Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The 10 Best Things About Pittsburgh: #3

#3 "We Are Fam-a-lee". OK, when I was a kid during the Pirates '79 season, they played that gawd awful song "We Are Family" by Sister Sledge ad nauseum! I hated it then, I hate it now. Pittsburgh was never a "disco" town, yet during that year Pittsburgh lost it's collective marbles and that song became everyone's favorite; except mine. I remember sitting at game 5 of the '79 World Series with my best friend at the time John V. John was into Skynyrd, Molly Hatchet and Led Zeppelin, yet even he swayed to that disco beat. I was not alone though. The twenty or thirty Baltimore Oriole's fans who sat in our section also sat there scowling when that song came on; mostly.

So what does this have to do with the "best" of Pittsburgh? Even though I despise the song, Pittsburghers really are kind of a family. Pittsburghers for the most part are not a class-conscious group. That's part of the blue-collar ethos that still lingers as part of this area's culture. Pittsburghers don't like conspicuous displays of upper-class status and pretensions. Trends aeren't as important here, at least once you are over 30. Pittsburghers genuinely like each other despite social and economic differences. I see it every time I stop for coffee, go to the grocery store or see a show. We are family.

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