Monday, April 30, 2007

We're the Savages

The weekend was a pretty good one, I think.

Friday, I headed out to the burbs to my dad's house. He is retiring to Bloomington (holla) in a month or so, and he needed some help moving some of his big items to the curb for the annual big-item garbage pick-up. I've never seen more pick-up trucks in Western Springs than I did on Friday night, as hundreds of trucks were trolling the streets, hoping to be the first ones to spot that perfect slightly worn love seat. Seriously, these people were scavengers. My dad put his grill out, and it was gone within 30 seconds. I guess that makes less work for the garbage men, and I think we can all agree that's a good thing.

Reed also came out to the WS, challenging me to a game of one-on-one basketball. Leave it to Reed to challenge me to a game of one-on-one when I haven't played basketball in three years (not that I was ever any good) and he plays weekly in a rec league. For the second time ever, he beat me, despite my Rodman-esque 9-point, 27-rebound performance.

Saturday, after going back into the city, I cleaned myself with water and soap, and headed to the South Side for the bachelor party of Mr. 10,000 himself, Jon "J-Diza" Dudek, who will be getting married next week in Fiji (the island in the South Pacific, not the fraternity of privileged douchebags at IU). We began the festivities with some tailgating before the Sox/Angels game, after which we attended the Sox/Angels game, after which we went to the soon-to-be-closing Jimbo's for a beer and a shot. The next several hours may or may not have occurred. The only documentation that time did not stop is this picture, which may be completely fabricated, probably by the government or certain Guatemalan militia men. We resurfaced at the Jefferson Tap at around 2 in the a.m., where we unabashedly consumed more beer for another couple hours, defying logic and our livers. After struggling to keep my eyes open during the cab ride home, I crawled into bed somewhere around 5 fearing retribution and concerned as to why there was a rather large horned mammal native to the Serengeti lurking in the corner, but I was far too tired to investigate, so I threw a clump of wet grass in its general direction, hoping it would suffice. It didn't.

I was awakened early Sunday afternoon by the smell of what I presumed was the rotting carcass of a wildebeest -- perhaps the same wildebeest who so thoughtlessly trampled my skull while I slept. As I searched for the source of this rather unpleasant stench, I came to the horrifying realization that it was not a wildebeest carcass at all, but rather my own breath. What I also soon realized is that 14 hours of alcohol consumption without any water is one of the least effective ways of staving off a hangover. I had one of those once-or-twice-a-year, God-is-punishing-me-for-everything-I-have-ever-done-wrong hangovers that not even Excedrin Migraine can cure. After getting up, I moved carefully to the couch, where I muscled down some Propel while I waited for the apocalypse. Instead of the four horsemen, I got the two Pope twins, who managed to convince me that going to Kirkwood for lunch was a good idea. Seeing as though I finally felt well enough to walk more than thirty paces, I agreed. While the service was mediocre (as usual), the bacon cheddar burger I had was exactly what I needed to face the rest of the day. And to top it off, while we were there we had the pleasure of watching the Bulls finish off the Heat.

Sunday was also my half birthday, which means I'm a mere six months from 30. Quarterlife crisis, engage. Speaking of quarterlife crises, my brother bought a motorcycle on Sunday, thereby ensuring that my children will never know their Uncle Reed. Because he'll be dead. Because of the motorcycle. More than anything, I'm pissed because he didn't buy a sidecar.

Sunday also represented the one-year anniversary of the move from Dayton to Chicago. It seems like just yesterday that Ryan and Tradd were sitting on my couch in my alley rather than moving it.

Jessie doesn't believe in Mormons.

First Three Albums of the Day

The Strokes - First Impressions of EarthThe Black Keys - Magic PotionJohnny Cash - 16 Biggest Hits

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Sweet Commute

Midwestern Eavesdropping will be postponed until next Thursday.

Wee Wee Y'All!
Loyal GMYH reader and Mr. 2000 himself, Jason "Wee Wee" Whitney, was recently spotlighted in the Richmond Palladium-Item for being a wildly successful restauranteur. Once again, a member of the Sigma class is overachieving. Good work Wee. Now, if you would only update your blog.

Morning L Etiquette
If you're like me -- and for your sake, I hope not -- then there are many things that really piss you off. One of those is when people talk on a crowded L train -- whether it's on their cell phone or to someone else on the train -- especially in the morning when everyone is trying their best to silently come to grips with the coming work day.

This morning, the Brown Line was packed. Standing next to me was a couple, probably in their late 20s, neither of them terribly attractive or graced with social manners. The guy was reading the Red Eye (the free, dumbed-down, Maxim-inspired version of the Tribune, for those of you not in Chicago), and he made a point to orally give his opinion on every story. This wasn't just a slight whisper so only his wife could hear, either. It was unnecessarily loud, ensuring that everyone on the whole damn train could hear what he apparently thought were his witty takes on everything from Mark Prior to John McCain.

Here's a smattering of the shit I had to endure for the 15 minutes it took to get from Diversey to the Merchandise Mart stop, where the guy's wife got off, thereby ending his access to someone who put up with him:
  • "I hate Mark Prior. I don't even care. I'm so sick of him. I really hate him." This is what I heard when I first walked onto the train. Now, I don't really have an opinion on Mark Prior (for those who don't know, Prior is a once-revered Cubs pitcher who is out for the season -- again), but I certainly don't hate him, and I'm even a Sox fan. So Prior's body has the defense system of a late-stage AIDS victim. It's no reason to hate him. If I could get paid a few million dollars to sit around for several seasons, you better believe I would.
  • He then went on some all-too-audible diatribe about how baseball players are overpaid and he hates when they have labor disputes because "they make millions and shouldn't complain about anything." It was at this point where I was very close to saying to the girl on the other side of me, as loud as possible, "Hey there attractive stranger, you know what I hate? When people on a packed train won't shut the fuck up."
  • "I just about gave up on the NFL last time they had a strike." The last time the NFL players had a strike was 1987, jackass. Remember that? You were 7. I'm guessing you didn't know why and didn't care why Mike Hohensee was playing instead of Jim McMahon for three damn games. I fucking hate you.
  • Upon reading that police figured out that Cho Seung-Hui fired a total of 170 rounds during his killing spree, the dude says (in a tone suggesting that he believes what he is saying is groundbreaking forensic investigation), "You know how I bet they figured that out? From bullet shells they found on the ground. Yep, I bet they counted the shells." Good Lord, you think? So what you're telling me is that the Blacksburg Police Department used the most basic and probably the most-used technique for determining how many shots were fired? Until he said that, I had just assumed they had relied on the combination of time travel, eyewitness accounts (since I assume most people were counting), an elaborate system of ropes and pulleys, and the chick from Medium.
  • "Who do you think is going to be the Democratic Presidential candidate, Obama, Hillary Clinton, or Giuliani?" Luckily his wife was slightly more bright than he was, so she explained that Giuliani is actually a Republican candidate. He then explained that he would vote for McCain, "if I actually voted for the President." The reason he doesn't vote: "My vote doesn't count." Nor should it.
  • "So if Hillary gets elected, will Bill Clinton be called the First Husband or the First Lady?" Almost punched him after this one. Then he went on to explain his firm belief that being the "First Husband" would be "emasculating for Bill." I'm pretty sure Bill Clinton isn't worried about his manhood being weakened by the fact that he and his wife would be the first-ever husband-wife team of Presidents. And the fact that he would be back in Washington would mean that he would pretty much be getting laid all the time.
  • The wife mentioned that Bill would probably be called "Mr. President." This sparked what I'm sure this guy believed to be creative ingenuity, when he said, "So then do you think people would say 'Good morning Mr. and Mrs. President'?" The wife found this funny, such that she laughed out loud for 10-15 seconds, which only encouraged him.
  • He compared Rosie O'Donnell to a tantrum-prone 5-year-old, which prompted his wife to laugh out loud, as if it was hilarious. So he made the comparison again. And again. And again. This went on for like 5 minutes, while he tried to come up with new ways to say "Rosie O'Donnell is like a 5-year-old" or "It's like Rosie O'Donnell is a 5-year-old." Despite his inability to vary his delivery or message, she laughed each time. I guarantee these two watch a lot of MADtv.

My only hope is that I don't have to be next to them (or on the same train car as them) again tomorrow, so that I can be spared from such comments as:

  • "You know how they could determine whether or not Curt Shilling's socks from the 2004 ALCS and World Series had blood on them? I think a surefire way to find out would be to test the socks to see if the red substance on them is blood. I bet that's how you could find out."
  • "I can't believe Congress passed that bill with a deadline for the war. You know, I just about gave up on Congress after they passed the Mann Act."
  • "Oh, the guy who sang 'Monster Mash' died. I always thought that song made that guy sound like Boris Karloff." Then he sings the song and boisterous laughter ensues from the wife, and he repeats the same two sentences forty-six more times.
  • Upon reading that Hugh Grant was arrested for throwing baked beans at a photographer: "I hate beans. I don't even care. I'm so sick of them. I really hate them."

First Three Albums of the Day

Dr. Dre - The ChronicPearl Jam - Live on Two LegsGrateful Dead - American Beauty

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Back in the Saddle

Last night at trivia was another glorious night of trivia at Rocks. Russian To The Grave (comprised of me, Jester, Gregerson, and the Brothers Weeser*, minus Greg of course) eked out a one-point victory to earn 25% off of our tab. I'm growing more concerned as to why whenever there is an Erasure song in the name-that-tune round, the Weesers* immediately know it.

Clubber Lang
In other news, Gregerson was in a cab that got broadsided Monday night at Lincoln & Webster, leaving him with a broken nose and some blood-stained dollar bills. He looks like he went a few rounds with Jack Dempsey, or possibly The Gooch. My favorite part of the story is that the guy who broadsided his cab -- driving an Infiniti, mind you -- got out of his car and just took off down the street with blood dripping from his freshly wounded skull. This of course prompts four -- and only four -- possibilities: (1) he was hammered; (2) he was driving a stolen car; (3) he was carrying enough coke to kill Pete Doherty; or (4) he was Pete Doherty (which I suppose would be kind of an all of the above answer).

I finished reading The Dirt, which I highly recommend for anyone who likes the Crue or rock 'n' roll in general. I laughed, I cried, I accidentally killed the drummer from Hanoi Rocks. It was certainly a helluva ride.

In its stead, I have started reading Turn Off Your Mind: The Mystic Sixties and the Dark Side of the Age of Aquarius by Gary Lachman, fka Gary Valentine, one of the founding members of Blondie. It's okay so far. Needs more Manson.

Mine Goes to Eleven
Spinal Tap will be reuniting for the Live Earth concert on July 7. They will be playing in London (luckily not Cleveland). Smell the glove.

Oh, Rosie
So Rosie O'Donnell is leaving The View. Holy shit, who cares? Is it me, or does that beast think a little too highly of herself? Where's the Rosie that played the sassy Gina Barrisano in Beautiful Girls? You know, the Rosie who only spoke sparingly and had not yet ruined my image of the magical moment when two girls make out.

Too Much Rod Benson
Greg Weeser* sent me a link for a blog by Rod Benson, former Cal basketball player who is now in the NBDL. It's pretty good. I especially found the "Funny MySpace Messages" posts hilarious. At several points I was laughing out loud. Anyway, check it out.

First Three Albums of the Day

-Outkast - Big Boi and Dre Present . . .-Runner & The Thermodynamics - Runner & The Thermodynamics (one of the many awesome bands that were on the verge of breaking through, but then broke up)-The Clash - London Calling

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

What Else Can I Say?

The parade of apologies relating to Saturday night continues. Many apologies to Kurt's wife Courtney, whose name is apparently not spelled "Colleen." So now, in the relatively short time I have known her, I have done the following three things to gain her trust:
1. Last summer or early fall, I met her twin sister. After she told me that she was Kurt's sister-in-law, I said, "Oh yeah, I've met her before. Michelle, right?" You see, Michelle was Kurt's girlfriend in college (I think), and from what I now know, she is not thought very highly of by many of the people in Kurt's life, one of whom is his sister-in-law.
2. I thought it was a good idea for me and her husband to sing "Under Pressure" Saturday night at live band karaoke, such that I urged them to stay at Piece instead of leaving before we had sung.
3. I referred to her as Colleen during my recap of said "Under Pressure" performance.

Once again, I'm really sorry Constance.

Beer Fest
Anyone who went to IU knows that the combination of the words "beer" and "fest" in succession means one rip-roaring, vomit-inducing, pissing-all-over-your-shirt-in-the-parking-lot-after-you-grabbed-a-flimsy-pine-tree-branch-for-support-and-fell-flat-on-your-face-while-pissing hell of a time. It seems that Chicago is trying to catch up to Bloomington (whose Beer Fest is the largest in the Midwest, I believe), by having its own festival, Beer on the Pier. It all goes down Saturday May 5 at Navy Pier. For $37.50 (or $47.50 the day of) you get unlimited beer sampling for one of two four-hour sessions (either 12-4 or 6-10). There is preliminary talk of going to this, and I see no reason why not. Even though I don't know you, you should go too. I'll be the drunk guy singing Queen. Or David Bowie. Or both.

First Three Albums of the Day
-John Lennon - Plastic Ono Band-The Replacements - Let It Be-Velvet Underground - White Light/White Heat (from Peel Slowly and See box set)

Monday, April 23, 2007

"Can't We Give Ourselves One More Chance?"

I love nice weather.

"These are the days, it never rains but it pours"
During the day on Friday, I emailed several people to see if they wanted to meet up at Chi-Town Tap ("CTT") at 7 for some $1 bottles and $2 burgers. It seemed like a fairly rational and reasonable way to start the weekend. Unfortunately, I suck at most things in life, including judging the amount of time it takes to finish an assignment that I thought I would have done by 5 on Friday. So everyone was waiting -- as Tradd said, "with bated breath" -- at the CTT while I was toiling away at work until 8:15. Awesome. I love billing 12 hours on a Friday, especially when it's pretty much all my own fault. After I got done, I just went straight to the CTT, where Jessie, Ari, Tana, Kyla, Alex, Tradd, Tron, Tron's friend Joe, and several of Joe's ladyfriends had already been enjoying the shit out of buckets of $1 bottles without me (as you might imagine). Upon my arrival, the group became decidedly uneasy, probably due to my uncontrollable panting and hysterical sobbing.

After a while, being surrounded by 19-year-olds became old for some people, so we all left. However, we left in shifts, so as not to upset the children with a single jarring exit. Everyone else went to their respective homes, while Tradd and I headed up to Will's Northwoods Inn to make fun of cheeseheads with Jeremy "The Floppy Burrito" DeMuth and his posse. Also joining us there were by brother Reed (as opposed to my other brother?) and David "House of" Payne. The conversation ranged from Kaiser Chiefs to Kings of Leon, with little in between.

"Sat on a fence, but it don't work"
Saturday the weather was glorious (it probably was glorious Friday too, but I wouldn't know). While Jester went to the Cubs game with some co-workers, I headed to Gregerson's pad, where the rooftop deck became a cornhole (or "bags," if you're wrong) battleground. There's nothing quite as enjoyable as day drinking on a 73-degree day without a cloud in the sky, while getting the shit kicked out of you in cornhole.

Afterward, I met Jester back at the homestead where we consumed a meal of food, then headed to Bucktown to some bar called Pint, where they have the balls to charge even more for the same pint of Newcastle I already pay too much for in Lincoln Park. Already there (anxiously awaiting our arrival, no doubt) were Christoff & Tradd, Dan & Noreen, Lutzow & Katie, and Kurt & Colleen. Timmy, the littlest Weeser*, also showed up. I put $5 in the jukebox, and as I was finishing up my song selections, one of the managers comes up to me and tells me that they are about to override the jukebox. In exchange for the $5 I just wasted, he gave me a "free" pint of Newcastle, which actually ended up being a better deal than if I had just paid for it from the bar. Disenchanted with the experience at Pint, several of us led the train a couple blocks to Piece for some live band karaoke. This turned out to be a grave error.

"This is ourselves, under pressure"
The karaoke list was revised, probably so that I would never again be able to butcher "I Believe in a Thing Called Love." I would not be deterred, however. For a while I toyed with singing "Dead Flowers," one of my favorite Rolling Stones songs, and a song that I know almost entirely by heart. Instead, Kurt and I decided that we would perform Queen and David Bowie's seminal collaboration, "Under Pressure." I was to be Freddy Mercury (minus the AIDS) and he was to be David Bowie (minus the androgyny). Kurt and I were confident that we were going to blow the crowd out of the water. Along with the new karaoke list is some sort of draconian rule that they don't give out lyric sheets before you get up on stage. It didn't matter, we thought, as we mercilessly mocked a group of three guys who didn't know the words to song I can't remember, in a world I can't forget. "If you're going to sing karaoke, know the fucking words," I said to Kurt, as he agreed with laughter. Karma's a filthy bitch.

"Watching some good friends screaming, 'Let me out!'"
Colleen, Kurt's wife, was clearly tired and was begging Kurt to go home. Like Jo-Jo the Idiot Circus Boy, I told Kurt that he couldn't leave yet because we hadn't sung our song. I pleaded with Colleen to just give love one more chance. She did. She was in for a treat, I told her. It was going to be mind blowing, I told her. Kurt and I were soon to be golden gods, I told her. What neither of us knew at the time was that I was lying about everything. In fact, I would say that my lying was so abhorrent as to constitute gross negligence. She may be entitled to punitive damages. Something has to be done to punish us for what I'm about to tell you.

Kurt and I stormed the stage like two cocksure English soldiers in a Fourteenth Century Scottish village, ready to rape and murder the audience -- with song. The bass line kicked in, and I was fully erect. I think we got "Pressure, pushing down on me" out, and then after that it was an exhibition in aural hemorrhaging. It turns out that I don't know "Under Pressure" as well as I thought, and my ability to distinguish while on stage between the Freddy Mercury parts and the David Bowie parts is on par with my ability to write a short weekend recap. Adding to that, I think the lyrics sheet they gave us was wrong, or I possibly had a stroke on stage. We sang a total of maybe 3 or 4 lines of the song. It was so bad that the guys in the band started singing the lead to get us on course. It didn't help. Were it not for the music playing, I'm sure the silence in the bar would have been deafening. "Who are these fucking assholes?" is probably what I would have remarked had I been watching, or maybe "Why would you do that?" while trying to hold back tears of intense sorrow and shame.

When the song ended, both Kurt and I were apologizing profusely to the crowd, who for some reason had not booed us off the stage. To call it a catastrophe would be a disservice to the word "catastrophe." I apologize to anyone who was at Piece, to anyone who might have been walking by Piece while we were on stage, to Jessie for having to be married to me, to Kurt for believing in his ability to sing the Bowie parts, to Colleen for making her and Kurt stay so that we could sing, and most importantly, to Queen and David Bowie for butchering their song worse than Robert Van Winkle ever could have. It truly is the terror of knowing what this world is about. Of course now I can recite the lyrics.

"Insanity laughs under pressure we're cracking"
I didn't sleep well Saturday night. The night terrors were back. I had dreams about people with handlebar mustaches and different colored eyes stabbing me in the throat, explaining that it was "for [my] own good."

Sunday morning I woke up vowing to change my image from karaoke assassin to zoo patron. Luckily it was 80+ degrees, sunny, and not humid, so Jester and I took a walk to the Lincoln Park Zoo, which is just one of the many wonderful cost-free options available to anyone and everyone in Chicago. From beaches to museums to parks to world-renowned architecture at every turn, it's no wonder that Chicago is a finalist for the 2016 Summer Olympics bid. Even if we don't get the bid, us Chicagoans will get along alright because of our easygoing, fun-loving Midwestern attitude.

The zoo was cool. I saw a huge ass camel.

On the way back, Jester and I stopped at a 7-11 to get Slurpees. It was apparently a very influential decision. In a one-block span, we convinced at least eight people to get Slurpees without even saying a word. My newfound status as zoo patron undoubtedly helped. I think I even heard one hot girl say to her equally hot friend, "Ooh, we should get Slurpees." Then her friend asked (quite fairly), "But isn't that the guy who assassinated 'Under Pressure' last night at Piece?" Then the first girl said, "That was so yesterday. Today he went to the zoo." Then they started making out.

Def Leppard, Styx, and Foreigner
Def Leppard is coming to town again this summer, bringing with them Styx and Foreigner. Last summer I saw Def Leppard and Journey. I wore a sleeveless Def Leppard Union Jack t-shirt. I had a great time. Two summers ago I saw Def Leppard and Bryan Adams. I wore a sleeveless Def Leppard Union Jack t-shirt. I had a great time. This year's show is Saturday June 30 at the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park. I will wear a sleeveless Def Leppard Union Jack t-shirt. I will have a great time. Lawn seats are $13.50. Can't beat that with a . . . Styx. Ah-thank you.

First Three Albums of the Day
-Led Zeppelin - III
-Kaiser Chiefs - Yours Truly, Angry Mob
-Mötley Crüe - Too Fast For Love

Saturday, April 21, 2007

"I'm Hot, Young, Running Free, A Little Bit Better Than I Used to Be"

You guys thought it was gone forever, didn't you? Oh ye of little faith, wanna cookie? Yes, that's right, Hair Band Friday is back. Do you think I've actually been working every Friday while I'm at work? Well, I have, but it's been interspersed with an amazing amount of ribaldry and finger banging. For instance, take this morning. "Live Wire" by Mötley Crüe, "Coming Home" by Cinderella, and "Never Say Goodbye" by Bon Jovi had just blasted their way through the speakers in my office. Tawni was performing on the north stripper pole (doing some fucked up tribute to Kurt Vonnegut, splashing milk all over herself and attempting to lick it off -- believe me, it's a hell of a lot more tactful than her Slaughterhouse-Five tribute), and Kristi was on the South Pole (as it's affectionately known), fucking a penguin or some dude dressed up like Admiral Byrd or something. I couldn't really tell, on account of the mixture of mescaline and speed balls. Meanwhile, Mary was performing her infamous Mary-Go-Round, in which every one of her orifices is simultaneously penetrated. There were two midgets -- no more, no less -- because you need them to accomplish a true Mary-Go-Round, on account of the ears. You ever wonder what the lead singer of Danger Danger is up to these days? He's the ass man in the Mary-Go-Round, and interestingly, Mary's husband. Naughty naughty, indeed.

Is That You, Mordachi?
As most of you probably know, Jessie and I are pretty sure that one day we will be heavily involved with falconry. However, an interesting development in England has led me to believe that our future may be with robotic falconry. Investigation continues.

Knight Rider Question
Tron asks: "Is it really possible to drive a car up into a semi-truck that's driving 70 mph down an interstate? I would think the car's wheels would be going at such a high RPM it would just shoot right through the front of the semi truck rather then driving up into a high tech computer operations center for a quick meeting. It's been bugging me for quite a while."


Is That a Mace in Your Pocket, or Are You Just Happy to See Me?
So, a high schooler in Gary brought a mace to school and attacked a teacher. Not mace, a mace. As in the medival weapon that has a spiked ball attached to chain attached to a stick. Technically it's a flail, although it's mistakenly known as a mace. Yeah, so I know about medieval weaponry. What's it to you? More importantly, where does one buy a mace (flail) these days? I haven't come across a good blacksmith in years. What in the name of Ronny James Dio is going on? It's fucking Gary. Don't they pretty much give away Tec-9s when you get to school every day? I just hope she was dressed in full chain mail. 'Cause that would be funny, more so than pathetic and weird. At least she won't be known as Maid Marian the rest of her life. That is, until she gets run through with a lance.

First Three Albums of the Day
-Mötley Crüe - Too Fast For Love
-Cinderella - Long Cold Winter-Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Midwestern Eavesdropping - 4/19/07

Here we go:

72-year-old man at bar to 29-year-old who he just met 15 minutes earlier: "All I can tell you is that I fucked up the world."
--Chicago, The Rose, Lincoln & Seminary
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Father and 3-year-old son in swimming pool:
Son: "Daddy, my body is tired of swimming."
Dad: "What part of your body is so tired, [son]?"
Son: "My butt and my penis."
--Bourbannais, IL, Riverside Health Club
Eavesdropper: Firefox

Lifeguard: "Attention members, please evacuate the pool because we need to clean the pool. A substance was found that needs to be removed."
Dude: "What was it? Are we going to die?"
Lifeguard: "It was poop. I saw it. You should be fine."
Dude (shock and anger while getting out of the pool): "Who was it!?!?!? Did you see the person!!?!!!"
(Lifeguard doesn't answer, just shakes her head "no")
--Chicago, IL, some workout facility on North Side
Eavesdropper: Uter

During Easter Mass, while priest walks up and down aisles blessing people by throwing water on them with little brush thing so as to symbloize re-baptism:
Non-Catholic Wife: "Is that scented water?"
Catholic Husband: "No, that would be holy water."
--Countryside, IL, St. Cletus
Eavesdropper: GMYH

3-year-old son: "Daddy, today we learned how to rhyme at school."
Father: "Oh, really, can you give me some examples?"
Son: "High and sky, dog and log, and kitchen and bitchin'."
--Brookfield, IL
Eavesdropper: Firefox

Socially Awkward Dork: "Hey Meghan! I just wanted to say, you know, before you went, have fun with your salad-eating thing."
Attractive Female: "Do I know you?"
--Bloomington , IN, 3rd & Indiana

Eavesdropper: RobD

Homeless man, to Australian guy, after 2 of Australian guy's friends just gave homeless man money: "What about you? I pray to Jesus."
Australian: "I don't believe in Jesus, but good luck with that." (turns around and walks away from homeless man)
--Chicago, Wells and Burton
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Heavily-cologned dude laughing, carrying on, noticing that it's time for his appointment: "Sorry, I know those guys… I guess actually it's not a good thing to run into friends at Student Legal Services, is it? Shit."
--Bloomington , IN, law office, 7th & Fess

Eavesdropper: RobD

Twentysomething librarian, upon passing woman on sidewalk wearing Notre Dame drum line shirt: "Might as well tattoo 'geek' across your forehead."
--Chicago, somewhere on Diversey
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Girl: "What are you doing tonight?"
Guy: "I have a shit load to do, paper due tomorrow."
Girl: "Fuck your paper. It's Little Five. Let's get weird."
--Bloomington , IN, 10th & Jordan

Eavesdropper: RobD

Girl: "Wanna know how I know I'm a really big loser?"
Guy: "Sure."
Girl: "I'm making flashcards in black light marker so I can study at the party."
--Bloomington, Kappa Delta Sorority, 1005 N. Jordan Ave.

Eavesdropper: RobD

The remaining eavesdroppings happened over the course of 6 hours.
Twentysomething special ed teacher: "I got so drunk at breakfast to go parasailing."
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher, after saying that she is going to "bust out her horns," then putting fingers on head so as to imitate horns: "Meow"
Twentysomething librarian: "Cats don't have horns."
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher: "I think there's something about Mexican restaurants that make me talk like an asshole."
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher: "My dog says (in high-pitched voice) 'what does mommy want?'"
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher: "Didn't the Jews say 'let there be blintzes'?"
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher: "You cannot have a complete Midwestern Eavesdropping based on what I say."
--Chicago, Cesar's, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomthing special ed teacher: "God damn you midget winter!"
--Chicago, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher, when asked what denomination of money she has in her pocket: "I got 2s."
--Chicago, Belmont & Clark
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher: "Dude, I will mind-fight you right now."
--Chicago, Holiday Club, Sheridan & Irving Park
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher, to female friend: "I'm gonna kick your chottie with my pointy toe."
--Chicago, Sheridan & Irving Park
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentysomething special ed teacher in crowded cab: "Let me massage your nut sack with my pointy toe."
--Chicago, in a cab on Irving Park
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentyfive-year-old special ed teacher: "I'm 25. Am I 25? Right? I'm 25."
--Chicago, Carola's Hansa Clipper, 4659 N. Lincoln
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentyfive-year-old special ed teacher: "I suck at life. I really do."
--Chicago, Carola's Hansa Clipper, 4659 N. Lincoln
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Twentyfive-year-old special ed teacher: "Andrew, we gotta talk. You cannot publish a whole Midwestern Eavesdropping based on what I say."
--Chicago, Carola's Hansa Clipper, 4659 N. Lincoln
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Special thanks go out to the combination of a 25-year-old special ed teacher and booze. Keep it up. And when you overhear something utterly hilarious, or even just kinda funny, email it to, and it will appear in the next exciting installment of Midwestern Eavesdropping.

I'm Scared

Well, it's official. It's been a long process, but I am now scared of nearly every single racial, ethnic, or other type minority. It all started with WWII, which made me afraid of Germans. The Cold War made me afraid of Russians and all people who countries were under control of the USSR, especially Armenians. That dude in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest who suffocates Jack Nicholson with a pillow and then chucks the drinking fountain through the window made me afraid of Native Americans. Béla Károlyi made me afraid of Romanians (and Rumanians), both mustached and otherwise. David Berkowitz made me afraid of Jews, even though I'm not even sure if he was Jewish. The Iran hostage crisis made me afraid of all Middle Eastern people. Polish jokes made me scared shitless of Poles. Grace Jones made me afraid of both blacks and women. A Polish Vampire in Burbank made me even more afraid of Poles, but also made me afraid of vampires, sluts, people from Burbank, and gay werewolves. The stand-up comedy of Paul Rodriguez made me afraid of Latinos. Crocodile Dundee II made me afraid of Australians. My Left Foot made me petrified of Irish people. Pennywise made me afraid of clowns. Black metal made me afraid of Scandinavians. Powder made me afraid of albinos and people who can bring deer back to life. Braveheart made me afraid of both the English and the Scottish and for some reason homosexuals (probably because I'm scared to associate with people who get chucked out of windows). The various conflicts in Bosnia (and Herzegovina), Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Kosovo made me afraid of any inhabitant of the former Yugoslavia. Tom Green made me afraid of, and concerned for, Canadians. Columbine made me afraid of affluent white suburban teenagers. Living with Alex Judson made me afraid of Bulgarians. George W. Bush made me afraid of Texans, even though I used to be one. Sanjaya's hair made me afraid of Indians and, just in case, Pakistanis and Sri Lankans too. And now Cho Seung-Hui's video has made afraid of all Asians. Yes Kevin, even you.

In fact, I think the only group of people that don't scare me are males who are half-Italian, with the other half being an unknowable, yet volatile, mixture of French, English, Welsh, Scottish, Irish, and German. Actually, I'm kind of afraid of them too. And bees.

First Three Albums of the Day - Wednesday
-The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Axis: Bold As Love-The Hold Steady - Boys and Girls in America-Johnny Cash - 16 Biggest Hits
First Three Albums of the Day - Thursday
-Various Artists - Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit-Foo Fighters - Foo Fighters-The Black Keys - Chulahoma

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


I hurt myself this weekend.

At 4:45 on Friday -- 15 minutes before I was to meet Jessie, Ari, and Kara to go to Gregerson's going away party for his now former job -- I get a call from a partner, who starts out the conversation with, "Before I say anything else, I just want to say that I would always dread it when partners would call me at 4:45 on a Friday afternoon . . ." Given the fact that I had been proverbially shit on twice in the previous seven days, I was expecting the worst. Luckily he just had a quick question, which leads me to wonder why he couldn't have just said "Hey, I have a quick question" instead of giving me heart palpitations.

So I made it out just before 5, and we headed over to Mother Hubbard's, where Gregerson's now former company was throwing him a going away party to make up for the fact that his position was eliminated as the result of a merger. A couple hundred dollars worth of free drinks for him and his friends would certainly do the trick.

Once the well ran dry, we all hopped in some cabs and headed up to Lincoln Park with intentions of going to Chi-Town Tap for $1 bottles. Unfortunately several hundred other people had the same idea, so there was a line to get it. Since we don't wait in lines, we headed a couple doors down to The Rose, which is a sweet dive bar. While there, we met a 72-year-old man named Don, who looked closer to 172 and claimed to be "the fastest man in the world." After I beat him in a footrace, he explained what he meant. Essentially, his shtick is that you hold a quarter in your palm and he takes it off before you can close your hand. It's a simple trick, but it's still fun to see a 72-year-old man believe that he's amazing a bunch of upper-twentysomethings who are otherwise scared that he might die.

I then struck up a conversation with Don and his equally antediluvian paramour Barbara. Unsurprisingly they live in the senior apartments that dominate the west side of Sheffield between Diversey and Wrightwood. After I told them I was an attorney (a word of advice -- never tell anyone you're an attorney, ever), they gave me some sob story and showed me some paperwork about state medical benefits that I didn't understand. I then wrote down an ambiguous phone number for them to call, and we all had a good laugh (our reasons for laughter being quite different).

After The Rose, it was to The Vu, to which we arrived before they started charging cover for the night (I don't know if that's good or bad). Soon after we got there, I needed to go to the ATM, so I went to the 7-11 next door. On the way out, I had the pleasure of seeing a group of three underagers get denied at the door. One of them was wearing a t-shirt that some people at IU made a few years ago after IU was named #1 party school. It said "Dry Campus" on the front and "My Ass" on the back with "America's Number One Party School" below that. When I confronted this youngster about his "IU shirt," he told me that it was a DePaul shirt, and I had to hold myself back, choosing to go ahead to the ATM as planned rather than force this kid into a coma with a devastating Camel Clutch.

After 8 hours of drinking, Jester and I decided to call it a night, headed to Los Tres Panchos for a burrito and steak nachos, respectively, and then headed home.

I awoke at 9:30 Saturday morning, showered, cried, ate breakfast, and around 10:30 headed up to the Cubby Bear, where I met the likes of Goni (little), Wood, Wells, Gsell, Shemmer (big), Reising (little), Tron, his friend Shane, and Gemkow (middle). All of us were going to the Cubs/Reds game, which started at 12:05, although Tron, Shane, Gemkow and I were sitting separately from the others.

The game itself was mediocre. It was cold. The Cubs won 7-0. As an Astros fan, it's too early in the season for me to know which team I should be rooting against. As a Sox fan, I don't care one way or the other, but would always rather see the Cubs lose. Bears wide receiver Bernard Berrian sang the Seventh Inning Stretch and may or may not have done a good job. The highlight for me was sneaking into the pictures the drunk couple in front of us kept taking of themselves. Peering over their shoulder, we saw them review their pictures, and it's very GMYH heavy.

After the game, Tron, Shane, Gemkow, and I walked a few blocks to the Dark Horse Pub, where we enjoyed Newcastle drafts that were cheaper than Miller Lite cans at Cubby Bear. While at the Dark Horse, the USOC announced that Chicago will get the USOC's Olympic bid for the 2016 summer games, which obviously brought the house down. Did you really think Richard Daley would allow another city to win the USOC bid? As you might expect, the first song played after the bid was announced was "Darlington County" by Bruce Springsteen. Apparently the good folks at the Dark Horse associate Chicago's Olympic bid with a song about a county in South Carolina by a man from New Jersey. I kindly asked the bartender to play "Sweet Home Chicago," and my request was honored.

At some point, I decided to honor my promise to Jessie that I would be home by 4, arriving home at 3:59 on the dot. Once I got home, I took a shower and choked some of Tattaglia's men to death. I have risen to the rank of Enforcer in the Corleone family, and I just met Michael. Seems like a good egg.

At 6:30, Jessie and I met Kyla, Alex, Tracey, and Ari at Cesar's (the one on Clark) for some killer margaritas and Mexican food. It was about this time that Kyla gave me what seemed like a never-ending string of Midwestern Eavesdroppings (stay tuned for Thursday). Several margaritas and a giant burrito later, we headed up to the Holiday Club up in Uptown. Having never been there before, it's a pretty cool place. Very retro. The jukebox is good. The video bowling is interesting. And they have a photo booth. This was all awesome until some asshole decided to play some awful 15-minute song by Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds. Why is that even an option on any jukebox?

Disoriented and confused, we headed up to Lincoln Square to Carola's Hansa Clipper to see one of Gemkeezi's many brothers, Pat, who was playing an acoustic set there. While there, the line between drunkenness and reality began to blur, although I do remember the guy playing before Pat imploring the audience to "try to name an AC/DC song where the title and the chorus aren't the same." I couldn't think of one, so I just had some Warsteiner Dunkel instead.

Since the Gemkows travel in packs, there were various Gemkow cousins there as well, including one who bore (and probably still bears) a strong resemblance to a young Matt Damon, which might explain why the Gemkows there were named Marky, Ricky, Danny, Terry, Mikey, Davey, Timmy, Tommy, Joey, Robby, Johnny, and Brian. Again, that's Marky, Ricky, Danny, Terry, Mikey, Davey, Timmy, Tommy, Joey, Robby, Johnny, and Brian. Oh, and Will.

Anywho, the show was a good time. It was a nice intimate venue, and the Dunkel never -- and I mean never -- hurts. I am unable to confirm whether Jessie and I took a cab home or flew back. Either one seems plausible.

Sunday Jester and I took Harley -- who I am slowly attempting to rename Butters -- to Lincoln Park (the actual park, not the neighborhood where asshole like me live) to chase some squirrels and generally work herself into a tizzy. At one point, she chased a squirrel up a tree with a fairly horizontal trunk (tree pictured to the left), and then tried to commit suicide after she didn't catch it, jumping from about 8 feet up to the ground. No physical injuries ensued, luckily.

We also saw a woman (I think) who I will dub the Pigeon Queen. She was surrounded by dozens of pigeons, probably because she's the type of whackjob who carries around a bag of bird seed feeding pigeons. She also had several that were perched on her shoulders and head. Yes, she actually allowed these rats with wings to stand on her head. But then again, that's why she's the Pigeon Queen and not a functioning member of human society.

By the time we got back from the Park, I only had a couple hours to write my sketch before my Second City class. The assignment was to write a sketch based on a historical figure, but it couldn't be a media parody (thus, my idea of a Charles Manson as a Dating Game contestant will have to wait). So mine was about a guy whose girlfriend breaks up with him, and then he prays to God to send him a guardian angel to help him with his relationship problems. BAM! Enter Jeffrey Dahmer. (And yes, Dahmer's ascent to heaven is duly explained.) The advice Dahmer gives is fairly unorthodox, but it comes from the heart. Unfortunately I didn't have time to edit the sketch, so it was a little rough in certain places. Apparently others don't find references to "making love to the corpse of a 19-year-old Marquette student" in the context of dating advice as funny as I do. I believe the phrase "you're going to hell" was uttered at least once by my classmates. After class, the class headed to Burton Place for a couple drinks. Because I don't learn from my mistakes, I accompanied them. Interestingly, we kept talking about Dahmer and the sketch and other possible sketches involving Dahmer. Given that discussion, it's quite possible that I will write and entire stage show called "That's So Dahmer," involving everyone's favorite cannibalistic serial killer getting himself into hilarious situations. Oh, that's sooo Dahmer. I hope you realize that I'm not in any way joking about this.

Yesterday, obviously the big news was the tragic massacre at Virginia Tech. I don't have much to say about the event itself, aside from the fact that my heart goes out to the families of the victims, as well as the students, faculty, and administration at the school.

What I will comment on are some of President Bush's comments following the shooting. This was actually the first reaction I read from Bush early yesterday afternoon after the shootings: "The president believes that there is a right for people to bear arms, but that all laws must be followed," Bush spokeswoman Dana Perino said. I'm glad to hear that one of the first things our President thinks to say upon learning of the worst mass shooting in US history is that he believes the guy who just murdered 32 people with a gun (or guns) had the right to own that gun (or guns). As far as I could tell, the Second Amendment debate really wasn't an issue yesterday. I'm sure it will be in the near future (i.e., today), but yesterday the last thing on my mind was "Hmm, you know, I don't defend what the shooter did, but I sure as hell defend his right to do it." I was more thinking -- and maybe I'm an aberration -- "Wow, I can't even imagine how horrifying it must have been for students to be chained in a building while a gunman ran rampant. My heart goes out to the university and families." You stay classy, George Bush. Then again, words have never been your strong point.

But that does beg the question: How many times does this type of thing have to happen before Congress steps up and bans assault weapons or handguns? Once more? Five more times? Is there anyone left who actually thinks unlimited access to assault weapons or handguns is a good thing? Is there any good reason why I should be able to walk into a gun store or a gun show and buy a Glock on the spot? And I know one of the suggested "solutions" is to crack down more on people who commit crimes with guns, but I fail to see how that could possibly help in a situation like this or Columbine or the Amish school shooting or any of the fucking dozens of occasions when a mass murderer commits (and plans to commit) suicide. Furthermore, making punishment more harsh when a crime is committed with a gun doesn't stop crazy, nor would it deter murder (it's hard to add anything more to life in prison or the death penalty), nor would it deter the 11-year-old from stealing guns from home and taking them to school (like Jonesboro, Arkansas in 1998). In the never-more-relevant words of Cypress Hill, "Here is something you can't understand, how I could just kill a man."

Last night, several older (at least older than me) Pi Kapps ("Crazy Legs" Hirst, Sanders, Schmidt) and I went out to dinner after work to a place called Bruna's in the Lower West Side, in old Little Italy, which I think is now Pilsen. Anyway, the restaurant was really good. It's been a while since I've had really good Italian food. I ordered gnocchi, which is always a risk because my grandma made the best gnocchi in the history of civilization, and no gnocchi I've had has ever been as good as hers. Last night was no exception, although this stuff was pretty good, and certainly better than most other attempts.

On the L this morning some jackass was blaring country music from his i-Pod. It couldn't have been healthy. People, if your headphones are turned up so loud that you can't hear anything else, including others asking you to turn it down, then your headphones are turned up too high.

While reading various coverage of the Virginia Tech thing, I came across an interesting blog post from a guy who was in a playwriting class with the shooter last year. There are links to a couple of Seung Cho's one-act plays he did for class. He wasn't very funny. In fact, I'd say that his plays were the antithesis of funny. "Richard McBeef" was disturbing, with the sophistication of an angry junior high student. Even worse, his play entitled "Mr. Brownstone" had nothing to do with getting up around seven and getting out of bed around nine, and very little about kicking a mean old motherfucker on down the line. Frankly, it sucked.

First Three Albums of the Day - Monday
-Thin Lizzy - Johnny The Fox
-Kings of Leon - Because Of The Times-The Raconteurs - Broken Boy Soldiers
First Three Albums of the Day - Tuesday
-Cypress Hill - Cypress Hill-The White Stripes - De Stijl-Kiss - Dressed to Kill

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Friday Follies

So I get to work on Friday, and I'm wearing a light blue sweater and khakis. This fact guaranteed that another attorney asked me to cover a hearing in court for her. I explained what I was wearing, and she stopped by my office. Upon realizing that I had a suit coat hanging on the backside of my door, she said something like, "It's just foreclosure court. No one will care." And with that, I was off to court in a sweater and sport coat, looking like some hip, young college professor, not unlike Professor Jeremiah Lasky (Associate Professor of Anthropology at California University), although Kelly Kapowski did not appear to have any interest in me and I do not have an adorable daughter named Abby. In due time.

Conversation Starters
So I'm on the Yahoo home page, minding my own damn business, when there is a link to an article about "5 Conversation Starters." Since I haven't had to start a conversation with a woman in the better part of a decade, I figured I'd check it out to see what people without anyone special in their lives are forced to endure these days. The guy that wrote the article is named David Wygant, and his picture suggests that he eats more shit than pussy. Also, his denim shirt suggests that he may be Canadian or sent to the future from 1993 to administer terrible dating advice. Either way, he is not to be trusted. His suggestion is to use "props" in your environment to spark conversation. Aside from the fact that this technique essentially makes you a Kenny Banya to an otherwise more clever man's Jerry Seinfeld, I think an examination of his five starters will prove to be a worthwhile exercise.

1. "She has a great dog, so you pet the dog and ask, 'What's your dog's name?' Obviously she will tell you, to which you can comment on how sweet the dog is and the conversation should naturally unfold."
The first flaw I see in this is that it only works if she has a "great dog." Unfortunately a lot of people own pugs and schnauzers. What then? "Hey, what's your dog's name?" "Misty." "Oh, it's, uh, very, uh, ass-faced. But you're hot. I think we should go back to my place and engage in sexual intercourse, but only after we murder your dog."

Also, how the hell can you even tell if it's a "great dog"? Looks can be deceiving when it comes to dogs. My dog, for instance, is probably hands-down the best looking dog ever to grace this Earth. It's a fact. But it's also autistic, hates men, and will chew any shoe if given the opportunity. I also know a golden retriever that probably seems like a "great dog" if you saw him outside. But then that big-headed bull in a china shop gets inside and cannot go more than three steps without knocking something over with its hydrocephalous melon or plank-like tail that is constantly wagging.

Third, commenting on "how sweet the dog is" may unintentionally throw the gay vibe out there.

Fourth, I fail to see how the conversation will "naturally unfold" after that. It's a lot easier to ask a hot chick if you can pet her dog than getting her to let you pet her cat. And by "cat" I mean vagina. The very same vagina that you will never see because you are literally one of hundreds of men each day who asks to pet her dog and tries to hit on her. Ergo, the conversation will naturally unfold as such:
You: "What's your dog's name?"
Her: "Mongo."
You: "Your dog is so sweet."
Her: "Thanks. [pulling dog's leash] C'mon Mongo, let's go."
You (as she's walking away): "So, would you, like, maybe wanna get coffee or something sometime?"
She pretends not to hear you and fails to turn around, hoping to God that when she gets home you will not have followed her, although if you do, a knife is also a really good prop with which to start a conversation with a hot chick.

2. You're in a café and she has a newspaper. You can ask, 'Do you mind if I read that section when you're done?' When she gives it to you, ask, 'Anything exciting I should read first?'"
Are you kidding me? First of all, hot chicks don't read the newspaper. They read People and Us Weekly, and maybe the Red Eye, which you can get for free and she will probably tell you that.

Second, what kind of an asshole walks up to a girl at a restaurant (or "café") and asks for something he can walk outside and pay 50 cents for? Oh, I know: the kind of guy that a girl reading a newspaper in a café would not date or give a section of her paper to.

Third, what happens when this imaginary hot chick with a newspaper in a café says "no" when you ask her if there's "anything exciting" in today's paper? Do you follow up like a tool and ask, "Really? Nothing exciting? Hmmm? Hmmm?" while raising and lowering your eyebrows? Probably not because after she gives you the Style section, she is going to get up and leave immediately.

3. On an airplane, ask to borrow a pen. If you're feeling really courageous, once you've got her pen, shake her hand and say very seriously, 'Nice to meet you, I'm ranked #2 among America's Most Wanted Pen Thieves. Ever seen it?' Sure it's kinda cheesy, but it's also the kind of off-the-wall thing women love.
First of all, sitting right next to a hot chick on a plane who has a pen will happen about as often as an unassisted triple play. Now if Wygant were to offer some advice on how to approach a 350-pound man whose side flab is encroaching on your armrest WITHOUT making him think you're hitting on him, then we might have something of use.

Second, no one who is the #2 pen thief in America is going to blow his cover. Once you feed her that line, she will just ask for the pen back, and when you don't give it to her, alert the authorities.

Third, as long as you're building a relationship on lies and superficialities, why settle for #2? It just makes you sound like you're not the best at what you do.

Fourth, "pen thief" is on par with "lamp shade salesman" as far as making a woman moist.

Fifth, "Ever seen it?" is not a natural progression from the previous sentence because "I'm ranked #2 among America's Most Wanted Pen Thieves" does not sound like you're referring to a TV show, so "Ever seen it?" is a bit confusing. A better follow-up would be any of the following:
-"Say a word to anyone and this pen goes straight into your jugular."
-"I also steal babies."
-"But Moriarty's got a little surprise coming, if you know what I mean, so I should be number one within the hour."
-"In the last year alone, I stole over 75,000 pens. This might explain why I haven't been on a date in that same time span and have to resort to lying to strangers on airplanes."
-"As you can see, I have Down Syndrome."
-"The only thing that will stop me is if I join the Mile High Club, but I just haven't found a woman brave enough to save society from my wrath. Until now, that is."
-"My name is Ozzy Osbourne."

4. "At a diner, ask her if you can borrow the salt from her table. When she gives it to you, say, 'Thanks, I saw you eyeballing it so I thought I'd help out by removing the temptation for you. Salt is very bad for you, ya know,' as you proceed to douse your own food with it -- another one that's sure to get some laughs."
You might as well follow that up with "And I don't masturbate twice a day either."

5. In a bank line, you can even use the lack of customer service on the part of the tellers as a prop. Why? Because it gives you something to talk about -- that's exactly what props are for.
This is about as insightful (and probably as effective) as "How 'bout this weather we're having? Did you know that I love you?" Here's how I see this bank conversation going:
(you're standing behind some hot chick named Her)
You: "Man, what a lack of customer service."
(no response from Her)
You: "You know what I mean?"
(Her does a half turn)
Her: "Oh, were you talking to me?"
You: "Yeah, I was just saying, 'what a lack of customer service.'"
Her: "Oh. Yeah, it's busy today."
You: "Now that we've established a rapport, I think we should go out."
(Her takes out pepper spray and maces the shit out of you)

Possibly a Terrible Idea
I've been toying with the idea of listening to all of my CDs in alphabetical order while I'm at work (excluding Hair Band Fridays, which will always remain dedicated solely to hair band music). This will allow me to rebut Jessie's repeated presumption that I "have too many CDs" (not like that's possible anyway) and that I "don't even listen to half of them." In addition, it will allow me to rediscover some of the CDs that I haven't listened to in a while -- hell, I don't even listen to half of them anyway. The problem is that with over 500 CDs, this may take a while. I figure that most albums are around 45 minutes. Thus, assuming I could listen to music for 8 hours every day at work, I could listen to an average of 10.67 CDs a day. Assuming I have around 530 CDs (I'm counting double albums as 2 CDs), it would take me about 50 days to accomplish this task, which is ten full working weeks. Another problem is that I don't really want to listen to the full soundtrack for The Natural. That alone may prevent me from going forward.

First Three Albums of the Day
It's Hair Band Friday
-Mötley Crüe - Greatest Hits

-Warrant - Cherry Pie
-Guns N' Roses - Appetite for Destruction

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Everything Alright In There?

Midwestern Eavesdropping will be back next week after you jerks overhear some funny things and send them to

Trivia Repeat
The Well-Coifed Women of High Moral Standards (comprised of me, Christoff, Gregerson, and Gregerson's friends Nick, Andy, and Dan) accomplished something rivaling what Florida did this year. We won Rocks Trivia for the second week in a row, and, like the Gators, it was a true team effort. With 7 members, we had to rotate one out each round, so as not to be disqualified for having too many players.

Stormy Weather, Baby
Victory could not be savored too long, as yesterday morning I woke up to a thin layer of wet snow on the ground. It was miserable in the morning. The snow was coming down in giant globs, feeling more like rain. To top it off, there was a horribly inappropriate stiff wind smacking me in the face, reminding me that I'm a sinner.

More Bathroom Hijinx
Yesterday morning I went into the bathroom. My coveted third stall was taken, so I had to settle for the first stall. Normally when someone else is in the bathroom I hear some jostling, toilet paper pulling, and uncomfortably loud panting. At the very least I hear some breathing or movement. But I wasn't hearing anything. Nothing at all, even after several minutes. I had convinced myself that this guy died in glorious fashion -- a true man's death indeed. As I sat there trying unsuccessfully to hear any sort of noise, I became more and more convinced. Now obviously I wasn't about to test my theory, but I was frightened that I would encounter the same thing on my next trip to the bathroom, at which time I would have to alert the building that there was a man who died during defecation in the third stall, forever tainting my once happy bathroom home. While I was working this out in my mind, his walkie-talkie cut through the silence like Jack the Ripper through a Whitechapel hooker (too soon?), asking him where he was. "Sleeping on the shitter" was not his answer. Needless to say, I'm relieved. Lord knows I don't want to be known around the office as The Guy Who Discovers Dead People in the Bathroom. It would surely taint my current image as The Guy With the Totally Awesome Three-Disc Changer Who Bangs Like Eighty Chicks Every Day and Does Not Discover Dead People in the Bathroom.

Work, IU, and the Like
As if my day couldn't get any better, I got some rush assignment yesterday afternoon, which was due this morning. Slowly I'm transforming into The Guy Who Everyone Gives Rush Assignments To Because He's Too New To Turn Them Down. What was particularly timely about this assignment was that several months ago -- out of the goodness of my heart and devotion to my alma maters -- I agreed to be an alumni volunteer for IU for the LT college fair, which of course was last night. So I worked until 6, trucked it over to Union Station, did as much work as I could on the train, trucked it to the North Campus Fieldhouse, for two hours helped convince a seemingly endless number of LT juniors (mostly hot chicks, er, I mean pretty girls, er, I mean males and females between the ages 16 and 17) to apply to IU by answering such questions as "What's like the most popular major?" (folklore, asshole, keep walking to Iowa State), "What do most people major in at IU?" (binge drinking), "What's your strongest program?" (this is always a funny one because the answer is music, and anyone who doesn't know that probably isn't interested in, or talented enough to get into, the music school), and, of course, "Is your business school any good?" (yes, although COAS RULES), then trucked it back to the Stone Avenue stop, read some of The Dirt on the Metra, trucked it to the Quincy L stop, read some more of The Dirt on the L, trucked it home, and worked until about 1 in the morning.

Lolla Lineup
The lineup for Lollapalooza has been announced. It looks pretty good. Among others, here are the groups slated to be there: Pearl Jam, Daft Punk, Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, Muse, Iggy & The Stooges, Modest Mouse, Interpol, My Morning Jacket, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Snow Patrol, The Roots, Pete Yorn, Patti Smith, Kings of Leon, The Black Keys, The Hold Steady, and a ton more. As usual, it looks like it's going to be a pretty good show, although I'm not sure why Daft Punk is getting second billing. Tickets are now $195 for the 3-day fest. Deal with it.

The OC is Back, Kind Of
Like a heroin junkie chasing the dragon, I have been looking for something to fill the void since The OC was so callously taken from me. All other teen dramas are akin to methadone as far as I'm concerned. Kudos to cable network SOAP for fixing me with a Nikki Sixx-sized hit of the good stuff by showing The OC reruns every weekday at 5pm Central (that's 6pm Eastern, 1pm for the Aleuts, and 7:30pm for those of you in Newfoundland, although I'm not convinced there are TVs in Newfoundland, nor the internet to read this increasingly superfluous parenthetical). Of course now I have to find an excuse to leave work every day at 4:30, but I can always lie and say that I'm meeting my dealer, going to the strip club, having an affair, going to my other job, taking voice lessons, going to the clinic "because my fuckin' dick just won't stop itching," or a combination of all of the above.

Here are a couple good videos:
1. A Blue Jays commercial featuring Frank Thomas that got pulled because Canadians are weak. Thanks to Christoff for the link.
2. A foreign slam dunk contestant picks a girl out of the crowd to dunk over, or at least that was the plan. Thanks to Gregerson for the link.
3. Jimmy Kimmel verbally depantses the girl who runs Gawker on Larry King Live. Thanks again to Christoff.

First Three Albums of the Day - Wednesday
-Van Morrison - Astral Weeks-Howlin' Wolf - How Many More Years (I couldn't find a picture of the album, so I just put a nice picture of Chester Burnett himself up here)-Kings of Leon - Because Of The Times
First Three Albums of the Day - Thursday
-Cream - Disraeli Gears-Wolfmother - Wolfmother-The Impressions - The Greatest Hits (By the way, if you haven't yet discovered The Impressions -- the Curtis Mayfield version, not the Jerry Butler version, although that ain't bad either ("For Your Precious Love" is an all-time great from the Jerry Butler years) -- and you like '60s soul, then I highly recommend this CD. There's not a bad song on it. They are Rock and Roll Hall of Famers, after all.)

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

DNA Clears My Name Again

NFL = No Fucking Leniency
I love the NFL for so many reasons, one of which is that it is run so much better than every other professional sports league, and its not afraid to come down hard on players who fuck up off the field. The latest example is that the NFL has suspended Titans public relations calamity Pacman Jones for the entire 2007 season and Bengals booze monster Chris Henry for the first half of the season for their various and sundry run-ins with the law over the past year. Kudos to accountability.
Big Daddy
Well, we finally know who Dannielynn's father is: former (obviously) boyfriend Larry Birkhead. Birkhead -- who resembles an unstable Jay Mohr who surfs a lot -- is one of a seemingly endless parade of suitors claiming to have had sex with Anna Nicole (who was probably wearing clown face paint at the time and may or may not have been on quaaludes) around nine months before Dannielynn was born. Look at his triumphant fist pump, as he realizes the fact that he had sex with Anna Nicole Smith paid dividends for the first time, in the form of an infant girl slated as the sole heir to hundreds of millions of dollars with no family members except one: daddy. I gotta be honest, I was pulling for Zsa Zsa's husband because I would have liked to see Zsa Zsa dole out yet another public mouth slapping.

Long Drive, Sort Of
So I was curious as to how long it would take to drive to Lulea, Sweden from Chicago, and I was surprised to find that Google Maps had the answer: 30 days and 22 hours. The toughest part of the 6,230-mile journey will be Step 20: "Swim across the Atlantic Ocean 3,462 mi." It begins in Boston and ends in Le Havre, France. After that it should be cake. I'm not sure how my car is going to make it, though. Granted, I'm sure I'm not the first person to figure this out, it's still pretty funny that it's even an option. I cannot, however, drive to Tokyo, Almaty, Ankara, Cape Town, Buenos Aires, Bombay (or Mumbai), Reykjavik, or even Nome, Alaska. That angers me.

First Three Albums of the Day
-Kings of Leon - Because Of The Times