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Month: October 2023

A modest proposal

Once again, the McCaskey Ken Dolls of the NFFL- National Fake Football League- lost another game Sunday Night. A few former pundits expressed they might- might being the operative word- only win one more game this season. Because of their miserable performance and horrid owners, I have a modest proposal.

Since Mayor Brandon Johnson does not have the cojones to go into federal court to stop the unlawful filtration of migrants from Texas Führer, Greg Abbott, Johnson should use his emergency powers to cancel all Ken Doll home games.

Soldier Field should be used to build a tent city to house the migrants. It is the perfect facility. It has space, it is not near a neighborhood so no residents will be against it. The facility has restrooms, food concessions, and the home and away locker rooms have showers. The city could provide the migrants with meal ticket books. They could reimburse the concessionaires for food consumed by the migrants.

Volunteer agencies could replace those offensive tailgaters, providing nourishing food to the migrants instead of that moldy swill they are getting from that politically connected staffing agency bilking the city out of millions of dollars.

Since the communities are rightfully up in arms over Johnson not involving them in the process of tenting migrants in their neighborhoods, this would eliminate public anger over his dictatorial edicts.

Johnson refuses to inform or seek input from the communities. He and his regime just do what they want. Meet the new mayor, same as the old mayors. So, if they want to do what they want, take over Soldier Field. Screw the McCaskeys, their team, and the drooling, bark chewing, knuckle dragging, brain dead Ken Doll fans.

This would be a benefit because communities would be mollified. Ken Doll fans would not have the embarrassment of watching the team lose at home. The other benefit is not having Ken Doll fans in drinking establishments on the canceled game days. Intelligent people can drink in peace without seeing all their offensive clothing and listening to them cheer for losers. We can watch other sports like soccer and rugby, you know, real football.

This modest proposal is a win-win for the city. They have a safe environment for the migrants. They can provide decent meals and sanitary restrooms. The migrants can be contained to receive social and legal services in one place. Soldier Field is a safer alternative than the neighborhoods. Everything is in one place for these people.

The only people who would suffer would be the McCaskeys. But turn-around is fair play. They caused enough suffering and emotional distress with their horrid ownership and management of the team. So what if they have to forfeit games? It does not affect the city as a whole. It does not affect the team because they are not going to the postseason, anyway. Oh, and they would have to refund ticket holders. The McCaskeys deserve to lose the money.

The only people who may be affected are the Chicago sportswriters, who are bigger cheerleaders than the fans. Chicago sports writers should be required to wear colorful uniforms and carry pom poms so they can be instantly recognized. Their few criticisms are so mild they sound like compliments.

Once again, a simple solution to a simple problem.

RIP Shelley Howard

Fixture: a familiar or invariably present element or feature in some particular setting especially : a person long associated with a place or activity (Merriam Webster)

Shelley Howard was a fixture on Rush Street and in Old Town. He was dubbed the Mayor of Old Town. Shelley Howard knew everybody and just about everybody knew him. If people did not know him, they knew or saw his work. He provided the posters for acts that played in various Northside clubs, especially Jam Productions.

During the 1980s, Shelley Howard created Video Dancestand which presented music videos for a dance-club audience. Video Dancestand appeared in various clubs and venues drawing thousands every weekend.

Shelley Howard had a presence on social media. His pet peeve was people misspelling his name. He had to remind them it was Shelley with an e. I met Shelley several years ago in Gibsons. We would run into each other at various events and a friendship was formed.

On Saturdays he could be found holding court with friends, eating Sushi or at Topio Gigio in Old Town, sipping a Martini. He was also a Rush Street denizen, usually at Tavern, Carmines, or Gibsons. Sometimes it would be all three. Shelley was also known for his birthday parties, usually at an upscale venue. He could also be found at various events throughout the Near Northside. If there was an open party, Shelley would be there.

Shelley remembered birthdays and posted them on Facebook with the message, “You’re not getting better, you’re getting older. Or is it the other way around. I kinda get confused at my age. Happy Birthday…”

Shelley was a devoted gardener. He posted pictures of his plants and lawn throughout the spring and summer months.

He was a devoted father and grandfather. His son, Sean, posted this on Facebook- “It’s with a heavy heart today that I say goodbye to my best friend. Dad you were an absolute legend and I don’t know what I’ll do without you…. You brought so many people together and were loved by so many. You will forever be the strongest person I’ve ever known and thank you for making me the man I am today. RIP Dad I love you forever.”

Friends and acquaintances posted their sympathies and memories throughout the day on Facebook and Instagram, some on Shelley’s pages. He was a friend to many and will be missed. Like a mutual friend posted, “He was our guy.”

Farewell Shelley. May your memory be a blessing. See you on the other side when I get there. Have the Martinis ready.

Send in the clowns

“The proposed ordinance also stipulates only “organizations, not-for-profit entities and licensed businesses” would be eligible to receive the necessary permit to build a bookcase on city land under the legislation.

Private individuals would not be allowed to construct the structures on public property at all, Lopez confirmed this week.

Libraries on private property, like a front yard, would not be impacted.”

Lopez did not directly answer a question about whether neighbors who have built Little Free Libraries on public property would be allowed to keep them. But he said they should “get ready to have that conversation” about the structure’s future. (Block Club Chicago)

In the realm of you gotta be f***ing kidding me. The Chicago Circus Council has nothing better to do than to “regulate” the Little Free Libraries that dot the city landscape. The concept of the Little Free Libraries is to place books in a small structure. People are encouraged to take a book and, if possible, leave one. Some provide non-perishable food items or toiletries for those in need.

In this age of book and language banning from the extremists on the right and the left, our alderclowns want these libraries to obtain permits if they are on the parkways. Only organizations, non-profits, and licensed businesses would be eligible. Individuals nope.

“So what this ordinance does is just basically creates a permit that will serve as a way of registering these in the public way.”

This is an ordinance Alderclown Ray Lopez (15th) proposed last week. It will move to the full Clown Council this week for passage. It is hoped there are enough alderclowns who will vote this preposterous idea down. But, too many of them think alike when it comes to power of Circus Hall to stifle great ideas. It means they are not thinking.

What next? The contents of the libraries need to be registered too to assure “objectionable content” is not in the free libraries? Will people leaving food and toiletries need to get a license? Will the city demand architectural drawings for the permits along with inspections by the Building Department? How far will this go?

These structures do not pose a threat or danger to citizens unless Lopez thinks the ideas in free books are dangerous, or providing sustenance and comfort to those in need is perilous. Every one of these libraries I have seen is well constructed. They can be bought as kits or pre-built all over the internet and they are pricey- 2–3-hundred-dollar price range.

People do all kinds of things in their parkways, including ripping out the lawns and replacing them with types of gravel or stones, encasing them with barriers and planting gardens, and other decorative effects. They put signage on or decorate trees, which are owned by the city. They place lawn signs on the parkways. No permits are required.

What does alderclown Lopez have against free books? Why does he want to regulate books? This is one of the dumbest ideas out of the many dumb ideas to come out of Circus Hall over the decades.

The Little Free Libraries harm no one. They are not unsafe or unsightly, like the ugly ghost bikes chained all over the city on parkways or other city land. Those do not require a permit. They are put up with no permission from the city. They are unregulated. Worse, they are litter and blight. Yet, the city refuses to remove them. Hmmm? Maybe the alderclowns get hefty donations from the whiny bike people and their crybaby organizations. It is the only reason I can think of that these ugly displays are allowed.

Banned Books Week

This is Banned Books Week (10/1-10/7). Banned Books Week started in Chicago in 1982 through the American Library Association, headquartered here. The week draws attention to national and local efforts to ban books in libraries, schools, and bookstores. According to the ALA, 2022 had the most attempted book bans on record. 2023 could be the next record year.

The first banned book in America was New English Canaan by Thomas Morton in 1637. It was a harsh criticism of Puritanism. The Puritans were the dominant political and religious force in the Massachusetts colony. Book bans along with other bans on published materials have come and gone throughout American history. In the 1950’s there were attempts to ban comic books, as they were accused of deviance or difference from established cultural norms, including stories of forbidden crimes, passions, and identities.

Social activists- whatever that means- successfully banned certain books for offensive language or offensive depictions of people that were deemed racially insensitive. They are still trying to keep these books off the shelves. Some publishers are rewriting the books. Do not buy these rewritten books. By them used. Two examples are Huck Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird.

Once again book banning is raising its ugly head. Extremist politicians like Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and their proxies like Moms for Liberty are pushing- sometimes successfully- for book bans in libraries and schools. Moms for Liberty focuses on removing what they deem as inappropriate books from school libraries. There is one title for these book banners like Moms for Liberty, hate groups.

No books should be banned. People choose to be offended. Society, schools, and libraries are not responsible for people’s personal choices. The rallying cry of the banners is protecting children. Politicians and groups like Mom for Liberty do not care and never cared about children. They only care about their narrow-mindless pseudo religious beliefs. These people are not Christians. They are heretics.

We should value schools and libraries. Activists and politicians have no value when they try to ban books or ideas. These narrow mindless people believe their views are shared by most Americans. They have been proven wrong time after time.

There are too many activists who believe in making America great again- whatever the f**k that means. They would start with books, then art, then television and movies. These are the American Nazis. Like their brethren, they would confiscate and destroy “objectionable” materials. They would ban anything they deem objectional. There are people on the left who hold the same ideas of banning “objectional” material. It is history repeating itself. We cannot let that happen.

The country is constantly changing. Values and morals change. Society changes. There is always a small vocal antediluvian dodo bird minority that fights changes. They want to go back to the Puritan era of ignorance. They use religious zealotry and made up “American values” as a reason for their mindless thinking.

This week buy a banned book or a book the left or right zealots want banned. Read it and pass it on. To learn more about book bans check out the Banned Books Week website or the Pen America Freedom to Learn series.

Hope dies again in Chicago

Chicago is where sports fans hope for championships go to die. While the Cubs were winning against the Brewers, the Marlins beat the Pirates, clinching the last Wild Card playoff spot. The Cubs lost their last game Sunday, falling to the Brewers, 4-0.

The Cubs had a roller-coaster season. They started out strong, went into a losing slump, came back strong, and slumped again. The Cubs lost too many games this season. That is the bottom line, the reason they will not be in the playoffs.

The blame game has already started on social media. Management, coaching, players, game rosters, and a list of other supposed issues are being blamed. Maybe some or all of the issues are to blame for the team’s failure to go into the postseason. The team will do a thorough examination and make the changes. Cub’s fans will have to live the motto, “Wait till next year.”

The White Sox held some early season promise too. They went on a losing streak and struggled throughout the rest of the season, losing 100 games. It’s just the fifth time in franchise history the Sox have lost 100 games. “They’ve only had four 100-loss seasons — 1932, 1948, 1970, and 2018.” (Chicago Tribune) Hope died earlier for them than the Cubs.

The McCaskey Ken Dolls did not fail to disappoint their suffering fans, losing 31-28 to the Broncos. This is their fourth consecutive loss this season. The spread was 3 points in favor of the Broncos. The Broncos came off last week’s humiliating 70-20 loss last week to the Dolphins to beat the Ken Dolls. People I know on social media are throwing in the towel. One is as disgusted as I am and no longer a fan. It must be liberating for him.

The Ken Dolls are the worst sports team in Chicago. They have no talent, poor coaching, and apathetic owners whose only concern is to count the kachingos$. Piss poor is too kind to describe this horrid team and their management. And please do not tell me about Justin Field’s stats or his “record-setting day.” Stats are meaningless if the team does not win games.

Hockey and basketball are in the preseason and hopes will be high for the Blackhawks and Bulls. We shall see if hope dies or if there is a postseason for those teams.

No matter how high our hopes are, we are prepared for disappointment. Even with disappointment, Chicagoans are loyal avid fans of our teams. We attend or watch the games at home or in saloons. Many buy branded clothing and other paraphernalia wearing or displaying it proudly.

It would be nice to have one champion or division-champion Chicago team this year. Go Bulls and Hawks.