I’m late to the party, as usual, but I can’t resist getting in on the City of Chicago’s program that encouraged all Chicagoans to read Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye as part of a city-wide discussion. The Outfit has covered this in detail, and better than I’m likely to do here, but that never stopped me before.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Washington Capitals fans are in full self-pity mode today, after losing Game 7 of their first round Stanley Cup playoff series in overtime. One of the players was quoted to the effect that beating Philadelphia would be hard enough without having to beat the refs, too.
The Caps had to live with a tough, but proper, no-call that cost them a goal. The penalty that left them shorthanded for the game winner had to be called, or there was no point in even bringing the referees onto the ice for the overtime.
It all worked out for the Caps and their fans. Now they can cry in their beer about how they got jobbed in overtime of a seventh game, instead of spending the summer licking their wounds after Pittsburgh swept them in four games, which is what would have happened had they advanced.
Some people don’t know when they have it good.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
I am a native of
I still visit my parents in the house where I grew up. My roots to
That's why the furor over Obama's "bitter" comments offends me. Over the past forty years, the people he's talking about—people I grew up with—have seen their jobs, their medical insurance, and their pensions disappear. Their children—such as me—have moved away to find jobs with futures. Every "improvement" in the American economy has passed them by. Damn right they're bitter. If they seem insular and untrusting, that's because they're down to a few things they can depend on, and they're holding onto them for dear life. If they think every advance made by another group comes at their expense, they have forty years of experience of watching it. The anger is misdirected—more of what they lost has gone to wealthy whites than poor blacks—in large part because Republicans have based their success over the past three decades on portraying the races as natural foes, when the real issue has been class.
Obama’s comments will not play as much of a role as the media predicts for one reason: little offense will be taken. These people know they're bitter. They're used to it, and they might even like Obama a little more for recognizing it in them.
My life and family are established here now; I'm not likely to move back to
Friday, April 11, 2008
New Mystery Reader has just posted an insightful interview with Irish Crime Fiction writer Declan Hughes, who has written three books in his Ed Loy series. While the questions are nothing special (not surprising, considering who asked them), Mr. Hughes’s replies are insightful and entertaining. Well worth checking out.
I lived over three years in the Chicago area—Woodridge, actually—and have tried, with diminishing efficiency, to get back as often as possible. It’s been four years since my last trip, and the time has not been kind to my image of the city.