Called by some "The Most Powerful Blog in Roanoke," and "The Most Dangerous Blog in Roanoke" by others. A harsh light shining within the City of Roanoke, as it struggles to comprehend what it's place in the 21st Century will be.
We've come a long way, and we still have more years of greatness ahead.
Let the Star City shine once again.
I'm just back from the Career Lifestyle Expo at the Civic Center, and boy are my arms tired!
Sorry.. never mind
It was quite interesting, I will say that much. Well attended, although the crowds average age skewed higher than I thought it would, but que sera sera... Ukrops got out to an early lead on hiring pre-opening. Smart move for them, as it will be much easier to set a base and fill in the cracks in the busy time leading up to opening.
The City, County, and Carilion were all well represented, as was the banking industry. Points off for Orvis and Enterprise Rent-A-Car for having unmanned booths, but the atmosphere more than made up for the dead spaces. For quite a good number, this was not only an opportunity to meet and greet with local businesses, this was a good chance to get to know other people of like minds.. people in the industry. Network, if you will.
Hats off to Stuart Mease for putting this whole shin-dig together. Seems like Stuart and I will be working together in the future to shine a spotlight on Roanoke blogs - it seems anyway. So consider this a Call to Blog!
If you have had the thought.. "gee, I could do this. This guys an idiot, even a monkey could write like he does..." or anything similar - I invite you to do it. Start a blog, blogger is free you know. Or start one and give it to a monkey.. if you feel so inclined.
If you already have a blog, but don't use it nearly as often as you know you should - do it.
And if you are a former charter member of the SCBA, rethink the past - and think about the future. Maybe an affiliation is not such a bad thing after all.
There you have it. Well attended, enjoyed by many, and perhaps worth repeating in a few months. Spring break, summer vacations, blah blah.. Maybe quarterly is the way to go on this.
Well, it was worth it. Too bad you weren't there. If you were, drop a line and let me know what you thought.
Just compiling a short (hopefully, mercifully) list of things I will do in 2007, for you all to share and revel in.
Record and post more podcasts. I would do one right now, but my basset is snoring like an unruly drain. The noises would be sure to turn you all off.
Rebuild and upgrade the website, including finding off-shore hosting which will give me more freedom to run it as I want it. It's been a heck of a year, and I constantly feel guilty that the site itself has been mostly ignored.
Make plans to bring together my local readers (if they so choose) and perhaps tour some of the sites featured in my ramblings.
Build stronger relationships with the upcoming leaders of the New Roanoke, a concept you will all be hearing more about in the coming year.
Cease the endless teasing of you, the reader, with snippets of projects - in other words, no posting of something until it's complete. Exception being a series of posts - then you'll just have to wait.
Push for more recognition for the Roanoke Bloggers, don't we deserve our own popularity contest in the Roanoker magazine? Course we all know Rhett would win - having all the Fire Fighters "vote early, and often" as is common to the job.
In a nutshell, thats how I plan on starting off 2007. In mid-06, I lost the ability to straight out live-cast using my cell phone. A tragedy I'm sure you all felt. Something to do with Google taking over Blogger, Odeo ending the service, and more such nonsense - but I will do my best to get the dirt straight to you - the public, when it happens and as it happens.
Consider me the 5th Estate - the last house on the left, if you will - A miasma of news, commentary, history, and the future - all rolled into one fuzzy bundle of love.
Oh yes, 2007 will be an entirely whole new ballgame - the revolution begins anew, and as some random keyfob on Amazon says: "Roanoke, Proud of our past, confident in our future."
Who could disagree with that? Well, if you do - it's time for you to leave town. Or buy one of those $149,900 "condos" they are building at Factory 324/Iroquois/Peerless Candy Co. building. Because your just the kind of sucker that would.
Automotive Commercial Historic District"
I defy ANYONE to explain that one to me. A former tobacco yard.. oh forget it. I'm not even going to bother.
See you all tomorrow, some of you at the Career and Lifestyle (Free!) Fair at the Civic Center between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. But you didn't hear me promote that, now did you?
Americans once expected parents to raise their children in accordance with the dominant cultural messages. No matter how much you can blame Davis for, you can't excuse those self-serving, special-interest-driven, pandering elected-but-not-selected politicians. Ballmer: Security Tops Microsoft's Priority ListBallmer said he wishes the security researchers "would be quiet as that would be better for the world. My problem is I have a lot of difficulty trusting what I hear from Microsoft in general and Ballmer in particular. Who knows, maybe keeping the "Do Not Call List" in place will even cut down on incidents of Postal Disease. Those are the slugs that should have been recalled. The World of Music will be reformed soon and you won't be in it anywhere. Then there was the disgusting folderol in the courts brought about by the ACLU. It is not the Governor that got us here. I think most of today's shopping public has been denied the experience of shopping at a store that gave away lessons in respect and quality while at the same time selling its products. Say what you might, but I think it speaks well of the man. I'm just sick over this revelation. I mean, I know how -bad- unsuitable Davis is. Folks, the sun is has seems to be very probably did set is now setting on The Golden State. Oh yeah; technology opens all sorts of vistas. We celebrate each others painful, horrific deaths by keeping tallies, running headlines, smiling in the streets. We about to spend millions of unavailable dollars for the recall, confuse everything and everyone, set expectations that cannot be realized and make no progress, real or imagined. Consultant with their Security Awareness Practice. She said, "It must have gone astray. Generally, the people would respond negatively and she would wander off, but occasionally someone would nod and there would be a quick exchange of money for something she carried in her bag. The full story is here. He may discover the RIAA has figured out it can gain added profits from law suits. They are plagued by dust which follows them in large, billowing clouds. she promised good service. If your failure comes back to you, you can address it as another "event" and it can be handled without regard to the original, failed commitment. And what you believe should not be based upon who told you but rather your own independent validation of what you've been told. Changed the style sheet, too. Still, I do have to pay for the bandwidth on this site so, in spite of the downward trend here, I just might help with this one, too. Changed the style sheet, too. Humans cannot be contained, restrained, channeled, directed. Someday I want to go to, say, the market and see some product that says, right there on the box, "the same old stuff. Maybe the shipping label was unreadable. What a selfless and loving act. They've even picked up a lawsuit charging program vulnerabilities fly in the face of "suitability" and "marketability. Covering up Spirit of Justice or not wanting to be photographed in front of her is just silly, incredibly immature. On Wednesday it had not arrived. I was stupid, indeed I was.
Yes, I was stupid - reading this to begin with - but yet it's somehow fascinating.
While talking with fellow employees today (one of whom is born and raised here, and one who is from New Jersey) and tossing around ideas, the question was asked that I have been asked many a time over.
"Why not take your ideas down to the City Council and see what they think?"
I generally laugh such an idea off (having evil designs of my own, of course), but tonight while in the process of watching "Looking Back" on WCOX, specifically the section on Design '79, and the recent design sit-in held at the City Market building - I finally came up with a solid answer to the above question.
Why worry about the City Council, they are just servants of the public (or used to be). The only way to truly affect change anywhere is to make sense to the people. Talk to the people, listen to the people - and from there, anything is possible. I think thats a lesson forgotten often these days, when City Council members have tarnished pasts that are hidden, yet still affect them to this day. And no, I'm not talking about Bev.
If the citizens speak with one (or as close to one as possible) voice, the city will have no choice but to listen. It is a desire, a determination, and a drive to constantly improve your lot in life - it's human. Some have forgotten that as well. But that desire can be reawakened, that drive refueled. In the simple hope and wish that the life of their child will be better than the one they had. But too many people believe that kind of life is unattainable here in Roanoke, and they impress this (knowingly or not) upon the child.
And then the city is left in the state it is currently in - a fearless City Council, unafraid as there are no "strong contenders" who are younger, smarter, faster, and better than they are. A struggle to attract and retain the local college students who are from outside the area, a oxymoron-ish housing situation, where perfectly good homes are left to ruin by landlords and tenants alike, yet the good homes are priced out of the range of most young people (and if you think it's bad, try the suburbs of New York City - average salary for someone just out of school is only enough to scrape by on rent and utilities - not to mention nice things like food, gas, and perhaps some form of amusement - and people wonder why kids never move out...).
Some of the best views in Roanoke, and the most centrally located housing in what should be considered the most desirable location for a businessperson is valued at less than $30,000 (* according to city GIS and tax assessment information). This is not only a shock, but a virtual disgrace. Most business owners do not like staying miles or minutes away from the business - they want to be there in seconds. But instead - due to it's proximity to downtown, it is considered a virtual ghetto - undesirable and unwanted.
Why would I waste my voice attempting to convince politicians that, in the interests of the city and it's citizens, it is imperative that those properties be valued - empty lots that high above the downtown area could mean many different opportunities. New upscale hotel, new restaurant similar to Carlos (with its overreaching view), new park (or should I just not bring up the Woodland Park debacle).. the possibilities are endless, should one want to see them.
And with an entrenched City Council, the argument needs to be brought to the people, to the public, to the taxpayers... Those who still believe that we have a representative government, and those who want to believe.
So no, there is no reason for me to bring my ideas to the City on a silver platter. There is more to be gained by speaking to the people, the business owners, and those who work every day and rest every night. To paraphrase W.E. O'Shaughnessy (via Willy Wonka) "They are the music makers, and they are the dreamers of the dream."
Sometimes the word can make the dream real, and sometimes the dream itself provides the word.
Now that the Christmas Holiday is behind us (364 shopping days left), and the new year lies ahead - this is the quiet downtime while the world waits. In a change of pace this year, fellow blogger and Municipal Worker-type Stuart Mease has put together a little job fair.
The partial list of attendees include some of the largest companies in the valley, one of which is technically not even here yet - but will be come March (or so), the local governments, local art and "lifestyle" (whatever that means) groups, and even the Roanoke Regional Small Business Development Center.
And that's just the short list - I'm sure the list has grown since this one was published.
Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Roanoke Civic Center (located on scenic Williamson Rd.), admission is free.
I'm off that day, so I might just see fit to come down off the hilltop overlooking downtown and put in an appearance.
In a related note (to being on the hill overlooking downtown), Mrs. RoanokeFound saw fit to present me with yet another dangerous tool in my hands. The Computer-aided, lazer assisted, high-tech stealth device I received will allow me to peer even further into downtown Roanoke, and easily track goings on.
Good for me, bad for those who turn tail and run at the sight of the Forgotten-Roanoke.com jacket. And you know who you are.. Mr. "Cough to get Attention at Tanglewood Mall"...