U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley took a page from David Letterman Tuesday night, delivering a Top Ten list from the floor of Congress of his "Reasons Chicago is the Greatest City in the World" despite losing its bid for the 2016 Olympics.
The man who replaced Rahm Emanuel in the House defended his hometown following Friday's Olympics rebuke, saying that it's a city uniquely capable of handling disappointment.
"George Will once said that, 'Chicago Cub fans are ninety percent scar tissue,'" Quigley said from the House floor. "So, as we stand here four days after the city of Chicago and all of the United States were disappointed by the IOC's decision, I can assure you that there is no city better-equipped to handle a little disappointment."
Quigley's Top Ten Reasons The World Should Stop By Chicago For A Slice Of Deep Dish Pizza:
#10: The Architecture
One of Chicago's great residents, Daniel Burnham, was known for saying, "make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood." From the Louis Sullivan buildings downtown to Mies van der Rohe's collection at IIT to the neighborhood bungalows to the Willis Tower that scrapes the sky, Chicago's architecture is distinct and historic.
#9: The Schools
I'm a proud graduate of Roosevelt University, the University of Chicago, and Loyola University, and I've had the honor of teaching young Chicagoans as well. Chicago is a place that inspires great ideas, but the Windy City is also a destination for the world's greatest minds. Close to 90 Nobel laureates have passed through the halls of the University of Chicago and Northwestern University.
Their work, as well as those at DePaul University, North Park University, University of Illinois, IIT, and several other institutions gives me great hope that Chicago will continue to produce leaders who will solve tomorrow's problems.
#8: Green Space
My district is home to one of the country's largest urban parks, Lincoln Park, which is also home to the oldest public zoo in the country.
Want to play sixteen inch softball? You've got 552 parks to choose from. No glove needed.
The forest preserve system is home to 68,000 acres of open space - and I was proud to help keep it that way during my time on the County Board.
#7: The Lake
Chicago has one of the most beautiful shorelines in the world. 26 miles of lakefront, with 15 miles of beaches, and 19 miles of lakefront trail are enjoyed by residents year round. It's a front row seat to one of the largest freshwater sources in the world - and a reminder of our responsibility to conserve it
#6: The Museums
The Art Institute of Chicago displays some of the most famous pieces of previous centuries - and trains artists to produce the finest works of this century. Whether it's exhibits about science, nature, astronomy, history, or culture, our museums all provide perspectives and a first-hand education not available anywhere else on earth.
#5: The Arts
Chicago's music is played all around the world, wherever people love the blues, gospel, jazz, or rock and roll. We're also home to the preeminent Chicago Symphony Orchesta, the Lyric Opera, and several award-winning theaters.
Most of the great comedians on "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock" came through Chicago too, home of The Second City comedy troupe.
The work of our artists, actors, writers, dancers, and creators not only grace the award-winning stages and halls of Chicago, but have put a lasting stamp on world culture.
#4: The Food
I guarantee you no one in Copenhagen has ever had a proper hot dog or slice of pizza unless they've spent a little time in my kind of town.
From breakfast at Ann Sather's to a chicken dinner at MacArthur's through a midnight snack at the Wiener Circle and all the pierogi, tacos, and steaks in between, it's got to be the finest eating city on earth.
#3: The Sports
All of our teams are among the oldest in their leagues, and all of them play right in the city.
They've all won championships - some more recently than others - but hey, everyone is entitled to a bad century.
#2: The Neighborhoods
Chicago has a beautiful downtown - nothing is more majestic than coming inbound or outbound on Lake Shore Drive.
But it's the diverse neighborhoods that make us world-class. The world doesn't need to come to Chicago - it already has:
From Bowmanville to Bronzeville, Portage Park to Albany Park, Pilsen to Pullman - take the 'el' around Chicago, and you've visited dozens of countries without ever leaving city limits.
Finally, the top reason the world should come to Chicago is the same reason I've never left -
#1: The People
The Second City has always been Second to None.
Because the people of Chicago look not at what we lost last week in Copenhagen, but at what we now have the opportunity to accomplish.
We know that our organizing efforts were not wasted.
We can build better schools on safer streets.
We can build better transit with greener technology.
And beyond our bid plans, lay big plans for our future.
In the words of the Superdawg, one of Chicago's iconic hot dog stands, I look forward to welcoming you by saying "Hiya, from the bottom of my pure beef heart."