Erwin gets breaking news treatment. Was it justified?

February 28, 2011

The A story: Ah, the Chicago mayoral election is over. Now, transition-gate can begin! Last week, former Illinois State Representative Judy Erwin was named to Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel's transition team. And on Saturday, she resigned after it became public that she was fined in the past for doing campaign work on state time. This is a huge no-no and she didn't tell Emanuel, who gets his first black eye of the new regime. But, is the story so big that the Trib needed to send out a Tribune Alert e-mail at 10am on Saturday? Could it be because they were the ones asking the questions and forcing the story public? I think the story is a good story, but not one that merits the kind of breaking news alert that tells us Mubarak has resigned or a major fire broke out.  Therefore, I am launching an investigation into the improper use of the Tribune Alert e-mail.  I'll send you a breaking news e-mail about it.

B story: I didn't get a chance to comment on the sudden retirement of State Senator Ricky Hendon. Here's my commentary: Hollywood NOOOOOOOOOOOO! Daley and Hendon are both out? I'm going to retire Sound Bite of the Day.

C story: Minister Louis Farrakhan held his annual speech at the Saviours’ Day convention at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont. It was four hours long.  Four hours! Putting religion aside for a moment, I would love to know at what point followers went from slightly annoyed to downright miserable. Maybe the Nation of Islam members are used to it, and they sneak Twix bars into the speech, like I do when I see any play at Chicago Shakespeare.

D story: Great story in the Sun-Times about the demise of horse racing in Illinois. A couple years back, I did a radio story on harness racing at Hawthorne in Cicero. It was one of the best-kept secrets in Chicago. A real throwback. Do yourself a favor and head out there on a random summer weekday. Fedoras, peanut shells and horse racing. It will remind you of your Grandpa.

Weather: We broke the record for most snow ever in the month of February. When is the trophy presentation? 

Sports: Believe it or not, right now is a major time for Chicago sports. The Chicago Bulls are quietly at the top of the Eastern Conference. The Chicago Blackhawks have worked themselves back into playoff contention. The Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs have started spring training. The NCAA tournament may be without local squads this year. And the collective bargaining agreement for the NFL expires on Thursday. So nothing really to see here.

Kicker: Mike Danforth and Ian Chillag are back with the "How to Do Everything" podcast. This installment gives us a how-to exact revenge on someone who dumped you over e-mail. This segment is accompanied by some kick-ass animation. Enjoy.