Who knew?

Talk about your visionary thinking...

I never thought much about it when they said your average food item travels over 2,000 miles before you get it. I just did not think it was this quick.

Gives me some ideas though..

Cannoli cream pipelines, Maple syrup de-cline railways (ask if your interested, and have funding), and I will not so easily abandon the concept of the BagelRail.


Tragedy strikes to the south of us

Apparently those in Greensboro did not get the memo that retired people are to be courted, as Roanoke does...

Check out this article: Not Greensboring Anymore

Greensboro ranked #40 out of America's cities for singles.

And yes, Roanoke even gets a mention in the article.

I'm very sorry Greensboro, your going to have to deal with a bunch of fun-loving people now.. rather than the retired and in bed by 8 like we get.

Just trying this out..

but I figured why not give you all something to listen to while I play around.

06 djbc-lovelynyc.mp3

Makes sense to me...

"Take this, for example. Oy. The base is an old 1930s building - a rather ridiculous structure that resembles a fascist movie set, but a rare example of its breed. Let us be charitable and note that the tower does not take its foundation into account as much as one might like. It looks like a chrysalis that will produce a robot Mothra.

If such a thing is proposed here, and the architects have sufficient pedigree, I imagine it would be celebrated as proof we’re a “world class” city, complete with the inhuman, arrogant, flavor-of-the-month architecture that title has come to suggest." Lileks

I can't help but draw comparisons between Minneapolis and our own fair city from time to time, mostly when I see things like this.

Don't get me wrong, I certainly do not expect to see any 80-story glass pickles being built atop the former "Day and Night Bank" building. But there is an arrogance to the forces-that-be telling us the Art Museum will represent the mountains - as if the common man is far too common to be able to see the vision, to see the greatness.

Those who mock it as the "wreck of the flying nun" and other things are, in a sense, undesirable - they do not have the intellect to see the beauty in the building, and by consequence - the art contained within.

And of course, this thought is not limited to worldly-art types either. Locally, it's easy enough to find. From the foothills of Mill Mountain, to the lowlands of downtown - the idea has taken hold that the "common man" (which is anyone other than the ones talking) is too blind?/ignorant?/uneducated? to grasp the simple concepts.

And sadly, our elected leaders are neither smart enough, nor bold enough, nor savvy enough to aid the citizens in any meaningful way.

Even those who consider themselves closely allied with them, oft times find nothing but disappointment.

In a nutshell, you have a city divided by it's own citizens, a fully independent city council that feels it answers to no-one. Vote them out you say? Like they are worried about that. They have no fear for their part-time jobs of representing the people. They make far more money, and have far more influence outside of the Municipal Building than they do within it.

So it's up to the citizens at large to stand up for themselves. Organize and revive the city.

I mean we are already getting one giant solar reflector, do we need a matching glass pickle?


New Roanoke 3

I have a feeling I am about to become very unpopular.

I stumbled upon a new phrase this weekend, which really caused me to think hard about Roanoke.

Cultural Sclerosis.

Now there are varying ideas as to what that exactly means, but at it's essence - it's a societal process - as sclerosis is "a hardening of tissue", the culture itself has solidified.

Now let's think about a different, yet related, concept.

Rampant Loser-ism.

How can we expect to attract the best and the brightest when we are constantly bombarded (at home and at work) with tales of young girls whose make it a point to get pregnant before graduation, young men who find it amusing and acceptable to sleep on the median of Crystal Spring Ave. because they spent all their "ride money" on beer, and are too drunk to get anywhere.

And this particular young lad lives in South Roanoke, up towards Boxley Hills.

Or how about the tale of a young girl, 17 - who engaged in adult activities with her mother's boyfriend. In public. And is proud of it.

We hear questions on why our schools have such a high drop out rate, and other asides.

Simple. Education is not valued. Cultural Sclerosis says these things are acceptable.

For the past x-amount of years, the city (and county, which has the same problems - just more spread out) - the losers have won. What good is hard work and an education, when you see so many people living life as they want, "making do with what they have."

Obsolete is accountability, replaced instead by acceptance.

"Well, thats just the way we do things."

"That's just the way he is."

Are standards that low?

Or let us not forget the old hymn: "This is the South."

Well I say hogwash.. balderdash and hogwash.

Accountability is not something that can be introduced like a virus, but it can be grown like a crop. And it is up to the community to show that there is a value to education, but not tolerating ignorance - and not giving it jobs, not allowing it to propagate in the workplace and holding employees to a higher standard.

Yes.. I said it - Standards.

If we, as a city, begin to work on the issue of raising standards for ALL people, not through legislation but through daily interaction, then perhaps.. just maybe - all the efforts at attracting and retaining will pay off. Until then, Roanoke is bereft with a low-powered work force.

Not to say there are not some smart folks and such around - but when visitors come from out of town - they see the mountains, the star, downtown and shuttle them out quickly before they have to stand in line at the bank while the teller reveals all the details about her hysterectomy to a poor businessman who just wants to deposit his check.

But I guess the crutch rears it's ugly head again, but that's a post for another day.

The real theme of this post -the message for a New Roanoke... stop accepting, and start raising.

"We've raised our standards, now up yours."