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Counselor Senior Editor Michele Bell's slanted view of the world.

Advantages Roadshow — Day Two: Des Moines

Filed under: Travel

Hi from the show bus in Des Moines!

So last night my new friends and I went out in downtown Des Moines looking for some fun, and found it in spades. After cocktails at the aptly-named “Doozies” bar in the hotel, we started the evening at a “rustic” place where Dan Burke from Avaline took music requests from the group. Dan regaled us with Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” not once, but twice. Then, we found ourselves in our first gay bar of the evening. Who knew that downtown Des Moines was so cosmopolitan?

For a Monday evening, the bar was packed and I had a delightful conversation with a lovely couple, Andrew & Joshua. Let me just say this now: No one has better musical selections than gay men in gay bars. It was awesome, and despite the fact that my group repeated on more than one occasion the famed Seinfeld line, “not that there’s anything wrong with that… .” From there, we went to the bar next store, which turned out to be another gay bar. I have decided that these are my new favroite establishments — annoying men don’t hit on me and the decor is always fabulous. But perhaps my favorite moment was when one of my group — exiting a convenience store we had a taxi take us to for beer and cigarettes — mistakenly got into the back of the police cruiser parked next to us, thinking it was the taxi. Mercifully, the police in Des Moines are a tolerant group of people.

Today’s show drew 165 attendees from companies like Counselor Top 40 distributor companies Vernon, Newton, Lee Wayne, as well as Maxim and Bankers.

Everyone is happy, having fun and just a little tired. I’ve started to notice, though, that people believe I am a bad influence. As Tom Vann, aka “Tommy T-Shirt” said to me, “I love you Michele, but I have to hide from you tonight.”

More tomorrow from Omaha!!!

Me, in the back of the bus, presiding over the bar we’ve fashioned that’s fully stocked with beer, wine, Grey Goose and Captain Morgan for my new favorite partner in crime Eddie Roth.

Like being on a campaign trail without the mouthy tools, the partiers have congregated towards the back, with Tom Vann, aka “Tommy T-Shirt” holding court.

Jason Grindall from the Graphco Line and Eddie Roth discuss high-minded topics like which tastes better in Corona, lemon or lime.

Before heading out on the town in Des Moines, we had dinner and drinks at the hotel restaurant. This relatively tame photo was a harbinger of the evening to come, which took a wacky left turn at about midnight. The place was aptly namesd: “Doozies.”

Avaline’s Dan Burke, and his miles of smile, at the hotel bar in Des Moines. While my little band of merry revelers put in fine performances last night, Dan wore the lampshade.

ASI’s Laura Fisher, Avaline’s Dan Burke and Tom Vann reveling in downtown Des Moines.

Benji, our incredibly accommodating and patient bus driver, and Eddie Roth of Aunt Beth’s Cookie Keepers.

(Clockwise from bottom): Andy Townes, Laura Fisher, Eddie Roth, Dan Burke, Tom Vann, me and Benji the Bus Driver. Shortly after this photo was taken, my face slid completely off my head.


  1. Cole Lohman Says:

    So, What happens on the ASI Roadshow stays on the ASI Roadshow, right?

    Tuesday March 11, 2008
  2. Michele Bell Says:

    Not with me on the show, Babycakes! ; )

    Tuesday March 11, 2008
  3. Eddie Roth Says:

    We all were discussing future business endeavors, I think Michele was on the ASA Side Show…..

    Wednesday March 12, 2008

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