No Blaise: Divvy Disasters

July 23rd, 2014

Pitchfork was amazing.

Ah-maz-ing.

Before you ask, I saw:

SZA, Beck, Pusha T, Tune-Yards, Danny Brown, St. Vincent, Neutral Milk Hotel, Schoolboy Q, Real Estate, Grimes, and Kendrick Lamar.

Although I thought Grimes may have been lip syncing  and that she was much better when I saw her two years ago, everyone else was amazing.

Ah-maz-ing.

Anika and I live close enough that we decided to walk home Friday night, which was lovely. Perfect weather, etc etc.. And Sunday Ryan had driven so she gave us a ride home which was perfect since I am still, on Wednesday, in extreme energy recovery mode from the weekend. But Saturday we decided to try Divvy for the first time as our method home.

My first Divvy will be my last Divvy.

Initially it takes about 15 tries for the machine to read Anika’s card, but once it does we bike our 8 block journey and then park with great success. After a brief stint at home where I get refreshed with a beer, we decide we’ll Divvy to Soul Summit at Double Door which is again only about an 8 block journey.

Though we are at a different Divvy station, the machine again is a real dick about reading Anika’s card. It turns out that this station has also decided to be an a-hole about accepting the little code thing Divvy spit out at me to allow me to take a bike. I try pressing the six numbers into several different bike ports, and although none of the lights turn green signaling my ability to take the bike, I somehow manage to pull one from it’s parking spot.

Maybe my workouts are paying off..

We finally are able to make our way 8 blocks north and find a station that has two spots open.

Perfect!

Anika jams her bike in, no problem. I roll into the last spot just as confidently and am met with a big fuuuck youuuu. The bike didn’t click in so I’m standing there with these unethically heavy bike and no where to put it.

Another guy rides up looking for a spot and I ask him to test whether or not his bike will cooperate, it doesn’t either. This guy turns out to be much more immune to Divvy’s bullshit and is all “Gonna go find another station, ta ta!” happy as a clam.

What a freak.

I set off much less happily to the next station which isn’t that far away but it’s far enough away that I can gripe for about 5 minutes about how annoyed I am. Unfortunately Anika stayed behind to wait for me by Double Door so I am talking to myself.

Same ol’ Same ol’.

As I approach the salvation station I hear someone yell out my name…

“Oh! Hello boy I went on a date with last week!”

At the end of the night we decide to cut our loses and walk home. But nothing without stopping at 7-eleven and McDonalds so I can drown my Divvy frustrations in gardettos and quarter pounders.

When we’re finally home I give my bike a hug and am all like, “I love you, I’m sorry I strayed, please forgive me, I just didn’t want to carry a lock in my teeny tiny purse, it’ll never happen again…”

And my bike is all, “Nora go drink some water and go to bed.”

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No Blaise: Festival Moods

July 16th, 2014

Summer in Chicago means there are 49058340958 festivals of one kind or another happening on any given day at any given time. I realize for most people this is one of the biggest reasons they love summer time so much but for me it’s a lot of, “Too many people, too much standing, bye.”

Lollapalooza used to be an exception to this, but now it’s pretty much the picture that pops into my head when someone mentions hell.

Street festivals are usually pretty cool. This rating goes up or down based on:

if it’s close to my house (+5 points)

if it’s crowded (-15 points)

if there will be good music (+25)

if my ex will be there (+/- 10 depending on how tan I am & what I’m wearing)

if it’s the taste of Chicago (not fucking happening)

I went to West Fest last weekend which wasn’t too crowded and was extremely close to my house, you can imagine how pleased I was with both of these factors. Got to walk around, be part of the West Town scene, and buy a very cool bracelet made by a local artist. Just browsin’ my way right into the hipster demographic.

As most of you probably know, Pitchfork is this weekend. I didn’t buy tickets out of pure laziness and so was getting into the mindset of “oh no, I’m not going, I’ve got some other stuff going on.”

This other stuff being sitting on my porch and attempting to make almond milk in my kitchen while hoping no one comes over to notice that I’m still wearing my pajamas from Friday or that I’m wearing lipstick I’ve been trying on while sitting on the couch watching the food network.

But as it turns out Anika won two three day passes to Pitchfork and she is taking me.

Me me ME!

Though it will disrupt my highly productive and utterly sexy plans, I’m working myself into full blown excitement.

+ 25 for good music

+5 for it’s proximity to my house

+100 for it being free

The other side of this excitement coin is the extreme outfit anxiety. Skirt? Dress? Shorts? Tank top?

Well, one things for sure, I will not be wearing a crop top.

P4K 2014 here I come!

 

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No Blaise: Cleanse Complete

July 9th, 2014

I ended my cleanse with a bang.

For all of you that care about my well being, you’ll be happy to know I don’t mean that literally, although I did consider offing myself on Day 6 and then on Day 7 was sure I was going to.

But here I am!

Looking altogether not any different, but feeling much less like my insides are at war with my outsides.

The week long health marathon ended last Thursday and was promptly followed by fourth of July weekend at a friends lake house. Or “Lafen” for those in the know. By “those in the know” I mean my friends, and they are more than likely the only people who read this so the last few sentences were probably irrelevant.

What else is new.

The three days of Lafen are spent drinking, eating a lot whenever you want, and walking to Libertyfest which is pretty much the mecca of both of those the previous items on this list, but I guess with more dancing.

Reuniting with day drinking and bratwurst after a week long hiatus was interesting. It was so interesting I decided to jump in the deep end and finish my first day on the lake by ordering a large pizza with 5 toppings for myself and Ryan, which was then consumed in bed. Woke up with alotta bacon and mushrooms on my pillow.

Get in line, fellas.

The next day was equally as glorious as we got to have our traditional fried chicken feast for dinner, this was all I dreamed of for my entire cleanse. And for the 51 weeks before that.

***Shout out to Steve and Sandra Norton, for both the chicken and putting up with a large group of twenty somethings roaming all up in their space.***

Saturday night ended with me eating cold chicken directly from the fridge and then falling asleep on the couch while everyone else was social. This again cannot be blamed on my re-adaptation into normal diet and drinking because it is something I do at pretty much every house party we throw.

So so many reasons why I’m single.

 

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No Blaise: Weirdest Week

July 2nd, 2014

Last Thursday Anika and I decided to start a week long cleanse. Anika’s unemployed, I didn’t have much going on in the upcoming week so it seemed like good enough timing to be hangry for a week straight.

We were in for quite a wild ride.

The second day we had to drink something cruelly called “chocolate mylk” which was just three heads of romaine and a bag of carrots. If drinking this doesn’t already sound like vomit to you, then just imagine it being the consistency of thick dirt.

There ya go.

Thankfully none of the things we had to consume the rest of the week could even compare to the nastiness of that mylk. We also had meals of “real food” mandated to us. Lots of salads which I enjoy, lil bit of quinoa here and there to keep us alive, I get to have something called “detox sushi” for lunch today which looks pretty delish. A lot of these meals included avocado and looking back I’m unsure I would’ve made it through without that delicious green guy.

Thank you, old friend.

My biggest complaint, aside from day twos vomit chokedown, has to be the amount of times I’ve had fish for dinner in the past seven days. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am definitely a seafood eater. Big into seafood. But take any seafood lover and have them eat fish every night for dinner for four days in a row AND deprive them of french fries, and you’ll break anyones fish habit. I’m not saying I’m never eating fish after this, or even that the dishes didn’t taste good, all I’m sayin’ is can a sister get some chicken.

I’d like to refer now to where in my first sentence I said that I chose this week for the cleanse because I “didn’t have much going on”. This turned out to be unbelievably untrue.

The weekend started out normally, minus my not drinking quantities of wine/beer. FYI–don’t go to a bar if you’re on a cleanse and can’t drink. It sounds “social” but really you’re just gonna sit in a chair and wish you were drinking. It also helped me realize how much I do need alcohol in order to dance publicly.

Monday roles around and things are still going according to plan, I’m still hungry but doing alright. Then the ginormous storm hits. My bedroom.

I’m in bed, which yes is in the basement of our house, and am reading  my kindle. Then I’m all, “Is there water dripping in from the window?” So I look over and there isn’t water dripping from the window, there is water rushing in through the wall. OH OK! I quickly grab the power strip and my computer off the floor as to avoid an accidental suicide, and then proceed to shriek and jump around in what is quickly becoming ankle deep water not knowing where to start. I run up to the main floor to get Ryan and she helps me get everything I can off the floor. Mostly shoes and books on low shelves.

Save the books! Save the shoes!

Then we lug sandbags out of a closet and put them up against my wall where water is rushing in. My landlord texts me to put the bags in the doorway of my room as to contain the water but I am not about to turn my bedroom into a swimming pool. Then said landlord shows up with a shirtless friend and they help with the flood, but there’s pretty much nothing to do but watch the water rise and pray the rain stops soon. By 1 am they get it all drained out and I fall asleep on the couch which is looking like it’s gonna be my bed for the next few days.

Minus my waking up on the couch, yesterday started out normally, I even got out of work early! So I went to DePaul to get my student ID, the photo on it of course turned out looking like I was a wet dog considering I hadn’t gotten to shower after the flood ordeal and was covered  in baby spit.

I go home and work out, mostly so that afterwards I can eat a green protein smoothie bowl, which have been gods gift to me on this cleanse. I’ve only gotten to have two, but I can’t imagine life without them now. The description of their deliciousness is for another blog.

Post workout I’m all ready for a shower, so I go to take one. The water temp never changes from freezing cold.

And I’m talking freezing.

I give up on showering because I have more important things like smoothie bowls to worry about and can just shower after dinner or something. Dinner, of course, is fish. Yum.

Fast forward to 10pm when my roommate Katie tries to shower and hers is also freezing cold. Turns out our hot water is off for no good reason. I text my landlord to no avail, and now that I think about it I still haven’t heard back from him. That mofo needs to get in gear and get that hot water back cause four girls in a house with no hot water is not cute.

HAVE A GREAT HOLIDAY!

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No Blaise: World Cup Confusion

June 25th, 2014

Being a semi-sports fan (Go Bulls) and having played soccer the majority of my life, until I was quit my senior year of high school cause my coach was a real d-bag, I have been following this World Cup pretty closely.

Well, as closely as I can comprehend.

When the games first started, things were much simpler. No one was getting eliminated yet and so I didn’t have much to keep up with other than the goals being scored and the players flopping. As we got deeper into the Cup, teams started to get kicked out. No pun intended.

Chile eliminated Spain and I was all, “Say whaaaat!” Cause that was crazy. I was pretty sure Australia was eliminated, but then yesterday I see that they played Spain, and I was all, “Wait what?”

Now I know there is a point system in place and that’s how these eliminations happen. However, being an English Major math has never been my “thing” so I’ve been doing a lot of smiling and nodding when people try for a fourth time to explain to me how many points a win or a loss or a tie or a hug between players is.

I was doing alright when the team would move on with a win, and would be eliminated with a loss. This makes sense to me. But then those World Cup rule makers decided to get complicated.

*The below scenarios are brutally fabricated*

“So if Japan beats Croatia, and then Nigeria ties with Bosnia, Japan and Bosnia will get through to 16, but if Nigeria beats Bosnia and Japan and Croatia tie, then everyone gets eliminated.”

“If Portugal beats The Ivory Coast, and England beats the USA by 3 points, then Portugal and England will play each other to see who will play the USA in the next round, but only if Brazil wins against Mexico.”

“If Jamaica plays Germany and both teams score 2 points, then Uruguay wins the entire tournament.”

To add insult to my apparent brain injury, there are groups of teams divided into letters. Within this, these is a team that’s the winner of the group and then there’s a runner-up. In the next round winners will play runner ups, runner ups with play winners, A’s will play G’s, C’s will play E’s….

F-U-C-K I-T

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No Blaise: Learning How to Eat

June 18th, 2014

A big part of Weight Watchers for me has been learning how to eat like a normal human being.

This of course includes finding the right foods to eat that don’t turn out to be 22 points post consumption, and a snack that isn’t 5 oreos. But it also includes learning how to eat the right foods, once I’ve decided what those are. By this I mean both portioning correctly and not wolfing it all down in two bites.

For all my fellow over eaters out there, you realize how difficult going from worshiping food and inhaling it at any chance to being calm and collected about the enjoyment that is a delicious meal. I’ve had to take drastic measures to ensure I both eat correctly and enjoy what and how I’m eating.

Because if you can’t enjoy it what is the fucking point.

My method has been to concentrate fully, or at least as fully as I can concentrate on anything, on what I’m eating. This means eating slowly and with purpose. A purpose other than to get it all down my pie hole.

Mmmmm pie.

When I eat noodles, I eat one at a time. If I have salad, I take a reasonably sized bite and wait a decent amount of time before diving in again. Pretzel sticks become mush in my mouth before I finally move onto the next one. Cookies…

Cookies I just tried to stay away from because once I had one of those bad boys all rules were out the window. Until the beautiful discovery that is 100 calories packs. This means a small bag of very small cookies, but it more importantly means my being able to eat 5 cookies without extreme guilt.

It’s a win/win, really.

Now all they need is to make an 100 calorie pack of cheeseburgers and fries and I will be all set!

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No Blaise: Vacationing

June 11th, 2014

This past weekend I went to Los Angeles to visit Hannah. It turned out to not only be a vacation from the Midwest, but also a vacation from Weight Watchers.

We went to the Griffith Observatory to get an amazing view of the city, and then to Dinos chicken to stuff our faces with delicious chicken and french fries.

A trip to the Melrose & Fairfax flea market followed by an even more exciting stop at In-n-Out burger.

Has everyone reading this post had a double double animal style with a milkshake and fries from In-n-Out? Cause if you haven’t, you need to stop reading and go get one by any means necessary.

photo (3)

This post, and life in generally, is best enjoyed while eating one of these beautiful burgers…

One of the items on my vacation bucket list was to have fish tacos, so we did that, too. Oh, and the first night we had Ethiopian, then Saturday morning Hannah and I had brunch and ordered enough food, and beverages, for an obese family of four. Thankfully they burnt the order of large potato pancakes we ordered so death by brunch was avoided.

You’re going to ask yourselves two questions now:

1) Do all of my fondest memories revolve around food

and

2) Am I ok with that

The answer to both is yes. A very definitive yes.

Now I’d like to say that my only WW slip ups occurred once I arrived in Los Angeles. But, as I waited to board my plane to LA Friday morning, at 5am, I decided to get a Potbellys breakfast sandwich. Unfortunately I decided not to check how many points the delicious sausage, egg and cheese sandwich was until after I’d devoured it. And, wouldn’t ya know, it was 22 points.

Oops.

Thankfully, I’ve come up with my own clause to the WW constitution that states “Anything you eat between the hours of 2am and 6am is zero points.” This of course applies to the breakfast sandwich, as well as the happy meal I had at 3 in the morning two Saturdays ago.

Hang ten!

 

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