Say what you will about Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman, but he's a man of his word -- at least when it comes to the word "suck."
In an apparent attempt to make up for his ruthless censorship of New Times'' work, the mayor said the word "sucks" 11 times at last night's Tempe City Council meeting.
A little background:
Last month, Hallman presented two Phoenix New Times "Best of Phoenix" awards to the city-owned Ken McDonald Golf Course. Hallman read the blurbs written by New Times staffers attached to the awards, and in one, he replaced the word "suck" with the apparently less-offensive "stink."
Hallman probably didn't anticipate a New Times writer to be in the crowd to call him on his malicious censorship of our work, but we just happened to be there for other reasons and noticed the switcheroo.
The portion of our original blurb for the award given to the course for having the "Best Winter Golf Course" reads: "We all love to play the pro courses, and in the Valley there's no shortage of great greens. The problem, however, is that if you want to play them in the winter, you may have to find a second job. That's why summer golfers at Troon North or TPC Scottsdale often find their way to the public courses once the rates go up. Public courses -- for the most part -- suck."
In Hallman's reading, he replaced that concluding "suck" with the much nerdier "stink" -- a word that really sucks.
Read more about Hallman's First Amendment faux-pas here.
Following our February expose on Hallman's Stalin-esque tactics, the mayor called New Times to assure us that he was in no way censoring the word "suck." Rather, he told us at the time, he was just reading what was in front of him, which was prepared by a staffer and had the word "suck" swapped out for "stink."
Hallman promised that to make up for it -- and to prove that he's not anti-"suck" -- he would say the word 10 times at the City Council's next meeting. The mayor, as we mentioned, said it 11 times, so apology accepted.
See video of Hallman suckin' it up at last night's meeting here (the suckiness starts at about 1:27:50).
In related news, the mayor will apparently be racing a toilet named "Leaky Loo McFlapper" this Saturday as part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's "Fix a Leak Week." The goal is to raise awareness of the "significant" leaking toilet problem we face here in the Valley. The race is four miles, which the mayor ensures us "really sucks."
For more info on "Fix a Leak Week," click here.