We got up Friday morning and searched in the phonebook for the nearest Dunkin’ Donuts, because what you’ve heard about their coffee is true. We headed downtown and had a brief rendezvous with Lauren outside her work, because she had obtained a parking pass in her neighborhood and some 24-hour CTA passes for us to exploit. We drove up and parked by her house, and took the bus to Wrigley Field.
wendy found herself some reading material on the bus.
We got there really early, so we wandered around the store for a while, then crossed the street to the Cubby Bear. Of course we had to try the Cubby Blue Bombs for $4 (it made my stomach hurt for the next five minutes). The Sparks girls were there handing out samples, and of course we had to try that, too. It wasn’t great, but it was free. They came back around later asking if we liked it, and wanted free cans. Um, yes.
I lived in Chicago for ten years growing up, and had never been to a baseball game there. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve never been to any sporting event in Chicago. I was only really interested in Wrigley Field, though. It was great.
Our seats were in the second row from the top, but they were awesome. I’m glad we weren’t in the bleachers, because the sun was brutal. Our row-neighbors were from Oklahoma, and I’m pretty sure they’d never been to a baseball game before; one of them got up and made us stand up so they could wander around at least every 15 minutes. They couldn’t even go as pairs.
We got to see Luis Castillo, who the Twins traded to the Mets a few weeks ago, and also Eddie Vedder singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” during 7th inning stretch. (Pearl Jam was playing at Lollapalooza.) I had flashbacks to 12 years ago. Also, I was excited to realize that you can see Lake Michigan from the ballpark.
The game was going well until the last inning, when the Mets scored about 500 runs. I’m not joking.
the ‘lose’ flag
We killed some time wandering around the stadium, then went to the el station. It was still crazy, but we managed to get on the first train and ride downtown to Millennium Park.
We had decided upon deep dish pizza much earlier, and there was a Giordano’s a few blocks up Michigan Avenue. We walked over there and found it very crowded. While Matt and I waited in line, Willis looked up another location in downtown. He called them and they said there was no wait, so we headed over that way.
After eight blocks or so, we realized that Google Maps had lied to us, and the restaurant was still several blocks from there. We ended up walking very far for that meal, but it was worth it. Not only was the pizza awesome, Franz from the Hold Steady was sitting at the next table.
We were rerouted along the way back to the train station because they had cordoned off a large section of downtown to film a movie. We asked a security guard what it was, and he said, “Batman.” We weren’t sure if that was true or not, because there was a production assistant across the street telling people it was Rory’s First Kiss. Willis looked it up, and it turns out that’s the supersecret working title for the new Batman movie. Wendy decided to stay and film some scenes.
wendy on the batman set
We got lost trying to find the el station for a while, and had to call Lauren for help. We rode up to her house, and walked over to Louie’s, the karaoke bar we’d visited the first time I stayed with her.
The karaoke was awesome but the drinks were not, so we headed to a dive called the Beachwood instead. Upon close, we went for 2am breakfast at the Hollywood Grill. It was not great at all, but it was necessary. We didn’t get back to the hotel til 3:30.