Hot Fun in the Summertime

Re: The Bloomingdale Trail: Urban Oasis or Devil’s Playground? by John Greenfield, August 13

To the hipster doofus in the story who said “It’s nice to have a part of the city where you can drink out in the open without worrying about getting busted,” you do have a place. Several in fact. They’re called 1. your front porch 2. your backyard 3. a bar with outdoor seating or 4. the ballpark. Why you think you’re entitled to, or would even want to, sit in broken glass spilling PBR on your ironic t-shirts is beyond me. —joebagadonuts

I love mass transit as much as the next guy, but you don’t build a train line just because there happens to be a right-of-way available. Best case, you end up with an orphaned shuttle line that takes people from Humboldt Park and Bucktown to the Clybourn Metra station, and I’m pretty sure that density along the trail isn’t enough to justify that investment.

As for the trail, it’s too enticing to all kinds of people to be up there, away from the streets and the watchful eye of cops and parents. If you live next to it, tough luck now but a great thing in the long run when the trail gets built. I will continue to jog up there because it’s the only place in the city (save for the lakeshore) where you can run long distances without having to deal with street traffic. —schematic

Will He Play in Peoria?

Re: NEA chair Rocco Landesman speaks out posted by Albert Williams on the blog, August 8

In response to Mr. Landesman’s NY Times interview, Suzette Boulais, executive director of ArtsPartners, and I extended invitations to the new NEA chairman to visit Peoria to attend a production at Eastlight Theatre (one of Peoria’s theatres). He immediately responded by email his gratitude for the invitation and that he will come. Tuesday afternoon on his first day in office, I received a call from Mr. Landesman confirming that he is excited about visiting our community and experience our arts scene. Our goal is for Peoria to represent all of the smaller communities in the nation that are doing worthy and worthwhile work in the arts. In homage to the ‘The Beer Summit’, we are lovingly calling this visit, ‘The Lemonade Stand’ . . . not because that is what we drink, but because that is what we do in Peoria—we take lemons and turn them into lemonade. —Kathy Chitwood

Have a Little Respect

Re: Lollapalooza: The View From the Ground: The action in the crowd, including a midfield fistfight broken up by . . . dancers, by Miles Raymer, August 13

Dear Mike Raymer,

The print version of the Aug 13th Reader attached the title “The View From the Ground” on your Lollapalooza coverage. Nothing against your article, but a quick google search of that title lands you at a Chicago-based investigative journalism project led by respected local activist and writer Jamie Kalven. In these days of diminishing support for toughminded, persistent, investigative journalism—covering Chicago public housing scandals, police abuse, civil rights violations, etc—can’t the Reader of all places help build, rather than defuse and water-down, the media identity of important local initiatives like this? It makes me wonder if you or your editors know about Mr Kalven’s work. If not, you should. ( Please forward this note to appropriate person(s).


Dan Peterman, Associate Professor, Art and Design, UIC

The Improvements Just Keep On Coming

Hello again, Reader people:

A couple weeks ago I fired off an email complaining about your movie listing, and today I found the unprintable drop-down menu replaced by a conveniently printable list of film titles *and* lead-ins to capsule reviews *and* names of theatres, all on the first click! Did I do that? I must have had help, but like the guy said, Holy Cow! This is much better than your first rebuild.

But clicking on the name of a suitable venue used to bring up all their show times for that title for the week (as well as for some other titles of possible interest, often), while now that info is still accessible only at one click per day, or seven clicks for the whole week? This part of the site is no better than One real step forward, a few back? *sigh*


Jack Reed

The Reader replies:

Thanks for your patience. It’s taking a while to put in place all the great things our Web site can do. It is possible to see a week’s worth of showtimes for one film at one venue. Pick your movie (perhaps by clicking on the title after you go to Now Showing, which drops down under the word “movies” in the navigation bar), then click on “location details” under the name of venue you’re interested in. You’ll see all the showtimes available for that location.

Being “Green” Doesn’t Get Him Off the Hook for Waste and Corruption

Brien Comerford writes in his letter last week that Mayor Daley has been doing a lot to promote environmental and sustainability issues. This is certainly commendable. But Mr. Joravsky should also be commended for illustrating issues that are broke and trying to fix them for the betterment of the city for all.

Daley’s environmental work doesn’t meant that he nor the city are faultless in other areas, or that those faults should not be addressed. Spending nearly $500 million on one TIF alone could have done a huge amount to create real, substantial results to build on the good start that the city has made toward environmental initiatives. The money would be a lot more beneficial if it went to improving the local environment, creating jobs, and making Chicago a model for urban renewal and sensible redevelopment.

Let’s celebrate and move forward with what works, and address and change what doesn’t.—Mark Raulston