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/// OP-ED MEAN & SOBER | by Stad DiPonzi Ride the Rapid, Keep Your Job


died and even the crappiest of replacements wasn’t in the cards, so it was rapid transit for me. It took a bit longer, but I got used to


F


it and met some cool people. My co-riders were all going to work, or to pick up their kids from daycare or to a doctor’s appoint- ment. Like my diesel-breathing brethren, without the bus, I would have been screwed. Totally, royally and completely screwed. There has been a bit of blowback flying


around after the successful Rapid millage vote in May. All of it is just ignorant, Tea Party-esque whining. To me, the (literally) life-or-death need for transportation is the bottom line. Passing by 136 votes, the millage win


means more routes, shorter wait times and a new express bus on Division, at the cost of about $40 per year to homeowners. Anyone who doesn’t understand what a screaming bargain this is has never relied on public transportation to earn a paycheck or get a prescription refilled. To paraphrase Michelle Obama, the vote made me proud to be a Grand Rapidian for the first time in a long time.


When you look at who supported the


millage and who voted against, the geog- raphy is predictable. Pissy old people in Wyoming and Walker said no, presumably so they could have more room to drive their


SDP likes the little-discussed provision in the Rapid Millage that will replace all the ArtPrize busses with direct shuttles to the local Soylent Green factories.


JUNE 2 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Chris Andrus


JUNE 3 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Nidal Lower Level - Top 40 DJ’s (TBA) Patio Area - LIVE Band (TBA)


JUNE 4 Patio Area - Timmy Sanders Band LIVE Lower Level - Dirty Beatz Productions Presents VISSION


JUNE 5 Patio Area - Fun In The SunDay with Guest DJ’s Every Week


JUNE 8 Patio Area - Blues On The Patio with Harry Lucas And The Lowdown


JUNE 9 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Melissa Dylan


JUNE 10 Patio Area - LIVE Band (TBA) Lower Level - Top 40 DJ’s (TBA)


25 Ottawa Ave SW, Grand Rapids / 616-805-5581 / twentyfivegr.com 10 | REVUEWM.COM | JUNE 2011


JUNE 11 Patio Area - The Dani Jamerson Band LIVE Lower Level - Dirty Beatz Productions Presents VISSION


JUNE 12 Fun In The SunDay with Guest DJ’s Every Week JUNE 15 Patio Area - Blues On The Patio with The Welshmen


JUNE 16 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Chris Andrus


JUNE 17 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Nidal Patio Area - LIVE Band (TBA) Lower Level - Top 40 DJ’s (TBA)


JUNE 18 Patio Area - Souls Of Rythem Lower Level - Dirty Beatz Productions Presents VISSION


JUNE 19 Patio Area - Fun In The SunDay with Guest DJ’s Every Week


JUNE 22 Patio Area - Blues On The Patio with The Welshmen


JUNE 23 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Melissa Dylan


JUNE 24 Patio Area - LIVE Band (TBA) Lower Level - Top 40 DJ’s (TBA)


JUNE 25 Patio Area - The Kari Lynch Band LIVE Lower Level - Dirty Beatz Productions Presents VISSION


JUNE 26 Patio Area - Fun In The SunDay with Guest DJ’s Every Week


JUNE 29 Patio Area - Blues On The Patio with Harry Lucas And The Lowdown


JUNE 30 Main Bar Area - Acoustic Music with Chris Andrus


Buicks at 17 miles per hour to Mr. Burger or to Saturday service. City of GR voters supported the millage, as did East Grand Rapids — Huzzah for liberal guilt! I will take progress however it comes. We still have one in five people out of


work or incredibly underemployed. Those who can find work are being forced to travel farther and work more second and third shifts than ever before. For a lot of people, the Rapid improvements will probably mean the difference between working and not working, paying the rent or being evicted, buying or skipping medication. I know that’s what the bus did for me. And it might have to again. n


OR ABOUT A YEAR OF MY LIFE, I relied on the bus to get to my two jobs. My silver Olds Toronado (badass red interior) had


Owning a mobile phone in America (or cell phone, as this lot call it) is not a particularly pleasurable experience.


Firstly, there is the widespread lack of modern technology. Phones here are about 26 years behind the curve. English phones can make a cup of tea for you, drive your car, milk the cow and take a blurry photo of your double chin at the same time! I keep mistaking my Yankee “Dog and Bone” for my son’s Spiderman walkie talkie, although that can shoot webs, so beats my phone hands down.


Secondly, there is the widespread use while driving. Every other person turning left at the traffic lights seems to have a cell phone glued to their ear as they cut the corner and remove my front bumper. Perhaps the American dental industry has something against hands-free Bluetooth just like they have against English Yellowteeth.


Finally, I have to pay to receive calls. That’s right; I have to pay to receive mobile calls. I have to pay a telecoms giant to receive a phone call from a robot in Nebraska. If some old biddy from New Hampshire looking for her grandson who just graduated high school gets the wrong number, I have to pay to listen to her tell me about how proud she is. If the NRA calls, I have to pay to listen to them, even though I am not allowed to bear arms. I have to pay to hear some cheesy Californian tell me I won a cruise that doesn’t exist unless I buy a house. Eh? I’m lost. I don’t get it. Everyone knows incoming calls should be free. Of all the oddities in this great land, this one makes the least sense. I have no control over who calls me, but yet I have to use precious minutes to hear them. It’s like paying to have the Jehovah’s Witnesses come round and knock on your door, except that is, of course, very entertaining and I’d happily pay for it.


Speaking of, I should get rid of my mobile phone and spend the money I save on t-shirts declaring “I’m a big old atheist who needs to be saved” with my home address on the back.


E-MAILS TO BLIGHTY | by David Smith Daft Punk Pigeone


SCHEDULE | DINING | SIGHTS | SOUNDS SCENE


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