Preckwinkle Should Impose Mob Tax Instead Of A Gun Tax

Preckwinkle Should Impose Mob Tax Instead Of A Gun Tax

Beginning today all law-abiding citizens of Cook County (but not in Chicago) must pay a $25 Tax when purchasing a gun. Well, first off, I would hope Cook County citizens use better judgement and decide to purchase their firearms in any other county than Cook because I would not stand for such a clear violation of one's Constitutional Rights via Preckwinkle's selective taxation schemes.

Second and every bit as important - how about Toni Preckwinkle impose a special "Cook County Mob Tax" to punish those engaged in mobbing? Especially after this weekend and the warmer weather approaching? Besides, this isn't the first time mobbers have wreaked havoc and chaos in Chicago / Cook County. What do you say Precki? Never mind that there will already be fines and legal costs because we already know most will get off with a slap on the wrist and if they do go to trial, most will claim poverty and waste tax dollars by requesting a Public Defender. Let's face it Precki just for that reason alone you should be adding a mob tax!

Heck, that tax can even be deducted immediately from any government benefits that the parents of these kids (or the teens themselves) get to ensure immediate payment. Maybe then, some of these parents will keep a better, watchful eye on their wild offspring. Hey - that may even entice a parent or two to take an active part in their kids' life instead of letting them run wild in the streets. The parents of these kids are just as responsible for the actions bestowed upon society and taxing them instead of law-abiding citizens is the more equitable solution.

After all, law-abiding citizens shouldn't be forced to supplement bad parenting and/or government's own ineffectiveness.

Despite that, though, we probably shouldn't expect Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle or Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to do anything that would actually punish the criminals. Why? Because they both have a perverse and misguided view on what the real problem is and how to solve it. Instead they continue to go after law-abiding citizens and trampling their Constitutional Rights (and I ain't talking about large clip automatic weapons here because even I feel that those are unnecessary) all the while refusing to believe the facts. Which are very plain and simple - criminals and gang-bangers couldn't give two shits about gun laws or society for that matter. Criminals will always have access to illegal weapons period!

So far as I am concerned, people like Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle or even that consummate outsider who sticks his nose where it don't belong New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg should use their intelligence instead of lying to the people as to what the real nature of their agendas are. You see these Liberal Democrats have already denied citizens of real representation as they move this nation ever closer to a complete oligarchy. And that oligarchy is already alive and well here as political insiders and cronies share in the spoils of taxpayer monies while denying the people proper government and essential services like public safety.

The bottom line is that Emanuel and Preckwinkle both would rather load up (and bog down) their respective government bodies from providing the necessary monies to properly police the streets and fight its crime. Let's face it, all these so-called taxes in the public interest will be squandered and diverted to the big salaries of political hires and patronage staff that do little to no work.

What a bunch of hypocrites!

And please don't delude yourselves for a second that what I said earlier isn't true despite the continuous cock and bull about how their new taxes will make a difference. We have all seen that that rarely, if ever, happens here. Like I said it most always winds up in the pockets of their interloping insiders and campaign contributors. So you can just fuhgettaboutit with these political yo-yo's. They would rather rape you of more taxes than solve problems because the problems we have are not really all that new - are they?

Sadly that is the true cost of political corruption!

As for the mobs, well, let's just say that they are nothing more than a blight on society. They are irresponsible amoebas without a brain or a soul. And now that summer and its warm weather are around the corner these mindless animals will be wreaking more of their havoc and chaos in Chicago Transit Authority Trains and Buses or on the streets of the Magnificent Mile.

Hopefully it won't be long before the courts finally shut down our misguided lawmaker's last attempts to stifle our right to carry. But until then there are ways to protect oneself. People can go to their local bank and load up on some rolls of half-dollars and stick them in a sock. Believe me, getting whacked in the head with a few rolls of coin will stop most people from inflicting harm. If that option doesn't suit someone, well, a can of pepper spray or mace will also give you some protection to ward off an attacker. Most important though - keep your IPhone's and the like in your pockets - you should always maintain a vigilant eye out for potential trouble. Unfortunately there are too many people out there tempting fate as well as an ambitious criminal.

As I said earlier, summer is coming and there will be hotspots where animals will try to disrupt things. As much as I would like to believe that the Chicago Police Department or the CTA Police will be there to assist someone - I wouldn't hold my breathe waiting. These two units just don't have enough personnel to protect everyone and budget constraints (and government waste) continue to keep them undermanned.

As for tourists from around the world? Well they should be forewarned that the politics of Chicago and Cook County prevent any real or effective policing because politicians are more concerned with diverting tax dollars that they have waiting to spring upon them then making sure that their police force is properly staffed to fight crime. And that kind of sucks given that Chicago is an expensive place to visit because of their bevvy of taxes. However, the only consolation is that Chicago might be slightly cheaper than Michael Bloomberg's New York which still leads the way in over-charging its tourists.

In short, Chicago (and Illinois) have put people at risk because of its political greed and corruption. Sure there are a number of other places that are just as corrupt, but nowhere is it as open and in your face as it is in Illinois. Politicians here routinely thumb their noses at the taxpayers even after being indicted and/or convicted.

Now I hate to say this because it would hurt working folks, but I couldn't in good conscience invite my friends from overseas for a visit for fear that we could wind up in the wrong place at the wrong time should mobber violence erupt. And that is something I have never felt before whether here or to places traveled around the world.

You know, it is bad enough that residents of Chicago, or those living in the suburbs who also like to frequent the city feel as if Chicago just isn't worth the trip. Chicago has increased the costs to visit to such a point that she is no longer a preferred destination. So not only is downright expensive, but now you must worry about your safety. Well that is just not a bargain!

Of course this is just my own humble opinion.

But I have lived here long enough to know what's going on around here.

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  • If the Blackhawks go deep into the Stanley Cup playoffs, lets have fans NOT wear their headress-logo clothes or anyother obvious marker of their support. Then lets have someoe tweet about a coordinated flashmob. That would be fun to watch.

  • In reply to urbanleftbehind:

    That is an interesting thought urbanleftbehind. Quite frankly I agree that we can all do without the insanity that follows victorious sports celebrations. But hey, I don't get what that really has to do with what I have to say or have said in the past about the disparities of society.

    You know in some ways I understand the lashing out by youth left behind in neighborhoods that stayed impoverished for as long as they have. It is a real tragedy, but that is a mufti-faceted problem. First our corrupt politicians must take much of the responsibility for keeping people down - but on the other hand there is also a problem in many of these communities where we have out of control kids with no supervision, guidance or parental involvement. Both of these symptoms need addressing now. It has gone on far too long and new remedies need to be employed.

    Thanks for your comment.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Maybe his comment is related to when the Bulls won successive championships, a riot on the west side was predicted to follow.

    However, hockey fans seem to have other ways to celebrate, usually involving Labatt's Light.

  • In reply to jack:

    Indeed - but like I said to Urban... - I am not opposed to a "mob tax" in any scenario that results in violence or rioting, sporting events not withstanding. So I am not just targeting the gang-bangers. Mob violence is mob violence and I do not differentiate between the two.

  • The real issue is that like raising the cig tax to $3 (resulting in a total of about $7), this will just mean more business for Cabela's in Hammond and less for Cabela's in Hoffman Estates,* but no more revenue.

    As I mentioned before, Beavers didn't have to go out of the way to buy gas in Hammond and avoid taxes he imposed.

    Besides that, it has been pointed out that most guns used by the bangers aren't purchased from legal outlets.

    But on your Second Amendment rights, Toni didn't infringe them, just made them $25 more expensive. And I'm sure that since you live in Will County, you aren't going into Cook to buy your protection.

    _________
    *I mention that because I once bought a coat in Hammond, and somehow got on their mailing list after they opened the store in Hoffman Estates complaining about a Cook County proposal to ban the sale of certain weapons. My reaction was "why didn't you build in Kane County, instead?" BTW, the only warm winter coats are sold in sporting goods stores.

  • In reply to jack:

    There is a reason I Like you Jack - you are a sensible human-being. Illinois Machine Politicians like Preckwinkle are always quick to add another tax or fee without considering that people will just alter their buying habits to avoid them. Of course there are a certain number of taxes and fees that are predicated on a "captive audience" but this gun tax will just result in lost revenue and taxes.

    As for the 2nd Amendment Rights, yes true except there has been an agenda that started with the former weepy mayor who tried hard to act as if he was one of the Three Wise Monkeys - which clearly has been to impose a financial hardships / impediments for those who choose to exercise their 2nd Amendment Right. So my thinking is that that is a subversive act intended to justify the means. Granted your definition of the law may be correct but I still see it as an attempt to trample.

    It is probably a matter of semantics but I see that as being just as dangerous. And if truth be told, our less than illustrious leaders singe the edges of the Constitution more and more.

    Last but not least - I don't buy a fricking thing in Cook County anymore except for the occasional stops at Kauffman Bagels and/or Schmeisser's Meat in Niles. As for the gun tax yeah that won't effect me either as (a) I already have plenty of protection and (b) if I ever have the desire to add another, well there are plenty of Gun Shops right here in Will County. Matter of fact we even have good alternatives to Cabelas so should I ever want a particular product (winter jackets included) from them well they are just shit out of luck unless they deeply discount it to offset the taxes. BTW, I like Farm and Fleet in Oswego, they too have great prices on heavy duty coats and jackets / ammo / etc...

    I have become quite adept in sticking to my convictions in avoiding those taxes and fees I find overly oppressive. Heck I don't even use the Illinois Tollway as much as I used to - I am not in much of a hurry and know plenty of alternative routes that are just as effective for my needs. I know I am only one person with my own little protest - but I get a sneaky feeling there are others like me just the same who have changed their buying patterns.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Farm and Fleet is too far for me, but except based on where you grew up, Schmeisser's would be too far for you. Also, the last I looked there, they didn't have a price on the leberkase.

    Getting to the captive taxes point, most Cook County residents figured that out when Todd and Co. raised the sales tax 1%. Most merchants also figured what side of Lake Cook Road to open establishments.

    In repealing the 1%, my understanding was that Preckwinkle increased the "registered title use tax" which basically means that if you buy a car or boat, you pay the tax where you register it, meaning one living in Cook County can't avoid the tax. However, I read somewhere that she expects people who buy stuff over a certain value outside the county to report the use tax differential voluntarily. Lots of luck with that. Of course, we discussed the fraudulent sales tax "acceptance point" earlier.

  • In reply to jack:

    Normally Schmeisser's and Kaufmann's would be "too far" except I have a monthly doctor appointment in my old neighborhood. He is getting old but I prefer my family doctor since he knows my conditions best and he is like family. His office is on Peterson and Bernard (Kimball) so after the appointment Niles / Skokie is easy to get to via Caldwell. (BTW Schmeisser has a website and they also ship now so if you are still interested in the Leberkase). Oh yeah, over the winter my boy's Track and Field coach was giving lessons out of a facility on Touhy and Lehigh - again easy to get to my two preferred retailers. I guess in that sense it has worked out.

    As for Farm and Fleet, yes that would be crazy for you unless you were in the area for something - but they are really good and are easy to get to for us since we are on the far west side of Plainfield / Joliet. I suppose it is all relative anyhow - you go where it is convenient or if there is another purpose that takes you there. But since moving here F&F have gotten their fair share of business from us, quality and prices are good for a wide variety of products.

    Yes - no one will offer Precki any voluntary tax differential reporting so they are just shooting themselves in the foot and basically violating economic principles of diminished returns. But hey I don't feel sorry for them either. I just refuse to pay any more than I have to unless I choose to. I used to love stopping at Superdawg or Boobies in Niles for a bite to eat whenever the kid and I are together in that area - but we just go to other places we like as much in the collar counties.

    It is what is my friend, besides I am on a fixed income so spending frivolously is something we try and avoid you know?

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    You are mentioning too many places in Niles. ;-) I at least used to go to the Niles Polish Deli, but couldn't communicate more than "I'll have the $2.25 sausage." Also "is that breaded stuff chicken or pork," although I did have a taste for the bone in pork chop.

    Booby's was involved in the Niles political mess involving Nick Blase being convicted of an insurance kickback scheme. Some reporter asked the owner if he got his insurance from the agency giving Blase the kickbacks, to be which the response was "I'm doing business in Niles, what do you think?"

  • In reply to jack:

    I used to live in Niles and despite the shenanigans of Nicholas Blase, I did enjoy living there. But yes I remember the scandal well as well as every time Hillary Clinton came to town, they would shut down Booby's for her private party. But here is a tidbit for you - despite the corruption, Blase made sure that the residents also got something in return; i.e. free bus service for seniors, community centers for kids, etc.. So this was a Village with some peculiar anomalies.

    The Polish Deli you are talking about - is that one just south of Dempster on Milwaukee? Made some mean sausages there, but I still like Schmeisser's best. Hell, been going there for 30+ years and remember the old man fondly. His grand-kids are running it now but the quality remains superb and regularly stock up the freezer. Of course the Crown Roasts around the holidays from Mirrelli's was something special when the old man was alive. He poured his heart and soul into them. They have now moved to the shopping center on Milwaukee by Oakton and have a smaller store run by the daughter and son's.

    Sorry about "too many places" but those are fond memories for me and that is why I still go out of my way a bit to get their product.

    Matter of fact, Niles was were I had my first apartment so, so, many years ago. Many great memories - sorry.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Nothing to be sorry about, that's why I inserted the smiley.

    Yep, that's that Polish Deli. The main distinction, of course, is whether you want Polish or German.

    Now Tony's* is open on Greenwood (where Dominick's used to be), which has Italian and Polish, and occasionally Deli help that understands English (it is easier for me to say "I'll have two sticks of Ashland Polish in the ad").

    Another bit of Niles trivia--Walmart was running ads comparing the Jewel at 8203 Golf with the Walmart at 8500 Golf.** I said "Jewel solved that problem by closing its store in Four Flaggs." Apparently not, as a recent ad compared that Walmart with the Jewel at 8730 Dempster.

    ____
    *The sign says "Super Tony's Finer Foods," but I wonder if Super Tony is related to Super Mario.
    **I recognized the Chinese Buffet in the shot of the shopping center.

  • In reply to jack:

    Hmm wonder if Super Tony's and Tony's are the same outfit? We just had them open up here in Plainfield after Strack and Van Til's closed. Our Tony's mimics Caputo's which is our regular grocery store. Unfortunately we have to drive to the Far North end of Plainfield - but it is funny I used to go to the original in Elmwood Park when I worked in Franklin Park. What a great selection though. Our Caputo's have a big Polish section and we get a real kick out of that because Polish / German are so close food wise.

    Talking about Four Flaggs I remember this great off-shoot of JC Penny's - it was called the Treasure Chest (this was in the 70's) but they had some good quality stuff. Yeah Niles was something.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    I can mention another Niles one I mentioned on Aquinas wired.

    I was sitting in Grendel's Oil Change (next to the Niles Polish Deli) when a young woman sat down and started reading "Jesus, by Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI," when Alan Krashesky (Gesundheit) came on and said that the Pope had resigned. I told her "I guess you don't have to read that any more," to which she said something about its enduring spirituality, or something like that.

  • In reply to jack:

    Now that is funny. So I thought you lived further North but I guess Niles a regular stomping ground huh? Used to love the New York Bagel and Bialy joint off Greenwood and Dempster - had some phenomenal Chopped Liver and Noodle Kugel. Ahh the joys of being a Kraut growing up in Albany Park when it predominantly Jewish.

    The Omega on Dempster used to have a little old lady who came in especially to make their Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup. Man you got me hungry now.

  • Same Tony, but somehow the sign in Niles has Super. Maybe it is really Tony's Super Finer Foods, but I can't have fun with that.

    I'm not familiar with Treasure Chest, but I remember Venture across the street, both in 1976, and that it had not changed in 1996, but that's Walmart now.

    I confused the bagel place you mentioned with the one at Harlem and Dempster.

    I went to Omega a couple of times but was not impressed. I heard Marv Levy on a radio show from there once, and in combination with him hiring Dick Jauron, I figured he went senile.

    But as far as getting around, I told someone that I knew every Greek, spaghetti, pita and bagel place basically bordered by Vernon Hills, Buffalo Grove, Niles, Skokie, and back up the Edens. Maybe not so much now, but still pretty extensive. And I know which pita places are Assyrian, Palestinian (or Jordanian), or Israeli.

  • In reply to jack:

    I dunno - we must be related somehow or something because my catalog is quite extensive too. The Treasure Chest was the predecessor to the Target, it lasted about two years before Penny's pulled the plug because they were basically competing against each other.

    Talk about going up the Edens I still remember "Irving's Red Hots" original shop in the strip mall across from the mall. I knew Irving when he opened his shop by where the new rebuilt Kaufman's is now near the Skokie Swift. Heck I worked part time at Gold Standard Liquors when i lived in Niles and worked at Powers Regulator. Small world my friend.

    Speaking of about ethnic pita joints I used to love the Felafel King right there by the Swift too. Omega, depending on which location had certain things they were known for; the one on Dempster it was the Sweet and Sour Cabbage and their Skillet Breakfasts which were great after a good Horseback ride on the weekend.

    I miss 94th Aero Squadron up by Wheeling as well as Don Roth's and the Bagel Nosh on Willow Road in the strip mall across from the State Farm facility.

    Man I can go on and on just like you. Nothing better than a good meal in a place with some character. I kind of regret moving out this way - most of the restaurants are the same old, same old chains. But there are some exceptional places too if willing to take a pleasant drive to Lockport or Naperville.

    Still I am more inclined to go to places of "character" rather than ritz over-priced restaurants. Plenty of 5 Star w/ Three Star prices yet to explore. Besides, one finds the darnedest places when going to one of my kids high school sports or academic events.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Irving's is still near the Edens, but the one in Glenview isn't.

    Most of the other places you mention aren't either. The area east of the Dempster Skokie Swift is pretty much vacated, although someone put up a new Oberweis and burger combo store.

    Bagel Nosh doesn't ring a bell at all. 94th Aero Squadron became some kind of Russian supper club. As did several other places.

    The main thing one can say about Milwaukee Ave. is that La Francais, Don Roth and Hackney's are gone, but Chicago Bagel and Bialy and Superdawg are there. Which gets me to another story...

    I'm in Chicago Bagel reading a newsclip on how it survived the rest of them when a Mexican guy comes out of the back, points to a picture of himself, and says "Don't trust that guy." My response: "They all look the same."

    The only bagel place on Willow is Einstein's. After having run into Seth and Rachel working there, I asked "Jewish people aren't supposed to be working in bagel shops?"

  • In reply to jack:

    You are funny my friend, just love your stories of your quips.

    As for Skokie and Irving's, yes, I believe the one off the Edens to be only surviving one after their too fast an over-expansion plans unless the "prime jewel of that plan" still survives in Downtown Chicago. Not sure but if I had a desire to buy anything in downtown, well I would head over to Manny's Deli anyhow. As for the area by the Skokie Swift - yes most places are now long gone except for what you mentioned and the newly rebuilt Kaufmann's.

    Heck even the Gold Standard has been bought out by Binny's and the Edens Bowl and attached Edens Restaurant have been long replaced by that ugly strip mall at the intersection of Grosse Pointe Rd. and Dempster.

    Wheeling's North Milwaukee Ave area has indeed lost many a good restaurant for sure - but they do offer some really good memories for me. Of course I always thought that La Francais was just "too rich for me" back then and frequented either Don Roth's, 94th Aero Squadron and/or the Weber Grill.

    Superdawg wasn't even there (except for his supply warehouse) and took a long time to even come to the area. I used to work part-time for the one on Devon and Milwaukee in my younger days and the owner had wanted to open one in Wheeling, but hesitated. What took so long is anyone's guess but I am sure it had to with wanting to keep a tight control on his product.

    Matter of fact, the last time I spoke with the old man (and after his son took over the day to day's - he was not pleased with the arrangement Superdawg had made with Concession Concern (hint - hint) at Midway Airport. They insisted upon full control over his product and from what I have heard from many who have tried it there - it just ain't the same!!!

    Bagel Shops - well we have a severe shortage out this way. We have an American Bagels on Essington Road and or a number of Dunkin' Donut shops and a few Panera's. If we want Einstein well it is off to Naperville or the one in Lombard / Glen Ellyn when visiting our old neighbors and friends from Lombard.

    As I said before - the south side of Plainfield / Far West Joliet have too many of the same old, same old franchises. Although we do have a place in Shorewood called Mark's on 59 which have the best damn Shrimp and Fish.

    The Bagel Nosh used to be in the strip mall at Pfingsten and Willow Roads (it was in the far east corner of the "L" shape complex). I am sure it is long gone and replaced by someone as my recollections of the place go way back (circa 1977 / 1978). Oh yeah I am sorry as I may have originally misplaced it at Landwehr and Willow. Sorry - been way too long.

    Matter of fact there are just too few of the really good places left anyhow. But bringing back memories has been a hoot Jack. Heck even Niles has changed but so long as I still have Schmeisser's that is good enough for me and the wife. We prefer their products over any of the chain supermarkets except maybe for Caputos. We do have a Butcher on Rte 59 and Fort Beggs called Tischlers but they just can't compare to Schmeisser's and are actually pricier.

    Then again, I don't mind going back into Niles or Skokie after finishing up with my doctor.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    The strip mall at Gross Point and Dempster was torn down and replaced with another strip mall. I guess all strip malls have to have brick and stucco.

    2 malls at Pfingsten and Willow--the one on the south side got the brick and stucco treatment, but the only bagels there is Einstein in an outlot store. There used to be a Jacobs Brothers in the strip, which was taken over by a Big Apple Bagels, which complained about Einstein moving in, to which my reaction was "if your bagels were any good...." Then they closed.

    As far as Landwehr and Willow, the only things there are the backs of houses on 3 corners, 2 Pace 270 bus stop signs, and a synagogue built about 10 years ago that has a bizarre history behind it too.

  • In reply to jack:

    Change is inevitable I suppose. Of course my recollections of that area go back to the mid to late 70s but the Bagel Nosh was a family owned sit down deli. It wasn't a bad place to go for brunch. There was also a nice little Chinese place at the far east part of that mall on the south side. BTW: the mall on the North side did not exist at that time, I think there was a company on that corner.

    Yes I remember all the homes by Landwehr as well as being able to see the All State (sorry I originally indicated it was State Farm) Complex. If I am not mistaken if you went south on Landwehr towards Lake / Euclid you would run into the Mormon Temple at the "T" intersection after passing Glenbrook High and the Hospital. Like I said it has been awhile since I've been down that way. But I do recall an absurd sign when you drove west on Willow and it became Palatine Express, there would be sign telling you to watch out for low flying aircraft as if you could really do anything about it should it land on the roof of your car.

    Yessiree, I have lived and worked all over the Chicago Metro Area and used to have a lot of old haunts which elicit a smile or two. Have some very fond memories of places on the north end and wonder why I ever decided to go live south after getting out of the service - oh well. Prices were good and the size of the homes were definitely a good bargain for the square footage.

    I guess I can't complain although I wish this economy would get better instead of the media just giving us the illusion it is. It is like they are reading a prepared script. I mean I don't know how it is up by you - but we are not rebounding at all around here with all these damn short sales keeping our property values well below market value.

    Well time to get some bills paid - see ya.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    The Mormon Temple is still there.

    On the north side, someone who lived in my development from the start (around 1975) said she went to a nursery at Pfingsten and Willow to get trees, to which I asked if it was where Jewel or Walgreens is now, to which the answer was Walgreens (i.e. north side). There is a good Texas smokehouse casual restaurant in that plaza.

    I think the low flying aircraft sign is still there, but they did have several crashes, including killing the owner of Sybaris. Anyway, a plane coming over you at 20 feet while you are driving is a bit disconcerting.

  • In reply to jack:

    You know I remember that nursery now that you bring it up and their stock was good quality too. Texas Smokehouse, yip we have one too by the Joliet Mall on the loop. We also have a "real smokehouse" at Lily Cache and Rte 30 that seems to be real popular. We have had it a few times but not really keen on their finished product. Must be me?

    There have, unfortunately, been quite a few crashes at what used to be called Palwaukee. Mostly towards Wolf Road side but there was the one just a few years ago that wound up in the river between the Milwaukee and River Road Vee that is forest preserve land. I think they found the plane in the water close to Euclid.

    But even though there can be planes right above you I think it more practical to pay attention to your vehicle. Besides not a whole hell of a lot you can do if plops down on you you know?.

  • Most of the smoked food I've had wasn't good, but this place's is. However, it appears that with most smoked foods, I taste it again about 4 hours later.

    I did ask the proprietor (who always visits the table) what the Texas Cow Pie was (other than the obvious). A combination of ice cream, Reese's, and chocolate that looks like the real thing.

  • In reply to jack:

    I have been to a few really good places; i.e. near Maywood Park Racetrack there is a place Russell's Barbecue in Elmwood Park. Loved it and didn't come back on you later.

    Of course when I used to travel for work, I have many places that I fell in love with especially in Forth Worth Tx, Little Rock Ark and Wichita Ks. As for chains like the Smokehouse, it isn't that that they are bad it is just a matter of consistency of the end product from location to location.

    Speaking of consistency, well for me it would be Portillo's - no matter which one you go to - you know what you will get whether it be Beef, Burgers or Ribs (which I happen to like) and most attractive is the pricing because it is a good bargain for the size of the portion.

    Texas Cow Pies? One word.......mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Portillo/Barnelli's, I get split being about equidistant from the one in Niles (in front of the shopping center where you mentioned NY Bagel) and Vernon Hills.

    I also remember when Walter Jacobson had the investigative report that the 12 oz beer at Portiyyo's (I guess in his Mexican phase) was only 10.5.

  • In reply to jack:

    You know I am sure there are plenty of places on par or better than Portillo's/Barnelli's but when you factor in the price vs portion, well I find it good enough for me. Naturally when growing up in the city I can remember going to Al's Beef and another place whose name eludes me but was located south of North Avenue on Cicero, maybe by Augusta or so - but not only did he have the best Beef Sandwich but you could take home a tub with a side of au jus and savor it all over again.

    I remember when my boy's High School Football Team was playing at Hanson Stadium which, by the way, is also where my old High School (Prosser Vocational) is located. Before the game I took him and his pals to Maries Pizza on Lawrence and Pulaski and turned on another generation to some outstanding thin, thin crust pizza hand tossed fresh by the window for you. A true Mastercard moment. We enjoyed it and the fact that they are still there all these years is testament of what people think of it.

    I love to eat but I also love not paying through the nose for it either. Like I said, there could be better out there at times but I would still go to the places where I believe I am getting a fair deal and even more important where I am made to feel like their best customer even though I probably aren't.

    I think we are lucky like that here in the Chicago area and have been enough places to make a fair comparison.

    Walter Jacobson, well, he probably forgot that most bottled import beers are often less than the standard 12 or 16oz.. i.e. I used to enjoy buying Holsten Pils from my hometown in Germany and their normal size was 10.8 oz. or 320ml.. Just the way it is. Now if his Cerveza fria was drawn from the tap well that is another story entirely because he should have gotten the full measure then.

    Here's a funny, when visiting my best friend in England the first time I ordered a shot of whiskey the standard size was 1 Gill and I looked at the barkeep and said hey I want a shot of booze not a fish. Anyhow - the Imperial Gill is 5oz whereas in Europe proper it would be 4oz - either one is a strict measure and is drawn through a bubble-like reservoir at the end of a bottle the customer can clearly see. Even a Pint is strictly drawn and a pub can be fined if a "proper pour is not maintained." Hence the line on a Pint Glass and the beer or ale must be "foam or head free" to that line. How's that for some little known trivial fact?

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    I remember when Canada was on the imperial measurement system. I thought gas [then] at $1.79 a gallon was outrageous until someone told me it was the equivalent of 5 U.S. quarts. IIRC, pints of Molson on tap were similar.

    Now Canada has road signs with such things as "1/2 km." although it usually is "500 m."

    Thus, until Portiyyos starts selling .25 liter mugs, Walter had a point. Not to mention the stink over the Subway foot longs. I guess that's why other places sell "whole" and "half" sandwiches.

  • In reply to jack:

    When it comes to Canada, yes my friend - you and me both.

    As for Jacobson's beer saga I don't remember much but as I indicated previously - if the Mexican Beer was "bottled" then his diatribe would have amounted to much ado over nothing as most drinkers know (or should have) that imports generally are less than 12 fluid oz (although Portillo's should have had a disclaimer).

    If, however, this was drawn from a "tap" - then he had a legitimate gripe especially if domestic beer was being given a larger serving.

    As for Subway's (or anyone else) foot-long designation - well two schools of thought here. Is that just a marketing thing or the real deal? Not sure but I remember when I was a teenager working at the Tastee-Freeze we served foot-long hot dogs but they were actually about 10-1/2" as received from the purveyor.

    There was also a hot dog joint just west of Wrigley Field known for their foot-longs but I suspect that they too weren't really a full 12" since they probably used the same purveyors like Vienna, David Berg, etc..

    But I do believe that at the very least there should be at the very least some sort of disclaimer on products. You know like McDonald's and their Quarter-Pounder snafu. That would at least serve as protection from being slapped with a false advertising lawsuit.

    But I can see where a company can clean up big time by taking "a little bit here or a little bit there" - as that eventually adds up. Kinda like those fractions of a cent some clever thief in a bank discovered when he diverted them into a ghost account many many years ago. It accumulated to a vast sum!

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    The beer was on tap.

    The only thing Mexican was Walter's pronunciation, not the beer.

    The sign for the McD's Angus Third Pounder has small type at the bottom about "5.3 oz. before cooking."*

    I asked my girlfriend whether she preferred a 10 inch Italian (advertised at the Evanston Main St. Street Fair) or a 12 inch Polish (then offered at the place across the street from Booby's, 2 or 3 owners ago).

    ___________
    *Which reminds me of when I was in the same bagel place mentioned in connection with the news clipping, someone was arguing why if corned beef was $13/lb and he was asking for 8 oz., why the scale, when registering 0.80 said $10.40, but since he was holding me up in line, I had to point out that the scale was decimal, and that 8 oz. was 0.5 lbs. Of course, anywhere I go, a half pound is somewhere between 0.53 and 0.57, and the clerk flinches when it reads 0.49--getting back to your hotdog vendor point, they must all be trained to go over.

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