(this is annie)

Erin and I are obsessed with becoming Missed Connections in the Chicago Reader. It's kind of pathetic, when you think about it. We probably pass up dozens of unmissed connections in real li fe because we're fixated on becoming a Missed Connection. Every Thursday, we e-mail each other to say, "Next time, someone will be looking for the tall bookworm who got off at Sheridan!" or "Just wait until somebody's looking for that quiet, clumsy girl." And that's great. I think we both know that the chances of becoming a MC, as we call them, are slim to none. Still, it's fun to pretend, fun to believe.

A while ago, Evan and I were talking about starting a band. He's always had this idea of me learning to play the guitar, but my hands are too small to strangle its neck. He laughed at my suggestion of me playing the tambourine. Anyway, now I am wondering if perhaps we'll actually make this little pipe dream come through one of these years. I'm sure we would have some great songs to write together. It would be a pop/post-rock/punk band, probably, with a few cheesy rock riffs here and there. We would be cal led Nest or something dumb like that. Or maybe Nest 76, like Sham 69, but not as cool when you think about it. If it were a shoegaze band, we could be called Limerance. I could go for a little limerance myself.

Brian is in New York now, and that's one more reason I sometimes wish I were, too. Hats off to you, Sholis, for your continued kindness. We must paint the town red again next time you're here or I'm there; we can't let it fade to pink.

on a roll like butter

The other night, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists played a rock show at the Empty Bottle. Adam and I had gone to Reckless for an in-store performance earlier in the day, but in my personal opinion, you can't get too much of that sound. The newish record is on Lookout, so go pick it up today, today, today. I had gone to the show by myself, so for about 15 minutes, I stood and watched the A-Set alone. Some guy kept shifting closer to me with every little indie rocker head-bob. I don't know if this was done on purpose, or if he was unaware of his encroachment on my Coke-sippin' territory. Either way, I was very happy to later find a human torch and Mr. Party J esus because awkwardness loves company, especially the company of good Michigan people.

Is it abnormal to have only two pairs of jeans? An informal poll says yes. A salesguy at the Crap (ho ho, that's THE GAP) seemed shocked, absolutely shocked when I said that I had only two pairs. He steered me toward some low-riders and some hiphug gers and some bunhuggers too. I told him that none of those would fit, but he believed otherwise. Five minutes later, in the fitting room, I laughed loudly because there's no way those pants would look good on anybody over 15.

The thing is, my two pairs of jeans are not so cute. I have had the first pair for a year and I've washed them maybe four times. Every time I wash them, they shrink a little bit, but only in the posterior. Perhaps the ol' rump is seeing the effect of one too many croissants. The other pair of jeans-what was I thinking? They are all stretchy and would probably be fine if I were, oh, Jennifer Lopez, and I liked showing off my derriere. But I'm not, and I don't, and the only reason I bought those flashdance ass pants was that they were something like 80% off. Dummy dummy.

So I went to the Diesel store today and found a lovely pair of jeans-just the right balance of messiness and crisp lines, none of that flared-leg hippie nonsense-but they cost $125. Call me a big cheapo, but that is too much money to pay for a pair of pan ts that can be ruined by some schmutz on a bus seat. A prisoner of skirts, I remain.

Haven't fed squirrels in months. Must get back to that. Must get back to basics and rule over acornian subjects with the crown and scepter of the Squirrel Emperor.

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sunless room

I am sitting in my sun room, finally using it for something other than growing plants and airing out old magazines. A few weeks ago, I bought an old school desk for $3 (an old… school desk, not an 'old school' desk, although technically both are probably the same). It's storming outside, and the drip-drip-plop-plop calms me.

It's amazing how easily old things make me happy. This soul was meant for a different era. My furniture is half assemble-it-yo'self garbage that serves its purpose, but it isn't what I'd like in my nest. The rest is mostly midcentury: a Heywood Wakefield side table, a dull maroon vinyl sofa, a blue Eames swivel chair ($5!), a "cities of the world" folding table, the aforementioned desk. Materialism aside, these pieces are comforting; they erase evidence of our hurried, cheapened, polluted culture.

Speaking of comfort, I bought a scooter about a month ago. It was the most financially imprudent-and most fun-decision I've made in years, maybe ever. After dilly-dallying over what kind to buy (new or vintage? how many CCs? what color?) I chose a new Ves pa. Her name is Vespy, and she's a smooth shade of ivory with a blue seat. The helmet is red, the ride is smooth, and it never fails to make me happy. If you value fun (but not money) and you can handle the mods looking down on your scoot, go buy one. Sim ple joy, and no more bus creepies for a while.

Tonight after work, it was too late to drive down Halsted past Cabrini, so I drove into the Loop and then up LaSalle. (Yes, I know I am a big wuss, but if your wallet had been ganked at 1200N/800W, you wouldn't want to head that way if you didn't h ave to.) Anyway:

The present thunderstorm was beginning to stir, mostly just grumbling and flashing the sky with lightning. It was magnificent to watch it slash the darkness, silhouetting buildings and reminding everyone that we're weak compared to the weather.

I met someone the other night who is perhaps the most beautiful creature I've seen since moving here. Stunningly, simply, subconsciously attractive yet seemingly unaware of genetic giftedness. Despite all that, I didn't lapse into Weirdo Mode. Usually, be autiful people make me uberconscious of my overbite and Noriegan facial tendencies, but this time I actually felt perfectly settled. Chalk one up for self-esteem, chalk one up for A. Grodecki.

Confidential from KW to everybody's favorite Newsweek journalist/K biographer: It can't, won't always be comme ca. Necessary roughness and all that mess. You're that Kenny Rogers song, if you know what I'm saying. AND I THINK YOU DO.


say hello

    it's anniet at gmail.


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