One of the most frequent questions I'm asked is, "is there anything you don't eat?" ‚ It used to be beets, because my parents drank/ate that purplish Manischewitz borscht product, but then I fell in love with the roasted, slightly sweet candy stripes and chioggias, and all was forgotten.
Mar. 24, 2010
For more than 30 years, Ed Curran has been one of Chicago's most versatile, talented and likeable broadcasters. The guy can do it all. So why is WBBM-Channel 2 about to yank him off the air?
In one of those strange corporate maneuvers that make no sense to anyone outside of television, Curran is expected to be relieved of his duties as meteorologist, technology reporter and all-around utility player at the CBS-owned station -- but still be paid for the remaining 14 months of his contract.
Although no official announcement has been made, Friday could be Curran's last day on the air, sources said. After that, he'll join the ranks of Bob Sirott, Steve Dahl and other high-profile Chicago broadcast personalities who are getting big bucks to stay home and do absolutely nothing.
Mar. 23, 2010
When this blog began in January chronicling the demolition of postwar-mod Standard Bank at 95th and Western, the one bit of information I wish‚ had then--but could not find--was the‚ name of the architect who designed the‚ building.
Then a few weeks after the building had been turned to rubble, I got my answer:‚ John L. Bartolomeo.‚ The architect's son, Louis, told me when he left a comment thanking me for my post. He also said:
Mar. 23, 2010
Robservations on the media beat:
- Jake Hartford soon may be right back where he started -- on news/talk WLS-AM (890). The veteran Chicago radio personality, who hosted Saturday mornings for more than 10 years on the Citadel Broadcasting station (until he was ousted in a cost-cutting move in 2008), is weighing an offer to return to WLS. If everything works out, Hartford could be back in his old slot by early April. He currently hosts "Awake with Jake" from 7 to 11 a.m. Saturdays on Newsweb Radio progressive talk WCPT-AM (820). Hartford, whose real name is Jim Edwards, was a producer at CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2 for 16 years, including 10 years as top investigative producer for Walter Jacobson. He began working at WLS in 1991 under program director Drew Hayes, who recently rejoined the station as operations director.
- NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5 launched a new blog Monday focusing on nine high-profile politicians in Illinois. Illustrated by the Sun-Times' Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Jack Higgins, "Ward Room" will follow the antics of Mayor Richard Daley, Gov. Pat Quinn, Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk, former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, and Chicago aldermen Toni Preckwinkle, Sandi Jackson and Ricardo Munoz. It will be written by free-lance reporter and author Edward McClelland, with contributions from Channel 5's Carol Marin, Mary Ann Ahern and Phil Rogers. As the inaugural post on nbcchicago.com explained:
Mar. 22, 2010
I begin this post with a happy, "can-you-believe-what-just-happened" sigh. We did it, Chicago! We took that round-trip ride around the city together! And it was kind of amazing, don't you think?
I am going to create a short film out of our experience (and share it here of course) but it will take me a good couple weeks. In the meantime, here's some video from one of the sing-a-longs, featuring musician Nick Gage on the ukelele.
So for this week's mission, I'd like to to ask those of you who partook in the adventure to please share (via the comment section) anything and everything you can about the experience.
Mar. 22, 2010
Despite the pre-hype generated a few weeks ago, about the "semi-finalists" for this year's Beard Awards, (nevermind that in the 15 or so years I've been covering them, they've never had a "semi-finalist" stage), the official nominations were released this morning. ‚ The awards are akin to the Oscars of the food world. The complete list is here, on the official JBF site, but since many of you will want to see the Chicago area contenders, I've provided a list below with the complete category, as well as the local scribe/chef/artisan in bold. Congrats to all of the nominees, including our own Eight Forty-Eight!!!!!!
Mar. 22, 2010
(photo by Lee Bey)
I passed the Thompson Center the other day.
We all remember the air conditioning system that couldn't‚ adequately cool the state office building--nearly baking its occupants--when it‚ opened in 1985. Then there was all the‚ back-and-forth over the building's unusual design. And in 2004, former Gov Rod Blagojevich led a failed effort to mortgage the building for $200 million to help shore-up the state's budget.‚ Then late last year, workers began removing 1,000 overhead granite pieces from the center's concourse after a section of the heavy stone crashed to the ground.
Has any Loop building led a more hard-knock life than this one?
Mar. 22, 2010
Two of Chicago radio's greatest living legends -- Dick Biondi and Herb Kent -- will share a stage for the first time and tell stories of their remarkable Hall of Fame careers next month at Columbia College Chicago.
Bob Sirott will host "Inside the Radio Studio:‚ 100 Years on the Air with Dick Biondi & Herb Kent" at 7:30 p.m. April 10 at Columbia College's Film Row Cinema, 1104 S. Wabash. The event is free and open to the public.
At 77, Biondi (aka "The Wild I-Tralian") still plays the hits he made famous at the dawn of the rock 'n' roll era from 7 to 11 p.m. Monday through Friday on Citadel Broadcasting oldies WLS-FM (94.7).