Wednesday, June 29, 2005

More pride
I'm trying to put together some irregular plural flashcards for my seven year old client. One of the words that I'm looking for in Clipart is "men." Everything that pops up first celebrates gay couples, so men in embraces, holding hands, etc. I'm halfway tempted to use of them just because they're so pretty.
I was really excited last night. "Average Joe" premiered and someone that Todd knows is on it. I met the guy briefly at one point when he sat a bar before a show his band was playing at The Mutiny (a most excellent dive bar). I was thrilled to recognize the dude, and cheered for him, but then he was ousted first round. First round. Brutal! Apparently he had asked to leave because he hated the girl and needed to get back to his job anyway, but it would have been awesome to have rooted for someone all the way through.

Who can forget "Average Joe Hawaii" when the lady had a huge secret to tell her beloved, which was that she used to date Fabio. And that was enough to make the dude break up with her. SOOOO awesome.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Happy Birthday to Katie, who turns 25 today.
Yahoo! I know that she'll celebrate by going to class!

Monday, June 27, 2005

So hot
I'm sitting in my apartment melting away. says that it's 81 degrees, but I don't believe it. It feels like at least 90. I think that I need to go for a walk to cool off.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Todd and I went to Humboldt Park on Saturday. It's expansive and pleasant and a good place to walk to on a sunny, warm day. We stumbled upon a car show filled with glistening, polished old and new cars. I think it was some kind of competition. I thought of Anne, who would have died and gone to heaven over the beautiful Mustangs on display. I was more amused by the huge muscled dude with a pony tail and tank top riding a scooter with the license plate "BIG DADDI."

Afterward we got some Puerto Rican food for lunch. Yum. We realized afterward that we never got our promised plantain chips, though. Daaaamn!
It was my first Pride Parade and was I glad to be there to experience the phenomenon. We got there today at 11:30 to meet Kevin, Jessica, and a whole slew of others to plant ourselves on a corner of Aldine and Broadway. We stood there for the next few hours and the parade wasn't even finished when we left. The streets were overflowing with people celebrating and drinking many beers and cavorting in honor of the big day. It was a good time. It was also a good time back at Kevin's place afterward where he had so graciously provided snacks and drinks and a place to sit in the AC. Everyone else left to go onto further parties and celebrations, but Todd and I were wiped so we came back to my place and napped for two solid hours.

The floats were all pretty awesome, but I mostly appreciated Kevin's exclamations throughout: when the policemen on horses went by ("Goooo gay horses!"), when a hummer went by with some random advertisement ("Gooo gay hummer!"). I went to the Pride Parade in DC in 1999 and that was a pretty modest event, but Chicago's Pride Parade is An Event with capital letters. Yesterday was Pride Fest, which we missed and I'm sorry about. Apparently RuPaul was the headliner and "sang" from her four albums (Kevin: "who knew?"). At one point she chanted "Give me some money, give me some money" which was a good shtick since people started handing her cash throughout the rest of the show. I need to get in on that action.

I wish that I had taken pictures of the streets after the parade, though. It looked like a war had gone through. Piles of detritus (mainly beer cans) lined the streets and people were flooding on through still in the midst of celebration. I went to the coffee shop tonight to do some studying, and the party was going on strong still. There were also many people weaving all over the place. Techno reverbertated from all of the apartments around me. I wonder how much business all of the bars and restaurants in the area did (a lot).

But the piece de resistance: the grand marshall of the parade (is that the right term?). Wilson Cruz of "My So Called Life." Ricky, for those who don't know the actor's name. He waved gaily (ha!) from his car, bare chested. Boyfriend's been working out in the past 10 years since he was yooge.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Hottest day so far in Chicago! It's going hit 100. Sweeet. I like the heat, but the apartment un-air conditioned can be something to contend with in that case. So far, it's not that terrible, but I think it will be another story in the height of the afternoon.

So my first week is coming to a close of summer quarter. So far, a big thumb's up to summer quarter: it's more laid back and not as pressing as the other quarters, and I like it. I also had my first sessions with all three of my new clients, and I enjoy them all.

I like my rounded, totally unintelligible powerhouse of a two-year old at daycare (he's a bear hugger and would be hopeless at some sort of sit down game, but can be counted on to go nuts over the prospect of blowing bubbles).

I like my three year old in the clinic: she is little and talkative and cooperative and I want to wrap her up and put her in my pocket. She's got amazing people skills as well. Yesterday we were talking about her cat named "Max." Here's a little bit of our conversation:

3-year old: "do you have a dog or a cat?"
K: "No, I don't have one right now, but I want one."
3-year old (with some concern): "You should get a pet. It will make you happy!"

(of course it took a little more time to understand her since she doesn't have a lot of her sounds yet). Last summer I read a great book called "The Ever lasting Story of Nory." It was written from the perspective of an imaginative five year old (I think) who went to a Montessouri school. My three year old attends one as well, and I feel like I'm talking to the Nory character when I work with her.

I also like my seven year old who I'm working on language stuff with. We played Simon Says and she was into it! It's awesome to have engaged clients this quarter after my little spitfire from last quarter. He was cool, but he was clever and set on sabotaging sessions. These little guys that I have right now are happy enough to be there, which is like a fricking gift from the heavens.

So this weekend is Pride Festival. Lakeview is ladened with rainbow flags. I can't wait for the Pride Parade on Sunday, which is supposed to be quite a spectacular event. I hope to take many pictures.

Tonight, Todd (a most awesome boyfriend) is taking me out for my half-birthday (which is actually tomorrow) to see "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" at Bailiwick Arts Center. I can't wait. It's at 11:30, though, and we usually crash around 11 on Fridays. I hope that we can stay awake.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Happy Anniversary Indeed!
As Anne mentioned, Christie and Stefan got married two years ago now. Wow, that was a quick two years. It was an awesome wedding and in beautiful Maine and a perfect couple.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Goooo Puerto Rico!
It was the Puerto Rican Day parade this past weekend, I think. I know this because I was sitting in Todd's place this Saturday waiting for him to get back from work and there was a constant stream of honks outside of his window. Everyone was out with flags flying and honking loudly, longly, and happily. People were cavorting through the streets with Puerto Rico flags draped over their shoulders. Todd's friend, Steve, said that a few years ago the Puerto Rican day festivities were only one day, then they stretched to a week, and now they're like a month long. Which is cool, because who doesn't love a party? It was quite festive.

We walked to Wicker Park for dinner Saturday night and many houses and cars were festooned with flags, and people were out grilling, and kids were singing about Puerto Rico living forever. I told Todd that by the time he moves out of his place, he'll be hanging flags outside of his window as well. Hooray!

Today the weather was amazing. We took the bus to Randolph street in the West Loop (I think), and went to The Taste of Randolph Street festival. There are tons of restaurants there (as well as the Harpo studios, which I had never seen before) so all of the places were selling their wares. Strategery was involved: the plan was to walk along the entire festival and rank what we wanted to try the most and then go from there. We totally scored with the fresh guacamole from this awesome place called De Cero. We kind of missed with the kebabs from a place that I don't know the name of. By that time we were pretty much dominated, though, so there was much food left untasted. Next time.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Suck/Swallow/Breathe Synchony
I know all about it now. The class on infant and toddler feeding finished up yesterday, and I think it is one of (if not the) favorite class that I've taken yet at NU. The material was interesting, we learned a good amount of hands-on basic therapy, and the instructor was engaging and easygoing. It was challenging to have to spend the entire day in class and then come home and look over your notes for the next day's quiz, but at least it was all pretty fresh. Plus, I'm done with one of my classes for the summer and the actual quarter's course load will be less brutal.

Most of the people in my class were in my program with the exception of two people: one mom finishing up her undergrad degree and one huge, quiet ponytailed dude. It kind of made sense that the mom was in the class since she had a 2-year old with some issues and had a 4-month old as well. The big quiet dude was in the class so he could graduate on time. Which was yesterday...the same day that the class ended. He seriously went straight from class yesterday to graduation. It slayed me so much that this guy was taking this class because it was no doubt directed toward SLPs in training (which he was not) and HOW did he pick this class? It must have been one of the only one-week classes available, because I can't imagine that this undergrad was like: "I have got to take a class on the feeding and management of infants and toddlers!"

This kind of cracked me up too: our instructor sent around thank you cards for the visiting parents who shared their story. She urged us to write little notes about what we learned from them, so you can imagine that the card was filled with substantial little blurbs. I noticed that the big dude only wrote "Hi!" ... which is so hilarious on a thank you card.

Yes, my threshold for hilarity is lowered.

Anyway, I'm sleepy right now since I woke up pretty early. Last night we had a little dinner party with Steve and Kiley and it was just what the doctor ordered at the end of a long week.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Happy Birthday, Vroom Vroom!

I think that the weather in Chicago is gorgeous right now in your honor!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Inside Mariah Carey's Mailbag
This is too much.
Kevin's got a new blog!
Check it out here and the Links Portion in the future.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Tonight Todd's band, All Limbs Intact, played for the first time ever. It was at the Elbo Room and they were pretty awesome. It was all instrumental since they're working on the vocals, but their playing was great, and while they celebrate the loud, my ear plugs that I brought protected me from noise exposure. Nice job, Todd!
Wedding Bells Ringing for Hambone
This is way belated, but a major congratulations to Lisa who recently got Spain of all places!

Is KFC catering??
Petition to help save PBS and NPR
Please sign!

Monday, June 13, 2005

Freedom is a buck oh five
We watched "Team America: World Police" this weekend and it was pretty hilarious. I couldn't get over how much work must have gone into that movie. All of those puppets! I could watch footage over and over of the puppets walking away, though, and laugh endlessly. The Kim Jong Il puppet was pretty awesome too.

Like Anne, we also watched "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou." I also didn't love it as much as his other movies (can anything touch "Rushmore"? Not likely), but there were some funny parts. Not the least of which is when Zissou urged his son to call him "Stevesie" rather than "dad" since it sounds better.
These are a few of my favorite things
I'm taking my intensive class on Infant Feeding this week, and I like it so far. I was a little apprehensive about the 9-5 class, but the class is pretty laid back with plenty of breaks and videos and stories. We only have a quiz every day and a little presentation at the end, so no mid-terms or exams or massive papers.

Plus, the class is all about babies and toddlers and eating which are my favorite topics in the world. We watched a video today of a normally developing baby--how she went from shoving food in her mouth to grasping utensils all for naught to finally directing the utensils to her wide open maw. It was pretty awesome. Tomorrow we have visitors: toddlers and small children who have feeding issues and their parents. One of the kids only eats bbq potato chips because he won't accept any other texture and taste. My kind of kid.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Sunday night
It was a nice four day weekend and much needed. I slept...a lot. Like all the time. It was pretty awesome.

Friday night we went to this place called the Hideout to see someone Todd know play blues guitar. I had never been to the Hideout before, but had been planning to find my way there back in September when FOUND Magazine was having a show there. Good thing that I didn't, because who knows if I would have gotten there. The Hideout is in the middle of nowhere, smack nestled in among all of these industrial buildings. What a cool place, though: small and a neat show venue. The place looks like a set from "Twin Peaks." Plus they have benches outside where you can sit when the weather is breezy and balmy like it was on Friday night. Hillary was going to meet us there, but I assumed that she decided to bail. I found out later that she got turned around on the bus, figured that she was in the wrong/bad neighborhood and then had to hang out in a KFC and called her roommate to pick her up after two cab companies never showed. Poor Hillary. Anyway, the place is a Hideout indeed.

On Saturday, we caught the blue line to downtown and wandered around the book fair held on Printer's Row. It was hot and kind of crowded, but pleasant to wander around all of the books. Plus, they were giving away popsicles. Free popsicles = Happy Kristin. Afterward we wandered over to Grant Park to the Blues Festival. That's a cool thing about Chicago: there always seems to be something going on when the weather gets nice.

Today we walked over to Wicker Park to have lunch and to go to Walgreen's where I could buy school stuff for tomorrow. Class starts tomorrow at 9 a.m. and goes all week, but I'm happy at the prospect of pounding one out of the way before the quarter officially starts.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Word and Phrases that sound gross, but they aren't.

I love this one:

Special bastard
A child born of parents before marriage, the parties afterwards intermarrying.

Jeffrey Kacirk, The Word Museum

(via metafilter)
Change my grade!
There's a Washington Post article written by a professor at American University about how many students challenge grades these days. It sounds like it's a pretty common thing. I've always been fascinated by the tenacity of students who do this, since most of the time, you can't really argue with numerical grades. Plus, who cares if you get a B or a B+? Noone. It's kind of hilarious to read how professors will post grades right before they have to leave for break and then run out the door to avoid the onslaught of phone calls.

I have found that I get nervous over grades mainly now because we can't get lower than a B in our core classes otherwise we would have to do remediation. The threat of that is enough to make me study my arse off.

Also, more confusion from the finanical aid office here about what forms to fill out and when! It's a labrynthine ordeal, y'all.

(via tmn)
Spring quarter has officially come to a wrap! The exam last night went pretty well and quickly (one person finished in about half an hour). I love doable exams. I have four days till the next class starts--four days of nothing! Luxury! Now it's time to catch up on wee chores and cleaning and grocery shopping and all of that good stuff.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Zack, the house head doctor, told me today that conversion disorders don't only have to do with voice. My question was answered and without research. Awesome!

I'm working on Delivery Systems for tomorrow night's exam. I'm feeling a wee bit burned out and over this, folks. But I'm going to sit my ass down for the next hour and get through some more of this at least.
An American Barbecue Pilgramage
More from well-traveled.
I have a problem. I am seriously addicted to sugar-free popsicles. They are just what the doctor ordered in this hot weather.

I went and sat by Belmont Harbor this afternoon with the pretense of studying. Didn't happen, but it was nice to soak up some rays by the water. Now I'm sleepy from the sun, though...

How else to kill time? Reading Well Traveled on Slate.
Done with voice

One more exam left to go, but that will involve less work and preparation, so it almost feels like break right now.

I've posted a couple of pictures that Don sent from his life in the Peace Corps in Armenia. They're beautiful so I thought that I would share.

Armenian wildflowers Posted by Hello

Armenia, from Don's view. How gorgeous. Posted by Hello

Monday, June 06, 2005

I'm tired of studying. I spent a good four and a half hours today sitting in the Borders coffee shop in a voice study group (although that was more fun by studying by myself and a good bit helpful as well) and then spent a couple of hours tonight reviewing and getting a leg up on the exam that's on Wednesday.

I also watched two hours of "Hell's Kitchen," and I am hooked, yo. That dude is so mean! I would totally crumple under his meanness, it's true. I would get kicked out stat and it would not be a pretty sight. Maybe entertaining, though. There was one dude on there though who was caterwauling with kidney stone pain that seemed to spring up during the stressful times, and all I could think was "conversion disorder!" That's something that happens in voice: people might lose their voice or suffer disorders whenever a stressful situation starts, whether to turn the stress into something else or to unconsciously create something that will help them avoid the noxious situation. We talked about this for a good 10 minutes during our study session today. I'm not sure if conversion disorders are only with voice, though: I'll have to figure that out.

I'm sad that I'm not taking my short break in lieu of taking this intensive class that starts this Monday. I mean, I know I'll be glad during the quarter when I have one less class to contend with, but it sucks to go straight back into work and to know that I'm be wrung out when the quarter actually starts. Plus, I felt a stab of homesickness for DC tonight. I talked to my parents on the phone and thought about what it would be like to stretch out on their couch in the back room with a Washington Post Magazine in my hands, the smell of good dinner in the background and it would be mighty nice. mighty nice.

Whoops, it's late. I need to get my beauty sleep for the exam bright and early tomorrow morning. I can't wait!!!!

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Break time!
I wasn't around for the Lakeview street festival today, but everyone else was. Todd dropped me off tonight and the streets were filled with people enjoying the warm, balmy evening weather and eating street food. I missed out!

Anyway, last night we went to Steve and Kiley's place for a game night (ah, harkens me back to our game nights back in DC...good times). Kiley fixed up a feast of tacos and salad and banana pudding (which I didn't partake in, not being a fan of bananas and all). Then we played Balderdash and a rousing game of Taboo. I wasn't very good at Balderdash, but Todd was on my team and I think he's got a talent at it. I love Taboo, though, even though I feel ridiculous performance anxiety sometimes. [I *was* impressed, though, when Kiley got "pedal pushers" from the clue "clam diggers." Most of the party was dudes, and they were all like "..." at that.]

Kiley had just gotten Taboo that day, so it was the latest version. I was thinking this morning about how in five years, so many of the words themselves and/or the red-tape clues to them would become outdated. One of the clues in the game last night was "Brad Pitt," and you weren't allowed to say "actor," "sexy" (hah!), or "Jennifer Aniston." But, hello! Even in these past few weeks, what self-respecting celebrity-gossip-gobbling person wouldn't know it from something around "Angelina Jolie." Come on. I also had the word "Jack Nicholson." I wasn't allowed to say movies that he'd been in like "About Schmidt," or "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest." But in like five years, won't there be more movies and then you won't even be foiled by those red-tape questions?

Yes, I spent some time thinking about this.

But, dude, I had the word "Adamant" last night. What the hell is that about? Needless to say, I didn't find victory.

Anyway, the take home message of this post is that you should buy Taboo right now with the knowledge that it will become easier with time or harder with time (how many of the names would become irrelevant?).
All I know is that when I take a break from studying and read Brendan's blog about his current gig and lifestyle (helipad parties! cheap hot lava stone massages! Miami! New York!), I can't help but question my own choices in life.
New Pot
I got a shiny new used big pot today. I'm pretty crazy about it: it's large and comes with a steamer and a pasta sieve and a top and it only cost $2. I went with Todd and Steve and Kiley to a garage sale held by one of the guys in Shellac. Bob something. I wasn't really looking for anything, but was pleased to find a cheap good pot, especially when I've been needing a big one for chilis and sauces and whatnot. And now it's got a little rock and roll history as well.

Man, I'm tired to looking at voice notes.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Thanks to Charles for the most excellent selection of cds: Explosions in the Sky and American Analog Set. Perfect study music. Suddenly poring over voice notes seems less painful.
Yesterday was long. First of all, let me dance a quick jig in honor of being done with classes for the quarter and not having to go to campus today. This is something that needs to be recognized and celebrated.

Second of all, that exam last night? Sapping to the utmost. It was taken at 6, after a full day of classes and hanging around campus all day (which for some reason tires me out even when I'm not doing anything there), and this sucker got served, "this sucker" being me. The professor packed it full of questions on topics that he just skirted over or never mentioned (pet peeve) and did my other pet peeve: asked a whole series of four questions in one and then gave us like a millimeter to answer that shite. I protest! Everyone who came out looked straight out gobsmacked and I came out to find Hillary planted face down on the couch in the lobby area. The important thing is that I think I did okay despite it all and I can now completely and fully put that class to bed.

...and begin to study for Vocal Disorders, on Tuesday, and the true bear of the exam series. I just woke up and have yet to pull out my books. It's much more important that I watch Shakira gyrate and sing on "Good Morning America." I think it's funny when they scan over the crowd, which seems to be a collection of people who stumbled upon the concert. A lot of them are standing there with crosses arms and stone faces and refuse to be swayed into feeling the music, dammit.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Hearing Impairment exam tomorrow night at 6. Paper and final report due too. Last day of classes, though! See, there's an upside to everything.