Rachel Shteir to Chicago: You blow. Windy City to Shteir: You suck

By now, most Chicagoans have heard (if not read) of DePaul professor Rachel Shteir‘s recent scathing criticism of Chicago in a book review she wrote for the New York Times. You can read the entire review here, but her ivory tower complaints about Chicago can be reduced to the more basic phrase: Chicago sucks. And... Read more »

Chicago Tribune to Boston Globe: Thanks, and the pizza is on us.

It’s tough to be a newspaper these days. Declining circulation, declining ad revenue, bankruptcies, online competition, disturbing suitors. In the middle of a huge, massive, constantly changing news story, the Boston Globe was a beacon in the journalistic night. When CNN and The New York Post (is that even really a newspaper?) were screwing up... Read more »

The Greening of Chicago: Spring has sprung!

This week, the last week of April, is one of my favorite weeks of the year. I start counting down to it in October as the leaves fall and the world slowly turns from red and orange to brown and grey. By February, when snow covers the ground and it can be so cold it... Read more »
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Stacking the deck of the DuPage County Regional Board of Trustees: The DuPage Brief

In the movie The Pelican Brief, an oil tycoon has two Supreme Court Justices murdered in the hope that new justices will be appointed who are more friendly to his court case, which is currently winding its way through the appellate courts. While no one is getting bumped off here in DuPage County, the DuPage... Read more »

Six Month Old Baby Murdered In Chicago: A Rant

Six Month Old Baby Murdered In Chicago: A Rant
Lately, everything seems to make me angry. I’m fed up with the idiocy of humanity and the lowest common denominator mentality that seems to dominate our society. Maybe it’s my age or my stage in life but everything I think sounds suspiciously like “Get off my damn lawn!” I learned long ago to muddle through... Read more »

Despite what Chicagoans think, living in the suburbs won't kill you. Yet.

Despite what Chicagoans think, living in the suburbs won't kill you. Yet.
“I used to live in Chicago” an acquaintance once explained to me, as if having previously lived in Chicago she was exempt from the mundane details of cooperative suburban living. It was said with a thinly veiled tone of superiority implying that her former zip code conferred upon her some sort of special status. I... Read more »
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Family calendars chronicle our lives

Family calendars chronicle our lives
I have a calendar on my kitchen wall that tells the story of my life better than any journal ever could. It is one of those Month-At-A-Glance paper behemoths, the kind you used to see on desk tops in offices, used for a blotter as much as a calendar. Just like the rolodex, it’s been... Read more »

Empty Nest Blues? Check.

My youngest son started his last semester of high school today. Barring disaster, he’ll graduate on May 31. It’s starting to sink in that the era of day-to-day parenting is coming to an end. For over 23 years, my life has been consumed with taking care of my children’s immediate needs, and in a few... Read more »

Hockey is back. (It never left.)

Because the owners and players of the NHL could not agree on a new union contract before the start of the regular season last fall, hockey owners “locked out” the players and put the season on indefinite hold. For 113 days, the two sides bickered and squabbled and fans of NHL teams sat on the... Read more »
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Violence Against Women Act Expires, Republicans Refuse to Reauthorize

Violence Against Women Act Expires, Republicans Refuse to Reauthorize
As the 112th Congress came to a close, wrapped up in the drama of the so-called fiscal cliff, it failed to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act. It was the first time Congress has failed to do so. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was enacted by Congress in 1994.  Among its many provisions were... Read more »