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.
If you are looking for me.. I've been busy lately - check the SE blog for information.
Of course, thats not all.. There will be another NewRoanoke this weekend.
Plus, once again your humble servant is mentioned in today's newspaper. An Oak-Leaf Filigree with Bronze Palm for the first person to spot me (excludes only a certain Fire Fighter, and the author of the article) and leave a comment.
Plus.. well, lets just say I have been active within the city. Very active.
Infiltration plans proceeding according to schedule. More later.
In the quest for 'coolness' and the young professional's dollar - Roanoke keeps coming up with ideas to improve itself. But there is one thing that must work, considering how many 'cool' cities are like this.
Maybe Roanoke should try it:
Startling new figures on NYC's middle class WABC Eyewitness News
(New York - WABC, April 3, 2007) - There are some truly startling figures out about how much money it costs a family of four to live a middle class lifestyle in New York City. The costs, according to the figures, is between $75 and $135,000 dollars a year. Those numbers are way above the national average.
And not surprisingly, many families here are having a very difficult time reaching that goal.
Eyewitness News reporter Sandra Bookman has the story.
Brooklynite Erica Casey-Lee says the family finances have definitely suffered while she's been on maternity leave since the birth of her second child, and making ends meet on her husband's salary alone is a delicate balancing act.
A new survey shows more and more New Yorkers are having to do the same thing in order to maintain a decent standard of living and things don't appear to be getting better.
In fact, while the median family income her is just over $49,000 dollars a year, those surveyed said it actually takes $75 to 135,000 dollars a year for a family of four to live a middle class standard of living.
While health insurance, owning a computer with Internet access and having a full-time job were considered essentials for a middle class standard of living in New York, reasonable housing expenses were at the top of the list.
Many housing advocates say that's not surprising in a city where million dollar plus apartments are becoming the rule not the exception.
Still, despite the challenges of making a life here, nearly every single person we interviewed told us any place else simply wouldn't be New York City.
(Copyright 2007 WABC-TV)
Just think, if we overinflate the Cost of Living, Housing, and the rest of the day to day expenses - it must make a place cool! There is not one major city that does not have this problem, so it must not be a problem - must be a solution.
Of course I jest, but those figures will give anyone pause for thought.
Myhometownhelper.com is set up by the good folks at Hamburger Helper/General Mills to fund community projects. The Roanoke City Police Department has asked for a grant of $4,000 to wipe out graffiti in Southeast Roanoke.
The folks in charge at Myhometownhelper.com decide on the 15th of every month which projects they will fund.
We have 20 supportive comments now, but I would like to see more.
Fine. You want the younger generations to come home, make this home, just be here. That's an admirable goal.
You cannot buy the youth off with kayak parks and amphitheaters. Seriously.
What the youth want is what everyone else wants. A sense of stability, a job they enjoy, and a place to hang out with your friends and have a beer.
Does Roanoke have it?
Somewhat - but the desperation with which they "attempt" to court the young professional is like the stink of fear. It clings.
What makes a city cool? The same things that make it livable. Jobs, services, a mix of everything and nothing.
First thing that young people notice about Roanoke is the beauty. The majestic mountains, the sculpted landscapes - touched by heaven. The 2nd thing is the gritty feel of certain areas - which feels comfortable to those from major cities. 3rd - the serenity of it all.
That's it. Everything else comes later. But the first impact Roanoke makes on someone who has not been here before is those 3 things.
Not the Market - which is a great discovery when they find it. The greenway system is another bonus. Mill Mountain and it's zoo are nearly overwhelming when added to the bowl that is Roanoke.
But let them look a bit deeper, and it becomes apparent that there are cracks in the surface of the bowl.
No support for the kinds of things they want to see, no community to interact with. Low standards, low accountability, and plenty of other chinks in the glaze.
But that happens, and they stick it out - balancing one with the other.
Listen, and focus.
We know Roanoke can be better.
Darlene Burcham recently said that the key to the real revolution in Roanoke is letting people know that this city will not be dragged down by low standards and poor behavior. Direct, honest, and simple. Like that guy that was peeing on the column before the pedestrian walkway Saturday afternoon. Easily 20 people walked by and saw him. Right out in the open, not even attempting to hide it (wearing coveralls makes it hard to shield anything). 20 people walked right by and let this nimrod make our city look bad.
Well, I had a gentle word with this numbnuts - letting him know in no uncertain terms that it was not a bright idea, and a citizen's arrest carries just as much weight with the judge as a cops. Weather it took or not, I can't say - he just walked off.. but that's just one person. If multiple citizens said something - perhaps he would get it through his head... and if not, well - a witness is as good as a photograph.