It was Nelson Algren's birthday yesterday.
I reckon his advice is pretty good: "Never play cards with a man called Doc. Never eat at a place called Mom's. Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own."
I hope that's an exact quote, it gets paraphrased a lot......
Forgotten who he is (or never knew?) Lifted from The Web: "He made it through the University of Illinois, then drifted throughout the Midwest, hopping freights, working as a door-to-door salesman, playing cards, and betting on horses that didn't win. He eventually settled in Chicago, which he called "The City on the Make," or sometimes, "the lovely lady with the broken nose." "People ask me why I don't write about nature or the suburbs," he once said. "If a writer could write the truth about one Chicago street, that would be a good life's work." He wrote two novels: A Walk on the Wild Side (1956), and The Man with the Golden Arm (1949), about a disillusioned, card-dealing World War II veteran named Frankie Machine. "
And here's a story inspired by those words on William Nowik's website [Danger: artist at work]