I am going to be completely honest. I am a bit lazy and usually do not have time at night to go blog exploring, so unless I hear about a great blog from someone or stumble across it, I probably have never heard of it. Which was the case of GlutenIsMyBitch. At the beginning of March several people I follow on Twitter started posting pics of these supercute “Fuck Flour” buttons and talking about this book they picked up titled Gluten is My Bitch. Even though I had sworn off buying any more books until I got through my backlog, I swung by the Book Cellar to get my own copy because with a title like that, how could I refuse?
To say I love this book would be an understatement. While April apparently has encountered more “run to the bathroom NOW” scenarios than I have, so many of the emotions that she talks about resonated deeply. It didn’t hurt that her writing style and tone are more than a little bit sarcastic. Plus the recipes look simple enough that even I couldn’t mess them up — if I ever decide to make one. You can only imagine my happiness when I saw that she was swinging through Chicago and doing a presentation at the Printers Row Lit Fest. In fact, I was so excited that I started to make the EL trip into the Loop a week early! D’OH! Thankfully a well-timed tweet from April saved me from the embarrassment of wandering around like a lost and confused puppy.On the proper day, Chicago decided it was finally time to crank the heat up a bit and supercharge the humidity in her honor. You know, ACTUALLY give us a day that felt like it belonged in the season we were in and a great day for the city to show off how fantastic it is when the temperatures rise and we all come out of hibernation. After a quick stop for an iced coffee IV, I was bright-eyed, busy tailed, happily caffeinated, and on my way to Printers Row and the Good Eating tent. Upon arriving I quickly spotted local GF bloggers Betsy and Andrea. We did a brief bit of catching up then it was time for April. Thanks to some pesky health and sanitation regulations, we could only look on as she literally whipped together 3 party appetizers, all while having a conversation with Monica Eng from the Tribune.
What I loved was, just like in her book and blog, April was completely open about her challenges, including those fun pre-diagnosis loo runs. Granted, I think she had many more “crap your pants” moments than I did, but every Celiac is different and her stories were just hilarious. Even though every Celiac/Gluten-Free person is different, while she spoke I looked around and saw so many people nodding their heads in agreement and understanding. After about 30-ish minutes, they opened the conversation up to questions. Through all of this, April continued prepping food that we couldn’t eat! Ah, those pesky laws.
At the end it was announced that April would be signing books under another tent. You know, that thing I did not bring because I wore my pin purse and the book didn’t fit? Yeah. That book. And somehow I ended up being one of the first in line. The day was saved when one of the volunteers gave everyone a post-it to write their name on for their autograph. Just like a in a cartoon, a lightbulb went off over my head. I realized that I could have her sign the post it and I would place it in my book when I got home! Brilliant!
I was already feeling pretty good, and my geek-o-meter was hovering in the high zone when it was my time to have my “book” signed. The geek-o-meter went through the roof when, before I said a word, April stated: “I know you.” We have never met in real life. We have never talked. We have had some Twitter exchanges, including getting the previously mentioned button, but that was it. A funny thing happens when the geek-o-meter maxes out. I get loud – er. I actually apologized to April because I felt that after that moment, I started yelling and being a spaz, and pretty much all those things that happen when I get really excited and lose my cool. You know, when I geek out. April was gracious, fun, and awesome. I even got a picture with her: Cute, right? Except April was behind the table and I was in front of it. My brain did not even THINK about asking if I could go around to get the picture. Nope. My brain saw an open space on the table and decided that I would just sit on the table and lean back. Cuz that is what you do, right? April has already blogged about the “inappropriateness” of this picture. I am going to apologize for the whiteness of my thighs in this picture. I don’t pre-tan and this was the first day that felt warm enough to wear shorts. Which means my legs have been encased in jeans for the past 9 months or so. So they are blinding. But really, this picture is thightastic. Enjoy!
Oh, and if you have not picked up the book — DO! It is actually one of the more accessible “Welcome to your new life” books I have read and it is one of the few ones that felt like it was written by someone less than perfect. You know, human. And funny. Cuz we all need to find the humor in our “where is the nearest loo” moments!! http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1617690309/ref=s9_simh_gw_p14_d11_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_r=0TPPEGXTR5B92302VH74&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938811&pf_rd_i=507846