Friday, December 8, 2017


Decades ago, Mark Rainey dropped me off at the (then) River Road el stop on the Blue Line, and I told him that I would write him a story as I waited for my train. Mark was going to be moving away from Chicago and going back to North Carolina, hence the story. Which started with Mark getting back into his car.

The story was reprinted several times, first in Year's Best Horror (where the title was changed back to "Rail Rider" after the first editor wanted it to be called "Third Rail", when the first title made perfect sense), then every time
sense. So, over the decades, Mark is continually getting into his car on a foggy September night in 1987. I had never thought to do so before, the many times I had gone to Chicago Comic-Con and then Wizard World after that, to take photos of that el stop along the Kennedy. I rectified that.

The only thing to add is that, if you ever read the original short story, I describe the buildings across from me in detail, if anything to add to the claustrophobia of the el platform as opposed to the wide open areas to the north and west. By looking at the photos, not a single building from that time remains and there is not a single empty area to be seen.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Code Orange Demolition On The Masonic Temple

63rd & Green, off Halsted. Ground Zero in Englewood. I have more photos, all from October of 2015, but its just too depressing to post them.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017


This would not have been as well-remembered as Twilight Tales would be, the back room was a confined area and it was hard to be heard because of water fountains just outside the back door. Still, it was a lot of fun, I still can't recall how long it went on, but there was a gap between DC and TT, which began, as I'll remind you again, the night Bill Bixby died of prostate cancer. That following Monday, Frank Zappa died of prostate cancer, but that was it for celebrity deaths that month.


I'm a week late in posting this, as usual, but Twilight Tales, which was started by Tina Jens, was a weekly reading series that went on for over fifteen years and won awards and really kept a lot of writers hanging in there with their open mic nights.

The Red Lion at that spot right now is a sports bar, so don't go there. I miss the place, and I miss the coolest bartender around, Joe Heinen. But it all started in 1993. On the day Bill Bixby died of prostate cancer.