Different Slants

Seeing the World from a New Angle

Chicago Municipal Tyranny Explained: My Newsstand in 1965…by Robert M. Katzman

Chicago Municipal Tyranny Explained: My Newsstand in 1965 

by Robert M. Katzman ©  August 1, 2017

There was a situation I first encountered when I opened my wooden newsstand August 21,1965 in Hyde Park, 52 years ago: Permission to issue permits to open a newsstand were delegated by the City to the four major newspapers in order to receive a newsstand permit for a particular corner in Chicago. Period.  But the main two asses to kiss were the conservative Chicago Tribune and the Liberal Chicago Sun-Times.

However, there were really only two City newspaper corporations, because the Tribune owned the Chicago American and the Sun-Times owned the Chicago Daily News. Both had to approve of you. Whatever running around by me was necessary, I needed four recognizable signatures on a yellow postcard-sized piece of stiff paper if my teenaged dreams of self-employment were to be realized.

Each newspaper assigned a certain medieval person called a “Division Boss” to decide whether a person was sufficiently worthy to receive their blessings for whatever area was under their control.  Direct contact with the newspapers’ business administration office was impossible.

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Retired, Confused, I Sing Joy’s Song…by Robert M. Katzman


By Robert M. Katzman April 23, 2016


Retiring from owning a store

What is that?

Time now indivisible?

Never late and no closing early

No more seeking to please

No more checking the clock

No more damning bad days



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Chicago is Littered With the Corpses of My Retail Life…by Robert M. Katzman

by Robert M. Katzman © April 10, 2016


Like discarded trash from today’s opened toys

I see the ghostly echo of my career

Sprinkled across the Chicago like tarnished glitter

Tho’ they used to sparkle for me

Perhaps many people witness

The fast-forwarding of their lives

While still living them

Time relentlessly unfolding

Blank pages written by an unseen hand

Caldwell Grammar School, South Side of Chicago


When I was 12, I sold firecrackers

Purchased from a non-judgmental

And very silent source in

Chicago’s mysterious Chinatown

Ladyfingers to Cherry bombs

Roman Candles to Sky Rockets

To my less enterprising classmates

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A Chicago Jew in Racine, Wisconsin…by Robert M. Katzman

Filed under: Humor,Jewish Themes,Liberation Fantasies,Life & Death,Philosophy,Retail Purgatory,Wisconsin stories — Bob at 8:30 pm on Sunday, July 12, 2015

Robert M. Katzman’s Amazing Story: www.differentslants.com/?p=355

© July 11, 2015  (but revised three weeks later as we began to blend in)


Ain’t nobody like me, up here

Or just barely

I’m a Mediterranean oasis

Wherever I go

A hot-house flower among

All the dour Teutonic people


Young girl cashiers

Mostly blonde

See my silver

Star of David

Dangling from my neck

Glinting in the harsh lights of

Small Wisconsin stores


“Ooooooh, how pretty!”

Some of them exclaim

When first noticing it

Bright against my olive skin

“What is it?”

Some ask


Could be worse

I think to myself

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A Public Essay about Small Stores…by Robert M. Katzman

Filed under: Depression and Hope,Friendship & Compassion,Life & Death,My Own Personal Hell,Rage!,Retail Purgatory — Bob at 1:14 pm on Monday, October 27, 2014

Robert M. Katzman’s Amazing Story: www.differentslants.com/?p=355

© October 27, 2014

Public Essay: Why support small Brick-and Mortar stores? Why bother? Some old man or woman selling a limited selection of whatever they sell or create. Walmart, Target, E-bay, Starbucks are infinitely more accessible, have mountains of things to sell and are coast to coast enterprises. You see one, you’ve seen them all.


Then why travel? Why visit little villages with unique pottery or cool coffee shops? Why go anywhere or meet anyone with the passion to create an imaginative, determined and one of a kind store? The odds of success are irrational. Some shopper can usually buy anything the small stores try to sell for so much less online. Brick-and Mortar shops?? Why not kill ’em all and just stay home in bed punching buttons and have stuff brought right to your door? That’s the life we all want, isn’t it?

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The Old Magazine Store.com: Complete Facebook Posts (updated 12/14)

Filed under: My Own Personal Hell,Obsession,Retail Purgatory — Bob at 9:22 am on Wednesday, May 21, 2014

 Usually, this space is reserved for poetry and short stories.

However, since 99.9% of the planet is unaware of my incredibly diverse vintage back-issue magazine store just north of Chicago in colorful Skokie, Illinois, I decided to intermingle my separate worlds.  All five of my books are always available for purchase and signing, in case you want to meet the eccentric who wrote the following:

Gifts for geeks and other souls who have no use for ordinary people. I have less than 100 periodicals on the origins and innovations of the internet. Time, Newsweek, The Economist, etc. Utterly fascinating and instantly obsolete! Incredible idea to distract a person with no time to talk to you, but may appreciate you anyway for the cleverness of your thinking. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Chips, Video Games stories from a guy who is absolutely technologically obsolete, but I know that. I still think pocketknives are cool. And flashlights. And paper, for God’s sake–paper!!! theoldmagazinestore.com(847) 677-9444
Last minute brilliant Christmas//Hanukkah gift idea for film buffs: theoldmagazinestore.com has a group of Playboy’s famous interviews of 25 directors from 1963 – 2012. Only 30 were ever done, five men twice: Woody Allen to Mike Nichols; Sam Peckinpah to Roman Polanski; Martin Scorsese to Quinten Tarentino; Stanley Kubrick to Federic Fellini. Limited supplies and some may be sold out. We ain’t computerized, people. Target & Best Buy don’t have them. Surprise a cinema lover and tell them they’re worth the effort to make them really happy! (847) 677-9444 Support small stores and get over here!!
Well, people, the following short video (137 seconds) filmed by the remarkable Benjamin Cohen, a nice Jewish boy if there ever was one, seems to make the best case yet in my ongoing attempt to make my amazing store irresistible to North America:


Mad Magazine. To those of you old enough to remember it when it was funny–a looooog time ago–I am selling out hundreds of them from the 1980’s to recent for $10 or 3 for $25. I also have a limited number of paperbacks which are collectible, from the 1950’s to the ’70’s, mostly one-of-a-kind. Nice gift for geezers. I also have a separate section where the more collectible issue of Mad, Crack and Sick are organized by artist. Nice when framed to decorate an office if you were fans of the styles of Jack Davis, Mort Drucker, Dave Berg, Al Jaffee, Don Martin and other notables from Mad’s early years. www.theoldmagazinestore.com where the unexpected gift can make someone smile for a long time (847) 677-9444

For certain people who seek gifts beyond the boring, I offer gifts about: Elvis, Marilyn, World War One, Christianity, Gay History, Neanderthals, Dinosaurs, 1950’s Fashions, Sunken Ships, India, Germany, China, Science Fiction, 1920’s cooking magazines, Hirschfeld art, original old Coke ads, my own five no-fiction Chicago stories books, Michael Jordan, Beatles, Stones, Tibet, Russia, Nixon, Kennedy, Japan, Playboy in 20 languages, and probably much more beyond your untested imagination because you’ve never been to the Frozen-in-Time Magazine Twilight Zone. Tell the world & get in here!
Playboy Interviews 1962-2005, part two: Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Hank Aaron, Yasir Arafat, Lance Armstrong, Ingmar Bergman, Beatles, David Bowie, Ray Bradbury, Tim Burton, Fidel Castro, Eldridge Cleaver, Bill Cosby (2x), Ray Charles, Dick Cavette, John Cassavettes, George Carlin, Cheech & Chong, Francis Ford Coppola, Cher, Salvador Dali, Bette Davis, Clint Eastwood and the barely remembered but incredibly brilliant visionary: R. Buckminster Fuller!
Support The Old Magazine Store. Bob Katzman too, is visionary, except going backwards. I offer gifts of originality, creativity and telling people you give enough of a damn to bother finding an eccentric store like mine. Open daily until Christmas unless a big pile of old magazines falls on me. (847) 677-9444
Playboy is famous for, among other reasons, its in depth interviews, 600 plus at this point. Read the responses of Vladimir Nabokov, Henry Miller, Martin Scorsese, Jean-Paul Sartre, Alex Haley, Stanley Kubrick, Orson Wells, Arthur C. Clarke, Malcolm X, Ian Fleming, Ayn Rand, Kurt Vonnegut, Stephen Hawking, Milton Friedman, Siskel and Ebert, Mike Nichols, Hunter Thompson, Tennessee Williams, Federico Fellini, Allen Ginsberg, Woody Allen, Ansel Adams, Muhammad Ali, Truman Capote and many more. Fantastic and unexpected gift for a certain person in your life! See? People really did really Playboy for its articles.  theoldmagazinestore.com (847) 677-9444
Imagine a Life Magazine from Christmas, 1944. A nurse standing over a wounded soldier lying on a cot, a large star shining in the dark night sky thru the open tent flap. How could you conceive how any vet from any war might feel upon receiving a gift like this, perhaps framed? I only have a couple left, but the point is, I don’t sell old rescued paper gift items. I sell emotion.
My store is not like another anything. It is the small diamond in the coal pile of giant chain stores seeking your attention. Yes, we shine. But still, a person has to be of a certain frame of mind to find us. I can match a gift to a person’s personality, for a perfect fit.

New store departments: Butterflies & Insects; Kurds, Eastern Europe & Russia; Michael Jordan; Dinosaur & Neanderthals; Scandinavia; British & USA Jazz mags; Dr Who (but only a few). Come visit a rare experience. Buy a present that shows someone you love, that you really thought about it first. Open Mon-Sat NYC, LA, Miami, Philly etc-Bet you wish you had an Old Magazine Store, too, like Skokie does. (847) 677-9444 The way stores used to be. Please like this page so that others will know about us, too. Thanks.

Imagine a homeless poster, gathering dust, cold, hungry, friendless, sleeping in the shadows. Time passing it by, its image gradually unrecognizable by succeeding generations.
Mom, Dad– who was Clark Gable?  Who was Marilyn Monroe?  Yoda?  Elvis??
Why are there still posters existing with their pictures on them?  Were they famous??

You can stop this travesty. Adopt a poster. Now. Today. Five dollars.
Make public radio wait. Skip a latte. Give a poster a home.

50,000 posters of every imaginable type formerly priced at $40 to $200 are now $5 and $10 each at the frequently incomprehensible Old Magazine Store.com in serene Downtown Skokie. Too serene.

Every poster must go. Pronto. Organization is totally random, so first come, first served. Expect chaos. Fun! Make a lonely poster smile.

Movie–Fantasy–Charts–Educational–Rock ‘n Roll–Crime–Military–Pinup (male & female)–Animation & Disney–Star Wars–Star Trek–Horror–Historic–Aviation–Trains–Cars–Jazz–Black History–Israeli Posters–Maps–Western–Farm Equipment–Film Noir–Chicago History & World’s Fairs (1893-1933)–Rockwell–Fashion–Motorcycle–

Cigarette–Asia–Beer–Native American–Famous Newspaper Headlines–Cops–Classical Music–Coca-Cola & Pepsi–French Ads–19th Century Industrial–Fireman–Hunting & Fishing–old sports– 1920’s-30’s mini posters of the Golden Age of Hollywood…

Cover your walls. Home Theater. Restaurant. College town stores e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e will all have the same boring posters. Give your kid something stimulating for their walls. Stock up for Christmas gifts now!! (847) 677-9444 Ask for Bob (a kindly person) Appt. possible.

Open every day, mostly.Saturday: 10–2 Daily: 10–5 (unless I’m seeking the meaning of life, and close at 4:30).  Please like this page.

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