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!”
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday, April 21, 2014:
Monday's Blogs from the Bog!
Local and state agents Thursday night raided The Keg, the popular college bar located in the area known as The Strip, leading to the (at least) temporary closure of the venue.
Time and time again, the Lafayette Parish School Board shows an overwhelming tendency toward idiocy, but Wednesday night’s contentious discussion over Northside High School’s teen mother program tops the list of dumb discussions.
C & C Technologies, HIT Fitness, R3 Sciences, the Acadiana Symphony Association and the United Way of Acadiana recognized for innovation.
“The accomplishment of this goal within the next ten years is not only critical for the region to effectively compete with other regions for residents and businesses, but also to provide an amenity for everyone in Acadiana to enjoy.”
Education Superintendent John White says a continued push to try to keep Louisiana from using tests associated with the Common Core education standards are creating "a state of chaos" for public school teachers.
The Acadiana Symphony Orchestra has decided to end its traditional Independence Day spectacular known as Red White & Boom.
Under the deal, Teche shareholders would get 1.162 shares of IberiaBank for each share of Teche stock.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's plan to use $210 million in surplus and one-time money to help balance next year's budget received the backing Thursday of the State Bond Commission, support that was needed for the maneuver to work.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
State wildlife and fisheries agents have arrested a 39-year-old man accused of stealing crawfish.
An East Feliciana Parish lawmaker has jettisoned his proposal to make it harder for a condemned prisoner to appeal a death sentence.
Senators advanced a proposal Wednesday that would let the governor remove New Orleans-area levee board members for violating what he considers to be public policy, despite concerns it would introduce political meddling into state flood protection.
The must have pieces this season
Dave Perkins, LCG Comp Plan honored along with local architects and designers at the 2014 INDesign Awards
Greg Manuel’s Lafayette-based residential development company is taking advantage of exponential industrial growth in Lake Charles.
Longtime Lafayette retailer ventures online.
It’s not how aggressive or conservative you are — it’s planning for risk that matters most.
Thanks to cutting-edge digital technology, more and more consumers are banking on ATMs and mobile phones.
Regional bank bids farewell to Downtown May 30
ABiz takes a look back at the most noteworthy moments for the local banking industry over the last year.
Most experts say short-term interest rates will be unchanged through 2014, but long-term rates are inching up.
Largest recruitment event in Acadiana returns May 21 to the Cajundome Convention Center
A lawyer’s ad should only be a starting point, as there is much more to consider when seeking quality representation.
Thanks to the inaugural 2012 INNOV8, a design for lifting heavy objects was brought to market.
The annual juried competition recognizes excellence in architecture, interior design and historic preservation in Lafayette and the five surrounding parishes.
Cypress Bayou GM hosts open house.
New hires, promotions, transfers in Acadiana business
The scion of a landmark Four Corners restaurant climbs back into Lafayette’s culinary scene as franchisee for a popular burger chain.