Friday, October 8, 2010

Little by little, bit by bit...Autumn in Rogers Park

George, the Pumpkin Seller at 7313-15 N. Sheridan Road, has not been well of late. His successor is a genuinely nice young 'gentle' man from Wisconsin: Aaron (I hope I have the spelling correct?)

This 'Pumpkin/Christmas tree' lot is right outside my 6th floor window. For the last several years I've lived here, George has been 'the man'. Now, Aaron is here, and I found him to be a somewhat shy, but great conversationalist.

Aaron has a dream...don't we all? But I feel Aaron will achieve his dream. He is a musician, a guitar player. At 26, that's about time for something great to happen, isn't it?

Aaron told me he voted for Obama...but for this seasonal job selling pumpkins, and later Christmas trees, he is UNEMPLOYED. He admitted to not knowing what he would do when the season is finished, other than, "I'll look again for a job."

My insight into human beings showed me that this is an exceptional man--creative, inspired, productive!

This is a young man who should not be here, in Rogers Park, selling pumpkins and Christmas trees. He should be out there, playing his heart out as he wants to do, for you and for me! He told me he has no guitar with him, but practices fingering anyway.

One of his goals is to be onstage, playing guitar right-handed, then switch to a left-handed bass guitar, because he is ambidextrous. I think that's pretty cool, don't you?

BTW, Aaron painted the pumpkin himself, with both hands, though he claims he's not an artist!

Please, give him your business. And...he has sugar pumpkins that are great for baking, so you can create your own pumpkin pie. I bought one, and I'm certain I'll go back for a few more!

Aaron also threw in this lovely 'swan gourd', which I photographed just for the heck of it. Isn't it lovely?

President Obama:

Is there any chance you could finally LISTEN to the American people? Can you and your half-baked Southside failed attorney/wife take some time to understand something more than PHOTO-OPS?

Isn't it a pity, isn't it a shame...

...because there are those of us who think, had you been able to live and take advantage of today's technology, you would have been extremely happy and still creative?

John Winston Lennon (October 9, 1940-December 8, 1980)

Tomorrow, John Lennon would have become 70 years old. And oh, imagine what he would have accomplished, musically, during the past 30 years! I am certain he would have used all the technology available--and produced songs that would have helped everyone in the world!

I still sing them...don't you?

The Great Chicago Fire

On this day, 129 years ago, Chicago's landscape was drastically changed.

That Sunday evening, a fire began on DeKoven Street, between Clinton and Jefferson Streets. It is now the sight of the Chicago Fire Academy, where potential firefighters train for the battles they fight to prevent a tragedy such as that which occurred the evening of October 8, 1871.

The Great Chicago Fire decimated nearly four square miles of South Loop, through Downtown, and on north to Lincoln Park. It is estimated that 200-300 died as a result.

Wabash and Washington, after the Great Fire

Dearborn and Monroe, after the Great Fire

Today, there are many residents of Chicago who know nothing of the Great Chicago Fire--an important point in the history of this city, which immediately began rebuilding itself. They come from far and wide, legally and illegally, to make their fortune in what was once touted as "the City of Big Shoulders" . They care nothing about its history--only what Chicago can give them for free.

When I first moved here in 1999, I drove from Downers Grove--about 30 miles--on Ogden Avenue, which took me to Chicago Avenue, less than a mile from my final destination.

I saw then, and I continue to see, areas that could and should be 'fired', laid to waste--because those who have migrated here do not care about their surroundings and do not understand the history of Chicago.

To me, Chicago is a city of lost souls--and believe me, it is really easy to 'lose your soul' here. Many have done just that, including our current President, and our out-going Mayor, and our new wannabe mayoral candidate.

Occasionally, I reflect upon those terrible two days in 1871; I have read of the great valor of some of Chicago's then-most-prominent citizens and their valiant actions to help their fellow men and women and children.

What would we do, here in today's Chicago, without our firefighting members of the Chicago Fire Department? These men and women work continuously to prevent another Great Chicago Fire.

They deserve our honor and respect.

Thank you--to all Chicago Firefighters!