Accordion Bay report #2: St. Pete, Weird Al, Pinellas’ failure factories, FetCon, and Glenn Beck

st petersburg

The corner of Central and 2nd Street North in St, Petersburg, 8:50 a.m. today.

Hello from St. Petersburg!

The Missus does a king-sized commute from Tampa to St. Pete every weekday, which isn’t too bad in the morning, but is rather gruesome after work, as people cram their cars onto the couple of causeways that cross Accordion Bay. To make life a little more pleasant for her and to provide me with a change of scenery, I spend one day a week working in St. Pete’s many wifi-equipped places during the day, and follow up with a date night dinner there. It’ll typically be on Wednesday, when The Iron Yard, a “coding bootcamp” school in St. Pete, has its Open Hack night (the next one’s on the 19th) — I try and catch as many of these as I can.

iron yard tampa bay

A scene from Iron Yard Tampa Bay.

Weird Al

weird al

I’m here today as opposed to Wednesday because Anitra and I are catching Weird Al’s show later tonight, which takes place at Ruth Eckerd Hall. Given our mutual penchant for the squeezebox, you may be surprised to read this, but this will be the first time I’ve ever seen Weird Al play live.

Here’s an interview that Florida Today did with Weird Al. See you at the concert!

Pinellas County’s “failure factories”

pinellas county worst place black school

Pinellas County is on the west side of Accordion Bay and includes the cities of Clearwater and St. Petersburg. Having water on both its east and west sides means that it’s got a lot of pretty sights, including the place where Anitra and I got married (photos are here and here).

pinellas county school performance

A screen shot of Tampa Bay Times’ presentation on Pinellas County’s schools.
Click the image to see it at full size.

Not everything is pretty here, especially if you’re young, black, and trying to get a basic education. This Tampa Bay Times presentation features 24 charts that show what happened after 2007, when so-called “school choice” overtook integration, “re-segregation” happened, and student performance in five schools plummeted. The Times published some responses to the presentation today, and they’ll published a full report tomorrow. You can follow this topic on Twitter by looking for the #FailureFactories hashtag.



Fetish Con (FetCon for short), one of the nation’s largest kink conventions, comes to St. Pete this weekend. Creative Loafing has the details, and they’re quick to point out that for admission, they accept only anonymity-preserving cash. For more, see the FetCon site.

fetcon 2

Glenn Beck’s ringing anti-endorsement

glenn beck crying
Right-wing asshat Glenn Beck recently gave St. Pete a great anti-endorsement, saying that you should St. Pete and other “least religious” cities in the U.S., because they’ll be the first to go when the end times (coming soon, he swears!) happen.

Remember, this is the same assclown who said Obama’s lead in the 2012 presidential campaign was part of God’s plan to show us His power — in the end, Romney would win, and it would be an irrefutable demonstration of divine intervention. Beck was such a sore loser when his prediction didn’t turn out that he blasphemed by announcing “Man, sometimes God really sucks”.

St. Petersburg’s mayor, Rick Kriseman, isn’t too worried. He tweeted this in response:

One reply on “Accordion Bay report #2: St. Pete, Weird Al, Pinellas’ failure factories, FetCon, and Glenn Beck”

Your uncle & I were there @ W.A.’s concert extravaganza, too! What an evening…better than we even imagined!

Still humming “Amish Paradise” & “Yoda”….

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