Afternoon Shift: What’s in a word?


Afternoon Shift: What’s in a word?


‘That Should be a Word’ offers 250 new terms for the modern lexicon

Last week, Merriam-Webster added more than 1,700 new words to its unabridged dictionary, including gems such as “clickbait” and “photobomb.” Now, author Lizzie Skurnick is adding a few more words to our cultural lexicon. In her appropriately titled book, “That Should be a Word,” Skurnick has added 250 new terms to fit our modern linguistic needs. She joins us with more on her book and her words.

Guest: Lizzie Skurnick is author of “That Should be a Word.”

Chicago landmarks captured in pencil

Local artist Jack Nixon has been building his portfolio for nearly 30 years. His detailed graphite drawings showcase some of Chicago’s most famous landmarks and buildings: the Civic Opera House, the art institute and the Tribune building, just to name a few. His artwork is photo-realistic, but almost goes beyond reality. He joins us to explain his work.

Guest: Jack Nixon is a Chicago-based artist.

Tinley Park water meters are overcharging residents

The Village of Tinley Park is facing a major water problem but not the kind you hear about in California. The southwestern suburb uses “smart meters” to measure water usage in homes. They’re electronic instead of mechanical and are supposed to be more accurate. But according to a Chicago Tribune investigation, the SmartMeters have been regularly overcharging residents, sometimes by hundreds of dollars. Greg Pratt is a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, and he joins us with details.

Guest: Greg Pratt is a Chicago Tribune reporter.

Tracking gas leaks in Chicago

The Environmental Defense Fund is pairing up with Google to map gas leaks in Chicago and the suburbs. It found the city riddled with leaks. All the wasted gas costs ratepayers cash. But it’s also a big environmental threat. WBEZ’s Shannon Heffernan joins us to explain.

Guest: Shannon Heffernan is a WBEZ reporter

Proposed condo development in Pilsen stis controversy

A proposed luxury condo development in Pilsen has some in that area concerned about the continued gentrification in the neighborhood. There’s a community meeting Thursday night at the Rudy Lozano library for residents to discuss their concerns. WBEZ’s Yolanda Perdomo joins us with a preview.

Guest: Yolanda Perdomo is a WBEZ reporter.

Tech Shift: Twitter restricts access to lawmakers’ deleted tweets

The nonprofit organization Sunlight Foundation has been keeping track of the tweets politicians didn’t want you to see anymore. The site, called Politwoops, saved the tweets deleted by lawmakers. For the past three years, it tracked thousands of blunders and position changes. It also helped track how Twitter was being used for political discourse. But last week, Twitter suspended Sunlight’s access to its information, shutting down Politwoops. The move raises questions about how the social network balances privacy with the public’s right to know what their politicians are up to online. WBEZ web producer Chris Hagan tells us more.

Guest: Chris Hagan is WBEZ’s web producer.

Canaryville beating sparks outrage on social media

Many people on social media are livid about an alleged racially-motivated beating that took place in Chicago’s Canaryville neighborhood last weekend. WBEZ’s Natalie Moore joins us from our South Side bureau with an update.

Guest: Natalie Moore is WBEZ’s South Side Bureau Reporter.

Jet noise relief may come to Northwest Side

As the summer heats up, so does the summer travel season. And for some Northwest Side residents, that brings to mind the noise of roaring airplane engines overhead. This week marks a few legislative victories for those neighbors. WBEZ’s city politics reporter Lauren Chooljian joins us with more.

Guest: Lauren Chooljian is a WBEZ reporter.

Prominent Indiana Democrat announces bid for governor

The race for Indiana governor isn’t until next year, but it’s already starting to heat up. Indiana State Schools Superintendent, Glenda Ritz, is currently the most prominent Democrat to hold a statewide office, and is officially running for governor of Indiana. But in the last year or so, much of her authority was stripped by Republicans who control the Statehouse. Ritz says she wants to focus on education, jobs and bringing Hoosiers closer together. Joining us to talk about what her candidacy means for the overall governor’s race is WBEZ’s Michael Puente.

Guest: Michael Puente is a WBEZ reporter.