Paid transportation in Chicago
I mean seriously Chicago. My VERY First CTA bus ride has a crack head/convict pass out on an old lady.
Monday, February 21, 2011
Ok, thats fine. That's probably a one in a million chance, right?
Kendle and I get on the Blue line to go downtown. On the way back we sit down and start staring out the window, looking around the train, the usual stuff. Then I notice that the guy in front of us is playing with a broken piece of mirror. Then I see the tear tattoo next to his eye.
Shit, this guys gonna shank me with his mirror.
So I start watching this guy who's NOT facing the way his chair goes, but more to the side so he's 1/2 pointing in my direction. And I mean I'm watching him close. If his hands made any sudden movements, I was ready to block my throat and Kendles.
So the guy looks up from his mirror sliver and makes a joke about how I'm staring at him, and how if he had a compact mirror like a girl carries it would look even funnier.
"Oh yeah, that shiv mirror is much manlier" I say. Kendle mumbles some agreement. At this point I have no idea if shes as freaked out by this guy as me or not or if I'm being nuts here.
So the guy goes on to tell me how it's his mirror from prison, and about his acne problem. Apparently he learned some home remedy when he was in the joint to fix it, so now whenever he gets a pimple he immediately has to pop it.
Yeah, I'm with you, it's a little gross, imagine actually being there and watching him "fix things" while talking to me. Well, thankfully, whatever the guy is on causes him to pass out and Kendle and I escaped with our lives.
We are two for two here Chicago. Let's keep going. That's right, we are NOT done.
So you will notice i didn't just say Public transportation. Because the next story is about a cab. The bus was no good, so we took a train, the train didn't work any better, so let's try cabs? Sure...let's try cabs.
So we get a cab, and we are at one of these crazy 7 road intersections that are EVERYWHERE in chicago (seriously...they call it the grid system? I've never seen a grid with that kinda intersection). The cab driver pulls this nutty move where he pulls right across 2 lanes of traffic to get us going the right direction.
Most of us in the cab were just stunned. Not at the danger of it, but that he actually pulled it off with out making us ever feel unsafe. We start to congratulate him on an amazing move, and he says "Yeah, one time I did that an I got a ticket." We all laugh at that...silly cabbie!
Que the flashing lights. We get stopped for about 20 minutes while our cabbie stumbles through this whole process. At one point he tells us we can get another cab. 1) I'm not gonna jump out of a pulled over cab, that looks suspicious as hell. 2) The way the cop was treating this guy, I felt it would be better if we were here as witnesses to anything assault-like that may happen.
Three for three Chicago.
So yeah, it's not just public transportation. If you come to visit, and I say "Oh, we will just take the train" I would suggest you saying something like "Oh, no, we have our car here, let's just use that." Either that or you can have some crazy shit happen to you.
Let's talk Zombies...
First let's all just take a moment and appreciate that this is NOT a movie trailer but rather a trailer for a game. This really has nothing to do with the post, but this trailer is just too good and emotionally taxing not to show. After the trailer I have a few questions that maybe some of you can answer for me.
Friday, February 18, 2011
Oh and PS the video is pretty bloody, and there is a zombie in a bikini, so...NSFW.
Ok, question one. Why do zombies always team up with other zombies. Why do they instead not eat each other? In alot of "scientific zombie scenarios" we see zombies being created through the use of a drug. Usually a rage inducing drug (a-la the t-virus in Resident Evil, or RAGE in 28 Days later). If they really are just enraged humans with a thirst for flesh....what's wrong with zombie flesh? it's a little rotten sure, but its there.
Next question. Why do we always see these cities over run with zombies, as if they could live there. With millions of zombies NOT eating each other, and the number of human survivors dwindling faster and faster, WHAT are these zombies eating to stay alive? You would think these outbreaks could be pretty easily contained with just the fact that cities are very far apart, and zombies are not super smart and like...look for road signs to get to the next town. I would imagine a zombie would just wander around town and eventually fall apart, after eating the last human.
I went to the produce place across the street today...
I was looking for some specific items.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Noodles, Chicken breast, breadcrumbs, cheese.
I was surprised to find it all there. With the place having "Produce" in its name, I was figuring it was gonna be some sort of fruit and vegetable stand.
But here's the weird thing. All the brands were funny one I've never heard of. And no, this isn't some "Ben's never been out of Champaign, he probably only knows about one or two brands anyways" kinda thing. This is the real deal. These were funky brands. The noodles looked ok, but they didn't have angel hair, except in this weird free form bag. The noodles were going all over the place! I need straight noodles, like spaghetti, only smaller.
Then the meat. The meat depart,emt looked and smelled like an aquarium. I double checked...there was no fish in there. They did have some funky cuts of meat, and head cheese. I've heard of it, but never seen it. It was nuts.
So the chicken breasts. You could buy them 2 at a time. but it was probably 4lbs of chicken! That was a little over what I needed...who are we kidding, that was ALOT over what I needed.
So at the end of all of it, I just went home. Kendle's gotta make dinner tonight now.
Well...it's GOING, but to celebrate, I've turned off the snow effect on the site.
Monday, February 14, 2011
Colin, Kristen, Kendle and I were all marching around Bucktown (or maybe it was Wicker Park...I'm not really sure) and it was the perfect packing snow. So I made this little guy, while the ladies were in some fancy schamcy boutique store.
Now Colin says not to get all excited and that come mid march, we will see temperatures in the teens again. It's sorta old man winters last "fuck you." He get's you all comfy, lets you start walking around without a heavy coat and hat. Then BAM! He smacks you with one last blisteringly cold week. Now I'm thinking it wont be like this:
...but I havn't put away my coat yet. Although...50 degrees seems down right BALMY these days, how sad is that?
This is my backyard
This is my porch, you will notice the close proximity to the train tracks:
Friday, February 11, 2011
Thats the blue line. Trains pass by quite often. Now I'm sure you are all saying "but Ben, WHY would you choose to live so close to the noisy tracks?"
Because THIS is where I'm gonna put my huge "hunka.net" poster:
Who's the number one blogger in Champaign AND Chicago? That's right, it's Hunka.
So I have a garage now, and with that comes a garage door opener. Day one the garage door opener worked fine, but every day after that when I clicked the button, the door lights just blinked at me. I wasn't really sure what was going on, so I just popped the door off the chain, and manually lifted it.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
This was a problem, because then the garage door was unlocked all day/night. Anyone could walk buy and fuck with my car.
So I had left a message with my landlord via his employees (his business is next door to my apartment building) that I was having issues and it needed looked into. As near as I could tell the door was just busted. So I dinked and dinked and dinked some more and I found out there is a button on the wall...and it locks the remote out. So that's all that was wrong. Someone had locked out the remotes. Which makes no sense...why would you even have that button. To top it all off the display on the wall unit was set to spanish, so the warning text that said "remotes are locked out, hit lock button to enable remotes again" was not something I could read.
So I go back into the store, 'cuase I don't want them to tell my landlord the door is broken, when its not and I got it all figured out.
So I go back in there, and tell the guy at the counter "Never mind, it was locked, I got it all figured out. No need to bother Pete" and he thanked me and I walked out.
There was a guy in the store who left at the same time who clapped me on the shoulder and walked with me to the parking lot.
"Man, I have never heard ANYONE say they have it all figured out. Can you tell me the meaning of life?!"
I just looked him dead in the eye and said "Be sure to drink your Ovaltine."
And that was my first interaction with a Chicagoian I don't know.
Observations about Chicago
I've been here a few weeks now, and I've come up with some observations.
Wednesday, February 09, 2011
1) My fingers prune up almost immediately in the shower here. I mean, I'm no stranger to the effect, but the speed at which it happens here is noteworthy.
2) Everyone on the street is REALLY nice and smiles alot at me, but then I figured out they just wanted to make sure I wasn't mugging them, so that made me sad.
3) For all the talk of Chicago Style Pizza there are no pizza joints around here. Taco's yes...pizza no.
3a) There are NO taco bells around here due to all the other Mexican joints. So, no fire sauce anymore.
4) Taking the trash out is a MUCH bigger chore now that there are three flights of stairs to deal with, and a trek across a snow covered ally.
We still have boxes all over the place or I'd show you pictures of the apt. Oh hell, who cares, right? Here you can see how it looked with all the boxes right after we first moved in:
I'll get you some updated pictures when we have everything unpacked.