It's official!

It's official!
David Stubbs Photography

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Dancing With the "Stars"

I woke up this morning to breaking news: The cast for season 11 of "Dancing With the Stars" has been announced!  It includes Jersey Shore's Mike "The Situation", Audrina Patridge from The Hills, Bristol Palin and David Hasselhoff.

Wait, who are the stars?

Somewhere along the way, America has confused people with actual talent with people who fight and pull hair on reality TV.  Jersey Shore is a show about guidos and guidettes from the East Coast who tease their hair, make-out a lot, bring nasty girls home and get into bar fights.  Mike "The Situation" is "famous" for his rock-hard abs and for saying things like, GTL, which stands for Gym, Tan, Laundry (the three things he does daily.)  Sadly I just read that The Situation will take home $5 million this year, and an estimated $10 million next year for his reality shows, clothing line, and appearances.  What are we thinking people??  This guy will make more than doctors and teachers just for working out.  Sheesh.

Luckily Audrina Patridge will be dancing and not talking, because if you ever saw The Hills, you know she can't put two words together.  But putting Bristol Palin on, the single mother who's been engaged twice to a douche bag, is just what America needs!

Maybe David Hasselhoff can start off his dancing by eating a cheeseburger off of the floor.

Wow, well at least Carol Brady, a.k.a. Florence Henderson, has also been cast.  Maybe her squeaky clean image can clean up the rest of the dirt on the show.

Click here to see the entire cast.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Bloodied and bruised

I did something this weekend I never want to do again.  I did something that left me scarred...literally and figuratively.  I did something that left me bruised and battered.  I walked 2.06 miles in 3-inch high heels.

My girlfriend Holly was in Chicago this weekend, so on Friday night we decided to get dolled up and put on our best high heels.  We walked to dinner at Friends Sushi restaurant at Rush and Superior.  (Side note: This is hands down the best Sushi in Chicago.  The "Friends" roll will make you cry happy tears.  I'm pretty sure it could unite the Shiites and Sunnis.)

I've realized for the past year, I've gone from wearing high-heels to only wearing flat boots, winter boots, tennis shoes and flip flops.  That's it.  I want a comfortable shoe I can easily walk 2-6 miles a day in.  I also want to be able to pass tourists left and right, and be able to run when my crosswalk gives me the "3-seconds left" message.  Sure, Carrie and the gang looked smokin' hot when they wore Manolo's around NYC, but that's not practically AT All.  On any given day I have to walk over uneven sidewalks, cigarette butts, vomit, dog pee and homeless man I'm not wearing $400 high heels.

So I've realized while I enjoy having on the cutest tops and designer jeans, my shoes will be remain ugly and practical, and I'm okay with that.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

High-rise living does not equal friends

I thought when we moved into a 46-story high rise, we would instantly meet new people.  Soon we'd be having dinner parties with our neighbors, joking about our college days and instantly become "besties."  I thought I'd be going to lunch with the girls on my floor and talking about the funny quirks of our husbands or boyfriends.  I thought our floor would be much like my dorm floor, and we'd all keep our doors open and jam to some N'Sync.

Sadly, after nearly a year here, I can say my only true friend is our doorman, Fred.  He's so sweet!  Other than that, nothing.

Yesterday I realized our neighbor, whom we share a patio wall with, was moving out.  I saw her in the hallway, and this was the extent of our conversation...
Me: "Oh, so you're moving out?"
Her: "Yep."

That was it.  I couldn't even say we'd miss her, because that wouldn't be the truth.  I don't even know her name.  Sadly, I know her Puggle is named Oliver, but that's about it.  If you put our neighbors and their dogs in a line-up, I'd know more of the dogs than the humans.

The weird thing is, I hardly ever seen anyone on our floor.  This seems crazy to me, because we all have dogs, and are therefore taking them out throughout the day and night.  I didn't even know our neighbors right across the hall had moved out until one day I saw a Golden Retriever coming out of the apartment instead of a Weimaraner.  I didn't even recognize his owners!  Pathetic.

The next test will be in a couple of months when we move into more of a neighborhood in Lincoln Park.  If I don't make friends with our neighbors there, I'll know it must be my social skills.

And to our doorman Fred: I really will miss you.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Two-Wheeled Death Machines

In Chicago, you quickly learn a few survival skills.

  1.  Cabs and city buses make sharp turns, so never have your feet out close to the curb.  You will lose a toe.
  2. If a homeless person is yelling at you and calling you nasty names, realize they aren't really mad at you, it's more the world as a whole.  Don't make eye contact and walk away.
  3. Don't assume just because the light tells you it's okay to walk that it actually is.  Look up, and wait for 3-4 cars to run the red light, and then you can walk.
  4. Finally, always stay out of the way of bicyclists.
There are three words to describe Chicago bike riders: crazy, insane a-holes.  (Sorry Grandma.)  

My experience with riding a bike has always been a peaceful one.  Either I was riding along the banks of Sanibel Island or the bike trails of Wyoming.  You can hear the birds sing and you feel a new zest for life.  In Chicago, bike riders could care less about the birds, zest, or you.  They will whiz by going 90 miles an hour, not caring about any pedestrian, child or animal.  They will come so close to your body, they surely can smell your breath and know what you ate for breakfast.  They come so close, your arm hair flaps in the wind and your ponytail smacks them in the face.

So many times a bicyclist has come so close to me, that I jump and then yell a profanity.  Them startling me is surely taking years off of my life.

Here's the thing bicycle riders:  You chose to live in Chicago, a city of millions that you know is busy, so don't act like you can race your bike Lance Armstrong style.  Also, it would be nice if every now and again you said things like "On your left" so people don't poop themselves when you whiz by.   And know that if you hit me with your two-wheeled death machine, it's probably going to hurt you just as much when you go flying over the handlebars.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Life lesson

I'm not going to lie, it's been a stressful 24 hours. At the risk of sounding morbid, I thought it might be the end of me, and I was mad because things are really starting to get good.

To make a long story short, during a routine exam yesterday, my doc thought she found a polyp on my uterus. It could have been nothing, but it also could have made me infertile, or it could have been cancer.

Wow. As a newlywed who's really enjoying life, I didn't expect that kind of news.

I decided not to feel sorry for myself though, instead I was going to fight this and really live life to the fullest. I went into today for a follow-up with a renewed zest for life.

During today's ultrasound, the doctor discovered I am totally fine, that yesterday's finding must have been a fluke, or perhaps misread information from the ultrasound tech.


Lesson learned: this thing called life goes by way too fast, and can be taken from you quickly. Enjoy each day, surround yourself with good and upbeat people, exercise, love, laugh often, and don't be afraid to take risks.

(Side note: I think it's time to try and get my first book published. No more fear of rejection.)

Monday, August 23, 2010

To regift or not to regift-you decide

To regift or not to regift, that is the question. I say yes, Mike says no, and thus begins our first disagreement of marriage (and when I say first, I mean first this week.) Just kidding!

Here's the thing: when you get married, not everyone will give you money or something on your registry. They'll go off the list and buy you something else. This worked for the awesome panini maker we got, because I didn't even think of registering for that. It also worked for the awesome gifts my friend Jennifer got us from wine country in California. She either guessed correctly, or knew from our registry, that our primary house colors are black and white, and she totally rocked some very cool Tapas gifts.

But it doesn't always work when your friends and family haven't taken into consideration the following things a) you live in a 660-square foot apartment and hardly have room for two Chihuahuas, let alone large serving dishes or large party platters b) you like the color gold, but only in jewelry, not really in house decorations and c) you live in Chicago, not a Wyoming farmhouse, so there's really no room to throw parties with the perfect nut dishes.

(Disclaimer-I hope by now, you know my sarcastic humor, and I say this in good fun. I'm totally appreciative of everything we received. We have so much to be thankful for.)

Now, that being said, I think it's perfectly okay to regift. I'd rather have the gift get used, otherwise it will sit in our closet for the next five years until we finally give it to Goodwill.

Did you know there's actually a regifting website?? Here are suggestions from

Is the gift regiftable? Never regift handmade or one-of-a-kind items. Signed books and monogrammed items are off-limits. Do you have to be told not to regift free promotional items? Some gifts that are good candidates for regifting include good (unopened!) bottles of wine, new household items and inexpensive jewelry.

How is the condition? Only new, unopened gifts in good condition should be considered for regifting. Never give partially used gift cards. Don’t give items that you have owned for a long time. A general rule of thumb: if you have to dust it off, it is not regiftable.

Is this going to work? Successful regifters use common sense. If you are going to regift, be sure you know who gave you the item, so you don’t return something to the original giver. Only regift items to people who are not likely to see the original giver.

Do you have good intentions? Don’t just give a gift to give a gift. Be sure that the recipient will appreciate the item. Remember, if you feel that an item is undesirable, the recipient probably will too. If you are regifting simply because you ran out of time, gift cards are simple to obtain and always well received.

How does it look? When it comes to gift-giving, go for show! While gift bags in good condition can be reused, wrapping paper is a one-time thing. Always spring for a new card or gift tag.

Can you handle it? If you don’t plan to announce the gift as a regift, ask yourself if you can keep the secret. Never feel guilty about regifting once you’ve done it.

Have you considered your options? An unwanted gift could be a welcome donation to a charitable organization. It is also an option to suck it up and keep an unwanted gift—after all, it was a gift.

What are your thoughts? I'd love your comments on whether or not it's okay to regift. (Don't even try and tell me you wouldn't regift these clogs.)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Wedding to do's after the wedding

Sorry I've been MIA for a couple of days now. I've been busy doing wedding stuff. What??? You're probably thinking, "But you got married 6 weeks ago, what could you possibly be doing now?"

First of all, our amazing photographer, David Stubbs, was kind enough to give us the rights to our pics right away. That means I've been able to post them on Facebook, and Shutterfly so friends and family can order them. But there are 480 pics all together, so it's taking me a mosquito's lifetime to upload them. (According to average life span for these insects varies greatly between exact species, but typically the females live for 3 to 100 days and the males live for 10 to 20 days.)

Also, on about 100 pics, the file size was too big, so I had to figure out another way to upload them.

Plus, the work continues on the thank-you notes. Wow, will I ever finish? We just got 2 new gifts yesterday, so I can't even keep up. I tell Mike he should be super thankful that his handwriting looks like an 8-year old serial killer's, because he's gotten out of doing any of them. On top of that, I'm trying to make sure each thank you is sweet and personalized because I remember getting a wedding thank you a few years ago that said, "Thank you so much for the gift (s)." Even worse, I gave them money.

Along with this, I've been staying up until about 2 a.m. everyday working on our wedding video. We decided to cut costs and not get a videographer. So my brother-in-law filmed the rehearsal, wedding, and part of the reception, and I'm editing it all together with music on our awesome Mac. It looks perfect when I preview it, but when I download it, there's bleeding audio. So in some scenes you hear people clapping, but they clearly aren't. Weird.

So I guess this whole underemployment hit at a good time, because if I was working 40+ hours a week, I wouldn't be getting any of this done.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The dirtiest of the dirty

Chicago is buzzing today with news that our former Governor, Rod Blagojevich, has been found guilty on one charge of lying to the authorities which could carry a 5-year prison sentence. As I'm sure you know, this stems from accusations he tried to trade the senate seat of then Senator Barack Obama for personal gain.

Blago actually came out pretty well, considering he was charged with 24 counts including bribery, racketeering, conspiracy, wire fraud....well, you get it. Come to find out, there was just one juror holdout, which forced a mistrial on the 23 other counts. Talk about just squeaking by!

Chicago politics truly fascinates me. If sent to prison, Blago can hang out with another former Illinois governor, George Ryan, who's serving a six and a half year sentence for conspiracy and racketeering...but that’s just the beginning. As I've said before, politics in Illinois is dirtier than preschoolers on fudgesicle day. It's dirtier than a baby's diaper after eating split pea soup. It's dirtier than...well, you get it.

Here are some other great moments in Illinois' political history, courtesy of Fox Chicago News...

Illinois has a long history of corrupt governors, tracing back to 1859, when Democrat Joel Matteson was indicted twice for embezzling money.

He was cleared of the charges and now has a suburb named after him.

Republican Len Small was indicted in 1922 for embezzling state funds. He was acquitted, but historians suspect jury tampering in the case since four jurors got state jobs after the trial.

Republican William Stratton was acquitted on tax charges in 1965.

Democrat Otto Kerner was convicted of bribery and fraud and served three years in prison.

Dan Walker was sentenced to seven years in prison for bank fraud, perjury and other crimes in a bank scam that took place after he left office.

So I guess threatening our politicians that if they don't keep their hands clean, they'll go to prison doesn't work. Maybe it’s time they get community service like cleaning out port-a-potties. I saw that done once, and it ain’t pretty. Let’s just say it involves a big vacuum, horrendous smells, and brown shrapnel.

I say that’s perfect.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Target Trance

What is it about Target that makes you lose all control and spend hundreds more than you intended? Perhaps it has something to do with their signature red color. Maybe the color tricks your brain into thinking you have more money than you really do. Perhaps it's the fact that they make it so easy so you can load up on toilet paper, cute clothes and coffee creamer all in one place. Perhaps they are pumping extra oxygen into the building, so you suddenly feel refreshed and ready to shop. Whatever it is, I know I spent $300 yesterday.

I'm not the only one either...people around this country go to Target meaning to buy hair gel, but they leave with $100 worth of goods. How did that happen?? There's even a Facebook group you can join called, "I went to Target to buy shampoo, and I ended up spending $150." There are 108,065 members of that support group.

One of my girlfriends posted this on her FB account the other day, and it made me chuckle...
"Went to Target for razors, hair ties, and birthday cards. Got there and I realized they have cute swimsuits. And I need a new pair of sandals. I should buy that book. Always need windex. My dog would LOVE this bed....and toy...and new leash. Am I out of soft scrub? I love trail mix. Hmm, this brownie mix looks good. Have I really been here for an hour?"
She checked out and realized she forgot the razors, hair ties and birthday cards.

Ooh, I wonder if Target employees get discounts. If so, I totally need to work there.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Think before you type

When I talk to my friends who still work in television news, I'm reminded that it really is a thankless job. I know you aren't supposed to constantly be told how great you are, but in news, it's just the opposite. Not only are you not getting positive feedback, there's usually some boss, anchor or viewer who's quick to tell you you stink.

I remember a particular instance of putting my heart and soul into a story, and being really excited with how it turned out. But when I got back to the station, the only e-mail in my inbox regarding that show was one from a viewer telling me my blue blazer was ugly. Another time my photographer and I were trying to get video of a murder scene (but hours later, so it wasn't really a "scene" anymore), but we had a shotgun pulled on us, so as you can imagine, we bailed quickly. Later we were yelled at by our boss for not getting video. Apparently getting video of an empty field is worth losing a limb/life for.

Anyway, you get it. What's making the problem even worse for newscasters, politicians, actors and anyone else in the public eye is the anonymity of e-mails, message boards and comment sections on websites. People are quick to judge others while posting a comment because they feel safe under this veil of anonymity. Have you ever seen how ridiculous some of these comments are??

Last night I got on a news website that had a story about a man who died after holding his girlfriend hostage, leading police on a chase and then crashing his car. The comments were just ridiculous. One blamed President Obama for taking a vacation with his family. Yep, they implied it's his fault that the man was a criminal. Another person remarked that you should probably place the blame at a local level, like say, the mayor. Another blamed it on crack cocaine.

Really people?

Why do we even need comments after stories like that? Is someone really going to have great insight as to why the man did this?

To my blog readers: If you feel compelled to start giving your political rants or making snotty remarks in my comment section, please know I'll sic two ill-behaved Chihuahuas on you, and it won't be pretty.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

You'll pay what???

So about a month after the crazy fun chaos of a wedding settles down and you still have a smile on your face--you are suddenly thrust back into reality. The reality that you agreed to pay for 150 of your closest friends and family to eat heavily, drink unlimited amounts of alcohol and wipe their mouths on the finest linens. That reality hits you like a freight train when your credit card bills start rolling in. In one day, I got two credit card bills totaling, well, a lot. Let's just say I could pay an 18 year old's college tuition, and that's just the icing on the cupcake (we opted for cupcakes instead of cake because they are about 2/3's cheaper.)

The good news? I've already received one free flight with my Southwest credit card, I'm close to earning another one, and I've earned a ton of free gift cards from Discover.

With all the new federal laws, it seems like credit card companies are being more and more honest with consumers. On my Southwest card, the minimum payment was something like $200. Next to that though, it said if chose to pay the minimum it would take me....get this...32 years to pay it off! That's a whole lifetime! It also said in the end, I would end up paying more than double because of interest rates. Scary, but good information. It certainly makes you think twice about not paying off credit card rates right away.

In other news: Mike and I will not be able to afford kids. Sorry to our parents who really wanted us to have them.

Friday, August 13, 2010

A look back at Hurricane Charley

Wow, I realized today it's been exactly 6 years ago that as a reporter, I covered Hurricane Charley in Fort Myers, Florida. It was a category 4 storm, and the strongest to ever hit that part of Florida. It was also a Friday the 13th, which seemed very fitting.

I was 26, working for WINK-TV, and so scared. With hurricanes, you know for several days they are coming, which in many ways, I think is worse. For 5 or 6 days you prepare, have an upset stomach and can't sleep. I was worried the new condo I just bought would be demolished, or that my dog Bailey would die. Worse yet, I had feelings that it might be the end for me.

Because here's the thing: television news reporters and photographers are asked to do really stupid things in storms. We tell everyone to stay inside, yet we're reporting live from a deserted beach with debris flying around our heads. We tell people it's too unsafe to drive, yet we're driving in 100 mile per hour winds, and driving over power lines. We're telling you to stay away from windows, yet we're sitting in a live truck.

That day I remember thinking I had a sweet gig, because I was first sent to the Emergency Management Headquarters. It's the safest building in SW Florida, and also where every top firefighter, paramedic and police officer was stationed. But then about two hours before landfall, the bosses told my photographer and I to leave there and "hit the streets." We went back to the station first to get some stuff, and we saw the engineers boarding up the doors. That meant as soon as we left, we were locked out. I asked my boss where we should go if it got really bad, and he said a parking garage was probably the safest bet. I sat there and bawled, knowing I was getting kicked out of the building and that I might die.

Was I just being overly dramatic? Nope, 16 people lost their lives that day.

Here's the thing, if you're ever watching TV and think, "Wow, why is the reporter so stupid and standing out in the storm??!!," know that he or she agrees with you, but they have no choice.

And to think, people believe television news is so glamorous! That week I slept on the newsroom floor, used port-a-potties sans toilet paper and bathed in a swimming pool.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Congrats to Chelsea Clinton!

Well, it's official! Chelsea Clinton married boyfriend Marc Mezvinsky over the weekend. I've always felt a connection to Chelsea, perhaps because she and I both looked hideous for several years until we finally grew into ourselves. We also both got married in our 30's, perhaps because we had to wait until our braces were off and the emotional scars healed. I also met Bill Clinton when I was 14, and he totally winked at me. He was probably thinking, "Wow, you're as awkward as my daughter."

The truth is, I hadn't thought of Chelsea in years. Since she's not on Jersey Shore or Real Housewives of New York City, she's not really on my radar. But when I was watching Access Hollywood the other night, they were all over the story of her upcoming nuptials. Billy Bush said, "Now to the real story, who will Chelsea be wearing?" Really Billy? That's the real story? I think the real story is whether or not Bill hit on any of her bridesmaids.

Chelsea was apparently being stalked so much by the Paparazzi, she wore this ridiculous hat to her wedding gown fitting at Vera Wang. Here are my observations...

1. Actually Chelsea, the hat calls attention to you instead of disguising you. My guess is that if you'd worn a baseball cap and no make-up, no one would have known who you were or cared.

2. Plus who really cares if you're seen going into Vera Wang? Oscar De La Renta? I know I'm not buying an US Weekly just because your mug is on the front.

3. There must be WAY too many Paparazzi in the world if there are enough photographers to stalk you, Kate Gosselin, and Justin Bieber.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Believe it or not, Mike and I have been in our tiny, 660-square foot Chicago apartment for almost one year. It's so hard to believe that one year ago, we were schlepping our crap up 31 flights in what was nearly the end or our relationship. What is it about moving that sucks so bad? It could have something to do with the fact that you don't think you have a lot of stuff until you have to pack it up and move it up/down a flight/or flights of stairs. It could have something to do with the fact that your couch is suddenly 900 pounds and doesn't fit through any standard size doors. It could also do with the fact that after you move all your crap, you realize the hard work has just started, because now you have to find room for all your shoes.

Today we got a notice from our building that our lease is almost up, and we can choose to re-sign if we want. The bad news is that the move-in special we got 10 months ago that created cheaper rent (they called it a move-in special, I call it "recession delight") is now over, so our rent will jump to $1922 a month. What? That's a year people, not what we should be paying for a closet.

Mike and I most likely move to Lincoln Park where the rent is a little cheaper and we might be able to have more than one bedroom. (Holla!) So now the debate is whether or not to hire movers. I say yes to saving our marriage, but Mike says no, saying that we don't have all that much stuff. Need I remind him that moving out of a high-rise with people trying to steal your service elevator puts Jeannie in her unhappy place, and therefore she gets called a "Bitchy White Woman." (See October 5, 2009 post.)

Monday, August 9, 2010

Sixteen Candles and Jake Ryan=The best!

Recognize this house? If you're a true 80's fan, then you know it's Samatha Baker's house (a.k.a Molly Ringwald) in the John Hughes film "Sixteen Candles." During the opening scene of the movie, Hughes shows a paper boy throwing a newspaper towards this house, it sets of the alarm, and everyone wakes up. Funny thing is, in the movie there is also a Volkswagen parked out front in the exact same spot.

This is a house I've wanted to see for years because Sixteen Candles is truly my favorite movie. I've probably watched it 100 times. Online, it says people of all ages come to take a pic of this house, and sometimes lay in the grass out front where Long Duk Dong was found in his drunken stupor. Remember such great lines as, "No more Yanky my Wanky, the Donger need food!" How did Hughes even come up with that??

This house is in Evanston, Illinois in the 3000 block of Payne Street. It's near Northwestern University's Campus, in truly one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in this country. I told Mike, "I think this is where they invented Apple Pie." It's truly Americana.

So what is it about this movie that people, typically women, just love? In it, Jake Ryan is the object of Samatha's affection. He's the popular and totally hot high school senior, and Samatha is a nerdy and awkward sophomore. Throughout the movie, Jake slowly falls for Samatha, and in the end he picks her up in his red Porsche and they kiss sitting on top of his kitchen table, with a birthday cake and candles for her 16th birthday. Awe.

For years, women of all races and ages proclaim they love Jake Ryan! Celebs even wear t-shirts that say so. The Washington Post even did an article entitled, "Why real men can't hold a candle to Jake Ryan." In it it says that this movie gives women a false hope that the perfect good-looking man will fall for them, even if they're the dorky, wall-flower type. The article says women still swoon when they even just hear his name.

Yes, I'll admit it, I've been in love with Jake Ryan for 25 years. I first saw the movie when I was about 7 years old, and I've been hooked ever since. His cool hair, stylish clothes, coy smile, ridiculous good looks, and yes, the Porsche, made me fall hard.

Going to the house where he stood outside and rang the doorbell, asking Long Duk Dong where Samatha was, was a very cool experience for me. Even cooler, I got to go with my real-life Jake Ryan.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Up, please!

After living for nearly a year 31 floors up, I feel like I'm the master of the elevator. I've figured out elevators all across this town, and know which ones have doors that close no matter what, so you don't want to chance throwing a limb in between the doors. I also know which ones have sensors, so I can throw an arm or Chihuahua in front of them so they don't close. I always double check before getting on that it's actually going the direction I want it to go.

What I've noticed about many other Chicagoans is that they're a hot mess when it comes to elevators. Perhaps preoccupied by life, these people are never sure if the elevator is going up or down, and which floor they're getting off on.

Tonight Mike and I took the dogs outside, and as we were heading back upstairs we stopped on the 21st floor. A woman was waiting to get on, and we informed her we were going up. She politely smiled and got on anyway. Then as we began going upwards, she realized she meant to go down. We warned her!

Yesterday when I got on the elevator there was already a women inside, yet no buttons were pushed. That means she was just going to ride around from floor to floor until someone got in and hit Lobby.

And on more than one occasion I've seen someone hit floor 40 or higher. When I get off on floor 31, they distractedly follow me off the elevator. Then they cuss, and realize they got off too soon. They turn around, but it's too late, the doors have shut behind them. What are we, sheep?

Isn't it scary that some people are so distracted? Usually they are texting or listening to an Ipod. I hope when they finally get off the elevator they aren't getting into a car, because that would be scary.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

You can run but you can't hide!

Technology is making it increasingly hard to hide or be anonymous. When posting something on Twitter, you can add your location via GPS. When you're on Facebook, unless you block yourself, your friends can see you're logged on, and can send you instant messages. Same with Yahoo or G-mail accounts.

With Facebook, you can usually tell when your friends must be busy because they don't post much, or you know when they're likely bored because they are posting tons of stuff, like "TGIF!"

Facebook is also how you can tell if someone's avoiding you. If you send them a message, and don't hear back, you can see if they've made any recent posts. If they have, that means they've logged on, but are ignoring you. This technology is exactly how I know one of my friends is avoiding me. It's a weird situation. For a year before my wedding, she kept telling me how excited she was to come. She RSVP'd yes for her and her boyfriend. Then on the day of the wedding? They were no shows. Ouch. If you're familiar with how weddings work (surely you are by now with this blog!) you know that you have to give your final number of guests 3-7 days before the big event, and then you're stuck paying for them.

What makes it worse is that I never heard from her after that. No e-mail saying how sorry she was. So finally about a week ago, I sent her a Facebook message asking if she was okay, that I was worried she didn't come.


Here's the thing, I know she's okay because the weekend of the wedding she posted, "I just love the 4th of July," and recently she's posted that, "She has an awful headache!" or "She loves her dog so much!"

So if you're planning on blowing someone off, just remember in this Facebook age, you can run, but you can't hide!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Something I could do without

Do you ever get eaten alive by mosquitoes, but the person next to you thinks your crazy because they aren't getting a single bite? Annoying. I can be around 100 people, but I'm the "chosen one."

On my way to work today I got two bites, including one of my forehead that caused a nice big, red bump. Pretty. Why are mosquitoes even in Chicago? They seem more likely residents of small towns like Effingham, Illinois. (Isn't Effingham a funny word? It's like you're trying to throw out the F bomb, but you put ham at the end to clean it up.)

When Mike and I enjoyed a movie in the park the other night (16 Candles. My favorite! And filmed in Chicago!) I got 10 bites on my legs, arms, even my middle finger. Mike got? None. The day before our wedding I got a nice one on my eyelid. It was bright red and swollen, which is every bride's dream.

So I did a little research and found out they are attracted to certain natural odors people put off. Apparently some people put off "good odors" which they like. They are also attracted to flowery scents. I'm almost always wearing a fruity or flowery Bath and Body Works lotion, so that helps explain it. I also read that if you eat certain foods like salty foods, i.e. chips, or foods high in potassium, they are more likely to bite. Guess what my dinner was last night? Doritos and a banana. Hah! Apparently, mosquitoes don't really bite, they suck out your blood. Ew! I'm pretty sure I need that blood! Also, female mosquitoes need blood for their eggs, so females are the only ones that "bite." No surprises there.

I googled "Why are mosquitoes needed?" and the best answer I found is that they are food to other animals and insects like bats and spiders.

"Okay God, it will be tough, but I'm okay if you take away all mosquitoes, bats and spiders.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Brazilian Baby Dancing Samba

Occasionally YouTube provides a good laugh, or a moment of "How did they do that?" but this video may be the funniest thing I've ever seen. Enjoy! This should make your week a whole lot better. (Please watch the whole thing, it's only like 3 minutes long)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

My proposal advice

I love sharing the story of how Mike proposed to me. It was in Chicago two years ago over the July 4th weekend. We were walking to dinner, when he asked me to walk into the courtyard of a beautiful church with him. It's the 4th Presbyterian Church on Michigan Ave., across from the Hancock Building. I was looking at the fountain in the middle and when I turned around, he was on one knee. Then when I looked up, our families began walking in one by one underneath the archways. They had all flown into/or driven to Chicago to surprise me! I cried harder with each new person I saw. We then took horse-drawn carriages to dinner at Smith & Wollensky's on the river. This picture was taken there. Awe, so romantic. Mike? He scored big points with that proposal. Women still cry when I tell them the story.

What made me think of this is a girl from work got engaged over the weekend, so we were all sharing our engagement stories with each other yesterday. Come to find out she got asked to be her boyfriend's wife in the most romantic spot you can think of for a proposal: in bed.

Ugh, I hate the "in bed" proposal stories! Can't these guys come up with anything more creative? Whenever someone shares this kind of story, you suddenly begin thinking they were probably naked, living in sin, and the guy got caught up in the moment, and blurted out, "Marry me!" I know you're thinking the same thing. Then when they tell their parents and grandparents the story, the first thing they'll think of is that their little girl isn't pure anymore, when they should be thinking how excited they are.

So men: I'm not saying you have to spend a ton of money, but get a little more creative than just being in your bedroom. You need to remember, you'll be telling this story for years to come, including to your children. Do you really want the kiddos having bad thoughts of mommy and daddy?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Why do I keep missing the excitement?

Our neighborhood was once again the hot spot for filming "Transformers 3." If you're a regular blog follower, you know they were shooting scenes for the movie a couple of weeks ago in our 'hood. Mike and I were super excited...but we missed the whole thing. We apparently slept through the helicopter/parachuting scene in the park right outside our window. Oops!

On Thursday, Michael Bay brought the crew back to our
neighborhood to shoot more scenes. Up until a few years ago, this area was a golf course, hence why there's so much green space right smack dab in the middle of a city. It's great for our dogs, and apparently stuntmen jumping out of helicopters. Last last week, there was another action packed scene involving parachuters, helicopters, explosions and debris.

What was it like?
According to my neighbors, it was "wicked awesome." But I, of course, missed it. I was too busy buying $10 shirts at H&M on Michigan Avenue. Dang it!

I did have one scary moment though. I was taking pictures of this leftover debris, when I saw the security guard coming towards me. This was our encounter...

Him: "Did you just take a picture?"
Me: "Yes."
Him: "Of what?"
Me: "Um, the debris over there."
Him: "That right there?" (He points to it)
Me: "Yes."
Him: "I'm sorry, I'm going to have to take your film."
Me: "What??"
Him: "I'm sorry, you can't take pictures, I'm going to have to take your film."
Me: "Well, it's not a film camera. Do you want me to delete the pictures?"
Him: "Yes."

I started getting my camera out, and without him even having to tell me why, my apparent fear of authority lead me to nearly delete the pictures. Then he flashed a big smile and said, "Ha, ha. Just f***ing with you!"

He got me good. I thought I had just threatened national security or something, because Michael Bay can cause worldly doom. (Think Armageddon)