Holiday weekend.

A friend of mine, one of the filmmaking crew, used to tell his wife, when she pointed out what a ridiculous, expensive, frustrating hobby he had, “At least I’m not a Civil War re-enactor.”

I have one for Alan now: At least I’m not a steampunk enthusiast.

God bless these nice ladies and their hobby, but I left the World Steam Expo in Dearborn Saturday deeply happy I didn’t let this lady talk me into buying a corset, even at two-for-one pricing:

She was very nice, and did her job well; she almost had me convinced that a simple navy pinstriped corset was just the accessory to spice up a shirt-and-jeans combo, and oh, what it does for your back! I told her I’d think about it while I took a lap of the vendors’ area, and left without returning. As you might expect, there were a lot of corsets on display, or rather, there were a lot of enormous bosoms teetering atop whalebone stays. There were also more top hats and cutaway jackets than you could count, masks, weird goggles, baroque jewelry and this sort of thing:

It’s a “weapon” of some kind. I guess this is all predicated on some sort of sci-fi genre, but whatever it is, I can’t get into it. “It’s goth for geeks,” one T-shirt read. But I had other places to go.

Specifically, here:

Yes, it’s the Detroit Electronic Music Festival, aka Movement, aka Techno Fest. Note that there’s nobody on stage. That’s because all the movement was being controlled by a DJ standing behind one of the pillars. Techno — what a deeply predictable and extremely monotonous genre. We sat through hours of this stuff, and soon I could predict when the bass drops were coming based entirely on how bored I was. It was like watching a puppet show with no story or dialogue, just dancing puppets. I can enjoy this stuff in small doses, but an entire afternoon and evening of it only underlined why it helps to be stoned out of your gourd to fully appreciate it. Fortunately, we stuck to the bitter end — Kate was bound and determined to see some dubstep act that was last on the program — and Alan and I stayed at the main stage for these guys:

Public Enemy! Now in their 25th year, a fact they reminded the audience, most of whom were embryos or less at the beginning of that time frame, about 6,000 times. I give them respect for lasting, respect for being who they were in 1987, major respect for “Fear of a Black Planet” and “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back,” but when Flavor Flav takes a moment to pimp his soon-to-open soul food restaurant, I got a little impatient.

Speaking of which, I had to love the line in the linked story, above, about the project:

“We season the actual chicken and then bread it so it’s almost like a double whammy,” said Harmon.

I’m not holding out much hope for that one.

But it was a good show, and when it was over, I was very glad to get home and feel the beat resonate in my bones.

I hope your weekend was very fine. As I mentioned last week, I’m off for the great white Up North first thing Tuesday, and will be there most of the week. Look for something, but not much, here.

Summer is officially under way. Let’s make it a good one.

Posted at 12:38 am in Detroit life |

47 responses to “Holiday weekend.”

  1. Dexter said on May 29, 2012 at 3:11 am

    Moby won me over to techno years ago with his first techno album, but I want to rave about how great the steampunk stuff is. I love looking at steampunk things on the internet. My fave steampunk item is Jules Verne’s Nautilus.

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  2. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 29, 2012 at 7:14 am

    “Like” he clicked. Although I like the nuclear sub Nautilus, too.

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  3. coozledad said on May 29, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Hey, Phineas, where you goin’ with that Philco on your back?
    Hey, Phineas, where you goin with that Philco on your back?
    The boiler has a pinhole and it’s scalding my crack.
    The boiler has a pinhole so I’m taking it back to Radio Shack.

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  4. beb said on May 29, 2012 at 8:03 am

    We got a call a couple weeks back from a lady who identified herself as my wife’s corset-maker. Until that moment I didn’t know we *had* a corset-maker. My wife has a really bad back so she’s willing to try anything that might help.

    Steampunk is a branch of science fiction that formed after I left the fandom but I believe it all started when some people read where the mathematician Charles Babbage has proposed a mechanical calculating device. He called it a Difference Engine. The thing is that once you have a calculator you’re half-way to a computer.So what would the 19th century have been like if they had invented computers back then? It’s a kind of Retro-futurism that’s become popular because the traditional futurism of SF has become non-stop bleak.

    You’ll know when Public Enemy has completely sold out when they begin hawking “reverse mortgages.”

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  5. Linda said on May 29, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Re: Public Enemy. I always think of them as a big family, and Favor Flav is the crazy uncle who got sprung from the attic.

    Summer, for me, is officially on because I finally planted everything I bought.

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  6. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 29, 2012 at 9:28 am

    And in aid of absolutely nothing, would you believe that one of the pioneers of this field was . . . Richard Dreyfuss? Yeah, the actor. He got halfway through a steampunk/alt history story called “The Two Georges” and when he was stuck, his editor connected him to Harry Turtledove who helped him finish, some 20 years ago. Not clear who did how much, but I thought it was a fun read. Worth buying a 1 cent, 3.99 shipping copy of from Amazon if you like steampunk.

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  7. Judybusy said on May 29, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Yes, I’ve given steampunk a try–after learning about it here–but it didn’t grab me.

    Our weekend was splendid. My partner and I spent gobs of time together, a tremendous treat now that she is in between nursing program semesters. The weather didn’t cooperate all that well for planting out. I was on a roll yesterday when the neighbors declared it was “beer-thirty” and invited me over. My honey joined us when she got home from work and before I knew it, three hours had gone by and with it, any incentive to finish up the planting! A fine end to the weekend.

    Have a wonderful trip, Nancy, and don’t give a thought to us chickens.

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  8. 4dbirds said on May 29, 2012 at 9:57 am

    I like Steampunk and 30 years ago well…. luckily my free time (I was an army girl) twenties were spent in t-shirts and jeans. Very cheap.

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  9. Bitter Scribe said on May 29, 2012 at 10:06 am

    When it comes to coffee, Steampunk has an entirely different meaning.

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  10. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 10:17 am

    I always thought Chuck D and the Bomb Squad had a lot of ‘splainin to do for Flav, who might as well be aka Stepin’ Fetchit. Still, touring with U2 was more disappointing. Anthrax was a more suitable collaborator. I like NWA and KRS better, and Run DMC is a bit more accessible. Fight the Power. I always liked Yo! Bum Rush the Show, for its oblique reference to Abby Hoffman. Like Steal This Book, n’est ce pas? Linda, I always thought of Flav as the brain damaged nephew entrusted to reliable Chuck by an older sister on her death bed. I’d have retained Griff and put Flav overboard in the reality TV horse latitudes.

    beb’s citation of Babbage’s difference machine, reminds William Gibson pretty much invented steam punk, if HG Wells hadn’t already, when he wrote The Difference Engine with Bruce Sterling. I’d say the leading practitioners these days are China Mieville and Jeff VanderMeer. Of course, Gibson is more well known for inventing cyberspace in Count Zero and Neuromancer. All three are good books, but Difference Engine is unblessed with one of those punctured, deflated endings that momentarily make you wish you’d given the book a miss.

    There is a steam punk TV show that we find very entertaining, Warehouse 13, which has had HG as a recurring character, only HG Wells in that universe is actually Helena, the presumed writer’s sister with a tragic past and the real author. By film crew, I assume Nancy refers to The Wars of Other Men, of which I’m a financier through Kickstarter.

    We had TS Beryl for a weekend visitor, and she turned into a depression. Windy, rainy but messed up FLA worse, so there’s that. Maybe those crackers won’t be able to set the Okeefenokee on fire this summer. But in a wierd bit of meteorology, Beryl made a U-ey back to the coast and has returned today, headed north.

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  11. MichaelG said on May 29, 2012 at 10:20 am

    I don’t know about steampunk as a lifestyle but there are lots of neat artifacts around.

    The Nautilus (SSN-571) was tied up and semi derelict at Mare Island for years. I used to see it all the time. There was always an old WW-II era destroyer or two tied up adjacent on its way to the breakers. The Nautilus was eventually towed back east somewhere to be put on display.

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  12. Bob (not Greene) said on May 29, 2012 at 10:23 am

    Count me with the group that is mystified by the appeal of steampunk. I don’t get it at all. I don’t get wearing corsets outside your clothes. I don’t get the top hats and handlebar mustaches. OK, I’ll go back now and sit on my rocking chair and yell at the kids to get off my lawn.

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  13. MichaelG said on May 29, 2012 at 10:24 am

    I just looked it up. Groton, CT.

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  14. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 10:58 am

    Bob NG. I wouldn’t walk around wearing that stuff, but the literary version is diverting and frequently well written and thought provoking. When I think of tophats and handlebar moustaches, I think immediately of Bill the Butcher and Gangs of New York.

    MichaelG, the Nautilus was most likely built in Groton, at the General Dynamics Electric Boat Division. It was christened and launched by Mamie Eisenhower, who probably woofed the champagne before she cracked the bottle on the hull. Nautilus, a perfect symbol of the military industrial complex Eisenhower warned against:

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  15. MichaelG said on May 29, 2012 at 11:34 am

    Yes, Prospero, it was indeed built at Electric Boat in Groton.

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  16. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Dubstep fashion. WTF? Shaggy UGGS?

    Dubstep explained. (NSFPeople with Epilepsy.)

    Electronica in general, and dubstep particularly, make up the soundtrack of hell.

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  17. JWfromNJ said on May 29, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    When my wife and I owned our deli-cafe we let the kids who worked in the kitchen choose their music – except for the one guy who loved techno. Drove me crazy, but I could and did enjoy the Puerto Rican dance music, and the rest of their selections,but I couldn’t abide the techno. You and Alan get awesome parent awards for that one…

    This isn’t exactly Steampunk but just about everything else this guy makes now and shows on his website is… I just like this school bus motorhome project. So much that my wife gets nervous when she sees me looking at old school buses on Craigslist.

    Last night we heard three gunshots at around 11:30 p.m. Dogs went crazy, but we couldn’t see anything outside. Then there was a single shot around 1:30 a.m. Dogs went crazy again and my wife claimed she smelled sulpher. I called the Sheriff’s office, but no one else had called in (because I guess the long term residents accept that as the norm here). My theory – murder-suicide and we won’t find the bodies until they are really ripe in a few weeks, because no one here cares about their neighbors.

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  18. coozledad said on May 29, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    This one’s for Pat Fish

    The Donald is my friend
    The Donald is my friend
    Wherever I go the Donald goes
    The Donald is my friend
    (What d’you think about that, bowtie?)
    I went out one spring morning
    to find myself a friend
    who’d connect with the shitheads
    that no-one could defend
    I found myself the Donald
    and I filled his tank with gas.
    His mail-order wife strapped on and banged me in the ass
    CHORUS:But the Donald is my friend
    the Donald is my friend
    wherever I go the Donald goes the Donald is my friend

    The Donald’s crazy
    Spouting birther trash
    I’m a little worried
    I’ll catch his orange rash
    Stupid, stupid Donald
    to most folks, he’s a clown
    I’ll buzz his weave of candy floss
    while Blitzer holds him down!
    But the Donald is my friend
    The Donald is my friend
    Wherever I go the Donald goes
    The Donald is my friend

    And Ghadaffi was my friend
    Yes, Ghaddaffi was my friend
    wherever he went, he pitched my tent
    Muammar was my friend
    And Meg Whitman is my friend
    She’s a shit but she’s my friend
    wherever I go Meg Whitman goes
    old frog-eyes is my friend
    And McCain is my friend
    The folks at Bain are my friends
    And Fiorina
    though she’s a mean-a
    has a cut I understand.
    And the Donald is my friend,
    The Donald is my friend. Wherever I go the Donald goes
    The. Donald. Is. My. Friend!

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  19. Deborah said on May 29, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    Another good one Coozledad.

    I’m another person who doesn’t get steampunk. Not at all. I never see anyone walking around looking like that. Maybe I’m just not paying attention?

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  20. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    Way good devil song, cooze:

    Whitman and Fiorina, the Noxious Golden Parachute Funded Candidate Twins.

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  21. Sherri said on May 29, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    I’m not really into literary steampunk, but Mieville is an excellent writer. The City & The City is not steampunk, and is a very good twist on hard-boiled noir. I’m mostly familiar with Jeff VanderMeer because of the teen sf/f writing camp he’s involved with, Shared Worlds. My daughter went to that last summer and loved it so much she’s going back this summer.

    The one true steampunk novel I tried was The Half-Made World, by Felix Gilman, but I just couldn’t get into it.

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  22. adrianne said on May 29, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    Prospero, the Reillys are huge fans of “Warehouse 13” and all the cool gadgets!

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  23. Chris in Iowa said on May 29, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    I’d be skeptical of Flav’s chicken enterprise for many reasons, including this

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  24. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 2:07 pm

    The City and the City is very demanding. Incredibly dense, and reminiscent of Dante. VanderMeer’s Finch probably qualifies as steampunk, and is an excellent read, as is Perdido Street Station, by Mieville. I’ve been meaning to ask, have any of you read Shamp of the City Solo by Jaimy Gordon? I have never been more befuddled by a book.

    One of my favorite movies, The Assassination Bureau, is steampunky. It stars the wonderful duo, Diana Rigg and Oliver Reed; Ms. Rigg plays a fin de siecl feminist journo a la Nellie Bly. Very funny, astounding location shooting.

    Yo, Adrianne, WH13 is back in July. A favorite episode was Pete being cast into depressed immobility by contact with Sylvia Plath’s typewriter. Love that sort of sharp writing. Usually, expecting intelligence from the audience that way leads to an ignominious end, like cancellation of Terriers.

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  25. Kirk said on May 29, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    Not sure I follow what steampunk amounts to, but would I be wrong to guess that “Wild Wild West,” with Will Smith, Kevin Kline and Salma Hayek, includes some elements thereof?

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  26. brian stouder said on May 29, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    A slight digression: I know nothing about “Steam Punk”, and I realize this is no great revelation, but it looks to me like one of the Great Truths at work here, with regard to live Steam Punk events: People-watching can always be greatly entertaining.

    And the synergy produced by coupling people-watching with people who want to turn heads can rapidly expand until you have a Happening; or even (for example) a Greatest Spectacle in Racing!

    Now that I’m an old guy, I found myself musing about this very subject on Sunday at the (steaming hot!) Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

    It was genuinely pleasing to see the big Purdue marching band mark time right down the main straightaway at the speedway (and with lots of razz-matazz thrown in) , preceded by many many attractive baton twirlers (who heaved those things way up into the air, and who never – as far as I could see – dropped one); and what are you gonna say about Florence Henderson (!!!) and Jim Nabors? It’s just cool stuff; hip-to-be-square, maybe.

    And the huge crowd? Before the day is over, you see just about everything – and indeed (“aha” moment here….not!) that’s the point.

    Although, I will say, now that all the attractive young ladies could well be my daughters at some point in the near future, I find myself equally (if not more) interested with the people that they choose to be with, and (often as not), cringing and sighing; but it is still definitely fun to look at the women who are my age (give or take).

    So then, after getting back to the ranch, I watched the F1 race from Monaco – and the point was reinforced. You’d have to be crazy to go to Monaco with the expectation of seeing the race! All any person could see would be one or two corners, or maybe the pitlane and start/finish, and that’s it. That whole event is about people-watching (and/or, being one of the people that others watch).

    Anyway, I don’t think I’ve ever consumed quite so much water in my life; certainly the ratio of fluids-in to fluids-out was heavily in favor of “in”! That’s Rule One for going to any big-time, summer-day auto-race: drag in all the water and ice that they’ll allow (14” X 14” was Indy’s max-cooler size, so the three of us dragged in three coolers, with lots of water, plus sandwiches and fruit)

    PS – JW, are you a near-north west Ft Wayne person? Some major bad magumbo appears to be happening today…

    PS to the PS- Cooze, I’m still chuckling about The Donald is my Friend…!

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  27. brian stouder said on May 29, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    An odd story:

    the lead paragraph:

    CENTRALIA, Pa. (AP) — It’s an anniversary the few remaining souls who live here won’t be celebrating. Fifty years ago on Sunday, a fire at the town dump ignited an exposed coal seam, setting off a chain of events that eventually led to the demolition of nearly every building in Centralia — a whole community of 1,400 simply gone.

    All these decades later, the Centralia fire still burns. It also maintains its grip on the popular imagination, drawing visitors from around the world who come to gawk at twisted, buckled Route 61, at the sulfurous steam rising intermittently from ground that’s warm to the touch, at the empty, lonely streets where nature has reclaimed what coal-industry money once built. It’s a macabre story that has long provided fodder for books, movies and plays — the latest one debuting in March at a theater in New York.

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  28. Scout said on May 29, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    Steampunk doesn’t seem to have made it to my little corner of the world. Probably too hot to stuff oneself in a corset. However, cruising downtown Phoenix on the light rail this weekend had the bonus of the Comic Convention taking place. All kinds of faeries and goths and goth faeries. Not to mention a plethora of superheroes which brought to mind one of our favorite so-dumb-it’s-funny movies, Mystery Men.

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  29. hexdecimal said on May 29, 2012 at 4:52 pm, one of the best of top 10 web sites you should be wasting time on, has a good example of a steampunk bicycle:×500.jpg

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  30. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 29, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Kirk, “Wild Wild West” is generally credited with triggering steampunk, if not creating it de novo.

    And in a cry to the heavens: is there not a cure for addiction to drama? Other than avoiding people who are addicted to drama?

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  31. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    What the hell was this kid thinking? Brave or crazy, a hero of mine, Matthias Rust.

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  32. JWfromNJ said on May 29, 2012 at 5:45 pm

    @Brian, nope, moved to Vero Beach, Fl. in 2010. I liked the known evil that was Ft. Wayne, with rules like, “don’t buy gas on anthony Blvd.” instead of this vibe where people live in nice houses but with a quiet desperation brought on by paying $240k for a house now worth $79k, and where no one but me calls in apparent gunshots at 11:30pm, 1:30am, as if it’s perfectly normal.

    We’ve debated a move to a gated community and the family consensus is while we’d like the safety and order, we’d be the ones they don’t like for our three dogs, desire to grill out, growing tomatoes in buckets, and other non-conformist things like wanting to hang stuff out to dry sometimes.

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  33. alex said on May 29, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Brian @ 26—

    Can’t find anything unusual in the news about Fort Wayne today. You referring to the Hooters on Coliseum going out of business?

    Steampunk somehow managed to escape my notice up ’til now as well. I don’t recall women sporting corsets particularly but I do recall when they were running around in bustiers and Victorian up-dos in the late ’80s. Was that a steampunk thing?

    As for techno music, I thought that stuff was invented as background noise for porn films.

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  34. brian stouder said on May 29, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    Alex, Pam gets the girls at a school bus stop just off Spring Street (not far from Sherman), and at 3:15 today when she headed into that neighborhood, the police were swarming, along with ambulances and the like; and she watched them barricade the street completely.

    She called me at work, and I found nothing on the web, but this story just went up on the WANE site:

    Other than that the victim is a woman, this looks a bit like more war – but we shall see.

    JW – the world is amazing, isn’t it?

    I think if I could live absolutely anywhere, it would be in one of those grand old homes right near downtown (think Wayne Street, etc). Pam says, if she had her ‘druthers, she’druther live off Old Mill Road…which I think wouldn’t be bad at all.

    Every neighborhood has their peculiarities, I’m sure, but I’d be hard-pressed to do a gated community. Then again, though, I want neighbors who will call 911 when they hear gunfire!

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  35. JWfromNJ said on May 29, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    All of the comments about Hooters being closed on various Ft. Wayne media sites have raised two points…

    The women that just say “good” without concern for the jobs, etc. tend to be the really ugly commenters… Ouch

    and two, perhaps someone could help me out, what is this “tilted kilt,” they speak of and did I miss out…

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  36. brian stouder said on May 29, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    JW – all Tilted Kilt is, is another Hooters; over-priced food, contrived ‘ambiance’, and scantily clad young ladies to gawk at.

    As I yapped about above – now that I’m an old guy I just cannot get into gawking at young ladies who could be my daughter, or a friend or class-mate of my daughter.

    I think my two greatest blessings are that, Unlike Bill Clinton (et al), ‘sweet young things’ always remind me of my kiddos; and I have a glass jaw when it comes to alcohol, so that Diet Pepsi holds more charms for me than an icy cold beer (for example)

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  37. alex said on May 29, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    I’m all for bad taste and the freedom to enjoy it, but I won’t shed a tear over the demise of the local Hooters. It makes my chest swell with pride to think that this community cannot support such a place. Then again, it’s possible that customers learned to just skip the push-up bras and bad food and go next door for the lap dances and tits dunked in your beer.

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  38. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    I’ve been to Vero, JW, in utero. The year (1951) I was born in June, my mom and dad went to spring training at Dodgertown. Played catch with Branca, Campy, Duke Snyder, Gil Hodges, Jackie, PeeWee Reese. I’ve got snapshots and a piece of Driftwood Inn stationery with the whole team’s autographs.

    Speaking of bad taste and the freedom to enjoy it, Brevard Co. bluehairs can titillate themselves to their old hearts content:

    Censorship over sexual content is a crock o’ shit, but if something is just dogshit writing for prurient interest, it’s a little hard to get exercised about it. Iwonder if those folks offer Lynn Cheney’s porno novel:

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  39. LAMary said on May 29, 2012 at 7:49 pm

    All three of the steampunk ladies you show have the same grin on their faces. Is it because they are wearing corsets?

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  40. JWfromNJ said on May 29, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    Prospero – the Driftwood is still going strong. Dodgertown is in pretty sad shape though. cracking concrete, rusted out seats, parking on the grass. I was there for a charity softball event in the fall and for a totally unrelated reason a film crew from ABC news was there. I ended up hanging with them and the one producer looked like he was going to cry, describing the place as the Wrigley Field of the South, and naming all the baseball greats that used to grace the field. It is pretty sad.
    There are some glimmers of hope – the O’Malley family is back in partial control, in a partnership that includes Chan Ho Park, but the stadium is a shame. When you look at some of the minor league showpieces, and Ft. Wayne’s Parkview Field is one of the best I’ve seen, there is nothing short of a full demolition and reconstruction that would put Holman Stadium back in that class. Shade is at a premium. Bathrooms are disgusting.
    Vero has a lot to offer but the days when Eastern Airlines flew nonstop to Vero are as gone as Eastern itself. We do have good newspaper, but on that one I’m a tad biased…

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  41. Prospero said on May 29, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    JW All a result of the poor span of attention of bad owners, Fox (Murdoch) and then the Boston parking lot mogul, McCourt. Aholes. It was a sad day when the O’Malleys left MLB. I blame Bud Selig, the fake commissioner who has always just been an underfinanced owner looking out for his own team. Anybody that decides home field in the World Series goes to the team from the league that wins the All-Star exhibition doan know shit about baseball, and apparently cares even less. Pure class in sports ownership. Always liked Chan Ho Park. They could name a new stadium after him.

    But, does it come with a flux capacitor?

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  42. brian stouder said on May 29, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    At the Indy 500, I got a kick out of a couple of interviews (visible on the jumbo-tron) they did with celebrities who were there for the first time. These included Tommy Lasorda and (wait for it, Prospero…) Pete Rose.

    ‘Course, in the old days, these guys were busy elsewhere; but now they are free to come to the big race and to the Kentucky Derby.

    And, before you say it Prospero, I agree.

    A way-long-time-ago, Pete Rose was my very most favorite baseball player. The guy was always fun to watch, and if you started out as a Reds fan, you couldn’t avoid loving the guy.

    You will go on about the All Star game collision, but I still chalk that up to Rose (in any other game) being Rose; but the gambling scandal really is unforgivable; and he should not get into the Hall of Fame, until after he is dead and gone….and maybe not even then.

    And, I agree about the ridiculous “commissioner”. Their last real commissioner was Bowie Kuhn, discounting that fellow who died too soon (Giamatti?)

    Major League Baseball lost me with the faux commissioners, and with the fouled up way they ran things years ago. Remember the year that the Reds had the best record in baseball, and didn’t even get to play in the playoffs? (strike year/split-season/Cincy finished second in the National League West versus one team in the “first half” and to another team in the “second half”, and got screwed.)

    JW is right; if I want to see professional baseball, I go see the Tin Caps.

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  43. Deborah said on May 29, 2012 at 9:41 pm

    As a youngster growing up in Miami, my Dad was a huge sports fan. He used to drag me and my sister to Marlins games when they were a farm team for the twins or the Oriales I forget. This is the late 50s early 60s and I spent the entire time during the games worrying that a stray ball was going to hit me between the eyes killing me. The stands were rickety bleachers that were terrifying to traverse. Not my idea of fun. I think this is why I’m so averse to sports to this day.

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  44. Dexter said on May 29, 2012 at 11:02 pm

    prospero: The baseball Gil Hodges signed for me in 1964 when he managed the old Washington Senators AL club remains my number one possession.

    brianstouder: I enjoy an evening at a minor league park but it’s impossible for me to follow these teams as I spend so much time watching MLB games on TV. If I know nothing about these players in the minors, the games mean nothing to me.
    Helluva of a monster rainstorm hit Boston late in tonight’s game. A real gully washer.

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  45. Crazycatlady said on May 30, 2012 at 12:00 am

    Yes, indeed, I do have a corset-maker. She is making a custom high-bust just for me. My niece is getting married, and I’m having a dress made with a very nice corset that will minimize my chest. No whalebone, but solid steel stays. That should support my back and maintain posture. No cleavage will be seen. And it laces in the back so as I lose weight it can be taken in (or let out after a chocolate binge). I’m having a black skirt(mid-length)made for it
    and the hunt is on for perfect ‘Victorian’ black shoes. This Lady is a seamstress who makes costumes and did Bridal dresses for 15 years. I can’t wait to see how it looks and feels. And I’m having a Bolero jacket made if there is time before the wedding.

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  46. Minnie said on May 30, 2012 at 12:32 am

    Crazycatlady: Pictures, please!

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  47. Dexter said on May 30, 2012 at 2:12 am

    Through the miracle of the internet, I feel like a proud uncle, sort of. My good blogger buddy from Apple Valley, California, named Rico, has kept me aware of the progress of Jason Vargas, a pitcher for the Seattle Mariners. Jason grew up in that same small town, and the townspeople there all remember Jason from his boyhood games.
    I cheer for Jason Vargas now too, because it makes Rico feel so proud.
    Last night Jason beat the vaunted Texas Rangers.
    “Seattle starter Jason Vargas (6-4) allowed three runs and five hits over 6 2-3 innings. The left-hander struck out two and walked three.

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