Sunday, February 25, 2007

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Orygun Tyme Agun

My return to Oregon has been a glorious one... I feel like my time in Eugene is akin to limbo, time seems to pass with little importance and nothing gets done. Hoo-ray for friends.

The last apartment I looked at in Chicago, on the way to the airport no less, turned out to be a dirty gem in Bucktown: beautiful views of brick walls through little windows, no doors and a little porch, but nice and big inside and just where I wanted it. I have not lived on my own since my first studio in Portland (quite an emotional disaster) but I look forward to the privacy and control over my domain. I am worried about furnishing the place but have been checking out I-go and Zipcar, or perhaps I should just get a hot bum bike set-up?

I move in April and can not bring much with me... This could be a disaster.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Bright Windows

Train Trip

Add to My Profile | More Videos

24 Hours On a Train

I have 10 more hours until I arrive back in Chicago from visiting Portland, Maine for a week. I have not taken Amtrak since I was little and only for a short trip from Eugene to Portland. I save $80 by not flying; but with 10 hours left, ask me later if it was worth it. At least I am getting in some Amtrak points. They need internets on these trains.

I briefly saw Boston at a transfer and said goodbye to New England; I didn’t get to see much of Boston but the "bomb threat" by Aqua Teen Hunger Force really left me frightened for my safety...

Trains always seem to amaze. Their lack of security, speed... as I write this we have just stopped and are being inspected by border patrol. I didn’t realize people risked freezing to death swimming across the great lakes. Exciting. If you are an illegal and get stopped on a train, just pretend to be in a deep snoring sleep; someone is using that technique a few rows back. Or take a bus.

Somehow I got sat next to the one other hipster on the train; he also is moving to Chicago to start anew - from Minneapolis; and yes, according to him, Prince does live there and does have yard sales and you can pay to hang out with him. Why would you ever leave? Unfortunately my social awkwardness only got me that far in conversation. So much for a chat-a-thon.

Chicago 1.0

Chicago: The 'Not New York' City

Chicago came into the fold about a year ago as a friend of mine and I were trying to plan our future escape from Oregon. It seemed an interesting option as positive stories about it smelling of chocolate, having offbeat radio shows, good local music, good jobs, affordable rent, hipsters, the Sears tower; and according to my absolute favorite college professor thus far, "the best art school in the country", not that I could afford it. Oh, what? Oprah too.

Moving east is appealing: the states are smaller - shit is closer and Jet Blue (the soon-to-be Greyhound of air travel, you'll see) goes about anywhere of interest for cheap (at a higher risk of death, I'm determined is true).

I came to Chicago with my good friend Mary Pilon (future prez of the world) for a preliminary visit. Forging through the cold with a CTA 7-day pass and a Rough Guide we tore through museums and documentaries like a hot knife with the assistance of her aunt and uncle who put us up and were more than amazingly hospitable.

Chicago has a kind of old American feeling; it seems to somehow look old without looking worn. There is no terrible modern skyscraper looming overhead or overkill public security and I absolutely love the aboveground trains no matter how slow they are. It might be the weather but people seem quieter and not once did I have to listen to someone else’s phone conversation on public transport… yet.

A Rare Snow Day in Eugene

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Snoozene, Oregon

Back in Eugene, Oregon and the return to being creative with too much free time: lots of thrift shopping and a graveyard photo safari.

Breaking Dancing Licenses All Over Town

Getting out of London was a relief. No more busy tube. No more terrible food. No more grey days. No more shady landlord. No more living without amenities. No more checking each day to see how bad the dollar is doing. No more chavs. No more foreigner confusion/stopping conversation to ask, "What does that mean?” no more tonsillitis. No more snooty French women or bro-ham Australian men. No more Kylie Minge or Anastasia. No more Prince Charles Cinema. No more cute little cars. No more cute little friends. No more feeling everything is new and exciting. No more free museums I didn't make time to go to. No more Mr. Hoover. No more gawking about time it takes to travel in the States. No more bad fish, no more good chips. No more musicless JD Wetherspoon veggie burgers.

There isn't much about London that I haven’t had to repeat to every one of my parents' friends at their holiday party.

Basic breakdown: first three months were mostly terrible while the last month was fantastic and I can't wait to go back; in the summer.