The video features raw footage for the television show "Chicago Slices." Skip Blumberg visits M.K Brody's Toy Store in the West Loop and the Palace Grill in West Town. There is also raw footage for a segment entitled "Kids Eggment" involving producer Tom Weinberg's children, Anna and Jesse.
00:00Copy video clip URL Videomaker Skip Blumberg gathers footage from around his home in New York before catching a cab to get on a flight to Chicago. He eventually cuts to a shot of the World Trade Center buildings before getting in the cab. He gathers footage of the New York City skyline in the distance.
02:40Copy video clip URL Once at the airport, Blumberg gathers footage of the takeoff from inside of the plane. He then gets a few shots of the New York City skyline as the plane ascends. Blumberg also gets footage of the plane’s descent into Chicago’s O’Hare Airport. This lasts for several minutes.
07:33Copy video clip URL Once arrived, Blumberg makes his way off of the plane and is greeted by Ahdee Goldberg who will be working with Blumberg in Chicago. The two make their way out of O’Hare Airport. Blumberg gathers footage of the Chicago skyline as they make their way into the city.
10:32Copy video clip URL Cut to footage of downtown Chicago.
10:47Copy video clip URL Cut to footage from outside of M.K. Brody’s Toy Store in the West Loop.
11:53Copy video clip URL Blumberg makes his way inside the store. The walls are covered with party decorations, tinker toys, and balloons. Blumberg briefly interviews a women who had just purchased some items for a bridal shower. Blumberg and Goldberg continue to gather footage from inside of the store.
14:54Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with a woman about her purchases from the store. She goes on to show Blumberg a number of her Egyptian rings and says she teaches high school history. We watch as she makes her purchase.
16:43Copy video clip URL Blumberg continues to gather footage from inside of the store. He also continues to speak with the history teacher about her purchases.
17:47Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with owner Lee Kaufman. Kaufman talks about the business, how he and his other brother became involved, and how his father acquired the business. He eventually gives Blumberg a tour of the stock room. Kaufman talks about the expansion of the business and states that it’s very diversified. He then excuses himself to take care of a customer who was waiting.
22:19Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with another employee about how she became involved with M.K. Brody. Blumberg also speaks with a customer about her current purchase.
24:34Copy video clip URL Kaufman demos a few of the tinker toys for Blumberg. Blumberg then buys a few tinker toys for his son.
27:30Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with the other Kaufman brother about his work at M.K. Brody. He talks about receiving a marketing degree from Chico State in California. Blumberg then moves on to gather more footage from around the store.
30:19Copy video clip URL Blumberg makes his way to the back office to speak with the owner of M.K. Brody. He talks about his son’s involvement in the business, how he acquired the store, and how the business has changed over the years. He states that they’ve had a lot of ups and downs, but that the business has given his family a comfortable life.
34:06Copy video clip URL Blumberg continues to gather footage from around the store. He eventually speaks with a teacher who was buying a few prizes for a school event.
38:12Copy video clip URL Lee Kaufman rings Blumberg up. He goes on to speak with Kaufman’s father about some of the merchandise. Blumberg also continues to speak with another woman about her purchases.
42:09Copy video clip URL Lee Kaufman bags up Blumberg’s purchases. Goldberg and Blumberg then leave the store. This is then followed by more footage of the building exteriors.
43:21Copy video clip URL Cut to footage of numerous Chicago buildings and downtown streets. This lasts for several minutes.
46:23Copy video clip URL Cut to raw footage of the “Kids Eggment.” Anna and Jesse Weinberg act in a short comedic sketch. This lasts for several minutes.
52:45Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of the top of the Sears Tower. Blumberg visits the Palace Grill Sandwich Shop on Madison Street in Chicago.
54:33Copy video clip URL Blumberg enters the diner and quickly begins to speak with a man who frequents the diner. Blumberg goes on to speak with a pair of police officers and George Lamperis, the owner. Lamperis talks about the history of the business and and what the diner means to him and his customers. “You come in, everybody knows everybody. It’s really a unique establishment… It’s a fun place.” Lamperis then shares a joke with a patron.
01:03:41Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of a laminated article about Robin Leach’s appearance at the restaurant. Blumberg then continues to speak with the restaurant patrons. Lamperis then continues to talk about the diner.
01:07:00Copy video clip URL Lamperis talks about his hopes for expansion in the future. He also talks about business being slow because of the current construction around the area. Blumberg goes on to speak with another patron about the diner and his work in Chicago. The man, adorned in cowboy apparel, talks about his love of Western wear and refers to himself as a “Southern cowboy.” This lasts for several minutes.
01:12:36Copy video clip URL We watch as Lemparis deals with some customers and cooks a batch of hash browns. Lemparis talks about the process of preparing the hash browns. Lemparis goes on to briefly talk about the neighborhood.
01:17:34Copy video clip URL Lemparis talks about the fun he has while working on the job. “I make people laugh. People make me laugh. I have a very long day. That’s what keeps me going. You try to be happy, upbeat for the most part.” Lemparis goes on to talk about the social interaction between himself and his customers. “Let’s put it this way: There’s certain people that you have to talk certain ways to. For the most part, I find ninety-five percent of your customers are truly great, which I’ve told you before. The five percent can really make you miserable and you have to weed out that five percent.” He goes on to state that most of his clientele are middle class and upward. He also states that many news organizations come to the diner to report on certain events. “A lot of the reporters come here and get the pulse of the world with my customers. We’re on TV ten times a year as far as that’s concerned, which is kind of neat.”
01:20:25Copy video clip URL When asked about new President Bill Clinton, Lemparis says that people need to give him a chance. He states that his political views are neutral. Lemparis goes on to talk about a sign he acquired from a movie set that filmed a scene in the diner. The sign reads “No Coloreds Allowed.” Lemparis explains that he and a number of his African-American friends joke about the sign with one another. However, there was one instance in which a person came in, saw the sign, and became very offended. After the story, Lemparis attends to a few customers. This lasts for several minutes.
01:25:06Copy video clip URL Lamperis talks about his relationship with his father. The two were very close. “He told me to take care of people, to be a good honest person, give people what they think they deserve, and they’ll be back, you know, we’re all American, work hard, and it’s going to come to you. It’ll happen.” When asked whether the hard work has paid off, Lamperis says yes and no. He sometimes longs for a normal nine to five job. He goes on to talk about the neighborhood and its evolution from a skid row to a safer place to be. Lamperis continues to cook while Blumberg gathers footage.
01:30:00Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with a patron about his job and his frequenting the diner. This lasts for several minutes.
01:31:52Copy video clip URL Lamperis tends to a few pails of grits and oatmeal. Lamperis states that they try to go the extra mile for their customers by cooking the food with extra care. He goes on to talk about the restaurant menu and the lack of space. Lamperis also refers to the nostalgia and character of the business.
01:36:16Copy video clip URL Blumberg speaks with a patron about his work in the electrical industry. This lasts for several minutes.
01:40:05Copy video clip URL Lamperis jokes and bickers with a Sox fan about his liking the Chicago White Sox.
01:41:10Copy video clip URL Lamperis talks about his never finishing college. He states that he sometimes regrets leaving to school to help out with the business. He also talks about his lack of vacation time and its downsides. This lasts for the remainder of the tape.
01:44:50Copy video clip URL Tape ends.