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Up Close And Personal

Yesterday I was walking south on Michigan Avenue from Tribune Tower so I could meet a friend at the Cultural Center. As I approached Lake Street, I glanced upward (as I often do; I’m always looking for photo opportunities!) and noticed a mural on the side of a building that I had never seen before. That’s pretty amazing since I have walked by that corner approximately twenty five bajillion times in my life.


I saw this mural, and I could tell that it was vibrant in color but couldn’t see the whole thing due to the fact that the adjacent building was blocking most of it from where I was standing on the corner.

Chicago building mural

I looked at the time and decided that I wanted to take a couple of minutes to discover a little more, so I turned right on Lake and got closer.

Chicago building mural 2

The problem was, I could see more gorgeous color and I think I made out some people in the design but I still couldn’t tell what it was about. When I walked on the same side of the street, the wide base of the adjacent building blocked my view of the mural. When I crossed the street to see what I could see, I couldn’t figure out the whole story, even when zooming in.

Chicago building mural 3

I finally concluded that in order to see what this mural is about, I would have to go into the building next door and take an elevator to one of the upper floors and walk over to a western facing window so I could get up close and personal.

Then I concluded that this mural is a lot like people in general. It’s easy to get a sense of certain parts of a person—their color, their physicality, their fashion sense—from far away but in order to truly get to know them, you usually have to invest the time in order to get a little closer and learn their story.

I don’t know about you, but for me the investment ALWAYS pays off.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Kari August 26, 2014, 5:51 pm

    Wow, that was deep.
    Why have we never planned a blogger meetup in the city?
    Like a walking tour/lunch/thingy??

    • Melisa Wells August 26, 2014, 9:51 pm

      I don’t know. I’m pretty available and you have kids in school. So I blame you. 🙂

  • Ann August 26, 2014, 6:01 pm

    Oh, I love this. Did you take the elevator? It’s calling you.

    • Melisa Wells August 26, 2014, 9:52 pm

      Thank you. And I did NOT take the elevator because it would have made me late for my meeting but I have a date with that elevator next time I’m on Michigan!

  • Liz August 26, 2014, 7:01 pm

    Love this! Now I want to see that mural, up close.

    • Melisa Wells August 26, 2014, 9:52 pm

      Come on ova.

  • Sylvia Joy August 26, 2014, 7:34 pm

    OK My eyes still can’t make it out I thought there was an angel on the bottom of the first picture. It looks very interesting–did you go in the building next door?

    Grandma W

    • Melisa Wells August 26, 2014, 9:54 pm

      Not yet but I plan to next time when I don’t have an appointment!

  • Marianne August 26, 2014, 9:43 pm

    Awesome post. We are all that mural – bird poop and beauty, good and bad. Though you probably have less bird poop than most.

    • Melisa Wells August 26, 2014, 9:54 pm

      I appreciate that. It’s one of the nicest things anyone has said to me today. 🙂

  • Tara R. August 27, 2014, 8:50 am

    So true. You can’t know a person’s true colors until you get to know them, and see them in all their glory, or folly. Great catch on the street art too.

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