Sunday, June 15, 2014

Take Me Out to the Baaaaall Gaaaaame!

It's the 100th Anniversary of Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs. Pip and Domo aren't baseball fans, but Wrigley Field is such an iconic part of Chicago they had to go.

Flanking the historic art deco marquee sign are huge signs with 1914 and 2014 in the style of the Cubs' jersey numbers. If you've ever seen Ferris Bueller's Day Off, you might remember the marquee said, "Save Ferris". (Ferris Bueller's Day off was John Hughes' love letter to the city of Chicago. It's a fun movie to watch.)

If you walk around the field, you'll notice many of the residential buildings have built their own bleachers on the roof. In the past, people would have cookouts and parties on the roof where they could enjoy the game for free. Now there are bleachers and people are charged for a seat. As you can imagine, this didn't go over very well with Wrigley Field, so for now, part of the profits are shared with Wrigley Field, although the seat numbers aren't included in the official seat capacity count at the field.

Even though Pip's not a baseball fan, he appreciated this detail on the left field foulpole (he knows enough to know it's left field. How about that?) The flags are the retired numbers of Ernie Banks, Ron Santo and Ferguson Jenkins. Pipkin's a little sentimental and tender hearted, and this (and the right field foulpole honoring Billy Williams and Ryne Sandberg) is his favorite feature of the park.

Monday, June 2, 2014

G is for Gorey - C is for Chicago

After Pipkin saw all the Dr. Seuss sculptures at Water Tower Place, he crossed the street to check out the old looking building nestled between all the modern glass and steel skyscrapers. He learned that it's the Historic Water Tower, built in 1869 for Chicago's municipal water system. The tower used to house a water pipe that regulated water pressure.

The water tower survived the 1871 fire that leveled most of Chicago, and today is an art gallery showcasing the work of local artists and photographers, and it's free to the public.

Pipkin made another fun discovery when he crossed the street. While he was looking up at the tower, he noticed this flag:

An Edward Gorey exhibit!? Edward Gorey is mostly associated with Cape Cod, where he spent the latter part of his life in the Elephant House. But what many forget, is that Gorey grew up and went to art school in Chicago. Visiting an Edward Gorey exhibit in his hometown just makes sense.

Pipkin had no idea there was going to be an exhibit while he was in Chicago. Glee! And it just so happens that the Loyola University Museum of Art is free on Tuesdays. Pipkin was happy to be so lucky.

A part of the exhibit was Elegant Enigmas: The Art of Edward Gorey, which Pipkin had already seen a couple years ago when the exhibit was in Portland, ME. He was happy to see the exhibit again, along with Thomas Michalak's collection of Gorey's letters and illustrations for other authors and magazines. Photography wasn't allowed inside the gallery, but the exhibit runs until June 15 2014, so if you're in Chicago, you can still see it!

You can click here and here to see Pipkin and Domo's visit to the Elephant House on Cape Cod. And you can click here to see some of what Pipkin saw at the Elegant Enigmas exhibit when it was in Maine.

Oh, the Places Pip'll Go!

There's a place where you won't often find Pipkin - the Mall. Pipkin made an exception on his recent trip to Chicago, because at the Water Tower Place on the Magnificent Mile (magnificent for the amounts of money people spend there) there was a short exhibit of some of Dr. Seuss' bronze sculptures.

Scattered throughout the mall were six bronze sculptures of characters from Dr. Seuss' books. The first one Pipkin found was The Cat in the Hat.

Who can forget this face? You were scared about missing Christmas as a kid, weren't you?

Pipkin offered this dog a bone but the dog seems to think he's a reindeer.

Unless we care for the trees, it'll just be malls, everywhere!

Horton hears who? Not Pipkin. Pipkin's totally being ignored.

Pip's hanging with Yertle, the Top Turtle (for now). From up here Pipkin's thinking, "Wow, it really is turtles all the way down."

This turtle doesn't know which is worse: Yertle's thirst for power or the smell coming from A&F?

This turtle doesn't know which is worse: the smell from A&F or the smell from all these butts in his face?

All the way down.

Sam offered up some Green Eggs and Ham but they turned Pipkin's stomach. He's not a meat eater anyway. He'd rather be eating at Do-Rite!

The sculptures were only on display until May 5th, 2014 (which is when Pipkin saw them) but if you're in the Chicago area and you're in the Water Tower Place mall, you can visit The Art of Dr. Seuss Gallery on the second floor. The Grand (re)Opening Celebration of the gallery happens this Father's Day Weekend, Saturday June 14, 2014 from 11 AM - 3 PM. The small gallery is packed with illustrations, sculptures, sketches and lots of unpublished work from Theodore Geisel AKA Dr. Seuss.  If you're a fan of his work, it's not to be missed.