I promised you Chicago, and I’m-a gonna deliver you Chicago like it owes you money. T’sallright? T’sokay. My amazing, funny, loving family had a PARTY for me when I arrived, and my pops grilled me up a plump n juicy one o’ dem dere Chicago dogs:
Whilst at the party, my brother-in-law Dan dropped an entire watermelon on my mom’s kitchen floor, where it exploded like Humpty Dumpty. Cats were scurrying, my nephew was crying, my mom was downplaying, and I was laughing my damn fool head off.
Did I help Dan clean it up, you may well ask? Did I comfort and reassure him that his rare moment of gracelessness was safe with me? Oh no. I stepped outside to convey his fruity faux pas to family members who were unlucky enough to miss it.
In spite of my wicked ways, he made us all dinner the next night, which included these:
If there is such a thing as a dessert fry, this is it. Boiled and twice-fried in an actual Fry Daddy (!!) and lightly dusted with brown sugar, salt and a kick of cayenne, these fries would give my fave Father’s Office ‘taters a run for their money. GO WATERMELON KILLER, GO.
Speaking of cheering, I watched the Northwestern Wildcats get the W on rainy Saturday morning, and sang the fight song at least three times. I have a longstanding crush on their coach, Pat Fitzgerald, a two-time NU All-American, who almost but not quite embarrassed Auburn last year in the Outback Bowl and is an energetic and youthful shot in the arm for the tired old Big Ten:
In keeping with the sporty spirit, I got a long overdue drink with my cousin Andrew at a homely little bar in the western suburbs, and became instant drinking buddies with this awesome dude:
I made sure to thank him for coaching the only Chicago team that doesn’t suck. And speaking of both the Blackhawks (who do NOT suck) and the Bears (who do), I was lucky enough to attend the Bears home opener against the Detroit Lions, thanks again to my bro-in-law. (Great guy, right?)
The Blackhawks opened the game wearing Bears jerseys and toting the Stanley Cup, which meant that for the briefest of moments, one of the three teams on the field were NOT pathetic losers. (Hint: not the Bears or the Lions, who went 1-15 last year.)
It was a picture-perfect fall day in Chicago. 75• and sunny, under a cloudless sky, the sun making the skyscrapers sparkle and the breeze just lightly blowing in off the lake. The game, however, was hideously ugly. The Lions got robbed. The Bears rushed for nearly 500 yards to the Lions 110, and couldn’t score 6 inches in four downs. But at least there was something beautiful on the field:
Awesome cousin Linds and I comforted ourselves that even if we have to watch the Bears go 1-15, which looks likely, at least Brian Urlacher still looks nice in tight pants.
More Chicago tomorrow!