Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Am I a New Target Audience?

This has been a banner year for me in terms of new television programs. I was very excited at the start of the season for several new shows. Most years I think they all look like crap, or maybe there are one or two I'm willing to check out, but this year I liked so many shows right away. As a matter of fact, I like so many that I'm behind on watching several, and I may have given up on one because I'm far enough behind and don't really have time to catch up.

Given my current television viewing situation (on top of all of the television series I watch I'm trying to catch up on a few on DVD, old show I taped, and watching as much of the NHL Center Ice package as I can), you would think the last thing I would want to do was get hooked into a new program. But, despite my better judgment, tonight I tuned into the first two episodes of My Boys.

When I first heard about the show a few weeks ago I thought it could be interesting, but I was reluctant to get addicted to a new show, and I had a sneaking feeling I would end up disappointed. It seemed to, I don't know, *me*, and I thought it would end up being different from how I expected it to be. Additionally, I don't really watch a lot of comedy series. I will watch dramadies, but I watch very little flat out comedy. I wasn't going to tune in, but a friend of mine emailed me this afternoon to tell me about the show, saying that she thought of me as soon as she read about it.


Because I could very well have been PJ, the main character, had my life turned out differently. Actually, with a few revisions, her life seems a lot like my life during my undergraduate years.

PJ is a sportswriter covering the Chicago Cubs. She loves sports. Most of her friends are guys. Now, I am not, never have been, and never will be, a sportswriter, unless you count blogging about sports occasionally. There was a time in my life when most of my friends were male, the only difference being that all of her male friends are part of one group of friends, whereas most of my male friends didn't know each other. I knew them from different places. Otherwise I see a lot of similarities between myself and PJ, which is really refreshing for me.

It is rare that I can connect to a female television character, especially when a lot of the character development involves romantic relationships. Having been one of the guys myself, I'm not one of those girly girls who loves watching mushy romantic comedies told from a purely feminine female perspective. I want to smack most of those characters upside the head. I have a feeling that PJ either will have, or had in her life before the show started, many of the problems I have had with men in the past. Being seen as one of the guys and thus not datable. Being called intimidating. Dating guys who think it's cool to have a girlfriend who likes sports, only to have them act like asses when they realized I knew more about their sport of choice than they did. She doesn't seem like the mushy type, and while I can go for the occasional mush, for the most party I'm not that type either.

It is nice to see a female character who can like sports and play poker and work in a field dominated by men yet still look feminine. It's nice to see a woman in a romantic comedy complain about men without sounding like a whiney baby (yet, and I hope it remains that way). It's nice to see dating discussion from a woman's point of view that isn't so sugary that it makes my teeth rot.

A smart, pretty female character who likes sports and poker. What a concept.

The last television charcater I could relate to this much was Angela Chase on "My So-Called Life". I'm glad there's finally another one.

Oh, and the Chicago-ness of the show helps.

I hope I still like it this much after next week's episode.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

You just figured this out?

I found this article posted on another site. Chairman and CEO of Federated Department Stores, Inc., Terry Lundgren, said that Macy's has had a harder time breaking into Chicago than it has in other markets.

Lundgren, who visited Macy's State Street flagship earlier in the day, added that other markets in which the local department store chain's name was changed to Macy's have been "much easier to break into."

Seriously, was this surprising? Did this guy actually think it would be easy?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Paper Ballot Issues

The Chicago Tribune describes some of today's paper ballot problems. The article insinuates that people have a choice between using a touch screen or using a paper ballot. I had no choice. I had to use a paper ballot. I'm actually glad about that because I just feel more secure when there's an actual paper with my choices on it that can be looked at if something goes wrong.

Anyway, I was given a special pen to use, and was asked more than once to bring it back when I was done. I can see how people would walk off with them, but perhaps the poll workers should make sure to ask for them back. Perhaps there should be a pen on a chain thing for people to use so they don't get stolen.

Election Day

I am an election day nerd. I get excited days in advance. I watch all of the election night coverage on television, even in non-presidential-election years.

I think my parents have a lot to do with this. My mother, father, and stepmother all vote in every election. Often when I was a child they would take me with them. My parents are divorced, and sometimes I would stay with my dad during the day, and go home with my mom at night, which sometimes meant that on election day I was at the polling place twice.

There was an air of mystery about it when I was a child. I would see people standing behind the little cubicles, punching away, and I always wondered what they were putting. My mom would let me come with her and watch.

I think I was helped along by the fact that I turned 18 in a presidential election year. I was too young to vote in the primary election, and I was very jealous of my friends who had their birthdays already and could. I did get to vote for president that year, and I was very excited. I often wondered if people who turned 18 the year of a presidential election were more likely to vote the first time out than people who turn 18 in an off year.

Today I was the first person to vote at my pricinct. There's a new voting method this year, and of course, I messed it up and had to ask for a new ballot. At least I realized it and did something about it right away before it went to be scanned. I will spend tonight watching coverage to see who becomes governor, and whether the Democrats take over Congress, or if the status quo is maintained.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Observations from My Evening Commute

There were rich people oohing and aahing over a little baby in front of the Park Hyatt.

On the next block there were people oohing and aahing over a pug with a sweater on.

The pug was 74328748302948 times cuter than the baby.

I got checked out on the el platform.

There was a man on the train wearing a Dr. Who scarf. One of the really long ones. It was very cool.