Friday, March 1 - Welcome, please take your shoes off when you come in. What up big ballers, TOUR has gotten off to an exciting start! 11 of us left Ann Arbor at 1pm to make it to Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh to perform at No Instruments Aloud, a show hosted by the C# Singers. The last three, colloquially known as Team 1.5 Asians (Conrad, Jake and Kyle), left around 3 hours later and met up with the rest of the group after the show. Jeremy was well entertained during the ride, as seen here playing Rocket League on his computer with a tethered PS4 controller.
Our late arrival delayed the show, but we were greeted by 7 other groups from Carnegie Mellon who all put on awesome performances. During our performance of Day ‘N’ Nite, something broke above the stage during the loudest part and dust started falling from the ceiling like snowflakes. We literally blew the roof off the stage… Nobody was hurt and we were invited to the after party, so all is good.
New segment: Guoden Ramsay’s Restuarant Reviews (feel free to skip this section if you’re not interested, this will not count towards your grade)
After a quick query on Google, Daniel, Jeremy and I found ourselves at I Tea Cafe, a small Tawainese restaurant just off the main restaurant/bar area. Even though we arrived at 9:45pm, they still graciously served us and provided an overall good experience. We ordered three dishes… spicy chicken, black pepper beef ribs and sweet and sour pork chops. The chicken was definitely the standout dish here. Juicy chunks of chicken were perfectly stir fried with plenty of chili oil and Sichuan peppercorns, delivering a perfect amount of numbing spice. The ribs had good flavor, but the meat itself was a bit tough and hard to take off the bone. I normally don’t order sweet and sour items from Chinese restaurants, but I decided to give it a chance today, hoping it was more similar to an authentic Chinese sweet and sour rather than what you normally see at takeout places. Unfortunately, the pork was just smothered in a sweet and not so sour sauce, which was disappointing but not entirely surprising. Overall, the service was fast, friendly and the owner was patient with my multiple failed attempts at reading the Chinese on the menu. Oh and I didn’t mention… this place is also has hot pot, which would be something to look into if you have more time. It was definitely a good first dinner on tour, and I would definitely recommend ordering some of the “Not Panda Express” items and they should turn out pretty good. Not sure if I’ll do one of these every day… If you want more or if you just wasted a minute of your life leave a comment. Shoutout Mari for this idea!
To wrap up the night, the CMU Originals, a super talented all-male group, had us over at their place for a little get together. These guys were super cool and had a decked out apartment that was quite lit. Nick reunited with his roommate from A Cappella Academy and some dude started doing Fortnite dances surprisingly well.
That’s a wrap on day 1… Big baller shoutout to Danny for being tour manager this year and planning this awesome adventure. Much more to come. - coach