With a week of July remaining, I stood in line at a currency exchange downtown that had posted a newspaper clipping that said CTA monthly passes were going up in price August 1. When my turn came, I asked the woman behind the glass, "What's the price of a pass if I buy it at the end of July?"
Loudly and incredulously she said to her coworker, "Can you believe he asked me that?" Then she pointed at the clipping. "What does it say there?"
"It says the price goes up August 1. I want to know how much I have to pay the day before the price goes up."
"Look, if you want an August pass, you have to buy it August 1 at the new price."
I said I always used to buy a pass a day or two before the month's start.
The coworker chimed in, "Well, 'used to' doesn't make it!"
On July 29 I was in a different currency exchange, where a sign said the pass price change was going into effect July 31. Before I had a chance to inquire, the person in line ahead of me bought a pass and was charged the new, higher price.
The doughnut shop at Clark and Division that never seemed to close was locked and deserted. Two hastily scrawled pieces of cardboard in the windows said, "Closed for remodeling. Sorry for the inconvenience." This flight of wishful thinking was grounded by the two giant Day-Glo green notices next to it that said, "License Suspended by Order of the Chicago Board of Health."