Thursday, October 20, 2011

Tailgating: I Must Be Missing Something

I freely admit that I don't necessarily get the appeal of tailgating. I'm not the most social of creatures (that's why I blog in my pajamas from my mother's basements, etc). But still, I'm confused that Minnesota Vikings Stadium via $600,000,000 public subsidies keep hitting that point. Tailgating!

"Sure, they could have used that money to repair my child's school, but fuck that! I get to grill in a parking lot!"

I'm sure the "fan experience" absolutely demands 20,000 parking spots (which will be controlled by the Vikings, and get more expensive each passing year), but I really don't know why part of it should be getting drunk in public on asphalt. I got over that halfway through high school college, when I found better places to drink, and learned the magic of taxis.

Again--I'm not a fan of crowds or douches I don't know offering me food, so clearly, tailgating isn't meant for me. All the same, I find it odd that it seems to be making its way into the discussion as an almost official reason to build a new Vikings stadium.

Believe you me, I get why the Vikings like it (as well as their shameless shill, Paul Allen on KFAN). Put a stadium outside of bus routes, train routes. Charge $20? $30? a parking spot. $20 * 20,000 * 8 equals what? $3.2 million a year in car parking fees? It sure would be nice to clear all that money without having to pay rent on the place.

Let's pretend that the Viking's projections are correct, and they get this new stadium built by 2015 (I'm highly dubious that when they break ground on a goddamn abandoned military munitions plant, that it will be as easy as they think to clean, but that's neither here or there). The Ramsey County's economic consultant says it would take until 2042 to pay off the $350 million than the Vikings are asking for*. That's 31 years!

31 years? That's interesting--the Metrodome, poor dilapidated piece of shit that it is, as the Vikings would tell you--not even worth attempting to renovate--that's how shitty it is--is 29 years old.  Why do I have a feeling that if a new, amazingly awesome complex in Arden Hills is built, we'll be hearing about how it is a piece of shit within 30 years?

$3.2 million in parking fees * 31 years = $99,200,000! Over the life of the new, proposed stadium, that's almost a 100 Million Dollars! And that's assuming that the parking price stays at $20, which it clearly won't.

Hey, Vikings, you dicks--how about you at least pledge to give back the money you make in parking fees, before you start bragging about all the other cities (that may or may not exist) that are ready to let you teabag them?

*Just one of the two $300+ million dollar public subsidies the Vikings are asking/demanding.

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