I like bread

Welcome to the city of Chicago! A place where urban planning meets midwestern alcohol consumption!

I suppose it does have its own charm though. The haphazard construction of the maze of streets allows for huge number of alleys and backyard building additions, not to mention the building of the bizarre fire escapes that are made of wood, take up half as much space as the buildings they allow escape from, and seem to be built with all the engineering ingenuity of a tree house.

I promised pictures of Chicago fire escapes, so here is one.

Is it deck?

Is it a plantation-style wrap around porch built vertically rather than horizontally?

No, this collection of flammable tinder is a fire escape!

I think that my CRAZY photo angle accentuates the CRAZINESS of the whole idea.

I've been staying with friends in the CRAZY Ukrainian Village neighborhood, home of the Claremont Cottage of the sparsely-updated Blog fame. This is a neighborhood where Ukrainians, Puerto Ricans, Gentrifiers and Bohemian Lay-Abouts all rub shoulders in solidarity.

Just kidding! They all give each other strange looks as they go about their separate lives, but they get along mostly 'cause they are all living in each other's backyards.

Things I have been up to here in Ukrainian Village include:

- Eating and drinking a lot of carbohydrates

- Drinking coffee and talking with Matt Blake

- Giving unsolicited advice

- Getting in a baguette brawl with Steve Erickson (you can see him about to club me in the picture)

- Taking different routes from one corner of a 16 block rectangle to the diagonal corner

- Speculating about how I'm going to pay my rent

- Thinking about taking a bus downtown

- Wondering if there might be a party, where it might be, and when it might start

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