October 7, 2022: winter is coming, comedy, building sustainably, traveling

(This is a now page, and if you have your own site, you should make one, too.)

Right now I’m in Albuquerque eating a giant fried chicken sandwich at Buds & Beans Cafe. It is HUGE. Way too big, even. Ask them for a knife and fork if you get one because HOLY CRAP. It’s fantastic. BTW, everybody knows how healthy fried chicken is, but did you also know it’s delicious? You heard it here first.

Big picture stuff, I’m doing prep for winter. Taos, NM winters are no joking matter, buddy! MF’ers fly in from all over to go skiing and snowboarding on the mountains I look at every day. The temperature can drop to 20 below zero. In my head, I keep hearing Ned Stark say, “winter is coming.” Winter’s not the only thing coming though, yaknowatimsayin?

I’ve been cutting firewood with Veteran’s Off Grid, but I need more. This summer I helped build a wallapini and an Earthship at VOG. They’re good people with a worthwhile mission. Because of going there, I’ve met so many of my friends and neighbors. It’s a wonderful community hub. They’ve got some deal with one of the forest management government people where they bid on some amount of acreage that needed to be thinned out to make room for fledgling maple trees. So the people in charge of the forest (nymphs?) marked the trees they want to keep and we cut the rest. How does this lead to me having firewood, you ask? I can hear you screaming, “That wood is green, you idiot!” Well, yes, you’re right. So my deal with VOG is I help them cut and haul the wood off the mountain and in exchange I load up seasoned wood they cut there last year. BOOM! I don’t freeze to death. Hopefully.

Another nearby community hub is Carson Cafe. This wonderful small business serves freshly prepared food, coffee, smoothies and beer. Small grocery with essentials. An outdoor stage for karaoke and live music performances. Yoga several times a week. A community garden. Fun place to hang out and meet your neighbors and friends. It’s the closest business to The Chaderossa, but I’d go there anyway. It’s dope. I’m doing a 30-minute set there this weekend as part of their Carson Harvest Music Festival.

Chad Riden at Carson Cafe 10/8/2022

That’s the other thing I’m doing: manifesting a comedy scene in Taos. I spent 22 years in Nashville helping to build a comedy scene from ONE open mic a week and ONE comedy club to several mics a night and many many booked showcases OUTSIDE of the THREE comedy venues. I am not claiming credit for all or any of that.. but I am proud of what I did. Honestly, Nashville does not need me anymore. My work there is done. When I arrived here, Taos, New Mexico had NO comedy to speak of, but now we have a monthly mic and I have launched a new non-profit (TaosComedy.com) with a mission to build and support a comedy scene in northern central New Mexico.

I’ve been going back and forth to Albuquerque and Santa Fe, scouting out the scenes, comics and venues there. I’ve got a LOT of work to do in Taos County, but I LOVE scene building.. and I’ve been amassing a group of interested, excited people who are on the same page. Lexi at The Burger Stand is a comedy fan and is 100% on board. That’s all I need.

open mic at The Burger Stand the 2nd Monday every month

I am trying to find the time to finish editing my “NashvilleStandUp @ NECAT” stand-up comedy showcase tv series. Only one has aired so far, but I’ve got 3-4 more shot. I didn’t expect to move to Taos until 2023 and I feel bad that I haven’t finished those episodes up but I wake up before the sunrise and I work all day. Occasionally we run off to the Rio Grande River for “river fun” (swimming naked with hippie girls) and I don’t get home until after dark. It’s a wonderful life and I have no complaints.. but I’m not on the computer hardly at ALL.

I’ll be back in Nashville the first week of December for my daughter’s college graduation and then to see my brothers and friends and stuff.

After that, I’ll be back on the mesa in the high desert hunkering down for the terrible winter. We’ll see how that goes. I may have to flee south at some point if it’s too cold.

In spring 2023, I start building stuff at The Chaderossa. I have changed my mind about what I’m doing a couple dozen times, and I’m glad I did because I thought I was going to build a 2-bedroom Earthship-inspired building right off the bat, but that’s too big for my needs. I’m going to build a traditional Adobe structure the way the native’s have for thousands of years. My native buddy Dustin built his by himself over the course of 6 months for $600 total. THAT’s what I’m all about. Then, I’ll build a simple survival Earthship.. and I’m gonna use styrofoam-infused aircrete to build a bunch of other stuff. This is all super fun. Wanna help?

If/when the world falls apart, come on by. Or before then, even. Ryan Singer and Patrick Devine have already stopped by. So can you.

This update was October 7, 2022.

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