It was the most significant custodial discovery since Frank Wills found the tape over the door at the Watergate complex. In the summer of 1989 a busboy cleaning a booth at Counsellors Row restaurant found an electronic bug. Its cover blown, the FBI admitted that it had been using the monitoring device to eavesdrop on […]
A Driving Tour of Cook County’s New 17th District
Lisa Freitag Really Knows How to Hurt a Guy
The Capital of Wicker Park
The huge Spanish colonial arch at Kedzie that greets visitors driving west along 26th Street should provide a clue. This is not the stereotypical depressed, abandoned shopping strip many people associate with minority neighborhoods in Chicago. Instead, the 26th Street strip from Kedzie to Kostner, which forms the heart of the neighborhood known as Little […]
Reporters throughout the city flocked to the near northwest side’s 26th Ward in 1986 to cover the raucous special aldermanic election between independent Luis Gutierrez and machine-backed Manuel Torres, a contest that ultimately ended Chicago’s famous Council Wars by handing control of City Council to Mayor Harold Washington. Most reporters ignored a simultaneous legislative election. […]
Next month Chicago will hold the most wide open elections in the city’s history. All adult Chicagoans, not just those registered to vote, will be welcome at the polls–even undocumented immigrants. And any adult can run for office without trudging around to collect ballot petitions. Indeed, those without previous experience are not only allowed to […]
You’re sitting down, about to enjoy a meal. Or maybe you’ve just put your feet up after a hard day. Or perhaps you’ve gone to sleep and have your passport ready for a trip to REM-land. The phone rings. Like the Pavlovian dog that most of us are, you answer it. On the other end […]
“We have thrown off the shackles of an archaic and restrictive constitution, and gained the freedom to deal effectively with the problems confronting Illinois,” said Governor Richard Ogilvie in 1970 after voters did away with a century-old constitution. Gone was a bulky document that included specifics on warehouses and the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. In […]
Can anyone here pass for Pancho Villa?
It seems the most unlikely of combinations: single-room-occupancy hotels, those holding pens for the John Hinckleys and Travis Bickles of the world, and not-for-profit organizations, those bastions of goody-goodyism. Yet such a combination has emerged on the north side, and it may represent a new direction for Chicago in the provision of low-income housing. Acting […]
A Report From the Third Annual Spark Awards
As the city prepares to negotiate a new contract with Commonwealth Edison, a few old hands with long memories are asking themselves, “Haven’t we heard all this before?”
Chicago to Laredo in a Rusting Dodge Van: 16 People, 1,200 Miles, 36 Hours, 59 Bucks.
“The word death is not pronounced in New York, Paris, or in London, because it burns the lips,” wrote Octavio Paz. “The Mexican, in contrast, is familiar with death, jokes about it, caresses it, sleeps with it. True, there is perhaps as much fear in his attitude as that of theirs, but at least death […]