You know how there are these REALLY COOL events you anticipate and are thrilled to attend... and then you move to the city where they happen and the novelty wears off really fast and you suddenly are ANNOYED at the existence of said event? Yeah, that.
It happened to me in Portland... about the 4th year of Rose Festival I began totally avoiding downtown when it was there. It was crowded and the grass got wrecked and smelled faintly of sewage (sometime strongly of sewage). I mean sure the ships were still cool. And there were sometimes great bands. But mostly it was the same old food and a LOT of extra people.
|Self-identified 'stupid art' (though it amuses me)|
I mean I love Art almost as much as the next guy... I'd probably love it as much or MORE, had my own art skills not seized around kindergarten. And there is a LOT of art...
Admittedly, some of it is STUPID art. And MUCH of it is pretentious art (hello, please pay $500 for this lamp I made from this branch). But really, there is also a lot of COOL art. Seriously—wicked cool. My neighbor has a ton of it—tiki statues and bobbing birds by her pool. Fairies and other friendly creatures inside. I love the stuff. And I know her well enough to know she isn't paying the $500 per piece prices.
But what BUGS ME is the VOLUME of people and the interruption of life. Ann Arbor's city limits can hold about 100,000 people. A football game brings that many extra... art fair? 300,000 in attendance... our city QUADRUPLES its volume for five days.
You know how I like Ann Arbor? Free of Art Fair Patrons and free of college students. There. I said it. I like college towns with no college kids. You get all the joys of a college town with none of the annoyance.
True story. I've lived in four cities, three of them college towns, and other than my time in high school that I was trying to SOCIALIZE with college kids, I always prefer them student-free...
To give you a little perspective:
This map is downtown Ann Arbor and central camplus. ALL the colored lines are normally streets you can drive on and are completely blocked for artfair. Purple is 'downtown' and while I know a downtown that is functionally 3 blocks by 4 sounds small and lame... this is ALL of downtown. Red is campus. And then the 'trolley' (aka city and campus buses moving in an off route so THOSE streets go a lot slower, too) So seriously... there is only really ONE route north and south through town and the primary east west 'part of downtown' is blocked (though going east/west Huron is a bigger street—but MAIN STREET? Yup. Main Street.
|Liberty--the red part near campus|
<------ Liberty is part of my daily commute—ALL of it. I walk it from 7th, which is several blocks west of where the map starts all the way to the end every morning. Now Art Fair isn't open yet when I walk to work, so there IS a little fun with walking up the middle of the street and having several intersections blocked so there is no need to wait for a light. End of the day though... there are so many people I can't read while I walk (you ALL know how I hate THAT) but worse, I can't even walk at a pace I like. I'm a speedy walker and HATE going slow.
All this fun arrives tomorrow... *sigh*
Anything you know you should think is fun that annoys you? Do you have any local 'claims to fame'? How do you feel about swarms of sweaty bodies in 100 degree heat?