When I heard that Cleveland had landed the 2016 RNC convention, my thoughts immediately went back to Tony Kornheiser’s response upon learning that Jacksonville would host the Super Bowl: “What Tuscaloosa was booked?”
In a piece that would haunt him to this day, the lovable curmudgeon would go on to write that
“Jacksonville may be in Florida technically. But this isn’t South Beach, gang. It isn’t the home of Gloria Estefan, Enrique Iglesias and Luther Campbell. Jacksonville is where Pat Boone was born (sometime around the Martin Van Buren presidency), and where the Southern hair band .38 Special got together. Somehow it doesn’t sound like hip-hop. It’s more like I-Hop.”
And so, it was my goal to not offend the good people of Cleveland — to not come across as some sort of East Coast snob.
Fortunately, the good people of Cleveland are a rugged sort (how could they not be?) and they are, no doubt, prepared for a little good-natured razzing. And Twitter delivered:
Jack Donaghy on 30 Rock: “Lemon, we’d all like to flee to the Cleve… but we fight those urges because we have responsibilities.” #RNC2016
— Jessica Taylor (@JessicaTaylor) July 8, 2014
And this delightful video comes to us from our friend E.M. Zanotti:
To be fair, some of my friends and followers were delighted by the news.
These folks all seemed to have a sort of preexisting condition -- a deep-abiding love for Ohio.
Let me point out that I'm just the messenger here. So don't try to "Kornheiser" me over this. Cleveland, I'm sure, will be a fine host city. I mean, at least they've got the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and LeBron, right?