Friday, August 25, 2006

The Most Interesting Thing About Where I Live

The image “http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/2003/aug03/northbrook/B85F3679_RJ.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

cyclingnews.com
THE VELODROME

John Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #126: What is the most interesting thing about where you live? "Thing" in this case would be a famous landmark, a famous current celebrity or historical personage from your home town or county, a notable celebration or sports event -- basically, anything that makes where you're from interesting and unique.

Many people think I live in the city of Chicago. So a velodrome seems kind of lame as a unique place. You can tell from one comment in particular that somebody thinks I could have come up with something, anything, more interesting.

That's one of Lance Armstrong's teammates in the picture at a charity race in my town, by the way. So, it's a pretty high class velodrome, not one of those namby pamby places.

Meanwhile, back to why I picked the velodrome. I do work in Chicago and consider myself a Chicagoan, but I really live in a town OUTSIDE the city.

So, all things considered, I think the velodrome is pretty unique. Most towns my size are lucky to have a village green and a McDonald's. The Drome is not much to look at when there aren't any bikes racing around it, because it's just a circular quarter mile track. But in the summer there are races every week. And big crowds gather hoping to see accidents and crazy spills. Wouldn't you?

Our town also has Jim McMahon and Gale Sayers if you're into famous retired athletes who show up at the grocery store occasionally. A couple of speedskating Olympians grew up here, too. Speedskating and  shorttrack bike racing are complementary sports, often used for cross training. So when you're good at one, you're often good at the other. 

Director John Hughes [Sixteen Candles, Pretty in Pink, Breakfast Club] grew up here. He and his wife also stopped in at the grocery store one day. Years ago, he shot parts of Ferris Bueller's Day Off at the high school.  For several weeks the huge water tower that looks down on our shopping area and train station also had "SAVE FERRIS" painted on it, which only served to confuse people who had no idea what, or who, a FERRIS was.

Hmmmm, I don't know how long that Googled picture of our velodrome is going to last so I better get out and take one of my own. Maybe I'll run into Jim McMahon at White Hen Pantry. Again.

OKAY ALREADY -- HERE'S A CHICAGO LANDMARK THAT'S KINDA COOL.  AND ONE THAT'S BECOMING MORE AND MORE FAMOUS.  NOT FOR IT'S REAL NAME, CLOUDSCAPE OR SOMETHING, BUT FOR THE NAME CHICAGOANS GAVE IT, "THE BEAN."  HAPPY NOW, BOSOX?

The image “http://home.uchicago.edu/~mopp/pictures/chicago_bean.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Google Images  ucchicago.edu

 



6 comments:

ladeeoftheworld said...

The White Hen Pantry....now THAT'S a fascinating place.

bosoxblue6993w said...

the clark stree t garage maybe, the sears towe, wrigley field. the loop ... but the velodrome?    render unto me a break.

jevanslink said...

Hey, I live in the Chicago METRO area -- not Chicago itself.  Na na na na na.
Mrs. L

swibirun said...

I've never been fortunate enough to see a velodrome as they are a very rare beast these days.  I watched a special on the rise and fall of the velodromes' popularity.  They used to actually take them from city to city like a travelling circus.

I would love to watch the finish of the Paris-Roubais one year.

Save Ferris.....snicker.

Chris
http://inanethoughtsandinsaneramblings.blogspot.com/

jevanslink said...

This velodrome almost bit the dust.  $400,000 just save it.  Mrs. L

pixiedustnme said...

Velo, wha?  I learned a new word today!  Cool Bean  -Kelly

http://journals.aol.com/pixiedustnme/Inmyopinion/entries/2006/08/26/where-i-live/1370