Okay, the picture below is not up to my usual standards, and I apologize. But I'm in a bit of a rush today, and don't want to let this wait. I used my computer's built-in camera: it's blurry, but legible (I blotted out the contact info deliberately). I found this flyer in a location outside the city, and took a bit of offense to the "Not in the City" comment regarding the location of these weekly dancing lessons.
I am a Johnny-Come-Lately and all, but I do know that St. Francis Hospital is in the city, because I live rather close to it, and am familiar enough with the city's municipal borders. But because I am a JCL, I don't know right off the top of my head about the names of the particular buildings and wings within the local hospitals, or the whereabouts of every single place in the city, which led me to wonder if perhaps Crean Hall was an auxiliary building, which was possibly "Not in the City." But most dopes, even JCLs, can use the interwebs, so it was no challenge for me to determine that Crean Hall is not only very clearly part of the St. Francis campus, but it is also nestled between St. Francis and Bert Avenues, which are two avenues very much "in the city." See below.
I'm not sure what to make of it. On one hand, I am offended by the constant Trenton bashing, especially when the location in question is in my neighborhood, and to think that these dance organizers must use the phrase "Not in the City" to get suburbanites to sign up for their lessons really rubs me wrong. Plus, it's a lie: the dance lessons will be taking place in the city, and all of the students will have to drive through the streets of Trenton to attend class. And once one Lawrenceville-based Hibernio-phile makes the trip to Crean Hall, word is gonna spread like wildfire that these dance lessons are indeed in the city.
Then, two things will happen: the fans of Irish dance will either say, "You know, it's not so bad," or "It's not as bad as I remember," or they'll say, "Screw you guys, I'm going home."
The whole thing leaves me with more questions than answers. I'm wondering if we, the residents of Trenton, can do anything to help with the public relations nightmare we face, since our government is doing very little for us in that way, and because I truly believe there's so much we can do for ourselves anyway (and we HAVE to, since we suffer under an irrelevant and uncaring administration). It's just so frustrating that there are so many decent people in Trenton and we must constantly defend our decisions to live here; it's so frustrating that the prevailing thought outside the city is that the city is complete write-off. It isn't. It absolutely is not.
So, do we tell the organizers of these lessons that it's bullcrap that they have to lie to their potential students to get them into the city? Do we tell them that it's bullcrap, in the first place, that anyone is afraid to come into the city, and they're a bunch of wussies? The "I'm so afraid of Trenton" mentality has to stop.
But on the other hand, I'm thinking we should all sign up for lessons. But, I'll level with you: despite my Irish heritage, signing up for Irish dance lessons is gonna be a tough one for me, and it's not because I lack coordination and grace (well, maybe that factors in a bit; I'm a total klutz). Mostly, it's because I have a certain respect for Irish dance, but it also makes me laugh, and not in a good way. But maybe I should challenge my ideas, and just go? I want people from the outside to get to know us, so they'll be less inclined to assume we're all thugs and gang members and wasters. I welcome the opportunity to be able to sell the city a bit, and maybe get even just one suburbanite to buy a house on my street, and/or eat our local DeLorenzo's pizza, instead of the White Flight variety out in Robbinsville.
If you want to sign up for lessons, drop me a line, and I'll give you the contact info. Maybe we can let 'em know that Crean Hall is in the city, the city in which we live, and we'll be on best behavior, and we're looking forward to the great exercise and music and the fun and the snacks and soda, too.
Happy Independence Day.