It thrills me to the gills when someone – i.e. the mainstream media – discovers Detroit. And the quirkier the discovery, the better. So, kudos to my beloved GQ magazine for lauding our city, our imminent rebirth and our fishing.
Yup, fishing. In a short essay entitled, “Motor City by Motorboat,” the May issue of the men’s publication gives Detroit some kind words right in front of its national audience. Yes, these are men who love to dress well and may groom themselves a bit too much. But now they know that Detroit is a prime spot to get their angler fix.
Granted, the writer is realistic when he says Detroit isn’t back yet. But he (and his editors) go on to say some nifty little bon mots:
But these days it feels less like a husk and more like Berlin in the 90s: a humbled city crawling with artists, musicians and Big Idea folk eager to rebuild. Already you’ll find destination restaurants, pop-up beer gardens in previous derelict lots and creative cocktail joints. And fish. Tons of fish.
Yeah, we’re looking at you, Tashmoo Biergarten. And, yes, you should be blushing. The article goes on to give written shout outs to Captain Steve Jones Charters, Westin Book Cadillac, Roast, The Lark, Slows BarBQ (natch), The Sugar House (yes!) and Astro Coffee (yum!).
Here’s the best part: There is this amazing, amazing, ah-maz-zing photo of the Riverwalk. Because I don’t want to get sued for stealing it to post here, imagine if you would…The gleaming Renaissance Center in the far back, the lovely walkway in front and the carousel on the right. There, among these riches, stands a loving couple looking out over the water. And there are trees there – green things growing where they should be planted, not inside of empty buildings. Thank you, Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, for sharing that photo. That was a killer decision.
Now, I’m not so sure the fishing advice is right. They say Lake St. Clair is the best spot in all of Metro Detroit to pick up everything from muskie to smallmouth bass. I’ll assume this is all true and that you should immediately go pick up a fishing license and get at it. I’d say you definitely need to get out on that Riverwalk stat – i.e. drop the phone, tablet or old-fashioned laptop you’re holding and get some Vitamin D, you pale Michigan resident.
Such a write-up in a major men’s magazine is awesome. Let’s get our best PR agencies on this one immediately. Let’s leverage this into building some better schools, governments and other foundational things Detroit needs. Well…maybe not. But the moment is here, the energy from such an article is fresh. It’s the kind of thing I’d hang in my front window if I had a storefront in the city or anywhere nearby.
It’s something to be proud of…in a city that needs every scrap of pride we can collect. And if you start to see some strangely handsome men wearing designer clothing at the nearest Gander Mountain, you’ll know that the article worked its magic. At the very least, we got described as better than a husk. And I’m pretty OK with that.
As an aside: If you need one reason more to see the Riverfront, check this out. I also stole this from the Riverfront…So, please, don’t sue me. Get ready for the the return of the 2012 Detroit River Days Festival, “one of the most highly anticipated summertime events happening June 22-24, 2012. The three-day festival, presented by the Detroit RiverFront Conservancy, features diverse and family-friendly programming with favorites like the tall ships, towering sand sculptures, eco-friendly kids’ activities and more all celebrating Detroit’s maritime, ecological and culinary culture, as well as live concerts with performances by local, national and international musicians.” So be there, would ya? Maybe they’ll go easier on me if you do.