Sunday, September 21, 2014

Hitchcock After Dark - Angry Birds

One of Chevanston's interns had a night off last week and decided on a lark to watch the filming of Hitchcocks's latest production. The following is his report verbatim.

The old Downey mansion and grounds at Sheridan and Granville is where Universal and Hitchcock decided to film his latest thriller, "The Birds" (well at least the trailer). This writer sat through a dry run of the entire film this past Thursday. A small audience had gathered to watch the production on a late summer evening.

Hitch himself never made an appearance but his presence was definitely felt. The actors, stage hands and film crew were all working feverishly trying satisfy the demanding director.

Never one to follow conventions Mr. Hitchcock cast men in traditional female roles and vice versa. Not sure if the songs will make the final cut but "The Woman At The End Of The Road" was well written and sung. Dialogue witty, on and off the set. Watching the actors have so much fun on stage you could live vicariously through them. When done well and with the right material there is nothing like it.

If it weren't for all the foul fowl Bodega Bay looked like a great place to visit or perhaps even live. At one point if felt as though the whole house was under attack by a flock of raving mad birds.

Since not all of the action takes place in one location the players had to make do with rearranging furniture, using a film projector, ersatz birds (for the safety of the audience) strobe lights and so called "electronic" cigarettes (nicotine free even).

At the end donations were collected to support Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

If you are lucky enough to find yourself in the possession of extra time and money; its both well spent.
Hell in a Hand Bag's rendition (PROMO ON YOUTUBE) of "The Birds" is probably the most offbeat, interesting play in Chicago at this time (especially for Fall/Halloween/Harvest time). Running Sept 11th through November 1st. An authentic reinterpretation given the seal of approval by Tippi Hedren herself.

Call 1-800-838-3006 or visit their website for tickets. Shows generally run Thursday through Sunday nights starting at 7:30 pm. A short walk from the Granville Red Line "L" station.

T-shirt of playbill will be available soon.

CAPS Meeting For Beat 2422

Marshfield and Rogers "L" gate
which grants CTA workers access to the track & ATC signal system.
This yard has been accumulating litter for years.

  • September 23rd (Tuesday) 7:00-8:00 pm @ Willey White Park 1610 w. Howard
  • Come meet your neighbors and your 24th District Chicago Police Beat Officers
  • Help make your beat a better place!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Gang Sidewalks

Gangs have been in Rogers Park for awhile. Take a look at these sidewalks. Above LK at Rogers and Paulina. Lots of walkways have been redone lately. These should be on the shortlist for replacement. Gangs and their symbols are hidden in plain sight. Ignorance of their activity may lead to peril. People stand and walk on these slabs of concrete everyday without realizing the violent gang turf.

Latin Kings and Gangster Disciples have been at it for a long time. You can tell with the age of this most permanent of graffiti. Over by Dubkin Park on Ashland there at least five slabs of walkway marred by gang markings.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Wonder Woman Lives On Rogers Ave

You wouldn't know it by the looks of it but.... this is where one of the major superheroes of our time resides. Or at least when she goes incommunicado. The gang graffiti provides local color and camouflage. Sometimes WW needs to be left alone.

She flies in on her invisible jet for the week (easy enough to hide). Breaking out her urban wear its a piece of cake to blend in with the locals. Every once in awhile she has to take care of business with her lasso of truth. Surprising that someone of her stature would stick her name on the buzzer box though. WW figures no one takes it seriously. When Bruce Wayne or Clark Kent happen to be in town they take the Red Line up north and call on WW to see if she's in.

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Progress On David & Glenner School On California

Monday, September 15, 2014

Birch Trees @ Greenview and Lunt

One day left on this postcard auction. Why are there so few birches (Birchwood) in Rogers Park nowadays? Easier to find them in murals that in real life.

"I have this old real photo postcard unused in mailingand titled on the PICTURED SIDE, APTS, N.E. COR. GREENVIEW & LUNT AVS, ROGERS PARK, CHICAGO, ILL. Below are scans of this postcard for viewing to show the condition of this postcard.. Mailing cost will be .50 cents in a stamped envelope inside a greeting card.. Any questions you may have please email me. Thank You for looking."

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Comment Of The Week

1600 block of Juneway Terrace (Google Maps)
Site of latest homicide in Rogers Park

said.... (regarding affordable housing in NOH, site of many a shooting this past summer) from the thread entitled IS CHA THE PROBLEM IN ROGERS PARK? at Everyblock RP.

(People need affordable and safe housing. How these units are being run NOH however is creating an unsafe environment. The density of the units in a very small area and their mismanagement and poor oversight has led to instability. Where else in Rogers Park do you see private detectives forever stationed watching chronic loitering? Where shootouts don't even make the news and hardly raise an eyebrow. It has gotten better but its still block for block the most dangerous area on the far north side.)

d3--There are a number of different subsidy programs in play and many times, more than one program is in place in the same building, though different units participate in the different programs.
I'm guessing that the 50% number refers to Census tract 101, which is everything Howard and north and from the El to the lake:

Northpoint owns 12 buildings, IIRC, containing 304 units. This is site based section 8.
Last I checked, there were another 100 or so housing choice voucher recipients; portable section 8.
Another 50+ units in the census tract have units that receive subsidies from the Chicago low income housing trust fund.
There are quite a few buildings that participate in Cook County's class 9 incentive program. These properties get a large property tax break for setting aside a certin number of units (35%, I think) for those who make less than a certain percentage of the area median income (80%, I think). Two buildings that I know participate in this program are 7645 Sheridan Rd and the Broadmoor, though there are others, of course.
As far as organizations that run low income housing operations in the area, Good News partners is probably the largest. They control something like 550 units, though some of those units participate in one of the above mentioned programs. 
There is a lot more to say and I'm sure there are some other incentives at play that I haven't covered, but this is a good start.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Hell In A Handbag Productions Presents.......

The Birds! Performances start tomorrow @ 6205 N Sheridan. Speaking to the caretakers of Downey Mansion (Berger Park Cultural Center) was illuminating. Tippi Heddren (mother of Melanie Griffith and original lead female) makes an appearance to at least one of the productions every year to raise money for one of her charities. She visited Chicago to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Birds recently and a free screening of the famous film at the Music Box a couple years back.

Outdoor seating has been expanded to 75 this year. The action takes place in the Downey mansion coach house, the grounds and the lake. Not a strict adaption of the movie. Girls play guys and vice versa. The Birds didn't mean to be camp in its day but watching it now it is. And thus so is the play. Alfred Hitchcock is rumoured to make a cameo appearance.

Tickets vary in price from 17 to 37 bucks. Call 1-800-838-3006 or visit to buy tickets.

"Endorsed by none other than Ms. Tippi Hedren herself, The Birds stands out as one of Handbag's most critically acclaimed and memorable shows. The environmental staging at the, Coach House on Berger Park in Lake Michigan makes it a unique experience you won't soon forget."

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Monday, September 8, 2014

Respect Our Community Do Not Litter

Paulina and Granville in nearby Edgewater has a unique street sign and set of garbage cans. Looks like its working. Are there other iterations of this sign? This sign is not attached to a street pole but is tagged as Chicago. Would this reminder and two extra garbage cans come in handy somewhere in Rogers Park?

This appears to be a community project. Not something installed by the city. The ornamental sign holder is especially cool. In this writers opinion Jarvis and Greenview could really use this set up. There is a no littering sign North of Howard.

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Sunday, September 7, 2014

Blame The Shooter Not The Victim?

Internet "discussions" follow a whole different logic versus the old face to face. If you disagree with someone and you want to "win" the debate the following parley is a classic textbook example. Especially if you are "inserting" yourself into someone else's convo where you take someone's side.

Intro - you just proved the other person's point. Response number one - you aren't paying attention so read it again (nitwit). Response number two - I could explain it to you but I can't comprehend it for you. Implying that it would waste the user's time to even go into the mysterious explanation. It's so above your head.  And the outro - well bro, sorry not my problemo you no comprehendo, smell ya later. Notice that the second discussant also blames the first party to committing the same sin that he did (so called jumping in uninvited, isn't that the whole point of social media?).

This confab revolved around the disturbing shooting on Morse Saturday night. Suntimes in their article mentioned that the man shot was a gangbanger. above adds that he was riding his bike down the sidewalk (technically illegal though only officially from Ardmore to 6400 W Sheridan along Sheridan Road) and someone from a moving car managed to wound him critically with a pistol. Motive is very important in solving any shooting and very relevant to public safety. Or should we be "indifferent"?

These shootings are scary because they are so random. Gangbangers aren't hanging on the corner anymore (correct this writer if wrong) so where they shoot has become more haphazard and the bullets have been hitting innocent bystanders including a young man on Devon who died from his injuries.

Last edited 9/8/14 1:10 am

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

A Path Across Rogers

Some neighbors take matters into their own hands. On parkways nonadjacent to their abode even. Large flagstones and pavers were placed at Fargo and Paulina and Rogers this past year. Neighborhoods and cities thrive when the community, residents and owners take care of the public land.

Official crosswalks and the natural passage are not always simpatico. People would rather walk through mud than take a extra minute to cross the street. Looking at the above picture there already is a cement slab corresponding to the footpath in the foreground.

Those going to and fro from the Paulina entrance of the Howard "L" stop usually find the cross walk further north too far. Usually there would be a crosswalk on both sides of the three sided intersection. Planners presumably have deemed that too dangerous as buses are always turning into the Gateway terminal. Silly city planners.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Lifestyles Of The .....?

This large apartment building at Fargo and Greenview sports one of the most lackluster and depressing parkways in Rogers Park. Dirt and garbage. Can't help but think of the Good Charlotte song "Lifestyles of the Rich and the Famous" when this writer passes by. Except its not.

Owner and management company are taking a completely hands off approach. Here's how it looks with snow. Hard to believe this outfit's headquarter is in a tony part of Lakeview. Someone should at least be dispatched once a week to pick up all the litter. Heck go crazy and one day plant something and water it a couple times a week. Until then this is the default parkway. Making no choices or upkeep is still a decision.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Commercial Space Available On Jarvis

What do we need in the neighborhood? Plenty of places to eat and drink. How about a clothing/jeans store? Or a book store? According to the Howard "L" area needs retail development. What about retail space that is already vacant?

The former Goods For Less has sat empty this past year and its been forever since Jarvis "L" retail space had anything. Thriving and interesting cities need places for people to buy goods and services inside the neighborhood. If not people living here are forced to drive or take the train elsewhere to shop.

1547 w Jarvis has had a lot of false starts and almosts. Maybe this coming year will be different?

Monday, September 1, 2014

House Music @ Inner Metamorphosis University

Low End Theory was the landmark hip hop album by Tribe Called Quest in the early nineties. The cover of the album was a women with red and green paint on her.

Low End Theory has inspired special edition sneakers, a club night in L.A and in S.F, and a Kickstarter campaign fully funded back in 2012.  (Baby used to have a paint brush. It looks like the baby has its fingers up its nose, probably just teething.)

And now its a DJ House set at I.M.U., 1418 w Howard.

Saturday September 6th 8 pm until 2 am, music spun by DJ Alano V. and Tony G. All those dressed in black and white get a discount at the door. #Committed to giving you the best in authentic Deep House and Soul grooves.

Fresh Organic Juice Bar and House Music will make an interesting combo.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Who Watches The Watchmen?

Howard Street March 2013

#Chicopwatch tweets started appearing July 17th. Almost a month before Ferguson. We Charge Genocide the organization behind #chicopwatch was interviewed on Vocalo recently (a regular morning show on 88.7 WLUW).

Some people are reassured when they see the cops shaking down teens and young adults in the city. Others are ashamed and alarmed. Who's right and who's wrong? Like everything its not black and white, pun intended.

Still We Rize @Baburrealer reported the first #Chicopwatch transgression in Rogers Park on August 12th. Underneath the photo he wrote "In Howard cpd is harassing another black man for no reason. He is not holding back. " Actually its Fargo. How does the writer know that its "harassing for no reason"? And who is "he" that is not holding back?

Sara-Ji@sarahdashji tweeted the second #Chicopwatch report here in the RP August 29th. "#RogersPark #Northshore and #Clark Too common a sight." Is it a common sight because the cops are racist or that the gangs on Clark are hispanic?

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Whatever Happened To Ye Olde Sandwich Board?

Instead of a human being Dunkin' Donuts (chain known for donuts and coffee - short descriptor from Google Maps) has a pole hold its sign up. Poles are way cheaper. They don't complain about low wages, or loaf on the job. They sit still day in and day out without protest with all sorts of things stuck on them. This advertisement was designed more for the auto than pedestrians.

Traditional sandwich boards are folksy. Its positive loitering. Its giving someone a job who otherwise wouldn't. Its the right thing to do. Putting up a giant poster board up like this is not only illegal its an eyesore.

The modern sandwich board is more commonly used when someone is going out of business. Stores with more tact use a small chalkboard for day to day specials. Handwritten signs updated daily or weekly add interest to our main streets. We don't live in a giant commercial. If Dunkin' Donuts insists on posting these giant ads they should at least pay for the privilege.

After awhile these giant obnoxious bills become so commonplace that they just fade into the background. The poster isn't even in front of their store. Dunkin' Donuts also contributes to traffic throughout the United States with their overflowing drive thrus. The 6250 N Clark Street store has been better at curbing the overflow this past year.

(Sol Cafe's chalkboards are educational to boot.)

Last updated 8/31/14 8:10 pm

Friday, August 29, 2014

Happy Labor Day Weekend From Witch's Hat

Not sure if 7430 N Paulina will be here next year. In any case she wants everyone far and near to have a blast this Labor Day weekend.

She will miss her cute little one car garage complete with chimney. Witch's Hat is very happy that for the time being that her outbuilding is now secure. She will soldier on until the bitter end. Keep your chin up no matter what.

Click here for a bird's eye view. According to Zillow built in 1901. Witch's Hat was the former home of John Dawson Associates.

"John Dawson Associates Inc was founded in 2010, and is located at 7430 N Paulina St in Chicago. It employs 2 employees and is generating approximately $82,000.00 in annual revenue. Additional information is available by contacting this business at (773) 274-xxxx."

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Pictorial Proof : Aguas Tortas Coming Soon To Howard Street

Can't believe everything you read on Everyblock. The headhonchos at Chevanston sent a loafing field reporter/producer out to verify claims that a Mexican restaurant was gonna open on Howard Street.

Aguas Tortas literally means waters cakes. On the website it explains that aguas refers to the flavored waters it sells. Tamarind, jamaica and ofcourse horchata. Tortas are Mexican sandwiches and burritos.

Juan Jimenez opened the first Aguas Tortas last year at 618 1/2 Church Street Evanston, Illinois. A hop skip and a jump away from Northwestern University. "To me you know its like youse a customer when you come into my house, to my home. And you know I want you to enjoy it because that's the only way I'm going to keep you here." Looking at the video the store is decorated with day of the dead figurines and artwork.

Is this a chain in the making? 99 reviews on Yelp with an average of 4 and half stars. A thriving business in Evanston expanding to Howard Street is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Last edited 8/28/14 8:18 pm

Jargowood Meeting September Second

Jargonauts & Friends

See meeting notice attached (or after jumpbreak).....and agenda.  We meet Tues Sept 2 (after Labour Day) at Chalet Living on Sheridan just south of Jarvis.....

Please note the new CAPS meeting schedule in Sept.  2423 meets Sept 8 and 2422 meets Sept 23.

Our big "continuing issue" is the condition of our streets and alleys due to extensive infrastructure improvements - gas lines, sewers, drains, phone stuff - is there any public utility who has not cut a hole in the pavement?  Drive slowly over the craters and pot holes and large metal planks in the street.  Do not fall into the pit.

I am sorry to remark - our Alderman has time to propose re-naming beaches and streets - but he cannot repair the craters in alley behind his house - axle-busters - support your neighborhood "front end suspension" repair shoppe.  Anyone who thinks that the Alderman's immediate neighbors benefit somehow from improved city services on their block - well, you are wrong.

Fall/autumn is coming and the leaves will fall and the trash will blow around.  Please clear the storm drain in the street in front of your property - no the street sweeper will not exactly remove the stuff clogging the drain.  You have to get out there and get your hands dirty.  We don't want to drown in the puddles after we have fallen into the crater left by the public utilities digging up our streets and parkways and intersections.

Lorraine Dostal

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Com Ed Trailer @ Howard and Ashland


Sounds like a train station. Later on it got louder and smoke billowed from the top. They must be working on the electrical grid since they are THE electric company.

Anybody have any idea what the function of this behemoth is?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Shot In The Leg On Juneway Terrace

Ashland alley just north of Howard

If you're shot North of Howard its not a big deal. No discussion on Everyblock, nothing on East Rogers Park Facebook, and nada from Just an honorable mention on the shootings roundup list compiled by NBC Chicago.

The only facts publicly known are that a 31 year old man was shot in the leg 3 a.m. apparently Saturday night. A family member bypassed the closest level one trauma and brought the victim to Evanston Hospital for treatment.

Is the area so bad NOH that getting shot isn't newsworthy? Or perhaps the violence is so hopeless that neighbors have just accepted the status quo? On Everyblock neighbors are more concerned about a gray cat that someone found. Spoiler! The cat is safe back at home.

Ashland's end of the line

Interesting drive up to NOH via the Ashland alley. A new black wrought iron fence with built in cut through to Willye B White has replaced the old chewed up chain link. An upgrade but lateral move. Hitting Jonquil via the Ashland alley you encounter a group of 4 youths loitering at the corner. Just down the street a man sits in a Kate's Detective Agency car.

Zigzagging around to the the left and right you find the last stretch of Ashland. Then at the terminus Juneway Terrace. To the left large brick apartment buildings and to the right fancy single family houses and a large courtyard apartment building being worked on.

NOH used to have its own blog 24/7 North of Howard Watchers. Now its hardly given the time of day by local media.

Say Goodbye To The Witch's Hat Garage

Someone doesn't want this garage around anymore. The notice is a joke. Hardly could you find a more sturdy car barn in Rogers Park. The structure is more solid than the house itself. The side gate by the driveway has been open and unlocked for a few weeks now. The door to the garage was unlocked, the screws holding the fastener with the padlock were removed as were the the screws to the alley gate's latch. Yet there is a brand new lock on the shed behind the garage.

Time to pay your respects. City of Chicago demo notice was posted almost a week ago. Whoever was supposed to respond only had three days. It appears that whoever owns the house (the bank) is having the city do its dirty work for them. Uncommon to find a one car garage of such an age in such good shape. Check it out soon.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

John Singer Sargent On Sheridan

The Fountain, Villa Torlonia
Frascati, Italy (detail) 1907

Spotted another one of these prints on California north of Devon. put prints up all over the country during the month of August. Billboards, telephone kiosks, subways, buses, bus stops and stairs are examples of where these masterworks have been plastered.

Above is number 18 out of the 58 selected for display. This particular work is housed at the Art Institute of Chicago which has a decent Sargent collection.

This is a fantastic addition to bus stops. Instead of the usual banal bland advertising, art! Something like this should be sponsored year round. Projects like this can inspire young minds to create their own masterpiece and to visit the Art Institute.

Last edited 8/20/14 7:08 pm

Monday, August 18, 2014

We Are All Living In A Giant Fake Computer Generated World

Someone escaped from the unnamed megacity. Before doing so this brave soul left an important clue regarding the very nature of our existence. He (judging by the handwriting) spray painted his revelation under the Morse Metra bridge.

You see this section of Chicago named Rogers Park isn't real. None of it is. This may look like the scribbling of the average madman tagger. Don't let the child like scrawl fool you. He is the only one who knows the whole truth. This writer investigated the outrageous claim last night. It checks out.

Wake up. All this work you're doing day in and day out, the posts and comments on Everyblock, the food you're eating, the dog you're walking, all the pictures you upload into your computer, the 911 calls, the crime, all of it is part of an ersatz program designed to keep you and your mind prisoner.

That's all this writer has time to say. They're getting too close for comfort. Will "post" again when time allows. In the meantime don't take life too seriously. Hope to see some of you on the other side.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Shots Fired 1600 Block West Fargo

8-16-14 8:05 pm

The late humid summer days peace was disturbed by three shots yesterday. Evidence (grey mechanical box with wheels) of the shooting has since been towed or driven away. The car had been hit in its left rear tire and in the quarter panel above.

After the shots fired one African American male with white tank top and one African American female with salmon shorts ran eastbound on Fargo toward Ashland. Other neighbors saw a car peel out and head westbound.

Right after the shooting neighbors came out on their balconies or down to the sidewalk to talk with each other and police. Some people were just getting home from work or from a walk around the neighborhood.

One neighbor mentioned how they had lived here since 2006 and this was the first shooting they had seen. A photographer with a tripod set up on the street to take pictures of the crime scene.

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Friday, August 15, 2014

Glenwood Arts Festival Extends To Wayne

Glenwood Ave Arts Fest (turning lucky 13 this year) originally ran from Lunt to Farwell along Glenwood. Then a couple years ago it expanded to Morse west of the tracks. Then it expanded into Family Dollar's parking lot. Now for the first time it runs all the way to Mayne Stage.

Glenwood is now blocked off to through traffic on the east side of the "L". Signs remind patrons that no bikes, skates, push carts, handbills or guns allowed. The fest opens at 11 am and closes at 9 pm tomorrow and Sunday.

Note, 6900 N Wayne has three to four rows of bricks perpendicular to the rest on the east and west sides of the street. Have to get the organizers to rename the Friday night Cobblestone jam. How about the Brick Road rager?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Towbar Once Again A Coffeeshop

This past Monday Towbar (at Jarvis and Greenview) opened at 7am. Jargonauts near and far rejoiced as their spot for morning coffee (Big Shoulders coffee light and dark brewed fresh every morning) was open once again.

Sol Cafe hands down is the best coffee shop in the area. But when the weathers sublime you need a place to sit down and read the paper with your morning coffee. Variety is the spice of life. And face it. Your regular barista needs a break from seeing your ugly face day in and day out.

It was a sad day when Towbar decided to only open afternoons. So come on down and rediscover Jarvis Square in the morning.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Pothole Repair On Wayne

The following are reader submitted photos of Wayne Avenue's street repair. Large chuckholes were filled and the uneven brick was leveled earlier today with asphalt. This stops Wayne from hemorrhaging anymore bricks. It was worst in two large holes just south of the Wayne Senior Building.

In the time it took the city to repair the street five or six bricks were lost. Probably the last major potholes to be patched this year. Finally the neighbors in this neck of the woods can put the polar vortex behind them.

Unfortunate that the city and the powers that be couldn't muster the funds or get the paperwork done in time to get the Christy Webber crew out there to do the job right. Maybe sometime next year or the year after Wayne and Glenwood can be restored.

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