Tis the season
Only three baggage carousels were operating at Midway on the night of December 28th. The damn things were spinning baggage from over 25 delayed flights. Checked luggage was piled everywhere - bags rolled off the overstacked carousels and onto the floor.
What a mess.
It took 90 minutes for my flight's baggage to appear, and a sudden stir in the crowd of kids wearing university sweatshirts and hats was the only indication of the correct carousel.