Friday, October 30, 2009

Dress Up Time

"Clothes make a statement. Costumes tell a story."

-Mason Cooley, college professor

What's your story this weekend?!

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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Webster It...

My friend just wrote me from Seattle and told me my blog was cathartic. After consulting Mr. Webster... I laughed. Look it up... you might laugh too.

Well played, Seattle. Well played.

Watch out B-M Purge Week... I'm ready... with a ready vocabulary.

Any more words I can over-use that week?
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B-M Purge Week

Before I forget, I need to document that I will soon be forced to participate in 2009 B-M Purge Week. Yes, this is an official week in my office. And they have posted signs in the bathroom stalls, reminding us when we should purge of our un-needed B-M materials on a specific week in November. (insert giggle #1)

Does anyone else find the choice of words hysterically funny? And slightly inappropriate to be used inside of an agency known for its strong communication skills? People pay us to come up with the right words for the right situations. I think we failed... or won... in this particular instance. I would give 100 percent credit to whoever came up with that... but something tells me they weren't thinking about the double meaning. (insert giggle #2)

Am I in 6th grade? Perhaps... but it makes me giggle every time I go into the bathroom. Which is kind of awkward for the person in the next stall...

I love Office Culture :) ...

Anyways... off to the bathroom to purge... I mean...
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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Phantom of the Staircase

I have to say... I feel bad for smokers.

I feel bad that they are voluntarily inhaling carcinogens in 2010... when there are more proactive non-smoking groups and information about the dangers of smoking than there elementary schools [that is clearly a made up comparison, based on nothing.... but you get my point]

I feel bad that they always seemed stressed out... until they have a cigarette.

I feel bad that the annoyance of second hand smoke has caused state-wide laws against smoking in public and forced them to go outside on cold, rainy, snowy days.

I feel bad that they have an extra tax... and that their clothes smell the next day.... and when people refuse to kiss their ash-tray mouths.

And I especially feel bad when they choose to live in a high rise... and are too tired to walk to the elevators to hit #1 and smoke outside when it's cold and rainy.

But more than anything I feel bad for my apartment right now that has been overtaken by smoke from the staircase....from X smoker's unfortunate habit that now has morphed into my #1 annoyance of 1350 N. Lake Shore Dr. This Phantom Smoker puffed enough nicoteine tonight to fill a 22-floor staircase.

For the love of fresh air. I just opened my window... and it's raining and 40 degrees. I haven't done that since my friend accidentally sprayed mace in my apartment back on Cornelia Ave... which deserved, at the time, an entirely separate blog.

I mean... seriously... in the words of Stephanie Tanner, "How rude!"

So my annoyance resulted in a second call on this subject to management about the Phantom of the Staircase. Call me the cranky cat lady from the 8th floor, but I'm not a fan of my apartment smelling like a frat house. Can you blame me? And better question, will they/can they do anything about this? Not sure... but maybe a return phone call would be nice. Or one of those elevator signs. Like when someone brought in an un-registered dog. That was all over the signage.

I say...bring on all the unregistered dogs you want... I would just like a smoke-free room, please. Thank you.

Anyone else deal with this at all in Chicago high rises?
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Thursday, October 22, 2009

A Lesson in Flag Football

Flag football. Another initiative I took on this fall to broaden my horizons and sports knowledge base (can you tell I've been writing a new biz doc all day today??). Spring season... it rained for a month straight. Unfortunately we were on the turf fields... so they never called a game. It could be 45 degrees and raining and we were playing. For a first timer... this was one step up from hell. Actually, for a second timer... it still would've been a painful experience. I'm not a varsity player. I'm not in gear or even have cleats. I want to catch the ball... maybe score one or two times... and then go get drinks with the team. Basically... it's not worth pneumonia. Or even a cold.

I discovered the key to avoiding that situation... fall flag football. In the fall, the soccer teams take over the turf field... and leave the flag football teams on the softball fields. Point being... when it's raining - as it has the past four weeks - they call the game. This may mean we will be playing fall flag football until January... but if that avoids cold rain... I'm game. I would rather roll around in snow or frost than a muddy, rainy mess.

So, in the meantime, we'll continue our team meetings at Corcoran's...and our team captain Jim, every week, will start to play match maker after three drinks. It's inevitable... but these are the plays we've learned this season. Just as if we were actually playing we might learn how to catch better or throw longer, in these meeting we've learned how to intercept the conversation... and that's a life lesson that can't be taught on the field.  :) 

Anyone else not playing flag football this season?? Do tell...
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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Kick me when I'm down...

When I set up my Google homepage, I included a daily horoscope in there for sheer entertainment and curiosity. Sometimes those suckers are right on! But every day I'm slightly shocked about how disheartening this one paragraph often is. Tough love, if you will. But do you really want to hear tough love from the stars?? Perhaps I should remove this... but I am a slight masochist... and honestly...they entertain me.

Anyways... had to share today's post... because my reaction was, "REALLY!? Way to kick me when I'm down..."

"You may have had a few days of intense interactions with others, yet the lack of any real romance on your horizon could be the source of your unhappiness. Fortunately, you can shift your attention and find satisfaction professionally..."

There are so many things I could say about those two sentences... but it looks like, for now, I'm the cat lady who needs to shift focus and talk more about SPAM. Not helping my romantic life :)

Until tomorrow...
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Monday, October 19, 2009

Reflections from the Cat Lady

As I talked to my cousin (the-new-mom) Jenny tonight, I started thinking... sharing an apartment with an overweight cat on the Adkins diet is much like having a newborn in your room. Unfortunately for me, my cat's LBs are not shedding... and this four-legged baby is not growing up anytime soon. She's growing. Just not growing up.

So these next few months, I will relate to someone else who rolls out of bed at 4:30 AM to feed her little one.  And come six months from now, I hope to also share the glory of sleeping eight consecutive hours without waking up to nails on my closet door or paws on my stomach. Or crazy high-pitched animal crying. 

Something tells me when little Anna wakes Jenny up, she's not reaching for the water bottle to spray her quiet. Or throwing pillows at her mid-sleep... Or putting her in the kitchen with water and a litter box. When it's not an animal, I believe that is abuse. Perhaps I shouldn't start lending any parenting advice. 

Sleep tight to the rest of the world. One day Moxie will grow down... Anna will grow up.. and both Jenny and I will get the REM sleep that we need :) 

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Winner for a Moment

I admit. Me joining a fantasy football league was a bit out of my element... but with each week, I've been learning the ropes, trading players and monitoring my status. Yesterday, I logged on to find 3/4 of my team was on status for a BYE week. I put Payton Manning on the bench, dropped Brady Quinn (b/c let's face it... the Browns suck) and brought in Brett Favre for my QB for the week. I switched a few others... and felt like I had a strong group for week 6.

With confidence, I checked my standing and patted myself on the back for being #2 in my league. Number two. I even texted my brother with pride. And maybe did a small victory dance around my living room. 

I headed up to Wrigleyville to watch the games at Murphy's with my friends Joanna and Jake. Before leaving their apartment, I had Joanna check the standings. Because as much as I was excited, there was a part of me that didn't believe it. 

She logs on... and I immediately figured it out. I was controlling my team from the wrong Web site. Week 2 the head of our league changed our site from MSN to Yahoo. And when I was pulling up the site via gmail, the MSN site was the first to come up. So I never switched.

So, no... I'm not #2... I'm #8. And after this week... I'm most likely #10.... since Peyton was my QB...and the rest of my team was either on BYE or injured. Ex. cell. ent. 

Rookie mistake? Maybe. But I'm ready for next year I suppose... and I have a LOT of making up to do these next couple months!

How are everyone else's teams doing?? Anyone really #2... or better yet, #1?
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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My Weekend Unplugged

This past weekend I packed my bags and headed to Kansas City with my mom to visit my cousins, their babies and my aunt and uncle. As much as I love Chicago, I needed a break. I needed a break from everything normal... and this trip couldn't have come at a better time. I decided to unplug from Twitter... from Facebook... and from my blog... and just enjoy my time with the fam.

Beyond meeting little three-week old Anna Colleen for the first time, one of the highlights for me was getting to know my cousin Anne's little girl, Kate. Kate is a year and a half years old. And she is living the life. She lives in a world where there is no such thing as ROI, no sales numbers to hit or no budgets to handle. There are no lay offs... no dating games... and no rumors... 

You meet Kate... and she will love you. And if you don't love her... she won't understand. She WILL notice if you aren't watching her as she is playing. Or if you don't laugh at her being silly... She will notice when you go to work and "do business" or run into the store to "get your money back." (Tawyeen, you do business??? Tawyeen... get your money back??) She will answer you with the last word of your question if she doesn't know the answer ('Do you know what your dad's company is, Kate?' - 'Is?'). And she will notice when you're gone (Tawyeen... where's Tawyeen?? Up? Outdoors?). 

It's refreshing to remember that everyone starts off as a Kate... That co-worker that frustrates you everyday was once a 1 1/2 year old who considered happiness twirling around in a bowa to the "Mama Mia" soundtrack. That guy who stole the cab from you that day it was raining was once a little boy who ran to the window every Wednesday morning to watch the garbage truck... 

That innocence is brief, but something you'll only witness or appreciate when you're unplugged. So while taking a sabbatical from Facebook and Twitter caused me to be out of touch with the current news of the weekend... I was emotionally touched by a three week old... who had perfect peanut head, future piano fingers and adorable blue eyes... and a curly-haired little girl who reminded me how easy it should be to love and be loved.

Totally cheese-irific post today... but, what can I say, I was feeling the love. And a little sad to return to the reality of ROIs, budgets and b-s :) 

Anyone else have a baby-tastic weekend?

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Friday, October 9, 2009

Notable Quotables

"And yet, to say the truth, reason and love keep little company together nowadays."
-William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream
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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

What We Didn't See at the 5k...

Although, clearly, we were right behind this elite runner, we had to catch the highlights of this monumental finish on FOX. Our one fan, Jake, however, couldn't stop talking about the surprise finish. Talk about running to the alter...

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Notable Quotables

"We don't see things as they are. We see things as we are."
-Anais Nin, French writer and diarist
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Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bucktown 5k

This morning my friends Joanna, Kristine and I sported up in our best running attire and trekked it out to Bucktown for their annual 5k. The three of us joined 4,000 runners for the 3.1 mile race... 3,000+ of those people are just 7 days away from running the LaSalle Bank marathon next weekend. We, however, were just running to workout together and have a reason for brunch. 

Not going to lie, this morning, as I waited for the 151, the breeze on Lake Shore Drive made me wonder for a second if this was a good idea. But as we drove further away from the lake, the temperature became more and more bearable. 

And really, it was the perfect weather for a run... but because it takes me a long time to warm up... I think I was just starting to feel comfortable as we crossed the finish line... 

But it was all worth it for the Feast Grand Slam and a pitcher of Love freaking delish :)

Other great (and not-so-great) things we discovered on our journey to Bucktown:
  • Neighborhoods are gorgeous
  • Dogs and babies are everywhere - more than Southport...
  • Baby strollers are hazardous to runners
  • Hot Chocolate isn't open until 10 a.m. on Sunday
  • Mimosas aren't served until 10 a.m. on Sunday
  • People actually wake up before 10 a.m. on Sunday...despite not being able to brunch before then
Anyone else saunter over to B-town this morning?? 
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Friday, October 2, 2009


Chicago was eliminated from the first round of voting for hosting the 2016 Olympics.

I guess we have to give up our dreams of the Gold line running through the Olympic village and our vacations to Hawaii.... and meeting Russian gymnasts.

There's always 2032?!
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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Decision Day: 2016

Tomorrow is a big day for the Windy City. Chicagoans will find out if we will host the 2016 Olympics. As with every major highly-publicized decision - Oprah vs. Michigan Ave, Drew Peterson vs. All His Wives, The City vs. South Side Parade -  Chicago is torn. But in the end, we have to remember that even if we end up paying $10,000 (each) in extra taxes... we'll make that back, plus some, in a week when all of us rent our apartments out to Russian gymnasts and take the first flight to Hawaii for a week... to watch the Olympics from our lanais with cocktails in hand.

To either celebrate or commiserate this monumental day, my wing man, Kristine, and I will be headed to the Loop for happy hour, joining what we hope to be dozens of charming, successful and single Chicago guys - or just good drink specials. It's Friday... it won't take much to make us happy.

Even on the Eve of this big decision day, we don't feel like making any decisions at all - big or small... so we'll leave that up to you guys. What should be our watering hole of choice?

  • The Gage: Think of this handsome spot as an Irish pub that went to culinary school...
  • Brandos Speakeasy: Brando's aims to please every crowd - martinis for lounge set, karoake for the entertainers, DJ dance parties for clubbers and drink specials for the frugal...
  • Sidebar: Victorian-meets-urban decor and sweet happy hour specials... 
Accepting votes now.

For now, it's good night for me... and tomorrow, hopefully a good day for Chicago.
Continue reading... Worthy??

My big blogger break has come. is looking for Chicago-centric bloggers to feature on their network. Sooo... I need all you to help make my case. If you read this blog and haven't click the "follow" button on my side panel, do so now. I know that's a lot of you... how, you ask? Well, when I wasn't blogging all summer, you pestered me day in and day out... making me feel guilty of my blog neglections. You know who you are... hit the "follow" button. And I will promise not to let you down again.

Sidenote: This kind of feels like the time in high school where my at-the-time boyfriend and I decided to campaign to be cutest couple. Kind of weird... but just go with me on this one!
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