Monday, November 18, 2013

The Pride of Lions - A Team of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Leo High School defeated the undefeated Crusaders of Ottawa Marquette 32-27

Up Next: CLASS 1A
Leo at Lena-Winslow
Maroa-Forsyth at Downs Tri-Valley

I am overwhelmed by the selfless commitment of the young men of Leo High School.   There is not one Super-star on this hard-scrabble score and half of teenagers suited and sometimes squeezed into Black and Orange; there is a collection of kids with heart and the tools to make a difference on the football field, the classroom and on the streets.

Leo High School may very well capture the Class 1A Football Championship, perhaps not, but I have pretty good idea of how they got here so far.

The Leo High School varsity is dominated by the Class of 2014.  These are the guys who began their freshman as the Leo Academy.   The Academy was the product of Mr. Frank Wilson - The Gunny.  The Gunny spent ten years as a United States Marine and the last ten years as Leo High School's Vice Principal.  Frank Wilson is  recruiting poster tall, lean and self-confident.  The Leo Academy that he envisioned pulled the incoming class of Leo freshmen together as a unit with a daily task and group accountability.  They formed a squad, a band of brothers.  It worked.  The Freshmen Class of 2014 amassed a GPA that set the standard for the next four years.  As a group these current seniors owe their success to the rigors of Gunny Wilson's discipline and command presence. The 2014 ACT is the highest in years and 2 full points above the Illinois Charter School scores.

Frank Wilson handles all curriculum and student accountability matters - all the tedious and attention to detail jobs, as well as serves as a powerful mentor to young men.  The Gunny exudes command-presence and never raises his voice.  It is near impossible to find photos of Frank Wilson on the Leo websites,because it is tough to catch him standing still.
Frank "Gunny" Wison, Ms. Silva and the Lady Lion Ms. Latifi.
When our seniors were summer session freshmen, Frank Wilson gave them a sense of team, personal accountability and selfless dedication to task that is clearly evident on the football field and so obvious in the halls everyday.

The Leo student body has followed the lead of the Leo Academy 2014 for respect of self and the traditions that are Leo -Facta Non Verba.

The game against Ottawa Marquette reminded me of an other Leo teams - the 1942 City Champs.  The team coached by Whitey Cronin featured no end of great athletes and Leo heroes - Jimmy Arneberg, Bob Hanlon, Bob Kelly, Tony Kelly and on and on.  There were no stand-out heroes; rather a team of extraordinary men.

There are so many impact players on the 2014 Leo Varsity that it is hard to say who stands out any one game.  Like the 1942 City Champs, Leo is the star,

We can thank Mr. Frank Wilson, Leo Vice Principal for making this year's leadership and talent heavy varsity football team, almost as much Coach Holmes, for making 2013-2014 Varsity Football a team of extraordinary gentlemen.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Forrest Contemplates His Next Government Appointment Amid Outcry -" Ventra is ObamaCare for CTA Riders

CTA President Forrest Claypool listens to complaints about Ventra during a budget hearing in Chicago.CTA President Forrest Claypool listens to complaints about Ventra during a budget hearing in Chicago.

Well, Ventra Cards are sure not doing much for Forrest Claypool's future CTA pay days.  The chinless job-hopper who has made a career of making his sandy eye-brows spike into Isosceles triangles when cameras roll aping genuine concern and attention has got to be thinking about the next appointment.

Let's see - Quinn already picked Paul Vallas for Guv Lite, dang. This accountability in the workplace is so not cool.

How about State of Illinois Chairman for Blue Ribbon Commission Appointments?  Knock down $ 185,000 per annum with all of the requisite perquisites.

Or, how about a County Gig - Forrest Preserve Commissioner - preserving a Claypool paycheck anywhere in the county.

City Hall might not be too happy. No.  Better let Rahm simmer down after 15,000 helots got free bus rides yesterday.

The Feds????  You bet.  There's three good years of Obama Czar Search Possibilities!!!!! Give Val Jarrett a jingle.

Hope and Change, Forrest!  Hope and Change, My Boy!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Pulitzer Prize Cartoonist Jack Higgins Defines the Quinn Campaign

My Legion of Reader will note that Paul Vallas was my neighbor and boon chum. I love Paul and his family.

Pat Quinn is no Paul Vallas.  Pat Quinn is Governor of Illinois because Rod Blagojevich went to jail.  Once Governor, Pat Quinn depended solely on the kindness of strange rangers -  Dawn Clark Netsches, Dr. Quentin Youngs, Boss Terry Cosgroves, Ralph Martires, and the canoe guy, Quinn keeps hiring.

Sun Times Cartoonist and Pulitzer Prize recipient Jack Higgins nails the entire Quinn strategy (above).  Quinn could not lead a glutton to a free lunch counter.

Pat Quinn proves the cockroach rule of Darwinian longevity.  Pat Quinn is a dyed in the wool, pure gospel, snake handling Progressive. He survived politics in much the same way that lamprey eels enjoy long and healthy life cycles.  Someone provides an electoral ride, dies, or goes to jail and Pat Quinn . . . well, you get the idea of my sentiments.

Anyway, I am not alone among voters who supported Pat Quinn in his run against Pat Brady and bought all of his 'workingman's best pal and loyalty is my middle-name" BS.   Pat Quinn is only loyal to the Hyde Park Progressive agenda - always was and always will be:  contrarian doctrinaire (if it sounds stupid Quinn is all over it) on law and law enforcement, pro-criminal, pro-radical, abortion happy and tax fabulous.

Pat Quinn has stuck his pinkies in the eyes of African American Democratic voters.  Quinn arrogantly assumes he has 'them' all locked up.  Quinn needs blue collar ethnic white voters, again.  He arrogantly assumes that they will follow the dictates of parish culture and neighborly obligation and vote for a one of them - the Tall Greek with Gorgeous Dutch Wife.

The very people for whom Pat Quinn scorns for their loyalty, their faith and their sense of civic duty - same as the black voters.

Pat Quinn needs Paul Vallas.  The very last thing Illinois needs is Pat Quinn. I love Paul Vallas, as I love myself.

I would not for Pat Quinn, if I were on the ticket with him.

Paul Simon & Sting? How about Ella Fitzgerald and Spike Jones?

Hope and Crosby, Bartles and James, Currier and Ives, Smith and Jones, - these I get.  They are combinations that make sense like the yellow and red plastic squeeze bottles on the tables where we hoi polloi grab a meal.Paul Simon & Sting Tickets Two bald guys - one with a hat!

Paul Simon? Meh. He lost me in the 1960's when he was duet-ted with the guy in the Jew-fro whose nuts had yet to drop.  If I wanted male falsetto, Lou Christie and Roy Orbison had it in spades. The Pop equivalent of choral castrati was never big with me.

Sting? Meh. Is Der Stingle a rock icon, movie star, fashion plate, or aging horn-dog? Back in the 80's when everything hip was all about being East German Stasi, Sting and The Police nailed the moment.  Big Hair went away. Sting stuck around, like Rudy Valle on a Bing Crosby Special in the 1960's.

Now, it's Simon and Sting - two bald guys and one wearing a hat, or one guy with two names and the other with but one.  What are we getting for our package?

I went to the official website to get a prospective - a sense of why.  All I got were opportunities to purchase ticket packages in each host city and learned that the PS & S Store would soon be open on the very same website.
Choose between three exclusive VIP packages to create your ultimate "On Stage Together" experience! Exciting package elements may include Front Row Seats, Pre-show Hospitality, Exclusive Merchandise and More! For details, click here
Did. Nothing.  ObamaCare is really having some effect, there, kids! Get a load of the Packages available! Now one ticket, at full price, best available will run this Old Dog who prefers the Kinks to Pink Floyd and Wilson Pickett to Paul Simon, $ 265.75 before all the County and Rahm taxes and sans the VIP ups and extras.   I'd feel about as happy and healthy as some poor slob who blew the mortgage and an additional $ 2,500 on VISA at Horseshoe Casino, after that purchase.

Maybe if I really, really, really like Simon and Sting, or at least one of the aging pop stars I'd toss away at least $ 400 on a stage visit to the front rows of United Center.

Having tucked away my pop-up road rage with disappearance of the Mormon Mockery on every news web page, I am now afflicted with waves of Simon /Sting Missives. I have yet to understand the musical mission?

What do Sting and Simon have that really demands a concert tour together? Imagine Ella Fitzgerald

With Spike Jones and his City Slickers

I imagine Luciano Pavaratti touring with Jigger Johnny and the Polka Fatboys, Ella Fitzgerald and Spike Jones, Carmel Quinn and Pogues, or how about Tom Jones and the Indigo Girls?

THAT I would pay to see.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

In the Face of Changes, I Confess!

"Wenceslas!  Good King Wenceslas! You look out on the Feast of Stephen . . . OUT!  Around, See what's happening!   Jesus, you're as thick as a bull's Walt, your majesty!"

Things change for the better, except in government and popular music.  Most people are much nicer to one another. Certainly the evolved cuisine beats the blue-plate special offerings of forty and fifty years ago. Domestic thermostatic climate control is superior especially in summer months.  I no longer need to sleep with my feet hanging out a window over the gangway in July and August.

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.   Well who don't? If Heraclitus has it right there is no constant but flux.  My hair and its absence in certain precincts of my noggin are pretty good indicators of this verity.  I ain't no kid.  I can still ascend the four floors of Leo High School without the aid of an oxygen mask full of natural gas on each landing and I am yet able to two-step like a self conscious Fred Astair; nevertheless, I am not the Steve Stunning of yore. Ecclesiastes 3, 1-8

I try to make my thoughts words and deeds appropriate to the occasion and fight my more juvenile impulses with . . .well that is not entirely true.  I behave only when threatened.  Somethings never change, Heraclitus. I confess my short comings and human limitations in order to off set any possibility of actually putting forth a huge effort. Kind of like when the Leo Maintenance Chief Ron asked me if I'd like to help unload fifty bags of sidewalk salt - " Gee, yes, Ron!  As soon as I finish mailing both of my thumbs to the Saudi Royals. Let me know where you guys are!"  I know WHAT TIME IT IS!

It's time for the Hollywood Argyles!

IHSA Football Quarter Finals in Class 1-A: Leo v. Ottawa Marquette

St. Laurence High School, operated by the Irish Christian Brothers will host the Class 1-A Quarter Final game between Leo and Ottawa Marquette at 2 PM on Saturday November 16, 2013.After a great Leo Family Get-Together last Saturday at St. Rita's Pat Cronin Field featuring a win by the Lions over visiting Stark County 31-20, the Lions head to Burbank for the Quarter Finals. Generations of Hogans, Mahoneys, Coopers, Paynes, Halls, Torres, Garzas, Greens, Jacksons, Sheehys and McNallys followed Jay Standring in whatever cheer, chant or taunt he could shout out.  

If you did not run into a pal that you had not seen in decades, you must have had your eyes riveted to the action on the field.  Me?  I'm a rubber-necker.  I caught up with Ernie Kelly, Bud Monaco, Marquis "Biggs" Ball, Akim Hunter,  Johnny Vasi, Bob Quick, Jack McNamara, Wally Macaulay,the Brothers Hopkins: Jack and Tom, George Spearekis, Mike Gurgone,The Brothers Finn: too numerous to name, George Newell, Coach Jack Fitzgerald, Senator Ed Maloney, Father Bill McFarland, Standrings and Earners and McElligotts Oh, My!!!!

When I was not peeling off five-spots to Canaryville's own Duke Rusty Montana (2016), whom I drove to and from the game, and who eats like he's going to the chair, I made happy re- acquaintance with old friends.  We all look exactly the way we did in 1967,'68. '69, & '70 - at least through the lens of Leo High School and parish camaraderie ( VIZ, John 'O God, Sabina's, KillYuns, Sain Nicks, Big Weed, Tommy More ( too old to fight, or just mellowed?) R Lady a Moun'Carmel, Caj-uhtins, & da res').

Come out and watch the Lion, catch the Ottawa Crusaders in its brawny paws. .St. Laurence High School 5556 W 77th St, Burbank, IL 60459(708) 458-6900

Monday, November 11, 2013

Leo Veterans Observance - Facta Non Verba: Honor in Deeds Not Just Words

The Marines of Chicago's Own - 2nd Battalion, 24th Marines carried 1903 Springfield rifles in tribute to the late James Durkin, USMCR Leo Class of 1930 veteran of Guadalcanal, British Solomon Islands 1942, as it was the weapon Mr. Durkin carried in that campaign.

The Durkin Family with Leo President Dan McGrath and Principal Phil Mesina

Liam Durkin and his sister Lilly helped their Mom lay a wreath at the Memorial in Leo's courtyard that was placed in 1965 through the efforts of James Durkin, Leo '30.

Three heroes of the Vietnam War - Leo Men and veterans of the 25th Infantry Division

The Honor is a small part of our obligation

Korean War vet and CFD hero Jim Corbett gives Leo Math teacher Ms. Hickey sound advice concerning the like-surnamed troll to Chief Corbett's right.

Mr. Holden and Mr. Richards of Bugles Across America did a Taps Duet.

Campus Minister Pete Doyle leads all in the Catholic Prayer-  Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

More great Photos by Phil Mesina, Leo Principal 

Friday, November 08, 2013

The Loud and Stupid Have Had the Floor Far Too Long - Dan Savage e.g.

 Overdue. Had to be done.

We have been far too nice to the people who make time stand-still: the vacuous, lite-enlightened, shifty, greedy, egomanical and the just plain too-stupid to be Governor.  Good manners and spineless moral dictates developed by ninnies with far too much time their hands preclude the time honored retort of  " What is wrong with you?  Just How Goddam Stupid Are You?  For Crissakes, You Just Can Not Shut up!  Now, have your opinions follow your ass out of here!" following any uncommonly stupid proposition or pronouncement (see any Editorial in any newspaper in Chicago, or catch Chicago Tonight on WTTW).

These dominating ideas used to come only from hopeless drunks after some cash windfall, any recently hired faculty member with a grudge about Homecomings, public librarians, Elks and Hyde Park indigents seeking unrestricted admission to the Newberry Library.

Now days,  this field of shameless edgy opinion contrarians crowds and dominates our inkspace, cyberspace, wirewaves and  legislatures.

Take for example this celebrated and  accomplished asshole -advice columnist, playwright, activist, arse-burglar and bullying  lecturer Dan Savage:

All wax and no wick.

Then we have this financially comfortable, mildly educated and spiritually bankrupt couple from Texas:

Two pacifists out of necessity in the battle of wits

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Tales of the South Side: My Favorite Year 1959! That Was Some Birthday!

Seven year old Pat Hickey tickles the genuine whiskers of El Jefe in the living room of Granpa Hickey's bungalow at 7535 S. Marshfield west of Ashland in the Highlands of Gresham.

Yep, I seem to recall the bearded presence of the future dictator of Red Cuba, when my uncle Bart brought him home to meet the family on November 8, 1959.  I had just turned seven at 10 AM and my Dad was at one of his three jobs ( Illinois Medicals Psychiatric Center, The Beverly Theatre, or Home for the Blind) - Ike was about to part the White House, the White Sox won the American League Pennant, but the LA Dodgers the Series, I was in third grade, JFK was a Catholic running for President and Castro visited the April of 1959.  Castro went to zoos and ranches in NYC, DC, Texas and Canada and generally hung around with Chicago Tribune's Latin Affairs Correspondent Jules Dubois.

Dubois had been a Panama suit and hat reporter in Panama and later became an Army spook during WWII.  After the war, Dubois worked to overthrow governments in Central America and also hated Cuban dictator and Mafia puppet Batista.

My Uncle Bart was the tallest of my Dad's six brothers and as Mary Garvey once said, 'That Bart is strictly MGM.'  Bart had been a Master Sergeant in the Marines during the Korean War and afterward a Stationary Engineer.  I am given to understand that during one of his not too infrequent visits to Mr. Kelly's that Uncle Bart pal'd up with Col Jules Dubois.

The Colonel and Bart hit it off and met up for beers periodically.   After the Sox lost the World Series, the two ran into one another and met for steaks at Stockyard Inn.  Dubois told Bart about the guy who had kicked the Batista and the Guineas out of Cuba in January and had charmed the britches off of the Manhattan swells and the likes of Lenny Bernstein.  Castro had visited the States on his own, in full beard and Army fatigues many times.

Uncle Bart cried Bullshit.

The Colonel protested, " On the Square, Batty.  Want to meet him?"

It was arranged.  On November 8th 1959, Fidel Castro wiped his feet on the mud mat in the hall of the Hickey Manse on Marshfield, right here in Chicago.

All of my cousins were there but Eddie who was a freshman football player at Notre Dame and it was my birthday besides, which meant cake.  The cake was from the bakery on 79th & Laflin and it was okay but for the coconut flakes, which I have hated with a generous passion - Lo these many years. Cutting off perfectly good frosting because of coconut flakes is just wrong.  Most of the cousins did not seem to mind and swallowed the stuff without so much as a blink.

In walked Uncle Bart and two guys - one a geezer and the other dressed in Army clothes and beard.  "Split-tails and goofs, quiet down.  This is Col. Jules Dubois and he's a pal and this is his pal Fidel. Fellas, this is my brother Pat's boy -Patsheen -he's what? Sixteen?"

"Seven, Uncle Bart,"  I corrected.

" Did I ask you, wise guy?  Close your chow hole and give your ears a chance until you're talked to . . .it's his Birthday, Chief. What did you bring for the kid?"

Into the excitement and up from the basement came FATHER - Granpa Hickey, formerly of Crinnie Hill, Castleisland County Kerry, a founder of Engineers Local 399, father of seven boys and six girls and a pioneering road rage, unfiltered vocalist. " Bateen, who's yer pals, so?  I heard ye come in the front door when the back way is good enough for Monsignor McMahon.  Hello, I'm Lawrence Hickey, Bart's father, like the story."   A Kerryman pronounces Bart as Bayart, but said fast and says 'Like the Shhtory for no good reason. BTW - Bat is short for Bart, which is short for Bartholomew, and it's diminutive in Irish would be Bat-een, like I am Padsheen, or Patsheen.

GranPa took in a full eyeful of Fidel Castro.

"Fwhat are you doing here in my living room dressed up like Tom Barry's Flying Column?" quizzed the original Crinnie Rage-aholic.

Uncle Bart answer, " He's Castro, Father (with undiminished irony) - the guy on Time Magazine from Cuba."

"That's near Florida, so?"

It was agreed.

Hands were shook all around and Fidel Castro was seated at the dining room table next to the Chicago Pater Familias - " How's things with that crook Batista off in the jungles somewhere?"

Col. Jules Dubois translated for the English challenged revolutionist - Castro lit up like one of his virgin-thighed rolled cheroots - " Ah Bueno, Senor Hickey! Muy bien! Las personas que saquearon mi pueblo para este año madres Mañana no será bienvenido en Cuba. Al igual que los Medias Blancas y la Sra. Rigné, Ha, ha, ha! "

" So, that's the way of it."

On it went, I suppose, in this manner until the large bag was opened with my birthday present from the liberator and future dictator of Cuba.  We all got beards and imitation Army caps made like those paper painter's caps.  Some haul, huh?

Uncle Bart decided to put El Jefe on the spot, " That's all you got for the Kid? It's his birthday for Crissakes.  Dig, Pepe, and come up with some folding money for the little guy." This was dutifully translated by Col. Dubois.

Castro feined a smile of resignation and oiled these words in his native tongue through his gums and whiskers, "What is this?  A Capitalist trap?  You Yankees!  Very Well, here is five Gringo dollars for your homely nephew with the gapped teeth. I am out of here!  Say good-bye to your foul tempered Irish father. Basta Ya!, Yanquis!"

Within a few months,  Time Magazine's Boy Castro was locked in an embrace with Soviet Communism that still breathes lustily today.

I got to tickle the real whiskers of Castro and pocket a 1959 value 5-$pot from a Commie and never really caught the desire to cut sugar cane.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

This Could Not Wait! Celebrate!

Koolher infant gorillborn Brookfield Zoo. | Jim Schulz/Chicago Zoological Society

Few things make me more happy than a Life Affirming Celebration  Yesterday, after months of set-backs, false hopes, mystery and deep, deep concern, Illinois can now breath with the ease of a morbidly fat lady shoe-horned out of her corset! Weeeeehoooooohhhhh!!!!!!!!!! Send a Fax to the Capitol!

Brookfield Zoo has a brand-new baby girl gorilla, a zoo spokeswoman said Tuesday.
The gorilla, which doesn’t yet have a name, was born early Mondays, zoo spokeswoman Sondra Katzen said. . . .The infant was born to 18-year-old Koola and JoJo, 33, the father.

Mom and Dad are doing well . . .in the Animal Kingdom.

All the best to the happy couple and their darling infant.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Ventra Cards - Why Can't We See (Hear) Forrest for the Fees?

You got that right, my brother!

Career Grifter and Government Job Hopper, CTA Boss Forrest Claypool, is invisible in today's Chicago Tribune article and only mentioned in passing by the Sun Times' account of the Ventra Card Debacle. 

CTA employees are being “verbally attacked daily by angry riders’’ who are blaming them for problems with the new transit fare-payment system, the rail worker union’s leader said Thursday, calling on the agency to scrap Ventra until all the bugs are worked out.
“The Ventra program is not working. There are people who are getting triple-, double-, quadruple-billed. Their credit cards are being billed that shouldn’t be. People are mad, they’re angry,’’ said Robert Kelly, Local 308 president of the Amalgamated Transit Union.
“But they are mad at the wrong person,’’ Kelly said at union headquarters downtown. “CTA should stop (Ventra) now, pull back, until they can work out all the kinks.’’ Tribune

Concerning double-charges, CTA spokeswoman Tammy Chase said previously that Ventra customers could be double charged if they tap a Ventra reader and get a “go” signal and then change turnstile lanes and get a second “go” signal. However, Ventra customers are not charged for “stop” messages, even multiple ones, she said.
Cubic Transportation Systems, which won a contract worth up to $454 million to manage and operate Ventra, was so inundated with calls in early October that, on Oct. 9, CTA President Forrest Claypool cancelled some Ventra deadlines. The move was intended to give Cubic time to triple the number of operators — from 100 to 300 — in its call centers and reduce the hold times of frustrated customers. Sun Times
 The Chicago Sun Times appears to Gimme Shelter Forrest with this passing props for cancelling some Ventra Rollout deadlines after the metaphorical halibut had already rotted on the transit poop deck.

I like to ride the bus to work and I would buy the CTA/PACE cards at CVS on 79th street.  They worked great and their value was obvious.  When something is not broken, a Progressive like Forrest Claypool will come in with an already divvied up deal to screw things into loam.  The newspapers will nod with conviction -"Ain't He Great?"

You see both Chicago papers ( read Editorial Boards) have a great deal of time, talent and treasure invested in the Carbondale Career Grifter.

Forrest Claypool can not keep his yap closed most times, because words are easy and deeds are tough.  When deeds follow the words that spill out of Claypool like mysterious Avondale fence ooze things get pretty tough on people other than Forrest Claypool - CTA workers' potty breaks get snipped off in mid - stream, Peep-hole camera's get located in locker rooms, a CTA yard worker* gets sanctioned, hundreds of thousands of Chicagoans, get their nickels snitched by Cubic Transportation Systems, and the Chinese wheels of the Canadian Bombardier L Cars don't fit the tracks.

How did Ventra become the "This CAN'T Wait" opportunity of a lifetime for CTA riders?

Forrest Claypool yapped up a storm for months.


It's a very different story but the same old song.

If Forrest Claypool is involved, we all pay.

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 308 President Bob Kelly is what real labor is all about - he stared done the Chinless Claypool over the Pee Break Embargo, called out the Bomdardier Wheel scam and is standing up for his people.  He should be doing Forrest's job.
n.b.- Robert Kelly was elected as President/Business Agent of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 308 in 2008. Mr. Kelly is responsible for protecting the collective bargaining rights of over 4000 active and retired Chicago Transit Authority workers who work on the rail side. Mr. Kelly serves as a Vice President of the Illinois AFL-CIO and is President of the ATU Local 308 Scholarship committee. He is the proud father of 11 children.
ATU 308 Officers, 13 Dec 2012 [cached]
Robert Kelly has been a member since October 1, 1986. Employed by the "Authority" on August 27, 1986. Robert has worked the classifications of Conductor, Motorman, Flagmen, Foot Collector, Switchman and Towerman. Appointed a steward in 1997 until he was elected as President/Business Agent on December 16, 2008. Robert demonstrates vision, insight and tenacity in representing Local 308's priorities. Re-elected to a second term on November 15, 2011 winning over 55% of the votes against 4 other candidates (emphasis my own)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Career Grifter CTA's Forrest Claypool' s Bull Durham Sack Management by Voyeurism

 CHICAGO (CBS) — The CTA admits it is using hidden cameras to crack down on employees who should be working, but some employees say they are placing the cameras in places they shouldn’t be.
The CTA claims that the cameras are part of an effort to crack down on waste, in this case employees sleeping on the job, and worse. . . .
I suppose that grabbing wink or two is the Progressive equivalent of sticking nickels in a Bull Durham sack. I am old enough to remember old timers who drove buses and streetcars. They referred to the art of Transit Larceny by an individual as being a 'Bull Durham Operator.'  On each route, a few nickels went home with the guy who spirited fares into a Bull Durham tobacco sack.   A greedy pig of a Transit worker would eventually get caught and find another City Hall gig.

Nowadays,  the thieves wear Brooks Brothers and get paid in checks with more zeroes than the Japanese air-force.  Or, if you read the Chicago papers and watch WTTW, the real thieves take naps after punching in to work.  I don't buy that crap.

I watch City workers everyday- cops, firemen, garbage men, water crews, teachers, bus and L drivers and the CTA repair crews on the Red, Orange, Blue, Brown, Pink and Mauve lines.  They do work.  They do work.  They do, work. There's no Siesta in public service! There is bid rigging, insider trading, fraud and all manner of contract opportunism.  Speaking of fraud and opportunism, let's turn to a paragon -CTA Boss Forrest Claypool.

I have long perceived Forrest Claypool to be a shameless moocher, a callow opportunist and really talent-challenged guy; now, in this second disturbing action  ( the first being the Claypool Pee-Watch on CTA Workers c. 2011) reported by CBS 2's Jay Levine I must add . . .really creepy.

My perceptions are based upon actual physical empirical encounters with this thin-gruel government job-hopper;  I watched Park District Commissioner shake down a girl working in the Special Events Department for VIP passes to Petrillo Band Shell performances acts open to the general public - but somewhat distant and without the VIP post-performance feed.   It was painful to watch . . . you know,  like a kid who beefs that his brother's birthday cake was better.  I have watched Forrest attend political events and fund-raisers for and by the people whom he would immediately stab in the back (too numerous to mention) and bad mouth to the ever useful Carol Marin.  I have followed the weasel-slick career of Forrest Claypool as he parlayed his way from Harold Washington to Rahm, always with a sense that there truly is no there, there.

I mean Andy Shaw endorsed Forrest. Me?  I think he is probably a great guy, when he's at home. Maybe not now, though.

Now, we hear that Ventra Boy the Micturating Bombardier has place peep-hole cameras in the locker and break rooms of CTA employees.  The idea is to find victims, when the public comes calling for answers about screw-ups that Forrest had his paws all over.

You see, Progressives have and always will hate and despise working men and women.  They love poor people, because they are commodity and could not name two persons in poverty.  Working people, especially skilled trades people are always and always will be the target of Investigative News Teams, Chuck Goudis, Peep-hole Operator and Progressives like Forrest Claypool.

Some guy sleeping off a hangover in the cab of Water Department Dump Truck must be exposed for the villain he is; some woman taking a bit too long in the Ladies Room really steams Forrest Claypool's clams and some kid taking a gander at the porn his supervisor downloaded requires a public chastisement.

The fact that this over-hired and over-paid Voyeur is setting up working people with cameras in their locker and break rooms is not new, but very consistent.  Forrest announced his 'crime fighting camera installations' last February; at the time, it was in response to thugs on the bus.  Now, we know that is just another attack on the middle class - the people who actually work for a living on the City's nickel.

Camera's never catch career grifters.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

This Important Little Man Gets It! So Does The Pope.

We enjoyed a visit from Cardinal George on Monday here at Leo.Cardinal George stayed way past his appointed schedule talking and joking with students, the parents and the Leo Alumni. Chicago's Archbishop gets it.

Mayor James Sexton - Little Flower HS 1970/ Loyola University 1974

Evergreen Park Mayor and my old classmate  and pal Jimmy Sexton dropped by the blessing and stuffed a huge check in support of the bus program into my coat pocket, offered his best to the Cardinal and beat it without fanfare. Jimmy Sexton gets it.

Some years ago the guy coaching Notre Dame football at the time told a bunch of 7,8,9 and 10 year boxers from Celtic Boxing Club, who traveled to South Bend in a Blizzard in order to fight exhibition matches that would benefit the coach's daughter's charity that he was far to busy to autograph pieces of paper, let alone sit for a picture and talk to them.  I'm sorry that is not true.  The coach sent his body guard, an off duty South Bend cop, to tell me and the kids that the Coach was far too Big and Busy a Man to concern himself with kids drawing in money for his daughter.  Yeah, that is accurate. The Coach was not, or course Faust, Devine, Holtz, Willingham, or coach Kelly.  The coach was let go.  He just does not get it.

Most people get it.  Little kids arrive with it and best of us keep it.

This below makes much more clear than I could ever hope to do, or say.

These guys get it.

Beef, Or You Die; Try This! Guinness Braised Beef Ribs

There's a Little Nip in the Air!  No, it's not Pearl Harbor Day.  'Tis Fall.  The leaves are past their ruby/amber seasonal majesty and are browning up nicely for their annual trip into my gutters.  The Illinois Football Playoffs begin and the IHSA *comes up with new and ever silly ways to make competitive sports as unappealing as an Andy Shaw witch hunt.

It is time for me to unbox the reliable and multi-caloried utensil for the Autumn and Winter seasons and seasoning - The Hamilton Beach Slow-Cooker.   My kids grew up on comfort food stirred in pot by old Dad on the stove-top, or the Slow-Cooker:  Chop Suey ala George's from 79th & Ashland, Klondike Chili aped from the recipe of late-great Charlie Orr, who brought Cajun Cooking to the south side via the Maple Tree Inn, Granny Hickey's SlumGullion, Kapust, St. George Illinois Smoked Boudin and Andouille Cassoulet with white beans, Lanacshire Hot Pots, Irish Stews & stuff I just threw together with broth,bacon, noodles and vegetables. The kids' favorite skillet offering was and remains SOS - creamed chipped beef on toast..

I now cook for one - my son of whom I am well pleased and who eats like he's going to the chair.

I plan to braise beef ribs in Guinness over a score and change of hours.  I will arise, at some point, an go . . .go to County Fair Foods on Western Avenue and nine bean rows will I pass and arrive at the meat counter.

I shall order beef ribs.  While the guy who took over when Mike retired cuts and trims my Moosickles,  I venture over to the vegetable section and grab some leeks, celery, spuds ( baby reds), carrots, green onions and parsley.

I have a spice shaker filled with Hickey Mix - Cumin, Coriander, black pepper, paprika and curry powder, onion and garlic salts.  I'll empty about four tablespoons of the stuff into a bowl and add 1/4 cup of brown sugar and dash or six of Kikoman Teriyaki Sauce.

I'll go over toCounty Fair's new beer section and grab a four pack of the big Guinness cans and six pack of Bud Lite for Conor. How, he can drink that swill plumb evades me.  A bad can of Burgie was better than that equine medical specimen.  I will also purchase a large can (16oz.) of whole tomatoes. 

In my big black cast iron skillet, I'll make a dark roue and spoon onto wax paper and when cool wrap it up..  Then, I'll  set the roue in a dish and stick it in the icebox, 'cuz I won't need it for a day or so. After cleaning the skillet with a paper towel, returning it to low heat on the stove I'll brown the bones on the three sides what's got meat.

Set them aside, when brown and then throw in the vegetables -all but the spuds let them soak up beef.  Now, I'll marinade the beef ribs in Guinness ( two big Cans garlic cloves, and black pepper corns over night and into the next day.  A good 20 hours.  Remove the ribs and toss the marinade.

Out comes the Hamilton Beach and after the porcelain innards gets a good cleaning and returned to the tin frame, I'll set t on slow. . .as slow as an Oberlin Summa Cum Laude.

In go Guinness marinaded cow slats, which shall cook for a minimum of four hours covered in Guinness from the remaining two cans and then stir in the above mentioned Hickey Mix & Brown sugar, a can of whole tomatoes, some sliced garlic gloves and some pepper corns.  Then - now here comes the hard part - Stir all carefully. Put the glass lid on and step away from the pot.

After four hours and change,  I'll add the browned vegetables and stick the baby red spuds in a pot of ice cold water. Cook three more hours and stir in the roue.  If it is night time turn off the slow Cooker and stick the porcelain pot in the ice box. If not cook for another two hours or so

Then, it gets close to eatin' time.  I plan to make the Australian spuds.  You half-mash the red taters on a baking sheet, sprinkle them with olive oil, salt and pepper and bake like cookies in 450 Degree oven for twenty minutes.  Those are base for the marinaded ribs, if there be any meat left on the bone that is. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.  Guinness Is maith agat agus Guinness dhéanann oidis mór níos mó.

Eat until you perspire.  Make your son do the dishes . . .as if.

* The IHSA is considering proposals from certain schools ( losers) requiring that all schools qualify for the playoffs.  WE ARE ALL WINNERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Jesus.