Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The places we'll go.

Does this sort of thing ever happen to you all?

Last night when rehearsal had ended I went to put my coat on and as I picked up my coat it was like my mind spun out of control. I was looking at my coat and I was thinking how I didn't care for that coat anymore which made me think of coats I had in the past. This thought led me to think about all the clothes I've had in my life and how I could never remember each piece which led me to think about the impermanence of things which made me contemplate my parents death.

This was all in a matter of 30 seconds, but it was all so vivid and clear and frankly, it threw me into a funk for the evening cause my mind was thinking how nothing lasts and how I've wasted so much time. Aint that crazy? I realize this is a bit insane, it just amazed me how it all went down and how it altered my evening.

The good news is, I managed to get a few good laughs in before the night was up by skyping with Mary and causing her (in)famous shocked look, by hold my computer way too close to my face.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

It's 10:01am

Oh, friends. I am incredibly tired this morning.

After work yesterday I headed to the Merchandise Mart to help a friend of a friend take down and pack the art from their gallery. It turned out to be quite the undertaking as when one handles expensive art, one must do so very carefully and very particularly. Also, as the art was being shipped back to Toronto, so packing was key.

As a side note: I am out of shape. If moving art is making me sore, I officially have a problem. I need to work on my fitness.

After about 6 hours of packing art, I tagged along to have some drinks and din din (at Avec) with all the art folk. As most of them were international (two in particular from Spain) I had to spend a good half an hour explaining why I wasn't eating meet. One adorable little Spanish girl just kept looking at me and asking "Why!?" then she would put the plate and front of me and tell me to eat it because I was too skinny and I was a growing boy. Ha! I had to look her in the eyes and tell her to please not worry about me and enjoy her food. Anyway, in a truly not American style of eating, they all ordered and ordered and ordered and drank and talked and sat for nearly three hours... resulting in the group closing down the restaurant at 1 in the AM.

It was a surprise of an evening, and a lot of fun. I'm just tired now.

Today is rather low key though, so I will indulge that.

Monday, April 28, 2008

It's 9:04am

I've been here at work for nearly an hour. Why you ask?
Well, not because I enjoy getting up before 7 on a Monday morning, but rather because I had to make a little presentation at 8:30 in the am. It went just fine, but I'm not sure my eyes were open throughout.

Before I launch into my weekend update, I would like to ask once again (even though I have done similarly in previous blogs): Aren't crossing guards for kids? I mean, I understand that they have a job to do but I find it positively embarrassing when the crossing guard near my bus stop stops traffic to let me across. Ok, that is a bit of an exaggeration... she basically just walks out there with me when the light turns red and the cars stop, but really? Do I look like I can't do it on my own? I'm a big dude! And, I manage many other crosswalks throughout my days just fine without her so I wish she'd just give me a break and say hello and wave as I leave her side and walk across the street.

A lovely weekend it was!
It was full of ART actually. Capital A R T.
Friday evening I departed work and met up with Linsey to head over to Artropolis to see the cavalcade of art fairs happening in tandem. Unfortunately we only made it through about two thirds of one fair! It was so much freakin' art, and good art at that! I felt completely overwhelmed and on sensory overload. I also just don't understand why galleries and art fairs close so early. 7pm? That's annoying. Let's make a night of the art, rather than an early evening. Regardless, we had a great couple of hours indulging. Afterwards we headed to Penny's for some noodles and beer. This was followed by a birthday party and a late night of dancing (watching and making fun of other people dancing). The night could have gone much later, but it was necessary to try and get some sleep as Saturday was a big day of surprises for Linsey's birthday.
On Saturday we took a surprise trip to the Milwaukee Art Museum, where we enjoyed yet more art and a lovely little picnic along lake Michigan. I have to say that people have been hyping this museum to me for quite sometime and I imagined it to be fun, but it was more than I could possibly imagine. It is a stunning structure with ample art that I found myself extremely interested in. We spent nearly four hours there (including our picnic) and I think we definitely could have spent an hour or two more?

I bring you visuals!

The best part about this day was that is was surprise. Although she had figured it out (for the most part) the ladies and I whisked Linsey away for this little birthday adventure.

After a long and tiring day of art and eating, we headed back to Chicago where we went to see Baby Mama with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. This movie was pretty funny. I think it was a mistake to see Forgetting Sarah Marshall one weekend and then Baby Mama the next because this didn't have as many laugh out loud moments so it felt a little underwhelming, but it is definitely worth seeing as Amy Poehler has some pretty classic moments.

Yesterday I spent taking care of the things I had put off the previous two days. I had intended to go to a birthday party, but I couldn't get up the energy. It also occurred to me to head back to Artropolis, but I felt overwhelmed by that notion so I decided to shut the phone off and regroup.

Today there is a threat of snow. My friend Tim said yesterday "They said snow and I said no."
I too, am saying "no."


Thursday, April 24, 2008

Another Day

It occurred to me last night that my professor is in fact Rosie O'Donnell and because of this, I am coming across as Elizabeth Hasslebeck. Now, please God, don't let me be Elizabeth Hasslebeck, but this dude is driving me crazy and someone has to play the devil's advocate, otherwise we are a bunch of liberals sitting their patting each other on the back and not coming up with any solutions. Mind you, my advocacy on behalf of the devil is not leading to solutions, but it at least is my attempt to open up the conversation?

Either way, it sure riles me up. I felt myself peddling more quickly than usual as I rode away last night.

(I was going to post the youtube video of the infamous Rosie/Elizabeth The View quarrel, but watching ten seconds of it made me want to die, so I wont subject you to that.)

In more light hearted news, a sure sign of spring has shown its lovely head. I have switched to iced coffee. Now, because I love a good visual aid I did a little Google search for Starbucks iced coffee (as that is what I currently hold in my hand) and while doing so I of course come across a clear representation of how I look with my iced coffee.

I always say, "If it is good enough for an Olsen, it is good enough for me!"

Gosh this blog is turning into all pop culture all the time. (Look out Perez!)

It is a sunny Thursday and I'm feelin' alright about the world. Tonight I will head up to Evanston to see a friend's MFA show.

And, because I am a copycat and Milan alerted me to the new Jamie Lidell album, I will share this track that is getting the both of us in the summer spirit.

Another Day - Jamie Lidell

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

"First of all, stop calling it The Laze. It's your blog."

I realized yesterday as I was leaving the chiropractor's office in Lakeview/Lincoln Park that I am straight up waltzing my way into yuppiedom. I need to check that before it gets outta control cause I was feelin' all good after I got my back cracked and was thinkin' about my massage I will be getting next week and then I was like "whoa, sluggah." It is times like these that I think I should get my butt out of the city before it is too late... but after my massage next Thursday.

This is my favorite quote from the last few of days.
"First of all, stop calling it The Laze. It's your blog."

My response?
"I'm calling it theLAZE."

I have been doing a lot of reading of articles for my class that all essentially read the same and I'm afraid I wont be able to keep my big mouth shut and I will say that in class today. "Why do you keep having us read articles that are all the same? And, why are most of them written by you?" You, being the professor. Graduate education feels so different than undergrad. I am so much less bright eyed and bushy tailed ... yet rather disgruntled. I will try and remain optimistic and learn things.

I also got back on the bicycle again today and it was a lovely ride. I thought again what freedom I have as I watched a long line of traffic wait to make their way onto the expressway and I just breezed by. It really is a wonderful form of transportation.

I'm still sitting on my pictures from the trip. Well, not literally as that would be uncomfortable... but I just keep looking at them thinking how it feels really distant really fast.

Oh, and I have a shopper's confession. I realize this will quickly wield me back into the yuppiedom status that I spoke of earlier, but I am willing to take that risk as I think it is too late already. See, I bought these shoes at which is like an extension of London's Top Shop.

Exhibit A:

Actually, that is the only exhibit. So I bought those shoes and maybe that was dumb because the dollar is sooo weak compared to the pound so maybe I paid more for them than I should (that amount will remain undisclosed) but then on top of those costs, the shipping was $20! But you know what? I decided to do it because I really have been looking for shoes that look like this and it was worth it so I ordered them, and received them in a prompt 4 days. Unfortunately, the shoes are tooooo big. So, I call and they tell me I can just send those back and order another pair. Here is the kicker: They don't refund the shipping, so I had to pay $20 to send them back (this is the lowest shipping rate) and then I had to pay another $20 for the new shoes to be shipped to me. In total, I have paid $60 in shipping costs alone and I can't bring myself to tell you how much the shoes cost.

So, my latest lesson with the struggling American dollar is: don't buy shoes from London, especially if you're not sure they're going to fit.

Good bye!

Oh, and ps. Please don't tell me what you think of these shoes because it is too late anyway. Thanks!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Weekend Update: Like getting back on a bike.

This is blog post is being written to you from the new found comfort of my desk chair at work as I began the morning with my medically recommended MASsage. Just kidding. I'm actually still in pain. The massage was rather intense as Laura stuck her bony little fingers in all my pressure points and I nearly cried about a dozen times. It felt good, but dang!

The weekend was a good one, as the weather lent itself to springtime happenings and I felt rather productive given the temps and the sun. On Friday I traversed down the street to the City North 14 to see "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" which I kept accidentally calling "I Hate Sarah Marshall". This is because of the obnoxious billboard all over the city for this movie, which although caught my attention, I don't believe were very successful at conveying the hilarity of the film. It was really very funny, with my group of friends (ok, mainly me) being the loudest laughers in the theatre. It was not AS funny as "Knocked Up" but it was close. I was reminded that sometimes it is fun to make an event of movie going rather than it just being something you happen to do.

Saturday I spent simultaneously relaxing and cleaning. I had a leisurely morning of doing laundry and the dishes and listening to old mix tapes that Jen and I used to exchange. For the record, regardless of whether you like my musical tastes now or not they have improved exponentially. I had terrible taste, and not in a so bad it is good kinda way. Let's just say there was way too much Ani DiFranco on some of my tapes. I also took a quick trip to the home depot to pick up some things for the home and made a new addition to my successful and happy family of plants.

I'm telling you... my green thumb is impressive.

Saturday evening Jessica and Taylor came over to have a few drinks before we went over to Avenue M to meet up with Christina and Philip. It was a fun night that ended sitting curbside, eating flash taco.

Yesterday the weather was still a bit chilly, but sunny and nice to say the least so I decided it was the day for the inevitable to happen. I pulled the bicycle out from the basement, pumped up the tires, and got back on. This was my first ride since THE ACCIDENT in September. Ha. It was fine honestly, and as I made my way down to wicker park and up Western avenue I was reminded that there is really more freedom in riding a bike than in most other forms of transportation (or walking). You just see more details in the city and you have more control over your timing. I don't have to wait for traffic, but I can move more quickly than if I were to walk. For me, it is the preferred way of getting around... although my butt is killing me today. That is the worst part about not having ridden for so long.

Oh! I almost forgot. Linsey was kind enough to go to Stanley's with me yesterday where I stocked up on some amazing produce, particularly fresh strawberries. This was the lunch that resulted.

If that doesn't say Spring/Summer, I don't know what does.


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Moment of Zen (If you feelin' like a pimp)

One more reason I am supporting Barack Obama:

Friday, April 18, 2008

Because it is Friday

Umm, you will probably never hear me say this again (especially if I become terminally ill) but God bless my insurance!

This morning I made my way to the "local" chiropractor and it was a sweet sweet deal, where I found out I can partake in regular massage therapy for $10! Yes, please!

It was odd overall.. he kept asking me all these questions about the history of my back pain and I didn't know how to answer really. I felt he was getting irritated with me so he just cracked my back, which is honestly all I wanted him to do anyway. Then they put electrodes on my back for a while then I zapped myself with a laser. Hahah. This could absolutely be a charade, but I'm buying it (or my insurance is buying it) so I can get some ten dollah massages.

I got my pictures back last night from my trip and overall, I felt disappointed. I believe it is because I saw such beautiful landscape that a picture of it just seems underwhelming. I also just feel like I don't take pictures like I used to these days, as if I am going through some sort of transition. I feel like my pictures are way to aware now and they used to be naive and that was why they worked, but now I know better? I don't know how to articulate this exactly, but I feel like this summer I need to do some artistic exploration.

Here is a picture of Mark and Tyler from the beaches of Provincetown.

Also, because it is Friday and I am feeling particularly aligned (read $10 massages!), I would like to share two new pieces of music/artists I discovered yesterday.

The first comes from an actress who was most recently seen on one of my favorite shows, Weeds. Zooey Deschanel and M Ward have brilliantly teamed up for a little duo called She & Him. It is a brilliant little throwback and I have to say that Zooey's singing voice is predictable in the most brilliant of ways. It sounds exactly how it should.

Here is a Beatles cover: I Should Have Known Better

Also, I came across a brilliant little Swede name Lykke Li because I found this great little video.

You can download the track here: I'm Good, I'm Gone

She is fun littler popster, reminiscent of another songstress.

Ok! Happy Friday to you.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Well done Mister Dyson!

So, I feel daunted by the task of recounting my trip and I am half way waiting for the pictures to do so but I figured I will write a few things in the meantime.

First and foremost, have you all used one of these yet?

It's a Dyson hand dryer and it is simply amazing. One sweep up the hands and the water is gone. I have used them at a couple of restaurants here in Chicago, but I was reminded how wonderful they are when I discovered them in the Providence, RI airport. Well done Mister Dyson!

Ok, so I will just document places of travel and then Maybe I can do more specifics later... or maybe if you're my close friend I've already told you... or maybe if you want to be my close friend you can call me and we can talk about it.

Last Wednesday I flew into Providence, RI where I met my friend Tyler at the airport. We rented a car and took off for a week of travels throughout much of New England that took us 1000 miles.
Our points of destination were as follows:
Providence, Rhode Island
Concord, New Hampshire
The White Mountains of New Hampshire
Augusta, Maine
Portland, Maine
Salem, Massachusetts
Plymouth, Massachusetts
Provincetown, Massachusetts
Newport, Rhode Island
Then... Back to Providence.

It was a pretty sweet trip, as we saw landscape that varied from farmland, to mountains, to the ocean, to cliffs and waterfalls. In Concord we stayed with my beautiful friend Ana and spent and evening drinking local beer and catching up. It was a sweet night. The following day we drove through the exceptionally beautiful White Mountains of Northern New Hampshire where we stopped periodically to take a walk and a picture. We stopped at a small restaurant in the mountains where the waitress made fun of us for ordering healthy food... and when I said to her that we weren't from the area she said "your kidding!" in a very sarcastic manner. I asked her to stop judging me. Following our travels through the mountains we made our way to a killer B&B in Augusta on a farm that used solar energy and had llamas and sheep and chickens. We had homemade desserts and breakfast and just had the most relaxing time. In Portland we found a sweet little in on the northwest corner of downtown with gaudy wallpaper and more character than one could typically ask for. Portland was my favorite city we stayed in as it seemed to have a lot of interesting things going on and a really interesting vibe as it sits along the sea. It seemed as all of the locals walking down the street had been weathered by the storm, which was just sort of fun to look at... like everyone had dirty jeans on, if that makes sense? From Portland, we made our way down the coast... stopped to see Plymouth Rock (disappointing!) and then made our way along the cape to the absolute tip, Provincetown. This part of the trip honestly felt like we were driving to Mars. It was a foggy day and all we could see were dunes and water and it just felt like we were driving forever until we ended up in this bizarre town in the middle of the ocean. We had a wonderful stay in PTown with my friend Mark who was the perfect tour guide. The highlight of this stay was that we were able to go to the Ocean's edge and see whales feeding. It was truly incredible. As we went whale watching I asked "how will we know when we see a whale?" but as soon as we arrived at the beach I saw huge puffs of air shooting out of the water and large tails that followed. It blew my mind. Truly incredible. After PTown we drove through Newport and then back to Providence where we made out departure.

It all worked out wonderfully. The driving was a lot, but the pacing was right and I don't feel like we missed anything that I was itching to do or see. We had plenty of time in coffee shops just sipping and relaxing but we also were able to be pretty active in nature, etc. I feel really pleased with it all... and anxious to do more trips of the sort.


But now I am back and school is knockin' on my door. I spent last night in class after missing the first two! But it seemed not so much a big deal as the professor didn't even know for sure who I was (even though I had emailed with him twice?) and it seems as if I can just do a bunch of reading each week, talk about it, and be fine.

I don't mind school like that.

The sun has gone away today, but the weather is still warm. I need to pull out my bike.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

...and he's back!


I've returned to more emails and voicemails than any human should.
Not to mention that my RSS feed was overflowing with a weeks worth of goss that I can't even begin to catch up on, so I will just leave it for now.

I had a spectacular time.
I saw some of the most beautiful areas of this country and I spent time with wonderful people.

I will do a recap blog, although I feel a little overwhelmed by it all now, so I will wait.

More updates soon.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Later folks.

See ya next week.


I deserved this.

Let me preface this post by saying that I realize in the grand scheme of my life and my worth in the world, my hair is a minuscule piece. Its great value is next to none and spending too much time talking about it is really a waste, but that being said... this is a blog and it is the exact forum where we pontificate on things less than important.

I got a terrible haircut yesterday.
Really, one of the worst that I have received in a number of years.
The kind where I knew it was happening at the time but convinced myself to just let the girl finish and I would be able to go home and fix it, just like I always do. But, this is really bad enough where I couldn't do anything, primarily because it is so short there is not much more to cut.
The truth of the matter is, as two of you in particular will tell me (again) this is my fault because I didn't need a haircut. I just had such a favorable time at the last barber I went to that I thought I would get another cut before I went away for the week... and so I found this barber shop right here by my work and made an appointment and hopped on over. I should have known immediately as the girl introduced herself that this was bad news, and particularly as conversation progressed and she asked me one dumb question after another, I should have just ran... but thats the thing about haircuts. You're stuck! You're in this chair and you're trusting someone to not screw it up and when they are screwing it up you really can't do anything about it, especially if you're afraid of confrontation like I am.

So, here I am with shorter hair than I've had in years. A terrible haircut in the front and an even worse haircut in the back. I was trying to think of famous people that rock a good version of my bad haircut and the only one I could come up with was Tom Ford.

The only thing is, I don't own and suit like that and he has the whole older balding man thing going on and I'm afraid I'm going to be tryin' to rock the young(s) balding man with the bad haircut.

I just had a revelation. My hair COULD look like this!

(Thanks Britney, for all you do. Really.)

ANYWAY! Enough.
Let me use this as my posting.
Don't go to State Street Barbers (ever!) and especially don't let Christine cut your hair.

On a completely different note, what is the use of an unmarked police car if I can always spot them?

Chew on these things.


Monday, April 7, 2008

...and then it was spring.


The sun is out.
The birds are chirpin'.
The flowers are peaking their heads through the ground.
It feels good, people.

My weekend was spent for the most part trying to my best to be out in the midst of this sunny goodness. I ran into my friend Tim on Saturday and he said that when he tries to get out in the sun that somehow always leads him to commerce and obviously the same is true for me as we ran into each other while shopping.

Friday night I was able to reconnect with some old coworkers through a potluck and that was quite a good time. I hate how time separates people. It is the natural progression of life, but when you're reminded of how things were it makes me a bit nostalgic for an earlier time... although I would want to be the person I am now, not the person I was then.

Otherwise, I am just preparing to take off for my trip this week.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Just Chan!

Here is my amazing piece of junk mail for the day.

The subject reads: "Bomb her womb from your huge cannon!"

I blame Bush. (oh wow... punny!)

So I just saw Cat Power last night because the concert was crowded and had this weird corporate agenda (it was sponsored by the Sidekick, which ... I think Sidekicks are decidedly immature for some reason? (sorry if you have a Sidekick)) so I just stayed for Chan and watched her be insane in front of a bunch of John Legend fans who just seemed confused and disinterested. Chan Marshall is really a wack job and that is why she is so amazing. She seems possessed by her music and I am so intrigued by that. She just paces the stage and fiddles with her clothing and has small seizures or something. It's amazing, but not when you're around people who don't get it, or don't care to get it I imagine. The truth is, I've seen John Legend and so I didn't feel bad about leaving.

Before the show I met up with Abby and we had dinner at a Moroccan restaurant in Lakeview. I ate some veggies baked in Philo Dough and she had some sort of shrimp dish that looked delish.

Despite the rain and the less than stellar show, I had a nice evening.

Tonight I will reconnect with old coworkers. I'm very much looking forward to that.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

8 glasses a day.

Yesterday evening was my final lesson with my longtime (over a year) voice student, Michele. It was strange because I actually forgot this was our final lesson and on top of that I had absolutely no singing voice to teach with... so I kind of just gestured my way through the lesson. It's weird because this is a student I have worked with for enough time to see real growth and see her potential and that has become important to me, to have that weekly check in where we kind of grow together in a way. I know that may sound odd, but that is where I find joy in teaching I believe. I take as much as I give from the process. But, times are changin' and we are parting ways and it was sort of funny... felt like a breakup or something, but a positive breakup. One of those mutual breakups that I've heard about.

I received a bill in the mail yesterday from Northwestern Medical Hospital saying that I owed them $500 and it was being sent to collection agency. This shocked me because I have been meticulous about getting my bills paid from my broken elbow and I have actually called the hospital on numerous occasions to make sure that I had completed all of my payments. This letter came as a surprise, so I called the hospital this morning to basically ask WTF? I didn't use those words exactly but I wanted to because the thought of paying them more money made my heart sink. Turns out (after 45 min on the phone) they had made a mistake and I don't owe them anymore $, so that is a relief to say the least.

I get so frustrated while dealing with medical issues because I think about the fact that I am a fairly competent person and doing all of this is such a challenge for me... imagine if English was not your first language? or you didn't have the basic knowledge of how to deal with these systems? I think it is ridiculously irritating.

In other news, I've seen on three newscasts within the last two days that the old "8 glasses of water a day" has never been proved necessary. I've actually read something similar recently when I was reading about coffee consumption and the amount of water we take away from just drinking coffee when most people think it dehydrates you. This apparently is not true? although I usually drink a cup of coffee in the morning and then a bottle of water after? But regardless apparently the idea that you need to drink X amount of water a day has never been proved true and there is data that shows we get a lot of water simply from the foods that we eat. I personally like to drink a lot of water because it makes me feel more energetic... but they said that is not necessarily true either! Ha! I say environmentalists are probably behind this revelation because of the excess of plastic bottles we are going through due to bottled water. Just kidding. I don't know.

I also saw two reports on two different channels about doggy yoga ... or DOGA if you will.

I guess this news means Britney Spears is not doing anything shocking these days?

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Super Cold 2008!

I spent all of last night coughing. I actually feel much better today than I have for the last few days, but last night was a real doozy where it occurred to me that maybe I was waking my neighbor up? Oh well, I made it through the night and I have this feeling that was the worst of super cold 2008. I called my mother yesterday to just have her here my not there voice and give me a little sympathy, but turns out she is in the same position so the two of just sat and croaked to each other on the phone for a few minutes until I felt the conversation unproductive and said I would call back when I'm feeling better.

I've watched much terrible tv in two days.
The highlight was definitely "Dancing with the Stars" and "The Hills"
I have absolutely come to the point in my life where (as Tim Gunn would say) I've spent too long in the monkey house. I felt myself genuinely feeling worried about who would get kicked off the show last night and actually laughing outloud at Heidi's terrible lip injections.
Seriously, are those for real?

So what I'm saying is, thank GOD that I am feeling better and will be occupied the next three nights rather than subjecting myself to more of this mind numbing goodness.

I leave for the east in one week. I am excited for this as a spring trip seems so exciting right now. I will have camera in hand and my agenda is small.

I've purchased a new backpack for the trip as I am going to try and pack lightly and although I have more bags than anyone should possibly have, it seems they are never the right size for a short trip... and Mary carried a similar bag on our trip to the DR, so I bought it as well. (read: everything Mary does, I must do.)

I'm sure I'll end up filling this so full I can barely carry it, but the reviews were favorable and the price was right.

Today there is sun and some warmth and I am thankful for that. Given the fact that I walked through sleet yesterday, I feel we have more than earned at least a week of the sun. Seriously, please give it to me.

I watched a girl sit in the sun on the bus this morning, bopping to her headphones. It made me feel good about the morning. I started to bop as well.