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Daily Archive : Sunday March 17, 2013
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Police: Suspect in custody in Elgin woman's murder
Elgin Police Chief Jeffrey Swoboda and Kane County State's Attorney Joe McMahon will be making an announcement Monday morning at the Elgin Police Department, 151 Douglas Ave., regarding a suspect currently in custody related to the stabbing death of Ellis on March 2, Commander Glenn Theriault said .
Rob Komosa dies more than 13 years after life-changing football injury
Rob Komosa, who was critically injured during a high-school football practice more than 13 years ago, has died, sources close to his family said. "Rob Komosa awakened a sleeping giant of compassion and caring with thousands of people in the Northwest suburbs," said family friend Don Grossnickle of the outpouring of support in the years after Komosa's 1999 accident.
Family mourns Streamwood man murdered in robbery
The family of Anandkumar Jaiswal remembered the slain 24-year-old Streamwood resident Sunday as a good-natured man who came to the United States from his native India three years ago hoping to attend college and build a better life for his family. Family members gathered in Jaiswal's townhouse Sunday to mourn as police continued to investigate his murder early Saturday morning at the gas station...
Group rallies against Fox Valley charter school
Northern Illinois Jobs with Justice hosted a forum Sunday to rally opposition to the online curriculum company K12 Inc. and a proposed charter school that could open in the Fox Valley as soon as next year. The nonprofit, Virtual Learning Solutions, is petitioning 18 boards of education across the region for a charter to open the Illinois Virtual Charter School at Fox Valley. They plan to contract...
RNC to spend $10 million to reach minorities
Reeling from back-to-back presidential losses and struggling to cope with the country's changing racial and ethnic makeup, the Republican National Committee plans to spend $10 million this year to send hundreds of party workers into Hispanic, black and Asian communities to promote its brand among voters who overwhelmingly supported Democrats in 2012.
Egypt vigilantes beat, hang 2 men in public
Egyptian vigilantes beat two men accused of stealing a motorized rickshaw on Sunday and then hung them by their feet while some in a watching crowd chanted "kill them!" Both men died, security officials said. The killings come a week after the attorney general's office encouraged civilians to arrest lawbreakers and hand them over to police. They are emblematic of the chaos sweeping Egypt and a...
Serious problems persist in indigent legal defense
It is not the happiest of birthdays for the landmark Supreme Court decision that, a half-century ago, guaranteed a lawyer for criminal defendants who are too poor to afford one. A unanimous high court issued its decision in Gideon v. Wainwright on March 18, 1963, declaring states have an obligation to provide defendants with "the guiding hand of counsel" to ensure a fair trial for the accused.
Murder trial of Philly abortion doctor looms
If pioneering physician Kermit Gosnell set out to offer women safe, legal abortions in the 1970s, that's far from what drug investigators say they found inside his West Philadelphia clinic in 2010. According to a grand jury report, Gosnell's patients received the equivalent of the back-alley abortions that advocates of legalized abortion had hoped to eradicate. Gosnell, now 72, goes on trial...
Bartlett Woman’s Club hosts candidate night
The Bartlett Women's Club is hosting a candidate night from 7 to 10 p.m. on Thursday, March 21 in the Oak Room of the Bartlett Park District Community Center, 700 S. Bartlett Road. Candidates for the Bartlett Public Library, the Bartlett Park District, the Bartlett Fire Protection District, the village of Bartlett and Elgin Community College will be present. The event is free and open to the...
Rise of Latino population blurs US racial lines
Welcome to the new off-white America. A historic decline in the number of U.S. whites and the fast growth of Latinos are blurring traditional black-white color lines, testing the limits of civil rights laws and reshaping political alliances as "whiteness" begins to lose its numerical dominance.
Pope wades into crowds, surprising onlookers
Walking up to crowds, shaking hands with surprised bystanders in the street, mixing his formal speeches with off-the-cuff remarks, Pope Francis stamped his own style on the papacy Sunday.
Must voters have to prove citizenship to register?
The Supreme Court will struggle this week with the validity of an Arizona law that tries to keep illegal immigrants from voting by demanding all state residents show documents proving their U.S. citizenship before registering to vote in national elections.
2 Ohio football players convicted of raping girl
Two members of Steubenville's celebrated high school football team were found guilty Sunday of raping a drunken 16-year-old girl, and Ohio's attorney general warned the case isn't over, saying he is investigating whether coaches, parents and other students broke the law, too.
MHS board considering search firm
The Mundelein High School board will meet Tuesday night to discuss hiring a search firm to find Superintendent Jody Ware's eventual successor.
Democrat: House budget ‘Romney plan on steroids’
The top Democrat on the House Budget Committee says the Republicans' proposed budget is "the Romney plan on steroids."
University Center open house
The University Center of Lake County hosts an open house on Thursday, March 21, from 6 to 8 p.m. at its Grayslake facility, 1200 University Center Drive.
Round Lake park board vacancy
The Round Lake Area Park District is seeking applicants to fill a vacancy on its five-member board of commissioners.
Lindenhurst considers budget
A special meeting of the Lindenhurst village board to review the draft 2013-14 budget is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, March 18 at the village hall, 2301 East Sand Lake Road.
Courtroom cameras coming soon to Kane County
Officials in the 16th Judicial Circuit in Kane County hope to send their plan for cameras in the courtroom to the Illinois Supreme Court by the end of March. The plan needed further review after a new chief judge was named and officials are ironing out requirements to notify parities in cases that the media has requested extended coverage.
Moylan hosts town-hall forum in Des Plaines
State Rep. Marty Moylan, a Des Plaines Democrat, will be holding a town hall meeting in Des Plaines from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, March 28, at Des Plaines City Hall, 1420 Miner St. Moylan, who took office in January, is seeking input on current issues facing the state and will answer questions from the audience. "I am eager to discuss with my constituents the issues that affect them most," Moylan...
Arlington Hts. library candidates discuss future direction
Is it about books or about technology? Arlington Heights Memorial Library board candidates dug into what a library's role should be at a weekend forum. Four hopefuls are running for two open spots.
New industry: Charging to remove cop mug shots from websites
There's a chance your mug shot is already online if you were booked into the Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake or McHenry County jail in the last couple of years — even if your arrest didn't make the daily news. At least a half dozen websites now post suburban booking photos on a pay-to-remove basis. When attorneys protested, "They basically said Sue us,'" one lawyer...
Vandals strike outside Arlington Heights homes
Arlington Heights police are investigating damage to several properties in the 1600 and 1700 blocks of North Chestnut Avenue.The reported vandalism occurred about 10:30 p.m. Saturday. Police said a pair of juveniles were questioned but no charges were filed immediately.
Barrington boy struck by train upgraded to stable condition
An 11-year-old Barrington boy struck by a train Friday as he attempted to walk across tracks in the village's downtown has been upgraded to stable condition as he prepares for additional surgeries to repair his injuries, school officials reported Sunday. Dominic Szymanski, a fifth-grader at Hough Street Elementary School, was hit by a Metra train just after 6 p.m. Friday.
North Chicago officer charged in fatal crash
A suburban Chicago police officer has been charged after he allegedly drove the wrong way on Lake Shore Drive and caused a crash that killed two people.
Newspaper query prompts state to look into mug shot websites
In Illinois, there's interest by governments in looking into mug shot websites. But that's as far as it goes. However, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office has taken several complaints about mug shot sites and is looking into them, including one that came up during Daily Herald inquiries, spokeswoman Maura Possley said.
Syria’s war affects generation of children
Hundreds of thousands of Syrian children have dropped out of school and fled two years of conflict that have claimed the lives of more than 70,000 people. Many are frequently seen wandering the streets of Beirut, pumping gas at stations and sometimes begging for money. Aid groups warn that some 2 million children in Syria are facing, among other things, malnutrition, disease, early marriage and...
Ex-Carpentersville fire chief says he wasn't paid to leave
The former longtime Carpentersville fire chief who was on paid administrative leave before he retired last month, said the village didn't pay him to leave. Moreover, the separation agreement he signed says that he could be asked to consult with the village when it hires a permanent replacement. "I chose to retire," John Schuldt said.
Chamber wants in on Naperville food, beverage tax talks
Naperville City Council members are preparing in less than a month to introduce drastic changes in the way they spend revenues collected from a 1 percent food and beverage tax charged to consumers at bars and restaurants. Officials from the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce, however, are urging the council to slow down and "take a break" from the conversation.
A cold but fun St. Patrick’s parade in St. Charles
"Gangnam Style" and "Disco Inferno" aren't your typical St. Patrick's Day parade songs.
Arlington Hts. candidates differ sharply on issues
One hates the new police station idea. One opposes slots at Arlington Park. One calls village hall a bureaucratic "maze" for business owners. The three candidates running for Arlington Heights village president pulled no punches at a lively forum Saturday.
Metropolis funding among hot subjects at Arlington Hts. trustee forum
The topics were varied but much of the debate during an Arlington Heights village trustee candidates forum Saturday came down to money — and the lack of it.One issue was funding for the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, which the village took over in 2005.
Darch, Kozel debate Barrington’s railroad fight
Barrington's nearly five-year legal fight with Canadian National over the need to mitigate increased freight train traffic through the village is one of the points of contention between Village President Karen Darch and her write-in challenger Mike Kozel. Kozel said he believes a less confrontational approach with CN would have made the company more willing to pay for mitigations other...
Bowden feels right at home with Cubs
Although pitcher Michael Bowden landed at "home" with the Cubs last year, the season was more of a whirwind than anything else for this graduate of Waubonsie Valley High School. But after a solid finish to 2012, Bowden is looking for good things out of the bullpen in 2013.
Nuggets bring hot streak to United Center
The Miami Heat's pursuit of NBA history has generated plenty of attention. But slipping in behind the Heat's 22-game streak and into the United Center on Monday are the Denver Nuggets, winners of 11 games in a row. No word yet on which injured Bulls might be ready to play.
Ohio State captures Big Ten title
In a game that featured 10 lead changes, Ohio State had just too much down the stretch while the Wisconsin went ice cold from the field and dropped the Big Ten championship game 50-43 in front of a sold-out crowd at the United Center.
Sox starter Stewart gets clobbered
SURPRISE, Ariz. — Making his first appearance for Kansas City since pitching for Mexico in the World Baseball Classic, Louis Mendoza combined with four relievers on a 5-hitter as the Royals routed the White Sox 10-0 Sunday in Surprise, Ariz.White Sox starter Zach Stewart allowed 7 runs, 8 hits and 3 walks in 2 innings, retiring eight of 18 batters.The White Sox scratched catcher Tyler Flowers with lower back stiffness, while infielder Jeff Keppinger is limited to designated hitter because of a tender shoulder.“It’s like every day it’s something else with somebody, but again the idea is to have them healthy when we are in Chicago,” said White Sox manager Robin Ventura. “We’re trying to be cautious to get them to that point where they are healthy and start the season and if they are ready, too. You’re a little short-handed and you are supposed to making decisions and guys are getting dinged up. You keep guys here a little longer and get a longer look at them.”Mendoza struck out four, walked one and lowered his spring training ERA to 0.82 in 11 innings. He threw 42 of 63 pitches for strikes.Mendoza is competing for Kansas City’s final rotation spot with Bruce Chen, who gave up five home runs Saturday against the Chicago Cubs.“Of course, I want to start, but any position they give me I’m going to take it to help the team anyway I can,” Mendoza said.Mendoza was the Caribbean Series MVP after pitching 13 1-3 scoreless innings.“I’m 100 percent already,” he said. “I’m just trying to keep the same rhythm and keep working hard. The first inning I just tried to establish my sinker and the next inning mix in my curveball and changeup. I think that was the key today.”He had not pitched since throwing two scoreless innings against the U.S. on March 8.“Five very solid innings,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “He’s doing his part. I’ve got a couple of weeks left to see what happens, but it was a very nice outing today. The pitching was good all the way around today. The hitting was good. It was a great day. There were positives all the way around. I was trying to find a negative there at the end of the day and I couldn’t find one.” Nate Adcock, J.C. Gutierrez, Dan Wheeler and Greg Holland limited the White Sox to one hit the final four innings. Wheeler has allowed seven hits in eight scoreless innings over eight appearances, while walking one and striking out 12.Kansas City had 18 hits, two each by Billy Butler and Alex Gordon. The Royals batted around in a four-run first inning that Gordon led off with a broken-bat single and included run-producing singles by Butler, Eric Hosmer and Jeff Francoeur.
Phenoms Baea, Soler soon to be reassigned
Cubs phenoms Javier Baez and Jorge Soler will be among the roster cuts the Cubs announce Monday. Baez recently went on home run tear. Both players are key building blocks to the Cubs' future, but the organization wants to get more seasoning for each.
Blackhawks’ Bowman in sweet spot for deadline
With the trade deadline approaching, the Blackhawks would seem to need very little right now, but if the perfect deal comes along, GM Stan Bowman might want to add some size.
Northwestern again looking for sign of hope
Is there another 31-year-old Mike Krzyzewski lurking somewhere in college basketball? If so, would Northwestern offer him its head coaching job this time? If so, would he accept?
Wolves fall 2-1 to Rockford
The Chicago Wolves could only muster 1 goal and allowed 2 power-play strikes as the Rockford IceHogs earned a 2-1 Illinois Lottery Cup contest Sunday at the Allstate Arena.
NILAX newcomers eager for IHSLA challenge
If you've ever wondered how a NILAX team would fare in the IHSLA, you'll find out this season. Batavia, Cary-Grove, Crystal Lake South, Crystal Lake Central, Dundee Crown, Hampshire, Huntley and Prairie Ridge are now IHSLA teams, as is Jacobs, which finished 18-0 last year while winning its second consecutive NILAX championship.
NCAA tourney: Louisville is tops; Illini get 7-spot
Louisville earned the top overall seed in the NCAA tournament Sunday, while Kansas, Indiana and Gonzaga also received No. 1s after a topsy-turvy regular season and another round of weekend upsets.The selection committee had its work cut out after five teams swapped the top ranking in The Associated Press poll, capped by the West Coast Conference champion Zags (30-2) moving to the lead spot for the first time in school history.But it’s No. 4-ranked Louisville (29-5) that leads the 68-team field after sharing the Big East regular-season title, then pulling off a stunning turnaround to beat Syracuse in the final of the conference tournament for their 10th straight victory. The Cardinals came back from a 16-point deficit early in the second half for a 78-61 rout.Closer to home, Illinois was given the seventh seed in the East region. The Fighting Illini will play the Colorado Buffaloes Friday in Austin, Texas.Notre Dame also takes a No. 7 seed in the West region, and will face Iowa State Friday in Dayton, Ohio.No. 7 Kansas (29-5) moved up to take the second overall seed after an impressive run through the Big 12 tournament, capped by a 70-54 victory over rival Kansas State in the title game. No. 3 Indiana (28-6) is third overall in the tournament despite falling to Wisconsin in the Big Ten semifinals. The Zags claimed the last of the coveted No. 1 seeds, edging out Atlantic Coast Conference champion Miami.The Hurricanes, who became the first ACC team to be denied a top seed after winning both the regular season and the conference tournament, were among the No. 2 seeds with ACC rival Duke, Georgetown and Big Ten tournament champion Ohio State.The tournament begins Tuesday with a pair of games in Dayton. Everyone is trying to get to Atlanta for the Final Four, which begins April 6 at the Georgia Dome.Kentucky won’t get a chance to defend its national title. The Wildcats were left out of the field after a quarterfinal loss in the Southeastern Conference tournament. It didn’t help that their best player, Nerlens Noel, went out with a season-ending knee injury.
Winfield native finally a PGA Tour winner
PALM HARBOR, Fla. — Winfield native Kevin Streelman finally won on the PGA Tour with a game that looked as if he had done this many times before.Streelman, who graduated from Wheaton Warrenville South High School in 1997, didn't make a bogey over the final 37 holes on the tough Copperhead course at Innisbrook. He didn't miss a shot over the last 11 holes on his way to a 4-under 67 on Sunday for a two-shot win in the Tampa Bay Championship.Boo Weekley, who teed off three hours before the leaders, had a tournament-best 63 and waited to see if that would be enough.Streelman, locked in a battle with Justin Leonard over the final hour, came up with one clutch shot after another. He hit 5-iron into 6 feet on the par-3 13th hole, the toughest at Innisbrook in the final round, to take the lead for good. "Probably the best shot of my life in that situation," Streelman said. "It's just how I envisioned it and I pulled it off."He locked up the win with a 20-foot birdie putt on the par-3 17th and he was all smiles walking up the 18th fairway. Until Sunday, the biggest tournament Streelman won might have been the club championship at Whisper Rock.He won in his 153rd start on the PGA Tour, and it sends him to the Masters next month for the second time in his career."That was really cool," Streelman said. "I just stayed really patient, and I had a peace about me today."He finished at 10-under 274.Cameron Tringale had a 66 and finished alone in third when Leonard, who earlier made bogey from the bunker on the 16th, three-putted the final hole for a 71. Leonard wound up in a tie for fourth with defending champion Luke Donald (69) and Greg Chalmers (70).The other big winner was Jordan Spieth, the 19-year-old from Texas who holed a 50-foot chip for birdie on the 17th hole and made a 7-foot par putt on the final hole for a 70 to tie for seventh. That gave him enough money to earn special temporary membership on the PGA Tour for the rest of the year, meaning he can take unlimited sponsor exemptions.Until making that chip, Spieth was projected to be $195 short of the temporary membership, which is based on earning the equivalent of 150th on the money list last year."That would have been brutal," he said with a grin. "But it's nice to get the crowd excited on 17. That was one of the coolest shots I've ever hit. That was as loud as it gets. Hair on the back of your neck stands up. But yeah, if I was $200, short, I would have just asked if I could pay them $200."He now has earned $521,893 in three starts, the bulk of that coming from a runner-up finish in the Puerto Rico Open last week.The 34-year-old Streelman was the 14th consecutive win by an American in official PGA Tour events, dating to Tommy Gainey at Sea Island last fall. Americans have won the first 12 events of the season, their best streak since winning 13 in a row in 1989.All that mattered to Streelman was finally getting a win."Just keep chasing your dreams," Streelman said. "You never know what will happen."Sixteen players were within three shots of the lead when the final round began, and anything could have happened. No one imagined a 63 at Innisbrook, and Weekley's round was so strong that it was 8.6 shots better than the field average."That will go down as one of the best rounds of the year," Pat Perez said in the parking lot, pleased with his own 67 and stunned someone could have a 63.Weekley began his round by missing a 4-foot birdie putt, and he closed with such brilliance that he ran off three straight birdies on the back nine from inside 2 feet."It was impressive," Weekley said. "Even I'm still kind of shocked at how good I really hit it. The greens that I missed, I thought were going to be perfect. Overall, one of the best days I've had in ball striking in a long time."
Ohio State takes Big Ten title
Ohio State is the champion of the Big Ten tournament again.DeShaun Thomas scored 17 points and the 10th-ranked Buckeyes used their stout defense to beat No. 22 Wisconsin 50-43 for their conference-best fifth tournament title on Sunday.Thomas was 6 for 19 from the field, but made some big free throws down the stretch as Ohio State won the championship for the third time in the last four years. Aaron Craft had nine points and six rebounds, and LaQuinton Ross delivered a couple of huge plays for the Buckeyes (26-7).Travon Jackson scored 10 points for the Badgers (23-11), who shot 38.3 percent from the field. None of his teammates reached double figures, with Sam Dekker next up at eight points.Wisconsin and Ohio State were close for most of the second half, but the Buckeyes seized on a cold spell by the Badgers to move in front down the stretch.After Dekker scored on a reverse layup with 7:01 remaining, Wisconsin went scoreless for the next 4 minutes while Ross stepped up for Ohio State. He had a strong offensive rebound and putback, then converted a layup to make it 47-41 with 2:39 to go.Jackson made two free throws to stop the scoring drought for the Badgers, who forced a shot clock violation on the other end. But Ben Brust missed a long 3-pointer and Thomas went 3 for 4 at the line in the final minute.Dekker's basket was Wisconsin's last field goal of the game.Thomas had seven rebounds as the Buckeyes enjoyed a 39-28 advantage on the glass.Wisconsin advanced to the final with a pair of impressive victories over No. 6 Michigan and third-ranked Indiana, while the Buckeyes beat Nebraska handily and edged No. 8 Michigan State to reach the title game for the fifth consecutive season.Each team is likely headed for a top-five seed when the field for the NCAA tournament is revealed later Sunday.Sam Thompson added eight points for the Buckeyes, who had 13 second-chance points, compared to four for Wisconsin.While the lithe Thompson is a potent scorer, the Badgers took advantage of his lack of size at times when they had the ball. The 6-foot-7, 190-pound Thompson started at forward for the Buckeyes, and Wisconsin's senior starting front court of Berggren, Evans and Bruesewitz all had at least 18 pounds on the sophomore.The Badgers used the advantage to get high-percentage shots inside or force a double team that left one of their 3-point shooters open. It was particularly noticeable during a 14-0 first-half run that included 3s from Bruesewitz and Frank Kaminsky and a slick reverse layup by Evans.But Matta also did a nice bit of coaching for the Buckeyes. After Thomas got off to a slow start, Matta pulled the junior aside for a quick chat during a timeout late in the first half and the forward responded with a nice jumper that trimmed Wisconsin's lead to 24-23 at halftime.
Cubs’ Baez flexing his muscles
Javier Baez continues to put on a show for the Cubs. The 20-year-old shortstop followed up his 2-homer performance Friday against Team Japan with 2 more in Saturday’s 8-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals at HoHoKam Park.
Bulls show resilience with win
Even a 42-point thumping against a team 20 games below .500 still counts as just one loss. The Bulls got past a dismal defeat in Sacramento by beating the Golden State Warriors 113-95 on Friday. The Bulls now head home to face Denver on Monday wondering which of their injured players might be back.
Troubled Carnival ship arrives back in Tampa
A Carnival cruise ship that experienced technical issues with its propulsion system and canceled one stop has arrived as scheduled in Tampa, Fla.
So the Dow hit a record; now where do we go?
So the Dow Jones industrial average broke a record this month. Now what? It's impossible to predict how the Dow, that popular barometer of the stock market, will zig and zag from here. The only thing certain about the market is that there will be more peaks and valleys ahead, and that's about as specific as a fortune cookie.
Cyprus president trying to amend bailout plan
Cyprus' president says he is trying to amend a detested bailout plan that would tax bank deposits across the country to reduce its effect on small savers.
How to deal with manipulators at work
Psychological or emotional manipulation at work involves using underhanded, deceptive and abusive techniques. The manipulative co-worker has mastered the art of aggression disguised as helpfulness, good intentions or working for the good of the firm. They are great at hiding their own motives, while making others look uncooperative, incompetent or self-centered.
New Zealand suffering biggest drought in 30 years
A drought in New Zealand is costing farmers millions of dollars each day and is beginning to take a toll on the nation's economy. On Friday, the government officially declared its most widespread drought in at least 30 years. Parts of the North Island are drier than they've been in 70 years and some scientists say the unusual weather could be a harbinger of climate change. There has been little significant rainfall in the northern and eastern parts of the country since October.
Smart Spending: Lifting the veil on store brands
Supermarkets including Kroger, Safeway and Whole Foods are improving the image of their store brands with better packaging and more distinctive offerings. But where exactly do these products come from? It's a question a growing number of people may have as retailers increasingly develop their store brands as a way to cultivate loyalty among shoppers.
Insurers warn of health overhaul-induced sticker shock
The nation's big health insurers say they expect premiums — or the cost for insurance coverage — to rise from 20 to 100 percent for millions of people due to changes that will occur when key provisions of the Affordable Care Act roll out in January 2014. Mark Bertolini, CEO of Aetna Inc., calls the price hikes premium rate shock. "We've done all the math, we've shared it with all the regulators, we've shared it with all the people in Washington that need to see it, and I think it's a big concern," Bertolini said.
Chavez tattoos, kitsch in demand since death
Business has never been better for Eudis Carrillo. Sure, he's heartbroken over the death of his hero Hugo Chavez, but there's precious little time for sentiment: Hats and T-shirts of the late Venezuelan president are flying off the shelves at his street-side stand faster than he can keep them in stock. Ditto demand for Chavez tattoos, Chavez earrings, Chavez mugs and talking Chavez action figurines.
Small businesses find ways to beat skills shortage
There are three jobs open at Rodon Group, a plastic parts manufacturer near Philadelphia. But despite the reports of a shortage of skilled workers nationwide, CEO Michael Araten isn't sweating it. Rodon, located in Hatfield, Pa., works with local community colleges to make sure students — the firm's prospective employees — get the skills they need to work at the company making plastic parts for products such as bed frames and machinery.
When stress tears leak out at the office
Q: I’m a middle manager at a company in turmoil. Lately, I have been getting contradictory directives from top management, while getting no cooperation from other managers and support groups such as marketing. Higher-level managers make changes to directives I’m managing without telling me. After a morning of dealing with three separate incidents of this type, I went to a meeting in which my input was discounted by a clique of three other managers. My boss was also there. Suddenly, tears were running down my face. I stepped out to get a grip and returned several minutes later, calm, but the tears continued. It was mortifying. I don’t know what to do now — apologize? Pretend it didn’t happen? My boss has not mentioned it.A: I view stress tears — as opposed to tears of joy or grief — as nature’s way of releasing tension when escape is impossible and a throat punch is inadvisable. I’ve seen them ambush otherwise stoic professionals, and they’re about as easy to stop as sweating or blushing.Unfortunately, some workers and managers consider anyone who sheds tears at the office unprofessional, even manipulative. As I recall, Meg Ryan’s character in “Courage Under Fire” dismissed that viewpoint in salty but succinct language. (Low-sodium version: “They’re just tears; they mean nothing.”)In your case, tears were an understandable response to trying to function professionally when communication has broken down, leadership is scattered, and it’s every manager for him- or herself. If they mean anything, it’s that you need to learn new ways to perform in this dysfunctional office.You did the right thing in the short term by stepping away from the meeting and returning calmer, if still tearful. Staying and sobbing your way through an argument would have been worse. You also could have asked to postpone the topic, in the interest of having a more productive discussion.Your boss’ silence may be the result of discomfort or indifference or sympathy, but I’d be surprised if yours were the only tears he or she has seen lately. You can regain your confidence, and your boss’, by calmly asking for help managing the current chaos: “As you saw the other day, I’m getting frustrated with the conflicting directives preventing me from doing my job effectively. I need some advice on how to get consistent guidance so I can meet our goals.” Focus on the turmoil — not on your tears.If this was a one-time event, you should be able to own it, learn from it and move on. But if you repeatedly find yourself fighting tears, it might be a sign that you need to run away — long- or short-term — from this circus.Ÿ Karla L. Miller writes an advice column on navigating the modern workplace. Each week she will answer one or two questions from readers.
Investors move into stock mutual funds cautiously
The Dow Jones industrial average continues to set new records but average investors are still proceeding with caution. While they added to U.S. stock funds in the first two months of the year, they put larger amounts into bonds and funds investing primarily in foreign stocks, according to mutual fund industry consultant Strategic Insight.
Soda gives way to water as most popular drink
For more than two decades, soda was the No. 1 drink in the U.S. with consumption peaking in 1998 at 54 gallons a year, according industry tracker Beverage Digest. Americans drank just 42 gallons a year of water at the time. But over the years, as soda increasingly came under fire for fueling the nation's rising obesity rates, water quietly rose to knock it off the top spot. Americans now drink an average of 44 gallons of soda a year, a 17 percent drop from the peak in 1998.
Study sheds light on funds’ hidden trading costs
Three university professors tried to calculate the impact of trading costs on fund performance, and their conclusion suggests that a fund's expense ratio doesn't come close to capturing the full costs that investors pay. The study's authors found that the typical fund's trading-related expenses take a bigger bite out of investment returns than the separate fund management costs reflected in the expense ratio.
5 ways to shake winter off your car
As spring approaches, it's a good idea to give your car a thorough once-over to undo winter's damage.It won't cost a lot. You can do the work yourself or visit a car wash and a garage. Goodyear, Firestone and other car care centers will rotate your tires, change your oil and fluids and inspect your vehicle for winter damage for $35 or less.
Life & Entertainment
‘Wild Thing’ Rapper Tone Loc collapses on stage in Iowa
"Wild Thing" and "Funk Cold Medina" rapper Tone Loc didn't want to be hospitalized after collapsing on stage during a weekend performance in Iowa. Loc, whose real name is Anthony T. Smith, collapsed after finishing a song during a Saturday night concert on a downtown Des Moines bridge.
‘Oz’ again tops box office with $42.2 million
Walt Disney's 3-D blockbuster, "Oz the Great and Powerful," led all films for the second week in a row, taking in $42.2 million according to studio estimates Sunday. Sam Raimi's prequel to the L. Frank Baum classic "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" also took in $46.6 million overseas, leading to a two-week worldwide total of $281.8 million.
Sunday picks: Fete St. Pat's with 'Flanagan's Wake' at the Met
Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with “Flanagan's Wake” at the Metropolis in Arlington Heights tonight. Enjoy pancakes and maple syrup and watch demonstrations of maple syrup production at the Sugar Bush Fair at the Spring Valley Nature Center in Schaumburg. Listen to the Vienna Boys Choir Sunday at North Central College's Wentz Concert Hall in Naperville.
Well-cast ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ reflects the good and the bad
On one hand, the Broadway-bound tour of the musical "Jekyll & Hyde" is like the good Dr. Jekyll: bursting with talent and ambition. On the other, it's theater run amok, a Hyde-like mish-mash of mood and madness elevated by stars Constantine Maroulis and Deborah Cox.
Elle Fanning inspires look at 5 great child actresses
Elle Fanning does some incredible work as a teenager caught up in the anti-nukes activism of 1960s London in the new coming-of age drama "Ginger & Rosa." So in a year in which "Beasts of the Southern Wild" star Quvenzhane Wallis became the youngest-ever best-actress nominee at the Academy Awards at only 9, here's a look at five great child actresses:
Scenic historic route for California Zephyr train
The journey east on Amtrak's California Zephyr train is as good as the destination. Riding the rails from the San Francisco Bay area to Reno, Nev., offers beautiful views and a tangible sense of history on the route over the Sierra Nevada mountain range that helped bring America together after the Civil War. Marking 30 years of service this year, the Amtrak train leaves Emeryville, Calif., every morning. The Zephyr's ultimate destination, 51 hours later, is Chicago.
On the road: Free egg hunt at Soldier Field
Thousands of adults and children are expected at the 10th Annual Spring Egg-Stravaganza at Soldier Field nexxt Saturday. Also, more than 100 guitars owned by greats including Roy Rogers, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, Woody Guthrie, Buddy Holly, Les Paul and others are on display for the first time at "Guitars! Roundups to Rockers" at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis.
New Legoland exhibit builds on popularity of ‘Star Wars’
In January, Legoland asked visitors which line of the toy building bricks they'd like to see get more space on display. "Star Wars" was the overwhelming winner, and now kids (and adults) can see the result of their votes at the new "Lego Star Wars Miniland." “I’m excited to see kids come in and get blown away,” said master model builder Andrew Johnson.
Jillian Michaels weighs in with weight-loss book
"I still drink a little bit of alcohol," confides fitness guru Jillian Michaels. "And I haven't been to the gym in five days!" No wonder. There's this grueling book tour on top of an always-heavy workload, plus the routine demands of parenting a 3-year-old daughter and an 11-month-old son who, along with her partner. But all is never lost, says Michaels, in the battle to lose weight and be healthy.
Anode rods cause hot water odor
Q. Regarding your recent article, I also have a rotten egg smell in my hot water caused by a new water heater. When I contacted the manufacturer, it mentioned that removing the anode rod would eliminate the problem, but said that would void the warranty on the unit.
Roommates want to break lease following break-in
Q. Our apartment was recently burglarized. The landlord hasn't done anything to make my roommates and me feel safer. We would like to move out, but still have six months left on our lease.
Huge decrease of Monarch butterflies in Mexico
The number of monarch butterflies making it to their winter refuge in Mexico dropped 59 percent this year, falling to the lowest level since comparable record-keeping began 20 years ago, scientists have reported. It was the third straight year of declines for the orange-and-black butterflies that migrate from the United States and Canada to spend the winter sheltering in mountaintop fir forests in central Mexico.
New fixture improves singin’ in the shower
Q. A friend recently told me about a new shower head that plays music. Can you please give me some information about this shower head and how it is installed? I'm excited about this and I want one!
Central School loft conversion provides lesson in suburban living
Victoria Bisbikis doesn't consider herself impulsive but she broke character by plunking down a deposit immediately after seeing how the kindergarten room at the former Central School in Libertyville was shaping up. "I didn't want to take the chance of losing it," the soon-to-be single mom said of the three-bedroom loft.
First lady: Priority is ensuring 'family is whole'
Michelle Obama is pushing back against the notion that she and President Barack Obama don't socialize enough in Washington. The first lady says in an interview in the April issue of Vogue magazine that she and the president were straightforward when they said — before moving from Chicago to Washington in 2009 — that their family, including two young daughters, would be their priority. She said "the stresses and the pressures" of the White House are so real that they prefer to spend free time with their daughters, now 14 and 11.
Endorsements: Bansal, Chakka, Piehl, White for District 204 school board
The Daily Herald endorses Krishna Bansal, Vassavi Chakka, Cathy Piehl and Benjamin White for four 4-year terms on the Indian Prairie Unit District 204 school board.
Endorsements: Brust, Ebert, Mirandi for Hampshire village board
The Daily Herald endorses George Brust, Martin Ebert and Deborah Mirandi for Hampshire village board.
Endorsements: Oilschlager, Drummond for College of Lake County board
The Daily Herald endorses Barbara Oilschlager and Darl Drummond for the College of Lake County board of trustees.
Endorsements: Neumann, McMahon, Linck, McNeill in District 34
The Daily Herald endoses incumbents Tamara Neumann and Diane McMahon and newcomers Lori Linck and Mary Kay McNeill for Antioch Elementary District 34 Board of Education.
Endorsements: Crotty, Fisher, Romberg, Samuels for Naperville Dist. 203 board
The Daily Herald endorses Susan Crotty, Jay Fisher, Jackie Romberg and Neil Samuels for four seats on the Naperville Unit District 203 school board.
Endorsement: Delgado for West Chicago Ward 2 alderman
The Daily Herald endorses Rosalinda Delgado for Ward 2 alderman in West Chicago.
Scary new world: Have mug shot removed for a fee
Websites that post police mug shots, then offer to take them down for a fee, are causing consternation among law officials and defense lawyers. But efforts to curb the practice underscores the modern-day challenges of basic crime reporting, says Jim Davis, news director for the DuPage and Fox Valley editions.
Keep experience, knowledge at CLC
A Lake County letter to the editor: I have known Barb Oilschlager for 24 years, who is running for re-election to the board of trustees of the College of Lake County, on both the state and national levels.
Make pension system fair for all districts
A Grayslake letter to the editor: Isn't it a bit ironic that school districts in the greater metropolitan Chicago area are bristling at having the cost of teachers' pensions shifted from the state level back to the respective districts, expecting taxpayers throughout the state to shoulder the burden of these pensions while at the same time howling that any change in how local districts spend their money within their own school systems would be unconscionable?
Strive for simplicity in solving problems
A Wheeling letter to the editor: The state comptroller's common sense statement -- "You don't spend what you don't have" — not only sounds simple, it is simple, and every responsible solvent household or business knows it, practices it and prospers because of it.
Our leaders cannot be at odds with each other
An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: It is time for our leaders to do great good things. Set the example. Give up their campaign chests; their pensions, their lobby money, cut spending and pay the bills. Take responsibility — each and every one of you — Democrats and Republicans — you got us here in the first place.
Link cards are being abused
A Hoffman Estates letter to the editor: For several months my wife and I, while trying to buy groceries we can't always afford but need, see people in front of us abusing the Link program. For instance, we were at a grocery store in Schaumburg. There was a lady buying a cart full of vegetables in large quantity. It could never have been just for personal use.
Good jobs available with 1-year degrees
An Elgin letter to the editor: At Elgin Community College, helping our students succeed in the workforce is an important part of our mission. That is why I am pleased to see two reports from Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce that substantiate our work.
A candidate with practical ideas
A St. Charles letter to the editor: Not one to be politically vocal, I was so impressed with my experience in attending a coffee hour with John Rabchuk recently that I have to spread the word.
All forest buildings well worth saving
A Glen Ellyn letter to the editor: I'm replying to the March 5 article by Robert Sanchez regarding historic homes on DuPage County Forest Preserve property. It's important to clarify the point in the headline that these aren't just old houses, but irreplaceable, historic, architectural artifacts that absolutely should be preserved.
No need to drive and talk on phone
A Warrenville letter to the editor: I am a Republican by nature, though my leanings are Libertarian. Many years ago, when we didn't have cellphones, we got along just fine. Now in this instant gratification era, we must be connected 24/7. This is poppycock.