Write me:
skot AT izzlepfaff DOT com

Thursday, 10 May
But Seattle Only Symbolically Crushes My Balls

All right! *rubs hands together eagerly* Time to rip into some Chicago! That Chicago! What a . . . they're so stupid! Chicago. Please. It sucks like . . . a thing that . . . sucks! Sitting on that lake! Like it's so big and, uh . . . lake-sitting! Gay. Chicago, you're gay! You're so . . . wait, "gay" isn't gay anymore. What's the new "gay?" Well, it's whatever Chicago is! Chicago is the new gay pejorative term! So next time you want to malign someone for his or her sexual preference, you walk right up to them and scream, "GOD HATES CHICAGOANS!"

This is getting complicated. I need to call Fred Phelps and see if he's cool with all this.

Oh, it's hopeless. I can't really make fun of Chicago, because frankly, Chicago is awesome. It's awesome in practically every way. It's got world-class public art (Miro! Picasso!), world-class pizza (oh, shut the fuck up, New Yorkers), world-class architecture, outstanding museums, outstanding baseball history (times two!), even outstandingly entertaining political corruption. (I would love it if on the "Welcome to Chicago!" signs, they would add the phrase "Fuck You, We're Still Electing Daleys.")

If there is anything to quibble about with Chicago, it's that maybe it's almost too awesome. It's almost oppressively awesome, to the point where you simply don't know what to do with yourself. Do I go see the Sears Tower? Do I go to Wrigley Field? Do I go puzzle over that Miro piece? Do I go visit that weather-witch of a giant fucking lake and wait for my marrow to freeze? Do I fall into the Daley gravity well and helplessly vote for him even though I don't live here and it's not an election year?

I think this is why the wife and I are so comfortable in Seattle. Seattle is nothing like Chicago: Seattle is a fake big town for dumb hicks who want to think that they actually live in a big town. But Seattle is flyweight compared to Chicago. Our public art consists of things like a bronze pig and a great big silhouette of a guy crushing his penis with a hammer. Our wan museum displays things like Andy Warhol's ear hair and waits for touring shows of other, more important shows to make bank; additionally (and perhaps most awesomely), it is directly across the street from a strip club called the Lusty Lady. Our architecture is usually exceptionally bland or utterly demented; the Smith Tower narcoleptically exemplefies the former, while the Gehry monstrosity that is the EMP demonstrates the latter. In between is the iconic 70s discarded toy for giant babies that is the Space Needle. I'm not kidding. On the base of the inverted lawn dart that is the Space Needle is a parental warning: "Suitable for giant children age 3 or above." There have been so many giant babies that have picked that stupid thing up and just jammed it right into their fucking eyes.

Don't even get me started on the local politics. Do you know who the mayor of Seattle is? His name is Greg Nickels, and his main accomplishment is, astonishingly, being less exciting than an actual pile of nickels. His predecessor was named Norm Rice, whose main accomplishment was, yes, being less exciting than rice. Washington's governor is Christine Gregoire, a politician noted most prominently for her slightly unsettling hairdo, which perches over her cranium like Fuseli's nightmare incubus.

So Chicago is in pretty much every way more awesome than Seattle. The wife certainly had a good time raiding the town while I was stuck at work doing things like manning a computer lab that was attended by nobody (no exaggeration--not one person showed up over three hours). We're dinky latecomers with no claim to any kind of the sort of throne that Chicago commands.

On the other hand, even in downtown Seattle, I probably won't have to pay ten dollars for a gin and tonic.

But on some mythical third hand, Chicago has wonderful public art that does not feature a giant guy who smashes his genitals with a hammer.

Roam | Skot | 10 May, 2007 |

Note: Comments are closed on old entries.


I used to live in Anchorage and traveled to Seattle regularly for the hot and dirty sex (girlfriend lived there) and, man, I so dig that place. We frequented this martini bar situated in a basement, the entrance for which was adjacent to a taco shop down the street from the dude with the penis-hammer. Everytime we caught a glimpse of that masochistic bastard, she'd yell, "God, it's so SYMBOLIC!" And, indeed, it was. I should've married that chick.

Comment number: 013884   Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' on May 11, 2007 10:34 AM from IP:

Um, Skot, you seem to have forgotten (perhaps willfully) the oh-so-engaging and charismatic Paul Schell, who was Nickels' actual predecessor. He who presided (mayor-ed?) over the WTO riots. Good times...

BTW, Seattle has acquired some cool new public art at the Olympic Sculpture Park. I haven't seen the New & Improved expanded SAM, but am glad the penis-hammer is swinging again.

Wait, that sounds wrong... you know what I mean... I hope.

Comment number: 013885   Posted by: Suzanne on May 11, 2007 10:50 AM from IP:

You're right, I did forget about Paul Schell. What does that say about how dull that guy was? I mean, apart from the whole "gas masks are illegal" thing, which was frankly hilarious.

Comment number: 013886   Posted by: Skot on May 11, 2007 11:22 AM from IP:

Jesus Christ Skot, you have been back what...DAYS?!?!? and you haven't gone to the new SAM yet? Get your ass over there...NOW!

Comment number: 013888   Posted by: cory on May 11, 2007 02:33 PM from IP:

i live in st petersburg, fl. we have the Dali museum, which is the museum of Dali's art he wanted to throw in a pile and put a torch to. mmm, kay?

Comment number: 013890   Posted by: alyxmyself on May 11, 2007 07:15 PM from IP:

You forgot about the Shedd! So many fish! and the other places near the Shedd. I'm sure they are very.... educational. But the Shedd! with the lizards and the sharks and the fish and having to be swallowed by a dragon to get in and other slimey/scaley wild things. My five year old is obsessed. It skews me.

Comment number: 013892   Posted by: Yukonruby on May 12, 2007 05:18 AM from IP:

Screw Chicago. You forgot to mention that everyone in Chicago weighs 350 pounds. BECAUSE NOONE GOES OUTSIDE: it's as cold as a witch's tit 360 days a year. And Seattle? It's a beautiful city, man.

Comment number: 013893   Posted by: MoShrine on May 12, 2007 09:04 AM from IP:

Screw Chicago. You forgot to mention that everyone in Chicago weighs 350 pounds. BECAUSE NO ONE GOES OUTSIDE: it's as cold as a witch's tit 360 days a year. And Seattle? It's a beautiful city, man.

Comment number: 013894   Posted by: MoShrine on May 12, 2007 09:05 AM from IP:

Our public art consists of things like a bronze pig and a great big silhouette of a guy crushing his penis with a hammer.

Not to nitpick, but surely that should read "pubic art"?

Also: there's a statue of a dude hammering his bits? Oh, my.

Comment number: 013895   Posted by: Elsa on May 12, 2007 10:04 AM from IP:

the main reason not to live in Chitown is the weather, and its' immediate proximity to the Midwest. The main reason to live there is the incredible, literal, bar-on-every-corner abundance of, um, bars.

If the weather or the proximity issue were to be solved, I'd immediately decamp.

Comment number: 013908   Posted by: mike on May 13, 2007 11:04 PM from IP:

Former Seattlite that I am, I only saw you once, Skot, during my long tenure. It was at your (second) wedding reception. Oh, and your first! You are right, he was the best man. Ah, remember when? Stupidly sometimes? What a pal I have been over the years.

Snooty, traffic snarled Seattle, I miss ye not.
Salty Ballard, I miss ye Skot.

How sad is it that I feel like we are still in touch by reading your blog twice weekly on my cell phone, from the shitter at work? You still have my love and undying respect.

There are some things I miss to be sure, like the leering hubcap eye of the Fremont Troll and the beer-quaffing sculpture on 45th mocked up to look like the ball-smasher, but they are all swimming in Puget Sound with my liver and my memories. Stay afloat, yo.

Comment number: 013947   Posted by: Spinal on May 16, 2007 10:30 PM from IP:

I really enjoyed this, so much I want to link it on my page. I hope you don't mind?
My blog tends to feature Chicago musings on my page (my hometown in which I am proud of).

Just one recommendation, Wrigley Field is an overrated piece of garbage. I think a visitor would
be better served taking a tour rather than attending an actual game. Believe me, I do speak from
experience, I was a bat boy for a day at (what true, somewhat misinformed Chicagoans call) 'Cubs Park.'

Wrigley field is only a treasure by accident. Meaning of course it only has value because greater
stadiums were tore down (Comiskey Park 'The Baseball Palace of The World'). Wrigley Field is the
Shea Stadium of it's day, always a work in progress. Most of Wrigley's beloved icons were late additions.
Yes, when discussing Wrigley Field people bring up the �History.� I can guarantee you that a hundred
year old toilet has plenty of history too. Cubs history is that of being on the wrong end of great history:
Babe Ruth�s called shot and The Amazing Mets of 1969. Now when they tear down �The House That Ruth Built�
baseball will truly have lost some history. Not that I�m a fan of The Evil Empire (I�ve put too much New York in
this post).For me most importantly, Wrigley Field is nothing to look at on the outside. If you are really into
ramps, stairs and fencing, then the Wrigley facade is for you.

Of course I would be really misguided if I did not mention the wonderful red marquee. It is really a great Chicago
treasure, it's pinnacle of greatness came on October 26th, 2005. When it read: "Congratulations Chicago White Sox
2005 World Champions.' It was absolutley beautiful that day. On another positive note, this week the Cubs have
announced plans to erect a statue of Mr. Cub number 14 the great Ernie Banks. This is a creation that is long overdue.

Still proud as well as happy to live in a city with an American and National League Team(s).

P.s. Don't forget our Olympic bid!!!
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Comment number: 014038   Posted by: Adam on May 24, 2007 12:37 PM from IP:

Post a comment