Opinions need not be feared nor suppressed.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Wilkes-Barre: Home of the cry babies

I'm assuming we all read with great interest the following Citizens' Voice story...

NEPA Filmmaker's documentary garners Sundance award

A very telling excerpt:

Alone, Fox set out on his cross-country trek with "no preconceptions," he said, but soon found "widespread regret among the people that leased" including in Dimock Township, Susquehanna County.

"The cowboys in Wyoming, the ranchers in Colorado, the ordinary people walking down the street in Fort Worth who have been burned by them," he said.

That's "widespread regret."

Anyway, I wanted to learn more about this local filmmaker, Josh Fox, and a search or two led me directly to his official movie page, as well as his blog...Gasland.

Give it a look.

This one had me shaking my head in stunned disbelief, but not for the reason one might expect.

From the Times Leader:

Skrepenak’s Big Ugly’s Sports Bar is closed

WILKES-BARRE – The sports bar/restaurant near downtown Wilkes-Barre that is owned by former Luzerne County commissioner Greg Skrepenak’s father is now closed indefinitely.

Greg Skrepenak Sr. opened Big Ugly’s Sports Bar & Grill, 165 N. Wilkes-Barre Blvd., in December 2005.

A handwritten sign could be seen in the front glass door of the business on Saturday afternoon, noting the establishment will be “closed until further notice” and was signed simply by “Mr. Skrep.”

There was no indication given as to why the restaurant that features sports memorabilia highlighting the younger Skrepenak’s football career was closed.

While that's all well and good I suppose, that's not what caught my four eyes. I've never been in that bar, and I could care less about it's clientele, or lack thereof. Skrep went and got himself in a legal pickle, and I feel no ill towards him or his family.

And while I've always (since December 2000) felt free to criticize the elected and the appointed, as well as high profile local players, I never cross a line I drew for myself. Basically, I never bring their families or personal lives into it.

And you wouldn't believe some of the choice tidbits I've received in the email inbox over the years. Real juicy stuff. Still, other than having revealed Gort's real name (Herbie Swickles), I've never used any of that stuff.

But this, this is just absurdity on growth hormones...

A woman answering the phone at the elder Skrepenak’s home blamed the media for destroying her family’s lives.

“Look no offense. Don’t call me. I want no part of you people. You have made a mess out of my life, my son’s life, my whole family, so please do not call me,” she said.

The media? The media made a mess of her son's life?

Holy jumpin' orangutan farts, batman!!!

Look, I'm sure this woman must be absolutely horrified by the current turn of events, so I'll not comment further. Well, that is, except for this: Holy jumpin' orangutan farts, batman!!!

Editor's note: The following is a private message.

Hey Gort! Give it up, man. Come clean, boy. Did the chick flick make you cry or not?

V'ger neds to know.

Editor's follow-up note: We now return you to your regularly scheduled circumlocution.

Here we go again.

From the Times Leader:

Growing Pains and this other nugget of negativity, Bar crowds draws gripes

WILKES-BARRE – Not all downtown residents and business people are enamored with the resurgence of the city, citing littering, noise and recurring vandalism as black marks on the revitalization.

Carol Laiuvara owns and operates Carol’s Deli and Bakery on South Main Street. Although she usually isn’t open when center city nightlife is at its peak, she often is greeted by debris and dirtied windows when she arrives at her store in the morning.

“They spill drinks on my windows and I find a lot of bottles or glass on the ground,” she said. “A lot of my customers tell me they can’t sleep because of the noise.”

When the downtown was empty, when it was home to prostitutes and little else, they bitched. And now that's it's filling up fast, they bitch. Such is life in Wilkes-Barre, no matter what, they bitch and bitch and bitch and bitch.

The residents of this city bitch about the traffic lights and the traffic patterns. Having grown up in much more populated environs, I'd have to ask, what freaking traffic?

And they bitch about the crime rate, as if Wilkes-Barre is the only city in which crime occurs. Having grown up near NYC, where murders occur at a rate faster than one per day, I'd have to ask, what freaking crime?

They bitch about tractor trailers on their streets. Yeah, Master Chemical and Benco Dental have been hearing it for years. Now, how stupid is that? With those tractor trailers come commerce. Commerce that the city can then tax. And taxes keep the entire shebang afloat.

And they bitch ad nauseum about potholes, again, as if potholes are unique to Wilkes-Barre. It's as if the mayor or the city council are expected to pass an ordinance banning them or something. Mayor Tom, we demand that you suspend the freeze/thaw process!

And they bitch about rampant drug use and use buzz words like, outsiders, or, those people. What are those words being used as a substitute for? Um, I have a pretty good idea, and the word in question starts with a capital N. So, if the administration of the city would just ban entry to the city to all non-white peoples, life would be good again. Right? Isn't that what they're saying? It's their white kids using it, but they want the hammer brought down on the non-white kids selling it. No racism going on there.

And now, now we can't tolerate bars. Nope, these saloons are just too annoying. And we demand that something be done about them. (Oh, and we have to make sure those newspaper reporters spell our names right.) Mr. Mayor, we demand that you wave your wand and strike those bars from the landscape. As a matter of fact, we demand that you effect the return of Woolworth's, Kresge's, Planters Peanuts and McCrory's to the Public Square immediately.

And what's up with the crime watch folks already. They've been howling for 6 years about how the mayor was supposedly ignoring the safety of the neighborhoods for the sake of the fast-rejuvenating downtown. So what do they do? They monitor the downtown bars. Anything to get their names in the papers--again.

Where there is drinking, there is the potential for stupidity. And where there's crowds of people
drinking, there's an enhanced potential for the outbreak of stupidity. So I would throw this back in their laps. What would you folks have us do about it? Should we force the closing of the bars? Should we deficit spend and double the size of the police force? Or should we run to the newspapers and generate some barely newsworthy bluster?

Downtown Wilkes-Barre has bars. And some of the patrons get drunk and act stupidly. And this differentiates Wilkes-Barre and every other city exactly how?

Bitch, bitch, bitch and gripe. Bitch, gripe, bitch and complain. Welcome to Wilkes-Barre, home of the cry babies.

I swear, if Planter's Peanuts were to reopen on Public Square, you people would be bitching about the peanut shells. What a bunch.



Gort said...

I didn't cry over the movie but hearing that Big Ugly's closed brought a tear to my eye- Herbie

Anonymous said...

hahaha that bike on the top looks like this guys from thompson st. in wilkes barre m. corr