Leslie's Omnibus


What's the sweetest item not on the menu at Sweets & Savories?

A peek-a-boo playing Mr. Monkey Toes, of course! (Our brunch there was fantastic, by the way -- great food, lovely ambiance, very good value.)

Mr. Monkey Toes and Mommy play with Ziggy the skunk and Dot the ladybug. Yes, I've started him out early on theatre, and he loved every second of it. Chicago Children's Theatre is terrific fun for kids of all ages.

Why don't I try online dating?
Within minutes of filling out my profile, e-mails with comments such as "Hey cutie!" or "What-up?" flooded my inbox. One man even said "Send me some body pics babe! Wanna see if you're hot from the waist down too!"
As Hairboy would say, "Yeef!"

You'd think these does and don'ts would go without saying...
Don't have screen names like "Mommywarnedyou" or "HotstuffMike." "Write a profile name that will make someone smile, not that will scare someone off," says Gandhi.

Don't take pictures of yourself with no shirt on in your bedroom. Shirtless photos are already sketchy, but if you want to show off your physique, be doing something, like swimming or fishing or rock climbing. You sitting in your desk chair with no shirt on just brings out all sorts of bad images that you don't want anyone to have in a first impression.

Don't use acronyms in your profile description that might offend, such as WTF or BS.

Do use spell-check when writing your profile. "You are wooing someone with your words so the first impression matters," says Gandhi. "And use punctuation. In this cyber-world, people think they can type the way they would text, and that can come off as lazy."

Don't reach out to people half your age. I got asked out by an 87-year-old man. I'm not against older men — but I will not be dating someone who could be my great-grandfather.

Don't "wink" at people. This is quite possibly more annoying than a million "pokes" on Facebook. If you like someone, send them a note.

Do write them an e-mail. "Take the time to write a good e-mail based on something the target has written," says Gandhi. "It doesn't have to be long — just enough to make them smile. And use the subject line in your e-mail to stand out. Ninety-five percent of people will say 'Hi'. Say something that responds to a comment in their profile. It shows you've actually read what they put out there rather than just looked at the pictures."

Don't be sarcastic. When I was struggling to write my profile, I decided to ask my 5-year-old son to describe me. I thought it was hilarious. But Gandhi warned, "Sarcasm doesn't translate in writing as well. They need to get to know you first, and that may be off-putting."
Unfortunately some men really do need to be whapped upside the head with the stupid stick. (For what it's worth, there are a lot of ridiculously dense women who should learn a lesson or two as well.)

Life as a satisfied singleton life suits me better every day.

WTF? of the Day:
A new Harvard University study finds that July 4th parades energize only Republicans, turn kids into Republicans, and help to boost the GOP turnout of adults on Election Day.
I don't know what they're smoking in that ivy-covered corner of Cambridge, but it's apparently got some very strange side effects.
Roughly 530 colleges across the country will soon have to submit special reports to Uncle Sam, explaining why their tuition and student fees have recently surged.
All I have to say is WHAT TOOK SO LONG???

Obama really should be taking tips from Chicago's new mayor:
Eager to avoid job cuts but more determined to solve a budget crisis, Mayor Rahm Emanuel posed a painful choice for organized labor: face 625 layoffs or sign off on $20 million in work-rule changes by midnight Thursday.

Emanuel said he has identified the 625 employees “as a precautionary measure,” but he refused to identify them, nor would he reveal what city services might be reduced, eliminated or privatized.

The mayor stressed that he does not want to pull the trigger on the layoffs. He insisted that job cuts will not be necessary if organized labor will “be my partner” on $20 million in work rule changes outlined for labor leaders this week that, Emanuel claimed, are already in place in union shops in the private sector.

But the new mayor said he is prepared to balance the city budget, without furlough days that have undermined employee morale and with or without union help.
He's doing a great job of keeping his promises so far.

Ear Worm of the Day:

I've never been a fan of Rod Stewart... but... I've gotta admit I love the way he does the old standards!

Get Your Kicks

Old Route 66, Dwight, Illinois

Bank of Dwight (1910)

Between the banks...

First National Bank of Frank (Lloyd Wright, that is. 1905)


Quick Stops

Another example of karma coming back to bite someone in the butt:

She's so well educated they even know about her all the way across the pond.

On my list of things I can't wait to eat once I get my permanent teeth:
  • Steak
  • Potato chips
  • Nuts
  • Hamburger on a bun with all the trimmings
  • Salad
  • Crackers
  • Caramels
There are more, but these are the ones on my I Really Miss That list at the moment.

Now here's an example of improvising on the fly:
The U.S. Army has established an app store (the Army Marketplace) for military smart phone users. This includes the iPad, which soldiers are also big fans of. The army app store includes an "App Wanted" section where users can post descriptions of an app they need. If a developer (in uniform, or an army approved civilian with access to the Army Marketplace) is interested, a discussion can be started on an attached message board. The army hopes that the needed app will be quickly created and made available at the Army Marketplace. Developers can charge for their apps, although the army is also willing to pay developers to create needed apps that have been described by military smart phone users.
Go read the whole cool article.

Giggle of the Day:


Get Your Kicks

Old Route 66, Dwight, Illinois

Amtrak Station and Historical Society



I've always assumed that if sunspots and solar flares are strong enough to cause magnetic poles to flip and potentially wipe out satellite and electrical grids they also dramatically affect climate. Turns out I was right.

It's no secret I'm a birth mother, and that my daughter's adoption was arranged at a time when adoptions were closed and original birth certificates were sealed.

Illinois law will change all that come November:
Illinois Department of Public Health officials are bracing for a flood of requests in November when a new law will allow thousands of adult adoptees to obtain their birth certificates.

The law passed in
Illinois last year could give some adoptees the names of their birth parents for the first time.
I can make an argument for finally opening those doors... and I can make an argument for keeping them closed.

Women who long ago made the choice to give their child a stable home with a loving parent or loving parents did so for all sorts of reasons. Some of us kept our secret and rarely, if ever, talked about it. Some of us have been open about it from day one. I refuse to judge any of them.

Here's the thing -- if you are one of the sisterhood who made this choice, you have another choice to make:
Birth parents can remain anonymous and have their names redacted from any released birth certificate by filling out a form by Nov. 1.
I've been very, very lucky, but I can understand how this could be a difficult choice. Whatever your choice, I stand behind you.

If the Divine Miss Marilyn were still alive, I'd have to get her the world's most expensive cat toy:


I love it when karma works:

Next time I'm in Austin, I'm heading straight for the Alamo Drafthouse!

Clearly Lendle listens to its users! If you're a Kindle owner, I highly recommend this free service.

Get Your Kicks

I got mine between Chicago and Bloomington, IL, this last weekend. Pix to follow later in the week.

Many thanks to the fine folks at the Chicago Architecture Foundation in for allowing Mr. Bill and I to tag along for a trip designed for their docents, instead of the general public!

Book Your Ticket

Books Read In May – 9/36

Half Broke Horses, Jeannette Walls

Minding Frankie, Maeve Binchy

Foundation, Isaac Asimov

My Thoughts Be Bloody, Nora Titone

Did I Really Make Breakfast? (Well Grandma did help a lot), Fabio Viviani[4]

Charles Jessold, Considered as a Murderer, Wesley Stace[5]

The Year She Fell, Alice Rasley

The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner, James Hogg

Private Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant, Ulysses S. Grant[6]

[1] Now I’m ready for A Dance With Dragons. Let’s see if Martin got the manuscript to the publisher in time for it’s promised July 12th delivery date. (He’s never been on time in the past.)

[2] While I usually like Hester Browne’s books, this one lacks a little pizzazz.

[3] If you’re a baseball fan, this is a must read ­– it’s an unvarnished portrait of a talented and self-destructive icon.

[4] He could use an editor.

[5] Like peeling an onion. (Pay attention to the wording of the title.)

[6] Read in conjunction with Booth’s Sister, My Thoughts Be Bloody and The Autobiography of Mark Twain. There’s a lot of overlap in the historical figures, and the four books combined give a fascinating overview of the time.



Finally the folks down in Springfield have finally used their noggins:
The vast majority of the 440,000 senior citizens who registered to receive free transit rides over the last three years will lose the privilege on Sept. 1, officials said Wednesday.

That's when current senior free-rides permits on the CTA, Metra and Pace will be deactivated.

As a result, the revenue from fareboxes is expected to increase by a total of $30 million annually at the three transit agencies, officials estimated.

Only about 25,000 seniors enrolled in the current free-rides program are expected to still qualify for free transportation on mass transit when the changes implementing a financial means test take effect, according to the Regional Transportation Authority, which administers the program.
There's no reason that people who can afford to pay shouldn't pull their own weight, especially in these economic times.

Bistro 110 is closing in August? I'll have to get up there before then! They've always had fantastic food.

Require homeless shelter residents to pay for their night's stay? Before you blow your stack, consider this:
The policy has had some unexpected advantages.

Residents say the shelter is much calmer and cleaner since the fees started and paying guests seem more serious about getting their lives in order. There are fewer fights and emergency calls.

"Beforehand, it was like a madhouse," said Ronald Wells, who has been living at missions for a year. "People really weren't interested in doing anything for themselves."

Edward Bravo, who became homeless after being evicted from his apartment, said paying his way makes him feel better about himself. "When everything was free, it was okay," he said. "Now I feel inside of me, it's helped me."

Maybe it's not such a bad idea after all.


Quick Stops

Just when you think you've heard it all, you find out that the ACLU is suing to get porn for South Carolina inmates and that the KKK protests the WBC. Is there a full moon this week?

I've been having some real doozies of dreams lately. In the past couple of days they've included:
  • Two long-haired Dachshunds -- one white, one tan;
  • A fistful of small unstretched canvas paintings that turned to bits of colored cotton knit fabric in my hands because I took too long to pick which one I wanted;
  • A fantastic pillow-strewn bed with beautiful cream colored linens perched high on the side of a hill overlooking a lake. The sun was behind the waves of the lake, revealing schools of shimmering fish and mermaids;
  • Skeet shooting;
  • Gorgeous architectural arches with a twilight sky beyond them. I have to choose either to go get my camera and possibly miss the shot because night will have fallen before I get back or to just stay and enjoy the view, knowing I have missed a perfect photo opportunity;
  • The Princess Mom and my sister.
That's just the bits I remember over a couple of days. Ack.

The way things are going, I'll see you in my dreams!