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Urban life

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TOP 10 THINGS TO DO WITH TIGER STADIUM

10. Burn it down
9. Use it for outdoor concerts
8. Homeless shelter
7. Little League baseball
6. Play Tigers games there
5. Singles bar
4. Turn it into lofts/condos
3. Fill it up with beer
2. Cover it with a glass dome and fill it with plants, birds and butterflies
1. Have Christo wrap it

TOP 10 BEST-KEPT LOCAL SECRETS

10. Detroit’s salt mines
9. There are cool apartments downtown
8. The waterfront
7. We have awesome water
6. Me
5. Underground railroad tunnels
4. Hamtramck
3. You can have fun downtown
2. The Scarab Club
1. If I tell you I will have to kill you

TOP 10 BEST NEW WAYS TO WRECK THE PEOPLE MOVER

10. Plant bombs in the Detroit River
9. Have Gov. Engler sit on it
8. Put a penny on the track
7. Blow up the Ren Cen
6. Keep it closed
5. Raise the fares
4. Let the Detroit school board run it
3. Hire Tyree Guyton to decorate it
2. Improve city bus service
1. Bombard it with livestock

FIVE BEST REASONS TO LIVE DOWNTOWN

1. It’s close to everything: Canada, freeways, clubs, theaters, casinos, the action and, for some people, work.
2. It’s cheap: Taxes, property, rents, lofts.
3. The people are great: Cultural diversity, friendly bums, muggers.
4. There’s so much to see: The Detroit River view, vacant lots, Red Wings and Tigers games, Eastern Market, the view from high-rises.
5. There’s always something to do: Restaurants, night life, snow shoveling, rat hunting, implosion watching, construction dodging, bragging to your suburban friends about where you live.

10 BEST REASONS NOT TO LIVE DOWNTOWN

10. Crime (real or imagined)
9. No snow plowing
8. Limited shopping
7. Too many one-way streets
6. Not enough movie theaters
5. Parking problems
4. Lung health
3. Isolation
2. Expensive insurance
1. Eventually you’ll need gas and groceries

BEST BUILDING TO IMPLODE NEXT

Renaissance Center

BEST IDEA WHOSE TIME HAS YET TO COME

Mass transit

BEST UNSUNG HERO

Tyree Guyton

BEST PLACE TO SEE MALL HAIR

Lakeside Mall

BEST PLACE FOR A LOCAL WEEKEND INTERLUDE

Windsor

MOST WORTHY CHARITABLE CAUSE

AIDS research/Mother Waddles/Karmanos Cancer Institute (tie)

Mother Waddles says she tries to be there when people fall through the cracks because she’s been there herself.

"I’m 86 years old and I raised 10 children," she says. "I’ve (been) home on Christmas with no meat. I walked to welfare eight months pregnant, 8 degrees below zero, and been turned back."

To raise funds, Mother Waddles sells used cars. You donate your junker, and she converts it to food, medicine, clothes or furniture for the poor. Her car lot on Jos. Campau is also a church, where she conducts services every Sunday.

Contributions can be sent or brought to the warehouse at 8825 Vincent, Hamtramck (313-393-0045).

Detroiters are fortunate to have a world-class cancer center at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, where physicians divide their time between patient care and research. In scientific circles, Karmanos is known for growing hormone-based breast cancer cells in the laboratory. These cells are used by researchers around the world, and led to breakthroughs such as the drug tamoxifin, which is now standard treatment.

Karmanos is one of 32 government-designated comprehensive cancer centers. More than 20 percent of the patients at Karmanos are involved in clinical trials, which represent cutting-edge treatment. This compares to 5 percent to 8 percent at other cancer centers and 2 percent at community hospitals.

Contributions can be sent to 4100 John R, Detroit, MI 48201. Or donate online.

Henry Ford Hospital has a laboratory devoted to AIDS research under the direction of Dr. Douglas Mayers.

"We can sequence every virus in the state of Michigan," says Dr. Norman Markowitz, chair of the department of infectious disease. Laboratory research at Ford focuses on HIV viral assembly, viral latency and genotypic resistance.

As esoteric as it sounds, this work has important clinical applications, particularly as more patients develop variations of the HIV virus that are resistant to the available drugs. — Elissa Karg

BEST PLACE TO FEEL LIKE YOU’VE TIME-TRAVELED BACK TO THE ’60s

Ann Arbor (especially the Hash Bash and the Art Fairs)

BEST BILLBOARD

The Meijer trout

SCARIEST LOCAL ARCHITECTURE

Renaissance Center

BEST USE OF TAX DOLLARS THIS YEAR

Road repair

FIVE BEST REASONS TO FEAR THE MILLENNIUM (BESIDES Y2K)

1. Armageddon
2. Freaked-out people
3. Chaos and anarchy
4. Don’t know what to call the decade
5. Having to re-date all our checks

FIVE BEST REASONS TO HOPE FOR THE MILLENNIUM

1. Make a new start
2. There’ll be a big party
3. 1,000 more opportunities for the Lions to win a championship
4. Peace on Earth.
5. Won’t have to think about Y2K anymore

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD TO BUY A NEW HOUSE

Farmington Hills

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD TO BUY AN OLD HOUSE

Ferndale (suburban)
Indian Village/Woodbridge (city)

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD TO TURN INTO A STRIP MALL

Highland Park

BEST PLACE TO ANNOY SOMEONE WITH YOUR CELL PHONE

In the movie theater

"So, do you like violent movies?" He looks into her eyes, inquisitively.

"No," she giggles. "I like comedies and, when it’s, like, really entertaining."

First date – I conclude – or he wouldn’t have dragged her to Paul Schrader’s Affliction. She’s in for a treat.

His cell phone rings as the credits start rolling.

"Dan! What’s up, man? I’m here with Amy. At the movies. Yeah. What do you mean what’s playing? Leave me alone, man, I’m on a date here. Later."

Voiceover: Willem Dafoe, Schrader’s favorite actor, tells a dark story involving two brothers, a drunken father, a silent mother, the intimation of a murder, the promise of future, tragic violent acts.

I love Schrader. Anyone who can dream up Travis Bickle – Taxi Driver’s righteous psycho – is a man with a vision.

"Dan? This is deep, man. Nick Nolte just got medieval on his tooth. Pulled it out with a pair of pliers from the tool shed. Later."

"Matt?"

"What?"

"Let’s go. This is soooo depressing."

"C’mon, Amy, don’t be a quitter. It’ll end well. They always do."

I smile at the boy’s innocence. Schrader and happy endings.

"Dan! Jesus! Nick Nolte just shot his old man. Now he’s pouring gas all over him. He’s going to light him up, man. This is one sick movie."

Somebody screams. Somebody leaves. Somebody doesn’t run out for their fourth medium popcorn.

And, in the blissful silence which follows those rare acts of cruelty that can still arrest our thoughts, the phone forgets to ring for the first time. — Dayana Stetco

FIVE BEST PLACES TO LEAVE YOUR KIDS

1. Belle Isle playscape
2. In the condom
3. Gameworks
4. The library
5. With their grandparents

BEST COMMUNITY IMPROVEMENT PROJECT

Heidelberg Project

BEST SOCIAL SERVICE ORGANIZATION

Focus:HOPE/Red Cross/ Catholic Social Services of Wayne Co. (3-way tie)

BEST COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION

Salvation Army

FIVE BEST WAYS TO INVOKE SOMEONE’S ROAD RAGE

1. Drive really slow in front of them
2. Cut them off
3. Tailgate
4. Flip the bird or blow them a kiss
5. Talk on your cell phone

BEST FREEWAY TO AVOID DURING RUSH HOUR

I-696

TOP FIVE SECRET ESCAPE ROUTES TO AVOID RUSH HOUR TRAFFIC

1. Michigan Avenue
2. Woodward Avenue
3. Gratiot Avenue
4. Hire the Go-Go-Gadget-Copter
5. I’m not telling

BEST FIVE USES FOR DETROIT’S ABANDONED TRAIN STATION

1. Make it into a restaurant
2. Set up a dance club
3. Start yet another casino
4. Use it to play paint ball
5. Turn it back into a train station

BEST WAY TO PLAY HOOKY FROM WORK

Call in sick

And what to do with your day off? In no particular order, you suggested:

• Go shopping
• Sit on the beach with your cell phone and laptop
• Go to the DIA
• Catch a movie, a play or a Tigers game
• Run off and get married
• Have a drinking binge
• Take a road trip

BEST LOCAL LANDMARK

The Uniroyal Tire on I-94

Could be the sympathy factor after being punched with that 10-foot long, 500-pound nail. Against such competitors as the Ambassador Bridge, the Spirit of Detroit statue and the Ren Cen, the giant Uniroyal Tire reigns with Metro Times readers.

Eight stories tall and 12 tons in weight, the tire has lived through multiple incarnations over 35 years, beginning as a 1964 New York World’s Fair exhibit for the U.S. Rubber Pavilion – the predecessor to Uniroyal. A Ferris wheel styled as a giant tire, it lifted and spun more than two million visitors, including the Shah of Iran and Kennedy clan members Jacqueline, Caroline and John Jr.

At the fair’s end it was shipped west by rail in 188 sections, according to Uniroyal, reassembled in four months, and anchored in concrete and steel.

There was a 1994 makeover, which included installation of a new hubcap.

Last August came the $15 million push for Uniroyal’s new tire, the self-sealing Tiger Paw NailGard: TV ads, a tire-shaped hot-air balloon, a Beanie Baby giveaway ... and, to start things off, another giant makeover and the symbolic nail, lifted into place by a crane.

Ken Ford, mayor of the tire’s home turf, recalls Allen Parkers rolling with the mixed reactions in the ’60s: "Some other communities, I think, had sour grapes, even people from Detroit, thought that it was kind of crass.

"But we always liked it, more now than ever before." — W. Kim Heron

BEST LOCAL CUSTOM

Paczki Day

TOP 10 LOCAL URBAN LEGENDS

10. Iggy Pop’s 1960s era concerts
9. Knock Knock Street
8. Gangbangers with no headlights
7. Coleman Young
6. The kid who took a hit of acid and thinks he’s a glass of orange juice
5. The panther that roams Detroit
4. Jimmy Hoffa is in the Dearborn stamping plant
3. Henry Ford’s ghost on the assembly line
2. Madonna
1. Heidelberg Street is art

FIVE BEST IDEAS FOR A NEW MUSEUM

1. Ted Nugent’s "Look at all the stuff I killed" Museum
2. Geoffrey Fieger’s Mouth Museum
3. Pictorial Museum of Potholes
4. A simulated crackhouse "walk-through" tour
5. Drag Queen Hall of Fame

BEST CANDIDATE FOR "BOZO OF THE YEAR" AWARD

Geoffrey Fieger

TOP 10 BEST RUMORS TO START

10. Ken Starr has a mistress
9. Monica Lewinsky is pregnant
8. Detroit’s population is more than 1 million
7. There’ll be free money at the new casinos
6. Chelsea Clinton got laid
5. Fieger is not going to run for office
4. Dennis Archer is really white
3. The Ren Cen is slipping into the Detroit River.
2. Jerry Falwell is gay
1. Tomorrow is a snow day

BEST LOCAL CEMETERY

Elmwood

BEST MOTTO TO REPLACE "IT’S A GREAT TIME IN DETROIT"

"We’re trying."
"Try Detroit, you’ll like it."
"Our schools are as bad as Chicago’s."
"Detroit: Where the roads give massages and the hookers are cheap."
"Detroit, rock city."
"Explosions ‘R’ Us."
"Welcome to Detroit – Yes, that’s gunfire."
"Detroit: At least the suburbs are nice."
"Lose your shirt in Detroit."
"It’s time for Detroit."
"B.Y.O.S.S (snow shovel)"
"There’s mo’ to do in Motown."
"Aww ... fuck."
"Get schooled in Detroit."
"You are on your own, ACE!"
"Where the weak are killed and eaten."
"Welcome to our failure."
"Gimme your wallet."
"The city of blowing trash."
"It’s not pretty, but it’s fun."
"Have you ever seen a sink hole?"
"Detroiters die quicker."
"Detroit – We are getting better, slowly."
"Bring a weapon."
"Detroit’s really fun. No, really."
"We’re still waiting."
"It’s dark and, hell, it’s hot."
"Detroit: The party never ends."
"It’s not my fault."
"It’s a great high in Detroit."
"The millennium’s model city."
"Detroit: Home of America’s international riverfront gateway."
"Detroit: The realest place on the planet."
"Detroit: Try to make it out alive."
"In Detroit, here and now."
"Welcome to Ilitchville."
"We bet you’ll like Detroit."
"You get what you deserve."
"We’re trying – just maybe not very hard."
"Land of Motown and motors."
"Fuck ’em if they can’t take a joke."
"It’s not for wimps."
"Detroit – it’s to die for."
"Come alive with Detroit."
"It’s an OK time in Detroit."
"Duck and cover."
"Detroit – it’s a gamble"
"Detroit: It’s good for casino owners."
"Jump on the Red Wing bandwagon."
"Better than St. Clair County."
"Where the People Mover moves as slow as the snow removal."
"Detroit – we’re workin’ on it!"
"Our mayor can beat your governor."
"Detroit, lump it or leave it!"
"Run!"
"Live fast, die hard."
"Unions make us strong."
"Live with it, because you can never leave."
"Fuck Chicago, we’ve got casinos now!"
"Fearin’ potholes in Detroit."
"Detroit – where the jobs are."
"Closed."
"Have fun where you can find it in Detroit."
"It’s a great time in Michigan."
"Detroit – bring a cup."
"The next Lost Wages."
"Gateway to Windsor."
"There’s nothing to do in Detroit."
"Detroit, the nation’s embarrassment."
"You can see Canada from here."
"Motown – Snowtown."
"Only the tough survive."
"You can’t forget the Motor City."
"Detroit: Third World-class city."
"In time, Detroit will be great!"
"It’s not what you think."
"It’s an OK time in Detroit if you know what you’re doing."
"Do time in Detroit."
"Don’t stare and you’ll be fine."
"Can’t we all just get along?"
"Don’t forget your dust mask."
"We can rebuild it."
"Ain’t no party like a Detroit party."
"Put your money down."
"Detroit – a great place to play with yourself."
"Detroit fucking rules."
"Game time in Motown."
"It’s a bumpy ride in Detroit."
"Detroit’s a real blast."
"Detroit – it’s worth a visit."
"Detroit – new look, same old attitude."
"Detroit – an urban frontier."
"If you don’t know the D, don’t go that route."
"Detroit – you gotta love it."
"Duck!! You’re in Detroit."
"Detroit – it doesn’t suck so bad."
"Detroit – where suburbs rule."
"Detroit – the rubble-sance city."
"Striving to be the perfect parking lot."
"Ain’t too proud to beg."
"We’re waiting for you!"
"We need you to come back to downtown, please."
"Enough crack for everybody."
"We’re got Gary, Indiana, beat!"
"No scabs allowed."
"You don’t need to travel to experience Third World conditions!"
"Why go to Vegas anymore?"
"Get out while you can!"
"Less violent than Colombia."
"Detroit – and you thought your town sucked."

BEST BUMPER STICKER

My kid beat up your honor student.
Real men wear shirts.
You’re just jealous ’cause you can’t hear the voices.
If you can read this, you’re too close!
Nice people swallow.
Normal people scare me.
Y2K this.
Caution: This driver just doesn’t give a shit.
Don’t follow me, I’m lost too.
Hate is not a family value.
If going to church makes you a Christian, then does going to the garage make you a car?
I’m the delinquent who is sleeping with your honor student.
Detroit needs classical radio.
Friends don’t let friends vote Republican.
Visualize whirled peas.
Shit happens.
I’d rather be spanking my monkey.
Bite me!
If you can read this, thank a teacher.
Honk if you understand punctuated equilibrium.
Forget world peace – visualize using your turn signal.
Get drunk and screw!
You say tomato, I say fuck you.
What! Me horny?!
Funken Gruven.
I fart to make you smell better.
Minnesota: Our governor can beat your governor.
Your college sucks.
Fuck work.
I hate you.
Get off my ass!
Clinton: Commander in heat.
Hang up and drive!
Horn broken, watch for finger.
Caution: Driver only carries $20 of ammo.
I think, therefore I’m dangerous.
No scab papers!
Caution: Driver under the influence of children.
Impeach Clinton and her husband.
Support your local mechanic – buy American.
Strangers have the best candy.
People suck ass!
It takes leather balls to play rugby.
If you don’t like my driving, stay off the sidewalk.
I found your cat under my tire.
Give blood – play hockey.
Jerry’s dead, Phish suck, get a job.
Stop honking, I’m reloading.
I love my country but fear my government.
Techno-hippie.
Resign, you fat bastard.
See me – I’m hot!
Forget the horn – watch the finger.
Thank God I’m an atheist.
Life sucks.
I eat my road kill.
Eve was framed.
DARE to keep cops off donuts.
There is no God.
Life is too short to dance with ugly men.
Bitch.
I miss my ex, but my aim is improving.
Don’t laugh – it’s paid for.
Bewildered is better.
Jesus saves and Yzerman scores on the rebound.

YOU KNOW YOU’RE A DETROITER WHEN ...

You can pronounce "Cadieux."

You go south to Canada.

You try to convince others to move here.

You don’t call Detroit "Hockeytown."

You play hockey at midnight.

Watching implosions is fun.

Nothing fazes you.

You like Highland Park.

You loved the Tigers in ’98.

Your snow still isn’t plowed.

You play euchre.

Lime-colored ’gator shoes do not surprise you.

You shop in Detroit.

Every other word is "fuck!"

You were born here and still live here.

You criticize and defend Detroit in the same conversation.

You can’t avoid potholes.

You drive a hoopty car.

You wear "Made in Detroit" clothing.

You suffer from pothole shock.

You look over your shoulder every other minute.

People fear or pity you.

Your car’s suspension is shot.

You know the bus schedule.

You say D’troit, not Dee-Troyt.

Your understand Paczki Day.

You support the Lions and Tigers.

You consider traffic laws to be suggestions.

You wear a tank top in February.

You can’t find a public toilet free.

You don’t give a ... !

You use your hand as a map.

It snows and you get stuck.

You love Ann Delisi and "Backstage Pass."

You ask for a "pop" in New York City.

Your idea of a balanced meal is two coney islands with a Vernor’s Boston cooler.

You still live here.

You lust for Sanders hot fudge sundaes.

You know obscure cross streets.

Your auto insurance is three times as high as everyone else’s.

You know who R.J. Watkins is.

You love the Howling Diablos.

You think driving 70 mph is slow.

You love it here.

You consider Vernor’s medicine.

You listen to WDRQ.

You have fond memories of the downtown Hudson’s.

You drink Faygo.

You say "Ford’s."

You know where you are going in the city.

You bitch about Detroit, but you just can’t leave.

You remember life pre-People Mover.

Your team is losing.

You still vote for Dennis Archer.

You have more Canadian change than American change in your pocket.

You’re missed in the census.

You have 20 coats for winter, fall and spring.

You are too concerned about race.

You don’t gag when you drink Vernor’s.

You don’t blink when the expressway is completely closed.

You root for the Red Wings even when they are playing shitty.

You feel safe in downtown.

You hear gunshots and don’t do anything.

You have been carjacked.

You have no fear behind the wheel.

You return after living elsewhere.

You drive through a red light in front of a cop and they don’t care.

You know all the cool bars downtown.

You know public transportation is a joke.

You know where your house used to be.

You move away and miss the city.

You shop at Eastern Market.

You live next door to a crack house.

You actually live in the city.

Your car has plastic bags where there once were windows.

No one asks about your city.

You take pride in your offensive driving skills.

When you expect it to snow after a day of 68-degree temperature.

You own pastel ’gators and a matching shirt.

You can fill out the MT "Best of Detroit" ballot.

You will fight for the city you just insulted.

Homeless people don’t intimidate you.

You attend WSU football games.

You can’t get where you want to go without a car.

You lower your convertible top when the temperature hits 58 degrees.

When the sound of gunshots relaxes you.

You park in the middle lane.

All you think about is moving out of Detroit.

When you are happy living here.

Nothing scares you.

You don’t have to try to maintain an "image."

You notice all the empty buildings.

You believe Detroit still has a million people.

You think Kmart is better than Wal-Mart.

You won’t go north of Eight Mile.

You love Belle Isle.

You can find a liquor store open after 2 a.m.

You talk to people in the middle of the street.

You have named the potholes on your commute.

You tell someone the mileage to Detroit from your house.

You notice when there’s no security or bulletproof glass around.

You have a snow shovel sewn to your hands.

You make excuses for the Lions.

You don’t duck at the sound of gunshots.

You know every street east-west.

Long commutes don’t bother you.

You spend most of your time in the suburbs.

You "ride" through Greektown.

You know all the spots on the traffic report.

You feel powerless.

You’d rather be in Chicago.

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