(Photo Credit: Looper).
Gary S. Kimmel is a longtime Marina City resident, a prominent condo board member, a respected family dentist, and a (several floors) upstairs neighbor of mine. Yesterday, he was indicted for laundering money for a nationwide prostitution ring that he allegedly allowed to operate out of nine Marina City apartments, in return for more than $400,000 in kickbacks. Although he did fix the prostitutes’ teeth for free. OK, say it with me now…are you kidding me?
Now anyone who lives in Marina City will tell you we have a good thing going here. For whatever reason (probably that widespread, peculiarly American fear of modern design) we live in two of the most affordable high-rise buildings in downtown Chicago. Sure, we have knockout views. But with that affordability we also have some perhaps less than stellar residents.
Regular readers will know our lowest floors are occupied by a pretty transient population. It’s not unusual to share an elevator or a laundry room with drunken college students, people moving in or out carrying all of their possessions in a bankers box, or the chronically unshowered. They all tend to get off in the 20s, while the rest of us sigh in relief as the elevator cheerily calls “Going Up” and closes its doors.
Point being, we take weird people for granted around here. So Dr. Gary surely knew that his rent-by-the-night tenants would fit right in without arousing much suspicion. Although his fleet of luxury cars, one among them bearing a vanity plate named after one of the call girls, “S-E-C-R-E-T”, was probably pushing it, who (well, except for the feds) would know?
Well, apparently everyone after Kimmel spoke openly about the investigation at the Marina City Christmas party that I blew off last month. This is so why not to be a joiner in a condo building, and you’ve got to wonder how exactly does one discuss the birth of Christ and hooker code names in the same evening?
Still, it came as a surprise to Yours Truly when, in order to cross Wabash this morning on my way to work, I had to navigate among several news media vans parked in front of my house. It was a colleague who finally clued me in today when she asked, point blank, “So, do you feel violated?” After receiving my blank stare in return, she suggested I check the news.
What can one say? Well, after the profane shock, anyway? And perhaps the painfully and darkly ironic groan at a family dentist helping to run an underage hooker ring? Figuring out that response will take some time.
But as to the question at hand, do I feel violated? Let’s see…supposedly responsible condo board member living in my home gives pimps all-hours access to my home to schedule underage hookers to turn tricks. In my home.
In my home.
Yes, I do.
I’m an #OpenlyAutistic gay, Hispanic, urbanist, Disney World fan, New York native, politically independent, Jewish blogger in Chicago. I believe in social justice, big cities, and public transit. I write words and raise money for nonprofits. I’ve written this blog since 2005. And counting...
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