I’m a little burned out on the numbers stuff for now and, therefore, am calling shenanigans on this whole blogging business. That’s right, the most rested blogger in the local ‘sphere is using a four-day hiatus from paid work to take a four-day hiatus from the volunteer stuff, too. Between all the gatherings, concerts, sporting events and other activities, there’s simply no way I’ll have enough time to blog and get the requisite 8 hours of sleep I need to maintain my youthful good looks. Alas.
Before I go, however, I’ll attach a few random thoughts to some links, in a special Thanksgiving Round Up.
General Growth is reaching out to local high school and college students to hear their thoughts on the future of Town Center. I applaud this move. Young people are full of ideas – some reasonable, some not – but aren’t very likely to engage in the community meeting-type stuff that is essentially required if you want your voice heard. So, rather than waiting for them to engage, GGP is actively connecting with the local students, which is probably the only way we’ll hear from them. Considering many who grow up here will choose to live here as adults, it’s only fair that their input be included in this community visioning process.
As for what they had to say, well…
Some concepts, to be sure, reflected a decided generational gap: the need for an arcade parlor, more free concerts, a casino and expansion of the mall to serve those with an insatiable desire to shop. One student at a recent discussion even suggested -- twice -- that there be a prohibition downtown on housing for the elderly.Some reasonable, some not.
But many other suggestions mirrored those advanced in the last year by county officials and residents: mass transit, an improved pedestrian network, nighttime entertainment venues and better parking facilities.
The Columbia Association is rolling out a new program that encourages volunteerism and good deeds by giving those who serve others points in a time bank that can be used “or tutoring, landscaping, transportation and errands, among other services.” It’s kind of like karma, only exclusively positive and you don’t have to wait for the afterlife to enjoy its benefits. I’d say Instant Karma, but I think that evokes negative connotations (“Instant karma gonna get you, gonna knock you right on the head”).
Finally, here’s a good story about HoCo’s newest organic/natural foods store, My Organic Market in Jessup, and how its emphasis on organic stuff is not just a marketing gimmick to get affluent liberals and other crunchy-types to buy their food, but an extension of their concern for the environment, too.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!