Creativity, part III

So my sister is preggo (due on my birthday!, Dec. 24) and can’t do certain things such as be near kitty litter, paint, etc. So because neither my mom nor I have to report to our school jobs until next week, we agreed to paint Amanda’s apartment walls back to white so they won’t be charged the $50/wall fee when they move out next month. We spent all day Monday painting, 3 coats in each room (b/c the walls are cheap, as was the paint we bought to cover them) so I’d say we got a good workout! LOL Amanda is appreciative, and seeing as how we saved her over $300, we bought Date Night on OnDemand. Amanda, we’re not paying you back. LOL

Amanda’s hubby has been at a conference in Bean-town, so the three of them have been away all week. I have been watching their kitties Coal and Max whom I absolutely adore. They meow and purr all day long, and I just love it. Here is the boys getting along:

Don’t think I’ve been sitting around painting and petting cats all week. No no, I have been reading!! I finished the 856 page I Believe This Much is True by Wally Lamb, a fabulous novel following a few years in the life of Domenico, grandson of an Italian immigrant who chose Three Rivers, Connecticut as the town where he would build a home for his family. Domenico has a twin brother who spent his entire adult life in hospitals, group homes, and mental health facilities because of his schizophrenia. The relationships Domenico forms are sometimes toxic, other times helpful and fulfilling. His quest to differentiate himself from his sick brother, to not be guilt about being the healthy brother, is what the story follows. A fabulous, yet long and sometimes frustrating read.

I also read Sin in the Second City: Madams, Ministers, Playboys, and the Battle for America’s Soul by Karen Abbott. It is a fabulous follow-up to 2004’s bestseller The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larsen. Abbott’s ability to thoroughly research rival her ability to tell an interesting, provocative story. I don’t usually read non-fiction so quickly, but I think it was because she broke her chapters down to anywhere from one to six pages. Each was preceded by a relevant black-and-white photo (some from inside the infamous Everleigh Club) and an interesting title. The story follows Aida and Minna Everleigh, two sisters who traveled the US to learn first hand what the best “Houses of Vice” had to offer, all the while planning more elaborate and classy ideas for their own. Once they arrived in Chicago, a town that at the turn of the century was rife with crooked cops and politicians, they knew they had to stay, quickly becoming the place to be. The Club’s demise came because of the works of Christian organizations intent on seeing such houses of vice eradicated from their city and state. The deals they made with the cops, politicians, and Dearborn Street gangsters were enough to keep the law from getting to them for over six years, during which they made millions of dollars in profit. This is a fabulous book about Chicago, a city that still has a negative post script attached to its name.

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