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posted: 5/3/2014 5:01 AM

The Soapbox

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A student's beautiful patterns:

Suburban Standout Timothy Zhou of Bolingbrook cleverly surmises that music, math and chess are alike because one must detect patterns in all of them to excel. "Patterns are essential for creativity," he said, "because otherwise you have randomness, and no one thinks randomness is beauty." What a thought-provoking observation.

In the race again for 25 years:

It doesn't seem like 29 years since Arlington International Racecourse's grandstand went up in flames. Many probably recall with some heartache watching the destruction of a suburban landmark and an economic engine. But out of the ashes rose its replacement four years later. The new racetrack stands as a suburban jewel a quarter century later. Happy anniversary, Arlington.

Medical system progress, but ...

A cardiologist signing off on a surgery for one of our editors told him to take a copy of his approval letter because sometimes the approval doesn't make it to the surgeon in time. Even with electronic records, the two systems are not connected and records can get lost. Our medical system is making progress but clearly has a ways to go.

A marked contrast:

Isn't it nice how within just the past couple of weeks lawns in the 'burbs have greened up so beautifully? Seeing the daffodils and hosta popping up seems so much more pleasant this spring -- even a relief.

But enough is enough:

At the same time, let's just hope these signs of spring can survive as wintry winds and temps just can't seem to let us escape their clutches. For every day or two in the 50s lately, we seem to get stuck with a windchill in the 30s a day or two later.

Tireless activist:

If only we could all be more like Myra Becker at 90 -- assuming we make it there at all. The Elgin resident has volunteered for a half century to promote her favorite causes: women's empowerment, mental health and voters' rights. The YWCA Elgin and Elgin City Council are giving her separate lifetime achievement awards. Well deserved.

Seeds of cooperation:

Due to campus construction, the College of DuPage no longer has room for its community farm. But thanks to a tentative agreement between college officials and the DuPage County Forest Preserve District, the farm, which teaches students about both gardening and service, may live on. A great example of intergovernmental cooperation.

Title bound:

Former Wheaton Warrenville South volleyball star Thomas Jaeschke is chasing another championship, this time with the Loyola Ramblers. Jaeschke, a sophomore all-American, helped the Ramblers (28-1) earn a spot in Saturday's NCAA Championship game. The No. 1-ranked Ramblers take on Stanford at 7 p.m. today at Gentile Arena.

Win one for the Baron:

If Loyola wins the NCAA title in men's volleyball tonight, it will be the first one for the school since its 1963 men's basketball team. The Joseph J. Gentile Arena is named for the suburban benefactor who helped build it in 1996. Gentile, who sold cars as "the Baron of Barrington," loved Loyola and the arena, which was updated in 2011, the year he died. He'd love to see another banner.

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