Our New Orleans trip

http://northincrease.space/2018/08 block my ip address At the end of the July I had a conference in New Orleans for work, and since it was so close to our two year anniversary, we took advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the city together. I had been to New Orleans a few times for work but hadn’t really had a chance to explore. I am so glad we did!

steinbrudd pris kontrakt I stayed at the Marriott in the French Quarter for my conference but then moved to the Garden District to stay with some friends who graciously opened their home to us for four days. I wanted to take notes on some of the places we went and food we ate, partially so that I wouldn’t forget, but also as a reference for others who might wish to replicate some of the things we did. I have to say that exploring New Orleans on foot (for the most part) in July heat was a little painful, but we made it through.

fatiha dua by dawateislami http://homewe.life/2018/08 ginastera piezas infantiles imslp http://whothese.com mandatene ved stortingsvalget 2017 Meals during the conference
We don’t get to eat out much while we’re working a conference, but we took advantage of a few free evenings to enjoy some great places.

dampf station test see My top recommendation is Coop’s Place. The place is a tiny local’s bar on the edge of the French Quarter, and the Supreme Rabbit & Sausage Jambalaya is the best dish in the place, and is gluten free. I ate there several times during my trip. lang nghe con tim there Go there.

schokolade löst keine probleme GW Fins was a great location for our staff dinner. Close to the hotel and with a large enough dining room to accommodate our group, the food and service were excellent. Nearly all of their food could be made gluten-free and there was no reduction in the quality of the food.

hovedlønnstabell staten 2016 Luke New Orleans seems to be busy on all nights of the week. There were five of us and while the staff were very helpful and the food was delicious, I got pretty sick from a food mixup in the kitchen and the food took over an hour to get to our table. Apparently their kitchen gets overwhelmed when the dining room is full.

zauberer aladin wien Palace Cafe was right next to my hotel and had a dedicated gluten free menu. I told my server I was in a bit of a rush and she brought my Shrimp Tchefuncte (Gulf shrimp, Creole meunière sauce, roasted mushrooms, green onions, popcorn rice) out in less than five minutes. It was very good.

bain telco product development process pdf go Daisy Duke’s is a surprisingly delicious, low-cost diner that is open 24-7 with several locations. The staff gave it good ratings and I ate there several times (mostly just the breakfast is gluten free though).

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Lunch at SoBu in the French Quarter with Shea, was fantastic. They had a separate gluten free menu and a dedicated fryer for their fries. I had the Churrasco Steak a la Plancha with fries and Shea had the two course lunch. The bartender made me a delicious mocktail a few nights earlier when the staff stopped by for drinks. We met up with our friends who would be hosting us the next few days and ended up at their friend’s farewell party for the evening.

moteur srt8 challenger visit Best breakfast. The Floridian omelette (stuffed with cream cheese and topped with crab meat) with potatoes and a side of gf pancakes. New Orleans is trying to kill me.http://blowforeign.live/2018 cadenas sécurité avec 20 clés Sunday: Our hosts recommended a place around the corner from their house in the Garden District called Another Broken Egg Cafe. And if it was located in Chicago I might eat there every day. I got The Floridian: Cream cheese filled omelette topped with garlic sautéed crabmeat, Monterey Jack & green onions. They came with breakfast potatoes and a side of gluten free pancakes. Incredible. Lafayette Cemetery No. 1. Got a tour from the cemetery custodian and learned about how they bury people.After breakfast, we walked down the street to Lafayette Cemetery #1 and were lucky to get a little impromptu tour from an older gentleman who explained various parts of the cemetery and how burials are carried out. Fascinating!

That afternoon we took a bus to catch the ferry across the river (a very short ride) to Algiers Point. There isn’t a whole lot to do per se (or even much open on a Sunday), but we found a great little cafe that was doing a brisk business, as well as a garage sale where we bought a hat for Shea. The houses there are just beautiful, though, so if you like wandering through lovely neighborhoods, it is nice. Just be sure to bring cash because the Algier’s Ferry only accepts cash. Touristing the French Quarter When we got back from Algiers Point we wandered the French Quarter and went to my favorite place for jambalaya (Coop’s Place) again, so that Shea could try it, as well as the Jean Lafitte Visitor Center, a lovely free resource if you want to learn a little about the history of New Orleans and the national park system. That night we went to Mais Arepas with our hosts. I had been wanting to go there since I first read about their gluten free options over a year ago. It turns out that they’re not always great about the gluten free things and had to bring my food out a second time because they put the fried plantains in my dish. It was tasty but I’m not sure I’d go back.    This is where we spent our day today. Worth it.

We basically spent the day at the National World War II museum. Worth it. Spend the whole day there if you like history. Trust me, you will be glad you did. The museum is well organized with displays that tell the stories in engaging and respectful ways. I especially enjoyed the Fighting for the Right to Fight: African American Experiences in World War II exhibit.

At lunchtime we decided that we were hungry and I found a place with good reviews just down the street called Cochon. Turns out that it has won a bunch of awards for being delicious. I got the Louisiana cochon with cabbage, cracklins & pickled peaches with a side of creamy grits, and Shea got the Rabbit & Dumplings. So, so good.

Almost 2 years. #vacationThat evening, our hosts took us to a park on the shore of Lake Pontchartrain, where we had a BBQ picnic and watched the sun set over the lake.


We wandered down Magazine Street to District Donuts to get coffee, and then to HiVolt for me to get a gluten free donut (it was pretty good). We spent time looking at various shops along Magazine Street (which is a must-see), and had lunch at Ignatius Eatery, where I had alligator sausage and Shea got an alligator po’boy. We waddled to the airport and got on a flight back to Chicago. I’m glad we saw most of the city on foot and am grateful to our friends for the time we spent together there.

One thing I would like to add. New Orleans still has the scars of Hurricane Katrina. 10 years later, the visible and not so visible scars of destruction, death, displacement, and gentrification are all there. It is a beautiful place with beautiful people, and I love every opportunity to visit…just know that it is a place beyond the tourist attractions and hotels, beyond the news stories that get so much wrong. Learn about this city because it has a rich culture and life to it, and recognize what was washed away in the storm. 

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MC at Greenlake Baha'i ConferenceI have been reflecting on the events of the last year, since March 21, 2012. It has been an absolute roller coaster. There have been challenges beyond my expectations, heartbreak, joy, travel, a beautiful summer, love, and a lot of laughter. I worked on one of the biggest events I’ve ever coordinated (the Centenary of Abdu’l-Baha’s visit to the United States), was a MC at a Baha’i conference, attended several other conferences (including a session at Louhelen with Mr. Nakhjavani), attended weddings, celebrated the birth of so many babies I’ve lost count, grieved the loss of family members, facilitated a youth group, began learning how to be a member of a Local Spiritual Assembly, worked on a never-ending Wilmette Baha’i archives project…

I wandered my city in rain, wind, sun, and love. Mostly in love.

At Green Lake

It has been proven to me beyond the shadow of a doubt that I am surrounded by some of the most amazing family and friends that this earth has to offer.

I have learned that people can be exceptionally cruel and not even understand that what they have done is wrong.

I have been validated in my feelings and told that I am loved.

I know that I need to be in warm, sunny weather to keep my spirits up to my normal state of existence.

I have taken greater risks this year than I ever have before.

I will never, ever let people tell me that my joyful exuberance needs to be reined in. And I will do my best to make sure that my actions allow others to feel no judgement, and to feel welcomed in my circle.

In Monterey, by the aquarium

To everyone in my life, thank you for this beautiful existence that we share.
I love you very much, and I wish you a very happy Naw-Rúz (Baha’i New Year).

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Officially Autumn

not many left

I am trying to accept that cold weather is coming. I am shopping for a winter coat, switching my wardrobe, and throwing myself into fall cooking (pumpkin pancakes, anyone?). I went apple-picking with some friends last weekend, which is more about the experience of wandering in an orchard than actually picking apples.

Changing leaves.

I love the outfits in autumn (hellooo, hats, scarves, & boots!), but I get very cold very easily. Living in Chicago for 20 years has been a bit of a test, needless to say. The summers make me forget how truly miserable I feel in the winter. I know that not everyone feels this way, but this is my blog, so I’ll be open about my hatred of the gray, dreary winters.

My next fall venture is figuring out what to do for Halloween (my favorite holiday).

Strange warehouse in the suburbs. It's where estate sales go to die.

A few weeks ago I was doing errands in the suburbs and saw a sign for an estate sale that was pointing toward a giant warehouse building.  I was curious and had time on my hands, so I pulled over and wandered around inside for a while. It was organized into sections…chairs, dressers, dishes, suitcases, etc. I don’t run across stuff like this very often. As I mentioned to a number of people, it felt like the place that estate sales go to die.

The only thing I ended up buying was a brand new 80s-era Kodak drink cooler for picnics for $5 (now that I’ve looked at similar items on Ebay, I’m pretty sure I got a good bargain). Part of the reason was that my condo just can’t fit much stuff, and part of it was that I don’t tend to carry much cash on me. It looked like it was a family-run operation, and while it felt a bit strange, it was a fun experience. There were prices on most of the big items, but I think you could probably easily negotiate.

As winter comes and as I get older, I find myself retreating into smaller groups of friends at a time, trying to have deeper relationships with people. I’m also cooking and baking a lot more, but that is par for the course.

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new path

Starting this, I am walking down a new path
we once dreamed of this freedom
this chance to begin again.
To step outside ourselves
look down to where our feet touch the ground
keep them moving and remember the stories.
We whispered in our blanket forts and beneath the trees,
ice cream Sundays (and Mondays and Tuesdays)
and childhood dreams
If the photographs captured perfectly
the sight would be of every day,
when you look at me in this perfect way.

I stopped writing because it is so difficult to describe happiness with words. It just is. I will wander through an entire forest and the memory I am left with is just a snapshot of when we ran from mosquitos. I will climb a sand dune and am remembering standing on top of the world with you as I gasp from a lack of exercise and oxygen. I will walk through a city and I see brick walls with numbers on them. I will hold onto every quiet moment because that is where the foundation lives. I can’t remember not knowing you.

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The flight home

In my last post I told the story of my adventures in mud on the way to my grandfather’s funeral in March. Well, my grandmother gave my sister and I some of Granddaddy’s tennis racquets. The one I was given had a wood frame around it to keep it from twisting from the force of the strings, and it is probably around 40 or 50 years old.

Granddaddy's tennis racquetI arrived at the airport about an hour before my flight, but when I went to the counter to get my boarding pass I was informed that my flight is delayed. Also, since I only had a carry on, I couldn’t fit the racquet into the suitcase, so the racquet had to be my carry-on and I had to pay $25 to check my suitcase. The gate agent felt sorry for me and upgraded me to economy plus.

As I had several hours to kill, I wandered around the Atlanta airport with my gigantic purse slung over my shoulder and an odd-looking tennis racquet in my hand. Now, I find it a bit strange that I can’t take water or a miniature Swiss army knife on a plane, but a tennis racquet with a solid wood frame bolted onto it doesn’t get a second glance from security…

Anyway, I had so many random conversations with people because of that racquet. Most of them were older folks who remembered playing tennis with a racquet like that when they were kids. I know I must have looked rather strange with that thing, riding the transit system and placing it carefully on the seat next to me where ever I was.

I am lucky to have a lot of paintings that my grandparents created, but I don’t have a lot of personal items from them, and it felt nice to have that racquet with me, almost a companion in my travels.

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The Most Great Festival, Ridvan

Arise, and proclaim unto the entire creation the tidings that He Who is the All-Merciful hath directed His steps towards the Ridvan and entered it. Guide, then, the people unto the garden of delight which God hath made the Throne of His Paradise. We have chosen thee to be our most mighty Trumpet, whose blast is to signalize the resurrection of all mankind.

– Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p. 31

The Festival of Ridvan lasts for 12 days, and is a wonderful time in the Baha’i community.  There are 3 holy days (1st, 9th, and 12th days), there are the elections of the Local and National Spiritual Assemblies, and every 5 years the election of the Universal House of Justice occurs at Ridvan.  It is hard to believe that 2 years ago at this time I was in Haifa, preparing for the 10th International Convention.  This year, I am preparing for the National Convention in Wilmette for the election of the National Spiritual Assembly, which will happen next week.  I wander the gardens of the House of Worship (where the tulips are blooming!), instead of the gardens of the Shrines in Israel.

Have a joyous Ridvan!

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This is the Baha’i new year (167 B.E.).  I am feeling…settled, at peace.  I seek out peaceful things, spaces, and sometimes people these days.  Other times, I want to be surrounded by crowds.

The Naw-Ruz post for nineteen days is up: AMAZING photos.  I am sad that the project is over, but so glad I had the opportunity to participate.

I spent the day cooking yesterday in preparation for the Naw-Ruz celebration in Chicago.  I will make a blog post about that soon (with photos).  I had an amazing dinner at The Sitdown (they have a gluten-free menu!!) with some lovely ladies, then went over to the Smart museum for the Chicago Baha’i community’s celebration.  After the program of music and prayers, we wandered around the museum for a bit, then there was food and dancing.  I think I danced TOO much.  Exhausted today!

I attended the devotional (prayer) gathering at my friends’ house today, which was small and joyful event, and we laughed a lot.  A nice, low-key day.  I am looking forward to this next (Baha’i) year.

“Praised be Thou, O my God, that Thou hast ordained Naw-Rúz as a festival unto those who have observed the fast for love of Thee and abstained from all that is abhorrent unto Thee. Grant, O my Lord, that the fire of Thy love and the heat produced by the fast enjoined by Thee may inflame them in Thy Cause, and make them to be occupied with Thy praise and with remembrance of Thee.” -Baha’u’llah

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An afternoon in Haifa

One day in February, a few friends decided to take a walk after lunch.   Two young men and three young women took the stairs down the mountain, with no particular goal in mind.  February in Haifa is warm during the day and cooler at night, and this day was an average one.  They wandered down the twisting, cat-infested streets with the aimlessness of an empty afternoon ahead.

Upon finding trees in a park, one of them climbed an olive tree.  The others gathered around.  They all watched some dogs run by, it was such a normal thing on this wonderful little afternoon.  An old man sat on a park bench, as old men have always done and will hopefully always do.

Next to the park was a playground.  Grandmothers encouraged children to play, and watchful mothers gossiped together.  As the young people tested the playground equipment and took pictures, the adults watched, a bit mistrustfully.  Why would such young people with no apparent purpose be up to good?

Some of the streets were ones that they had never traveled, even after months and years in this city.  Some were familiar and had too many memories attached.  And as the sun went down they began to realize how hungry they were.  The consensus was that they should buy meat from the best butcher shop in the city, take it to the apartment with the large balcony, and feast into the evening.  They stopped at the bazaar to buy tomatoes, potatoes, and onions.

Walking up the mountain was harder than walking down…especially since their stomachs were starting to complain.  They arrived at their destination, immediately dividing tasks.  The young men started the grill and began to barbeque while the young women made fries in the wok and chatted in the kitchen.  They gathered around the table, placed the food in the middle, and like a proper, odd sort of family, ate one of the best meals they had ever had.

At the end, there was the important matter of dessert.  Spiced hot chocolate was made and the lights dimmed as they welcomed the evening into their lives.

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I still have blisters on my feet.

There was this man that we saw every day.  He was neither young nor old, tall or short.  Slightly balding, with a mustache, the kind of man that would blend into the background.

He walked up the four steps to his elderly mother’s house, sometimes with bags of groceries, unfailingly polite and slightly shy.  The five women of our house knew who he was, but only one or two of us ever found out his name.  He brought his mother outside, gently unfolding her wheelchair on the sidewalk and guiding her into it.

The old Italian neighborhood still looks the same.  There is fresh paint on some of the houses, including ours (it is still “our” house, even though none of the original roommates are there).  The prices have gone up at the old hot dog stand and there are new buildings over by the hospital, but the streets end in the same places and the sidewalk still leads to the train.

Wandering with a purpose.  Even when I have nowhere in particular to go, I have a hard time sitting still.  The idea of park benches and peaceful afternoons is appealing in theory, but in the five years of residence there seemed to be little opportunity.

Going back to the old haunts is too painful, still.  There is too much attached to those places, little moments that eat away at me if I let them stay too long.  Unwelcome guests, they settle in the corners of my brain.

I remember the clack clack of boots on city sidewalks, it is comforting to hear when there are hundreds of people swarming to get home or drown their sorrows or listen to the latest podcast or watch the football game or eat dinner or hug their three children.

Chicago in the rain and fog is a heartbreaking place, the buildings are stark and bright against the glow of sky.  Invest in a warm coat and a strong heart, and a comfortable pair of shoes.

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There are so many stories.

Too many words.

There are literally dozens of emails that I have not replied to.   I want to, but am unable to write at the moment.

I am having so much fun.  Grandparents, family, realizing that my little sister is WAY smarter than me, catching up with my Chicago friend-loves, laughing so much my sides hurt, and sleeping…a lot.

I was in the Barnes & Noble in downtown Evanston on Saturday afternoon, having intended to wander around the art festival but being lazy and deciding to read inside instead.  The weather got really bad.  Tents and debris were flying by, people were banging on the emergency door to be let in…it was pretty intense.  I saw several people with pretty bad cuts.  Very surreal.

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Eilat, or “A musical journey”

This past weekend was a long one, as it was the Ascension of Baha’u’llah, and we had 3 days in a row off of work. A lucky group of 13 (5 guys and 8 girls) took a road trip down to Eilat, which is the southernmost city in Israel and a resort town.

We rode camels


Spent a lot of time at the beach/in the sun


And drove through the desert

There were 3 cars, and each had their own “style” when it came to music choices and driving. My car changed CDs between ABBA, Elvis, Chicago, Top 40 hits, Indie rock, and musicals. It was, quite frankly, hilarious. Also, my car was in the lead, and managed to get the entire caravan lost in Be’er Sheva for at least a 1/2 hour.  “Stay the course!” was the phrase of the day.  U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” was playing while we wandered around the city.

We ate good food and walked up and down the boardwalk, stopping for various amusements.  We played volleyball in the pool at the hotel, slept in, and generally relaxed.  I must say, for such a large group, we were fairly well organized.

So, just a few weeks before I leave Israel, I finally went to Eilat.  🙂

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month 18

The eyes of strangers touch, leap across crowded spaces, and safe smiles reach the lips, are traded, and fade.  The touching of eyes crosses space, marble floors, dirt paths, and place settings with coffee stains and the remnants of sugar packets.

Eyelashes are beautiful things, wet with the tears that never fall from my eyes, or shining to frame your (their) face(s) as we (they) talk earnestly, in a thousand places and combinations.

I will hear my alarm in four hours.  In the darkness we fumble for our keys, and I will circle the stone paths in whispers for the first and last time.   Dawn prayers.

It all becomes more real, and in one month my world shifts again.

I was holding a brown child in my arms last night (in my dreams).  He had soft, curly hair and he was not necessarily my child, but I was caring for him.  I carried him through ballrooms, as technical crews set up the rooms and we wandered the back hallways.

We looked at each other, looked in each other’s eyes, and laughed, inches away from each others faces.  He grew up, in an instant, and asked why I carried him…he was old enough now.  So we walked past the zoo, and he talked to the animals, and we walked down the shore of Lake Michigan.

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An observation

Music in department stores is the same, no matter where in the world you are.

As I wandered the one department store at one of the malls in Haifa last night with a friend, I realized that the piped-in music floating through the store was the same brand of Americana middle-aged-woman-friendly chintz that haunts shoppers in stores across the country back home.

And it has followed me to Israel!

Also, department store dressing rooms are exactly the same, too. It is strange…sometimes I feel like I haven’t left home at all.

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A day with the ladies

A Saturday unplanned became a Saturday of relaxation and time with friends.

I went next door for brunch, and six lovely ladies and I cooked and ate a large meal…eggs, bacon, pancakes, potatoes, coffee, tea…yum. Then I hopped on a sherut and went to Bahji for the rest of the day.

This is what it looked like:

It is khamsin (dust storm) season, so the sky was not clear, but it was still warm and beautiful…I wandered the gardens for a while by myself.

A large group of us ate dinner back in Haifa at 14 Sheks (I doubt anyone actually knows the real name of that place), then Roya and I went to my place to watch Chocolat and drink…hot chocolate. 🙂 Perfect ending to the day.

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Try to summarize

I start writing, literally have paragraphs typed out and a subject line and something twists inside me and I stop. I keep trying to explain my life here, how much I love it, but I have the same words I did before, and a thesaurus does no good.

A weekend:
Friday is work-beachTransformers.
Start Saturday with a trip to Bahji, delight in an engagement (congrats!), wander Akka with girlfriends, go to a dinner party where I laugh so hard it hurts.

I watched the Shrine of the Báb from a rooftop as the sun went down and we said prayers for someone who had left this world for the next one. I watched the perfect color of Persian tea reflect torchlight, and I began to understand that these are the times that things matter. I sat in a café and thought about everything and nothing.

This is my life, after 7 months.

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Adventures in Tel Aviv

My flatmates and I took a little train ride to Tel Aviv for the 12th Day of Ridvan. We went with no destination, no map, no plans. It was wonderful. And here is my story (with pictures) of our adventures. Click on the links.

We arrived in the afternoon. We found the mall right next to the train station, but it felt like I was back in the USA. We soon left to go to a wonderful street market, where we shopped to our hearts’ content, and I drooled over spices & veggies that I couldn’t possibly carry back with me on the train.

Proceeding down a back alley, I felt like I was in Europe, and we wandered about taking pictures and finding our way back to the main road. We spent a nice hour at a restaurant to rest our feet.

I found a bag shop, where I purchased a messenger bag for a very good price, and chatted with the owner while he fixed the zipper on my other bag for free! The shop was his father’s since 1971, and he used to have a factory outside Tel Aviv, but imports from China forced him to shut it down, and now he just runs the shop. There was also the discovery of a store with shoes that were all 30 NIS, which is about 7 USD.

And finally, we left on the 7:40 train to go back to Haifa.

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Happy Ayyam-i-Ha

Today is the last day of Ayyam-i-Ha, which is a time of joy and gift-giving before the Fast, and is about 4 or 5 days long. The Fast lasts for 19 days…no food or drink between sunrise & sunset. At the end of which we celebrate the Baha’i New Year (Naw Ruz). I had a rather quiet Ayyam-i-Ha, mostly consisting of reading at home and cooking.

When I was wandering down in the Hadar the other night I saw a kids (and their parents!) trying on costumes. Purim is in a few days, and it was kind of surreal to see the familiar sight of Halloween-type costumes in the stores.

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The middle managers are all wearing blue shirts & khakis today,
walking to their meeting in single file.
The sales guys know my name, but to me they all look the same.

Office dinosaurs
wander around the jungle of cubicles
colorful skin of polo shirts and sweater-vests
walrus-mustaches and flannel
voices modulated from 30 years
of telephone-customer-service
their lumbering gait
halts near my desk
where the jar of pretzels lies in wait
and they methodically chew and philosophize,
gathering around the watering-hole (coffee pot)
to shake their ponderous heads.
We younger mammals (of a different era)
just try to stay out of the way.


http://www.overheardintheoffice.com is hilarious. If you’re a cubicle monkey like me, the irreverant humor and uncanny truth may save your sanity (or offend you).

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What is it about office supply stores that make me so happy? Sure, they’re overpriced most of the time, but wow… everything is just so efficient.

I found myself in a delirium of joy last night, wandering through the aisles in search of sharpies, filing folders, and various supplies. I don’t know why the idea of filing my bank statements and bills in pretty colored folders makes me smile, but at least I am trying to stay ahead of the blizzard of paper that takes over my desk at home.

I’ve lived in my house for 1 1/2 years, and I feel like only now do I really live there. One roommate and I are considering the purchase of a rodent of some kind…probably a gerbil. I haven’t had a furry pet since my rabbit in high school, and I tend to kill fish after a while. Maybe with another person helping we’ll manage to have a pet with a decent lifespan.

I also enjoy the efficiency of a 24-hr post office, and feel rather spoiled in that regard. There is something beautiful in the streets of Chicago’s Loop at 7 pm…silence. 🙂

Now if only I could figure out a way to fit my clothes in a closet that is much too small for the amount of stuff that I try to put in it…


At last count we were at 5 weddings upcoming for the 2006 season. Everyone…on your mark, get set…GO! I love watching this whole process from the sidelines. Do I get to cheer people on? I’d like to develop jerseys and little flags to wave. bwahahaha.

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Burnham Plaza Theatre

826 S. Wabash Street, Chicago, IL
Status: Closed
Screens: Multiplex (5 Screen)
Architect: Robert C. Berlin

The YMCA Hotel opened in 1915, located on Wabash Street in the South Loop, designed by architect Robert C. Berlin. Eleven years later, Berlin designed an addition to the hotel, in a similar style to his original.

In 1988, the building was converted over to mixed residential and retail use, including a multiplex theater, originally operated by Cineplex Odeon. The former hotel building was renamed the Burnham Plaza around this time.

After it was closed by the Meridian chain in 2000, the Burnham Plaza Theatre was reopened by the Village Theatres chain, showing first-run features, but at bargain prices.

The Burnham Plaza closed for good in September 2005. The building is scheduled to be converted into medical offices.


This was the cheapest theater in the area, and was always empty so you never had to search for a seat. It was also very close to us, and parking was easy at night. *sigh*

Chase Cafe

7301 N. Sheridan, Chicago IL
Status: Closed

Located in the very large lobby of a Rogers Park apartment building, this all-ages venue offers a section for eating that serves soups, sandwiches and salads, along with espresso and coffee. Patrons lounge on couches and chairs near a fireplace, but wander into another section and youll find a cyber cafe/copy shop/computer lab (complete with CD duplicators and a brand spankin’ new color copier…forget Kinko’s). Make your way to the next section and youll find a pool table and a gift shop before entering the largest area, where youll find a ballroom whose stage features live music and improv theater. Expect to mingle with artsy locals and hippie types eager to sample something healthy from the juice bar.


This was my freshman year hangout. It is where I started overcoming stage fright and made some very dear friends. I loved Tuesday night open mic.

Zorba’s Diner

Status: Being renovated

Apparently under new management and being remodeled, and is NOT closed as previously thought. At least ONE of my college hangouts is not disappearing. whew! But I wonder if it will ever be the same…

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Writing & Finals (not related!)

I know that I am a good writer.

What frustrates me is that I don’t always have the time or the inclination to show it.

I find it fascinating to proofread other people’s work.

People messing up there, their, and they’re will inevitably make me growl under my breath, roll my eyes, and cringe.

I use big words because I don’t know the smaller word that means the same thing. I’m not being pretentious. I just learned to read at a very young age. And many of my “books of instruction” were the Baha’i Writings.

I know that I am bad at writing fiction. I love reading it, but am often picky about the quality.

Books I’ve finished recently: Cryptonomicon, The Alchemist, The Valkyries. Baha’i Book: The Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys. I have a list about a mile long of Baha’i books that I want to read. Perhaps over break? I’m slowly working on the Kitab-i-Aqdas.


Forgive me if I’ve forgotten your birthday. If I haven’t called or emailed you back. If I seem distracted when I say hello or shake your hand. If I wander off in the middle of a conversation or forget what we were talking about. If I vent my frustration and forget to ask how you are doing.

I’m working on it. Give me a few more weeks until finals are over.

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“It behoveth him who is a wayfarer in the path of God and a wanderer in His way to detach himself from all who are in the heavens and on the earth. He must renounce all save God, that perchance the portals of mercy may be unlocked before his face and the breezes of providence may waft over him. And when he hath inscribed upon his soul that which We have vouchsafed unto him of the quintessence of inner meaning and explanation, he will fathom all the secrets of these allusions, and God shall bestow upon his heart a divine tranquillity and cause him to be of them that are at peace with themselves.”

(Baha’u’llah, Gems of Divine Mysteries)

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