Best Blog Post You Didn’t Read

This is a great example of citizen journalism.

Did you read it?  Don’t worry — I’ll wait.

You can listen to the City Manager’s comments to Worcester Local First.

Around the 11:20 mark, he says that the city should be “getting out of the business of parking garages and meters.”  This makes me extremely angry.  I went to the Forbes Library in Northhampton a couple of years ago to see a friend’s art show.  Did you know that the parking fees for that library parking lot directly support their public library’s book fund?  Instead of doing that with the Salem Square parking lot, we’re thinking about going in the opposite direction. 

Also, around the 8 minute mark, he says he got a complaint that he has  “the whole city under road construction” and that he wears that complaint “like a badge of honor.” 

Right about the 15 minute mark, he says, “Government’s got to listen.”

Honey, listen to me, the problem is NOT that the whole city is under road construction.  It’s that the wrong parts of the city are under road construction.  Why is Belmont Street still scarrified in areas between Plantation Street and Lake Ave?  Why are we narrowing some of the major arteries near the downtown? 

Around the 16 minute mark — “CitySquare is going to proceed…It’ll be the statement that we’ve talked about and more.”  Will the “and more” just confirm my lack of faith in the city government?

Any other comments on the City Manager’s remarks?

Worcester Blog of the Week

I’ve been thinking about blogs in Worcester this week, and not just because I started blogging.  I am a fan of “blog blogs” — I don’t do Twitter (though I do subscribe to a number of Twitter feeds in Google Reader) and I don’t believe in Facebook (though my husband is now up to 530 friends).  I like people who blog every (week)day, I like people who write long posts about things they’re passionate about, and I think people who comment on blogs are just as valuable as bloggers themselves.  (And I’m not just saying that because I comment a lot more than I blog…)

Kurt had a lovely post about the dearth of commenting and hat-tipping in blogging.  Since I was mentioned in both the digital blog log and the 508 podcast last week, I figured I would pay it forward and mention a Worcester blog I really, really like.

The Further Adventures of Bret M. Herholz is an art blog and not only can you register your kids for his classes at the Worcester Art Museum but you could commission an original piece of art from him.  

He is also a huge Doctor Who fan, and I’m especially excited to see pictures he’s done featuring the Fifth Doctor (or, as I like to call him, the Tristan Doctor.)  Also, for you fans of the Master, check out the post with all the Masters.  (Though for some of us, Roger Delgado will always be THE Master.)

Blogging can be a very solitary endeavour, and I think compliments can go a long way in encouraging someone to keep up the great work.  So, Bret, I don’t know you, but keep it up!!  (But, please, more Third and Fifth Doctors!)

Library Tip: Auto Repair Manuals

I don’t know how many people are aware of it, but the library has a very good collection of automotive repair manuals.

You can find them in the library catalog by searching for:

Author = Haynes, John Harold or Author = Chilton Book Company  (For my car model, the stock the Haynes manuals, but you might need to search for Chilton for your model.) 

You might also be able to find the book by LC Subject = (your car’s make).  So, if you own a Toyota, search by LC Subject = Toyota.

You’ll find listings like Toyota Automobiles — Maintenance And Repair, Toyota Automobiles — Maintenance And Repair — Amateurs’ Manuals, and Toyota Automobiles — Maintenance And Repair — Handbooks, Manuals, Etc.  You’ll also notice that there are individual listings for Toyota Celica Automobile, so you can also search by LC Subject = (make) (model) to refine your search.

We’ve replaced a control arm, a part for my directional signal, and an alternator for my car, all using the manual I took out of the library.  If you only need to make a repair to your car, and it’s not an emergency, I recommend requesting the repair manual online and then picking it up at the library checkout desk when it’s available.

Blurry Vision

My husband said the last post made him sound like more of a socialist than he actually is.  He thinks the city should take the mall and parking garages by eminent domain, redevelop them, and then sell them to someone else.  (He also wondered aloud last night whether Ni Hao, Kai Lan was a secret plot by Red China to indoctrinate our children.  I believe he was joking about that, though.)

In honor of that correction, I would like to nominate my top five bad downtown ideas (barring, of course, the mall situation):

5) The hospital formerly known as Med City.

4)  The AT&T Building.

3) Putting the new courthouse in its current location instead of knocking down the AT&T Building.

2) Putting a hotel right smack on top of the new courthouse, instead of leaving any space for future expansion.

1) The reflecting pool on the Common, which was taken down and replaced with a nice grassy area (which was a pretty good idea), only to be replaced by the thought of an ice-skating rink.

Any other nominations?