2012 Week 12: “And may the odds be ever in your favor.”

Zachary and my third hedgehog is named Katniss after the Katniss in The Hunger Games. She was so thrilled that so many people went to see the movie about her! Can’t you tell?

Very tired. Brief week wrap = go! It was a busy week at work, so I didn’t make it out much during the week, but the weekend ruled. Of course we saw The Hunger Games! We went to Sarah and Todd’s wedding in Three Oaks, MI. Our friends Mark and Aubri got engaged. I had every intention to work out today, but didn’t get to. Hope to bike to work every day this week. We’ll see if the weather lets me do so.

Films watched 12th week of the year:

Orgasm, Inc.*
Like Crazy
Friends with Kids
The Hunger Games


As a film, The Hunger Games was just about as perfect as it could have possibly been. I was expecting the worst because it was one of my favorite books ever. I am happy to report that the adaptation was really, really great. Of course there are always going to be bits left out on film that were great in the book, but they did a superb job. I can’t stop thinking about it and I am already planning to see it again.

2012 Week 11: Things are just ducky.

Of note this week: I rode my bike to work three times in the lovely, albeit freakish, weather Chicago has been having! I started watching Downton Abbey and Shark Tank. Unfortunately, now I am obsessed with Shark Tank! I also went to Hon Kee (see above) and Chopper’s with Z and Donovan. It was so nice to spend time with a friend I met through the crafty universe, who I usually only see at craft fairs or randomly out at Bite. Friday night Z and I went to dinner with our besties, Kirstie & Jason, to Angel’s and enjoyed the weather and then we all watched Ken Russell’s The Music Lovers. If you are a film lover and have not delved deeper into his catalog than Tommy, you should do so.

Saturday Zachary’s efforts to see two films at the Music Box were thwarted by drunken leprechauns who had taken all the neighborhood parking, so we holed up in the Boo Haus until we ventured out onto Division Street to Delish for sustenance. We immediately felt like strangers in a strange green land. Three girls at the table next to ours seemed to be wannabe Jersey Shore cast members. A direct quote: “We’re in a Jewish Diner, bitches!” It is hard to eat pancakes while someone with Snooki’s vernacular is 5 feet from you. So hard not to laugh and/or weep for humanity.

I still haven’t found pit tickets for Radiohead in Tinley Park. I keep hoping that something will turn up, but then I read Craigslist postings of scalpers selling tickets that they purchased through the w.a.s.t.e. (Radiohead fanclub) presale for hundreds upon hundreds of dollars. I have often said that I wish they would ask an easy RH trivia question that would have to be answered in order to get to the purchase page. That would trip up at least some of the scalpers.

Films watched 11th week of the year:

OSS117: Cairo, Nest of Spies
Dorian Gray (2009)
Tamara Drewe
The Music Lovers
The Woman
How to Get Ahead in Advertising
These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America*


Cinephiles would enjoy the last one. I somehow reached the end of the week and realized I had not watched a documentary yet, so I picked this one and finished it just under the wire. This doc about the National Film Registry turned me on to directors/films I had never heard of like Dorothy Arzner and Lois Weber and reminded me of some I had not thought about in awhile like Sherman Alexie, who directed one of my favorite films, Smoke Signals, based on his book The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven.

2012 Week 10: When you forgot you had a lemon on hand, make butter lemon sauce.

Most of this week was awesome, but I experienced a giant pitfall in there. Took a co-worker pal to Podhalanka. Attended my first ICNC networking breakfast. Went to a reading that was part of Chicago Zinefest and went to Chicago Zinefest itself. Went to my first Paper Machete at Horseshoe. Made chicken and waffles from scratch with friends. Saw Stacy of Paper Doll’s new pug Rhoda Morgenstern twice this week!

The pitfall experience was failing to get tickets to Radiohead. We tried and failed on both the w.a.s.t.e. pre-sale and the WXRT presale. During the proper sale on Saturday, I had 200 level tickets in my cart on Saturday and I just could not pull the trigger. I can’t see my favorite band since 1995 from that far away. I just can’t. So, if anyone stumbles upon this blog post and can help out, my friend (old school IRL #permanent_daylight name internautte) and I (old school IRL #permanent_daylight name madflowr) are looking for two Pit or 100 level tickets. Crestfallen is the best way to describe how it feels not getting tickets to your favorite band for over half of your life. I am fairly certain it will work out in the end and we’ll find some way to see them, but currently I am feeling gutted. I had to force myself to leave the house Saturday, but I made it out and it was a good thing I did.

Adapted from the recipe I found here:

Lemon Butter Sauce:

1 cup dry white wine
1 lemon, quartered and chopped
2 tablespoons minced shallots
1/2 cup 1% milk
2 cans artichoke hearts, quartered
1.5 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Combine the wine, lemons and shallots in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until reduced by half, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and mashing the lemons with the back of a spoon to break up into pieces. Add the milk and cook until reduced by half, about 3 minutes.

Add in two cans of artichoke hearts, quartered. Whisk in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, adding each piece before the previous one has been completely incorporated. Continue until all the butter is incorporated and the sauce coats the back of a spoon, removing the pan from the heat periodically to prevent the sauce from getting too hot and breaking. Add the salt and pepper, and whisk to blend.

Remove from the heat and serve immediately over your favorite type of pasta or cover to keep warm.

Yield: 5 servings

I removed the couple steps I did not follow. I know this would have been better with cream, but all I had on hand was 2% milk. I would also recommend using only 1/2 or 1/4 of the lemon, depending on your tastebuds. This sauce was extremely tart and had way too much lemon incorporated into it.

Films watched 10th week of the year:

The Exploding Girl
A Fish Called Wanda
The Gate
Dirty Country*
From Prada to Nada
Waste Land*


Winners this week were the two docs. I love documentaries. Wasteland felt especially pertinent to my job and I’m going to recommend that my co-workers watch it. Anyone who is a fan of art, living green, or a good doc would enjoy it. Dirty Country was Z’s pick, but I ended up loving it. Prudes, beware! I want to go see this guy Larry Pierce play a show in his garage one day. Watch it: Dirty Country.

2012 Week 9: documentaries to document

Tilda doesn’t like the pigs from Angry Bids either.

I didn’t want to jinx it, but as of last week I had lost 10 lbs. since starting my new year’s resolutions. This week I threw Just Dance 2 into my workout routine. I am digging it, but I can already tell after doing it 3 times that hearing the same songs over and over is going to get boring. Being a huge music nerd, it just doesn’t make sense to me that there are so few songs. Blerg.

This week ruled. I finally went to Sun Wah for the duck feast with friends. It was everything it was quacked up to be. I attended a successful surprise party for my friend Juli of Cordinated. I redeemed my expiring Groupons at Loving Hut and Lovely Bakeshop. Bummer #1: I skipped out on Don Hertzfeldt because I needed a night off. Bummer #2: Yesterday my ladytime left me feeling useless and full of unfulfilled cravings. I made today count and Z and I made a donation run to Brown Elephant, dropped off LP mailers for Permanent Records to re-use, and dropped off plastic bags for recycling at Jewel. Tonight I made chili and the mashed cauliflower below.

RECIPE: Garlicky Mashed Cauliflower

1 head – cauliflower
1 TBL – butter
5 cloves – garlic
salt, to taste

Roughly chop cauliflower into pieces.
Boil for about 20 min. or until tender.
Drain in a colander.
Transfer into a bowl.
Mash with a potato masher or electric hand mixer.
Add butter and garlic.
Add salt to taste.

I modified the recipe that Juli sent me to cut some calories out (milk & cream cheese). I put a dollop of sour cream on top and it was amazing. Huzzah!

Films watched 9th week of the year:

Being Elmo*
Gogol Bordello: Non-Stop*
AI: Artificial Intelligence
Off the Menu: The Last Days of Chasens*
Nostalgia for the Light*
In the Line of Fire

It seemed like this week I could not watch enough documentaries. Luckily there is a plethora of them for my hungry eyes! Being Elmo blew everything else I watched this week away. Kevin Clash is from Dundalk, where my very awesome friend Laini was from before she passed away. He followed every one of his dreams and has ended up with one of the most recognizable voices in the world: Elmo. His family had documented his early days, so there is footage of him making some of his first puppets and bringing them to life. Really, really inspiring.