Casualty of Capitalism

Exiled into Wilmington, Delaware by virtue of corporate layoffs. (Note: Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this blog are Copyright 2005, Michael Collins, and cannot be used without permission.)

Location: Wilmington, Delaware, United States

Graduate of University of Maryland School of Law; University of Maryland, College Park (Economics/Political Science).

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Next door, for all your ciagar needs. Posted by Hello

WARNING: Do not get the hotdog confused with the large pickle! Posted by Hello

Wrigleysville Dog and environs. Plus, today's lunch treat. Posted by Hello

Today's View From the Unemployment Line

Today I left my Wrigleyville apartment to check out the offerings at a local hotdog joint called, "Wrigleysville Dogs." That's not a typo. My dog was ordered Chicago Style, meaning it was covered with tomatoes, relish, onions, and one large, hotdog-sized pickle slice. You might be able to make out the actual hotdog in the picture. The bun was soggy and the dog was serviceable.

"Wrigleysville Dogs" (again, not a typo) is located next to a convenience store that apparently sells something called "ciagars." I also had a "pop" with my lunch. Chicago sure is strange.Posted by Hello

Today's Maryland Football Hype: "Student"-Athletes Found

Today's Washington Post wants us to believe there are really "student"-athletes on our football team. Heh-heh. That's like pretending that the "student" section of the stands is actually full of students rather than low-class punks. I kid, of course. Except about the fans.

Republican National Convention

In case you were watching the pointless pre-season football game and missed them, I highly recommend seeing both John McCain's and Rudolph Giuliani's speeches from last night's RNC. Although the scene was rather militaristic for most of the night, McCain and Giuliani did a great job of describing where we've been under President Bush, and where we need to be 5-10-20 years down the road.

McCain's speech is level-headed and speaks to our responsibilities around the world to make it safer for all people. Giuliani outlines in layman's terms, better the president has yet himself, our reasons for being in Iraq. The true goal is to create "free and accountable governments" throughout the Middle East. This is a scenario they have not known during our lifetimes and one that the people of the region deserve and our national security demands. And I, personally, am glad that someone, George Bush, has taken the initiative to create the conditions that will give those people the chance to be free and develop governments that will attend to the peoples' wills.

Hopefully in the coming days Arnold and the other speakers will tell us what the Republicans intend to do domestically. Stay tuned, if your local stations allow it.

I Didn't Know Nate Newton Was Living in Illinois

Police seize 850 pounds of marijuana in garage

Published August 31, 2004CICERO -- Chicago police seized 850 pounds of marijuana from a garage in Cicero, where investigators believe the drug was being stored for the Latin Kings gang.

Monday, August 30, 2004

New Daily Feature: Today's View from the Unemployment Line

A blog about being unemployed should include photo evidence of what it's like to be so unfortunate. So starting tomorrow, I will include a new feature: "Today's View from the Unemployment Line." Being unemployed isn't all fun and games, so this daily post will give you a sampling of life in Chicago without the cubicle or the bossman or the paycheck. Sounds sweet, except for the paycheck part.

Even though unemployed, I wouldn't want to be the one verifying DNA in this case

Dave Matthews, environmentalist and alleged dumper of 800 pounds(!) of human waste on boat full of siteseers on the Chicago River, has released this statement where he offers DNA evidence that it's not his 800 pounds of poop that ended up on the heads of dozens of unsuspecting tourists. Worst job ever.

Rather than getting attorneys involved, like usual, he could just pay a small fine and continue on his way. Instead, he's going to waste thousands more dollars of city resources, beyond what has already been spent investigating and cleaning up after the incident. If he is really the environmentalist he says he is, he should agree to pay the expenses without admitting fault and make a charitable donation to clean up the Chicago River. There are ways to reach settlement without liability to the bus driver. But he'd rather send in the lawyers because it's likely not the bus driver who would have to pay under principles of vicarious liability, but the deep-pocketed quasi-corporation known as the Dave Matthews Band. What a model citizen!

As as resident of Chicago, I say to Dave Matthews, "Move On!"

"8.29.04To the people of Chicago and our fans:
Given comments being made in some of the emails we have received from fans and the comments we have seen in some of the media, we believe it is important to clarify where we stand regarding the bus dumping incident in Chicago.Hopefully this will resolve any misunderstandings because we want everyone to know that we care deeply about what happened to the people on the boat that day, which was terrible, and the damage that occurred to Chicago's environment. We are not attempting to avoid any responsibility we may have for the incident. We love Chicago, we love the city and we love the people. It is one of our favorite cities to play. We would never do anything to offend the people of Chicago or any of our fans. If we were responsible for what happened, we will work quickly to make amends, with the people on the boat and with Chicago.We have fully and voluntarily cooperated with the Chicago authorities since the moment we heard about the incident. We provided access to our drivers and our tour manager immediately, the band was using five different busses in Chicago at that time and we provided the license plate numbers of all of them, we provided photographs of any of the busses they requested and we offered to supply DNA evidence to determine if one of our busses was the bus involved. In short, we have worked with the Chicago authorities in every way we can to determine whether one of our busses was the bus involved in the incident.Our driver was the only person on the bus during the period relevant to this matter, and he has told us that he had nothing to do with this incident. We have not yet seen any of the other evidence in this case, and we have a few narrow but critical questions related to what we have seen of the evidence in the media. We are working with the Chicago authorities to resolve these open issues as quickly as possible so this matter can be closed.What happened that Sunday is extremely important to us. It touches on many of the core principles we have supported and tried to live up to, not simply environmental principles and principles of accountability, but more importantly simple principles of humanity. What happened to the people on the boat is awful and our hearts go out to them.But please understand another principle we are committed to is loyalty and respect for the people who we work with. We are proud that many of our crew have worked with us since the band's earliest years. It has become a family and that family is very important to us. This driver has been working with us for over 5 years. In that time he has earned our respect and trust and on a personal level he has become part of the family. In light of that, we take his statements seriously and ask for everyone's patience until we resolve our concerns. We are working to resolve these as quickly as possible. And to repeat, if it was our bus that did it, we will take responsibility immediately."

Countdown to Football Season!

I probably don't need to mention that this Saturday night, at 6pm ET, the Maryland Terrapins open their football season against the Huskies of Northern Illinois. Those of us Terps with long memories (standard) will recall last season's shocking season opening loss in OT to NIU in the suburbs of Chicago. I choose to believe that that memory will be replaced with the happier memory of crushing NIU at Byrd Stadium this Saturday night.

So let the countdown hype begin! Maryland is ranked either #22 or #21 depending upon whom you believe. But the Terps' biggest question is at QB, so it will be tough to believe the rankings until we've seen the team play on the field.

Today's WaPo has an article about how Maryland respects NIU after last season's opening loss in IL. Feel free to skip past the opening two paragraphs that ruin an otherwise insightful article with an annoying reference to the Yankees, the cryingest team in baseball. The article is definitely material for the Terps' lockerroom as one NIU player, coach, or broadcaster after another brags about beating MD last year. I was personally the beneficiary of several pity drinks after last year's game, being the sole Maryland fan at Hi-Tops in a small pond of NIU loyalists. They were nice enough to rub it in by buying me drinks, but even though I'm unemployed now, I'd take a Terps win over a free Miller Lite any day.

I am confident that you, as I, have faith in the Fridge. Although we have started 0-2 the last two seasons, ruining any chance to defeat Oklahoma for the national championship, October 30 versus Florida State will be our first real test. Don't believe the West Virginia as #10 or #11 hype. Need I remind you that 1) Maryland beat them twice last year, including the Gator Bowl, by the combined score of 75-14, and four times over the last three seasons by a combined 155-51; and 2) WVU plays in the Big East.

So let the football season begin! Lord knows that yesterday's windy-66 degree and falling game-time temp at Wrigley felt like October. Stay here for more Terps countdown hoopla as the week goes on!

An in a final bit of ACC Football 2004 hype, please see this website for a most important preview.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Our seats at today's Cubs game brought to mind Bob Uecker's line from the old Miller Lite ad, "I must be in the front row!" Posted by Hello

Saturday, August 28, 2004

This building on Michigan Avenue has always intrigued me. Did the architect intend for the righthand side of this building to sag, or is it about to collapse? Whatever the case, nobody seems to be doing anything to fix it. Wonder if there is a discount on office space... Posted by Hello

Friday, August 27, 2004


Hi-Tops, the local sports bar/dance club situated across from Wrigley's SE corner on Sheffield was involved in the latest Kennedy family grope-a-thon. Once again, William Kennedy Smith has been accused of assault after a night of drinking with a woman, this time at Hi-Tops. It's rare to find a story about a Kennedy without these three words used in some combination: "woman," "assault," and "drinking." Despite what could be the loss of considerable alcohol sales, Hi-Tops had this message posted on its marquee last night:

"Kennedys will not be served here."

It is now safe for the ladies of Chicago and thousands of alcoholic beverages to return to Hi-Tops.

Thursday, August 26, 2004


Hello everyone! I just started this website to pass some time while I'm looking for work. As I wait to hear some good news, I'll occasionally post about things that are going on out here in the soon-to-be-frosty Midwest. Hopefully my digital camera will help tell the story when possible. Now that I know a little more about Chicago and its surrounding corn fields, I should be able to post about more than going to Hi-Tops to watch Redskins and Terps football games this fall. I hope this site is a little bit of fun for everyone back East!

Sometimes, the view from the unemployment line is not so bad.  Posted by Hello