The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Take it with a grain of ...

The City of Evanston, my birthplace, bastion of good government, where I have lived for just over three years, has run out of road salt:

[Evanston Public Works chief] David Jennings says that on Wednesday "our salt supplier notified us that they could not honor the balance of our current order, about 1,100 tons, due to difficulties in getting their supply of salt to the distribution point that serves us."

Jennings says city crews have stopped salting residential streets, but are continuing to plow. "This means that most of these streets will develop 'snowpack' which is smooth in some areas, but tends to rut and develop a washboard surface as traffic packs it down."

I can attest to the 'washboard' surface as driving Parker to day camp the last two days was like driving over two miles of railroad tracks. Oh well, snow does melt eventually, and we should have above-freezing temperatures in a month or two.

Daily Parker post #1000

Yes, this is my 1,000th post since this blog started in November 2005.

I had hoped to write a long, introspective essay on blogging in general and this blog in specific over the years, but it turns out I have work to do today, so that will have to wait until the 2,000th post or so. (Many of you are fighting back tears, I know; though I suspect they're tears of joy.)

No, today I'm just going to mention the two most immediately relevant things that confronted me on my way to work this morning.

First, in the past 24 hours, the temperature in Chicago has dropped 27°C. Spot the cold front:

Second, my preferred candidate, John Edwards, for whom I had planned to vote today at lunch, has dropped out of the race. So I'll vote tomorrow, once I formulate Plan B.

Chicago Sunrise Chart

It's time for the semi-annual update of the Chicago sunrise chart. (You can get one for your own location at

Date Significance Sunrise Sunset Daylight
4 Jan Latest sunrise until Oct 28 07:19 16:33 9:14
28 Jan 5pm sunset 07:08 17:00 9:52
5 Feb 7am sunrise 07:00 17:11 10:10
20 Feb 5:30pm sunset 06:40 17:30 10:49
27 Feb 6:30am sunrise 06:30 17:38 11:08
8 Mar Earliest sunrise until April 12th
Earliest sunset until Oct 28th
06:14 17:50 11:36
9 Mar Daylight savings time begins
Latest sunrise until Oct 22nd
07:12 18:51 11:39
16 Mar 7am sunrise, 7pm sunset
12-hour day
07:00 19:00 12:00
20 Mar Equinox 00:48 CDT 06:54 19:04 12:10
3 Apr 6:30am sunrise (again) 06:30 19:19 12:49
13 Apr 7:30pm sunset 06:13 19:30 13:17
22 Apr 6am sunrise 05:59 19:41 13:31
10 May 8pm sunset 05:35 20:00 14:24
15 May 5:30am sunrise 05:30 20:05 14:34
14 Jun Earliest sunrise of the year 05:15 20:28 15:13
20 Jun Solstice 18:59 CDT 05:15 20:30 15:15
21 Jun 8:30pm sunset 05:16 20:30 15:14
27 Jun Latest sunset of the year 05:18 20:31 15:13
2 Jul 8:30pm sunset 05:20 20:30 15:09
16 Jul 5:30am sunrise 05:30 20:24 14:55
8 Aug 8pm sunset 05:52 20:00 14:08
16 Aug 6am sunrise 06:00 19:49 13:48
28 Aug 7:30pm sunset 06:13 19:30 13:17
15 Sep 6:30am sunrise; 7pm sunset 06:30 19:00 12:29
22 Sep Equinox, 10:44 CDT 06:39 18:48 12:08
25 Sep 12-hour day 06:42 18:42 12:00
2 Oct 6:30pm sunset 06:49 18:30 11:40
12 Oct 7am sunrise 07:00 18:14 11:13
21 Oct 6pm sunset 07:11 18:00 10:48
1 Nov Latest sunrise of the year
Latest sunset until Mar 5th
07:24 17:45 10:20
2 Nov Standard time returns
Earliest sunrise until Mar 2nd
06:25 16:43 10:18
6 Nov 6:30am sunrise (again) 06:30 16:39 10:08
15 Nov 4:30pm sunset 06:41 16:30 9:48
2 Dec 7am sunrise 07:01 16:20 9:19
8 Dec Earliest sunset of the year 07:06 16:20 9:13
21 Dec Solstice, 06:04 CST 07:16 16:23 9:07

You can get sunrise information for your location at

Oddly warm

Just three days ago, Thursday morning, the temperature in Chicago sank to -18°C, with a wind chill of -23°C. Right now, it's 16°C. Did I mention it's the beginning of January?

I'm so happy the U.S. has taken the lead against global warming.

Even Parker is reluctant to go outside

Gotta love Chicago weather. Right now it's -18°C outside, which is the point where Chicagoans are allowed to complain about the cold without looking wimpy. It builds character. And I do have to get to my office, but you know? I don't want to go out there. Even Parker lasted just long enough to do his business before sprinting back to the door like his tail was on fire. (Of course, that could have been about breakfast and not about the cold.)

But this being Chicago, the forecast calls for 10°C weather on Saturday. A 28°C rise in two days? Heck, I've seen that happen in two hours...