It seems a week doesn’t go by without the New York Times doing a story on Detroit. I don’t think it’s ever been something I didn’t know about already, but that’s the Times’ job — to be the gatekeeper and curator of Our Vast Interesting Nation for its readers. To the extent that they’re trying to dispel the image of Detroit in the right-wing media, i.e., Detroit is a place where women have sex with pit bulls in dank drug houses (thanks, Weekly Standard!), I approve.
Anyway, everyone who lives here and pays even minimal attention knows the Slows Barbecue story. I see the piece also dug up that obscure, underexposed source, Toby Barlow. But it’s nice to see Supino’s Pizza getting some love — I like to stop here on Saturdays from time to time, but since I’m almost always alone, I have yet to try their signature pie, the Bismarck, which features an egg cracked over the top just before it goes into the oven. They don’t sell that one by the slice. One of these days.
Next stop for the NYT will doubtless be Saturday’s Halloween party at Theater Bizarre; fingers crossed they overcome the downside of success before that. Which is? What else?
Organizers say the city is demanding they get a temporary liquor license to give away beer to patrons — and fear inspectors will issue more requirements in days leading to Saturday’s affair.
Alan and I went to one of their summer events a couple years ago, and I was delighted to see Detroit police officers mingling through the crowd, which was peaceful and fun-loving. This Saturday-night party is truly one of a kind, and it would be a tragedy to see it shut down over this. (Hear that, Republican readers? I am coming out against regulation.) Watch the video at that link. That gives you a good sense of the place.
What else is going on this weekend? Elsewhere in the same story:
On Tuesday, the City Council denied a permit for a Highland Park company that has operated a “haunted bus tour” for a month through East Robinwood near Woodward. Organizers from Creative Images and Things acknowledged the desolate, burned-out street made a perfect stage for the 15-minute tours that include fake zombie attacks. But council members worried about a lack of streetlights — and the city’s image.
“I just think it sends the wrong message at this time,” council President Charles Pugh said.
For the record, I disapprove; most of the houses on this street are abandoned, but not all of them, and the poor souls who are stuck here deserve better than to have a bunch of suburban d-bags rolling through in buses, not to mention the fake zombies. (This is the street, by the way; Jim at Sweet Juniper put together a panorama that gives you an idea.) However, Charles Pugh’s silly comment almost makes me want to take the opposite view.
This has been a long, exhausting week. I know I say that every week, but this week is super-duper long and extra-schmextra exhausting. Productive, though — that always mitigates things. But I’m ready for the weekend. Let’s see what sort of bloggage we can dig up:
Scott Lemieux on Juan Williams. Key passage:
For the role of being a Washington Generals Potemkin “liberal” on Fox News, his former NPR affiliation, lazy sub-mediocrity and uncritical immersion in shallow center-right conventional wisdom are major assets.
Exactly right, and this is why, while I disapprove of the current practice of booting pundits for not being perfect, I can’t get upset about this one. Williams never dispensed a single comment, anywhere, that I found insightful or even interesting. Booting Dave Weigel from the WashPost was a loss. This? Not so much.
Whatever the reason, the regional disparities are stark. In Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont, for instance, 2008 birth rates were less than 25 per 1,000 teens aged 15 to 19, CDC found. In the same year, Arkansas, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas all had rates topping 60 per 1,000 teens.
Mississippi had the country’s highest rate (65.7), CDC says, while New Hampshire had the lowest (19.8).
Leslie Kantor, national education director of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said the report “makes it crystal clear that the teen birthrate is lower in states that provide students with comprehensive, evidence-based sex education.”
I think there’s more to it than that, but it’s interesting just the same.
Clarence Thomas’ old girlfriend says he loved the porno. Shocked, shocked, etc.
The weekend awaits, eventually. Hope yours is great.