Ten Ways Rahm Emanuel Can Make Chicago A Jewish City


Now that Chicago officially has a Jewish mayor, it's time for the city to become more kvetchy


By: AMY SCHILLER  
Published: February 23rd 2011
in News » World

Rahm Emanuel is Chicagos first Jewish mayor

Dear Rahm,

 

Mazel tov on your victory in the Chicago mayoral race. You certainly worked for it – shaking all those hands is hard with only four-and-a-half fingers to carry the burden.

 

Everyone knows how Jewish you are. It’s everywhere, from your name (a one-two punch of Hebrew), to the day school your adorable children attend. Your wife converted; such was the power of your Jewiness. Now you’re the first Jewish mayor of America’s Second City, a place that yearns to be seen as an equal to the proverbial concrete jungle where dreams are made – New York.

 

You know in your yid heart that the only way this can happen is if Chicago becomes less docile and more kvetchy, less wholesome and more crafty, a snarkier, schmaltzier and more inconvenient metropolis that nevertheless continues to offer spectacular sodium-laden beef delicacies.

 

In other words, Chicago must become more Jewish. Hence, the following suggestions, from a lover of both locales, to say nothing of your insanely fine silver-fox self (Call me. Anytime.)

 

Ten Ways Rahm Can Make Chicago A Jewish City

 

1. For a beach to be Jewish, there are two requirements: it has to be a pain in the ass to get to, and it must involve cabanas. Your 26-mile lakefront is far too ample and easily accessed to be a Jewish beach. Relocate the beach to the South Side, so everyone can complain about getting there with no trains, and build a stretch of one-room ramshackle cabanas for my grandparents and their friends.

 

2. Who doesn’t like Olde Style beer? Possibly, Jews. Very German, all this beer you so proudly display everywhere. It makes us vaguely uncomfortable. Perhaps making kosher wine available in all bars would help with that.

 

3. Your acclaimed theater scene needs more glitz, more schmaltz, and more musical nostalgia acts about being outsiders in an unforgiving culture. For every innovative Edward Albee production that those well-meaning Steppenwolf people put on, stage a Rodgers and Hammerstein piece. Start with South Pacific.

 

4. It’s hard to imagine your weather could be any worse in the winter, but you need to go to whatever lengths are necessary to get people to start hating themselves and obsessing about how all of their life choices have been wrong. More snowstorms, slower cleanup. Bloomberg did it first; time to catch up.

 

5. Any property not currently owned by the Crown or Pritzker family should hereby be transferred to them. It just makes the hegemony clearer for everyone.

 

6. Chicago has. so. much. meat. Well done (heh). The all-beef hotdogs with myriad salty and acidic toppings are the most Jewish thing you have going. Just “lean” into it and incorporate a little pastrami into the regional cuisine.

 

7. One of the baseball teams has to start winning so the Jews know to root for the other one. National vs. American League is irrelevant; we just need to know if it’s the Cubs or the Sox who are destined to suck forever.

 

8. Sure, it’s a landmark, but if you dismantle the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel, you preempt so many liability concerns from Jewish mothers. Consider banishing all sales of peanut products while you’re at it.

 

9. Many Jews would support naming the Green Mill jazz club as the new Temple Mount. Oh, is that idolatry?

 

10. There’s no good way to say this: your people are….nice. Friendly, helpful, wholesome. The city as a whole is entirely too livable to allow for proper kvetching. Narrow the width of all streets by half. Make stores close on random days for no good reason. Anything to inculcate a sense of victimhood in a Sisyphean world.

 

-Amy Schiller

 

February 2011

 

This article first appeared on Heeb Magazine and is reprinted with permission.



Related articles: (Rahm Emanuel, Chicago, Democrat, Mayor)

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