Boston pol takes aim at Citgo sign after 'devil' comment
September 24, 2006 3:27 PM   Subscribe

Don't mess with my Citgo sign!
posted by freshwater_pr0n (44 comments total)
""Given the hatred of the United States displayed by dictator Hugo Chavez, it would be more fitting to see an American flag when you drive through Kenmore Square," McDermott told The Boston Herald."

Oh really? He hates the U.S.? I love it when people speak based on the "news."
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 3:39 PM on September 24, 2006

punitive politics = awesome!
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 3:40 PM on September 24, 2006

Here's the grandstander right here. He loves President Bush more than his poor constituents who got below market-price Citgo heating oil.

He also looks like someone mated a leprechaun with Rocky Dennis.
posted by Mayor Curley at 3:40 PM on September 24, 2006 [1 favorite]

oh yeah, go yankees.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 3:42 PM on September 24, 2006

george bush != united states
posted by Saucy Intruder at 3:45 PM on September 24, 2006

Getting rid of the CITGO sign -- t'll never happen.

It's such a beacon in the city. As a matter of fact, I can see it from my window right now.
posted by ericb at 3:52 PM on September 24, 2006

Fox News's 'Big Story ' [YouTube].
posted by ericb at 3:54 PM on September 24, 2006

freedom fries anyone?
posted by MrLint at 3:55 PM on September 24, 2006

Instead of fulminating about some damn sign, Mr. Nitwit could, just maybe, not purchase Citgo gasoline and encourage others to do the same.
posted by Captaintripps at 3:55 PM on September 24, 2006

What could we possibly do to inflate the already overblown ego of a South American despot? I know! Respond to him and keep his name in the news even longer!
posted by bardic at 3:57 PM on September 24, 2006

Mayor: We’d hate to C-IT-GO
"With one of the Hub’s most beloved icons caught in the middle of the political outrage over Venezualan President Hugo Chavez’s anti-Bush rant, Mayor Thomas M. Menino yesterday said the famed Citgo sign deserves a break.

'It’s a landmark in our city,' said Menino, who criticized Chavez for calling President Bush 'the devil' at the United Nations on Wednesday, but doesn’t believe the neon sign in Kenmore Square has to go.

'The only one that gets shortchanged is us' if that were to happen, Menino said.

...'We’re getting calls from Arizona, Pittsburgh, all across Massachusetts,' he said."
posted by ericb at 4:01 PM on September 24, 2006

He loves President Bush more than his poor constituents who got below market-price Citgo heating oil.

To expand on Mayor Curley's reference...
"A subsidiary of the Venezuelan national oil company will ship 12 million gallons of discounted home-heating oil to local charities and 45,000 low-income families in Massachusetts next month under a deal arranged by US Representative William D. Delahunt, a local nonprofit energy corporation, and Venezuela's president, White House critic Hugo Chávez.Thousands in Mass. to Get Cheaper Oil

The approximately $9 million deal will bring nine million gallons of oil to families and three million gallons to institutions that serve the poor, such as homeless shelters, said officials from Citizens Energy Corp., which is signing the contract. Families would pay about $276 for a 200-gallon shipment, a savings of about $184 and enough to last about three weeks.

The contract is to be signed Tuesday by officials from Citizens Energy, based in Boston, and CITGO, a Houston-based subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela SA. The contract was arranged after months of talks between Delahunt, a Quincy Democrat active in Latin American affairs, and Chávez, a leftist former paratrooper and fierce critic of the Bush administration."

[Boston Globe | November 20, 2005]
posted by ericb at 4:04 PM on September 24, 2006

Oh, please. They're not going to tear it down. It's a lame pub stunt by a brown-nosing pol.
posted by GatorDavid at 4:04 PM on September 24, 2006

Freedom Fries.
posted by rxrfrx at 4:05 PM on September 24, 2006

Oops -- that got borked with the title mistakenly placed at the end of the first paragraph.
posted by ericb at 4:05 PM on September 24, 2006

Given 43's history of suspicious electedness and willingness to shit all over the constitution, I find it hilarious that dudes like this are referring to Chavez as "dictator."
posted by stenseng at 4:11 PM on September 24, 2006

what kind of city has a gas station sign for a landmark?
posted by pyramid termite at 4:12 PM on September 24, 2006

Not to mention that no one has yet proved to my satisfaction that there is no truth in Chavez's statement about Bush. We still don't have an adequate explantion for that hump on his back, and some have remarked on a lingering sulphurous odor in his wake.
posted by madamjujujive at 4:14 PM on September 24, 2006

what kind of city has a gas station sign for a landmark?

For starters -- a number of cities in California. 'Save the 76 Ball' -- ConocoPhillips' iconic 76 Balls (previously discussed).
posted by ericb at 4:19 PM on September 24, 2006

what kind of city has a gas station sign for a landmark?

I would like to be among the first to welcome you to America.
posted by Mayor Curley at 4:20 PM on September 24, 2006 [1 favorite]

This might explain the smell.
posted by suki at 4:22 PM on September 24, 2006

Does this mean McDermott doesn't believe in the devil?
Isn't that tantamount to not believing in god? I mean God. Help me here. I'm not up on religion.
posted by notreally at 4:29 PM on September 24, 2006

It's all about form over substance with these people. George W. Bush's ego is more important that poor people not being able to heat their homes.
posted by delmoi at 4:32 PM on September 24, 2006

a headline from the new york times years from now

posted by pyramid termite at 4:46 PM on September 24, 2006

I was teaching a lesson on shapes to Boston kindergarteners a few weeks ago. I would hold up a shape and they would tell me what it was. I showed the class a cut-out of a red triangle and one girl yelled, "Citgo!"
posted by Marit at 5:05 PM on September 24, 2006

From the third link: "Measures 60 feet by 60 feet - the size of an Olympic pool."

er, no. An Olympic-sized pool is 50m x 25m (roughly 150ft x 75ft).
posted by clevershark at 5:15 PM on September 24, 2006

what kind of city has a gas station sign for a landmark?
posted by pyramid termite at 7:12 PM EST on September 24 [+] [!]

Well, I was going to look up your city and make some nasty snark, but hey, I like K-zoo. (I do like Boston better though.)
posted by caddis at 5:17 PM on September 24, 2006

There's no gesture like an empty, meaningless gesture.

Obviously the sign should be torn down and replaced with an American flag to prove to the world that the US is not the sort of nationalist, government-controls-everything kind of place like Venezuela! Oh wait...
posted by clevershark at 5:22 PM on September 24, 2006

pyramid termite: that headline can't be from the New York Times; it reads like a concise summary of a story, not a cryptic crossword clue.
posted by nowonmai at 5:22 PM on September 24, 2006

First time I heard this, I was all "Cities Service is owned by Venezuela now? When the hell did that happen?"

And this is what a well designed about page should have:
Occidental Petroleum bought Cities Service in 1982, and CITGO was incorporated as a wholly owned refining, marketing and transportation subsidiary in the spring of the following year. Then, in August, 1983, CITGO was sold to The Southland Corporation to provide an assured supply of gasoline to Southland's 7-Eleven convenience store chain.

In September, 1986, Southland sold a 50 percent interest in CITGO to Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA), the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. PDVSA acquired the remaining half of CITGO in January, 1990. With a secure and ample supply of crude oil, CITGO quickly became a major force in the energy arena.
posted by dw at 5:32 PM on September 24, 2006

An olympic pool is over 3x the size of this sign.

Of course mebbe he means the wishing pool at the Olympic Diner.
posted by MrLint at 5:51 PM on September 24, 2006

I spent a couple of summers in years past in Boston. I was interning and staying at a dorm on the Common, and could easily see the Citgo sign at night. I always kinda wondered why it was such a big spectacle. I didn't really figure that out until I moved here recently, and saw a Sox game on TV with the sign glowing over Fenway.

Kind of a weird thing to have be a hallmark of a city, but these sorts of things don't really get chosen logically.
posted by brett at 6:10 PM on September 24, 2006

Although you may not know this if you are not from the fine River City in the midwest, St. Louis is home to the world's largest Amoco sign. The people of St. Louis love it so much that the gas station decided to keep it, even though it now belongs to BP.
posted by Afroblanco at 6:24 PM on September 24, 2006

If they take down the Citgo sign, how will I know where to get off Storrow?
posted by Enucleator at 6:33 PM on September 24, 2006

In Dallas, there's a big pegasus sign that once was the symbol for Mobil Oil that is now a city landmark.
posted by jefbla at 6:39 PM on September 24, 2006

I once lived in a 9' x 6' dorm room overlooking Kenmore Square that faced the Citgo sign dead-on. I don't care what excuse they use to turn the lights out as long as they shut the damn thing down.

Keep the Pru, though.
posted by eamondaly at 6:53 PM on September 24, 2006

The "heritage" of gasoline advertising where the Fenway-visible Citgo sign is located goes back a long way. In the 50s Atlantic Gasoline was a big Red Sox sponsor ("Atlantic keeps your car on the go"), along with Carling Black Label beer ("Hey Mabel. Black Label"). The gasoline sign changed with consolidation in the petroleum biz. I think it went Atlantic -> Amoco -> Cities Service -> Citgo. It's heritageable to some extent, anyway.
posted by bmckenzie at 7:08 PM on September 24, 2006

Holy smokes, someone should do an FPP on giant oil company signs. I had no idea there were so many.
posted by sourwookie at 8:39 PM on September 24, 2006

I find it humorous that people are so in love with a giant billboard. I could understand if it was a building, but a giant advertisement? In your face marketing as a landmark?

Are there laws preventing other companies from putting up similar signs in the same area? I bet there are.
posted by tomplus2 at 9:27 PM on September 24, 2006

tomplus2, this billboard has been with us for decades and it helps us to navigate a byzantine city.

suck it, haters. we Bostonians love the citgo sign because it grounds us. it's a homing beacon.
posted by freshwater_pr0n at 11:07 PM on September 24, 2006

And eamondaly, the best thing that could happen to Boston would be the bankruptcy of BU. If your third-tier university hadn't eaten Kenmore Square, you'd never have the chance to whine about a landmark blocking your view as you leaned out the window to vomit into the streets of our city.
posted by freshwater_pr0n at 11:10 PM on September 24, 2006

the Citgo sign is awesome, I immediately loved it, the first time I came to Boston as a teenager. and I didn't even know it was a landmark, I just thought it was cool (and funnily enough, I didn't even know what Citgo was, they don't have gas stations in my country)

this being Boston, cooler heads will prevail and the (refurbished!) sign will stay where it is, but I guess we all know that in other cities (like, I don't know, Houston?) it would have been torn down. I mean, Chavez's oil is BAD, unlike the Saudi oil (we all know how much they love America, instead. I mean, 14 on 19 is a pretty good score)
posted by matteo at 7:11 AM on September 25, 2006

You know Afroblanco, I live about two miles from that thing and it figures heavily in directions I give to my house, and, of course, I have always refered to it as "the worlds largest Amoco sign" in a joking sort of way. I didn't know it was a widely recognized phenomenon.

I have been told that it is commonly used reference point by pilots but never actually had a pilot confirm that.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 7:19 AM on September 25, 2006

I have no particular love or hate of Chavez, but leave the Citgo sign alone. It's cool.
posted by aerotive at 10:51 AM on September 25, 2006

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