Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Tour This

I love Chicago in the summer, but man, I hate all the fucking tourists it brings. And, I want to be crystal clear in my definition of tourist here, because I like to travel, I know you like to travel, and this is what separates us from them. You might be a tourist if you have 5 of the 10 following qualities:

1. Tourists wait in line for Garretts popcorn. Long lines. It’s popcorn. One tub costs like 60 bucks. For popcorn.

2. Tourists have 2.3 kids that take up more than one seat on the bus/train, and even though the kids are at least 10 years old they each have a stroller ready, folded up in a seat next to the parents. So, 4.3 people are taking up 8.5 seats. Don’t do that.

3. Tourists ride the bus during rush hour (Can’t they shop any other time of day?) with 6 kids under the age of 5, and give each of the kids 2 dollar bills to stick in the slot so they can pay on their own…because it’s “fun.” I’m usually stuck behind them.

4. Tourists walk 8 people wide, at a slow pace, wearing matching shirts.

5. Tourists carry at least 3 bags per person, so it takes them a good 20 minutes to find their map.

6. Tourists spend 90 percent of their time downtown, (50 of that 90 being at Navy Pier) and the other 10 percent at Wrigley Field or the Zoo. They don’t go to neighborhood because those are scary.

7. Tourists literally run into the closest Walgreens if it’s even slightly drizzling and buy up all the overpriced umbrellas and rain gear. I saw a group freak out last week. My shirt was dry by the end of the block.

8. Tourists wear fanny packs. Some are pretty sneaky, and you might not recognize it at first. They might be wearing it over their shoulder, but if it’s a small bag that looks like it was made to go around the waist, you have a fanny pack.

9. Tourists take the bus one stop. Literally. One. A half block. They try to blend in when they should be looking at their map.

10. Tourists feel really smart when they tell another tourist to get off at Addison for Wrigley Field, since they just looked it up on google maps with their blackberry. Or they are a total fraud and overheard another tourist ask someone else.


Jae-hak said...

A person that shan't be named in this space had a friend in town, and took them on the El to ride from Sheridan to Addison. Come on, nobody bothers with that trip. But at least that was because the out of towner had never been on the El before, which can be touristy. The bus? What the fuck? Who wants to ride the bus?

At least the Chi has good old Ontario Street, where the tourists you speak of are generally caged. Plus, you know one can always head down to Howl at the Moon or Rock Bottom if one wants to pick up on pasty girls from Oklahoma. Or, better yet, one can go to Holiday or Gingerman and avoid them entirely.

slug vs. salt said...

anyone who takes up more than one seat on a bus should have to pay a second fare. that'll force chubby mid-westerners to lay off the dairy, too.

Julia Dossett said...

Have you had Garrett's popcorn? I won't wait in (too long a) line for it, but I sure do like to eat it. mmmmm.