Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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1240 North State

From 2 to 15, I grew up in the heart of Chicago's bridge and tunnel bar district, at State and Division.

When the Bears won the superbowl, they overturned cars a half a block from my house. Police on horses with tear gas were dispatched to quell the sportsfans.

This is the house where my brother beat up on me, where Larry and I would stay up late talking, where my father killed himself.

Built in 1870, it was a four story townhouse in a row of five other such homes. Once upon a time, one family lived in three of them, a single living room connecting.

By the time we moved in, in 1976, it was an urban anomaly. We had a front yard, it was used as a boudior and a bathroom. Our backyard was denied sunlight most of the day by the fourty storey apartment building down the block.

Beyond the garden, against the alley, was a two storey coachhouse.

I used to sell lemonade out in front out the house. I was so proud of making $30 in two days I never worked again.

teenage wasteland My room was in the far corner of the fourth floor, blessed with window and fire escape access to the roof.

I filled it with all manner of camp and crap. Before they were hip to the concept of novelty sales, I hit the Video Plus store down the street up for two armsfulls of movie posters. These I put on the walls, and ceiling. Between them, cut out Archie comics, Mad Magazine bits, stickers.

In this picture you can see Clarence Darrow in the upper left, Tutankamum above my desk, Led Zeppelin on the bathroom door. My monitor is blue, meaning I was working in Word Perfect.

There's my old red bunk bed, and to the right the exercise bike that Mom never used, so I made it into an extended hangar.

jesse came over in about 7th grade and started a "book fight" with tony frenzel I think - removing all the texts from my shelf and hurling them about the room, at us. there was about eight inches of hardy boys and archie andrews and kurt vonnegut covering the floor for two or three years hence.

I was sad to move to 209.

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