for those who are in or around sane

Thursday, June 8

the infinite

So the longer I’m here, the more I enjoy it… this city is pretty damn amazing. Please please, TCers, don’t get me wrong – I love MN and all it has to offer. I miss a lot about that place and you wouldn’t have to drag me kicking and screaming back there. But Chicago has really surprised me.

There is too much to do. Every weekend, every nice night, there is something to do. I’m at work, and looking ahead to an evening of self-reflection in front of prime time tv, a little elliptisizing and maybe a home cooked meal with my roomie. Then I get an email about a pick up volleyball game on Montrose Beach at 6:30pm. Of course I go to the beach. It’s not prime season yet, so the sand is still finely combed, the poles stick out, naked and eager for nets, and occasionally, you can watch a storm attempt to roll in through the lake breezes (ok, they are more like blindingly huge gusts). Afterwards, its off to one of the local digs for boozin’ and supper. And, a round of “cheers!” or “slainte” to many many more evenings of such glory.

There are also the planned nights. The music nights. Since I’m still not quite up to snuff w/ my music, I rely on a few trusted pals to usher things my way. On one such night, I went to O’s and from there we hiked to the Metro and saw the Islands – aka the Unicorns. O was, admittedly, a bit hyper and cruisin’ for a boozin’, so quite a few ridiculously expensive lite beers later, we were bopping around to the nutty music (opener was the Busdriver, whom I am lead to believe is actually from MN) and running all over the Metro, finding little things to keep our interest for more than 30 seconds at a pop. We found a photo booth. Oh yes we did! Revel in our beauty. Revel.

And last weekend, my ex-co-worker Lauren came down to the city, CHP books in tow. The 3 TC presses pooled resources and garnered a booth at the annual Printer’s Row Book Festival. We had an absolute blast – tons of people came! It blew my mind that there were so many bookish people here. not that it should have, but in the twin cities, the literary crowd is significantly smaller and slightly cliquey (not hoity-toity by any means, but it always appears that you know or have seen every person at the book reading you’re at).

CHP author Lolita Hernandez came down from Detroit to be on a panel and to hang with us at the booth. The three of us plus Graywolf’s Publicist Mary and author Tess Gallagher ventured out for cheap Italian food and wine-and-exhaustion inspired pontifications on war, women and literature. Lolita’s clever photoshop abilities documented our adventure.

This weekend is BluesFest, and there will also be a shin-dig at a notorious apartment, famous for their lack of brakes, both of which I am missing due to an important wedding (hoorah for Spayne!) . But I know that the next weekend I have free, there will definitely be something for me to do besides bike on the beach, read in the park, or any other blissful solitary experience Chicago has to offer.


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