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Every blog needs a year-end wrap-up post. Here’s mine.
- January: I saw the future when I noted that modifications to the then-proposed “Safe Haven” law could cause serious trouble. My concerns were validated months later as nearly three dozen non-infants were dropped off at area hospitals.
- February: Mayor Chris Beulter backed Barack Obama. I guess he knows how to pick a winner.
Pretty much everybody in town complained about the City’s snow-removal practices. Some things never change.
Tina’sLina’s opened and quickly became one of my favorite Mexican restaurants in town.
My son spoke his first sentence.
Matt Olberding’s Biz Buzz premiered
- April: Lincoln reached the century mark.
We found out that the Scott brothers will develop the Haymarket arena. If/when it happens.
- May: Mr. T kicked off his Where in Lincoln series.
Lincolnite Akshay Rajagopal won the National Geographic Bee.
- June: Beerorkid discovered that Lincoln now has a “Street View” option on Google Maps. Soon the face of Google was revealed.
- July: Ken Svoboda earned a new nickname,
A bike trail bridge over North 27th Street was announced.
Lincoln got its first bodega.
- August: The Hamann Rose Garden reopened. So did Trago Park.
- September: Hy-Vee announced that its North 48th store would become a new Heartland Pantry. The neighborhood rejoiced.
Robin Eschliman declared her hatred for upholstered furniture.
An LPD officer killed a man with a TASER while MTV listened in.
One of KFOR’s favorite restaurants closed its doors.
- October: Harris Overpass reopened.
Nebraska had its first DNA exoneration.
The zoo caused a ruckus when it kicked out God.
- November: I liveblogged the election, thanks to KOLN/KGIN.
Mayor Beutler acknowledged that Antelope Valley could have been handled better.
- December: Lincoln officially christened a patch of blacktop on Q Street the Catalyst One Memorial Monument to Failure.
The Husker volleyball team ended the season with a loss that comes as close to a “moral victory” as you can get.
LPS tops the list for having the most schools in the state that “need improvement”. LPS administrators are too busy counting their raises to explain why it’s nothing to worry about.
What did you think about the year that was 2008?
One of my favorite hobbies leading up to Nebraska’s (almost) annual bowl games is watching press outlets do the standard “here’s everything you need to know about Nebraskans” stories for the locals. You know the kind: Nebraskans eat beef; Nebraska is flat; Nebraskans are fat; Nebraskans wear red; Nebraskans don’t know the meaning of “a la carte”; and so on. Most of the stories are trite, but occasionally you’ll find one that’s really amusing.
Laura Capitano’s ”Welcome the loveable Huskers” is definitely in the former category, so normally it wouldn’t be worth mentioning. But then I read the lone comment from a disgruntled Husker fan near the bottom of the page. (Note: The comment is PG-13.) Apparently we’re not all lovable.
Have you found any notable Nebraska stereotypes articles related to the Huskers’ upcoming appearance in the Gator Bowl? So far the pickings have been pretty slim. Not that I’m complaining. At least we’re going to a bowl game.
Call me goofy, but a tiny part of me wants to see something like the 1948-1949 winter in my lifetime. I don’t really care to see the damage that would come with it so I suppose I ought to be very careful about what I wish for. Still, I’m fascinated by Mother Nature’s power, not to mention Her quirks. Maybe October 1997 was my shot. If so, I suppose that’s ok. I do have a couple good stories to tell about that one. Nothing like 1948/49’s 18-foot drifts, though.
Nuts, I almost forgot this morning’s Where in Lincoln post! Never fear, I’m here with it now:
If I’m not mistaken, this edition of Where in Lincoln represents a first. But I’m not going to tell you what sort of first. That’s your job today.
UPDATE: beerorkid correctly guessed the mystery location of today’s photo. It was the interior of the Lincoln Children’s Museum:
I hope the holiday season is treating you well. The weekend went remarkably well for The Wilsons, with oodles of food and plenty of family time keeping us busy. Oh, and there were some presents, all of which were well-received as you can see above.
The best gift-opening story I heard came from occasional commenter and former Lincolnite Christopher. His pre-school-age niece tore off the wrapping paper to reveal a Hungry Hungry Hippos game. “It’s perfect!”, she exclaimed with a huge smile on her face. “It’s just what I always wanted!” She then went over to her father and whispered, with a confused look on her face, “What is it?” Priceless.
Our holiday season isn’t over yet. More family will arrive from Louisiana on New Year’s Day. That means there are still many rounds of Trivial Pursuit and many hands of Pitch and Oh Hell! to be played, many political jokes to be hurled, and many grumbles to be directed at football games. But first, a few days of work. Dang.
As part of my day job I work with folks from around the country (and the world). A bunch of folks I work with nearly every day—but whom I have never met—are heading to SXSW this March, and I would like to get down there to visit them. But I figure, why travel alone? If folks from around here are going we may as well carpool. Are any of you planning to hit SXSW Interactive? If so, and if you haven’t made travel plans yet, let’s talk.
Have any of you been to SXSW before? What should a guy expect down there?
Have you noticed how difficult it is to get work done on Christmas Eve? When I was a kid it was impossible to concentrate because my materialistic self couldn’t wait to see all the stuff I would collect that night and the next day. These days the thoughts distracting me are more “grown-up” in nature, but the effect is the same: I will likely get nothing of substance accomplished today. On the plus side I was very productive last night, assembling several items in advance so the recipients don’t have to worry about taking chunks of flesh out of their fingers like I did. Seriously: ouch.
I’m not sure how much I will be posting over the next few days. I will try to get a few fun posts up, but no promises. If you don’t hear from me, know that I wish you and yours a merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, and/or delightful winter weekend. Stay safe and happy, y’all.
These Lincoln Public Schools are in the doghouse under No Child Left Behind:
- Belmont Elementary
- Culler Middle
- Everett Elementary
- Saratoga Elementary
- West Lincoln Elementary
- Calvert Elementary
- Dawes Middle
- Holmes Elementary
- Irving Middle
- Lefler Middle
- Lincoln High
- Meadow Lane Elementary
- Mickle Middle
- Northeast High
- North Star High
- Park Middle
- Scott Middle
- Southeast High
- Southwest High
Lincoln’s 19 schools represent 46% of the state’s 41 schools that “need improvement”. Culler Middle School holds the dubious distinction of being on the list for three consecutive years, the longest of any school in the state.
I’m not a fan of No Child Left Behind and I am perfectly aware that the law has myriad flaws. “Needing improvement” under NCLB doesn’t necessarily correlate with school (or school district) problems. Still, owning nearly half of the state’s list isn’t great for appearances. What’s the deal, LPS?
Apparently the City’s snow-removal ability isn’t the only thing that’ll get Lincolnites ranting and raving. You can achieve the same effect by giving State and Federal workers a day off.
The topic raises a good question, though. Should State work schedules be tied, by law, to Federal work schedules? It doesn’t seem like an unreasonable policy in general, but to enshrine the policy in law seems like overkill. Can anybody make a convincing argument supporting the law?
I didn’t drive a lot this weekend, but I did get around a little bit. Late on Sunday I realized that I couldn’t recall seeing sand on any of Lincoln’s myriad icy roads. Was I just not paying attention—a definite possibility—or was there really no sand on all / most / many / some of Lincoln’s skating rinks?
Guest photographer Nikkidemas has chipped in two photos for today’s edition of the Where in Lincoln series. Do you know where these are located?
Bravo to D.M.B. for identifying KOLN/KGIN’s doppler radar:
Kudos to beerorkid for knowing this was part of the gazebo at Hartley Neighborhood Park near 31st and R:
The Missus and I ate dinner in the Haymarket last night. I didn’t realize how long it has been since we last ate down there. Way too long.
As is our custom, we followed up dinner with a trip to Ivanna Cone in the Creamery Building. Immediately upon opening the door to the building we heard live piano music. What’s this? A new bookstore? I had no idea! I’m not sure when Indigo Bridge Books first opened, but their grand opening celebration was held back in November. I’m really behind the times here.
Indigo Bridge is exactly the sort of business the Haymarket needs and Haymarket visitors crave. It had it all: live music, coffee shop, free cinnamon rolls from Bread & Cup, all in a comfortable and inviting atmosphere. I wasn’t more than two feet in the door when I actually said out loud to nobody in particular: “This place is awesome!” Judging by the warm smiles of virtually everyone else in the store my assessment wasn’t unique.
I don’t drink coffee and, I’m ashamed to say, I’m not much of an analog reader. Yet I fully intend to patronize Indigo Bridge. The owners have managed to create an entirely pleasant experience that fits perfectly with the store’s location. I don’t think it’s a stretch to assume Indigo Bridge will be around much longer than the previous tenants in that location.
Indigo Bridge Books (402-477-7770) is located inside the Creamery Building at 701 P Street.
Winter / Christmas / Holiday break started early this year, with LPS and other area schools closing today due to the weather. That means you parents of school-age kids have begun your stretch of seventeen days without school. Good luck with that!
Fletch offered up this interesting bit of news today:
BREAKING NEWS… speaking of food, the IHOP at 87th and Highway 2 is no longer an IHOP. It has signs for “Greenfield’s” pancake restaurant as coming soon and now hiring. All the IHOP signage is down, and the awnings have morphed from blue to green.
Thanks for the tip, Fletch! Can anybody confirm if the north IHOP is still wearing blue?
I hate to keep harping on this, but I can’t help but laugh at the folks at Public Works and their continued winter weather preparation problems. Back in early November they began applying a salt brine solution to the City’s roads once each week. The solution was supposed to be effective for at least a week. Early November, you may recall, featured some very pleasant weather so the brine did little good. Some people even said the solution made the otherwise dry roads slick. 0-for-1.
Then came the infamous Thanksgiving Incident. City crews skipped a week of brine application due to the holiday, rather than moving the application to a different day. Of course winter weather struck. Lincolnites mocked. 0-for-2.
This week we got hit with more snow, and snow and ice are forecast for later today. You might have already guessed this, but I’ll tell you anyway: crews didn’t apply the brine solution to City roads last week. Why not? It was too cold. 0-for-3.
So far Public Works is having a pretty rough winter with this salt brine solution. We’re never going to figure out if the stuff is worth the money if it is never applied at the right time.
- June 2013
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