The Andy Aupperlee Explosion 5000

Cabin Fever

by on Mar.03, 2009, under Events, Nightlife, Party, Washington State

Hey there, Bear
Cabin fever is serious. As we shiver through the early days of March, please be careful to diagnose and treat any symptoms related to this ailment. Since the Andy Aupperlee “explosion” (that’s what we’re calling my S&F), this blog has gotten uber serious about medical issues. The best form of treatment is prevention, and that’s why I’ve decided to dedicate an entire post to this subject. Also, all ad revenues from this post will be donated to the Society for the Advancement of Cabin Fever Knowledge (SACK).

The following is a case study of a group of 20 somethings from Seattle, Washington as they battle cabin fever near Mount Baker.

Part I: How to diagnose Cabin Fever.

Card Games!
Card Games.

A rapidly developing affinity for vintage card games is one sign that you’re coming down with a case of cabin fever. Good luck trying to actually play these card games though. It requires multiple players, which means you’ll need to encourage participation and explain rules to fellow cabin fever sufferers (who are likely self-medicating already). One possible solution is to infuse a “boozing element” into the game—more on this later.

Kala's 23rd
Chasing Cake with Beer.

This only seems like a good idea when a severe bout of cabin fever has set it. Be careful. “One bite” often turns into eating half the cake.

Beer 'n cake
It’s also recommended that you cover the cake and hide it after the initial birthday celebration. One poor, inebriated soul will inevitably decide it’s a suitable alcohol sponge and drunkenly finger the cake into crumbs and smudges of frosting. Read about previous incidents with cake and beer.

Bella and Kate
Pets acting like humans.

If you notice that your dog is acting like a human, you probably should get some sun and go for a run or something. Or just look at more pictures of Bella.


If Sharat starts playing non-bloghaus hits (read Ariz/Pullen playlists) off of an iPod that he DOESN’T own, he’s probably lost his effing mind and you should proceed with caution. Exercise extra vigilance if he starts doing a Brooklyn/Hipster-ish dance to JT’s “My Love” or similar jam. A quick way to re-route this debacle is to put on Ratatat’s “17 Years.” (Don’t worry, it’s on Kristen’s iPod).

Seventeen Years – Ratatat

Paul in the Kitchen
Labeling “baking a rack of cookies” as a “productive day.”

If you feel accomplished and all you did was bake, you’ve got some serious CF.

Adding ‘boozing rulez’ to innocent games.

If you and 10 other people agree on a way to play Spoonz that requires consuming mass quantities of Coors Light, you probably are experiencing the early stages of Cabin Fever.

Bella makes a new friend
Pets talking to stuffed animals.

It’s actually okay to think your pets are talking to you. Bella kept staring at me all weekend and I kept asking her, “why so serious?” However, if you find yourself enthralled by the discourse exchanged between a boxer and a stuffed bear, you might have Cabin Fever. The bear definitely cannot talk.

Rocking on a crutch and a prayer
Imagining things to be instruments.

I wish those crutches were guitars. Then breaking your leg would be AWESOME. It’s actually okay to rock out with a pair of crutches. Just don’t rock out too hard—you don’t want to actually need them.

Head Bands.

Fashionable and progressive accessory? Or an indication your friend has a “duele me cabeza?”

Your Photog

If you see this guy without his camera, the best thing you can do is give him a beer. CF is likely setting in, and he’s probably spent too much time updating his blog. An Amstel or Coors will do the trick.

Part II: How to cure cabin fever.

The Laura
The Laura.

If The Laura has been unleashed, you’re actually in good shape. The ridiculousness that is about to ensue will cure 90% of Cabin Fever cases.

The Detroit Lean
The Detroit Lean.

As demonstrated here by Mr. Cappel, the Detroit Lean is an effective way to burn calories and stave off CF during the long winter months. Give it a try in front of your computer.

Plaid vs Argyle
Plaid vs Argyle.

Sharat and Liz are demonstrating classic anti-CF looks. Sharat sports a scarf and argyle sweater. He’s sticking his tongue out because it is too cold to flick me off.

In the hood

Keep those ears warm, Liz. An important part of reducing Cabin Fever is listening. If your ears get too cold and fall off, how will you be able to hear the Backstreet “OMG-you-have-this-on-your-iPod-let’s-play-it-for-irony’s-sake-yet-I-secretly-still-like-this-band” Boys song coming from the stereo inside? You won’t. Keep the hood up.

Can't raise the roof? Pound the floor.
Can’t raise the roof? Pound the floor.

Security deposits are nice to get back. You’d like to tear the roof off the sucker, but you should probably just ‘beat down on the ground.’

Jean Jam
Jean Jam.

You are probably wondering how your parents’ generation were able to fight Cabin Fever. They didn’t have all kinds of great technology like iPods, wide-mouth beer cans and DJ REDDY. I hate to say it, but nothing cures the winter blues like a little ‘blue on blue.’

people snakes
Meet new people.

This is also a reason why you should always leave the house with a clean pair of underwear on.

do the pullen
Do the Pullen.

This dance has similar benefits to the Detroit Lean, but it takes an advanced user to properly maneuver.

Ear Action
Ears are safe.

Cabin fever cannot be transmitted through the ear. Have fun!

Beer Bottle Mic
Sing to the beer bottle.

That bottle has given you so much, why not give a little back via singing it a song? Also a great CF reducer.

Hopefully you are now prepared to diagnose and treat cabin fever. If you have any questions, please see the slide show below. Thank you.


One lucky commenter will win an Andy Aupperlee Explosion 5000 t-shirt. Share a story about cabin fever or comment on the nonsense you see here by Monday, March 9 for a chance to win. Be sure to leave a website, Facebook or MySpace link in the “website” section of the comment form. Also, check out last year’s Baker trip on Facebook.


There are always a few loose ends to tie up in the aftermath of a weekend like this.

Notes on the Photography.

All of the photos here and in the Flickr set were shot with a Nikon D300. Picture control settings are Neutral with +1 saturation. I alternated between the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 and Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8mm lenses (the difference should be pretty obvious). I used a Nikon SB-600 on many of the shots with the Tokina. I typically use this flash at 45° or 60° with a Sto-Fen cover as it bounces the light and evenly lights the foreground and background. To get that “Last Night’s Party” look (bright foreground, dark background), I removed the Sto-fen and shot the flash straight on at 90°.

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7 comments for this entry:

  • Laura P

    Andy! I could spend all day looking through your blog, I’m seriously thinking about calling in sick tomorrow and just spending some QT with your mind’s eye. Anyway, thanks for documenting this weekend (and others) so well! My only regret is not looking like I was having that much fun… I’ll make sure you get some sillier photos next time… haha Hope to see you again soon!

  • Chris Y

    Great Pics Andy! Nice shots of the pooch. What a great weekend! Good times….glad your crippled butt made the trip!

  • Sarah N

    Thank you Andy for addressing this serious condition. Cabin fever often goes overlooked. I’m starting a non-profit called I.A.M.D.R.U.N.K. (Increasing Activity of Massive Drinking Related Uncensored Nights in Kabins) in an effort to reduce the effects of cabin fever. To support us please visit or just remember to bring an exra case, a full deck of cards, or a fake mole to your next cabin occasion. Thank you.

  • CS Brown

    Looks like despite your condition you were able to make it to a cabin, so brave, so inspirational…

  • Lara G.

    Hey Andy!! These photos are awesome and hilarious. I wish I could have been there…next time. 🙂 Hope you are enjoying DC.

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