My friend Jake asked me to help him sell "Packers Suck" T-shirts at the Bears-Packers game last month. He had sold them when the Bears played the Packers in Champaign last year and made $500 in less than two hours. "They sell themselves," he told me. "One for $10, two for $15."
We hopped on the el with two duffel bags loaded with about 60 shirts. Almost immediately we started seeing people on their way to the game. I was ready to sell it right there. "That's illegal," Jake reminded me.
We got off at the Roosevelt stop in a sea of blue and orange and staked out a spot past the LSD overpass. After about 20 minutes a pack of slightly drunk and very loud women came up to us. "Two for $15?!" one said. "We gotta get one for Bill and Danny. You got triple XL?"
Business was picking up. Two more guys came over to where Jake was exchanging money with the ladies. "What's up, guys?" I said, holding up a shirt. That's when I noticed the badges hanging around their necks.
"You're done is what's up." The cops, one big and one little, told us that it's illegal to sell on park property. "Really, they don't want you selling because the city don't get their cut," the big one said. "Daley's got all these zones set up downtown. You can't sell anything anywhere." "Man, I hate Daley," said Jake. "Yeah, we do too," the little cop replied.
They only gave us one ticket, and they didn't take the shirts. Still, the fine was $75. Against the money Jake made, he owes the city $15.