Skip to content

Completely Losing My Mystery

My whirlwind weekend tour of Chicago exceeded expectations. So much so that I don’t even know how to recap it. Lists can’t adequately convey the fabulousness but it’s all I’ve got.


  • Rolled in to Chicago during evening rush hour, but was guided by the amazing Emily, over the phone, to her cute little neighborhood. I was a bit nervous about meeting her for the first time but I needn’t have been. She rules. Not only did she put me up for the weekend and play tour guide, she was hella fun to hang out with. And her boyfriend is super swell too.
  • After getting settled in and coming up with a game plan we decided to venture over to Amitabul, an all-vegan Korean restaurant, for a little dinner before the show at Beat Kitchen.
  • How awesome was it being chauffeured around by a Chicago native? Downright dreamy.
  • Tornavalanche with their two drummers? So so good.
  • After a long day of driving I apparently fell asleep while Emily was in mid-sentence. Doh! I could’ve at least done that while I was in mid-sentence. How rude.


  • In the morning Emily led me to what is now one of my all-time favorite coffee shops, Atomix. It’s a big sunny room with gorgeous murals, a photobooth, an array of vegan muffins and other baked goods to choose from, beverages with names like Mr. Turtle, and a proprietor who looks like a young John Malkovich. What’s not to love?
  • Drank WAY too much coffee and freaked out like a complete dork before going downtown to meet James.
  • Calmed down and took James to Karyn’s Cooked for lunch. The slab of bbq “ribs” entree was delish, as were the slices of pie we ordered to go. (We wound up eating those for dinner later but hey, I was on vacation.)
  • Mosied on to Rotofugi for a little toy shopping, then popped in to Vigilante Press, a lovely comic book store. Then it was back to Atomix for some coffee and photobooth fun.
  • We went back downtown, to be touristy at Millennium Park before the Arcade Fire show (where no photography was allowed). Little did we know we were right smack dab in the middle of an evacuation zone, after a crane crashed into a nearby building. Weird.
  • Post-show we ate vegan pecan pancakes at the Pick Me Up.
James is not really a shadowy man


  • We played it by ear. Started out at Atomix again, then moved on to the Garfield Park Conservatory, which was lovely. Especially as the weather had turned all cold and cruddy.
  • Dinner was going to be had at the Chicago Diner, but that was too close to Wrigley Field, where a baseball game had just ended. Instead we wound up at Earwax. This was for the best. There was something for everyone (I was the only vegan in the group anyhow) and damn, my milkshake was good.
  • I wanted to end the evening with a movie so we saw the light-hearted Waitress, which was just the thing.
James and Emily


  • In the morning I felt like I could sleep for a week but instead I hightailed it out of the city. Or tried to. Got stuck in morning rush hour near Midway Airport.
  • Halfway through Wisconsin two things happened 1: I realized I wouldn’t be able to get to the little man’s bus stop in time to pick him and so enlisted J’s help and 2: it got crazy hot and I had to change clothes at a rest stop.
  • After this point I was 1: hella bored and 2: not in such a rush. I allowed myself to stop a little more frequently, to take in the sights…such as a giant pink elephant wearing eyeglasses, and I took a long hike up to a scenic overlook.
a very strange roadside attraction

Getting back into the groove of Normal Life mode has been difficult, compounded by intense forward momentum. Today’s highlights included closing on my home equity loan, procuring yet another epi-pen for the little man (who is now so large he needs the adult sized version rather than the epi-pen jr.), and having the Seestedt’s guy come over to measure the kitchen floor and stairs. This was all topped off by being home while the house was being powerwashed, which is a lot like living inside a car wash. Very weird. But the prep has begun. In the coming days there will be scraping, priming, and painting. Also? My friend Mike will be starting on the inside tomorrow. Patching plaster, tearing down the last of the wallpaper, and other general prep before he begins his painting. It’s all really happening. But more than one person has pointed out…now that the house will finally be fixed up all nice-like I might not want to move. Hmmm.

and this is it, I swear

Bonus: Summer show season is upon us. Today I found out about two. Whitejazz plays again, Saturday night, at Memory Lanes. Then June 9th is a NE Block Party, featuring Low and MC/VL. I am so there.
Plus: I’m preparing to watch the season finale of Heroes (dang, it’s getting late, maybe tomorrow night) but I wonder how many viewers know about the Primatech Paper Company web site. I filled out their bogus registration form, and today was sent this link to the Yamagato Fellowship site. Check it out, if you are so inclined.
And: Tonight I missed both the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club show at First Avenue and the Michael Chabon reading at The Fitzgerald. It’s just as well. I was too tired to do either, and should really turn in soon.


  1. Brian wrote:

    I swear, you do more in a weekend than I do in a year of weekends. I just stayed home alone watching the Heroes marathon on SciFi. I’ll be interested in hearing what you think of the season finale. I was a little disappointed…

    Tuesday, May 22, 2007 at 11:53 pm | Permalink
  2. Sara wrote:

    I was working out about a month ago and they had TVs everywhere with closed captioning. The news was on and somebody was talking about how to properly use an epi-pen. Instead of saying that you have to jab it in your side, the closed captioning said “take the cap off and stab it in your eye”.

    I damn near fell of my eliptical.

    Wednesday, May 23, 2007 at 6:28 am | Permalink
  3. Holy crap Sara! That’s funny but you know, not. I think that would just bring up a whole new set of health issues.

    And Brian, what can I say? I am just chock full of manic energy! Though I can also get down with some serious lounging too. Hopefully I’ll get to watch Heroes tonight.

    Wednesday, May 23, 2007 at 7:05 am | Permalink

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *