Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Jasper Fforde Marathon

Being home sick for three days has afforded me with the time to read and read and read, so far in the last three days, I'd re-read Jasper Fforde's first two Thursday Next novels and starting on "The Well Of Lost Plots", drinking lots and lots of cups of tea and orange juice and not to mention Theraflu and other assorted medications. Yesterday was a brilliant day out, the weather was warm and breezy (just the way I like it) and the temperature reached 80 degrees, and if not for the fact that both Jay and I were SICK, we'd have been out and about enjoying the glorious Memorial Day and attending assorted barbecues. Instead we stayed home and made dinner. And I dare say today's miserable weather did not improve our moods one bit, the temperature plunged to 50 degrees and it even rained a little bit....and it's JUNE!!!!

But I saw something in the supermarket that cheered me up...CHERRIES!!!! I never miss cherries at the start of the summer, although supermarket cherries can be a hit-or-miss, if you can find a halfway decent farmer's market, buy your cherries from there...they are awesome!!! Especially after you throw them in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes. Brilliant!!!

The thought of a bag of ripe, delicious Bing cherries has cheered me up slightly.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Sick As A Dog

Jay and I have the flu and I haven't been able to taste anything for 2 days now :(
Great, right when it's brilliant and sunny and warm out and I'm sitting in the house coughing my lungs out and sweating like a piggy :( Boo!!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Cranford Episodes 2 & 3

From PBS.org:

As winter approaches, Cranford is beset by sorrows and struggles to regain confidence.

Dr. Harrison's housekeeper, Mrs. Rose, discovers a leg of mutton has been stolen from the kitchen window on the very same night that Mr. Johnson, the owner of the town's most important store, is mugged. The ladies decide that a crime wave has hit Cranford.

Mr. Johnson, meanwhile, becomes convinced that Job Gregson, the local ne'er-do-well, must be his attacker and Job is arrested. Job's son, Harry, decides to make a confession to Mr. Carter of his own part in the poaching to save his father from transportation and has to bear the acute disappointment that Mr. Carter feels. Mr. Carter pleads Job's case with Lady Ludlow, saying that without her intervention, Job will be found guilty and the Gregson family will starve. Lady Ludlow is immovable — the Gregsons are not her responsibility.

Christmas arrives and Cranford huddles together to celebrate, though the town has been so buffeted by events that it feels strangely unsure of itself. An invitation for Matty arrives from Mr. Holbrook, asking her to visit him on his farm. Miss Pole and Mary urge her to accept, and they accompany her on what turns out to be a delightful — and hopeful — day for Matty.

Meanwhile, Dr. Harrison confides in his medical school friend, Jack Marshland, about his love for Sophy. Jack encourages him to send her some Valentine flowers. But Jack, a perpetual prankster, has set up some mischief by sending a Valentine card to Caroline Tomkinson as if from Dr. Harrison, hinting at marriage. Caroline is ecstatic and eagerly awaits Dr. Harrison's proposal.

Matty suffers great disappointment and, in a nostalgic mood one evening, decides to confide in Mary about Mr. Holbrook, and how things were put asunder by a trick played by her younger brother, Peter, who then ran away in disgrace to India and has not been seen since.

The mention of India prompts Mary to write to Major Gordon to tell him that Jessie regrets her decision not to marry him, since her father is now so busy at the railway works he really has no need for her.

Dr. Harrison visits the Rectory and formally asks the Rev. Hutton for permission to court Sophy. He promises he will propose as soon as he is able to provide a home for her.

At an auction, Dr. Harrison bids for a small table. When he gets it home, he discovers it is a sewing table so suggests his housekeeper, Mrs Rose, might like to use it. To Miss Pole and Mrs. Forrester, this is tantamount to a proposal. Gullible Mrs. Rose believes them and allows them to dye the grey out of her hair. They convince her that Dr. Harrison will propose on May Day.

Miss Tomkinson, meanwhile, becomes concerned by Caroline's fretful waiting on Dr. Harrison to proclaim his love, and decides to draw him out on the matter.

Preparations for May Day excite everyone in the town, and there are high expectations of the day. Dr. Harrison looks forward to the first time he will be able to be with Sophy openly as a couple. The whole town gathers on the Heath.

Jem and Martha marry and live as lodgers in Matty's house — a source of joy for Matty.

Miss Pole invites the ladies of the town to a secret meeting to discuss Matty's crisis. United in their love for Matty, they decide to secretly share part of their own incomes with her. Mary is recruited to devise a means of getting this to Matty without her knowing where it came from.

Dr. Harrison, on the other hand, is shunned by the town — no patients will come to him now that he has been exposed as a philanderer. Dr. Morgan suggests he must move on to start afresh.

Mr. Carter is horrified to discover that Lady Ludlow has secretly mortgaged her estate to raise money for her son's villa in Italy, and knows what pain such an unfathomable mortgage has cost her personally. He confronts her and there is a heated exchange.

Sophy returns to Cranford ill, but is diagnosed by Dr. Morgan as simply being heartbroken. He assures Rev. Hutton that, with time and love from her family, she will recover. By the time Jack Marshland arrives in town to help clear Dr. Harrison's name, Sophy's condition has worsened and she is diagnosed with typhoid fever. He enlists Mrs. Rose's help in treating her, while Dr. Harrison is physically barred from either seeing Sophy or assisting.

Mr. Carter visits Captain Brown at the railway works in a desperate attempt to see if he can raise capital for Lady Ludlow's mortgage by selling timber or tools. While he is there, disaster strikes and the injured are taken to Dr. Harrison's for emergency treatment. As Sophy's condition deteriorates, her young sisters defy their father and ask Dr. Harrison for help. But has the call come too late?

Pics From The Upset Mag Launch Party 5/16

A good time was had by all and met some cool people..some great art was on display as well...

The above "You Crazy" piece was actually a woodcut, not spray-painted....crazy indeed.....

*Photos by Brooks Golden

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Upset Mag Launch Party and Art Show (May 16th)

Come out if you're in Chicago!! It's gonna be fun!!!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The Owl Show In Pictures 5/9

Ummm...I'm finally getting round to posting a blog about this show. Clothes Optional (2918 N. Clark) was packed to the point of people spilling out onto the pavement!!! Tons of amazing artwork and all vintage items were 50% off (excluding jewellery). Below are pictures of people in attendence and some of the artwork on display:

News, I suppose.

I generally post an average of two blogs a week which is quite disgusting really since I am on the computer practically every day. It all comes down to laziness I suppose, and while the hubs and I take a lot of photos (he especially takes MAAAADDD photos), most of said pics rarely get posted on blogs due to, again, my laziness at? in? blogging.

I have been going thrifting a lot as of late, and acquiring a few brilliant pieces of clothing and accessories, including a practically brand-new hobo bag (I gave in, although I had SWORN to never, ever buy one, but at $5.00 it was quite hard to resist...besides it's not like I paid a mad amount for it), a sweet vintage handbag for $2.50, scarves, and this amazing H&M mini dress which I'm contemplating wearing to the Upset Mag launch and art show on Friday. I'm having to pluck up my courage as it's the color of a prison jumpsuit!!! Accessories, I think, will be key. I also got a pair of brown suede shoes for $4.00.

Thursday will be a full day as I have the day off from work and the hubs and I will be doing a lot of running around (he's putting up his artwork at Co-Prosperity Sphere for the Upset Mag Launch Party and Art Show, picking up a piece of artwork from New'd, and getting tattooed by Josh H. at Belmont Tattoo Co.) and I'll finally be tattooed by Josh sometime in the next couple of weeks (about damn time). Still want to get tattooed by Tim Biedron over at Deluxe Tatoo... a mad sunflower spread on my upper back. And a hedgehog on my upper right arm. Sometime in the near future.

I still can't figure out how to add captions to pics without effing up, so I'll just leave you people with said pics.

Till next time!!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Of Hopper And Homer

Yesterday Jay and I managed to get our asses out of bed early enough and wandered over to The Art Institute Of Chicago for a look at the Edward Hopper and Winslow Homer exhibits since the shows are due to close on the 10th. The last time we went to the AIC was....forever and a day ago? And so we were eager to see how much the AIC had changed since we were there last.

After we got tickets we headed over to the northwest wing and were semi-shocked to see that we had to stand in line to get into the exhibits. But it wasn't bad, fifteen minutes and we were in. The place was crowded, surprisingly so since it was a Wednesday afternoon but I suppose the weekends were even worse.

The exhibits were brilliant, although in truth I much preferred the Winslow Homer exhibit to the Hopper show. I gathered that a lot of people came to see Hopper's most famous work, Nighthawks (1942) but as the picture hangs in the AIC all year round we have had studied it pretty much to death. We were interested in Homer's The Gulf Stream (1899), alas, although there were a few similarly styled paintings, the real deal was not on display.

After that Jay wanted to take a quick peek at Ivan Albright's Picture of Dorian Gray (1943-44), unfortunately the painting was in storage! Boo!! But we did swing by Georges Seurat's La Grand Jatte (1884-86) for a Ferris Beuller moment..hahaha kidding...There was so much artwork in the museum it was mind boggling...and I heard that the stuff on display was only a teeny part of the museum's collection...

The Modern Wing is nearing completion, I for one know that Jay is most excited to take a look at the modern art collection when the building's completed.

After that we went to The Cultural Center (a stone's throw away) to see a Tony Fitzpatrick show there called "The Wonder - Portraits of A Remembered City", a collection of collage work and some sculpture, interesting stuff.. somehow the work had the feeling of old Balinese or Indonesian art from afar, although upon further inspection the pieces were filled with clippings and cuttings of vintage Chicago memorabilia.

To complete the day of art appreciation, we swung by an artist's "studio" in the pedway under the Cultural Center, Mike Genovese was showing there himself.

All in all, a brilliant day of art and the city. I love Chicago!!


The Gulf Stream

The Picture of Dorian Gray

La Grand Jatte

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Schoolgirl Crush

Yeah, yeah I know I did a bag blog about 4 posts ago, but wtf, it's my blog and I'll post bag blogs if I want to. Now, this isn't a post about ordinary bags, it's a post about a love affair that spans almost twenty years, or thereabouts.

I have yet to find that perfect accessory from my childhood, that bag that goes well with the school pinafore, blazer, polished school shoes..yes, I am talking about the school satchel. I have searched vainly for many years, and it's not just a school satchel, it has to be the perfect school satchel, worn, beaten up but perfectly servicable. The kind you can only find in thrift stores or somebody's attic. Or if you live in England.

Ignore the fact that the photo above is of Emma Watson..but the satchels!! The satchels!! Especially the darker one on watserface. Like, how brilliant is that? While it's true that the satchels won't hold anything except a purse, assorted make up, cell phone and an MP3 player, it's the perfect bag of my dreams.

English schoolboy with satchel.

So until I come across the satchel of my dreams, more likely by accident than design, I shall satisfy myself with trolling around the web, and looking at (poor) substitutes for my perfect satchel.

I came across the Mulberry site (Luxury English fashion, darlings) and apparently this wonderful bag (below) was Becks' preferred man bag of choice in 2006. Like, how gorgeous is this Mulberry "Alfie" bag (395 pounds, or roughly let's say $600.00)? If only it came in dark brown leather!!

This is verrrrrry nice:

This Toscanella ($396) mini messenger purse is made from Vacchetta leather (Vacchetta calf skins are tanned using vegetable dyes for a matte finish leaving a more weathered, casual look. Soft to the touch although a little rigid to start, as this leather ages, it’s feel becomes progressively more supple. The peculiarity of this leather creates an uniqueness to each piece adding to its individual beauty). Damn. Somebody get me this. Also gorgeous in yellow:

Oh how I love school satchels!!!


thisislondon.co.uk (Emma Watson pic)
archivist.com (English schoolboy pic)
retrotogo.com (Mulberry Alfie pic)
pierotucci.com (Toscanella bag pics)