Tag Archives: Chicago

Superbowl Shuffle (04/04)

I didn’t grow up in Chicago, but I did know who Refrigerator Perry was. I even remember cutting a picture of him out of TIME magazine (he was standing next to a refrigerator) and putting it in a collage.

But I don’t necessarily remember this from my youth:

However, while at the Park West Venue in Chicago, I learned that was the location for the video you just watched.

Doesn’t it make you nostalgic for a time when everything in life had a rap song?

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Like Father, Like Son (03/24)

Joakim Noah, of the Chicago Bulls, is not the only athlete in the family.

noahx1

His father, Yannick Noah, was a professional tennis player and won the French Open in 1983.

ten_g_yannick_195I am not sure if Joakim has the same musical aspirations, but Yannick is also a pop-soul singer. Who says you have  to the same thing your entire life?

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What Building You Talkin’ About? (03/12)

THE SEARS TOWER

THE SEARS TOWER

That’s right ladies and gentlemen we are talking about the Sears Tower, our nations tallest building. Why are we talking about it? Because the name is going to be changed to Willis Tower. Who names a building, Willis?

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

The 110-story Chicago giant, the nation’s tallest building, will be renamed Willis Tower under a leasing deal. The New York-based owners signed a lease with Willis Group Holdings, a London-based insurance broker, for 140,000 square feet.

“Having our name associated with Chicago’s most iconic structure underscores our commitment to this great city, and recognizes Chicago’s importance as a major financial hub and international business center,” said Joseph Plumeri, chairman of Willis Group Holdings.

blah, blah, blah. It’s hard enough to keep up with the names of stadiums, now we are going to have to keep up rnaming buildings too?

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Cermak (03/03)

Many major streets are named after influential people, but it is easy to take who those people are for granted.

For example, I have driven on Cermak road in Chicago numerous times and never thought about who Cermak was. I am positive that natives of the city know the story, but I am not a native of this area. However, I do know the story now.

Anton Cermak

Anton Cermak (May 9, 1873 – March 6, 1933)

Anton Cermak emigrated to the United States with his parents in 1874 from Austria-Hungary (now the Czech Republic).

He began his political career as a precinct captain and in 1902 was elected to the Illinois state legislature. Seven years later, he would take his place as alderman of the 12th Ward . Cermak was elected president of the Cook County Board of Commissioners in 1922, chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party in 1928, and mayor of Chicago in 1931.

Before Cermak, the Democratic party in Cook County was run by the “Lace Curtain” Irish. They looked down on anyone who wasn’t “Lace Curtain,” even the Irish from the Back of the Yards and Bridgeport neighborhoods (referred to as “Pig Shit” Irish), and also non-Irish ethnics. As Cermak climbed the local political ladder, the resentment of the Lace Curtain group grew. When the bosses rejected his bid to become the mayoral candidate, Cermak swore revenge. He formed his political army from the non-Irish elements, and even persuaded black politician William L. Dawson to switch from the Republican to the Democratic Party. Dawson later became U.S. Representative (from the 1st District) and soon the most powerful black politician in Illinois.

Cermak’s political and organizational skills helped create one of the most powerful political organizations of his day, and Cermak is considered the father of Chicago’s Democratic machine.

Wikipedia

On February 15, 1933, while shaking hands with President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt at Bayfront Park in Miami, Florida, Cermak was shot in the lung and seriously wounded by Giuseppe Zangara, who attempted to assassinate Roosevelt. Cermak’s words to FDR en route to the hospital, ” I am glad it was me instead of you.” He died from his wounds on March 6, 1933 in Miami.

Read the Chicago Tribune’s 1933 coverage.

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