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Ghost illustrations overlaid on an image of an empty Chicago street
Photograph: Shutterstock

20 things Chicagoans officially want to ghost

We’re leaving these unsavory parts about Chicago life on read.

Emma Krupp
Written by
Emma Krupp
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Sure, maybe you’ve ghosted a bad Hinge date or abruptly cut the cord on a meandering situationship—but what if you could ghost your least favorite thing about living in Chicago?

In the spirit of all things ghostly and Halloween-inspired, we polled readers on Facebook and Twitter to find out which aspects of Chicago life they would ghost if they could, and received answers ranging from the practical (winter, potholes) to the political (crime, the mayor) to the personal (shout out to the respondents who replied, “Your mom” or “My ex-husband”). Take a look through some of our favorite answers below and consider which things you’d ghost—just don’t say the CTA, because the ghost trains and buses are way ahead of you on that one. 

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1. “People who live in the ‘burbs but say they’re from Chicago.”

2. “People who call it ‘Chi-Town.’”

3. “Privatized city street parking and traffic cameras.”

4. “The anti-ketchup people.”

5. “CTA not showing up when it says it will.”

6. “Malört.” 

7. “The Bat Cave, aka Lower Wacker Drive.”

8. “Getting off the Red Line and catching wind off of the lake on a 20-below day.” 

9. “Never-ending construction on the Kennedy.”

10. “People who only want to talk about ‘random’ violence and ‘gang bangers’ that typically no one ever truly encounters here.”

11. “Deep dish pizza.” 

12. “All the politicians! All of them.”

13. “The Taste of Chicago.”

14. “The men.”

15. “Everywhere you go it smells like urine.” 

16. “Winter, and Pulaski and Madison.”

17. “Cover bands.”

18. “Navy Pier.”

19. “City sticker fees.”

20. “Traffic, for sure; otherwise all expressed negativity about Chicago. Love it, warts and all.”

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