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

Hey, did you read:

• That WBEZ finds oversize classes and teacher shortages in supposedly “half-empty” Chicago schools? Mick Dumke

• About the big warehouse fire in McKinley Park? (The Trib says Bridgeport, but that’s McKinley Park.) Tony Adler

The top headline on the Guardian‘s world-news section yesterday: “How the Vatican built a secret property empire using Mussolini’s millions”? Ben Sachs

• That Chicago is now the top city in the country for bedbugs? (And do read Julia Thiel‘s cover story from last year on the pesky vermin.) Tal Rosenberg

• The New York magazine feature on Larry Gagosian, who almost single-handedly controls the art market? Tal Rosenberg

Dwight Garner’s review of Artful, the new novel by Ali Smith, a writer with “an agile and mischievous mind”? (At one point the narrator tells her partner to calm down and “Go and do a line of Shakespeare.”) Steve Bogira

• That though it’s late January, the Blackhawks are still undefeated and untied? (Which is nice and all, but when do pitchers and catchers report?) Steve Bogira

• Due to opposition from residents and the alderman, the new Lincoln Park location of reggae club the Wild Hare has twice been denied a PPA license and can’t put on shows, so it’s in imminent danger of closing? Philip Montoro