Archive for August, 2006

Venus Release Party Tomorrow

Even if you’re not a regular reader of Venus zine (though, really, shame on you – this is one rad rag), there’s plenty of reason to make your way to Mars Gallery Friday night for the release party. I’m talking button making, catering by the Bleeding Heart Bakery, music by DJ Mother Hubbard, leather-painting workshop hosted by Carol Jackson, and, oh yeah, free admission and free copies of the magazine.

I’ve got friends coming into town tomorrow and I’m dragging them along. Where will you be tomorrow night – already on vacation?

My Summer of Ceviche: Last Two

The weather outside tells me I need to wrap up any “summer”-related activities, so here are the last two ceviches of my summer…

Ceviche at Twisted Spoke

I hadn’t been back to the Spoke (3369 N Clark) in a while, so I was excited to be back and try the ceviche that got me started on this whole kick in the first place. And you know what? Maybe it needs to be experienced at the end of a long, hard night of running around with a camera. As an afternoon meal I noticed how tomato-juicy it was — I really had to dig around to find some solid bits in there. It was also, in comparison to most of the other ceviches I’ve had this summer, a bit bland.

The main selling point of the Twisted Spoke’s ceviche is its volume — for just a few dollars more than the appetizer size, you get a full pint glass of ceviche. And hey, there’s always cheap whiskey at the Spoke!

Ceviche at That Little Mexican Cafe

After months of an empty space with a small “Coming Soon” sign in the window, That Little Mexican Cafe, which has received mixed reviews for their Evanston location, finally opened on the corner of Bryn Mawr and Winthrop. I’d had a late lunch and one of the specials of the day was a ceviche appetizer, so that was my dinner.

TLMC’s ceviche breaks my usual rule that ceviche relies on the contrast between the textures of the fish or shrimp and that of the tortilla chips. I was halfway through the bowl and I was about write it off as rather bland and uninteresting when I had a spoonful without one of the thick and heavy chips. The difference was incredible. The ceviche was spicy and shrimpy (in a good way) but the chips were completely absorbing the flavor.

FYI: The Evanston location is known for their margaritas, but the Bryn Mawr location is still BYOB.

Oh, oh, oh, it’s magic…

… really, it is. Tonight Magic Chicago is having its monthly showcase, featuring local magicians Benjamin Barnes and Robert Charles, with guest performer David Parr. It’s at the City Lit Theater, 1020 West Bryn Mawr, and it costs $15 at the door. Because we could probably all use a little more magic in our lives.

I forgot to “Save Ferris”

Last night I ordered in a pizza and watched three back-to-back episodes of that reality show about the real housewives of Orange County and played on the internet for entirely too long. Only this morning did I realize that I was SUPPOSED to be sitting out under the stars watching Ferris Bueller’s Day Off! This is about the fifth movie I’ve really wanted to see in the Outdoor Film Festival and the fifth one that I’ve forgotten about. Anyone see the show last night?


My Labor Day weekend starts tonight! Jealous?

What do YOU have planned for the long weekend?

Indie Comedy

The worlds of Indie Rock and Comedy will intersect tonight as the Empty Bottle and Drag City present what they hope to be a monthly comedy series. The Chicago Reader has the details and also discusses the comedy scene in Chicago. I’ve checked out comedy night at the Bad Dog Tavern and the Lincoln Lodge in the past and have enjoyed what I have seen. For now the shows will take place the last Tuesday of the month at Weeds. I hope it sticks around!

Sweet home…

I made a quickie trip to San Diego this weekend, and was so happy to get home on Sunday, and not just because I was sick of airports (but I am so sick of airports). No offense to San Diego, but there is just something more real about Chicago to me. Maybe it’s because I like having four seasons rather than just one, maybe it’s because I’m just not the kind of person who longs for the tropics, maybe I just need a bit of corruption and WTF?! when it comes to how a city is run, but being out in a place like California, all sun and flowers and laid back living, really makes me appreciate Chicago all the more.

New In Wicker Park: Avenue N Guitars


Yes, a nifty new guitar shop has opened up in Wicker Park- Avenue N Guitars (1823 W. North Ave.). The shop is run by some very nice folks. They buy used instruments and sell new and vintage acoustics and electrics as well as offer lessons and repairs.

Oh, and guess who bought the very first acoustic guitar they sold? Yours truly.

I picked up a spruce-top parlor-sized guitar by Art & Lutherie for a song (get it? Har.). I had two guitars I was choosing from, and it wasn’t until they rung up my sale that we noticed the serial number on the model I chose ends in “666,” which will at least save me a midnight trip to the crossroads.

The Grand Opening is being held on Saturday September 16th from 12-7 PM with music, giveaways and refreshments.

Stop by and tell ’em nikkos sent ya!


But a picnic always sounds so good

So I was reading this article on Centerstage about one woman’s attempt to picnic and I realized that even though picnics are always in my list of top five reasons I love summer, I usually only get around to having one a year (this year it was my birthday, at the lake, and it was fun but exhausting). Does that mean it should be demoted from the list? My other faves: al fresco dining, late-night still-light walks, farmers markets and the lake.

What would be on your list of top five summer faves? And does anyone out there actually picnic?



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