Things Chicago Does Right (and some other cities)

As usual I have no time, but I can't help asking, why are these things even comment worthy?

  1. The subway / elevated trains run 24 hours.  I was explicitly told that Boston shuts down their trains 30 minutes before they ban sales of alcohol so drunks don't take them (normal drinkers would leave before the end I guess).  What, you want drunks on the roads, not the trains?  But London, Brussels, you aren't off the hook.  Why does anyone want to shut their city down?  Don't you know people work at all hours?  Why can't they go home or go out?
  2. 24 hour restaurants / diners.  Again, I think there's exactly one of these in Boston.  See previous comment.  These things make neighborhoods safer as well as being there for people who think or live a little differently.
  3. Restaurants that sell "grass fed" animals.  OK, if the government wants to co-opt the terms "organic" and "free range" to mean things that don't necessarily benefit the animals, why not come up with something better?  Milwaukee does this right too – it may be a US or a Midwest thing,  I don't know.
  4. Coffee shops.  Of course, Vienna (& probably Paris) does this right too, but why are good coffee shops so rare?  This is important enough that it's got another blog post.
  5. Cleaners also do alterations and repairs.  There are even environmentally-correct cleaners who do this.  Why oh why does no city in Europe that I've ever lived in combine these two obviously-related services in one place?  And I don't remember ever finding somewhere that did repairs in Boston (or reasonably-priced ones in Bath.)
  6. Art galleries.  OK, this probably has to do with just generally being big and cool, but the Chicago contemporary art scene like the Milwaukee contemporary music scene seem highly cooperative and productive.  You can find a huge number of galleries just under the Chicago stop of the Brown Line (formerly the Ravenswood L).  Art shouldn't just be in museums, it should be in people's homes, but if it's in people's homes how do you see it?  The compromise is decent galleries, but I have never found anywhere like Chicago for galleries you actually want to walk around in.  Maybe I'm going to the wrong places in other cities, or maybe they don't have their best galleries open to the public business days or priced reasonably, I don't know.  But I thought it was worth mentioning here:  Chicago is awesome for art.  (Edinburgh is too, actually.)
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