I spent much of last week running errands that needed doing (in addition to getting out my first Drawing Coffee Original!)—everything from getting the defroster inspected in my car to getting my teeth cleaned.
I feel kind of suspended in a large Pyrex dish of Jell-O recently. The last month has been one big illusion, as if I was on winter break like most other people I know and now I should be back at school (spring semester classes at U of I began today). I’m not returning to my job, my relationships, my columnist position, my classes, my whole routine and lifestyle. I’m just kind of suspended at the moment while everything under my feet continues to move.
In other news, the MLK Day weekend was enjoyable. Suraj had Monday off from work, so I drove down to St. Louis to hang with him. I left Springfield in the early afternoon to meet another friend at the art museum and catch up post-break. My Google Maps directions sucked (as per usual; I typically do not trust these things, but I forgot to talk to someone in advance/scope out my atlas to get a better idea–plus I have not always been the best with maps in my brief lifetime), but I managed to get there without too much trouble. I was disappointed that the recent Japanese screens exhibit had already closed (Jan. 3), but we at least got to wander through the “period rooms” and check out Mother and Father Worked Hard So I Can Play before heading out to get coffee. Kayak’s is on Skinker, headed sort of towards Wash U. It’s not the world’s greatest coffee shop (I haven’t yet had a chance to think about the origins of the coffee they serve and it is kind of chain-y), but my latte tasted pretty good, I didn’t get a parking ticket for letting my jerk-off one-hour-only parking meter expire, and their loaded baked potato soup made for a tasty snack to tide me over until dinner with Suraj and his family.
While at Kayak’s, I also picked up the most recent edition of the Riverfront Times (similar to Springfield’s independent news publication, the Illinois Times, but bigger and with kinky ads in the back) and a postcard ad for the third annual St. Louis Naughti Gras, an erotic art and music event. If you are 18+ and in the St. Louis area February 5 and 6, consider checking it out.
I lost track of time and stop-started through St. Louis rush hour traffic to dinner with Suraj and his family since his parents were getting ready to leave for Hawai’i the next morning. We had intended on seeing Sherlock Holmes with his brother, but ended up staying home because Suraj was tired. Instead, we had a mutual friend over for some Savage Lovecast, Settlers of Catan, and wine (Georges DuBoeuf’s 2009 Beaujolais Nouveau, Bogle’s 2007 Old Vine Zinfandel, and a 2003 Jacob’s Creek Shiraz that was definitely not what we should have ended the night with because the flavor was kind of whoa).
Saturday was tasty homemade breakfast (oatmeal and eggs) before undertaking our mission to find Suraj some bookshelves for his condo. We went to Marshalls first so I could look for some running tights (which I found!), and I was lucky enough to also find a perfume I have been looking for for some time. We met up with a friend of Suraj’s who was in town from Chicago for a baby shower and out shopping as well. We ended up finding some great shelves on clearance at World Market off Watson Road, carted them home, and then set out for sushi at the Wasabi in Clayton before hitting up some FroYo (a St. Louis version of CocoMero) and heading for Suraj’s brother’s apartment for his roommate’s birthday party. We stayed there for a while, then met up with a mutual friend from our UIS days to visit some bars, talk, and dance.
Sunday involved us searching for shelf supports for the new bookshelves (partially successful), Barnes & Noble (I can’t decide whether to blow most of my gift card on a comprehensive vegetarian cookbook or on lots of other literary books), making garlic and roasted veggie ravioli, playing video games and enjoying some Zenato Ripassa Valpolicella Doc Superiore. Monday was lunch at Pi (the best pizza of your life) and then to the Galleria for Lushcapades (they have a great $25 combo pack right now, so if you want a lot of things for a great price and have been thinking about trying out Lush’s stuff, do it). I headed home and haven’t done a whole lot since.
Bedtime is rapidly approaching, and I need to get a lot done tomorrow. I also just remembered I need to wash out my french press. An update about writing, professor hang-outs, Urbana, and a new column all on the way. In the meantime, listen through a bunch of archived Savage Lovecasts (like I am doing—this is like my webcomics obsession playing out on a podcast level). And if my saying webcomics piqued your interest, read/buy this beautiful work. And finally, if you want to read/listen to something depressing, Laredo, TX lost its last bookstore.