Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Stay Tuned
July 24, 2012

To all my loyal readers—please stay tuned as I will be updating this publication. For those who are new, please enjoy this 1920s saga. Always inspired, Eleanor

Looks can be Deceiving
October 16, 2011

Peaceful activities can be very deceptive. Especially when it seems too quiet, as it has lately around the streets of Chicago. There is a growing unrest that cannot be denied. As prohibition advances through the decade, it inspires tremendous growth in the very vice it aims to eliminate. Good intentions can have unexpected consequences. They can even backfire. So it is with great concern that The Chicagoan is on the lookout.

Observant citizens can’t help but notice that the city is growing very quickly. Unlike in a small town, new faces don’t stand out very much; they are expected. But there is some strange behavior that is starting to get noticed. Men in expensive suits are gathering in small groups on street corners, standing too close together, whispering, and glancing about. What is of particular concern to this publication is that many of these frequent but short meetings are happening just outside The Chicagoan office. Granted there is a popular shoeshine stand positioned at the corner of the building, but informants coming in and out of the office with scoops seem to feel a bit intimidated by the well dressed men standing about.

Business is business and everyone understands that. Each has a unique way of conducting it and Chicago has proven itself as quite tolerant. However, there is a difference between tolerance and denial, between naïveté and skepticism, between seeing the good in people and being prepared for the worst.

shoe shine stand activity

Shoeshine stand is strategically placed so any action can be seen up and down Center Street. Mister Moorlord keeps his shoes in top condition while he stays current with published opinions. Mister Cascone happily gives these well-known shoes their continual perfect patina.

It is particularly notable that Mister Shepham Moorlord always has the shiniest shoes. If anyone has important business to discuss with Mister Moorlord and has the guts to interrupt his reading of The Chicagoan (and less reputable newspapers sprouting up in town), he can be found frequenting this particular location. Served by Mister Vinny Cascone, it is a good idea to make friends with this more quiet and unassuming fellow first. Mister Cascone has been around town all his life observing and making smart associations, but not astute enough to elevate his profession from shoe shine to dreams of influence. Perhaps, though, much like a barber, he is in a great position to gather and pass on information, thus making his home life a bit more comfortable than the meager salary from his modest enterprise might allow. Maybe the tips are particularly good for a man with his experience.

"businessmen"

Mister Carrollo is barely communicative, Mister Colosimo sees more than he tells, and Mister Tony is seen everywhere.

Several of the newcomers of mysterious business must go unnamed because they won’t respond when questioned by reporters. Only Mister Carlo Carrollo was polite enough to offer a minimum of introduction. Most of these men don’t use too many words. And the words they do use are spoken so low and quietly, it is hard to hear them. They will not repeat themselves either. In fact, they ignore everyone who is not of their own kind—except for their gracious lady companions who dress as nicely as they do. Leading the group of fashionable “businessmen” is Mister BigJim Colosimo who likes to observe more than be watched.

Mister Fat Tony is also a known name about town, though he is as tight-lipped as his colleagues. Hopefully the good citizens of Chicago will not let these “businessmen” (who lurk outside the Chicagoan office) deter them from doing their civic duty by dropping in with tips to enrich this publication with different views and understandings.

(Photos by Misses Starla Huntress Moorlord)

For information on upcoming activities please see www.1920chicago.com.

____________

Historical notes:

The romance and the glamour of gangsters in the 1920’s has given Chicago its continuing international reputation. The drama and intrigue are played up; the sordid and evil are swept under the rug. The SIM is realistic in its gathering of fashionable and questionable characters. It portrays the gradual decline of legal power as the decade progresses. By 1929, the year of the infamous massacre, morals in the city had degenerated to the point of alarming the average citizen. Ringing the downtown business district, private speakeasies and brothels were almost beyond counting. While bootlegging flourished and businesses profited, the influx of questionable characters also increased, seeing a marked rise in the crime rates.

At the end of the decade, several developments occurred that concluded the culture of the Roaring 20’s—as if someone threw a switch. First the St. Valentine’s Day massacre stirred the attention of tax payers who demanded that something be done. Secondly, the stock market crashed that fall, plunging the entire country into depression and transformed gangsters into heros. But not yet. The SIM still stirs with those last days of the decade—days of more unsavories joining the population and more women seeking some of the world’s oldest professions. Organized crime is inspired by prohibition to develop a powerful black market; the structure continues today in the SIM as well as in the real life city. The black market grew from alcohol to arms to prostitution and to countless “reputable” front businesses. It spread its tentacles into every level of society. This assembly of mysterious “businessmen,” secretly led by warring puppet-masters is replayed on these streets. Citizens beware.

Celebrating Dedication
March 18, 2011

Prohibition doesn’t seem to inhibit Chicago entertainment style. Publicly, activities are lubricated by creative cocktails such as “Blueberry” Juice, “Snowballs,” and “Lemonade.” But privately, many households still boast of stockpiles stored in basements, personal stills in backrooms, and concealed flasks that get shared during events. Saint Patrick’s Day in Chicago is a particular challenge to legality, as everyone knows how the Irish love to drink!!!

With steins of nonalcoholic “beer,” Mayor KJ Kiranov and Miss Xyza Armistice, the consummate hosts, made up for any lack of strong refreshments with outstanding decorations and music for the St. Patrick’s Day Relay for Life Benefit Ball. In fact, to focus more on contributing to the great cause for the American Cancer Association rather than on lack of lubrication, is a healthy and worthy shift of emphasis.

X & KJ dance

Elegant and humorous, hosts Mayor KJ Kiranov and Miss Xyza Armistice entertain a festive turnout

On  All are Irish on St. Patty’s Day, and with a unifying exuberance, the political squabbles between ethnic groups were set aside for a philanthropic spirit. Such a large percentage of new residents into Chicago do come from Ireland, so respectfully finding a great excuse for a fantastic party is politically astute. Thursday evening, the ball culminated in the costume contest, drawing a healthy crowd of creatively-clad residents. And, swept up in the spirit of celebration, the amount of green outfits displayed was quite impressiveI

outfits

Always a good idea to show the most fashionable ladies demonstrates why Chicago is one of the fashion capitals of the world: Miss Bea Shamrock, Miss Nuala Maracas, and Miss Arizona all show why green is such a popular color.

The Hotel LaSalle offers the most elegant of settings for the swirling couples and self-absorbed singles. Dancing was shared by all!! And the decorations, complete with rainbows and pots of gold, a waterfall also demonstrating nature’s best color combinations, and shamrocks everywhere, all cares were cast aside! Of course those present contributed generously to the worthy cause. Sadly, the suffering targeted seemed quite far removed from such a setting. Perhaps contributing to the less-fortunate inspired the partiers to enjoy themselves even more! As a psychological benefit for helping the less fortunate, riches of experience and environment are undoubtedly enjoyed with deeper appreciation and gratitude!

St Patricks dance

Gracing the center of the dance floor, winners Miss Udinetta Shilova and Mister Bartolo Breda were irresistible.

At the end of the evening, votes were taken and winners awarded. Not surprising, the winners for the best costumes were Miss Udinetta Shilova and Mister Bartolo Breda. From the moment they arrived, their charm and elegance were central.

unsung award winners

Dancers swirl in the elegant setting of lebrichons, shamrocks, and rainbows: Miss Una Woodrunner, Miss Sylvan Shilling with Miss Stormy Pixelmaid, and Mister Shepham Moorlord with Misses Starla Huntress Moorlord.

However, if there were an award for most humorous, it would have to go to Mayor Kiranov. An award for cutest could be shared by Miss Stormy Pixelmaid and Miss Sylvan Shilling. Sexiest would have to go to Mister Shepham Moorlord and Misses Starla Huntress Moorlord. And most romantic to Miss Xyza Armistice. Best dancer would undoubtedly be appreciated by Miss Una Woodrunner. The most purposely-focused winner would be The Chicagoan‘s own Miss Eleanor Medier, who, with professional commitment, shot these pictures as she danced to the side.

st patricks day

Miss Eleanor Medier enjoys some good moves while performing her duty as journalist.

Congratulations go to those who did win for costumes and will win when the treasure hunt is over this weekend. Apparently there are pots of gold hidden around the city. Yet before they are all discovered, The Chicagoan feels obligated to highlight those who made the event happen: and those who went to such trouble to be so entertaining!

overview

Green is a fantastic anchor color for a party—in fact the color alone is a perfect reason to dance!

HISTORICAL NOTE:

Prohibition, supposedly, was enforced only for public places—hence alcohol could not be commercially sold or purchased. Privately, citizens were allowed to have alcohol inside their homes, only. Hence, most households had stills in the basement and developed a personal inventory. Rather than inspire people to drink less, prohibition inspired them to drink more at home and more creatively when in public.

http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/unknown-chicago/2011/01/chicago-goes-dry-1-17-1920.html

FLASH: The Most Sinister Plot in History
February 17, 2011

This week presents a tale of unprecedented mystery and evil that brought world attention to Chicago and changed the city forever. It is only fair to readers to unfold the story exactly the way it happened, hoping that the good citizens of Chicago will forgive this less-than-adequate and unfortunately distracted reporting.

Seduction of a Journalist

It started out as a typical Sunday morning. The Chicagoan Editor-inChief Miss Eleanor Medier looked forward to catching up on work in her Loop office, anticipating some concentrated writing time. First she let her hair down (she really doesn’t like the new bobbed hairstyles) and put on her sweater to defend against the brisk wind coming from the river. Happy to walk through the unusally quiet streets, she arrived at her office without encountering anyone. And by this time, she was used to receiving notes on her desk from the loyal and dedicated citizens who keep her informed about real or imaginary happenings about town. Sitting on her counter was a neatly folded note that revealed a simple request:

“Dear Miss Medier, We have been remodeling the Boom Boom and have some new chairs and tables that would love to be photographed. If you could spare a few minutes this morning, it would be great to see you.
Sincerely, Miss Kitten Leakey, manager”

Because Miss Leakey is a good friend to Miss Medier, she didn’t hesitate to grab her camera and skip a block over to this most popular establishment. Always pleased to see improvements, especially in interior design, Miss Medier was already composing mental images.

As she mounted the stairs and turned to enter the lounge, she was not surprised to see some new chairs, but she was very surprised to find a tall dark handsome stranger sitting on one of them, his long legs stretched before him, a cigarette casually dangling from his fingertips. Readers must understand that it had been some time since Miss Medier met any guys that weren’t what she considered “wimps,” as Chicago is full of transient and superficial newcomers. And she also didn’t think much of the regular residents who care more about the latest firearms than they do the latest fashions. This fellow, though dressed more in worker’s clothes than in the many tasteful suits being sold on Michigan Avenue, he made up for his informality by a quiet and charismatic confidence. Naturally Miss Medier’s lonely (she didn’t realize until that moment how lonely) heart did a few flip-flops. Also uncharateristic of her, wishful thinking overtook her normally skeptical judgement.

The tall dark handsome stranger didn’t seem surprised to see her, however, and that should have been her first clue that something underhanded was afoot. But though Miss Medier is much harder to distract than most women, her best appraisal decided to take a vacation at that moment. Her second clue should have been his unusual accent, but he was so complimentary and interested in every question that she asked (journalists are compelled to ask questions) he seemed to be the kind of person she hoped would move to this fair city!

Soft jazz (Miss Medier’s favorite) was playing on the radio, and after exchanging pleasantries, the stranger asked her to dance. Though the club was empty at that hour, romance gripped her heart, and she decided “why not have fun?” she unwisely said to herself. Twirling around the empty lounge in his arms, she forgot to wonder even where her friend Miss Leakey may be. And she certainly forgot about the new chairs and tables! So unlike this most popular journalist, she even overlooked the fact that the stranger never even told her his name (even intelligent women can be very foolish when it comes to romance)!

seduction

Miss Medier is swept off her normally practical feet into fantasies of romantic adventure

After a wonderful interlude of a few hours, Miss Medier mentioned to her new friend that the Saint Valentine’s Day Ball was scheduled for that very evening. Might he attend the event with her? she asked hopefully, looking forward to a sensational entrance on the arm of such a handsome and possibly presentable man—assuming he had a decent suit in his wardrobe. Saying all the right things to warm her otherwise skeptical heart, he agreed enthusiastically, assuring her that he owned better clothes. (The most successful criminals understand psychological manipulation!) Little did she know, feeling to be part of a couple at last, as their movements together seemed like meant-to-be choreography, she was missing out on the crime of the century taking place just a few blocks away! And even when she heard the sound of gunfire and shouts, she was so caught up in the moment that she ignored all indications that a world-shaking event was happening!

The Massacre that Shocked the World

Everyone knows that Chicago is the home of gangsters and prohibition-escaping enterprises. In fact, many believe that the strict prohibition laws do the opposite of what is intended: instead of encouraging virtuous behavior, they inspire even more mischief than occurred in the prior more liberal decades. Perhaps it is reverse psychology in action, but many are profitting from bootlegging, speakeasy parties, and less than honorable business negotiations. Yet no one would have ever predicted the kind of violence in the streets that leave law enforcers scrambling in many directions at once!

But the events of Valentines Day have topped all of the other sensational repercussions of the well-intentioned. On that fateful afternoon, while the most astute businessman in town, Shepham Moorlord, was preoccupied with his own romantic relaxation in his penthouse with gorgeous wife Misses Starla Huntress Moorlord, the most sinister of all crimes was progressing in the streets below! He claims that he had nothing to do with the diabolical plot.

In a discreeting unamed garage on the east side of the Loop, there was a meeting of seven leading mobsters, possibly lubricated with or motivated by alcohol, it was certainly clandestine. These also discreetly unnamed and loosely-called gentlemen were probably trying to avoid confrontation as they plotted their profitable enterprises. So they must have been surprised when there was a knock on the door which then revealed two uniformed policemen, accompanied by two trench-coat clad strangers, who entered under the guise of checking out the neighborhood for illegal activities.

Although these “gentlemen” were hardly the trusting sort (or even model citizens), they must have been shocked when these alleged policemen pulled out their tommy guns and forced them to line up along the back brick wall. No one will ever know what discussion ensued, but it could not have been pleasant. Still thinking this was a typical raid, maybe trying to fast-talk their way out of a jam, the still-unamed mobsters appeared to have cooperated with instructions. They even allowed themselves to become unarmed and certainly could not have been prepared for what infamy they would bring down upon themselves.

The alleged policemen, most inconsiderate and impolite, not only threatened this peaceful conference, they refused to give their identities, it appears. All those walking on the street nearby were halted in their tracks by flashes and the sound of rapid machine gun blasts. The imposter policemen proved themselves disreputable and evil when they opened fire upon the inhabitants of the garage! With these new weapons, enough bullets flew to not only kill each of them several times over, but splintered the bricks behind ((which later sold for a fortune when the garage was torn down in good taste)).

garage massacre

Officer Chandler Olinger is always the first on the scene of any dramatic and disreputable activity.

Fearing for their own lives, the good citizens on the street managed to reach the telephones as they disappeared behind their own closed doors. Officers Chandler Olinger and Leather Garnett were the first to arrive on the scene. One of the victims was barely still alive when Officer Olinger pumped him with questions, asking most-importantly “Who did this?” Before he died, the victim whispered “Nobody did this,” even though he suffered 14 bullet wounds. Officer Olinger, of course, doubted the truth of such an answer, as it is impossible for “no one” to cause such havoc.

massacre

Mobsters meeting peacefully are not-so-peacefully gunned down in a garage on the east side of town in the warehouse district of downtown Chicago.

Soon the ambulence arrived, but there was no one eligible for its rescue services. Only a clean-up crew was necessary because the garage was left quite a mess by the perpetrators who didn’t even bother to take the bodies with them for disposal. Also, the identities of the victims must be withheld from the press until further investigation.

Officer Olinger is completely puzzled as to who could have come up with such a spectacle of violence. Admiring their ingenuity, clandestine plot, and clever escape, Officer Olinger is not very hopeful of apprehending the guilty. Afterall, criminals who kill other criminals actually help law enforcers—much like the concept of an enemy of an enemy is really a friend!

To appease the citizens of Chicago who are rather fed up with, albeit used to, gun fire in the streets, the officers will at least try to save the city’s reputation. And those in favor of prohibition might also reconsider their position on the matter, as there is no question that bootlegging and alcoholic profits had something to do with the motive.

In the meantime, Chicago has now achieved international noteriety, which might indeed assist the tourism business of the future but does little to assure the safety of citizens in the short-term present.

The Show Must Go On (photographs by Miss Xyza Armistice)

In typical Chicago style, whenever there is a significant event, positive or negative, the best and the brightest loose themselves in the dance! Miss Medier, mortified and embarrased that she missed witnessing (and reporting on) the horrific events of the morning at least felt the consolation that her new date would admire her gown. Miss Xyza Armistice, style leader of all the Chicago ladies, worked hard with the normally-fashion-negligent Miss Medier (who admires the latest styles on paper more than on her person) on finding the right look for this major event. Taking place in the glamorous Hotel LaSalle, everyone who was anyone in the city would be there.

With stars in her eyes, Miss Medier arrived at the agreed-upon time, yet there was no tall dark handsome stranger to greet her! In fact, he was no where to be seen! Still optimistic (as her nature is always optimistic), Miss Medier made her entrance into the party alone, thinking her friend may already be inside. But he wasn’t. And as the evening wore on, it became apparent that Miss Medier would be dateless as usual.

valentine dancers

Masked dancers enjoy the great singing of Miss Dinah Halostar.

Naturally everyone at the party was abuzz with what happened that morning, so Miss Medier’s ears were filling with facts of the most alarming crime in the city’s history Putting two-and-two together (Miss Medier is good at math), she reasoned that her romantic interlude was happening at exactly the same time—she had been duped!!

valentine lovers

The lovers enjoy the dance more than those observing.

While her disappointed tears smeared her face-jewel and spilled down to spot her new satin dress, she was doubly upset! Trying to stand on the sidelines unnoticed, her great friend Chicf Olinger perceived her distress. The Chief, much more experienced in the ways of men, put her arm around Miss Medier, mistaking her tears for feelings of rejection. But any reader who understands the heart of a journalist would know that Miss Medier had all but forgotten the stranger at that point and was more focused on the sensational photographs that she didn’t shoot! She vowed to herself that she will never be so distracted again from her duty!!! The whole town knows (and is grateful for) Miss Medier’s courage, tenacity, and inventiveness. And to her great embarrassment, they now know of her foolishness.

lovely ladies

Lovely ladies exemplify the best fashions of the day; note forlorn Miss Medier looking better than ever in her light blue gown.

Chief Olinger did accurately sum up an astute conclusion when she declared (the Chief is more loyal to her friends than she is to the law): “Let’s give all the guys guns and watch them shoot each other!” Miss Medier couldn’t help but smile through her tears. The last victim of the soon-to-be-famous Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre was Miss Medier’s innocence.

Historical Notes:

The conflict between rival gangs is legendary. Suspected that the perpetrators worked for Al Capone has never been proven. It was probably retribution for a previous attack on Mr. Capone’s headquarters and an invasion of his profitable territory (gangsters tend to be very territorial). Check out a more complete description of the crime at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Valentine’s_Day_massacre and http://www.chicagohs.org/history/capone/cpn2.html

massacre

Shepham Moorlord did a fantastic job of recreating the real scene (left) with the fictional one (right).

It is also only fair to pay tribute to the one loyal and honorable heart that was the most tragic victim at the scene: the german shepherd, who did his duty until the bitter end—he howled for help until law enforcement arrived. Although he did survive the massacre, he was “destroyed” by the police who claimed he was “raving mad.” What readers will not find in the popular press, something only residents of Chicago can know (as the author of this post has found first-hand), the lot on North Clark Street where the doomed garage stood (now a parking lot), is haunted by the only pure spirit lost that day. Residents walking their dogs will observe their pets acting strangely when nearing the fence that borders the lot: they cower, howl, and whimper in the most mournful ways. This terrible crime will never be forgotten and will forever be a stain on the hearts of all animal lovers.

FLASH: Peaceful Days, Almost
January 24, 2011

For some, it has been a peaceful week in Chicago. But then everything is relative. The workaholics have been busy, the shops buzzing with activity, and social directors deep in planning. Yet there is always room for spontaneity, expressing the dual nature of this great city. ((Also be sure to see Classified Listings at the end of this article.))

Resplendent with fashionable ladies, jumping jazz performers, and wealthy residents throwing money around behind closed doors, Chicago is always abuzz with activity. Yet before getting to this week’s fun reports, there are those diligently doing their civic duties behind the scenes.

••••••••••••
PROFESSIONALS ON THE JOB

It is comforting for citizens to know that police and reporters stroll around the streets, cameras and notebooks handy, to record anything newsworthy. And editor Miss Eleanor Medier also encourages informers (and needs some new suits—so if anyone would like to invest in press coverage for improving public relations, her telephone sits waiting for the call). With such a large and growing readership, The Chicagoan needs eyes and ears in every corner of the city! But Miss Medier was unprepared for what she found in her office last Sunday morning when going to work. With the Loop business district quiet on a Sunday morning, she had a full Things to Do List to catch up on. All of those priorities flew out the window when she looked at what was perched prominently on her counter.

There, Miss Medier was confronted with a photograph leaning against her tip jar. It depicted a crime scene, an image which she is determined not to grace by publishing it. Suffice it to say that it showed a large bald man wearing a black hat hoisting a rolled up rug into the river. The rug, of a sumptuously beautiful oriental design, had fingers sticking out of one end and shoes hanging out of the other. Concerned that this photograph may be evidence, Miss Medier immediately telephoned Chief Chandler Orlinger who confessed that she had received the same photograph sent to her office. The first thing the Chief did was to single-handedly apprehend and question a fellow who looks surprisingly like the one in the photograph.

rug mystery

Brave Chief Olinger apprehends the huge and menacing Mister Bubba, thus interrogating him and holding him for further discussion. But, unfortunately, she didn't really have enough to hold him on because there were no witnesses. Photographs by Chief Olinger.

After hunting for any other witnesses, the Chief called up Miss Medier to declare that it was time to look at what might be lurking in the river. Plus, she expressed, maybe she can find the rug, as it is the perfect color and style for her apartment.

rug myster

Chief Olinger brings out the police department's best equipment to search the river for the expensive oriental rug, disgusted that anyone would through such a treasure away. Photographs by Chief Olinger.

After a short search, the Chief discovered the water-logged run at the bottom of the river and retrieved it while watched by Miss Medier from the bank. With much excitement, the Chief brought the rug to the surface, then discussed its condition with her editorially concerned friend. The two laid the rug out on the bank, trying to figure out if there were any stains that would prevent it from complimenting Miss Olinger’s curtains that just happen to be of a similar shade.

rug mystery

The rug is brought up from the bottom of the river, Chief Olinger, still wearing some of her gear, looks out over the water to see if she missed anything, then receiving assistance from Miss Medier to hang the rug on the bridge to dry.

Suddenly Miss Medier spotted Mayor KJ Kiranov across the river. Ambitious with his new fishing rod and equipment company, he was excited to demonstrate his latest design to the ladies, always happy for an audience. Though Miss Medier and Chief Olinger observed supportively and respectfully from the bank, they were concerned that the Mayor might slip into the river, and ruin his expensive suit. Without such practical cares, the good natured Mayor was delighted to demonstrate his well=practiced skills.

rug mystery

Mayor Kiranov, pleased with his kiosk to sell rod designs and the fish to catch, Miss Medier was dismayed when more of the fish found her as pets than were caught by the Mayor for dinner.

•••••••••••
CENTER OF ATTENTION

in such a peaceful spirit, it delighted all residents when Miss Demetra Aquacade and Mister Art Clift, proprieters of the famous Boom Boom Lounge, demonstrated social leadership on Thursday afternoon. These popular business managers laid out a banquet, blankets, and even featured Chicago’s own DJ Mister Andy Tachor and band—luring all residents away from other priorities. Who could resist showing off their newest outfits? The only resident caught unprepared for a fashion statement was The Chicagoan‘s hardworking editor—tastefully not shown here wearing an old suit. A little annoyed with her freinds, as she portrays them so well in these pages, friends who set the standards for good taste and fashion elegance, Miss Medier hasn’t bought new shoes in two years. (Only Miss Xyza Armistice has assisted Miss Medier in her crisis for appropriate attire.) So she sat on a blanket by herself, tossing out snide comments at those nearby, yet simultaneously praising her more generous associations.

couples

Misses Starla Huntress Moorlord shares a blanket with her husband BOI Chief Shepham Moorlord in blissful domestic harmony. Miss Kathryn Button tries to ignore Mister Art Clift's frequent quips filled with sexual connotations—which may look bad on her ability to keep his eyes from wandering. Photographs by Chief Chandler Olinger.

It must have been the unusally warm January afternoon that inspired such generosity in Miss Aquacade and Mister Clift. Chicago boasts a gorgeous lakefront park that is framed by Colosimo’s Restaurant, the Hospital, and the Mayor’s Mansion. Speaking of the Mayor, he chattered excessively and drank a little too much at the party, so the editors refrain from revealing any embarassing photographs of him wandering around entertaining anyone who would listen. His dear friend, Miss Armistice, was rather mortified by his unseemly behavior and vowed to take him to task at a more appropriate time. After all, few public figures function too well without the wisdom of feminine guidance.

picnic

Glamorous citizens unusually relaxed on a gorgeous afternoon: Miss Kitten Leakey, Miss Meganna Larsson, Miss Armistice, and newcomer Mister Mac Ernst. Photographs by Chief Chandler Olinger.

Groups milled around, mingling with old friends and new. Most of those attending embellished their refreshments and generously shared home-made specialties. Beverages flowed as those angling for better social positions took advantage of the opportunity to deepen relations with neighbors and acquaintances. Many newcomers also were exposed to Chicago’s more genteel nature as their fortunate first introduction to the city. Hopefully Mister Ernst, who challenged Mister Clift’s arrogance, will be a good influence on the wimpy single men that so annoy the available ladies.

beauties

Beauties grace blankets on the grass: Miss Gypsy Ronin, Miss Jadelicious Crystal, and Miss Meg Jelasco.

Stylish citizens always inspire blending good taste, fashion vision, and friendly personalities. As the city grows, more shops come to its streets, more establishments attract participation, and events continue to bring out happy residents, Chicago becomes a more carefree place amidst the frequent emotional drama and criminal mischief.

attendees

Demonstrating appropriate attire: Chief Moorlord, Miss Acquacade, Chief Olinger, Mister Tachor, Miss Larsson, Miss Emma Poole, and Mister Pierre Linette.

Everyone particularly enjoyed listening to Mister Tachor who has so successfully launched his musical career. Although no longer a reporter for The Chicagoan, staff is delighted that he is meeting with such great and national success. On the road a lot, he hosts many parties and special events—but is always open to talk about new bookings.

picnic

Miss Larsson and Chief Olinger are pretty as a picture lounging together on pillows, the picnic is well attended in the beautiful park, and Mister Tachor's band that also features Mister Gravius Wolfe, completed the festive atmosphere. Photographs by Chief Olinger.

Although several of the Mayor’s friends were concerned that he may get lost, others were so pleasantly surprised to see him let his hair down, he may have converted a few of his opponents into his camp. But the ladies were not as pleasantly surprised. As the Mayor disappeared from sight, Mister Clift offered to go and “check” on him, thus walking off in the same direction. Though the ladies watched with some concern, they were too lost in their conversation to pay much attention.

Suddenly there were shouts and sirens from the direction of the Mayor’s Mansion! The partiers transformed their attention from casual enjoyment to uncasual witnessing! Anyone running to the scene would have found many spectators, one fire truck, and one lone, suddenly sober, Mayor spraying the fire. Apparently, and more information must still be collected, Mister Clift came upon a drunk Mayor in a room engulfed with flames. Apparently Chicago’s most distinguished civic leader lost control of his fireplace that had burst its civilized boundaries, thus catching rug and woodwork in the mayor’s living room to catch fire. Mister Clift claims he saved the Mayor’s life by dragging him from the flames, but where was Mister Clift when the Mayor commandeered the only fire hose present?

picnic ends

Mayor sprays the fire in his living room where it started, outside of his house where it spread (with observing ladies continually following him around), and dousing it when it spread across the street. The only assistance he received in fighting the fire was from Miss Armistice who found a bucket.

Obviously the arsonist was jealous of the relaxing citizens, thus disrupting their enjoyment. Whomever set that fire must be very pleased with capturing the center of attention.

•••••••••••
HARMONY FOR HEROS

The Chicagoan is particularly pleased at the most peaceful and elegant event of all this past week! The editors feel listed to in their previously published recommendations.

1. Request that the Mayor address the citizens with inspiring words
2. Upgrading law enforcement
3. Give the city a celebration.

On Friday evening, Mayor Kiranov called for all citizens to not only celebrate the opening of his fresh gleeming new courthouse and police station, but to get a tour demonstrating their tax dollars at work. The old courthouse, being well-used as skown so well on these pages, really did need a facelift—although some residents may miss the old ornate carved wood and well worn hard benches. Those who have attended court hearings, as most good citizens should to know what is going on, they may remember that only the jury and the judge had padded chairs, thus making the observers more impatient than they otherwise may be.

Mayor Kiranov addressed concerned residents and business owners in the lobby of the slick, modern, and state-of-the-art facility. Dignified as always, impeccibly clad in a perfectly tailored expensive suit, Chicago’s elegant Mayor said the words that most wish to hear:

We are here today to start a new beginning , in our fight against the criminal scourge which has gripped our fair city as of late. This new Police station, and Court complex, will gives us a more modern, and efficient means with which to carry our message to the criminal elements of Chicago.” Very polite, those listening kept their skeptical and humorous comments just low enough for their neighbors to hear, but not loud enough for the Mayor or the COI Chief to decipher.

audience listens

Prominent citizens line up, unposed!, listening to the Mayor's words of assurance against criminal elements and commitment to support a prosperous future.

Continuing to tell the citizens exactly what they wish to hear, just as great politicians can so skillfully do, the Mayor continued: “And that message is, its time to move on, the good people here have had enough of your brutality, your thieving, and your total lack of respect for government, and the common man both.”

Although each citizen present has a hidden agenda based on individual motivations, having such a variety of self-interested people in one room peacefully bodes well for supporting the Mayor’s lofty goals. They were equally rivited to his every word as he continued: “Chicago will no longer be known as a ‘gang town,’ and I swear to carry that message to them myself, if no one else will. I intend to fight day and night, tooth and nail, to rid this town of the criminal scourge grasping at its very foundations of decency. With that, I thank you all and dedicate this building to the good people of the city of Chicago.”

courthouse dedication

Mayor gives speech next to the impressive new statue in the lobby. The prominent citizens present pose for an official Chicagoan portrait. Standing from left to right, Miss Netera Landar, Chief Olinger, Miss Armistice, Mayor Kiranov, Mister Clift, Miss Smiley Paneer, Miss Aquacade, Mister Britt McMahon, and Miss Samantha Seranno. Seated left to right, Misses Moorlord, BOI Chief Moorlord, and Miss Medier.

The Mayor went further by recognizing the bravery and heroism of Chicago’s Finest, declaring that Chief Chandler Olinger has “fearless determination in fighting crime and putting her life on the line so many times.

Chief Chandler was pressured into making a speech—not her normal forté. So she blushed and stammered, saying “Ain’t really got much to say. The ones who are here to rob our town of peace and destroy the people’s way of life will pay as they have found out I cannot be bought. I only stand on one side…the side of Justice!” And as a matter of fact, she did stand to one side of the statue, carved especially out of a single piece of Grecian marble, shipped at great expense from the famous quarry outside Athens, home of democracy. Chief Chan, now warmed to her topic, continued “with Chief Shep we will rid this town of the mob! Many things are in the works to make Chicago a safe place to live.”

Chief is awarded

Chief Olinger displays her award but first, she faints with surprise when Mayor Kiranov called her forward, proclaiming her as a hero. But later, Mister Clift, who had been so well behaved during the speeches, followed the new hero on a tour of the Police Station. Officer Olinger, careless for the first time in her career, turned her back momentarily to show Mister Clift the new lock up cells, and he took the opportunity to lock her in one.

Applauding as frequently as possible, BOI Chief Moorlord called out over everyone’s heads because he is taller than everyone else: “Chan is the real lady liberty!” His big hands also clap louder than everyone else’s. It is reassuring to observe the richest guy in town, the Mayor, and the leading businessman Mister Clift, in such harmonious agreement.

FLASH: Tolerances Tested
January 13, 2011

There is a buzz on the streets. Citizens unrest grows as there have been many unacceptable acts of distructive behavior occurring in the last few weeks. The good people of Chicago are demanding that something be done! Perhaps as the police and the administration are busy enjoying the perks of their positions, they don’t seem to be aware of the mischief happening under their noses! And the conscientious residents have had enough! So The Chicagoan steps up to speak for the people. If might doesn’t prevail as right, then those with imagination and resources will use them in more and more creative ways. So it is time to face the facts with this FLASH lineup!

The Fire That Won’t Die Out

Everyone must agree that some, as yet believed arsonist, went too far this time. Though the actual crime was almost two weeks ago, and The Chicagoan didn’t cover it because this seemed like half of a story. But the buzz on the street gets louder as residents and property owners are not only outraged at the attack, but that administrators (and shamefully press) have thus far ignored. However, it is delightful to run some dramatic photographs! These are HOT—literally! So if nothing else comes out of this, the photographic artwork is quite impressive! But—back to business.

Pressure is coming to bare on the police, who are bitterly complaining about being understaffed (hint hint to all those citizens with time on their hands and concern for civic progress). But, another digression.
Back to the story at hand—fortunately The Chicagon puts out an appeal to all residents for help to uncover the origins of this nasty and vindictive actThe Chicagoan is sensitive to the disappointment of the Salon’s owners who’s grand opening was interrupted. Fortunately, the astute journalist Miss Netera Landar was on the scene. Hence, here is the beginning of the continuing Salon Saga which should placate those complaining that there was no coverage and inspire those who want revenge:

••••••••••••

Barbershop Ablaze!! by Netera Landar, correspondant for The Chicagoan

Fear struck the hearts of Chicagoans as they witnessed flames engulf the new Touchables Barbershop on Fullerton, at 5 o’clock on January 1. Not a single fire truck was observed. Witnesses, staying a safe distance from the flames, were horrified at the sight! Local residents Miss Talula Shippe, Miss Kathryn Button, Mister Art Clift, Miss Meg Jelasco and Miss Wilamenia Zarco stood discussing the facts beside Police Chief Chandler Olinger. With reporter’s notebook and pen in hand, I struggled to get the story jotted down. Cautiously, knowing the reputation of Mister Clift, I couldn’t help but be curious why he was present. He seemed very happy to talk to me, and even chuckled when he volunteered that when he  “walked up the fire was already going inside and there are witnesses to that.” He also pointed out that this might have happened because it is the Salon’s opening night.

salon fire

This gorgeous photograph was captured by Chief Olinger for her scrap book.

Considering that barbershops don’t open at night, it led me to suspect that Mister Clift was actually suggesting that the shop is an illegal speakeasy! So I went right to the highest authority present to get the real story. “I was the first one on the scene,” declared Chief Olinger. While I seemed the only one concerned of a repeat of the Great Chicago Fire, everyone else seemed to be roasting marshmallows!

Mister Clift grabbed young Miss Kathryn Button (who had followed him to the scene) by the arm and pulled her forward. “See, this girl?” he insisted, shaking her. “She may be homeless soon! This is the type of evil that comes when illegal intoxicants are unleashed on this city. God bless,” he voiced without sincerity.

Emboldened by everyone’s evasiveness, I stepped up with a simple, yet deadly, question: “You think a gangster is involved?” After all, I thought to myself, if they were jealous about each other’s profitable endeavors, perhaps they wouldn’t mind lighting a match and setting a new speakeasy on fire. Of course when I voiced that question, there was a stunned silence, so it seemed a good idea to add: “This is totally off the record you know.”

salon fire observers

Miss Landar' photograph captures residents observing the fire while they discuss plausible stories for its origin.

To my surprise, Miss Shippe stepped forward into the conversation. In the meantime, the poor salon continued to burn with no fire department intervention in sight. (Where in the world are the tax dollars going to? Am I the only one asking this question?)  Miss Shippe grabbed attention when she leaned forward to explain: “Muh-mista Fang, he was thinking no club, Miss! But rather a den of iniquity!” Just in case readers don’t know, the name ‘Fang’ belongs to one of several infamous crime bosses in this corrupt city. If this friend(?) of Mister Clift’s was speaking the truth, then Mister Fang had plans. As she pointed out, because she should know, Mister Fang is fond of a wallet filled with money and dames all around him.

While questioning the witnesses, the horrid thought of people dying in the building suddenly came to mind. There was no way anyone can come out of that inferno alive! Trying to peer through the flames, I continued to listen to Miss Shippe as she elaborated: “I saw Mista Art, and the police chief heah, and the whole place was lit up like the Fourth of July, Miss,” She  seemed nervous as a mouse surrounded by alley cats!

It’s hard to believe he sensed my distress, but Mister Clift startled me when he confessed softly right into my ear: “Best I can tell nobody was in there, which is how you know I didn’t do it. If I was going to burn this place down…I’d do it with the gang inside!” I always find there is a problem in thinking: what is and what might be are two different things. Instinct whispered for me to pursue the chief who was quite preoccupied with watching the flames. Something seemed stirring in that mind of hers. Slipping away from Mister Clift and friends, I tugged on her sleeve. Her eyes looked glazed from her trance-like fascination with watching the fire lick up the sides of the building. With an odd glint, she smiled. “You want the truth, Miss Reporter?” she spat.  Maybe my curiosity was getting on people’s nerves, yet I didn’t like her tone. Still, I held my tongue from further saying what I was thinking (which Miss Medier always reminds me to do) knowing that the Chief is a well respected citizen in this dark city. Yet, how could I be prepared for what she said next?? “I set the place on fire!” she cackled. If our hearts could have stopped at that moment, they would have! Stunned, everyone was watching us, and by this time we had more attention than the fire! Yet in that astounding moment of shock, the only sound was the crackling of the flames.

inside salon fire

This is another striking image caught by Chief Olinger—a little closer to the action than seems safe.

Miss Shippe came to her senses first. “He’s a bad, bad man, Miss. He coulda dun it fer insurance! Yeah,” she reasoned, as if her reasoning even caught her off guard! I’m thinking people are innocent until proven guilty, even if this one man is a known “crook.” So attention was diverted from the chief’s startling confession, for everyone really wanted to believe otherwise. “Miss Shippe makes a good point, Miss Lander” Mister Clift enthused, as he watched me scribbling down everyone’s comments. “Mister Fang may have done it. I smell insurance fraud,” he quickly concluded.

But I’m not thinking about fraud—I’m hearing the truth from the Chief and wondering why in the world would a good person light a perfectly respectable(?) establishment on fire—and on opening night?? I sidestepped Mister Clift again, trying to regain the Chief’s attention. I was getting the feeling that I was the only one doing anything, but she did turn to me and declared “I’m tired of all these illegal booze havens getting our citizens drunk,” she admitted.  It occurred to me that she might have bent the law a bit to get her job done. And rumor was that she wasn’t on the take. She, like all of us, just was tired of seeing our men come home drunk and senseless, spending all their hard earned money on bootleg whiskey and fast women.

“You’re the Chief of Police. You’re putting yourself in danger!” I admonished. But she just went on as if I said nothing: “I’m going to run them out of town starting with this one here,” she claimed—seeming frustrated, angry, and determined.

Something bugged me though! “It’s not a good thing for the right arm of the law to make judgments Chief. We have to do things in a lawful manner!” I batted right back to her. Her eyes still had that memerized quality when her gaze slid from me back to reflecting the flames, roaring with enthusiastic gusto. “We can not allow this kind of place to flourish in this town,” she insisted and I hear the words of a senator in her authoritative declaration. “Making judgment is my job, Miss. Booze is illegal and dealing with it is my responsibility.”  “But Chief,” I couldn’t help but declare. “A judge can put you behind bars,” I warned.

Then Mister Clift, continuously nearby, claimed: “If you need a good judge, I own a few!” I noted this for further evidence in the hopefully upcoming trial. Owning the law—that was the corruption I’d read about in Atlantic City!

Miss Shippe wasn’t done with me—surprising determination from such a delicate little lady. “Ey, Lady, iffin yer press an all, aintcha sposed to keep from pointing fingahs? Jess write the stinkin thing!” she ordered. Maybe I was hitting some nerves.

salon fire smoke

Dramatic billowing smoke is photographed by Officer Chandler who was fascinated by the various stages of the flame's destruction.

But the chief also demanded my attention again. “Listen. I’m the Chief of Police. I deal with crime as I see fit. If you want to baby these gangsters then get my job first!” she told me. I knew that the government would send prohibition agents, in time, to put a lid on crime in this city, but how many sons would be buried first? How many men would end up with cement shoes in the Chicago River? I also knew that I was one step away from being written up for obstruction of justice and facing possible jail. The way the chief looked at me, I knew I better consider my options carefully. One thought, one opinion….yet the pen is more powerful than a bullet.

••••••••••••

Mayorful Musings

Further addressing the disgruntled citizens of the city, The Chicagoan‘s editor, Miss Eleanor Medier, was determined to track down the city’s on-the-run mayor. Catching up with him at his favorite vacation retreat, Miss Medier felt she represented the people in her direct and penetrating questions:

Miss Medier used a safe opener: “Mister Mayor, how do you think things are going in the city?

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “There is a lot going on. I have a new Courthouse/police station in the works which will make prosecuting the law more functional.

Miss Medier probed: “But there is serious concern in the city that there aren’t repercussions for illegal behavior. For example: the salon fire last week, gun battles in the streets, people are literally getting away with murder. What do you plan to do about it?

Mister Mayor Kiranov kept cool and calm as usual: “Well, we have set up a new listing of criminal acts and a fine structure; its in city hall right now.

Miss Medier, aware of the police crisis: “But how will it really be reinforced?

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “Basically persons will be held accountable, by either paying bail (a fine) or serving jail timeThe Police Department has yet to find a good way to implement it. But I think its a step in the right direction.

Miss Medier responded, as unsatisfied as readers probably are at this point: “At least is defined. And it seems to be step 1.”

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “And now we need to find the manpower to enforce it.”

Miss Medier: “How do you propose to do that?

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “As always , we’re limited by the times our residents are here. So trying to schedule is always difficult. But starting off, if we could at least provide some law enforcement during prime time, thats a start, and work from there. I’m sure Miss Olinger and BOI Chief Shepham Moorlord could add more on this.” Typical political evasiveness!

Miss Medier, realizing that nothing more will be gained on this topic, switched gears: “Ok– can you tell me what goals you have for Chicago?

Mister Mayor Kiranov puffed up to his true political auditory style: “My goal, simply put, is to give residents a real view into 20’s Chicago, be it the excitement, or maybe even the opposite, terror, and have them enjoy it.  I do want to keep seeing improvement as far as the numbers of resients we have.” How can anyone argue with this?

Miss Medier: “Yes—we must attract more residents.

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “Well im sure you’ve noticed that our standards of citizen activity is getting much better ((thanks to our classes we have been having on Tuesday and Thursday nights at 6:00 in my courthouse)). That will make it more real for most people.

mayor's retreat

Mayor Kiranov at his favorite vacation spot.

Miss Medier looked around at the lavish environment where she finally cornered the mayor. Determined to inspire him into deeper action, she persisted: “How about the city itself—what improvements besides the courthouse? You are a master builder, obviously!!! What about bringing the new decco skyscaper style to Chicago so we can keep our architectural leadership begun 4o years ago after the Great Chicago Fire?

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “I always like to see better buildings ((with less primage)).

Miss Medier, warming to her subject: “What about my favorite subject: the Chicago landmarks we are sorely missing???

Mister Mayor Kiranov, always quick to agree: “Yes, I myself miss them, but its a tradeoff right now, between decco and  our resources ((the amount of prims we are using)). I’d really like to see preservation work on the water tower.”

Miss Medier: “It seems to me that we could get rid of pagodas, etc. and renovate ((replace with)) the big three: the Water Tower, the lions of the Art Institute, and Buckingham Fountain. How can we be Chicago without these??

Mister Mayor Kiranov, anxious to please the press: “It is something that we are working on. I plan on starting a water tower, as soon as this other building is done. I’d like to do more, Miss Ele, but its not really my call, hehehe.

Miss Medier, understanding the politics too well: “But you are the mayor! Are you gonna bend to the richest guy in town?

Mister Mayor Kiranov, still agreeable: “Well yes, because he ((the sim owner)) is the one pulling the strings, as you know.

Miss Medier: “Not exactly. Our illustrious industrial baron ((owner)) has the same goals I think.  And if he doesnt listen to you, what good is it to be the mayor? It should be your job to show him what is possible within his parameters.

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “I do try and show him, and push toward that direction. Its ((prims are)) a big problem, and will get worse the more residents we have.

Miss Medier, tired of brief answers, probed: “Then as mayor, how do you propose to educate the residents? They tend to think they need more resources ((prims)) than they do. Without cultivating their understanding, they get resentful.

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “We just try to keep plugging, finding new ways to represent what we need, using less resources. In the end, we all have the same goals.

Miss Medier, wondering about the ‘shared goals:’ “So the mayor’s office needs to help show them how to use resources ((prims)) well, and be creative ((in rp. The classes are a huge step in that direction. So will you be conducting one of the classes?))”

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “We continue to do that. Mister Art Clift, and his crew, have really have made strides.”

Miss Medier, biting her tongue diplomatically: “Mister Clift is great, but you are our fearless leader.”

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “I dont think I will give a presentation Miss Ele, I’m not one of the stronger ((RP)) persons, hehehe, but I’m also learning more and more.

Miss Medier, not one to let him off the hook easily: “But you could have a town hall meeting. The citizens are mainly concerned about the crime going unpunished. And the economic balance ((use of the prims)) because the perceptions may be wrong. And finally—we need to do something about the guys in this town! The women are unsatisfied by these motley fellows. Few of them know how to behave, much less dress.

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “The first two we can tackle, hehehe.”

Miss Medier, wanting to be clear: “Can’t tackle the women huh?

Mister Mayor Kiranov, seemed finally a little nonplussed, loosing his well groomed tie: “Well thats a basic ((sl fact)). We have more female citizens than male. I think its the male mentality maybe. A lot of guys do like ((online)) games. But this is more of a domestic interaction experience— and big for shopping. Most men dont have the patience for it. I, myself, thrive on the interaction. I love it, and I cant do without it. More guys need to see that though.

Miss Medier, half-satisfied with finally an answer with some substance: “What can be done about this? They should love being or fighting gangsters!”

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “But alot of them would rather just push a button and shoot things mindlessly , than to chat up a beautiful woman who may just brush them off. ((Hehehe, its too much like the real world!)) Another aspect are the diferent people from all over the world, experiencing things very remote from their own background. Australians, UK, and European people are all moving into Chicago. The potential is growing every day. The Fiume has expanded dramatically, bringing alot more folks to see what we have here. With better quality music, we attract alot of great visitors.

Miss Medier: “How can we capture their interest more when they visit?

Mister Mayor Kiranov: “I think its a matter of maybe letting them see and observe more ((with a little rp thrown into the mix of dancing and music)). Maybe a staged happening or so, almost like dinner theatre. I think it would perk peoples interest.”

Miss Medier, winding down: “Is there anything else that you want the citizens to know?

Mister Mayor Kiranov, finally revealing a rare confession: “Well for one, this has been a hard couple of months for me personally, since I took office. I haven’t been there all the time as I was previously. And for that, I ask the citizen’s forgiveness and patience. I can say, that as of late, I’m much happier now. I’m having more fun, and getting back to my creative side that really brings me joy. Personally, I’ve had some things happen to me that have really stomped on that a bit. I kind of lost focus and just whiled away for a bit. But I can say, on the romantic side, that the one I do love, is talking to me again, and we’re making headway. Now it’s a matter of catching up to what I’ve lost, trying to do more for Chicago.

Miss Medier: “I hope to encourage you to have a town hall meeting ((to talk about the prims)). It will be good for your relations with your constituents.

Mister Mayor Kiranov, in a promising mood, agreed: “Yes, we will discuss that and I look forward to it.”

Miss Medier: “So glad you are back and that things are better for you. The residents of Chicago have missed you and look forward to your attentiveness.” What more can be said?? Letters to the Editor responses are encouraged.

••••••••

Message to the Mayor by Martin Winterfeld, correspondant for The Chicagoan

The usual calm tempo of the Chicago evening was interrupted yesterday by the brisk stacatto rhythm of gunfire. Fortunately, for now, there were no bodies to bury, but several spectators were taken to the hospital to be treated for shock.

Mister Clift

Mister Art Clift almost photographed at his popular club, The Boom Boom.

At 7:44, local businessman and rumored head of the Sindicate criminal organization Mister Art Clift stormed into City Hall and demanded to speak to the mayor.  When the mayor’s receptionist told him that Mayor KJ Kiranov was unavailable, he decided to let himself into the mayor’s office to do a little redecorating.  While many would start with the carpets or the wallpaper, Mister Clift began and ended his work by putting three bullet holes in the mayor’s chair… exactly where Mr. Kiranov’s heart would have been, had he not been already on his way to the Fiume.

Mister Clift then, according to eyewitness reports, announced loudly so they could all hear very clearly: “If you see the damned mayor…. you tell him that Art Clift was here… and he was here for business!” What business he may have with the mayor, he didn’t elaborate on at the time. His spokesman, Mister Darknight Dastardly was reached early this morning by telephone for comment and stated definitively, “Mister Clift ain’t so happy with how this city is running. He’s filed lawsuits with the courts and nothing’s happening, the city lets trash like The Outfit walk the streets every day, and the police defaced his automobile the other day while it was lawfully parked outside Mister Clift’s own office. He wants new administration in this city, and he’ll do whatever it takes to get it.” When asked if that included killing the old mayor, as that seems to be how succession is handled in this town, Mister Dastardly replied “Who did you say this was?  You want to talk about this in person? Maybe we could meet tonight? Someplace quiet and dark?  Near the river maybe?” And when I paused to give a cryptic answer, he hung up before I could reply.

The mayor’s office has, so far, declined to comment on either the Sindicate threats or what type of chair the mayor will consider to replace the recently perforated one.

FLASH: Communication Etiquette Questioned
December 17, 2010

In a growing city like Chicago, news come in faster than the presses can roll it out!! But fortunately the more generous civic-minded citizens are stepping up to assist (each of course with his or her own agenda).

However much these contributions are appreciated (and they meet mutual goals of helping to get the news out faster), there is a right way and a wrong way to deliver unsolicited articles. This week experienced both extremes with the following top stories—demonstrating a polite submission method and one that will be met with disapproval. Then please enjoy how The Chicagoan’s entertainment contributor himself becomes the entertainment!

••••••••••••
CHICAGO WELCOMES NEW CITIZENS
[Is There a Choice?]

The most exciting part of running a publication is arriving at the office (conveniently located at Willow and Center—in the northeast corner by the river for those who are new and want to stop in for a cup of tea) in the morning to discover contributions waiting. Anyone who takes the trouble to think enough about his or her observations, strategies, and conclusions to get it down on paper must have something to say! And, of course, The Chicagoan wants to hear it!

This morning, a letter, on expensive cream-colored paper with a watermark contained in an envelope with gold embossed return lettering, had been slid appropriately under the door. Unfortunately, not all such generous contributions are well written, so the editor must be discriminating about what gets printed. That said, this well composed letter was very sloppily typed which is quite surprising for an author who chooses his materials so wisely—indicating, perhaps, that his secretary must not be very efficient. Even so, it may be a public service to share this sincere letter with readers [please note that one of The Chicagoan‘s best editors felt the need to interject comments and could not be talked out of doing so by the editor-in-chief; this valued employee argued that a balanced view is the duty of a publication also as a public service]:
••••••••••

“Dear Chicagoans,

Citizens may have noticed attractive new faces around town and had some questions, so, as a conscientious and interested businessman, I wish to be of service and share what I know about them with the concerned community.
Let me begin with a little background. The Sindicate has been an upstanding company [editor’s note: crime-family] in the Chicago business scene [criminal underbelly] for many years [since they killed off the other ‘upstanding business-men.’] Their contributions [bribes] and charity work [extortion upon poor people] have always flowed liberally [spread rampantly] and our, I mean their, committment to this city has never waivered [they won’t leave even when we beg them to].

For as long as most Chicagoans can remember, Mister Mike Mapp has been the honored figurehead of this noble [really quite ignoble] and peaceful [terrifyingly violent] organization [mob]. He has lead us, I mean them, through high points [such as dramatic massacres] and low points [sometimes themselves getting massacred] and it is with a heavy heart that we bid a sweet and hopefully temporary farewell to him. He has been asked to take over our, I mean their company [damned mafia] business in Atlantic City. The out-of-town operation will be involved in real estate [gambling] banking [gambling], investment futures [more gambling], and cultural and social philanthropy [bumping off people who get between them and the gambling]. Mister Mapp will be back to visit from time to time for social and business reasons. [So if you owe him money, you still better pay up!]

Now this is where I, umm—we, come in. Taking over the company [the group of people who break every law including the constitution whenever they damned well please] will be one of the Sindicate’s own sons, Mister Art Clift [an alias for TheVeryLast Swashbuckler]. Mister Clift is known for his gentle nature [he flirts with every skirt], level-headedness [he once bashed in a man’s skull with a carpenter’s level—this is a true story], and fairness [this word so completely does not belong in this sentence that my typewriter jammed three times when trying to type that line.] He’s a gentleman who will show respect to your wife [send her flowers after he kills you, and then drop by to hope he can pick her up ‘on the rebound’]. And he diligently never misses an opportunity to kiss a baby [because he always suspects it may be his!].

Mister Clift hopes to bring our, I mean their, benevolent [at this point I’m just impressed that this writer is able to keep finding new adjectives that completely don’t apply to this situation] organization [this group of bad people who kill and steal and bribe and drink!  Seriously, don’t talk to them, don’t look at them, don’t buy or sell to them. If they walk into the room with you, you should knock over a candle or throw a baby at them as a distraction and run like the devil himself is chasing you. In fact, if you have an option to run towards the devil do it because there are limits to the torture HE will inflict upon you! But you probably won’t catch him because the DEVIL will be running from these evil characters as fast as his cloven hooves will carry him!] into a new era of prosperity [more illegally gotten money than you can imagine. Seriously—imagine a warehouse full of stolen money. Now imagine ten warehouses.  Now imagine a thousand warehouses. There is truly no number that describes the amount of warehouses full of money these guys are going to shake our city down for!] and civic responsibility [they plan to payoff all the politicians—maybe they probably already have]. Towards such noble ends, Mister Clift will reach out to [bribe, intimidate, or shoot—he’s too much of a gentleman to reduce himself to dishing out threats] all residents of Chicago. Together [because if you try to leave they will hunt you down] this fine corporation [gang] will turn Chicago into the kind of city [warzone] it has always dreamed [nightmares technically count as dreams] of becoming.

Thank you for your warm welcome and this writer looks forward to making the aquaintance of anyone who will talk to him. Most Sincerely, Darknight Dastardly, Concerned Businessman [Known Sindicate Associate]

sindicate faces new and old

Attractive new faces about town—the letter tied to the rock contained portrait photographs for public relations purposes. Some of these new and not so new citizens, committed to their organization, are more attractive than others.

Mister Dastardly was not available for questioning. But, with a good talent for public relations, Mister Clift did answer the phone and was willing to answer some questions about his ‘business;’ he was happy to share his strategy:

I plan to build on the Sindicate tradition of providing valuable and necessary services to this great city. I bring to my work a commitment to my fellow man, my family, and my church. Religion is very important to me. I believe we are doing God’s work in Chicago. When Adam was lonely, God provided a woman, did he not? I provide lots of friends who are women. … [some text must be deleted from here because this publication appeals to a family audience.] And when Jesus’s friends were thirsty, he didn’t let them drink water, he turned it into wine. Now, I don’t advocate breaking the 18th Amendment, but I’m just saying that if Jesus knew that a party was better with wine, who am I to argue?

When asked to elaborate on  the cost of his ‘services to the community’ he replied:

When Adam wanted a woman, he gave up a rib! I ain’t askin’ a rib—just a little cash. And when Jacob gave his thirsty a brother a drink, did it come free? Everything in Chicago has a price. I offer legitimate protection services and philanthropic associations and trust you’ll find mine a fair one for mine, I mean, our services.

He  went on with more descriptions that aren’t wise to print, but seems to be interested in befriending several of The Chicagoan reporters.

••••••••••••
REPORTER’S LAMENT

Miss Eleanor Medier loves to receive of new messages in the morning upon arrival to her office. Like presents left from Santa Claus (her mind being quite seaonably-oriented) prefers them slipped under the door or through the mail slot. It was with dismay she discovered a delivery method she most disapproves of on Friday morning. Still patching up woodwork splinters caused from bullets flying when her guests were so rudely attacked last week (is there such a thing as politely shooting someone?) right under her nose, she wasn’t the least bit amused by discovering a broken window with a rock lying inside scatching her floor. She assumed that the rock flew through the window, but doubted there were any witnesses. Tied to this offending rock was a small scrap of paper, which she quickly transported onto her counter for closer examination. Thinking this can’t be good news else she would be enjoying tea with pleasant company, her fingers shook as she separated the paper from its bindings and peered inside its folds at scrawled handwriting that was addressed directly to her person:

Dear Miss Medier,

Your story about Bravery on December 13th contains lies and deceptions offensive to all readers who care about the truth. You said Miss Tiffy Vella is Misses Tiffy Vella-Tinkel, or maybe it was Misses Tiffy Tinkel-Vella.  You are wrong—WRONG!! This Tiffy has a husband and it is ME and ME ONLY!!

You better correct this information immediately in your next issue or you will see more than a rock come flying through your window! I’ll be watching the newspaper for you to clean this messup.

Signed, D. Vella

Miss Media took a big gulp of her earl grey tea thinking she needed something sronger. With mixed reactions containing outrage, loyalty, suspicion, mistrust, and even maybe sympathy for people who get confused, Miss Medier wondered if she herself trusted the wrong people. Always corroborating her facts, friendship was also an issue. As Miss Vella had become one of Miss Medier’s intimates, she was shocked to discover the elegant tea-drinking lady was hiding such a shady past!!! Why did her sources jump to such conclusions about her maybe-isn’t-legitimate marriage to Judge Want2 Tinkel?

There was an important clue to the truth that nagged Miss Medier as she wrestled with memory, confronted her conscience, and questioned her judge of character: where was the wedding??? Why did they look at her funny when she extended congratulations to them? She assumed they were embarassed that they forgot to invite the press to the wedding—subjecting Miss Medier to hurt personal feelings. And for someone as prominent and who loves a good show, such discretion from Judge Tinkel surely was out of character! Certainly he would not deny eager citizens a chance to display their pageantry and dance at an expensive celebration! The voting public demands more!

Furthermore, never tempt a reporter with a mystery. Journalists crave questions like babies do candy. In every murky situation, headlines flicker before their eyes. When it concerns one of their best friends, they must maintain a professional position and report with honesty. Could it be that the pinacle of ladyness in Chicago isn’t sure if she is married and with whom? The thought that such a gentle and tasteful creature could be a bigamist was very disconcerting.

All is in doubt now. Who is this compelling husband? He must be worth seeing to check out his tastes in fashion, given that nobody has a more extensive wardrobe than Miss Vella (now forever losing the hypenated name in these pages no matter how she decides to spell it, as The Chicagoan can’t afford to continually replace windows at the office).

Miss Medier pondered the situation as she refreshed her tea, having re-brewed the earl grey extra-strong. As the steam rose from the rattling tea pot as she poured into her Grandmother’s prize china cup, it’s cleansing aroma filled her nostrils, clarifying her thoughts in an instant. She became determined to investigate further before staking her reputation on any rude-rock-attracting assumptions. Setting her delicately painted white cup down with a determined thump, she grabbed her handbag and locked the office door behind her, even though the window was broken. And, highly unusual for Miss Medier, she did NOT shoot a photograph of this less-than-refined delivery technique so as not to inspire copycats. Anyone reading this far into this story surely wouldn’t be the kind of ignorant person to do such a thing.

With curiosity overwhelming her trepedation (the Judge is her good friend too) Miss Media raced to the courthouse to check records. She inquired about marriage licenses in the Public Records office on the second floor. Scanning the list, she saw no name listed as either “Vella-Tinkel” or “Tinkel-Vella.” Determination melting into consternation, she marched toward the court room. After tentatively knocking on the Judge’s chamber doors, she heard a groggy response—perhaps he had been napping. Politely (having enough of bad manners for one day) Miss Medier asked to have a word with him.

She was taken aback by the gruff reply from her (she thought was) dear friend, for he almost yelled:

I have nothing to say about any of the cases you are inquiring about, Miss Medier. Those are ongoing investigations and it would be inappropriate for me to comment.” Even more suspicious by such defensiveness, Miss Medier persisted because it is in her nature: “No, Judge, I’m not asking about any open cases; I want to ask about your relationship with Tiffy and the proper spelling of your names. Are the two of you married? And if so, which name comes first? And if not, what do I report to the readers so that I don’t look bad?

Judge Tinkel, who has dealt with Miss Medier’s persistence before, gave in because he is compulsively helpful. He beckoned her into the shadowy interior of his office, maybe dim so that visiting friends and business associates wouldn’t notice the bags under his normally twinkling eyes. Straightening as she entered, he used his most authoritative official voice when he stated:

Miss Vella and I are very close friends. As you know, I am recently divorced from my wife.(notice filed on election night, November 18, while all eyes were diverted to watching the voting process, appearing quietly at the bottom of the page). I have tried to provide for her and my children in the settlement. It seems, Eleanor (at least he didn’t call her Miss Medier), that she is not happy with this and wants more (how can anyone blame her when she married a man named “Want2”?). She has threatened trouble for me if I don’t increase her alimony, which I refused to do. You know, Miss Medier (oops—friendship set-aside), that I absolutely refuse to be blackmailed by these Chicago mobsters, and I certainly will not be blackmailed by my ex-wife. Miss Vella is an extremely nice person, very influential in Chicago, a business woman of indisputable character. I happen to know that she has a very nice husband who loves her very much, and she loves him, as she has told me many times. It’s unfortunate that her career takes her away from her home so much, but, it’s the nature of her business that she must travel to different locations in order to stay competitive. I appologize to you if our actions have led you to believe there is more to our relationship than just close friendship.  And, I would like to publicly apologize to Tiffy’s (ah—good friends again) husband, as I’m sure that he must be disturbed by the misunderstanding published in your now-widely-read paper.

Tiffy and Want2

Just-good-friends Miss Vella and Judge Tinkel do dance beautifully together. Miss Vella's out-of-t0wn husband, who has asserted himself in a most unusual and suspicious way, should be grateful there is an honorable and appropriate protector for his wife while she is in Chicago, any wishful thinking aside.

That would have been enough, actually, but Judge Tinkel, not a man to conserve on words, felt he must continue—maybe to make Miss Medier feel more on the inside again:

Miss Vella has been a great source of strength for me during my divorce. She has offered me much advice and insight from her own experiences in marriage. It is only through her influence that I agreed to the level of alimony and child support that I did. My ex-wife should be grateful to Miss Vella. However, nothing is ever enough for my ex-wife. It’s one of the reasons we separated, she was never happy with the sort of life I could provide for her. I moved to Chicago hoping that to start anew, however, the same problems haunt. Tiffy and I have never been more than close friends, nor do we have any plans for anything more than that.

Though the Judge loves to speak, when he is done, he is done. And that’s it. Perhaps this is inspired by his experience hitting a gavel on a pad, which he seems to enjoy. So Miss Medier, not really satisfied with such an answer, decided to investigate these would-be great friends of hers further. How ironic that reporters spend more time investigating criminals than their own friends! No one should be more careful or discriminating in who to trust than the press. And, quite honestly, such juicy stories do sell publications. People want to know.

Once back behind her typewriter, sipping the luke-warm earl grey tea, Miss Medier forgot all about needing more caffeine. Fingers flying across the keys, she explored how the plot thickens. But she couldn’t help wonder with whom she could now share late-night intellectual conversations.

••••••••••••
ESCAPADE ON ICE

In the winter there are other ways to let off steam than on the dance floor. Favorite Chicagoan entertainment contributor, Mister Andy Tachor, himself became the entertainment! Captured by a would-be photographer who lives in a nearby apartment, this concerned citizen tested her new camera on the surprising spectacle below. For a man famous for wearing a most distinctive coat, Mister Tachor was not only captured coatless, but in his underwear! He may become more famous for what he doesn’t wear than what he does!

And, to make matters more scandalous, he was skating with even less-clad new companions. These ladies must be some of the new faces in town, for they obviously have yet to discover Chicago’s many fine shops with the new one-piece bathing suits fashionably available in a rainbow of colors. So without care to the icey breeze fluffing the snowdrifts, Mister Tachor and company discovered the benefits of the perfect-packing temperature for making snowballs, which they threw liberally in all directions, occasionally finding a target. To watch these graceful under-clothed, a small crowd gathered, discussing the sanity of these warm-blooded souls twirling, dipping, and occasionally landing on butts, to the giggles of the ladies.

The Chicago river is a great attraction for citizens who like to ice skate, though they usually dress more appropriately. Since the theme of today’s FLASH is etiquette, it seems fitting to conclude by suggesting to this favorite entertainment contributor that he not catch cold because he has a story due. When under deadline to someone who is waiting for the contribution, it is not a good idea to be seen skating around a public place—especially without an outfit that can represent his good taste. Mister Tachor should remember that there are eyes everywhere in Chicago, and a reputation is a worthy possession to protect. But if his article is turned in on time, all will be forgiven.

It just goes to prove that those who are dedicated to regular strolling about the streets, as Mister Tachor is prone to do, will never know what they may find or what they may see.

skaters

Mister Tachor braves the cold to enjoy a snowball fight with his new friends; and though he is playing hooky from his responsibilities, he may experience a new notoriety about town.

Open Season on Bravery
December 13, 2010

It isn’t often that the news becomes the news. Usually it is the reporter who runs after the story, not the other way around! And to make matters worse for the victims of last night’s bullet fireworks on Willow Street, being stalked and hunted like prey came on a very special night!

As a hard working girl, Miss Eleanor Medier was thrilled when Miss Tiffy Vella and Judge Want2 Tinkel came by The Chicagoan office to view the proofs of her first book: a pictorial portrait of this fair city. Judge Tinkel is a big supporter of the periodical version, as he happens to be featured prominently in its pages. The three colleagues were celebrating how well Miss Medier’s new offset press works and the construction of the first book produced by this office. Miss Medier’s pride swelled further when her favorite free-lance correspondant, Mister Pat Canare, joined the party.

approve book

1- Mister Canare admires the newest publication (soon to be available) that will showcase the wonderful features of living in Chicago.

Although they wished they had champagne, Miss Medier was pleased to prepare her newest earl grey tea in her fine china teapot, inherited from her grandmother. Because of her good manners, she graciously welcomed some drop-in guests, Miss Peachez Preiss, Mister Smoke Fang, and a man in a white suit that she had never seen before. Unfortunately, these surprise visitors were waving some of their finest weapons, recognized by Miss Medier from her recent photography session at Mister Fang’s warehouse down the street. When Judge Tinkel politely inquired what they were doing with such quality firearms, gently (ok–not so gently) suggesting (ok–dictating) that they conceal them, as it is illegal to walk around the streets with such trophies. Mister Fang impolitely laughed, declaring that “This is MY city and I can do whatever I want.” “So what is that you want to do with those weapons?” asked Judge Tinkel, growing more impatient. In a less than respectful tone, Mister Fang declared that he and his friends were going out “hunting.”

confronting bad guys

Judge Tinkel confronts Mister Fang's friend in the white suit, trying to giving him a lesson in the laws that concern hunting in the city.

Miss Medier, with tea invitations on her lips, paused to wonder what kinds of animals they could hunt in the city: rats? pigeons? She shuttered to think what other little creatures may suffer from their target practice. However, the only guest to accept her just-brewed specialty was Mister Fang. Unfortunately, the tea pot rattled loudly as she tried to pour, grateful for the gracious assistance from Miss Vella.

The tone of the conversation, however, continued to deteriorate as Judge Tinkel and Mister Fang traded ever-strengthening threats. The Judge explained in graphic detail how that if Mister Fang didn’t know who robbed the bank on Saturday night, he is indeed losing power in the city as all the citizens suspect. It occured to Miss Medier, and she was about to suggest it, that perhaps Mister Fang could assist the police in apprehending the wealthy killer, still at large. But her past experience with Mister Fang proved that he is not warm to suggestions, even if she did compose a beautiful portrait photograph for him.

The Judge further was happy to explain that there are many new guys in town who have more money and more smarts. Miss Medier, though she admired Mister Fang’s green pin stripped suit, had to agree that some of the new furs, canes, and hats sported by a strong influx of new guys bring a fresh style to the streets.

While Mister Fang sipped on his tea, the guy in the white suit (that everyone was ignoring), wanted to assert his opinion of the laws and practices upheld in Chicago. Judge Tinkel puffed up into his best authoritative-speech-giving-voice and declared: “You can kill me but you can’t intimidate me!” And he couldn’t resist the temptation to add “I will NOT step aside and allow you to wreck havoc in our streets! If you break the law you will prosecuted to the full extent of that law!

With alarmed expressions, Miss Vella and Miss Medier had opposite reaction instincts. Perhaps it was because of Miss Vella’s recent experience being kidnapped that may have increased her confidence, for she marched right up to the guy in the white suit, no longer ignoring him, to defend her now-official husband (and that’s another story!). Miss Medier, on the otherhand, slowly snuck behind Mister Canare, comforted to have a skilled marksman and friend standing by her counter.

Mister Canare, who’s attention was suddenly diverted from the gorgeous photographs and witty text, had his own bone-to-pick with Mister Fang over the ownership of the Almost Sunset Salon. He just couldn’t contain himself when he blurted “And arent’ you the thug who is threatening my beloved Meganna Larsson over the ownership of HER salon?” Miss Medier and Miss Vella both gasped, as Mister Fang had boasted that the salon was his, especially at its opening night party when he parked his new car right in front and displayed such uncharactertistic politeness as he greeted the arriving guests. Miss Vella declared that everyone was under the impression that Mister Fang owned the salon. Mister Canare, on the other hand, bravely objected to Mister Fang’s tone, implications, and treatment of his new lady love. Miss Medier reflected that if words were bullets, they would all be dead by that point!

defense

Miss Vella confronts the man in the white suit while defending her just-bethrothed husband (and that is another story!) Juge Tinkel encourages the uninvited guests to leave when he reveals his own concealed state-of-the-art pistol.

When it appeared that the conversation was not going to improve towards inspired shared goals and collaborative solutions, Judge Tinkel finally said something that Mister Fang could agree with: leaving The Chicagoan office if he wasn’t interested in the strategy of publishing. Offended that the group would not accknowlege his supremacy, he covered his disappointement with sarcasm, took his guy in the while suit and lovely Miss Preiss, who is a decent sort of gal, with him. The as-yet-to-be-brave Miss Medier peaked around from behind Mister Canare and was relieved when her friend had caught the fine china cup Mister Fang had flung in their direction.

Miss Preiss, Mister Fang, and Mister Austin Bondar (the guy in the white suit declared his identity), turned to walk out but didn’t really leave. Mister Canare was accutely aware of the dark sedan that kept rolling slowly past the windows. Miss Medier, not to have her celebration dampened, immediately returned her attention back to marketing strategy. She reflected that it seemed like a lot of traffic for a Sunday night in the Loop, little realizing that it was the same traffic over and over.

Mister Canare, concerned about his Miss Larsson, found a break in Mister Fang’s roaming to slip out, presumably to offer her his protection. Unfortunately, Miss Vella, Miss Medier, and Judge Tinkel had other priorities than to watch Mister Fang prominade around in his latest wheels. And they agreed that they were disgusted with his new friend in the white suit who dressed poorly, smelled bad, and later proved to be a bad shot. Sadly, they wondered at the literacy and lifestyle choices of such characters. Their dedication to the written word, however was soon even more rudely disrupted when Mister Fang, this time leaving the guy in the white suit outside, entered again uninvited. Having so far proven incapable of taking the limelight, this time he just wanted to “talk.” However the threats were soon flying again. Miss Medier, feeling this was getting redundant, wanted to hear what Mister Fang had to say. She reasonablysuggested that they all sit down with a cup of tea to discuss—a much more civilized way to deal with disagreement. But when ignored in her own establishment, she further displayed her own version of bravery when she responded to Mister Fang’s concern about the welfare of Chicago residents. Always wanting to turn a negative into a positive, she suggested that Mister Fang grab the opportunity to become a fashion-leader in the city, advising the male citizens with their wardrobe selections. Mister Fang turned to Miss Medier with his beady gaze, then threatened her written words: “I’ll give ya a headline doll!” “Yes,”still seeking to be agreeable, she responded, “It should say: ‘Chicago Men set New Fashion Standard.’” He didn’t seem to hear the suggestion and again stomped out.

waits outside

Mister Bondar waits outside while Mister Fang again tries to steal the limelight from Miss Medier's celebration

Mister Fang, obviously unhappy with failing to gain a headline opportunity, continued to circle around The Chicagoan office. The three remaining inside began to finally notice him out there and grew concerned about Mister Canare and Miss Larsson. Having generously offered to give their friends sanctuary, Miss Vella hoped to reach them, somewhere out there in the night. She reflected that at least at that moment she knew where Mister Fang was not-hiding. But with the deterioration of quality in his employees, who knew what or where more could be?

For the very first time in her as-yet short career, Miss Medier was suddenly in the wrong place at the wrong time. The unlocked door of her office flew open when Mister Bondar aimed his tommy gun right at Judge Tinkel, with Miss Medier nearby!

shots fired

Bullets zing past Miss Medier who is quicker with her camera than she is with her feet, but Judge Tinkel is fast-on-the-draw and immediately returns fire.

Although Miss Medier was lucky, Judge Tinkel was not. Taking a hit, he slumped down by the suddenly closed door, his lovely Miss Vella (now Misses Vella-Tinkel, but that really is another story) who flew to his side, successfully holding back the flow of blood from his wound. Miss Medier, fingers shaking uncontrollably, tried dialing the phone in the back of her office. First she called the emergency operator who didn’t answer due to a dinner break. Next she called the police station, and there was no answer there either, though the reason is as yet unclear. Luckily BOI Chief Shepham Moorland has a phone at his house, but there was no answer there either. Panicked, she started calling everyone that she knew that had phones and the street suddenly seemed to echo with conspicuous silence. Finally, low and behold, the voice of Judge Tinkel’s saviour came on the line! Mister Anh Tachor, always the one to be in the right place at the right time, scurried from his own engagement to come to the rescue!

blood on floor

Misses Tinkel-Vella (or is it Misses Vella-Tinkel?) kneels by her new husband, stopping the flow of blood, grateful that its color matches her beautiful red gown. Mister Tachor arrives to help just in time.

Miss Medier swoons at the sight of yet more blood as Mister Tachor digs around in Judge Tinkel’s shoulder, then triumphantly held up the bullet he fished out. She was amazed to find that Mister Tachor just happens to carry bandages around in his pocket, and thus was able to patch the Judge up quickly and efficiently. Miss Medier, already admiring Mister Tachor for his observation and timing skills (not to mention his astute taste in coat design), was further impressed at his medical knowledge. And Misses Tinkel-Vella was also generous with her now-revealed fask of ten-year old scotch that both soothed the impromtu doctor’s nerves as well as calmed her own in her new function as nurse. They also rememberd to administer the scotch to sterilize Judge Tinkel’s shoulder wound.

judge rests

Judge Vella-Tinkel recovers in one of his favorite chairs while Misses Tinkel-Vella hovers protectively.

Surprised that the chaos didn’t attract more spectators, one did appear finally: Miss Meg Jelsaco. Happy for a friendly face they to relay the recent events, Miss Medier was disappointed when everyone had lost the appetite for her fresh earl grey tea. Nonetheless, all discussed and concluded that Mister Fang made a big mistake. They shook their collective heads at his missed opportunities, poor sense of priorities, and obvious rude behavior. All doubted that his upbringing was very sophisticated. Misses Tinkel-Vella bemoaned the fate of the lovely ladies that Mister Fang seems to attract. Miss Medier agreed that education for ladies can make all the difference in their lifestyle choices.

those at end

Misses Vella-Tinkel reveals surprising strength for one so gentle; Judge Tinkel-Vella looks the worse for wear; Mister Tachor is a hero who still hasn't found a new coat (after losing his in the recent gas station fire), Miss Medier controls her shaking to serve tea but manage to dial the phone, and Miss Jelasco does nothing but show up late and listen.

Although Misses Tinkel-Vella and Judge Vella-Tinkel (or is it the other way around?) became anxious to leave the party, Miss Medier was thrilled that Mister Tachor proved his own good manners and judgement. Accepting her offer to look at the proofs of the soon-to-be-released profile of Chicago, he was most complimentary about her publishing venture. The evening regained its celebratory tone as he grinned over his photograph, discussed plans to buy a replacement coat from the one lost in the picture, and offered to be of more assistance to The Chicagoan in the future. Miss Medier felt that if her book can so inspire, this is a good sign.

As Mister Tachor disappeared into the night, Miss Medier contemplated the spilled tea and pool of blood left by the door to clean up. At least her wallpaper was saved, though the woodwork displayed some splinters created by Mister Bondar’s poor aim. The good news was that her office did  not meet the same fate as the bank a block away, having suffered from a much larger gun battle, more victim messes, and an explosion. However, she did discover that it is hard to sleep after being a target. She also was not inspired to walk home through the streets with Mister Fang driving around, so she retreated to her darkroom and developed the negatives of the photos she so bravely shot of Mister Fang’s misguided visit.

escape

Misses Vella-Tinkel recovers her motorbike hidden in the alley behind The Chicagoan office and wisks her new husband to safety.

Miss Medier concludes that bravery is a pre-requisite for living in Chicago. Perhaps her ability to shoot a camera can translate into an ability to shoot a gun. For those who work late on weekend nights in the Loop, this skill is probably a good idea. Now she and her readers are left to contemplate three open cases, concerned that there are two, now possibly three criminal/murders frequenting the city’s entertainment establishments and enjoying coffee at neighboring tables in the cafe.

Miss Medier is making plans to interview Chief Moorlord, knowing that readers demand conclusions:
1. First, there is the unsovled murder of Mayor Renfort; Miss Medier aggressively pressed Judge Tinkel for updates prior to Mister Fang’s inconsiderate distractions. She insisted that the city just can’t provide such an elaborate and beautiful funeral and then just forget about a dedicated civil servant.
2. Then there is the bank robbery/muder, which couldn’t have been done by Mister Stanley Luv because he was just executed for the one solved case in recent history.
3. And finally there is the arrest warrant for Mister Fang. Smarter criminals pick their battles more carefully unless they crave documentation and want to look attractive in print. Hopefully Mister Fang will learn that attacking a judge and a reporter is not good for public realtions. And in the meantime, Mister Fang should focus his attention on how his power is being further eroded by those who dress better. Perhaps one of the new guys will grab the opportunity to lead Chicago men in adding color to their wardrobes. Miss Medier could use an upbeat headline.

Mister Fang exaserbated his mistake further by hurting Miss Medier’s feelings when he didn’t even pause to look at her new book! But she hesitated to ask him to, knowing that he might not find the photograph of him in chains complementary. She recommends that, while fleeing his ill-gotten arrest warrant, he take a real vacation to gain perspective on his poor decisions and to reconsider his strategy. But since he and his friends seem unlikely to read these wise words, Miss Medier takes comfort in the knowledge that his group must be discovering that he is no longer fun to work for.

The Man with the Money
December 12, 2010

The bank was unusually busy last night. The recent court decisions have inspired greater commerce and business owners were quick to get their hard-earned dollars under lock and key. Miss Starla Huntress particularly has enjoyed recent prosperty—and she happily arrived to stash her large pile of tips from Colosimo’s recent busy after-the-execution crowd.

setup

Miss Huntress deposits Colosimo profits while a sinister meeting takes place just outside.

As The Chicagoan has many resources, a freelance photographer just happened to be walking by the bank as the activity started. Not writing down any notes because the action happening too quickly, the facts must be pieced together carefully. Apparently it was just at the moment Miss Huntress passed her cash across to bank teller Miss Talula Shippe. Other witnesses/victims of this crime included Miss Bea Shamrock, Miss Una SpiritWeaver, Mister Adisa Afterthought, Mayor/Doctor KJ Kiranov, who were all depositing profits, and Guard Dino Fyanucci who had taken the night shift.

As depositors waited quietly in line, an unknown, but not bad-looking, young man burst into the bank with a gun in each hand and waved them at the occupants. The bank was full of prominent Chicago business people who had to wonder whether the robber was after their valuable persons (given that Miss Tiffy Vella had recently been kidnapped, albeit rescued) or the cash apparently not destined long to fill the safe. Or both? Miss Huntress was so startled she scurried away from her transaction even before Miss Talula Shippe could provide her with a receipt.

holdup

Just as Miss Huntress passes her cash across to teller Miss Shippe, the gunman approaches bank guard Officer Dino Fyanucci, threatening his life. Miss Huntress wisely tries to quietly slip out of the way. The inconsiderate gunman forces Miss Shippe to open the safe and unload the contents per his instructions.

As this rather fashionably-sensitive robber demonstrated very insensitive requests, he busied himself by adding to his personal weath at the expense of the depositors. Two of his accomplises rushed into the bank with guns blazing! These men appeared much scarier and more sinister than the lead robber, clad in all black with big hats, long coats, and dark expressions. They had no care for where they aimed their tommy guns, seeming to enjoy the display of flying plaster, splinterred wood, and shattering marble. Without thought for those who worked hard on designing an impressive interior for the bank, the depositors suddenly regretted their hurry to put their money where it was about to become suddenly unsecured.

gun men

Unknown darkly clad gunmen fire shots into the bank while patrons panic and try to get out of the way. Miss Huntress hides behind Miss Shamrock, undoubtedly hoping for cover. Mayor/Doctor Kiranov stands helplessly to the side, conspicious in his white suite. He must have regretted leaving his lovely protective employee at home.

Many of the witnesses were so nervous that they could scarcely follow the action. With three robbers in the bank at once, no one knew where to look first. Trying to dodge the bullets kept them from astutley peering into the faces of these robbers-about-to-turn-assailants. Several feel they can identify them if the fugitives wear their hats and coats and carry their guns again. Otherwise, they couldn’t be too sure.

hiding

Miss Katey Watkins wisely hides around the corner of the bank when she heard the yelling and the gunshots, shielding her ears from the too-loud volume. The two dark aggressors crowd the door, preventing anyone from discreatly sneaking out, as everyone present probably would try to do.

Sounds of the action reverberated off buildings up and down the street, disturbing late dinners, television viewing, and other personal recreation. Residents peered from behind their curtains. Miss Eleanor Media, developing negatives in The Chicagoan office one block away, could serve as witness to just the audio portion of the action, as she could hear every rat ta tat tat of the tommy guns, every whistling ricochet of the bullets, and all the shouts from those who were closer to the action than they wanted to be.

fight in street

The gun battle moved into the street as the dastardly demons made for their escape.

After the bullets stopped flying around inside the bank, Mayor/Doctor Kiranov quickly administered to the wounded, noted that the guard was no longer breathing, unconcealed his concealed weapon, and ran out into the street after the robbers-turned-assailants.

running

As Mayor/Doctor Kiranov was running out, BOI Chief Moorlord was running in. Fortunately they were soon running in the same direction.

It didn’t take long for the police to flock to the scene—the ever-attentive BOI Chief Shepham Moorlord trailed by Officers Chandler Olinger and Leather Garnet. They brought their newest arms, yet still were puttering along with less than current wheels. Bravely returning fire, Chief Moorlord scored better than the bad guys: he felled one of them whereas they merely wounded Miss Shippe and the mayor/doctor. Judge Want2 Tinkel, who arrived just after the police, was horrified to think that Chicago almost lost another mayor so soon after the the last one. Perhaps the mayor/doctor’s white suit is not the wisest color where targets are being sought. Although Miss Shippe’s ear will never be the same and the mayor/doctor will have a permanent scar in his chest, both will otherwise make full recoveries.

wounded

Tending to the dead and the wounded: Miss Shippe shouldn't be sitting on the trolley tracks even though her ear may hurt; Mayor Kiranov is assisted by his recently hired beautiful nurse Miss SpiritWeaver, and the unamed gunman faired the worst when he proved to be permanently unresponsive

More curious than cautious, as soon as it seemed quiet enough, residents ventured out to investigate. Most knew that something must have happened, for they were able to identify the distinctive sound of tommy guns versus the backfire that the new cars seem unable to contain. Fortunately, the victomized depositors stuck around long enough to share what they saw with the press. Miss SpiritWeaver was quite impressed with Mister Afterthought’s bravery and he seemed quite happy to make plans with her. Before they could wander off enthralled with one another, they did pause long enough to give the most vivid depiction of how Miss Shippe and Mayor/Doctor had both suffered by being in the path of several poorly aimed bullets. Miss SpiritWeaver elaborated further: “Bea was shot on the arm, just a graze as was Mister Adisa and myself. We were all hit. It was too much shooting in a small place.” Mister Adisa, now opening up more about the tragic experience due to Miss SpritiWeaver’s enouragement, added how the bank guard, Officer Fyanucci, won the contest for having the worst night of his life. Because it was his last. And, just to make it even worse than that, the now-proven-to-be-criminals even left a bomb behind that exploded before anyone could take the body to the coroner. “The crime has left the bank quite a mess,” he concluded. Miss SpiritWeaver then sadly slipped her am through that of her new escort. He seemed quite pleased with this turn of events, but he did add “tonight will be the last time I get shot in this city,” as he generously posed for a quick photograph.

people observe

Those who are known and those who want to be known gather to discuss facts and compare notes. Various groups gather on street corners illuminated by Chicago's recent investment in the lamps that make activities more visible: Miss Shamrock shaken but still standing at least; Mister Swashbuckler shares poetically insightful observations; Judge Tinkel feels left out of the action because he and Miss Tiffy Vella were watching a very loud movie at the thick-walled Chicago Theater; Miss Vella (with a really cute new dress) shudders at the implications; Mister Afterthought demonstrates affection towards his own under-used tommy gun; Miss wilamenia Zarco wears red better than anyone else; Miss Samantha Seranno probably regrets her move to Chicago; and Mister Mojo Penberg who saw nothing and knew nothing declares the desire to dine at Colosimo's where he enjoyed Mama's meatballs the other night.

Mister TheVeryLast Swashbuckler expressed concern for citizen safety and tried to press his advice: You shouldn’t be standing around out here… somebody’s going to be angry. Really everyone… get someplace safe.” When he was completely ignored by the investigative discussion, he stomped off, shook his head, and took his protective instincts elsewhere. And despite the wisdom that fell on deaf ears, the streets continued to fill up with available residents.

police

The police made their presence felt by trying puttering their old squad car around from group to group. Then Officer Olinger, disgusted with the old vehicle, chugged out of the police station in her less-than-completed new red car. Spectators admired the color but wondered how Officer Olinger would be able to apprehend any crimials without more seats with which to transport them.

Miss Huntress, badly upset, managed to stay outside long enough to help paint the scene with her shaky and tearful descriptions. Through her sobs, she told how the guard pulled out his gun and shot back at the robbers. “Then I had to get down for fear of getting shot too,” she sobbed. Comforted by her protective husband Chief Moorlord, he sent her home to rest, confiding that “she isn’t in places like that much.” He seemed happy to share his very incomplete observations. He took credit for winning the gun battle, along with the unluckily wounded Mayor/Doctor Kiranov who luckily killed a second of the three criminals. But unfortunately, one of the dangerous gunmen did escape. Chief Moorlord did generously remember to add that “the poor bank guard drew his gun and hit a couple of the thugs but there were to many for him. He died trying to save people.”

Apparently, no one took the time to determine how much money would grace the escapee’s future lifestyle, should he not be apprehended and the money retrieved. Citizens should be more concerned with safety and less concerned about missing resources, for their rapt note-comparing kept the on-hand officers on edge. Ignoring the recommendations of those who know better, spectators lingered until all the details, contributed like a patchwork quilt from various snatches of observations, were put in coherent order.

About that time, Miss Samantha Seranno joined the discussion group, catching up with what she missed while her train was pulling into the station on the other side of town. Surprised that no one had counted the money left to determine how much was taken, she had to add her opinion to the mix: “I would have counted the money on the way out if was me. Money is nice you know.

Citizens paced uncertainly and Chief Moorlord shook his foot nervously. But everyone felt satisfied when Judge Tinkel stated: “It is obvious that these men care nothing about the citizens of Chicago. I can see that we need to set another example for them to show them that we won’t tolerate this behaviour. However, I have confidence that the police will find them.” Heroically stated and warmed by the suddenly attentive gathering, he had an audience. Rising to his full rather short stature, he bellowed out: “And when they do, the citizens of this city will, once again, rise to the occasion and deal with them.” Then he checked his calendar under “E” for execution.

Not for the Faint of Heart
December 9, 2010

Humans have always found the dramatic entertaining. And when there is blood, victims, and justice, such events might even be appetizing for some. Last night’s execution of Mister Stanly Luv demonstrated extreme reactions: either festively munching on popcorn or loosing appetities completely (without being able to take eyes away from the gruesome process unfolding).

One of the shortest events of late, it took longer to fill the spectator benches than it did to do the dastardly deed. For those readers who are squeamish, it is recommended that you stop reading here, as the tale is about to become more graphic.

preparation

(left) Popcorn is exchanged and generously shared by Miss Paradise Quixote, Officer Chandler Olinger, Officer Leather Garnet, and Mister Anh Tachor. Miss Summer Paulino looks on critically. (right) Mayor KJ Kiranov and Judge Want2 Tinkel supervise the setup as the prisoner is prepared for his ordeal.

As Judge Want2 Tinkel prepared to give his introductory remarks, he suggested that anyone who needed popcorn might want to wait for a batch held by the prisoner so the heat of the voltage could be efficiently employed. However Miss wilamenia Zarco came prepared with hidden turkey drumsticks, saved especially for the mayor from the goodies served at Mister Luv’s monday night trial. It seemed that minds were more focused on the cuisine, the expected meat-baked aromas soon to come, and ideas for further plans than on the changes about to take place in Mister Luv’s longevity.

introduction

Judge Want2 Tinkel clears his throat after being sure everyone present has seats and refreshments

Judge Tinkel waits for the audience attention before he continued with his description of events about to take place, his voice overpowering the cries and denials from behind the closed curtain. “Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you for coming as verifiers of the proper execution of our prisoner. I will be acting as executioner tonight.” Only Miss Summer Paulino questioned what might be ‘proper’ about an execution. The Judge, ignoring the comment from the back of the assembly, reminded the continually more attentive group: “You are here for a great moment in Chicago justiceI will go in and insure that the prisoner is properly seated and all straps and connections are secureThe doctor will come in and check the heartbeat prior to the execution. Then, we will throw the switch and justice will prevail. Once the execution is completed, the doctor will again check the prisoner and pronounce death.”

open curtains

Mister Dano Hammerthall, sporting a handsome new blue jacket, investigates the glass window separating the audience from the dangerous currents about to be unleashed. Suddenly the curtain opened.

Mister Stanly Luv, seated in a chair for the last time, at first protested his innocence. But soon rage overtook good judgement, and to the gasps of everyone focused on his covered face, confessed his dastardly crimes when he screamed: “I KILLED THE SON OF A BITCH AND I’M GLAD HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

Anyone who was sympathetic up to that point let go of any naive illusions. Those who admire Mister Luv’s trombone playing were most disappointed, though there are some great new musician’s now including Chicago on their tour schedules.

Once Judge Tinkel’s instructions to Mayor/Doctor KJ Kiranov were completed, the switch was thrown. Mister Luv finally stopped squirming, twitched in moves reminiscent of dance steps, and finally went limp. But that wasn’t all. Suddenly (and this is the worst graphic part, sorry) his head exploded and blood decorated the enclosed room with warm burgundy tones that were enhanced by the red lights of the electric shocks.

process

Mister Stanly Luv is made comfortable in his special chair, is relieved of any pain by powerful electric shocks, blood is released, and the execution is complete when the body vaporizes, leaving only a minor mess to clean up behind.

Several spectators, most notably the astute questioner Miss Paulino, were very confused when the body suddenly vanished. BOI Chief Shepham Moorlord (who took a moment away from consoling his glamorous wife Miss Starla Huntress who had her face hidden from the sights without peeking) assured those who wondered that its a good thing we had the body evacuated or it would be bad if the ladies had to see such a thing.” Mayor/Doctor Kiranov seemed equally satisfied saying that perhaps he used “too much juice.”

Miss Zarco examines

Miss Zarco, being too excited and too hungry to stay in her seat, examines the now-empty chair while the judge and the mayor contemplate the next step.

Most in the audience cheered the results with only one questioning voice (generally ignored) from the back of the audience. If there are concerns that Mister Luv may have escaped somehow, rest assured that it is hard to survive after such an ordeal.

Even before the curtain closed upon the scene so the cleanup crew could prepare the equipment if needed again, the spectators filed out, sharing ideas for dinner spots. All agreed that Colosimo’s would be the best choice. Mama’s meatballs would seem quite satisfying and appropriate after such a performance.

For anyone who thinks that Chicago’s law enforcement officers are unsympathetic, be comforted that when Miss Paulino tripped while climbing over the benches, probably trying to be the first one out the door, Officers Chandler Olinger and Leather Garnet were quick to help her to her feet, dusting off her cute little dress, and offering comprehensive further assistance.

Judge Tinkel, helping the ladies to reach the exit, summed up the feelings of many when he said loud enough for all to hear: “Perhaps these criminal elements will think twice before breaking our law.”

spectators

Spectators and participants included many known, and a few not so known as yet, faces: Miss Kitten Leakey seen most often now in the company of Mister Dano Hammerthall, Chief Shepham Moorlord who always observes proceedings carefully, Mister LoneWolf Levane who claims to be still undecided about this fair city, Mister Dane Ghostar who said nothing the whole time, Officer Chandler Olinger who deserves a night of entertainment, and Officer Leather Garnet who is always on hand for comments.