Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Sunday, November 28

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On the Web Fri Sep 04 2009

Roger Ebert in Granta

More from Granta, this time from Roger Ebert on the personalities to be found in the past in a North Ave. bar, telling Neil Steinberg, "you had to be there":

O'Rourke's was our stage, and we displayed our personas there nightly. It was a shabby street-corner tavern on a dicey stretch of North Avenue, a block after Chicago's Old Town stopped being a tourist haven. In its early days it was heated by a wood-burning pot-bellied stove, and ice formed on the insides of the windows. One night a kid from the street barged in, whacked a customer in the front booth with a baseball bat, and ran out again. When a roomer who lived upstairs died, his body was not discovered until maggots started to drop through the ceiling and on to the bar. A man nobody knew was shot dead one night behind the building. From the day it opened on December 30, 1966 until the day I stopped drinking in 1979, I drank there more or less every night when I was in town. So did a lot of people.

 
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Book Club is the literary section of Gapers Block, covering Chicago's authors, poets and literary events. More...

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