John Mc

This is a collection of my thoughts. Some of the thoughts that I once had, I no longer do. Some thoughts I have now I have never had. Yet none shal be discounted. This blog is soley for the enjoyment of the author and the readers. On occasion the views expressed are overly exagerated in order to prove a point. Also there may be a dirty word or thought in some of the posts. Grow up and take this for what it's worth - a blog that barely anyone will ever see.


The Trade Winds Are A Blowin'!

What a great day for Chicago Sports!
First, on the last day of trading for MLB, YOUR CHICAGO WHITE SOX have picked up Ken Griffey Jr.!
Hell yes! Granted, we got rid of a decent pitcher, but to get Mr. Jr. is a fair trade. It is just unfortunate that we couldn't trade Boone Logan or Jose C. They aggravate me so!
The only thing about this that I don't like is what will happen at first base. Jr. will go to the outfield pushing Swisher to first. Swisher does a great job no matter where they put him on defence. Plus being a switch hitter and showing he can produce makes him equally valuable on offence. Don't get me wrong, I dig Swish, but what will happen to Paulie?
I enjoy watching Paulie trot. However, even after he took a few weeks and the All-Star break off to heal, his numbers are right around .190 in his few weeks back. This will cause him to have limited playing time. A knee-jerk reaction from the suits seems to be at the helm of all of this.
Why not put Swish at second and get rid of Uribe. He isn't deserving to be on Da Sox for offence OR defence! I want to still be able to use my home-made "Trot, Paulie, Trot!" sign in the few games that I will visit before we go to the post season.
PLUS, Bret Favre has chartered a plane to Green Bay. They offered him $20 mil to stay retired for ten years and he hops on a plane to tell them no. I really don't care much about that. However, the speculation is that the Packers will re-instate him and then trade him before the season starts. Their top two picks? The Vikings or DA BEARS!
Now, I have always respected the athletic abilities and love of the game that Favre has always exhibited. This wasn't difficult to do despite my dislike for The Packers. He is arguably one of the best, if not THE best quarterback to ever take the field. His work ethic and stats are both equally incredible.
I would love for him to join Chicago! Our two Packer wins a year will have that much more emotion behind them! (Can you imagine what it would be like to have a quarterback on Da Bears? We haven't seen that since Carter was in office. No offence to the honorable McMahon.)
A lot will go down today in the remarkable world of Chicago sports. I will be on the edge of my seat watching the scroll on the bottom of the ESPN screens at work to figure out what is going on.
I wonder if Jr. will be singing along to "Thunderstruck" with me when I go on August 10th?!

New Developments Going Up

A great deal has changed in the past week and a half. Actually, all the changes occurred within a week. But, it has taken me a few days to get to writing about it.
First, I am on my own. I have moved out of Rick's house to be on my own. Why? It was time. I can afford it and I enjoy my freedom. (I don't have to wear pants while watching TV. Life is good.)I am currently writing this from my new two bedroom 1,000 sq foot place in Westmont, IL. Plus, I was able to find someone's open internet connection, so bonus!
Also, the 1993 Chrysler Le Baron has seen better days. After putting over 80,000 miles on it, (bringing it's grand total to over 134,000) it is time for that era to end. I shall miss the days of the convertible top on drive-in dates, but not the oil marks that are left behind whenever I park.
This past Saturday I got a Scion tC. I'm digging it. While it doesn't have a convertible top, it does have a sun roof, which is almost a convertible. But not quite. It is quicker and more reliable. Plus, it doesn't have as many dents as a golf ball like my previous ride.
So, there are two major developments for right now, and more to come later. I now need to find a way to pay for all of this. That comes with my new positions at the college. More on that later post to be published.



This marks my 300th post. Yup. 300 in a little less than 3 years. If my remedial math serves me right, I think that works out to roughly 100 posts a year. Now, if you take out the stuff that I accidently repeated, it is more like 225. If you remove the NFL predictions, it comes closer to 115. Then you take out the stuff that doesn't matter anymore, we are down to about 78. Then eliminate the political rants that go on too long and still aren't completely explained, there are roughly 47. Take a look at all the few sentence waste of time posts and pretend those don't exist and we are down to 17 Then finally take out the posts that are really intended for one or two people with a hidden message and are really time wasted on everyone else I have only really posted 8 posts.
None-The-Less, I like to try to do something special for these Milestone Posts. This one will be a small reflection on what has occurred with me recently (Within the last two years.)
My current schedule is a weird one. I'm essentially on Hawaii time because I usually work from 4pm to midnight or 1am and then go to sleep at about 3-4am. I get up around 9-10am. I get ready for the day, check e-mail and stuff like that. I prepare brunch (Usually left-overs or something) while watching the WGN news at noon. This is my morning news. I then do some stuff around the house while watching Comedy Central's re-airing of the previous night's Daily Show and Colbert Report. Right after is a full hour of Scrubs re-runs. I wasn't much a fan of the program when it was on the air, but in re-runs, it makes for great background while I get stuff done. Plus, once in a while it dispenses some interesting information.
In the past month, one of the characters by the name of Bob Kelso said "Nothing worth having in this world comes easy." Wow. Read that again. For a silly sitcom, that is a pretty neet statement. I don't kid myself by pretending that they came up with that, but it is still a great bit of advice. Two years ago, I lost my job, I lost my license, (I got three moving violations in one year. Long story short - I have a VERY heavy left foot... well I used to!) and I lost my girlfriend. Things did not look that good for me. I didn't have anything. For example, when you first meet someone the first question you ask them is "What's your name?" The second is "What do you do?" Those days, I didn't do much. I spent all night on the computer applying for jobs and all day walking throughout the neighborhood looking for work.
It was rough. I was reading a book around the time written by musician Steven Curtis Chapman where he talked about "Hurricane Of Grace." Essentially what that means is sometimes God has to tear down everything around you so you can build up bigger and better than before. I hoped and prayed that this was the case for me.
But, I persevered. "Nothing worth having in this world comes easy." I got my old job with the mobile DJ company back again. After a month or so of looking, I got a job at a national chain restaurant in the area. And a few short months after everything fell, my license was re-instated. Things were on an upswing. I had income. I was able to make enough to survive. But, soon I became restless and decided that I should be making more than enough to survive.
I just didn't know how. I had plateaued at the restaurant and had my wedding DJing on the side. But, it wasn't enough. I searched out other opportunities much like I had when I found the restaurant job, but this time was different. I shot higher.
Roughly a year ago I applied at several colleges to teach radio. Every college I applied to let me know that they weren't looking for anyone at the time. All except one. They decided to give a guy with a nearly fake college degree (Come on. It's a degree in Radio. My friend Luke who graduated with me likes to tell people that we majored in an appliance.) and no real teaching experience a college course.
I went from not working at all to not having a free moment because I was working three jobs. Well, I did eventually have Sundays off for football and The Lord. Soon I was able to manage my time well enough that I am working less, but making the same amount and in some cases, more. Now I'm on my own with a new place and a new car and enough spare time to take a Second City course for fun. But, this did not come easy. It took a great deal of determination. The route to here was exhausting, stressful and very difficult. And, of course I'm not done by any means. I'm still looking to constantly make things better. Once one becomes content and/or stagnent, regression comes very easy.
I plan on getting a better 9-5 job than a restaurant. This will fit perfectly with my teaching if I can get it in the city. I teach at night, so I can stop in the college on my way home. I also am happily single, but wouldn't mind spending some time with someone special. However, I'm content with the way things are right now.
Hey, that pretty much sums it up. I'm content, yet looking forward. I like where I am and look forward to where I'll be. It is a very good feeling.
I feel like I'm bragging, but I don't mean to be. Essentially, it has been a rough two years, but it has been worth it. My "Hurricane of Grace" has allowed me to move back up to Chicago, get a job that I really enjoy at the college, be closer to my family and friends in the Chicagoland area and meet about 15-20 new people at Second City that are awesome. It has also permitted me to really appreciate that "Nothing in this world worth having comes easy."

It's Over

Before I had a chance to write about it, it is over already. I have completed my first class of Second City training. Every Monday for ten weeks I would meet at Second City in Chicago with a great group of people to make stuff up. It started off small with simple games to increase awareness of the other folks in the room as well as focus on what is required of you. We then went on to study how to convey emotions and become "grounded" in a scene. In other words, to explain a back-story to the audience without having to come out and say "We are a married couple who have been together for twelve years. She is controlling and I am not. We have 2.5 kids and a dog named 'Spiffy.' We are having issues with the bills and need to work something out."
This was a very unique experience. While I anticipated that we would be creating scenes together, I never knew how much went into Improv. The guidelines and rules make scene. For example, the two most important ones to follow are "Yes and..." as well as "Accept everything." They kind of go together. You agree with whatever the other person has created and build upon that. Whatever they have said is the truth and you accept it immediately and put your own spin on it and make something out of nothing.
The class that I was in was great. It seemed that there were no two alike personalities. This I feel was key to why the class worked as well as it did. Everyone offered something different and came from a different point of view. Were some people better than others? Of course. No matter what the activity, no two skill levels are identical. However, after a few weeks of working with everyone, you knew their strengths and weaknesses and were able to manipulate that. (In a good way.) You knew that with one person, this topic or statement would work well and with another person, they would sink on stage. While simple open questions will work with some, you can be more direct and "from left field" with others.
This being said, I did still wince some times when I was paired with certain people. I knew that it would be rough, but welcomed the challenge.
One great aspect was our instructor. We had a guy by the name of Brian Posen. (Look him up. I'm sure you will be impressed.) Brian has been with Second City since 1923. Or at least his extensive resume' would have you believe that. He also is the director and co-writer or the longest running Improv play in Chicago history "Cupid Has A Heart On." (Look that up too. It was a remarkable performance.) But, most importantly, he knew how to instruct in a fun way while offering constructive criticism and raining down many compliments. It was an all-inclusive learning experience from the moment class started to well after it ended.
We also would meet after class for a pint or five at the bar across the street. Or we would catch the free improv show at Second City at 10:00. (It is free for everyone. You should go.) We would get to see how what we had just learned translates to those on stage and have a greater understanding for what they do while seeing the steps between where we were and where the performers were. We would also discuss what we had just learned with the class afterwards to further re-enforce what we had just been taught. And then gossip about people who didn't join us for a drink after class.
Sadly, this Monday was our last day. It appears that we will all be going our separate ways. (For the most part.) Second City attempts to have classes stay together throughout the entire 5-course learning process. Because, after a year of hanging out with the same group nearly every week, you will have a great understanding for how they work and how you work with them. Alas, I will not be continuing Second City this semester. I plan on starting up again in the fall. I have to focus on work right now and can't have any distractions or additional financial responsibilities. More on work and my new financial responsibilities soon.
While we hoisted our last pint together Monday night, there will be one more reunion of sorts. This Sunday I plan on having as many of my fellow classmates over as possible for an awards ceremony. This ceremony will be rather reminisent of "The Dundies" from "The Office." We will probably have a small BBQ on my Forman grill (I will hope that no one gets their foot burned) and maybe because we are all improv nerds, play some improv games. But, the main purpose is to show that in a few short weeks how many people have been brought into each of our lives and to maintain these relationships. That and to give out "Bushiest Beaver" to one of my fellow classmates.


673 WPM - Texting!

I have recently found that I text faster than my phone's screen can keep up with. (I have been typing faster than MSWord can keep up with for years now, so I knew that it would only be a short amount of time that this would occur with texting as well.) I don't know if this is an accomplishment or a sign that I text way too damn much.
It's definitely not something that I will include on my resume.
I also have just found out what this T9 thing is. It is the default setting on my phone's text sending screen. I haven't decided if I like it or not. I have played with it a little bit to see if I can stump it with any words. Very few did it get wrong.
Yup. This is how I spend my time when I have an unscheduled day off and there isn't anything good on TV.

Time Travel Without A Flux Capasitor!

There is a relatively new feature on my blog that lets me post things at a later date. It is AWESOME! I will only on occasion have the time, ability and/or desire to post. When I do, I usually write several at the same time. This usually causes multiple posts on the same day and could cause people to only read the most recent one assuming that the rest are ones that they have already read.
With this new feature, I can write as many as I'd like and have them post whenever the hell I want. For example, I have four (as I write this) that will post at random intervals in the next few days. One on my newest purchases, one on my teaching, one on texting and one who's topic escapes me right now. (In the next few days expect one each morning, one in the afternoon and one in the evening. Also, be on the look out for my 300th post with a look back on the past two years!)
I LOVE IT! I am writing this at 3:45pm CST on Tuesday and will have this post at 4:30pm CST today for no apparent reason. The one on texting will post later today.
Hey, I just had a morbid thought. I could write something that isn't supposed to post for two years that could post after I'm dead if I don't keep updating the post date. That would be kind of weird. I don't know what I would include. My REAL thoughts on everyone? My passwords and stuff for my mail and this blog? I don't know. Hmmmm... I don't think I'm going to do that. But, I will let you know if I change my mind.
The only thing that I'm pissed about is that I am currently unable to spell check and/or load pictures. I don't know if this is an issue with or if it is an issue with my Internet Explorer.This seems like a perfect situation for the expression "two steps forward, three steps back!"
I will see you in the future!


For those who have asked, there is no contact between me and Libby anymore. She did e-mail me and I sent one back, but I'm pretty sure it's over. Even if she wanted to try again, I doubt that I would. There just wasn't much of a connection there. Don't get me wrong, there are no hard feelings, but we just didn't click. I gave it a shot and didn't feel anything.
No big deal. I'm enjoying being single right now. I'm not on a search for "the one" or "the next one," but instead enjoying the company of folks. Whether it is just friendship or it becomes more, my opinion is "whatever."
What I am trying to become is more receptive. I have noticed that I have NO IDEA when a woman is interested in me. I found out recently that someone I have known for a while really digs me and I had no clue.
I have to be hit over the head with the obvious before I get it. It is as if I'm wearing blinders and just focusing on enjoying the time spent together without realizing that she wants to be more than friends.
Who do I blame for this? Society. It is an obvious choice. I have heard women say "I don't know why he doesn't know that I'm interested. I gave him so many signs." When I investigate this further, I realize the reason is because the signs don't work. Their idea of an obvious flirt is something like dangling their flip-flop in his direction in a playful manner.
What? Men need to be hit over the head with the obvious. I mean be VERY obvious. Say "Hey, you're fun and I want to date you." Or "We would make a great couple." Or "I enjoy our time spent together and think that we should take it to the next level." And make sure that you say one, two or all of these while giving him a lap dance. Then re-state them once he can focus on conversation again.
I have decided that for the time-being, I'm just going to go out and enjoy my time with women and if something progresses, great.
If not - Whatever.


Katie's Wedding

On May 24th, my sister got married. I wish I could have blogged about this earlier, but I have been so busy.
We are 100% Irish (Thus the "Mc." at the end of my nick-name) and have several relatives in Ireland. They actually came over for the wedding a few days prior to the event. I was a part of the welcoming committee at the airport. My mother was on the Welcome Wagon as well. She hates jeans. When she saw me in mine, she took one look and shook her head saying "The Irish are coming." I asked her if they were coming by land or sea, because that would determine how many lanterns I was supposed to hang.
We had the rehearsal the day prior and I was shown that I would walk my grandmother, mother and my soon-to-be brother in law's two sisters down the aisle. At one point the wedding director asked "Who are the ushers." My sister informed her that there were none. "Then who is taking up the runner" the director asked. My sister quickly looked around and picked the two groomsmen standing close to her (me and some other guy) as the ones to take up the runner.
I was going down the aisle four times the next day.
We concluded by having dinner at a fancy suburban Italian place. The food was awesome. (How can you go wrong with Italian food?!)
The day of, I showed up close to on time and the photographer and video guy got all sorts of shots of us. The video dude asked us to walk up as if we were in Reservoir Dogs or something. He had the camera low to the ground and we were to walk over it. It was strange.
The ceremony went off without a hitch. Everything was flawless.
Then it was time for pictures. The pictures were ENDLESS. It got to the point where I almost recommended that we take individual pictures of everyone and have them photo shopped together into the groups that were suggested.
After the many pictures at the church, we all piled into one of two vehicles (other than the limo that my sister and her new husband took) and it was off to a local park for more pictures. This is pretty standard.
Once my face felt as if it had been botoxed into a smiling position, we concluded our pictures with the trees and it was off to the reception. I made a quick stop at a Target. It was weird being in my tux, but I wanted to get a card for my friend Kate. She had agreed to be my date for my sister's wedding, and I though that it would be a nice gesture.
I got there shortly after the start of cocktail hour. Kate met me there. We hung out for a short while until we got some pictures taken. I was encouraged to get pictures with everyone that I walked down the aisle with (Which was 54 at last count) and my date. So, we got that out of the way before the dancing started and I lost my jacket and tie.
Dinner was remarkable. Toasts were great. And it seemed as if very quickly the dancing started. Not much time wasted. The first dances were perfect.
As soon as they were done, we got a family picture taken. Then one with the cousins. Then the cousins from the other side of the family. Then with all the aunts and uncles. Then with the grandparents. Then with the waiters and waitresses. It seemed that every 5-10 minutes another picture needed to be taken. AND the time it took to take the picture was anywhere between 10-20 minutes depending on how many people we had to line up and get in line.
I apologized several times to Kate to let her know how sorry I was that I couldn't spend that much time with her. However, that is the cool thing about Kate, she is very easy going. Just a sweet lady. I'm lucky to have her as a friend.
The whole day was perfect. I honestly didn't notice a single error. And if there had been one, no one in my family noticed it.
A much delayed congrats to my sister and her new husband! Thanks for a great day and may God bless you both!


The Second City Dog

As I mentioned in a previous post, I am taking a course at Second City. I took the class in order to see if I could do it, to have some fun and to meet some new people. I have accomplished all of the above. One of the great people I was able to meet was a young lady named Liz. She writes for a Chicago-based resturant magazine. She let us know that she is a food critic for them.
It was when I heard this that I asked her if she rated just food that had French names or real food as well. Liz informed me that she does rate regular stuff, too. I let her know that I recomend a hot dog place in Downers Grove, IL that I have been going to for the past dozen years. She challened my tastes by tossing out some of the more well-known hot dog locations around the city of Chicago. I felt confident that this was within the same arena.
Liz agreed to venture out of the city to my neck of the woods for a hot dog. I talked up the steamed dogs and buns. I raved about how great the fries are (crispy on the outside and warm and mushy on the inside). She still seemed to have her doubts on whether or not her trip was worth it. She even told me that she felt she had ventured past "BUFU." It is not like we were surrounded by corn fields and manure. It must have been the free parking that threw her.
So, the lovely Liz approached the entrance and mentioned she enjoyed the "No bare feet" sign on the door. (Ok, chalk ONE element up to her BUFU theory.) As soon as she entered, I pointed out the "Green River" on tap at the soda fountain. She felt that this was worthy of a picture. Yup. She took photos for her food blog. She even took photos of the dog/bun steamer that I pointed out next.
We ordered the daily special, (two dogs and a small fry) which I think is always the daily special, and got a spot at the bar around the windows. After photographing the hot dog (She pretty much took a picture of everything) she gave it a shot. While she didn't seem overly impressed, she was not upset either. Liz did, however, adjust the dog negativly by placing ketchup on it. That could have a big factor in her lower-than-expected rating.
It was as we were discussing our Second City class that a fellow customer over-heard us. She was a rather large older lady with yellowed teeth. (Ok, TWO elements) She asked us where we went to school. We let her know that it wasn't an actual school class, but instead classes for fun at Second City. This lady's life story was offered next. Because, as all of us know, discussion of improv training prompts a Biography Channel-like synopsis of the listener. We learned that the doctor who told her that she wouldn't live past eight died eight years ago, she was paralized, but now drives stick shift, she is back in school and she draws pictures of your pets for $80 for an 8 X 10.
Don't get me wrong, she was nice, but fell into that category of persons who annoyingly offer more information than desired. Should anyone want their pet drawn, she does it by photo or by visiting the animal, I can get you her contact info and I must say that her buisness card did have a very well drawn dog on the card.
Once we were informed of the dog artist's life-long path to the hot dog place, we went outside. There we talked a little more about our improv class and decided to head our seperate ways. I was off to finish unpacking the rest of my appartment and she, off to write for her magazine. If you would like to see her thoughts on the day, click here.
More on what you missed in the past month and a half coming up soon!

A Month and A Half?!!!

May 6th? May 6th?! That is the last time I posted? I'm so sorry to all my dedicated readers (both of you) who check this blog on a daily basis.
So much has occurred in the past month and a half. My sister got married. I am less than a week away from completing my first Second City course. I moved to a new location. I'm inches away from buying a new car. I'm having at least one, if not two courses added to my class load for next semester's teaching. PLUS I'm hoping to get a new 9-5 job.
Oh, and I had a hot dog. Yup. More on all of this very soon. My computer has gone from lousy to ridiculous. I am unable to log onto the Internet, but hope to soon with a new computer purchase. Thus, once this happens, I promise you will be caught up on all things John Mc. ASAP.