Chicago DARSIT

Geeking out with my badge and program.

Where do I even begin?  Perhaps with the nearly two hour long trip it took my old roommate Sarah and I to get to Yorktown Center, where a conference actually called Chicago TARDIS, a tribute to all things Doctor Who, was being held.  We took two different forms of public transit from start to finish to get there.  We then paid the slightly painful price of $60 to get our badges allowing us free reign of the event space (clearly there will be more planning ahead next time).  And then, AND THEN we had a freaking blast.

This was the first time I’d ever been to a convention of any sort.  I wasn’t sure about it.  I wasn’t sure I would fit in because I didn’t have enough time to make a costume.  I’m a normal girl with a bit of an obsession.  Who happens to want to work in the television industry.  That’s what I was thinking, but I now quite clearly see that these reasons were exactly why I needed to go.

I needed the first hand knowledge that fandom was not completely crazy.  I needed to see for myself that nerds are awesome and I can fit in just fine with people if I just be myself.  I knew all of this before.  I just forget sometimes and need reminding.

Panels with titles like “People Dig Chicks Who Dig Time Lords” (It’s a book.  Which I now own.), “I’ll Tumblr For You”, “If Silence Falls In An Empty Forest Will River Song Notice?”, and “Inspector Spacetime: The Panel”; I nearly didn’t know where to begin (and a call from my best friend while she’s in London didn’t help matters — love you Al!)

These panel’s taught me more that I ever expected to learn from a nerd convention.  I learned about creative licence verses sticking to the book.  I wrote down at least a dozen names that I need to have a proper sit down to google.  I got to know the entire history of a little known show called Inspector Spacetime all through the experts and show creators.  It was fabulous.

I think the best part of all of this was realizing how attainable it is.  With the Doctor Who fandom especially, the people who are now creating the show have been lifelong fans.  It’s been around that long.  And the cycle will only continue.

Right Now I am…

nostalgic of Thanksgiving.  It’s always my favorite holiday and this year has been no exception.

tearing up over the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.  I don’t know why I get so emotional over this parade.  I love parades.  Yesterday I watched bits of the Chicago parade from out my window while eating breakfast.  It was beautiful.

dreaming — for no particular reason at all — what life will be like after school.  I know I will never be done learning, but I wonder what form learning will take.  I also rue the day where I don’t have to do homework at night and can just sit at home and watch television.

planning for next semester.  I’m applying for on campus jobs, and recently registered for classes.  Organizing myself for more organizing and planning for studying abroad which will be happening a year from next spring if all goes as planned.

feeling thankful.  For all the family and friends that I didn’t get to see yesterday, and for the one’s that I did see.

“baking”.  It feels wrong to say that making peppermint bark is baking, but I can’t quite think of what other verb to use in that situation.

beginning to feel a lot like Christmas.  Breaking out the Charlie Brown Christmas music and making lists of who needs presents and things that need doing.

getting ready for Chicago Tardis!  I can only afford to go Saturday, but I’m super excited.  My old roommate and I are going together and we’re getting together to make costumes today.  I am planning on creating a masquerade mask from paper plates and construction paper.  It’s going to be awesome.  Expect pictures.

Happy Thanksgiving!

My roommate last night, trying to stay up late so she adjusts to the time difference in San Francisco.  She’s left early this morning; her perfect scenario. 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!

I knew when I started college that there would be a year that I wouldn’t get to go home for Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday), and it appears that this is it.  I was working all afternoon and evening today and have work again bright and early Monday morning, so it made sense that this was the year I stay in Chicago.

Overall I think it’s shaping up to be a pretty good weekend though.  Today I’m going to Grandpa’s house for some Turkey and hoping to bring home plenty of leftovers.  Saturday I’m going to a Doctor Who convention with my old roommate.  I’m kind of super excited for the nerdiness that is sure to ensue.  Bring it on.

This year I am thankful for family, friends, and inspiration.  Speaking of inspiration, I’m working on a new weekly series that I’m super excited for — get excited.

Fascinating Stuff

I thought I’d share some excerpts from my weekend, because it was so interesting you guys (only half joking).

“American Icons”
This article talks about the characters on Jersey Shore, how they are becoming international stars, and how that represents Americans. As the audience of Jersey Shore is becoming international and the show is becoming more popular, international audiences are coming to view the people on Jersey Shore as the way that all Americans live. There has also been talk of filming Jersey Shore-type shows in other countries, with varied feedback. One documentary filmed in Saudi Arabia focusing on liberal young people was met with scorn in it’s home country. It seems, the article states, that the world is always ready for American stupidity, but not willing to look at their own country in the same way.
I think this is a very fair assessment. I hate the fact that there are people who think Snooki is an example of all Americans, a clearly false idea. I can understand however, the reluctance to see your own culture under that sort of scrutiny, just as I dislike it. I think that as long as people can know and understand that the people on the screen are exaggerated characters, and not necessarily representative of the entire population, than shows like this are okay. But, a lot of people don’t see that which creates problems.
Excerpt from my Marshall Field’s paper:
D. H. Burnham was a successful architect who planned not only many of Chicago’s building, but also came up with what he called “The Chicago Plan” of 1909, subtitled “Paris on the Prairie”. He is most noted for designing the structures that were used for the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. The Chciago World’s Fair was the largest of it’s kind and brought people from all around the world to see the city of Chicago who in turn got to see the feat of skyscrapers and cutting edge architecture that made Chicago different. This included the newly completed Marshall Field’s Annex as well as the finery of Field’s original store on State Street. The Annex is a mix of Chicago Style and Early Renaissance Style Architecture, creating a bold, angular structure save for a few entry-way arches. The building was loved by patrons and office works who ran their business from the top few floors, but scorned by many in the Chicago Architecture community. Louis Sullivan in particular critisized the building as the death of Chicago Prairie Style Architecture. Unfortunately for Sullivan this building, paired with the World’s Fair (also called the Colombian Exposition), gave new rise to neoclassical revival Architecture in Chicago.

So, there’s some interesting stuff.  Yup.

Right Now…

jumping on a band wagon that has probably been going around for a while, and following in the footsteps of SouleMama, The Frugal Girl, and my friend Paper Armor in doing a “Right Now” post.

bundling up for the cold.  Chicago weather has turned to winter and I couldn’t be more excited.  I’m one of those weird ones who loves winter like you wouldn’t even believe.

wearing lots of lovely layers.  Also, moccasins.  Because apparently moccasins keep you very warm.  Seriously, I’m not even wearing socks today.

knitting up a storm!  Elspeth, of the afore mentioned blog Paper Armor is teaching / reminding me how to knit and helping me through my first project.  I have about a foot of scarf going so far in a week.  which I think is pretty good time for a first project.

getting frustrated over a group project.  Earlier this week I saw a set of pie charts on what students are supposed to learn from group projects, and what they actually learn from group projects.  In the second chart the majority of the pie was “Trust no one”.  That’s kind of my life right now.

missing San Francisco.  My mom sent me a picture yesterday of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco covered in fog.

planning my meals out meaning I don’t spend as much as I used to at the grocery store.  I still feel like we have a lot of food in the house, but I suppose that’s good if I’m spending less money and not going hungry.

looking forward to next semester.  I’m getting the just-after-midterm-blues, plus last week I registered for next semester’s classes.  Plus, I’m applying for a job for next semester (along with the Teacher’s Assistant gig I have this semester), so I’m going to be busy, but it’ll be fun.

I’m in Love with the Idea of: Drinking Beer in Foreign Countries

I’m a 20-year-old college student, so admittedly I have only drunk when in foreign countries.  No really.  Okay, not quite, but almost really.  Anyway, ever since a conversation that I remember overhearing about how real people drink beer straight from the bottle / can, and reading Gossip Girl after which I associated fruity cocktails with bratty, stuck up, rich kids; I thought that real people drink beer.  Straight from the can.  These “real people” may have a glass of wine at a dinner party or a specialty drink for different occasions (a mint julep while watching a horse race of example), but for the most part real people drank beer.

My problem is: I kind of hate beer.

Beer is light or dark.  It’s thick.  It froths over the edges of the glass and makes strange patters on the glass.  Beer makes my teeth feel funny.  Funny in an icky, I-haven’t-brushed-my-teeth-all-day sort of way.  Beer is sticky and smells weird.  I just don’t really like it.

Cocktails on the other hand… brilliant.  Sugary, liquored up wonders that taste great and make me a little bit happy.  I can drink a few of those, but then again, that’s not always the greatest idea in the world…

21 Before 21: The List

This will be an everlaaaaaasting love.  Oh wait, no.  This will be the post where I finally say my list of 21 before 21.  Twenty-one things I want to do before I turn twenty-one.  I’ve sort of kidnapped this idea from Sarah Von of Yes and Yes, so I always feel like I should give credit whenever I talk about it.  Go check out her blog, it’s kind of one of the reasons I started a real blog.

Anywho.  21 Before 21 is my way of doing New Years Resolutions.  Some are more resolute-y than others, but the general idea is to get a bunch of stuff done throughout the year.  Since I have a September birthday it’s also a great way of setting goals for the school year.  Well then, without further ado:
  1. Read the whole bible
  2. Go to a clothing swap
  3. Vote
  4. Create a Cookbook of Rachel
  5. Start and complete a knitting project
  6. Do a lead climb
  7. Go snowboarding with friends
  8. Go scuba diving
  9. Bake Bread
  10. Have a real sit-down dinner party
  11. Plant a mini herb garden
  12. Learn how to apply make-up
  13. 100 push-up challenge
  14. Improve my typing speed (I’m at around 60 wpm, and I think it’s be really cool to get up to 80 or so)
  15. Dye my hair with Kool-Aid
  16. Go paint balling
  17. Get my fortune told
  18. Go for a month without looking in the mirror
  19. Skip class and go out to breakfast
  20. Go camping
  21. * <edit> Buy Christmas presents with money saved </edit>
The last one is an asterisk because I actually still don’t know what it’s going to be.  No clue, which is a little irritating to me.  Everything I think of is too simple or completely impossible.  Maybe it should be a reading one, but I wouldn’t know what book (to be honest, the “grown-up” section of the library scares me a bit).**
So, there’s the list.  I haven’t really done anything yet other than start a bible reading plan that will get me through the whole thing (awesome).  I have some recipes collected, some people in mind for a dinner party, and a connection to go diving, but other than that… Let’s do this.

<edited to add>I’m adding “Buy Christmas presents for immediate family with money saved” to the list.  In past years I’ve always gone to get Christmas presents for people with my parents and they they would pay for the gifts.  This year I’m going to buy gifts for immediate family and some friends with my own money.  I’ve already started looking, and it’s turning out to be a little harder than I thought.  But no matter, I’m pretty determined about this one.</edit>

Going Domestic

It feels strange to say sometimes that I enjoy (some!) housework, but strange as it is, it’s also true.  As long as I am not be rushed through everything, then I don’t mind doing the washing and the ironing, the cleaning, the cooking and the baking.  I recently came across a list of Victorian Era chores assigned to days of the week (HERE, through another post on THIS blog I follow occasionally).  It seems so simple, so obvious.

I remember that as I was growing up.  My mom stayed home with my sister and I and every day of the week was reserved for a different chore.  I’m not sure we had baking on our list, and Daddy did the grocery shopping, but every day was assigned it’s own chore.  My sister and I were expected to help.  Especially on cleaning day, dusting and picking up our rooms.  On washing day we would sit on the bed sorting socks.

The list got me thinking of all the things that I should be doing on a more regular basis.  Washing, ironing, cleaning, and baking among them.  Why not have a day for blogging though?  I already schedule posts to appear later than I write them.  Or a day reserved for catching up on all my television shows (I’m a TV major, let me have my fun).  On the more practical side a day for sorting through everything on my desk and dealing with things that need dealing with.  A day to go to the post office (something that’s been needing to happen more and more lately).  A day to double check that all bills are paid.  A day to check in with my roommate, a day to change the sheets on my bed.

I can’t help by think that I used to have days for things like this.  I can’t help but wonder what happened to them.  With my changing schedule and constant homework situation, balanced with my level of procrastination, I do things in strange sequences as of late.  Washing doesn’t get folded until days later, and ironing nearly goes forgotten.  Baking happens when I suddenly get the urge late at night.  Shopping is unplanned.  And all this leads to me staying up late into the night, or things not getting done at all.

So starting now I’m re-evaluating my schedule.  I’m creating lists and there are going to be changes around here.  I wasn’t even expecting that when I started writing this post, I sort of talked myself into it.  Just now in the last two paragraphs.  But I think it does need to be done.  Ask me about this the next time you see me, yeah?  Cause I have no idea how it’s going to work out.

Around Town: Old Friends

Friends come to town and good things happen.

I feel woefully inadequate for creating this post now as opposed to when it happened just over a week ago.  Part of the reason for this of course is that I took no pictures.  I am horrible at remembering to take pictures when clearly pictures should be taken.  Though that’s not to say that the weekend wasn’t documented.  There were many pictures taken, just not by me.  (Pictures can be seen on my roommates blog HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE)  But regardless of the lack of pictures on my end, we all had a blast.

He was in Chicago to look at a school (I don’t want to say which one because I haven’t actually told him that I’m writing about him) that he may be coming to next year.  In Chicago!  Near me!  I’m trying not to be super excited about this, because I know college admissions can be tricky, but nevertheless I am very excited about the possibility.

Long story short the weekend was filled with staying up late, getting up early, eating out, the Girl Scouts (more on that in a later post), playing Nintendo in Wicker Park, wandering the city, good conversation, and frozen yogurt.  I wouldn’t change anything.

It was strange to see him here in Chicago since I’m so used to him being in San Francisco.  Very strange.  Fun, but odd at the same time.  I miss him a lot since he’s still in San Francisco and I’m here in Chicago, but that may change next year (*maniac grin*).  Of course all these people visiting this month has gotten me extremely behind on my chores and some of the homework things I should have been doing, but that’s only half relevant, so we choose to ignore it.