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What to Hate About Chicago

Welcome to my city, Chicago, which in Native American language translates to “Smelly Onion” my guess is this wasn’t meant as a compliment but what do I know, as I am merely a writer for this site. There is a lot to love about this Great American city, but also there is plenty to hate, and really, that is the stuff that is funny, so let’s get on with the hate, my friend.

1) Political Corruption. 4 of our last 7 Governors have gone to prison for acts they committed while Governor of the state. Furthermore, the Chicago Sun Times suggests the average Illinois resident pays $1,308 in corruption tax, which to a typical family of 4 means that the corrupt government flushes $100 of yours down the toilet per week merely due to political corruption. This doesn’t even count the general incompetence of government in general which wastes even more of it.

2) Chiraq. While the Spike Lee movie has generated controversy over the title, the fact of the matter is, you only need to spend 20 minutes in town to see someone wearing a shirt sporting that word, and it’s been that way for the better part of 10 years. It also remains true that more Chicagoans were victims of homicide during the Iraq war, than American soldiers died during it.

3) Encased meats. While I do enjoy a good Italian Sausage or hot dog now and then, Chicago’s fascination with tubular meats has gone into obsession.

4) The plows. When I first got a job in the city, everyone told me left and right that the one thing the city did was plow the streets. Boy were they wrong on that. While they do a decent job on the main streets, they do not touch the side roads, where you actually park your vehicle. I have parked in 15 inches of snow 2 weeks after the last snowfall before.

5) They invented the ballpark named after a corporation. In 1920, they renamed Weeghman park, Wrigley Field, better known as the company that makes that Juicy Fruit that Sean Payton is so fond of.

6) The City of Broad Shoulders and narrow trophy cases. In 140 years of baseball, the Cubs have merely 2 Championships (somehow they managed those in back to back seasons of 1907 and 1908). In 115 seasons of play, the White Sox have won 3 World Series titles (1906, 1917 and 2005). The Bears, while they are 2nd in the NFL with 9 titles, only one has come in the Super Bowl era. The Bulls, while 3rd in the NBA history with 6 titles, only has those in an 8 year time frame, making the other 40 years of the franchise a giant ball of suck. The Blackhawks while they have won 3 Stanley Cups in the past 6, the fact remains, that only 1 Original Six team has won less than they have.

7) The traffic.   On a good day it takes roughly an hour to get downtown from the burbs.  If you are driving home in a snowstorm, it might take  you 4.  They recently renamed the “Circle Interchange” (which is easily a top 5 traffic tie up nationwide) the Jane Byrne interchange. For those who don’t know it what I am referring to, it is the major Interchange downtown which Interstate 90, 94 and 290 all meet. Speaking of Jane Byrne, while she was mayor of Chicago in 1981, she decided to show how safe Public Housing was in the city by moving into the now demolished Cabrini-Green housing project. It was seen as the publicity stunt that it was, ensuing in protests, police brutality, and her moving back to civilization after 3 weeks. Furthermore, to keep her safe, her security staff blockaded every entrance to the building she was living in but one so they could easily monitor who entered and left the facility.  This blockade was not removed when she moved out and the local gang, The Gangster Disciples, quickly found the advantages of this.  The building came to be known as “The Fort” and soon thereafter the gang, decided to do this to all the buildings in the complex.   This area got so bad in the 80s and 90s that many of the Chicago Police Department refused to patrol this area out of fear for their lives.

8) Hey fuckstick!  The letters “th” do no pronounce a “d” sound.

9) The Super fans.  It’s impossible to watch a Bears or Bulls game at a Sports bar in town without someone referencing this famed SNL skit.  It’s funny  because while the city seems to embrace it as a compliment to the city and it’s fans, it clearly was made to make fun of Chicago and it’s delusional sense of reality when it comes to sports in their town.

10) The Giant Bean.  Let me see where I have seen a place where I can look different at different angles in a mirror.  Oh yeah at every fucking County Fair in the country!

The picture above is from the back of a T-shirt that employees of the now closed “Hot Doug’s” used to wear.  There always seemed to be a line out the door, for “Hot” Doug Sohn’s tubular meat creations ranging from the typical Hot Dog, Bratwurst or Polish Sausage to the rare ostrich or elk sausage, and he even topped some of these with Foie Gras. It was best to go there on Friday or Saturday when they cooked the fries in rendered duck fat.

Next week, we travel back to Detroit, for a rematch with the Lions.  I have already done a hate column on Detroit this year, but I don’t think I will be short on material for another 10 reasons to hate this Zombie Wasteland, but if you wish to contribute, don’t hesitate, as I will be more than receptive.