Guys, I have my first meeting with my Wayne State class in a few hours, and of course I have a combination of stage fright and impostor’s syndrome, that feeling that you’re going to ask for everyone’s attention, only to be interrupted by two goons with badges who will come through the door and arrest you on suspicion of being a big ol’ fraud.
In other words, I’m a bit nervous and distracted. Fortunately, there’s some good bloggage in the world.
First up, another absolute gem from the anonymous scribe who writes in the Metro Times under the pseudonym Detroitblogger John, probably because in his day job at the News or Free Press they have him on the better-parenting beat. It’s a story about the attempted rehabilitation of one of the most notorious strip clubs on Eight Mile Road, the All Star Gentleman’s Club:
(The new manager) was a DJ at All Star for years before convincing the owners to pour a quarter-million dollars into its renovation — a gamble to convert a ghetto dive into a glitzy club. They made him general manager.
First thing he did was ban pot smoking in the bar. Then he tore down the VIP wall, turning what was essentially brothel space into a display area with little privacy. Next, he ruthlessly culled the crew of strippers.
“When the bar went upscale, I had to let go of a lot of girls I really care about because they’d gotten on in years, gained 30 to 40 pounds, 33 years old now,” he says. “In the old days you had a little longevity dancing. Now you burn up a girl in a few years.”
Just one of ten thousand gems within. OK, one more:
“Lots of things let you know not to let somebody in,” he says. “Twelve guys wearing white T-shirts with the dead guy on their T-shirt and they just came from his funeral — uh-uh, you’re not coming in here, baby, ’cause I know what happens. They want to grieve, and ‘grieve’ means pouring alcohol on the floor and slapping girls around.”
Highly recommended. Be a mensch and hit the MetTimes site for the traffic, then cruise over to Detroitblog for the extra photos, which are borderline NSFW.
Elsewhere, I have to take back at least some of the mean things I’ve said about Rod Dreher over the years, because he’s how I found part one of a Naples Daily News series on the ongoing train wreck of Ave Maria, Tom Monaghan’s little Catholic outpost down in Florida. It’s a big country and there’s room here for everyone, but talk about things that would make Jesus Christ say, “Jesus Christ,” here’s this:
When Kathy Delaney moved a year and a half ago with her two teenage sons from Maryland to Ave Maria, she believed certain rights remained unalienable.
Elections, she thought, followed the rule she’d known all her life: Her vote counted as much as anyone’s. Delaney could only assume the government of her new town operated the same. …What Delaney didn’t know is that Ave Maria’s founders already had decided how the town northeast of Naples would be ruled. They would have the power to control the town forever. This power, some say, is so great, it might be unconstitutional.
Long story short: Monaghan and his co-developer successfully lobbied the Florida legislature — the members of which would find a lot in common with the tricking strippers at the All Star Gentleman’s Club — into passing them their own little law regarding Ave Maria’s governance:
The law gives Monaghan and Barron Collier Cos. more power than any Florida developer in at least 24 years, power perhaps not seen since the days of the early 20th century land boom. The law makes landowners, not registered voters, the ultimate authority in Ave Maria. The law ensures Monaghan and Barron Collier Cos., as the largest landowners, can control Ave Maria’s government forever.
Or, to put it another way, move to Ave Maria, exit the United States of America. The whole series is here. Years ago, I sent an e-mail to Carl Hiaasen’s Miami Herald address — in other words, I spit down a well — suggesting Monaghan would be a good person to base a character on in one of his novels. However, I don’t think even he could have dreamed up a twist like this.
Oh, look: Sarah Palin has figured out a way to keep herself in the news that doesn’t involve parading her daughter and grandson around the morning talk shows — she’s “writing a book.” God help her editor:
“There’s been so much written about and spoken about in the mainstream media and in the anonymous blogosphere world, that this will be a wonderful, refreshing chance for me to get to tell my story, that a lot of people have asked about, unfiltered,” the Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate said during a brief telephone interview Tuesday with The Associated Press.
Palin’s logorrhea is truly a thing of beauty. Not just written about, but also spoken about. Not just in the mainstream media, but in the anonymous blogosphere world. This won’t just be a chance to tell her story, but a wonderful, refreshing chance (because God knows, this woman really has been forcibly kept from microphones, hasn’t she?) to tell her story, unfiltered.
I suggest her publisher really and truly leave it unfiltered. Give her a microphone and a stenographer and let the story rip. The book will weigh in at 1,200 pages and be so boring no one will get past chapter one.
And now, you must please excuse me, because I have to go obsess over my syllabus and handouts. If you see those goons coming to arrest me, try to distract them.