We haven’t known each other long, so I need to give you some background before I get to the Wrigley Field Pearl Jam part.
At this point, my relationship with Chicago is the longest I’ve ever had, aside from family. But I gotta tell you, we’ve been having some problems lately. For a couple of years, now, I have been having a sordid affair of the heart with SoCal. Oh, Chicago knows about it. I’ve been very honest about my feelings for that sunny, hot land out west, but I’m here now, and we’re dealing with it. I suspect however that eventually, Chicago and I will have to work out an open relationship of some sort.
But last night, Chicago took me out on a date to the Pearl Jam concert at Wrigley Field. (As usual, we had to sit outside….oh, Chicago) These annual concerts are kind of a special thing between us. One of my most memorable moments in Chicago, EVER, was witnessing Paul McCartney perform “Live and Let Die” two years ago: Fireworks: literal, and metaphysical. (Metaphysicaliterally… hmmm…that time it kind of worked, JA)
Last night, I sat on the big noodle on the southwest corner of Addison and Waveland, holding hands with my city.
And here are a few things that happened.
- A girl got super pissed off at me for not getting down off the big plastic noodle so she could take a picture.
I told her I would scoot as far up the noodle as I possibly could, and then maybe she could take her picture at an angle. No deal. I suspect she kinda likes being angry, because she walked away saying loud, passive aggressive things at me that made no sense. Like “….whatever it is I sure wish I had some of it. It sure seems GOOD.” And I was all like “haha I don’t drink but I’m pretty sure you do”(when I looked at this picture, later, I suspected her right hand might be giving me the bird..and look at the dude in the back. Yeah, Chicago!!!)
- A little later, “Kelsey from Milwaukee” asked nicely and came up on to the noodle, and her friend took this picture and she is a really nice girl.
- Then an adorable manboy (who is probably taking an improv class and is on one or two improv teams around town) jumped up on the noodle, told me I was gorgeous and had beautiful eyes (I think he was high but mamma gon’ take it) high-fived me, and had his ladygirl improv team member take a picture of us high-fiving, a pic that will probably be on his Facebook page, if it isn’t already. (Note to self: always ask for the pic)
- A woman in her mid to late 60’s waited forever for the Clark Street bus. I felt bad for her, and asked if she was sure the bus was coming. The man with no legs in a wheelchair in front of the noodle, wearing the dirtiest Walgreens’ Chicago hat I’ve ever seen (American flag pin? Possibly. Very dirty hat) confirmed that the bus was indeed running. And when the bus finally arrived, he let the elderly lady get on first, then masterfully maneuvered that chair of his onto the bus, perfectly centering the wheels on the accessible ramp with mere centimeters to spare on each side.
- For every 100 dudes who walked by, about 60 sang “Jerrremy spooooke, ennn….”, and the other 40 high fived me.
- Pearl Jam started. I gotta say it: Kinda boring. They played that one song. Not “Jeremy.” The other one.
- And then they stopped. Rain delay. And I left.
But the nicest part of the evening happened as I walked home. I got a glimpse of the Chicago I fell in love with. The Chicago where most five minute conversations with not-drunk strangers are pleasant experiences. The Chicago where, in the summer, we all feel like we are at this way cool playground, and it’s just fun to climb on everything. The Chicago where in CVS, the $8.50/hour guy managing the self-serve check out stations gives me the three pennies I am missing to pay for my soda. The Chicago where a dude has a fake black crow on his arm, hanging it out of the window of the taxi cab tooling down Southport Ave.
Chicago and I might not be together forever, but I think we will always be good, good friends.
Carry on. Old Single Mom
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