Friday, March 27, 2009

Florida Things We Miss

As we’ve stated here numerous times before, the main thing we miss in Florida was the fine people we knew there. But there are a few “things” that we miss at least occasionally as well, and I thought I’d list a few of them:

  • Doug Rhodehamel’s clever, funky, inventive art installations.
  • Orlando theatre, which is seriously underrated on its quality and filled with amazingly talented people of the calibre New York would be lucky to have.
  • WPRK (which we regularly listen to over the internet, thanks guys!). CFUV (our local indie/college station) is also very good, but obviously we have an emotional connection to WPRK.
  • The Peacock Room and the P-House. And all the little bygone bars we loved so much, from Faith in Physics to Visage to Below Zero and Big Bang and the others. You know who you were.
  • Fairvilla Megastore. One gigantic, friendly, candid and funny adult toy store. The ones we have here are dark, serious, and self-ashamed, knowing as they do that the ghost of Queen Victoria is not amused by their presence. :)
  • Taco Bell. We were never big fans of anything but their prices, but the lack of one in Victoria (there’s one near Nanaimo, two hours north of here) plus their saturation-bombing ads on late-night TV drive us crazy. Advertising really can make you want something you didn’t really want!
  • Target. This one is more Heather than me, but she misses it. We have other stores here that fill that gap, of course, but nothing quite like Target.
  • Waffle House. Oh for some genuine hash browns and waitresses that call you “sugar.”
  • The great Orlando bands like Rocket 88, the Hate Bombs/Four Shames, the Evidents, the Delusionaires and so on. Haven’t really gotten into the local Victoria scene, though there seem to be at least a couple of local bands we could love.
  • Rock n Roll Heaven, the greatest “little” vinyl store this side of Wax n Facts. When Jim pointed out that they weren’t on this list (originally) I was shocked and appalled at myself for having forgotten to include them, so I’m adding them now (with a plug!) and hoping the Rah-Ehman gods are not too displeased ...
  • And the big one ... the Enzian and the Florida Film Festival. Victoria has it’s own film festival which is very good (and growing), but there was just something magical about the FFF and every time it rolls around (starts today!) I feel the pain of separation. The rest of the year, the Enzian was a great one-stop shop for art-house, family classic and cult film screenings. Victoria’s various cinemas kind of “pitch in” to collectively duplicate at least some of that stuff, but we certainly don’t get the quantity and quality we got from the Enzian. Bless ’em.
  • And yes, finally, Disney. Seriously. We don’t miss the parks so much as we do the resorts, restaurants and kitsch, but yes we miss the whole big stupid overpriced plastic mess of Disneyworld. There we said it.


Jim Donato said...

What do I miss about Orlando?

1) Rock & Roll Heaven - Asheville has lots of vinyl stores but none so awesome. We've actually lost two of the best since I've moved here, but Harvest Records is an up an coming store that one day, when the owners get as old and crusty as Ray Ehmen, could give R&R Heaven a real run for their money.

2) The few friends I have left in Orlando who haven't bolted. Thank goodness that Elisa & Tom live just a few hours away for a quick dose of quality friendship!

3) ...There is no #3.

Disney...?!!?! Are you Serious??!!

Anonymous said...


chas_m said...

re: "Sun?"

LOL ... actually we do get enough sun here that we haven’t missed it, particularly not the sheer heat and humidity (and bugs! did I mention bugs!) that came with it (in Florida).

Victoria seems to have an almost-magical force field around it (really the Olympic Mountains more than anything else) that shields us from a lot of the rain Seattle (and even Vancouver) gets. Weird, but we're not complaining.

Anonymous said...

Re: RNR Heaven VS. Wax N Facts

By the mid 90s RNR Heaven smoked Wax N Facts for breakfast, in my opinion. True, I haven't been to W N F since 2001 and RNR H since 2005 but at last visit that trend had not changed at all. In the mid 80s WNF was on top of the world, it's true. And RNR H was just an afterthought to the likes of Murmur, but RAY ROCKS! His is the singular record store of my life experience that has only gotten better and not yet started to decline. Good RK topic there...