Mayor risks 'bad karma' by shredding cheese


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To lusty cheers, a wooden replica of a cheese wedge was put through a city public-works shredder today at a pep rally for Sunday's Super Bowl.

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl told the crowd of hundreds on Forbes Avenue, Downtown, that he had received e-mails warning him that shredding the cheese wedge, a Green Bay Packers icon, would be "bad karma."

So in the interest of popular government, or perhaps political security, Mr. Ravenstahl let the crowd decide. And the crowd threw caution to the wind.

"The cheese is shredded," Mr. Ravenstahl announced after the shredder jerked, quaked and belched what looked like thousands of splinters into the back of a dump truck. "Go Steelers!"

Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato, former Steeler Robin Cole and Elizabeth Cope, daughter of the late, longtime announcer Myron Cope, also took part in the event.

Mr. Cole urged tough love for Pittsburgh native Mike McCarthy, now the Packers' head coach.

"We gotta love him," Mr. Cole said. "But we're gonna love beating him on Sunday."

In a reference to the Steelers defense, Mr. Ravenstahl and Mr. Onorato declared today "Hittsburgh Day" in the city and county.

More details in tomorrow's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Joe Smydo: jsmydo@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1548. First Published February 3, 2011 6:00 PM


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