Of the, like, four people who I know read this sometimes, no one commented on my last post. Hmm. Starting to sound like a Moonie, am I?
So, on to more fun and superficial subjects. Did you know the Super Bowl is coming to town? And that Yours Truly is a volunteer? As well as Paul (aka THNIATD)? Here's how I feel about this:
Yes, colossal waste of money in a city where some huge proportion of the city is under the poverty line. And yes, downtown's been cleaned up nicely. We were down there for the big volunteer pep rally (about which more later) and a few weeks ago to show Magpie the big tree at Campus Martius. I have lived in the city itself for (yikes) 23 years now, with a brief three-year break for East Lansing, and I have never seen downtown with so much to DO. New restaurants, clubs, galleries, even some shops. Of course, this all happens after we have a kid and can't take much advantage of it, but it's nice for the younguns and swingin' singletons. But -- and this is the cynical lifelong Detroiter in me as much as anything -- how much of this will still be around Feb. 6 or shortly therafter? And while everything looks all nice and shiny in the area surrounding Ford Field, I stilll think we're going to get shellacked in the naitional media. Detroit already has a bad reputation, and if you're here all the time you can really see improvement. If you're coming from NYC or Chicago, it still looks like a war zone.
Also, I loathe football and find it ironic that my volunteer assignment is at a team and media hotel. I could be talking to Walter Peyton (wait, is he dead?) and have no idea. It's my hope that The Daily Show is covering the game and they are staying at the hotel I am stationed at, THAT would be a thrill beyond measure, but otherwise, I am quite meh about the game itself.
I am, however, quite pleased to get the nifty little parka we got--I expected to get a vest and instead have this high tech jacket "system." And I am just cheap enough to wear it all the time. I don't have a "sporty' warm winter coat and am pretty excited to get one for a piddling four hour's work.
They handed out these jackets at the pep rally, and short of some commotion after MSU basketball wins I don't think I have ever been as close to a near riot. We were told, based on our last names, to get there at 2, the rally would start at 4, and there would be parking. Not so much on the parking, they were waving us past totally empty lots (comedy show at the Fox took precedence) to a lot in BFE. Which would have been fine if there hadn't been like eight other lots we'd been told we could park in only to find not so much. And thank God we know our way around downtown -- there were lines blocks long headed into where the clueless suburbanites parked.
So we get there, pick up our stuff, stood in the most interminable line ever to try to buy my brother a Super Bowl shirt, gave up, and settled into our seats for the rally. Until the rumor went out that they were handing out uniforms then. So we go, join the chaos (thank God for a tall husband so I could figure out what the hell was happening) and wait. One of the volunteers shouted "You all have to go back to your seats, we have to start the rally!" 300 people screamed back "NOOO!" So they tried to shut down and yelled at us again, and his time "NOOO!!"" and pushing. Headlines flashed through my head "Detroit mother trampled by overzealous voluteers" but I grabbed on to Paul and just started laughing.
To whoever it was who had the brilliant idea to tell 8,000 people to get to the rally two hours early, wait in lines, sit for a pep rally and then tell us we could stand in a yet more huge line afterwards, umm, WRONG. If they were worried about people staying for the pep rally, they should have had a drawing for tickets or some other good freebie. Instead, there were just a lot of cranky people. We did stay for the rally, I booed the mayor, and finally left when the incredibly lame comedy duo got onstage.
However, can't complain too much. Nifty parka. And I am excited about this big event coming to my city, to get to greet some of the 100,000 people that will stream into town for this once-in-a-lifetime thing. If you're coming, welcome. Don't mind our mess, we're glad to have you. If you're watching, say nice things about us. And if you see a short pudgy woman in a parka walking around town with a cute guy and a gorgeous baby, say hey.