Too Many Exclamation Marks

It seems we should be able to come up with something better than, “OMG YOU GUYS!!!!!!!!” But that’s how we feel after the exciting launch of our 2014 season.

Here were are, the kind of people who are irrationally proud of our ability to use correct grammar, yet our ability to express ourselves has been degraded to drunk text message levels.

All caps.

Overuse of exclamation points.

Inarticulate.

OMG YOU GUYS!!!!!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!

A-hem.

In case we haven’t talked your ear off about it, we released our new CD — Miniature Horses, get it here — in January. To celebrate we had a standing room only release party at West Seattle’s Feedback Lounge. We had lasers — a ukulele band with lasers, that’s ridiculous! — and Dave, our video guy was there, and our friends from Petal Songs came up from Portland to work the merch table, and that guy from the Murphtones, the one who loaned us his badass car for the video, was there, and, wow, what a night.

“More bodies than seats!” said Jeff Gilbert, the guy who runs the place (and wrote our liner notes). One of my favorite moments from that show (and there were so many) was watching Jeff come into his bar and seeing his face break out into a huge smile at the sight of the crowd.

Because once you have more cowbell, more laser is the obvious next step.

That crowd, that was you, buying rounds of Smashed Ukuleles, the drink the bartender concocted just for us, you standing three deep at the merch table to buy our music, you singing along and dancing and cheering for us. Some of you were the kind of people who Don’t Get Out to This Kind of Thing Much, and there you were, and we could not have been happier to see you. If we didn’t cover you in sloppy kisses at the time, it’s because we were all shouted out and overwhelmed and a little dehydrated, to be honest, but we owe you. You might want to carry around a tarp, just in case.

WE LOVE THIS GUY.
Terry with our cake. WE LOVE THIS GUY.

Two weeks later, we headed up to Bellingham where we were welcomed by the good people of the Bellingham Ukulele Group (BUG). Future hosts and venues? If you find our expectations seem a little unrealistic, it’s not our fault, you have BUG to blame. They made us a Cake in the Shape of a Ukulele with the Band Logo on it in Fondant. It was gorgeous. And delicious.

There were a lot of other delicious things too, including a ripe, sweet pineapple — this is February in the Pacific Northwest, friends, those things don’t grow on trees. (Literally, they don’t, and figuratively too, see, we still observe proper definitions.) So hey, we’re trying to keep it real, but this kind of treatment, let’s just say the bar has been raised, friends, the bar has been raised.

Pam: LOOK AT THAT CAKE! I CAN’T STOP LOOKING AT IT!
Pete: I KNOW!

BUG had booked us into the Encore Room at the Mount Baker Theater and someone might have sneezed out little clouds of glitter when she saw the band’s name in lights on the theater marquee. Inside, the room was filled to capacity and we could not have hoped to play for a nicer bunch — we met music teachers and uke builders and the kind of people who hang out with the kind of people who play the ukulele. We would happily have pulled up stakes to live in Bellingham, so immediately welcome and at home did we feel there. We are all about diplomacy with our northern neighbors forged in a common love for ukuleles and cake. (We might have a little crush on Bellingham. Quit teasing us.)

Mount Baker Theater
Go ahead and make a “puppet show” joke, but know that we are WAY ahead of you. And the spelling… we know.

Given all of that, you can see why it’s easy to get stuck on, “OMG YOU GUYS!!!!!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!”

It’s been an amazing start to the year, so amazing that some of us lie awake at night after the shows because they can’t believe how amazing it’s been, and because they can’t sleep, they go look up synonyms for amazing because underneath all of it, they’re still kind of nerdy and they figure they should try to do better than “Everything is amazing!” and  “OMG YOU GUYS!!!!!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!”

Or not.

Sometimes, “”OMG YOU GUYS!!!!!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!”” is exactly what you want to say.