Monday, January 25, 2010

Geeky Geeky Nation

We got out to a Jonathan Coulton concert over the weekend and had a fabulous time listening to performances of IKEA and Tom Cruise Crazy. He and his opening band, Paul and Storm, were college acapella singers with a techie bent, now parents of young children, and we enjoy the combination of humor and great voices.

JoCo’s most well-known songs are Code Monkey, a tale of a programmer’s romantic side, and Still Alive, told from the point of view of the charmingly evil computer in a video game called Portal. I favor his songs about sealife – there’s one about a giant squid with self esteem issues, another about Ye Old Furry Lobster, and of course, Octopus.

They attract a geeky crowd, and we fit right in. Banter between songs required the audience to have wide ranging knowledge – ancient philosophers, modern physicists, 80’s arcade trivia, Hollywood pop culture, musical styles. A few crowd favorites:

Paul: What is the pirate’s favorite mathematician?
Audience: ARRRRRchimedes!

Storm: This next one is a tribute song, so get out your lighters, or at least get out your iPhone lighter apps. Or go and write a lighter app and come back quickly.”

I looked across the crowd. I didn’t see a single real lighter, but I saw dozens of iPhones glowing with images like these. Life in Silicon Valley!


Anonymous said...

I must go now and listen to Jonathan Coulton, I have a feeling my engineer's soul will delight.

mayberry said...

That's great! The zippo app was the first one my husband downloaded when he got his iPhone. Then he taught the kids to use it. Is that bad?

Kimberly said...

Very cool! When we saw Pearl Jam two summers ago, there were few lighters. Most people just held up their illuminated phones. Times have changed!