29 December 2007

Pretty great

Yesterday was a pretty great day--and it's spilling over into today. I wrote copy for a mailer at work. My concept is pretty bitchin, if I do say so myself. I lit out early due to "inclement weather." (I'm puzzled by the pantywaist, alarmist talk on weather.com, by the way. It's winter. And we live in Wisconsin. Therefore, it snows.)

I'm loving the new Alterra in Riverwest, it so happens. I signed up for a crochet class--which I've been wanting to do for the longest time--at the adjacent Loop yarn den and met up at the cafe with my best young man. I added it to my list of Riverwest places I love with great interiors like Art*Bar and Nessun Dorma. And it's all the better cuz you always run into folks from the neighborhood. Yay! We had a great conversation--during which I connected Velvet Underground with Thai food...and explicated on Hedwig and the Angry Inch along the way. Oh, I also requisitioned the houndstooth trousers I bought at Fischberger's and wore them yesterday. I looked great!

Also adding to the Riverwest goodness: I'm going to be doing Poetry Marathon this year! Yeehaw! I worked last year's event as a volunteer, but this is my first time as a reader. I didn't get one of the A-list timeslots (chile, you gotta sign up early!), but I'm looking forward to my 5 minutes of poetry fame--which adds up to about .005 minutes of regular fame--nonetheless. So, give me a donation!

28 December 2007

Do We Want What We Want? Or Do We Just Want To Want It?

Dig? It's easy as a woman to get into the habit of thinking, Wow, if only I had the sandals/sunglasses/hair my life would be completely transformed. Earlier this year I went to a store in my neighborhood well known for its shoes. I had been craving a very three-dimensional or else 1940s-ish heel. Yet, when I spied the sculptural shoes of my dreams, I hesitated! I shilly-shallied and looked at other inferior shoes.

Finally, I went over to inspect my little beauties up close. The heel was absolutely everything I'd been fantasizing about--rounded and weighty, Cubist almost.

Yet, I found there was something daunting--maybe even disheartening--about being stared down by exactly what I was looking for. WTF?! Where was the jubilation? The triumph?

Therein lies the conundrum of setting one's heart on stuff: the inevitable let-down of acquisition. This has to do with the expectations we're encouraged to place on objects. We expect fulfillment, transformation, transcendence. But by the time I've saved my money for the Balenciaga sunglasses--if I can even get on the wait list--they're already over. That avenue to acceptance and status--and its downright magical powers to transform my drab little existence--is closed.

Once I confront the actual thing I can't help but notice it doesn't live up to my expectations. But there is no way an object can live up to all the attributes I've imposed upon it. I don't feel any different. I don't feel like I thought I would. I'm exactly who I was before.

That's what's so depressing about getting what you thought you wanted. If these material totems fail us--what's next? Where to now? What is there to believe in? Most people conclude they had the wrong stuff picked out--and pin their hopes on something else. Something more expensive, more exclusive. Cuz that has to do the trick.

26 December 2007

How Was Your Xmess?

MK does not celebrate Christmas, the birth of little baby Jesus notwithstanding. She did, however, exchange Solstice gifts. As Yoko Ono would say, Yes, Ms. Kansas is a witch.

This past Saturday, Ms. K made the jaunt to Fischberger's, 2445 N. Holton, for the first time. It seems like a Milwaukee classic-in-the-making to MK. It's an adorably brilliant variety store full of fabric and sewing notions, old-fashioned toys, attractive futuretro kitchenwares, candy and lifestyle novelties and well-curated secondhand clothing. Tres charmant!

Ms. Kansas picked up a pair of houndstooth trousers for her fella and bubblegum cigarettes. The lively little emporium has actually been open for a year. It's now a must for anyone's Riverwest itinerary.

Photo from onmilwaukee.com.

18 December 2007

Jury Is Out

I went to my first Art v. Craft on December 8. Yes, it's the very first one I ever went to. I was wearing the really cute old man hat I picked up at one of my Super Secret Shopping Spots earlier this month. This time, the wing-ding was at the Humphrey Scottish Rite Masonic Center right downtown.

I saw people I knew there, including The Little Friends of Printmaking; local fashionette Leslie Vaglica, who is working for tenniswear-maker Eliza Audley and loving it; Jim Herrington, the excruciatingly hip photographer with Nashville cred, motherfuckers; a woman I used to work with at Discovery Hell, er, World; and, of course, the doyenne herself, Faythe.

I guess I was expecting some sort of life-changing baptism in hipness--or, at least craftiness, but A v. C was pretty much like any other event that Milwaukee scenesters are going to be at. Though, maybe the weather kept some of the Madison wanna-bes at home. I guess my disappointment stems from the fact that I didn't see any cool clothes there.

Though, I did pick up a card wallet from Barry's Farm for a special someone.

P.S. The photo is from the Barry's Farm website.

06 December 2007

Haute food

Last week, in a rare break of form, MK went out on Friday night. Oh, perhaps it's not what youngsters these days call going out, but it was livelier than, well, Ms. K's apartment. The site was Hinterland, a spot newly opened in the Third Ward.

Well informed vegetarian hypochondria/fastidiousness notwithstanding, a good time was had by all. Ms. Kansas supped on tempura goat cheese stuffed zucchini. Zucchini are admittedly not MK's favorite veggies--she is not much of gourd kind of girl. However, these toothsome little morsels were accompanied by shiitake mushrooms, totsoi and bamboo rice saute, pickled carrot salad and sunchoke puree. It was a delicately savory melange. Hell, eating there was worth the rosemary-infused bread alone!

The decor was New-Mexico-with-a-trust-fund:lots of bleached out woods and dark browns. And texture, texture, texture! The service was good, and the crowd was rather smart.