Friday, November 30, 2012

Wine Mess - 23nd Illinois Regiment Outside of Lexington, Missouri 1862

Lt. Aloysius May
Why are you so into Pinot*? It’s like a thing with you.

I don't know. It’s a hard grape to grow. As you know. It’s thin-skinned, temperamental, ripens early. It’s not a survivor like Cabernet that can grow anywhere and thrive even when neglected. Pinot needs constant care and attention and in fact can only grow in specific little tucked-away corners of the world. And only the most patient and nurturing growers can do it really, can tap into Pinot’s most fragile, delicate qualities. Only when someone has taken the time to truly understand its potential can Pinot be coaxed into its fullest expression. And when that happens, its flavors are the most haunting and brilliant and subtle and thrilling and ancient on the planet.  
I mean, Cabernets can be powerful and exalting, but they seem prosaic to me for some reason. By comparison. How about you?

Lt. May
What about me?

Col. Mulligan 
I don't know. Why are you into wine?

Lt. May 
I suppose I got really into wine originally through my ex-C.O.. He had a big, kind of show-off cellar. But then I found out that I have a really sharp palate, and the more I drank, the more I liked what it made me think about.

Yeah? Like what?

Like what a fraud he was.

Regimental Sergeant-Major Colman Enright
No, but I do like to think about the life of wine, how it’s a living thing. I like to think about what was going on the year the grapes were growing, how the sun was shining that summer or if it rained…what the weather was like. I think about all those people who tended and picked the grapes, and if it's an old wine, how many of them must be dead by now. I love how wine continues to evolve, how every time I open a bottle it's going to taste different than if I had opened it on any other day. Because a bottle of wine is actually alive—it's constantly evolving and gaining complexity. That is, until it peaks—like your ’61—and begins its steady, inevitable decline. And it tastes so fucking good.

Col. Mulligan
Really?  Did anyone ask your opinion?

The Wine Dialoguefrom the film, Sidewaysby Alexander Payne & Jim Taylorbased on the novel by Rex Picketty

Tales of the South Side: The Late Svebjon "Hike" Sorben Returns to Ground

Svenbjom "Hike" Sorben ( 1939-2012) - Suddenly

Fans of low hurdles were saddened to hear of the passing of The Saltating Swede, Svenbjom "Hike" Sorben who wowed the crowds of Old Calumet High with his bounding athleticism on the track and field cinders and across many lawns in the Highland section of Chicago's Auburn Gresham neighborhood in the mid-1950's.

Hike Sorben was  the only son of Tilda and Torbjorn Sorben, who operated a Swedish meats, herring (smoked pickled & creamed), pickle and cheese store at 85th & Racine. Svenbjom leaped over footstools and toadstools, mattered not.

While in grammar school at Cook Elementary, Svenbjom took on the name Hike while playing prairie football in the vacant lot between the houses in the 83 Hundred Place Block on Morgan Ave. with his pals Spats Cullina, Dibs Thompson, Nose Banacheckovich, and Just Plain Bill Smith. Every  time the word 'Hike' was called by Dibs for Nose to snap the pigskin young Sorben would bound over not only the offensive line but the defense as well.

At Calumet High School, Hike Sorben single-handedly accounted for more track and field points than any athlete in the school's history capturing high and low hurdle, as well as, low, long, and high jumping honors.

A poor student, Hike never matriculated to a quality post secondary education, nor did his short-lived military career as an Air Force mail-sorter burnish his once sterling record of achievement.  Sorben was asked politely to leave the military two years earlier than his required enlistment agreement due to his penchant for bounding over base shrubbery, barbed wire fences, barracks bags and napping Airmen.

He became a US Postal letter sorter and moved to Wyoming in 1970, where he competed in local track and field events until his 2012 visit to the Grand Canyon.

Services closed to the public and family.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Why Allow Gang Bangers a Church Burial?

November 26th one dead and one wounded at a gang funeral in Chicago.

Two known gang members shot at funeral in Chicago; numerous shootings in city
On Monday, a gang funeral was interrupted by gunfire.  Jesus did not tell Dismas, " This day you shall be with me in paradox."  A paradox is a statement that defies logic like " A gangster's Church burial."
My neighborhood is littered with 9mm casings fired in salute to a departed gangbanger on the way to Mount Hope Cemetery.
At one time, gangsters were refused burial in Catholic services.  Dean O'Banion is one of the most notorious of examples. In our "Well, Who's To Say" culture, Mr. & Mrs. Pecksniff have staked out the moral high-heap and wring hands that God forgives all.  He do?  Why did He knock out Ten Big Rules?  Thou Shalt Not Kill is a pretty heavy favorite in all cultures.  Gangster Culture stands rigidly opposed to God and His Decalogue:
I am the LORD thy God - Nigga, Please!
Thou shalt have no other gods - Bling, Benjamins, Bitches
No graven images or likenesses - Represent How???????
Not take the LORD's name in vain - Dayem!
Remember the sabbath day - Is the sabbath every Saturday
Honour thy father and thy mother -  Lemme two-twelve wit' you for second, holla at you
Thou shalt not kill -some hot spitters !Bear with us or bear witness, live to die, it's on nigga!
Thou shalt not commit adultery -  no hoes bro ain't neva been no lames 
Thou shalt not steal -  I'm a ride baby til the judge give me a verdict yeah! 
Thou shalt not bear false witness -'cause the chedda brings change in the game 
Thou shalt not covet -Money and murder you my nigga my jelly preserver 
 The sentiments are gangstah -every race, cred and color.
Live the LIFE and get dead.  Fair play to you. Once departed exit without fanfare from all or any of us.

No Mr. & Mrs. Pecksniff might chirp, " Who's to judge?"  Who is to say? Everyone has a right to burial rites?

On the other hand, Catholic burial rites are to be refused to the following, unless they gave some sign of repentance before death:
  1. Persons well known to be guilty of apostasyheresy or schism;
  2. Those who asked to be cremated for anti-Christian motives;
  3. Manifest sinners, if the granting of Church funeral rites to them would cause scandal to Catholic
Family of the departed? Do give them (Gangsta Cuz) a nice fitting send-off, but one that remains unblessed by the very church and creed gangsta life spits upon. At family expense, as well.

Perhaps, the person who feels that faith and community have no part in his life and does everything in his power while drawing breath to befoul what they represent might not require church and community send-off when it is time to take his case to God Almighty.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Rest In Peace: John "Jack" Gallapo- A Quiet Hero of Korea

 Chicago Fireman John " Jack" Gallapo (left) and Chief Jim Corbett spent their wonder years in Korea as Marines. Here they are in 2011 at the re-dedication ceremony for Leo High School's Medal of Honor Hero John Fardy, USMC.

 Gallapo, John J., Jr., USMC - Awarded: Silver Star - Korean War

 Gallapo,Jr., John "Jack" Ret. CFD, Veteran USMC. Beloved husband of the late Joyce M. Gallapo (nee Walsh); loving father of Michael (Maureen) CFD, Robert (Gay Marie) CFD, Jane Hoff, John (Lauretta), and William (Anna) Gallapo CFD; cherished grandfather of 12; adored great-grandfather of 6; fond brother of the late Lois (the late AI) Wegenast; dear brother-in-law of Lorane Ryan and Patricia (Henry) Thompson; dear uncle of many nieces and nephews. Visitation Wednesday, from 2:00pm until 9:00 pm. Funeral service Thursday, 10:30 am at Curley Funeral Home, 6116 West 111th Street, Chicago Ridge. Interment private. Past president of Chicago Fire Fighters Union Local #2, B.A. Local #2, 60 year member of Cement Mason Union Local #502, presently serving as Sargent of Arms. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Chicago Fire Department Widows and Orphans Fund, 20 South Clark, Suite 1400, Chicago, IL 60603 would be appreciated. 708-422-2700

Christ, welcome home a hero. 

Puck Fair August 10, 1977 - When I met Hector Piggott


I have seen quite a bit in my three score years on the old Terra-  phones went off the wall and into my pocket, slide-rules became calculators, televisions won't work unless I pay not only my light bill, but a fee to a cable company.  Yes, it has been one interesting glide on the old pavement. Shucks, in no time at all Governor Pat Quinn will sign legislation that Noel Coward could have used with Clifton Webb ( both gents were gayer than 1890 picnics) to start having little Noel Webbs, or Clifton Cowards and singing show tunes around the Steinway in the parlor.

Wild stuff. Now, I have been to three Puck Fairs, fourteen Kankakee County Fairs, three hog call contests, but I have never seen anything like Hector Piggott.

 Ah, the The Puck Fair - packed pubs and plethorae pints; food items that would sicken a starving goat - like King Puck Himself. Voila! Black Pudding Eggs

Puck Fairs, you ask?  The Puck Fair* takes place in the town of Killorglin, in County Kerry Ireland.  I have been to three as I stated.  The Puck Fair is a wild festival notable for the hosting of Travellers from all over the British Isles. The Travellers are gypsies - folks who move about in Caravans, or recreational rolling homes - campers, RVs. They tend to be adept in the roguish arts -three card Monte, con games, bucket drop artists and the odd thief, or twenty in a score.

The Puck Fair is named for King Puck - a goat who is placed in a tower for the three days of the fair.  You will see fire walkers, bearded ladies and beardless laddies, snake charmers and charming snakes on two legs or less.  It is quite fun.

In 1977, after my sophomore of teaching high school, I went Ireland.  On August 10th I went to my sophomore Puck Fair - my freshman year Puck Fair took place in 1974, the year I took my Artium Baccalaureus from Loyola University, but had not encountered the Prodigious Hector Piggott, it was Golden '77 that this encounter took place.

I had a good time at the fair and generally kept my wits about me ; being a Catholic high school teacher blessed me with impecunity and thus, a small level of restraint as far as potent potables. I took in the sights and sounds and smells and generally avoided over-indulgence and occasions of getting my ass-kicked by the Pikeys, or the locals.  I was not lured to games of chance by Hibernian Hucksters nor gulled into an unseemly amorous ambush by the slatternly sirens who seemed to crowd out the causeway. Lovely samplings, but I declined.

It was a sign proclaiming - The Prodigious Piggott in the Tent Beyond -Absolutely NO Women Allowed, Clergy Included that hooked this fish.

For an entry fee of three Shillings, about $1.75 at the 1977 rate of exchange, I had to witness this marvel. Within a shabby and wind-torn canvas, there were no seats and barely room for man and boy, but wedged in as the show began.

A man in an Edwardian black cape that fair covered his naked ankles stood before the scores of gawkers. He was toothless, unshavenly homely and stood a full 6' tall.  With a flourish he opened the cape to reveal himself in his full Adam suit.   

The man of sixty years was gifted with Wedding Tackle that unprovoked and limp defied the hem of the cloak for mastership of his ankles.

"Them Canadian Mounties'd have no task trackin' this Yoke in the frozen North!"

" Cupid's Howitzer, so!"

"Aye, So! The Good Lord sh'pent long week plannin' that bosthun's pudding."

However, the Prodigious Piggott coaxed this appendage into full charge with a deft manipulation of his fingers and . . .. Behold Leviathan Itself!

The tent gasped in manly admiration and universal acclaim.  However, Piggott was not done.  With the Leviathan Rampant he managed to place three walnuts on a table and then proceeded to pummel each with a single stroke of Flesh Made Steel.

Sir Georg Solti never heard an applause like the one I added to in that tent.

In 1998, I returned to Ireland and the Puck Fair.  I was into the marrow of mid-life and recently widowed.  The entertainment afforded in Killorglin might knock the cobwebs from my soul.   I was astonished to see a sign pointing my path to a tent shrouding the majesty of  The Prodigious Hector Piggott.  I had to see this; my God, the man must be all of ninety.  He was.

He was yet a marvel of God's gift to man and talisman of the species.  Ninety years old and change and in his fullest of powers!

This time, however, once he had whaled the langer into full charge like a fire hose at 2/11 blaze, Hector Piggott placed three huge coconuts on the table and executed each one's demise with a single bludgeon from his Leviathan, sending chunks and bits of them brown hairy fruit in wide arches about the tent.

When the awed tent of Kerrymen retreated to Puck Fair Causeway, I had to ask The Prodigious Piggott - "Sir, why at your age did you select a larger and more robust target for your equipment?"

Drawing himself to his fullest height and the Edwardian Black Cape about himself, Hector Piggot cocked an eyebrow and offered,  " Me eyes ain't so good these days, Yank."

There by hangs this Tale.

*Puck Fair:1613 to TodayThere are many legends which suggest an origin for the Fair, many of which are wildly inventive, but there is no written record stating when the Fair started. It can however be traced back to a charter from 1603 by King James I granting legal status to the existing fair in Killorglin.
It has been suggested that it is linked to pre-Christian celebrations of a fruitful harvest and that the male goat or "Puck" was a pagan symbol of fertility, like the pagan god Pan.
The origins of the fair have thus been lost in the midst of antiquity, and various commissions set up over the past two hundred years have tried in vain to date them. Evidence suggests that the fair existed long before written record of everyday occurrences were kept as there is one written reference from the 17th Century in existence which grants Jenkins Conway, the local landlord at the time, the right to collect a sum for every animal brought to the August Fair. This would suggest that the Fair was something already well established in the local community.
With special thanks to Max Weismann

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Michael Moriarty's " Big Town Boy" - Big Time Jazz

My expatriate pal, a son of Canaryville himself, Michael Moriarty is one talented gent.  A captain of the stage and screen, Mr. Moriarty sails the keyboards and brings in boadloads of musical compositions that recall the best in jazz -America's greatest art form.

Not only that the the tall athletic Mick has a more than decent set of pipes.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Boys to Men - Only If We Skip Gender Fluidity

BOYS. . . Photo: Please keep Mrs. Latifi in your thoughts and prayers as she mourns the recent death of her mother in Albania.Leo's Lioness -Aurora Latifi -THE Woman who Loves Them!
I crashed English teacher Robert Sills' 9th Period class yesterday.  I grabbed one of the guys to discuss an 'incident' that took place the previous Friday.  As I had guessed it was much ado about nothing, to quote Mayor Emanuel when his staff was caught illegally taping a dialog between Rahm and a reporter.  Taping a conversation is so gender fluidly passive that no such thing would happen here in a Catholic all male high school - one deals with a problem head on.  That methodology has worked for centuries.

When I returned the likely lad to his class, I decided to catch up on the group work and discussion concerning the plot of the Hunger Games. The story is about a young woman trapped in a futuristic dystopia created by males that requires a lottery to determine combatants of both genders, and I imagine those questioning their sexual preferences and identities as well. In sum, America is composed of a Capital dedicated to the pleasure and luxury of the wealthy, attractive and athletic class and the twelve surrounding impoverished Districts populated by industrial slugs, breeders and close-knit ethnics, or hillybilly bible and gun hugging helots.Interestingly this post-apocalyptic USA is called Panem, which is Latin for Bread.

The protagonist is Katniss, a mythical Diana/Atemis forest dwelling huntress and her male counterpart is Peeta, a gender fluid baker's boy.  One on one the chick would take out the dude, because she got game. . . Hell,she stalked game.

I asked the lads, "How about it?"

" There's some tough girls"

You may say. However, would a Katniss start for Leo at defensive tackle, or power forward?

There was a roaring answer to the negative.

I went into a summary of the Illiad and focused on the convention ( there are five to epic poetry) of beginning in the middle of things ( In Media Res) and explained the starter for the Achaens -the Greeks - was sulking in his tent: Achilles.  Achilles is what being a boy is all about.  He is like every one of the twenty guys in Mr. Sills' freshman English Class -petulant, argumentative, egoistic, angry, violent, willful and easily distracted,
In short, Achilles is all boy.  Our culture has no time, patience, or sympathy for budding males.

Boys are ignored, bullied and persecuted in grammar schools, because the schools are not meant for boys. . . . Sloppy, smelly, scatter-brained, bored, loud, disgusting willful boys. One of our Canaryville boys, a skinny, athletic little smart-ass in very bad need of a hair cut named Sal, has grammar school 'rap sheet' that is as thick as an Oak Lawn phone book with with disciplinary reports form Miss J, Mrs, B, Ms.K and Mrs. Q indicating a completely unrecalitrant blaggard, sloven and scoundrel destined for the gallows.

In fact, this young bothersome scapegrace is scary smart - he picks up math at all levels like a Shop Vac.  Boys are not in the least like girls and must not be treated as such.

I have watched Illinois certified K-12 male teachers trained in gender neutral methodologies collapse into jello when confronted with a classroom packed with young males.  Boys get bored when teaching is boring, rote, unimaginative and unloved.  If a teacher does not love his subject, but demands a paycheck, boys will eat him for breakfast.

Our strongest teacher is a woman from Albania who loves boys and knows that boys learn differently from girls and knows her discipline inside and out.  Mrs. Aurora Latifi is better male role model than most of the boys have in their lives, despite her feminine grace and exotic beauty, because she loves men and demands their best - self-discipline, gallantry and masculine empathy.

I read a wonderful essay by a Canadian journalist Margaret Wente who summed up my experience in Robert Sills; 9th period English class, concerning the neglect and abuse of boys in our culture -
. . . in the modern world, boys are often treated as a problem. The dominant narrative around difficult boys – at least in the public school system – is that they’re unteachable, unreachable, disruptive and threatening. Many commentators – men as well as women – blame male culture itself for the problems with boys. In their view, what we need to do is destroy the death star of masculinity and all the evil that goes with it. What we need to do is put boys in touch with their emotions and teach them to behave more like girls.
This argument might make some sense – if you’re someone who believes that masculinity is nothing but a social construct. But people who care about real boys know that’s not true. They know you have to celebrate boys’ boyness – and work with it. Many boys’ schools are trying to do just that.(emphasis my own)

Leo High School most certainly does just that. Our boys range in age from 14- 94.  Merry-hearted boys make the best of Old Men. Real women, like Aurora Latifi recognize just that.  My guy Sal will either be a Nobel Prize laureate in math/science, or, if his public grammar school teachers are correct, some kind of James Bond villain.  I think the former.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Catch 'Something Cool' at Katerina's - Gayle Kolb Sings June Christy

The lovely Gayle Kolb, a south side girl with the pipes of a  sexy angel pays tribute to the great June Christy at Katerina's on Irving Park Road this Tuesday Night.

June Christy was the vocalist for the Stan Kenton Orchestra in the late 1940's and early 1950's, who was sensational artist who phrased lyrics like no one else.   Gayle Kolb is a Chicago born Jazz artist who fills the atmosphere with smart and sexy phrasing like no one else.

Get to Katerina's for Gayle Kolb's June Christy Birthday Tribute.

Ms. Kolb will be accompanied by the great Tommy Muellner on piano.

Katerina's $10 Cover -8PM Tuesday November 20th
  1920 West Irving Park Road  Chicago, IL 60613
(773) 348-7592 - For Reservations.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Journalism that Matters

Jacey Eckhart - Another Magnificent Woman

General Petreaus had opportunity, distance and an aging marriage.  Out went fidelity.  The guy hooked up with a toothsome bit of baggage - a West Point and Harvard Educated careerist new woman.  The General had a close-cropped noggin which befitted his Samson role and like the long-tressed biblical warrior-judge of Israel went all Delilah weak in the knees for the athletically toned and wildly ambitious globe trotting stalker bint.

Sic Transit Omnia.

The General did not lose a battle, turn tail and run from the enemy, or loot the Officer's Club revenue.  Sadly, like too many males, the weaker gender, he went trappin' the wrong crick. 

Fidelity ( faithfulness) is the stay against age, distance, circumstance, opportunity, flattery and the libido.  Fidelity is a practiced virtue and one of most neglected in our shabby culture.  We are shabby because we make excuses instead of obligations.  Women, it seems to me, are much more adept at toughening themselves and their mates to fidelity. That we are all weak is given, but it is the woman who holds ledger of accountability.

A man will announce a birthday party for his six year old daughter with paternal bravado and promises of paternal largess; a woman will write and send invitations, plan, decorate, bake, purchase and wrap gifts and execute the activities for a household and yard stuffed with young miscreants and their mothers. Pater Familias will arrive hours late with a snootful and receive the hugs and squeals of Little Liza - "Thank You, Daddy!"

Women are magnificent!

In the wake of the Petraeus gossip, I caught the words of a young military wife who has watched her faithful husband go off to war, just like Mrs. Petraeus.  This young woman has a faithful mate.  She appreciates his fidelity and shares ideas with the other 800,000 military spouses who wave goodbye to their spouses - too often.

Jacey Eckhart is the young wife of a naval officer.  She enjoys a good marriage, because she and her mate work at it, rather than work on excuses. She is very much like the wives that I know of personally who say goodbye to ComEd linemen, Peoples Gas workers, cops, firemen, nurses, EMTs, and, yes, even teachers- people who into harms' way everyday.   Tomorrow is promised to no one, but that is not license to act like a jerk. These beautifully magnificent women, like the wives/husbands of military spouses,  work at mutual fidelity - the human races greatest insurance company.  Their spouses can not wait to come home.

Jacey Eckhart tells why

This weekend I treated my husband to the same scene that probably played out in the bedrooms of all 800,000 active-duty marriages. Ours was crowned with me stomping out of the tub clad in a towel and crying, “Please, please, promise me that won’t ever happen to us!”
My husband of 25 years thought this was the silliest thing I have ever said. And I have said a lot about infidelity through our own history of 7 deployments, 16 moves and 2 so-called geographic bachelor tours, when he was sent on assignment without us.
I don’t mean that either of us has jealous tantrums or that either of us is a cheater. I mean that when military life requires that you spend so much time apart, your marriage confronts one of the factors shown to contribute to infidelity: opportunity.
When we were first married, the opportunity was all mine. My husband was stationed on an all-male ship in the middle of the Persian Gulf. I was a 22-year-old girl who thought it was “no biggie” to go dancing with a bunch of naval aviators. “It was just dancing,” I claimed. “What are you so mad about?”
Later, the opportunity was all his. I was home with a baby and no friends, and he was making port visits. One night he woke me up with a call from a 7-Eleven in Daytona Beach, Fla. “Some girl was flirting with me a little too much,” he said. “I thought I should go get a Klondike bar instead.”
Although there are no firm numbers about infidelity and the military, I suspect that we are a lot like other Americans. From my experience as a military marriage consultant, I’d estimate that a third of military marriages are probably blighted by infidelity — about the same as civilian marriages.
And so we set up our little rules and policies to keep our marriage safe. We talk. We identify the rare, much-too-attractive individuals in our work and social circles whom we need to keep at arm’s length. Fidelity is ingrained in us now.
. . . What are our meager defenses against age and distance and opportunity? We talk about the Petraeuses as if we know them; we don’t, personally, but in a way we know their life story intimately. And now we know, as they do, that history isn’t enough to keep a long military marriage together.No, I think we always knew it. It is just that now we have a reason to look at this new fidelity and make our plans for the deployments to come.
We reassure each other. We discuss strategy. We laugh over our shared past. We head back to bed.

Women are magnificent.  Jacey Eckhart is a magnificent woman.
Jacey Eckhart, the spouse editor for, is the author of “The Homefront Club: The Hardheaded Woman’s Guide to Raising a Military Family.”

Friday, November 16, 2012

Eric Zorn Ignores the UN Declaration of Human Rights

Gay Marriage is serious about Illinois - Is Illinois Serious?

Eric Zorn carries more water than Gunga Din - he carried buckets for Rahm's Garbage Grid and has strenuously liquefied the parched tongues of Civil Union advocates, abortion on demanders and now for immediate Gay Marriage in Illinois. Today, close on the heels of Rahm Emanuel's latest nod to his money base and the Progressive zeitgeist tagging Gay Marriage as Priority Three, EZ barrels the basic human right meme:

 All Illinois can do now is hop on the train of history. The trend lines show it's about to roll over the obstinate states where legislators refuse to recognize the inevitability, if not the wisdom and justice, of same-sex couples getting the same rights to formalize their relationships that are enjoyed by opposite-sex couples.
The same rights?  Even the United Nations does not view gay marriage as a human right, much less a requirement to equate Stonewall with Selma, or recalibrate homophobia to school-yard bullying. That is for the journalists and academic procrustean bullies to pound away at once the funding comes through from the usual sources.

The United Nations lays out basic humam rights and specifically sites marriage -

United Nations Declaration of Human Rights

Article 16.

  • (1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
  • (2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
  • (3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

The Civil Union Act, fogged as a Religious Freedom dodge by Greg Harris and company in the Illinois Legislature, immediately attacked Catholic Charities.  Catholic Charities was bullied out of its service to children without families.  Civil Unions just could not wait. Illinois got on the gay side of history and went to war on millions of Catholics.  How about that?

No Catholic ever said outlaw homosexuals (LGBTQ) or gay culture.  The opposite can not be said to be public knowlege.

Eric Zorn works the meme that Homosexual Marriage is a Basic Human Right.  Marriage is and has been a social contract between men and women for as long as Homo Erectus put two syllables together, Will and Grace, Glee, Modern Family and Ellen DeGeneres notwithstanding.

Illinois is bankrupt, to paint with as broad a brush as Zorn the Scrivener, families and businesses are doing the Exodus from this  Land of Progressive Pharaoh, school choice is unavailable to inner city and struggling rural families and our media do the bidding of Progressive PACS, academic eunuchs, and fiscal star gazers. Go Down, Moses!

Greg Harris armed with the fortunes of Henry Van Amerigen and Fred Eychaner, who wholly own a handsome portion of the Illinois legislators and the media in Illinois artfully bulled through the wildly misleading and divisive Religious Freedom and Civil Union Act, set the table for the Religious Freedom and Marriage Freedom Act, which was tucked away due to the Illinois fiscal collapse and the looming re- election of President Obama. He might be the 1st Gay President, but Barack wanted no rocks and hard places on his path.

The media and the elected officials who take the coin of the Pink Pharaohs argue the basic human right of sexual preference that can only be satisfied by the immediate recalibration of  the meaning of Marriage.

One may argue one's position, but do so with at least a wink to honesty. Gay Marriage will no doubt take effect in Illinois very soon, but let's not pretend that it will not be the result of vast piles of cash paid out in bribe money to clueless at best and spineless at most politicians.

UPDATE - I guess I hurt Eric's feelings:

ZORN REPLY -- Let me cut you off there, Beth. That's just Pat Hickey. More people would read his screeds if he wrote them with a Sharpie on a bathroom wall, which is where they belong. I'm not going to enable him by posting the link, though, as his arguments are ignorant, bitter and small. We don't need that here, now, do we?

Ignorant, bitter and small arguments.  Man I could be a Columnist!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Media Mum on Protected Codes of Silence, But Can't Shut Up About Alleged Cop Omerta

Go You Northwestern, Bruce!

Once again the Medill Marxist Day Camp at Northwestern University, home of the MacArthur Center for Justice for Some and the Lawyers Who Shill for Them, Bernardine Dohrn's Ghost Payroll Gig, and The Fagin Dave Protess Buy a Cabbie School of Journalism, has coaxed Wild Kit Bruce Dold into another shameless plea for Lawsuit Lotto Lawyers G. Flint Taylor, Jon Loevy and their comrades with today's editorial -

Don't appeal Abbate verdict: Time for City Hall to eradicate the 'code of silence'

Gee, Bruce, this h'yar polemic makes me want to toss on my Atticus Finch Suit, but it is after Labor Day. Dold and Company's  clownish offering is nothing but smoke screen for political power players, lawyers and the Medill Big Progresive Thoughts sausage works in Evanston.
The wake-up call came Tuesday when a federal jury ordered the city and former Officer Anthony Abbate to pay $850,000 in damages to bartender Obrycka. Abbate, off-duty, had beaten her in a bar attack caught on video that went viral.
The city — Chicago taxpayers — also must pay Obrycka's attorney fees dating back to 2007. Combined with what the city's Law Department already has devoted in resources, the tab is about $5 million and rising,  . . .Lesson learned? No. City Hall intends to challenge the verdict through post-trial motions, which are standard in these cases, and if those fail, appeal.
Bad idea. Move on, Mr. Mayor. . . .Within a few weeks, an internal police agency reviewed the case — but not the video at first — and recommended a misdemeanor charge for Abbate. Investigators even took the unusual step of going to Obrycka's home get her to sign a misdemeanor arrest report. But once she realized he was about to get a slap on the wrist, she released the video publicly. It was seen around the world.
Suddenly, the department took her case very seriously. The state's attorney's office upgraded the charges to felonies. Her lawsuit alleged that cops protect cops — that, because of a code of silence, Abbate would have received minor punishment had millions not seen that video.
While the department has strict, written guidelines for cases of alleged misconduct, the trial proved those procedures weren't followed. Ekl argues they still aren't: A too-cozy relationship persists between the department and the Independent Police Review Authority, which handles misconduct allegations. . . .
But for the bad ones, the code of silence, he said, is "alive and well."
It's long overdue that the Chicago Police Department start abiding by its own rules when officers become suspects in criminal cases. As police misconduct expert Lou Reiter testified in Obrycka's case, the vast majority of Chicago officers are decent, moral public servants who never have cause to interact with the Independent Police Review Authority.
No cop ever said Abbate was 'one of their own,' Bruce. No cop ever demanded to give this vicious drunken whale a cintilla of support.

Ask this, Bruce. Who clouted Abbate onto the job, protected Abbate and gave him the comfort to besmear his profession?  Who among the  the Ward players and through the Merit bosses in the department and through"Merit" whispered the command?  The guy on Floor # Five at the Time?  I'm sorry I can not hear you. Please speak up.

How about the code of silence at Tribune Towers?  How about the code of silence at Medill?  How about the code of silence between the Progressive Power Players in academia?  How did Bernadine Dorhn get her gig?  Who hired Bill Ayers at UIC (I believe it was Stan Ikenberry ) . Is there a Code of Silence at Cease Fire which took a $ 1 million buckoons and did absolutely nothing - again?

Can you name one Chicago Police Officer ( Non-Merit Gold Braid types exempt of course) who thinks that Abbate is not a louse?  I can not and I talk to scores of cops a week.

The Code of Silence meme in this case of Abbate and the tiny Polish bartender is a legal gambit to open the door even wider for the likes of Loevy and G. Flint and the Center for Wrongful Opportunities to Be Somebody at Medill.  Is there a Chicago Police code of silence?

Not among cops;  they'll tell you plenty.   Is there a code of silence?  Speak up.

The Code of Silence is another Code of Opportunity, like Systemic Police Torture.

There is a Code falsehood in the editorials in this city.

According to one 19th Century journalist thus always that be - "There is no such thing, at this date of the world's history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes." John Swinton 1829-1901)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Get Load of "Honorary Consul" Kelley's Authentic (if they be so) Diplomatic Credentials!

Jill Kelley leaves her home Tuesday, Nov 13, 2012 in Tampa, Fla. Kelley is identified as the woman who allegedly received harassing emails from Gen. David Petraeus' paramour, Paula Broadwell. She serves as an unpaid social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, where the military's Central Command and Special Operations Command are located. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — When news vans camped outside her stately home, a Florida socialite tied to the Gen. David Petraeus sex scandal fell back on her informal credentials as a social ambassador for Tampa society and top military brass: She asked police for diplomatic protection.
In the phone call to authorities, Jill Kelley, a party hostess and unofficial social liaison for leaders of the U.S. military's Central Command in Tampa, cited her status as an honorary consul general while complaining about news vans that had descended on her two-story brick home overlooking Tampa Bay.
"You know, I don't know if by any chance, because I'm an honorary consul general, so I have inviolability, so they should not be able to cross my property. I don't know if you want to get diplomatic protection involved as well," she told the 911 dispatcher Monday
I'm no law enforcement, diplomatic, or government authority, but I know a great set of credentials when I see them.

Call me an old sexist cynic, but I'd say that Consul Kelley ( no relation to Chicago barrister Dan Kelley) stacks up-credential wise.

You can beat a drum.

You can, with the right mouth-piece,  beat a right-turn ticket.

But, you can not beat stupid.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Meatless - Monday or Friday? Go Reconcile Yourself.

Was that you, Ma?  Good Lord.

I am saving Mother Earth.

I can't get the window with this bum stepper.

It's Organic, Pa and it's Monday.

In a unanimous 12-0 vote, the council approved a resolution Friday endorsing the "meatless Monday" campaign and asking residents to make a personal pledge to ditch meat for one day a week.
The resolution makes L.A. the largest city to     sign on to the international "Meatless Mondays" campaign, which aims to reduce meat consumption for health and environmental reasons. L.A. Times
Fifty years ago, we ate fish sticks of Friday.  When the Old Man could be home for a Friday dinner we had halibut.  A couple of years later, we were told that Friday fish was out and we could have meat from animals that  " walked the earth" on Friday as well.

We were called Mackerel Snappers, Fish Eaters and Friday Pork Dodgers by our ecumenical pals who either went to public school, Timothy Lutheran, or kopped a plea and attended Little Flower Grammar School with us Cat Licks.

We did not swim at YMCA either. We went over by Leo High School, or to Ridge Park and very often took CTA and Sunburban transit to Blue Island's Memorial Park.  The YMCA preached 'birth control' and the older gents swam in the nude - very Progressive.  We swam elsewhere in swimming trunks and ate fish on Fridays.

Friday was a day of abstinence - a adjunct to the Sacrament of Penance - in preparation to a visit to the confessional box on Saturday afternoon.

The Sacrament of Penance was nuanced into Reconciliation 'Forget God, it is our human community with whom we must atone.'

The lines to the confessional box vanished.  Hey, sorry . . .heartily sorry. Sin vanished.

Now, we hear of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops returning the faithful to the purpose of Penance.  As part of this evangelical consideration, Catholics will be asked to again abstain on Fridays.

Not to be eclipsed by the Bishops, the Los Angeles City Council asks its citizens to reconcile themselves to obesity and the environment.  Meatless Mondays are Progressive Doctrine.

I get the lard legislation. Wide loads are a burden on the eyes of the lithe liberal and legislion ladlers -  Be like Us, Your Betters! Reconcile yourselves to the fact that WE know better. 

I have also heard the flatulent fantasies of the Eco-radicals holding that hoofed and cloven creatures fart up a storm and blow holes in the ozone -They, preach, "WE (you) must ALL (you) go and consume less meat, and MOTHER EARTH will have fewer eructations from bossy and Old Major splitting the pastoral sound barrier and wafting heaven-ward.  Be Vegan!"

Well, husbanded cows, pigs, sheep, and foul are Vegans.  They eat no meat with their feed - only vegetables and wholesome grains.

Moreso, I have been in the proximity of Vegans of all shapes and sizes in the produce sections of Whole Foods and let me tell you the methane atmosphere could not be attributed to Slim Jim consumers.  I was once part of a line at the checkout for Whole Foods immediately behind a pony-tailed hottie of twenty or so with a basket loaded with organic beets, beans, brown rice, tofu, carrots, kale and cabbages.  This athleticly toned and tanned young siren proceed to staccato caps of noxious rounds that would gag a hungry maggot.

In words of Kipling's Peachy Carnehan from the Man Who Would Be King, the Gwenth Paltrow look alike seemed to "break wind at both ends simultaneous - which is more, I reckon, than any god can do."

With watery eyes, but good manners I backed off and broke ranks, fitting in behind a solid-looking Bavarian Burgher clutching an expensive ham which perfumed the queue removed a safe distance from yon Vegan Vestal.

I choose to do Penance on Friday and abstain from my four-legged and feathered friends of Mother Earth.  I need to do Penance.

As to the LA Inquisition?  Go reconcile yourselves!

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Catholic Vote in my Precinct ( 23rd of the 19th Ward) in Chicago

My Precinct is very Catholic; my Ward is very Catholic.   Here is how the election returns reflect a heavily Catholic voting sample.  Mind you, I am nothing if not very scientific.

               Prec't.   Total reg.    Obama        %                 Romney          %            Gary Johnson  % Green          %   






      Ward  Total reg.       Obama           %                     Romney       %                       Gary Johnson %        Green          %






Early on the morning of November 6th, 2012 Kareem's Dunkin Donuts at 104th & Western Ave. was thicker with folks than usual.   Poll judges and workers were getting coffee and donuts prior to their labors monitoring the public franchise and getting out the vote.

I vote at the Quaker Meeting House at 107th & Artesian, so there might be a Quaker or two in the precinct.  Likewise the Unitarian Church at 103rd & Longwood has long been a home to former Catholics and devotees of the Unitarian creed.  However, most everyone I know is Catholic.

Catholics voted overwhelmingly for President Obama in my Ward, but bit less in my precinct.

Catholics - the country's largest religious group with one-quarter of the population - have supported the winner of the popular vote in every election since 1972.
Reuters/Ipsos exit polling found that 51 percent of Catholics favored President Barack Obama, compared with 48 percent for Republican contender Mitt Romney. A report by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life had a similar finding, with 50 percent of Catholics for Obama and 48 percent for Romney, the same as the popular vote in the general population. Reuters
I saw Alderman Matt O'Shea all over the Ward on election day and he really did a great job getting out the vote and making it a smooth operation.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Terry Sullivan Trio at 12 West Elm - Last Call! 4PM

'You're on Miss Sullivan!'

Sunday November 11th 4:00PM-6:00PM - The Terry Sullivan Trio - Terry Sullivan brings the classic NYC Supper Club environment back to Chicago. Accompanied by the most talented musicians in Chicago, this is a performance that shouldn't be missed!

Jazz in the Afternoon

Terry Sullivan Trio

Sunday, November 11, 2012
4:00 p.m. (new time)
TWELVEWEST nightclub
12 West Elm, Chicago
Admission $10

Information: 312/337-3200 or
Dress: business casual or better

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Pent Up in Utica - Illinois GOP Can Not Even do the Dutch Act

 Mike Madigan Button
How'd that work out for you tasseled-loafer geniuses? Ask your leader Christine Radogno!

"I'm not sure what we need now is an in-your-face, confrontational, white, downstate male. I love our downstate guys. I have a great relationship with them, and I'm not playing a gender card," she told the Chicago Sun-Times.
"What I'm saying, as a practical matter, is that we need to change our image. Fairly or not, we're perceived -- and these aren't my words, I've read it reported this way -- as being the party of angry white men, and that's not true by the way. The fact of the matter is perception is reality, and we need to deal with it," she said.
Caprio took issue with Radogno's implication that the party needs to rebrand itself so it again can carry appeal with moderate suburban women like herself. (emphasis my own) -Sun Times
Indeed. Opt for the daffy, dizzy. ditsy woman we all know and love!  You know like a GOP Dawn Clark Netsch, or cloth coated Sheila Simon.  Wait, didn't angry white man Bill Foster just pull the chair out from Judy Biggert's padded rump?  She, after all, is identical Dawn and Sheila.

Hey, thanks for playing, Christine!  Write some more swell Marin-esque diatribes against the Catholic Church in your spare time. Now, back to Illinois GOP attempts at ritual suicide, which will fail as comically as all of its past efforts at anything and everything.

The Illinois GOP mocks itself - refer to its Leader Christine Radogno's pleas above.

Leading the laughs, and well he deserves to, is Illinois Speaker of House Mike Madigan.   He plays Illinois like a fiddle.

The Illinois GOP is not unlike the Roman Patrician Party confronted by the wildly talented, focused and brilliant Gaius Julius Caesar - read Illinois Speaker of the House Mike Madigan.  Like Caesar Mike Madigan is a skilled, thoughtful and inventive statesman.   He has expanded the scope and power of the Illinois Democratic Party  over the last thirty years like no other man in public life.  He defeated the tasseled loafer patrician likes of Pate Phillips and Lee Daniels for control of the Illinois House and Senate with skill and finality.  Madigan cares not a whit what is said of or about himself in these his focused political tasks.  Madigan will suffer fools gladly, but brook no opposition from those who lick his salt.

Shiny objects, like civil unions, gay marriage, death to the death penalty,allegations of  police torture or misconduct, a woman's need to kill an unborn child, or BGA witch hunts on sleeping civil servants become stars in the political firmament for slack-jawed and oh,so smart, while the Speaker's will be done and quickly. The franchised voter occupies her time with star gazing. Mike Madigan is disciplined and closed mouthed. From 1983 to present with a brief DuPage County GOP Commonwealth, Mike Madigan has worked to keep Illinois solvent and joyful.

Without Mike Madigan and Gary Hannig, Governor Blagojevich would have bankrupted Illinois in 2007 with idiotic  gross receipts tax.

The very same forces that cry foul of Madigan curry his good will and have become his pawns.  I wish I had a nickel for every thousand of dollars spent by Democratic and Agenda PACs, individuals and the Illinois GOP to make personal war on the Speaker Madigan over the last thirty years.  I could retire from my helot's l;abors with the splendor of a Forrest Claypool, or a Toni Preckwinkle, this very day.

Speaker Madigan is Caesar.  Old Man Daley may have been a Marius and Richie Daley a lesser Sulla, but Mike Madigan, as far as political power is concerned is Caesar.   The Illinois GOP never has had a Cato - and intellectual, moral and ethical force of nature. Instead. the Party that always blows off it's own toes grabs someone and anyone.

Mark Brown's thoughtful post election analysis argued that the Illinois GOP would go the way of the Whigs -
Instead, Madigan emerges from this election as strong as ever, which I’d imagine came as less of a surprise to him, as his dominance is not of an accidental nature.Nowhere, though, were the Republican failures more glaring than in the Senate, where Democrats picked up a net gain of five seats.
Folks, this is a legislative chamber that not so very long ago was commanded by James “Pate” Philip, a Chicago-hating Republican from DuPage County.
Now, for at least the next two years and quite possibly for the next decade, Senate Republicans will be about as relevant as their counterparts on the Cook County Board, in other words not very.
And that Republican bastion of DuPage County?
It elected its first Democratic state senator Tuesday, to go along with two Democratic state representatives. And for the second straight time, Obama carried DuPage, too, although not by quite as much as four years ago. The very clear picture is that this is no longer Pate Philip’s DuPage County.
Whigs?  Naw.  The Whigs were not too interested in abolition as I recall and old Honest Abe cut a deal with Lyman Trumbull to defeat Democrat James J. Shields and wait to form a Republican Party that stood for something.  The 18th Century poet Joseph Addison wrote a tragedy, CATO, set immediately after Caesar's defeat of the Patrician Republicans in the African city of Utica, where Cato, the moral core of the Republican forces, plans and executes his suicide rather than submit to a phony and practical submission to the victor.  This play was performed at the command of General George Washington for the Continental Army at Valley Forge in order to steel its resolve against the Crown.  I would wager not one member of the Illinois GOP has ever heard of this tragedy.

The Illinois GOP, unlike the Patrician Cato, when faced with a Caesar -Madigan can not even do the Dutch Act properly, while 'pent up in Utica.'  Instead it made a place for ninnies like Judy Biggert and Christine Radogno who argue that the party should adopt identically popular positions on all social issues in order to get funding from Personal PAC and Fred Eychaner. Stand for nothing!

The only GOP candidates that I have ever heard make any sense were Ron Gidwitz and Dan Proft. Naturally, the Illinois GOP ran away from Gidwitz and Proft quicker than it does against Mike Madigan and any political win.

Illinois is awash in problems.  Do not blame Speaker Madigan. He is 50% against Illinois Governors only  the oily Jim Edgar(GOP) and the daffy Dem Pat Quinn are currently out of the hoosegow.  He is the only professional in the game.  Blame the lightweights that you allow to become search lights. If Christine Radogno is your idea of a game leader, understand your part in this daffy game.

Who knows not this! but what can Cato do Against a world, a base degenerate world, That courts the yoke, and bows the neck to Caesar? Pent up in Utica he vainly forms A poor epitome of Roman greatness, And, cover'd with Numidian guards, directs A feeble army, and an empty senate; Remnants of mighty battles fought in vain.

We might be going bankrupt, but it looks like Gay Marriage is on the way!