Wednesday, June 28, 2006

No computer and no work means lots of movies

Well I've been relaxing a lot since I finished my school stuff and since fucking around on the internet is currently not an option, I've ended up seeing a lot of movies in the last couples weeks. They include:

Firefly the TV show
Some Kind of Wonderful
Nacho Libre
Prairie Home Companion
Wedding Crashers

That's all I can think of at the moment. It's been great. A little Altman, a little contemporary fluff, some 80s cheese. I highly recommend Prairie Home Companion above all though. There's this bizarre film noir side plot that makes no sense, but is so much fun that I didn't mind. Meryl Streep--of whom I'm not usually a huge fan--is hilarious. There's a song about bad jokes that Stephan can't stop singing, which is great because I love to listen to it. And finally, Garrison Keillor himself is so great I might start listening to his radio show. It's Altman thru and thru but not ala the Company, more ala MASH or Gosford Park so check it out!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Missing my computer

Hi guys. Sorry for the no posts. First I was really busy with some school stuff. Then my computer broke. I am currently using Stephan's, but it's not really the same. I miss my computer! My stupid silly broken computer. Life really isn't the same without it. Anyway some notable updates:

--I met my 101 and 97 year old first cousin four times removed (my great grandfather's first cousins). They were awesome. The wife kept teasing her husband about still having his marbles.

--I saw X3 and Nacho Libre. X3 was weird. Its politics were weird and shitty, but I loved Magneto's outfit when they go to visit young Jean Grey and I loved Phoenix. Again hated the politics. Nacho Libre was funny, suprisingly beautiful, and I really really want the soundtrack which seems not to exist.

--Stephan out-ed me as a Communist to my parents. My dad clarified that really I was a socialist and seemed okay with it. My mom decided she was a socialist too. Sweet.

--I bounced a check for the first time in my life. I feel like a total dick. Obviously I really let my life go to shit during all the school trauma. That too seems like an excuse my ashamed 18 year old self would make, except she was more responsible than me and never bounced a check. I am an idiot.

Okay, those are the highlights. More later. Maybe with pictures.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Who has world cup fever?

I am an ugly american jumping on the bandwagon so my friend T sent me this. I love it. Especially the part about the Colts. So awesome.

'Unknown Weegee'

There's a pretty good article on the NY photographer Weegee in the NYT today. I hadn't heard of this guy until last summer when I was at the International Center for Photography, and they had a really amazing book of his stuff. (Now they have an exhibit.) Anyway, he was a beat photographer for NYC tabloids in the 30s and 40s so most of his material covers pretty sensational stuff. I'm attracted to it train-wreck-style, which I guess is the point. A lot of it is sad or fucked up, but wow the man could sure capture a moment.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Mighty Goods

I just discovered this site thru One Good Bumblebee's new site (
I like the variety of goods and prices. They find some really awesome stuff.

Chicago v. New York

So Chicago has a major chip on its shoulder about being the Second City. It's really odd to watch the news here because every story has to somehow relate back to Chicago. My favorite example is when they overturned the ability to get a gay marriage in San Francisco. Chicago covered the story by interviewing a little boy from Chicago whose aunt's marriage was no longer valid. WTF? Really? There's not a better way to cover the story? That wasn't the follow-up story either. That's how they informed people watching the news that this event had happened. Also when Stephan, myself, and our friend J went to New York last summer, Stephan spent the whole time being Chicago-ed out, talking about how the architecture is better in Chicago, Chicago's better, he wouldn't want to live in NY, yadda yadda. Now to be fair, J and I were egging him on. Also I'd rather live in Chicago too, but only because it's infinitely more affordable and I can keep my car. But I still acknowledge that NY is awesome and I love it. After having lived in Chicago for 8 years, Stephan can't even say the words that New York is great. He can't.

All that said, I found this map on (quite an allure lately) comparing the space of Manhattan to Chicago. I assume Stephan will manage to spin this post into a more-evidence-Chicago-is-better. But mostly, it's pretty nuts to see. Chicago really is huge as far as the city itself goes. I live at approximately Damen and Division if you're interested.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Goodbye pretty mural

Apparently someone painted over this amazing mural in Los Angeles, without permission from or notice to the artist. It took the artist 9 years to paint. So sad. Full story linked at

How does your garden grow?

I always think of the rhyme "Mary Mary quite contrary/how does your garden grow?" from The Secret Garden when I think of gardens. Random. At any rate, I live in an apartment in Chicago and do not have a yard. BUT I do have an amazing rooftop patio so I do have a garden of sorts. It is not doing well. I planted all my stuff right before a below freezing spell. Then it stayed in the 50s for a couple weeks. And I'm not that great at making sure I water the little guys everyday. And I don't do anything else for them. The tomatoes and basil seem to be doing okay though. My rooftop patio also includes a pretty super view of the city and a grill that receives a lot of love.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

First Person

A few years ago, Errol Morris did a TV series for Bravo called First Person. Each episode consists mainly of interviews with a single person (I've seen one so far that interviewed a few different people at once). So far I think the series is great. This isn't surprising--I'm a huge Errol Morris fan. This is despite the fact that Fog of War made me super super mad. Not the film itself, because I think it's subtle enough that you can't tell what position Morris is taking. But he spoke at the screening I attended and was definitely pro-McNamara/JFK and anti-LBJ, which I think is a) historically fuzzy (including this treatment of the assaassination of Diem) and b)too easy. Vietnam is way easier to explain when it's just LBJ's fault.*

Anyway, First Person is AMAZING. Some of the episodes are better than others. So far there's a lot of 'true crime' themed ones. But despite that you see a variety of different kinds of people connected to those true crimes--or some other bizarre event--in surprising ways. The story isn't necessarily the true crime, even if that's the starting point. Stephan said that the great thing about Errol Morris is that he builds the docs as celebratory features of the subjects so much so that if the subject watched, they'd be thrilled with them. And then he lets the subjects hang themselves. It's true too. You start out really sympathizing with a lot of these people and by the end, they're saying things that make you doubt everything that came before. And they're the ones saying it. It's not Errol Morris bringing in another perspective or something. It's amazing.

All that said about the true crime ones, the not-true-crime episode "Stairway to Heaven" is so good it's almost trancendent. I'd rather not give too much away, but basically it's about an autistic woman who builds the infrastructure for slaughter houses. I can't remember the last time I've felt so surprised and awed by someone's approach to the world. I can't recommend it enough.

*On the other hand, I feel very comfortable blaming Iraq on Bush. I wonder if my historical distance lets me be more forgiving of LBJ or if it's just that I like his domestic policies better or if Vietnam legitimately was more complicated. I really do believe JFK got LBJ into it, even if LBJ then handled it poorly.

Bizarre, devastating/happy news story

I'm somewhat obsessed with this news story. I couldn't even sum it up, so I recommend you read it yourself.

Things I love

Mermaids, little red riding hood, martin starr, steve buscemi, felt, pom poms, hats, yetis, shrinky dinks, turtles, birds, matchboxes, the indpls scene of brown bunny, the cody chestnut scene of me and you and everyone we know, soup, bottlecaps the candy, teresa wright, stocking stuffers, jess from gilmore girls, reggie miller, marvin harrison, jason david, dwight freeney, ricky gervais, taking baths, the yarn scene from hitchhiker’s guide, tim and dawn in the office, mao and mrs. mao dunnies, pincushions, pocket pals, postcards, state puzzles magnets etc, Honda civics, bears, houses, maps, architecture plans, handkerchiefs, tulips, drawers, wooden knitting needles, tiny figurines, giants, watching movies in the park, shopping, crafting, London, Canada, the Newbury Inn in Boston, Rotofugi, Brainstorm, RR1, Paperdoll, paper dolls, sanrio, stickers, stationary, fiddler on the roof, jamba juice, shoes, tomatoes, sushi, little house on the prairie, kurt Vonnegut, star wars, pete & pete, the Harvard comma, apples, pears, tomatoes, Check Please, television without pity, edith head, slide shows on nyt, ukulele music, bobby pins, bangs, lip gloss, fantasy football, iu basketball, teaching, scarves, apple and brie sandwich at meinl, stanley’s Monday buffet, club foot, y the last man, gingerbread houses, wes Anderson, joseph cotten, ewan mcgregor as obi wan and as renton, alec guiness as obi wan, hoichi in kwaidon, david the gnome, the drinking tune in bon voyage Charlie brown, my tiny ipod, tiny things in general, advent calendars, aj moye, pop-up books and cards, embroidery, paul & joe, domino magazine, blankets, light blue, green, nautical pants. . .

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