I am NOT happy.
Not happy at all. Yesterday, I was innocently checking on Twitter when I got terrible news. The Sears Tower, one of Chicago’s most famous icons/attractions/sources of pride, will be renamed this summer. Are you KIDDING me?
Call me dramatic (it wouldn’t be the first time), but as a native here I feel violated. Again. There are certain things in life that you just count on, you know? Death, taxes, and the Sears Tower still being called the Sears Tower.
Willis Tower? Fuggeddaboutit.
I don’t give a rat’s patootie that the naming rights were up for grabs over the past couple of years. What about history? What about local pride? What about the fact that my 14-year-old used to refer to the Sears Tower as the “Serious Tower” and that won’t be nearly as funny when I tell it to his children some day if the building isn’t even called the Sears Tower???
It’s a travesty, I’m telling you.
Chicago’s landmarks are being branded and changed like nobody’s business, or somebody’s business, depending upon how you look at it. First, the Standard Oil Building was changed to the Amoco Building, and then…wth? Aon Center? Whaaaa?
Then, the New World Music Theatre was next to fall. It became the World Music Theatre, Tweeter Center, and now the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre. Who goes to concerts at a bank????
Before yesterday, there were two offenses even worse than the two I just mentioned. You know the White Sox? They used to play at Comiskey Park. Guess where they play now?
U.S. Cellular Field. I hate it…and I’m even a Cubs fan! Take another little piece of our hearts, Mr. Big Business.
The WORST one, though, hit closest to home with me. It was the day Macy’s took over Marshall Fields. I was sick. It’s bad enough that there are no more Marshall Fields stores in the Chicago-area malls, but the fact that the Macy’s company couldn’t find it in their ice-cold heart to NOT rename the State Street location and let it remain Marshall Fields made it so that I could no longer give any money to that company. The State Street Marshall Fields, as I will *always* refer to it, is a landmark. It is chock-full of history. The clocks are still there, outside. The world’s largest unbroken example of stained glass (1.6 million pieces) is on the ceiling in the cosmetics department.
The Walnut Room Restaurant is still famous for its fountain and giant Christmas tree. Fans of the store even maintain a website and are trying to bring the Marshall Fields name back. A visit to this grand store is bittersweet now; it’s hard to look at what has been there forever when the Macy’s name is slapped all over everything.
What I want to know is, what’s next? The John Hancock Building? Navy Pier? Buckingham Fountain, for goodness sakes?
I say NO.
Who’s with me??