Street Smart Chicago

Chemistry Isn’t Science

City Life, Love & Sex No Comments »

I really dig taking online personality tests. You know, like the ones you can find on Facebook: “What kind of tree would you be?” or “What ‘Sex and the City’ character are you?” or “If you were a fascist leader, who would you be?” Because, well, they’re a joke with questions and answers that never really pertain to me.

So when Chemistry.com told me I was going to answer a few questions that would lead to my Prince Charming, well, I was ready to test it. Would I be paired with the athletic jocks because of my passion for kickball? Would I be joined with the intellectuals because of my infinite interest in “Star Trek”? Could my soul mate be just a generic answer away? Read the rest of this entry »

The Veil of Iron

City Life, Love & Sex No Comments »

Chemistry.com promises to navigate the tumultuous seas of dating for you. However, is online dating really that much easier than dating in the real world?

I decide to test the waters and sign up for an account. Writing my online bio is supposed to be fun, but instead it throws me down some sort of existential rabbit hole that I am yet to climb out of. Now I’m plagued with all sorts of doubts and nagging questions about moral relativism. Who am I?  Where have I been, and where am I going with my life? Read the rest of this entry »

Local News: Fight Big Media at a sandwich shop

City Life, Loop, News etc. 1 Comment »

Passionate discussion resonates from one of the tables Friday night at Cosi on Michigan Avenue. Five guys—Mike, Michael, Mitchell, Jerry and Jack—sit at the table with a small piece of white paper inserted in one of the card holders that says “Fight Big Media Meetup is Here.” Mitchell Szczepanczyk, the Chicago Fight Big Media group moderator for the past four years, has his laptop open so he can be ready to announce breaking news or to research more information on discussion topics.

They’ve just finished talking about Walter Cronkite’s death Read the rest of this entry »

Chicago Hype Exchange: Charting the capricious contours of celebrity

Chicago Hype Exchange, News etc. No Comments »

This Week’s Biggest Gainers

1 Mike Reed
The Pitchfork Music Festival organizer—along with the rest of the site’s staff—oversaw yet another successful fest weekend, once again proving it’s the city’s best. Read the rest of this entry »

Free Will Astrology

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By Rob Brezsny

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Storm chasers are people who love traveling around the continent in pursuit of wild weather. Nothing feeds their lust for life more than getting up close and personal with a tornado or supercell thunderstorm. Many of them are meteorologists who are curious about the way storms work; they’re not motivated solely by bravado. I mention this because, according to my astrological analysis, the coming weeks will be prime time for Aries storm chasers to load up on thrills. The immediate future should also bring excellent opportunities for other Rams who are yearning for breezy adventures that will captivate their imaginations and slake their sense of wonder. Read the rest of this entry »

Ride On: Tour de Fat comes to Palmer Square

Bicycling, City Life, Events, Green, Humboldt Park No Comments »

tourdefatWigs, hats and antennae; wings, fake mustaches and long socks; pirates, cheerleaders and ringmasters—it’s all part of the spectacle Saturday at the Tour de Fat in Palmer Square.

The event, part of an eleven-city tour, highlights biking, beer, creativity and sustainability. New Belgium Brewing Company, based in Fort Collins, Colorado, started the annual tour ten years ago to increase awareness and participation in bike transportation. The day seems all about being as creative and green as possible—on a bike. Read the rest of this entry »

In Bloom: Flowers for Heroes preserves memory

News etc., Politics No Comments »

A couple hundred people gather at the Willowbrook Ballroom in Willow Springs for a night of music, dancing and, more importantly, dedication. Tonight’s four-hour event was put together to promote and raise money for Flowers for Heroes, a not-for-profit organization based in Elmhurst and founded by Russ Phillip, owner of Russwholesaleflowers.com. The group raises money not only to put flowers on every gravestone in every military cemetery but also to give back and support Gold Star Families—an organization whose members are families of fallen soldiers. Read the rest of this entry »

Girl Power: Girl 360 gives young tweens life lessons

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By Ilana Kowarskidsc01214

This past December, women’s rights advocates Anne Ream and Randi Shafton introduced their new Web site to the blogosphere—Girl 360, a digital “safe space” for tween girls everywhere. Filled with advice columns, stories about successful women and empowering T-shirt logos, the site is meant to make girls feel good about themselves and to give them “hope,” says Ream, and “life lessons they can apply,” says Shafton. Ream asserts that advice and encouragement are particularly important for tweens, who are at “a vulnerable point in their lives,” a time when, as she puts it, “girls are getting a sense of who they are.” During this period, Ream and Shafton believe it is especially important that girls have positive female role models. Ream explains, “Every great woman started out as a great girl, one who often discovered her own ‘superpowers’ after encountering other super-cool female role models. Our mission at Girl 360 is to make encounters like this possible by bringing the stories of history’s and today’s most amazing women to the attention of a new generation of tween girls.” The goal of Girl 360, Shafton explains, is to provide a “shared dialogue” which “makes a girl that much stronger and that much smarter.”  According to 10-year-old Sara Alavi, that is precisely what the site does for her. “I am very inspired by the women on the site, so, if I need inspiration to do something that isn’t easy, I go to Girl 360.” Read the rest of this entry »

Chicago Hype Exchange: Charting the capricious contours of celebrity

Chicago Hype Exchange, News etc. No Comments »

This Week’s Biggest Gainers

1 Michael Smith
The Chicago policeman and Daley security guard apprehended an escaped murderer outside the mayor’s Michigan vacation home. Read the rest of this entry »

Free Will Astrology

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By Rob Brezsny

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I fear you’re on the verge of slipping into a state of mind that wants everything and is therefore in danger of getting nothing. I worry that you’ll be lusting for such total control over so much wild sweetness that you won’t actually formulate a foolproof plan to commune with even a pinch of that sweetness. Let’s see if we can motivate you to overthrow this state of mind. Let’s try to coax you into devising a precise strategy to assemble paradise piece by piece. Read the rest of this entry »