Back to My Life Story, from Laurel, MD to Evanston, IL and The Crash in 2011.
We started calling our big Chicago Failure "The Crash." Because we 'crashed' our lives. It was such a bad experience that we deleted all of our digital photos taken there - they only remain in the blog posts linked below.
Heard the expression: Leap and the Net will appear. -? Yeah. That didn’t happen.
We landed in Evanston after stopping at my brother's in Bloomington, IN along the way - we arrived near Bloomington after dark. And we got lost, because his directions involve turning on a road that you cannot see, which has absolutely no street lights. Even after we moved here and learned our way around, I still don't like driving out to his place, on those rural roads.
Then we drove to Evanston. We didn't realize our apartment was a 'Walk-Up' (no elevator). And we were on the 2nd floor. Once again we rented an apartment long-distance and sight-unseen.
We were awakened in the middle of the night by the LOUD BANGING of the boiler heat. That was an unpleasant surprise.
My office mate in Washington, DC gave us hockey game tickets as a going-away present. Standing room, so we had to stand in the back.
I found a high-end hair salon and got my hair cut. Except that when I went back for a trim the guy couldn't duplicate what he did and I had to go back, with the staff whispering at the desk about me, so I never went back after that. I kept a photo just after my first haircut because I used it as a Profile Pic online:
We did like being just a few blocks from Lake Michigan, which was very cold when we arrived. We went for walks every evening, down to the lake and along the lakefront park.
I spent $300.00 shipping my Velvet Pussy to the Hazel Dooney show in Australia. Here is a Tour of the Pink Panties and Velvet Pussy. After the art show, I could not afford another $300.00 to have her shipped back. I wrote to the gallery owner and told her to just toss it, she had served her purpose. Let somebody dumpster-dive if they wanted it. She said she would keep her safe until I could manage to have her shipped back. I told her that was unlikely and to please not worry about it. Later she closed her gallery. So I have no idea whatever happened to the Velvet Pussy.
I was reading Mary Karr memoirs and saw that she was giving a free talk downtown so we went. She was funny. I loved reading her books.
We bought some furniture just after we arrived - a bed with a nice wooden frame, finally sleeping up off the floor and a kitchen table with four chairs (black, cheap and a dust magnet).
Jobhunting in Chicago was horrible. We didn't know there were no jobs there. I spent most of my time signing up with Chicago employment agencies, until I realized what a scam they are, thanks to the unintended honesty of one of the little 23-year-old reps. I emailed about a job they posted online and she said they had no such job. Then she told me they place great-sounding ads just to get new people to register with them. I signed up with seven agencies, and canceled my appointment with #8 when I heard this.
The thing that surprised me the most was that Chicago, which I thought was a major U.S. city, had a very rural Springfield, Misery Yew-Ain’t-Frum-‘Round-Hyah vibe. Every interview I went on, I was greeted with suspicion and confusion about why I had moved to Chicago. I guess I wasn’t ever going to get an $80,000.00 Executive Assistant job of my dreams. Chicago was the wrong place for that.
Steve was completely misled into a horrible situation with a job. They said it was 'sales and marketing' but it wasn't. They were required to show up in a suit to their office and then were driven to gas stations - GAS STATIONS - where they had to change into other clothes in a GAS STATION BATHROOM and then convince gas station customers they needed to replace their windshield. Paid on commission. I made him quit after only a few days. He could not risk damaging his expensive suits for crap like that. Steve then had a temp job in a warehouse, but the customer wanted extensive ‘logistics’ experience, but failed to tell the temp agency.
Steve applied to the PhD History program at Northwestern, but he didn't realize they won't accept anyone who doesn't already have degrees only in History and nothing else. So that was a mistake.
I continued to work on the Set Sail painting, which changed a lot. You can see it in progress here.
I was, of course, still working on my Martha Beck exercises, and wrote a great post called Body Signals Come on Little Cat Feet, about how my body's signals are very quiet and subtle.
I was trying to post updates on my artwork called What I'm Working On, but there were so few of them that I deleted that category. Here is a book I altered, and a follow-up post showing a second Velvet Pussy that I made for the cover (since the book is about Vaginas). More artwork updates - this painting ended up being cut into many small butterfly shapes. I was still trying to layer but wasn't having much success with it.
I created a lot of shapes which I used in the Velvet Pussy. Below, in the Bloomington Big Journal, the shape patterns, lots of butterflies, and a few sketches. I had a long train ride downtown to my temp job, so I drew a lot of faces on J. Project pieces. And the finished Don't Be Afraid piece, even though everything most certainly did not work out.
One good memory from Evanston: Steve wanted to go out exploring on his own one evening. And I stayed home. I had poured myself a beer. Steve decided to try the Japanese restaurant on the corner. He was still hungry after dinner. He called me on his cell to come join him. So I put my beer in the fridge and put on my jeans and coat and went up the street. They had little appetizers, these little fried crab things. And I had some sort of pink bubbly sake drink that was really good. I did an art journaling page but it was too literal, trying to get the interior of the restaurant.