#442: Across Pulaski, Across Cicero

February 23rd, 2015 § permalink

For all the North Side’s talk of diversity, Albany Park is a neighborhood that really lives it.

It’s a place where posters for accordion-drenched Mexican Norteña bands get taped to the sides of Korean-language newspaper boxes. The walk west along Lawrence brings Ecuadorian restaurants, Indo-Pak grocery bazaars, barbershops with signs that say both “Se Habla Español” and “Free WiFi,” travel agencies with hand-painted signs promising low-cost trips to “India, Pakistan, Europe, Middle East, S. America & Africa.”

It’s a place where people work, live, breathe alongside each other. » Read the rest of this entry «

#228: Down in the Tube Station at Midnight

October 11th, 2013 § permalink

A lumpy older man with perfect network hair and a dirty yellow raincoat over a dirtier bike racing jersey wandered by. The bike jersey had a zipper down the front and a picture of Gumby. Gumby bulged.

I watched the man poke around the platform. I watched chatting old guys leaning against a newspaper recycling box and texting young ones lean against the stair railing. I watched the screaming cars’ headlights shoot down the highway, an endless daisy chain of light and stress in both directions.

And I watched as one by one, the expected times for the trains back home switched from numbers to the word “Delayed.” » Read the rest of this entry «

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