Sunday, February 10, 2008

The 10 Best Things About Pittsburgh: #7

#7: Rivers and lakes. I'm not a great swimmer and I haven't waterskied since college (well, it was more like being pulled by a boat as water rushed up my sphincter until I fell flat on my face at 20 MPH) and I don't really like to fish. But I've always loved the rivers, creeks and lakes around Pittsburgh.

When I was a kid, I used to play in the "creek" (an open sewer) behind my parents' bar. It was fun building dams and floating sticks, but mom always said that I couldn't play in the part where the creek turned orange. Yes, orange. Bright orange. Pre-E.P.A. enforcement orange. This happened where the discharge pipe emptied from one of the local steel mills into the "creek". We thought it was pretty cool back in the day that the water turned this neat color. Looking back, I can't get the image of the three-eyed fish from "The Simpsons" out of my mind.

Well, now the mills are closed, the water is, well, it's not orange any more and I'm looking forward to enjoying my time by the water this summer. I love watching the water flow down the Ohio. I spent many a summer day staring at the fountain at Point State Park. I anticipate the first warm day where I can take the boys for a walk around North Park Lake. Maybe I can even convince my brother to put his boat back in the river.

No comments: