typisch chicago

it's so cold here today. i'm currently wearing:

handknit socks
silk long underwear
thermal long underwear
long sleeved t shirt
bulky aran wool sweater

and i'm still cold. maybe it's cause i HAVEN"T MOVED today. stayed in bed finishing my book, then signed online, and didn't really move. started collaging some valentines. want one? you have to leave a comment....

uploaded pictures and wasted lots of time on flickr. will post them here soon. first i need to feel like i've acomplished something today....


oh, i've missed you and your lovely blue pop up self! after fooling around with all that fucking code they finally posted a wizard, and it's so easy, and so now- i present to you....


since i know at least two of you have said you will never again comment in blogger format, i am so glad to give you the option you all so richly deserve. now, btw, would be a lovely time to comment in the lovely new pop up about how much you love my new comments, or conversely (or addionally!) how much you love me.


guest list update

so while there are NO philadelphians who are coming, i do have an odd assortment of guests who have committed to movies and potluckyness. broken down by gross generalizations, i have coming:

my boss and his boyfriend,
a girl i met on the dance floor,
a girl i met on yahoo personals 4 years ago, and her girlfriend,
a boi i met on craigslist,
an ex-roomate whom i've talked to once in 5 years,
and someone whom i'm friends with mostly because i feel like i don't have enough friends in chicago and so should keep all the ones i've got even if i don't like them very much.

a pretty odd assortment, right? strangely enough, i've only slept with one of the eight. i'm just not that kind of girl. still, it should be fun. ya'all may want to reconsider coming.

also- could we all chime in on whether we think i should go to denver over memorial day weekend for the international gay and lesbian square dancing convention?



come to my house next friday! i'm having a groundhog's day party! i have four guests already! i can't believe how many people rsvped. i am nervous about all of us crowded around the whopping 17" flat-screen... but i think that rather than move the couch i'm going to move the computer to a stool and flip some chairs around. i think that will provide comfortable viewing for all guests.

will you come? comment (or email, since you all hate commenting so much) and i can give you more details.


went to hear patty griffin tonight. at schubas. yes, schubas. ch heard about the tickets, and joe's work friend bought them, and i felt a little guilty spending that much money but i have a patty complex. there are few things i regret in life, i know i've blogged this before. the red skirt- and that turned out ok, it eventually made itself to me. and patty- in 2002 or so i turned down the chance to see her and eliza gilkison at fitzgeralds. it was the suburbs, i had a paper due- and instantly and continuously regretted it. i made a resolution then, that when given the choice in the future i would choose going out, i would live my life in a responsible enough way that when given the chance i wouldn't pass up a once in a lifetime chance to do something like see patty.

and i did get other chances. i saw her at the vic, and again at park west. but tonigh, oh tonight was SCHUBA's. d and i had the discussion the other day about would you rather be deaf or blind, and when i told ch about it the next day he said blind, because concerts were a religous experience for him. and i was really feeling that tonight, the atmosphere was just all about that, with big fat flakes of snow falling outside, and the plaster walls and wooden beams and flickering candles.

i couldn't believe i was so close to her, schubas is such an intamate venue. i've never really seen her before, it was always far away like on a tv. but there she was, this woman who's voice is so familiar to me- a voice from my past, from my present, that i've heard a thousand times. i thought of marty from the rainchildren being amazed at mad mission, of skipping over moses and then falling in love with it, playing it on my guitar in my bedroom along with the cd in my boom box.

i love her as a rocker, and she blew me away at park west, but you know acoustic is always closest to my heart, and ah, the cockles were warmed. it made me so excited for the new stuff- this was her prequel tour for the new album coming out early february. a song about public transporation, a song about aerial circus arts... the love is tangable.

playing the what will she open with game, ch brought up every little bit. and she didn't play anything old- just from the clandestine silver bell and two newer albums. but ch and i are part of the secret silver bell club and it was something like magic. she played be careful (all the girls) and i wept. she played making pies and the whole audience collectively sighed.

she ended with icicles, and it was cold and beautiful and final and perfect. for an encore she played new stuff and last played truth #2, like a little rocking secret. and all left the concert dancing along to the bass (upright bass, mind you) line in their head. bum bum bum. it was perfect.


year in review 2006

ok, i know it's past my bedtime, but it's almost february and i haven't done my fave meme yet. so i'm going to do it right now. you go into your archives and post the first line of the first post each month. here is the brief summary of my 2006:

januar: i was so good at blogging in philly, then, well, too many parties started happening!

februar: darlings i love you, but...
i just can't blog tonight. ch took me out for a margarita after work and now i'm tired and hungry.

märz: still hate colaborative seminar. calculated my trim in costume construction today.

april: goddess, it feels like it's been so long since i've had anything to say. thursday i had a another nightmare, again on the farm- this time the world was ending.

mai:so ch has been saving all these music videos for me to see, songs for me to hear, all sorts of streaming media! because i of course can do nothing with my dial up connection.

juni: oh my goddess, now that you've read all about bermuda i need to catch you up on what's happening this week! it's been crazy, poor mitzi's like, what's up, bitch, i thought you were HOME from vacation?

juli: i feel when i'm sad i will just feel sorrier for myself if i lay in bed all day, reading books and watching movies, occasionally getting up just to waste time online. and i feel proud of myself when i get stuff done when i don't feel like doing anything.

august: was not in a good place when i left for the beach.

september: SO, i was only supposed to work half a day today, but we ended up being so busy i stayed all day, and after ch & i closed up, we went upstairs for a margarita... i was feeling, i don't know, like shopping i guess, so i said i was going to sears to buy a vacuum cleaner.

oktober: the bag lady was designing this music spectacular thing at old town this weekend, and when i saw it was kid friendly i invited deb as my date, and she could bring her son along.... so i finally met the 5 year old.

november: work today, blah blah blah. stayed up too late last night listening to all that linford and so was tired today. i've just been feeling grumpy and blue lately.

dezember: i think you all should take your whining and STUFF IT! because it's snowing here in chicago, and it's BEAUTIFUL! it is cold and crisp and the light is bright and diffused. i got out the christmas music today, and my fur hat, and my advent calendar.

thereby ending my summary of a year. it worked amazingly well this year, and i think the first sentence provides lovely little tantalizing bits, and now i am inspired to be a good little blogger this year. i'll be greatful for it in january 2008.


why is it that whenever i come home from work i'm too dead to do anything, but then when it's 15 minutes past my bedtime i am all compelled to blog? i have so much i want to blog about.
1. the year in review.
2. post recipies.
3. post photos from second photography lesson and above mentioned recipies.
4. write about books.
5. write about my girlfriend.
6. write about the mundane activities of my day to day life.

and then i also want to write fiction, and write letters to the hundred or so emails filling up my starred box.

so what do i do? come home and plug in the rice cooker and watch the goofy french film the closet. i did put away my christmas boxes, and write a postcard, and pour drano down the drains and washed my dishes. PLEASE can i have a gold star?


same old same old

continue to waste time on tuesdays. took me till THREE today to get out of bed, fold the laundry and put it away, shower, eat breakfast, and fool around online. once i was done doing all that i was able to get a little acomplished- got the squares cut out for the quilt i'm making jr for his birthday, patched a few pairs of his pants, and walked to the hardware store to get housekeys made for d and ch. and there's a new light on glenlake!!! how long has that been there? it's very new and exciting to me. d swears we've stopped at it before, but i don't remember it being there on friday when i did my shopping. it's perfect, because between granville and thorndale there are so many stores and it was so annoying to have to walk all the way to one or the other to cross. since the cvs and the healthfood store and the hardware store and the library are all on one side of the street, and the dominicks, fabric store, and walgreens are all on the other, i was always tempted to jaywalk. but now it is unneccesary, because there is a new light at glenlake! huzzah! it reminds me of when they put the stopsign right in front of my building in hyde park, and it took me a few days to figure out why the cars were all waving me across the street.

anyway, part of my wasted time today was reorganizing my podcasts. i'm really upset that there are no new ebert and ropers. what's up with that? grrr. i deleted morning becomes eclectic videos- i never watch them. don't have the heart to cancel chubb creek yet, even though i never listen to it. but krista likes it so much i feel i should. i signed up for KPBS's a way with words on her recomendation. then i tried to get statler and waldorf's podcast (from the muppets) to replace ebert and roper, but there seemes to be an error. THEN, while listening to windy city queercast i foudn that senator obama has a podcast, which as a voting citizen of illinois i am very happy about, and it's little 5-10 min soundbites of what he believes and what he's doing in washington every week, which i am so glad to hear, beacause all i ever seem to read about in the paper is the hype and the presidency, and not anything meaningful. so it's one of those catch22s- the more podcasts i listen to, the more i subscribe to. still have 20 to go from since christmas. it's worse on netflix. i keep saying i have a moritorium on adding to my queue, but the number keeps getting higher- more sneek in than i watch. watched 2 this weekend... but my queue's still at 125. i really wanna keep it under 100. i'm going to become a better movie watcher this year though. more movies more books (the easy part) and less online wasting (the harder part). also, i am going to buy a suntimes every monday and do the patternless crossword, until i am confident enough to buy it on tuesday. i think i'm kind of making the resolutions up as i go along. i think that's ok. especially in january. will turn them into an actual list, at some point, if i need to make myself feel better.

d and jr came over for dinner, and it was very successful. we made a new recipie from crecent dragonwagon's passionate vegetarian, the curried eggplant sweet potato stew. it was good. had sweet potatoes and nothing too scary for jr, vegan for deb, yummy for me. i mixed up a good curry powder (equal parts tumeric, corriander, garam masala [the real stuff from swad] and cumin) and there were lots of things for jr to peel (the eggplant, the sweet potato, and an apple. d with her contacts chopped the onion, and eveyone seemed happy. i thought it was delicious, and i think it is the first thing jr ever ate in my house.

affterwards, we played some cards, then i had jr read to me. which you know i love. a board book by rosemary wells (who doesn't love ruby and max?) and we started one fish two fish red fish blue fish. he's a good little sounder-outer, but he started wildly guessing when he got tired. so they went home, d with good news from her parents, but sad that she won't see me again for a bunch of days.

another new years resolution- make and send out valentines. can it all happen? stay tuned!


two posts in as many days

lucky you! who would have thought it. just like old times. kind of. mondays are hard when i end up posting on sundays. i guess i did a few things last night. watched igby goes down. packed for d's and realized i needed to fix and print this year's vday price list. printer was spitting out blank sheets of paper so had to trouble shoot that. also, had to load ch's 3 new cds on the computer. they are supremely fabulous:

1. dixie chicks, long way around
2. birdy busch, the ways we try
3. the cardigans, super extra gravity

they are great individually, and as a group. aosl i would like to voice my extreme disapointment in wxpn's top 50. i know i didn't vote, but i don't even live in philadelphia. come on, you people! maybe despite our differences doesn't deserve a place in the top 50, but how can you NOT vote for that AMAZING new shawn colvin album, these four walls? it's rather exquisite. thank goodness taking the long way around was on there, or heads would roll.

anyway, after that i did make it to d's house in time for the L word. well, not really, but she tivo'ed it. no, don't ask me why she still has tivo and cable and a cable modem when she can't make rent. it's not my household, none of my buisness. anyway, we had to stop at home depot first, because you know she has a car and i wanted to go specifically to a superstore so that i could get more wackeys. well, they were out of the size keys i need for my front door, so the whole venture was pretty useless. i just go to my local hardware store down the street- they can always hook me up.

also got some hippie stuff at the home depot- there was an article in the newspaper about greening your home and i'm making some changes. i know that the only way to acomplish anything is through small changes. but caitlin, you say, i thought you were already a crazy hippie doing everything you could to be eco-friendly in your little apartment! and it's true, i've already made a whole collection of small life changes, but there is always SOMETHING else you can do. so i'm going to

1. find out more about more reliable recycling (cause i don't trust the blue bag program) i need to ask about the health food store- i heard they recycle cardboard... and then there's the whole girlfriend-with-a-car thing, who can drive me to a different drop off spot. horray! AND coming up is the famous first saturday of the month, when the electronics and household chemicals disposal site is open and i can finally get rid of that FUCKING printer.

2. turn off my powerbars at bedtime. i don't think i can be bothered to unplug my phone charger because i keep it under my bed, but every other little black box i'm going to start turning off when not in use. i'll occasionaly leave my computer on overnight so it can do it's stupid update thing, but my modem will actually last LONGER if i turn it off every night, the newspaper said. i tried this before and gave up after a week of pushing down my bagel and having it never get hot and pop up, so we'll try again, slightly more awake.

3. at the home depot, i also bought 4 compact florecent lightbulbs. i have always been torn about them, cause they use so little energy and last so long... but the light they give off is so UGLY. i find it to have a grocery store quality, and their attempts to make it more "incandecent like" just make it yellowy grocery store. it's just not a warm, comfortable glow like incandescent lightbulbs. but i decided change starts small and so i bought a 4 pack dirt cheap, and i replaced them in my overhead light, which i rarely use. just for cutting out patterns or displaying work or other activities where direct bright light is needed. and i had a pleasant suprise when i put them in tonight- not only are the combined 56 watts from the four flurecents twice as bright as my two old 60s, but the light is actually quite nice. i got the "soft white" in the yellow spectrum of their little scale, and i'm very pleased with the light quality. so perhaps someday i'll actually replace bulbs i use on a regular basis.

ANYWAY, all that to say, after the depot we watched the L word, and i'm starting to be able to keep the characters straight and form opinions about them. went to bed, went to work, went to square dancing. ate the last of my chillean squash cassarole for lunch and my delicious mujahdrah for dinner. must post recipies, photos sometime. soon, baby, soon.



sunday morning, d's in the shower, i'm just taking a few minutes to blog for you all. we went to the chixmix party again on friday, and then had a lovely day yesterday shopping. i got up and drug all my cookbooks in bed with us, and we curled up together under the duvet and read recipies and made the shopping list. it was so nice. then we tried to find the sewing machine shop- no go. we drove around and around the block, and i cursed myself for not getting the address when i called for the hours. so it was off to the grocery store, devon market for veggies and dominicks for bagels and cheese.

we then drove to the empty bottle, the first craft show i've ever been carded in. i'm trying to remember the last time i went to a bar in the daylight= i'm pretty sure it was pride. it's always surreal. there were some fun crafts, but i went mostly to see pam and mike and trade christmas gifts with them. d bought some of her bottle caps. they really are f-ing cool.

but we couldn't linger and talk yarn with the crazy knitting lady, because we had to get to square dance lessons. which are still really boring for me. i keep thinking next class they'll get fun, but we'll see. i don't think i'll go next week, and i'll see how much the new students learn if i skip a week.

we were starving after that, so instead of making dinner, we went to the indie cafe, "our" place in my neighborhood. i went wild and had thai instead of japanese, and was richly rewarded with a sweet-peanutty-coconutty-spicy sauce. d enjoyed hers too. it was very companionable. then home again, where we watched fire.

which was pretty amazing, i mean, indian and lesbian, what a combination. i don't know if it was the filmmaker's style or if it was watching it on the flatscreen, but everything seemed so overexposed- there were all these interior shots with glowing white windows- or even saris that are colored in the shadows and glow white in the sunlight. but i guess when you're shooting some place with as high a light contrast as india, it's better than just capturing what the sun shines on and everythign else is black. it made the world outside seem so sunfilled and the inside full of shadows. it made me think about filters, which i think is a pretty stuck up view, but i don't notice the craft of filmmaking that often. anyway, it was wonderful.

d's out of the shower now. we're gonna go eat breakfast. see ya.


bed... and historical dreaming

am supposed to be sewing today. there is a huge list of fabric oriented things that need to be done- but i feel i've worked too hard already to not blog. last night made some spectacular dinner- will post pics of that, as well as photography lesson 2, soon. my house has been cold- the radiator in my main room is only heating on one coil. which makes some things hard- i can't sit in front of my computer and just veg- i need to keep moving or my fingers freeze. but there are other simply delightful things about it. i pulled out my second duvet and am sleeping like the swedish. honestly, how cold to people keep their houses in sweden? ikea calls my duvet a 4 season duvet- you use the thin one in the summer, the thick one in the fall and spring, and both in the winter. but in chicago, that's always way too hot. i use the thick one in the winter, the thin one in the fall and spring, and just the tiniest corner of it over my belly in the summertime. summertime is never a fun time to sleep. my feet are always cold, but it's too hot to heat up a water bottle- that is uncomfortable and rediculous. but when your radiator is broken, oh.... crawling naked under my double duvet and sticking my feet on the cuddly tigerente waterbottle cover is heavenly. it's just so thick and fluffy, the 9" of down or whatever. natural fibers are amazing. i don't care what the vegans say. but boy is it cold to crawl out from under there in the morning!

luke came by last night to bleed my radiator and try and make it work. and it is better- bout 1/3 of the coils work now. while we were waiting for it to heat up we were looking at my other ones, and i showed him the beautiful wraught stuff on the one in the kitchen- i will take photographs, soon. and he was all, wow, that must be one of the original radiators! this building was built in 1906, it just had it's hundreth birthday. he told me hannah greg's apt upstairs is one of the 2 left that still have the original woodwork. mine is sadly all painted, a gagillion times. i was jealous and wanted to move upstairs, but luke told me to just keep my month to month lease, because he's currently asking $100 more a month than what i'm paying now. that's ALOT of money! but really, the place is worth that. but i couldn't afford that.

and now, having this talk, curled up under my duvet, i keep having these grand historical musings, imagining me living here in 1910, when the building was 4 years old instead of 100. how at the end of the day at work at the flower shop i'd climb the stairs to the elevated train stop at quincy, and browse the advertisements for fancy hats or new bungalows until the train comes. and i'd get off in my cozy tree-lined suburb, and when i got home the gas lamp above the door would be lit. i'd open my shiny brass mailbox with it's tiny key and maybe there'd be a check from my mother or a postcard from my grandma, appalled i'd want to live in the city, esp. with all the news of fires she keeps hearing. i'd be all, grandma, the big one was 25 years ago. i'd put my wet mittens on the radiator in the hallway, perhaps, or if it wasn't wet just inside the hall closet, with it's giant mirror- such an extravagance. i'd take off my bustle and put on a day dress. i'd put a teapot on my big potbellied stove and make myself a cup of tea. maybe i'd have the day off in 1910, just like 2007. maybe i'd take a trolley downtown, cause the trains are running so slow. maybe instead of going to a branch i'd go to the main library, right on michigan and randolph, and shiver a little at the grandness of the mosaic-ed writers up in the dome. or maybe i'd do like today, and walk down to the fabric store on broadway, then come back and sew while there's still so much light coming in through the window above my sewing machine in the closet. such hard work hidden behind doors i can barely imagine, those french doors all heavy dark wood, the mirrored panes clear and new.

can you see how i've gotten a little carried away with this? i keep trying to figure out who lucille was. i think she was the owners wife, and she died of cholera during construction. he loved her very much, but she was a wild independent thing like me, and that's why her husband did something as crazy as giving a lease to a single woman. it's interesting- i know historically there's so much less middle class, people are either extravagantly rich or barely surviving. i tend to imagine myself historically as, like, a factory worker chained to my machine. but maybe i could make good enough money for a roof as extravagant as this one sewing back then- it reminds me of a facinating set of pie graphs i saw in the newspaper a while back- comparing family expenses at the turn of each century. now, a third of one's income goes to housing. then, housing was barely a sixth, but like 50 percent went to clothing, and a huge other portion went to food.

so that's what i'm musing on as i'm sewing today. maybe i'll put on my hoop skirt and play pretend around the house. what are you contemplating today?


did i tell you about this?

in other random news...

can you tell i'm cleaning up the scraps of paper from my desk? but there are so many little things that i've collected to share with you. r emailed me from germany a few months ago to say she'd been reading here and of course that filled me with joy. cause i love all blog readers, but i especially love emails from accross the pond! and it was such a good email, with a story that she started with, "forget all your moral values when reading this..."

isn't that a great start to any story?

she was fooling around with a boy this summer, and there was a point of this story that is just so fabulous, and so much like r. she writes, "however, he was being a total asshole, continouosly telling me on our way to his appartment that actually, i am not his favorite kind of woman - in fact, not at all - but that he wants to fuck me. i´m not really picky but if a man wants to fuck me i expect him to be nice. just be nice, you don´t have to tell me that you love me but DO NOT tell me that in fact you would like to fuck someone who has blond hair and a bra size twice as much as i wear. that´s just not cool.

so, instead of continouing our flirting at work, we started to fight and then shortly before we arrived at his appartment i had enough and decided to go home. ten minutes later i got this txt mess which says something like "just come back, don´t think about what's going to happen, tomorrow we´ll see".

isn't that the best quote ever? "i'm not really picky but if a man wants to fuck me i expect him to be nice."

so here is the honorary contender in my top 15 best text messages:
"komm einfach zurueck und morgen sehen wir weiter..."

i need to update my list, anyway, so that one should be added to it.



sorry, y'all. i can't believe how bad i've gotten at this blogging thing, recently. i guess it's cause i check my email and blog before i go to bed, and i've been spending so much time not sleeping in my own bed recently. i spent a lot of time with d this weekend. saturday was her first square dance class. it was fun to be an angel- a dancer coming to help, not learn- and to chat with all the people i knew, and see all the new students. and it was fun to see how much we actually have learned, with all the extra stuff they've been craming down our throats, keeping one step ahead of us, it was fun to see that it actually works! d had a really good time too, which i was glad about. she kept giggling and saying "i like being a boy!" which i found totally humorous. we went back to her place and made enchiladas for dinner- just as good as z's- and i read to her.

i really wanted to go to the all day sing sunday morning, and she wanted to go to church, but instead we decided to get frisky. so instead on saturday we just went to help carrie and ashley- ashley is moving in with carrie. we didn't get there in time to help the actual moving, but we painted over the lovely blue of ashley's apt with primer and polar bear white. it was so cold though! brrr. since i had spent the night at d's, i was wearing my fave pair of new jeans, perfect for moving, but not so good for painting. esp. when one is short, stuck doing the bottoms of things, and hence kneeling on the drop cloth. i got all sorts of splotches on my fave new jeans. ;-( but when i got home i scrubbed them with a toothbrush and laundry detergent, and now they aren't as noticeable. i typed in the inventory for work, and then d was BACK, to pick me up again, cause i was going to her place to watch the L word since she still has cable. you know how dubious i am about tv shows, but so many people have told me how i need to watch it, i am going to try it for a few episodes and see how it goes.

jr and i have been playing all sorts of games for learning, which i find lots of fun- i find kids easier to deal with during structured, rather than unstructured activities. and after reading with me sunday, d told the cutest story on monday. carrie and ashley were selling their old couch and d needed a couch, so she borrowed a van and picked it up yesterday since everyone but me had the day off. jr was having the best time sitting in the front seat being able to see everything, and he kept sounding out signs, and d could hear him thinking really hard, going ka-ka-ka-tit-tit-tit-a-a, kit-a, cr-ta. and finally h asked, "mommy, what does c-t-a spell?"


the list

i did such a good job working on the list yesterday i'm hoping i can drill myself to similar standards today. we'll see. it's long and boring. but i have to do it. that's why i stayed home. i can't believe i'd ever stay home by choice on a friday night. everyone wanted to go out with me, but i turned them all down! d wanted to drive me out to temptations to drink and play air hockey. christopher wanted to take me out bowing with his friends. and ch wanted me to go to a concert with him and hugo up on morse. but my list is too long, and i've already planned a lot of girlfriend time this weekend, so now i have to get my work done so i can do it all as unguitlily as possible!

first, though, i'm gonna try and hook up my turntable so i can listen through the computer speakers. wish me luck!


calendars and the dali lama

don't worry, nothing really interesting happened for a whole 24 hrs, so it's ok that i missed a day of blogging. lets see. tuesday after i last wrote i went downtown to meet with ch to go to the art exhibit inspired by the dali lama. we decided to meet at borders, and i saw their calendars were $4. unfortunately i didn't have my gift card with me, but i really did need one, so i bought one anyway. but HOW does one choose? last year i waited until closer to february and got an ok tolkien one- but for my planner i got the amazing happiness planner. i loved that thing. happiness means so much to so many different people! but anyway, this year i jumped the gun, and bought a wemoon when i was buying xmas gifts at women and children first. but the selection was so goo this year- reading women in 19th century art? good huh? but better yet is WILLIAM BLAKE! and if you can believe it, i turned down that one, too. i chose... the flower fairies. i thoguht it would make the best envelopes next year. but i am actually really attached to my calendars, so i can't imagine it. thinking back on my calendars i've had some good ones. now i want to chalenge myself and see if i can name them all- 2006- tolkien, 2005- syracuse cultural workers, 2004- andy wharhol, 2003-maurice sendak, 2002-????, 2001- american art from the art institute of chicago. now i'm going to have to go dig in my envelope drawer to see if i'm right. really close- sendak was 2002, we'moon on the wall was 2003. and i also have animalia from 2000, so i have a calendar from every year since i left home. don't know why this is so imporant for me. how many people could blog so long about wall calendars?

so anyway, about the art exhibit, which we went to after i bought my flower fairies calendar. the very first wall ch is all, woah, too much text! and speeds ahead. it was wierd behavior, and i didn't know what happened. maybe my bag was too crinkly. i would have prefered to walk with him. maybe he thought i would talk to much. in general, the whole exhibit made me feel discombobulated. one of their taglines was 88 works from 25 countries, but there were no countries on the artist information tags. there were so many works that i wasn't sure how they fit into the whole. and the whole exhibition was broken down in to the 10 essences of the dali lama (ie tibet, peace, compassion, etc) which were numbered- but they didn't go in order! there was 1 and 2 in the first room, then 6-9, then more of 6 in the back, and so on all over the place. i didn't understand the flow of it at all. also, i'm wondering what other people feel about multimedia art. i rarely have the patience to watch video in a museum. i like 3-D and 2-D work just fine, but when it comes to the 4th dimention of time, i just have no patience unless i'm at home or in a theater with popcorn. anyway, with all the downfalls, there was some beautiful beautiful work. there was an enormous piece that was a long red rectangle, and on the left hand side there was a little tibetian girl with a red shirt and red hair and blue eyes, and there were light red characters behind her head, and the artist said she was the next reincarnation of the dali lama... and i thought that was just fucking awesome. another amazing peice was buddha carved out of a stack of manhattan phonebooks. i wish there were photos. the best photo for the exhibit i can find is this:

afterwards. ch and i go to gentry for a drink, which turns into three. i go home and there's a message from the new job, the laundry bag guy. he wants to come over tonight. luke wants to change my locks tonight. so there are all these people in my apartment! it was kind of crazy. but i have deadbolts on the back and front now. and a hamper face i need to drape a laundry bag on.

worked yesterday, then went to the spectacle space to work there- and no christopher! guess he's not working late over jterm. so i went to the library instead, then to d's. my feelings are as always so bi-polar about her. i guess i'm always feeling i need to pledge my undying love forever and sign a lease together or break up. i need to remember there is middle ground, and to have patience. maybe i'll change, maybe she'll change, and make one become more likely than the other. i just need to wait and see.

work again today, then home finally to cook- i haven't cooked since i got back. and i FINALLY did my dishes, so i feel ready to fly with the flylady. and it seems i've already posted about my shiny sink.... i make my potato wirsing soup (it's apparently called savoy cabbage in the usa, but that's terribly awkward i think, and it LOOKS more like wirsing, don't you think, with all it's little wrinkles?) while listening to records- i successfully have my turntable hooked up! or at least, the turntable on the reciever next to my desk, and the turntable can play through the reciever to the speakers in the kitchen. next, we're going to see if it can go the other way- from the turntable through the usb to the comptuer speakers. stay tuned!


resolutions with photos

first, my new inspiration with the flylady- she doesn't demand a kitchen sink, now, does she? my bathroom sink gets really shiny. i can shine that every night before i go to bed. i am also going to try and buy a new dishwashing tool to maybe make me do my dishes slightly more often. there may be hope for me yet.

photography-wise, it seems all i've done so far since getting home from squaredancing is take photos of my cat. she's so nosey. so i decided to teach her a lesson with the flash. this was such a horrible picture it inspired me to start taking the let's-prove-i'm-learning photos. so my next entry will be from my autodidactic photography school!

photography lesson #1

in this week's photography class, we will be exploring the P setting. P stands for program. the camera will automatically chose the shutter speed and fstop, but turning the wheel with change the program up or down the scale for the same exposure. in this way, the camera will choose the ideal exposure, but the photographer can choose the shutter speed or fstop within the limits given by the amount of light available.

for my first homework assignment, i took photos with extremely long exposure times. this gives the subject time to move within the frame. as you know, cats are excellent for this because they hold very still, but also walk out of the frame before the shutter closes.

now, i thought a ghost cat should have a ghost owner.

taking these self portraits made me want to explore moving in the frame during the exposure time, instead of just moving into the frame, so i set the timer and did this self portrait as shiva:

for my second assignment, i took photos with as large an apeture as possible, to give the shortest depth of field. i also used the zoom to make the shortness as obvious as possible.

i also used sunbeams as another way of separating my field of focus:

finally, i did a study on a library book. the page shot most clearly indicates the blurry backround, the focused middle ground, and the blurry foreground.

these two contrast focus on the spine vs. focus on the text

and as for this photo.. well, i had to include it in my presentation because i just like it. it's my favourite from this week's shoot.

here ends today's lesson. tune in next week when we explore the "Tv" setting.


resolution recap

-taking photos
-reading flylady's email
-read a rediculous number of books
-uploaded my pics from the new digital camera

-haven't sketched yet
-haven't shined my sink
-missed figure drawing class
-still spending too much time online

too soon to tell:
-haven't signed up for violin lessons yet
-haven't started anything else

so we will see how it goes. jamie and i seem to have a digital camera learning contest going, so i'll have to work extra hard since she's making such beautiful food these days. my goal is to pretend i'm in photography class again, and to spend one week on each feature-"today, class, we're going to learn about depth of field." there are five non-automatic settings on the knob, so hopefully six weeks from now i'll know how they all work.


christmas spirit

ok, so i guess i really need to get down to the trip. i should do that while my photos are loading. i got good gifts- a usb turntable, so i can convert all my LPs tp mp3s. a rice cooker. and a SLR digital camera. wow! where did that come from? i feel like i'm not a good enough photographer to deserve one. i really need to finish reading the guide, i've just been using the automatic functions, but there was a sunset shot that i wanted to use the lightmeter for and couldn't figure out how to adjust it. i've just been using the manual focus and manual zoom. zoom! right now it's connected to my computer and i'm using stinky old iphoto to save the images. because i don't think i can figure out how to use the file viewer utility right. i just HATE how you can't rename the files. grrr. anyway, it's a cannon EOS digital rebel, for those of you who have done research about digital cameras and care about such things.

so that's part of my one picture- one sketch daily. am a week behind on the sketches- but am a week behind on shining my sink, too. i tell ya, i just can't bring myself to do it. i don't know what's wrong with me. got a great egg timer widget, though, and that helps me control my internet usage. a little. ah, who am i kidding.

so the trip was good. d and i travel well together, i dj, she drives, it works out well. the whole straight thing at the farm worked out well, although oh was my bed cold and lonely there. the funniest thing was gma calling d "debbie" i don't know why or where she automatically converted deb to debbie, but it cracked me up, esp. as d hates it. j had to work late, so we barely saw her, but it was nice to have someone there who "knows."

pa was pretty to travel across, the mountains are so much nicer that flat in and oh. everyone in east pa was kind to us. dad's family, mom's family- there really wasn't much trouble. christmas was nice, and we had fun playing games with the party in a box.

we went to philly for a day, d and i. we drove downtown and found parking (amazing!) and walked around old city, went to betsy ross's house and elfreth's alley. met krista and sarah at a charming cafe, then headed to the west side for the dinner party at leah and rachels. their new apartment is fabulous, so much more personality, more bohemian, than their old place. i of course took no pictures. oh well. i was so pleased to find that the other michiganite with laura was julien! so that was fun and exciting. we thought we'd get there a little early to help with preparation and catch up, but it wasn't the best idea. i think d was really awkward and i find l can suck all the energy in a room to the point where i don't exist. but more guests came, and we drank more, and had a great time. leah and rachel have the most fun friends ever. i want to be a philly dyke. we played surrealist games, and the dreidl game for slips of paper. i'll type mine in once i find where they are. but we had to get back downtown at a reasonable hour, so we took the trolley to krista and sarah's house, where they provided conversation and couch cushions, then took us out for lunch the next day. thanks you guys! it's funny that we'd just met sarah and i'd only met krista once before, because they felt like the safe old friends, whereas leah and rachel always feel like the dangerous new friends. i'll always think of them as the coolest girls in school, the ones whose lunch table you don't sit down a t with out an express invitation.

a did make it home, after all. she flew in on the 25th and out on the 1st. it was a really healthy trip for her, and she was really happy, so that was fun to be around. she and d really got along, so that made me really happy. i'm glad they like each other. we all went shopping at the outlets, and bought me a red bra and a new bag for my camera. we had so much fun d and i went back later and bought her a whole new wardrobe- we closed down the lane bryant outlet on new years eve.

we'd been to so many parties on new years i was sick and just wanted to stay home. so a came over, we all played cranium, and z and i won. we all watched the ball drop on the projection screen tv, and d and i soaked in the hottub before bed. the first we went to the party in a box's house for our requisite pork and sauerkraut, and then marty and mom took d and i to a place in deleware for a contra dance, which was lots o fun.

coming home was less fun than going out- though we did take the turnpike and it was even more beautiful. it was even harder to be at the farm, though. i was playing footsie with d under the 500 table. and i knew it would be days and days until we could sleep together again. the next day was even worse- driving the whole way across ohio caticorner because we needed to pick up jr. there was some fun at a rest stop in indiana, where we got frisky in the dark parking lot in the back... but i screwed up the directions, and it ended up taking us 3 hrs longer than origianlly expected. once we go to champaign, the agony was exsquisite- d had to call her ex's sister for directions to the school, where said ex and jr were. then we got there, and we had to find them, then we had to go up and get some of jr's stuff, but the rest of it was at ex's house, so we had to give ex ride home, and then get all the stuff, and i thought we would NEVER head back to chicago.

but we did, and now i'm home, and i can't blog anymore. go to flickr if you want to see pictures- i can't be bothered to add links into the body. it's here.
and if that's not enough, here's my mom's photostream with even more and some better photos.



the tree is DOWN! pine needles tidyed up. ufta. what a mess. going over to d's now. type more later.


accosted on the train

spent a lot of time in my book today- the commute downtown was ages as the red line lost power at belmont. grrr. what is with all the power outages? christopher and i again spent most of the day gossipping. after work i went to a new job- a custom closetmaker is looking for someone to sew laundry bags for him. that'd be me. apparently bags are my specialty. and, i don't know, i guess pennsylvania was making me feel like i don't have enough work, so i thought i should start on my fourth job.

on the way home from that, i was minding my own buisness, reading my book, when a very old woman in a very purple poncho and a zillion shopping bags sat down next to me. she had a great big black straw hat and soft skin with an unbelievable number of wrinkles. she let me go about one stop before she started- she liked my hair. hers is all short. she first did it twenty years ago, she walked into a barber shop and they said, we won't cut your hair you'll look too masculine, and she said, what? i'm an old woman. so she went to the drugstore and bought electric clippers and did it her self, and just think of the money she saved! that was the best story, i think. she told so many, but when you're that old, you have so many stories to tell, and i don't think she picked the best ones. i wasn't really interested in her angelic theories and what her rabbi thought of them, or how people these days are so immoral. she has 7 kids, and numerous great-grandchildren. she was a translator, and she traveled all over. she's loopy now, but in a kind, chatty way. it was very surreal, i wanted to read my book, but also pretty nice, in a my-life-is-really-a-movie sort of way.


first post of 2007

oh, i just feel so behind! i want to tell you all about my christmas, but i just can't. am trying to get my life reorganized. i've unpacked except for my clothes. i still have to take down the xmas tree. that's the only big hairy scary thing to do.

i know i should go in chronological order, but first i want to tell you todays news. guess who i got a text message from? s. and she (he?)'s inviting me to her birthday party tomorrow. of course i'm going. i felt like she was a loose end in my life, and now i'm excited to reconnect. ch thinks i'm crazy.

also went to the library and got 14 books. my new years resolutions:

1. spend less time online, more time reading books, watching movies, and drinking tea.
2. drink the flylady kool aid, and get my house clean.
3. Learn. d and z got me a gift certificate for the old town school of folk music for xmas, so i can learn to fiddle. i also want to figure out how to get my butt to that figure drawing class. and i want to take arial arts at the circus school. square dance graduation is in may.

so i'm going to go unpack now. undecorating the tree can wait till tomorrow. babysteps- one day at a time!