What To Do With Detroit?


Detroit turned out to be heaven, but it also turned out to be hell. ~Marvin Gaye

Well, at least they're being honest

 Let me start off by saying there’s a lot of people I like from Detroit. Bruce Campbell and the Raimi brothers, Jack White, George Peppard, Gilda Radner, Lily Tomlin, Alan “Cameron Frye” Ruck (well, he wore a Red Wings jersey, at least), and yes, one of my favorite co-workers. I’ve been there once and it was perfectly all right…I didn’t get mugged, carjacked or even shot at. I may have lingering frostbite, but it seemed like a nice enough place if one were making a postapocalyptic zombie movie. Or a Special Forces urban combat training exercise.

I know Detroit used to be a really great city. The sad thing is, it isn’t anymore. It has the one of the highest rates of foreclosed and abandoned buildings in America. Even architectural wonders like the Michigan Central Station stand empty and rotting, as if preparing for a remake of 12 Monkeys or I Am Legend. It still has the Red Wings but is saddled with the Pistons, Lions and Tigers. And the Pontiac Silverdome is still there. I think. It’s been 10 years or so since I ventured to the Motor City, and I gather things are still going downhill.

There has to be some good use for Detroit. Considering it’s a frozen wasteland for about half the year, I’d say an agricultural haven is out. But I have some other ideas. (For those of you who actually are from Detroit, or for that matter, Buffalo or Cleveland, keep in mind that these ideas are satire. Mostly.)

#1: Zombie Apocalypse Training Facility/Undead Resistance

Just think: when and if a Zombie Apocalypse actually occurs, America will have an elite corps ready to do battle with the shambling undead. They’ll be well-versed in the arts of urban combat, improvised weaponry, and throwing octopi onto hockey rinks. All they need is practice in a large metropolitan area with lots of braindead citizens and abandoned buildings. I’d have said Cleveland, only Detroit is much larger. They probably even have an abandoned amusement park like the one in Zombieland, and plenty of convenience stores stocked with Twinkies.

#2. Negotiation Location Spot for Athletes and Agents

Remember when you were little and your mom told you to go to your room until your homework got done? Or threatened to send you to Aunt Rita’s house if you didn’t behave and eat all your vegetables? If it were up to me, spoiled and coddled athletes and agents should be shipped up to Motown until they could get their collective acts together. They could even have a separate team for drug abusers, wife beaters, and deadbeat dads: The Detroit Felons, anyone?

#3: Permanent Quarantine Zone

The concept of a “leper colony” is an ancient one. Since leprosy is no longer a scourge in modern society, and we now have bugaboos like H1N1 (I tremble with fear), why not set up a quarantine zone just in case, well, there’s ever a real outbreak? It’s colder than hell half the year anyway, so more than likely the bugs would get killed off. And hey, the infected would have the Lions for entertainment during the cold months. Oh, wait, the Lions never play past December. Never mind.

 #4: Speed Record Testing Facility

Just think: with some work, there could be an uninterrupted flat stretch of land for would-be Fastest Men Alive to practice their craft, and they wouldn’t even have to head west to the salt flats of Utah. Detroit’s also located on the water, making it ideal for water speed records during the summer months too.

#5: Bruce Campbell/Evil Dead Theme Park

Because Bruce is from Detroit (Royal Oak, to be exact), and the world needs an entire amusement facility dedicated to his awesomeness. Take a spin on the Ashmobile, get molested by a tree, try a Frozen Henrietta, get your picture taken with the Necronomicon. Klaatu, barada…something starting with “n.” I can already see property values going up.

#6: Use It To Build Better Automobiles For the Future

Hey…wait a sec…is somebody trying to be funny here?

(In all honesty…I’ve got nothing against Detroit, nor any other Rust Belt city, for that matter. If we’re going to start American renewal, these cities are ground zero. And isn’t it ironic that Detroit’s city motto is Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus, which loosely translates to “We shall rise from the ashes?)

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~ by Howlin' Mad Heather on June 22, 2011.

One Response to “What To Do With Detroit?”

  1. I vote for #5. Great post.

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