Saturday, January 27, 2007

The city and the Colts

While there may be very little that links the art scene of Indianapolis to the Colts, it’s impossible not to consider what it means for Indianapolis to have a team in the Super Bowl. I don’t know if it’s just because I live in this city, but I can’t remember a recent Super Bowl game that had so much significance for a city. The underlying point or question is if the outcome of a professional football game will have a significant affect on the city, either psychologically or economically.

If you follow the Colts you would know that it was a very big deal for them to beat the New England Patriots (for football fans, watch this), and of course, it’s a big deal to play in the Super Bowl. In many of the interviews I’ve seen with the team, I’ve heard it mentioned a lot that it’s important for team to win it for the city of Indianapolis. I don’t remember this kind of talk when past Super Bowl teams played. Is this because Indianapolis has such an outlook that a game like this really is important? Or that Indianapolis really is on the cusp of becoming a real city and that having a team that won the Super Bowl would give residents some kind of confidence and help to improve it? Or is it that this is all just a public relations ploy because the city wants to get the Super Bowl here in 2011, and that would be important economically for the city?

Or maybe I’m just a football fanatic over thinking this and we should return the regularly scheduled program of art?

Anyway, here’s something from Colts.com:

“It was everything and more that you dream that it would be,” Jim Irsay said. “Mostly, I feel for our fans, our plays, our coaches and our staff and our city – that’s what to me brought so much joy, being able to be a steward, and being able to be deliver this and to know that grandmothers and mothers 80 years from now will tell their grandkids they were there and where they were. Families, friend and the collective sharing of it all – it means so much to a city, to a state, to a community.

You can do all the economic-impact studies with the professors, but none of that has anything to do with this. This is really the very fabric of importance and what living and life is about. Yes, it’s a game, but it’s more than a game.

There are thousands of stories being written.”

Last year I had conversation with a friend who used to live in NYC, he suggested that perhaps Indianapolis is the next Williamsburg -- a place where housing is so cheap that you can live very easily, and that you are linked close enough to what you're really interested in that it just makes sense to live here. Of course, Williamsburg is no longer cheap but it once was a lot cheaper.

Well, I certainly enjoy the affordable living, but all the rest ... I don't know. It will be hard to shake the red out of this city and state. I have another friend who said she would live here as long as the city got better every year. I would argue that it is getting better here every year.

2 Responses to “The city and the Colts”

Anonymous said...
January 29, 2007 at 8:37 PM

With the increase of homicides with the blues in office, I dont know how much better I want this city to get.

Here's how Indianapolis compares to other cities increase in murder rate in 2006 based on an AP story:

* Oakland (57%)
* Indianapolis (54%)
* New Haven, Connecticut (53%)
* Houston (15%)
* New York (10%)
* Philadelphia (6%)
* Cincinnati (5%)
* Chicago (3.3%)
* Los Angeles (-4%)
* San Francisco (-15%)
* New Orleans (-36%)

The AP story writes, "[G]angs, the easy availability of illegal guns, a disturbing tendency among young people to pull guns when they do not get the respect they demand, and, in Houston at least, an influx of Hurricane Katrina evacuees."


Anonymous said...
February 1, 2007 at 8:26 PM

NOt the same anonymous, but a different one said:

Yes, the city will get better and better. For a select few. The middle class will continue to grow smaller, the rich will usurp more power here and the art community will become more and more about Who You Know in the above mentioned group instead of What You Do and that will be an annointed few. In other words, it will become like every other city in the nation.

What is shameful is that it takes a game (and after all, it is JUST a game) to bring the spotlight and some kind of faux glory to our city instead of any kind of academic or cultural achievement.

I want to puke every time I see the utility commercial showing what makes Indianapolis great: They show the colts, the 500 track, some big shiny buildings, a few nice houses and the canal. Wow! That's all Indianapolis is to the great unwashed masses. 465 and some nice sporting events.

What will winning the superbowl do to our city's cultural level? We won't grow up until we grow a brain.

Yeee-uup. Go Colts.


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