* Peter Spalding, “Why the Chicago Fire Still Matters To Me”

Beyond that, though, very few people know much about the fire. In fact, it has been so mythologized that’s easy to forget that it really happened. The city rarely commemorates it, and aside from the Water Tower, there are few visible signs of it left. But beneath the surface, its influence is all over Chicago; for better or worse, it turned the city into what it is today.

* Megan Cottrell, “Cabrini residents fight building closing”

She works as a janitor nearby, and while the salary she brings home isn’t huge for single mother with four kids — $43,000 a year — it’s too much for her to qualify for a unit in the newly built replacement housing in the mixed-income neighborhoods.

* Dmitry Samarov, “On Tap”

The fat disheveled man gropes the girl with his left hand, his right raised toward the street, the whole scene lit by the Old Style sign overhead.

* The Science Essayist, Oiling The Devil’s Darning Needle

On the Gulf Coast, then, it seems more than likely that as we speak, dragonflies are taking oil for water.