We put the debit card in the box for parking, and it told us that it was going to be twenty dollars and not the cheaper amount displayed at the entrance of the parking lot.
The reason: “A Special Event”.
What “special event”?
When we entered the Hilton and Towers, on South Michigan Avenue, we found out.
It was the Lovable Losers Convention, complete with Ronnie Woo Woo.
We were surrounded by people in blue and white, their eyes glazed over, wearing numbers of their favorite players and chanting a mantra well over a hundred years old: “Wait till next year.” No doubt the Kool-Aid was free.
As Sox-Siders, this was worse than being a werewolf at a vampire convention.
We had no crosses or holy water or beer with us, so we just tried to blend in, and sang “Take me out to the Ball Game,” in our best slurred Harry Cary.
Here we were, having our very first Eliot Ness Untouchables Convention in the midst of the enemy. But where better to hide, but in plain sight?
We grabbed some brews and waited, huddling at a group of chairs with a sofa, facing Michigan Avenue.
We were waiting for Untouchable blood to show, an honest-to-god descendant of Joe Leeson, one of Eliot Ness’ Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Bureau “untouchable” agents.
Finally, he and his fiance showed. They brought along two friends, who were afflicted with the Ness-Capone virus.
We brought along a Chicago Daily News newspaper from 1931 about some bootlegging raids that Eliot Ness and the boys were involved with.
The confab went well — an unnoticed. Ronnie Woo Woo did wave at the six of us, but I think he wanted to be payed for the wave. Ronnie Woo Woo is not an “untouchable”.
Scott, Leeson’s grandson, suggested a meeting in Washington DC. He seems to think that the time is ripe for an Eliot Ness revival. He may be right.
Eliot Ness and the other federal agents he worked with were determined to bring down Al Capone and his reign of crime. Ness and his unit fought the crime and didn’t take any bribes. They were “untouchable”. This is the exact opposite of our politicians today. Touch them anywhere, but make sure your fingers are lined with Franklins.
I leafed through the Chicago Daily News, from 1931. It seemed not much had changed in eighty-one years. There were political scandels, robberies, murders, controlled substance (booze) raids, and a column about the Cubs. The Cub’s writer was exasperated. He said that, as usual, not much was going on with the team, and not much was expected.
The goat agreed.