Friday, June 30, 2017

BIG Y'EYEMAH's Friday Night Creature Feature for June 30th, 2017: A Special Sauce + Herbs & Spices -OR- Fast Food Dinner Theatre Edition


Scene: BIG Y'EYEMAH (a.k.a., The BIG YO'MYE'MAH), Loseturd Q. McNebbish, and eight feral cats and a mangy dog in a ramshackle trailer at the edge of Pleasant Vista and Aroma Trailer Homes on the east side of Trumpkin Village, itself on the south side of New GOPerusalem City.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Hurry, BIG Y'EYEMAH, or we won't catch the Circu-LOSER-alator bus and make it to McDonald's.

BIG Y'EYEMAH (breaking wind while eating from a vat of corned cheese): Oh, bother. I'm coming. I was waiting for the bread in my bread-maker to rise to the top. Mom says that's when it's reached doneness and you can say Grace.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Oh, BIG Y'EYEMAH, is it for our church's bait-and-switch Bread-for-the-Poor tax dodge campaign?

BIG Y'EYEMAH (giggling): Yes. Coo. Coo.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Oh, yea verily, BIG Y'EYEMAH, you do do so much charitable work.


Hour later at the bus stop next to Crackston Towers at the corner of Cabrini and Green Ways. Sound of gunshots, screams, breaking glass, and lots of yelling and profanity coming from inside the walled-off compound.

BIG Y'EYEMAH: Sounds like a lot of love in there. Truly, Jesus saves!


Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Oh, BIG Y'EYEMAH, you see ONLY the good. That's why THE LORD(TM) sent you to me.

Two hours, a near mugging, and 47 screaming schizophrenic people later, the bus pulls up followed by another one. The first keeps going while the second one reluctantly stops. 


SHHHHHWOOOSH! BEEP - BEEP - BEEP. Down comes the bus on its pneumatic kneeling device so that BIG Y'EYEMAH can get on the bus in her wheelchair.

SQUAWK! SQUAWK! from the fare reader owing to no money on either card.

BIG Y'EYEMAH: Oh, dear, we need to add value to our fare cards.


Loseturd Q. McNebbish: But I only have a 20 Trump bill, BIG Y'EYEMAH! and I am saving my debit card to use for dinner!

Bus Driver: Put dat cash on yo' card o' git yo triflin' fat asses off dis bus!!

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Say, BIG Y'EYEMAH, maybe we should just forget about this and go back home. We have some corned cheese and spam and some crackers.


BIG Y'EYEMAH: WAAHH! I WANT MY BURGERS AND FRIES! I'M HUNGRY! YOU DON'T LOVE ME!

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: There, there, BIG Y'EYEMAH. I'll put the money on the card. Anything for you and our Little Annabelle Mae. Say, where is she? I haven't seen her since Thursday.

Two hours later at the McDonald's in front of the cashier and underneath the garish fluorescent lights.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: And we'd like to order four Big McYoMyeMah Macs, five saddlebags of Freedom fries, four vanilla and two chocolate shakes, and three extra large soft drinks. Now do the burgers have the SPECIAL SAUCE plus HERBS AND SPICES??

Cashier mumbles inaudibly.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: But does it have the SPECIAL SAUCE plus HERBS AND SPICES?? I saw that on the TV commercial.

Cashier: Bitch, I don't know or care! Just pay the 120 dollars.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: Wait -- 120 Trump dollars?? BIG Y'EYEMAH, I DON'T HAVE THAT MUCH MONEY ON ME!! My debit card only has 100!

BIG Y'EYEMAH: WAAAAHHHH!!!

A whirling sound as a set of floating drone cameras appears around BIG Y'EYEMAH and Loseturd Q. McNebbish.

Loseturd Q. McNebbish: What's happening, BIG Y'EYEMAH?!? There are cameras and a JANITOR ROBOT!

In a flash, the automated restaurant janitor robot appears behind BIG Y'EYEMAH and Loserturd Q. McNebbish and - in a flash - cuts off their clothes. BIG Y'EYEMAH's top plops off -- rolls of fat fanning outward -- and Loserturd Q. McNebbish's pants fall down revealing a big bowling ball of a belly and a jiggling ass. Privates of both are concealed by fat.

The scene is projected not only on the massive outdoor wall-screen but on millions of flat screen televisions coast-to-coast  in the Trumped Up States of Amerca.

"There's your SPECIAL SAUCE plus HERBS AND SPICES!" says the disembodied voice that is 3,000 miles away in Hollywood on this episode of Candidly Loser Camera. Sound of uproarious laughter.

Loserturd Q. McNebbish faints away.

BIG Y'EYEMAH: Could I just get three Big McYoMyeMah Macs and one coke instead, please? Here's Loserturd's debit card.

More audience laughter.

The End.

--Regulus

Trump's Tweetstorm of Unhinged Misogyny Ignites Political/Media Firestorm -OR- Another Day, Another Camp Runamuck Conflagration; GOP "Better Care" Bill Still the Worst for Health

**This entry was posted and updated on June 30, 2017.**

**Updated 4:44PM 6/30/2017: See below.**

Potomac River view near the Kennedy Center, Washington, D.C., 4:50PM June 25, 2017.

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So this is a political-themed entry tonight because -- to quote the inestimable Charlie Pierce -- of the billowing clouds of smoke coming from Camp Runamuck, a.k.a., the Trump White House, is a sight to behold.


Of the many Trumpster dumpster fires burning, the latest conflagration involves Trump's noxious and deranged tweets Thursday morning against Morning Joe cohosts (and erstwhile Trump friends) Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski (pictured above). (The two are now engaged.) As background, the relationship between the co-host couple and Trump has soured bigly in recent months as they've begun questioning everything about him including his mental health.


It was Trump's usual deep and hateful misogyny that erupted -- and as CNN pundit Ana Navarro noted -- in the context of his bizarre fixation on women and blood, hence the tweeted remarks about "low IQ crazy Mika" Brzezinski and how on New Years Eve she was "bleeding badly from a face-lift."


Above are images of the two tweets that our mentally unbalanced President sent out -- and the response across the media-scape (with the exception of the Fox News propaganda organ and rightwing hate radio/internet garbage) was revulsion and condemnation.


For her part, the awesome Ms. Navarro said the following to dough-faced Wolf Blitzer:

"I was frankly disgusted ... This dude has got such a fixation with women and blood. What is wrong with him? And then you remember that this dude, this disgusting dude, is the president of the United States. ... He's acting for all of us ... and he is embarrassing. He is shameful."

She went on to say: "It's time that somebody ... calls him up and says, 'Listen, you crazy, lunatic 70-year-old man-baby, stop it. You are now the president of the United States, the commander in chief, and you need to stop acting like a mean girl, because we just won't take it.'"

Source here.

Trump also just lied when he wrote that this -- since it basically states that neither Scarborough nor Brzezinski were in attendance with Trump at the Mar-a-Lago New Years Eve bash when there is every bit of photographic proof that they were:

Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski meet Trump at Mar-a-Lago on New Years Eve 2017.

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A picture of Mika Brzezinski at Mar-a-Lago on New Years Eve 2017 -- as sent out in a tweet by CNN's Brian Stelter yesterday -- showing that she was most definitely not "bleeding" from a face-lift for any other reason.

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Of course, Trump and the truth have almost no overlap. Earlier this week, the New York Times had a full page print edition list of all Trump's lies -- available here online as well.

Well, all except for idiot Chris Cillizza, who tried to sound like some jaded, worldly sophisticate by yammering on about how "this is who Trump is and he won't change" -- as if that is some sort of resolution to the moral and ethical depravity of that man who occupies an office to which he should have never ascended.

Oh, and Melania Trump's reply through her mouthpiece was equally offensive with its thuggish "When attacked, Trump will hit back ten times as hard" mindset. This shows mental instability and abusiveness -- and it also shows Ms. "Stop Cyberbullying" to be full of shit.

That's some abusive marriage she's in.


As for the useless Sarah Huckabee Sanders (pictured above the other day), to cite what Charlie Pierce recently wrote, had Trump not won, she "would be would be on the 700 Club, hawking Jesus by the pound."

New York Times online headlines, 2:12AM June 30, 2017.

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The Trump tweets caused an earthquake in the American media and political worlds -- representing a sort of breaking point (or at least it seemed so in the heat of the moment). They also instantly appalled literally tens of millions of Americans who pay attention to these things. Here is the main New York Times article about it -- it has at present over 5,200 comments associated with it.

The Washington Post news, analysis, and opinion pieces on it similarly have thousands of comments per piece.

Washington Post online headline on Trump tweet backlash, June 29, 2017.

The headline quote is actually taken from Sen. Ben Sasse's tweet.

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It's too bad that Mika's father -- the late Zbigniew Brzezinski -- isn't still around. I would have loved to have heard what he would have said. (He died just a bit over a month ago.)

UPDATED 4:44PM 6/30/2017

I have to note in this entry the Washington Post op-ed headlined "Donald Trump is not well" that Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski wrote today.

The piece details on the Mar-a-Lago New Years Eve event and the revelation that "top White House staff members warned that the National Enquirer was planning to publish a negative article" about the co-host couple unless they "begged the president to have the story spiked."

They wrote: "We ignored their desperate pleas."

Of the 5,500+ comments associated with it as of this update, the top one by poster "Mark Sparkman" is worth reposting here:

Trump defines himself through his criticisms. It's called psychological projection and he is the poster child for a Psych 101 course on this disorder. Just look at his most recent critical language, "low IQ", "showboat", "grand-stander" -- sound like someone we know? In the past he has called people "losers", "incompetents" -- this from the guy who has been married 3 times and bankrupted 4 or 5 times. "Fake news" from the man who pushed the Obama birther lie and the bogus wire tapping claim. If you want to know the real Donald Trump just look at his endless criticisms, he tells us exactly who he is.


Oh, and the Washington Post editorial board had this unsigned editorial (link embedded): Trump clearly won't change. Here's what the rest of us can do.

I never thought I'd be in a reality where I found common cause with Fred Hiatt & Co. Funny that.

End of Update.

*******

Trump's unhinged outburst -- calling to mind the blood comments he made about former Fox News personality Megyn Kelly -- was all too much for many Senate Republicans, some of whom had surprisingly harsh denunciations of Trump, including South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham (R - Gay) and Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Cornhusk Hole).

A leafy elm tree in the 2000 block New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C., 1:42PM June 25, 2017.

This tree is across the street from my apartment building and I see it from my window. It's actually about 7 stories tall -- higher than my 5th floor apartment. This means it is taller than the tallest dinosaur that ever lived (Sauroposeidon)-- but not longer in length than the blue whale.

*******

For their part, Senate Republicans are in a deserved and hopefully intractable mess over their Obamacare "repeal and replace" effort that is little more than a trillion dollar tax giveaway to the superrich at the expense of Medicaid recipients and that pits the far libertarian right Teabagger types against the moderates (i.e., garden variety right-leaning Senators) worried about how such a savage reverse class warfare will weigh on their electoral chances once the human devastation starts piling up as a result of the passage of the bill.


Leading this effort is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who is an amoral tool of oligarchy and plutocracy -- and who bears a striking resemblance to a tortoise. But at least he doesn't tweet hateful bullshit.

1272 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C., 2:14PM June 25, 2017.

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Regarding that "Better Care Reconciliation Act" -- still as much of a bloody abortion of a "health bill" as the House Republican "AHCA" version -- there have been some great pieces on the whole process and ongoing sudden / unexpected developments from my usual trio of must-read political writers to include Jonathan Chait, Josh Barro, and Charlie Pierce, each in his own effective style.

The Potomac River near the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge, Washington, D.C., 4:49PM June 25, 2017.

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I would like to post more but it is already ridiculously late -- nearly 4AM. However, before signing off, I would like to note that I did something I haven't done in a long, long while (as in, 2 years 3 months), namely, I updated my long-lost-from-any-purpose Arcturus's World blog.

Several of the images in this entry are also in the new entry I posted over there. That being the case, I'm going to sign off now. I'll try to post a BIG Y'EYEMAH's Friday Night Creature Feature edition later today.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington, D.C., 5:10PM June 25, 2017.

It's far better to see it on a cold, still winter night when there are few tourists around and instead the memorial is bathed in subdued lighting.

*******

OK, goodnight, or rather, good morning.

--Regulus

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

June 2nd, 2017 in the Windy City: My Last Full Day in Chicago Walkabout Photo-Essay Finale

The John Hancock Center as seen from E Chicago Ave and N Michigan Ave, Chicago, Ill., 5:50PM June 2, 2017.

I couldn't think of a more Chicago-y picture than this one.

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This entry contains the full collection of the photographs that I took with my admittedly low-quality flip-open cellphone camera on my last full day in Chicago -- June 2nd, 2017 -- during my four-day trip there and day before I returned home. (Recall I went there to attend a DOE workshop and stayed an extra day and a half thanks to the generosity of my former co-worker Amanda and her boyfriend Bryan in allowing me to stay at their place.)

All times -- both in the photo file names and photo captions -- are local (CDT).

The exterior of the house at 1449 W Addison Street, Chicago, Ill., 2:34PM June 2, 2017.

Here I had started my walk from the Addison Brown Line CTA ("L") station eastward. My intended destination was a bit under a mile east at the Addison Red Line CTA station since that station stop would have put me at the north end of Lake View ("Boystown") for my walkabout that is photo-chronicled in this entry. However, I screwed up and went to the "wrong" Addison station.

As I explained in the updated portion of this entry, Chicago there are THREE (3) stations named "Addison" in the CTA system -- variously on the Blue, Brown, and Red Lines, and in my first attempt, I screwed up and went to the one on the Blue Line that is almost all the way back to O'Hare Airport.

More generally, the CTA system has multiple stations with the same name -- including three "Harlem" stations with two of them on opposite ends of the Blue Line.

The reason for this state-of-affairs is that there are man-miles-long east-west and north-south-running roads that crisscross the vastly sprawling Chicagoland area and the station names simply reflect where the various lines intersect them -- meaning that names get reused.

Being accustomed to the D.C. Metrorail system, this is highly confusing since station names are never repeated including the Addison Road station on the Blue Line. (Apparently, repeating station names also happens on New York's subway system).

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Wrigley Field, Chicago, Ill., 2:57PM June 2, 2017.

It turns out that Wrigley Field is located along Addison Road -- it even has an Addison Road address (1060 W. Addison Street). (My unplanned jaunt out to the Blue Line Addison Street station and then back deep inside "The Loop" of central Chicago and out to the Brown Line one took about 75 minutes.)

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A path in Lincoln Park near the Diversey Driving Range and not far from Lake Michigan, Chicago, Ill.,, 3:46PM June 2, 2017.

Lincoln Park runs for many miles north-south along the lakefront (stretching well outside the Lincoln Park community area).

By this point, I had walked down N. Halstead Street through Boystown (in Lakeview community area) and detoured -- after making a badly-needed pit stop in a lockable, private bathroom at a teashop at the corner of North Broadway and W. Briar Pl -- over to Lincoln Park. I didn't have the time or wherewithal to explore any of "gay Chicago" -- it was still basically midday and I still had several miles to walk and wanted to go atop the Hancock Center before meeting up with Amanda and Bryan.

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The entrance to the Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, Ill., 4:05PM June 2, 2017.

I checked ahead of time and there are no hippos at the Lincoln Park Zoo, so I was not inclined to try and get in a quick visit there.

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Street view, 1500 block of N State Parkway, Chicago, Ill., 4:20PM June 2, 2017.

By this point, I had traversed Lincoln Park and into the Near North Side -- one of the 77 Community Areas of Chicago and one of the four that comprise downtown Chicago. Near North Side includes the affluent Gold Coast neighborhood and the stretch known as the Magnificent Mile.

For its part, N State Parkway -- which has a terminus point at North Blvd -- becomes N State Street at Division Street. But State Street also marks the east-west dividing line of Chicago's street grid. The north-south dividing line is at Madison Street. So the intersection of N State and S State Streets and E and W Madison Streets marks the zero point or origin of the city's grid system. (The 1500 block I noted above indicates it is 15 blocks north of Madison Street. The earlier "1400 block of Addison Street" indicated I was 14 blocks west of the State Parkway / Street dividing line.)

Unlike D.C., Chicago doesn't use quadrants (i.e., NW, NE, SE, and SW) but rather simply individual directional letters -- so when you're near O'Hare Airport on the CTA and you see two street names and something such as 9800N and 5200W, it means you are 98 blocks north and 52 blocks west of that zero point.

In D.C., of course, the Capitol building is the zero point (0,0).

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Sidewalk view outside 1440 N State Parkway, Chicago, Ill., 4:22PM June 2, 2017.

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Carmine's: A Rosebud Restaurant, Chicago, Ill., 4:34PM June 2, 2017.

Carmine's is located at 1043 N Rush Street in the Magnificent Mile stretch. For its part, N Rush Street "y's" off of N State Street at E Cedar Street in a south-southeasterly fashion.

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The Tavern on Rush steakhouse, Chicago, Ill., 4:34PM June 2, 2017.

Tavern on Rush is located next to Carmine's and its address is 1031 N Rush Street.

I would have liked to have tried both these places but, alas, I simply did not have time. I'd like to return to Chicago and spend a bit more time in this part of the city.

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Intersection of N Rush St and E Bellevue Pl, Chicago, Ill., 4:34PMM June 2, 2017.

I sure took a lot of pictures at 4:34PM CDT. Well, three in all.

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Street view of Hugo's Frog Bar and Fish House, 1024 N Rush St, Chicago, Ill., 4:36PM June 2, 2017.

Hugo's Frog Bar and Fish Place is another restaurant I would have liked to have visited.

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By this point, I was approaching my destination: The John Hancock Center located in Chicago's highly affluent Near North Side community area in (depending on how they are reckoned) the Gold Coast or Magnificent Mile neighborhoods.*

*By way of explanation, Chicago has 77 community areas and within them are varying numbers of neighborhoods. In the case of the Near North Side, the neighborhoods that included Goose Island, Old Town, Gold Coast, River North, Streeterville, and the Magnificent Mile (although sometimes the latter is considered just a stretch of North Michigan Avenue).

The Near North Side also includes Cabrini-Green -- making it the startling exception to all these highly affluent neighborhoods. Cabrini-Green once was the location of Chicago's most notorious tenement high rise slums plagued with poverity, violent crime, and drugs. (In popular TV culture, it's where the show Good Times was set.)  

At the base of the John Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 4:42PM June 2, 2017. 

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The 100-story Hancock Tower has an architectural height of 1,128 feet high, although one of its twin antennas reaches 1,499 feet. The observation deck -- 360 Chicago -- is on the 94th floor. By comparison, the Willis (Sears) Tower has an architectural height of 1,450 feet and an antenna pinnacle height of 1,729 feet. The Willis Tower observation deck is on the 103rd floor. I had gone to its observation deck the previous day.

To clarify, the Willis Tower pinnacle height was originally lower than the Hancock Center. Antennas were added in 1982 and the western one was extended in 2000 to the current height of 1,729 feet which was enough at the time to make it the tallest building in the world.

South view from the 360 Chicago Observatory, Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 4:52PM June 2, 2017.

The Willis Tower and the frickin' Trump International Hotel and Tower are visible in this image along with the Aon Center toward the left. From right to left, these are the first, second, and third tallest buildings in Chicago, respectively, with the Hancock Center the fourth tallest.

*******

I was unable to get definitive rankings of the "supertall" Hancock and Willis skyscrapers in terms of height -- I found multiple, conflicting rankings on various Wikipedia pages. According to this list of buildings ranked by pinnacle height,the Hancock and Willis Towers are 11th and 7th tallest, respectively, as of June 2017.

East view from the 360 Chicago Observatory, Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 4:52PM June 2, 2017.

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As is the case from the Willis Tower observation deck, it is possible on a day with good visibility to see the Michigan shoreline directly across Lake Michigan from Chicago -- a distance of about 50 miles. Lake Michigan -- which is really an inland sea, as are the other four Great Lakes -- widens to the north and at Milwaukee, is probably about 90 miles across. It is also possible to see the entire rounded southern portion of Lake Michigan including the Indiana shoreline.

Oh, yes, that's Navy Pier visible stretching out into Lake Michigan. The larger island-like structure to the left (north) of it is the Jardine Water Purification Plant.

*******


Before continuing, I would like to post the image directly above -- the link to which is here taken in April 2009 from the shoreline on the other side of Lake Michigan by Flickr user "ctm800" that purports to show the Chicago skyline -- or at least the four tallest buildings to include (as now named) from left to right the Willis Tower, Trump Tower, Aon Center, and John Hancock Center. (The left to right order also marks the tallest to fourth tallest Chicago skyscrapers, in that order.)

There also appear to be a few other objects just poking above the horizon but I'm not going to try to discern which buildings they are.

The shadow of the John Hancock Center as seen from the 360 Chicago Observation deck, 4:52PM June 2, 2017.

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The next two views are facing north -- with the late afternoon shadows being cast by the towers along Lake Michigan in the Lincoln Park and Lakeview community areas:

North view from the 360 Chicago Observatory, Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 4:54PM June 2, 2017.

From this vantage point, you can see the beaches along Lake Michigan to include the Oak Street Beach and a bit farther up the shoreline, the North Avenue beach -- marked by the spit of land curling out into the lake.

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North view from the 360 Chicago Observatory, Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 4:55PM June 2, 2017.

As I mentioned in at least one entry at the time of my visit, the water in Lake Michigan is oddly deep blue -- even greenish blue -- giving the appearance of being very clean, except for the fact it is also opaque, which creates a sort of strange effect.

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There is a bar in the 360 Chicago Observatory called the Architect's Corner Bar and Café. I got the one-drink "package" ticket -- which I thought meant I could not buy a second drink while there. However, that turned out not to be the case.

Bartender Clayton, Architect's Corner Bar and Café, 360 Chicago Observatory, John Hancock Center, Chicago, Ill., 5:03PM June 2, 2017.

Clayton is from Dallas but lives in Chicago with his twin brother. He has a regular office job but landed this most unusual gig on a part time basis. He said it really is amazing to be on the observation deck when it snows -- or when there is a thunderstorm. He also said that because the Hancock Center includes private apartments -- and there is the occasional need for an ambulance call, folks can get stuck up there when the fire alarm sounds.

I would not want to be in that situation.

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Chicago Water Tower, Chicago, Ill., 5:48PM June 2, 2017.

Constructed in 1869 as a water pumping station, the limestone tower is one of the few buildings to have survived the Great Chicago Fire of Oct. 8 - 10, 1871 -- the one for which Mrs. O'Leary and her cow were not responsible. Today is houses the City Gallery in the Historic Water Tower

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Sidewalk view along N Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Ill., 5:52PM June 2, 2017.

There are very upscale stores along this famous Chicago thoroughfare.

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Street view from N Michigan Ave and E Ohio Street, Chicago, Ill., 5:57PM June 2, 2017.

That tall structure is the Trump International Hotel and Tower. I hate even spelling out the name "Trump."

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The crowded bustle of N Michigan Ave near E Illinois Street, Chicago, Ill., 6:00PM June 2, 2017.

I was heading toward Millennium Park to meet Amanda and Bryan.

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The next picture features a poignant sculpture in Chicago's Pioneer Court called "Return Visit" that was erected shortly before the (disastrous) presidential election last November. It features a 25-foot tall sculpture of Abraham Lincoln giving a copy of the Gettysburg Address to a modern-day common man wearing a sweater, corduroy pants, and sneakers.

Created by 87-year old artist Seward Johnson, the sculpture suggests that Lincoln is "explaining the tenets of the Gettysburg Address and what relevancy those words would have today," said Paula Stoeke, curator at Seward Johnson Atelier in California. You can read a Chicago Tribune news article about it here.

"Return Visit" sculpture, Pioneer Court, Chicago, Ill., 6:02PM June 2, 2017.

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Continuing with my walk ...

The Chicago River looking east from the DuSable Bridge, a.k.a., the Michigan Avenue Bridge, Chicago, Ill., 6:04PM June 2, 2017.

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Paying the respect due the man and his crooked and compromised Russian-funded real estate empire ...

Trump International Hotel and Tower, Chicago, Ill., 6:06PM June 2, 2017.

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The Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:17PM June 2, 2017.

There was a local gospel choir performing. The first thunderously loud song was wonderful. The next four or five as I waited for Amanda and Bryan were just thunderously loud.

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I finally made it to the Cloud Gate sculpture -- a.k.a., "The Bean" -- in Millennium Park. Apparently, this sculpture Indian-born British artist Anish Kapoor was inspired by a drop of liquid mercury ...

Reflection of Yours Truly in the polished stainless steel of Cloud Gate sculpture, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:21PM June 2, 2017.

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People taking pictures at Cloud Gate sculpture, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:21PM June 2, 2017.

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The concave chamber ("omphalos") underside of Cloud Gate, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:22PM June 2, 2017.

According to Wikipedia, this is the "omphalos" -- a "warped dimension of fluid space" in which "solid is transformed into fluid in a disorienting multiplicative manner that intensifies the experience," and that "is emblematic of Kapoor's work to deconstruct empirical space and venture into manifold possibilities of abstract space.The experience is described as a displaced or virtual depth that is composed of multiplied surfaces."

OK, then.

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The reflection of nearby buildings in Chicago's Loop area in the stainless steel plates of Cloud Gate, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:24PM June 2, 2017.

The Aon Center is visible in this reflection.

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I met Amanda and Bryan at Cloud Gate around 6:40PM.

A young couple (presumably going to their prom) take a selfie at the Cloud Gate sculpture, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill., 6:33PM June 2, 2017.

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The three of us discussed where to get dinner before heading out on the CTA to the Ravenswood neighborhood for the evening's planned events -- and while trying to decide, a placed called Rudy's Bar and Grille appeared right before us.

This was precisely the sort of place I was seeking on my first night in Chicago -- but could not find because it was a bit too late for me, I was tired, and I don't have a Smartphone that would allow me to find such places.

Blurry picture of the interior of Rudy's Bar and Grille, Chicago, Ill., 8:01PM June 2, 2017.

While we got a table, this is precisely the kind of place where I enjoy sitting at the bar and having dinner. I was happy both with the food and service. 

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Thereafter, we took the CTA Brown Line up to the Ravenswood stop in the Ravenswood neighborhood in Chicago's Lincoln Square community area. We went to a curious little private club to which Bryan belongs known as Rodam to see a performance by a jazz band. We stayed there until about 12:30AM -- and took an Uber back to their apartment. That was quite an enjoyable high-speed, late-night ride through Chicago on mostly empty thoroughfares with a good conversation that also involved the driver.

First of two blurry pictures at the Rodam club, Ravenswood, Chicago, Ill., 11:08PM June 2, 2017.

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The driver found my political commentary kind of funny, especially the part about if Chicago were ever to go the way of Detroit (barring some national calamity, not likely in the present era), it could (much like seems to be underway in Detroit) just be purchased by a few random libertarian billionaires and have a dome put over it.

Second of two blurry pictures at the Rodam club, Ravenswood, Chicago, Ill., 11:59PM June 2, 2017.

It seemed appropriate to take this picture at 11:59PM -- the last minute of my last full day in Chicago -- and to conclude this particular post with it.

*******

OK, this concludes my June 2nd Chicago pictures. It also concludes this entry. If I discover and typos or syntax errors, I will correct them as I find them.

My planned next entry will not be until Thursday or possibly Friday.

--Regulus