If someone would point out who it is I am supposed to get mad at, I am prepared to emit great vibrations of high temperature steam but I didn't really catch the name of the guy at Technical Support and it's not really his fault that my DSL light keeps flashing red as opposed to staying a solid green like it's supposed to and that's what brought me to the library this morning after completing my research on what will probably be my new bestselling diet book (working title) The Life is Not a Cabaret Diet in which the breakfast is composed of a bowl of glocky gruel-really-it's so incredibly high on the gack scale one can expect the shedding of pounds almost immediately-maybe even from thinking about it's preparation and so you all might consider yourselves mighty fortunate in that I am unable to scan any illustrations at this time because it would be oh so totally gross and yet still in the research and development stages so you know it's probably good when you think about it that the light decided to go red right now and that the local tech support dude can't come until Monday and better than that, he can't even estimate a time of day he or his peoples might swing on by-somewhere between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, yeah THAT narrows it down, doesn't it-you know, people who internet at the library seem to cough a lot, someone remind me to wash my hands before I get to my next bowl of gack, altho please promise me that you will never let me turn into one of those people that carries hand santizer because if I was a germ I'd be hopping all over THAT person, (wouldn't you?) also I think that behavior begets the permanent installation on ones person of a pocket comb and then before you know it, your standards of personal grooming have gone way too high and suddenly you're packing a travel-type collapsable curling iron and you know where that leads, yeah,the carriage of safety pins and that would prevent me from my reaction of great distain when some man asks me if I have a safety pin (or a tissue) what do I look like, Walgreens?
Anyway, yeah, out of commission until Monday. Put your heads on your desks until then.
Oak Park Public Library
834 Lake Street
Oak Park, IL 60301
Thursday, February 28, 2008
I had actually spent a few moments worrying about my existence not being funny enough for documentation. Yeah, some people have to worry about global warming and some people get to worry about inflation and I was worried that I was not providing the appropriate lpw (laughs per word) I had intended when I started. (I don't worry so much about the typos. I see them yet I know you know I know so I just don't worry about it.)
This is a drawing of love. You might not recognize it from where you're sitting. See those balloons? Those balloons have been stuck in that tree in front of the Catholic high school behind my building since before Valentines Day. In their original incarnation, they were attached to a high school boy's SUV. I saw the girl with the micro-mini plaid uniform skirt that placed them when Grantley and I were out for a stroll. It must have been SUV-boy's birthday or was she wishing him good luck in the big game or I dunno, what are the celebrations of those crazy kids today? Congratulations on not using up your anytime minutes? Way to Just Say No?
Later that very same day, the balloons were trapped in the tree and they've been captured for the entire month of February.
This morning when I got out of the shower (try and keep up, won't you?), I reached for nothing. I looked around and thought, where's my towels? Hey, where, uh-oh, they're not, oh no.
Yeah. In my excitement about the egg at the Worlds Largest Laundromat yesterday? Walked outta the joint without my towels. They required another twirl in the dryer and I never looked back. They weren't glamorous but they were paid for and for about 17 minutes I thought, hey I could go to Target and get new ones and then I thought about how counterproductive to my overall mission that would actually be.
There's a time to reap and a time to sew and a time to drive back to Berwyn and this was, clearly, the latter and as I approached the woman behind the counter and asked about a lost and found, she turned and presented me with my three blue towels neatly folded and stored in a clear plastic bag. No questions asked. And I thought, yeah and why did I spend 20 of my planetary-based seconds worried that the writing would be funny? I should have just sat back and waited. I should know that by now. It's not as if I'm new to the humor business. Duh.
I never got any more information about the balloon girl and her beloved. In the theater of my mind (good seats still available!), she would have done anything to get his attention while he, on the other hand, saw the bouquet, turned a similar shade of magenta and let those suckers fly. She was briefly disapointed but realized (bigger picture) that there'd be better boys in bigger SUV's with more magnificent celebrations down the road and that she had time to sit back and wait.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Is it wrong to love a Laundromat? Is it a sin to spend part of Christmas day watching your wet clothes twirl? What if it’s a solar laundromat? What if they have free donuts and coffee every single day? (You have to get there early for donuts and recently I’ve been avoiding them but not because they are not gigantic and sloppy and sweet.) What if the laundromat has a ton of flat screen TV’s tuned into Spanish soap operas where you don’t have to know the language to know the score? What if they have actual bilingual clowns on Sundays? What if they award free bikes to kids who read books?
I developed a fondness for laundromats back when I lived in New York. If the laundry gods are with you(and do not send you into the dreaded no mans land of clean yet dripping laundry with no available dryer in sight or worse-too much laundry/not enough baskets. Horrors.) you can get everything done all in one shot. I developed my competitive folding talent having been continually observed by little Italian ladies in Maspeth, Queens. They stared and frowned and so you quickly got better, faster and neater in your folding skills.
Not enough fabulocity in the Worlds Largest Laundromat, you say? Okay, how about this? I was sitting there drawing this bird today, nobody bothering me except for a woman trying to talk me into some Mary Kay and perhaps she sensed I was a Mary Kay Cosmetics hater(Don’t get me started)because she left me alone with my pencil and free drawing paper, but yeah, they have real birds, and when I got done drawing this dove, I went over for a closer look at it and buried in the birdseed holder I saw an egg.
A real egg.
I went over to the woman who had sold me my Gain(I love that stuff) and I asked, is that really an egg in there? And she said they take brand new baby birds out of this enclosure all the time.
Even the birds realize the W.L.L. is someplace special.
The World's Largest Laundromat
6246 Cermak Road
Berwyn. IL 60402
Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
I am an instigator.
A demander of action("Come ON, you loozahs" or a simple, "You're goin") in a world of overstuffed, oversized, overpadded chairs and hey, don't think I haven't had MY rest on top of the bed of cabbage roses that covers MY gigantic chair because the dented cushion would betray me, but that was then and now on Tuesday nights at 7:30, my posse and I place ourselves on top of red plastic balls and roll out the madness(okay tension, but that's not high enough on the Drama Queen scale for how this will make you feel when you try it because you will) that has managed to collect within our muscles from week to week.
Here. Can't we let Ms. Fitness describe it?
"The beauty of Yamuna Body Rolling is that it takes you from the origin of the muscle at the tendon, elongating the muscle while stimulating the bone and soft tissue. Working with the body's own gravity, the exercises ease movement in the muscles to the point of relaxation, offering one of the finest weight-bearing exercises, with the benefits of a deep self-massage."
--Ms. Fitness Magazine
Thanks Ms. Fitness. I might have done a better job myself but there's that toasty mental disconnect that happens after class where you just want to go home and sip red tea until your head falls over for the night.
Yamuna body rolling & Bartenieff Fundamentals-
Yoga Trek 911 South Lombard Avenue Oak Park Il 60304
Monday, February 25, 2008
Tommorow, when I can't yank myself out of bed fast enough to grab the ringing phone, or if I seem to be moving extra slowly as I attempt to manuver myself and my library books over the mounds of freshly fallen (yahoo!) February snow, or if by some chance I never even make it past my bowl of yogurt with frozen berries, I want someone to remember to remind me that this was what in the world I was talking about, when I decided I wanted to see what it might be like attempting to actually live and not just to be alive.
That or it'll be time to sign up for my Hoveround.
Lombard Roller Rink
201 W 22nd Street
Lombard , IL 60148
Sunday, February 24, 2008
S. just sent me one of those survey things where the intention is that we all step out from behind our immortal computer screens of anonymity and boldly reveal our innermost desires. One question was: What's your favorite restaurant? I had to think for a little bit. Favorite + restaurant (4 me) = Mickey's Gyros. Which I am quite sure would invoke a bad case of the shivers in less adventuresome(read:weaker) humans. I'm actually trying to think of a reason not to go over there right now and get my very favorite Sunday afternoon delight which is the glorious Gyro Salad/Food of the Gods. No kidding. (Here's a reason: I blew my entertainment budget for today before 8:00 AM. Fooey.)
The Gyro Salad consists of 700 pounds of lettuce jammed into a plastic box, with greek olives, tomatoes, feta cheese and sliced gyro meat product under one of those unsplittable, hot off the grill, toasty pita bread things and green peppers and onions and the tzatziki sauce and some sort of italiany dressing stuff (also on the side) plastic fork and napkins in a brown paper bag and oy! For six bucks, the cost per meal comes out to something like $2.30 because Grantley and I can eat it all Sunday afternoon long.
It's gotta be the same sorta thing for dogs. If you sent me a survey asking how would one would like to spend a Sunday in February in the company of dogs, one person might reveal that their dream involved loading several wire crates into the back of their van that has some sort of breed stickers on it and hauling the entire nightmare on down to McCormick Place in Chicago, shelling out a frajillion dollars for parking(a frajillion dollars that might be better spent on Extreme Makeover Dog Handler Edition for some personal grooming-no offense/I'm just sayin'-three words-full length mirror) and hanging out for the day in a giant facility that smells like lemon gone wrong watching a single pug win a blue ribbon because there are no other pugs to compete with in that division. (And I ask you:Are pugs really dogs? I think not.)
It was such torture, that like when a child is presented with a over-hyped Christmas gift and ends up playing with the cardboard box, we were forced to provide our own entertainment whch consisted of renaming each other 'Judy' and trying to smash that into a sentence as many times as possible. "Hey Judy? Do you think we can get the hell out of her now, Judy?"
International Kennel Club Dog Show – Sun., Feb. 24th (Benched)-Chicago's McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60616
Mickey's Gyro's and Ribs 4-525 N Harlem Ave ,Oak Park, IL 60302
Saturday, February 23, 2008
It's as if she almost dared herself not to hope that she'd get to go along, but yikes, the shiver when she saw I had her formal wear ready. Formal wear, in this case, being the ancient family heirloom-like, leather leash as opposed to the red retractable because Anti-Cruelty frowns on retractables.
Then we're in traffic on State Street, then we're parking on the roof of Anti-Cruelty, riding the elevator and finally in the center on the floor in front of Pam Kuhn-a pet massage therapist-who confessed she thinks she has the best job in the world. And after she demonstrated the lack of force involved in Massage K-9, we have to agree that umm Pam gets paid to rub dogs which is none too shabby in the employment department, altho I imagine they're don't tip very well.
Grantley is seven now, so she's able to settle-unlike the junior goofball boxer close to the door, but that's okay too because if there's one thing we do not aspire to be and that is an old crab. Perish the thought.
We learned ears, the jaw, the neck, cupping, effleurage, feet, legs and the tail. The coolest thing about dogs that I already knew and hoped to personally emulate, is that if you're not hitting the dog in the perfect nirvana spot o' joy? They don't send you a 'We need to talk' e-mail, they don't go to the library and get a book about interpersonal communication, they don't consult a life coach or a tarot card reader. They scoot over.
She slept straight from Wells to St. Charles Road where she adjusted her foot and then straight on till Elmhurst, we're we sampled a bagel my Dad made. Yeah read that again. A bagel my Dad made. Ya know what? It was actually pretty good. And then, again, she snoozed all the way home, only her pillow for the last leg of the journey was the enormous green plastic bag of produce my Mom sent home with us.
Three oranges, five bananas, 3 different kinds of apples, a pear and a lonely potato make a fine pillow for the well stroked dog.
Winter Lectures-Anti-Cruelty Society-157 W. Grand Ave, Chicago 60610
Friday, February 22, 2008
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Once again, today I joined the Parade of the Very Bad People on the walk of shame in the second floor courtroom in Addison, Illinois. I was there six months ago because what initially landed me in the parade, had an automatic 'Go Directly to Court' decree attached to it and now you think less of me, don't you? Gling glink. (That's the Law and Order noise and I'm afraid we're going to need it.)
I'm going to tell the entire story as it establishes me as a complete and total dork and we might as well get that out of the way right now, yes? Tres bien. Pourquoi not?
I signed up to go to Pickle Making Class, uh-huh, I did. And on that day, I actually had a temp gig going on, so, I didn't want to leave my dog alone all day AND all night because that would be wrong, so I woke at the crack of dawn, and took her to her country home(aka: House of the parentals) and I had 45 minutes to get to work(Objection: Relevance! Established the defendant was not rushing your honor. Overruled!) and I was pulling up into a railroad crossing(People in gallery gasp audibly. SFX: Bang bang. Order! Order! I'll clear this courtroom! So help me God!) I say 'up into' because it's on an incline and lawdy I've only driven across that particular crossing about 800 thousand times in my life and oh yeah my hot rod. Yeah my 4 cylinder, 1995 Chevy S-10 pickup truck (you see where we're going Mister McCoy? The defendant COULDN'T go fast. It's an old, slow, teeny, 'exterminator-like', pickup truck. OBJECTION! Leading the witness! Sustained!)
Yeah so. I get at least 3/8ths into the crossing and ding ding ding ding. I looked up and the lights started to flash and I was already in motion, and friends? When you have a 1995 Chevy S-10 4-cylinder pickup (on an incline) that's already in motion and it's 2007? There is no turning back. There just isn't.
Yeah totally busted.
For the first time in my entire existance, I was pulled over. Whoa I didn't even have a clue what I was supposed to do except keep my hands visible and listen for the theme song from COPS which lucky thing, I never heard.
The pickles turned out swell.
Traffic Court-1:00-Three Friendship Plaza-2nd Floor-Addison, Il 60101
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
They said they had the moon in High-def on the 10:00 news. It was also available in what is known as the sky.
Rerun Heckman is mad for Grantley. We were all looking at the moon and he was saying 'Woooooooooooooooo'.
The only total lunar eclipse of 2008 occurred on 21 February 2008, beginning at 01:43 UTC, visible from Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and Australia and Oak Park. The next total eclipse of the moon will not occur until 21 December 2010.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
You know how you have those sheets of 'Goals' or whatever you call 'em and there's this one you keep saying to other people but you're sort of discussing it in the abstract. Like, "As soon as I start ice fishing lessons" or "Pretty soon I'm gonna only eat organic tartar sauce because it's supposed to be really good for you" only secretly? You haven't bought fish sticks since Y2K.
This was me with yoga.
Last night I got an email about a free class. You can't negotiate with free. Not when you've got all that blah blah blah behind you.
This was an experienced teacher who, to get this certain flavor of certificate(turns out it's the kind of yoga where the yogi was recently pictured doing a hands-free headstand on top of a rock in Vanity Fair) had to do 500 hours of teacher training which included this free session and 73% of me was really scared to go. It has always amazed me, when I've gotten negative feedback about something I've set out to try, that people seem to think there's some corporation behind me with nasty corporate smokestacks blasting clouds of grey smoke into the universe.
It's just me here and I get scared.
But like I always do, I got the forward momentum going and it got to a point where I could not turn back and soon I was pushing the Yoga Trek door open, wearing my 'please don't hurt me' expression and then I was next to Kate-the owner and she was making it okay for even me. (Yeah I was at the bottom of the power Yoga chick arc, I mean yikes-I'd look up and Kate's head would be somewhere I didn't even know heads could go and my downward facing dog should have been called" Put this dog down but we got to Savasana? I had the peace and calm thing? I had the mind and body resting thing? My thoughts came in and floated out naturally just like they were supposed to. I did not dwell on any one thought. Except for this tiny thing:
Posted by ARF at 7:32 PM
Monday, February 18, 2008
I did not consider that seeing the befores and afters would gross me out royally, but they did. I am friends with both a Laparoscopic Gastric Band-er and a Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass-er and back in December, my lovely Bypasser had mentioned that the Bariatric Support Group was having a holiday party and that as her friend, I was welcome to come. At the time I thought, yeahhhh.....naaah I don't want to go to that, but then I thought more about my role in these friendships where- when we go for lunch they completely stop eating after 4 bites.
Probably, I thought, It would be good if I had some clue.
This was my second meeting. I forgot what the topic was last time. I know that there was fresh fruit and bottled water and mostly women and a doctor who exhibited haste in passing out his business cards. I tried to contain my judgements about the audience and the salesman-ish part of the whole thing.
Tonight's presentation was by a plastic surgeon. First thing I noticed was that she had an incredibly smooth forehead, the second thing that jumped about her was the advanced age of her hands. I can't recall the first slide exactly. I think it was the one where cuts had been made along the line of where invisible underpants might sit and eventho you couldn't see the patient's face, for a second it connected in my head that the red line was a cut mark and how very unglamourous and vomitose that actually was. By the time the doctor stood in front of the slide of what had to have been the Worlds Largest Nipples(so huge they were cropped off the screen!), I forgot they were attached to a person so it was easier to look.
The drawing tonight is of what people call their 'Bye Jane's'. The skin that flaps in the breeze when you wave goodbye. On the left the droopy skin and on the right, the darts of perfection. A tummy tuck is $7000 complete. Don't go to anyone who calls themselves a 'cosmetic' surgeon. Skin on your back is good for liposuction. Skin on your 'Bye Jane's' is hardly elastic at all.
Support Group-3rd Monday of every month-West Suburban Hospital-Lower Level-Free
Posted by ARF at 8:37 PM
Sunday, February 17, 2008
We found a better place to sit across from where we sat last time, when our two male companions had such a miserable experience, one put on his earmuffs and the other made us leave after the halftime show and we were oh so totally bumming. And that was before we stopped to eat at this 87 course Greek dining extravaganza where we finished our entire dinner waffle while they were still on their salads.
To find oneself cast back toward yesteryear into the fuzzy black and white teevee screens of our youth is one thing entirely but to be a party to such wickedness on a Sunday evening makes the event extra delicious. If you've not used up your applauding for the week, and I suggest that you should, there are plenty of opportunities at the Windy City Rollers.
There are 4 teams. We love them all. We clap for everyone-whomever is in front, whomever falls and gets back up and whomever we think is cool, and that's pretty much all of them. Except that they appear universally fearless, the skaters are all physically different. And we couldn't be 100% sure, but they seemed extra fast tonight.
$15 on line, $20 at the door. http://www.windycityrollers.com/
Saturday, February 16, 2008
The teacher gets to be late because she has jewels glued to her inner eyes. She also gets caught by the trains. Not to mention the eighty or seven colors of eye shadow. Ya think that stuff applies itself?
It is my second semester doing this and I'd like to say I've mastered something I'd be willing to demonstrate in front of live humans but it is not (yet)the case. I am the front row on the right side person and I get there early enough not to have to negotiate my place.
My committment to the dance falls between the fact that I have purchased a coin scarf but can't go as far as getting my own zils. And I've sort of been halfheartedly looking for a skirt? But I kinda groove on the silver coins over black sweats. Works for me for now.
Our instructor Sam is so much higher on the cool scale than one could ever hope to be. She smiles a lot and reassures us. And I've seen her dance with a sword balanced across her head so yeah, I'm okay if she's a little bit late.