Wednesday, August 25, 2010

it's just lunch

I'm in the process of selling some extra Carrie Underwood Ravinia tickets on Craigslist and had planned to meet Amy, one of my buyers, outside of the Wrigley building at noon today to exchange my ticket for her mula. Simple enough, right?


At about 5 minutes til noon (what? I'm always early) I text Amy to let her know where I'm standing and that I'm wearing a black short-sleeved dress (at which point I feel like I should tell her I'll be holding a red rose, you know, just to see if she has a sense of humor) . . . Well, about 10 minutes go by and there's no response from Amy. No problem, it's a nice day! I'll just take advantage of this excuse to stand outside and enjoy the nearly perfect weather.

Then possibly one of the top 10 most random/awkward situations happens. I would try to summarize it, but I don't think I could even start to do it justice. So, here's how the situation played out:

Scene opens with Liz standing outside the Wrigley building, catching up on a couple emails on her Blackberry, soaking up the nice weather, waiting for Amy to show up. Between writing emails Liz looks up to take a quick survey of the surroundings in case Amy forgot to bring her phone with her and now has no way of finding Liz.

Mid-email, Liz senses someone approaching.

Guy: Hi. Are you Liz?

Liz: Yes . . .

Guy: It's so nice to meet you in person.

Liz: . . . Yes, you too (?) (What! In the same way that you instinctively say 'bless you' after a sneeze, it just came out without me even thinking!)

Liz tries to process the situation and quickly assumes that Amy must be stuck in a meeting and have sent a co-worker/friend to get the ticket for her. I mean it's the only reasonable explanation, right?


Guy: Wow, you're really beautiful in person. I almost didn't recognize you.

Liz thinks to herself "Recognize me?" and realizes something isn't quite right.

Liz: Wait, are you friends with Amy?

Guy: Wait, you're not Liz from eharmony are you?

Lightbulbs go off!

Liz laughs. (But with him, not at him, I promise.)

Liz: No, I'm sorry. I'm actually waiting for a girl named Amy to sell her a concert ticket. I thought maybe she had sent you instead. Especially since you knew my name was Liz. . .

Liz laughs again. Because, really? what else can you do at this point? This is hilarious!

Guy: Oh, wow. Ummm. I'm so sorry. I'm really embarassed. Errr. I'm just going to go back and stand over there and act like this didn't happen.

Liz: Gosh, don't worry about it! This is funny! You just made my day! And, on the bright side, at least you have a really really great story to tell Liz when she does show up!

Guy: Ummm. Yeah. Ahhh. Good luck with the ticket.

Liz: Good luck with Liz!

Liz and Guy proceed to wait for Amy and Liz, respectively, for a couple minutes when, suddenly, the real Liz appears! (Editors note: while Liz and Liz have sort of similar hair colors, their similarities end there. Liz wonders how Guy ever confused her for other Liz.)

Liz pretends not to be listening, but hears Guy tell Liz about the earlier snafu. Both Lizs look up at each other and smile. Liz (me Liz, gosh! this is getting confusing!) waves awkwardly and tells the couple 'good luck'.

End Scene.

Eventually, Guy and Liz walk away to what I pretty confidently am assuming was their first date, Amy shows up, the deal goes down and I head back to work. (Of course I had to tell her the story before letting her leave!)

And I can't help but hope that this Guy and Liz really hit it off and eventually fall in love. I hope at their wedding reception Guy gets up and tells the story about how he met the right girl. How he met the right Liz. Everyone will chuckle and comment on what a great story that'll make for their grandkids. And they live happily ever after.

I mean could this story be any better?

Well, I suppose he could have been incredibly good looking and decided that Liz (me!) was who he'd rather be meeting! Gotten my number and had lunch with that Liz and dinner with this Liz. And our grandchildren could hear this great story someday.

But, I digress.

Monday, August 23, 2010

fantasy football

Now, don't get me wrong, I take the selection of my fantasy football team pretty seriously. As a past fantasy football champion (yes, I'm bragging), I have a lot of pride on the line. And, despite my inability to secure a running back that amounts to anything consistent or to ever be in a position to draft Peyton Manning, I like to think that I know what it takes to draft a winning team. However, as I gear up for draft day (8pm CST this Sunday for my all girls league), I've decided to put together the ultimate fantasy football team. For this team, players are judged on their overall appearance just as much, if not more so, as they're judged on their athletic ability. And, come to think of it, my fantasy football team name (2 Addai 4) seems to be the best way to sum up this team. Because with their good looks and athletic prowess, these boys are certainly to die for.

Adrian Peterson - Running Back - Other than Chris Johnson, AP rightfully finds himself on the top of most fantasy draft picks. Plus, have you seen him run in slow motion!?. Talk about muscle definition. Good looking and able to single-handedly crush most NFL defenses? That, my friends, is a true fantasy pick.

Reggie Bush
- Running Back - Anyone who has the ability to distract some attention from a teammate as good looking as Matt Leinart deserves to make it on this team. Since USC, Bush has gone on to win a Super Bowl ring and Leinart has a handful of less-than-sober-looking pictures of himself in a Jersey Shore-inspired hot tub scene floating around the internet. Clearly, Reggie did something right. Plus, the boy's got a killer smile and, when completely healthy, can juke a tackle like nobody's business. He may be a risky actual fantasy team draft pick, but for this team, he's a shoe-in.

Miles Austin - Wide Receiver - Gosh, two Kardashian boyfriends on one team! I didn't intend that, but Kim sure knows how to snag a good looking football player. I'll give the girl that. He racks up yards and has a smile that could make most girls swoon. Basically, he's smokin' hot on and off the field.

Wes Welker - Wide Receiver - He's on the shorter side and he spent a significant amount of time injured last season. But he's one of the most consistent receivers in the league. A go-to guy in the Patriots offense. And you can't argue with blue-green eyes like his when it comes to this fantasy team.

Hank Baskett -
Wide Receiver (honorable mention) - I'll admit it, I'm a big fan of Kendra. So, after watching a couple seasons of the show, I feel like I actually know Hank. He's charming and genuine and little Hank is adorable. (Which has to, at least in part, be attributed to Hank's great genes.) But I cannot and will not actually draft Hank for this team after the great onside kick debate of Super Bowl XLIV.Yes, it's just one play. And one single play does not make or break a game. But the Colts were never the same after that play. At that moment, they were defeated. And I blame Hank. But, gosh, little Hank has got to be the cutest football baby I've ever seen. For that, Hank gets a mention.

Tom Brady - Quarterback - As if there was any question. He's got 3 Super Bowl rings, 2 Super Bowl MVPS and the greatest chin dimple I've ever seen. I'll just let this picture do the talking. . .

Jason Witten - Tight End - Hands down my favorite player in the league. (Okay, that's not entirely true. But he's a close 3rd to Peyton Manning and Bob Sanders.) Witten has, in my mind, the absolute ideal build. Tall. Strong. Not too juiced-up or too defined. And when he's not wearing a helmet, he can usually be found in a backwards baseball cap, to boot! Witten is by far the captain of my fantasy football team. (Sigh!)

Adam Vinatieri - Kicker - Vinatieri looks like he belongs in a business suit instead of a uniform, but when the game's on the line he's Mr. Clutch. It doesn't get much better than that.

And a couple defensive guys to round out the roster . . .

Dwight Freeney -
Defensive End - One of the most stylish guys in the NFL and one of the most threatening to opposing QB's. Plus, he just happens to play for the best team in the league. Check, check and check.

Will Demps -
Safety - He's a little more GQ than NFL, but oh my, that skin. That smile. Those abs.

Okay, okay. This is arguably about the girliest you can get when it comes to football. So, sure, you can laugh now. But I'll be the one laughing when my real fantasy team (as if I'd reveal my strategy for that one) brings home the championship this season.

Let the fantasy games begin!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

cuckoo for lulu

I finally caved in.

I've been holding out ever since it moved into town. Ever since it opened it doors onto Halsted Ave. and started tempting me with it's butt-hugging pants and electric yellow sports bras. Ever since I saw those red totes all over town. A store that combines athletics and fashion? I think I've died and gone to heaven.

Yet, somehow, by my own better judgement and self-control, I had resisted. (Sometimes, I surprise myself.)

But then the two greatest brothers in the world gave me a lululemon gift card for my birthday. I now had the excuse I always needed to dip my toe in the water. To walk through those doors and flip through the racks. I knew myself. I knew once I started browsing, I'd never stop. I knew no price tag would seem too high when I found the perfect pair of running pants. I knew I should have brought in the gift card and nothing else. No credit. No debit. No cash. No checkbook. Just the gift card. I knew better. But I just didn't know how bad (slash wonderful!) it would actually be.

$208 later I walked away from my first lululemon experience. Hey, it could have been much much worse. I reluctantly (after much internal deliberation between the bad angel on my left shoulder and the good angel on my right shoulder) had put back two $54 tank tops. I had even resisted the $28 leg warmers, which sounds much easier than it actually was mind you. And I has passed up the $98 neon yellow nylon gym bag that I couldn't help but stare at the entire time I was waiting in line. I had been good! And yet, I ended up spending twice what I went in there to spend.

The immediate damage to my bank account tonight isn't nearly as bad as the impending future damage this store is bound to cause. I'm still longing for those two tank tops that got away. I'm still trying to find a way to justify leg warmers in 2010. I'm hooked. Hook, line and sinker.

lululemon will eventually be the financial death of me. I guarantee it.

But at least I'll go out in a fitness fashionable way.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

scary, but true

“Nobody knows what’s wrong with themselves and everyone else can see it right away.”

- from last week's episode of Mad Men

Friday, August 13, 2010

movin' on up

Somehow 'find a new apartment' has landed on my annual to-do list ever since moving to Chicago. It's right up there with attempting to figure out New Years Eve plans that will accommodate all my friends, a nasty case of strep throat, renewing my city parking sticker, filling out my income taxes and (sorry, guys) the dreaded trip to the ladies doctor on the list of things that happen once I year whether I like it or not. It's not that I necessarily intend it to be that way, but rather it's just a reality of being twenty-something and living in a big city. Regardless, except for that two-year stint that B-Trice and I did on Dayton (which I only attribute to it's huge closets and the fact that it just so happened to be within stumbling distance of our favorite bar of all, Durkin's), every year we're searching Craigslist, viewing endless dumps, finally finding a place we like, hiring movers, packing up all our shit, trying to negotiate with RCN on a better rate, sweating as we transport box after box and then making sure that we have every little thing put away and every picture hung within 24 hours of move-in. (That last one I blame on my type-A personalty and obsession with organizing.) Then, whew!, we fall in love with our new place. At least for 12 months, until life throws a curve-ball and the cycle starts again.

Well, like clockwork, moving day is approaching again. Only this time, my cousin so rudely scheduled her wedding day on October 2nd. The very day after we move into our new place! And not only that, but she had the audacity to fall in love with a guy from Neenah, Wisconsin. Not somewhere convenient for me like Chicago. So, yes, I am very very happy for my cousin and her approaching life of wedded bliss. But at the moment, I'm just feel cranky because I have to drive up to meet my family in Milwaukee on Friday night so that we can make it to Neenah in time for all the festivities on Saturday. How in the world am I supposed to concentrate during the vows and dance the night away during the reception when all I'm going to be thinking about are all the boxes that are still fully packed up? All of the walls that are still bare? All of the things I could be putting away? Arrgggghh.

Life is so cruel, isn't it?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

weather or not

I'm addicted to Addicted. Against my own better judgment, I constantly feel the need to look up the 10 day forecast or, better yet, the hourly forecast. (Eeee! What could be better than knowing the exact temperature and chance of showers for every single hour in the foreseeable future!) Despite the fact that time after time, let's me down. Gives me bad information. Leaves me ill-dressed for my 8:30pm flag football game. Causes me to tote around an umbrella in my purse all day for no reason. Or, worse even, leave my umbrella at home in the morning only to get drenched on the walk from the El at the end of the day. I just keep coming back. never fails to fail me. But yet, I can't get enough of it.

I wonder if sometimes we don't get addicted to being told half-truths. Addicted to being let down. Addicted to disappointment. Or maybe just addicted to the possibility, however small, that this time will be different.

For what it's worth, it's supposed to be 88° F with a 10% chance of precipitation at 6pm tomorrow. I should learn from my mistakes and bring an umbrella just in case. But something tells me I won't.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

hope floats

There aren't many things that I look to the Detroit Lions for beyond losing and roster instability. And I wouldn't consider head coach, Jim Schwartz, to be a regular beacon of knowledge. Now, I realize that's probably unfair, but if you ask me, anyone taking the head coaching position with an organization as messed up as the Lions either has a God-like complex, believing he can turn things around, or may be just a little crazy. Either way, I don't usually look to Schwartz, or anyone connected to the Lions, for inspiration. But then I stumbled upon this quote from Schwartz in the middle of's Camp Confidential report: "Hope is not a strategy". I mean, I was just reading the article in hopes of finding a couple digs to keep at hand when my guy friends start boasting about their Lions finally turning things around! But, this? This caught me off guard. It's sort of one of those duh! statements. Of course we know hope isn't really a strategy. But how often to we act like it actually is? Like if we want something bad enough or hope for it strongly enough, we can just will it to happen. Just like that! Hope is a really powerful thing. But I think hope, on it's own, can sometimes be debilitating. Hope isn't enough. It's never enough. To accomplish any great feat, to make any big change, to do anything worth doing, hope has to be present. But it has to be accompanied by a strategy. By a blueprint. By a game plan. By a way to put one foot in front of the other. Hope, alone, can only do so much. It's not going to move you from point A to point B. It's not going to change the world. And it's not going to win football games.

Who'd have guessed that it would be
Jim Schwartz to remind me of this?

I guess it makes me wonder if the Lions are going to catch a couple teams, just like they caught me, off-guard this season . . .