Saturday, January 22, 2005

(ie '05 blizzard dibs* conceptual piece)
By Ms. C.K.

Shovel car out. Leave space free
and see who else goes there.
Record results til spring.
Then paint space pink,
minus outline of car.

*It's snowed like a foot and it's still going like gangbusters and it's so windy the stuff is falling horizontally and the conditions are white-out. Every time there's a big snow a smattering of locals dies from shoveling too much but I don't know how many have lost it yet since the cable co doesn't carry the local news channel. In any case those within city limits, where street parking's at a premium anyway engage in "dibs" -- or "dibsh," in local parlance -- in which Chicagoans shovel out their car and more or less legally save "their" spot with any combination of rickety chairs, milk crates, broom handles, traffic cones, industrial-size buckets and dusty Soloflex machines (anyone who moves "dibs" items and parks in said space is subject to having their vehicle trashed or their tires slashed). I don't engage in this but many people do -- particularly in the neighborhoods further away from the lake. "I tell people," Mayor Daley once exclaimed, "if someone spends all that time digging their car out, do not drive in that spot. This is Chicago. Fair warning." Hence its near-legal status.

We shoveled out my car, since it's front-wheel drive, so I could go ten blocks to the shala to give a private lesson to a Serious Ashtangi from Hyde Park who was willing to drive over 100 blocks north in a de facto blizzard in order to spend an hour honing his backbends and whatnot. Jack dropped me off and as soon as I opened the door I learned that said ashtangi had cancelled; apparently Lake Shore Drive was a parking lot and the expressway no better. And I nearly jumped for joy....

We drove straight back home as it was TREACHEROUS and much to our surprise! our unsaved spot was still there. (Rock star ex-girlfriend parking? I don't think so).

So much for dibsh.

Before heading in we collected our cross-country skis and boots; the former are outside the front door and the latter are heating up on the radiator (steam heat), waiting for us to get our arses in gear.

And now we are watching the mediocre Wicker Park, which is meant to take place in Chicago's famed neighborhood, and in which every character is a liar and it snows in every scene. During breaks we are conducting Important Research on the proper method of twisting a Handlebar Moustache.

And it couldn't be cozier.

More on dibsh here (well worth the cut and paste):

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