The Blago Trial Begins!

Oh goodie!  After 18 months of anticipation, the Rod Blagojevich corruption trial has begun!

I have a sad confession to make: I voted for Blago. Twice.  And, I hate to say this, but I would probably vote for him again – even though deep down I know he is batshit crazy.  I have a soft spot for Blago because back when I was single and diagnosed with thyroid cancer and couldn’t get health insurance after my COBRA ran out, Blago mandated a program that forced major insurance companies in Illinois to pool people like me and cover us at the same cost as everyone else.  It was a life saver for me, and I’m sure many, many people like me.  Say what you will about nutty Blago, but I think he really believes he was fighting “for the people” when it came to insurance and healthcare for those that got stuck in the shitty system that everyone seems so reluctant to change.  At the time, Illinois was one of only a handful of states that had such a program, and had I lived somewhere else I would have been fucked.

Is he “cuckoo” like Mayor Daley called him back in 2009?  Yes.  Is he guilty of corruption?  Probably – but so is every other politician from this state, including those that have gone on to bigger and better things.  Anyone that lives here knows how things work – I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just saying that’s how it is.  This type of shit happens every single day.  Rod just made the mistake of pissing off the wrong people and thinking he was beyond reproach because, well, he’s batshit crazy, remember?  It comes full circle.

Many pundits here in Chicago think that the case against Blago is weak and he may walk.  I think that juries are basically too stupid to follow the facts (I know this from personal experience on a jury) and it is really just a crapshoot.  But, if he is convicted, then he won’t be alone:  He can join our other esteemed Governor Ryan in the big house and help us live up to the motto:

Illinois:  Where the Governors Make the License Plates.

So, We Lost the Olympics


Wow – even after trotting out the Obamas AND Oprah!  Perhaps if they had made Michael Jordan come as well – or maybe Al Capone’s corpse?  What, the 5,000 Italian Beefs they shipped to the IOC didn’t work?  (Okay, I made that last part up.  Maybe.)

Franky, I’m not crying about it – I didn’t really think that this was a good idea for Chicago.  The transit problem alone was reason enough to keep the Olympics away.  Have you ever tried to drive downtown on a Friday in the summer?  Now add about  a zillion more people and see how that works out for you.  Can you imagine Sox games, Cubs games, Taste of Chicago, Neighborhood Festivals, Concerts, AND the Olympics?  There aren’t enough hot dogs in the city for that…

The only thing that makes me sad is that now I can’t rent my house out for $50,000 and head to Paris for a few weeks as I had already planned.

Happy Anniversary to The Pants!


Well folks, it was three years ago this week that Nacho Underpants was born.  To celebrate, I will be posting links to some classic posts all this week via my Twitter page.  When I started this blog, it really was more because I wanted to be the next Perez Hilton and get to become famous for doing really nothing except sitting on a computer all day.  Then I realized that Perez Hilton is a tool.

No, I didn’t become famous (outside of getting listed in Chicago Magazine as one of 171 Best Chicago Websites in 2008), but all in all it’s been fun writing for you average of 200 people per day.  It’s been a great way to fill that inner-need to be a ham. (Or a Liver Sausage Pineapple.)

Viva La Pants!

303 Taxi Still Sucks!


So, for some reason, my 303 Taxi Sucks post from last year seems to be quite popular and is always in my Top 10.  (Probably because if you Google 303 Taxi, my post is the second one that comes up.)  Well, move over 303 Taxi Sucks and make room for the new and improved 303 Taxi Still Sucks!

Yes, 303 Taxi fucked us again!  You would think I would have learned, but actually it wasn’t me personally, but a friend of mine who was trying to leave a party at our house we had over the weekend.  So, you could say I was indirectly involved.

So, we have a party.  This particular friend was smart enough to figure that he shouldn’t drink and drive and took a 303 taxi to my house for said party.  Amazingly, 303 Taxi managed to get he and his girlfriend from his house to mine with no problems.  The real problem arises when he decides that perhaps he would like to do the OPPOSITE and go from my house to his at 1am. This must have set off some alarm bells at 303 Taxi Headquarters as this is what happened next:

  1. My friend calls 303 Taxi, they say they’ll be at my house in 20 minutes.  My friend and his girlfriend say their goodbyes and go wait on my front stoop at the time the taxi is supposed to arrive.
  2. 15 minutes after the original 20 is up, I realize they are still waiting and ask who they called.  When they told me it was 303 Taxi I somehow knew it would go down bad because that’s “how it rolls” with 303 Taxi.
  3. They call 303 Taxi again – the dispatcher tells us that someone called them from our house and cancelled the taxi, so that’s what they did.  We find this odd since no one knew they were leaving via taxi but them, and they had used his cell phone to call, not my house phone.  So, he re-orders the taxi.  Now it will be another 20 minutes.
  4. 20 minutes – no taxi.  My friend calls again and this time they tell us that they had called back the number he gave them to confirm the taxi and no one answered , so they cancelled the taxi.  The number he gave them (he made them read it back) was his cell, and we had been sitting outside the whole time and his cell phone never rang.   He re-orders the taxi.  Another 20.
  5. Another 20 goes by and still no taxi.  We call again and this time I talk to them.  They tell me that the taxi was farther away than they thought and it would probably be another 10-15 minutes.  At this point my friend is getting pissed as he’s no spring chicken and he really just wants to go home.  It’s now over an hour since the original call and it’s still not there.  Lucky for him,  about 10 minutes later another friend was leaving at this point and was nice enough to drive them home even thought it’s a little out of his way.  Kudos to this friend! (You know who you are!)
  6. When they were almost to his house (a good 30-40 minutes later) his cell phone rang and it was 303 Taxi telling him that the driver would be at my house really soon.  Obviously at this point my friend explains he already got a ride and is home already since he’d been waiting for so long and the caller got snippy with him because he didn’t cancel the taxi when he decided to take the ride with my other friend!

So, let’s sum up:  Almost TWO HOURS after my friend placed the original call, the taxi was still not at my house but yet they are pissed off that he didn’t cancel the call when he figured out that 303 TAXI SUCKS and would really be picking him up at 20 minutes past NEVER?  WTF?!

Yes, 303 Taxi, you still suck.  (You’ve ruined my old area code for me, too.)

Airport Bars of the World: OTC


CHICAGO, Illinois, USA – Ogilvie Transportation Center (OTC)
The Chicago News Room 
Located on the 2nd floor

Okay, okay – this isn’t an airport.  But, it is a transportation center, so I thought it could kind of count.  Besides, it’s one of my favorite bars.  Welcome to the Chicago News Room inside the Ogilvie Transportation Center, otherwise known as the “end of the line” when going downtown on the Metra NW train line.  This is the best place to wait for your train and hang for awhile.  Why?  It’s nothing special to look at, right?  No, but they give you a very strong drink at a fair price (for Chicago, anyway) and have also figured a way to give you a roader that will give you no problems on the train – in a large styrofoam coffee cup with a lid.  

Not that you are not allowed to drink on the train – you still can.  (Hell, they used to still have bar cars on the commuter trains until just a few years ago.) But, the coffee cup ruse gives you the added bonus of people thinking that you’re drinking coffee, and perhaps not on your fourth rum & diet.  This way, you don’t get the annoying looks and stares from the other boring commuters and conductors like the beer drinkers do.

It’s not just the Chicago News Room that facilitates the time-honored tradition of the commuter train buzz – a friend of mine who used to commute daily had a “deal” with the little newspaper stand just a few stores over from this place where each weekday the guy working the stand would place two 40 oz Miller Lites in a brown paper bag at 4:30pm next to the cash register.  My friend would whiz by and grab the Miller Lites on the way to his 4:45 train.    He would pay the guy at the end of each week for that week’s worth of beer.  No muss, no fuss. Now that’s customer service!

Plusses: Strong Drinks & Coffee Cup Roaders – need I say more?
No Food, Kind of Depressing 

A T-RATING® of 4 out of 5

Obama Obama Obama



You know, I am as excited as anyone to get Mr. Bush out of there and Mr. Obama in, but I have to be honest and tell you that I am kind of getting sick of the Obama-mania.  The guy is on the tube all day every day it seems, and he’s not even in office yet!.  Every TV show has Obama as a subject matter no matter what the tie-in.  Everything from two hour-long 60 Minutes episodes to nightly updates on Entertainment Tonight for God’s sake! Entertainment Tonight???!! He’s on every magazine cover from Time to GQ.  GQ????!!  It’s completely ridiculous.  Yesterday I tried to keep count of how many times I heard the words “Barack Obama” and I actually lost count at around 30.  

It doesn’t help that my home state is a laughing-stock as the rest of the world snickers at the complete and utter corruption that is Illinois politics.  Of course, we all knew in here in Illinois what was what, but we certainly don’t need the rest of the world knowing about it. (Good luck with that Olympics bid now, Chicago!)   Our illustrious Governor Blowjob was impeached today, a first in Illinois, but he still seems to come out on top on having everyone in a tizzy.  His appointment of Roland Burris as the fill-in for Obama’s senate seat was nothing short of evil genius. But, even with all this hub-bub going on here in my state, all I hear all day is Obama Obama Obama Obama.

I need a vacation.  Oh, yeah – I will be leaving tomorrow for a week.  I’ll be back just in time for the inauguration!

* sigh *

Politically Incorrect Stained Glass



Every time we go to the neighborhood bar closest to my house, I mean to take a picture of this.  Yes, this is some stained glass at the entrance of said bar.  There are actually about 15 of these types of stained glass decorations around the bar that are supposed to depict different countries.  But, although most of them contain scantily-clad women and are mildly strange – this one is pretty much offensive and right at the entrance, which is beyond odd.

Originally I was going to blog about how this is kind of funny because the bar is obviously so old that these were made in a time before people were a little more in tune with what would be considered politically incorrect, etc. etc.  (Kind of like how some people collect those old timey Mammy-type salt and pepper shakers from the 20s and 30s or the old Bugs Bunny cartoons that have since been taken out of rotation.)  But, then I did a little research on this particular bar, and it turns out that it was built in 1971.  I’m pretty sure this was considered as offensive in 1971 as it is today, right?  Good thing Bobby Seale didn’t stop in for a cold one.

Now I don’t know what to think about it.  I do know that when I’m going in to the bar I am always kind of bothered by it, but on my way out (many hours later, I’m sure) I kind of chuckle at it.  I guess I don’t have a huge problem with it, but maybe it shouldn’t be right by the door.  Or, maybe I am being too uptight.  Or, maybe it should go.  Or, maybe as Jerry Seinfeld says, “I don’t think we’re supposed to be talking about this.”

What do you guys think?

I Hate @$%#&! Plastic Bags


And, no, it’s not because they take 10 bazillion years to decompose in the landfill – although that is a good reason to hate them.  It’s because for some reason when the baggers at the grocery store use them, they use 10 bazillion of them.  Before I got with the program and started using a reusable grocery bag, I used to bitch and moan about the way they were used.  How many times do you go to the Jewel and buy 10 things and get a fucking separate bag for each fucking thing?  Really – plastic isn’t strong enough to hold more than a package of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese?  Then why the hell does it last for 10 bazillion years in the landfill?

Last year I made a conscious decision to use less plastic – no more plastic bags and no more plastic water bottles – and so far I’ve really cut down on both.  I’ve been trying to use my reusable canvas bags each time at the grocery store, and let me tell you – they try to make it as hard as possible.  Why?  Does the Plastics Industry pay the baggers a supplemental bonus for each plastic bag they can slip past the system?

Take yesterday for instance.  I was at the store to pick up items for dinner last night.  I didn’t use a cart, I used the little mini basket to get my items.  I didn’t even fill up the basket, but yet still managed to get home with three plastic bags anyway.  They stuck the plastic bags INSIDE MY REUSABLE BAG.  WTF?  If I can manage to put all the items in one basket, then YOU should manage to get all the items in my one reusable bag, okay???  And forget asking for paper – they are always perpetually “out” of paper, or the ones they do have are short and have no handles so it’s hard to carry – another Plastics Industry Conspiracy, I just know it.

And you just know when you actually bring the bags back to the store and put them in the Big Bag Recycling Bag (how ironic) that they just wait until it’s filled up and throw it in the main garbage out back…  Kind of like the old Chicago Blue Bag system in the early 90’s.