Daily Dirt: Now, I’m even prouder to call Illinois my home


Daily Dirt for Aug. 17, 2021

Hooray for Illinois! We’ll find out why in the Vol. 40 of the Daily Dirt:

1. Here are four Illinois-based inventions and innovations that have made a major impact on people’s everyday lives:

A. The zipper: After years of trial and error, Chicagoan Whitcomb Judson introduced the zipper, which quickly became a favored fastener of clothing designers and customers worldwide.

B. Television remote control: The first remote intended to control a television was developed by the Zenith Radio Corporation in Chicago in 1950. The original remote, called “Lazy Bones,” was connected to the television by a wire. A wireless remote control, the “Flashmatic,” was developed in 1955 by Eugene Polley. We are forever grateful to Eugene.

C. The dishwasher: The first patent for a dishwashing device was awarded to a Shelbyville lady named Josephine Cochrane in 1886. We are forever grateful to Josephine, too.

D. Brownies: The first brownies were first featured in 1893, thanks to a lady named Bertha Palmer, who introduced a smaller version of a cake … and the brownie has been with us ever since.

2. Ever wonder how much food costs at various MLB stadiums? According to webstraurantstore.com, these are most expensive sites for:

Hot dogs

A. Citi Field, New York Mets: $6.50.

B. Oracle Park, San Franciso, $6.25.

C. T-Mobile Park, Seattle, $6.00.

Cheapest: $1.50, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore.


A. Citi Field, New York Mets, $10.50.

B. Wrigley Field, Chicago Cubs, $9.00.

C. Target Field, Minnesota, $8.50.

Cheapest: $3.00, Coors Field, Colorado.

3. Speaking of ballpark food, here are some of the weirdest concoctions at MLB concession stands:

A. Pork rind chippers, Baltimore: “It’s a portable heart attack, to say the least,” writes Jon Taylor of si.com. These pork rind chips are topped with crab meat, cheese and other condiments.

B. Barnyard Wedding, New York (Yankee Stadium): This may end up leading to a triple bypass. A gargantuan burger topped with cheddar cheese, a fried chicken cutlet and a hash brown — 1,200 calories worth of food.

C. The Bloody Mary Brunch, Tropicana Field, Tampa Bay: Only available during day games, this is a portable breakfast: A Bloody Mary that comes with sausage, egg, chicken and waffles, doughnuts and bacon on a skewer.

D. The Clean-Up Hitter, Guaranteed Rate Field, Chicago: This burger is a plethora of ingredients: Italian sausage, beef, mozzarella cheese, sweet peppers and marinara sauce. “Bring a napkin,” writes Taylor.

E. Grasshoppers, T-Mobile Park, Seattle: Toasted grasshoppers, a classic Mexican treat, cooked and then dusted with chili lime salt. It’s high in protein, they say.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. His Maserati does 185.

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