Sunday, February 26, 2006

I had a lazy weekend. Like lay around and watch lots of "Flava of Love" lazy (has anyone watched this show? These ladies are crrr-aazy. I just can't stop watching the girl who calls herself New York, though). Reports are due next week and there are only a couple of weeks left to the quarter. You know what that means, folks? THREE quarters left to go before graduation. I think the countdown might begin now.

Saturday, Todd's brother came by with Ava, Todd's baby niece. She just turned two months old and she's perfection with her rounded and smooth cheeks. For lunch that day, we walked over to Calvin's BBQ, this awesome little orange bbq shack that's a few blocks from his place. I hadn't been there since early January, which was the last time we saw who we call "the sassy waitress." She super sassy and flirty and friendly, and in anticipation of seeing her again we deemed that day "Sass-serday" (instead of Saturday...get it? get it?). Except the last time we saw her, I think that Todd hurt her feelings a little. She was giving us a hard time about getting take out and Todd, in the spirit of the sass, said back "we just didn't want to hang out with you." The crack in her sass came through when her face fell. It was a sad moment in Sass History.

In other news, I just might have the best friends one could ask for. I'll leave it at that for now.

Monday, February 20, 2006

TLC is freakshow central.
Todd and I totally watched lots of freaky shows on TLC this weekend. We watched an entire show about a guy with hypertrichosis (think "wolfman"). The guy's name was Chuy and it was a very sad, enveloping story about his efforts in finding a job in his native Mexico.

Directly following this show, there was a show called "The Man Whose Arms Exploded." It was about some dude who took so many steroids his biceps started leaking blood. "Exploded" might be a bit of a hyperbole, but it was gross nonetheless.

Before the hypertrichosis show, I watched a show called "The 750 Pound Man."

And THEN, we almost started watched a show called "The Tumor Ate His Face" but then had to turn it off because there was blood leakage. Man, TLC is definitely in the game to steal my time.
James has the hook up.
He linked to the most excellent video of the fat, fat, fat cat in China. It made my afternoon, so I had to link to it as well.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Such a rock star.
Here's a quick run down of my schedule yesterday.

9:30: wake up
9:30 - 5:40: sit on the couch because--dude!--it's like one degree outside and I'm so not even kidding about that.
5:40: Todd and I go to our belated V-day dinner at Tango Sur, this Argentinian steak house on Southport.
6:10-8:00: Enjoy some gastronomically amazing filet and a nice bottle of red (read: costs more than $10).
8:30: Get back to Todd's place, and collapse on the couch with plans to leave at 10 to see his friend play at a nearby place.
9:30: Asleep.

I seriously fell asleep at 9:30 and slept for 12 hours. Part of this was the fact that the food was so amazingly rich. I do think that Tango Sur is my new favorite nicer restaurant to go to. It's lovely and small and candlelit. The meat was succulent as all get out. We shared this filet dinner for two that came out on its down sizzling platter with lots of garlic and portabello mushrooms. Oh my gah. The place is BYOB as well, which always makes a place a better deal. But our nice dinner was less than $40 without tip, which is pretty awesome for a special occasion place.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Today we went to school screenings in Skokie. I always enjoy them since the kids tend to be hilarious, bright, and happy to "play talking games." They also are so easy to please. One of the activities is to look at a picture of absurdities and to describe what's going on there. The kids will seriously lose it over the picture of the father sitting in a high chair at dinner.

Anyway, today, I was talking to a five year old, and we were at the vocabulary part of this particular screener. So I asked the kid to describe "huge." The interaction went like so:

K: So, what is "huge"? Tell me what "huge" means.
Kid: The great white whale!
K: Very good!
Kid: Can I tell you what else is huge?
K: What?
Kid: Your head!

Hmm, kid has a point. It reminds me of the drunk guy that we came across at a restaurant in China. When informed that my mother was from Southern China, he thought for a bit and then very seriously informed us that he could tell because people from the South tend to have big heads.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day!
Many hugs and kisses to all. It's a lovely sunny day in Chicago with an excellent taste of spring in the air. It's pretty wonderful.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Weird week
It's been an odd one this week. I think that this mainly comes from the fact that I (and the rest of my classmates) are recovering from what was a busy midterm week. I was seriously wrung out at the end of last week and haven't really been able to do anything of substance since then. This is a bad thing since I had to accomplish a very complicated aphasia take-home mid term during that time, so let's just leave that one to the gods, shall we?

So there's that, and then there's the getting over the cold. I think I'm about 90% there. I'm still a storehouse of snot, and the bottom of my nose is all red and chafed, but I'm not longer congested and that is a big old plus. I wake up now without one nostril feeling like it's blocked up with cement. And today I worked out and didn't wonder if that was possibly not the wisest decision in the world like I did on Monday and Tuesday.

And then there's the late night engagements at school popping up. One was a last minute meeting MANDATORY(!!!!) called for those of us going off campus this summer (four months away, mind you). It was at 8 at night in our building. In the middle of a snowstorm (okay, more like a flurry, but it felt like a storm at the time). Beforehand, I met Lauren, Hillary and Katie for Chinese food (more on that later) and then we headed back to the building for the meeting. It was so odd and absurd trekking back there to the deserted campus in the swarming snow. The meeting went for an hour and a half, which is...awesome. The good news about the meeting was that it reaffirmed that general closeness of the off-campus practicums which means that we're that much closer to being d-o-n-e.

Then there was an aphasia lab from 6-8 that I had to go to tonight since I can't attend my old one now that my new client is scheduled during that time. Nighttime labs kill me for some reason. I'm pretty much useless after 5, which I know is pathetic since there are people who work full time and attend school at night. I don't have that sort of fortitude, though, so I'm like a limp rag after being on campus all day. This lab was particularly brutal as well since it was about syntax. We're talking transitive/intransitive verbs, wh-movement, NP-raising, obligatory three place verb syntax. Don't be too jealous, y'all.

But I want to talk about the Chinese place that we went to on Wednesday night. It's not actually a Chinese food place, although they have Chinese dishes on the menu. It's mainly Korean, since about 60% of the menu is Korean food, the people who work there and own it are most likely Korean, and the clientele (this place was packed) are a lot of young Korean students. But the place is called The Mandarin House, go figure. You would never know it was there. It's this little divey looking entryway and the inside's decor could best be described as striving-for-old-European with the dark wood and the dim lighting. But I love that it's crowded and doing great business and its food (both Korean and Chinese) is good, so yay for the Mandarin House!

So that's that. The weird week is winding down, thankfully. Tomorrow I don't have too busy of a day and then the weekend will be spent catching up with erstwhile friends since Todd is going to be whooping it up in NY. I so wish that I could have tagged along, but I decided to be responsible when I realized that I couldn't really justify shelling out the necessary money and time for a trip to that lively, wonderful, heady and expensive city. (Aside to Mom: I hope that you're proud of me for making the mature decision here.)

That's the latest from this bedraggled grad student.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Happy belated Chinese New Year
A week late, but better than never. My family went out to have dim sum at the best dim sum place ever back in DC, and I may be able to get some dim sum this weekend. Again, better late than never.

Still a little sick, but improving. I'm going to go to bed early again tonight which will help to kick this cold.

That's all that I've got for now. Hopefully there will be more exciting things to report as the week goes on.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Still alive
Well, this week is almost over. Both midterms and the final are done, the presentation is given, and the paper has been turned in. Everyone is sick in our program, and I finally fell under the scythe of it last night when a head cold tromped my ass. This afternoon I got home from class and didn't do an ounce of work. Instead, I wrapped myself in a big blanket, drank approximately twenty three gallons of herbal tea, and contemplated my early bed time tonight. There's stuff that's going to be due early next week that I could get a start on, but I can't motivate. I'm quickly reaching the stage of Uselessness.

But the good news is that tonight I'm going to get cheap Thai food with Pam and then am going to come home and go to bed. And that is something worth celebrating.