Talk of the Weather, the Cubs, and What's Biting

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Everyone seems to be outside and in the mood to talk on those first warm days of the year. Saturday was one of those days.

"Good day!" a small man with a bouncy gait called out to me as we passed on a side street in Rogers Park. "Good day!" he said to the people behind me. I heard him all the way down the block: "Good day! Good day! Good day!"

A few minutes later I came upon a guy sitting in the sun outside a neighborhood church. Tufts of hair stuck out from under his ball cap. He took a drink from a tall boy in a paper bag.

"How are you?" he said. "Hey, you want to buy an umbrella?"

He didn't appear to have an umbrella with him. I told him I was all set.

He nodded. "I guess it would be easier to sell if it was raining," he said. I couldn't disagree.

Others were drinking beer and talking about the Cubs on the end of the Pratt Avenue pier. The loudest of the bunch was the most optimistic. "They won't be eliminated for at least a few weeks," he declared.

Some were enjoying the afternoon in a more introspective fashion. A skinny kid of about 12 was fishing nearby. I asked him what he was using for bait. He pulled his line out of the water. There was a three-inch minnow on the hook.

"Fish," he said.

I asked him what he was trying to catch.

"Fish," he said.

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