Doing our best to get excited

Because what is the alternative, really?

This newsletter depends on the reporting of other news outlets, full-stop. And that can make it hard to criticize those outlets. They are dear to us, we want them to succeed, and we’ve worked at most of them. But these past two weeks have seen Crain’s walking through the streets tolling a bell of doom and rending its garments over looting. One of the few positive headlines this week: “Looting boosts business for board-up and glass-repair services.” Otherwise it’s looking like this, just a stream of morose asides from a bad grandfather.

We’re not surprised, just disappointed, especially when Crain’s doesn’t seem to connect the dots on the business it’s so eager to protect giving nothing back to the city. Literally, nothing, Water Tower Place and other big downtown landmarks are deferring their tax bills, yet asking for nonstop police protection. Potbelly is once again dipping into that PPP money after laying people off, presumably to pad out its profits during the pandemic. At least it can afford to pay for all those boards over the windows, right? Rightfully disgraced WeWork is breaking past lease promises, and even World Business Chicago, the organization charged with bringing new business to the city, is laying off five staffers and failing to replace four more. 

It’s the wrong looters Crain’s is looking at. And we do not have the time for that kind of racist distraction. 

Instead, we have some actual funding news to focus on! Venture capital firm S2G raised a $100 million fund to invest in startups that promote sustainable seafood and ocean health. OK! We can’t imagine too much of that money is going to stay in the landlocked Middlewest, but still, glad to see Chicago raising money and putting it toward fighting climate change. 

Homeowners’ insurance startup Kin raised an additional $35 million, and plans to use the money to start selling plans in three new states. Do we need insurance for our homes more or less now that we never leave them?  

Still with all the funding, Amazon is the company adding the most jobs to Chicagoland. Until that’s no longer the case, you won’t hear us talking about a recovery. 

Jobs, Glorious Jobs
Development Officer at Embarc
Embarc takes low-income high schoolers on cool field trips. A great way to expand your idea of possible opportunities, yes. Also, just objectively, even a terrible field trip is still going to be the best day of your year as a high schooler. The mission of this role is clear: Double Embarc’s fundraising over the next two years to double the number of students it can break out of classrooms for a day. 

Marketing Technology Coordinator at Neal Gerber & Eisenberg
Coordinate all the marketing technology platforms and analytics, manage the law firm's mailing lists, and help the marketing director run webinars and train staff. Basically wow them with your marketing and digital knowledge in what should be a fairly secure setting.

Development Manager at City Bureau
Newsrooms run by venture capitalists don’t seem to be working out. So roll up your sleeves to help this member-supported South Side nonprofit raise funds for the future of journalism. Your deadline to apply is Aug. 30.

Head of eCommerce at ConAgra Brands
This is a big-time e-commerce power job: Work with existing channels and partners and identify new ways to grow brands like Birds Eye, Gardein, Slim Jim and BoomChickaPop through digital marketing, space planning, program testing, content management, promotions and new technologies. Operate the P&L, serve as a thought leader, work with stakeholders and agencies, build a team, engage new retailers. Who’s hungry?

Inspiration of the week

“Tonight I couldn't be prouder to be a loyal union member, a passionate climate activist and a patriotic Democrat. Or as Donald Trump will call me in a tweet tomorrow, a washed-up, horse-faced, no-talent has-been with low ratings. Well, with all due respect, sir, it takes one to know one.”

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, during what turned out to be a powerful, intimate and hopefully effective virtual Democratic National Convention. Check out the JLD DNC supercut here.

It may not be the ticket you wanted — it isn’t the ticket we wanted. But we are going to do our best to get excited about voting regardless, because it most definitely is the better ticket. And all the while, we’ll be looking for the glimmers of hope that it’s a ticket capable of being pushed further left, and doing more for people everywhere than it’s currently promising. 

Forward this email to anyone who needs to feign enthusiasm sometimes. They can sign up here and get an email full of GIFs that will at least elicit a sad smile to keep them going every two weeks. 

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