Voting with my feet

Rock on

Make a great downhill course, wouldn't it?

Every now and then I get tired of being a vehicle and become a pedestrian instead. Today was one of those days, so I spent 90 minutes hiking various trails in Palmer Park.

I ride the park at least once a week, usually on one cyclo-cross bike or another, which limits my choices from the trails menu. There may very well be people who can ride the entire Templeton Trail on a ’cross bike, for example, but I am not one of them. So today I stomped around on a mess of trails my wheeled self generally gives a wide berth — the Templeton, the Kinnickinnick, the Cheyenne and the Edna Mae Bennet.

It was a nice change of pace, and also a reminder of the price Bibleburg is paying for the honor of serving as a pilot project for Grover Norquist’s wet dream of drowning a shrunken government in a libertarian bathtub. The park crappers are locked and the water faucets shut off, and I get the impression that a lot of the recent trail maintenance was the work not of parks staff but of volunteers, specifically the Guardians of Palmer Park.

Just outside the park sit empty bus benches bearing signs saying the bus doesn’t stop there anymore, and downtown an even hundred of the century-old trees that make the Old North End so homey are coming down because they are either dead or dying thanks to an extended drought and reduced watering by the city. Plenty of our once-green parks are in a similar woeful state.

Elections have consequences, as folks here and elsewhere are learning the hard way. At least I hope they are.

• Late update: Meanwhile, we’re pouring another $21,500 down the five-ringed loo at the U.S. Olympic Committee — which already cost us $42.3 million in taxpayer dollars — for a temporary mural featuring a local gold medalist in an ludicrous attempt to make ourselves look pretty. Once again, satire runs a very poor second to reality.

11 Responses to “Voting with my feet”

  1. flahute Says:

    What drives me fucking bonkers in the 801 is how so many of the green spaces (whether parks or corporate campuses) do their watering in the heat of the day, every day … 4:00 pm on a hot summer day is not the most appropriate time to water; sprinklers should run for a longer amount of time, in the middle of the night, every 3 days, rather than every single day. This encourages deeper root growth (and thus stronger grass), and gives water a chance to soak in, rather than immediately evaporating in the summer sun.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Yeah, we have that going on here too. My fave is when the city folks water in the middle of a rainstorm, which doesn’t happen much ’cause we don’t get rainstorms anymore.

  2. Libby Says:

    Beautiful park. Last year state parks were closed or hours and facilities reduced in my neck of the woods

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      It is beautiful, Libby. I lived right next door to Palmer Park from ninth grade through senior year in high school. Then when Herself and I came back from Santa Fe we moved straight into the same house — it was great being just a few minutes away.

      Now it’s a slightly longer trip, but always worth it. Palmer Park is a trip back in time, a glimpse of what the east side of town looked like before developers dropped houses all over it.

  3. Khal Spencer Says:

    Really. I wonder if the wingnuts in Arizona still want to cut government services deeper–like maybe eliminate the firefighters….

  4. Larry T. Says:

    These folks WANT all the services (except the ones which benefit the poor or people of color) they just don’t want to PAY for them! But these sames folks continue to believe that making the rich folks in the USA richer somehow benefits them….despite plenty of proof that it doesn’t work. You all know what my wife says…

  5. SteveO Says:

    Funny … Nearly every stop that Palin made on her bus tour was a site maintained with federal tax dollars. Romney announced his candidacy at Bittersweet Farms, which still exists because of $1M in federal assistance.

    I have nothing against the libertarian idea of letting folks do their own thing. And I think there’s goodness in the conservative philosophy of individual rights and individual responsibilities. But the real world is a complicated place, and it’s impossible to practice any singular political ideology in a vacuum. Anyone who tells me he has the One Answer for our woes loses my attention and respect from the get-go.

  6. SteveO Says:

    Then again, the only party more disappointing than the Republicans is the Democratic party. And vice versa.

    The Dems see GOP largesse, not as hypocrisy, but simply as the cost of doing business. They think, if we call them on subsidies for oil companies, they’ll call us on the billions we hand out.

    Never overmissunderestimate either party’s ability to screw things up.

  7. Ira Says:

    It’s gatting so bad up here in the Great White Conservative North the senate pages are protesting http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2011/06/03/pol-senate-page.html

  8. bromasi Says:

    Yeah i’ts getting bad here in the redwoods of the nortcoast of Ca., parks closing and cutting back services. Really sad.

  9. Libby Says:

    Regarding satire/reality: how did the French police manage to steal your upcoming cartoon about AC running w/o lights in a French tunnel. Sucks, man (smirky face).

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