CMB post: Favorite Fries
Over on the Chicago Metroblog I just posted a round-up of our favorite french fries (yay - alliteration).
Over on the Chicago Metroblog I just posted a round-up of our favorite french fries (yay - alliteration).
The ball isn't visible because George has just kicked it out of frame, but it might as well be a picture of George kicking the ground in a traditional "shucks, mister." We weren't defeated, but neither are still all-victorious -- we went up against Rusty's Wranglers (aka "the costume team") and we tied 2-2. Shoot.
Here's the cast of Documentary South, documenting the heck out of Ryan Gilmour.
As I've mentioned, the opening of Doc South got moved up a few weeks because of a sudden space availability at the Playground. So we had an extra rehearsal last night to make sure we're all ready for our opening night this weekend. I think that, in fact, we are. If this cast improvises half as well as they dance, we're set.
Total number of books I've owned: Funny that past tense in the question, "owned" -- if we go back through all the books I've ever owned, the number is probably an even bazillion. But I did a reasonable purge when I moved from Lafayette to Chicago, and another when I finally took all my adolescent books from the parents when they moved to Texas, and then... OK, lean close because this is a terrible secret, for a book person. When we did the horrible 2-days-notice move out of my old place, we were on such a tight schedule and were up until 6 am every night, and we were moving all of our stuff into storage and I... threw away books. In a dumpster. It was heartbreaking. Look away, I am hideous.
But enough survived the purge that I have about 40 of what U-Haul calls their "Small Box" full of books waiting for the bookshelves to be delivered, plus a full bookcase (the only one that survived the move) in my bedroom. Hopefully my books will fit on 77 square feet of bookshelves. I supposed they'll have to. So that's my answer -- 77 square feet. Plus another bookcase. Plus the six grocery bags of comics that Mark and Megan just gave me.
Maybe I should have just said "lots" and left it at that.
Last book I bought: Jumper by Steven Gould just arrived in the mail yesterday from a Half.com purchase, so I'll count that. I think it was a recommendation from John Scalzi, in fact. I tried to order it before, but the Half.com shipper (Half is basically a online consignment shop, if you aren't familiar) sent me the completely wrong book. So I ordered it again a couple weeks ago and forgot about it and then a couple days ago I was thinking I'd really like to read a pretty straight-forward science fiction story and then, ta-da, Jumper showed up in the mail. Done and done.
Last book I read: I leapt right into Jumper (sorry) and I'm a little ways into Word Freak by Stefan Fatsis -- about competitive Scrabble players. I'm on a little gaming-sub-culture kick, I think, because not too long ago I read both Positively Fifth Street (James McManus) and The Biggest Game in Town (A. Alvarez) -- both about poker players -- and Bringing Down the House (Ben Mezrich) about MIT students turned Blackjack sharks. I'm also, sadly and ironically, stuck halfway through Getting Things Done (David Allen). Sigh.
Last book I finished: So Yesterday by Scott Westerfield. It's a young adult novel about "cool hunting" and it was odd because I had just read Pattern Recognition (William Gibson) that deals with the same subject, but in a rather more complicated way. Nothing against So Yesterday, it was just an odd contrast.
Five books that mean a lot to me: Grrr... and here's the meat of the matter -- meaning and not just facts. I'm always kinda stuck on what "mean a lot" means -- mean a lot to me lately, or influenced me early, or what? Also, I have a terrible memory.
Update: I forgot to Pass the Baton. Geh. I'm not going to try and force my friends to fill out forms -- I'm sure they do enough of that at work. If you do one of these after reading this, please leave a comment.
Worse than the pain is the half-hour of sleep they robbed me of this morning. Erica had food poisoning last night (and so she is the one who deserves any sympathy) and so we were both up late. To be woken up by a cat clawing his way across your face at 6 am can be summarized as, "Boo."
7-3 over the Bike Rack Bullies. Yeah, we're winners. And sometimes, winners have to wear balls on their heads. You just gotta...
This is the official Documentary South cast photo. Too bad I look like a goon. Our opening night went well... a sold-out house and people said nice things. And those parts of the show (the, you know, beginning and end) that we had tossed in at the last rehearsal, actually went pretty well.
So tomorrow night you have a choice (if you were thinking of seeing this show at all, of course). Erica and I will be out-of-town (a wedding in Southern Indiana) so you probably would want to wait until next week or the week after (I making a rash assumption that because you're reading my site, you have some interest in me) but there is a coupon that gets you a half-price ticket, but it's only good for tomorrow night. So which is more important to you -- seeing me, or being a cheapskate?
I have three and five. So, yes.
25 Things to Do at Purdue Before You Graduate
I've posted some of the snaps I took at my uncle Jim's wedding as a set on my Flickr account.
Anyway, Indiana doesn't do Daylight Saving Time. Except in some of the corners where it does. And Vevay is in a corner. So when we got to Madison, where our hotel was, we asked at the check-in what time it was in Vevay. "They're an hour ahead, so it's 6:30."
Eeek! The wedding was at 7:00! So we threw on our wedding clothes and jumped in the car for the 20 mile drive to Vevay. We got there just at 7:05 and ran into Mo's Steakhouse. We pushed our way past the long line of people waiting for seats and asked a server at the front counter, "we're here for the wedding?"
"This is Mo's Steakhouse, right?"
"Do you have a banquet room or something?"
"Janice, do we have a banquet room?"
Mo's, it must be noted, is a good-sized place, but not that big. Fortunately, Janice did know that they had a banquet room, and even how to get there.
And it was 6:15. Vevay, despite the assurances of our hotel clerk, is on "slow time". The groom found us as we were headed into the banquet room. "I'm just hanging out here to catch fast-time people who are showing up early." Fast-time and slow-time, it turns out, are appended to times like the TV always says "10 PM Eastern (9 Central)". As in, "I'd better get home soon, because I have to be at work tomorrow morning at 6 AM Fast-time."
The rest of the wedding is in the picture set.
Tonight was our rain-makeup game against Yes We Can, so it was ironic that it was drizzling as we started. It rained pretty steady through the first three innings, but none of us wanted to give up. In end we won 5-1, which means that James Brown Celebrity Hot Tub Party finishes the regular season undefeated (7-0-1 if you're keeping track at home). Next week the playoffs begin.
Two weeks ago after kickball at our official league sponsor bar, everyone (myself included) ignored the perfectly good baseball games going on on all the TVs and got really caught up in the women's college softball championship game between Michigan and UCLA.
Last night, it was Dancing With the Stars. People roared with disgust when John O'Hurley was given a 7 -- scoring lower than the horrible Rachel Hunter (what were the judges thinking!).
At one point, after a different table cheered as the White Sox began their rally to pull ahead of the Diamondbacks, Scott stood up and said, "could you keep it down -- we're trying to watch some dancing here." He was joking. Except not really.
If you've been waiting to see Documentary South, tomorrow night is the night to go, my pretties, you little flying-monkeys, you. Tomorrow night will be the first time we have the full cast doing the show, and with this cast that means you're in for 9 (nine) buckets-o'-fun.
Nina Metz reviewed the show for the Chicago Tribune and it came out in today's paper. I wasn't there, so I can't comment on anything in the show, but I do want to have a quick round of Fuzzy-Bites-the-Hand-and-Quibbles-With-Reviews. Nina says the show is performed by "the improv team known as Dirty South Improv, an offshoot of a team from Chapel Hill, NC". Dirty South Improv is a production company, based in both Chicago and Chapel Hill. DSI is producing a show called Documentary Show, which is performed by an ensemble that was cast specifically for the show. I just wanted to clear up those relationships.
And this is definitely an aside (because I know DSI uses the word "team," so I'm not blaming Nina for using it), and I know ImprovOlympic uses the word, but I'm beginning to feel about "team" the same way I do about "skit" -- it's an oddly demeaning little word and I think improv needs to outgrow it. Ensemble or company or group or, yes even troupe*, all are preferable to me.
Anyway, here's that review.
Update: After hearing Dan use the word "team" 600 times in rehearsal to describe the cast, I realized that really I should keep quiet about these things. Usually when I do one of my "quibbles" it's for a show I produced, so I know exactly what information the press has been given. This time, I've never even seen the press release.
We grilled the chicken breasts on the grill outside. Amazingly, cooking them "as long as it takes the water for the linguine to boil" proved to be the exact time needed to cook them perfectly. We chopped up the chicken and gently heated it up in a pan with the sauce (Spicy Tomato & Pesto) while the linguine cooked. Combine, sprinkle with parmesan. Done and done and delicious.
I was going to be all "let's talk about reviews" but that should just tip you off right there that I (we) got a bad review because nobody talks about the general concept of reviews when they got a good one -- they just say "The Cincinnati Herald says we roxx0r!" So let's pull the band-aid off fast and note that Jack Helbig says we suxx0r in the Reader today.
Which is very confusing, because it was a good show, both in terms of what we trying to accomplish with our use of [doc/mock]umentary techniques and from a pure-entertainment-value perspective. Of course I'm biased, but I think I'm telling it straight. Between you and me and the other guy who reads this site (hi Don!) I'll tell you that the cast thinks that Nina Metz' review of the show last week in the Tribune was fair -- it was a lack-luster show. This week was, in our collective opinion, not lack-luster. In fact it was rather lustrous. Shiny, even.
So you've got one more chance to see us at the reasonable hour of 10:30 pm, before we start our odd little run of every-other-week-at-midnight as part of DSI's Afterparty slots at the Playground. Please do come.
I wish I could say this was our victory photo. But it's not. Once again, we came in second.
The day started out well. We got to skip straight to the semi-finals because our first-round team forfeited ahead of time. In the semi-finals we took Feets of Fury 4-3 in a rather tight game. Pete had the play of the game with a slide home that sent up such a cloud of dust that you couldn't see him for a minute. In the championship game, Rusty's Wranglers (aka "the costume team") bested us 2-0 with their firey pitcher and "white-trash prom"-themed costumes.
Sometimes it's just as simple as a sleeping cat.
A couple of months ago I was turned onto the notion of the movie Me and You and Everyone We Know by tinyluckygenius, but I missed that showing at Roger Ebert's Overlooked Film Festival so I had no idea when I might see this indie movie. Over those last few months I've been following along on writer/director/actor Miranda July's blog as she traveled with the film and and shared emails from the frightfully clever young actor Brandon Ratcliff and won the Camera d'Orr at Cannes. And then a few weeks ago the great news, Chicago is a "select city"*. And then last night, Erica and I went on a real date and went to La Creperie and then across the street to see Me and You and Everyone We Know. It might have been the bottle of L'Ecole No 41 Semillon we split, but we both thought it was wonderful. I teared up at the end, I'm not too proud to say. And I'm not sure why I can even say it was so great -- it was funny in parts, certainly, and so much of it didn't make sense, but it was so right. And since I've made this such a link-heavy post already, I'll point out Jessica's update about the movie, and Roger Ebert's review, and the Learning to Love You More website (a co-project of Miranda's) that gives you art assignments.
"Hey Kate," I said on the phone to my friend Kate O'Leary, "you're all over Michigan Avenue!" Then I made a crude joke about the animal on the banner that made Kate sigh with sadness that I was her friend.
The banners are for a new exhibit at the Lincoln Park Zoo. Kate did all the illustrations (11 large paintings and 20+ smaller pieces) for the exhibit -- the Pritzker Family Children�s Zoo. There are all sorts of woodland creatures in the exhibit -- bears and otters and wolves and yes, beavers, and Kate did story-book style paintings of each of them. The exhibit officially opens today, and Kate says it's really cool for her to see her art up in such a public place and in such a permanent fashion. It's really cool for me to have my friend back again after a year of "I can't go out tonight, I have to work on the turtle for the zoo."
And Kate's art is not only available to world-class institutions like the LPZ. She runs Kate's Pet Portraits where she'll do you up your precious Mr. Snuggles in her expressive style.
Shaun didn't like the picture that MK Online used to illustrate his Developer Diary, so he had them replace it with another one. The new one is cropped down from a picture we like to call "Shaun over-indulges". Drink, check. Smoking and pizza, check, check. T-shirt for violent video game, check. Vapid expression while watching someone do bar karaoke, check check check.