Who Wants to Buy the Bloomingdale Trail?
Re: "Stalled on the Bloomingdale Trail: Sixteen months after choosing a design firm, the city still hasn't awarded the contract" by John Greenfield, November 25
I was wondering if at all possible, as the city seems to fuck things up constantly, if through Kickstarter or whatever that is that the people not the city could possibly purchase and maintain this trail? This way the people, not the city would own it. It would seem that with the drive and enthusiasm that many have regarding this trail it could possibly happen much quicker and in a way that the people involved would have it done in a fashion more to what they actually are looking for in a use that suits their needs. With your and others' desire and energy I see this as a better alternative than a Park District property. I have no idea regarding the legality of this but I'm sure that someone with interest who knows law might enjoy the cause. It certainly would be a huge undertaking on all involved but I see this as a better option than what has been not happening over the years of debate about this possibly lovely public park. —Mike T.
That's How You Report on Layoffs
Re: "Out on Their Cans, With Cancer: The Sun-Times Media layoffs: as good an example as any of what decent people do to decent people in a bad economy" by Michael Miner, November 25
Let's see if I've got this straight. These publications are being shut down or their staffs are being whacked not because they're losing money and not because they're not viable or valuable but because they're not worth bothering with as they generate less than 1 percent of the company's revenue.
And so we have these stories—which, by the way, even though they're about journalism are, nonetheless, the best and most relevant journalism I've read this Thanksgiving weekend.
But let's be real clear about the corporate reasoning behind this crap: These people whose lives are now wrecked were just not part of "an effort that is worth our doing."
Good. I'll remember that. . . .
By the way, this is the type of reporting that ought to be done every single time there are mass layoffs anywhere. Companies ought be held fully accountable, in detail, for the horrors they impose, usually for no good reason, on the people who make their existence possible. —Pelham
Second Tier Fame, First Tier Talent
Re: "The Real Syl: An underappreciated soul great gets another chance" by Peter Margasak, November 25
Second tier fame not being the same as second tier talent could be the motto of the entire genre of Chicago soul. Look at the names you have mentioned above, yet there is only one book on the topic, and our soul sound is not well-branded as such. So it is always good to see it or some part of it, in this case Mr. Syl Johnson, get its due. I sure would love to hear the stories these musicians have. What could they tell us about Jackie Wilson in performance, supposedly one of the great soul experiences? This is a whole oral history we in Chicago should capture. The Vee-Jay building is for sale: 1449 S. Michigan. Would it not be great to have a Chicago soul museum there? Chicago soul expert Robert Pruter reports that legendary soul producer Carl Davis bought the contents and the building and moved in there when Vee-Jay went bankrupt. So, a lot of history there. —CatherineL
Overselling The Paper Machete
Re: "That's Journotainment! What Trib Co. tried to accomplish with Chicago Live! is happening across town at Christopher Piatt's Paper Machete" by Deanna Isaacs, November 25
I've never been to a Chicago Live! performance, but I have been to The Paper Machete, and the comparison here strikes me as bogus. The capacity of Ricochet's has to be about 50, tops, and if the shows are SRO it's because there are only half that many bar stools. As for the crowd, Isaacs does it the favor of omission by not characterizing it—on the afternoons I've attended, it's been about as indisputable a gathering of "friends, family, and coworkers" as one could imagine, if one's workplace is the insular world of fringe theater artists and their friends on staff at weekly lifestyle publications. —****
Spot On, Chaps
Re: "A British Pub With Burger King Views: Logan Square's Owen & Engine" by Mike Sula, November 25
What a wonderfully witty review of Owen & Engine. As much as I like what this kind of cooking has done for dining here and elsewhere, the apparently required trappings that accompany it are amusing. Nicely done. —Terry at Blue Kitchen
Bwah ha! Were I a writer I would have written that review of Owen & Engine. Utterly "spot on" as they like to say. —charliedid
The Medill School of What Now?
Re: "Watch your language! You're talking to a doctor of Integrated Marketing Communications!" by Whet Moser at chicagoreader.com, November 23
Jack Donaghy: "Ongoing train wreck aside, I love this idea—it's great synergy." —MrJM
So this is where Lee Abrams fetched up. —Henry Kisor
As long as students realign their information and blend their marketing tactics strategically, no reason why this exciting innovation and transformation of brands can't be synergized into a new and efficient way of reaching potential customer bases. —edgyme