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Empty Stockings: Wrigleyville’s “Christmas Club” Pop-Up with Kelsey McGrath

“What are those?”

All four of them looked at the ceiling, festooned from wall to wall with decorations: presents on strings, a collection of DVD cases for holiday favorites, a ventilation pipe wrapped in string lights. Among the hanging décor, just to their left, were a pool of ornaments –– each consisting of a Santa hat, above a pair of Santa pants.

“It’s like a holly jolly dry cleaner,” Dania quipped.

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Taking Necessary Caution: Aló, Borges, & Carson’s “MENace”

Meet the Hanslick Girls: Gwen, Eleanor and Dania. Created by writer Zach Barr, they are a trio of friends who are always out experiencing the best of entertainment. Be it plays, films, concerts, exhibits, or games, they’ve learned that the arts are best when experienced together. They may not have the same opinions, but their conversations tend to make for an entertaining read. This week, the Girls discuss a recent narrative chestnut: a miniseries of minute-long episodes, distributed via Instagram, and produced almost entirely by women. Let’s hear what they had to say…


The new year was now a week old, and the novelty of throwing the past year over her shoulder had finally faded. Avoiding the end of her lunch break, Eleanor killed time in the break room on her phone. She swiped through Instagram expectantly – this was the best time of year, when everyone posted their photos from over the break. Family after family of smiling people in front of fake fireplaces lit up the screen.

One of the posts stood out, catching Eleanor’s attention enough to stop scrolling for a moment. It was a drawing of three women – from left to right, a blonde in an orange top, a woman glancing up from a mane of thick black hair, and a woman with her hair tucked and pulled back over her head. All three glanced up to the right, with expressions ranging from distrust to distaste. The teal background was empty, save for the word “menace,” in script, sitting in the center of the image. At the top was scrawled the artist’s name, “Partes,” and the handle @MENACEseries.

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