in a perfect world of yancies: July 2007

31 July 2007

Bix and such

So the other day Emily ran in the annual Bix 7 road race in Davenport. (Is this my blog or Emily's, you ask; well, I watched her run--how about that?)

Mimi after the race. Looks pretty good after running seven miles, no?

It's a big race (15,002 runners this year), and there were lots of elite runners, at least one Olympic gold-medalist, and lots and lots of people. So anyway, Emily didn't win it; she did come within three minutes of her 1997 time, though, so that's pretty cool (especially considering that she only trained this year for about 5 weeks, and she had to train with me . . .). Feel free to view results: Emily's 1997 results; her 2007 results.

(Note: the "chip time" in the second is Mimi's own time, according to the computer chip on her shoe; the other time is from the gun, but she didn't actually cross the starting line for like 6 minutes, so the chip time is what counts.)

A short video I took at the start, which gives some idea of the size of this race (if you watch the clip about 25 times, that would probably approximate the experience of watching the start):

Mimi at the finish line

The Quad-City Times has a ton of coverage of the race, including videos, photos, stories about the various participants, and even a very cool interactive course map, with little video clips about different parts of the course.

We also had the pleasure of seeing Eric, who drove up last week and joined us (okay, fine, he bought the tickets) at a Swing game. Good stuff. Beautiful ballpark.

Eric on a serious tractor; most impressive, though, was the child seat, which Dr Berg is pointing out for you, gentle reader. Good kid, that Dr Berg.

One other (sort of silly, perhaps) thing: I just got my Seattle U email address; so if you felt like writing, feel free to try

30 July 2007


Is this not a great movie?
[Legal? I don't know; let's find out together!]

PS, due to repeated difficulties, I have taken away the Now Playing feature. If you would like to hear the Junior Boys song that was to have played for the last post, click here.

24 July 2007

Congratulations, Emily!

She did it! Emily was today offered the position of Associate Archivist at the Providence Archives in Seattle!

[Now, that's not our picture above, but it's supposed to be a shot of Seattle from West Seattle, where Emily will be working. Not bad.]

Out West

Mimi at the window of our hotel room--not a bad view, is it?

So we went west, we saw the Seattle U campus (seemed nice enough), really liked the nearby Capital Hill neighborhood, especially the record store Everyday Music. That's where we got the Junior Boys album (Now Playing) (after hearing them at Pitchfork, we had to go for it; oh if you could have seen the size of that store's electronica section, reader!).

Hopefully we'll find a place in Capital Hill, but we're still waiting for word on Mimi's job. She had her interview (5 hours!) (including a tour and lunch), and it seemed to go well, but we're still waiting. . . .

And we met the chair of the Phil. dept. at Seattle, and his wife; they seemed cool. And we walked, and walked . . . had some good food (thanks, Fran & Dave, for Mimi's birthday present! (dinner at the Dahlia Lounge; delicious crab cakes!)); had some coffee. Got rained on, but not too much.

Even made fun of tourists from the south ("Does this bus stop at Mine street?" driver: "Ninth Street?" "No, Mine street" (and then more like that); turned out it was Main street she was after . . .).

On a bench on some pier

Hotel window at night

Trying to take a picture of ourselves at Olympic Sculpture Park, in front of Eagle, by Alexander Calder. Nice write-up on that park recently in Sunset Magazine (yes, like the Wilco song). Why the squinting? First time the sun had been out all day; and we're looking right at it. . . .

At the sculpture park: Typewriter Eraser, Scale X, by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen (yes, that's right: they did the big shuttlecocks at the Nelson-Atkins in Kansas City! way to stay with me, reader!)

Speaking of arists & such, the Seattle Public Library is a pretty recent architectural wonder designed by Rem Koolhaas. We spent some time there (really fun building, with wacky escalators, a beautiful reading room, great views; plus it's out of the rain, and the Wi-Fi's free). There's a pretty good slide show on their website, if you've got the time. (Photo courtesy of the library's website.)

So Merrica's been living in Japan, in the Akita Prefecture (秋田県), which, among other things, is famous for it's rice, its sake, and its Namahage festival. When we saw that Saito's had a sake called Namahage, from Akita, we of course ordered it! Tasty stuff. And the sushi at Saito's was also quite good.

Emily, not expecting to be photographed

Speaking of Emily, she recently found out that an essay she'd written won third prize in the annual competition by the Theatre Historical Society of America. Her essay is called "Into the Brick and Mortal and Marble: A History of the Fort Armstrong Theatre," and it offers a pretty cool discussion of a place just a couple of blocks from our apartment in Rock Island.

I'm not sure, but I think the Society's journal, Marquee, will publish the piece; until I figure out the copyright details, you'll have to take my word for it when I say it's a good read. (Anyone especially interested in obtaining a pre-release copy is encouraged to contact me or Emily personally.)

Well, that's all for now. I'll let you know about Mimi's job as soon as I hear. All best, reader.

16 July 2007

ah Chicago

Ever since, in Helena, MT, I did that project (4th grade?) on Illinois, one city has captured my heart. Heart? That doesn't sound like me. . . . Whatever, the city rocks me--how's that?

It's been great to be so close this year, and hopefully Seattle will charm us. In the meantime, though, before we go, we've been trying to enjoy this city from tip to tail.

Well, or at least we saw some friends, drank some Goose Island beer, and danced to some "elite" music (the New York Times' term, not mine (see below)). (And I hope you can tell that, as we enjoyed the Pitchfork Music Festival, the Sears Tower graced the skyline, as shown above . . .)

More on the festival in a moment. First, some suburban fun. (Did that sentence just come at the cost of my soul? Oh well, no help for it now.)

Small Mimi and Mom, with flowers, on the Fox River in Geneva IL (right near, actually, the spot of the rehearsal dinner for our wedding . . . but I digress)

Um, a chipmunk on the door of Emily's parents' house

Okay, a brief Quad-Cities detour: We had a great 4th of July out at Jamie (special collections librarian) Nelson and her husband Eric Anderson's place, and got to hang with their newborn son Wythe. No denying that there are many things we'll miss here in IL. . . .

Eric with young Wythe

Mimi, Jamie, Wythe, and the blanket made by library staff for Jamie (well, for Wythe, really) (Mimi did the yellow squares)

What else? Well, we spent an evening with Dave & Diana recently (and, I cannot lie, I ordered some Grand Marnier when I should not have, and so I have no photos).

But Emily did get a cool bag that Diana made--if you're interested, she has a store on, Pravina. Emily's (in case you didn't follow that link) is a pretty neat one-of-a-kind thing, made from a Chicago neighborhood banner.

And Dave introduced us to a pretty good group, called Battles. Here's a fun video:

And then we had a great brunch at the 3rd coast cafe with Chris and Carrie. (Worth noting, perhaps: that's where their rehearsal dinner was . . . weird . . .)
Shall definitely miss being so near such cool "cats." Glad we had this year, though . . . sigh . . .

Anyway, Pitchfork! That was pretty damn cool. And only $35 for two days!

Many bands, including Battles (see above), who put on a pretty good live show, and Iron & Wine, and Cat Power (good music, sound trouble), and that guy from Pavement (not so great), and Junior Boys (fun), and Jamie Lidell (double fun), and Clipse (they're ready for a re-up!), and De La Soul, even Yoko Ono . . . great eclectic, perhaps even elite line-up.

Fun stuff. And fun to people-watch with all those hipsters everywhere (though it's too bad we were there for the year of skinny-leg jeans and t-shirt dresses (from a recent fashion column: "the sack is back"); at least they're not hippies, though, right?).

In any case, easily the best outdoor music thing I've seen. Some cell-phone pics:

Short and clever; brava

New Pornographers. For us, at least, the highlight of the weekend. My current favorite of theirs is Now Playing, above, right.

Closeup (?): Look, Neko Case!

The two of us. (Yes, that's a Kansas hat. I said Chicago was the one city, not place.)

How Chicago, right? Like, double-parked bikes and that tower in the background . . . oh yeah . . . I had a job in that tower, you know, how cool is that? (tele-marketing calling from a broom closet, but come on, the Sears Tower!)

Now, I could give you links to local coverage of the festival, but as much as I may "dig" Chicago, no place does newspaper like New York: I recommend the review of the festival in the Times.

Okay, this post has gone on long enough. Hope you're well, reader.

Thanks also to Deron, my mom, and the rest of the well-wishers out there. And I'll take a tipsy person's word for just about anything, just for the record

07 July 2007


Well dear reader, looks like we're moving to Seattle. !

Mimi hasn't had her second interview yet, but we feel good about her chances of getting the job out there. And either way, it sounds like a fun town. Watch here for more news.

I meanwhile have accepted a job at Seattle University. It's not a dream job, but it is a job teaching philosophy in Seattle, so that's excellent.

The school, you ask? I've heard good things, but I don't really know a whole lot yet. One thing I do know: the chapel is very cool looking. I've never been a huge chapel fan, but I trust you'll agree that it's a surprisingly handsome building:

Anyway, more news as it develops. Hope you're enjoying your summer, reader.

03 July 2007

I Haven't Seen You Since . . .

We had the pleasure last weekend of dining with Shelley Calisto (née Goodrich) (pictured, on the left) and her parents, husband, and children (one of whom, Isaac, is also pictured); Heather Dominick (no relation, that we know of . . .) (right) and her parents, husband, and daughter (Elliott, pictured) also joined us.

A great chance for Emily to catch up with some friends from high school, and a great chance for me to meet people who were friends with Emily long before I'd met her.
Was nice to see, also, that almost everyone present is still running like all the time (myself, of course, excepted) (Emily and Shelley and Heather were on the Saint Charles High cross-country team together oh so many years ago).

Very cool. Hope we won't have to wait another like 6 years to see them again!

In other news, we helped (well, watched, carried a couple of boxes, and bought everyone burritos) the Iwanskis move down the road to Geneva. At least the weather was beautiful.

And we saw Sicko. I don't care what that idiot David Denby says in the New Yorker; it's an important, upsetting, inspiring, and most importantly hilarious movie. Please see it.