How an 8.5-Foot-Tall Festivus Pole Made Out of Beer Cans Ended Up Next to Baby Jesus in Deerfield

Categories: News
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Out in Deerfield Beach, on a piece of government-owned property, an 8.5-foot-tall tower of beer cans is looming over baby Jesus. No, this isn't some rogue Art Basel installation that crossed the county line. It's Chaz Stevens' salute to the holiday season. 

Since the end of November, Stevens has been frothing at the mouth with Christmas delight. The 48-year-old self-proclaimed attention whore and "rabid atheist" whom New Times deemed Gadfly of the Year in 2010, was ready and willing to do battle with the Deerfield Beach City Commission over holiday decorations. 

His beef? A nativity scene and Menorah placed on the front lawn of a city firehouse at the corner of Hillsboro Boulevard and Federal Highway.

"I would like permission to place an 'anti-religious' display this coming holiday season, on the fire department's property," Stevens wrote in an email to Deerfield Mayor Peggy Noland, who didn't return numerous calls for comment, and a handful of other city officials. "I wish for my display to be located next to the (ever present) manger and menorah."

Stevens had the ACLU and the city attorney on speed dial. Much to his surprise, the city acquiesced. 
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Then came the hard part: figuring out what holiday icon to erect. 

Waist-high block letters reading "WTF" in candy-cane stripes would be hard to sell as being in the holiday spirit and could be deemed offensive. A Flying Spaghetti Monster was too esoteric and not the easiest thing to build. Stevens found his answer in a case of Pabst Blue Ribbon.  

"I think the Festivus pole is perfect," says Barry Butin, co-legal chair of the Broward ACLU, who reviewed Stevens' argument. "It does have some religious or holiday symbolism, but it's from a comedy."

For those who think stacking up 24 beers cans and plopping the resulting Seinfeld-inspired eyesore among religious icons and illuminated reindeer, Stevens has one thing to say: "Ba-fucking-humbug."


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21 comments
kamadulski
kamadulski

I was going to repost this story, but once I saw how big a douchebag this Stevens pansy is I decided not to give him the attention that his mommy never did and that he so desperately craves.

IrvingFeiner
IrvingFeiner

Now that everyone has aired their differences, its time for the feats of strength.  

I'm usually not one to push dogma, but the traditional Festivus pole is supposed to be made of unadorned aluminum.  I dont think a beer can qualifies as unadorned.  

Deerfield Beach, I would have no problems with a traditional unadorned shiny silver aluminum pole next to the menorah and baby Jesus and company, but this gaudy beer can monstrosity makes a mockery of the true meaning of the joyous Festivus season. 

johnmblack1
johnmblack1

Hey Chaz, next year why not use Budweiser, the king of beers? How fitting that would be next to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

thwright
thwright

I think many folks miss the point here. If a person thinks egocentrically, considering only their own selfish religious ideals, they have already missed the boat. This has nothing to do with religion. No state or government is allowed to say "yes" or "no" based on religion. This is about the ability of a private citizen to publicly celebrate the "holiday season" in a manner they set fit without offending anyone else. According to Court rulings, even a nativity scene does not celebrate Catholicism  - it celebrates the holiday season which is why it's allowed on public property. Now, when I say he can celebrate the season without offending anyone else, that doesn't mean you're not allowed to irritate a person by not subscribing to their religion - it just means it's inappropriate to specifically make fun of it. If Mr. Stevens wanted to push the envelope he could have... there were preliminary ideas that were truly vulgar and shocking, but in certain arenas, it's best to take baby steps. 

GregFromDelray
GregFromDelray

@ChazStevensGenius your reply lacks the same creativity as building a pole out of shitty hipster beer cans based on an old, played out TV show premise. Shocking. Quite a blow struck for Freedom of Speech...try harder next time. This is boring.

ATLGreg1
ATLGreg1

@byChrisJoseph Seeing "Hillsboro Boulevard and Federal Highway" brings back memories. I grew up not very far from there.

FatHand
FatHand

Haha, that is awesome. Happy Festivus Chaz.

ChazStevensGenius
ChazStevensGenius topcommenter

@IrvingFeiner actually, you are (once again) wrong.

The author of the book, Festivus. A Holiday for the rest of us, former NYT reporter Allen Salkin noted, 'beer cans make a perfect festivus pole.'

samir
samir

@MarisaKabas the legend will be passed to our children's children.

ChazStevensGenius
ChazStevensGenius topcommenter

@GregFromDelray @ChazStevensGenius So this will be the final time I ever acknowledge your existance, as I have no time for retards.

1. Are you familiar with the case law here?  I am...  I know about the Michigan, California, and Florida cases.

2. If you were familiar with those cases, then you would know the concept of "limited public forum" and also the notion of what could, and could not, be placed.

3. The New Times will be running this story in their print edition. Once again, I'm making into the pages of their newspaper. I've lost count how many times....  And as for you, you're relegated to bitching from TrollVille.

Enjoy your life.  You and I are done.

ChazStevensGenius
ChazStevensGenius topcommenter

@GregFromDelray %s Actually... 

I'm a card carrying member of the ACLU... So, if you want to call me a name, kindly call me either a:

1. Constitutional Zealot

2. 1st Amendment Zealot

3. Seperation of Chuch and State and Freedom of Religion Zealot.

4.  The guy who bangs your married sister.

IrvingFeiner
IrvingFeiner

Well, you go ahead and celebrate Festivus your way and I will celebrate the Festivus season the proper way.

Dan O'Keefe, the originator of Festivus specifically stated on that first Festivus in 1966 that the Festivus Pole is to be an unadorned aluminum pole. 

Was Allen Salkin even born in 1966?  If Allen Salkin doesnt like that, he can go start his own festive season.  And stop screwing up other people's festive seasons.

Even with its glaring faults, kudos on the Festivus Pole.  Get to work, a media hoe with plenty of time on his hands ought to get that pole to go national.

MarisaKabas
MarisaKabas

@samir thank god our generation has finally formed a legacy

burninshore
burninshore

@ChazStevensGenius you also forgot to mention your woman beater/harasser/stalker card you carry as well. it kills me to think that you feel youve struck a giant blow for rights...LOL...i cant wait for your next vulgar comment back to myself or someone else...i feel the only reason new times even mentions you is when they realize that this place has lost traffic that was here when Bob was reporting things...it's a shame you feel that youre really that important...btw Merry Christmas

bryan514
bryan514

Yeah, what are you, some kind of Festivus Reformer?  Splitter!

burninshore
burninshore

@ChazStevensGenius @burninshore You've also been in the paper for beating on women. Remind us how many times that you've been arrested for hurting/beating/harassing a woman? Why would I have to say anything I've done? I'm not the one self promoting like a cheap whore. I am not the one who practically breaks my arm patting myself on the back every time I am mentioned in any form of media. It's pretty pathetic you are relegated to these nonsensical stunts since your 15 minutes of fame have come and gone, and your search how to remain relevant. I am sorry Chaz, you are not the big fish in a small pond. You are nothing special unless beating on women gets you a prize somewhere . Btw, I think you meant breathe and not breath. I obviously struck a chord with you, because just like I said, you had nothing substantial in your retort and resorted to your childish ways. Do me a favor and put your big boy pants on next time if you wish to continue, because honestly, 10 yr olds have better comebacks. MERRY CHRISTMAS

ChazStevensGenius
ChazStevensGenius topcommenter

@burninshore @ChazStevensGenius I'm on the front fucking page of the Sun-Sentinel. I've been on the front page of the Miami Herald. I've been on the front page of the Washington Post.

Remind us all of your accomplishments?

And guess what, I'm done with you. Never again shall I bother to acknowledge the fact you breath air.

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