Thursday, March 09, 2006

Happy Birthday to my Baby and I love Chi-Town

I love Chicago! Yesterday I spent the day downtown wandering through the Art Institute and Michigan Avenue and Marshall Fields on State Street. I saw a girl wearing black and white striped tights and a bright pink tutu type skirt that perfectly matched her hot pink pigtails. I saw an exhausted secretary type wearing black nylons with knock off Ugg boots and a giant fleece cape with polar bears all over it and bedraggled hair (it had just begun to rain). There was a tiny girl wearing tall black riding boots, black tights, a long black trench coat and big black glasses with thick bangs and a messy ponytail smoking a cigarette who looked totally miserable and totally glamorous.

The Art Institute is currently exhibiting the work of Girodet, a french romantic painter who I personally think is really exceptionally sentimental and bland, but I guess thats what the French nobles were looking for at the time. They were sick of everyone's head being cut off, and trying to decide if they were going to have a monarchy or what, and they just wanted to look at fat little cherubs and little nude greek boys and forget about it all. We aren't really so different now. Girodet was to 17th century France what Paris Hilton is to 21st Century America. You know, a little white noise for everyone to tune out to.

I also went to the Harold Washington Library, which is always sort of awe inspiring. There are all these fiercely Gothic lamp fixtures in wild sharp curly-ques, and inside and it is all neon lights and sad rows of escalators. I was remembering what my mom said about Chicago when she visited last, that it felt the way Rome must have felt so long ago. This huge metropolis with all these people rushing by to get on with their lives, the diversity of it all. Its just so concentrated and full of energy. And when you are in a big public building like a library or a museum you really feel that.

I thought about using the internet while I was there, maybe working on my blog, and I went to reserve a computer on the third floor. Then I stopped and looked around and realized that 95% of the people online at the downtown library were black. It was startling. I suppose I just realized again how lucky I am to have everything I have, because I am sure that it is a hassle to head to the library every time you need to use the internet. But it was also encouraging in a way, to see that there were resources available and people were utilizing them. Its hard to wrap your head around how much the internet has revolutionized everything everything everything about our world in 10 short years. It can equalize power and distort it wildly, but what is so amazing about it is the way that ANYONE can use it. How unprecedented and thrilling and scary too. Signing off now...

1 comment:

Joshua said...

I love the Harold Washington Public Library. How do I love the Harold Washington Public Library? I love it so much I will roll the syllables around and around my mouth. Yummy!

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