Being Chicago and Jenna. She's been here this weekend, and it's been good times. We tried to kick around Chicago looking for a compromise in living arrangements so that neither of us has to spend seventeen hours on the El, but I'm not sure that's happening. She's going to UIC, which is about center on that map, while I'm still whiling away the last bit of my youth at Northwestern (the Noyes stop on the map there.) As you can see, we will be working not quite at opposite ends of the city, but far enough away from each other that the living thing tends to become annoying. The only decision thus far is that we're not living in Uptown near Wilson. And while Wrigleyville and Lakeview are nice, both mean being around more Cubs fans than I'd like.
I kid. But not really.
I've spent quite a lot over the weekend, and so we'll have to go back to eating sandwiches comprised of whatever I can find in my kitchen. So wasabi and oranges, I guess. If you're in Chicago at some point and feel like heading somewhere interesting that knows a bit about wine, try Volo a wine bar that's nice if you're in to feeling pretentious, and somewhere I might be able to afford to go once every, say, five years. The rest of the weekend's purchases were mostly musical, as I found License to Ill for $8 at Virgin Mega, and threw in Del tha Funkee Homosapien's "Elektra Years: B-Boy Handbook" and Danger Mouse and MF Doom's "The Mouse and the Mask" in for good measure. Everyone knows License to Ill, so I'll just comment on the other two.
"Elektra Years" is a small compilation of some of Del's earlier works (most of the tracks come from "I Wish My Brother George Was Here" (1992), and from what I've been able to listen to in the few hours since I've purchased it, is pretty enjoyable. It's witty, flows, and is well produced. The only real thing that bothers me about it apart from realizing that it's fourteen years old, and I was nine when it was made is that that age tends to rise up in a few places, and I'm left with visions of the truly awful music videos of the mid 1990's. Lots of neon. Though I think that's because I hunted the "Mistadobalina" video down on YouTube. Perhaps it'll pass.
"The Mouse and the Mask" is being sold with at least some attempt to draw in on the success of Adult Swim, though for what it's worth, I'd be happier if they left Meatwad rapping off of the damn thing. A formidable record in its own right, it's incredible how the music twists around the samples from 1970's cartoon soundtracks. Still, if they eliminate the Adult Swim crew from talking over the beginning and end of most tracks, I don't think anything would be lost.
I'm really glad most things I own are books, and are therefore pretty resistant to me throwing things at them. The MARLINS? We lost a series to the MARLINS? I didn't get to watch Zach Duke's outing yesterday, but Ian Snell today... I... So here. I'm of the belief that Ian Snell will eventually come around and show the control he's shown in his previous four starts every time. I think the kid needs to play in the majors, and I really do believe that he's going to be a factor in the Pirates rotation at some point. Color me hopeful. But today's 1 1/3 inning start in which he gave up 7 earned runs isn't making it easy for me to keep that sunny disposition up. Magically, after he was pulled, Vogelsong put together two more outs, and then Cota was no where to be found, having been replaced by Ronnie Paulino in the top of the third. Why is it whenever Cota's in, we seem to stink with such force? It could be an artifact of his status as Perez' personal catcher, and the fact that Perez is terrible this year, but yeesh. I have no idea. It's getting really hard for me to watch this continually.
On the subject, I bought a book over the weekend in the hope that I'd somehow remember something of teams I'd never seen play, when Pittsburgh baseball wasn't such a joke as to be avoided by commentators as just too easy. The book in question is Clemente: The Passion and Grace of Baseball's Last Hero, and while it's not nearly as suspensful as the things I've been reading (the things I've been reading being thrillers and sci-fi), it's very well written, and is an interesting experience for this fan who wasn't alive in time to see Clemente play by about eleven years.
I'm going to sleep now.