Taking the A Train

Comments (29)

A few weeks ago, I talked myself into getting a Foursquare account. I've been putting it off for ages because I don't want people knowing where I work or where I live, and as sad as it is, those are the only two places I go. Rather, those are the only two places I thought I went. But 2011 has been a bit of a weird year on the introvert front; I've moved from the "so introverted I'm going to most certainly die alone in my robe after running out of things to watch on Netflix" stage to the "maybe I can share some of these Netflix marathons with other human beings" stage. You still won't catch me at a nightclub (unless I have it on good authority that I'll bump into Elijah Wood there), but I'm finding a decent number of places to "check in" to with Foursquare.

Just Friday, I wound up in downtown Chicago with no agenda and nothing to slow me down. I was originally in the area with three of my coworkers for a Photoshop training seminar1, but when we got to the venue at 8:30 a.m., we were told that the event had been cancelled. After an hour of chatting in the lobby, I walked back with my three little ducklings and put them on the train back home. Since my work for the week was already done, I called the office to let them know what was happening and then took off for the Art Institute2.

After a few good hours there — discovering new corners with new exhibits — I got to enjoy a burger from one of my favorite restaurants, Eleven City Diner, and then a quick stop at Barnes & Noble for a book to read in the gardens adjoining the Art Institute. There were even ducks in the fountain. It was a downright enchanting day, full of creative inspiration and great food and good exercise and tolerable weather.

But wait! That's not all! Call now, and we'll send you this free CTA transit card and directions to gRegor's apartment, a.k.a. the "Lady Lounge"! Just kidding. No directions for you. However, I got to stop by the Lady Lounge and say hello to both gRegor and Quesadilla the Qat (friend of Tippington the Tiger, pictured below). I also got to experience Ribfest Chicago with gRegor. Our tummies enjoyed the Pitchfork ribs, some maple bacon doughnut holes, and some sort of bacon empanada. Oh, and the free drinks from Chiquita were surprisingly good. (Yes, you were good, too, ice cream from CVS.) I sort of collapsed after that and an episode of Pushing Daisies, though. A girl can only handle so much fun in one day.

I don't know how much longer I'll keep Foursquare, since it still makes me a little uncomfortable, but I'm certainly glad that it encourages adventures and allows me to feel twice as good about leaving the house. Of course, when someone comes up with an app that gives points for time spent sleeping, y'all can kiss me3 and this blog farewell.

1 The church owns four licenses for Photoshop (two CS3 and two CS5), and I'm the only person using the software. I might have done some squawking on the topic, and the higher-ups might have decided to pay to get the rest of the gals trained. I was tagging along to learn how to be a better teacher of Photoshop.
2 Remind me later to write about how much I'm loving my membership there.
3 On the cheek, boys. On the cheek.

gRegor

gRegor

Thanks for not giving out my address, haha.

Hooray for the Art Institute, good food, good times, and footnotes. Seriously, I was just thinking the other day about how footnotes on blogs are cool.

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

What, don't want ladies showing up at your door and leaving freeze pop wrappers? Lame.

gRegor

gRegor

I already know one who will do that! :)

Gilligan

Gilligan

Ah, Foursquare.

I'm avoiding it for just about the same reasons you are. I know I don't go many places other than home, work, and church... though I'm sure Foursquare would disagree with me. The other reason being I don't have a smartphone to take advantage of the track-me-whereever-I-go-pretty-please functionality... Oh wait, the phone companies already know that anyways. :-p

At any rate, art, food, a book and a friend sound like a great way to spend a day in the city with no agenda. (Even if it does mean missing out on a cancelled Photoshop class. Bummer, ain't it?)

Lastly, I'll second gRegor on the footnotes comment. Footnotes in blogs are cool, especially when well done. (For those who understand it, Learning Perl is a shining example, and for those that don't, just know that nearly a third of the text in the book is in footnotes.)

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

I'm only bummed about the Photoshop class being cancelled because it means umpteen more days of me being the only person on staff capable of opening a .psd file.

As for the footnotes, I've made some updates even since last night! The footnotes now have little arrows at the end to allow you to jump back up to where you were reading, and you don't even have to jump anymore. You can just hover over the numbers in the text, and the footnote text should pop up. Tadaaaa!

chris

chris

Foursquare tip: become the mayor of Chicago!

I actually only use it when I go out of town (mainly). Has anybody else even checked into the local Subway?

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

Ha! That would be a fun way to get into politics, actually. And yeah, I don't plan to use it much when I'm in my own 'hood. With millions of people in Chicago, I don't mind fifteen of them knowing that I'm at Giordano's for lunch on a Saturday, but I would definitely mind if those same fifteen people knew where exactly my bed is located.

Bart

Bart

As always, you are 100% delightful, Rachel.

And yes, creative inspiration usually comes when you're doing the LEAST amount of "creative work". Don't forget to spend some of your creative work day doing what the normals call "goofing off"; in reality, you're just fueling your creative brain.

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

Hey! You actually commented on the entry! That is delightful! As for creative inspiration: I follow quite a few Tumblr blogs that put fresh new ideas in front of my face several times a day. Even when I'm at work, I dedicate thirty or sixty minutes a week looking through a church marketing pool on Flickr, where I can see what my peers are doing and how our other peers are reacting to their choices. It's fantastic. But then I go someplace like the Art Institute and get to just bathe in the beauty of it all without trying to analyze why it's pretty or how I could be incorporating this or that element in future works.

P.S. Adding you now. :)

Bart

Bart

PS: Add me on Foursquare. I've been there for quite some time. ;)

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

I use foursquare after saying that I would never use it. Not because of the creep factor, but because I hated to see every single person tweet where they were at. Unfortunately, I had to register so I was familiar with how it worked since I'm apart of a social networking start-up. For where I live, I log into the neighborhood. No exact address or street crossing so all is safe.

I'm really excited to come visit Chicago this weekend! ^_^

P.S. You might want to consider what boys. Not to brag or anything, but I'm a pretty good kisser. You've seen my lips, yes?

P.S.S. I recognize that tiger from a twitter post last week!

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

1. That makes sense. I've started a separate Foursquare account for my church, so I can manage our business stuff from there. And while I actually signed up for Foursquare's predecessor (BrightKite), something about all the tweeting really turned me off to Foursquare. Obviously, you understand. But the privacy factor was the biggest issue. I don't like people knowing my last name or the location of my real residence. Even my UPS box is a few towns away. GET OFF MY LAWN. DON'T EVEN LOOK AT IT.

2. Dude, I'm excited, too! Bring a cat with you this time to make up for the fact that you wouldn't bring one last time.

3. Not to brag or anything, but I'm also a fantastic kisser. Perhaps we could start a school for kids who can't kiss good.*

4. Rawr rawr!

*Fun fact! Intentional grammatical errors make my soul cringe!

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

1. You take introvertednessness to the EXTREME. You're so hardcore. Even more hardcore than Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino. "GET OFF MY LAW----N" *grits teeth*

2. I'll see if I can dig a cat up. If I don't, is there something I can bring t make up for lack of cat? =(

3. I have to admit. I got kind of excited up until I got to "a school." Don't get me wrong, I'd love to aspire to Zoolander status and start a school for kids who can't kiss good, but come on, you're so pretty.

4. ROFR copter!

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

1. I was so confused by that movie. Rather, that movie left me feeling confused about things.

2. Hello Kitty bandages.

3. Talk to me again after I see the cat or the Hello Kitty bandages.

4. OMGROFRBBQ.

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

1. I think it's absolutely fantastic. Near heart wrenching and the imagery was wonderful.

2. Hello Kitty band-aids it is. If I can't find a cat.

3. I'm buying the Hello Kitty band-aids tomorrow. 2 boxes. And some lip balm... Just in case.

4. ROFR-COPTER!

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

And by "kids," I clearly mean "adults." And by "adults," I mean I'd like to kiss Elijah Wood.

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

*sigh* Elijah Wood gettin' in the way of all the guys swooning over you. I'd have my revenge, but then you'd hate me. I rather you have me as a friend then hate me because I took it out on Elijah for all the men in the world.

Sorry men. Skirts before... bros?

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

Skirts before shirts? Nnnnope. That doesn't work, haha.

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

5. Your comment made me laugh so hard.

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

5. I'm so glad my comment made you laugh so hard. =) ROFR!

Jwewmiah

Jwewmiah

17th!

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

10th! Yay, Tennant!

LovelyAnomaly

LovelyAnomaly

OOooph. And now my "home"sickness for Chicago increased a little.
This really does look like an enchanting, seemingly perfect day.

gRegor

gRegor

The plan is working!

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

Mua ha ha. :)

LovelyAnomaly

LovelyAnomaly

Huh. I see what you did there.

Gilligan

Gilligan

11th! (And youngest!) Smith acts, Moffet writes, combination: AMAZING. Almost as amazing as that lip-balm inducing conversation above...

2. Speaking of P.O. Boxes... I should probably get one and change my mailing address to it, but they cost money I'd rather not spend.

3. This is a fairly lively post. Dare I say the liveliest in a long time? I wonder what the record number of comments is here?

Rachelskirts

Rachelskirts

I think the record is held by the one vlog entry I did a few years back. I didn't have threaded comments then and mostly responded to people via email. I'm experimenting with being more active in my own comment thread, which is why this one seems unusually "lively."