Friday, April 29, 2011

This or That Thursday

Well, no is isn't Thursday. I meant it for Thursday, but that didn't happen. Where have I heard that (or something similar) before? Anyhoo, it isn't Thursday, but this is this or that. So, piano players, not necessarily, Ms. Alicia, but generally. That is to say, tickling the ivories? Or . . .

Plucking or strumming the strings. Recently, I had occasion to hear a woman telling a story whilst she played a sitar. I do believe it was my first live
sitar playing story-telling concert like event. In fact, I know it was. Well, not the live women telling stories part, just the sitar part. She told a fascinating tales whilst plinking the strings. Oh, and it was an audience participation type event. Oh. The. Joy. Anyhoo...strings (not necessarily a sitar) or piano playing.

But then again, it really isn't an either / or situation, is it?

Well, in either case, play ON.

Monday, April 25, 2011

This Week's Weather . . .

Post title courtesy of one of an earlier Chicagoist entry which reminds me yet again, that no matter how bad mine might be, someone else is catching it harder.

Not, mind you, that I needed the minder. I'm faced with that reality each and every day. And on this day, I am grateful that my problems are infinitesimal compared to that others in my sphere face.

On this day, I am grateful for two (Saturday more than Sunday) wonderful weekend days that found me outside walking and riding up a storm, especially as we brace ourselves for a week of craptastic (I can hear the wind whipping and whistling) weather, and the peace being out on those two days created within.

And I am grateful on this Monday for the luxury of being able to lay down nearly immediately upon arriving home after THE. LONGEST. MONDAY. EVER. (ok, hyperbole, but roll with it) to rest my mind, quiet my nerves (which is flaring up the eczema, which is making me want to rip my skin OFF! NOW!) toward recovery for the day, days ahead.

And now, with Tuesday, carry-over problems, and likely newbies to the mix only hours away, I am grateful for heat that will serve to lull me to sleep and for the sound of music drowning out the dreary weather noises.

And finally, to my friend who is feeling overwhelmed by life's offerings at present, I know it doesn't feel like it now, but . . . well, you know what THEY say. Know that my thoughts and more are with you.


Friday, April 22, 2011


It is Friday and of course, you know what that means, RAIN and in the words of a work associate, "as if we haven't had enough." Truly. But, still rain is good. Good for the grass, the trees, the flowers, the knees...oh, well, maybe not the knees.

Still, the rain is better than the alternative, SNOW, which we also saw this week. Monday's snowfall (a trace amount, really, less than an inch) broke a record for the day, I read somewhere. And according to a professional weather prognosticator snow in April is not all that un-common and as a second work associate noted today, "I can't remember a Good Friday when we've had good weather." Neither can I, though, my memory isn't specific to Good Friday weather as it is to April in general. The last few Aprils, it seems, have been crappy, meterologically speaking.

However, it is Friday and of course, you know what that means, the weekend beckons. Saturday morning is a few hours away and I'm already anticipating the sleeping late. Well, not sleeping late, but rising (a second time) later. For there is no sleeping late. The body is forced, yes, forced, to awake at 3 (or 4) am every morning. Ankles, knees, and other joints gather and conspire against the bladder (who fights valiantly) to raise the body up.

On weekday, work day mornings the pre-dawn rising precipitates a frustration that settles about the shoulders creating conditions that ultimately hamper 1. falling back to sleep and 2. navigating an "on-time" getting up and out. Tomorrow morning there will be no need to get up and out (prior to 10 am) and thus, the pre-dawn rising, which will occur, like clockwork, will not result and anything more than emptying the bladder and releasing her from the guilt of being overrun by the others.

For it is Friday and in the spirit of, "acting like it dammit!" after having left work early on this day. I will partake of some delicious (prepared-by-someone-else) food and drink a few fine brews, and perhaps dance or something similiarly relieving. When I get to bed I shall sleep-the-sleep of a well worn week to rise at the usual time, at the usual insistence of a bladder weakened by the chattering noises of ankles, knees and the like, only then to return to bed. I will gleefully burrow back into and under the blankets and stay that way until the sun (which I've read will make a glorious appearance) is shining high and bright, even if it is only in my mind. Well, that is unless the cats join the conspiracy.

Still, the plan is to get on with the day and rest of the weekend in as leisurely fashion as can be mustered.

Welcome to Wednesday? Naaaah, Welcome to THE WEEKEND!!!!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

May The Force Stay With Me

Over the past couple of years one circumstance or another prevented me from accepting any one of a variety of invites to experience what I now recognize as one of Chicago's treasures. This year once circumstance and then another fell into place which is how I came to accept the most recent invite and found myself among a throng of folks cheering (wildly, in some cases) the home team Chicago Force as they dismantled the Minnesota Machine . The lop-sided score did little to quell the enthusiasm of the fans. Though at some point, I think at least some in the crowd harbored some hope that the Machine would put together one successful drive. That hope was dashed as the Force had every aspect of their game; offense, defense, special teams clicking on all cylinders. It was quite simply, a spectacular display. Peeping over the schedule, chances are I will only make it to one more game. But, I have that hope circled and will do my best to steer circumstances that way, for that Saturday afternoon at the stadium proved to be a raucous good time. Go Force!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Welcome To Wednesday

Delivered with far less exuberance than the former CTA CSA's "Good Morning Precious" the current CTA CSA's "Welcome to Wednesday" greeting falls somewhere between, "Hey, at least it isn't Monday" and "Hey, it is almost Friday" in the cheery schematic. Mostly, she sounds bored but feels compelled to offer some greeting to her customers. Though, I've noted, she apparently feels no such compunction for any of the other days. Perhaps the other days; Tuesday, Thursday, nor Friday (she isn't on duty on Monday) aren't as welcoming or don't lend themselves to an alliteratively proper greeting.

The weekly, "Welcome to Wednesday" greetings are met with, for the most part, grunts. But some customers do volley back a "good morning" or something like that. While the CTA CSA seems neither daunted nor encouraged by the returned greetings I wonder if she wonders what we might be wondering about her and / or her welcome. Or something like that.

My mind usually wanders to Ricardo Montalban's greeting, Welcome to Fantasy Island or sometimes to the sandwich sign out front of an events business near my place of work; on event days the business places a chalkboard sandwich sign out front with the message, Welcome PRIVATE EVENT printed with bright chalk colors. I happen to find the sign somewhat disingenuous as the event is private, so everyone isn't welcome. Granted, it doesn't say, "everyone welcome" but placement on a public street generally implies that all who see it are welcome. I recognize the desire and need to welcome invited guests, but I think that goal could be better met once the guests were inside.

Anyhoo . . . I've decided the "Welcome to Wednesday" CSA is happy about Wednesday and likely even more so for the other days of the week. I think her pro forma performance is due in large part to the frustration she feels at not being able to devise unique, sufficiently lyrical greetings for Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.


Whatever her deal I welcome you to Wednesday and every other day.

Embrace and Celebrate.

Monday, April 04, 2011

Never Say Never

. . . or another week of random stuff. It's like needing to clean the closet, you can't move on until the underused, no longer fitting, the "what the heck was I thinking?" are purged from your cramped space.

My head feels like a cramped closet. Thus . . .

The actor's current show is entering the final weekend. I was saw the show this past Thursday and again on Sunday. Sunday made three. The Irving Berlin penned, "Blue Skies" is woven into the story line and as a result the song (and overall theme) has been looping.

Blue skies, smiling at me, nothing but blue skies, do I see Not surprising to have learned of the many, many recorded versions of this song. And even less surprising, that in spite of the happy, tappy message of the song and the looping I'm feeling the other blue that is to say, blah and bummed.

A cousin lost his battle with cancer last week. His "home going celebration" was today. And while he was ill for quite some time and his death expected, the reality and witness to the finality, was (again) daunting and yes, sad. Still, there are happy memories embedded in our history and I will recall and recount those, down the road a bit. But, what I take away from the services is his beautiful smile and how he touched so many people in a very positive way.

In other news my daughter started her extern-ship today. She's training to become a Pharmacy Technician and while she was all knotted up with nerves this morning, she donned her professional clothing and lab coat and set off to conquer the world! The first day was a winner and she returned home with a brush of confidence that she can, "do this!" One day, one step but YaY for starting on an UP note.

And finally, pickles. An email alerting me to a comment posted to an old blog post had me thinking about pickles in all the incarnations. I read the comments and among them, my 'not on a bet' comment re: fried pickles. That was March 2007. And while rooting around the archives, I spied another post where I talk about (among other things) fried pickles at Toots. I don't think there was a bet involved, but certainly some influence was asserted to get me to try them. And as it happens, I couldn't get enough of them.

A friend and I talked about about things we might or might not do and while we were reluctant to say, "I'd never" we were pretty clear about certain likelihoods and the phrase, being in love . . . bracketed a few statements on how that state may change what we may or may not ordinarily do. Of course there are factors other than love, but at that (and this) moment in time, I'm looping (among other songs) N. Cole's "Nothing Stronger Than Love".