Friday, April 13, 2007

Friday Carnival of Nothing

Nothing! I got nothing here.

Thank god I have friends who have something. Alert reader Top!Secret!G points out Dahlia Lithwick's excellent essay in Slate exploring the Duke lacrosse rape case as an object lesson in why quality prosecutors matter (and why putting ideologues from Regent University in charge of personnel at Justice is problematic).

Some people in Tucson are doing handsprings over the city council approving a taxpayer-funded $130 million arena downtown, the latest sure-fire idea to revitalize an area that was largely bulldozed in the 1970s to make way for government buildings and a cement monstrosity of a convention center. An additional $60 million is being committed to revitalizing said convention center. I must confess that I don't get it, unless plans are in the works to regularly hold marquee University of Arizona basketball matchups in the arena, or to lure a semi-pro hockey team or something else, anything else, that would regularly draw maybe 2,000 people downtown on a given weeknight.

The city and county dropped the ball ten years ago when they decided to build a very nice minor league baseball park/major league spring training facility in an industrial area across the street from the juvenile court/lockup instead of downtown where the existing, if sparse, gastronomic infrastructure of bars and restaurants had a shot at growing in response to pregame and postgame noshers. The sheer number of games on a baseball home schedule delivers potential customers on a regular basis--and when they're being delivered to Ajo Way, they typically sprint into the stadium, watch the game, and then sprint back to their cars and leave in a hurry. Will people be drawn downtown just to gawk at a shiny new arena without regularly scheduled and attractive events? Will wildly popular and successful restaurants and pubs spring up around the periphery and do a rollicking business even on nights when the Icecats aren't playing? Perhaps. I hear the arena will look like a desert tortoise. I guess that's something.

Maybe the Be Good Tanyas will play there. Not likely, though, so you should probably go to their website and listen to them there, and then wait for them to come play at Solar Culture or something.

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