Saturday, February 28, 2015

Now Playing At The Howard Street Theatre

P and J presents - Nike and the Strength Inside - at 1627 w Howard Street. How many seasons has this show been playing? Seven, ten, twelve,fifteen? Recently the Factory Theater did a mock up using the same frame.

Too bad the theater itself on Howard was destroyed. Maybe one day the centerpiece will house another theater or movie house. Plenty of other retail space on the strip for PJ's to relocate.  Shoe stores used to take center stage on Morse ( Cobbler Mall ).

The other marquee tougher to photograph. Its dark. "I live this" Conditioned to conquer brought to you by Nike. A view of another Howard Street type city-scape from the elevated.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Friday, February 27, 2015

Guardian Gryphons

Like something out of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Morning sunlight pierces the ad hoc entrance of the apartment building on Howard; revealing the archaic original.

Griffins indifferent to the cold stoically watch over the entrance. No loitering and no trespassing warnings are superfluous. Should anyone threaten the safety of the occupants the bas relief gargoyles will emerge from their stony slumber.

Ever been bitten by an eagle with the strength of a lion? Having done some research into the matter for a previous case this writer can tell you its not pretty.  Ancient literature on the subject was hidden under some dusty scrolls in the back of the rare books room (downtown at the Newberry library).Its a long story. Merek had wanted to find out what happened to his family in the Middle Ages.

Anyways griffins when hungry will pluck an ox up from the farmstead and fly away to their mountain retreat to feast. One strange gryphon made a Jell-O ad. Best to not interact with them unless its unavoidable. They are unpredictable.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

A New Beginning For Witch's Hat?

The for sale sign has been taken down, the front steps are shoveled and salted, a missing window in the back three season room has been patched. Rehab work has started inside.  The cute one car brick garage still stands.

Things looking up for this charming Victorian.

It went through some tough times. The previous owner passed right as the real estate market collapsed around 2007/2008. Kids hung out under the porch, threw rocks at the back windows. Passerby after passerby littered the yard year after year, the parkway and lawn left overgrown. Neglected by its owners and bank.

7430 N Paulina recently sold per Zillow (late January) at a price low enough to warrant restoration and reinvestment. The house is in a key location for the neighborhood. At the deadend of Fargo and on the corner of Rogers and Paulina. It sets the tone for the neighborhood. Its the gateway to Jargowood, Rogers Park (especially walking south from the Howard "L" stop).

The location has its down sides. It gets more than its fair share of commuter trash blown over from the large Gateway bus station. To keep this part of Rogers Park looking good the SSA should be dispatched on a regular basis to pick up Rogers Ave. This old house was here long before the bus station and should get due deference.

Last edited 2-25-15 8:30 pm

Monday, February 23, 2015

Down Zone At Fargo And Sheridan

7450 N Sheridan - Former Moonies Outpost
across the street from 7430 N Sheridan "The Ship House"
So what is 7440 N Sheridan - the pole?


Address : 7440 N Sheridan Road

File No. - A - 8096

Amendment - X

Wireless Communication Facility - NOT X

On JAN 21 ST 2015, an application was filed by

Name and Address : Joseph A Moore 7356 N Greenview Alderman 49th Ward Chicago Il 60626


Change RT4 Residential Two-flat, Townhouse and Multi-unit District to RS3 Residential Single Unit District

For additonal information, please contact the applicant at Contact Information Ald. Joseph Moore (773) - 338 - 5796

This notice shall be posted not less than 5 days after filing the above application and shall be removed within 3 days after the public hearing.

City of Chicago
Department of Planning and Development
Bureau of Zoning and Land Use

Saturday, February 21, 2015

What The Heck Is Metro PCS?

One way to ensure your tweet gets no favorites or retweets is to announce the opening of a new cell phone store. This authorized dealer at 7547 N Paulina will be unlocking its front doors soon (to indifference, applause, or mild enthusiasm?). METRO PCS is English for generic corporate phone store. Metro Pcs just opened up a branch on Clark street in the Dunkin Donuts parking lot to zero fanfare. There is another branch at Western and Birchwood.

PCS either stands for nothing or Personal Communication Services.

Metro PCS will give Cricket on the Evanston side of Howard some competition in the prepaid, zero contract wireless market. Across the street on Howard Robbie Communication 10 and K.K.H.comm are the modern day equivalent to catch all mom and pop electronic gadget stores.

They (Metro PCS) joined forces with one of the other major generic cell phone providers T-Mobile (which has a branch at the Howard Gatway mall if your too lazy to walk). You have to name a company something (like CVS short for Consumer Value Services).

Last edited 2/24/15 10:34 am

Friday, February 20, 2015

Frozen Fargo Beach

Fargo's rock pile recently lost its pole from rough waves. The warning which shooed people away from the rocks is no more. There isn't a strong undercurrent or riptide right now. Certain death lies beneath the unstable lake ice.

While this winters ice cover is impressive it doesn't hold a candle to last annum. People routinely walked their dogs east of the rockpile in 2014. There was also a footpath from Fargo to Howard Street Beach

The lakefront's change in appearance from year to year is dramatic. Ice caves dominate the shoreline in 2015. One of the neanderthals left a beer bottle behind.

Chicago Park District flag system is out of commision. No lifeguard on duty. Some people like to swim in winter. For some reason the Rogers Park Polar Bear Club never caught on.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Openings & Closings - RIP Golden Mini Mart

A week ago a junk truck idled at the bus stop to collect odds and ends from the shuttered convenience store. The little groceteria on Morse that was long a haven for criminal and gang activity closed its doors for the last time. One inactive user from Everyblock discovered it couldn't be reformed.

Golden Mini Mart failed its last inspection January 26th.

broken door at walk-in cooler excess and peeling gray tape try to hold door and door frame instructed to repair.front walk-in cooler door jammed instructed to repair. 
Cardboards used for shelf liners,at selling area and inside the walk-in cooler,instructed to remove and maintain shelves clean.rusty shelves replace or repaint with a smooth cleanable and non-absorbent material

broken wall under the paper wall at side of toilet bowl,instructed to repair.broken wall at rear furnace area.opening and cardboards above walk-in cooler, instructed to remove cardboards,seal opening with a smooth,cleanable and non-absorbent material

At the end it says on Feb 4th they passed inspection and that their license had expired. Well when you voluntarily allow your business credentials to  age out you have in fact graduated from the whole inspection scene into nonexistence. GMM was a grocery store with grade 3 low risk which underwent a canvass inspection. Results? Out of business.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Stop Work Order

Another day another sign. This one halts rehab at the 339 - 327 w Howard street mixed use building.  It was to be home to Harold's Chicken. Last fall the 8th ward alderman announced that the building was under new management.

This is the building with the (3 spot) Evanston cab stand.

Nothing on the Evanston Now website. So far the outside work helped unitize the three offending storefronts with a plain black finish.

No off the cuff, under the radar construction work allowed in Evanston, particularly in the commercial sector.

Please continue reading for more pictures 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Aftermath Of Devon-Damen Fire - A Total Loss

Still smoldering this morning from Sunday's fire. Officials haven't released the results of their investigation yet. Crews set to work taking down the unstable shell.

According to the Trib one man was found dead and with another sent to the hospital (St. Francis) in serious condition. The building to the south suffered water damage and has boarded up windows.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Precrime Or Crime Prevention

People love to click to check out the results of accidents and mayhem. Not always so interested in the  smaller infractions that lead to death and injury. After the fact investigators figure out what caused the tragedy.

Constant reaction is not a fun way to move through life. Situations happen over and over again that could and should be prevented. Apathy to everyday misdeeds causes more work later on. The man waiting for the school bus says, "that guy always parks like that".

This intersection of Birchwood and Ashland is surrounded by large apartment buildings. Structures so large that the owners or managers or conglomerates that own them don't take a personal interest in what's going on at the corner. Plenty of single family homes nearby. Even so, the geography of the area leads to indifference. Hey its such a public place who knows? Whatever. It's not my problem. Until one day it is.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Mayne Stage - Cine Negro @ Wayne Ave Brick Road

Abandoned Car @ Ashland & Birchwood?

Probably not. But if you don't investigate how do you know? The law of unintended consequences. It takes a couple of unexpected causes for a bad outcome. One illegally parked car, a pedestrian not paying attention and a distracted driver equals one dead pedestrian.

That and how do you know the car isn't stolen or involved in a crime?

Anyways looks like its okay to park here? Heads up walking northbound on Ashland towards Rogers Ave. This corner parking has been going on for awhile. Larger that average corner so it almost looks legit. How many times have you seen cars bounding a crosswalk? In the off chance the driver spins out of control and you aren't looking both ways its possible the parked car could shield you from deadly impact. More likely the scofflaw car will cause an unwitting walker (zombie or otherwise) to not see oncoming traffic.

Same crosswalk mid-January, and mid-December.

Please continue reading for yesterday's pictures same corner

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Interruptor De Seguridad De Servicio General

General Duty Safety Switch 30 Amps & 240 Volts

Apply appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and follow safe electrical work practices.This equipment must only be installed and serviced by qualified electrical personnel. Never operate energized switch with door open. Keep door fastened. Turn off switch before removing or installing load side connections.

Always use a properly rated voltage sensing device at all times and load tube clips to confirm switch is off. Turn off power supplying switch before doing any other work on or inside switch. Do not use renewable link fuses in fused switches. Failure to follow these instructions will result in death or serious injury. To lock out switch, place padlock hasp through hole in lockplate and hole in handle.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Future Site Of Factory Theater?

This is what 1621-23 west Howard looks circa early 2015. It would've been much cooler if the theater could've been larger and in the central part of the old Howard Theatre Building. You gotta start somewhere.

According to Joe Moore's email blast the 2015-16 season will start off with "Zombie Broads" (Supposed to open September 25th with previews starting September 18th). It will be an eighty seat "THRUST" theater. According to Theatre Design a thrust type stage is "oldest known fixed type of staging in the world, and it is thousands of years old!" A thrust stage has an audience on three sides. The down side for queasy guests are the vomitory entrances (through the aisles). Not really nausea inducing, just from the Latin vomere to "disgorge" spectators.

No official opening date yet. Keep your fingers crossed. We know that not everything pans out (Aguas Tortas). Factory Theater  posted a picture of playbill mocked up onto one of the Howard Theatre marquees. "When you turn 23 It's time to get your own place. Season 23 at 1621-23"

Friday, February 13, 2015

Chevanston Photo On New Bang Da Hitta Video

Craig posted a link yesterday to the latest Bang Da Hitta (and Young Pappy video) on Everyblock. Can't understand what they're rapping about. Guess these guys never heard of Kenny Rogers. "Know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away and know when to run. You never count your money when your sittn' at the table. There'll be time enough for countin' when the (drug?) dealin's done." Lots of money waving. Better to put that money to work for you instead of flashing it around.

None of this behavior follows common sense. The antonym of taunt is commendation. Positive hip hop would have lyrics like, much respect to blah,blah,blah.

Is Mr. Rogers (Coming Soon) - Philip Mcgregor Rogers?

The Youtube video uses a stretched out screengrab of this "famous" unelevated shot of Glenwood Ave (looking north) from 2013.

The ensuing discussion on Everyblock is pretty standard for current internet parley. Snipes, satire, and smart alecks.

A309vision - this videographer's style involves filming rappers confabulating in front of prominent civic structures at night or inside their apartments. Its a beginning. Maybe with enough of these recordings under his belt he will branch off into something else more artistic or meritorious.

Putting two or three of these videos on in the background makes for an amusing mish mash.

In case you didn't know the restoration of Glenwood and Wayne avenues' brick roads are still in limbo until Ward 49 finds the funding.

Last edited 2/14/15 9:04 am

Friday, February 6, 2015

Giant Crane On Howard Street

Something big is being lifted near the city limits. A huge hvac, heating and air conditioning unit is being hoisted onto the Broadmoor? Gotta step back pretty far to get the whole thing into frame. Like Rogers Ave or at least a block away.

La Grange Grove GMK 6250 is the make and model. A used one from 2006 will set you back 1.6 million dollars. Better to just rent it out as needed. La Grange is based in Hodgkins, Illinois and has been in business for more than 50 years. This crane became the largest in fleet back in 2006. It can routinely haul up 10-15 ton Hvacs and water towers onto tall buildings.

Please continue reading for more pictures

Monday, February 2, 2015

After Superbowl Snow Squall All Bets Are Off OR When Its Okay To Park On The Sidewalk

If you can't walk on the foot pavement after twenty inches of snow then you are allowed to park your pickup wherever. As long as you clear a path. If Chicago got twenty inches a day people walking the streets becomes the norm. Fat bikes replace ten speeds, fixed gears and mountain bikes. Four wheelers instead of motorcycles, skis not roller blades.

Chi Streetsblog is a humbugger. They say you can't park on sidewalks. But they aren't taking into account the occasional snow blast. Parking on the sidewalk under normal circumstance will piss off most city folk, including the Expired Meter. But there are some circumstance where you can get away with it.

The deluge of snowflakes temporarily shuts down the city. People have to roll up their sleeves and take it back however conventionally or unorthodox. The Gateway mall four wheelers were out this morning have a good time on Rogers.

Last edited 2/3/15 4:50 pm

Easy In Easy Out

As many Rogers Parkers already know, tis better to head for higher ground after a blizzard. Overnight parking at the Howard station (Gateway) garage ranges from 9 to 12 dollars depending on how long. Sometimes it easier to pay the extra dough and forget the headache of dibs and street parking after a snowstorm.

Four wheel drive won't save you from tractionless traps. So if possible don't put yourself into those situations. Just in case bring a shovel so you can dig yourself out.

Last night even the Gateway garage was tough to maneuver. Snow removal was delayed due to the impressive snow drop on Superbowl Sunday. The Trib says Rogers Park got 20 inches.