Scandinavian Cyber-Posten

Welcome to the Scandinavian Cyber-Posten!

The Scandinavian Cyber-Posten is my blog for the band. Ever since I started reading The Machine's Pump on the Brave Combo website I've wanted my own blog. After all, I'm a creative and intelligent person and I have thoughts on a lot of things. Here's a place where you can read what I think about a variety of topics. I hope you enjoy what you read. If you have any feedback on what I've written, email me at

Sunday, August 1

I will not miss July

Greetings, Scandinavian fans!

The month of August is here. Traditionally it's the warmest month of the year in Western Washington. We have thirty-one days of enjoying the sun and warm weather before school starts again and Oktoberfest season beckons. I'm especially glad to see August this year because it means that a very challenging month of July has ended.

July began with good intentions. I started a project back in June to fix up a 1993 GMC Jimmy for use on smaller gigs. There were a lot of small issues: bad heater control relay, burned out bulbs, old spark plugs. There was nothing too difficult. One major issue came up while I was in the process of fixing all the little things. The transmission was leaking at various times. I took the Jimmy over to a shop and they replaced the front pump seal and the torque converter bushing and now it leaks constantly. That's incredibly frustrating. I've put much work into the Jimmy and I have nothing to show for it yet.

Just before the trip to Kimberley I set the Jimmy aside to do some work on the venerable Polka Van. It has given good, reliable service for the past six years. It's a 1992 GMC Vandura and has been amazingly reliable. It takes us to all of our gigs where we need a big PA system or we're traveling out of town. It had just turned over 100,000 miles so I decided a full tune-up was in order: new plugs, wires, cap and rotor. I also replaced the serpentine belt, changed oil & filter, replaced some of the vacuum lines and flushed the cooling system. All systems were functioning properly. It passed emissions with flying colors and got relicensed in time for the trip.

On the way to Kimberley the Polka Van decided to throw all kinds of problems at us. The radiator cap came apart in Sandpoint, ID. I walked to the auto parts store and bought a new one. The coolant temperature sensor died in Bonners Ferry, ID. Thanks to some *VERY* helpful locals we were able to get that fixed and back on the road. The alternator died in Cranbrook, BC which required an overnight stay in the local hotel and a great deal of monkeywrenching to get the new one on. We made it to Kimberley on time, though, and played the gig. It was a great success and the people of Canada were very gracious hosts and hostesses for us. They make a great audience, too!

The following day we headed home. The tread came off the right front tire just before we got to Cle Elum. I pulled off the freeway and into the parking lot of the Twin Pines Drive In. The band members jumped out of the van and we got the tire changed and back on the highway in ten minutes. Not only are they great musicians, they're a pretty good pit crew as well. We finally made it home and we were very glad to be there!

The other major event of July was the Finn Fest in Naselle. It was a wonderful event! There were many young dancers there who did a great job with both the traditional Finnish dances and some of the more contemporary offerings. The crowd stayed right up to midnight and danced the whole time. That made it a really fun trip.

With all the challenges of the trip to Kimberley it was a very stressful month. I'm looking forward to August and some of the more relaxed events upcoming like the Jefferson County Fair and the Bremerton Blackberry Festival. Gigs on peninsulas are always good for us. Until then, enjoy the remainder of the summer and plan ahead for Oktoberfest!



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