Author Archive for Rachel Lazar

School of Last Resort

There’s a new school in South Shore, and it’s empty and beautiful. It has a swimming pool, a green roof, and state of the art lab facilities, but no students, as of yet. It needs to be occupied, though, and fast; by law, it cannot remain vacant past January 31.

Fresh Ground

A trip to Café 57–the coffee shop formerly known as the 57th Street Istria–is personal, both for the customers and the workers. Co-owner and manager Belinda Lipscomb, a bubbly native South Sider and former Starbucks barista, greets one customer, “Hey babe, how you doing?”

A Unique Black Friday

Entering the Unique Thrift Store at 51st and Kedzie on Black Friday, you are not greeted–you are assailed. Christmas hat-wearing employees exclaim “Happy Thanksgiving!” or “¿Cómo estás?” A festive balloon arch frames the waving signs proclaiming sale prices–50 percent off…

Engage against the machine?

The handwritten posters plastered around Hyde Park read: “4:00 Friday. The Point.” At 4:15pm the five people who had shown up to Promontory Point expecting to find an organization of technology-free “Neo-Luddites” were getting restless, thinking they had fallen for…