Thursday, July 01, 2004

You're Money, Baby!! Small Change, But Still Money!!

Like clockwork we received a holiday terror alert for O'Hare airport (anyone else notice that the terror alert chart looks like the heat index on a jar of salsa? The Department of Homeland Security should just rename the alert warnings "picante", "en fuego", and "verde." 'Course as long as Bush is in office we'll never see verde and I'm rambling.)

- The only terrorism happening in the Midwest this weekend is at Taste of Chicago, where for the mind-boggling price of four dollars you can get roasted corn on a stick, or nine dollars will get you a slab of ribs that most people in this city would laugh at if served in a restaurant.

- I saw "Fahrenheit 9/11" and "Spider-Man 2" in the past week. Without going into gushing weblogger platitudes about how each movie was "awesome", "rocks", "kicks ass", or how I "<3" (that's supposed to be a heart) each movie, I do recommend them. In the case of the former, it is Michael Moore's most focused film to date- one that was surprisingly pro-soldier- and the box office tallies it raked in last week showed that maybe this will be a close election in November after all. I mean, Michael Moore's an asswipe, but at least he falls on the right side of the arguments.

- "Spider-Man 2" was simply a beautiful movie throughout. It didn't seem as long as it's two-hour run time suggests as it just flowed effortlessly throughout. In his review of the movie Roger Ebert wrote, "I was surprised to see this film working from the first frame." He's right. It did. A superhero/action/popcorn movie that also dealt with the human condition. It was like trapping lightning in a bottle. If Sam Raimi and company can do the same with the third "Spider-Man" movie, I think that the three movies can be held up as a serious cinematic achievement similar to the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy.

Part of what makes "Spider-Man 2" work is the contributions of Michael Chabon, who's best known as the author of "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay" and "Wonder Boys", which was turned into a movie starring Michael Douglas and Tobey Maguire. Chabon's work meticulously details the insecurities of men and women, and that was evident in "Spider-Man 2." Breathtaking.

- I found this through Gawker. After reading that and this post from Mimi Smartypants, I'm even more confused. It's been nearly three years since the attacks, can we hate New york again?

Actually I find a lot of the same points Mimi makes in her rant about New Yorkers apply when talking about Chicagoans, as well. I see no discernible difference between downtown Manhattan and the Gold Coast; Times Square or Lincoln Park. A couple years back I had a date with someone I met through a Reader personals ad. I remember this one clearly because she specifically stated she only wanted to date men who lived in the "312" area code. I read her ad again, made sure that it also didn't carry the terms "financially and emotionally secure", determined that, since I live in the "312" area code that I qualified, and answered her ad.

We agreed to meet at Starbucks in Pipers Alley. Over caramel macchiatos ("I so love your choice of cappucino," she offered) she explained in great detail that she determined that men who live in the "312" area code were "driven, sophisticated, classy, and successful. They're really tuned to the pulse of the city." I tried to argue that she could find men like that in any area code. "'773'ers' (her term) are still boys," she said, oblivious to the obscene number of backward turned Big Ten University ball caps in this particular Starbucks. We asked each other the obligatory "get to know you" questions and tried to find common ground. Her idea of good jazz was Diana Krall, mine was 8 Bold Souls. Finally she asked, "So, how come I've never seen you around the neighborhood?"

"I don't live in Old Town," I replied.

Her eyes grew wide like she just held up a Brinks truck full of gold bricks. "Well, you are a '312'er', right. Where do you live?"

I drained the rest of my macchiato, leaned close, and dropped the bomb. "I live in Bridgeport."

She was still oblivious to it all. "Where's Bridgeport?" She asked.

"South Side of the city. By Comiskey Park."

"Where's Comiskey Park?"

"Where the White Sox play baseball."

Her jaw dropped so fast it almost turned the table over. She recovered long enough to say, "You lied to me?"

I looked back at her. "No, I didn't," I said. "your ad specifically stated that you only wanted to date men who lived in the '312' area code. I do."

"But," she stammered.

"That was your only qualifier. Be careful what you wish for." And with that I was off.

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