Yes, But What Goes Unsaid

I had a full and ex­cel­lent week­end, full of su­perla­tives. I had sushi at Pacific East be­cause Kimo’s was closed for the Indian’s game, watched A Murder of Crows by Mac Wellman at The Liminis and had a Pisco Sour and Bourbon Daisy at the VTR. A Murder of Crows [I’m prob­a­bly go­ing to go see it again to make sure] may very well be my new fa­vorite play. I didn’t re­al­ly have an old fa­vorite play, but this one fit right up my al­ley. I got a sweet ‘bin­er clip with built-in flash­light at the VTR too.

On Saturday I grilled some ke­babs from the WSM and made the most de­li­cious pork chop I’ve ever had. Yes, a few weeks ago I said the same thing, but this chop was bet­ter. Heirloom toma­toes and roast­ed corn on the cob com­plet­ed the meal. I al­so put­tered around Market Square and the City Xpressionz [God I hate typ­ing like I’m l33t] spray-paintathon.

Sunday I did my laun­dry and went to see Thee Silver Mt. Zion and BLKTYGR at the Grog Shop. Rafeeq & Co. put on the best show I’d seen from them and Thee Silver Mt. Zion made me think about the meld­ing of pol­i­tics and art. How all too of­ten art is used in the ser­vice of pol­i­tics in­stead of the oth­er way ’round. Thee Silver does it the oth­er way ’round and the mu­sic def­i­nite­ly ben­e­fits from it.

I should al­so men­tion that I made my first [and hope­ful­ly last] vis­it to Crocker Park over the week­end. That place is the flag­ship of American deca­dence and moral bank­rupt­cy. An en­closed sub­ur­ban “lifestyle cen­ter” [“mall” is too pro­le, ap­par­ent­ly] de­signed to look ur­ban, com­plete with res­i­den­tial lofts above the big box­es, speak­ers vom­it­ing top-40 muzak from the ‘80s hid­den be­hind the care­ful land­scap­ing and the whole place made my skin crawl. Seriously. Suburban faux-ur­ban loft apart­ments above a rich-per­son-on­ly mall where you can buy a park­ing space so you don’t have to walk as far to the stores. I didn’t see one non-white per­son the en­tire time I was there. WASP city. The place made my skin fuck­ing crawl. More on Little Citadels.

13 thoughts on “Yes, But What Goes Unsaid

  1. While I agree that Crocker Park is, in­deed, a fucked-up place to shop — is it bet­ter or worse than the tra­dion­al mall that would have been built there oth­er­wise? Will you go back to Great Northern, or will you just stick to the pse­du­do-elit­ist bou­tiques in Ohio City?

    And you didn’t see any non-white peo­ple be­cause you were in Westlake. I grew up there — there was one black per­son in my grad­u­at­ing class.

  2. Ok, well then I sup­pose the ques­tion be­comes: What would you prefer? No Crocker Parks, ok… what in­stead? A non-in­su­lar and non-ex­clu­sive shop­ping en­vi­ron­ment? Wal-Mart comes to mind.

    And I think it’s more like: Why dri­ve a half-hour down­town to shop when there’s all the stores I need five min­utes away? 

    And near­ly every one of the “ex­clu­sive” stores in Crocker Park was on­ce run by a “lo­cal en­tre­pre­neur,” and the tax dol­lars that are gen­er­at­ed by them cer­tain­ly ben­e­fit Westlake… most like­ly the school sys­tem.

    Just say­ing, is all.

  3. I think it is worse be­cause it is pre­tend­ing to be some­thing it isn’t. At least the Ohio City places [I don’t re­al­ly shop there ei­ther] are run by lo­cal en­tre­pre­neurs and shop­ping there ben­e­fits the lo­cal econ­o­my.

    A mall might be a shrine to con­sumerism and ma­te­ri­al­ism but CP and LV are frig­gin’ cathe­drals to it. They’re al­so so in­su­lar and ex­clu­sive, by de­sign, that they prob­a­bly do more to fos­ter will­ful blind­ness than you’d ex­pect. Why go down­town to shop where you might see a home­less man, or a black man or get a whiff of Lake Erie or a sew­er when you can dri­ve 5 feet to get the “ur­ban” ex­pe­ri­ence you want to that makes you com­fort­able…

    Basically this is just an­oth­er facet of my the­o­ry that peo­ple will do any­thing they can to make every­thing that is not pleas­ing to them some­one else’s prob­lem.

  4. To re­it­er­ate, CP and LV are sym­bols of what I see as a trou­bling ten­den­cy: the can­on­iza­tion of per­son­al com­fort and en­ti­tle­ment to the ex­cep­tion of all else. It is self­ish and ir­re­spon­si­ble.

    CP doesn’t just ap­peal to con­sumers for con­ve­nience, its sell­ing point is that it is de­signed to make the peo­ple who can af­ford to live/​shop there feel bet­ter about them­selves. It’s like a gi­ant day­care.

    I’m not grous­ing about the mon­ey, I’m grous­ing about the en­vi­ron­ment that is cre­at­ed by places like that.

  5. I’m just say­ing we need to learn to ac­cept and live with­in the con­sumerist par­a­digm we live in, in­stead of “grous­ing” about it and not pro­vid­ing any al­ter­na­tives.

    And, as far as avoid­ing the un­pleas­ant as­pects of ur­ban liv­ing, yeah — that’s fine by me. I see crack deals go­ing down on my street every night, and hear gun­shots at least on­ce a week. I could al­so do with­out get­ting hit up for change every time I go to the gas sta­tion to buy a six pack, and I’d re­al­ly en­joy be­ing able to walk around my neigh­bor­hood alone at night. God for­bid peo­ple want to avoid feel­ing safe and com­fort­able where they shop, let alone where they live.

    It of­ten seems as if you are judg­ing peo­ple for choos­ing to live in an area that is safe and com­fort­able, in­stead of in a won­der­ful­ly ur­ban place like Tremont. Yet you com­plain about the crime in Tremont, which is what makes it so won­der­ful­ly ur­ban…

    Perhaps I don’t make any sense.

  6. Ok, but let’s say you get what you want — peo­ple do­ing some­thing about the crime, and then crime elim­i­nat­ed. Seems to me that would make Tremont an aw­ful­ly more com­fort­able place for you to live and shop.

    Be care­ful how much “pos­i­tive change” you ask for, you might just get it.

  7. damn, i was on the list for that blktygr/​silver mt zion show but my ride bailed on me..

    BTW: its crack­er park!

  8. I choose to live where I am and work for pos­i­tive change from the in­side. I have lit­tle pa­tience for peo­ple who would rather just walk on by and leave prob­lems for some­one else to fix. I don’t com­plain about the crime, I com­plain about the peo­ple not do­ing any­thing about it.

  9. I would have loved to read your post, but I was too dis­tract­ed by the idea of a week­end full of su­perla­tives. What a fab­u­lous lit­tle bit of writ­ing that sen­tence is.

    I would fuck that one with Bea Arthur’s dick.

  10. You have some re­al is­sues with Bea Arthur, PTB. Do you want to dis­cuss?

    Adam-your de­scrip­tion of Crocker Park will make SnogAsh weep with Joy. Very nice.

  11. I was at the SMZ show, as well – re­al­ly en­joyed it. I can’t come up with an­oth­er ex­pla­na­tion as to why a shop­ping cen­ter would be de­signed the way CP was, oth­er than to make peo­ple feel good about what they’re do­ing. Entering the place feels a bit like step­ping on to Main St., USA in Disney World. To me, it comes across as a sleazy at­tempt to cov­er some­thing up. I don’t think there’s any­thing more to cov­er up then the tra­di­tion­al, bla­tant con­sumerist ap­peal. But the gaudy, tow­er­ing store­fronts do more to make me feel I’m be­ing duped than be­ing com­fort­ed.

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