I’m in somebody’s top ten. Rather, this blog is.
I know, right? This Is Jasmine is on The Core’s list of top ten UChicago blogs.
So. Maria started college with me in the early 90s. She had to take a break for a few years, then eventually made her way back to school, worked her ass off, and graduated in 2003. For some reason, there was a kerfuffle that wasn’t a kerfuffle but she still ended up not getting her diploma.
Until today. A quick visit to the University registrar, where her diploma was rescued from the safe where it’s been waiting all this time.
1. 10 year college reunion was this weekend. My hair was a big old mess on account of the humidity and the fact that I need a haircut. I had a good time. Notes to come shortly.
2. Jacinda and I are going to collaborate on a play about the R. Kelly trial. We’ve come up with a title: “Theatre of Ignorance Presents: ‘R Town'”, so naturally it’s going to be modeled after “Our Town”. The character of the narrator is going to be based on Jacinda’s mom. Oh, and it’s going to be puppets.
3. I was talking to Kathy yesterday about that Obama rally in Oregon that drew 75,000 people, and how some folks were saying that most of them were really just there for a free concert or some shite. Which may be true, but who has the drawing power to pull 75,000? Kathy thinks my following comment should be my new e-mail signature: “The only person who could do that shit is James Brown, and he’s dead. That ain’t James Brown, that’s Al Sharpton in a corset!”
5. I am still enjoying ‘Doctor Who’, which is nice because it’s summer and there’s fuck all to watch on television. When I was home Saturday morning, I lay in bed and watched ‘Blink’ instead of installing my air conditioner. Have you seen this episode? It’s very light on actual Who-jinks but very scary. SCARY!
6. Back to reunion: attended the big campus party in the fancy gym. It was really nice — good food, beer and wine only, and lounge areas in each corner featuring leather couches and fake bookcases. Hilarious. The band actually played “Falling Slowly”. I didn’t dance, as I had too much gossiping to do. We tried to have a drink at Jimmy’s afterwards (where we saw Father Bob, aka Matt Calhoun, tending bar!) but it was too crowded with drunk seniors (class of ’08 and class of ’68, heh) and Jimmy’s still doesn’t have a/c.
7. Belated birthday snaps go out to the following: Adrienne, Jenny, Rozi, and Nadine.
8. Nick was in town last week to hang with a friend who had to spend a few days at the hospital. Nick and I managed to have dinner at Cafe Iberico — delicious, of course.
9. I must now declare it to be the summer of fruity drinks. White and red sangria, frozen margaritas, pina coladas, planter’s punch. Pimm’s Cup! A sweet mixture of Arnold Palmer and Starbucks passion tea lemonade courses through my veins. It’s delicious.
10. Sean Stevenson has returned from his trip to New Zealand. We can begin writing again. But ask him about his trip, as well as obscure LOTR trivia. I’m sure he’s got lots to say.
Feist – Now At Last; Sheena Easton – Strut; Lynda Barry – Naked Ladies
I wait. I’m a waiter. I wait for things to happen to me. Which is interesting considering how much I dislike surprises. What I’ve been waiting for these past few months, and all my life, it feels like, is inspiration to strike. Or someone like Albus Dumbledore to explain life and stuff to me. Also to explain the popularity of Crocs, “The Closer” on TNT, and the tofu scramble.
I like to say that the reason there was no flip front for six months was because I had writer’s block. Words failed me when I tried to conjure them. In truth, it wasn’t the words. It was me. I got lazy. I got sad. I got bored. I got distracted. I got busy. I got fat(ter). Incidentally, I wasn’t going to the gym, either. So I got more sad.
And then I was thinking about that stupid question from “Office Space”, the one where whatever you say you’ll do if you had $1,000,000, that’s what you should be doing for a job. The problem with that question is that I have no decent answer to that. I could invest it and live (if a bit modestly) off the interest. Open a business. Get it changed into $1 bills and roll around in it. None of these answers provoke a real passionate answer.
I think what I prefer is that bit from High Fidelity where Rob and Laura are discussing Rob’s five dream jobs:
I have a list, which I’m not sharing, because I don’t want to jinx it. Which is stupid, but then again, I can be pretty stupid sometimes. Okay, most times, but whatever.
I thought about writing a poem to sum up the missing months, but decided instead that because I’m a crappy poet, I thought I’d write notes on photographs I’ve uploaded to my Flickr stream instead.
Note: the below only gets us through June 6. Which still leaves the whole summer to recap. Which I will most likely do some time this weekend. Which is appropriate, as to me Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer. Oh boo hoo.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/424888949: Rozi’s sister Miriam was in town for her birthday, so I joined them for a birthday dinner at Japonais. This is only the second time I’ve been there. Not a cheap meal, but totally worth it for the food, the company, and, dare I say it, the ambiance. The room is full of 40-something ladies sporting gigantic acrylic nails and enormous breast implants. I’m pretty bad at subtly checking people out, so the table next to us was on to me once I got started. I suppose I deserved the dirty looks but I’m like a kid when it comes to obvious non-artful fakery — I cannot look away and I cannot shut up.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/428775419: Maria beaming. I don’t know anyone else who beams so often or so well.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/434681980: I should have spent that last weekend in the Oakley apartment packing and cleaning but instead I watched television and had brunch at Reza’s. Afterwards, people came over to hang out. In the back of my mind, I was freaking out about two things: not packing in time for my flight on Thursday, and throwing out stuff I didn’t mean to. As it was, the packing went fine, though I felt bad that Molly, her boyfriend, her sister and sister’s husband had to throw out so much of my stuff for me. Those Ohioans — so generous. And a belated thanks to those of you who offered boxes, advice, etc. Those last days where a stressful blur.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/439394778: I stayed up until midnight boxing up the last of my shit. Those boxes were arranged in a circle around my bed, which was still in my room. I wasn’t coming back to Chicago until after the owners of the newly condo-ized apartment began demolition. They’d be knocking down everything in the apartment around my room, so as long as my shit was covered by a tarp, and was out as soon as I returned, I could keep it there after April 1. So I left for LA with my fingers crossed that my stuff would survive mallets and debris. I kept my fingers crossed that the movers I hired to move stuff to my new studio in Lakeview would up on time. I kept my fingers crossed that the studio wasn’t a bad idea, and that Lakeview with its amenities would be enough to make up for the fact that I am no longer within walking distance of Honey #1 BBQ, Margie’s Candies, Arturo’s, the fancy new library on Milwaukee, Danny’s market (best guacamole), and Irazu. I stopped panicking as soon as I got to the airport and decided to spend 15,000 frequent flier miles on upgrading to first class. Which is not a bad idea for a 4 hour long flight. There was breakfast, and wide leather seats. The guy next to me was travelling with his wife and three young daughters who were kept quiet by the family laptop playing a DVD of “Finding Nemo”. I watched “The Office” on my own MacBook and watched the landscape. At LAX, Amanda got me and drove us to her parents’ house. The parents were lovely, taking us to lunch at this delicious taco stand near their house. We couldn’t take very long, as Amanda and I had to get back to Amanda’s house in Silver Lake before an afternoon taping of “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson”. At Amanda’s, I dropped off my bag, Amanda and I applied fresh lip gloss. I admired the view and the lighting in the purple bathroom before we drove to to CBS Television City for the taping. At Television City, there are long benches where audience members wait before being admitted to tapings of shows like “The Price Is right” and “The Tyra Banks Show”. Tyra’s show had all manner of young ladies in short skirts and high heels jiggling slowly towards the studio. One of the ladies was even on stilts. The audience of “The Late Late Show” was not as colorful, though we did seem to have an inordinately high number of Norwegian tourists in our midst. Ice Cube was the guest, there was a skit, and candy thrown to us during set-ups. The day ended with dinner at the Electric Lotus, a delicious Indian restaurant, and making plans for Saturday with Celi, who would not be able to join us for our trip to Disneyland the next day.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/440964989: This is Amanda. Isn’t she cute? Amanda is the angel who let me sleep in her guest bedroom, went to Disneyland with me, and spoke in a Scottish accent to crack me up while we waited on lines for rides and stuff. Speaking of rides and stuff, this is a list of what we rode and the order in which we rode them:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/441568432: Amanda had morning docent training at Hollyhock House, so I had the house to myself. I had Electric Lotus leftovers for breakfast. I read news on the web. I showered and invited Celi over to hang out and wait for Amanda. When Amanda returned, we drove to Spitz for doner kebabs. Amanda tried on Celi’s ginormous bamboo doorknocker earrings while we ate our lunch in the sun. Refilling our cups with soda, we headed to Pasadena to window shop at Macy’s. It’s not like there aren’t other Macy’s in LA, but this was the good one. And it was, even though none of us ended up buying anything. I thought Amanda got close with some cute dresses, but we all walked away empty-handed. We met Beto and his girlfriend at The Grove for dinner, sitting down for steak and other kinds of roast beast at the Wood Rance BBQ & Grill. I had the sirloin salad, which was as protein-tastic as the name implies. No carbs! Which was great, because I ended up getting ice cream at the farmer’s market next door. Driving home, the three of us ended up getting into a pretty intense talk about what else? boys before calling it a night.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/443042534: This is my perfect Sunday morning breakfast from Alcove, which is where Amanda took me after we got our nails done. No celebs were spotted at Alcove (or the nail place for that matter, though it was a lovely spot in Silver Lake), but plenty of young couples with parents in tow. And a Scientology center across the street. We spent the afternoon checking out the Saul Bass exhibit at the Skirball before Amanda dropped me off at Nate and Celi’s for the rest of my vacation.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/444339417: With Celi off to work and Nate running errands, I had a key to the house and directions towards the Pier, the Third Street Promenade, and Venice Beach, each a short walk away. At the end of Nate and Celi’s street, I found Cha Cha Chicken, which featured a cheap, delicious jerk chicken meal, and a mural of nudists on the wall behind the juice bar. Alrighty. Hit the Pier afterwards, where I had a vanilla latte from the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf stand. I stared at the ocean and ran away from seagulls. I bought a postcard. I thought about riding the carousel, but there’s something about being the lone adult on a carousel that struck me as being so “Strangers On A Train”, so I made for Third Street where I had a snack on the curb, watched people walk by, and flipped through magazines before going to a late afternoon showing of “Blades Of Glory”. Dinner that night was chicken escabeche and kale, made by Nate.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/445301586: This hidden space invader greeted me at the end of a long day spent walking down the beach towards Venice. Venice was a bit grotty, though it probably won’t be for long, as there were many “upscale” condo buildings under construction. Somewhat disgusted, I made it back to Nate and Celi’s in time for Christina to pick me up. We drove up to the Getty, supposedly to look at art though we ended up having a snack and talking about boys. Dinner that night was sushi at a neighborhood joint, followed by a “yogurt” from the Pinkberry in Marina Del Rey. It was kind of a cold night, as the skinny girl in the sundress standing on line behind us kept yelling, more to herself than to her friends. Oh, and as if that wasn’t annoying already, she kept doing it in this fake-sounding Australian accent.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/446586987: Jesus, my thighs look huge. Nate drove me to the airport in the morning. I was able to buy a box of See’s before my flight back to ORD. No chance of an upgrade to first, as the plane was on a long-haul to CDG, and first was full of important looking entertainment types and their bored-looking children. I landed in Chicago that afternoon, with no home to go to. My stuff back at the old apartment, and my new place was empty. Thankfully, I’d gotten a cheap hotel room through Hotwire, so I at least had someplace to sleep for a couple of nights before me and my stuff could move in for good. The hotel was near Oysy, and featured room service from the Weber Grill, but I still ended up snagging dinner from the Jewel across the street before falling fast asleep.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/451185994: The first weekend of April was a blur. After moving into my new place on Holy Thursday (thanks, Starving Artists Moving Company, for another quick and inexpensive move), I spent Good Friday unpacking and napping. I missed the Seven Last Words service at Trinity, but I saw a bunch of people for dinner the following day. Barbecue at Fat Willie’s followed by “Blades of Glory” (yes, again) at the movie theater across the street. I spent the night at Kathy’s, so we could get up early Easter Morning for:
Easter tends to be a remarkable day. Resurrection, life, and then there are eggs! Eggs at breakfast, hatching chicks at the MSI. The Body Worlds exhibit is strange but engrossing (emphasis on the word “gross”).
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/460956673: Iggy and the Stooges with Jeff and his friend whose name I forget. I forgot my camera, which is a shame because my cameraphone didn’t get a good shot of the guy who wore a chainmail shirt. Bwahahahahahahaha.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/476325594: Michelle was in town visiting her mom, so we got to hang out. Naturally, I don’t have any pictures of us at my apartment, or eating fish and chips at the Duke of Perth, but doesn’t my waffle from Baladoche look amazing?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/489390412: Chris and Sarah eloped in April. Being as none of us were there, they had a dinner for their friends at Cyrano’s Bistrot. It was delicious, and I nearly made myself sick, I was laughing so hard.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/489416229: Went to Christine’s to make dinner (fettucine carbonara — see recipe at http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Fettuccini-Carbonara/Detail.aspx) and watch “The Motel”. Both were excellent.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/495251317: Looptopia had me and Kathy scrambling all over the loop for free performances and activities that kicked off at 5:00 pm Friday and would not end until 10:00 am the following Saturday morning. It was very cold and windy, so I had chapped knees as we looked for a place to warm up. We ended up at the Art Institute which had all manner of cool tours which we ended up missing.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/496748524: Mother’s Day. I got my mom a parasol and flowers. She loved both, and said that she’s been getting tons of compliments on the parasol.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/502663519: CWS over NYY, 4-1. A lovely way to spend a Thursday afternoon.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/514310704: Kathy and I hit the home opener of the Chicago Sky at UIC. They played the LA Sparks, which you may remember me telling you is owned by Kathy’s friend Kathy. It was a fun time — UIC Pavilion wasn’t sold out, but there looked to be a healthy amount of people. Too bad the Sky lost.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/514339599: Nick and Nadine came in to see their friend Jeremy, who was in the hospital (read all about it here: http://jeremylawrence.blogspot.com). They went straight to the airport after landing, and wound up at my place late. We had some Thai food before falling asleep. While they spent that Saturday at the hospital, Joe and I joined Kathy at Tasneem’s for a picnic that was driven indoors by the rain. We played Apples and Oranges, which is my new favorite board game which is not Scrabble. I made it home in time to let Nick and Nadine in after an afternoon with Jeremy, then scampered off to Sing-A-Long “Grease” at the Music Box with Christine, Gail, and a bunch of Gail’s friends.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/518269531: Jacinda spent Memorial Day house-sitting in Lincoln Park, so I went to visit her. The house was beautiful and, most importantly, very comfortable. Also, there were dogs — Lola, an insane Yorkie puppy, and Rita, the sweetest dog in the world. When I wasn’t cracking up over the dogs, Jacinda and I had takeout and watched a season 1 “Hex” marathon on BBC America. It was brilliant.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasmine/sets/72157600302705914/: Alumni Weekend! Not my 10th, but Kevin and Joe’s. Sean was in town for this, so we made the trek to Hyde Park, arriving in time for Convocation. The address was given by James Watson, who was… interesting. I didn’t go to any of the afternoon sessions, as my long lunch at Jimmy’s turned somewhat boozy. Which is what happens with a pitcher of Leinenkugel Red, two large orders of fries, and no air conditioning. Sean went off to an afternoon lecture while I, along with Joe, Jacinda, Kevin, and Gabe, ended up wandering campus:
“Oh, I’m so nervous. If I’m not funny, I won’t be able to live with myself.”
“Well, then you’ll have to get another apartment, won’t you?”
Depeche Mode – Route 66; Maxwell – This Woman’s Work; Al Green – I Want to Hold Your Hand; Rahzel – Seven Nation Army; Me’Shell Ndegeocello – Who Is He (And What Is He To You); The Rolling Stones – Moonlight Mile
Verisimilitude Test: Is This Really the City You Know?
Let us frolic in my totally dope blanket fort
BILLY SUNDAY’s Easy Guide To Meeting A Summer Jumpoff…
Scary Scadshows: Can You Tell That A Woman Is Single And Unlaid Just From Her Apartment?
America’s next top mohel
‘Glamour’ Editor To Lady Lawyers: Being Black Is Kinda A Corporate “Don’t”
My friend Joe is selling his condo. It’s in Lincoln Square! It looks cute! Check it out!
The U of C got $100 million for financial aid from an anonymous alumni donor. That’s a lot of 0’s.
After I got over the initial shock (which I did by checking how much I owe in student loans), my friend Maria e-mailed me to begin the guessing game. From the University’s announcement, it’s a male alum who graduated in the 80’s. I’m assuming a graduate of the College, though a grad of the GSB, the Law School, or the Lab School (K-12, for those of y’all who aren’t familiar) would be feasible.
Now that I know what I’ll be Googling during my lunch break (as well as checking the alumni directory), feel free to leave your guesses as comments.
In this month’s issue of the University of Chicago alumni magazine, there is a temporary tattoo stencil you can print out on page 9.
The tattoo, picture left, is meant to convey the love only a Maroon can have for the old alma mater when it is too hot (as it will be in June during Alumni weekend) to wear sleeves.
Now, I had graduated a few years before Don moved into what I had always thought of as Hugo Sonnenschein’s house of style, but no doubt I will miss him as an alumna of that superfine institute of higher education. While I appreciate him giving ample notice so the University can find its next capitán, what I wanna know is: how do I get in on President-finding committee?
I want to sit at a long oak table, gavel in hand, ready to scream “I object!” to every unworthy candidate whose c.v. comes across my lap. Okay, so maybe that’s my fantasy if I ever got a guest-starring role on Law & Order, but whatevs. I’m a fantastic shopper — I have a critical eye, unsparing wit, and am notoriously cheap! I’ve also got some potential candidates, and in no particular order, here they are: