Facebook users capture Lafayette’s zeitgeist. By Walter Pierce
I’m perilously close to eclipsing the 300 “friend” plateau on Facebook, and perilously close to quitting Facebook. To my “friends”: I don’t care that you’re in the drive-thru line at Taco Bell and “OMG it’s taking for-eeeevvvveerrr LOL!!!” And I’m certain you aren’t laughing out loud.
The inanity is enough to drive me from the fold, but local-centric curiosities like Lafayette Gay Fire Firefighter and now Save the Downtown Go Cup keep me coming back.
The former is a persona adopted by a real-life friend inspired by the statue in front of the fire station on West Vermilion Street across from Don’s downtown — the marble depiction of a shirtless fire fighter clutching a hose, buttocks jutting jauntily as he points dramatically toward a distant inferno. Very Village People. Lafayette Gay Fire Fighter, by the way, is a homage, not a slur — the real-life friend is real-life gay.
At last count, Lafayette Gay Fire Fighter had 773 fans, myself among them.
The latest iteration of Lafayette’s mood on Facebook, Save the Downtown Go Cup, is a reaction to the City-Parish Council’s vote last week approving an introductory ordinance that would banish open alcohol containers from downtown as well as the Simcoe and McKinley strips. For the aged and uninformed, go cups are the plastic cups stacked at bars into which customers can transfer their adult beverages and head out the door. Go cups are common in Louisiana, which was half-witted enough when it raised the drinking age from 18 to 21 — at the threat of losing federal highway funding — to still allow 18-20 year olds into bars, even though, “technically,” they aren’t allowed to drink. Wink wink.
Take a walk around downtown Lafayette on a Sunday morning. It’s littered with go cups.
Save the Downtown Go Cup, whomever it is, has a catchy slogan: “Downtown deserves the same freedom as the rest of town. Downtown deserves go cups.” There’s been quite a bit of activity on the page, although not the light-hearted repartee generated by Lafayette Gay Fire Fighter and his flock.
“Is there any passion on this issue?” opines SDGC. “Anyone willing to get active to try and stop this?” Clearly, SDGC cherishes the hard-won civil right to walk about with beer in a plastic cup.
The March on Selma this is not, but SDGC’s outrage is shared by others on the page: “Can you really imagine this?” offers another go cup devotee. “When the Saints win tonight, people would have to chug their drinks before being able to walk anywhere else... What’s next on the list of things we shouldn’t be allowed to do?”
Cruising. That’s what’s next.
The council also approved an introductory ordinance banning motorists from passing the same traffic control point more than twice in a two-hour period on weekend nights on Jefferson Street and other loci of alcohol-generated conviviality. One would think this would be the bigger outrage, since cruising is such an American pastime. But so far, no Facebook page opposing this indignity.
Later this month the council will discuss drawing up an ordinance that would bar 18-20 year olds from bars altogether, which will surely spawn a new identity on Facebook.
Meanwhile, back at Save the Downtown Go Cup’s page, one post brought it all home for me: “I heard they are trying to make the gay firefighter downtown straight!”
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The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
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The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
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Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, March 07, 2014:
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
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The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
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Conservatives have been losing their minds over this satirical bit on the Colbert Report.
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The House approved legislation Tuesday night to roll back a recently enacted overhaul of the federal flood insurance program, after homeowners in flood-prone areas complained about sharp premium increases.
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The NFL has formally designated New Orleans' Jimmy Graham as a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag value, which is now set at $7.05 million next season unless Graham and the Saints subsequently agree on a long-term deal.