Tuesday, September 15, 2009

BAO Bingo

Yesterday we had our first day off of rehearsal. The boys and I went on a quest to find a Bank Of America. Now, someone in the cast says there's BofA's everywhere, and when we looked it up online I think it says there's at least two. Our first clue should have been that there were no actual addresses, just approximate locations. The first one we tried to visit was in what looked like an abandoned mall. The pin drop on google directed us to a stand-alone elevator at the back of the parking lot that went up about 2 stories to some grass and dirt road above. Uhh... weird. Obviously not what we were looking for. Our second search took us into a more industrial area. I think we should have just given up when we saw fire spouting out of a tall tower. Google took us to a road that dead ended into nothing. Thanks google, big help.

We dropped Michael off so he could do some laundry and go to the gym, then the three of us decided to a) find the bank that distributed the checks so we could just cash them, and b) go to Sonic so I could experience it for the first time. You'd think it would be easy enough to find a bank that a check comes from IN the actual city you got it in, right? Well our first try was another strike. The directions took us to Virginia College, a nursing school, and said the bank was inside one of the buildings. Highly doubtful. We decided to go to Sonic, something we knew was absolutely there, before giving this bank thing another go. I got the Supersonic Cheeseburger - which... oh my god I just found out it has 898 calories. Whoa. Well... anyway, I got that and an apple limeade which was fantastic.

Side note: sweet tea. Have you had it? I don't know now it's still called tea. It's sugar water. I can't say I don't like it... it fascinates me.

After Sonic we went on our quest to find this elusive Bryant bank. At this point I don't think any of us were certain we'd ever find it. On our way to maybe or maybe not Bryant we saw the entrance to Vulcan Park and decided to go there on our way back from wherever it was we were going. I think the drive was about 15 minutes, it took us to a cute area with nice looking apartments and even a mexican restaurant, then - lo and behold - we found Bryant Bank. It was certainly a relief. Ben and I cashed our checks and we were on our way.

We found Vulcan to be, like many places we've seen in B'ham so far, void of people, save for the ones that work there. This Vulcan thing is a cast iron statue atop a tall pedestal of sorts. It was $6 to get access to the museum and the viewing tower that encircled Vulcan, but since there was thunder and lightening not long before, they weren't allowing people up in the tower.

And now for the title of this entry, BAO bingo. BAO stands for Birmingham AIDS Outreach. It was our first of a few performances we'll be doing for the organization. This was another tricky place to find but thankfully, like Bryant, it was actually there. The bingo night was held in the basement of the BAO building. We were to sing during intermission after an act called Obscenity. Obscenity, it turns out, is a drag queen who lip syncs to ABBA and collects dollars from bingo patrons who wanted to donate to her... cause. I'm not sure if the proceeds were going to her own personal charity or to BAO. We may never know. When out time came to sing we (I believe there were 8 of us) went to the front and huddled around two mics. They started playing our CD track, and just as the intro finished and we began to sing, the track went out. We continued to sing a cappella and made it through, staying on pitch and in rhythm. The 4 out of towners decided to end our strange day with HBO and a couple bottles of wine.

And that is what one does with a day off in Birmingham.

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