festivals galore

People weren't kidding when they told me about all of the outdoor activities in Chicago over the summer.

All summer:
Movies in the Park
Millennium Park Free Programs

Taste of Chicago
Wicker Park Summerfest
Plus tons more...

There was even a World of Warcraft festival this past weekend, Darkmoon Faire!


boat tour

I went on my second Chicago boat tour yesterday. My first one was the "Barge" Review last fall, when they packed law students onto a boat, in the cold, with nothing but an open bar to entertain us. Basically we all got trashed and I remember little of the actual Chicago architecture.

This time around, the weather was much better but my city views were limited as I didn't want to deal with the crowded roof deck. My favorite views were when we were in Lake Michigan facing the city, with the sun going down.


Afterwards we tried to get the whole LLM group of 30+ students into Timothy O'Tooles (the only place we thought could fit all of us). However, they were being extremely strict with checking IDs - even on a Wednesday evening at like 8:30PM. Not used to carrying around their passports, a bunch of LLMs only had their student ID cards, or ID cards with no age info, so sadly, most of them ended up just going elsewhere (although I'm sure they enjoyed much better food).


land of the free

As a child, I was a library rat. I could spend all day, every day, inside the library. It was always quiet, cool, and filled with exciting ways to kill time. In addition to reading books, I could play Oregon Trail and other educational games on the Apple II's, watch old videos on their film reel machine, and look up news articles of all sorts on the fancy microfiche machine.

One of the first things I try to do when I move to a new city is get a library card. You can always count on libraries to provide free wireless internet, movie and book rental, and sometimes a few other cool bonuses. However, the Chicago Public Library tops what I know of the last two library systems I used (New York and San Francisco). First off, they have an awesome Museum Passport program - library members can check out free passes to Chicago museums that are good for one week and for up to four adults! I picked one up yesterday for the Art Institute.

Then today I learned that Chicago public libraries also give out free tickets to Ravinia! Each library only has a limited supply for each night, and each member can only request a total of four tickets for the whole season, and up to two for any one event. Call your local library to see what free concert tickets you can score! (Too bad they don't have Lollapalooza tickets!)


long day of tests

I took time off work on Monday for a long day of tests. I woke up bright an early to take a long statistics exam, in order to hopefully waive out of DECS-433, which is the introduction class to statistics for business and economics. I took tons of statistics and probability in undergrad, so all of the problems about confidence intervals, covariance, probability diagrams, etc. actually began to make sense by the end of the three hour exam. However, the understanding may have come too late for me to pass the waiver exam...

Immediately folllowing the waiver exam, I headed to the law school to proctor the LSAT and make what turned out to be a long $75. The meeting kicked off at 11:45AM, and although I had a small room of only eleven nervous test-takers, it still felt like forever until we finished at 5:30PM. At a certain point I started wondering if it was worth it, but the I realized that $75 can go far on my stretched budget. Plus I read over half of A Fine Balance while making sure there was no LSAT funny business.

After a quick refresher at home, I met up with friends at my favorite Hawaiian place in Chicago, Aloha Grill. No matter how much I though about it, I can't help but order the Combo BBQ Mix plate everytime I go. I swear, next time I'll get a mini-plate and spam musubi...

This morning, I overshot my El stop as I was completely engaged in A Fine Balance. I won't run the story for anyone by posting my thoughts on the web, but let's just say I found the book completely depressing. It almost made me never want to go to India.

In other news:
Tomorrow I'm going on an architectural boat tour!
Coming up this weekend, Taste of Randolph Street!

beach, zoo and the blues

After a late Saturday night, I decided to start my Sunday slowly. I slept in (very very rare for me, especially in the summer), and waited for Jack to call me to go to the beach. After he and his friends finished at Ribfest, Jack picked me up and we headed out to North Avenue Beach. He and his classmates spent two years at Kellogg without ever visiting the beach, but we had a good time relaxing in the sun. On the way back to the parking lot in Lincoln Park, they wanted to stop by the Lincoln Park Zoo, another Chicago landmark they were visiting for the first time before graduating next week. I've been there a few times already, but it's always enjoyable (and free!).

After having a quick dinner at home, I bussed down to Grant Park for the Chicago Blues Festival. Although I only caught about an hour of the festival, I thought it was really cool.


In other music news, here are some albums I got this weekend that I'm looking forward to checking out:

- The Bravery, The Sun and The Moon
- Nelly Furtado, Loose
- Killers, Sam's Town


busy saturday

Saturday morning kicked off with me waking up Jack. After a fun game night with law school friends, I met up with Jack and his Kellogg buddies at Sound Bar for a late night of watching Jack dance.

I had ambitious plans for Saturday:

Printer's Row Book Fair - Although this didn't match up to the SF Library Annual Book Sale, it was still impressive and lots of fun. Before used book shopping, I usually like to have a list of books to pick up. I quickly jotted down a short list of books I wanted: Devil in the White City, What is the What and The Namesake. Although I didn't find used copies of anything on my list, I ended picking up five other books: A Fine Balance, The Human Stain, China Boy, A Thousand Acres and The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. All for $20 total!


Ribfest - After building up an appetite book shopping, I went straight from the Loop to Lincoln Square to Ribfest Chicago. Along the way I finished half of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, a very light sunner read, on the 30 minute train ride. At Ribfest I promptly gorged down seven rib samplers, each a small plate with 2-4 bones off a baby back rib rack. With my appetite sated, I took the long train ride home and spent a few hours recovering at home before going out again.


Jess's birthday - After a big rib lunch, I followed up with all-you-can-eat sushi at Sushi Para II. After sushi, we merged Jess's party with another birthday party from the law school, hitting up Trinity Bar and Maxbar. Along the way, we were surprised by the Chicago World Naked Bike Ride!


chicago #1

One list where Chicago comes in #1: A sportswriter's basketball scorecard

And for those who don't know, I'm rooting for the Spurs. Gotta support West Coast dominance (although the window is rapidly closing on my beloved Lakers)!


busy weekend

Here's how I'm hoping my weekend will turn out:

Friday night: Game night at my place
Saturday morning: Printers' Row Book Fair
Saturday afternoon: Ribfest Chicago
Saturday night: Jess's birthday dinner (happy birthday Jess!)
Sunday morning/afternoon: Study for statistics waiver exam
Sunday night: Chicago Blues Festival

oci bidding

OCI (on campus interviewing) bidding begins for us on June 25, ending July 23rd. For those of you who remember on-campus recruiting in undergrad (it was quite an ordeal), that pales in comparison with law school OCI. There were almost 700 firms from all around the world (with more being added constantly) looking to meet with prospective interns and sumer associates. It's crazy! I've heard horror stories about spending weeks and weeks traveling to callbacks across the country before finding a position, but I'm hoping that I can narrow down my decision early in the process and be done with it all in just a few weeks.

In other news:
Next week I'll be attending the Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago's Annual Installation Reception. I've really enjoyed meeting people and getting connected to the Asian American legal scene in Chicago.


upcoming events

I'd like to start off by thanking Seyfarth Shaw for hosting an NU alumni, current student and admitted students reception tonight. They served a fine pomegranate martini, as well as tasty mini roast beef sandwiches with popover buns. Plus, it's always nice to network with attorneys and learn more about my future career.

Here are some upcoming events in Chicago:

6/7-10: Chicago Blues Festival
6/20: National Townhall on Hate Crimes: Asian Americans and Hate Crimes, 25 years after the death of Vincent Chin
7/13-15: Pitchfork Music Festival
7/18: THE DECEMBERISTS with the Grant Park Orchestra

In other news:

I bought a Weber 121020 Go-Anywhere Charcoal Grill today for summer grilling on our patio deck. It's been so long since I last barbecued!


summer reading (and eating!)

I kicked off my summer reading last weekend with two books by great authors.

First up was The Yiddish Policemen's Union (YPU), by Michael Chabon. Chabon also authored The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, a Pulitzer Prize winning blockbuster that inspired me to venture from science fiction and fantasy into literary fiction. YPU does not live up to Kavalier, but that's nothing to be ashamed of. I'd still recommend this mystery tale of a has-been Yiddish policeman set in an alternate Alaska.

Next was A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini's follow-up to The Kite Runner. Similar to YPU, A Thousand Splendid Suns does not live up to the incredible emotional roller coaster of The Kite Runner, but it is still a captivating read nonetheless.

I haven't decided what to read next. I've started Yellow, based on a friend's recommendation, but it hasn't gotten my interest yet.

In other news, I had lunch at a great Korean restaurant today. My manager took me to San Soo Gap San, where I had a fantastic Dol Sot Bibimbop, served with tasty panchan. Its Lincoln Square location is a bit of a trip from Streeterville, but I'm sure I'll be back.

months later...

I'm on summer break now! I can't promise I'll be better about posting, but I'm gonna give it my best shot.

First return post (aside from this one) coming soon...