Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Transitional Round Up...

Off in the distance, if you listen really close, you can probably hear the creaking of hamster wheels resuming the tireless spinning that keeps this blog going.

It’s always a slow, inelegant transition from one year to the next – oh, the shredding of mislabeled checks well into February -- but this blog should find its flow in a couple days weeks. No need to rush, right? We’ve got the whole year.

Keeping in mind the nature of this sub-month, how about a transitional Round Up? In this sense, “transitional” means primarily that it will exist somewhere in the transition from bad to just OK, though let’s see if we can make it an overarching theme in this post, too.

Am I making sense? I hope not.


A new housing director is appointed, then profiled. Read all about Howard’s young head housing honcho, Stacey Spann, and the journey he’s taken in this Baltimore Sun piece.

A new governor takes office, Republicans lose jobs. This story is about the goodly group of Howard Countians appointed to by the Ehrlich administration, almost all of whom are now looking elsewhere for work. As with anyone who enters politics as a profession, none seem crestfallen by the transitory reality they’re facing. In fairness, the story’s first line is miserable, and not even in a malicious or biased way. It’s just so…lazy.

Hammond High gets a new football coach. Cautious alumni hope for a winning percentage north of a respectable major league batting average. For the non-sports inclined, I’d say upping the win total from two to three would be a good start.

Beer for tree-huggers. Yum.


The Columbia Association approves funding for our city’s 40th birthday party, and the story’s first quote from a board member is: “This is a bad vote.” I’m not sure why board chair Tom O’Connor feels this way (something about conflicting with the Festival of the Arts, maybe?), but then, I never really know what to expect from my suburban overlords. Best to not think too much, I suppose. Anyway, the party will last 40 days and 40 nights, which I also think is a little odd.

In other CA news, they’re still addressing symptoms and not causes. Here’s our predicament: Angst-ridden, rebellious teenagers are bored by their cloistered suburban existence. In search of fun, they convince older siblings or morally-challenged strangers to purchase for them light beers and wine coolers – booze that goes down (and comes up) easily. They consume said beverages in authority-free zones, which, around here, consist of tot-lots during the darkness of night. This upsets non-teenage residents, who enjoy taking their children to playgrounds that aren’t littered with partying paraphernalia and sleeping without the sound of revelry in the background. These residents request that something be done to stop this menace. CA puts up a sign and issues platitudes about “enforcing the rules.”

What if, instead of more signs, we had more activities for teenagers? What if we installed lights on a few public basketball courts and let kids play all night? What if we had at least one night of teenage garage bands every week at a CA facility? What if there were a few nightspots in Columbia that weren’t solely intended for use by over-21 residents?

Seems to me that teenagers are as good as the rest of us at assessing options, and given a set of viable set, they usually make half-way decent decisions. Unfortunately, tot lots are but one of only a few local options for entertainment; they are also the only places where the cloud of “parent-sanctioning" is not so heavy.

Other “Sames:” Growth. Local questions bringing people from all over out of the woodwork (Connecticut? Canada?).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hardly the woodwork. Our shared avian ecosystem does reach to Canada after all.

Similarly, our Chesapeake Bay watershed does stretch far and wide, with the Bay being fed from waters from six states (including New York) and D.C.

No man/place is an island. Think Globally. Act Locally (and Regionally).