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August, 2007:

Summer’s Over

For me, the best indicator of the end of summer is the resumption of my MBA classes at Loyola. My Fraud Detection and Compliance class (ACCT 407) begins in one hour, 15 minutes.

Dressed for success?

Here’s a confession: I like wearing ties to work. It’s ironic, because no job I’ve ever held mandated that I wear a tie, save for specific occasions.  But I like the tie, I like the sport coat,  and I like to sport that “professional” look.  I wear a tie often at Mohawk, and  that puts me in elite company. Only two other people regularly wear ties around here.

I mention this because of news out of Illinois State University: business students will now have to dress business casual for all of their classes, except for marketing management.  This means dress shoes, dress pants or khakis, a sport coat and well-pressed clothing. Actually, the sport coat is optional; a collared shirt is not.

Anyway, it really isn’t too different from the attire I see at Loyola, with a few exceptions.  I’d estimate that two-thirds of my classmates work full-time and rush to class right after work, so they’re dressed professionally. Some wear an open-collared shirt and dress pants, others wear a tie and dress pants, and others wear suits.  If a student is dressed like that, they wouldn’t be out of place.  It proves the point that it’s very hard to be overdressed for most occasions.

Full-time students area also in these classes. Many of them dress professionally as they are looking for a job or are participating in a Graduate School of Business program.  However, there are always a few that dress like slobs.  Maybe there’s no problem with it. Maybe ISU student Todd Froemling is right when he said,  “It’s not like you need practice wearing clothes.”

Oh, but maybe you do.  Mary Burns, one of my favorite professors at Loyola, probably disagrees with Mr. Froemling. She wrote Entitled to What, a book about Generation Y’s difficulties in adjusting to the professional workplace. The book is intended to serve as a guide for recent college graduates as they enter the corporate world, and it offers advice based on the best and worst she has seen out of the youngest professionals.  One area she hit on was hygiene and presentation.  I agree. Sometimes to be professional you have to look professional.

Football’s back!

Covered Vernon Hills’ 43-14 rout of Niles West on Friday.  Niles West had trouble with the option, but the staff had no trouble somehow getting the field into playable condition. Beautiful job, a day after the worst storm I remember.  I do think Vernon Hills could go 7-2 or 8-1 this year.  They don’t back down from anyone, so their game with Libertyville should be interesting.  I was impressed how Vernon Hills, inexperienced as it is, took it to them.

Yesterday, I went to the Bears game, and they looked awesome in the first half.  While the preseason crowd is a strange crowd, it finally feels like it’s here!

It’s about time

Look on the bright side: It's not Prison.I told you the story of Jonathan Lee Riches ©, the prisoner who is passing the time during his five year prison sentence by filing bizarre lawsuits targeting everyone he can think of (by the way, Dreadnaught is the place to go for your Jonathan Lee Riches © updates).  What is Mr. Riches © in jail for? It turns out he was convicted on identity theft charges.

Which bring us to the tale of Elvira Arellano, the woman pictured on the right.  Ms. Arellano has been holed up in a West Side church claiming “sanctuary” and somehow immune to federal agents who wished to deport her as she has been living illegally in the United States since 1997.

During that time, she gave birth to a son, who is a U.S. citizen. So, apparently this was her “Get Out Of Jail Free” card. The son’s a U.S. citizen, so why should she have to return to Mexico? More importantly, why should she have to even attempt to remain here legally, when illegal means are available.

Which illegal means did she choose? Ms. Arellano obtained a false Social Security number and worked at O’Hare for a few years before tighter security checks after 9/11 caught up with her in 2002. Yet, she has stayed here five more years — and she hasn’t faced charges for using the fake Social Security number.

Mr. Riches got five years in prison, which might be a little light for my tastes. I’m sure I’d get just as long in prison. Ms. Arellano got a free trip to Mexico.

My wife’s dream come true

They say that I'm very horse today. Oh, very hoarse?Since Sunday, I’ve been saddled with a curious case of laryngitis.  It’s strange because I don’t appear to have any other symptoms of cold or virus or anything like that. Just a bad voice.

The result has been better than my wife has ever imagined.  I can’t talk loudly enough for her to hear me much, and she’s taken to trying to keep me quiet when I’m home.  So I’ve taken to hand signals.