africa and the hypocrisy in her newfound attention as a wealthy, “profitable” rapper. “I used 2 beg borrow or steal jus 2 hustle sumfing 2 eat,” Yo-Landi spits, juxtaposed next to a woman dressed in food she’s wearing just for the couture of eccentricity.

Die Antwoord offers a new, postmodern rap that captures various manifestations of poverty in South Africa with a sense of humor and social message, either intentional or not. For instance, the song “I Fink U Freaky,” at first glance, simply celebrates deviancy. The video, however, presents an aesthetic with primal elements and, again, a representation of poverty and despondence that makes you wonder what kind of world these artists came from. In another song, “Baby’s on Fire,” Yo-Landi and her rap partner, Ninja, play brother and sister in a classic lower-class white neighborhood; together, they shed a light on sexism, objectification and racism within these environments and a desperate conceptualization of ‘luxury,’ from Ninja watching girls fight in a plastic kiddie pool to Yo-Landi gasping at a gift from a male guest: a doll version of herself.

Part of what makes Yo-Landi such an interesting rap artist is her almost self-parodying over sexualized child-like presentation. Yo-Landi regularly wears crop tops and shorts in bright pastels, pigtails, and sneakers. That is, until you hear her rap. In that Micky Mouse voice, Yo-Landi spits harsh, violent rhymes that demand you see her as a force to be reckoned with. Not to mention, Yo-Landi’s almost-bowl-cut and invisible eyebrows make her seem just a bit too strange to be “heterosexy.”

So, you can see why the two would be so offended by Lady Gaga’s claim of similarity. For Lady Gaga, deviance is chic, upper-class or “special.” Die Antwoord earned its aberrancy from seeing it, living it, in all its glory and horror. Although South Africa is a world away, American fans can learn to be a little more open-minded with a dose of Yo-Landi.

Check out some of Die Antwoord’s work here and here.

No Kitchen Required – Peaches and Ricotta

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

We all love tasty treats, but as broke college students, a) we’re poor and/or can’t afford to go out to eat and b) we have no kitchen in our dorm room. Whoever allowed this contradiction to happen is some sort of sadist, but never fear! It’s time for… No Kitchen Required!

PEACHES AND RICOTTA WITH PROSCIUTTO NESTS

Peaches and ricotta are a classic Italian treat and as we’re reaching the end of peach season it’s the time to take advantage of this simple, easy nosh. The prosciutto nests counterbalance the sweetness of the peaches and honey and the creaminess of the ricotta.

The secret to this dish (along with many others) is fresh, high quality ingredients. Go on down to the Farmer’s Market today in George Sherman Union plaza and pick out a firm but juicy peach. A good way to pick a peach is with a smell and a squeeze: Pick up the peach and smell the area right by the stem. If it smells fresh and mildly sweet, then it’s most likely ripe. If the peach you’re smelling doesn’t have a scent, then it’s not ripe enough. If it smells very sweet, then it’s too ripe. To verify the ripeness of your peach, squeeze it gently. It should give a bit, but your fingers shouldn’t be able to break the skin or leave imprints in the flesh of the fruit. If you’re serving your peaches and ricotta to one other person, one peach will suffice. While you’re at the farmer’s market, try to pick out a small bottle of local honey – even if you don’t use all of your honey, it’s always nice to keep in your dorm.

Next, it’s crucial you pick up a nice ricotta. Ricotta, when it’s low-quality, ends up being very grainy and flavorless . Splurge on the good quality ricotta. Head over to the North End and visit any cheese shop there. If they make fresh ricotta in-house, pick up a smaller container. Award-winning Calabro ricotta is made in New England, it’s fairly inexpensive and it can even be found in certain Whole Foods if you want to skip the trip to the North End.

In terms of prosciutto, you can either skip this step (for the vegetarians and cost-effective folks out there) or head over to J. Pace & Son in the North End for unbelievable prosciutto. Trader Joe’s and Shaw’s also stocks tasty prosciutto, for those that want to stay within a college student’s budget.

From here, all that’s left is simple assembly. We’re going to give you a “choose-your-own-adventure”-type recipe from this point on.

Either you can keep your prosciutto raw or crisp it up in the microwave. If you prefer your prosciutto soft (and more malleable), keep the slices raw and lay pieces out like sheets. Rip the prosciutto into two separate strips and lay them crossed over one another, like a large plus sign. Otherwise, shape your prosciutto into small cups and put about three cups on one microwaveable plate. Microwave the prosciutto for 30 seconds to 1 minute until they are somewhat crispy. They might never be as crispy as you may like, but remember – this is renegade dorm kitchen pioneer cooking and sort of crispy is still better than the bacon they serve in Warren. Use a napkin to sop up any excess grease from the cups and lay the prosciutto out on a new plate. Cut the peaches into smaller slices and use a smaller spoon to dollop ricotta onto the prosciutto. Use a straw or coffee stirrer to add a drizzle of honey to your little canape cups. If your prosciutto is raw, wrap the peaches and ricotta in the parma ham, tying each of the four ends at the top. Serve immediately.

MUSE: The People of Boston Calling

By Brooke Jackson-Glidden, Staff Writer
@bufoodist

Just a couple of people who can appreciate good music and good company./PHOTO VIA Clemence Puche

I moved to Boston last year from Eugene, a small city in Oregon that boasts the title as the best city for hippies in the United States. Tie-dye can still be purchased in stores or in open-air markets. People brew their own kombucha and/or make their own keifer. I saw more Birkenstocks on the feet of my high school peers than flip flops or sneakers. Most importantly, I grew up on a steady musical diet of Jefferson Airplane, The Doors, The Beatles, Jimi, Janis and a complete slew of jam bands.

Going to open-air concerts and festivals generally involves groping at the air, skipping in circles, saying something along the lines of “I feel so free right now” and wearing the traditional hippie uniform of a maxi skirt, daisy crowns, body paint, etc.

What you’ll never hear an Eugenian say is, that to an extent, this behavior is an act. People whose brains are not completely addled on drugs and can actually hear the music probably don’t like fifteen-minute guitar solos that are, inevitably, off-key and unimaginative (let’s be real, the musician performing is also on some sort of contraband substance).

Now, don’t get me wrong, I can get my hippie on. It’s my culture – patchouli runs through my veins. But I guess going to a concert where there isn’t that sort of “hippie” pretense, or the desire to be the most counterculture, is new to me.

So when I moved to Boston, as promised by my family and friends at home, I experienced quite the culture shock. Why wasn’t I seeing any hemp clothing on my fellow Bostonians? Where could I get locally brewed kombucha? Why were all the drivers so mean?

But I guess that’s why I moved to Boston. I knew I wanted to be around something different, or diverse. So far, Boston has yet to disappoint me on that front.

Musically, however, I haven’t found that “let’s dance in the moonlight; throw mud directly at my face!” Kind of carefree spirit that reminds me of home. Upon attending Boston Calling, I thought I might get a taste for my home – I think Bonnaroo is probably the closest thing to summer in Eugene on this side of the Mississippi.

At Boston Calling, I experienced a completely different genre of not only music, but also audience members. Costumes were few in comparison to folks in t-shirts and jeans. People wore Boston Strong shirts, didn’t dance, but rather sat and listened to bands they had loved for years.

It was different, but not in a bad way.

Boston Calling feels like it’s a Boston festival. No, it’s not hippie paradise. As far as I can see, most people are sober. However, it’s unpretentious and far from preppy (this isn’t Cambridge Calling or Martha’s Vineyard Calling). It’s just about the music.

Listening to Bat for Lashes on brick streets of City Hall Plaza, watching at her reach for the sky at seagulls with steeples and clock towers watching from the distance, I felt more of a part of Boston than I ever had before. I felt like I had arrived at the next phase of my life.