What does Wildeboer do when the Blago trial is adjourned? Naturally, go swimming in the river

June 3, 2011

Lots of fire and ambulance rolling through the loop this morning. Was it all for the fire at the Harrison Red Line stop? Or the derailment at Union Station? throw in the fact that a colleague of mine left his wallet on the Metra? Come on, bad day for trains.

B story: So we are or we aren't going to clean up the Chicago River? I thought the word was that the Water Reclamation folks were going to back away from opposing river cleanup, but head honcho Terry O'Brien didn't in a press conference yesterday. It seems everybody is for this clean up, except O'Brien.  O'Brien is undoubtedly of the Daley-mold and gives off the vibe that he's holding on to the view once held by the Great Emperor and no 'new guy' is going to change that.

This begs the question: Is O'Brien the highest ranking Grabowski left in Chicago politics?  Tom Byrne still runs Streets and San and the guy at OEMC is very much meat & potatoes, but are either of those guys above O'Brien? With the end of the Daley empire, it seems we may be seeing the last of the classic 'Chicagoesque' department heads.

C story: Wow, great point via Whet Moser, via Kass, via Alderman Pawar (47th ward): "[A] city that acts as the 'house' is a city that bets against its own people."

D story: Who knew that West Chicago had the goods to be a destination suburb! Kraft, Jones, other rich guys who aren't Kraft and Jones flew to Dupage airport (of course they did) and then holed up to talk NFL lockout business in a "local" hotel. This was all in secret. But these are billionaire NFL owners, so my guess is that the hotel wasn't the La Quinta. Now, I haven't seen the place where they stayed, but rumors say it was somewhere in St. Charles. St. Charles is among the most affluent of the far Western Suburbs, so that makes sense. But how awesome would it be if you worked in the St. Charles Arby's and the owner of the New England Patriots stopped to get a couple beefs.

Weather: Nice. Just right. Don't rain now, ya here.

Sports: The announcers during the NBA Finals took a big swipe at Pippen for his 'Lebron is better than Jordan' comments. But Van Gundy went a bit further and commented on how Pip is paid by the Bulls (ambassador) but he is publicly attacking players for poor play (namely Boozer). That's a very astute observation. Van Gundy felt Pippen should have waited until after the season and not commented while the playoffs were happening. It definitely raises good questions about Pip's role with the team. Why are you paying him if he is criticizing your players and giving the national media quotes about how another team's guy is better than your best? If he wasn't paid by the Bulls and just a booster, I could understand.

Shaq retires today. Everyone will remember the dominating player. One of the best big men to ever play. And here's a clip of his first game against the Chicago Bulls. Shaq vs. MJ:

Kicker: No Blagojevich trial today. So that means that our ace reporter Rob Wildeboer gets a day off. He's off to see if the Chicago River is indeed safe for swimming: