Friday, September 14, 2001
Pitt Screws Oakland
After almost 100 years of flirting and courtship, the University of Pittsburgh has officially screwed Oakland. Sealing the deal is the current erection of the Multi-Purpose Academic Center on Forbes Avenue. Also contributing to the fornication was last year's demolition of Oakland housing to build the Bouquet Garden Apartment Complex.
With the addition, Pitt gained a more attractive campus and bragging rights at national university conventions.
“Yeah, those two blocks in South Oakland between Oakland and Bouquet — I got it,” Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg boasted last fall at a national chancellor's reception in Washington, DC. “We slammed that block so hard, it didn't know what hit it. We rocked their world.”
The University of Pittsburgh has made Oakland his home since 1908. Since then, his campus has spread from two small buildings that housed both classrooms and administrative space to the current sprawling spread of over 50 buildings.
As the campus grew, Oakland stood by and watched as landmarks from her past were slowly torn down for state-of-the-art dormitories, laboratories, and hospitals. Places frequented were no longer hot spots to visit in the neighborhood. Rather, the University kept touting his reputation as an institution of higher learning and bragging about howmany buildings he had.
As time went on and paranoia and tension escalated, Nordenberg and the University repeatedly assured residents and the Oakland Business Improvement District (OBID) that it would always be there for the community and the people. “Its a tough time for both of us, but if we can make it through this, we can make it through anything.”
“They told us they loved us for who we are,” OBID director Nancy Cudrey sobbed. “They complimented our charm and character and made us feel like the greatest neighborhood in Pittsburgh. They promised they would never hurt us and that we'd marry to create a solid relationship, working in rhythm to create new opportunities together. But once they got what they wanted, the phone calls stopped and the lunches at the University Club disappeared. It was like we never existed at all. I really thought we had a future. And now we have nothing.”
OBID is not alone in falling from the University's graces.
“When Nordenberg said he was going to ‘smack his bitch up’, I thought that maybe he was really going to change the way the University presented itself, ran its business, educated its students. I even thought tuition may decrease as changes rippled throughout the institution,” commented Peter Geist, a lifelong resident of Oakland. "He only meant he was going to violate and destroy all of Oakland's self-image.”
Local business owners are fearing they are next to fall, as Zelda's and CJ Barney's bars were closed in recent years. Area gossips claim that the Original Hot Dog Shop is the next victim to be wooed by the University, located in the same block as the fallen businesses.
“We’re small and looking for someone to take care of us,” reported a local businessperson, who asked to remain nameless for fear or University retaliation. “Opening our heart and opening up our business for Pitt is a sign that we not only expect the University to co-exist with us, but to love us too. We want the University to respect us and encourage its students to patronize our establishments. Oakland business will not lay back unless we feel comfortable with, and loved by, the University. Now, I fear for the stability of my business.” A Carlow College psychologist specializing in human sexual relations agrees, labeling Pitt’s conquering nature as akin to some type of macho competition amongst fraternity members.
“The University needs to keep its phallus, the Cathedral of Learning, in check,” said Carlow psychologist Janet Meyers. “Just as the biological male feels a need to conquer females and reproduce his seeds, Universities also feel compelled to do the same.”
Throughout Pitt’s glorious history, he has been accused of numerous exploitative relationships. He has used and abused numerous businesses, institutions, and even churches. “If you examine the history of the University’s relationships, you will see that they are all one-sided, with the University assuming a domineering role,” Oakland historian Emanuel Harrison commented. “You will see a repeating pattern of abuse and neglect coming right after a very emotionally involved honeymoon period. Just take a look at Forbes Field and the proposed closing of Bigelow Boulevard. It is a vicious, never ending cycle.”
Reports claim that Oakland is currently seeking support and advice from her sensitive, artistically inclined, homosexual neighbor Carnegie Mellon University, during this trying time.