Spring Break (woo.)



Well, OK, it’s not spring, but apparently these days winter lasts about two weeks at the end of December. For all intents and purposes it’s Spring.

Some lily varieties have evolved to mimic local fauna for protection

Congratulations on being present for an historic event in Chicago history:  this is the first time in recorded history that Chicago had no snowfall in January and February!

Big thanks to the parts of the current administration that are trying to get us out of the Paris accord.  Real win for America, that.  I’m sure Steve Bannon knows science better than…..scientists.







Are you interested in seeing how you or your home will disappear into the sea? Check out this interactive map to learn just how much water your community can stand!











Can you believe Spring Break (woo) is approaching?  Just two short weeks from now you have the luxury of realizing how far behind on your thesis-work you are, and how little time it will be before you are once again ejected into the cold reality of professional life.

We of the MAPH office thought we might check in to highlight a few things to do over the next month or so in Chicago, and offer some advice as the end of the year races towards us.

Good advice. Bill Nye, 2020

OK Important Stuff First: Self-Care

This can be among the most stressful times of the year for MAPHers. You may feel isolated, under siege, and not up to the task of the final months of the program.


Don’t forget your project here: being a MAPHer is harder than being a first-year PhD student, because you are producing your thesis in addition to a FULL class load.

But it will get a little easier in Spring quarter. As you know, next quarter you will only have 2 classes. For about 3 days, you’ll say something like, “The rest of the year is a breeze! I love Spring Quarter!”

Then you will say something like, “I fucking hate Spring Quarter.”

It can be hard to get real serious about your thesis. It’s stressful to have looming deadlines.  And you will find that having two classes still keeps you extremely busy (after all, you may have been ignoring roughly the amount of reading of a full class between your three winter classes).

But overall, I think MAPHers really come into their own in Spring.  All of a sudden your cobbled-together mass of thesis starts to look like a professional piece of academic work.  You get onto the Irony listerserv and start seeing all the badass jobs you can do as a humanist.  You start to internalize the waves of theory that have been hitting you for six months (thaaat’s what Hegel was doing!)

The weather will be gorgeous.  Or it will be super cold.  Or it will get to like 90 degrees and humid.  Pretty much up in the air.

(see what I did there?  up in the air?  the weather is up in the air?)

Also groom yourself

You might actually have some breathing room.  You might actually be motivated to get out of Hyde Park.  I think you SHOULD get out of Hyde Park.  Get a little Vitamin D, see this great city. Take the architecture tour. Take care of your mental health.

On that note, here are some things to do in the coming weeks.  There is SO MUCH going on, this is only a tiny slice of stuff that jumped out at me.

Things to Do:

Baconfest: April 1

It’s baconfest people. ‘Nuff said.

Women Perform Shakespeare: March 3-26

Woman play all the parts in Henry V, a war story about leadership in the face of adversity at City Lit Theater. Discount tickets $6 to $10.

Orchid Show: March 3-26

Nothing says springtime in Chicago like a presentation of East Asian flowers brought to this continent in the 1700’s. Seriously though, they are gorgeous. Or if you want to go emo, check out their corpse flower. If you can get there, it’s worth it. Add a trip to the B’hai temple while you’re up there.

Official Blurb:

See 10,000 blooming orchids at the Orchid Show, with morning music Tuesdays & Thursdays, orchid sales March 11 & 12 & 30, and an Evening with Orchids cocktail tasting March 16 at Chicago Botanic Garden.

Personally I would prefer blooming onions, but this is cool too

Rabbits love orchids

Peace on Earth Film Festival Mar 10-12:

Take a break from the blockbusters and learn a thing or two at the Peace on Earth Film Festival, which showcases a series of social justice-oriented films and filmmaking panels.

The three day event showcases films about social justice and human rights with the aim of advancing world peace. This year’s opening night films address prison reform with “Beyond the Wall”, a behind-the-scenes documentary and a drama by award-winning director John Hancock starring Nick Nolte. Other notable films include Sharon Stone’s conversation with Skokie resident and Holocaust survivor Sam Harris and a documentary about the Onondaga Nation waging a battle with the U.S. government for its land in central New York.

Adult Variety Show: March 3 – June 23

Kiss Kiss Cabaret is a fun mix of burlesque, off-color comedy, music, magic, and variety acts at Uptown Underground for age 21+. Discount tickets $14.

If you haven’t been to the music box, you should go.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade: March 11

The St. Patrick’s Day Parade goes north on Columbus Drive from Balbo to Monroe, rain or shine. Free.

Celebrate St. Patty’s day like a true Chicagoan: Get drunk at 10am, get in a fight at 10:15am, vomit into the river at 10:28am (they turn the river green!) and fall asleep at 10:35am.

Repeat at Noon, 5pm, and 10pm.



Or maybe you don’t want to celebrate like an as–I mean, like an enthusiastic Chicagoan.  If so, check out the Irish-American Heritage Center’s St. Patrick’s Festival:

Not down for the madness of the downtown parade but still want to celebrate? Celebrate a more traditional way with Irish food, dances, and live music at the Irish-American Heritage Center’s St. Patrick’s Festival.

Mar 17-19: Take in a series of workshops, competitions demonstrations at the Chicago Tattoo Arts Convention, where artists from across the nation come to show off their skills. You can even get inked yourself.


Free Food Festival: March 18

Sorry, did you not see that?  FREE FOOD FESTIVAL.

Good Food Festival is all about locally produced food, with speakers, micro workshops, chef demonstrations, vendors, and a kids’ corner. Register free online and bring your confirmation.

Mar 17-19:

Encounter a whole new level of pet obsession at the Chicagoland Family Pet Expo. Shop for the latest pet treats and toys, or meet with breeding clubs and rescue organizations.
No pets allowed lol.


OK, that’s it for now.  Have a great spring break y’all

Love you,

Yer Menters

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *