Dorchester Botanical Garden One Year Later

The corner of 64th and Dorchester.
A great deal has changed in a year since the Dorchester Botanical Garden was started. The garden has dramatically expanded with community and volunteer support.  It now encompasses the entire east side of the 6400 block of Dorchester. Garden founder William Hill has even started offering gardening classes. I can’t wait until the final plantings... Read more »

Who Sang It Best: National Anthem Diva Edition

I’m all in my feelings today about my Americaness (is that a word?) right now. The personal journey one side of my family made from Mississippi during the great migration. The part one of my grandfathers played in producing some of the steel that built the infrastructure of our country. The fact that I garden... Read more »

Project Motivation

After a much needed break, I realized that I have several unfinished home projects. And now they’re piled up and sitting all over the house. Or in the case of my non painted walls and (still) non organized second bedroom, sitting there patiently waiting to be completed. In all fairness, the stress of substitute teaching... Read more »

I Just Wasn't Joking, Shady Neighbors Do Exist

Remember what I wrote about shady neighbors? Behold, real life evidence of #7 on my list. A few days ago the dumpster was in its proper place by the alley.  It was seemingly moved to facilitate someone’s need to take out their trash without actually schlepping down to the dumpster like the rest of us.... Read more »

Ten Signs That Your Neighbors Might Be Shady

I’m a huge fan of avoiding drama. Especially where I live. That means I take a keen interest in who moves in the neighborhood—as any concerned resident should.  These days questionable neighbors may mean the difference between relative peace and quiet or your door being mistakenly kicked in by the police (if you’re lucky). Unfortunately,... Read more »

Barbara Ann Smith: An Unsolved Homicide Five Years Later

Five years ago today, my neighbor Barbara Ann Smith’s body was found in her apartment. The police came. The press came. Everyone left. And her murder still remains unsolved. Like I wrote last year: I wonder if anyone gives a damn. I wonder if  Ms. Barbara will ever receive justice. The only thing I do... Read more »

Vegetable Garden 2016: The List

A few days ago, I sent off the order for the vegetable garden. Anyone in the Chicagoland area knows that planting before Mother’s Day is risky at best.  So I clearly timed my order to arrive closer to planting time. In a few weeks, I’ll be out back cleaning out the beds, turning over and... Read more »

#SaveTheShrine: The Shrine Still Needs Your Donations

Despite the great new from the Archdiocese yesterday, the Shrine still has a great deal of money to raise for the building’s full restoration. Estimates for the full restoration have been given in the $3,000,000 to $6,000,000 range. While fundraising for the stabilization of the building has exceeded the $680,000 mark, much more money has... Read more »

#SaveTheShrine: The Archdiocese' Major Announcement

The Archdiocese of Chicago released this statement yesterday: Chicago, IL (February 28, 2016) – The Archdiocese of Chicago today announced that it has deeded the Shrine of Christ the King in Woodlawn and the land on which it stands to the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest. The members of the apostolic institute have... Read more »

Adventures In Substitute Teaching

Thumbnail image for 'Adventures In Substitute Teaching'
Corporate American has not yet chosen to welcome me back into it’s warm and benefit laden embrace, so I’ve gone ahead and done it. I’ve become a substitute teacher. I know.  I know.  It’s come as a surprise to a great many people.  Settle down, just let the notion sink in. As a general rule,... Read more »