Happy Retirement, Tom Skilling!

Tom Skilling
Tom Skilling

Tom Skilling is the greatest meteorologist the City of Chicago has ever had. He began his amazing 45-year run on WGN-TV in 1978, a few months before I was born. I don’t think a day of my childhood went by without ‘Chicago’s Very Own’ WGN, on one of the TVs, though that might have been more because of Bozo. To this day, I can’t trust anyone else’s weather forecasts. Tom’s, not Bozo’s.

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Nickel and Dimed to Death!

I shouldn’t be surprised. Hell, nobody should be. Between gas prices and everything else, inflation has deflated everyone’s bank accounts. Yet, in the midst of all of it, somebody has a plan to charge for the privilege of (but, not guaranteed to be) “fast lanes” on the highway systems of Chicagoland.

This city and state have gone so far over the edge of budget destruction for as long as I’ve been alive, but they keep finding ways to put their hands in our pockets. Go ahead and build the pay for use fast lanes, then let’s sit back and count the days until they decide to lease them out to a private business who jacks up the price to an even more obscene level. Why stop at parking meters and the skyway? Sign off on another 99 year lease for pennies, compared to what they’ll make, and we’ll lose.

Yeah, I know. I’m getting ahead of myself. So, what? If I didn’t say it, others would still be thinking about it. Besides, where is all the money we pay out that’s specifically for the roads and highways? It’s found its way into someone else’s pocket, of course. Right after they decide to tear up every other street in the neighborhood, at the same damn time.

When was the last time you drove thru a construction zone where they were actually doing some work and not just standing around BSing with their co-workers, or just simply not being around at all? We pay for them to do a job that takes 4 times as long as it should because nobody can figure out how to fix something in a timely manner. They’re not suffering for it, but the rest of us sure are. And, even if they complete a project in a respectable amount of time, the road ends up looking like a demented jigsaw puzzle because one department can’t communicate with another, and 5 minutes after completion, that other department is tearing up a section of perfectly repaved roadway!

The day I can leave this place for warmer weather and less bullshit, it will be amazing. The only problem, is finding where they might be …

Same, But Different

Today was the same, but different. Wake up and go to work. Just like any other day. Except, today the alarm was set for 4:00 am, instead of almost noon. That doesn’t matter though. I can’t remember the last time I slept until my alarm rang. For the last 2 and a half years, I’ve worked the afternoon/evening shift, 32 hours per week, and would set my sleep schedule accordingly. Now, I’m working the morning shift, for 40 hours per week. Early morning wakeups are going to take some getting used to. A co-worker received a well-deserved promotion, which allowed me to move into his old shift. It’s the same job, with the same things to do. There’s just more of it to do. Which is OK. I’m not going to complain about being kept busy.

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Yelling at Clouds

Rocky Wirtz turned into Abe Simpson tonight. During a town hall event to discuss the future of the Chicago Blackhawks, Rocky was asked questions concerning the sexual assault of Kyle Beach in 2010. Rocky was having none of it, laying into two respected sports journalists in the process. That sort of disgusting behavior doesn’t just disappear, and people don’t just forget about it, because you don’t want to talk about it.

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Will The Bears Screw Up, Again?

The Chicago Bears haven’t given fans many reasons to afford them the benefit of the doubt lately. They did finally clean house at the end of the season, by firing head coach, Matt Nagy, and general manager, Ryan Pace. Since then, they have either been connected to, interviewed, or plan to interview a wide range of people for both positions. The main fear for Bears fans is that they’ll repeat old mistakes by hiring a new coach before they settle on a new GM. You need only go as far back as Matt Nagy’s predecessor, John Fox to see how this worked out before. It was referred to on local sports radio as a “Shotgun wedding” between Fox and Pace. That being the likely reason Pace kept his job and hired Nagy.

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Console Warcraft

Some fans have asked/hoped for World of Warcraft to be released on consoles for a while now. It’s not likely anytime soon, but it wouldn’t surprise me either with the news breaking this morning of Microsoft’s intention to buy Activision Blizzard, for $68 Billion! That’s one way to try to bury the negative press surrounding the culture at Blizzard HQ and the scandal and lawsuits that have come from it.

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RIP: “The Grobber”

A Chicago sports radio icon passed away yesterday. Les Grobstein was a walking, talking sports almanac, or as was mentioned on the radio earlier today, he was the internet for sports fans before the internet was even invented. If something big happened in the world of sports, especially anything revolving around the Chicago sports teams. Les was probably there or was at the front of the line when it was time to discuss it. He could recall so many sports events, down to the date it occurred, without any effort at all.

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The Post Office Sucks! And Other Things…

If you read my previous post, I mentioned that the post office can’t manage to do its job in any reliable form right now. I know COVID has put a strain on things, but I also know that our problems with the post office started long before that damn virus decided it wanted to wreak havoc on all of us. For years now, we’re lucky to receive mail 2-3 times a week.

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Still #$@!ing Prediabetic!?

My doctor’s appointment came and went. Or, did it?

I arrived for my appointment only to be told, “We had to reschedule your appointment because the doctor is on vacation for over a month”. Lovely. Was anyone going to let me know this? But wait, there’s more. They tried to notify me by mail, but the post office couldn’t manage to deliver a simple letter, across town, within the 18 days between the date on the letter and the date of my appointment. Thankfully, I was able to receive my blood test results. Unfortunately, those results show I’m still prediabetic. I’m sitting here feeling somewhat defeated. What else can I do? At this moment, I’m almost 35 pounds lighter than the last time I saw my doctor at the end of May and have barely touched sugars/carbs. I’m walking a bit more than usual and am down two pants sizes. I’m also less than half a pound away from what is considered a healthy weight, or so the BMI calculator tells me. I’m still tossing around the idea of joining a gym and it seems my wife is considering it, too. I guess I keep on dieting and see where things go next.

Four Days to Go, 30 Pounds Lighter!

With only four days to go until my next blood test, I’ve officially lost 30 pounds! It’s been roughly 14 weeks since I started dieting, to hopefully kick the crap out of my prediabetes diagnosis. I’d have to go back almost 20 years to be at a weight anywhere close to where I’m at right now. It’s been quite a trip; My pants size has shrunk, but my belly is still present. According to my lovely wife, the belly has shrunk, too. I guess I don’t see it shrinking as substantially as she has. Regardless, I was pretty ecstatic this morning when I stepped on the scale. This milestone has been teasing me for a couple of weeks, but to finally hit it, is very gratifying. I’m still tossing around the idea of joining a gym, though. The impatient part of myself will have a hard time dealing with the almost two-week wait before getting the results of the blood tests. I’m hoping to celebrate good news after those two weeks, but also slightly concerned the results won’t be nearly as good as they could be.