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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

The Big Mad: 'Die-Hard' Blues Fans, Road Diets and a McCloskey Reckoning

Posted By on Wed, Sep 22, 2021 at 10:10 AM

click to enlarge If you were there for this, maybe don't turn on the team over a vaccine mandate. - DANNY WICENTOWSKI
  • DANNY WICENTOWSKI
  • If you were there for this, maybe don't turn on the team over a vaccine mandate.

Welcome back to the Big Mad, the RFT's weekly roundup of righteous rage! Because we know your time is short and your anger is hot:

Street Dreams: If you've driven on Hampton Avenue between Chippewa Street and Gravois Avenue lately, you've immediately noticed the change in vibe. Not only has it become a hot spot for outdoor dining, the road traffic over there is more chill than anywhere else in the south city. That section of Hampton recently underwent a "road diet." The street was torn up and replaced, and the lines were redrawn with just one lane in each direction, a two-way center turn lane and wide parking lane at each side that's also used by runners and bicyclists to avoid getting clobbered. The change has completely transformed the driving experience on that section, and it's now a nice, almost relaxing experience. God, this makes us mad. Why on Earth aren't we doing this to all of the other streets in the city? Why must we seethe with rage while driving on cramped streets, doomed to constant lane-switching and having to use a combination of instinct, prayer and sheer ballsiness just to make it to Ted Drewes for a damn Cardinal Sin concrete? Go on a diet, St. Louis streets. You're all way too fat.

McCloskeys on the Defense: The state Supreme Court could suspend Mark and Patricia McCloskeys' law licenses. The state's chief disciplinary counsel, a University City native named Alan Pratzel, recommended St. Louis' gun couple finally face repercussions for their firearm-swinging, unrepentant response to peaceful protesters. The McCloskeys will surely spin any possible consequences into a full production of false victimhood theater, but that's not the infuriating part. The outrage is that Pratzel, whom you've probably never heard of before, is apparently the only statewide official willing to hold them accountable for undeniably dangerous behavior. He doesn't have the clout of Donald Trump, who hailed the McCloskeys as heroes, or even of Governor Mike Parson, who fell in line and promised a pardon before the couple was even charged. The guy didn't even send out a press release or hit the talk show circuit to grandstand. It's maddening that Pratzel, just by doing the job, seems like a throwback to a less insane time.

Ice Cream Interruption: We're fed up with the ice cream-creation industry. A couple of weeks ago, we had to deal with the barbaric creation of Lion's Choice and Crown Candy Kitchen's bacon-vanilla monstrosity. This week, Ben & Jerry's announced a new ice cream in support of Congresswoman Cori Bush's public safety bill. Ben & Jerry's Change Is Brewing flavor supports the organization Movement for Black Lives and Bush's People's Response Act. But we're not mad about the cold-brew, brownie and marshmallow concoction. We're mad that we cannot immediately consume it. This actually sounds like a slice of heaven coffee and brownie lovers alike can get behind. We mean, seriously, how is this fair?! You're going to announce this on a Monday morning? We're going to have to stop what we're doing and find the nearest ice cream dealer. Then we'll have to speed over to the grocery store and grab at least two cartons. We're also going to have to find the right movie to watch while consuming ice cream in copious amounts. It's a lot to ask, Ben and Jerry and Bush. Could you not have waited until the weekend? We need a minute to process all the deliciousness we will be consuming throughout the week.

"Die-Hard" Fans: The St. Louis Blues made the smart choice last week to require fans to show proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test to attend games. After a year and a half of dealing with the pandemic, you'd think making commonsense decisions aimed at digging us out of virus life would be welcomed. Well, you'd think that if you weren't also living through one of the dumbest times in history — a time when a ruthless minority of the population continues to wage war on solutions and anyone who suggests them. So, predictably, the Blues' are getting slammed by "fans" vowing to stay home (fine), claiming the team is embracing tyranny (right), and generally wishing disaster on an organization they claim to love (liars). It's those kinds of reactions that have caused companies, elected officials and everyday people to weigh doing the right thing against the venom it will trigger. The Blues ultimately came down on the only side the organization could, but the attacks by the team's supposed supporters has made what should be a no-brainer of a decision seem brave. Maybe all these "die-hard" fans should consider getting a vaccination so that term means something.

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