DEARBORN, Michigan — My favorite writer, Chuck Klosterman, claimed to have written his most popular book, Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs, at the ends of the days in the last 30 minutes before he went to sleep. I believe him, but I don’t really get it. Perhaps it’s because my night writing is usually a game story on deadline and I tend to be wound up afterward, but I can’t write and then fall asleep. Tonight is an exception, though, as I want to write about the sixth day of this journey tonight instead of lumping it into a double-up sixth-and-seventh-day blog. ANYWAY, there’s a reason why Chicago is my favorite of the top 3 largest American cities. It’s just a little more chilled-out and drive-able than New York, but it doesn’t take any guff off of New York. And it has nothing in common with Los Angeles, which is fine with me. This time around, I had the privilege of seeing a side of Chicago I reckon not many visitors get to see. My friends Sean and Ed DelBeccaro invited me to play Oak Park Country Club as their guest. It was designed by Donald Ross in 1914 and golf course connoisseurs (my dad) understand that’s really all I need to write. The cool thing about this club, along with the immaculately conditioned, old-style course, is the fact that it still utilizes a caddy program. Golfers are required to take a caddy as long as one is available. This provides jobs for about 200 people, many of them high school and college students. My caddy, Killian, was knowledgeable and fun. He’s 19 and about to head to Florida to continue college at Ave Maria University. I can’t say enough good things about the club and the course. We could all learn something from how well the staff treated me as a guest. Even better, seeing a couple of friends made my day. I saw another friend that night when Mawuli Agbefe met me for pizza and beer at a place called Reno. I was supposed to meet him at a dive bar called Delilah’s, but after taking the blue line to Logan Square, I gave up trying to find the No. 76 bus and asked if he could make it to Reno, a pizza place I noticed across the street from the bus stop. It turned out, Eater.com rated it in the top 25 of Chicago pizza joints. I have to agree. We had a build-your-own pizza with bacon, carnitas and fried garlic. I’m glad I gave up on the bus. Well done, Chicago. I’ll see you again soon.
By the way, the dateline on this blog is Dearborn, MI, because that’s where I’m writing. I drove from Chicago to Allen Park and Detroit Lions camp to interview Matthew Stafford today. I’m going to attempt to get back on my schedule of morning blogs before I go to Lions’ practice in the morning.