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The [Monday] Papers

1. It looked good in practice.

2. Nine overtimes.

3. When Neil Steinberg complains about "those people" "hooting and hollering," "weeping and shrieking 'Hallelujah' in that hairdresser's," he means black people even though the dominant images of people celebrating the acquittal of O.J. Simpson were broadcast from college campuses, not inner city salons. But that's not how Neil Steinberg sees black people, which is why he got these responses and why he was called a racist on WVON-AM on Saturday afternoon.

4. More Steinberg:

* "[Jay Mariotti will] say anything just to get people excited."

* "Kass is a genuine fraud . . . Every 10 columns is a good column."

* "When I met Michael Jordan, I didn't know who he was."

5. When you're are Dick Mell's daughter and Rod Blagojevich's wife, well, this sort of thing is only natural.

6. Daley not as green as he says.

7. In "City Sees Progress In War On Rodents," the Sun-Times ballyhooed Chicago's efforts to decrease the rat population from 6 to 7 million 20 years ago to 500,000 today.

If the reporter had bothered to check his own paper's clips, the headline could have (and should have) been: "No Progress On Rats In Six Years."

Because in 2000, the paper ran a story headlined "Chicago Winning Battle Against Rats" that noted the rodent population was down to . . . 500,000.

8. "Incoming Cook County Board President Todd Stroger says that in all his years in the state Legislature and City Council, he's never seen a 'clout' list."

A) Um, that's because you never had clout, Todd.
B) That's funny, because your father put your name on all of them.
C) But now that he knows what they look like, he can't wait to get started on his own.

9. "Democrats Split On How Far To Go With Ethics Law."

Apparently all the way is out of the question.

10. Incurious George. It's almost beyond comment by now.

11. I haven't seen Borat yet, but having David Brooks, Christopher Hitchens, and Neil Steinberg line up against it is quite an endorsement (third Steinberg item, the one in which he opines that "generally," "movies" are "lousy.")

CORRECTION 5:00 P.M.: "The movie's as funny as everybody says," Steinberg wrote. "I was wiping my eyes on my sleeves, and at one point I worried I was howling so hard that something snapped in my jaw."

Apologies - I mixed two potential Borat items into one, and in the mixing Steinberg got the raw end of the deal.

12. Maybe Steinberg is another Sacha Baron Cohen character designed to illuminate our prejudices.

13. The Tribune continues to propagate the false conceit of Red and Blue America. False because a state that is, say, 51 percent Republican gets painted Red - as Red as a state that is 80 percent Republican - and because the divide is more typically between urban and rural, and because that sort of divide isn't necessarily anything new, and among other reasons. Christ, journalists saw the big electoral maps the networks use for presidential elections and drew profound conclusions! What a bunch of knobs.

14. City Hall can save a tree but can't determine whether John Duff is really a black woman, figure out who hired Angelo Torres, or discover massive hiring fraud under its nose. I mean, assuming it didn't already know.

15. Concertgoers: Shut the fuck up.

16. Cool new rules for politicians, including: All dirt must be presented in the first 30 days of a campaign unless breaking news occurs, and no candidates allowed in church.

17. James Meeks cherrypicks the Bible.

18. The Bible and Greed.

19. Aren't you glad the Democrats have furthered their control of state government?

20. "Sen. Dale Risinger (R-Peoria), who voted to reject the raises, said he could not vote to increase his pay when highway engineers and other state workers in professional jobs have not had a cost-of-living raise in four years.

"I cannot go back and look in the eyes of other people in this government that are doing a heck of a job, working hard, saying, 'You know what? I got mine, but you can't get yours.'"

James Meeks can, though.

21. Two views of Agora:

"This truly represents the 'I Will' spirit of our city."

- Mayor Richard M. Daley

"I think it shows the essence of a world gone mad."

- Bill McLean of Flossmoor

22. "I Don't Make My Jukebox Selections For The Recognition."

23. "Mayor Daley normally calls Bill Walls last to speak, even when Bill is among the first to sign in," the Dock Walls campaign says (click on budget hearing). "Bill out-foxed Daley by signing Guillermo Paredes,' which is Spanish for 'William Walls'."

24. Another woman I won't be dating.

25. The true cost of the Olympics revealed.

The Beachwood/Butterball Tip Line: Here for you all week.


Posted on November 20, 2006

MUSIC - Lyric Opera Strike Settled.
POLITICS - USA Today's Op-Ed Disaster.
SPORTS - SportsMonday: Come On, Vic!

BOOKS - Chicago Book Haul: The Dial.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: West Town Blues.

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