6ABC – PHILADELPHIA — The city is quickly returning to normal and is still basking in the glow of a remarkable, historic weekend. It was, on the one hand an uplifting experience for most, and, on the other, frustrating and disappointing for others. “It was not the same. We did less business than a normal weekend,” Corey Martindale of Zio’s Pizza said. All along the 13th Street restaurant district there is disappointment. Many are reporting sales off by 50 percent or more. Although some did pick up new customers. “All new customers. We definitely did not see a lot of regulars. It did see most of the city had cleared out,” Jason Brooke of Zavino said. And it appears most who came to see the pope brought their own food. “We ate what we had with us. We shared, a lot of people talked. A lot of people brought food. So it was really like large family meals,” Monica Walker of Brookfield, Wisconsin said. The million plus crowds never materialized. Many residents left the city and others never bothered coming, blaming the tight security restrictions. Mayor Nutter blamed the media. “I think the reporting on any number of aspects of this was detrimental to the mindset of many Philadelphians and others. I think that, in some instances, you all scared the s*** out of people with some of the stories,” Nutter said. Nutter later apologized for, as he called it, an ‘intemperate’ remark. But it was the mayor who set the tone, sternly warning people about long walks, restricted areas, tow zones, checkpoints and street closures. New Jersey officials all, but urged people to stay away. “There are not enough parking spots in Camden city or Camden County in the region to accomodate the people who want to get to the event,” Jamie Fox, Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Transportation, said in an August 13th press conference. Mayor Nutter admits public officials could have done a better job of getting on the same page. “Those were not our finest moments in all of us and that is, the government’s overall responsibility,” Nutter said. Celebrity chef Marc Vetri, whose eponymous restaurant is a fine-dining landmark, took to Facebook to rail against city leaders who he said “decided to roll out the red carpet for everyone making the pilgrimage, and roll us up in the carpet to place in storage until Monday.” He said he was “haunted by the empty streets and shuttered windows.” At Midtown III restaurant, co-owner Vivian Tafuri rented a refrigerated truck, filled it with $7,500 worth of food and spent another $1,000 on a parking space. “It’s all wasted,” Tafuri fumed Sunday. “All the time our mayor was saying a million and a half people, and nothing. Wasted.” Liz Furey, a bartender at the restaurant, said the pope’s visit chased away the regulars. “The people who are visiting are having a good time at the parkway. But as far as the local businesses were concerned, what we were promised didn’t happen at all,” Furey said. The World Meeting of Families, the Vatican-sponsored conference that drew Francis to Philadelphia, had estimated 1.5 million people would show up for the pope’s weekend visit, with 10,000 staying overnight and business sales of $390 million.
The media is to blame for all of this? Et tu, brute? How about you look in the mirror, pal. Every government official, including Mayor Nutter, was acting like this event was going to be apocalyptic to be in the city. And still, it kind of was. You drop a couple of those Floridan bath salt, flesh eating marks in the crowds and it would’ve resembled World War Z. And I can see why businesses are ticked off. This World Meetings Of The Families happy horseshit promised to bring millions of people and dollars to the hard working citizens of Philadelphia but under-delivered greatly. There were thousands compared to millions and those who made the pilgramige into the city didn’t spend dick. But blaming the media for reporting that the world was going to end because THAT’S BASICALLY WHAT YOU WERE SAYING is bushleague. No shit the news outlets are gonna go nuts when you close down almost every bridge and major interstate, put the national guard on every residential corner, and have multiple security checkpoints*. New Jersey officials basically told everyone “Fuck That” when referring to the entire weekend. Again, great City of Philadelphia, thanks for offering up 2,000 (just about 40K short) spots for $20 a pop for those who want to pay to park their car for the weekend so it didn’t get jacked by the city. That’s cute.
Honestly, this would all be fine if these so called Catholics would’ve rented out our place for $10K for the weekend LIKE THE MEDIA SAID THEY WOULD. My
dumpster place is located blocks away from the Art Museum and was been up on Airbnb for only $500 a night for about a month. No dice. Not one fucking bite. And tbh, I haven’t heard of ONE SINGLE person who actually rented their place out for this overrated rock star for the imaginary band in the sky. I’ll see you all in hell.
*I waited in line for an hour and a half at one of these fuckers on Saturday night just to try and get to the bar. That fun time was complete with a gaggle of Latino’s YELLING Amazing Grace in Espanol, Pope peddlers selling knock off crap on the street, and babies everywhere screaming their faces off. Pope Francis, my Pontiff, you sir have lost a customer. At what local penny fountain can I file an application for the Jews?