Monthly Archives: December 2013

I heart the Library

photo (17)I got a library card on Monday because I am now an official citizen of the fair city of West Dundee. Also, I have a piece of ‘official’ mail (whatever that means) that proves it! It has been a long time since I’ve lived in once place and all my ID’s, mail, and addresses matched- so this is kind of a big deal.
Guys- the inner nerd in me surfaced in a big way. I forgot how glorious libraries are. I’m like a kid in a  shoe craft candy store.
I got four books which I have had sitting in my Goodreads queue for far too long.

First up is The Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye. It’s about New York around 1845, when the first police force was put together (typically not my choice time period for books but the rest sounded interesting so I went with it).  The main character is the younger brother of a firefighter turned police chief. They have an interesting love hate thing going on. Anyways, that is the one I’ve started with and I’m about 75 pages in and it’s pretty good.

Then I meandered over to the biography section and got in touch with something I’m presuming to be on the lighter, wittier side. Jenny Lawson’s Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. I’m really excited to read this one as I love/have a weird obsession with her blog: The Bloggess. It is witty, funny, brash, and snarky- so I’m guessing the book won’t be too far off from that either.

And while I was over in the biography section I found Banished: Surviving My Years in the Westboro Baptist Church by Lauren Drain. Sometimes I have a hard time with non-comical biographies because I feel like they read like a to do list in reverse- I did this, then this happened, so I did that. And that was that. The end.  I’m starting to think I’ve grown out of this….maybe. I don’t know. We’ll find out. But I read an interview somewhere with her talking about her book and it seemed interesting so I went for it.

And finally, since there are two serious/dramatic books (on fiction, one non-fiction), I figured the lighthearted department should be equally balanced with one fiction, one non-fiction (this is how I think, really- that much thought went into picking out some books…)

Anyways- lastly, I got Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close because well I don’t even really know. It sounded like one of those semi-cheesy but maybe not so cheesy it’s a turn off types. And I thought I’d give it a chance.

So, that’s my December reading list. What are you reading these days? Have you read any of the books I picked?

I’ll be back with a review on these as soon as I’ve finished them!

Why Me & Mr. Trestman are Fighting Right Now

Can we talk about the Bears for a hot minute?

Honestly Mr. Trestman- why? Why are you personally attacking my sensibilities like this- I thought we understood each other?

WHY IS CUTLER STARTING ON SUNDAY?

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My soul is slowing being crushed as the days draw closer, and I am forced to watch the train wreck that is Cutler add to his interception record. Mr. Flik, please make sure there is plenty of beer handy.

I think Cutler is terrible.
(I am probably going to get hate mail for this)

He looks good on paper- but in the pocket under pressure he loses it. Whatever amount of ”it” he even has at this point.

Grant it, I don’t think McCown is the granddaddy of QB’s but he’s been playing like a champ and should rewarded for this play. Like he get’s to finish the rest of the season kind of rewarded.

That was GLORIOUS. Also, it was the level of GLORIOUS Cutty would never attempt, much less succeed at. For these guys, football is their paid job, so- if one man is outperforming the other, that outperformer (ehm, ehm, McCown) should A) be rewarded B) encouraged and C) promoted. Let McCown finish this season- at least we know he can, you know, since he won’t get any ouchies like Cutler seems to in every game (he hasn’t played a full season since ’09- that’s 4 years kids) .

Let’s talk about how Cutler is about a tough as a porcelain doll (with 4 chins). How, how did he get hurt on this play?  I think I’ve gotten harder hugs than that in my life. Seriously, Jay?

So Cutler has a rocket launcher as an arm. That’s nice- except he throws it to the wrong friggin team, like all the damn time. I will take accuracy over distance, thank you.

McCown is old- yea sure, whatever. He is our backup- yea, yea.  Ok cool. But he takes a beating (did you see him jump and get flipped over that guy when he scored that touchdown?!) and acts like nothing happened. He doesn’t get mad and stomp off (GOD I LOVE THE ONION) to the sidelines when a play doesn’t go the way he wanted. And he throws A LOT less interceptions. Because McCown knows this is footballand not the Miss America Pageant- a lesson Cutler clearly has not yet learned.

kristin-cavallari-jay-cutler-gettyYou know what else I like about McCown- he’s not married to a former reality TV star. I know this has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with football, but it just goes to show he’s a few short of a dozen to begin with. 

I’m sorry Mister Trestman, but I think this is a HUGE mistake. I’m with Brian on this one.

I feel like the fans that are still saying Cutler is a good quarterback (and not just on paper) are the same ones saying the Cubs are going to win the world series. Sorry, but not in this lifetime.

This post is part of a Fan Friday Linkup:

Venus Trapped in Mars

 

Why Student Loans are TOTALLY Killin’ My Vibe

Seriously I KNOW I am preaching to the choir here- but I just paid my student loans for the month and of course the usual depression and anger ensued. Four times a year I have to pay BOTH loans (which amount to nearly $600). The other 8 months it’s about half that.
That’s a lot of dough!

The cost of education is OUT OF CONTROL (can I get an AMEN?). Honestly, at the tender young age of 18 you are supposed to sign up for a down payment on a house worth of debt (or maybe the whole damn thing depending on where you go!). For a degree that in this day and age is worth about as much as a high school diploma- and that is, if- yes if you can even find a job! And if you decide that whatever you chose to study back when you were 18 is still interesting to you, and if it is a valid field with job openings, and if  you don’t have to go back for more school before you start making any money. You know…IF.

Once said job is found, you are probably starting pretty low on the totem pole because, well- you don’t have a Masters, and/or lack experience- so you’re making somewhere around $30-50k.  This doesn’t seem too bad…until- you subtract taxes, health insurance, social security, etc. After  ALL THAT you have to pay your student loans. So at the end of the day, we’re probably making somewhere near minimum wage. Tricky how they fool us like that!

Nationally, there are somewhere around 37.1 million people with student loan debt, of that 37 mil the average debt (per student) was $26,600. Also of that 37 million people, a quarter owed more than $28,000. Student loan debt totals between $902 billion and 1 TRILLION DOLLARS. Just for a frame of reference- one trillion is a thousand billions. If you still can’t wrap your brain around that (don’t worry it took me a minute) this website can help or this one (sorry I couldn’t chose which to go with!). The 400 richest Americans total worth (all 400 billionaires) is just over 2 trillion (Forbes). So let all that sink in.

NOW- my first questions is why the HELLLL is education so expensive?
Did you know non-profit universities don’t pay taxes? And yes, to answer your question there are for profit schools (a la University of Phoenix).  So I’m just wondering where the frick my $34,000 a year went…and don’t even get me started on textbooks! 

And then can we talk about how the government decides to bail out banks (I know this is old news, but its still hurts every time I pay my student loans and think of it)? BANKS- you know those people who make 32 billion dollars a year just in overdraft fees. Yea, back in ’08 they decided they needed a little extra help.

A “bailout” is defined by wikipedia as: “A bailout is a colloquial term for giving a loan to a company or country which faces serious financial difficulty or bankruptcy. It may also be used to allow a failing entity to fail gracefully without spreading contagion.”

One of those bailout banks was Citigroup, whose CEO sold his shares in the company for $61 million before the bailout/Chase takeover. Seems like they weren’t failing gracefully enough…

I think the government put their money in the wrong spot. I think me and the other 37.1 MILLION in debt college grads would agree.

Because I would like to fail gracefully with a stack of cashola from Uncle Sam!  Because I would take said cash and pay those icky, overdraft fee sucking banks their damn money for my “education” which looked something like this….
unicycle

This is me, in college doing an assignment.
Please explain to me how this relates to a college level education (besides clown school of course)- or Clinical Psychology and I’ll give you a hug.

Please tell me you relate?

 

 

Because Mondays are Hard

First, lets talk about Chicago’s first (real) snowfall last night and the drivers who get seasonal driver’s amnesia. It’s kind of like seasonal depression- side effects include driving like a complete moron and nearly causing accidents by being too careful. Seriously friends- it’s a crazy world out there, but can you at least get it together on the driving thing? It would really improve 2 hours of my life each day- and 10 +/- hours a week, that’s a lot of time.  Now that I’ve gotten THAT out of my system…

So many important things happened this week. Honestly, I don’t pretend you care enough about what happened to me all week to read all of this (and I’ll never know if you do or not- but the Big Man Upstairs will! haha, got ya), but if by chance you do- hurrr ya go, and if not just scroll to the bottom where there’s links and other cool stuff. Really this post is just because I can’t get my words out in a better fashion- and well, I’m blaming it on the fact that it’s Monday and it’s 1 degree out right now, not including wind chill.

Here’s my Saturday to Saturday rundown:

Last Saturday (the 30th) all Fast and Furious (or anyone with a great appreciation for the loveliness that was Paul Walker) had a rough night after hearing he died. Leave it to my friend Brett to be the first of my friends know- he’s like Perez Hilton (except not caddy and with a way better face- look out Perez, Brett’s on the scene!). Ok, yes, so my friends and I who happened to already be gathered mourned the loss by drinking fine cheap wine, playing Cards Against Humanity (which is the greatest game, like ever- except for those sensitive types), and watching some hysterical YouTube videos. R.I.P. Paul Walker

Sunday was a poor attempt at decorating for Christmas and watching an even poorer attempt by the Bears at winning a football game.

Monday: Blah blah, no one even really cares about Monday. Can we write our congressmen and have them do something about this whole “Monday” situation? Speaking of congressmen- last night Mr. Flik and I watched 8 episodes (I am NOT embarrassed to admit that, not even a little) of House of Cards on Netflix. Its real good kids- if you aren’t on that boat yet, get there. All I’ll say about it is KEVIN SPACEY and really, that’s all you need to know.

Tuesday was a great time in that I was matched with my Cara Box partners- which I am SUPER stoked about AND I got to eat Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken- which is one of the best things on the planet. If you’ve never had it, you should. I’m sorry I’m telling you what I had for dinner…almost a week ago. Anyways, I’d call Tuesday a success.

Wednesday: worked day & night, not even kidding. We’ll just pretend this day didn’t exist.

KINDA WHERE THE IMPORTANT PART STARTS:

Thursday: Nelson Mandela died. I won’t lie- and am a bit sorry to say I am not any kind of intimately familiar with South African history, apartheid, or really Mandela’s story- however I do know it’s rare to find a person in history whose legacy becomes so sentimental, iconic, and valued universally- except for people such as himself.

Also- I went shopping (found some really great steals, thank you Target), then rehearsaled, and ate my body weight in pizza with the wedding crew because as I said in my last post– my sister got hitched!

Friday: Wedding. Shenanigans. Nuff said.

Saturday: Recovery.

Sunday: House of Cards (oh and we put up our tree, and it was all cute and sentimental because it was almost a year to the day that we got engaged as we set up our tree last year!)

WHERE THE IMPORTANT PART STARTS, LIKE FOR REALS.

Today: DITKA DAY. Kiss it kids- Da Coach got his own day! That being said lets also kick some Cowboy ass!!!

 

This post was added to the following link-up:
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Wedding Bells are A’ringin’

I’m just going to put it out there. I should have just taken this week off, because the chances of me actually getting anything done are slim to none.

This week will be the LONGEST WEEK IN ALL OF HISTORY.
I don’t think it has anything to do with the fact that my sister is getting married this weekend!!!  Totally, not related to how the days are dragging by at a snail’s pace (said snail is crawling through peanut butter with a 10 pound weight on his back).

redeye

So instead of being productive I took the latest copy of the Red Eye and added my own twist to the cover story for my coworker to find when she comes in tomorrow.

I also read every blogger I like, checked facebook more times than I am willing to admit, and read just about every story on Buzzfeed.

Now, back to the more important news- MY SISTER IS GETTING MARRIED THIS WEEKEND. That being said it got me to thinking about a blog post series which I have been meaning to collaborate with my lovely sister over at You Name It Events  on. We want to create a few posts about tips for brides and wedding guests/bridal party members. I have been asked by multiple coworkers recently what the proper amount/gift to give as a guest, or if they should still give a gift if they can’t attend, etc. Apparently, I have become the authority on weddings since I am the newlywed in the office.

SO- if you have any input (i.e.- questions, ideas, stories, tips, etc.) leave them in the comments section and {hopefully} within  the next few weeks we can get this series going!