Growing up in Chicago Heights, Illinois, Kelly Lee Williams was more focused on crossing the finish line at high school track meets than crafting the perfect punch line. In fact, it wasn’t until he took the stage of a Chicago-area comedy club in 2001—after stints as a soldier, an IT worker, and a DJ—that Kelly truly immersed himself in the world of professional comedy. In the years since his life-changing career shift, Kelly has honed his comedic chops with performances for audiences from New York to Montego Bay, coaxing forth laughs with witty self-penned songs. His plunge into the entertainment business has taken him across the country and earned him diverse gigs that include serving as a member of the Chicago Bulls’ Incredibulls squad to gracing the big screen with a speaking role in the recently released Drew Barrymore film Big Miracle. After making the move north to Anchorage with his family and pet rubber chicken in 2008, Kelly branched out again, adding the role of teacher to his expanding arsenal of occupations.
EZ Tech's well-mannered, CompTIA- and Microsoft-certified technicians troubleshoot laptops and desktop computers to optimize performance and fix glitches. Depending on a client's needs, they may remove viruses and malware, upgrade equipment, or back up information. They also build custom computers for gaming, video editing, and other specialized functions. Their e-recycling program safely recycles unwanted electronics, including LCD monitors, microwaves, and cell phones.
Inside its colorful storefront, Metro Music & Book Store stocks an extensive collection of previously-read fiction and nonfiction, nestled alongside rows of folk, rock, pop, hip-hop, and blues albums. Many of Metro Music’s publications sell for at least half off the cover price ($8 on average), so even relatively new releases are within the reach of frugally minded book worms. In the music collection, color-coded sections allow for easy genre-based browsing for the most mind-melting cuts and the grooviest subliminal messages (CDs start at $8.98). To give a newfound book a quick scan, customers can hang out at the in-store Café Felix, a laid-back spot to sip on daily roasted coffee, snack on crêpes, and read a best-selling novel about a talking vacuum cleaner that becomes UN Secretary-General.
Metro Cooks' recently expanded suppliery houses an array of professional-quality cookware, great for equipping home mess halls and surprising food fanatics. A selection of cooks' tools from a number of top brands, including Chef N, Zyliss, Salter, and Rosle, makes peeling carrots quicker and grating cheese easier on the fingernails ($7.25+) and scores of professional-grade steel knives from Wusthof, Henkels, and others improve slicing precision ($7.49+). The plugged-in paddles and blades of Krupps and Cuisinart appliances chop veggies and mix dough to the pliable consistency necessary for bread sculptures of Martha Stewart ($35.99+). Add zest to favorite dishes with tasty truffle oil, fig jam, barbecue-spice rubs, and specialty salts ($4.99+) or benefit from the baking prowess of All-Clad, Le Creuset, and Emile Henry cookware ($23.99+).
“Cliché” and “mundane” are not words one would use to describe The Look’s cache of chic clothing, lingerie, and adult products. The 7,000-square-foot boutique houses rack upon rack of fashionable streetwear alongside sensual bras, panties, and costumes. It also stocks hard-to-find adult accessories such as massage oils, lotions, and incense designed to enhance romance. Garments’ tags reveal upscale brands such as Obey, Lucky-13, Dreamgirl, and Seven 'til Midnight.