I feel I must mention that if you go to the xkcd store, they have a tie with xkcd characters!!! (I don't wear them but may need to buy my husband one.)
So, I forgot to tell you that Mrs B. and I did get to go out to dinner while we were in Chicago. (Slightly embarrassing side note: when we mentioned we were going to a nice restaurant, one of my students said, completely straight-faced, "Well, it's important to keep the love alive"; later, she walked past us, making a smoochy face. Sigh.)
We got seated at around 10 and had some pretty rad aperitifs made with bitters. And guys, the bread basket had a bread with salami in it. Win.
We had some pasta, which I forgot to photograph, but you know what pasta looks like. We then decided what the hell, and got dessert. Mrs B. had tiramisu and I got this:
Gelato affogato with some little homemade donuts (which look ginormous in the photo, I know, but I promise they were little).
All in all, it was a very successful conference, although I have to say I'm glad I don't have another one until next March. Stay tuned: I've got another trip to Chicago planned for December (and yes, I'm already working on the packing list, because I'm anal retentive--er, detail-oriented).