Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Leaving Chicago (with random thoughts)

Today is my last day in Hyde Park. Very sad. Not that I've been around much - I've logged almost 40 days of travel since the end of June. But I'll still miss the place greatly. Next up: Santa Monica, via Historic Route 66.

I felt somehow compelled to place "Historic" before the "Route 66." I think that's because all of the ads for taking the Route call it that. Whenever an epithet is consistently used to describe something, I'm always highly skeptical of the description's truthfulness. I think the technique is invoked by those with something to prove. Alexander wasn't that Great, and King Richard wasn't all that Lionhearted.

Ok, maybe I'm being a little tough on Alexander because the movie sucked. And by the way, can we officially endow Oliver Stone with the Paul Verhoeven Chair in Being a Has-Been Director and Yet Somehow Still Conning Large Studios To Hand You Tons of Cash for Box Office Bombs? I will accept other nominations (Kevin Costner, maybe?). Why don't these guys suffer Michael Cimino-like fates?

Time for bed. Goodnight all. Goodnight Chicago.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Life Does This

For the past three years, I've lived in Hyde Park. It has a lot to offer if you dig deep enough, but no amount of digging led to the discovery of a Potbelly Sandwich Works. I've mentioned my love of Potbelly before. They're ubiquitous in the Chicago area, and yet UChicago's Potbelly needs were completely ignored. I have complained about this fact to many an unwilling listener since I arrived here. Well, this week Ben and I were walking back from the (far inferior) 55th St. Quiznos when we see something strange in the Co-Op Grocery parking lot: COMING SOON: POTBELLY.

Our prayers have been answered, right? Funny thing. That was Ben's last day in Hyde Park (he's a fellow Potbelly lover), and I leave for Europe on Tuesday, only to come back and immediately move to Santa Monica. In Santa Monica, heck, in the entire Western U.S., a Potbelly is nowhere to be found.

There's a joke there, but it isn't all that funny. I'll leave it.

Goodness knows I've tried to solve this problem. Awhile ago I began an email campaign - consisting of me - requesting that Potbelly start a single store anywhere in SoCal. I don't care where. I'll make pilgrimages on the 10, on the 405 EVEN, to get to it. Here was Potbelly's response:

***Hi, Brian! Thank you for writing us!

We're so happy to hear that you love Potbelly!

And, we appreciate your suggestion for opening a location in Southern
California. We're always looking for exciting new locations. We'll
continue to announce all of the details concerning our new store
openings on our Web site at http://www.potbelly.com/stores3.2.html.

Keep checking back and hopefully we'll be coming your way soon!***

"Hopefully we'll be coming your way soon!" If I received that response from a girl I'd asked out, it would be . . . disheartening, to say the least. No sir, that won't do it.

So, a call out to all of our displaced Chicagoan readers who love Potbelly and currently reside in the greater Los Angeles area: bug Potbelly until they bring a store out to us. Our massive reader base must contain scores of people fitting this profile, right?

I'm screwed.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Back From The Bar

I just got back. Some numbers:

9 Days in California

3 Days of Bar Exam

6 Essays Answered

2 Performance Exams Taken (one very poorly, I might add!)

200 MBE Questions Answered

2 Days Studying Furiously at Cal Tech

4 Days Searching Furiously for an Apartment

30+ Apartments Visited

1 Lease Signed (on a place I found the morning of the last day!)

3 Movies Seen (Recommended: The Aristocrats)

1030 Miles Driven in a Rented Dodge Neon

Thousands and Thousands of Dollars Spent

Needless to say, I'm spent too. But don't cry for me. I leave for Europe next week.