So I sampled a bit of Southwest Florida culture this past weekend, and, well ...
Let's just say that I'm now shocked the retirement-home stench of near-death isn't perceptible the moment one steps out of his bachelor apartment. Mangomania was a bust, no matter what my former employer tells you.
Never mind that the damn thing ended at 4 in the afternoon. It cost $6 just to walk around the grounds of the Cape Coral German-American Social Club and be assaulted by vendors charging even more money for their mango-themed wares. It's like paying to walk into a mall, and a shitty, un-air-conditioned mall at that. And honestly, it would have been OK if there had been interesting people there, like, say, attractive women wearing mango bras, or any attractive women whatsoever. But, it was just a bunch of sweaty old people, parents and kids.
I don't know why I thought Mangomania would be any different from your average Southwest Florida scene. Maybe it was because Mark told me it would be last year, and I didn't go, and felt like I missed something for 12 whole months. Maybe it was because there's a permanent sign in Matlacha telling of the festival and its dates for that particular year, like it's the island's pinnacle annual event. Maybe it was because I thought it might actually be on Pine Island, or at least Little Pine Island, instead of the German-American Social Club in Cape Coral. Maybe it was because I ignored the obvious warning that any event at a place called the German-American Social Club is inherently lame unless held in October.
Or maybe, just maybe, the people in Southwest Florida are almost universally dull and ignorant.
My move to Tampa can't come soon enough. Even if that does mean dealing with Bucs blackouts and the horrid Devil Rays.