I’ve not updated this bloody page in months, and likely subsequent posts will be next to zero. I don’t think, after 9.5 years of writing, bitching, and moaning, that I have the time or energy to actually sit down, write, and give thought to the things that irk me (this is why twitter exists). I will likely shut this down in the summer and let the wordpress blog wander, but just link to other projects.

Nevertheless, as long as this domain is still valid, I wanted to share two more things:

The first is that I’m just going to share photos of the transit adventures I’ve had (over the course of the last 7 years) into a tumblr scrapbook. You can see the collection here. I’m proud of the numerous amount of bus and transit related photos I’ve taken since Social Media has come about (and for what it is worth, it shows what a geek I am–and I am not afraid of that).

The second thing, is that over the last couple of years I’ve been asked about my twitter handle, @rookiephenom. This stemmed from an incident on Twitter in the fall of 2013 when my account was accidentally suspended:


I’ve had the handle for the better of 5 years (originally called “TheDaveS”) but the name changed after a few months. In fact, I used it as a universal moniker, utilizing it from AIM, Skype, OKCupid (which I am not on) to Facebook.

The history stems from when I was in High School after my first year on the debate team. Honored with the title “Rookie of the Year” honors along with a top 4-ranking in the City of Chicago (and this is 2002 mind you), and then gave the nickname “Rookie2Phenom.” A name I’ve had and kept throughout the years, only to revive it when I returned to Graduate School.

Needless to say, the nickname will likely die with me. The blog and its content is kept in the shade (or for when I need to realize how ridiculous my neuroticism has been over the course of the last 10 years). At least I can now focus my attention on other non-technological and technological things in my life.

I still have this. Enjoy yourselves.

Ode to the Blue Line

Being a reverse commuter for what’s recently the last four years has been not only an experience, but a trial in character building. Having to commute from the depths of hipsterville to the near middle of suburbia has been an exercise. Not so much is the issue of driving (no, that’s a lie, that’s a separate hell for that, and a different blog).

A poem, if you will:

The beginning of a 20 mile journey
The start of a new day
Roll out of bed to roll to the train.

A simple swipe of the card
Entitles you to one ride
Unless you have ventra,
In which you’ll be charged six.

As you walk up the stairs
You hear the rumbles above
Hoping that it isn’t your train
That’ll leave you behind

An eight car set
Take the front, the middle, or the rear,
But knowing where I’ll head
Probably a good idea to look up front

Some days you’ll have peace
Some days you…won’t.
Either you’ll have the 7am teleconference
Or the crazy guy who proselytizes about the end of western economic capitalism and civilization.

Maybe you’ll hear some jackass
Who decided a fight with their boo is a great idea
But when you’ve not had a cup of coffee
Your thoughts turn into rage-o-holism.

Western. California. Logan square.
Reverse commuters come in shapes and sizes.
Rockabillies sport their daytime best
And so do the hipsters
Vera wang, bendel, Gucci.
Your weekday best starts right here right now

Belmont, Addison, Irving Park.
More and more people load on.
People aren’t aware of the crowding
But would rather not wait 4 minutes
For the next train behind us.

Yuppies galore
Often times confused with their suitcases
Often times knocking other people with their bags
Often times not courteous of their surroundings
Then the strollers
With the children inside
Completely ignorant of the rules
And of the space
The times get worse

Jefferson Park, Harlem
The longest stretch betwixt
With feelings that the train will never get there.
Stop. Go. Stop. Go.
I look at my watch
I fear that I’ll miss my transfer again

We slowly turn to Cumberland.
Where now time is of the essence
And lord knows I worry more
Because if I am off by a millisecond,
Then it’s a 15 minute penalty.
The train stops, and a herd of people get off
Often mixing with people heading west
Every second counts
Tick tock tick tock
One big sigh.
Followed by the occasional stiff arm.

Then rosemont. My stop.
The clock must be off. The bus already has left.
Running down the stairs
Often times stiff-arming Mr. Doomsday
Knowing a juke move is imminent
If I’m going to make it to work on time

Success is measured in arrival times
And knowing it’s public transit, “on-time” is a miracle.
And as much as I get upset (often)
I’m soon reminded that it could always be worse

I could be driving.

News Report on Model Illinois Government

Students take a stab at state policy.

Long story short: This is what and where I’ve spent every last weekend in February for the past 6 years. Needless to say, they’ve got some good shots of me on the report.

I’ll have a post-mortem blog on this soon.