R.I.P., Chicago’s ‘best friend in the whole world’ / Sewer savvy / Tough Spotify

R.I.P., Chicago’s ‘best friend in the whole world.’ The death of longtime WXRT-FM host Lin Brehmer Sunday at 68 after a long run against prostate cancer made the front pages of both the city’s major daily papers:

The Tribune’s Rick Kogan describes him as “hugely popular, buoyant and beloved.”
The Sun-Times praises his Lin’s Bin audio essays, “interweaving prose with his encyclopedic knowledge of music and popular culture.
Block Club: “Brehmer became known to thousands of Chicagoans as the narrator of their morning commutes, school drop-offs and everything in between.”
His longtime producer, Pete Crozier: “XRT was a circus and … he was the lion tamer … protecting us against the bloody fangs of corporate greed.”
Meyerson and Brehmer in 2017
Your Chicago Public Square columnist, a teammate to Brehmer in the ’80s, asked by Axios for comment: “His ability to balance his intelligence and literacy with his talent for engaging a mass audience … alone justifies his place in Chicago radio’s pantheon of giants.” (2017 photo: Brehmer and Meyerson at the 25th anniversary celebration of Brehmer’s morning show.)
Radio news veteran Dave Berner: “I know if I could ask him if he believed he lived a good enough life to be given a good death, he’d say he certainly did.”
The station was planning a memorial broadcast beginning at 10 a.m., to be streamed here.

‘Garcia’s Madigan problem.’ Politico: A Trib scoop about U.S. Rep. Chuy Garcia’s mention in the corruption case against ex-Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan is gonna leave a mark on Garcia’s Chicago mayoral campaign.
Trib columnist Laura Washington: “If the Black vote is split, Lightfoot had better start packing her bags.”

Teachers told to hide books. Popular Information: Teachers in one Florida county are under orders to make classroom libraries—books not “selected by a school district employee who holds a valid educational media specialist certificate, regardless of whether the book is purchased, donated, or otherwise made available to students”—inaccessible to students.
The Daily Herald: Illinois rejected 383 “naughty” license plate requests last year.

Welcome back. Classes were back on today at the University of Illinois at Chicago with the suspension of a four-day strike …
 … under a tentative deal reached Sunday with faculty.

Sewer savvy. As the federal infrastructure law sends hundreds of millions of dollars to communities for sewer pipe repairs, The Conversation warns that the cheapest and most popular fixes can push toxic fumes into homes and schools.
The New York Times: “The giant spending bill passed by Congress last month … quietly rewrote huge areas of health policy.”
USA Today columnist Rex Huppke: The Republican Party seems to have “learned nothing from its midterm failures, pushing forward on conspiracies and culture-war nonsense.”

‘It’s an embarrassment to Biden.’ AP analysis: “An excruciating week of awkward disclosures and the appointment of a special counsel to investigate classified records” found at the president’s Delaware home “is beginning to strain his claim to competence” …
 … but The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin says none of that should hinder the Justice Department investigation into Donald Trump’s “willful retention of classified documents.”
Rolling Stone: Trump’s plotting a breakup with his own social media company.

Tough Spotify. The company’s laying off 6% of its workforce …
 … and the woman who brought drivel-peddling host Joe Rogan to the platform (2020 link) is on the way out.

Missing link found. Friday’s Square failed to include a hyperlink for this item. Here you go:

‘The drink no restaurant dares serve.’ The Sun-Times’ Neil Steinberg ponders the reasons why Chicago joints don’t offer nonalcoholic wine.

Have you voted yet? Chicago Public Square encourages you to cast your ballot—for Square, of course, as Best Email Newsletter and Best Blog—in the Reader’s Best of Chicago poll.

A Square public service announcement

Know a newsroom that could use an intern? The Chicago Headline Club and the Chicago Headline Club Foundation are accepting applications for grants to support internship programs. Nonprofit Chicago-area print, broadcast and online news organizations can apply here.

 Mike Braden made this edition better.

Subscribe to Square.