This week, the Munchies Awards named Chicago the country’s best food city, citing local hot spots like Black Dog Gelato in Wicker Park, Intelligentsia Coffee in Lakeview and Streeterville’s Bar Toma as some of Chicago’s best food attractions. However, no restaurant better emblematizes Chicago foodie culture like the visionary Big Star, the hub of Wicker Park’s cuisine scene. Big Star is a love letter to Chicago, a testament to our city’s endless capacity for invention. When it comes to food, we are second to none.
There are an endless number of reasons you should be a Big Star regular—or a self-described "fan girl" like myself. Here’s five.
1. Big Star makes great food accessible.
Big Star is located in the heart of Wicker Park, a latte’s throw from the neighborhood’s popular Wormhole Cafe and the shops that line Milwaukee Avenue.
I’ve always known I would have a daughter someday. With my brothers, father, uncles and their friends, I was surrounded by men who shaped my understanding of the world. A classic workaholic, my father taught me the importance of playing by society’s rules, doing what was necessary to get ahead. As a former nerd, all he wanted to do was fit in and be one of the guys.
My father and his friends had a term for girls: “Psycho bitches from hell.”
At the age of three, he taught me how to catcall. He trained me to whistle at women in the grocery store and yell things like, “Hubba Hubba!” The woman would usually tell me how cute I was.
“You’ll be a real heartbreaker someday,” she would say.
My dad would wink and nudge me, rewarding me for sexual harassment and complicit masculinity. This is the world I grew up in.
But it wasn’t supposed to be. I was supposed to be a girl. My mother was going to call me Natasha, Tasha for short. I wonder what life would have been like as Tasha, even though I’ve always hated that name.
June brings another month of Pride to Chicago, the LGBTQA community’s annual celebration of, resilience and progress. Pride is a call for remembrance and for visibility, and events like Dyke March and TGIF 2013 use our collective voice to say we are here, we have survived and we will thrive. Our bodies speak louder than words.
Although the month is an ode to our diversity, we too often think of Pride as a Boystown event, a celebration of men on half-naked white men on floats dancing to Katy Perry.
United Latino Pride is working to shift that and remind us what Pride can be. For organizer ULP Danny Olvera Orozco, pride is “an absence of shame, a refusal to apologize for who you are.” Being gay and Latino, Olvera Orozco stated that his community experiences Pride at “the intersections of possibility.” Olvera Orozco said, “We’re both and more. Pride is showing our beautiful queer and brown selves.”
The Chicago Shakespeare Theater's upcoming production of Roadkill promises to be an experience unlike any other. The website warns that the play will take place “off-site.” Theatregoers will board a bus with the actors to a run-down apartment, where the rest of the story takes place.
Director Cora Bissett wanted Roadkill to be immersive, as a way into the world of sex trafficking. Roadkill follows Mary, a girl from a poor family in Nigeria; as she searches for education in Chicago and the dream that America offers.
“She has no idea what she’s about to encounter," Bassett said. "In her case, desperation overruns knowledge.
Last week, Gwyneth Paltrow pulled one hell of a pop culture hat trick. In addition to breaking international box office records with her newest film, a little movie called Iron Man 3, People named her as the world’s “Most Beautiful Person.” The world, however, proved itself not so fond of the multi-hyphenate actress.
Billie Jean King. Martina Navratilova. Sheryl Swoopes. Natasha Kai. Megan Rapinoe. Sue Wicks. Rosie Jones. Michelle Van Gorp. Amber Harris. Jessica Adair. Liz Carmouche. Stacy Sekora. Seimone Augustus.
What do all of these women have in common? They are all out professional athletes, just like Jason Collins.
King and Navratilova became the world’s first out sports stars over 30 years ago, at a time when homosexuality was still classified by the American Psychiatric Association as a mental disorder. King won 12 Grand Slam titles in her long career, a laudable feat for any athlete.
To be taken seriously, King didn’t just have to prove she was the best female player. She had to prove she was the best, period. When she beat Bobby Riggs, the headlines claimed she “won for all women.”
But how far have we come since 1973? Here’s an experiment: Name ten female athletes currently playing team sports professionally.