Posted inNews & Politics

Salt & Pepper Blues

1990 was the year they started building Comiskey Park. Not the old baseball palace they opened in 1910–the new one across the street. This was also the year they opened the Original Mitchell’s restaurant–not Lou Mitchell’s, the breakfast shrine that’s been on West Jackson since 1923, or the Original Mitchell’s on North Avenue, but the […]

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Exotic Nails

The sound of melodramatic soap opera dialogue blares from a TV suspended from the ceiling, ricocheting off the pink tiles, as Sha-Sha shows off the designs in her display case. They look like miniature replicas of medieval and African shields, but what they are is fingernails. “This is the ultimate war paint,” Sha-Sha says. “There’s […]

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Clybourn Car Wash

“That Car Wash movie was just a lot of romance,” says Mario Xavier, the smooth-dressing young manager of the K&K Hand Car Wash on North Clybourn. “All we do is work around here. The business has lost its personality and isn’t very entertaining anymore.” The K&K, which operates in a dull yellow, almost adobe-style structure […]

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Dead Pets Department

“This is not the kind of job you talk about in social situations, because most people find it distasteful,” says Don Smith, frowning. “What we do isn’t for everybody. But it’s a job that has to be done. We can’t have deceased animals lying all over our streets.” A city worker for 29 years, Smith, […]

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Jordanian Dream

McDonald’s moved into the neighborhood, in the 1400 block of North Clybourn on the edge of Cabrini-Green, in 1971 but pulled down its yellow plastic arches in 1977. The company claimed poor revenues were the reason for the rare failure. It’s not often that Big Mac suffers a black eye. But denizens of this all-night […]