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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Reader goes to New Trier, alma mater of Mayor You-know-who!

Posted By on 10.17.12 at 10:00 AM

Hey, its pretty nice here!
  • Hey, it's pretty nice here!
Several months ago I attended an Evanston High School basketball game against our archrival, New Trier, which, as you all know, is the alma mater of our very own Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

That game—a classic—went into overtime when Reid Berman, a New Trier guard, hit a cold-blooded, last-second three-point shot.

Thankfully, Evanston went on to win in overtime, sending me and my fellow E-town old-timers into paroxysms of ecstasy.

Oh, happy day!

Afterward, I could not resist myself. I wrote a post predicting that Mayor Rahm—whose cabinet is filled with North Shore types—would immediately reward Mr. Berman by appointing him to some high-ranking position with CPS.

Okay, it seemed funny at the time.

Well, anyway, fast forward to last week . . .

I'm visiting New Trier, as part of its annual literary festival. Talking to a group of students in the library about the ins and outs and ups and downs of journalism—a career that many are considering. Believe it or not.

The buzzer sounds. The kids walk out. I'm gathering my stuff. When who should walk up but—you guessed it—Reid Berman!

That's right, the kid who hit the cold-blooded three that almost broke my heart.

He couldn't have been more respectful or polite. He told me his father had seen my story and passed it on to him. The whole family loved it. Apparently, I'm huge in Wilmette, at least among the Bermans.

When he left, I was hit with pangs of guilt. For years, I'd rooted against the dastardly Trevians of New Trier. Who knew they were so nice?

I made a mental note to root for Berman to average 30 a game in the coming season. Good God, what's next? Cheering for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers?

Fact is, till then, I doubt I'd ever met a New Trier basketball player. I now knew that my blind antipathy toward them was as irrational and unjustified as, oh, the one that Mayor Rahm and his fellow charterheads have toward union teachers in Chicago.

In fact, Mr. Mayor, in the aftermath of my visit to your alma mater, I propose that you take a field trip to a real Chicago public school where you can meet real unionized teachers so you can see first hand how misleading your antiunion caricatures really are.

On second thought, maybe it's a good idea to keep Mayor Rahm away from the schools. I don't think he can walk into one without feeling an urge to fire teachers, cut the pay of janitors, and institute another standardized test.

Anyway, I want to thank everyone at New Trier for being such a great host. It's a wonderful school with outstanding teachers, all of whom—irony of ironies—belong to a union.

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