Detroit vs. Pittsburgh Redux: Feathers Fly On and Off the Ice

Editor's note: Last Stanley Cup season, we sparred with our sister publication in Pittsburgh. They haven't spoken to us since, but now, the Penguin lovers are back with some more hockey smack and city talk.

Elaine Labalme (New Girl In Town columnist, Pop City):
Folks, Sid touched the Prince o' Wales Cup. No, he put his hands (fins?) all over it, and then called Geno and Gonch over for some more love. It's not o-vah. We're still in it.

Terry Parris, Jr. (Writer, Model D): Oh, it is all over for those flightless birds.

Elaine: Detroit will win this on a (red) wing and a prayer if you can get Eminem to show up to rap the national anthem. A Slim and Shady Show fersure ... do those Swedes have any moves other than left-right-left? It's a more up-and-down thang in the ‘burgh.

Terry: I'm sure Detroit will win regardless of who sings the national anthem. But we'll probably have the only woman famous for singing the national anthem at hockey games do it ... Karen Newman. I don't expect you to know that. It's a Detroit thing.

Let's face it, the Pens can learn a thing or two about hockey from the Wings (like how to win a Stanley Cup, for starters). On the flip side, Detroit could learn a few things from Pittsburgh. We’re paying close attention to how Steeler-ville has rebounded after the steel industry pretty much disappeared. We might be in a similar boat ... or car. Back to razzing you.

And Sid? Oh baby, Sid. He should quit hockey and open up a winery ... actually ... wait for it ...  a WHINE-ry. I've never seen a grown man cry that much.

Elaine: Even the New Girl In Town knows that the Pens can win a Cup or two, to wit the Mario era of the early '90s. We like to think it's quality, not quantity, here in the 'burgh -- 'cept when it comes to winning Super Bowls (er, is that Steelers 6, Lions 0?).

And thank you, Mr. Rooney, for making the president our BFF – Pittsburgh is hosting the G-20 Summit  in September. That's huge, the international stage, and we will be forever known as the city that hosted this major event. Now if Sid, Geno, Feds and the gang meet and break bread with the G-20, we might finally achieve world peace.

Terry: True, the Steelers have more Super Bowl wins than the Lions. But the Lions went 0 and 16 ... way more memorable. Silver lining, babycakes. That's what we're all about in Detroit -- silver linings. Speaking of international stages, the Swedes aren't the only ones paying attention to our city. The 75,000 glow stick-toting electronic music fans and artists at the Movement festival last weekend hailed from all over the world. Our music scene is renowned the world over.

Terry, are you trying to say that Pittsburgh (and Southwestern PA) is one of the nation's leaders in the farm-to-table movement? That's what you are saying, right? We're all about organic and sustainable, farmers markets, honey bees (we're stacking hives in Braddock)...and one of the 'burgh's hottest young chefs, Kevin Sousa, is opening a new place this fall called Salt of the Earth.  Come to think of it, that describes Sid to a T...or is that P-E-N?

Terry: Not sure about Pittsburgh, but Detroit could be the urban farming capital of the world. It'd be like Hockeytown, but instead Urbanfarmingtown. Eh, work in progess. But check it out, New Kid On The Block, we've got organizations like the Greening of Detroit, more community gardens than you can shake a (hockey)stick at, and potentially the largest urban farm ever.

Elaine: So, Terry, Hossa or Guerin? Chevy or Ford?  Wait a minute, you've got a buncha Volvos over there ... I'm stickin' with Guerin on Sid's right wing. Billy can score a goal and land a punch, all on the same shift. Hossa's too pretty for a fight ... plus he dissed Sid, Shero, Mario. That spells bad karma times three.  Even the Dalai Lama can't get him outta that jam.

Terry: Volvos? In Detroit? Are you kidding? I'm gonna have to go with Hossa -- Guerin's salt and pepper beard makes me think he might not make it. Billy can score a goal, land a punch, and get 50 percent off the blue plate special at the Hilltop Cafe thanks to AARP (Chelios, too, for that matter). And, actually the Dalai Lama plays goalie for us. We call him Chris Osgood, though. He's got ice water in his veins. Unlike the Flower - or Fleury -- who is a ball of nerves and will most likely blow it... similar to last year. CHOKE!

Really, though, Pittsburgh is great. I love Zip Cars. Wish we had ‘em.

Elaine: I'll let you in on a secret: I love Eminem.  We've had some cool cats out of Pittsburgh, too, with names like Carnegie and Mellon and Heinz. Have you heard about the new dinosaur wing at the Carnegie Museum? (some of the dinos had knees as creaky as Chelios!) Heinz Hall, too, where the world-class Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra makes beautiful music. Oh yeah, and that Carnegie/Mellon collaboration of a university where uber-geeks are engineering the future. And let’s not forget Clemente, a maestro with the glove.  No wonder we're the City of Champions.

Terry: Or how about you change it to ... City of Second Place? It has a nice ring to it.

Carnegie, Mellon, and Heinz? Is that like Crosby, Stills, and Nash? Can they do-wop?

They built this city, baby, and we're happy to ride into the sunset on their backs (and their bucks) while making a few of our own. CSN is so Cali -- I left the City by the Bay for Pittsburgh. I've traded up! It's about the big boys this week and next and what they mean to their respective towns.  A showdown for the ages, or at least the Midwest/Mid Atlantic/wherever we are.

Terry: I say the Wings take it in four. And even knowing you will lose to us, it's still an exciting time for both our cities. Here in Detroit, a major light rail project is gearing up and the film industry has brought in the likes of not only Clint Eastwood but ROB SCHNEIDER. And gold has been found in the river. Actually, don't believe that last one.

Elaine: And here in Pittsburgh we're talking G-20 summit and green technology and green chemistry and green buildings, along with hockey. Keep your Red Wings, we'll take our green ‘burgh ... GO PENS!

Terry:  Oh Elaine. My sweet Elaine... Here in Detroit we're having the same discussions. The only difference is, of course, we'll also have back-to-back Stanley Cups. But when the dust does settle, and your city has wiped the Stanley Cup losing tears from their rosy cheeks, we'll still be friends, right?

Terry Parris Jr. lives in Southwest Detroit, writes for Model D and likes octopus on ice. Elaine Labalme writes for Model D's sister publication in Pittsburgh, Pop City, and apparently likes Happy Feet-style skating.


Game two in Detroit at Joe Louis Arena.

Photographs by Detroit Photographer Marvin Shaouni Marvin Shaouni is the Managing Photographer for Metromode & Model Contact Marvin here
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