Sunday, April 8, 2007

Shells Of Easter In The City

Easter. The eggs get broken. Shells discarded. I'm still angry about my last post and how much I want to eviscerate the bastard involved. He will end up being a stand-up guy at 26th and Cal(ifornia), site of Cook County Jail. Wasn't like he killed a kid. Nope. Cripples and homeless are fair game. Years ago, a guy living in a box on Lower Wacker Drive was killed by some hotshot shooting a crossbow; the guy was eventually caught after bragging about it. The crime is still the only "killed by an arrow" homicide in Chicago's sundried history of squalor and vileness. Maurice Kindness--he tells me with his Touerette's stutter that I could not pronounce his true name--has sold flags for years, since before the First Gulf War, his pleas or perhaps simple words barely audible on a windy day. Frank, the guy in the next photo, lives in the alley near the Red Lion Pub, at Fullerton and Lincoln, a lifetime and a lifeline away from downtown. Whenever I am going to go to the TwilightTales readings on Monday nights, I'll offer Frank a fiver and drink a coffee instead of a beer to start out. I am usually pissed off at myself in the simple fact that thirty-five steps will bring me into a conversation with Joe Heinen the Owner, the coffee reawakening synapses, my good deed already submerging. On Easter, I find myself thinking of "Flagman" and Frank more than I do my own family.