Friday's intriguing people
Richard M. Daley is stepping down as Chicago mayor after 22 years in office. A new book looks at his and his father’s lives.
May 13th, 2011
12:02 PM ET

Friday's intriguing people

Richard M. Daley

For about 44 of the past 55 years, a man named Richard Daley has been mayor of Chicago. Richard J. Daley was mayor for more than two decades. And his son, Richard M. Daley, is now stepping down after 22 years in office. He’ll be succeeded Monday by former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

A new book by Neil Steinberg about the Daley legacy has been published with excerpts appearing in the Chicago Sun-Times. The Daleys have their political finesse and Democratic Party ties. More offbeat, Steinberg said, is the Daleys' "genius for mangling the English language.”

“There are even crooked reporters,” the first Daley said when faced with a police scandal, “and I can spit on some of them right here!” “Scrutiny?” the second Daley said about news coverage of his brother. “What else do you want? Do you want to take my shorts? Give me a break, go scrutinize yourself. I get scrootened every day, don’t worry, from each and every one of you. It doesn’t bother me.”

James Durbin

He overcame the death of his musician father, poverty, Tourette’s syndrome and substantial autism to rise to the top four finalists on “American Idol.” Yet Durbin’s flamboyant rock 'n' roll performances were not enough to spare him Idol’s hook Thursday night.

Durbin was eliminated in a shocker determined by 72 million votes. He finished the evening with a powerful version of Paul McCartney’s “Maybe I’m Amazed.” It was a tribute to his wife, the mother of his young song, who supported Durbin in his pre-Idol days by placing Post-it Notes throughout their house that said “Embrace Your Gift.”

Crystal Kim

She was denied air travel by Korean Air because the airline feared the terminally ill cancer patient would die on board a flight, according to affiliate KING.

On Thursday, after five days of waiting, Kim headed back to her homeland of South Korea, flying first class on Delta Air Lines with her daughter. The two flew first to Japan, then on to South Korea, where Kim hopes to live out her final days.

Taylor Phinney

The two-time world champion track cyclist launches his professional road-racing career Sunday as analysts project that he will be America’s next — scandal-free — road-racing sensation. According to a profile in this month’s Outside magazine, the 20-year-old has the genes, and perhaps the smarts, to overcome Lance Armstrong’s illustrious, if now tattered, legacy.

“Mini Phinney,” who is 6-4, is the son of Olympic stars Davis Phinney and Connie Carpenter. Davis, now battling Parkinson’s disease, was the first American to win a Tour de France stage in 1986. Meanwhile, Carpenter was an Olympic speed skater who won a gold medal in cycling in the 1984 Los Angeles Games. Since Taylor Phinney began track racing five years ago, he’s earned two world titles, a national title and an Olympic berth.

Even more impressive is how he has quietly distanced himself from road cycling’s controversies. Though he was hand-picked by Lance Armstrong to lead Armstrong’s Trek-Livestrong Under 23 team, this past September, Phinney quietly moved from Armstrong’s Team RadioShack to sign a three-year deal with the BMC cycling team.

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. dan smith

    The Daley's gave new meaning to the term crooked politics.

    May 13, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  2. funkybunch

    Agree, but why do we keep re electing these people. Its not just Chicago, I know first hand. Surviving in Newark NJ.

    May 13, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  3. banasy

    Sure, the Daley's were crooked. Sure, Richard M carried on the legacy of his father with the Chicago Machine. I'm the first to acknowledge that, having had a Daley in office most of my life.

    If you thought that the elder Richard was colorful, he pales in comparison with Richard M. That man had some of the most hilarious sound bites *ever*! He is perhaps the most outrageous, outspoken, politically incorrect politician I've ever seen. I adore him. Not his politics, but him!

    I will miss him very much. Thanks for the laughs and the memories, Mayor Richard M. Daley!

    May 13, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Cesar

    So unfair to Crystal.

    May 13, 2011 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  5. duke

    Maybe senators,Ensign,colburn,and Santorum,
    Should be fridays intriguing persons!
    It amazes me how those who openly oppose so called"liberal lifestyles" are in fact the ones who can't help themselves when presented with a super liberal situation!
    The same people who opposed Common coming into the white house will show up in droves to vote these three in office again and again,the party of god(gop)gotta luv em!

    May 13, 2011 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Marti Gras

    What are you TALKING about, duke?

    May 13, 2011 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
  7. dan smith

    Banasy, I can certainly understand how someone from chicago would miss the Daley family being in office. Oh also I changed my log in name do to some idiot logging in under mine and saying stupid things.

    May 13, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  8. duke

    Mardi gras!
    I'm talking about the corrupt senator John Ensign?
    I thought infidelity was for liberals,I thought lying and bribes were all liberal traits?
    Only to see this report on gods house party(c-street)?
    And if by now you don't know what I'm talking about,then I guess the media did a good job at hiding this story from you!

    May 14, 2011 at 9:02 am | Report abuse |
  9. Dale

    22 years is a long time.

    May 14, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Neil Steinberg

    I should point out, the whole book isn't by me - just the introduction that the Sun-Times posted and a later chapter. My book on the city, "You Were Never In Chicago," is being published next year by the University of Chicago Press, assuming I can get it done in time.

    May 15, 2011 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Brandon Stone

    Ah. They must've shown up because their water softener from Barrington, IL showed up. They just eat those things up, ya know?

    June 26, 2013 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |