Tag Archives: Craigslist

Jaded or jerks?

Having grown up in a small town, I was ever-so-trusting when I first moved to Chicago.

“You like my style, and you’re not trying to make me attend a career seminar?” (Oh, those Mary Kay career women)

“Of course it’s safe to walk home at 3 a.m. by yourself after many drinks!” (truly dumb)

“You only need $16 to get your car off the tow truck? And you’ll give me your ID in exchange? And you have starving kids in that car?” (Why is it always $16 and why do I get this one every week?)

Needless to say, I’ve become jaded. I can’t be approached by a stranger these days without raising my guard. I immediately think the stranger wants something or is ready to tell me a lie. I’d like to think I’m more cautious or smarter about my surroundings. Probably I’m just a jerk.

Before I moved, I was even cautious about selling items on craigslist. “Will they try to rip me off?” “Should I really let potential serial killers into my apartment?” (Side effects from watching too much Dexter) However, quite nice, normal people bought my microwave and bookshelf. And in return, I bought this table and dining-chairs-turned-art-project from nice, normal people who were moving or replacing furniture (not trying to stab or steal from me).

Furniture bought from non-sketchy people

So, are we all jaded or cautious for good reason?

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Filed under Chicago, city life

Missed connection

I am not a sap.

However, I am a sucker for an absurdly romantic gesture. Cue Dirty Dancing and the “No one puts Baby in the corner” scene. Or the Pretty Woman scene where Edward defies his fear of heights to climb up the fire escape and “rescue” Vivian. Yeah, I’m can be a girl about such movie moments.

I’m even a sucker for Missed Connections on craigslist. Funny, sweet or fake, they get me every time. I like to imagine that if I were single (no disrespect at all to Mr. Davis), I’d be destined to meet someone via Missed Connections. And the world would stop once we saw each other at the fountain in Wicker Park (the meet-up spot in my fictional Missed Connection ad).

Given I’m such a sucker, you can imagine my elation when I saw this romantic gesture, a real-life Missed Connection, if you will.

This flyer was posted up and down Franklin Street in River North, perhaps near the scene of the Missed Connection. I hope Lauren is truly addicted to love, Robert Palmer style, and she e-mails Victor the Spartan.

Or else I’m just a sucker for fiction.

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Filed under city life, downtown, random, urban behavior

How grown-ups make friends

My little sister left for college yesterday.

I am jealous of her for many reasons. Partially because college was the time in life where I experienced incomparable fun and major growth (yeah, I know…not literally). My sister is going to IU, my alma mater, so I have a good idea of all the parties, nights at the library, nights out, delicious food (read: not dorm food) and sporting events that lie ahead of her.

I am mostly excited for all the friends she will meet. There’s no easier place to meet friends than in college.

“Want to grab food at the dining hall?” Friends.

“We’re going to a party tonight. Wanna come?” Friends.

“Do you know how to set up your phone?” Best friends.

Why is it so easy to make friends in college? Most likely because everyone is going through the same new-kid-finding- yourself-missing-home experience at the same time. It’s an unspoken empathy and connection with thousands of people you don’t even know.

Somehow, I assumed that meeting friends in the city would be as easy as it would be in college, and it would happen while you’re riding the subway or even while you’re eating in the sandwich shop, Subway. This is not necessarily the case. When you’re in the real world, everyone is in a different place in life and may not necessarily require new friends as they once did in college.

Don’t get me wrong, I have been lucky enough to meet some fantastic friends since I’ve been out of college. I’m lucky to have a core group, but it didn’t come as easy as I’d hoped. Many friendships have actually sprouted from college-like activities and situations…you know, ones that revolve around making chitchat and drinking.

From what I’ve seen and experienced, people meet a majority of friends through work. Or through friends from work. So it’s no surprise 4 out of 5 of my post-college pals are art directors/design kids. We live on the same floor in this metaphor.

The best part of having art director friends is that there's never a dull moment, or at least a moment that can't be created through the magic of photoshop

The best part of having art friends is that there's never a dull moment, or at least a moment that can't be created through the magic of Photoshop. Name the work pals in this oldie, but goodie.

Besides being geniuses at Photoshop and wizards in InDesign, art friends are pretty much the biggest bad asses I know.

Besides being Photoshop geniuses and fitness fanatics, art friends are pretty much the biggest bad asses I know.

I’ve also met friends through the often-asked-about, seldom-discussed wine club. It’s certainly a classier version of the college keg party. I’d love to tell you more, but of course, the first rule of wine club is don’t talk about wine club. So I’ll let pictures do the talking.

There's much eating involved...

There's much eating involved...

...and, um, a little wine drinking...

...and, um, a little wine drinking...

...chitchatting...

...chitchatting...

And as a result of aforementioned wine drinking, shoulder dancing, Hennessy drinking and red wine spilling on white carpet have been known to occur. And certainly, friendships have emerged and are becoming more refined with age.

And because you can’t have enough friends, I went to Craigslist searching for a book club. Yes, you’ve counted correctly, that’s two clubs. You would think I’m running for homecoming queen sometimes. This is my second book club, actually. I’ve met some nice ladies I wouldn’t have otherwise.

Not so much a picture of book club as a picture of books at book club.

Not so much a picture of book club as a picture of books at book club.

I’m curious…how else do grown-ups make friends?

This is also a long-winded way to say that I’m grateful to have such great friends. Thanks :/

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Filed under Chicago, city life