In April, DaBearsBlog is joining our principal sponsor Art of Men (ArtofMen.org) and Cook County Commissioner Bridget Gainer for a city-wide book drive across Chicago to benefit the young men and women at the county’s Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC). These kids have not all been convicted of crimes. Many come from terrible home environments and are trapped in the system. They feel forgotten. But we don’t forget them. It is impossible to quantify the impact the act of handing one of these kids a book can have.
Donation boxes will be available at more than 100 bars and restaurants, with hundreds of AoM members providing thousands of books.
(I will also be setting up shop at a bar in Chicago for the duration of the NFL Draft this season and would love for many of you to come and say hello. More on that in the coming weeks.)
IF YOU ARE CLOSE WITH A BAR OWNER WHO’D LIKE TO PARTICIPATE OR WOULD LIKE TO HELP RECRUIT BARS (FOR DECENT MONEY), EMAIL ME: JEFF@DABEARSBLOG.COM
Art of Men is a member-based organization reaching men of every demographic in all fifty states. It’s outreach, initiatives and project database (artofmen.org/projects) enable men to utilize their wisdom, skills and experience to make the lives of those in their community better. “Together we make an impact. Together we leave an enduring legacy.”
Commissioner Bridget Gainer was Noted by MSNBC’s Chuck Todd as a rising star in Illinois politics, Commissioner Gainer was elected to the Cook County Board in 2010. With an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and a strong background in finance, Commissioner Gainer’s first act as a County Commissioner was to create Cook County’s first Pension Committee.
Commissioner Gainer has devoted special interest to the women and children in the County’s criminal justice system. She eliminated the practice of separating new mothers awaiting trial from their newborns, led the fight to ban shackling pregnant detainees during delivery, created the first citizen advisory Board for the Juvenile Detention Center and continues to lead the fight to reduce the number of non-violent offenders in County Jail.
The Juvenile Temporary Detention Center provides temporary secure housing for youth from the age of 10 through 16 years, who are awaiting adjudication of their cases by the Juvenile Division of the Cook County Courts. The Center also provides care for youth who have been transferred from Juvenile Court jurisdiction to Criminal Court. These youth would otherwise be incarcerated in the county jail.
You know you wanted it!
You know you missed it!
Here it comes!
The return of Audibles!
On April 22nd 1995, the day Rashaan Salaam was drafted by the Chicago Bears, I was playing Little League baseball in Kearny, New Jersey. For younger readers, the draft did not used to be a prime time affair. It was a two-day, all weekend long, NFL fanatic binge experience the likes of which the league has never duplicated. It was amazing.
There were four Bears fans in Kearny. Me. Anthony Aiello. Phil Caputo. John Cali. Yes, I grew up in a place that had a few Italians. It’s also the town where about 75% of The Sopranos was shot. (My mother did the real estate deal with HBO for the property that became Satriale’s.) Three of the four of us were at a place called Gunnell Oval – a large park area with six baseball fields – when Salaam became a Bear.
You know that scene in That Thing You Do! where the members of The Oneders run through the streets of town at the shear excitement of hearing their track on the radio? That’s what the Salaam pick was like in Kearny. We thought, none of us older than 17 at the time, this pick was going to change the franchise. We thought a Super Bowl was near.
It didn’t come to pass but I like to think I’m still that 13 year-old kid down the Oval, endlessly believing greatness is just one draft pick away.
Rashaan Salaam died of an apparent suicide at the age of forty-two. Our love goes out to his family and all the people in his life. Too many young men who’ve played this game we love have left the world too soon.
Mike Mulligan, not known to make shit up, shocked many Bears fans with a bit of a bombshell late Tuesday:
This weekend is the final opportunity for you to register for the DBB / Art of Men NFL Draft Picks Contest. There are ONLY two ways to register:
The contest will be simple. Everyone registered will submit their guess for the Bears first round pick. Those who get that player right will move on to round two…etc. The last contestant standing will receive two tickets to a Bears game this season. (Tiebreakers will be announced next week.)
If nobody gets the first round pick right, the tickets go to charity. Because, quite frankly, you don’t deserve them.
Art of Men is one of our primary sponsors (and a fantastic organization you should really check out). This year the organization is offering a pair of Bears tickets for the coming season to the winner of our NFL Draft Contest. The contest details will be announced Monday, April 25th. (It will essentially be guessing the Bears picks the same way we do it every year but we haven’t settled on the points system yet.) But in order to be eligible for the contest YOU MUST REGISTER.
There are two ways to register:
REGISTRATION WILL BE CLOSED ON FRIDAY APRIL 22ND AT 6:00 PM CT.
*This will sign you up for Art of Men’s weekly email and allow you to search the organization’s database of projects.
Art of Men, one of our main sponsors, is quickly becoming a force in the service world. They now have 1,600 members committed to doing good in the communities that need them. Last Saturday several members – including myself – provided 250 Thanksgiving turkey dinners to families in NYC’s Spanish Harlem. For full details on the event CLICK HERE.
I urge all readers of this site to simply go to ArtofMen.org on their phone and pop their email address into the space provided. You won’t regret it.
We’ll take this opportunity to promote our sponsors in the space of an actual post.
I made the editorial / business decision a year ago to be sponsored by not-profit companies. I’ve never done this site for cash and I’m not going to start now. But if a few solid organizations could make this site profitable whilst allowing me to do something good, I’m all for it.
Several years ago I began working with an organization called Art of Men. I so loved the founder, Art Gurwitz, and the mission of the organization that I have taken on a leadership role with them. I would spend time here summarizing what the organization does but AoM’s mission statement takes care of that.
THE WORLD IS FALLING APART.
Everybody’s complaining, but no one is doing anything about it.
SOMETHING HAS TO BE DONE.
We’re doing it.
WHAT IS ART OF MEN?
We’re guys across the world taking matters into our own hands.
Per a Patrick Finley report in the Sun-Times (and many other reports), Lance Briggs left the Bears locker room during Brandon Marshall’s tirade after the team’s humiliating loss to the Dolphins:
“I just left because I could see where things were kinda going,” he said on his weekly Comcast Sports Net show, which airs Tuesday night. “And I knew that when you get emotional there are moments when, you get in an argument and both people are emotional, you’re not going to get anywhere, continuing to argue.”
So let me get this straight. Lance Briggs is the team’s most veteran presence and supposedly leader of an entire side of the ball. Instead of sharing his views with Marshall and the team or, you know, leading…he LEFT THE LOCKER ROOM?! Has any player revealed themselves to have less character over these past two seasons than Lance Briggs? From his Twitter outbursts regarding the team moving on from veterans to his refusal to speak with media for much of 2013, Briggs has become a player whose brilliant prime in Chicago is starting to fill like a distant memory.
DaBearsBlog will be co-hosting a charitable benefit in Chicago on Sunday night, December 8th with Bears legend Otis Wilson. The event will be a Mike Ditka Lookalike Contest, celebrity judged by Otis Wilson, James “Big Cat” Williams and other Chicago luminaries. The contest winner will receive two tickets to the following night’s Bears v. Cowboys game, featuring the Ditka jersey retirement ceremony at halftime.
The event will be co-hosted by a new organization called Art of Men (pairing men with volunteer projects across the country) and raise money for the Otis Wilson Charitable Association.
TICKETS WILL ONLY BE $10 and will include drink deals. All proceeds will go directly to the OWCA.
Any attendee who brings a toy for the Otis Wilson Charitable Association Christmas Toy Drive will be entered into a raffle to win a signed jersey. There will also be other Bears-related raffles for charity.
Sunday Night, December 8th. Doors Open at 7:00 pm. Contest begins at 8:00 pm.
Double Door. 1572 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago. Wicker Park.
After the jump you can see the glory that is the event’s poster…