Queen B graces the cover of the September 2015 issue of Vogue. Her story, “Just B: Beyonce and the Art of Global Domination,” starts with a realization that we are not all that we want to be, and more importantly, that we are dependent upon other people, namely “glamorous, powerful women” to do that for us. We need these powerful women not simply to live vicariously through them, but also to validate the dream of success, power, fame, and beauty. To know it is real. It’s attainable. The article starts:
“What do we want from the glamorous, powerful women we call divas or icons or cultural forces? We want them to want—and in our names get—everything they possibly can. Success in work and love. Sexual pleasure. Money and power. We want them to embody multiple fantasies. We want them to make us believe that exciting realities are just around the corner.”
As I thought about the “exciting reality” that we want, I realized that I have that exciting reality. You have that exciting reality.
I don’t think we give ourselves and our reality enough credit. So, I wanted to take you on a mini-exploration of all of the things you have available to you—all of the exciting events you can attend, people you can meet, and things you can do just by dwelling in Chicago.
You are in one of the most aesthetically pleasing cities in the world. You can climb up and look straight down from one of the largest building in the world. The architecture is world-renowned. The parks are highly acclaimed. And that’s just the outside of the city. Chicago is home to the #1 Art Museum in the world.
In Chicago, there is so much to do and see. If you want to meet the staff at Microsoft, you can. If you want to attend one of the largest tech conferences in the nation, you can.
Though Chicago is one of the biggest cities, you can easily travel to all neighborhoods without a car. If you want to travel internationally or the next state over, chose a train, plane, or car and leave the same day. No waiting.
Sit right down at the hundreds of restaurants a short walk or convenient train ride away. You can taste the world in one neighborhood. There are vegetarian options, vegan choices, and, of course, savory steakhouses. Enjoy the finely chopped, exotic, and the familiar foods and beverages specially prepared from inventive chefs and award-winning mixologists.
Think of your most over-the-top sporting experience. Chicago turns into a university. On game day, not only do people sport fanfare, but statues wear jerseys, businesses fly banners, and restaurants and bars bring in more TVs to watch the game. The rivalries are intense. At baseball games, not only do people show up, but they overcrowd, they wear the t-shirt, they cheer, and liven the surrounding neighborhood—be that in the north side or south side. The whole city erupts during a national championship. During the Blackhawks victory, people popped champagne, ran into the streets and shouted for hours, raising their hands and people in the air spanning over two intersections. Preseason is duly noted and The NFL Draft is now a Chicago event.
Love fashion? Stroll down the Magnificent Mile and see one of the most beautiful Burberry stores. Shop discount or high-end. For men, you can shop European designs from BOGA, brought exclusively to its Chicago West Loop storefront or shop Canadian designs from Frank & Oak, which opened it’s second national store in Chicago. Want to shop organic, local, or vegan make-up and beauty products? You have that option. At the club, you can dance all night and then get a manicure in the same place at Beauty Bar.
The more that I explore Chicago and meet people, the more that I realize not only how much Chicago has to offer, but also the quality of life that this city provides.
No, we aren’t shutting down The Louvre or appearing on the the cover of Vogue’s September. Maybe we aren’t wearing designer, nor have 40 million followers on Instagram, and perhaps we aren’t nearly as successful, but an exciting reality—that you can have. And you can create that for yourself in Chicago. The dream isn’t just there, it’s a viable option.