Morning Musically-Minded, Medically-Minded, Masticators!
(Today’s post is sponsored by the letter “M”)
Over the past 600+ episodes, The Simpsons has taken us on an amazing journey involving music, science, and food to name a few concepts.
And what better way to start your week, then by discussing some of these concepts Monday morning?
So let’s get started this week by talking about a former architectural landmark, the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.
In the forty ninth episode of The Simpsons, Lisa the Greek (Season 03, Episode 14), Homer is all geared up for football season with snacks available in every direction. Every Sunday is set aside for football and betting on football games.
Lisa, however, is disappointed that her father is not taking an interest in any of her hobbies. So Marge suggest Lisa take an interest in Homer’s hobbies.
Marge: “Oh, look at that. A shoebox house. Lisa, you’re so clever!”
Lisa: “Why isn’t Dad ever interested in anything I do?”
Marge: “Well, mmm, do you ever take an interest in anything he does?”
Lisa: “No. Well, we used to have burping contests, but I outgrew it.”
So Lisa starts watching football with Homer. When Homer turns to Lisa for advise on who she thinks will win the game, he’s pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
When Lisa learns that Homer is gambling on games, Homer convinces her there is nothing wrong with gambling. So Lisa continues to pick winners and even calls Moe to place bets. Homer and Lisa start referring to the day as “Daddy Daughter Sunday”.
But things go bad when Homer makes plans to go bowling with Barney the week after the Super Bowl. When Lisa asks him what about “Daddy Daughter Sunday”, Homer responds that the next football season starts in 7 months. Lisa, upset at Homer, tells him that if she loves him, the Washington Redskins will win. But if she doesn’t love him, Buffalo will win.
Homer is super nervous as the Super Bowl between the Washington Redskins and Buffalo Bills gets underway at Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. Alas, all is right in the world when the Washington Redskins win and Homer goes hiking with Lisa instead of bowling with Barney the following Sunday.
But have you ever wondered what the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome is?
Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
The Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, commonly just called the Metrodome for short, was a domed sports stadium located in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The Metrodome was designed by Bangladeshi-American architect and structural engineer Fazlur Rahman Khan. Considered the “father of tubular designs” for high-rises, he is best known as the designer of the Sears Tower (now called Willis Tower), the tallest building in the world from 1973 until 1998, and the 100-story John Hancock Center.
Fazlur Rahman Khan (3 April 1929 – 27 March 1982)
Construction on the Metrodome began on December 20th, 1979, and officially opened on April 3rd, 1982. The stadium was named in memory of former mayor of Minneapolis, U.S. Senator, and U.S. Vice President Hubert Humphrey (under President Lyndon B. Johnson), who died in 1978.
The Metrodome was well known for it’s air-supported roof. An air-supported structure supported by positive air pressure, it required 250,000 ft³/min (120 m³/s) of air to keep it inflated. The air pressure was supplied by twenty 90 hp (67 kW) fans. The roof was made of two layers. The outer layers were Teflon-coated fiberglass while the inner layers were a proprietary acoustical fabric.
The Metrodome served as home to the:
- Minnesota Vikings (NFL) (1982–2013)
- Minnesota Twins (MLB) (1982–2009)
- Minnesota Golden Gophers football (NCAA) (1982–2008)
- Minnesota Strikers (NASL) (1984)
- Minnesota Golden Gophers baseball (NCAA) (1985–2010, 2012)
- Minnesota Timberwolves (NBA) (1989–1990)
- Minnesota United FC (NASL) (2013)
The Metrodome is the only venue to have hosted a MLB All-Star Game (1985), a Super Bowl (1992), an NCAA Final Four (1992 & 2001), and a World Series (1987 & 1991). My favourite baseball player Devon White of the Toronto Blue Jays hit an inside the park home run at the Metrodome.
Surprisingly, two days after the episode aired on January 24th, 1992, the Washington Redskins would in fact go on to beat the Buffalo Bills in the Super Bowl at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome on January 26th, 1992.
As of this season, the Washington Redskins are now known as the Washington Football Team, as the former Redskins name and logo drew controversy over its history, with many criticizing it as offensive to Native Americans.
With the passage of time, Metrodome was thought to be an increasingly poor fit for all three of its major tenants (the Twins, the Vikings and the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers football team). These tenants all said that the Dome was nearing the end of its useful lifespan. The roof was deflated for the final time on January 18th, 2014. Demolition of the Metrodome was formally declared complete on April 17th, 2014, a month ahead of schedule. Officials from the construction company said the entire demolition job required 4,910 truckloads and 16,000 man hours to complete the job.
Now that we’ve learned more about the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, be sure to come back next week when we continue our Monday morning musings with the next episode of The Simpsons.
Did you remember the Metrodome building? Have you ever been there yourself? What is your favourite sports building? What about your favourite building in general? What do you think of The Simpsons correctly predicting the Washington Redskins would in fact go on to beat the Buffalo Bills in the Super Bowl at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome? Sound off in the comments below. You know we love hearing from you.