The Rocky Mountain News' Civic Center Poop Obsession

Yes, we've written about the Rocky Mountain News' "Civic Center Blues" before. Click here and here to read our previous protestations about what may be the most moronic and embarrassing series the tabloid has ever printed -- and if I'm forgetting something, praise be for selective memory. But we can't stop because the paper won't stop. James B. Meadow was initially said to be putting together five articles on Denver Civic Center and how it's not shiny and pretty enough to impress Democratic National Convention visitors -- and that would have been excessive enough. But in a July 26 column, Rocky editor/publisher/president John Temple promised/threatened to publish Civic Center reports every weekday through the convention, and thus far the publication has been as bad as his word. August 4 brought us "Pigeon Poo a Big Problem at Downtown Denver Park" exactly one week to the day since "When Park Visitors Gotta Go, They Gotta Go," another epic stinker about defecation. I'd think the tab had officially designated Mondays as Shit Day if the fertilizer wasn't being spread in plenty of other editions, too.

The phrase "fecal bombardment," which appears in the August 4 subhead, is an apt description of how readers must feel when reading overripe prose like the following:

No head is safe, no shoulder is immune, no uncovered cup of coffee can get cocky because at any moment, one of these perpetual defecation machines can strike. And even if it misses you, chances are it's going to land on the steps "like a tomato," says operations supervisor Jose Palma - spattering on the brickwork, joining so many other green-and-white globs that the ground sometimes looks like a Rohrshach inkblot test.

As should be obvious by now, there's not nearly enough material to sustain this series, which treats homelessness and mental illness as cosmetic issues, not important societal problems that can't be solved with brooms, sponges and police officers masquerading as nannies. Nonetheless, the Rocky appears bound and determined to keep foisting this literal and figurative crap upon us until the City of Denver launches a massive Civic Center cleaning, at which point the paper will undoubtedly take credit for having prompted the action.

Of course, such a pre-DNC spruce-up was likely in the cards anyhow, which makes the Rocky's series even more ridiculous and redundant. It's the shit -- and not in a good way. -- Michael Roberts

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