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This Week’s 10 Must-Read Stories

The nastiest pitches in the World Series, the Area 51 of pot in Illinois, and inequality permeating the bail system in Chicago

A worker checks cannabis plants in the flowering room at Revolution Enterprises Cannabis in Delavan.   Photo: Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune

1. The Double Life of Ahmad Obali

The Anderson Cooper of Iran works from a suburban home near the Wisconsin border, commanding a huge audience in the country he fled as a teen in the 1980s. Chicago magazine profiles the Azeri journalist.

2. Bent on Bail

In 18 months, over 1,500 Chicagoans spent more time in jail than the crimes they were charged with bring in sentencing, adding up to 323 extra years of time served. Injustice Watch goes behind the numbers.

3. Kerry James Marshall, in Conversation with Theaster Gates

Just off a major retrospective at the MCA, the painter sits down with the Chicago art legend. The New York Times’s T magazine captures their conversation.

4. Meet the Nicest Restaurant in Chicago (and the Family Behind It)

Connie Sims-Kincaid, a veteran of The Drake and Hyatt, put her 401k into her dream, so that her neighborhood could get cooked-to-order food that doesn’t come from behind bulletproof plexiglass. Fooditor eats at 5 Loaves.

5. Sudden Move: Father and Son Join Rising Number of Forced Evictions

They’re up 35 percent since the recession, putting an extra 4,000-some families on the street every year. WBEZ follows a man and his 13-year-old son from home to homelessness.

6. A Peek into the Area 51 of Pot

It took two months of requests to get into the 75,000-square-foot facility in tiny downstate Delevan, which is protected like a nuclear facility. Why the secrecy? The Reader pays a tightly controlled visit.

7. Even the Data Thinks the Cubs Have Been Cursed

By the numbers, they should have won another four or five World Series over the past 113 years. To make matters worse, their closest rivals are the second-luckiest team in baseball. FiveThirtyEight documents their struggle.

8. A Vision for a Chicago Unified by Rivers

The riverwalk is just the beginning. CityLab talks with architect Carol Ross Barney about our riverine future.

9. The 2016 World Series’s Nastiest Pitches, Almost Objectively

The Cubs rank fifth, second and first on nastiest pitches, coming from pitchers they picked up this season for the World Series run. Fangraphs breaks them down.

10. Why Are Half of Chicago’s 911 Operators Absent from Work?

High stress, little support, and low morale lead to about 44 employees taking unpaid time off every day. Chicago magazine explains.

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