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Friday, March 30, 2018

How are these seders different from all other seders?

Posted By on 03.30.18 at 06:00 AM

  • Steve Jacobs

A few years ago, some friends joined me in writing a Passover Haggadah that borrowed the tunes of Beatles songs. We named it "You Say Shalom, And I Say Shalom." None of us is particularly observant (we're more Jew-ish), but we longed for the days when matzo was a delicacy and grandpa chugged the glass of wine left out for Elijah—the prophet who is said to attend seders in spirit form, thirsty for that sweet, sweet Manischewitz—when nobody was looking. Plus, it was a fun way to include our non-Jewish friends and sing as if we were camping out around a proverbial burning bush.

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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Carillonneurs play the world’s largest musical instruments—and they’re all but invisible

Posted By on 06.06.17 at 02:49 PM

Thomas Rees Memorial Carillon in Springfield's Washington Park - RYAN SMITH
  • Ryan Smith
  • Thomas Rees Memorial Carillon in Springfield's Washington Park

It can be lonely at the top—and it almost always is at the top of the monolithic musical instruments known as carillons. On Saturday night in Springfield, Illinois, UIC graduate student Hunter Chase was one of just five people chosen to venture alone to the peak of the 132-foot bell tower in Washington Park to perform at the Rees International Carillon Competition.

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Friday, February 17, 2012

More Saturday events to consider

Posted By on 02.17.12 at 04:12 PM

Mardi Gras, 1948
Every Chicago Saturday is brimming with activities, shows, concerts, and parties, so how can we fit everything that we want to in our weekly Agenda? Answer: we can’t. So, while you may have planned on hitting up a screening of the Joffrey Ballet doc at the Siskel or a show at the Bottle, here are a few other events to expand your freedom of choice this Saturday.

Things are going to get crazy

If you can’t make it down to New Orleans this year for Mardi Gras, Chicago Samba’s Carnaval offers an alternative that’s closer to home this weekend with a Brazilian Mardi Gras-themed celebration. Be ready for performances, dance lessons, live music, and a parade. Brazilian food and drink will be on sale to replenish your energy. (Those 21 and older can get a little wilder.) 10 PM, Logan Square Auditorium, 2539 N. Kedzie, $15. 18+

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Substituting tea-tree oil for nicotine

Posted By on 01.10.12 at 02:30 PM

Photo from Shutterstock
Each year, I cut back a little more on smoking. A far cry from my pack-a-day undergrad years that were spent cramming for modern American lit exams, delivering pizzas, playing in inept punk bands, and not really giving a shit, these days are exhausted with being hyperaware of a slowing metabolism and a 30-year-old body that's starting to break down—I finally just overcame a death cough that's been lingering since Christmas, for example.

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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas from the Reader to the Chicago Bulls and the Chicago City Council

Posted By on 12.25.11 at 12:00 PM

I was going to write a really nasty blog post, chiding 36th Ward alderman Nick Sposato for caving in on the United Neighborhood Organization's request to build a charter school in his ward.

'Cause what the world needs now is another UNO charter school, like I need a hole in my head....

You know, I always did like that song.

But then I started thinking....

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Monday, October 17, 2011

Blabbing 'bout my generation

Posted By on 10.17.11 at 03:09 PM


The cover story of this week’s New York magazine — written by Noreen Malone — entitled “The Kids Are Actually Sort of Alright,” aims to provide some sort of framework for today’s twentysomethings, who “Gchat, a million tiny windows blinking orange with hopes and dreams and YouTube links, with five-year plans and lunch plans,” whatever that means. The article has a photo slideshow of various defiant and brooding New York City twentysomethings with marker-scrawled masking tape fastened across their chests, bearing statements like “BRIGHT BUT UNCERTAIN,” “YOU HAVE NO IDEA,” and, my personal favorite, “LEAVE SOME FOR US.”

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Friday, October 14, 2011

Announcing the Reader's 40th birthday bash

Posted By on 10.14.11 at 04:40 PM

I dug up this great Cracked feature, "The 7 Most Unexpectedly Awesome Parties in History." Among the celebrations that made the list are Victory Day, the celebration to commemorate the signing of the Constitution, and a party celebrated by the Waris, which ended up wiping out their entire civilization.

Well, you can add the Chicago Reader’s 40th Birthday: A Black, White (and Yellow) Ball to that list. If you're not there, you will miss out on what one writer says, "...is sure to be the best party of the year." And that writer is me (encouraged by our promotions department). Full press release after the jump.

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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Conversations with the morning paper

Posted By on 08.30.11 at 11:35 AM

  • Gandhi
“Journalism of the highest order,” said A.E. Eyre. He slapped the Tuesday New York Times onto the table. It was opened to the op-ed page and the headline “Falser Words Were Never Spoken.”

The readout immediately caught my eye: “Reader beware: inspiring quotations are often fudged.”

Surely, not your own, I said.

“Mine are authentic,” said Eyre, puffing up a bit, “and I’m prepared to issue notarized certificates to that effect.

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Britney Spears and the search for meaning

Posted By on 08.12.11 at 11:38 AM

  • gtall1
There’s been so much ink spilled on both Lady Gaga and Britney Spears, though the kinds of press that the two attract couldn’t be more different: Gaga gets all the high-minded analysis (what other pop star would pranksters even think about playing a Slavoj Zizek-related trick on?) and Spears the white-trash jokes. So it was with high hopes that I went to Britney Spears 101, a three-person discussion at the Hungry Brain on Tuesday that I thought might bring some long-deserved deep thinkin’ to bear on the supersuccessful singer.

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Chicago Korean Festival comes to Albany Park

Posted By on 08.12.11 at 11:30 AM

  • Courtesy of the Chicago Korean Chamber of Commerce
According to the Chicago Korean American Chamber of Commerce, there are about 100,000 Koreans living in the Chicago area. In celebration of the city's large Korean influence, the Chicago Korean Festival returns this Saturday and Sunday (8/13-8/14) on Bryn Mawr between Kimball and Kedzie.

The 16th edition of the annual gathering runs from noon till 10:30 PM each day and includes cultural activities and demonstrations on two stages in Albany Park, a neighborhood where approximately 45 percent of businesses are Korean-owned. Demonstrations range from traditional Korean dance and cooking to tae kwon do and ssirreum, a native form of wrestling. Attendees can also participate in the annual 5K or a B-boy break-dancing battle, as well as sample offerings from restaurants like Woo Lae Oak and Woori Village. Memo.Fx, the Hemmingbirds, and Parts Per Million are a few of the bands providing musical entertainment throughout the weekend.

Festival chairman Brandon Yu of the Chicago Korean American Chamber of Commerce anticipates thousands in attendance. Admission is a $5 suggested donation.

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Agenda Teaser

Galleries & Museums
Artists Run Chicago 2.0 Hyde Park Art Center
September 01
Performing Arts
October 02

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