Over on Knickerblogger.net, there is a compelling debate going on about what the team should do over the summer given what’s happened over the course of this season.  Getting beat in the playoffs by a team that is perhaps the favorite to win the NBA Title tends to break out the old measuring stick.  The short of it is this: Outside of Game 1 of this past playoff series, the Miami Heat did not look like invulnerable world-beaters.  Unfortunately, the Knicks did not have the firepower to truly take advantage, save for winning Game Four of the series at MSG. 

This particular post will focus solely on the team’s outlook at starting point guard.

***

One of the team’s biggest warts this season was from the floor general position – the point-guard.  The emergence of Jeremy Lin proved that good point-guard play (in a non-triangle offensive system) means almost everything to an NBA offense, especially when your next-best passer only averages 3.6 assists per game.  Yes, the team found ways to compensate when Lin was lost for (what turned out to be) the season due to knee surgery.  But such compensatory methods wilted when the Knicks faced the elite defensive schemes of the Heat.

This summer, one of the very best floor generals will become available: two-time league MVP Steve Nash will be a free agent and is widely expected to leave the Phoenix Suns for a championship contender.  At present, the Knicks talk about being championship contenders, but have yet to consistently show they can beat the NBA big boys with regularity – regular season and playoffs.  But its been reported that Mr. Nash is fond of NYC, spending parts of his summers in Manhattan.  Amaré Stoudamire, Nash’s former teammate in Phoenix, has already started campaigning for Nash to join him here in New York.  And maybe the Knicks could convince Nash that he’s the missing piece to a championship contender?

This brings us back to Jeremy Lin: he’s a restricted free agent, meaning the Knicks can match any offer another teams makes for him.  But the concern that’s starting to surface is how much of a raise will Lin solicit, and will such a raise impede on the Knicks’ chances of luring Nash.  According to this ABC News article, the most Lin will likely make is around $5 million next season.  The problem with that salary figure is that’s the limit the Knicks can sign any player under the league’s Mid-Level Exception (MLE).  Steve Nash, due mostly to his age (38), is widely assumed to be offered the MLE by championship-contending teams.  Long story short: if another team signs Lin to an offer sheet of $5 million per year and the Knicks match it, they’ll be using up their MLE on Lin, which will take them out of the running for Nash.

This potentially puts the Knicks in an interesting pickle.  The ideal situation, of course, is to resign Lin for less than the MLE, then use the MLE to lure in Nash.  That nets you the pass-first floor general (12.5 ppg, 10.6 apg this season) whom, by-the-way, shot better that 53% from the floor this season to go along with 39% from downtown.  Boy, could the Knicks could use another guard that makes opponents pay for leaving the perimeter open.  Sure, this will put Lin on the bench, but think about this: what better mentor could you have for a young point guard?  If Nash joins the Knicks and plays until he’s 40, that gives Lin a two-year apprenticeship.  The young Harvard grad has shown to be a quick study during the season – imagine how much he can absorb from Nash.  And as far as the roster goes, the Knicks need a quality point to run their second unit – Baron Davis’ career is likely over after wrecking his knee in the playoffs, Bibby’s coffin career is also coming to a close, and Toney Douglas… um, well, uh…

You can definitely argue that Lin is due a substantial raise with his lottery-pick-level, NBA-start-worthy play (14.6 ppg, 6.2 apg, 19.97 PER) in his first true season of real court time.  In comparison, 2011 top draft pick and Cleveland Cavalier rookie Kyrie Irving averaged 18.5 ppg, 5.4 apg, a PER of 21.47 (only a point-and-a-half higher than the undrafted Lin) and is making $5 million a year.  So if another team believes Lin is indeed the $5 mil and signs him to an offer sheet… better yet, if Lin decides he’s worth the full $5 mil and signs another team’s offer sheet, should the Knicks match it and lose out on a proven, top-flight point guard who has made a career of elevating the play of his teammates?

The answer to that depends on a few things:

  1. Nash’s point guard prowess is unquestioned, but for someone just finishing his 16th season in the NBA, you have to question how quality production much he has left in him despite the fact he keeps himself in great shape.
  2. Jeremy Lin’s emergence saved the Knicks’ season when the team’s record was 8-15.  His emergence, as stated above, also solved the team’s point guard woes.  But it is also believed that Linsanity expedited the end of the MSG Network standoff between Cablevision and Time Warner.  In addition, Lin’s play allowed Cablevision boss James Dolan to strike lucrative business deals out in the Far East.  And he’s only 23.  Ideally, there’s no way in hell you let a player like that walk for $5 million.  BUT…
  3. If the Knicks truly believe they can shoot for the NBA Title next season and in 2013-2014 while Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler are in their primes (sorry Amaré, but unless you can return to your career averages of 21.6 ppg and 8.8 rpg next season, you’re not in your prime anymore), then there’s logic to favoring Nash at the expense of letting Lin go.

So if it comes down to a choice of either the young gun or the old vet, what path would you sell Dolan on?

Next post: Another outlook at the Knicks’ “high scoring” forward tandem.

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Wanted to share a Facebook debate I had yesterday on a friend’s comment thread.

He… let’s call him “Billy Wayne” was apparently disappointed that voters in North Carolina approved a same-sex marriage ban.  I wasn’t going to get involved in the thread, but one poster whom we will refer to as “Kory” offered his two-cents:

Kory: Hmmmm….. the People as a Group, many People spoke as One. Isn’t that what our country was built on, “We The People”? But since you don’t agree with the cumulative vote of the People…they are wrong. We as the People, have to believe in what the majority wants not what one wants. That’s the only way. When it doesn’t work…”WE THE PEOPLE” will see that and have the voice to change it. There are things I don’t agree with. Can’t do a Dad Gum thing about it…for 4 years. But then, I get a chance to get up, speak louder and have a chance to move “FORWARD” and “CHANGE” what I don’t like. It’s actually pretty cool, we get to do that. GO USA!!!”

I thought this dude was sipping the “We the People” Kool-Aid a little too hard.  So I offered the following rebuttal:

ME: hey… “People as a Group” once though slavery and segregation was OK too once upon a time… I’m just saying.”

I wasn’t agreeing with Billy’s disappointment, but more-so questioning that believing what the majority wants is the “only” way, and that “People” always know what is best.  I also included this clip from the first Men In Black movie to colorize my opinion.

Kory responds:

Kory: …In my post… people will see the wrong and “We the People” will Change it. And [me]…you can THANK …”We the People” for changing. Besides [me]….what do you know about slavery? Were you a Slave? No… All you know is that every time something doesn’t fit…you’ve been taught to bring up slavery and the color card. Slavery was abolished 147 years ago. Your Parents and probably your Grandparents never experienced slavery. And then to equate or quantify your statement w/ a movie…some fictitious event. C’mon Bro. It the “We the People” experiment that has worked for 236 yrs. this July. Why change it? It’s proven…it just works.”

Wait… I know this muthaf… he didn’t just say what I saw him say.  “…Been taught to bring up slavery and the color card”???  This dude obviously does not know me very well to speak such insults. I had to take a step back and a deep breath.  After gathering the thoughts and energies for my intellectual Hadoken, I let loose on dude:

ME:  Mr. Kory… please don’t go there with me w/the “were you a slave et al” commentary; I’m going to ask you nicely – once. That comment wreaks of ignorance and disrespect, and you don’t know *what* I know, what I’ve seen, what I’ve studied or any of my family roots to even begin to claim of what I was taught.

You want to know who I thank for change? I thank Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, I thank Malcolm X, I thank Mr. Jack Roosevelt Robinson (whom believed in patriotism despite facing ENORMOUS racism in his life and career), I thank Muhammed Ali, I thank Rosa Parks… and that’s just the start of it.

Slavery was abolished 147 years ago, but the Civil Rights Act is only 48 years old – you fail to mention that or about the Jim Crow Laws that existed from 1876 to 1965 – my parents and grandparents were certainly alive during that period and have shared many a story.

As for your comment for citing a “fictitious event”: I cited a quote from a movie that colorfully supports an argument I’ve made about right vs. “rights”. I believe in “The People”… but to blindly support any consensus, popular opinion is no better than trying to ‘follow the crowd’.”

Whew… I had to go in on dude.

His response:

Kory: Love the sentence structure Mr. [me]… very very nice and very good points all. Believe it or not…I agree w/ about everything you say and don’t disagree w/ any. How’s that. Question..though all the people you named happen to be of color….your not thankful for one white person that helped make the difference? I get sick and fricken tired of everytime I hear well slavery, slavery that. It’s not an equal playing field. Guess what Mr. [me], there has been for quite sometime an equal playing for those who have wanted it. Sounds to me in most parts you are a Man that went out and got what he wanted. It was there to be attained. It’s all about the want. For most who bring up Slavery and an equal playing field…. they really don’t want an equal playing do they? NO they don’t..
… because if they had an equal playing field in their minds…there would no appropriations and entitlements. What a shame that would be. They’d have to work. Just as you and I have. We turned out Ok…didn’t we? Everything we’ve worked for we’ve attained. When we became lax’d or lazy it passed us by. We are not owed, we are not entitled to anything. Being in this country the land of the free give us rights and one of them is to go out and get whatever you are willing to work for and it’s yours.”

Peep how he switched his whole tone up along with his rhetoric.  He tried to make a set of assumptions on me, but I showed him I have a brain and I know a lil something about history.  So now he’s using a far more complementary tone – yet he’s still making assumptions.

This next response never made it because the thread, for some reason, was deleted while I was typing.  But this is what I was in the midst of typing:

ME: I appreciate the respectful tone, sir.

Yes, the pioneers I listed were indeed African American. And something told me you were going to ask that question, but the truth for me is these people are the first people that come to *my* mind when I think of whom helped make it possible for me to work in a more-level playing field. I say “more-level” because even in today’s society there are certain areas where the playing field is not completely level.

Ultimately, I agree with you that one should aim to go out and get whatever it is he/she wants in life and work for it. However, to be able to *effectively* do so takes knowledge and motivation. You may not believe this, but I *know* there are glass ceilings in place to control or limit access to certain areas or knowledge, and “systems” in place to discourage people from believing they can elevate themselves mentally and economically. And let me also tell you Mr. Kory that racism, like many other things, has evolved and it is alive. Again, we’re only 48 years removed from the Civil Rights Act – some old “habits” die hard.

Again, it is ultimately up to the individual to elevate themselves. But many are lead to believe that they cannot, and were never taught how to properly overcome barriers and injustices.”

Whomever said that writing a book is the easiest part wasn’t kidding.

Wait… I didn’t tell you I was writing a book?  You sure I never mentioned it?  Maybe in passing?

Okay: I’m writing a book – a guide for fellow top-heavy lovers like myself (I find “top-heavy” to be a bit more tasteful than “big boobs”, “big breasts” or “big-ass titties”).  The title of the book will be Boobie-Trapped; right now, the subtitle reads One Man’s Guide to a Top-Heavy Love Affair.  I say “right now” because recently I spoke with a web-savvy author whom believes in search-engine optimization.  He feels the way people use Google and such to look things up, it would benefit me to have an SEO-friendly subtitle versus something that’s clever.  Once I decided on an editor, I’ll play with the subtitle some more.

So back to the book: the best way I can word the book;s purpose is to quote myself from a donation page I just created (more on that in a bit):

I am a man who has many interests.  Among the top of these interests are helping others, defeating ignorance and top-heavy women.  I am combining all three elements in a book tentatively titled Boobie Trapped. The book will serve as a guide that will speak to, and educate, my fellow top-heavy lovers on how to not just better appreciate a woman of such physique, but to look beyond the breasts and consider the woman as a whole.”

I recently spoke with an editor at AALBC.com, a site dedicated to African-American books and authors.  She believes I will need to self-publish (as I plan to) and to amass around $5,000 to kick things in gear, especially for marketing efforts.  Coincidentally, the group facilitator for my monthly business meetings stated he has spent $5,000 on his new book as well.  I had not planned on using (or needing) that much money, but it sure would make for a nice launch pad.

Of course, there’s the question of how on Earth am I going to raise that much gwop.  I budgeted carefully to put aside the bit of money I have now – even with a higher paying job, I would be pressed to save that much in one year.  I’ve started looking up writer’s grants online and in reference books at the library, but as of now it feels like I’m looking for the proverbial needle-in-a-haystack.  So today I venture onto Facebook and after wasting over an hour playing Marvel Avengers Alliance peeped that my longtime friend Stacey has created a donation page on this site called GoFundMe.com.  Even better, she’s already raised almost $700 in about three weeks’ time.  Since one of the 23 Billionaire Principles states: “Copying is Better Than Innovating”, I went on ahead and copied her by creating my own donation page.

So check out the page, and feel free to pitch in a few pennies.  Even the smallest amounts help.  Thanks.

My next post regarding this project will discuss my process of finding an editor.  I’ll keep ya posted; in the meantime, its off to watch the Knicks stave off playoff elimination at the hands of the eeeeeviiiiiilllll Miami Heat…

It’s been a minute since I talked about my progress with my weight loss.  The short answer is that I’ve had other shit on my periphery.  The longer answer is that I was stuck around 230 lbs for a minute, and I had gone awhile in between weighing myself.

So Friday, after a makeup gym session (I didn’t go on my normal Thursday cause I was feeling “off”), I weighed myself when I got home.

The scale read 222.2 lbs… Yea-yeahhh! [Small fist pump]

Being within the 220-225 range is definitely progress.  It brings me closer to my next landmark of 220lbs even.  But back to the part where I was stuck on 230: it seemed maybe my body had gotten accustomed to my routine.  Even the weekly newsletter my gym emails me suggested doing something a little different if the needle stops trending down.

Since spring arrived, I find myself enjoying walking outdoors a bit more.  One Sunday after work, I walked down this hill to catch the bus home.  But it was so nice out, and I wasn’t in any rush to get home.  So I walked it – according to Google maps, it’s 2.4 miles from the job to home.  Forty-five minutes and a sweat-soaked shirt later, I made it home.

I have to say, it’s an honest and refreshing walk.  Thankfully, my job doesn’t provide any real stresses that need to be dumped before I set foot in my home.  But the walk is scenic and nature-ly.  In fact, here’s some pictures I’ve taken of what I see as I now make the walk once a week:

image

I caught some nice shots of the Hudson River, including the sun’s reflection in the water. Deer populates the wooded area near my job and tend to grill me as I walk past as to say, “Should we rush him if he tries to come over here?”. And last is a fallen bus stop sign.

***UPDATE***  I “swole” up to 228lbs – maybe it was the ice cream + M&M’s I treated myself to while I mourned the temporary unavailability of my laptop due to a recently deceased ac adapter.  Oh, and I missed gym yesterday (though I did walk the 2.4 miles from work to home), so I made it up today.  Walking is good, but I have to keep working the muscles if I truly want to keep up my svelte figure, lol.

Apologies yet again for the near two-week absence.  Chuck’s been working on some comic book design stuff; you can check his material out here.  As for me, my energies have been pointed in other directions lately.

“This sounds like another excuse, Diggy.”

It is, but just roll with me on this.  It’s hard to write coherently when your mind is other places.  So at least let me share where some of those places are or have been.

Some of you reading this may know that I’ve self-published a book back in 2008.  Some of you also know that I am very much into voluptuous (read: top-heavy) women.  Thus, I wrote a book about my passion – reaching out to other similarly passionate men to help them appreciate such a woman better.  It was a “shits ‘n’ giggles” thing – dipped heavily in guy-humor to reach out to the unsophisticated man.  It was a great experience, but in terms of being able to spread the word effectively, I saw four major problems:

  1. The book was only 27 pages.  Any avid reader could flip through the whole book while in a store without buying it.
  2. I self-edited the book.  As I learned later, it’s very difficult to edit your own words.
  3. I may have laid the man-talk on a little too thick.
  4. A title such as “The Guide for Big Breast Luvas (pronounced ‘luv-ahs'” may be a bit too direct.

So a year later, I began a rewrite of the book.  I knew that in order to give this thing a real shot, I’d have to be more coherent, with research to back up my opinions and thoughts.  the book would need more than 27 pages, which meant it would definitely need a lot more material.  So I spent most of my time during the summer of 2009 working on the book… along with finding a job.  In September I found work, but a funny thing happened: my interest in the rewrite waned.  I was stuck in a career and life crossroads, trying to assimilate back into a “normal” job field after spending more than a decade pursuing a career in radio and TV.

Fast forward two years and another breakup later: I end up reading Rich Dad Poor Dad in August and September.  And wah-lah… I feel not the need to assimilate any longer, which feels even better given than me and the word “assimilate” have always been like oil and water.  Later in September, I meet this dude at a after-hours social who has his own publishing company.  I sent him a couple of my drafted chapters, and at the end of the month we sat down for two hours to talk about how I can improve things.  These two events re-sparked my desire to do the rewrite.  And this time, I had not only a direction, but an inner voice that started to speak something about “true independence”.

As of today, I have all but drafted the entire book.  I’m currently researching editing companies and services because I want my manuscript to be me, but in the best light possible.  The book has become a driving force, because I know there’s an audience for it.  I know the book will educate people on things that are overlooked, as well as things that are not common knowledge yet not hard to understand either (sort of like the radio business).

I know I cannot do this alone – not if it is to be done right.  I need the right people around me to help, people whose strengths are my weaknesses.  I’ll need funding too, but I’m not overly concerned to the point I’d let it stop me.  I truly understand now there is more than one way to skin a cat, and money is not the end all of life… I even say that last line now with more confidence and a new base of knowledge than before, when I would simply duck money because I truly thought it was evil. 

I’ll keep you posted on my progress.  I know I’ve only truly begun the process, but I look forward to solving for “x”.

And by the way, the new title of the rewrite will (tentatively) be Boobie Trapped: One Man’s Guide to a Top-Heavy Love Affair.

___

Not related: I hate having a crush.  More on than in another post… maybe.

Last month, I posted an exhaustive piece that took me eight hours to complete on the state of the Knicks and their potential options moving forward.  I decided to go with the prism analogy because there were many ways to look at this team given their player personnel, coach, and that the team was struggling with their offensive identity.

Obviously, a lot has changed in a little over a month.  D’Antoni is long gone, and Mike Woodson has taken over the head coaching reigns.  Carmelo Anthony has been more himself offensively and has given more than a damn defensively.  And the team has needed it, with the injuries to Amaré Stoudamire and Jeremy Lin limiting offensive firepower.  Still, Anthony and the Knicks have responded, going 13-5 over the last 18 games. Their only home loss was today to the Miami Heat – more on them in a bit.

I stated in the earlier version of this post that there were a lot of new ingredients thrown – or fallen in the case of Lin – into the pot, and in a lockout-truncated season and only a week’s worth of training camp, perhaps there will not be enough time realistically for this meal of basketball talents to come together this season.  With STAT and Lin sidelined (plus an injury spell to Jared Jeffries), the team has had little choice but to run the offense through Melo.  Again, he’s responded on both ends of the court for Mike Woodson, but this team is not whole.  STAT may come back this week, but Lin is still charted to return if the team makes it to the second round of the playoffs.  That’s a pretty big “if” with the very real threat of facing the Heat, the Chicago Bulls, or even the surging Boston Celtics (who’s had the Knicks number) in the first round.

So for fun, let’s revisit the prisms (that are still relevant) I introduced the last month with an updated quickie version.  Here goes nuffin:

  • Current Prism:  Amar’e/Melo; The “Elite-Scoring” Forwards

There still isn’t enough evidence to show that the two can play well off each other in the long run.  In the original post, I gave three reasons Amar’e has (or had) more goodwill built up than Melo.   I believe those reasons can be tossed aside now with Melo’s current level of play.  And with Woodson incorporating more isolation sets for Melo and putting him down in the post, he’s made better use of the forward’s offensive talents.  Let’s also remember that STAT had picked up his play as well on both ends of the court before he went down with that bulge in his pants back.

  • JLin/Chandler – Shifting to The Point Guard/Center Prism

This was my original comment:

You’ve seen how effective the Lin/Chandler pick’n’roll is.  You seen how Chandler brings it every night and is the heart of the team’s D.  You believe not just what you’ve seen out of Lin, but that he will get better and you know that he is, as Bill Simmons put it, a de-facto rookie point guard in a league filled with talented PG’s.  So you say, “you know what, let’s scrap the current “star” plan and build a team around our newfound PG and defensive stud C.  Let’s find a PF who can help Chandler on the boards, D his man effectively and hit a 15-18ft J.  Let me find a versatile SF who’s athletic, can defend and hit the 3-ball above say 35%.  Let’s see if Shumpert can work on his outside shot during the summer and improve on the makings of an elite perimeter defender.”

When Woodson took over as head coach, he kinda-sorta axed this prism by emphasizing Melo and STAT more on offense and Lin a bit less.  There were signs that this began to work before Stoudamire and Lin got hurt.

Speaking of Coach Woodson:

  • The new coach prism – Mike Woodson

Today’s loss to Miami marked the first home “L” for Woodson as the head coach of this squad (Knicks are now 9-1 at home under Woodson).  Melo’s improvement under him has been well chronicled, which as I stated earlier has been vital since Amaré and JLin have been out.  In this 13-5 stretch, the Knicks have beaten playoff-bound teams like Indiana, Chicago and Orlando.  They’ve also firmly entrenched themselves in the dogfight for the seventh and eight seeds for the playoffs by beating Milwaukee and Philadelphia, and they are three-and-a-half games behind an Orlando Magic team that just lost center Dwight Howard to the same ailment that befell Stoudamire.  This is important, because if they can catch the Magic and steal the sixth seed from them, the ‘Bockers will face Indiana in the first round – a much more desirable matchup.

In the NBA, the stars set the tone for their teams.  Because of the coaching change, and that Mike Woodson is holding everyone accountable (something many will argue that D’Antoni did not), Anthony and his teammates know it is clearly on them to perform.  Carmelo (as well as Stoudamire before he got hurt) has responded, and his teammates have keyed in on that.

My Opinion:

The performance of this team through the end of the season, and especially the playoffs, will likely determine whether Woodson has his “interim” tag removed – although Phil Jackson is still out there.  Because of the late-season injuries to the aforementioned players, it’s unlikely we will see the Knicks at full strength unless they do make the second round.  And even so, incorporating key players back into the lineup after a lengthy absence is difficult enough in the regular season, let alone the playoffs.

What the injuries also mean is that it will be hard to truly gauge if the current prism of our scoring forwards will work this season.  Therefore, the following is still in play (taken from my last post):

…take the summer for Shump Shump to get a better clue on offense (improve on finishing around the rim, work on that J), Lin to tighten his handle and react to double-teams as well as working to stay in front of his man, Landry to revive his outside J (esp from deep), and Amar’e to get his back in order and find that missing lift.  A full summer, a full training camp.  Then let it rip and use the first half of next season to decide if the pieces can once-and-for-all fit.  And that’s even if there’s a coaching change.”

[Whew, that did not take forever to write this time]

I know I know; I was supposed to be blogging every day from Chicago with a summary of the day’s events – my utmost apologies.  A few things got in my way of such a lofty goal:

  1. My sister’s camera was not as fully charged as she claimed.  This was made worse because:
  2. She gave me neither the charger for her camera battery nor her USB connection to upload pictures off the dag-gone camera to my laptop, which led to…
  3. I had to use my phone to take pictures, GPS, take notes and make calls.  With a Samsung Epic, that means your battery gets sucked dry faster than blood to a vampire.
  4. I had my backup external battery with me when I walked around town Saturday.  That got sucked up to.
  5. I don’t think I fully charged my phone or backup battery at any point during the trip.
  6. Remember that horny MILF I told you about back in January?  Well…

Here’s a day-by-day summary of my trip:

Friday, April 6th: Flight landed around 6pm CST, a half-hour ahead of schedule.  Had to wait 45 minutes for my ride because she got stuck at work due to a no-call no-show (typical Murphy’s Law rearing his head).  Settled in at the hotel, then went out for dinner.

Saturday, April 7th: My friend had to work during the day, so I tabled this day to venture to downtown Chicago via mass transit.  And by the way: you know you’re a veteran transit rider when you can spot someone “slow” boarding the bus and you’re the one out of town.  Something about this slow chick having 50-something CTA fare-cards, but not one of them had full fare on them. The bus driver had to relent and tell dizzy to take a seat.  And she’s one of those loud cellphone talkers, smh.  Either she’s slow or coked up – and she almost spilled Pepsi on my new Nikes.
Any-whoo… took the bus to the subway (yeah yeah they call it the “L” here but yanno).  My first stop was the United Center to pay the statue of Michael Jordan a visit:

Here's what I think of your six rings, buddy!
NYK4LIFE!!

After that, I ventured over to Union Station.  The outside looks a bit like the post office on 34th Street in Manhattan.  The inside is kind of a cross between Grand Central and a smaller Penn Station:

Okay, back outside:

This is the river I saw in all those segue shots on Family Matters

How you know you're not in Manhattan: Elevated "subways" running through downtown.

Waiting for the "L". The platforms are very old-school.

A shot of downtown from the "L" (it's still a damn subway, lol)

One of the entry/exit points of The Loop. Looks like a four-way intersection, but of tracks.

Hopped off the Orange Line at State & Lake to walk down and transfer to the Red Line northbound.  Destination: Wrigley Field.

From the "L": the staircases leading up to the rooftop seats outside Wrigley.

Historic Wrigley Field.

The back of Wrigley. As you can see, it's game day.

Rooftop seating view from the front.

There were a lot of people outside given the game was in the 8th inning. Then again, the Nationals had taken a 7 - 4 lead.

After a full day of walking the streets of Chicago, it was time to head back to the hotel to meet my friend after she was done with work.

Waiting for the Blue Line train at Addison. The train actually travels in between the median of I-190.

I made it back to the hotel around 5:30pm.  Wasn’t a moment too soon, for all of my electronic devices were D-E-A-D.  Great day – and I was proud of myself because my studying of the area rail and bus schedules before my trip paid off.  Go me!

P.S.: Leftover Mexican food should definitely be refrigerated.

Click here for Days Three to Five.