Saturday, September 09, 2006

Shopping in Chicago

As if the change of venerable downtown Chicago department store Marshall Field's to Macy's isn't enough to piss off Chicagoland shoppers, a couple of weeks ago it was announced that Carson Pirie Scott is closing its State Street store. One would have thought that they might have waited a bit to see if they picked up some of the disaffected Marshall Field customers, but apparently not.

I like downtown department stores. I was ticked off when the Belk's and Ivey's in downtown Charlotte closed years ago and again when Woodie's closed its store in the main part of DC. But the Carson Pirie Scott closing is worse somehow, particularly given the historic building. Designed by Louis Sullivan a century ago, the store exterior is a masterpiece. The interior needs some serious work, which is probably another reason that Bon-Ton is closing the store, but I really like the layout. It's a historical building so I'm sure they'll have to do something with the building but I doubt it'll remain a department store. But it's a hell of a building.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

September is /* fill in the blank */ Month

After the last year (losing the account that I worked with for years, JennySlash being sick through the holidays, loss of our pup, the stressful spring and summer sojourn to Chicago), I've decided that
September is Fun Month!
I think I deserve a little fun after all of this. Of course, with the new job I'm really having fun and want to make this new gig work well. So maybe instead I should be thinking that
September is Get to Work Month!
That's not a bad thing, except that work has really kept me from getting any damn photography done at all since the tour last fall. I've taken some but I really have to get my ass in gear and get things ready for this year's tour and maybe the Carolina Club show (since I actually sold something there last year) so really I think
September is Photography Month!
On the fourth hand, I haven't seen my family since Memorial Day weekend and have barely seen J's Mom even though she lives in the same town. So I'd like to think that
September is Family Month!
but that's probably not going to happen. Weekends are already getting pretty packed which is making it tough to get my workouts in. In fact, after losing 60 pounds 5 years ago, I've now put back on over half of it. This driving in to work crap is making it almost impossible to get my runs in and the gym that J is a member of has a waiting list to join. I've got to find a way to lose this gut, so I guess
September is Physical Fitness Month!
I suppose the reality is that
September is Life-As-Usual Month!
Honestly? That's not so bad.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Eternal Optimism

Dad emailed me last week with his predictions for the upcoming Carolina football season. As usual, I found his 8-4 prediction (he did hedge with a 7-5 worst case) to be irrationally exuberant and let him know that I figured we'd be doing good to split down the middle and finish 6-6. That would frankly not be a disappointment to me. Jeez, we're playing Notre Dame, Miami and a resurgent Clemson on the road so that's 3 losses right off the top. Virginia Tech is 4. Between Furman, Rutgers, GaTech and South Florida I figured we'd be doing good to split (and now we've lost to Rutgers, so that's one down). And this is all assuming we don't get upset by a Dook or Wake or NCState (man, the Big Four really, really suck at football these days!).

With most of my coworkers in the office State fans, it won't be a total loss if we ONLY beat Dook and State, but I'm sticking with my 6-6 prediction. I'm just still not convinced that Bunting is the guy to get us back into BCS contention.

When Life is Like a Music Video

Drove up to DC for a meeting through the pre-Ernesto rain last Wednesday, leaving around 6:30 am in the rental car. As the RTP radio stations started to fade out and the Richmond stations were not yet in range, I slipped in the latest rental car travel mix CD that I'd punched up the night before. Just as I hit the I-85 bridge to cross over Lake Gaston, Chuck Leavell slipped into the greatest piano solo in rock-and-roll history on the Allman Brothers' Jessica and the early morning sun broke through the clouds to my right. Chuck traded licks with Dickey Betts, the sun sparkled off the lake waters and I kept looking around for the camera car that was undoubtedly filming this for the music video of my life.