In just the last week, three iconic Chicago restaurants have announced permanent closures: Southport Lanes, Fat Willy's Rib Shack, and Lawry's The Prime Rib.
I'm having beer at Southport Lanes this afternoon and ribs for dinner Thursday. Lawry's, I'll see you before the end of the year.
Watching Amazon's 2017 anthology series Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams, I particularly enjoyed how many episodes they filmed right here in Chicago.
"Real Life" filmed mainly around Lake St and the river. "The Father Thing" takes place mainly in The Villa, a niche hidden away in Irving Park. And it took me all of 5 minutes to locate a shooting location by the Damen El stop in "Safe and Sound."
Of course, as most of the stories take place 20 minutes into the future, some of the locations have digital additions (like the diner in "Real Life"). But they made no effort to conceal Chicago. It's fun.
Working from home with a gigabit Internet connection has at least one major perk: TV on in the background. I've gone through a lot of it in the last six months. The Expanse, Tales from the Loop, Wyonna Earp, Warrior Nun, Upload, and The Umbrella Academy were all worth watching. Some of them even have new seasons coming out soon.
On the "return to the office full-time" front, we probably have another six months to wait. The New York Times has a rundown of the 92 Covid-19 vaccines currently under development. But despite the president's lies, none of them will be available before the election. And getting 7 (or 14) billion doses manufactured and distributed will take time as well.
So, we work from home, wash our hands, wear our masks outside, and have lots of TV on in the background. Yay us.
Talk-show host Stephen Colbert has set up a website called Better Know a Ballot where you can check on the voting requirements for your state. He's producing videos for each state (starting with North Carolina) to explain the rules.
That's the bright spot of joy for you today. Here are other...spots...of something:
OK, one more bit of good news: The Economist reported this week that the southern hemisphere had almost no flu cases this winter, because pandemic response measures work on influenza just as they work on Covid-19.
I put on a long-sleeved shirt to walk Parker this morning, and I'm about to change into a polo. It's a lovely early-autumn day here in Chicago. Elsewhere...
Finally, the city received over 600 submissions from 13 countries on how to have outdoor dining in a Chicago winter.
Welcome to stop #34 on the Brews and Choos project.
Brewery: One Lake Brewing, 1 Lake St., Oak Park
Train line: CTA Green Line, Austin
Time from Chicago: 21 minutes
Distance from station: 200 m
Carved out of a 1920s-era bank building right on the border with Chicago, One Lake Brewing has an unusual, multi-level space with a pleasant rooftop beer garden, good food, and great beers. On Sunday, a friend and I trekked out to Oak Park to try a few beers there.
From right to left in the photo above, I tried the Blonde@40 (4.0%), a malty lager with a clean finish that reminded me of MGD (my training beer) the way a Wagyu steak reminds me of McDonalds; the Lando IPA (8.2%), a big, hoppy, delicious and strong ale I'm glad I tried in a small pour first; the Oscar Milde (4.2%), an excellent English mild ale with chocolate and caramel notes and a whiff of toffee; and the Black is Beautiful (5%), their version of a German black beer with complexity, depth, and a long chocolate finish I loved.
(I actually drank them in a different order: Blonde, Mild, Black, IPA.)
We got lucky that they had a 2-top available for walk-in right as they opened, but the rooftop filled up fast. Given Sunday's beautiful weather and smoke-tinged sunset, plus the food (worth a trip on its own), I can see why they've gotten popular.
Beer garden? Rooftop
Dogs OK? No
Serves food? Yes, full menu
Would hang out with a book? Yes
Would hang out with friends? Yes
Would go back? Yes
Just a few of the things that crossed my desktop this morning:
And last night, Cubs pitcher Alec Mills threw the club's 16th no-hitter against the Milwaukee Brewers. In the history of Major League Baseball, there have only been 315 no-hitters. The last time the Cubs won a no-hitter was 51 years ago.
The sun came out today for the first time since last Sunday, it seems, so I plan to spend most of my day outside. But I have these to read as I sip my morning tea:
And finally, tomorrow at the office I'll listen to the Nerdette Podcast's breakdown of Pulp Fiction.
"The Fermi Paradox is Our Business Model" is worth the 10 minutes it'll take to read. Of course, after that, you'll be back in reality.
With 58 days until the election, the noise keeps increasing. Here's some of it:
Finally, The Smithsonian describes how Greg Priore managed to steal priceless documents from the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, because he was in charge of security for those items.