What's the nation hearing about Tampa during the Republican National Convention? Here are some tidbits gleaned from the national media.
We couldn't stop laughing at the Tampa cracks provided by Comedy Central's "Daily Show," which is airing from the Straz center. Some favorite lines from Tuesday:
Correspondent John Oliver on the region's humidity: "Somewhere between Friars Club steam room and a subway platform in Haiti. … There is no place that you'd rather be, particularly if you're an insect from an Indiana Jones film or a struggling strand of streptococcus.
Oliver on why the GOP chose Tampa: "A perfect symbol of what Obama has done to America. In just 3½ years this once bustling metropolis is now a wind and rain-soaked foreclosed shell of itself; its denizens barricading themselves in their homes trying desperately to protect whatever rat-urine-soaked meth lab equipment they own."
Correspondent Jason Jones: "I'm here in Tampa's famous strip-club district, or as they call it here: Tampa."
Samantha Bee, being flown away in the grasp of an elephant-size roach: "I was coming out of a Waffle House. Apparently, the scent of syrup and cigarette ash proved irresistible to this, what the locals have assured me is a 'juvenile' palmetto big. … Oh, no. WAIT. OH, MY GOD, HE TAKING ME TO ST. PETE."
A LITTLE BUCS, SPARTANS FLAVOR
While the screen labeled them "Buccaneer Babes," a handful of Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders performed on "Fox & Friends" on Wednesday morning, along with the University of Tampa band.
Cheerleaders Karen Bittinger and Lauren Spires were briefly interviewed by co-hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Killmeade, offering little controversial beyond referring to law enforcement at the RNC as "Ghostbusters" because of their khaki uniforms.
And maybe this big-fish-in-a-little-town response on hosting the RNC.
"It's pretty cool having all these people in the Bay area and letting people know that we're even a city that is here," Spire said.
The squad did a pair of dance routines, one accompanied by the Spartans' band, directed by Jeffrey Traster.
THAT'S SOME WALK
A local might not try it, but a three-mile downtown walk in humidity climbing "slightly, to 365" might seem like a reasonable idea.
Harper's magazine writer Kevin Baker and a colleague made the trek from their Ybor City rental to the Sheraton Riverside, then to the Forum, then back.
It wasn't their first plan, but it turned into an odyssey filled with interesting Tampa characters, a respite at the Hub, a mystery at Tampa Theatre and a brief protesters-police clash.
Baker chronicled the trip in a story titled, "A Season in Hell, or A Brief Chronology of the Trip From Ybor City to the Republican National Convention."
His antagonist? Probably the TECO streetcar line.
It's fun reading, but we wouldn't recommend following in his footsteps. At least until the summer heat is gone – say, December.
Chelsea Clinton was hanging at the media center lounge Wednesday morning. Clinton, the daughter of former President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, was scheduled to take part in a town hall event at the Tampa Improv later in the day.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was drawing a crowd on radio row while talking on WNYC-AM.
Actor Steven Baldwin, who co-hosts a conservative national radio show, was among those floating around radio row Wednesday.