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What's That Smell Jacksonville

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout' started by typhoon, Jan 28, 2005.

  1. typhoon

    typhoon Member

    Jul 17, 2003
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    What's That Smell? Jacksonville

    By Tony Kornheiser

    Wednesday, January 26, 2005; Page D01

    Right after Chad Lewis caught that touchdown pass with about four minutes to go, the touchdown that cemented the victory and ensured the Philadelphia Eagles would be in the Super Bowl, some guy in the stands joyfully held up a sign that said, "We're Going To Jacksonville."

    And I thought: What on earth is second prize? You have to build there?

    How did Jacksonville get the Super Bowl? What, Tuscaloosa was booked?

    If going to Jacksonville for a week is the reward New England and Philadelphia get for being the best teams in the NFL this year, Peyton Manning ought to be happy he didn't get there. Imagine how Manning would have felt, having to play all year in Indianapolis, and then landing in Jacksonville? Which gods would he have offended to get that killer quinella?

    The NFL must see itself as handing out some sort of charity when it awards the Super Bowl to any place other than New Orleans, Miami and Southern California. Because, believe me, nobody wants the game to be anywhere but there. So when the NFL insists on putting it in outposts like Detroit, Houston or Minneapolis, people ask, "Are you guys nuts?" But when you pick Jacksonville, people are agape and say, "Who in Jacksonville has a photo of Tagliabue with a goat?"

    At least these other places are big cities, with some history and a longtime affiliation with the NFL, as opposed to Jacksonville, which has now been in the league for about 15 minutes. Detroit is where American cars are made, and where Motown music originated. Minneapolis-St. Paul is the home of 3M and General Mills. Houston is the home of NASA, and, thanks to Enron, the gold standard in white-collar corporate crime. Jacksonville is what? (I'm just taking a shot here, Tony, a dump? No. Cut that out. It's a 'Ville! The only good 'Ville is a Coupe de Ville.)

    Have you ever been to Tampa? It's heaven, if you like Waffle Houses.

    Jacksonville makes Tampa look like Paris!

    Jacksonville has this one great thing, the TPC course with the island green on No. 17. (Which is actually in Ponte Vedra.) And the rest of it can be described with this phrase, "Welcome to Hooters."

    People in Jacksonville will be very upset with this piece. They will say it's a cheap shot by an effete Northerner who didn't want to be the 28th person on his own paper to write about how great and smart and handsome Tom Brady is. (Which is true, but come on, we kid because we love.) They will yell and scream that their city is hardly a backwater -- it's the 14th largest city by population in the country! Yes, and that's because it's the largest city by area by far. It's an octopus. It's 840 square miles! It takes in almost all of northeast Florida. If Jacksonville annexes all of southern Georgia, it could maybe crack the population top 10.

    The NFL will tell you Jacksonville is a warm-weather site because it's in Florida. But Jacksonville is barely in Florida. It gets cold in Jacksonville. Yesterday morning, the low was 31 degrees. That's below freezing, boys and girls. That's cold enough that you need to keep the space heater turned on in the double-wide. And Jacksonville is 20 miles from the beach. Jacksonville is one of the smallest and most remote stops in the NFL. Green Bay is smaller and more remote. But Green Bay has Lombardi, Starr, Favre and the frozen tundra. Jacksonville has a Dairy Queen.

    Jacksonville may be in Florida technically. But this isn't South Beach, gang. It isn't the home of Gloria Estefan, Enrique Iglesias and Luther Campbell. Jacksonville is where Pat Boone was born (sometime around the Martin Van Buren presidency), and where the Southern hair band .38 Special got together. Somehow it doesn't sound like hip-hop. It's more like I-Hop.

    My friend Tony Reali, "Stat Boy" on the "PTI" show, flew to Jacksonville a few months ago to emcee some dopey trivia contest. And when he walked off the plane, he got a whiff of something that almost brought him to his knees -- it was Jacksonville -- and he made the not uncommon observation, "This place smells."

    "I am from Staten Island, and I have lived in New Jersey," Reali explained. "I know bad smells. This was right below Secaucus."

    Not as bad as Staten Island?

    "Nothing approaches Staten Island," Reali said with conviction.

    The next day, while appearing on a national radio show with Dan Le Batard of the Miami Herald, Reali announced, "Jacksonville stinks," and asked Le Batard if it smelled that bad in Miami.

    My friend Mike Freeman, who used to work here at The Post and now writes a column in Jacksonville, heard the show and went wild. He called Reali "Stat Jerk" and "Stat Punk," and chided him for slandering fair Jacksonville (named for Andrew Jackson, who, by the way, never actually set foot in it -- he was probably waiting on the beach). In his column Freeman said Reali's salvo was probably the first of many that would be fired at Jacksonville now that it was getting ready to host the Super Bowl.

    Get used to it, brothers and sisters, Freeman wrote, this is what they're all going to do.

    Brady, table for five. Brady, table for five. Welcome to Applebee's. Eatin' good. In the neighborhood.


    © 2005 The Washington Post Company
  2. Uprising

    Uprising Contributing Member

    Dec 29, 2000
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    Well, aparently having it in Houston wasn't a bad thing.....considering it's coming back.
  3. Mr. Mooch

    Mr. Mooch Contributing Member

    Nov 30, 2002
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    Wow, how often is it that my hometown gets mentioned from a guy who went to Binghamton?

    Pretty neat, even thought it was kind of a dig, but whatever.
  4. typhoon

    typhoon Member

    Jul 17, 2003
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    After the success of last year’s Super Bowl festivities in Houston, Texans owner Bob McNair is ready for round two.

    Houston is one of four finalist cities that will be considered to host the 2009 Super Bowl game. Along with Miami, Atlanta and Tampa, Houston will submit a proposal a month before the NFL’s May meetings, at which time each city will make a formal presentation in front of the NFL owners.

    The league expects to announce a winner at that time and Houston is already hard at work to make sure their name tops the list.

    But McNair recognizes that the Space City’s competition is stacked. Tampa has hosted the Super Bowl three times (1984, 1991, 2001). Miami has had the sports spectacle eight times and is already named the site of the 2007 Super Bowl. And maybe the toughest competition will come from Atlanta who has already hosted twice in 1994 and 2000 and is moving full steam ahead for another bid.

    “Some people are under the impression that it’s a foregone conclusion that we’re going to be selected in ’09 so the first thing I want to let you know is that we’re going to have to compete,” McNair explained. “It’s going to be a matter of which city wants it the most.”

    While McNair believes that the Houston community aggressively welcomes the opportunity to host again, he knows cities like Atlanta are just as desirable.

    “Atlanta is very serious about this competition and it goes beyond the value of the Super Bowl in the city of Atlanta in that the Falcons would like to improve their situation in reference to their lease at the Georgia Dome,” he said.

    Ultimately, the decision lies in the hands of the owners who will collectively decide which city can provide the most attractive facilities, activities and climate.

    McNair believes that Houston is right up there if not above the competition when it comes to accommodating the participating teams in addition to the hundreds of thousands of fans who flock to take part in the week’s activities.

    “When they’re looking at the facilities, we’ve got the upper hand,” McNair said about Reliant Park and the surrounding sports complexes in the city. “We have world class facilities.”

    Also included in Houston’s proposal will be hotel accomodations, restaurants, transportation, nightlife and leisure activities.

    In 2004, Houston’s downtown hosted around 300,000 people on just Friday and Saturday nights alone prior to the big game. Houston was able to generate over $300 million for the community by hosting the event and McNair knows that the economic and global prosperity is invaluable.

    “I think it really created a lot of positive energy on behalf of Houston,” McNair smiled. “Those of you that were here for the Super Bowl last year know what kind of energy was generated by virtue of it.

    “It’s something that’s hard to describe and the positive reaction from all over the world was something we had not seen in Houston for a long time.”

    Because of the number of new stadiums around the league with plans for construction under way, McNair knows this may be a very valuable window of opportunity for the city to host. Another chance may not come for some time.

    “This is not a slam dunk,” he said about winning the bid. “If we lose this opportunity it could be several years before we’d be able to get the next one because we have the stadiums that are being built and hosting a Super Bowl could be a part of their approval for the stadium.”

    McNair and the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee from 2004 are working feverishly with local and state community and hospitality officials to get a solid plan into place for the May NFL Meetings.

    And he strongly believes that the city of Houston can put on an even bigger and better show in 2009.
    “I would hope that what we could do is emphasize the value of a Super Bowl to the community and as we keep emphasizing that people will be energized and just as enthusiastic as they were before," McNair said. "It really invigorated the downtown area."
  5. mateo

    mateo Contributing Member

    Jun 20, 2001
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    I thought after the snow in Atl last time, they would avoid it.
  6. Faos

    Faos Contributing Member

    May 31, 2003
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    I can't believe he called Houston an "outpost".
  7. jello77

    jello77 Contributing Member

    Feb 19, 2002
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    i dont get why they play the super bowl only in warm weather places and domes. football is meant to be played outdoors, and snow makes football incredibly fun. what a bunch of pusses.

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