New Chicago ordinances


Can you find Easy Street on the Chicago map?

Chicago and Illinois residents awoke this morning to a new set of Chicago ordinances. Mayor Daley called an early morning secret meeting of the Chicago City Council. New city ordinances were enacted under the cover of night, surprisingly reminiscent of the Miegs Field Airport closing. The new Chicago ordinances take effect immediately.

  • All reporters are hereby prohibited from  using the words “clout” and “bribes” in the same sentence with the name of Da Mayor or any council member.
  • Parking ticket books will be issued to all Chicagoans who purchase a Chicago city sticker.
  • Richard J. Daley is now formally recognized as one of Chicago’s founding fathers.
  • Illinois is now officially a suburb of the city of Chicago.
  • Lawsuits against the city of Chicago will immediately be dismissed if not filed by an attorney with Machine clout.
  • Four-day school week will become the law for teachers. Students will continue to attend school five days per week.
  • Old police motto of  “To Serve and Protect” on police cruisers will be replaced with “To Curb and Collect.”
  • O’Hare Airport passengers are now officially Chicago citizens and must pay property taxes while at O’Hare.
  • Lake Michigan is now Lake Chicago.
  • St. Patrick’s Day will only be celebrated on March 17.
  • Days of the week beginning with the letter “R” or “D” are now parking meter holidays.
  • Alternate Leap Days will be designated “The City that Works” Day, whereupon all city workers must work a full day.
  • Yesterday’s problems will be deferred to future generations.

Spanish students


Traffic crash scene at the corner of Clark and Randolph.

Oftentimes, I will meet one of my present or former Spanish students unexpectedly. I’m always happy to see them again, but I usually meet them long after I’ve forgotten their names. Once I was at the McDonald’s Playland near Midway Airport with my twin sons when they were about four years old and one of my former students greeted me with a loud and friendly, ¡Hola! I was happy to see her again, but this time she was with her young son and she was happy with her life.

Once while I was on duty as a police officer working in a patrol car, I was assigned to park my squad car with the blue lights flashing so other cars wouldn’t crash into a car that had crashed into the Cook County / City Hall building downtown. This must have been a slow news day because all kinds of cameramen came by to film the car that had crashed into the building while I just sat there in my squad car watching everyone come and go.

Then, I noticed that one cameraman was looking at me as he walked past. I couldn’t help but notice him, too. Then, we both recognized each other! He was in my Spanish class at UIC! He also recognized me. We kind of looked at each other with a look that could only mean, “This is what you do for a living?” I never imagined him as a cameraman. And he definitely never imagined me as a police officer.

Another time I was downtown where an employee of Dunkin Donuts was a theft victim. As I walked into Dunkin Donuts, one of my students saw me. We greeted each other and that was about it. However, I realized afterwards that he saw me in full police uniform walking into a Dunkin Donuts. How cliche! I was actually responding to a radio assignment, but I appeared to be acting like a typical cliché police officer going for coffee and donuts.

Last Saturday, as I was leaving the Burger King in Mount Greenwood with my twins, I saw a former Spanish student in the parking lot. We said hello to each other and then I noticed that he was with Mark Pera who is running for Congress so they gave me a flyer and asked me to vote for him. I responded that I would think about it. When I got home, just by chance, Mark Pera’s campaign office called me and asked me to vote for him. I told the caller that I had just seen him, but she didn’t believe me.