I live in Chicago.
And I mean Chicago. Not Arlington Heights. I mean Chicago. The Loop.
And not a day passes where someone doesn’t complain about the traffic, city noises like sirens and taxi horns, or the winters. To these complaints, I have one thing to say:
This is Chicago. In the Midwest. It’s cold in winter. It’s the third largest city in the US. There are lots of people. There are lots of cars. There’s a lot happening at any given time. Thus, noise.
If any of these bother you, then go. Leave.
You act as if these things surprise you. Shock you.
Did you not think these things would occur in a real, honest-to-God city like Chicago?
I remember once hearing a person complain about the noise of the ‘L’ train above on the tracks. They weren’t from here. To me, the ‘L’ rumble is soothing. Calming. The sound of a city working.
If it bothers you, get out.
And Chicago’s notorious and nefarious past? Al Capone? The Outfit? Mayor Daley’s machine? The corruption? Yeah, that’s the city. I’m sure YOUR city is simply perfect.
That’s what makes up the soup that is our city. It ain’t perfect. But it is what it is.
Oh, we have challenges. Economic struggles. Crime. Hunger. Corrupt (and stupid) politicians.
But I also just saw a guy with the Chicago flag tattooed on his arm. We are proud of this place, what it means, what it tries to stand for.
We are Chicago. We are proud of this imperfect, yet perfect city. We revel in its wonderful history, seasons, festivals. And we rally around its struggles and challenges.
We rose from the dead after the Fire.
We will rise again.