Saturday, December 16, 2006

Will the last people who know how to read turn the lights off when they leave?

I've been a rockford proponent. As many people (often justifiably) attack the forest city, I am a rockford apologist. In particular, I have been a downtown cheerleader even before I lived here. But I'm tempted to cut and run.

You know how people make claims like "If Dubya gets reelected, I'm moving to Canada?"

Here's my breaking point.

New American Theater: closed.

That means Rockford is officially unlivable. I don't care if you liked it or not, the idea of a downtown of a biggish city not having something like it is stupid.

I'm gone.

Enjoy your tractor pulls, you drooling, dirt necks. You win. May I suggest closing down your beleaguered school system all together and opening more restaurants? Food service is all the next gen. of illiterate citizens can handle anyway. And it's already all there is to do in this city: consume. Consume and migrate east, and prefer former cornfields to downtown. Prefer gentrification to culture. Prefer "Sports Bars" (whatever the hell that actually is) to a good watering hole. The Sports bars are resembling asteroids: They all are unremarkable and look alike, and we discover more and more of them -- so many that we stopped giving them recognizable names and just start calling them things like "stellar body m-987-5." But instead I guess the naming formula would be "vague ethnic sounding name + modifier that suggests drinking + sports term with the words Bar and Grill appended on." Drinkagin McTouchdown's. yay.

In this position, the temptation is to flee north of the area you are unhappy with. But that wouldn't be Canada--I'm not unhappy with America (not enough anyway). I'm unhappy with Rockford, and the Park-insas are not an option. I know misguided souls who go to the 'burbs because they think rockford is lacking, but that takes win, place, and show in the "Deluded dumb-ass derby." Houses that all look alike and a White Hen Pantry don't cut it.

But somewhere.

I always held in contempt the people who blamed Rockford (or any city) for their lot in life. But now I dunno. I'm not so sure now.

This angry rant...well, I'm not mad, just disappointed. Every city has its suck. But why must Rockford demonstrate with such brutal detail the Frost poem "Nothing Gold Can Stay?" Gold. Right. What's the one under silver? I'd settle for that.

My rant is stilted, exaggerated, inflammatory, and inarticulate...just how I get when I am maybe not just disappointed. Disappointment is for victims, anger is the other thing. More proactive. More on that later.

It would increase the rhetorical impact if I didn't clarify that I'm not actually moving, but there's enough confusion right now.

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