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Good news if you don't like to eat pesticides: Illinois farmers who use small amounts of commercial fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides actually make more money per acre than heavy users of such chemicals, according to University of Illinois research.

Sorry, sir. Does Fido have his Indiana passport? "Moving with pets takes careful planning," warns United Van Lines in a moving-season release, and suggests "contacting the state veterinarian in the capital city of your new home state for specific laws concerning the entry of your pet, as well as the need for an entry permit."

The city that imagines. "While the stockyards are long gone, in the elemental sense Boston's the Windy City, Los Angeles has been Second City for ten years, and the South Side, in the words of Chicago's favorite street documentarian, Studs Terkel, is 'silent' and 'dead.'... [But] in attitude, [Chicago] remains an industrial stronghold in a post-industrial era, the city which insists that it still works rather than serves." This from Allison Gamble in New Art Examiner (May 1989). "Chicago's politicians, dreaming wistfully of supercolliders, and its journalists, who wax along their nostalgic beats week after week, perpetuate this communal self-delusion.... As the 'working class,' becoming more and more marginalized, is transformed into the 'urban poor,' as Chicago becomes more and more polarized--North/South, economically, racially--it appears that the romanticized mythos of the city that works grows in inverse proportions."

Worth more dead than alive. In These Times (May 10-16) reports that Boston University president John Silber plans to take out life-insurance policies--with the school as beneficiary--on students who agree to it. Thus, the death of a student insured for $5,500 would yield the university $350,000.

Arson-ic. "The ten o'clock television news on a Sunday evening very frequently opens with a huge fire in progress, usually in an older industrial area...frequently in the old strip west of the Loop. The fires are frequently very hot ones, indicating that they may have been set in several places with fuel," writes William J. Leahy in Leahy's Corner (April 1989). "There is a convenience to such fires. They are out of control before the Fire Department is called, and thus few firemen are killed in such blazes. We frequently hear that derelicts may have accidentally touched off the fires, but why are bodies never found? In any case, this pattern had been going on for decades before Chicago had a serious homeless problem. Everyone is satisfied with this system: arsonist, the Mob, City Hall, and the Chicago Police Department, who virtually never catch an arsonist unless he is an unconnected Korean businessman. After all, this is a cheap way to clear land and collect insurance claims by rich men with good City Hall connections. Everyone is satisfied except for fire fighters..."

40,000 hours of radio shows, 3,000 hours of TV programs, and more than 5,000 commercials are now contained in the archives of the Museum of Broadcast Communications on South Wells.

I don't know what language that is, and I don't want to know. "A good restaurant must have a concept," writes Allan Post in Power Marketing Quarterly (Spring 1989), "and every successful restaurant concept has a DAB-eristic--a Different And Better characteristic than the place down the street. A DABeristic may be (and more often is, in reality) a menu item, or even a whole menu concept. Often, it's a service-related 'istic'..."

Would you walk a tightrope over a safety net like this? "In 1977, there were 78 children in AFDC households for every 100 children in poverty," reports the Public Welfare Coalition News (Winter 1989). "By 1987 there were only 58 children on AFDC for every 100 children living in households below the poverty line."

Bad news for gun nuts. According to a government survey reported in Outdoor News Bulletin (April 21), the percentage of the U.S. population that goes hunting declined from 11 percent in 1960 to a little under 9 percent in 1985.

You might prefer not to drink the water. Waste Management's Settler's Hill landfill complex in west-suburban Geneva has received an award from the Illinois Society of Professional Engineers. When full, the landfill will be topped off with "two golf courses, a driving range, two clubhouses, a restaurant, ski slopes, trails for horseback riding, cross country skiing, jogging and biking, an equestrian center, a lake and a picnic area."

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): illustration/Carl Kock.

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