Friday, April 06, 2007

Pittsburgh Comfort Level


Greetings to all you whoadies and whoadettes. I'm Burnso, the non-skinny member of Cockblock 4. Most of my friends have indirectly noted the (hitherto unnamed) Burnso paradox: I have a one-track mind capable of expertise and concentration in many, many things. If the nature of mono-poly focus is any paradox, it furthers itself by my brain being exceptionally unfocused. I believe this may be my lone strength as concerns this digital pamphlet. This is my inaugural entry to JS2k, so I promise not to embarrass myself. I just got done eating a bacon sandwich in the shower. I'm currently at work now, thus free to type. I hope I don't suck at this.
As my first topic I'd like to poke at the parallels between the Steelers and Pirates and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Pittsburgh Opera. On one hand we have the old masters, long recognized as one of the finest institutions of their ilk in the nation. Moving from an old 'burgh landmark to Heinz, they've been figureheaded by some serious players in the game, like Fritz Reiner and Jack Lambert.


On the other hand, Pittsburgh is not a baseball town the way it's not an opera town. I figured this as I saw a bunch of young bucks in a low-budget Magic Flute about a week-and-a-half ago. There's generally not a desire to go to the opera the way there is to go to the symphony, or at least I felt that way when I was in music school. The opera has a sort of Bucs game ritualism to it in that the substance of it isn't going to transcend you, but it's nice to do on a summer day/wear-a-suit night. Don't get me wrong, I like the opera here, for what it's worth. I used to produce Pittsburgh Opera for radiocasts and spent an 8 hour workday listening to 4 different performances of Il Nozze di Figaro . I admit I can't keep up with the Pirates with the fervor of a gentlewhoadie but I'm very into going to a game this summer, wearing my Bettis jersey like a jerk, if anyone's interested. I just feel that we're not going to have a Met or Mets in this town. There's a comfort level in this town that tends to let certain things linger; every once in a while we'll get Sherrill Milnes as Falstaff or the All-Star game.

I remember the All Star game of '06 well. I was down at the Thunderbird Cafe, Pittsburgh's premier site for lesbian karaoke. There was a guy at the bar who came to Pittsburgh for the game, wearing some ridiculous jacket that had logos for every team sewn on it on some "I'm a real big fan of major league baseball and I admire what exhibition games represent." The poor guy was drinking by himself in a total un-sports bar and asking every (not hetero) girl what was interesting in town, getting ignored for most of the evening. He probably went back to the HoJo and looked up Padres stats before putting a gun in his mouth.

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