As Far As I Can Tell


Visitors galore, and only small explorations so faróI need to start just driving my moped around all day; just looking. Yesterday my brother and Johanna were in town. We went and saw 13 Conversations About One Thing, which I liked. Itís a dialog driven drama about the lives of various people all in search of happiness, and (almost) all failing. Sounds depressing, but I didnít come away from it that way.

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Yesterday I picked up the latest issue of Punk Planet. This issue centers on Chicago, so I was doubly interested. Itís always been published here, but thereís never been a focus or theme dealing with the city. Iím continually surprised by the depth and intelligence of that magazine. Itís a far cry from the bad interviews with bad bands loop that most long running zines are stuck in. In fact, as the years go on (this is their 50th issue) they are covering more non Ė music related topics, and talking more about level headed political ideas. Iíve read nearly the entire issue this afternoon.

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Dan, Miguel and Dave rode mopeds to Chicago to visit about a week and a half ago. As crazy as that sounds, they made it and back without any significant break downs or problems, save some severely sun Ė burnt skin. Itís currently longest Moped Army trip ever. It was awesome.

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No job yet, for Meredith or I. Sheís been hunting like mad every day with lots of resumeís and interviews; but no call backs. Iíve been doing freelance work still, so I havenít been concerned with it much. I might stick with freelance for a while; it depends on how things go. I might have even gotten a raise from Copper; Iíll know next week.

On a different note, I realized today that for the last year Iíve only been doing ďsafeĒ work. This is really troubling to me. Iíve gotten a lot done, but itís been personal projects with little to no external accountability, or freelance work that has fallen into my lap. I need to branch out into unfamiliar territory, maybe with collaborators who hold me responsible for my time and output. I need to find some new clients that have high expectations. Iíd like to do visual work that is directly critiqued by the end user and client, not just me making something function according to a pre Ė described specification. In short, I need to push my self creatively, not rest on my laurels and get caught up in all theory and no output.


 

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The hair growth gene that I mentioned yesterday is actually called ďcongenital generalized hypertrichosisĒ. More info and photos can be found here and here.

Dan pointed me to the website of a Jesus loving Werewolf, which is an entirely different sort of thing altogether. Note his description of himself:

Favorite Literature: Jesus Freaks: DC Talk and the Voice of Martyrs
Favorite Were Literature: Elfquest book #1, Blood of Ten Chiefs
Human Career: Student/Marine Corps JROTC Cadet
Preferred Prey: Humans and Werewolf hunters


 

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So I live in Chicago now. Youíd think there would be tons to note in my journal, but yet I havenít been. Iíve been too busy with just living in the city; so much to do. The apartment is great, the neighborhood is really nice and moped riding in the city is awesome.

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On Saturday Dan, Ana and Erin came and we all went to a show at the Fireside Bowl: Pretty Girls Make Graves. I hadnít heard of them before, but I liked it. Unfortunately the construction on Fullerton caused a flat tire in Erinís car on the way back to my houseómaking them drive all the way home on their donut spare. Every day I see cars with flat tires from that road, luckily their starting to reĖpave it now.

Sunday, Meredith and I went with Ivo to see Amelie again at the Logan Theatre, which is a second run within walking distance of my house. Great as before; go see this movie if you havenít. We discovered our local grocer too, ĒTonyís”. Great produce section, and just a block from our apartment, it should handle all of our grocery needs. Iím starting to learn where all the stuff like that is here.

Monday, Jake was in town and we went moped riding around the neighborhood a little. It was pretty cool that he just showed up out of nowhere, and with his moped. At night we went and visited Maggie, Meredithís friend who lives downtown in her momís apartment. Itís in one of those huge cylindrical apartment buildings next to The House of Blues. Their on the 52nd floor, and have a balcony with the best view that Iíve never seen of downtown Chicago.

Today my mom and sister were in town, and took Meredith and I out to lunch at Father and Son Pizza. They came to drop off some furniture for me and go to Ikea. I realized that I donít really see my sister that often, and how creepily similar she is to my mom.

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Meredith is job hunting, and Iím trying to get some work for Copper done. I havenít done any billable work in over three weeks, so I need to get down to business. Meredith is looking for a temp job, which seems to be hard to come by. Tonight she went in for an interview at a place where she would sell knives to people. The interview took over 2.5 hours, and she got the job, but sheís starting to reconsider how good itíd be. Itís one of those self motivational jobs where you might end up making very little depending on how things work out.

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I was just watching this Spanish talk show on TV. I couldnít understand any of it, but behind the hostís head were a pair of audience members whose faces were totally covered in hair like some kind of beasts. I guess its part of the Ďwerewolfí gene which is only known to effect a certain family in Mexico. It was crazy to see, and I kept thinking the show should be about them, but they were just audience members. Does anyone know more about this disease?

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In short, Chicago is awesome. More on the specifics on life here later, Iím going to get some sleep.


 

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I’m about to unplug my cable modem and pack up my computer. The next update will be in Central Time.

Going away party at Moped Manor, tonight at 8p.m.—see you there.

Westnedge Apartment, Packed in Boxes


 

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I woke up today to my house shaking. Not just my bed, or my floor, but my entire house. I quickly ruled out an earthquake, and decided it must be someone downstairs jumping from a high height. I actually pictured Tom clinging to the ceiling like Spiderman and then letting himself go, landing 10 feet down, wearing big construction boots.

When I left the house to get my haircut, I found out what it really was; my neighbor’s tree had been felled. The tree cutting guys had been sawing away at it all week, getting all the branches out of the way and leaving only the exposed trunk to sit sadly in the rain for the last few days. The force that shook my house was 150 years worth of tree smashing to the ground. That age is just an estimate; my neighbor had only counted 137 rings when I interrupted him to ask, so I rounded up.

I spent the majority of the day continuing to pack. I’m to that point where all the natural categories of possessions are gone. Yesterday my boxes were labeled clearly with titles like “Books”, “CD’s”, and “Art Supplies”. Today they say things like “Large Items” and “Random”.

Tomorrow Meredith and I go to Chicago to pick up the keys, and take her couch and desk to the apartment. It’s nice to think of the new place being empty right now, waiting for us.

I went over to Josh’s place to fix a mouse problem he’s been having on his computer. It was a quick fix, so I stuck around to watch The Simpsons. When I left, 45 minutes after I arrived, my truck was missing. Apparently you can’t park at his apartment complex without a permit, and I failed to notice the signs on my way in. So I’ve wasted $78, and I hate tow people even more than I did before.

The place you have to go to pick up your vehicle is super shady of course. It’s a building attached to a fenced in area, guarded by a huge dog. There’s no door, only a window with a doorbell. Taped to the window are all sorts of hand written warnings about how they don’t take credit cards or checks, and can’t offer any change when you’re paying with cash. The guy comes to the window, takes my money, puts it in his wallet and lets me in his cage to get my truck—which he stole from me. Somehow this is legal, but it doesn’t feel like it.

The evening winded down with me going to watch Meredith’s poetry reading at K College. It was a reading with everyone in her creative writing class. Only she and a handful of others stood out, but I had a good time. I get excited whenever I hear her read a poem that I know is referencing me; it’s like a secret.


 

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My apartment is starting to look like it did 10 months ago when I moved in. Piles are the theme, and a mountain of boxes blocks the view out of my porch door from my bed. I have 5 more days in Kalamazoo; Iím barely ready, but excited.

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This last week after the BBQ has been hectic and full of buzzing around. Thursday Dan and I went to Cincinnati by way of Dayton to pick up a total of 5 mopeds. The day consisted of 6 hours of driving my truck, 5 hours of riding around on mopeds, and 6 more hours in the truck ó constant movement.

It was awesome to hang out with The Bombardment Society though, and especially cool that they had mopeds for us to ride. They took us on a tour of the city, which Iíd never been to, and a mini tour of Covington, Kentucky which borders it by way of sharing the Ohio River. We hit the high points (literally) of each city.

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Saturday I went to a wedding for two of my oldest friends, Corey and Meghan. It was an outdoor affair that ended up too hot, too typical and too religious for my taste, and I imagine theirs too. I still ended up feeling good about it though; I think Iíve always known they would be married someday.

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Sites you should visit today:

Look At Me
Salon Audio
Encyclopedia Mythica


 

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As far as who can tell?


Chicago, IL

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