The Rich and the Poor and the Pools They Swim In…

So, those in charge of the City of Scottsbluff have closed the only truly public outdoor pool in Scottsbluff.  The Splash Arena has been closed, and a “shortage of lifeguards” is cited as the reason.

For those not familiar with the Westmoor Pool, it’s not really a swimming pool.  The Westmoor Pool is a kiddie park with some water.  The Westmoor Pool is a crowded and loud wading pool with water tainted by the urine of hundreds of toddlers.  I do not like the Westmoor pool.  But I love how the dude in the video is asking patrons not to come right at opening.  I love how he is asking people to wait until about 3:30 pm to come to the pool, you know, to distribute the pool load.  Apparently Mr. Mader has never been to one of the outdoor Scottsbluff pools in the late afternoon… you know, when the evening thunderstorms are starting to roll in.  I have been at our pools during those times, and it is a joy to watch the lifeguards.

If there are dark clouds on the horizon, the lifeguards’ attention all turn to the skies.  You can see the giddy excitement on their faces, I’m sure imagining a short shift and planning what they are going to do with the remainder of their day since they know work will end early… yet again.  If there are dark clouds on the horizon (which, on many, many evenings in the panhandle of Nebraska, there are), you best be watching out for your own kid’s safety, because the attention of the lifeguards won’t leave the sky until that first flash of lightening in the 30 mile distance is sighted, the whistles blow, and you get to go home with no refund or complimentary pass for a later time.  Yeah, let’s encourage people to go to the pool at a time when they are going to get screwed by the weather.  Brilliant!

Of course, there are other options given by the representative of the city.  The City of Gering has a nice public outdoor pool.  The only issue with that is that the residents of Gering HATE the residents of Scottsbluff.  If all of a sudden the Gering pool is at capacity because of an influx of Scottsbluff residents, there will be blood.  Gering residents would rather have their pool blown up by Islamic fundamentalists than let the residents of Scottsbluff pollute it with their “north-of-the-river” disease.

The video also mentions the YMCA Trails West pool, which is a private pool and is not available to the public… unless you want to rent it… for $75 an hour… with a two hour minimum… not exactly an affordable option for most folks.

The last option offered up by the brain trust at the City of Scottsbluff is the Scotts Bluff Country Club pool.


They’re gonna make me give my opinion on country clubs?

Okay, here we go…

You have to be a member of the Scotts Bluff Country Club to use the pool at the Scotts Bluff Country Club.  Most residents of the City of Scottsbluff and surrounding area cannot afford a membership to the Scotts Bluff Country Club.  Most of the people who frequent public pools (myself included) are exactly the kinds of people who country club members are trying to avoid by joining a country club!  People with money join country clubs to hang out with other people who make a similar amount of money.  People do not join country clubs to hang out with the kind of people they may run into if they are forced into a trip to Walmart.  Successful business owners join country clubs so they are assured they will not run into one of the low-paid employees they have to deal with during the work week.  Lawyers and politicians join country clubs so they are guaranteed they will not run into much of the “common trash” they represent.  The fact that a representative of the City of Scottsbluff would list the Scotts Bluff Country Club pool as a viable option for the swimming needs of anyone other than the elite of Scotts Bluff County makes me realize how out of touch some people are.  The elite already use the country club pool.  The elite wouldn’t be caught dead (or have their children caught dead) at a public pool.  Mentioning the Scotts Bluff Country Club pool in a PR piece that attemptes to give alternatives to a frustrated general population may actually have an opposite effect.  Many patrons who will not get to use the public pools as much as they would like have just been reminded that, up on the hill, there is a place where the local financial elite have their own pool… and we’re not welcome to use it.  Thanks for the reminder, City of Scottsbluff…

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