Cirque du Soleil's KURIOS - Cabinet of Curiosities will be in Chicago under the Big Top at United Center from Aug. 6 to Sept. 20, and you could win two free tickets to attend. Visit and "like" the Gaper's Block Facebook page for details.
As of January 1, 2016, Gapers Block is on indefinite hiatus. The site will remain up in archive form while we evaluate our options, which may include a redesign or sale.
✶ Thank you for your readership and contributions over the past 12-plus years. ✶
Wednesday, May 4
Cirque du Soleil's KURIOS - Cabinet of Curiosities will be in Chicago under the Big Top at United Center from Aug. 6 to Sept. 20, and you could win two free tickets to attend. Visit and "like" the Gaper's Block Facebook page for details.
Help no-kill dog rescue group One Tail at a Time open their first adoption center in West Bucktown this summer! They aim to raise $70K before their proposed open date of Aug. 1. Previously relying on foster homes to take care of pooches before adoption, this will enable the group to rescue more dogs from Chicago Animal Care & Control before they're euthanized.
Photo by Ron Slattery
Just added a few new campaigns to GB's curated Kickstarter page, including a bolt-shaped shot glass, a wireless flash for your iPhone and a new fashion line by Maria Pinto. And if that's not enough, the Second City Network has another Kickstarter for you.
Tinley Park native and current River North resident Stacie Juris was the second runner-up at Miss USA last night. The crown went to Erin Brady of Connecticut. Juris is currently studying fashion business at Columbia College Chicago.
WBEZ assembled a group of hilarious details from the Navy Pier redevelopment renderings.
Campaigns for a bike GPS tracker, a new lightweight 4"x5" camera, a landing spot for the tamalespaceship and more can be found on GB's Kickstarter page. And World Business Chicago is helping community projects launch on Kickstarter with its own curated page, so expect even more soon.
Startup Three Man Rocket hopes to raise enough through their Kickstarter campaign to fund a gadget called Bike Spike that would allow bike owners to not only track their bike if it's stolen, but also alert loved ones if they have an accident. (It's on our curated Kickstarter page.)
A local documentary film house, 137 Films, followed some FermiLab scientists around for a day in a new doc called Science at Work. (No need to head to the box office, either, as you can watch the film on You Tube.)
Artist John Garrison has created a line of art deco-inspired neighborhood posters.
If you're into slot cars and The Blues Brothers, you might be interested in this 1974 Dodge Monaco kit.
A documentary about a neighborhood hero, a no-spill cup designed by a teenager, and an amazing-looking video game are just some of the projects on the Gapers Block Kickstarter page right now. And over on Indiegogo, you might be interested in this comic book about bands or this touchscreen watch with a nonprofit mission.
The Sky Scratcher is a cardboard cat-scratching tower modeled off the Sears Tower (add your own antennae).
Sox pitcher Jake Peavy was added to the American League All-Star Game roster after Angels pitcher C.J. Wilson was put on the DL with a blister.
Apparently, actor Josh Hutcherson, who will play "Peeta" in the upcoming Hunger Games movie, has two stalkers from the Chicago area. His Christmas dinner with his family in Kentucky was more interesting this year than he anticipated.
Busy Beaver wants your votes in the first annual Golden Button Awards! Vote now through Feb. 24 for the People's Choice winner; the Poetry Foundation and Coudal Partners already won special citations.
Unison has your twee little desktop accessory needs covered. (Unison has an online warehouse sale this weekend, Feb. 10-12, FYI.)
Jamie Dihiansan designed Airstates to go on the side of an Airstream trailer, but it could just as easily go in your kitchen or office.
A Willowbrook man called 911 and said that he "wanted to see an officer because he wanted to fight with them." The police obliged.
The city of Chicago made $3.6 million in online auctions of surplus and unneeded goods in 2011, and plans to make even more this year. If you're on the prowl for a Crown Vic, dump trailer or a whole bunch of old toner, you can scope out current offerings yourself.
Spoonflower.com is a place where designers can create their own design and have it printed onto their choice of fabric. They're currently running a contest to have folks vote for their favorite city insIpired designs. Lots of Paris and Amsterdam, but there are a few Chicago-inspired designs, and even one of Berwyn.
The street-wear shop, Leaders, carries crewneck sweaters featuring the city's favorite bull masked for either the blistering cold or an old-fashioned mugging. Its title suggests the latter.
When Santa's not in a sleigh, he's totally a bike winter fan. Don your fuzziest of red hats or your elfiest of shoes and head out to the Santa Rampage bike ride on 12/17 starting at the Twisted Spoke downtown. Only fully-dressed Santas, elves, or dreidels are allowed (homemade costumes are completely fine). Details in Slowdown.
Hello Chicago, a pocket guide to some of the city's delights, written by a Brit.
If the TyK cycling pinup calendar is too controversial for you, maybe the Garter Girls Chicago calendar is more your taste. Featuring women "making it happen in vintage culture," proceeds go to Girls Rock! Chicago and the Nick Curran Cancer Benefit.
OK, last vintage toy post for awhile: H. Fishlove & Co., the company behind fake vomit -- which was created at Marvin Glass' studio (previously) -- and chattering teeth (previously) lives on as Fun, Incorporated, which also has a bunch of other wacky items and magic tricks to sell you.
Two Chicago friends recently launched Chicago Comb Co., which makes some fine looking combs out of single blocks of stainless steel.
The moon rock embedded in the Tribune Tower has been removed so that NASA can replace it with a new one sometime soon.
Roy Leonard, a WGN broadcasting icon, will be selling hundreds of books, CDs and memorabilia from his estate Saturday in Kenilworth.
Or maybe it is. Either way, this one is a bit more sophisticated than the usual sampler.
Apparently, Miley Cyrus loves Chicago, so she totally wants to hang out.
An employee at "a junk shop in a far North Side neighborhood" chronicles some of the more unusual objects that have passed through. Example: a VHS tape labeled simply, "Secrets." Oh yeah.
Artist Floyd A. Davis III repurposes vintage suitcases into the Gentleman's Boombox.
Chicago makes a humorous appearance as a foil in a syndicated columnist's somewhat confusing article about where area youth should move.
Lightning struck in Rogers Park this morning and took out some poor defenseless chimney bricks near Pratt and Greenview at the Lake Shore School. Luckily, no one appears to have been injured. Transmission contributor Dan Snedigar took some pictures of the debris.
It's looking like a still-cool, faintly overcast weekend. Utilize the power of literature and positive thinking with The Poetry Foundation's selection of spring poems.
Well, maybe it's more like mischievous kids are making a scene in an Uptown alley.
One Lyric patron was allegedly so upset that he was unable to enter "Carmen" while it was underway that he shoved a female usher twice, among other unpleasantries.
See one for free (before February 28) at the Brew & View by filling out this survey.
Were money no object, I'd be tossing my mail onto one of these sleek credenzas by local designers LAPEL.
Cards Against Humanity is a question game similar to Apples to Apples designed by Max Tempkin. It's free to download, but if you fund its Kickstarter, you get a deluxe edition. UPDATE: Max writes to note that six other people were involved in the game's design.
So you got some new gadgets for the holidays and the ones you bought two years ago are, like, totally obsolete--a common 21st century problem. Don't trash them, though--Chicago Surplus Computer is offering computer recycling on January 8 at 3140 North Central. Computer disposal is free, and the easing of your green conscience doesn't cost a thing, either.
Craig Shimala turns Chicago into a water wonderland with a digital camera strapped to his windshield (and a nice ambient soundtrack).
The Needle Shop is collecting handmade, kid-sized blankets for Project Night Night, a charity that distributes childhood essentials -- like books, stuffed animals and blankets -- to homeless children. You can drop off crib-sized (or smaller) blankets at The Needle Shop, 2054 W. Charleston, through December 30.
Cultural weekly NewCity gives us their 2010 top picks in vintage TV shows filmed in Chicago, food trucks, indoor make-out spots, and many more.
This map of Chicago neighborhoods is pretty cool, but something about the lake bothers me...
I'm not sure what makes these sneakers "Chicago" -- the Asian carp, I guess?
George W. Bush and Kanye West may have a reconciliation in their future.
I'm going by anecdotal evidence, but it seems like a lot of people move around September -- warm their house with these suggestions from local gift shops, compiled by Time Out Chicago.
Darryl Marlow has now been arrested 253 times, many of which seem to be for "aggressive panhandling."
Chicago leads the nation (well, four studied cities) in hand washing in public restrooms, but don't celebrate too quickly: 23 percent of men still don't wash their hands after visiting the toilet.
A suburban Menards was evacuated on Saturday when an employee saw a man placing a box in a parking lot light post. Apparently the item had been cached there since January.
University of Chicago press is giving away a free ebook of The Chicago Manual of Style, first edition.
There is an invisible dagger-wielding dwarf running rampant on Chicagoland streets who seems to be waiting in the bushes for cyclists to crash. One got me two weeks ago when I broke my arm after falling off my bike on the way home from work. I didn't get a good look at him, as he was invisible, but based on Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me host Peter Sagal's description of him, I'm betting we got jabbed by the same bastard.
Show some love for your parents, grandparents or ancestors and your hometown with Formula Werks' "Made In" shirts, giving you five ways (English, Spanish, Polish, Chinese, and Ukrainian) to say you're "Made in Chicago."
All bad jokes aside, there's a big pile of wood for the taking in the alley south of Erie Street between Elizabeth and Ada, courtesy of this summer's bout of thunderstorms.
Towers Productions is developing a series with weird science suppliers American Science and Surplus, and they're looking for customers who buy stuff at the stores to build interesting doohickeys, gadgets, and gizmos. Interested parties can contact Becky
Street poet/Muppet, Kermit once remarked "it ain't easy being green," but apparently it's even harder being a mascot. Days after a woman dressed in a Porky Pig costume at Six Flags Great America was assaulted, the Chicago Bulls mascot Benny was shoved and knocked down by an unidentified male in Tinley Park on Wednesday evening. At least he wasn't wearing a LeBron costume in Cleveland...
If you liked Justin Russo's gaming posters but didn't get a chance to buy one, you might be interested in the limited edition poster he designed for AbleGamers. It's printed locally by Delicious Design League
Rotofugi and Squibbles INK have been been hard at work on Roto-A-Matic, a Mold-A-Rama machine that's being refurbished to create custom artist molds. Meanwhile, the Mold-A-Rama in Lincoln Park Zoo changed from a yellow lion to a green gorilla this year.
The Wurlington Brothers Press, makers of those cool Chicago landmark paper models, also has a set of ViewMaster reels showing iconic sights of Chicago -- motels of Lincoln Avenue, hot dog stands and the remnants of Route 66 in the city.
Lightology, the locally based largest contemporary lighting showroom in North America, is having a design contest. The concept must feature at least one foot of Lightology's LED Soft Strip, and prizes include a $2,000 Lightology gift card and a feature in i4 design magazine. More details here.
If you're German, Irish, Italian or Polish and a Chicagoan, here are the t-shirts for you.
Tom Skilling is off galavanting around the Great Plains in search of tornados, allowing us rare glimpses into his psyche. For example, he uses forks as pointers instead of high tech tools when he's not delivering his broadcast, and he leans out of moving SUVs to take iPhone pictures of severe weather.
Guess who's got his own Facebook page? That's right, Ike — the Eisenhower Expressway Dog.
Apartment Therapy is looking for some guys who have a room in need of a do-over. Lucky for you, Chicago is one of their five selected metro areas (but sorry, ladies, this project is for boys only). Apply by May 24.
Shawnimals' latest creation will have your mouth watering -- and since it's plush, it'll soak that slobber right up. (Ew.)
In the strangest "he said, she said" argument heard in a while, a couple is arguing over whether the homemade explosives traded for methamphetamine were dynamite or fireworks.
Eight months after he went missing in Albuquerque, tenacious tabby Charles turned up last week in Chicago.
This Saturday, come to the Little Village Boys & Girls Club's Sidewalk Sale -- your purchases help fund the oldest stand-alone Boys & Girls Club in the city. 2801 S. Ridgeway, 10am-2-pm. They are also accepting donations: call (773) 277-1800 for more info.
Center for Economic Progress provides free personalized tax services for individuals making less than $25,000 and families with income less than $50,000. Their centers are staffed with IRS-certified volunteers and are ready for the final sprint to the deadline.
Whether you're celebrating or trying to forget, make tacos a part of your April 15th. Taco Del Mar (3955 N. Broadway) is giving one away: head to the website to print out your coupon.
Men born in April to the end of the year, you're in luck: Halo [for Men] offers select free spa extras on your birthday (such as as shampoo or brow wax) with the purchase of another salon or spa service.
Are you the master of flip cup? Form a team of four (or sign up solo and meet new friends) for Flip Madness — a flip cup tournament on 3/27 at Mad River benefiting Rock for Kids. Beer, food, entertainment provided. Details in Slowdown.
Got an old prom or formal dress just collecting dust in your closet? Help make an Chicagoland girl have a happy prom night by donating your dress to the Glass Slipper Project. Dress donations are being accepted now in many locations around the city and suburbs.
Hey, do you like colorful, cartoonishly illustrated visions of consumerism, with a heavy dash of 1960's and a hearty sprinkling of monsters? You do? Have you checked out Shag's new exhibit at Rotofugi?
Don't forget that you leave footprints in the snow when you flee the house you were just burglarizing.
A Rockford police car and the handcuffed man who was driving it were reunited with the Rockford Police Department after the car was stopped at a Chicago intersection.
For those creatively inclined Valentine's Day lovers, Andersonville and Lakeview card and frame shops Foursided and Twosided want to see your best handmade Valentine's cards. Winner gets $50 gift certificate. Deadline 2/7. Details and rules.
A good present for Chicago expatriates: a silhouette of the skyline they can put on their wall.
Have a friend who's a Cubs fan and a Transformers geek? Here's that person's perfect gift.
CoalGram.com ships a stocking's worth of anthracite coal anywhere in the country for $10 flat -- and gives 15 percent to the charity of your choice.
Gatorade may be commonly associated with Florida; it is, after all, named for the state's university mascot. The company that manufactures it however, good ole Quaker Oats, is based right here in Chicago and just so you know, we're standing by our number one pitch man, Tiger Woods.
Scared Panda is a new t-shirt company putting a twist on the standard Threadless model: submit a design and if it's picked you get $100 and a shirt -- and the charity of your choice gets 10 percent of the profits. Their first design is an homage to the Tamale Guy, which benefits Esperanza Community Services.
Wish the stars were better aligned, but this Chicago flag soap is still pretty awesome.
Threadless and Griffin have teamed up to put the former's t-shirt designs onto the latter's iPhone 3G/S covers. The first two designs went on sale today -- and we've got one of each to give away! Details after the jump...
All you have to to enter is send an
email to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Threadless" as the subject line and your name and mailing address in the body. We'll choose two winner as random at midnight tonight. Good luck!
UPDATE: Congrats to Nina and Kevin!
This Saturday (10am-noon), gather up your unwanted paper debris and head down to the parking lot in front of Jewel, Kmart, and Staples near Ashland and Division: WPB is teaming up with Secure EcoShred to tear up your printed materials for free. 3 box/bag limit, $5 box/bag after that.
Are you a fan of WGN's top meteorologist? Maybe you'd be interested in a custom "Snuggle Up with Skilling" Snuggie.
A. Favorite immortalizes Sinatra's favorite skyline on a greeting card.
In Will County, you can get out of community service for $50 worth of jerk chicken.
In honor of this calendrical curiosity, Threadless has made all its shirts $9 for the day. Enjoy!
The Chicago Tribune, that great purveyor of folk wisdom, shows you how to build an electric guitar just like Jack White (in a dandy little hat) does in It Might Get Loud. Properly, you'll be building an electric diddley bow, which is much more fun to say. (via)
When you put 19,000 bottles of Gatorade next to each other on a basketball court, they look just like Michael Jordon.
Whether you're just freshening up after a morning at the gym or defending your taxi against assailants, deodorant has you covered.
Crain's recent headline, "Midway sale to Warner Bros. approved by court," made me a little worried about the state of the airline industry ... until I clicked on the link.
Lakeview's Eye Spy Optical is offering a couple of environmentally friendly ways to save money this month. Bring in your old prescription specs, which will be donated to New Eyes for the Needy, and get $25 off a new pair. Or if you take the Brown Line to the newly reopened Paulina stop or ride your bike to their store, they'll give you 10% off a new pair of prescription glasses.
Couldn't make it to the International Housewares Show last month? No worries, Craig Berman and Tobias Lunchbreath have drawn you some pictures.
Looking for a way to get noticed among the thousands of applicants at a job fair? Well, you can always don a chicken suit like this guy.
The Comedy and Everything Else crew gives props to our local comedy scene in their latest episode, as Chicago-born funny men Jimmy Pardo and Jimmy Dore reminisce about their early days of doing stand-up around the city.
Examiner.com has some fun at the expense of HGTV and "Best of" lists with the network's proclamation of the Gold Coast as Chicago's dreamiest neighborhood.
Hey good morning Chicagoans! Did you know that for today, the outside is poison!? TGIF, am I right!?
With all the snow we've gotten over the past week, people are once again getting creative with their parking spot placeholders.
When preparing for your next bank robbery, you may want to use a blank sheet of paper for your note to the teller. You wouldn't want to use your pay stub or something...
Ever stretching the boundaries of the English language, the AP introduces the term "unsleepy."
The Cook County Sheriff's latest sting to arrest those with outstanding warrants involved a "sweepstakes" called Shoptastic Solutions. When people attempted to collect their prizes, they were arrested.
Stumped on what to get that hypochondriac on your Christmas list? How about a giant, plush microbe, created by University of Chicago law school grad Drew Oliver. Choose from The Common Cold, E. coli or Black Death. Hours of fun...
Following a vow not to date for seven years, two abstinence educators kissed each other for the first time the other day ... when they got married.
Brian Urlacher's son's mother says the football star paints his son's toenails blue and dresses him in pink diapers. Apparently, she sees this as cause for keeping the boy away from his father.
Yes, it really is that time of year again. If you're decorating for the season, you might consider one of these Christmas tree alternatives, or maybe a live potted tree. (Jewish college students might also want to try designing a green menorah.)
Know a University of Chicago student or alumnus? Know two or more? Print out these U of C-centric Bingo cards for them to enjoy during the holidays. Then stand back and watch the geek-tacular fun ensue.
May I introduce you to Larry Dean, who was mauled by a tiger. His reaction? It's "really not a big deal."
A car wash in Elgin seems to have gotten itself into trouble over a racy promise on its sign.
In case there's any confusion: "In the past, we in Israel asked if this was Chicago. Today, they're asking in Chicago if this is Israel."
A Chicago dentist got busted for being the primary money launderer in a multi-city prostitution ring. Of course, he also did dental work for the prostitutes and pimps.
At first I thought it was an Onion article, but, readers, pat yourselves on the back. You made someone's visit so enjoyable they wrote the Trib to tell you.
No matter how funny it may be to officially add "IN THE NAAAAME OF LOVE" and "AND SMELL THE ROSES" to stop signs, you can't.
And, more importantly, show up your siblings, by eschewing the half-wilted, unsustainably harvested bunch of red carnations you always get her, in favor of a beautiful card showcasing Chicago’s community gardens. Your $25 donation to NeighborSpace, a nonprofit urban land trust that protects many of Chicago’s urban oases, gets Mom the card and an invitation to a fall tour of city gardens. Slackers, take note: card orders must be received by Tuesday, May 6, at 10 a.m.
If you're out on the town and don't have a web-enabled phone, you can still access the Internet via a service that doesn't require calling that friend who's always online. ChaCha is a new human search service you can text with any question. So if you're wondering when the Chicago Diner closes or curious about the middle name of your alderman, they'll text the answer back to you. Also, if you don't already know, you can text GOOGL (46645) for business addresses and phone numbers.
The Trib earned a national shout-out for its April Fool's Day prank.
Padma Lakshmi, host of everyone's favorite reality television chef competition, apparently has a dangerous job. Also, "out of principle," she won't say "pack your knives and go" to people on the street. So, um, don't ask her to say that when you see her walking around town.
Thank you for considering my impressionable mind when editing your fine paper, but you've gone too far. My first glimpse of over-editing was when you changed Shia LaBeouf's "asshole" to the goofy "nincompoop." I was then a little offended when you switched (what I assume was) Buddy Guy's "nowhere" with "[any]where." And then you edited Sarah Silverman's "f*cking" to "doing the deed with." As with my asterisk, if you must edit, could you please stick with the intended meaning?
Who else has been getting a ton of Facebook updates about Thrillist coming to Chicago? Apparently, Gawker Media is introducing its own dose of Daily Candy soon, but you can sign up now if your sweet tooth can stand it.
An extra Friday is always cause for celebration, especially when it helps keep our calendar in alignment with the earth's revolution around the sun. The last time we had a February with five Fridays was 1980; check out Wikipedia for more fun leap year facts.
Swissôtel Chicago is now paying $10 to staffers who catch guests smoking in their rooms. Guilty guests get charged $250 to defray the cost of deodorizing the room.
Will the natural clown or the anti-discrimination activist take the title of Most Beautiful Cat in Chicago? You decide!
If your name is John Smith, This American Life would like you to email them at email@example.com with a few words about yourself. They may include you in an upcoming show about people with your name.
Rich Uncle Pennybags is going to include city names in a new Monopoly edition. Apparently he's ok with competition in this case, so vote for Chicago's inclusion today, and if you're really dedicated, every day until Leap Day.
I wonder if my landlord reads Gaper's Block. If so, he should be reminded that Section 10-8-180 of Chicago city code requires every person "having charge of any building or lot of ground in the city abutting upon any public way or public place shall remove the snow and ice from the sidewalk in front of such building or lot of ground."
Aramark and the Kane County Sheriff are being sued by three inmates for $2,000,000 in damages due to food being "insufficient" on a variety of measures, including nutrition, sanitation and sogginess.
I've been fighting making this post, but I must acquiesce. It seems the gold rally and the Chicago Board of Trade's rising wheat, corn and other commodity prices have something do to with a man's mugshot.
Have you ever wanted to know how bank robbers get named? In Chicago, look to the FBI's Ross Rice.
but Apartment Therapy has a few suggestions to keep the temperature in your apartment so delightful. (Sorry. I couldn't help myself.)
A 17-year-old followed the wrong person home yesterday in a robbery attempt: an armed, uniformed cop.
Remember the plane that lost luggage in air? Following reports that among the lost luggage was an American Girl doll whose owner was "sad and sleepless ... since the doll was sucked out of the cargo hold," American Girl stepped up and sent her a new doll.
It seems a Delta flight lost some bags after taking off from Midway. So if you haven't already taken the bags from heaven to the local thrift store, they'd like them back.
A weird, unnecessary email appeared in my inbox at 12:29 a.m. Friday morning from the CTA warning me of Thursday's late-afternoon storms, advising me to "allow for extra travel time on CTA service this evening." Thanks for the timely warning, folks.
Don't forget today is Talk Like a Pirate Day, ya scurvy cur! You may want to get in the mood by viewing pirates from previous years, and while you're looking, note that flickr has gotten into the spirit.
Apple's new iPod releases include an interesting partnership with Starbucks that will hit Chicago in March 2008. When you walk into a megalocoffee shop, you'll be able to see information about each song that's playing in the store as it plays and, of course, buy it and other iTunes songs. If you're interested in more information about the program, most pages on Apple's site currently list the wrong URL, so go here instead.
The Sun Times posted a feature about the variety of restaurants, clubs and other points of interest underneath our fair city. You may also want to check out Alice Maggio's two-part feature on the Pedway.
If so, make a short video about your collection and submit it to apartments.com for a chance to win $20,000. At the time of writing, no one's submitted anything, so your odds are good at being an early front runner.
Calling all drywallers: are you sick and tired of not getting the spotlight for your craft? Here's your chance for glory and a $5,000 prize through the "The Best of the Best Drywaller" competition, sponsored by USG, the folks who make Sheetrock. Qualifying bouts are currently being held at hardware stores all over the city, with the selection of the top drywaller taking place from 1pm to 5pm on August 19 at Harrison Park, 1824 South Wood.
What do Vegas, Bangkok, Mumbai and Krakow have in common? Well according to the Global Language Monitor they are all more important to fashion than Chicago. Nuts.
The Globe and Mail reports on what is surely the most important aspect of the Conrad Black trial.
If you've ever wondered why you've never seen a white Chicago Police Department horse or at least what being a mounted policeperson is like, this article's for you.
A circuit court judge has upheld the right of a former member of the Walgreens family to keep her three pigs on her Lake Forest property until at least 2011. Her next-door neighbors and 300 other locals aren't pleased. The decision will be appealed.
Our friendly neighborhood Quizno's coyote, Adrian, isn't alone as an urban explorer. Chicago coyote visits have increased from "perhaps a dozen" in the 1980s to 312 in the last three years.
The National Weather Service has enlisted the help of the FBI to track down a person who is submitting bogus weather reports in Illinois and Wisconsin. The reports have caused the service to issue erroneous storm warnings. If you can't trust weather reports, what can you trust?
Calling all family albums! The Tribune is seeking your bad vacation photos.
"We can maybe take that week and show her how much we really love her." We can definitely take that week, apparently.
Now that the Buckingham Fountain is going full blast, maybe you'd like to astound your friends with some related trivia. For example, it opened on May 26, 1927, and its computer's name is the "Honeywell Excel-Plus."
A revolt is underway in the suburbs. The target: new sidwalks. After all, with sidewalks, "who knows what you'd be encouraging to come through?" The Trib's online readers are having none of it, with approximately 90% saying sidewalks in neighborhoods are "a positive addition."
Maybe we're going a little overboard with all this Cicada Mania, but if you absolutely can't wait till the end of the month for the emergence of Brood XIII, the Trib has the answer; cicadas in origami (PDF file).
While Calgon may not take you away, Abraham Lincoln has you covered.
Several cars in Printers Row received smiley face makeovers last night. The Trib astutely predicts "if the taggers are caught, there will be no smiles."
The Tribune has an interesting list of Chicago transit facts (with an inexplicably capitalized headline).
The AP's reporting that the Skyway was in danger of "turning into a gigantic, Windy City-style, deep-dish pizza" yesterday. You may want to watch out for other structure-to-food transformations throughout the day.
If you've traveled around the world "crossing every meridian of longitude in the same direction" and are interested in meeting others like you, you're in luck. Chicago has its own chapter of the Circumnavigators Club. Oh, and your travel doesn't have to be in the same trip.
Michael Horvich is more than a supernumerary, he's the curator of Michael's Museum. Unfortunately, the physical museum is currently not open to the public, presumably due to high demand because of a recent Tribune article. For now, enjoy the photographs and lists.
Photobooth-o-philes, get excited! You'll soon be able to take a zany picture of yourself and your close friends at Quimby's.
It's always a pleasure to see a news organization pick just the right stock image for a Downers Grove mob hit story.
College newspapers may not be known as paragons of journalism, but some local schools have some trailblazing pieces online, such as Columbia Chronicle's Jackass of the Week column. Other recent college paper wackiness comes from an article about Microsoft vernacular, an apology from a paper that got it all wrong and a pseudo op-ed arguing for a "Star Trek Defense" system against illegal aliens.
Someone smart at the Tribune asked its arts and architecture critics what prompted them to reevaluate artists in their disciplines. Some second looks include the Trap Door Theatre, William McDonough and Walker Evans.
Oak Brook's very own McDonald's seems to be having some trouble on one of its British websites. (Unfortunately, the item on the original website is in Flash, so we can't link to it.)
"It started out as a harmless fling. He was a male cicada in love, she was a female cicada with needs." Could this possibly be from a real newspaper? Find out now.
Convert your currency to South Side dollars while enjoying an unusual White Sox website.
If you're looking for the toniest neighborhood for your next real estate purchase, maybe you should check the Chicago Business High End Homes section. The feature includes maps, photos and sale prices for the most expensive homes in the region in 2006.
Prospect Heights-based Alibi Network will construct elaborate lies on their clients' behalf. Given the copious amounts of stock photography and late 1990s web design, I thought this company was a hoax until I found their massive media archive.
Hoffman Estates-based EA Chicago is coming out with a new video game called Def Jam: Icon. In it you can pick your favorite real life rapper and stomp the crap out of your least favorite real life rapper. Fun. As far as I can tell, it seems sort of like Hood 2 Hood and Don Diva combined in video game form. An additional venue in which, to paraphrase Chuck D from a recent documentary, Black death is being pimped by corporations.
Welcome to a world wherein grandparents in Lake County teach their grandchildren how to play video games.
It's 1961 and the communists have overthrown the government of the United States of America. Prepare yourself for the U.S.S.A.! What is the communists' first step? Move the government to Merchandise Mart! As J. Edgar Hoover says, read this comic now in order to "help us recognize and detect communists as they attempt to infiltrate the various segments of our society."
Even if you've never pointed a bent coat hanger at Stonehenge, you have to admit strange things were afoot at O'Hare last November. So in case you were curious, Chicago Mag has compiled a few of the more compelling UFO reports.
It's only February, but the Daily Southtown has already given cause for celebration (or is that panic?): "Snowmageddon has arrived!" Bonus points awarded for their photo of kids ramping their sled off of a folding table.
This month's Chicago Magazine contains a funny little feature providing high school portraits of area notables like Dave Eggers, Liz Phair, Harold Ramis and Donald Rumsfeld.
How's this for an unusual look into the lives of our senior senator and his three high-powered roommates! Juicy tidbits include Durbin killing mice with his bare hands and his insistence on having a big screen television.
The Aqua Teen Hunger Force advertisements that caused serious problems in Boston have been in Chicago for weeks. After all of the hubbub in Boston, most of ours were collected last night. [If you happened to snap a photo of the Chicago Ignignokts/Errs, please post it to our flickr pool for all to enjoy.]
Fortunately, the irony that the Illinois Institute of Technology's student newspaper hadn't been updated since January 31, 2006 wasn't lost on its editors. Oh, irony, thou must find elsewhere to roost.
Those wacky Sun-Times staffers are at it again with this year's monkey stock market picks. As you'd expect, "Mr. Adam Monk," the primate in question, has beaten the major indices for the last four years. After you take in the monkey madness, pull a stock out of a hat and enter their contest for most appreciating stock.
At last year's recent DIY Trunk Show, I made my usual rounds looking at who was doing what. The quality keeps getting better and better every year, a testament to those who organize the Trunk Show. However, one vendor caught my eye — Pink Loves Brown. The goods were smart, well-designed, retro-modern and quality. Nicole Balch puts out some really nice stuff — her apartment is quite inspiring, an extension of her work and aesthetic.
Some United employees saw a UFO at O'Hare on November 7th, but the FAA's having none of it.
If you're looking for a holiday laugh, check out the Tribune's reader-submitted "Scared of Santa" photo gallery. (Link pops due to window resizing.)
I don't know how many times I've been to the Quimby's site, but I'd never noticed the "live at quimby's" section until this morning. It has audio recordings from almost two-dozen events, although the one I really wanted to hear (Al Burian) is broken.
A number of robots will soon see action in Chicago. Oh, and one of them is named "Frank."
One might think that 5,700 complaints against Chicago cab drivers would be a record high, but it's a 17% drop.
Console Camp, a new, Chicago-based game console blog, carries news and will provide details about the best camping spots for the Wii and the PS3. And in the spirit of democratic media, you can even post to it via email!
How much do you know about bizarre Chicagoland murders? Take this short quiz and find out!
This Halloween season has plenty to offer the ghoul lurking inside of you. Unusual offerings include KFAR's Spookagogue Synagogue, the Apollo Theater's Haunting History, the Six Corners Monster Film Festival, and Ursula Bielski's Creepy Chicago Hauntings. Check slowdown for additional options.
We all know that the Art Institute was a location for Ferris Bueller's Day Off, but did you know that Gerri's Palm Tavern was a location for The Sixth Sense? MovieMappr knows, and it will show you where Gerri's was.