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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

The Monz-Murs Connection!

Monz dittos yesterday's lunch, but adds string cheese and jalapeno pistachios, which he bought at Walgreens' while waiting for his passport photos. Makes a difference, as lunch goes up to a definite "yummy."

The editors take this opportunity to respond to a letter from the MYL mailbag!

"Dear Editors:

While we are enjoying the motherload of Monz information on the blog, we don't feel we're getting the complete Monz experience. Words appearing on a cold electron-produced screen cannot replace the cadance that comes from natural conversation. Is there anything you or Monz can do to help in this regard?"

Yes! During the myl trip to Canada, the Music Editor (ME) was listening to hit rapper Murs' song "Sillygirl" and he was struck by how much the spoken-word, non-rap intro, especially the part that goes "it's not hot, it's not cute, and it's not gettin you anywhere, and it's about to get you fired so, calm it down." is exactly the way Monz sounds sometimes -- check it out!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Sister Golden Hair Surprise!

Monz is having corned beef on whole grain bread, with beer mustard and an orange. While he has not had this particular lunch recently, he is quite confident it will be yummy.

Although Monz is a happily married man, we pressed him to take the What Celebrity Would You Date? quiz. Guess Who?!

Monday, May 29, 2006

They're Lying on the Beach Perpetrating a Tan!

It's the unofficial start to Summer for those women looking for a brother with the money to be their man. Hope they find someone like Monz, who was busting legal moves this weekend, taking time out today for a turkey sandwich on black bread from Boston Blackie's. "Pretty good."

Friday, May 26, 2006

Power Combo!

This morning while en route to the myl offices, the EIC was handed a flier for Executive Boxing. Whatta coincidence! Monz boxes (see supra), Monz has been known to have a box lunch, Monz is boxing his cold and Monz has always celebrated Boxing Day (if not explicitly). As for Executive, been there, done that! Now he works as a mild-mannered (but always zealous) attorney and munificient-spirit-spreading blog inspiration.

As opposed to the editors, who are high tailing it out of town to visit Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario for the holiday weekend without waiting to see what Chinese Food Friday brings. We respectfully ask Monz to commentblog the results. Have a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend everybody!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

So L7!

Baker's L7, that is! For those not in the oh-so hep know, L7 is slang for "square." Yesterday, Monz provided Mrs. Monz with late night dinner company at Baker's Square, picking up a ham & swiss ciabatta and lovingly carrying it to the office fridge this morning. The editors were on the line for the first bite. "Mmm. I can't taste it." We are still contemplating this inscrutable message.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

He Can Only Be Visceral!

Mark Monz' taste buds are laid low by his cold, but Monz does not quit! Monz fights on, ordering something quite tasteful (Gennessee Cafe for two Chicago dogs sans onions). He might not be able to taste them, but he can feel those peppers! And having no taste buds doesn't mean you have no taste. Check out Monz reaction to the New York Times survey of the high literati for the best fiction of the past 25 years. Confederacy of Dunces, multiple Phillip Roth? Yawn. DeLillo? Blech. Cormac McCarthy? "Makes me want to take a baseball bat and slam the faces of each person who voted for him until there's nothing left -- I'd be wittier and less violent if I wasn't sick, but I am sick so I can only be visceral" Even more Phillip Roth? "This is the most exasperating...WTF? Reveals everything wrong with literary criticism, the literati and writing, just towing the party line and p*****ng me off -- give me a break, "Claire Bloom didn't like me, wahhhhh!" John Updike's Rabbit novels? "Brilliant Genius! Kick Ass!"

And for the winner (Toni Morrisson's "Beloved?") "Showing why this is a trumped up CONtest. Yes, we're all losers!"

And what is Monz' pick for best of the quarter century? "Sweet William" by John Hawkes. Taste that!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The End Is Near!

What is a greater sign of the apocolypse? That Monz, while having "the usual" notices a stark increase in mentally ill people "yelling-God-stuff" around downtown Waukegan? Or that, after postponing a planned, timely interview with the Monz (because yet another insidious virus has attacked) concerning a recent literati event, the editors planned to parody The Supreme's classic golden oldie "You Can't Hurry Love" only to find it's been done before?

Monday, May 22, 2006

Lunch, Eh?!

Monz puts lunch into a vortex warp by stopping off in Ohio for lunch at Canada's finest, Tim Horton's. Toasted chicken club of meager proportions, thus he adds a couple of bagels to chomp on down the road (plus a peach drink). But wait! How can Monz go to Tim Horton's and not have...? "Coffee and donuts" Monz finishes our thought for us. "Because this is o-HI-o, not Cah-NAH-dah!

Meanwhile, could it be that a certain ornithological classic rocker is a stingy, standoffish, significant-other-controlled jerk? We're just asking...

Friday, May 19, 2006

Monz Yummy Breakfast!

Alas, as deadline approaches we have not received Monz' lunch report. We fear he is fruitlessly scouring southern Ohio looking for Chinese take-out. However, he did call-in early this morning with a breakfast report! Crossing the border into West Virginia, Monz stopped by Bob Evans (which are pretty scant in the Chicagoland area) for some whole wheat pancakes, taking time to admire the well-maintained highways and cobblestone streets.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Big Wheels Keep on Turn, Turn, Turning!

Spooky. Readers may recall that once a year Monz travels to Ohio to hang out with Jorma Kaukonen and friends at Jorma's Fur Peace Ranch, and maybe pick up a few guitar playin' pointers along the way. In the past we've anounced these trips by quoting Willie Nelson's "On the Road Again," as the life Monz loves truly is making music with his friends. And by utter coincidence, Monz stops off en route for lunch at a Dairy Queen in Nelsonville! Grilled chicken sandwich and chocolate shake. Last year Monz wowed Jorma and his wife. This year former Byrds-leader Roger McGuinn is about to receive the Monz Experience!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Chinese Food -- It's Not Just For Fridays Anymore!

Ma Po Tofu and eggroll (fried rice too bland to mention), today's special at Fong's Kitchen.

Which reminds us...

The fried Chinese food, the fried other foods, the zesty spreads, the orgasmic-like gratification that comes from satiating a ravenous appettite has taken it's toll. Not on Monz, who pumps and jumps with all the zeal of a street corner preacher! On the Food Editor (FE). The FE has been talking lately of going on a diet. Not just any diet, but a trendy diet. A relatively untested diet. A diet which, after it was explained to us, made us roll our eyes in disbelief. Like Al Franken at then President Bill Clinton's press club roast, we've decided that "we can have some fun with this." Over the next few days we'll be dropping some tantelizing hints as to what this mysterious diet might be. Then we will blog the FE's experience -- hopefully he'll be dropping some tantelizing pounds!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

$685.00 Per Oz.!

They say silence is golden, which makes this one of our posher posts and Monz has not checked-in! In the spirit of recent posts, we were going to present this list and get Monz' opinion. Instead we're left to contemplate how the fate of the free world may rest on how loudly "Sunshine of Your Love" was playing this morning!

"No lunch for Monz!" (tied up in a long but apparently productive pretrial conference)

Monday, May 15, 2006

The Great Lunch Heist of 2006!

Well, not exactly, but it could have been! Here's the deal: our young pup Sports Editor (SE) volunteers once a month to help make lunches for a Chicago West Side charity, which in-turn distributes the lunches to hungry local residents. For out-of-town readers, the west side is the poorest part of town, but the areas closest to downtown have been quickly gentrifying. So quickly, in fact, that a condo developer made this charity an offer they couldn't refuse, and now they are building a new facility a mile to the west. In the interim, the lunches are being distributed out of a parking lot. Since nobody else could drive the lunches to the parking lot, the SE was asked if he could haul them over and wait for the charity's officials and a volunteer from a north suburban location to show up. The scheduled time was 11:00 AM. The SE showed up at 10:45 and already there were people gathering in the lot. As soon as the SE parked his lunch-packed car, he was approached by a man and a woman. They claimed to be from the charity, that the director who was normally supposed to be there couldn't make it, and that he was to take down some contact information about the SE's group and then we could leave the lunches with him. The SE was a little suspicious. He'd been approached by would-be "early birds" back when he dropped off lunches at the old place. Could this be a dastardly plot to snag --all-- the lunches? But what if it was legit? He didn't want to insult this guy by effectively calling him a crook, a liar, a swindler, a rapscallion of the worst srot! "Uh, ok, but actually I'm supposed to talk to the person who is coming from (up north), so I guess I'll hang out a while."

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. The minutes pass. Nobody is showing up, except for more area residents. The SE, who kind of stands out in this crowd, is getting antsy. He's tried calling all the numbers he's been given: the director, the director's assistant, the project manager's cell. Nobody is answering! Could the plot run even deeper? Did this guy have accomplices who kidnapped these people... or worse?! The SE was about to dump the lunches and hightail it out of there when he heard a voice in his head. The voice of the Monz! Monz was saying the third commandment of myl: Thou Shalt Not Deprive Others of Their Yummy Lunch! And while the SE has doubts as to these lunches yumminess (bologna sandwich, bag of chips (assorted varieties), apple and two cookies), he resolved to see his mission through. And, by no coincidence, he was moved to call the director again, who this time picked up the phone and assured him all was well (and that this dude was taking any leftovers down the street to some church). So, on behalf of the hungry of Chicago, we say "thank you, Mark Monz!"

And what fuels such a spirit? "Leftover pizza and some chicken thing" from the Italian Kitchen, that's what!

Friday, May 12, 2006

I Want Lunch!

Today is not only my last day of guest-blogging for awhile, but it's Chinese Food Friday! I was going to cap the week off with some excellent before and after shots of today's lunch, but I opted for just using a photo of the fortune I received instead. I went to China Garden for some Roast Pork Mai Fun and Chicken Fried Rice with an eggroll. All in all pretty good, ungreasy and filling. A little too much cabbage and onion in the noodles for my taste, however.

Today I am going to finish up Monsieur's request with 5 more random tunes from my ipod. Hang on, let me plug it in . . . ok! Here goes:

6: "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue" by Bob Dylan from Bringing It All Back Home. I was aware of this tune long before 1981, but I didn't care. In 81, Dylan was born again and losing fans and his reputation. This was great because it meant that when he toured that year, it was really easy to get great seats! My friend and I went to see him and sat in something like the 6th row center. The show was excellent. This was the final tune he played that night -- he came out alone with just his acoutic guitar and ripped into it. It was an epiphany!

7: "Hungry Freaks Daddy" by the Mother of Invention from Freak Out! What a great Album! Back when local record stores were local record store, I walked into the local record store and saw this sitting in the Zappa section. It was an original pressing on Verve that had probably been sitting there since 1966. I snagged the 2 LP set for $4.95 and walked out. The title alone made me love it, but when I heard the tunes, I freaked out! Zappa was never better than this album. And it made dealing with all the tools in high school so much easier!

8: "Embryonic Journey" from Jefferson Airplane's Surrealistic Pillow. I got this LP as gift for my birthday in Junior High. I remember the first time I heard this acoustic guitar finger-picked piece of genius. I said to myself, "those two guitar players kickass!" When I got a little older, and I kept listening to it, I realized that it wasn't two guitar players, it was only one! And the author was listed as Kaukonen -- so I knew that one guitar player was Jorma! Since then I've had lots of fun adventures with Jorma, but none as seminal as sitting in a room with his as he taught me how to play this tune!

9: "Little Know it All" by Iggy Pop from Skull Ring. This ferocious angry rock anthem should have been the song of the year when it was released a couple of years ago. And I'm not even in Iggy's fan club!

10: "Wasn't Born to Follow" by the Byrds from The Notorious Byrd Brothers. I first heard this when I watched "Easy Rider" for the first time in high school. The tune was used prominently in the soundtrack and the use of mega-heavy phasing blew my youthful mind! And the Rickenbacker 12-string! I never got over that. The song is a Goffin-King typical 60's pop tune, but in Roger McGuinn's hands it becomes so much more.

Back to you, editors!


Thursday, May 11, 2006

In the Mood For 'Za!
I'm still sick, and I'm getting sick and tired of being sick! I have to go out of town next week and I've got a lot to do this week in preparation! I need to be well! Anyway, I've had a low-level craving for 'za since I've been back from Savannah. Today, I satisfy that craving by walking over to the CSC and ordering a slice of cheese and a slice of pepperoni. This is what it looked like:

Ale wrote requesting the drink be added to the photos -- there you go!

Rumor has it that a movie was shot in the locale of my office: check it out here.
Further rumors note that . . . not one . . . not two . . . but THREE NEW RESTAURANTS are going to open in Waukegan this spring/summer. I happened to walk by a new Italian place being built on Gennessee St yesterday. Can't wait! Lunch shall hit new frontiers and new boundaries!


Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Size Doesn't Matter!

A most unusual day calls for a most unusual lunch! Today I headed over to Subway for a footlong turkey&ham on Hearty Italian with lots of peppers and Baked Lays! I'm sure it would be yummy if only I could taste. Not even the hot peppers could break through the virus barrier.

Today I'm not gonna deal with another request, I'm gonna go with science and inspiration. A loyal reader commented about bite size and ferocity in yesterday's pics. So today I decided to experiment. Take a half of a Subway Sub and bite into it and measure it to see what happens. Here are the results:

Whoa. Not as big as I'd imagined. Still, it's not size but what you do with it, and I wolfed this 'wich down in no time! Make of it what you will.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Good Night, Future Boy!

Still feeling horrifically ill, but still smarting from the injustice of missing out on cinco last week, I headed over to the Genessee Restaurant for a torta cubana! I ordered it with rice instead of fries. Holy moly! It's huge! I can't report whether its yummy or not because I can't taste it.

Back to my stack of requests: Paul Christo or Juan Snugles, one of those people, requested more "Before and After" photos! Call me the lunch genie cuz I'm here to grant your wish!! However, I'm modifying it -- I couldn't down this whole thing so I offer up "Before and During" photos!

Before: (Note lack of fries as per my order)


Thanks Paul or Juan!


Monday, May 08, 2006

Still Ill!

I'm still fighting this horrible spring virus. But my appetite is back, with a vengeance, and for lunch today I had a corned beef sandwich on WG bread with beer mustard, an apple, a Breakstone's Cottage Doubles and I brought an orange I may pound later. Onward. I've had requests for things here during my guest-blogging stint, and I now turn to the top of the stack. Monsieur writes last month, "I would like to suggest a new music-related posting in which Monz comments on 10 random tunes on his iPod (similar to The Onion's A/V Club "Random Rules"). Monz could explain why he likes the tune, where/when he first heard the tune, etc. We loyal readers yearn to know more about what 'makes Monz Monz.'"

Well, Monsieur, I'm way too sick and tired to write up 10 tunes so I'll split this entry in two. I'm good for 5 now and 5 another day! Let's dive into my iPod! Hold on, I'm flipping through . . . hold on . . . . OK . . . .Five Random Tunes:

1: "Elbow Blues" by the 88 from their LP "Kind of Light." I first discovered this band one night at one of the best gigs I ever saw -- Gwendolyn and the 88 at the Hideout. Gig dignity was all over the place as this band ripped through an acoustic set to a very very small but appreciative audience. After the gig, I bought their 2nd CD and went online to check them out a little more. I went to their website where they kindly offered this tidbit from their first LP as a free download (hint: I think it's still there!) and it kicked my ass. Ouch.

2: "The Good in Everyone" by Sloan from "One Chord to Another." I first heard these guys on a local radio station in the very early nineties. Then they seemed to disappear from local radio. One day in the later nineties, I was bored as hell with rock and remembered them -- I went to their website and wound up ordering a random LP of theirs just to see what would happen. Well, what happened was it changed my life! This was the first tune on the LP, and I never looked back. Sloan! They restored my faith in rock n' roll!

3: "The Adultress" by the Pretenders, currently from the "Pirate Radio" box. A more recent addition to my 'pod, this tune brings back memories of when their second LP was the new one, and I taped it and slapped it into my walkman. I was working at my dad's place that summer and I'd drive to work with him. He used to listen to AM talk radio blasted really loud, so I'd plug into my Walkman and crank this. If only I knew what I was getting into . . .

4: "Crow Jane" by Skip James from the classic LP, "Today!" One of the sprightliest, jauntiest tunes about murdering your chick ever recorded! OMG! Skip is easily the angriest, most miserable bluesmen ever to walk the earth (he really was -- research him if you get a chance). Kudos for that! I first heard this when my brother bought me the LP many years ago. You really gotta hear this, the music (a solo acoustic guitar) sounds like he's about to play the happiest tune ever. Then he starts singing in his ghostly falsetto about killing Crow Jane. The dichotomy never ceases to freak me out and leave me muttering to myself.

5: "I'll Run the Jack on You" by Dave Cloud from the seminal "Song I will Always Sing." Low-fi rockin' madness! From the indelible retro accapella intro, to the repetitive riff that just drives you straight to rock n' roll nirvana. It's got everything: distorted guitars, revenge fantasy lyrics, pounding drums and vocals unlike anything you've heard in rock n' roll.

This was just a random sample from the currently 7+ thousand tunes on my pod. Whew!


Friday, May 05, 2006


I'm still ailing. First, let me tell you all about what I missed yesterday. The CLC had their annual Cinco de Mayo celebration yesterday (!) in their plaza, about a block from here. Rumor has it that lots of lunch delicacies were offered up. I was busy getting my throat swabbed in the ER.

Today, however, is Chinese Food Friday!!!! I had Hunan Chicken and pot stickers from Fong's kitchen (because it was close) and the warm mushiness of it felt good on my otherwise destroyed throat. I apologize for the lack of fun pictures and other stuff this week. I intend to make up for it next week! Stay tuned!!


Thursday, May 04, 2006


too sick to blog . . .

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Quit Loafing Around!!

Today I headed over to the County Street Cafe to try something new! No more standard sandwiches, no salads that always look appealing and wind up disappointing! No way! Today I went over to the hot food dudes and ordered meat loaf with mac n' cheese! Really good, but not like mom's (I had a roommate in college who, rarely, spoke words of wisdom. On one of those occasions he famously uttered, "the only good meatloaf is your mom's.")

Today I am just treading water, in anticipation of tomorrow's lunch, which promises to be a multi-cultural extravaganza not seen on MYL in many, many months! Hold tight!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Every Picture Tells a Story!

I take your concerns and suggestions seriously (at least during my stint as guest-blogger!) One thing you've asked for, over and over, are more pictures! So, in that spirit, here is today's lunch:

In case you can't tell, it is a footlong turkey on hearty Italian with lots and lots of peppers. I know the editors are jaded and enjoy calling this, "the usual." However, there was nothing usual about this 'wich! It was yummy!

Monday, May 01, 2006


Welcome to two weeks of substitute blogging! We flew in from Savannah yesterday. O'Hare was all backed up due to heavy rain and winds. But the flight was smooth and everything worked out nicely. Just to backtrack a little, on Saturday, we had lunch at Moon River Brewing which was bad and was a lesson to all restauranteurs on what happens when you let teens run a non-fast-food restaurant. Even the beer was mediocre. My lunch of a Moon River Whammy (shrimp and ham on a hoagie) was a giant let-down. The onion rings were fried -- way over fried -- and were like eating dark-brown bricks. Luckily I was able to digest it.

Which brings us to today's lunch. Last night we ordered pizza from the Italian Kitchen, and cold 'za leftovers combined with an apple and carrots make up today's offering. Pretty good, if not ecstatic yummy.

Over the next two weeks I will be bringing several blog-items "to the table." I will be dealing with some of your requests and, of course, there will be some excellent before and after photos!

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