Wednesday, November 7, 2007

I Assure You That the Area Surrounding this Blog is Safe

Thanks, Barry. Thanks a lot. Jerk.

You can by all means "go outside if you have a wallet or anything else." It's safe around these parts. I swear.

As it turns out, the namesake of this blog had some choice words about Newark, New Jersey recently. It so happens that Newark is where the Devils' new arena, the Prudential Center, is located.
In a video segment posted on last week, Melrose described the recently opened arena as a "beautiful new building" but added, "Don't go outside if you have a wallet or anything else, because the area around the arena is just horrible."

Newark Mayor Cory A. Booker and Municipal Council President Mildred Crump took exception to the remarks and called for Melrose to apologize.
Now I'll be honest, when it comes to beating on New Jersey, I'm usually one of the first in line. It's so easy, how could you not? But folks, this is not one of those times. It's hard to pinpoint exactly where Melrose's comments came from, but I imagine it was somewhere between his back and his knees.

While it's fairly common knowledge, at least in the northeast, that the crime rate in Newark is pretty high, somehow I don't think Melrose even considered that. The part where he has never actually been to the arena makes this one of the most ill conceived statements in recent memory. We all know that "talking heads" tend to say things for effect and to draw emotion from a viewer (I'm looking at you, Stephen A. Smith), but there is really no denying that what Melrose said was asinine. That's not to mention how he backtracked almost instantaneously, which makes it all look even worse. If he had actually went to Newark, taken in a Devils game and gotten mugged on the way home, well, then maybe the statement has some merit. But otherwise, no. Not at all. Not in any way.

I had nothing to do with this, and frankly am completely confused by it all -- Imagine a first grader trying to understand trigonometry. That's about where I am when it comes to serious topics. The proverbial light bulb doesn't turn on so fast. Nonetheless, I understand the situation and cannot help but somehow feel at fault and responsible. That's probably the little voice of reason in my head that chimes in from time to time. Thanks for making me feel guilty, Barry. Thanks a lot. Ass.

In the wake of this embarrassment, I'm going to try and do what I can to make it up to Newark. For the next 48 hours, the blog will be renamed for for you, Newark. Really. It's the least I can do. Heck, the new name even has a nice ring to it.


  1. i don't even like barry melrose, but come on, the guys just doing his job. he certainly wasn't the first to make the joke.

    and actually even now with the renamed site, i'm getting a little nervous just being here. i'm gonna quickly finish up this comment and try to get outta here before someone jacks my cellphone.

  2. Newark Rocks.... Sounds like a new brand of crack.

  3. I think there have been about 14 seasons of COPS filmed in Newark

  4. "i don't even like barry melrose, but come on, the guys just doing his job. he certainly wasn't the first to make the joke."

    Hell, I've made the joke before on The Fourth Period before the season, when I said the worst case scenario for the Devils was "that the most dangerous thing about the Devils this season is walking five blocks in any direction from their new arena."

    See, that's a joke. What Melrose said, if you watch the video, wasn't. It was a declaration and a warning, as if he had been there himself and seen the area around the arena. Which he hadn't.

    Look, I'm not saying Newark is harmless -- like any urban area, it's got its dangerous spots. But the blocks around the arena isn't one of them, and it's just going to get better if there's some economic change around The Rock.

  5. When I go to Devils games this year, I will just get as drunk as hell so I don't remember who mugs me. Everyone wins in that scenario.

  6. The new name would be really hard to say if you had trouble with your "R's."

    "Newook Wocks... fuck!"

  7. From what I have heard - and will see for myself next week - for games they put so many police on the streets its like its under martial law, rivaling what NY did around the Garden for the Republican Convention a few years back. Wild.

    I berated Barry for going back on his word - you are responsible for the things you say, if you don't mean them, don't say them - in my blog and got Mr. Gay Pride ripping me a new one saying that most of Newark was totally safe despite having hree times the national average for several crimes. Like I said, I will be there next week so if I make it back, I will let you know ... lol.

  8. @chris s: no, it sounds more like a cheap beer.

    Like, "Grab an ice-cold Newark Rocks. YEEAH!"
    /never been to Jersery