a little bit of everything

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Marshall Field's, a Chicago Icon

There are certain things one is reminded of when they think of Chicago; Michael Jordan, Wrigley Field, Al Capone, the 1968 Democratic Convention, the Sears Tower, the World's Fair, the '85 Bears, and Marshall Field's. Well as of yesterday morning that last one, Marshall Field's, will have to remain in our thoughts. Terry Lundgren, CEO of the Federated Department Stores and Field's new owners, gently broke the news to Mayor Daley that they would indeed be changing the names of all Marshall Field's stores to Macy's, ending months of speculation, begging, pleading, and petitioning by Chicagoans.

We'll have to chalk this up as yet another Chicago mainstay being lost in exchange for corporate naming rights. Anybody remember where Jordan and the Bulls won their first three titles? Not the United Center, the wondrous, albeit dilapidated, Chicago Stadium. I can understand why the stadium needed to be torn down and rebuilt, but did we also have to do away with it's name, not to mention destroy the world's largest pipe organ because it would cost too much to extract it. More recently the new Comiskey Park, a new stadium that kept the historic name, has been changed to U.S. Cellular Field, or the Cell for short. This caused an uproar with all Chicagoans, not just Sox fans, many of whom refuse to call it by it's new name. Now, come September 1, 2006, when the name change will be complete, we'll no longer see those forest green shopping bags bouncing up and down State Street, the Field's clock will be the Macy's clock, and Chicago will have lost another icon.

I understand that this is business and it all boils down to the all mighty dollar, no matter what PR spin Lundgren is putting on it, but still do we have no sense of history. Field's helped build this city just as Macy's did with New York. I have nothing against the Macy's stores, I've even been to the Macy's store in Herald Square and it was incredible. But how would New Yorkers and loyal Macy's shoppers feel if the roles were reversed? What if the Field's company bought out Macy's and wanted to change the name of all Macy's stores to Marshall Field's, including the famed Herald Square store? I'm sure that would not go over big, nor should it. And even though I'm not a New Yorker or a Macy's shopper I would still object. Field's is not New York, Macy's is, and Macy's isn't Chicago, Field's is Chicago.

I fear the day when our government can no longer afford the maintenance of our National Monuments. A map of Washington D.C. may too closely resemble a Wal-Mart aisle with the Parker Bros. Lincoln Memorial, the Velveeta Arlington National Cemetery, and the appropriately sponsored Trojan Washington Monument.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Keep Honking, I'm Reloading

No, I have not decided to join the NRA, this lovely statement graced a bumper sticker on a vehicle in front of me this morning. What a nice cheerful thought to greet me on a Monday morning. This is precisely why I cannot give any intellectual credit to most anti-gun control supporters. Stunts like this do nothing to help your case, it actually adds fuel to the gun control fire. Whoever thought this bumper sticker was funny enough to print, sell, and purchase may want to pay a little more attention to the news. In a day and age when drive by's and road rage attacks are common happenings this is not funny, it's distasteful, crude, and just plain stupid. What is funny about insinuating that not only do you have a gun in your car, but you may use it if another driver pisses you off? For those people who claim to oppose gun control because they're sport shooters or hunters you should be disgusted by this too, because again, it's damaging your argument. However, to be honest I really don't understand the "I'm against gun control because I'm a hunter argument." Okay so you like to hunt, I'm no hunting expert but I believe rifles are the hunting weapon of choice, not modified machine guns. I'm not trying to keep people from being able to hunt, I'm trying to keep guns out of the hands of people with bumper stickers that read, "Keep honking, I'm reloading."

As a side note, surprisingly enough this bumper sticker was not on the back of a pick-up truck, but on a Jeep Grand Cherokee. Who new yuppies had such awful senses of humor.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Da Bears

It's been 20 years since our beloved Chicago Bears won the Superbowl and had the whole country doing the Superbowl Shuffle. With the new NFL season underway Chicagoans and Bears fans everywhere can only hope for a return to the glory days, but don't hold your breath. Like last summer we all had high hopes after the team completed their training camp, but like last year, the injury fairy came along to burst our bubble. We now have our 64th starting quarterback in the last 20 years in rookie Kyle Orton, who is managing to look and play like a quarterback, unlike some of his more veteran predecessors. Head coach, Lovie Smith, has tweaked with the offensive line, and added more fire power to the back and receiving positions in the hopes that we will no longer have the worst offense in the league. So we go into this season the same way we go into most, with hope and faith that the Bears can make something good happen.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Bateman 365

Bateman 365 is an innovative site in which artist Scott Bateman is producing an animated film every day for a year. Bateman is now 22 days into his production and has held true to his word. Not only has he produced a film for each of the past 22 days, he's produced creative, and comical ones some of which contain some biting commentary on the state of our government. He is only 22 days into his journey so it's not too late to get caught up with his clips by using the sites archive. I've included some of my favorites below:

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin's Actual Commentary On the Bush Adminstrations Disaster Relief Efforts.

George W. Bush Springs into Action

Actual Excerpts From the President's Speech of 2/6/03

Politics Schmolitics: Karl Rove

The Bateman 365 Trailer

Saturday, September 03, 2005


Is it just me or does George W. seem to have an aversion to water? First in January his response to the tsunami was a bit too little too late. Fast forward 8 months and his response to Katrina is strangely similar. Apparently good 'ol George doesn't realize just how damaging water can be. Especially at extremely high volumes and when accompanied by violent, hellacious winds. Mr. President I am so sorry that both natural disasters interrupted your vacationing but get off your ass and do something!

Friday, September 02, 2005


At a time when we think the world and the U.S. can endure no more. At a time when we're almost done picking up the pieces from the last tragedy, Katrina strikes and brings devastation to our gulf coast. Millions of people are homeless and possesion-less. Hundreds of thousands more are dead or missing. Once again we must come to the aide of our fellow citizens. Forgive me for being redundant and posting the same information that's been seen on TV and other web sites, but I want to give you one more opportunity to donate if you haven't already. I know times are rough and money is tight but if the roles were reversed you can be damn sure the people of the gulf coast would be coming to your rescue. So please, anything you can afford to give, no donation is too small.

American Red Cross Katrina Relief


A Bush is in office, we're at war in the Persian Gulf, and we've just been struck by the worst hurricane in our history.

Forget his incompetence and insensitivity, these Bushes are plain bad luck.