Keeling Carter loves mac n’ cheese, the John Hancock building and running with the bulls! This fearless comedian is a tour guide for Mercury Cruises and he's the center of this week's Feature Friday.
Why did you become a tour guide? I have always been an outgoing person and I love attention. Also, I am a fantastic story teller and the city of Chicago is layered with stories, lore and tales of destiny. According to this man who took one of my tours in July of 2017, I am a "good talker."
What is the most adventurous thing you've ever done? The most adventurous thing I have done is, without a doubt, running with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain.
What has been your most interesting job? I have had more than 10 different jobs since high school. I would have to narrow it down to 5: substitute teacher, gardener, bike courier, working the Nut Hut at Christkindl Market and being a canoe concessionaire. The most interesting would have to be when I worked as a campground manager in the wilderness of Arkansas.
What is something about Chicago that is a “hidden gem” of yours? The Robey in Wicker Park has an awesome view of the city that not many people know about.
What is your favorite building on the tour and why? There are so many awesome buildings on the tour! My favorite is theJohn Hancock (officially 875 North Michigan Ave). The exterior “X” bracing on the outside gives it a raw look that screams "This is so metal!" One of my favorite comedians of all time, Chris Farley, lived there.
What’s the last book you read or are currently reading? The last book I read was The Deer Hunter. I am currently reading The Bull from the Sea.
Tell us about a memorable experience on the job at Mercury Cruises. There have been so many memorable moments over the years. I would have to narrow down the list to hearing all of Captain Joe's stories of adventure and the time I saved a couple of kayakers in 2014.
If you had to eat just one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? Mac n’ cheese, mashed potatoes, and lasagna!
What is your favorite part about being a tour guide? My favorite part is the guest interactions. I get to meet people from all over the world. It’s truly amazing to take a few nice moments and share them with someone from a land far far away.
How long have you been working as a tour guide? This is my 6th season working as a deckhand/tour guide.
Do you currently have any other jobs? I also do sketch comedy shows on the side and I do one person shows as well.