Taste of Chicago


It's been a few days since my last post, so I'll briefly re-cap the week!

Wednesday: We headed out in the AM to go find a place called Working Bikes, where you can get old beat up bikes that...well...work! 60-day CTA bus passes for the two of us would have cost $350, so we decided to go take a look at these banged-up bikes to see if we could save a buck!

We ran (literally) to the location that was posted online (two miles away), but they had moved. There was a cardboard sign up with sun-faded writing that was really hard to read. After staring at it for a minute, we made out "We've moved to 234 S. Western Ave"...another mile away. So we ran there but still Working Bikes was nowhere to be found! Keep in mind that it is 90+ degrees outside and incredibly muggy. We were not happy.

To top it off, we were running through a very rough neighborhood. Little punk kids yelled at us saying "Hey! I dihn't know we had white chocolate in dis neighbuhood! Yo! Looka dat white chocolate! Yeah, run away white chocolate!"

We finally ran into a gas station where they were nice enough to let us use their phone (Working Bikes' number was disconnected...awesome!) and they even went online for us. As it turned out, the store wasn't at 234 S. Western but 2434 N. Western. We had run a mile in the wrong direction and now had to run another two to get to where we needed to go! Not-so-nice words started crossing our minds. We wanted to catch a bus, but had no cash on us. And we couldn't even use the ATM because I only had a credit card on me, not a debit. @#$%

So we start running in the opposite direction when we hear this BOOM and it starts pouring rain!! Now, we're used to rain smelling good. But we live in Utah where the air is relatively clean and people aren't defecating in the streets. In Chicago, however, rain brings out all the lovely smells that have been hiding in the alleys. Nasty.

We finally found Working Bikes and found two Schwinn one-speeds from like the 60s. Niiiice. With the exception of some rust and ghettoness, they worked just fine and we only payed $125 for the two of them.

On the way home I got a flat tire.

And later that night I burned my hand on the stove really bad. The reason I haven't blogged for a few days is that it hurts my hand to type! I have gnarly blisters.

Wednesday sucked!

Brock had work off today...yay!! We set out early to find Greenpeace's HQ...I'd called and left a message on their automated "So you want to work for Greenpeace?" machine, but hadn't received a call back in two days. Instead of accepting defeat, I decided to hunt them down!

Thus began the wild goose chase. This took us back to the scary part of town we'd been to on Wednesday. We finally found the address, 2439 N. Kedzie Avenue, and went up the stairs to suite 5W. Knock knock knock.

Nobody was there. We peered through the slit in the door where people slide mail through, only to see dusty old furniture stacked up in unused piles. 5W hadn't been used in a long time.

So that sucked. But hey, sometimes it's the searching that's the most fun. Yeah, we didn't find Greenpeace, but we did find 2439 N. Kedzie Avenue suite 5W! We grabbed an Oreo McFlurry at McDonald's to cool off, and continued on with our day. We rode our bikes east towards the lake, and ended up going to the Lincoln Park Zoo. It's free! We were pretty tired from the past two days of running/riding around all over Chicago, so we only visited half of it (warthogs, giraffes, polar bear, monkeys, etc). Right next door to the zoo is the Lincoln Park Conservatory, which is basically a huge green house with all sorts of tropical plants, flowers, and ferns. There was a lot of cool stuff to see, but it was even muggier in there than it was outside, so we didn't last long!

After the Conservatory we went to Navy Pier with the intention of seeing Transformers 2 at the IMAX, but it was sold out. Instead, we grabbed dinner at the Billy Goat Tavern (burgers and hotdogs...classic Navy Pier fare!) and even splurged on a $5 orange creamsicle...mmm!! More than worth it :)

I don't know how we had the energy to do more, but we managed to make it downtown and dink around before it got dark. We stopped by Hershey's and Ghirardelli's where I filled out job applications (not sure if Greenpeace is gonna work out!). At Hershey's we split a s'mores brownie which looked a lot better in the display window than it actually tasted in real life.

Then...home! At one point during the day I remember passing a TV in a window with the headline "Michael Jackson in hospital," and by the time we got home, Brock's dad had texted us saying he'd died. ?!?!?!!
Friday: We chilled. The past two days had been go-go-go, so we slept in until 11 AM and watched Michael Jackson videos on YouTube all morning. That man was, without a doubt, the greatest performer this world has ever known.

After Brock went to work, I began searching on Craigslist for jobs. Greenpeace still hadn't called me back, so I decided to move on. I found a listing that a grassroots campaign had put up, who was looking to hire people interested in working for environmental issues. Greenpeace on a smaller scale, basically. I called them and got set up for an interview at 5:30.

As it turned out, this grassroots campaign was comprised of WACKO LIBERALS!!! I mean, I lean to the left (about one degree) on some issues, but these guys were off-the-wall progressive politics. ACLU-loving, GOP-bashing, Prop-8-revoking crazies. And what's more, it was a bunch of college kids running the joint! In this crappy rented-out space 15 floors up in a skyscraper, with like broken tables and chairs, empty Tostitos bags and Sum 41 blaring out of a boombox. Classy.

Immediately after that interview, I found myself some WiFi (at a Corner Bakery Cafe...with those fudge brownies...how convenient...) and googled Greenpeace again. I was determined to find their offices! After some searching, I found two more possible locations which, luckily, were in the vicinity. So I set out on foot. The first location was a bust, but it sent me down State Street, which is a really cool street with a lot of history. It was nice to get acquainted with it.

The second location was...golden! I'd found it! Finally! Yes! And the irony of it all is that it's literally a stone's throw away from where Brock works! Seriously! You cross the street and you're there. I couldn't believe it lol. Anyway, the security guard, Tony (he was really nice), sent me up to the 9th floor and I FOUND THEIR DOOR! Unfortunately, nobody was there (it was kind of late in the evening) but I was just so stoked to see a door with "Greenpeace" written on it after literally looking all over the city. Sometimes the small victories mean the most :)

Walking out of the building, guess who I run in to? Anthony! What luck! I called his name and he was like "Oh my gosh! Hi!" He told me that for some reason, they weren't able to get a hold of me on the number I'd left, and that's why I hadn't gotten a call from them. He gave me his personal number and told me to call him on Monday to set up an interview for Tuesday. YES!

On that high note, I met Brock who had just gotten off work, and we went home and watched "Super Size Me" on Hulu. I will never look at fast food the same way again.

Saturday: That brings us to today! Brock and I made pancakes for breakfast and then rode our bikes to the beach. The beach is actually pretty nice, but the water is nasty. Unlike the ocean, there's no current to keep things moving, so everything just kind of sits there and stagnates. Keep your mouth closed!

After the beach we went to Taste of Chicago, which is where tons of restaurants from all over town set up booths to overcharge you on crappy food. Hahaha, no just kidding...well....not really lol. It was like $8 for 12 tickets and each food item cost so many tickets. We were able to spread them out pretty well by doing little "testers" of everything (which only cost 4 tickets each). We tried: potato pancakes (some weird Southern thing...basically like a big, extra-greasy hashbrown), an Italian fried steak sandwich (think chicken fried steak in a bun with marinara sauce on it), rib tips (excellent!), a whole wheat oatmeal raisin cookie (also excellent!), and Oreo cheesecake with ice cream. It sounds like a ton of food, but all the portions were really small. Plus we split them. So it filled us up nicely without doing us over!

They also had entertainment at Taste of Chicago. This one girl rapped about the city's crappy educational system and about the stigmas that come along with being black....she was totally legit. I got goosebumps.

By that time, Brock was due in for work. He towel-changed out of his swimsuit (yes, towel-changed! You can take the boy out of California, but you can't take the California out of the boy) under a tree in the park that was away from the crowds, and went in at about 2PM. I proceeded to find a Blockbuster and rented "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button." Probably not Brock's top choice, but he wasn't there to chose, now was he? ;)


Post a Comment

© Raesevelt All rights reserved . Design by Blog Milk Powered by Blogger