Chicago re-connections

I think I’m finally catching up to the present day with the blog, rather than posting about what happened 3 weeks ago. Before I dive into the relatively recent past, I should mention a few of the social/entertainment highlights of this last Chicago stint. Many reunions.

First, Shawn and Jenny were in town from LA, which was a happy coincidence. We met at Café Iberico, a restaurant that set the bar for me for Tapas and Sangría. Joining us was Timm, Marcy, Tyllie, Carrie, Amy, Gabe and Cynthia, a crew that continues to raise the bar for being awesome. It was good to see everyone, and catch up on life adventures while eating, drinking, and generally being merry. You can see evidence of said merriment via the blurry photo. Iberico Dinner Crew

The next day we met them again for a picnic in Lincoln Park, along with the parents and immediate families of Shawn and Jenny, good people. I got to meet Eli, and spend time with the Carr kids and Zig and his son, Logan. Everyone looked good. I never imagined I’d see that entire group in the same place. Jenn was smart and snapped a few pics, I did not and now regret it. Shawn and Eli: Shawn and Eli

Another huge highlight was reconnecting with Eric and Liz. I visited Eric where he worked, managing band rehearsal spaces at an old Zenith Factory. Years ago he and I shared a space there. He played drums and I played bass and we wrote a song or two and did tons of jamming. These days he runs the place, writes, plays and records lots of songs and plays about 12 different instruments. I was really impressed, yet not surprised. Eric has always excelled at the things he throws himself into. The building looked and felt essentially the same except that the once plain hallways walls were now covered end-to-end with spray can art. Click the image below to see more pics on flickr: Zenith Factory

We went through the old 4-track masters of music we had made together and reminisced about good times and lamented the passing of Jim Bauer, who played guitar with us on many a session. Jimbo was a such a large soul, a man of such amazing energy and humor, loved by so many people in his life. When he left this world, a vacuum was created. Where once the man sometimes known as Groot existed, stood a huge black hole, drawing back together the people whose lives he touched. It was in the wake of his passing that Eric and Liz and I reconnected. Rest in peace, Grolchshlofowitz: suspension bridge over the clearwater river, idaho

The next evening Eric and Liz had us over for dinner, a lovely meal in a lovely home. Jenn and I got to spend some quality time with them and their beautiful daughter Addie. Eric, Addie, Liz

Oddly enough, we ran into Eric and Addie at the Shedd Aquarium two days later, which was like a bonus round of hanging out. They take their aquarium and their safety very seriously: Eric and Addie sailing the Shedd

Between Iberico, Hot Doug’s, Schwa, Blackbird, the lovely and elegant Violet Hour, Tony’s Italian Deli, and 3 different neighborhood pizza places, I definitely met my food and drink agenda. Heather and Mark’s Wedding was the final grand reunion of old friends, but that is going to have to wait for another post. I have to go ride my bike.