Tuesday, December 6, 2011


I'm starting to think that B21 is just not what I'm looking for. He's actually starting to irritate me a bit. I came to this conclusion this morning when I awoke from a restless nights sleep and found that he was sleeping in the middle of the bed while I had a tiny sliver on the edge. I'm used to having my bed to myself, but I never seemed to have a problem with B10 who is actually a much bigger man than B21. I actually found myself faking a sore throat this morning just so I didn't have to give him a blow job.

Anyway, it's not just that. I think B21 has a lot of qualities that I've been looking for. He's funny, he cooks and he enjoys sex. However, something just isn't clicking. He messages me every day (mostly about sex) and this is starting to get annoying. Also, he doesn't bring his own condoms. If I am springing for birth control I believe a guy should supply the condoms. Of course I keep some on hand, but we went through my box yesterday and this morning he reminded me to buy condoms. Listen, buddy if you are going to jump my bones every 5 minutes then you need to supply the condoms.

Also, we haven't gone out since our first date. He only comes to my place and always spends the night because it's close to work. This is fine every now and then, but I need my space and sometimes i just want to go out to dinner and come home alone.

I know this is a lot of complaining and I should just be happy to have someone in my life, but I just can't settle. It's not my style. I know how I want to feel when I'm in a relationship and this is not it. I really wish I could combine the best qualities of B10 and B19 into one man. Now the question is what's my next step? I can probably avoid him for the next few weeks and blame the holidays, but I have to own up to this at some point. Do I text him or wait until we hang out next?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

maybe spinsterhood is not for me

I saw Bachelor #21 three times in one week. That's one sleepover at his place and two at mine. How is it that one guy (B21) can be so eager to spend time with me and other ones (B19) would never even invite me to their place after dating for four freakin months? We've exchanged back rubs, played our favorite music for each other (sadly, he does not have the same taste in music as me) and have had lots of really decent sex. Is this what it was supposed to be like with B19?

The really stupid thing is that I miss the fun that B19 and I had. He really made me laugh and I was extremely happy with him. Sure, he turned out to be a total D-bag that was clearly not into sex as much as I was, but other then that, the time we had together was pretty good. B21 is pretty awesome and clearly not afraid to get close to me. He's cooked for me, taught me to infuse vodka and has certainly kept me satisfied, but can he make me giggle? I guess time will tell.

B21 has a lot of characteristics I look for in a guy. He's funny (studied improv), he knows his way around a kitchen and a woman's anatomy and he's a drinker. I'm comfortable around him and he makes me laugh. It's only been a week, but I'm just waiting for the deal breaker. I hate being this way, but I haven't really had the best streak with the bachelors. I can't understand why.

I'm funny, smart and pretty open when it comes to what I want. I have control of my life, but am willing to give up some of the control in the bedroom. I have the sex drive of a 16 year old boy, can cook, am cultured and can make a mean cocktail. So why hasn't some guy gotten smart enough and snatched me up yet? What if the one for me is actually herding polar bears somewhere in Canada? Or maybe we don't even speak the same language? What if he's right here in Chicago and we just haven't crossed paths yet? What if I am or have dated him already? Jesus...can't a single gal get a break?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

skipping Thanksgiving

I work retail. This means I am denied my holidays. There is no peace and joy for me. November and December are my most intense months and the holidays leave me with no good will to spread. This year I am trying something different. I'm skipping Thanksgiving. This is the first time in my entire life (with the exception of the year I lived in England) that I have not been with my family for Thanksgiving. I'll be honest. I'm not bummed.

The last thing I want to do is commute home an hour and a half each way only to spend my day in a cramped trailer with my my mom's family. Sure, I'd love to see my mom, dad and sis, but I get to see them any time I want. I've always been a family person, but what's the use in going home for Thanksgiving if I can't really enjoy myself? My family situation isn't the same. I hate imposing on my sis and her fiance for a place to spend the night every time I go home and I hate that I don't have my family to itself since my grandma is now living with my parents. So this year I'm doing Thanksgiving my way.

Obviously this involves a few trips to Trader Joe's, enough food for four and tons of booze. Here's what my feast consisted of:

Butternut Squash Soup
Parker House Rolls
Cranberry Sauce
Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Green Bean Casserole
Truffle Mashed Potatoes (with a little bacon grease added in for good measure)
Corn with Chile Powder
Turkey Gravy
Turkey Breast with Stuffing
and Pumpkin Pie for dessert

I got to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and the Dog Show today. All in all, a pretty good day...now on to the holiday chaos. Please keep me in your thoughts and remeber to be kind to your retail workers because we put up with a lot of shit this time of year.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Bachelor #21 and some policy violations

Good news is that Bachelor #21 might be a keeper. Bad news is that I broke my dating policy and slept with him. However, I did get morning sex out of the deal so it really is all good. B21 and I met on OKC and exchanged a few e-mails. We met up last night for a few beers and I knew that he was someone I would go on more dates with. As you know, I can't stand it when the conversation doesn't flow, especially on a first date. I refuse to continue to date someone without a personality. Good news is that this guy makes the cut. We share a passion for food and drink which is a huge bonus for me. No more dating the non-drinker - lesson learned with B19.

So we went to two bars and drank a lot of beers. After the last bar we decided to get pizza. I really should have called it a night and stuck to my policy. Instead we got pizza (he also offered to make pizza for me!!!) and went to his apartment. Okay, so I bend one policy, but surely I could control myself and not have sex on the first date. Turns out that I can't. So we had sex and then I was going to head home, but he was kind enough to supply me with a contact case and solution so I could spend the night. Clearly, he wasn't going to kick me to the curb and actually wanted me to stay. I really like being in bed with a guy and I guess I was craving some cuddle time so I stayed the night. So far B21 really has B19 beat. He drinks, had me over to his apartment on the first date and took all of his clothes off for me. Yep, I think we will keep this one.

So at around 7:30 this morning I woke up very hungover and thought I would just make my way home, but I was rewarded with morning sex. Morning sex is the best. So at around 8am I found myself doing the walk of shame to Dunkin Donuts where I stood behind a 5 year old who took 20 minutes to make a decision on a donut. I did procure some donut holes and a coffee before catching a cab back to my place.

And it doesn't end there. I promptly received a text from him. This is good because it means he's not going to play the waiting game with me. I hate having to wait 2-3 days to talk after a date. We exchanged some texts which soon turned in to full on sexting. Finally a guy with personality, sex drive and boyfriend potential. Yay me!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Mad Girl's favorite things

I have to admit that I loved it when Oprah did her favorite things show. Sadly, we won't get that this year, but I've decided to compile a list of some of my favorite things. Hopefully, they will inspire you this gift giving season.

I adore oils and vinegars and my favorite place to get both is Old Town Oil. I usually do some of my x-mas shopping here every year. This year I'm really excited to try their Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar. Imagine what this would taste like over fresh strawberries or drizzled over bacon wrapped dates?

Whenever I go to Old Town Oil I always stop at the Spice House. Everyone eats and you are bound to find something for those hard to shop for people in here. It's also a great place to shop for your foodie friends. This year I might give out their Hot Cocoa Mix to deserving boys and girls. I also think that their Chicago Neighborhood Spice boxes make a great gift for out of town guests.

Maybe you need to spice up your eggnog or hot cocoa this holiday season. Then may I suggest checking out Koval Distillery? Koval is a local boutique distillery that I just adore. Their liqueurs are great for cocktails or just as an aperitif. I think the coffee liqueur will go well in a nice warm winter cocktail.

If you are looking for something a little more relaxing then I am utterly in love with Aveda Comforting Tea. It's a little pricey, by it's oh so yummy and just what the doctor ordered after a long hard day of work.

Now for something you can't eat or drink, but is still delicious. Have you ever had a Paddy Wax candle? I think their Library Collection is the perfect gift for the bibliophile in your life. Haven't you ever wanted to have you house smell like Jane Austen or Oscar Wilde?

I always love to do some holiday shopping at MoJo Spa. The owner, Amanda, makes all of her own products and everyone here is super friendly. I think the cake soaps make a nice gift with a bit of whimsy. I am also in love with their chocolate body scub so this gift set would make my day.

My other favorite place of body products is The Body Shop. I think the peppermint footcare line makes a great gift for that special aunt, grandma or anyone who is on their feet all day. I think this shave set makes a nice gift for the man (or gay boyfriend) in your life.

I just got my first pair of City Slips. These are adorable little flats that fold up into a bag. The idea is that you can wear your fancy shoes to a party and then slip out of them and put on these comfortable flats. I think these would make a great bridesmaid gift as well.

I caught my hairdresser wearing these uber adorable glitter Toms and had to have some. I haven't bought them yet, but I think they will really jazz up my basic black wardrobe. We'll see how they hold up on the sales floor.

And if I had a special bachelor in my life I might consider getting this or this :) Bet you Oprah would never have either of these on her favorites list.

If you are looking for entertainment then I think that A Very She & Him Christmas CD and the Lion King DVD would be on the top of my must have list. However, a museum membership is another great idea. I recently joined the Art Institute and have a been a member of the Chicago History Museum for years. These make great gifts for anyone.

And for the little ones...I think this vintage Fisher Price Record Player is the way to go.

I'm going to do a whole separate blog on books so stay tuned for that!

Monday, November 7, 2011

sick day

I do not have the type of job that affords me the luxury of a sick day. Yet, here I am at home using the first sick day in 2 years. Actually, the last time I used any sick time was when I was in the hospital to have my gallbladder removed and before that I think I went home early once after I vomited at work. The worst part about being sick is the guilt of it all. Yesterday I found myself crying in my office because I really needed to not be at work, but I felt bad about leaving and going home sick. I was also slightly afraid to call my boss and let her know.

The sickness started about a week ago with a mild sore throat. I thought I could just take some cough drops and move on. Well, my sore throat got so bad that I found myself popping Ibuprofen like they were candy and barely able to run my store because I was experiencing the worst sore throat ever. I went online to Web MD and it sounded like I might have strep. Fantastic. Just what I needed right now. There was no way I could take time off to get better, my store is already down a manager and today is a big product launch. So I pushed on and sweated (literally) it out. I went from work to my bed for 3 days and finally my body and nerves just couldn't take it anymore. So, I left work early yesterday and went to the Minute Clinic. Turns out it is most likely not strep (still waiting for some more test results) but I am very sick.

The nurse told me to go home and get a lot of rest. Did this mean that I shouldn't go to work the next day? She said that I just needed to rest and curl up on the couch with some movies. She also told me that all the stress of my job was not making me better. I almost laughed in her face. I told her I was scheduled to work the next day and she said I should stay home. The guilt kicked back in. She actually wrote me a note excusing me from work. I contacted my boss letting her know I needed to be off and she just sends me one icy cold reply: ok. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Not a 'feel better' or 'don't worry the store will be okay'. This was not good.

This is the point I've gotten to with my job. I'm miserable and stressed out beyond belief, but feel that I have no options for making this better. I want to be able to take a sick day every now and then and not have it stress me out more because of all the work I'm going to have to catch up on or the fact that I'm adding stress to my management team. I give 110% when I'm at work and when I can only give 50% I feel like I'm failing. I'm unhealthy, have a weakened immune system and my home (it's a disaster) and social life are suffering. I'm just not sure that I see a light at the end of this tunnel. Just like there is not crying in baseball, there are certainly no sick days in retail.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Bachelor #20

You are probably thinking 'Wow, this girl works fast'. However, I actually met B20 on OKC a while ago. We just never had the chance to meet up. When I updated my profile on Sunday he messaged me and we started back up where we left off. We ended up meeting last night for our first date and I had a really nice time getting out and blowing off some steam. B20 is someone I do want to spend more time around, but I'm just not sure if there is going to be any chemistry.

We decided to meet at a bar in the Ukrainian Village around 9pm. This was so past my bedtime, but I sucked it up and figured I should try to have some fun. Turns out that he had a friend playing in the band so there were a few people he knew there. Everyone was really nice and there was no awkwardness at all. It was kind of loud but we started chatting and found that we had a lot in common.

About halfway into our date he got a little touchy and explained that he was an affectionate person. I just didn't feel very comfortable with it and told him I wasn't really touchy feely. I can be when I get to know a guy, but to start out with I'm a little reserved. He also told me how much he liked me and how cute I was. I was truly flattered by this attention, but it made me uncomfortable because I was not really feeling chemistry towards him, plus I have a hard time taking compliments.

We left the bar and decided to get some food but after that I called it a night. I wanted to be honest with him right there and let him know that I wanted to see him again, but didn't think that this would be anything besides friendship. I really do like him and am going to go out with him again, but the last thing I want to do is lead him on because he seems like a really nice guy.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

my dating policy

I recently read a really good blog post on HelloGiggles.com that was about first dates. It got me thinking that I probably need a dating policy. I'm back on OKC and actually already have a date for tomorrow. However, I think that it's time to apply all I've learned from dating 19 Bachelors and set some guidelines. So, here is my dating policy.

  • only drinks on a first date and only a few drinks at that. no more getting drunk and smooching boys in bars

  • no sex on the first date...in fact, no sex until we've dated for a month or at least 5 dates

  • no invites to my apartment until after we've had 2 dates. this goes for visits to his apartment as well

  • follow my gut. no compromising early on. if it doesn't feel right then I need to cut my losses and move on.

I'm not sure how well I'll be able to stick to these guidelines, but I'm really going to try to be good about this. The idea is that I find someone who wants to get to know me and genuinely wants to spend time with me. Once that's been established then we can have lots and lots of sex.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

down with B19

B19 and I are no more. I guess I should have seen it coming because he totally forgot (or just ignored) my birthday this week. I wasn't expecting much, but a Happy Birthday text would have been appreciated. Was this my warning sign or was it when he wouldn't invite me to his place or spend the night at mine?

I guess I was just having so much fun with him that I choose to not read too much into any 'signs'. I figured he was just the type of guy who needed more time to get comfortable around me. It came as quite a shock when I went to check my Facebook account last night and I saw that he had posted something on his page that was clearly directed at me.

It was obvious that he read my recent blog, the mean reds, because he actually referred to it in his post. He spoke about me not believing in god and not wanting kids. It was basically a big fuck you message and was probably the most hurtful thing that has ever been directed at me.

At first I was in shock. I went to my kitchen, poured a glass of wine and started chopping veggies for dinner. Then it hit me and I started sobbing. I'm talking, uncontrollable, heaving sobs. How could someone that had once made me so happy make me so miserable? I pulled myself together enough to reach out to my friends for a little comfort. They helped and I knew that it was time to cut B19 loose (as if there would be any other option). I sent him a message on Facebook letting him know I had read his post and thought it was time to move on. I then promptly unfriended him. I still just can't (and probably won't) understand how a grown-ass man could be so cruel. I totally misjudged this one.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

a case of the mean reds

Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?

Paul Varjak: The mean reds, you mean like the blues?

Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you're getting fat and maybe it's been raining too long, you're just sad that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of. Do you ever get that feeling?

I've been in a bit of a funk lately that lead to a case of the mean reds about a week ago. They eventually transitioned to the blues and I feel that now I'm out of my rut. I've got a lot of shit going on in my life right now and in bits and pieces it really wouldn't be that bad, but when it all hits around the same time and is combined with a horrible case of PMS...you get the mean reds.

First off I had scheduled some cleaners to come in and clean my apartment. I was planning this all month and had let certain areas of my apartment get pretty dirty. Well, I get up and wait for the cleaners to arrive and when they are 30 minutes late I call the company and they say they canceled my cleaning appointment! What the fuck! So, on top of wasting an afternoon waiting for these people I'm now in charge of cleaning my apartment. GRRRRR!

So to add to this I got to thinking about B19. I decided to be a big girl and approach the subject of our 'relationship'. I feel strange referring to him as 'the guy I'm dating'. We've been dating for about four months, we are both exclusive and I have not desire to see anyone else. Plus, I really, really like him. Well, that conversation did not go as well as planned. I thought we could come to an agreement to 'go steady' (yep, I'm old). Instead he sort of skirted around the issue and made it clear that I'm just 'the girl he's dating'. Awesomeness.

Well, to top everything off I call my mom and listen to her cry about her relationship with my dad and the strain that moving in with my grandmother after my grandfather's death is putting on their marriage. I've always come for a happy, stable home, but lately home is the last place I want to be. My mom is very unhappy because she is trying to please everyone and feels guilty about my grandma because she is depressed. My grandma doesn't want to be left alone and will even follow you from room to room like a puppy. My parents are free to live the life they used to live and I am starting to resent my grandma big time. I truly don't even want to be around her because she drives me batty. It's just no a good situation and it's only a matter of time until it all blows up.

As you can see, things got a little intense and emotional and hit a boiling point for me. I'm better now, but think I should probably look to get on some sort of medication so I don't break down at work one day and strangle a Lincoln Park housewife.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

fall reads

Yay! Fall is here. This is by far my favorite season. I adore everything from apple cider to pumpkin pie to haunted houses. Also, my b-day is in October so that month has always been a time of celebration for me. Fall also means fall reads. A lot of famous authors put their books out just in time for the holidays. Here are some of the books I've put on my to read list.

Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern - I just started reading this tale of two magicians who are supposed to face off to the death but end of falling in love. Yes, it does seem a little like the Hunger Games plot, but I am enjoying it so far. Also, I could easily see this book being adapted into a Tim Burton movie.

Damned by Chuck Palahniuk - I'm going to give him another chance, but I've been very disappointed by his last few books. This one is about a young girl who overdoses on marijuana (can you do that?), dies and goes to hell.

The Magician King by Lev Grossman - This is actually a follow up to The Magicians. It's getting rave reviews and I know a few people recommended The Magicians to me (telling me it was Harry Potter for adults). However, I have two reliable sources who say that The Magicians blows so I'm going to start with number two and see if it's any better.

The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson - I've been eyeing this book for the past few weeks. It's about a family of performance artists and the effect it takes on their children.

Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick - I adore Hugo Cabret and expect greatness from his new book. Yes, it's a kids book. However, her combines moving narrative and fantastic images to make this a read for all ages.

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami - I haven't read any Murakami, but this one looks really interesting. It looks like this might be a spin on 1984 by Orwell so I'm willing to give it a try.

Momofuku Milk Bar by Christina Tosi - She's the pastry chef for David Chang's Momofuku and I can't wait to see what this book holds - yummy!

Girl in the Kitchen by Stephanie Izard - I am smitten with Izard and so excited that this local Top Chef has a cookbook out now.

....and what was my favorite summer read? I would have to say that Divergent by Veronica Roth was the best of my Summer of Teen Dystopian Reading.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

the universe did not want me to do laundry today

Today the universe did not want me to do laundry. I had the best intentions of doing some laundry and then maybe heading to the lake front to read. I went to withdraw $20 and purchase a roll of quarters from the bank. Turns out that I had insufficient funds. Instead of just transferring the money from my savings I decided that this was a sign - the universe wanted me to go to the lake.

So I came home and packed up a tote consisting of a book (Witches of East End), a peach, some chocolate covered berries, a bottle of water, my ipod and a thermos filled with cheap girly wine. Needles to say, it was a splendid afternoon. It was really windy and a bit chilly, the waters were rough and I was able to just tune out.

I spent the time listening to podcasts and watching the waves crash against the walls of Belmont Harbor. I chugged some wine, read my book and ate my snacks. It was a wonderful way to spend my afternoon and I could have stayed there way longer, but I ran out of wine and it started to rain.

Now I'm back home in my apartment getting a refill on the wine. I think I'm going to disconnect myself from the world and curl up with my book, some brie and some sweet girly wine. This is a perfect way to welcome Fall.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Mad Girl and the abnormal cervix

Okay, this one is just for the ladies. It involes a vist to the gyno and some very sensitive info about my cervix. Guys, go grab a beer and sit this one out - you'll thank me later.

So I went for my regular check up with my gyno (who is so awesome that I want to make her my BFF - is that weird?) and the results of my pap smear came back abnormal. I really wasn't surprised, if I have an angry vagina then why not have an abnormal cervix? I didn't really know what this meant, but my gyno assured me that it was not cervical cancer, but we would need to get checked out anyway.

I had to schedule an appointment to get a colposcopy which is a test that looks at my lady parts through a lighted magnifying tool. My doc also scraped some cells from my cervix to run some tests on them. I really didn't know what I was up against, but my doc did a fantastic job of explaining everything to me and I wanted to share my experience with you in case you or someone you know is in the same position as I am.

First off, you need to get a check up and pap smear EVERY year...got it? My test came back abnormal and it also turns out I have HPV. Did you know that 80% of us have HPV? There is a huge stigma around it, but chances are you have it. Yes, it's an STI, but my doc explained it like my vagina has a cold and while there is not cure, you can get over it. The part that sucks is that it doesn't show up for men. Why is life so unfair. Anyway, HPV can lead to cancer so it's important to get yourself checked out. Also, maybe the HPV vaccine for young gals isn't such a bad idea...

So I went in this morning for my procedure which was honestly just like a really uncomfortable pap smear. The feet went into stir-ups and my doc put some vinegar like substance in me. This dried out the wall of my cervix and made any abnormal cells turn white. She took a sample of these cells to analyze. The scraping part was uncomfortable and I guess some women experience cramping, but I don't think it was too bad. Besides, my doc and I were talking about mimosas most of the time.

The whole procedure took only about 15 minutes and then my doc handed me a pad and said I'd want to use that because there would be some bleeding later. She also told me to just try and lay around for the rest of the day (I can do that) and avoid sex for a few days (that one is going to be a bit harder to do). I came home and took a long nap and have just been chilling. Really not too bad at all.

Now I have to sit and wait for the results and hope that there is not too much craziness going on in my cervix. I'll let you all know what the outcome is, but in the meantime please do me a favor and go get a check up on your lady bits if you haven't been for a while.

UPDATE: So the good news is that it's not cancer. The bad news is that there may be something there and I need to get Paps done every 6 months. I like my doc and all, but I really need to boost my immune system so I can fight of the frickin cold in my cervix. With a little time and a healthier lifestyle my issue should clear up.

Monday, August 15, 2011

from Bachelor to friend?

So what gives universe? I spend all these years being single and when I finally do find someone it seems that everyone is interested now! Yesterday I got a call from B15. There wasn't a lot of chemistry with him, but we got along really well. We went on three dates and there was no kiss. After the third date we agreed to meet up again and then he never contacted me.... until yesterday. He said that he had some stuff going on and wanted to see if I was interested in meeting up again. Seriously? What is it with guys? I just don't think I'll ever get why they do shit like this.

Anyway, I texted him back letting him know I was 'involved' with someone, but that I could use a drinking buddy. He seems to be up for that, so it looks like I've found myself a new bar buddy! Let's hear it for making friends. If he's cool with having a platonic friendship then count me in. I've managed to keep in touch with a few of the previous bachelors and I can say that I consider B4, B6 and B10 my friends. Is it wrong to do it like this? I have no desire to be with any of them, but they all possess qualities that I look for in a friend. All of these guys have been there for me at one point and I've been able to have some pretty good times with them, even when sex is not a factor.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

blame it on the rain

There's something almost magical about being tucked away inside my apartment during a rain storm. I get to just laze about and let the summer rain wash everything away outside. I've spent my whole day being totally unmotivated to do anything. I've basically sat around on my ass watching movies and stuffing my face (for the record, leftover coq-au-vin is d-lish). I had a to-do list a mile long, but the mess can wait another day. I managed to do a load of laundry and finally clean all the dishes that had piled up in my kitchen. I feel slightly guilty for not getting more done. I even said I was going to call some long-lost friends and catch up with them, but here I am hiding away from the world. Today I'll blame it on the rain, but what will I blame it on tomorrow?

Friday, August 5, 2011

voulez vouz manger avec moi ce soir?

I'm cooking dinner for B19 tonight and decided to go with a French theme. I feel that having a theme helps tie everything together. This way you can coordinate food, drink, music and decor to help create the ultimate dinner party. I've been watching a lot of Rocco's Dinner Party on Bravo lately so I've been inspired to throw one of my own. I used to do cocktail parties at my place but haven't done one in a while. My real dream is that one day I'll have a big fancy kitchen, huge dining table, and tons of interesting friends to entertain. A girl can dream.

So here's the run down of tonight


Arielle Dombasle

Amelie Soundtrack

Carla Bruni


Paris for Lovers

anything Putumayo

Edith Piaf

menu (recipes below)

French Onion Soup

Coq au Vin

Haricot Vert

Thyme Roasted Fingerling Potatoes

Chocolate Mousse


sparkling limeade

wine (Bordeaux)

Let's get cooking! This is a very simple menu to make. It may look like a lot of work and sound fancy, but you will be surprised at what went into this.

I wasn't sure what to do with this and thought that instead of making something I'd just see what Trader Joe's had to offer. I started with a box of bacon wrapped scallops, but then I found frozen French Onion Soup! Bingo. I know I could have made this, but I figured that with everything else I was making I wouldn't have time to pull off homemade soup too. I also have a really good zucchini curry soup that I love to make and would be perfect for summer...I just now remembered that.

Coq au Vin (or Chicken in wine) is a delicious, comforting dish. There are may recipes out there, but I'm using one from Nigella Lawson (I also referenced my copy of Joy of Cooking and they are pretty similar). I always like to put my own touches on recipes though so what you find below isn't the exact same one that Nigella uses.

In a saucepan combine:
2.5 cups red wine (I'm using a Bordeaux)
1 celery stalk
1 quartered carrot (I actually bought a pre-made mirepoix at TJ's - it's way easier)
2 cloves garlic
1 sprig thyme
a few sprigs parsley
3 peppercorns
3 bay leaves
bring to a boil, reduce heat and let bubble away until reduced by half. Strain and reserve.

In a casserole
heat 1 tsp olive oil
brown 6 skinned chicken thighs
season with salt and pepper as you are browning

remove chicken and add
3 shallots minced (you can use onion from the mirepoix for this as well, but i like the taste of shallots)
diced pancetta (or Canadian or Irish bacon) to your liking (the recipe calls for 2oz)
cook over medium heat for 5 min

add 6 oz sliced button mushrooms
6oz pearl onions pealed (for the life of me I could not find these so was stuck with onions from a jar)
cook for 3 min or so
sprinkle with a tablespoon of flour
stir and cook over low heat for 3 minutes
gradually stir in 1 and 1/4 cup chicken stock and reserved wine

place chicken thighs back in
cover and cook gently for 45 min to a hour until chicken has just begun to get loose on the bones
heat 3 tbs of brandy in a ladle over a low flame and tilt until the brandy ignites. Pour into casserole and stir

It should be done, but if it's too runny just remove the chicken and raise the heat and reduce to thicken little more.
sprinkle with parsley
serve with crusty baguette


Thyme roasted potatoes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
in a saucepan
heat 2 tsp minced thyme in EVOO until fragrant and sizzling
remove from heat and let steep for 20 minutes - strain and toss potatoes in olive oil and roast for 30-40 minutes. I like to add a sprig of thyme to the bake sheet as well
season with salt and pepper

haricot vert

saute up some extra onion from the mirepoix, bacon (I'm using applewood smoked bacon) and haricot vert until tender


chocolate mousse

sprinkle 1 packet of gelatin over 2tbs of cold water and let stand for 2 minutes (I couldn't find gelatin at the store so I used pectin...we'll see how this turns out) add 1/4th a cup of boiling water and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved

mix 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup cocoa in a large bowl add 2 cups of whipping cream and 2 tsp vanilla extract. beat until mixture is stiff. pour in gelatin mixture and beat until well blended.

spoon into dessert dishes and refrigerate at least 30min. garnish with strawberries.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Mad Girl is a slob

I am not a very clean person. I've often commented on how I live with 3 frat boys who keep my apartment in a constant state of mess, but in reality it's just me. Blame it on laziness, procrastination, or Bravo TV - I'm a slob. I've actually never been a neat and orderly person. I remeber fights with my mom about cleaning my room or making my bed. To this day I refuse to make my bed. Why bother?

I've been trying to be better at this, but housework isn't a lot of fun and I'm often too tired to pick up after myself. Right now I have dishes piling up, my floors need to be cleaned, and there are various piles of clutter building up around the house. How do clean people stay clean? Are there people who actually enjoy cleaning?

I did notice that while I was on staycation for a week things stayed pretty tidy around here. Maybe I just don't have the time and/or energy to maintain an orderly home life. Someone also told me that Libras are bad housekeepers and I believe them. I can't imagine what it would be like if I had a house and kids to take care of as well. Maybe I'll get lucky and find a house husband one day...

Friday, July 29, 2011

just friends

A few weeks ago I had my last 'visit' with B10. I think we both knew it would eventually come to this and it really wasn't as hard as I thought it would be because I'm so into B19. We are still going to stay friends, which is fine with me because I need some more city friends. Plus I do enjoy B10's company and the way he's straighforward with me. I told B10 a little about B19 and he said something that really hit me. He advised me not to become one of those girls who only hangs out with her boyfriend. OMG.....I realized I have no more city friends. All the friends I did have either moved away or did something to really hurt me and in turn I ended that friendship. This is a whole other long, tragic blog that I will get to one day.

I considered sending out an e-mail begging some of my friends to move to Chicago just so I wouldn't end up as 'that girl'. I thought dating was tough, but actually, finding new friends is not that easy either. I have a few co-workers that are pretty cool, but I'd like to meet some people outside work. So where does one start making friends?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Chicago Chocolate Tour

Ready for dessert? My friend and I went on a fantastic tour with Chicago Chocolate Tours. I really didn't know what to expect, but I was quite impressed with the tour and would go on one again. They offer different tours, but we chose the one of the Gold Coast and Mag Mile. Our tour guide, Courtney, was really good. She had good public speaking skills and a great personality. Our first stop was Teuscher Chocolate which is a Swiss Chocolatier. We got to sample their truffle filled with a Dom Perignon cream. It was amazing and made me want to eat a dozen more.

After this we headed on to stop two, More Cupcakes. I do enjoy a good cupcake, but I hate all these trendy cupcake places that have opened and decided to charge $8 for a cupcake. We got to try their basic chocolate cupcake and could have purchased more, but I just wasn't in the mood for paying through the nose for a bacon cupcake. The interior is small and the cupcakes are displayed like works of art. I guess if you live in the Gold Coast you can afford to have cupcakes from here.

Next stop was Hendrickx Belgian Bread Crafter. We got to go behind the scenes here and were welcomed into their back room where we got to see how croissants are made and got a mini-lecture on Belgian bread and chocolate from the owner. We got to sample their white chocolate bread, dark chocolate cake and some regular Belgian peasant bread. It was all very good.

When we were done here we went to the uber famous Sarah's Pastries and Candies.
Which is on Oak Street (sort of like or Rodeo Drive) and is frequented by Lisa Ling, Martha Stewart and Jim Belushi. Sarah is a local gal so you gotta appreciate that. She also does wedding cakes which I'm sure I'll never be able to afford.

Our final stop was Argo tea where we tried their delicious Chocolate Mint Tea. This is one of my faves, but if you like white chocolate then I suggest their red velvet drink. Just as an FYI they are a Chicago based company and also see Vosges chocolate bars made with their teas.

This is a really fun activities for a ladies/girl day out or a fun idea of something to do with an out of town guest. Tours were about $40, but I think it was well worth the money.

sushi and shaved ice

After my adventures in Pilsen yesterday I spent a delightful evening in the company of B19. I am not pursing any other bachelors at the moment and this includes letting B10 know that we are now just friends. It's a big shift for me, but I feel good about where things are heading with B19. However, that's now why I'm writing....I've got some foodie stuff for you.

So after a long, hot afternoon in Pilsen my chariot arrived and whisked me away to Butterfly Sushi Bar and Thai Cuisine. This type of place is right up my alley and I was pretty hungry after being out in the hot sun all day. Clearly the two tacos I had earlier were not enough to fill me up. I have mixed feelings about this place. The sushi was good, but not something I'd go out of my way for. However, it's the service and ambiance that just rubbed me the wrong way. Let's start with the food. We ordered the Thai escargot as an appetizer. This was delicious, but I am a huge fan of escargot so it doesn't take much to win me over. I did something really embarrassing though and ate most of the escargot myself. B19 had never had escargot and he tried one and then when he went for more I had devoured the entire plate...whoops. We ended up getting four different sushi rolls which were all very good, but nothing really blew me away or made me think that i needed to come back to this place for sushi. It's just good quality sushi so if you live in the area then you should go here, but I suggest getting take out.

The first thing that really annoyed me is the fact that the tables were so close together. You actually had to more your table if someone wanted to get out at the table next to you. I hate this because who wants to sit so close to the table next to you that you hear every word of their conversation? This just made for a very uncomfortable environment. The other thing that bothered me is the fact that they brought our sushi out before we were even done with our appetizer. They did the same with the table next to us where they brought their sushi and main course out at the same time. I was very annoyed that they were blatantly trying to turn the tables really fast and had absolutely no respect for the diners who wanted to enjoy their meal. I could understand this a little more if it was lunch time, but it was 8pm on a Friday night.

After our dinner we headed back to my hood and went to Cloud 9. I've been here a few times and always liked it, but this was by far my best trip. They had green tea flavored shaved ice this time. I adore anything green tea and especially like green tea ice cream. I think the first time I had it I was at the Japan 'exhibit' in Epcot center. So of course I had to go for this. I decided on a mango drizzle and then to be extra Asian I got the red bean topping. Now, before you freak out this wasn't a baked bean topping (although it looked like it), but the sweet red beans that you find in a lot of Chinese sweets. It was all a winning combination and I will certainly be back for it again sometime soon.

Are you full yet? Well save room for dessert because my next blog is going to be about my chocolate tour....

Friday, July 22, 2011

Pilsen adventure

I wanted to explore Pilsen since I moved to Chicago, but for some reason I never made the trip. I'm quite taken with Mexican food and culture so it baffles me that I haven't visited Chicago's 'Mexican neighborhood'. Yesterday I finally had my Pilsen adventure. I started my afternoon with some tacos. I read some pretty good reviews about Birreria Reyes de Ocotlan which is a small little joint that specializes in goat. They make birria, which is a goat stew. I've had this stew before in Mexico and since it was 100 degrees out I decided to pass on that and went for the tacos. Their menu is simple (basically goat and a few types of tacos), but there were definitely some items that were new to me (cows head, goat liver, tongue). I opted for 2 tacos and I'm glad I did two instead of three because these were quite filling. I got the chiva (goat) and cabeza (cows head).

Let's talk about the cows head first. This taco is filled with various parts of the cow's tender head meat (brains, cheek, eyes, tongue), but if no one told you what you were eating you would just think it's the tenderest, juiciest beef taco you've ever had. If you can get past the idea of what you are eating, or at least convince yourself that it's something else, then you are in for a treat. The goat taco was also pretty good, but I've had goat a lot before so this wasn't as new and exciting as the cabeza. These tacos were packed full or flavor and were the type that needed two tortillas. I paid about $6 for the two tacos and a horchata - not a bad deal at all. The only complaint that I would have is that the air didn't quite seem to be working at full speed so on a hot day it was not as comfortable as I would have liked.

After my lunch I walked up to the National Museum of Mexican Art . I was quite impressed with this museum for a few reasons. The museum is free, but I left a $5 donation because I was so impressed with what they had done. The museum is not huge, but has a fantastic permanent collection and 3 rooms of rotating exhibits. What I like most about this museum is it had personality. There was this an temporary exhibition of art from Benito Huerta that really caught my eye. It's only there until the end of August so I suggest you check that out. The museum also had a really nice gift shop.

After art in a gallery I took in some art on the street. Pilsen is known for its murals that depict scenes from the Mexican community. They are often political or social commentaries. I found quite a few along 18th street, but I'm sure there are many more to see. Here are a few of the murals I visited:

If you want more info on the exact location of these murals then just e-mail me and I'll send you that info.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

why Mad Girl might be a little crazy (or my trip to MSI and Hyde Park in 100 degree heat)

So maybe it is hotter than hell out there, but I wasn't going to let the heat scare me away from doing something fun on my vacation. I've never been to Hyde Park and thought that I would make a stop off at the Museum of Science and Industry to see the Smart House and then wander around the University of Chicago. Of course, I choose to do this when the heat index is about 105 degrees.

I'm a member at the MSI and wanted to see the Smart House for a while. This is a house that is totally sustainable. It's a modular home that is furnished with recycled materials, creates its own power and is wired with all sorts of cool gadgets. You have to pay a bit extra to do this, but I recommend doing so. They take you on a tour of the house and then let you roam around the gardens afterwards. I decided to keep it green by purchasing a bobble which is a water bottle with a built in filter. It costs about $15 but think about how much you will save by not buying bottled water.

After the MSI I walked to the U of C campus which is only about a 10 minute walk away, but in the heat it felt like forever. I made my way down Midway Plaisance (site of the World's Fair) and walked up Woodlawn to the Robie House. This is one of Frank Lloyd Wright's houses and as a member of the National Trust I got a 50% discount (yes, I'm a member of everything). This tour was nice, but not nearly as impressive as the Frank Lloyd Wright home and studio in Oak Park, which I highly recommend.

I also took a nice stroll through the UIC campus which has a really nice 'place of higher learning' feel to it - I think it was the ivy climbing up the sides of brick buildings. I was wandering through the campus when I came across the Flirty Cupcakes food truck! Score! Of course I had to have one of these much tweeted cupcakes so I got the Curious George which was a chocolate banana cupcake with a salted carmel frosting. It was very tasty, but not worth $3.75.

I knew I wanted to eat somewhere in Hyde Park, but I really couldn't find too many good suggestions nearby. I guess that Lincoln Park and Lakeview have spoiled me with their selection of restaurants. I decided I'd give this place called The Big Easy a try. It's a Cajun joint that got mixed reviews on Yelp, but Cajun sounded really good to me. Well I make my way (in 100 degree heat) to the restaurant and it turns out they are closed for lunch. I checked their hours before I went and make sure they'd be open, but when I got there there was a handwritten note taped to the door stating that they wouldn't be open until dinner. UGHHHH! That's annoying as all fuck.

I turned those lemons to lemonade thought by heading home and getting a manicure and then ordering some BBQ from The Pork Shoppe.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

a nice summer meal

I am not Julia Child, but I do like to get fancy in the kitchen every now and then. Here is a simple summer meal you can prepare for someone special. I'm not much for sticking to a recipe so these are just guidelines.

caprese salad on a stick

  • assemble on a toothpick: mozzarella cheese, basil, some sort of tiny tomatoes

  • dip in balsamic

  • cover about 2 cups crustless day old bread in cold water and soak for 15 minutes

  • boil 3 cloves of garlic in a small sauce pan for about 3 minutes. drain.

  • in blender: 3 cloves garlic. bread (squeeze extra liquid). 2 tsp salt, 2lb beefsteak tomatoes, 1 four inch cucumber (peeled), a few dashers of white wine vinegar and a few dashes of sherry vinegar. You can also add a sliced green pepper, but I don't like those so I used some Creole seasoning I got from the Spice House.

  • puree until smooth

  • with machine running pour in 1/2 cup EVOO ( actually added a little blood orange olive oil to the mix) in a slow, steady stream and blend until emulsified.

  • blend in 1 cup of cold water and season with salt and pepper.

  • refrigerate until chilled (at least 3 hours or up to 1 day)

sauteed shitake mushrooms and spinach

  • saute 6 cloves garlic and one shallot in some olive oil

  • add sliced shitake mushrooms and saute for about 10 min

  • add spinach and saute for another 5 min

truffle mashed potatoes

  • boil potatoes in chicken broth until tender (about 10 min)

  • drain, but reserve some of the liquid

  • mash in chicken broth, half and half, butter, truffle oil and pepper to your liking

seared scallops

  • head a skillet on high and add 1tsp butter and 1tsp veg oil

  • when skillet is hot add scallops - DO NOT touch/move/or otherwise disturb them

  • after 2 minutes check to see if the bottom of the scallop has a nice carmel crusted color

  • once you have the sear then flip them and cook for about 1 more minute. sides should still be translucent and soft

fruit with balsamic

  • cut up peaches, berries, strawberries...whatever you have

  • drizzle with balsamic (I'm going to use a pomegranate balsamic)

pair with...

  • prosecco

  • a nice rose (yes, it's okay to drink these)

  • saison (a French country ale)

  • blood orange Italian soda

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Mad Girl's little bag of tricks

Sometimes a gal finds herself sleeping over at a guy's place. You never know when this can happen and sometimes you don't plan for it. I put together my own little kit for just such an occasion because I like making my walk of shame just a little more glamorous.

  • hair tie and some bobby pins for taming that morning after hair

  • condoms

  • hand and face wipes

  • aspirin

  • Colgate wisp mini-brush

  • contact case and solution

  • feminine wipes (SweetSpot makes some awesome on-the-go-wippettes, but you can also find individualy packaged wipes in the feminine care isle. I just got some from Playtex).

  • compact

  • lip gloss

Monday, July 18, 2011

Harry Potter and the end of an era

Today I went to see the last Harry Potter movie. This was a bittersweet moment for me. I've read all the books, attended midnight book release parties and have seen every movie in the theatres (except Deathly Hallows part 1). It's so strange to think that it's all over. It's the end of an era.

Harry Potter brought me back to that childhood excitement of reading. I quickly got sucked into J.K. Rowling's world and would stay up late just to finish the books. What's the last book that you stayed up past your bedtime to read?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

bizarre foods

Where did I discover my love of exotic eating? You would think that a girl who refuses to eat salads or lunch meat would certainly avoid eating such delicacies as grasshopper but it seems I've got a bit of the Andrew Zimmern bug inside me. Last Friday B19 and I went to Chicago's Dog House (www.chicagosdog.com) where I enjoyed a delicious alligator sausage. The sausage was served with a sweet chili sauce and caramelized onions. I will certainly return to this place to check out their other exotic creations.

In the spirit of adventurous eating here's a few other things that I've eaten that might make some other people squirm:

sweetbreads - Not on the top of my list of favorites, but if you are going to try them then I suggest going to The Publican.
fois gras - I know this is the trendy thing to eat, but I really wasn't that impressed.
bulls tongue - had this sliced with gravy when I was in China
grasshopper - had some chopped up as an appetizer at a Mexican restaurant in Chicago
caterpillar -deep fried and crunchy. Had these at Sticky Rice.
ant egg omelet - also had this at Sticky Rice. You really can't taste the eggs though.
rabbit- schezuan rabbit in China. Yummy.
elk - in a tamale from the Green City Market
ostrich- at Rockit Bar and Grill. ostrich is really lean and much better than beef.
various cow parts -in a steaming bowl of pho at Tank Noodles. I honestly can't identify all that i ate, but I'm pretty sure there was stomach, intestine and some cartilage in there.
pigs feet - in delicious croquette form at Topolobampo.
blood sausage - I've had this a few times mostly as part of an Irish/English breakfast.
beggars chicken - a whole chicken (feathers and all) cooked in a clay pot until it implodes on itself. Had this in China.
fat - not sure how else to describe this, but also had this in China where it was a delicacy.
bison - on a burger at Wilde.
escargot- I guess some people would object to eating snails, but the ones at Bistro Zinc are my favorite.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

what is it with guys and communication?

So last night at 11:34pm: Hi, this is B17. Sorry I've been out of touch. I as busy and then had family over. Want to watch some tv or something? Are u working this weekend?

Hmmm...now I really did like B17. We went on two dates and I have a very nice time with him. However, he stopped messaging me and then sent me a message on OKC a few weeks ago which I replied to and told him he could just text me and we could hang out sometime. I think it's been over a month since I've seen him. I get being busy, but why couldn't he have just told me that upfront. To me this seems like he really wasn't into me that much and had a bunch of other things going on. He's sitting alone on a Friday night and is horny so he decides to text me. Not sure how I feel.

So, I have 3 options:

Text him back and make plans to hang out next week.

Text him back and let him know I'm involved with someone else (which is sort of true)

Don't text him at all.

Please weigh in with you advice.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

summer reading list

I really have no idea why I don't write about books more often. It's how I've made my lively-hood for the past 10 years so I do have a few things to say about the subject. Today I'm going to share some of the titles on my reading list as well as a few of my recommendations for summer reads.

Teen Dystopian Novels are the new Vampire Romance. Blame it on the Hunger Games (haven't read it? stop reading this blog and go get a copy...I'll wait) but this theme is all the rage. Here are a few that I've read or plan to read this summer (which shall also be known as The Summer I Read Way Too Many Teen Dystopian Novels)

Wither by Lauren DeStefano - I devoured this one. Imagine a future where all diseases have been cured, but girls die at 20 and boys die at 25. The main character is a very strong girl (no weak love-lorn, vampire dating wimp) who is kidnapped and sold into a marriage. It reminded me a lot of A Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood. Very spooky.

Divergent by Veronica Roth. Dystopian Chicago. 16 year olds tested for aptitude. Choices to be made. A main character with a cute shortened nick name.

Matched by Allie Condie. Another Mormon writes a book I'm sure to be obsessed with. With names like Xander and Cassia and big brother watching this is sure to make my heart race.

Also on my summer reading list...

Beaten, Seared and Sauced: On Becoming a Chef at the Culinary Institute of America by Jonathan Dixon. Because I'm clearly not going to be attending the CIA any time soon.

Try This: Traveling the Globe Without Leaving the Table by Danyelle Freeman. I love my food writing. Freeman has a website called Restaurant Girl and was a guest judge on Top Chef Masters.

The Map of Time by Felix J.Palma. The plot reminds me a bit of The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde, but this book has been a bestseller overseas so I'm going to give it a shot.

Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition by Daniel Okrent. Because I'm an educated drunk.

Demon Fish: Travels Through the Hidden World of Sharks by Juliet Elperin. There is a secret shark week fan buried deep inside of me.

Witches of East End (Beauchamp Family Book Series #1). Family of witches? Count me in!

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. This books is a mix of fiction and photography. Seems like it might be a darker, more twisted play on Series of Unfortunate Events.

Sweet Valley Confidential by Francine Pascal. That right, Elizabeth and Jessica all grown up!!!

Other pics for summer reads

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain. A work of historical fiction told from the perspective of Ernest Hemingway's first wife.

Blood, Bones and Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef. A fantastic descriptive work of food writing.

Bossypants by Tina Fey. Laugh your ass off funny.

Life, on the Line: A Chef's Store of Chasing Greatness, Facing Death and Redefining the Way we Eat by Grant Achatz. Local celebrity chef. Never going to be able to afford to eat his food so I got his book.

good date/bad date

On Sunday I had a really nice date with Bachelor #19. We were supposed to meet at Wilde because he really wanted to try their bison burger. Well, we get there and the place is closed due to power outage. The mythical bison burger is turning into some sort of a joke with us. We keep talking about it, but never get a chance to eat it. Anyway, I suggest we head to my standby, Duke of Perth. As we get closer to the Duke he suggests the Mexican restaurant across the street (can't remember the damn name of that place though). I've never been, but will never pass up a chance to have a margarita. So we go in and take a seat on their delightful little patio. The setting is perfect, the food is awesome (carnitas and carne asada!!) and the 'ritas are spot on. B19 ordered everything is Spanish, which was a bit of a turn on. He made sure I had plenty of margaritas and shared his carne asada with me. It was a really pleasant meal which he insisted on paying for....he's a gentleman like that.

After our meal we head to the gelato place by my house. I get some sort of crazy gelato combination and he orders vanilla and strawberry...hmmm. I know this is going to sound strange, but I was a bit disappointed in his choice. Just hope he isn't vanilla in the bedroom :). We got our gelato and i suggested a walk to the lake front. We made our way to Belmont Harbor and things got a little more flirtations. As we walked to the lakefront we came across a trapeze school! Very cool and I think I might try that this summer. We watched for a bit and then head to the lake where we just chilled out and enjoyed the view.

I'm really enjoying spending time with B19. We've been on 3 dates with no sex (go me!), but I'm pleased to report that he is a good kisser. He even has that very kissable lower lip, just like B10. The other strange thing he does is make sure that I walk on the inside of the sidewalk (also like B10). However, that's where the comparisons end (well except they are both Mexican). It seems that B19 is way more willing to treat me like a potential girlfriend. Am I just playing my cards right this time? Maybe there is something to be said about holding off of sex for a bit. Don't know if I can wait much longer, but it's nice to know that we can go out and have a good time without sex.

Now for the bad date. I met Bachelor #18 for drinks last night. I had to cancel on him last week because I just felt like poo and really wasn't very excited about going out last night either, but I'm not a girl who cancels plans and we were going to meet at Delilah's so it couldn't be that bad. Now B18 is a pretty cool guy, but there wasn't a lot of chemistry on our first date -just a pleasent time. However, I did feel that a second date was in order. I'm not sure if it was my mood or what, but there things just felt awkward last night. There were uncomfortable silences and the bar didn't have the air on so I was feeling a little nauseous after a few beers. I think that about an hour in I was ready to go, but tried to tough it out. The date lasted about and hour and a half and i had to apologize and head home. I just really wasn't feeling it with him and feel sort of bad about it. Maybe, it's the weather, maybe it B19 or maybe I'm just done with random dates.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Mad Girl is a little tired of dating

I've just about had enough of dating. I can't believe that I've been on dating sites for 2 years and have gone through 19 Bachelors. I thought that at some point I'd meet a guy worth keeping around. Actually, I think I met a few worth keeping around. However, it seems that after a few dates they always tend to drop off the face of the earth. This makes me wonder what I'mdoing wrong...is it me? is it them? am I meant to be single forever?

I'm in a bit of a salty mood right now because I was supposed to have a date with B10 last night and I was really looking forward to seeing him because it's been over two weeks and as you all know - I like B10 a lot. Well at about 7:30 last night I text him and here's what unfolds:

Me: So what's the plan for tonight?

B10: No plan :( my car's fucked right now, I have to take it to the shop tomorrow. I'm fucking freaked out that it's gonna cost me a lot.

Me: :( that sucks. Want me to come down to your next of the woods?

B10: Nah, I'm at the bar with the new roommate right now lamenting my fucking life.

Me: Um...ok

B10: I know, I'm sorry.

Now, a few things about this really piss me off. First, this really isn't a B10 sort of move. He's actually a really good guy and hasn't ever pulled shit like this. Also, why couldn't he have texted me that afternoon to let me know we weren't going to hang out? It's really fucking hard to make other plans at the last minute and I had a glorious Saturday night free with a Sunday off! This is a rare thing in retail and now it's wasted.

I'm just getting tired of all the dating. I want to find someone who's constant in my life. I'm about ready to give up and just accept my inevitable state of spinsterhood. Guess I have to drag my ass to the gym now because at least I won't be a fat lonely spinster.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bachelor #18 and Bachelor #19

Okay, it's been a while and I have so much to say but am way too tired to say it. I did a training session with a new trainer today and my limbs feel like jelly. It was a really good workout and I like my trainer. He's gay, a Virgo and a dancer; so clearly we hit it off. I am going to make more of an effort to work out and loose some of this weight I've been gaining. Goal #1: fit comfortably back into my size 14s.

But enough about that...on to the Bachelors! I went on a first date with Bachelor#18 about two weeks ago. He's a very charming guy from Virginia who likes to drink Jameson on the rocks. I had a really nice time with him and would certainly go out with him again, but I'm not sure if there is chemistry. I do like the way he said my name with a slight Southern accent. Definitely worth a second date. Fun fact about him: His dad is a preacher.

Tonight I went on my first date with Bachelor #19. I was originally drawn to him because he did remind me a bit of B10. I figured that since I liked B10 so much I should stick with the same formula and maybe I'd find a guy who actually wanted to make an honest woman out of me. We went to Kuma's (I had the High on Fire burger) so I did break my 'just drinks' on a first date rule. It was a really great first date. I was really comfortable with him and neither of us was at a loss for words. He has a great sense of humor and he's Mexican, which is totally my MO.

So it looks like some of these guys may be promising. Bachelor #17 is acting all flaky after I slept with him -my bad. What is it about guys that turns them into a different person after sex? This shit is getting really annoying.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Bachelor #17

Finally! A really good first date. I actually wasn't too excited about the date with Bachelor #17 because I've been in a dating funk. I think that my crush on B10 and and desire to make him my boyfriend has gotten in the way of my dating other guys. I had exchanged a few e-mails with B17, but nothing that really wowed me. We decided to meet at the Duke of Perth which is always good for a first date because it's close and I don't feel I'm going out of my way to be disappointed by the date (please refer to Bachelor #16). (I also have to add that I had spent the previous night at B10's watching episodes of Louis C.K. and having my brains fucked out at various points in the night. Needless to say I was a little tired.)

So, I made my way to Duke of Perth and was not at all into the idea of going on a date. I really just wanted to go home and put my pjs on and watch TV. I got there a few minutes early and B17 was 7 minutes late. I was going to give him 5 more minutes and then head home. B17 showed up and apologized for being late stating that he forgot the name of the place and almost went into a bar across the street. I was willing to overlook that because he did seem genuine.

B17 was way cuter in real life then in his pictures. He's 40, but looks like he's in his early 30's. He has dazzling blue eyes and is really good looking in that dashing gay man sort of way. Why do I always find myself on dates with guys who seem to be a little gay? He was wearing a tight black button down shirt that also struck me as something a gay man would wear to Sidetracks, but I was willing to overlook all of this because I do believe my gay-dar is broken these days and it turns out that these type of men are usually good in bed (ie. Bachelor #6)

We started talking and I instantly realized that this was going to be a really decent date. There weren't any awkward moments and I found that i was quite comfortable with him. What was even cooler is that he also seemed into me! I still don't quite understand it when a guy is into me, but he actually told me that he was having a really good time. He even asked to kiss me mid date. This gave me some flashbacks to my first date with B12 (remember beer, bacon and sex?). Mid first date kisses are always the best. However, I was a little hesitant to like this guy and tried really hard to play it cool.

Anyway, B17 made it to a 4 beer date on a school night which I informed him was a very good sign. He even went so far as to secure the second date. I really think that if I said I wanted to see him the next night he would have agreed to that. At the end of night he walked me home and tried to pull me down a dark alley to make out. However, I stood my ground and resisted. I was very proud of myself because six months ago I was would have easily dragged him home and slept with him. So, we get to my apartment and he says he has to use the restroom (yeah right). I let him come up, but have already decided that there will not be any funny business.

He came up to my apartment and looked around...he did try to lead me towards an indiscretion in the bedroom, but I pulled away. We had a very nice make out session by my hallway entrance where I somehow became braless, but I pulled away and kicked him out. How's that for self control?

B17 certainly has potential, but I'm trying really hard to not get excited about him because I've been let down too often in the past. I am going to try and wait until we make it past three dates before I really start liking him. Now the question is...do I sleep with him on date 2 or wait a bit longer?

Bachelor #16

I really just wanted to write about Bachelor #17, but figured I should also give Bachelor #16 his due cred.

B16 and I met up a few weeks ago. I hadn't paid as much attention to his profile because I was communicating with a lot of guys at the same time. He invited me on a date and I accepted. From the look of his picture he looked like a hipster boy with big black geeky glasses. He suggested we meet at Hub 51 for our first date and this got me thinking that he might have been a douchebag.

Hub 51 is the place to be seen and I knew that I would not fit in. They have a dress code and this is where all the well to do trendy 20 somethings hang out and drink Sophia out of cans with straws. So, I put on my cute little black dress and did my best to try to blend in. I showed up first, but he arrived a little bit later. Imagine my surprise when I saw that he was Indian. WTF! I really need to do a better job of pre-screening. I was certainly not attracted to him. Besides being Indian, he also had a little bit of a 'stach. Ugh! We had our drink and chatted a bit. He seemed nice enough, but I knew this probably wouldn't last past the first date.

He suggested we go get some sushi so we left Hub 51 and he tried to locate somewhere nearby on his IPhone. When he wasn't having much luck I suggested we go to the Purple Pig - a small plates place that focuses on pork. He agreed and we headed up the street. Once we were there and sitting at the table looking at the menu he mentioned that he didn't usually eat pork. This would have been nice to know before we sat down. Also, with a name like Purple Pig you would think he would have asked me about the food before we arrived. So the date was off to an awkward start. He took a long time to decide on what to order and seemed to be a very picky person. He tasted 3 different wines before he settled on one. At this point I should have just asked the waitress to leave the bottle. He also didn't know what half the stuff on the menu was so he total lost foodie cred with me. We had some decent conversation though. The one thing that really bothered me was when he tried to tell me about myself. At one point we were talking about relationships and he told me that I wasn't a relationship person and I shouldn't try to be one. WTF!

What type of guy would say this to a girl who is clearly out there trying to have a relationship. What a douche.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

May can suck it

I know it's been a while since I've blogged, but things have not been going well with me lately and I don't want to be a whiny bitch (well,not too much). So here's the break down of things that have been making my life miserable:

Work: short staffed - high stress- spend most days wanting to crawl under my desk and cry

Work-out: not only have I sucked at going to the gym, but I've gained weight and am now feeling like Fatty McFatterson.

Dating: no luck. Still sweet on B10 and wishing he felt as sweet on me.

Family: my grandfather is going to pass away any day now and I can't get the time away from work to go see him.

So, once I get out of this slump I promise to write more. I just went on a date with B16 so I do have some stories to report. Just bear with me.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Fit Girl week 3...fail

Okay, so this is where it starts to become a battle. I really blew it last week. I only got to the gym once. I stuck with my food challenge of drinking more water though. So what stood in my way? My social life. I over booked myself and left little time for exercise. When I did have the time I was battling a hangover. (more to come on my adventures in Oak Park and my Pub Crawl) I really need to get better at finding that balance between work, play and exercise. So, for this next week I will make it to the gym 3 days. This will be tougher because I am home in Indiana visiting my family for 3 days this week. I am also not going to eat after 8pm. This is a big one for me because I love late night snacking. However, I know it's bad for me and I really need to start shedding some pounds. I have to stay the course not matter how much this sucks donkey balls.

Monday, April 4, 2011

B15 + B10 + B6 = Mad Girl is in a funk

Bachelor #15 and I had our third date last night. There was no kiss at the end of the date and I'm 75% sure there is no chemistry. I think I may have just made another friend. We have a good time with each other and I do enjoy his company, but I just don't think I'm feeling much more. Maybe we should kiss and then I'll know a little more. Sometimes it is in the kiss. Maybe we should sleep together. What if the sex is amazing and that is what ignites our relationship? I'm just so confused about what step to take next, but I do know I don't want to play games. So maybe on our next date I just need to come clean and tell him how I'm feeling. What is really frustrating about all of this is that I keep coming back to Bachelor #10. I really like him, but I don't want to ruin what we have (what is it that we have anyway?) by pushing for a relationship when I'm pretty sure that is not what he wants right now. I don't want to be the girl who tries to change the rules of the game mid-play. To make everything more confusing I had a quick hook-up with Bachelor #6 this week. We exchanged a few dirty texts and he stopped by for a some very quick sex because he had somewhere to be afterwards. It was just as good as it used to be, but I was somehow left unfulfilled. I'm not sure if I just needed the conversation that leads up to the sex or if I'm just not that into B6 anymore. Either way, I'm in some sort of dating funk. I'm exchanging e-mails with about 5 guys on OKC, but none have really impressed me yet. Maybe if I meet a few of them in person that will change. I hope I get out of this funk soon.

Fit Girl week 2

I made my goal of working out for 3 days a week for at least 45 minutes. It was not easy. After about 30 minutes I get antsy and want to get everything over with. However, I do feel fantastic afterwards and I have been sleeping better. I'm going to keep trying to set goals for myself each week and I also want to set some sort of food related goal because I think that is also the key to weight loss and a healthier life. I hope I can start to break some of my bad eating habits. I was reading about heart rates because I was curious about where I needed to be. I've been getting up to 155 in my workouts and this makes me feel like my heart is going to explode. I did a litle reseach that told me I need to maintain my ideal heart rate for 30 minutes to maximize the benifits of my work out. Well, it turns out my ideal heart rate is 189! Looks like I have some serious work to do. So, my first short term goal is to get my heart rate to 189. I'm going to start slow and hopefully build towards this because I know that I wont be able to get there right away. For this week I'm setting a goal of working out 3 days and maintaining a 155 heart rate for 30 minutes. I'm also making a point of consuming more water this week. I'm thinking about 60 oz a day should be attainable. I've got a new water bottle that is 24 oz so it will be easy for me to measure my progress. I'm also going to reach out to my trainer and try to set up a session for next week sometime. Hopefully, she can give me some pointers and help set me on the right track.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Fit Girl week 1

Last week I set a goal of working out 3 times. Pretty simple and I'm happy to say I met that goal. Working out does really make me feel better and give me a bit more energy. On the days I open at work it's pretty easy to pop next door for a work out. One the days I'm off or closing I go to the Bally's by my house. This also puts me in close proximity to a grocery store so I find that I can pop in and pick up some produce on my way home. I've been able to keep more fresh fruits and veg around. I make it a goal to only shop the perimeter of the store because that's where the freshest stuff is. Actually, yesterday I bought a package of frisee salad. I detest salads and have never learned to love them. I still don't like them, but I figured I could try to choke down a small amount in a the name of health. I made a small container to bring to work and mixed my own salad dressing of blood orange olive oil and pomegranate balsamic. It was okay, but not something I'm ever going to look forward to. I paired it withs some carrot sticks and cup of chicken noodle soup. So for this week I'm still going to goal myself at a minimum of 3 days, but I'm also going to up my workout time to at least 45 minutes. I figure that I can get that done with a combo of elliptical and bike. I also got an Ipod shuffle last week and made a fantastic work out mix. This has made my work outs more enjoyable. Wish me luck on week 2 of my Fit Girl challenge.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

get in shape girl

I was laying in bed this morning trying to make a deal with myself. I knew I couldn't avoid the gym forever, but I was a little frightened to go back there after my intense work out on Wednesday. So, I told myself that if it was after 9:15am I would not go work out and just stay in bed and read. I slowly opened one eye and without my glasses on it looked like I was looking at a 9...score. I reached for my glasses and looked at the alarm clock again. 8:05...damn it!

So I got my ass out of bed and got ready for my work out. This was my first time going to the Ballys by my house. This one was supposed to be bigger and nice and it was. They also have a pool that has a good view of the city. I hauled my ass down there and committed myself to 30 minutes. 20 on the bike and 10 on the elliptical. I am proud to say that I went for a whole 15 minutes on the elliptical :) That's a 35 minute work out and I felt great afterwards.

I can now say I feel much better about this whole gym thing. Plus I was thinking about the potential to meet men there. I think that really happens and if a guy is willing to hit on me when I'm sweaty and have no make up on then he is clearly going to be impressed with my cuter made-up side. The only complaint I have about today's work out is the stupid trixie who was on the elliptical next to me and thought that it was okay to talk loudly on her cell phone while she worked out. I hope that's not a normal occurrence because I don't want to have to take my shoe off and beat down bitches like that.

After my workout I treated myself to a shot of wheat grass (what does that stuff do anyway?) and an apples and greens smoothie from Jamba Juice. I then went to the grocery store and bought some fruits and veggies making sure to shop the perimeters of the store.

Now that I've got some motivation I'm going to start setting short term goals. I realize that my goal of working our 3-4 days a week for 45 minutes to an hour may not be realistic for me right now. So for this week I'm goaling myself on 3 trips to the gym where I spend 30-45 minutes on bikes and/or elliptical. We will start small and just focus on cardio for now. I'm also going to cancel my trainer appointment for the week so I can just focus on not having a heart attack. For the next few weeks I'm going to try to post my workout goals on here in hopes I feel obligated to live up to the deal. I've also told myself that at the beginning of each month I will reward myself for working out and invest in more workout gear, gyms shoes, an ipod, etc. Wish me luck.

Friday, March 18, 2011

wild times

another one from the vault

September 22, 2001

My two male roommates (from Istanbul and India) are wild. We seem to have a constant stream of foreign men in and out of our house. This can be a blessing and curse sometimes. They are really into partitying. We had a huge party last night and we plan to do the same tonight. I hope they don't plan on doing this every night because I need my beauty sleep.

Last night they got pretty loud and in the middle of the party I hear a knock on the door. I opened the front door and I'm pretty sure a giant cloud of pot smoke wafted out. There on my doorstep where 2 police officers -I nearly shat myself. I was pretty sure they were going to ship me back to the States. However, they just came into the house and knocked on the guys' doors and asked them to be quiet. Gotta love England.

I also think one of my roommates, Agnes, made out (or maybe fucked) one or both of our male roommates last night and I'm sure this will only lead to drama. This is her first time away from her family and she's really lonely. She's decided to deal with her new found freedom by getting really drunk and throwing herself all over every man at the party. I did as much as I could for her, but she's a big girl and I can't be her mom. Well, that's it for the excitement in my life.


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

MadGirl nearly goes into cardiac arrest

You may have noticed that about a week ago hell froze over. That's because I marched my ass into the Ballys next door to my work and got a membership. I didn't want to, but I know that i had to. As most of you know, I am not what you would call 'fit'. I like to eat and I do enjoy my curves. However, my hedonistic diet of food and drink and rising stress levels at work have driven me to do at least one thing good for body.

Today I had my first workout with a trainer. I signed up for a small training package because I knew that I would need someone to show me the ropes and keep me motivated. I was expecting to get someone who would show me how to use the equipment, help me figure out what I should be doing and for how long and then maybe show me how to stretch. However, what I got was a workout from hell that almost put me into cardiac arrest.

I was partnered with a very attractive trainer (tall, black and handsome) who told me that he was a professional rugby trainer. At this point I should have run in the other direction, but i followed. I guess the joke was on him when he discovered that I couldn't even do a sit up. He tried to start me out with some elaborate exercises and quickly discovered that I had no stamina and no idea what the hell I was doing. I was a little ticked because I was not expecting a boot camp work out and while my trainer was nice I really started to despise exercise and was pretty sure that my heart was going to jump out of my chest. Great training if I was getting ready to try out for the women's rugby team.

At the end of our session my trainer suggested that i do the elliptical for 30 minutes a day. Seriously? Did he not see my fat ass or notice the fact that I almost passed out on him? I'm going to stick with this workout thing, but on my own terms. I don't want to hate working out and need to start with baby steps. My goal is to go to the gym3-4 times a week. Maybe 20 minutes of the bike and 15 on the elliptical. I'll probably work some resistance training in there as well.

For those of you who work out what's your advice? How did you start? What worked for you? How do you stay motivated? How often do you work out? HELP!!!! I need to go from Mad Girl to Fit Girl.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Bachelor #15

I feel like I'm going through a dating dry spell. Right now I've only got #10 making regular guest appearances. However, I have high hopes for Bachelor #15. Let's see if he can 1) make it past 3 dates 4) is good in bed. My wishes are quite simple these days.

I met B15 on OkCupid and he immediately impressed me with references to Pulp - I was smitten. We exchanged a few e-mails where I found out that he was a vegetarian and really into music. He actually called me last week and we had a very nice phone conversation and decided we would meet for a drink sometime soon.

Last night we met at Duke of Perth and after 5 hours of excellent conversation, 5 beers and one order of fried mac n'cheese I can safely say that this is a guy I could really like. Turns our he is a musician, which is actually a bit of a turn off. However, I'm going to be open to this and it seems that he isn't a starving artist. He's 40, went to school at Valparaiso University (right by my home town) and burnt me a CD of a Smith concert. However, what really won me over was the fact that we share a mutual hatred of children and the parents that produce them. I feel that good things can come of this....

Oh, and in other news: I joined a gym today. That's right, time to get motivated and give my mind a body some much needed exercise. We'll see how long I last.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

gluttony and lust

I am a sinner. I try to stay away from the really big sins, but I'm pretty sure that Gluttony and Lush were both on the plate for me this week and I do believe I got punished for both.

Let's start with Gluttony. It's Mardi Gras season so I figured I should stop by Heaven on Seven for some New Orleans cuisine. I met my GBF (gay boy friend) there after work and had my mind set on gumbo, oysters, and a few hurricanes. I've eaten there many times and have tried a lot of items on the menu. There is a certain item that I've always had my eye on. It's called 'Jimmy Feed Me' and is a tasting of 7 items prepared by the chef for $35. I decided to give it a try last night. I've had tasting menus before and they are usually small bites of food specially selected by the chef to showcase their culinary ability. I figured I could easily handle 7 courses....I was wrong. The portions started off small for the first 2 rounds and i was moving along at a nice pace...then the entrees arrived and I can assure you they were close to regular size entrees. Holy crap! I felt like I was going to explode by the end of my meal. It was sort of like that that scene in European Vacation where Audrey falls asleep on the plane and dreams about being stuffed with food until she explodes. Let me give you a run down of what I consumed:

fried green tomato: this is a classic and one of my favorite things to order here.
sampling of gumbo and turtle soup with a jalapeno corn muffin on the side: I adore the gumbo and had never tried the turtle soup which was equally fantastic.
blackened tilapia with a crab cake on the side
voodoo enchilada: came with a special voodoo sauce made with fruit juices and spices. the portion was enough for two people and this is where i started to get full
scallop with braised oxtail: one of my favorite items of the night. the scallop oxtail combo is always a winner.
bbq salmon: I'm normally not a huge salmon eater, but this was pretty yummy (maybe a little bit fishy) with the BBQ sauce
beef tips: I thought I was going to burst by this point, but I kept consuming. I think they tasted good, but I was deep into a food coma at this point.

And if this all wasn't enough the waitress then set the dessert menu down and said I could pick anything wanted. I went with the pecan pie which was warm and gooey and only managed 3 bites of it. So I do have to say that this was quite a deal, but bring your appetite because the portions are not 'tasting' size.

And now a little about Lust. I had 3 decent dates with Bachelor 14 and found out that he was not the best kisser. However, against my better judgement an the advice of my GBF I had B14 over for cocktails. I won't bore you with all the details (those will be given out freely over drinks). However, I will say that I imagine that this is what sex with an awkward 16 year old boy would be like. I suspect that he may even have been a virgin because at least that would explain the poor performance. I'm usually the type of gal that enjoys all kinds of sex, but I actually found myself laying on my bed with B14 on top of me and thinking that this was certainly the wost sex ever. Lesson learned.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

the art of seduction

Tonight I will be taking advantage of Bachelor#14. I realize that I could probably serve him beer and wear my pjs and I would probably still get the same end result, but I like to set the mood nonetheless. So let me give you a quick run down of what I've put together this evening...

Setting: My apartment is cleaner than it has been in a while. Hell, I even made my bed. I have a bunch of mood lighting going and some candles burning -just a few not too many. It's comfortable, but doesn't scream 'brothel'. It says sex tonight if you play your cards right, but only after you impress me with your wit.

Music: I've got the CDs in the player in this order: Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs/ French Kicks/ Jarvis Cocker/ Raphel Sadiq/ Interpol. All good make-out music.

Scent: I recently started burning incense again, but it's not overpowering. He will not be walking into a college dorm room. The scent is light and seductive.

Me: Minimal make-up. Kept my colors natural with a little black eyeliner. My hair is inspired by Reese Witherspoon's Oscar do and is pulled up in a high pony tale. I am waring a pair of dark jeans and a black shirt that accents my boobs, but hides my belly. I finished the outfit off with some cherry earrings. Underneath I've got on matching bra and panties in black lace and silk.

The drinks: Tonight we are going with rum. I've picked a caipirinha, which is a simple mix of cachaca, lime and sugar and then we are going to follow up with a little something I came up with that I have yet to name. It's a shot of dark rum mixed with a half shot of cherry herring and a half shot of cointreau I added the juice of half a lime and shook with ice. I bought some fancy new bitters so I added a few drops of that as well. It's tasty.

UPDATE: Okay B14 just left...Worst. Sex. Ever. too shell shocked to write more, but I will update later.

So it's almost time for B14 to show up. I'll post an update later and let you know how it all went.