• Angela Weiss/Getty Images for Variety
  • Jill Soloway, influential person

Reader staffers share stories that fascinate, alarm, amuse, or inspire us.

Hey, did you read:

• That in Supreme Court cases, the Justice Department under Attorney General Eric Holder, as under his predecessors, routinely backs police officers’ use of force? Steve Bogira

• About all the gut microbes that human beings have lost? Tal Rosenberg

• About “trash food,” an exploration of food and class? Aimee Levitt

• That more than $1 million was spent in the 43rd Ward aldermanic race? Tal Rosenberg

• That the Art Institute just received its largest gift ever? (The haul totals $400 million worth of art, including nine Warhols.) Brianna Wellen

• Or watch this NBC Nightly News story about a young transgender boy and his family? Gwynedd Stuart

• That former Chicago theater artist Jill Soloway, creator of TV’s Transparent, is on Time magazine’s list of the 100 “most influential people” for 2015? (And that the blurb on her was written by Alan Ball of True Blood fame?) Tony Adler

• That local rapper Vic Mensa signed to Roc Nation? Leor Galil

• About the making of Orphan Black‘s opening sequence? Sue Kwong