We didn't want to seek out the most powerful or influential, or even the up-and-coming. We didn't care if the people we chose had achieved early success, or if they were "successful" in the traditional sense at all. We didn't require that they be exceptional, at least not exceptional in a way that sets them apart from the other millions of inhabitants of this city. . . . we tracked down the people who, like most of us, work behind the scenes, who populate the underground and the everyday, who are fascinating chiefly because the work they do is . . . real.
In all the work we do for the People Issue, not all of the story gets told. Each writer gets to spend a good deal of time with their subjects, and there's only so much space to try and capture who that person really is. So for this edition of Variations on a Theme, Reader writers will be offering supplements to some of their People Issue subjects, trying to showcase more of the people that fascinate them, because there is invariably so much more to tell. So check back all week long for People Week, and stay tuned this week for the Reader's second annual People Issue, where we'll have all-new, one-of-a-kind Chicagoans for you to read about.