Tuesday, August 30, 2005

How Far We've Come

Long ago Bobby and I seemed destined to live a life of love and blow. Of course it's been a long time and we hardly speak anymore. But I was still a little shocked that he hadn't bothered to call me with the news. Remarried. My God.

Note his shoes and how his scarf matches her flowers.

My New Blazer

Behold my new blazer. Bought for twelve dollars from Ragstock at 812 W. Belmont. It is lovely and will make me the coolest...ever.

A Site I Think Everyone Should Visit

I have yet to figure out how to add links so I'm just going to say go to: http://www.smithappens.com/antihaleyjoelosment.html

And be amazed.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Chicago Pizza And My Day

This was my first true 'Chicago Stuffed Pizza'. I had it on my first day in the city before I decided whether or not to actually come and live in it. Do you see all the cheesy goodness? You should, because it's there.

Today a man named Angel turned on my gas. Or rather, told me my gas was already turned on.

Today I went downtown to SAIC and got my U-Pass, a flimsy little card with my picture on it that will let me transport publicly and for free (kind of).
I also went shopping for graduate school clothing...but didn't end up buying anything other than a pair of black pants. I almost bought a pair of low heeled shoes that seemed like, if I was the kind of girl who wore heels these would be them...but then I didn't buy them.

I just finished reading Summerland by Michael Chabon. Let me tell you, if you don't read the description of the book and simply go by the cover you're going to be pleasantly surprised. It's somewhere between Lord of the Rings, The Sandlot and Harry Potter...and maybe the bible. Not the best children's (but anyone can read it) book ever...but I did read it in two days.

Also read Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver...a literary enviromentalist's dream book. Filled with lovely sentences and plots interwoven with pleas for enviromentalism and love of coyotes....which is interesting since Summerland's villain goes by (among other names) Coyote.

Also read Jane Smiley's Barn Blind...I believe it was one of her first and not necessarily her best. Though if you like to read about horses/horse people (as I do) you will like this book regardless of some of its flaws.

Now I'm going to go read another book.
I'm freaking out about whether or not I have what it takes to be in this program but at the moment I'm keeping it on the down low.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Horse Racing in Chicago

Last week while still without a definite place to move into, the parents and I went to Arlington Park for a day at the races...where I managed to start with twenty dollars, double it, then lose it all. Oh well. But the track itself was pretty amazing. I have not, by any means, been to every race track in the world but of the six or so I have been to, this one was by far the cleanest. I mean the cement shined! It was strange not to be able to figure out where exactly the backside of the course was but other than that it was a really great day.

On Friday I spent seven hours waiting for the gas people to come and turn on my cooking gas. I had been told to be in the apartment between 11:30 and 3:30, around 3 I called to make sure they hadn't forgotten me (they said they hadn't and were coming). Around 6 I called again and found their offices to be closed and no voicemail to lodge a complaint. So I continue to be unable to eat anything hot in my own home.

Last night I went to Abbey Pub. I went with a friend who is interested in photographing burlesque dancers and that night there was to be a burlesque show. We took two buses to get there and by that time I was starved. The food (I had a chicken sandwich with bacon) was okay but because of the show everything was crazy and it took literally an hour for our rather standard fare to arrive. The show itself was entertaining and funny though some of the acts seemed to be trying to make too many political statements for my taste. Ah me, I felt a bit un-enlightened/provincial. But it was a good time.

This morning went about three blocks away to my local dim sum hookup and had quite the hook up for eight dollars. Dim sum is a lovely thing. Next time I will take photographs.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Hmm. So this is a view of the courtyard/building and living/dining areas I will be living in for the next year. Pretty snazzy if you ask me.
I've met two sets of neighbors so far and have actually gone out to dinner with them (I moved in on Tuesday!). I am amazed at their friendliness and willingness to let me into at least a little part of their lives.

It's a little depressing to have no furniture past air mattresses and a plastic bin, but I hear spartan is the new mauve....so at least I'm hip. Up until two days ago I had been really good about keeping my cigarette smoking to five-six a day but now I'm averaging closer to ten...I blame the stress of school truly starting and my wondering how the hell I got into it.

A quick list of other places I have eaten but don't have much time to talk about:
1)Four Moon (Roscoe Village)-okay fish and chips, good beer, great outdoor seating feel.
2)Retro Bistro (suburbs near the racetrack)- food wasn't bad but something about it made me never want to go back.
3)Walking Duck-I'm not even sure if that's really what it was called but it was really near the Belmont el stop...good thai food a little small in terms of appetizers but main courses seemed plentiful.
4)T's(Uptown)-double pints for six bucks on Thursdays, tasty fish and chips and somehow surprising shaved pickles...their manager let me take home a phone book...very nice.
5)Tako Shi (Andersonville)-Byob sushi place that made a big deal out of their 'special rolls'...I personally didn't try one but can say that what I did eat was very tasty.

That may be it. Yes it is.

First Meal in Chicago

The first night in Chicago my parents and I stayed at Heart o' Chicago Motel on N. Ridge Avenue near Bryn Mawr. Our first meal in C-town (does anybody in Chicago call Chicago C-town...I don't know) was at Arkadash Cafe. We stumbled upon this restaurant by pure happenstance and were encouraged to go in by a young woman with a big dog. We did and it was fantastic. We had (among other things) an appetizer sampler, shepard's salad and a meat combo that included lamb kabobs, gyro and lamb patties. Chased down with a Turkish red wine and apple hookah. We were the only customers on a Thursday night but the owner or manager said that on the weekends the place was packed...they seem to have a dj and belly dancers. The funniest thing is that I have ended up living not too terribly far away from the place and look forward to taking any future visitor to the establishment.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Another Long In Between

Well since my last post I have moved to Chicago. Got here last Thursday, went apartment hunting with Jen from Apartment People (a great service) and moved in on Tuesday. Yesterday was orientation and I have to admit I was less than my most fabulous social self but then I've never really thrived in large get-to-know-you settings. I like people to get to know me on the sly without formal introductions and stilted conversation.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Perhaps the last lobster I will ever eat

A few months back my father told me about this mysterious condition going around the lobster community...I forget the exact term but I'm going to call it 'Black Shell Disease'. It seems that the lobsters, while still alive, look good enough for eating but once put into boiling water their shells turn black. The meat is still good but the aesthetic is a bit ruined. The boyfriend looked into the possible environmental ramifications of this disease and thinks that eating lobsters is no longer a responsible thing to do. We'll see if I can really go the rest of my life without another lobster. But for now, this was it. Boiled for about sixteen minutes. Served with butter and lemon. A Pouilly Fume (very nice) as the accompanying beverage.

Major Life Change

Well. This blog hasn't exactly rocketed off into greatness or even true blogness....I have yet to talk about a single meal nor have I figured out how the hell to put photos on. Oh but soon, everything will change!
I'm going to change this blog from simple food talk to a chronicle of my moving from small town Tennessee to big city Chicago.
Be prepared for restaurant reviews, book criticism and random freak outs.

Seriously it's going to be great.