We went to Chicago! It was a lot of fun, and my first flight since February 2020. I stayed with my best man, Kolton, who lives downtown near the Loop. This is my third visit to Chicago, but the last two times were for work, so I didn’t do touristy things, which I was excited to fix on this trip.
The flight from Texas was interesting, we had a stop in Houston, where we ate at the in-airport Pappadeux’s. They had some fried gator chunks that were very good. Afterwards, we came across a piano and violin duet playing in the middle of the busy airport, which was fascinating to watch.
I tried to avoid one of the touristy things though, that being The Bean. I like the reactions I get when I tell people I’ve been to Chicago twice and have never seen The Bean. Unfortunately, while we were walking back to Kolton’s place after Yolk one morning, I caught a glimpse of The Bean in the distance. I’m ruined.
Some highlights of the trip, mostly food related:
Breakfast places: The cinnamon rolls at Ann Sathers are insane, and we went to Yolk twice.
A hidden ramen place that describes itself as “An intimate subterranean ramen lair”. The pork slices in their tonkotsu are incredible, 10/10. Lauren insists that the broth at Ramen Tatsu-Ya in Austin is better, I think I was too distracted by the pork to notice. The BBQ place above it is great too, I had been there before for a work event and didn’t notice the ramen place.
Cheesie’s — Esquire called them the “Most Life-Changing Grilled Cheese in America”, and I have to agree. They had a blueberry shandy on tap that I won’t forget.
We went out on a party boat on the lake. It was absolutely wild, and the weather was great. Afterwards, we walked for a good 30-40 minutes to Taco Bell, which really did “hit different”, as Kolton described it.
The weather was great for most of the trip, in the 70s with cool breezes and sunny. A stark contrast to Texas, where my town hit the upper 90s with high humidity. We did run into a severe thunderstorm with a tornado warning though, me and Kolton were driving back down from Lake Forest in the midst of it. When we got back to his apartment on the 34th floor, I watched lightning strike the top of a building across the street. One of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.
On the flight back to Texas I started noticing what felt like cold symptoms, and the at-home test confirmed I contracted the big C for the first time. Who knows where I got it, could have been the maskless Southwest flight crews that hundreds of people pass within 20 inches of every day, the plane itself, the restaurants, the boat, etc.
I started feeling better within a week, but Lauren had a worse time of it, and for longer. We didn’t lose our sense of taste or smell, still trying to figure out if we have The Fog. It’s difficult for me to judge my short-term memory effectiveness, as it’s always been less than reliable.
Serena’s ringworm outbreak has pretty much disappeared, she had a small spot on her chin, but it is almost gone. And the other cats still haven’t shown any signs of it. Maybe she has a weaker immune system.
9 posts this month, not bad.
Still no progress in book reading, I wonder if audiobooks would help. I know I will zone out while listening to them though, like I do with podcasts. But I zone out while reading, too. I remember when I was super into reading, sometimes I’d read the entirety of two pages and then re-read them when it came time to flip, because I had zoned out.
Articles I liked this month
- ISO 3103 is a standard for brewing tea for testing. And yes, the British came up with it. It gets better — there is an entire ISO sub-committea with 17 members who have published 33 standards related to tea
- On a mission
- House Giacomelli Schmid
- Aspartame: Once more unto the breach
- The Beavers Seem to Be Learning
- GHOST Busted
After a rabbithole that started with indie Mac apps and ended with changing my terminal emulator and shell (I promise this is all related, somehow), I’m now using WezTerm and fish, while slowly learning Vim with the release of version 9. And I think I’m addicted, despite the learning pains. I even have a proper
.vimrc now, with config options and plugins. fzf for commands and files is a game changer. Vim is a huge timesink though, you end up going down one rabbithole after another, so Sublime Text is still my main editor. But I love some of the shortcuts you can do with Vim, such as
o to start a new line under the current line,
dw to delete characters until the next whitespace, and
dd to delete entire lines at a time.
- Album We by Arcade Fire - my thoughts
- Album Ugly Season by Perfume Genius
- Album Soft Sounds from Another Planet - Got back into Japanese Breakfast after seeing them on SNL recently, this remains my favorite album by them. I saw them in concert with Lauren.
- Album Waterslide, Diving Board, Ladder To the Sky by Porridge Radio
- Album Welcome to Bobby’s Motel by Pottery
- And other British post-punk
📺 Movies and TV shows
Shows I’ve been watching
- Spy × Family – I think the show is on a break now
- Stranger Things S4 – we finished Vol. 2 last night. I’m a bit mixed on the direction now, though I wrote positive things about Vol. 1. I had hoped they would wrap up the entire show this season, but now it’s set up for a fifth season. Maybe Netflix will save us and cancel it.
- The World According to Jeff Goldblum – really enjoying this series, and Jeff’s mannerisms and wild outfits. Also how old do you think Jeff is? I was surprised to find out