Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Through the Keyhole - June 2017


guess the location
     JUNE 2017 turnkey-color-logo-white 7
Through the Keyhole

Informative & Interesting... not your everyday company newsletter.
Get your summer on!
It is time to get your summer on (whatever that may mean to you)! June is here and the weather has started to heat up after all of that rain we had this spring.  There is plenty to do in the area and lots of people to join in the fun.  I've got a few ideas off the top of my head that make for good summer activities.

I'll remind you of a few of them here:

1) Oak Street Beach (or any other Lake Michigan Beach)
2) Indiana Dunes
3) The ROOF at the Wit (swanky rooftop bar)
4) Guaranteed Rate Field or Wrigley Field
5) Wrigleyville during or after a day game
6) Millennium Park
7) Ravinia Festival
8) A concert at former Meigs Field (Northerly Island)
9) Ribfest Chicago (June 9-11)
10) Chicago Blues Festival (June 9-11) Millennium Park
11) Botanic Gardens
12) Lincoln Park Zoo
13) Miller Park (Milwaukee - but very well done)
14) Wendella Boats - architectural tour
15) Chicago Riverwalk
16) Wisconsin Dells (only for a day - AND in an outside waterpark)


As Chicagoans we spend a lot of time indoors so it's really nice when the weather cooperates.  June seems like it should be the official start of summer but for whatever reason this month is still 'iffy'.  Don't worry, the lakes are warming up and the humidity is building.  And if you don't like the weather, wait 10 minutes and it will probably change.

They say we only have 2 seasons in Chicago - Winter and Construction.  Welcome to Construction Season.

And now for a new picture above- Can you guess where it is by looking "through the keyhole"? 
"This City is home to one of the world's last free zoos and the river actually flows backwards.  It's also home to one of the largest collections of Impressionist paintings and was the site of the first blood bank." 
Can you guess the location? Also, you get extra special points and a Lamborghini if you can name the movie pictured in the clue (a 1980 classic).

Correct answers will be given recognition but half the fun is trying to figure it out.  The correct answer will be revealed in the subsequent issue.  Good luck and have fun.

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As always, send any items you think are newsworthy, interesting or just plain odd to

Mackinac Island - Keyhole Answer

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"With a chilly pool and high tea at 3 pm, this fudge ridden, no car driven island is available by hydrofoil..."
Last month, Jason Ross won the location by guessing correctly.  He correctly said "the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island."  Knowing Jason and his family, I bet he spent a night or two on the Island and may have ridden a bicycle around.  Anyone who has been there can attest to the fact that the entire place smells like fudge.

The Grand Hotel

Since 1887 Grand Hotel beckons guests to a bygone era of old-world hospitality and charm. Experience the tradition of Afternoon Tea in the Parlor, dressing up for dinner, nightly dancing to the sounds of the Grand Hotel Orchestra, and sitting in a rocking chair on the world’s longest porch with views of the Straits of Mackinac.

Family-owned for three generations, this National Historic Landmark has always embraced its rich history, while keeping up with current times. That means today, guests enjoy modern amenities while the hotel’s original architecture and charm have been tastefully preserved. Contributing greatly to the hotel’s ambiance is the relaxed atmosphere of Mackinac Island, where cars are not allowed and the horse and carriage and bicycle are favored modes of transportation.

Grand Hotel has been decorated by esteemed interior designer, Carleton Varney of Dorothy Draper & Co. Each of the hotel’s 393 guest rooms feature their own unique style and theme. Click here for more information on Grand Hotel’s spectacular accommodations or take a virtual tour.

A full breakfast and five-course dinner are included daily in most guest room rates. Guests 9 years old and younger stay and eat free. Significantly reduced rates are also available for guests 17 and younger.

About Mackinac Island

Pronounced "mack-in-aw", this island is full of family fun starting from how you get there.  You can only fly a small plane or arrive by boat or ferry.  It's open only about 6 months per year and only about 500 people call the island home. 

Mackinac Island is a small island located in Lake Huron in the eastern Straits of Mackinac which are located in northern Michigan in the United States (about 6 hours away from Chicago). It is an island but also a town named Mackinac Island, Michigan. It is between Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas and is east of the famous Mackinac Bridge that connects these two peninsulas together.

It is only about four square miles in land area and approximately 8 miles in circumference.

You can reach the Island by ferry from Mackinaw City, Michigan or St. Ignace, which is in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is about 3 miles from either town and the ferries make it a quick trip in about 15-20 minutes.

The first inhabitants of Mackinac Island were Native Americans of the Ojibwa tribes around AD 900. Mackinac Island information reflects that in the past it was a place for local Native American tribes to convene to make offerings to Gitche Manitou and to bury their tribal chiefs. Mackinac Island information shows a history rich with Native American tribes plus French-Canadians, British and Americans who built forts, fought battles and created entrepreneurial businesses such as fur-trading which created an industry that brought pioneers and missionaries to the area.

Mackinac Island State Park covers approximately 80% of the land on Mackinac Island and is considered one of the nicest National State Parks in the U.S. due to the natural beauty of the island but also the quality of the historic preservation that has taken place through the diligent hard work by its year-round community, summer residents and the State Park commissioners and staff.

In the late 19th century the residents created a ban on motorized vehicles allowing only transportation by foot, bike or horse to be allowed. That was a smart decision for tourists and residents love the fact that there is no noise of automobiles just the clip-clopping of horse-drawn buggies on the island. Snowmobiles are allowed for residents to use in the winter.

Grand Hotel (video)

Things I don't understand

That cracks me up.

The Bet34

A couple on an African Safari witnessed a small antelope being chased down by a cheetah.
While the kill was about to happen before their eyes, the husband casually remarked, “I’ll bet the antelope gets away.”
The wife answered,  “If that antelope survives this one, I’ll have sex with you every day for the rest of your life.”
The deadly chase was recorded.

18 second video.
Click here.....

This guy outsmarted the system!

"Mad Dog" Mattis REAL Quote of the month
Dickerson: "What keeps you awake at night?"

Mattis: "Nothing, I keep other people awake at night."

video here.

Adulthood for beginners
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From the Chicago Tribune May 30, 2017

...So I started reading. And I laughed because it's funny. Then I laughed some more because it's consistently funny. And then I thought, "Holy cow, this is a really good idea."

The book is, truly, a guide to being an adult in the modern age. It covers everything from dating and making friends to keeping a schedule and setting goals. It talks about health and resume writing and social media. It spends a large amount of time on work, both finding a job and being a good person once you get there.

One of my favorite lines is: "Err on the side of not being an (expletive)."
You could pay good money for a life coach or a career adviser, but at the end of the day, that kind of advice makes a lot more sense.

It's worth noting that the book contains a lot of profanity, but that's part of what makes it authentic. This isn't a scholarly work, and Andy doesn't pretend he's any kind of learned expert. He's just a dude who has lived and made mistakes and learned a lot and now wants to share that information, with heavy dose of humor.

I know some people who could use this.

A really cool carry on.
Have you heard of the revolutionary new carry-on luggage from Barracuda? It's going viral thanks to reviews from Forbes, GQ and travel experts everywhere! We all have a problem storing our luggage when it's not in use. This game-changing carry-on collapses down to four inches, so you can store it anywhere. The added bonus of special features like a built-in table, integrated USB charger and luggage scale make this bag a must-have. Watch travel expert Marcy Mckenna show you how to travel like a pro!

Red Bull Daredevil...30
This video was sent to me and I am not sure where these people come from.  You can hear the heavy breathing and basically feel this guy's heart pounding as he speeds down a mountain over jumps and through the forest at about 50 mph (maybe more).

It is about 4 minutes but a good watch.

Click here.

If a tree falls in the woods...

Here is 3:35 worth of video that's tough to watch.  No one gets seriously hurt but some of the dumb things people do when clearing trees is mind boggling.

Watch here.


The History of the Middle Finger

Well, now......here's something I never knew before, and now that I know it, I feel compelled to send it on to my more intelligent friends in the hope that they, too, will feel edified.

Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers.  Without the middle finger it would be impossible to draw the renowned English longbow and therefore they would be incapable of fighting in the future.  This famous English longbow was made of the native English Yew tree, and the act of drawing the longbow was known as 'plucking the yew' (or 'pluck yew').

Much to the bewilderment of the French, the English won a major upset and they began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated French, saying, See, we can still pluck yew!  Since 'pluck yew' is rather difficult to say, the difficult consonant cluster at the beginning has gradually changed to a labiodental fricative 'F', and thus the words often used in conjunction with the one-finger-salute!  It is also because of the pheasant feathers on the arrows used with the longbow that the symbolic gesture is known as 'giving the bird.'

For the record, I have no idea if this is true or not.

100 Years Ago...
The year is 1917 "One hundred years ago," what a difference a century makes!   
Here are some statistics for the Year 1917:   
The average life expectancy for men was 47 years.   
Fuel for cars was sold in drug stores only.   
Only 14 percent of the homes had a bathtub.   
Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone.   
The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.   
The tallest structure in the world was the Eiffel Tower.   
The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.   
The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.   
A competent accountant could expect to earn $2000 per year.   
A dentist $2,500 per year.   
A veterinarian between $1,500 and $4,000 per year.   
And, a mechanical engineer about $5,000 per year.   
More than 95 percent of all births took place at home   
Ninety percent of all Doctors had NO COLLEGE EDUCATION!   
Instead, they attended so-called medical schools, many of which were condemned in the press AND the government as "substandard."   
Sugar cost four cents a pound.   
Eggs were fourteen cents a dozen.   
Coffee was fifteen cents a pound.   
Most women only washed their hair once a month, and used Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.   
Canada passed a law that prohibited poor people from entering into their country for any reason.
The Five leading causes of death were:   
1. Pneumonia and influenza   
2. Tuberculosis   
3. Diarrhea   
4. Heart disease   
5. Stroke
The American flag had 45 stars .   
The population of Las Vegas, Nevada was only 30.   
Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and iced tea hadn't been invented yet.   
There was neither a Mother's Day nor a Father's Day.   
Two out of every 10 adults couldn't read or write and only 6 percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.   
Marijuana, heroin, and morphine were all available over the counter at local corner drugstores.   
Back then pharmacists said, "Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind, regulates the stomach, bowels, and is in fact, a perfect guardian of health!" (Shocking?)   
Eighteen percent of households had at least one full-time servant or domestic help.   
There were about 230 reported murders in the ENTIRE U.S.A. !


These are hilarious can opener truck accidents.  Sorry to laugh but they are... (video here).

Amazing Historic Photos
Walt Disney on opening day of Disneyland 1955
Eiffel Tower 1888
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Scorched human silhouette after atomic explosion in Hiroshima
Hollywoodland, 1925
Twin Towers 1971
London after Nazi blitz December 1940
King Tut, 1925
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1930s construction of Golden Gate Bridge

Beautiful English...

I called an old school friend and asked what was he doing.

He replied that he is working on "Aqua-thermal treatment of ceramics, aluminum and steel under a constrained environment."

I was impressed......

After further questioning I learned that he was washing dishes with hot water, under his wife's supervision.

A $250M House? C'mon.

In the exclusive Bel Air neighborhood of Los Angeles sits a new monument to opulence, a $250 million mega-mansion that's now the most expensive home listed in the United States.

The four-level, 38,000-square-foot mansion comes with a seven-member staff, a $30 million car collection and an infinity pool complete with a swim-up bar, 270-degree views of the city and a monstrous 20-foot outdoor television.

It has 12 bedroom suites, 21 bathrooms, five bars, three gourmet kitchens, a spa, a 40-seat movie theater, and a bowling alley.

video here

Angel Food Cake with Strawberry Topping
Let's face it - we all want something easy to make this summer.  It does not get easier than this...

Step 1:  Buy and Angel Food Cake at the local grocery store (bakery section)
Step 2:  Buy Fresh Strawberries too and your favorite whipped creamStep 3:  Cut up Strawberries and add some sugar to tasteStep 4:  Cut cake into desired pieces and top with Strawberry mixtureStep 5:  Garnish with Whipped Cream (whipped by you or in a can - no matter)Step 6:  Enjoy.

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