Latest Blog Posts

This Morning’s Audio

February 29, 2012 at 10:50pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Here’s the audio from my appearance with Leigh Esau and Joan Kinsey on the Jack & John Show this morning. It was a blast, as always. Thank you, Jack and John, for having us on the show. And thank you Leigh and Joan for joining me on relatively short notice.

I like to think that we made at least a little bit of difference. The Missus was approached this morning at the Y by a woman who said she had heard the show. She had pondered forster parenting for a while, but she hadn’t quite been able to pull the trigger on getting licensed. After listening to us on the radio, she decided to give it a try. Thank you, anonymous woman, for taking that next step.

Remember folks, if any of you are thinking about getting into foster parenting or if you want to support foster children in some way but you aren’t quite sure how, I’m here to help.

I’m On the Radio

February 28, 2012 at 10:57pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

I will be on Jack & John (KLIN 1400AM) tomorrow morning starting around 8:00am to talk about foster parenting and related issues. Also appearing will be Leigh Esau and Joan Kinsey, both of whom are passionate foster parents.

Please tune in! And remember, even if you don’t have a radio or you’re out of KLIN’s coverage area, you can listen online.

20 Questions: WIL-Replacement Edition

February 27, 2012 at 2:30pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Mr. T is AWOL today so that means no Where In Lincoln post. But that doesn’t mean we can’t all have a little fun! It has been waaaaay too long since we last played so you may be a bit rusty. Let’s review the rules:

  1. The answer is related to Lincoln.
  2. The questions should be worded so they generate a yes/no answer.
  3. Each person may ask one question at a time. After your question has been answered, you may ask another one.
  4. Ask your question as a comment to this blog post. Do not ask your question as a reply to another comment (i.e. a “nested comment”).

If you haven’t played before, here are some examples to review: Snow Day Edition; Winter Solstice Edition; Mr. Wilson’s Vacation Edition, Nikkidemas Asked For It Edition..

Ask away!

 

Check inside for a list of the questions asked so far.

Solved! Check inside to see how the answer was reached.

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Heroes of Polar Plunge 2012

February 26, 2012 at 2:11pm By: Mr. T Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

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A bizarre assortment of freaks turned out for the Polar Plunge in Lincoln yesterday morning. This included the fruit of the loom guys, gnomes, bikini babes, cross dressers, superheroes, Austrian musicians, pirates, and various other weirdos. It was all to benefit the Special Olympics Nebraska. Good going all!

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At Least Somebody Loves Them

February 23, 2012 at 12:00pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Lincoln’s favorite roadway design has won an engineering award. That’s right, you haters out there. At least somebody loves the roundabouts outside Memorial Stadium.

I don’t have a big opinion of the roundabouts myself. I like roundabouts in general and in the right circumstances. I haven’t traveled in this specific area very much, though, and not at all during periods of heavy traffic flow, either before or after the installation of the roundabouts. (Driving through them when there’s nobody else around, as I’ve done to date, isn’t particularly exciting.)

Actually, the only thing I don’t like about driving in that area is that when you leave the parking lot just north of Memorial Stadium, you can’t turn left (southwest) onto Salt Creek Roadway, and you can’t (legally) do a u-turn at 14th Street. That means I usually have to do a loop through Downtown rather than just going straight over to 9th Street as I’d prefer. Bleh.

I’ve Really Got to Stop That

February 21, 2012 at 1:00pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Dear Self,

Please stop reading the comments on articles over at JournalStar.com. You know how it causes your brain to seize up, and the frustration, anger, confusion, and complete loss of hope for the future of humanity you experience while reading the comments only puts you in a sour mood. And don’t get yourself started thinking about all of the spelling and grammar errors!

Instead of torturing yourself by reading the comments, how about doing something more productive with your time? Possibilities include:

  • Smash your head against the basement wall to create holes for the egress windows you plan to install
  • Count the number of hairs on Daisy the Wonder Schnoodle’s back
  • Eat gravel
  • Engage in omphaloskepsis

Please, Self. I beg you.

Yours,

Me

Run for the Bridges

February 21, 2012 at 12:57pm By: Mr. T Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Fans of Wilderness Park should keep March 17th circled on their calendars for the upcoming Run for the Bridges benefit trail run. A marathon, half-marathon, and 6-mile run will be held to raise proceeds for the various bridges that need repair work throughout Wilderness Parks. The registration deadline is March 7th.

The run starts at the day camp area at 1st and Park, and will then go south past Old Cheney. Timing chips will be donated by the Lincoln Track Club. All entrants will receive a string bag for participating in the run. 

This sounds like a pretty cool, low-key event. Even though there will be timing, in events like this walkers are encouraged, and I imagine that many of the runners will join just to help benefit the cause and not for competitive reasons. Hopefully by then the trails will be reasonably dry!

Where in Lincoln is this?

February 20, 2012 at 2:14pm By: Mr. T Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

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EDIT: Solved!

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You’ll Be Shocked

February 17, 2012 at 11:55am By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

You’ll be shocked to hear that Whole Foods is the grocer being discussed to go in to the new LPS project at 59th and O Streets. That was one of the worst-kept secrets in recent memory in Lincoln.

The only remaining question, I suppose, is will it actually happen? Momentum seems to suggest that yes, it will. But we’ll see. If nothing else we now have solid evidence that Whole Foods is shopping in the Lincoln market, and we have a rough idea of the sort of location they’re looking at. Even if this particular project doesn’t work out—and I’m not aware of any good reason to think it won’t—we can be fairly certain Whole Foods is going to show up somewhere eventually. That’ll make many locals giddy.

Eye Witness

February 15, 2012 at 2:20pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

I don’t know all the facts of the case. I wasn’t on the jury. I didn’t investigate the case. I wasn’t there at the time of the crime.

But after the conviction of Armon Dixon based largely on his selection out of a photo line-up, this MSNBC piece seems relevant.

What’s Your Tax Druthers?

February 15, 2012 at 12:20pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Which would you rather pay: property tax or sales tax?

Mayor Beutler wants to lower your property tax rate in exchange for raising the sales tax rate by a portion of a cent. A 3 cent deduction in the property tax rate (ten-ish percent) would save the average homeowner about $45 per year and cost the City about $5 million. Meanwhile, a half-cent increase in the sales tax would bring in about $19 million annually.

One of Beutler’s goals with the suggestion is to provide property tax relief, since that’s such a popular refrain among voters. I’m not so sure they meant “provide property tax relief ... while charging me more for everything I buy”, but perhaps I’ve misunderstood them. Voters are pretty goofy, after all. It’s not clear just how much extra a person could be expected to pay under an increased sales tax plan, or how regressive or progressive it would be relative to the property tax. Anybody who buys anything pays sales tax; anybody who owns or rents property pays property tax. Both scenarios cover pert near everyone.

One of the “special projects” that could be funded if extra revenue were generated is the South Beltway. I would argue that the South Beltway should be filed under “mandatory projects” rather than “special projects”, but let’s not get wrapped up in semantics. The point is that we could, hypothetically, find ourselves able to pay for things we aren’t otherwise able to afford. Important, necessary things. I’ll gladly pay a couple extra cents on my weekly Oso Burrito trip if it means making those projects happen.

On the other hand, there are of course no guarantees right now that any extra revenue wouldn’t go toward what might be called in voterspeak “red tape”. I’m not exactly sure what that would look like, but if Lincolnites think that’s what would happen, it would be poison to Beutler’s plan. Perhaps he could pinkie swear that all the projects paid for by the extra revenue would be awesome.

Is the tax swap a good idea in your eyes?

Ivanna Sample Some

February 15, 2012 at 12:00pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

Ivanna Cone is hosting a fundraiser for the William G. Lauer Foundation on February 28 from 6pm to 9pm. The foundation supports individuals living with ALS in Nebraska. For a $10 donation, attendees get to sample 30 flavors of ice cream. Last year’s event raised over $2,000.

Ivanna Cone offers the best ice cream in Lincoln, but the toughest part of going there is deciding which flavor of ice cream to order. At the fundraiser you won’t have to decide—try ‘em all! That’s my kind of fundraiser.

Where in Lincoln is this?

February 13, 2012 at 12:51pm By: Mr. T Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

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EDIT: Solved!

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Vacation Planning

February 13, 2012 at 12:25pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

The Wilsons are headed northwest this summer. I would love to hear any advice any of you folks have to help improve our trip.

First we’re going to spend three nights at a cabin at Fort Robinson. We’ll be there with my parents and my sister’s family. We last went in 2009 when Robbie was three. Our family has grown 40% since then, so it will be exciting to get back out there with the larger crew.

Robbie and Morgan walking at Fort Robinson

After that we plan to head up to the Black Hills. We’ll probably hit Cascade Falls on our way up toward Hot Springs. After that ... who knows! There’s so much to do: Custer State Park; Needles Highway; Jewel Cave; Sylvan Lake; Harney Peak; the mammoth dig; Mt. Rushmore; Reptile Gardens; and on and on. We’ll probably rent a cabin and stay for anywhere from 3-7 days; four days is probably most likely at this point.

I’ve been to the Black Hills many times, but my most recent visit was way back in July 1995*. I imagine things have changed a fair bit since then. What’s hot these days that we just have to see? What should we definitely avoid? Any “hidden gems” we ought to investigate? Any cabin recommendations?

The vacation is five months away but I’m already looking forward to it. Who doesn’t love a road trip? Joey and Keishor have never been on a vacation like this so it will be fun to see their reaction to everything. I imagine we’ll hear many shouts of “This is so cool!”. And probably lots of “Are we there yet?“s as well. I guess that’s unavoidable.

* The last time I was in the Black Hills was in 1995 with my parents. It was our last major family vacation, though my sister didn’t go with us. I read a lot of books on that trip, one of which was Congo by Michael Crichton. I really enjoyed it. On a particularly scorching hot day we decided to enjoy the air conditioning in a theater. We decided to see Congo since I had just read the book. SPOILER ALERT: the movie sucked donkey socks. Whodathunk that one of the most memorable parts of that trip would be going to watch one of the most wretched atrocities in cinema history? Amy! Amy! Ugh. Stupid animatronic gorilla.

On Toppers

February 13, 2012 at 12:00pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

The Downtown diners among you have probably been waiting for Toppers [WARNING: obnoxious music] to open so you could check it out and compare it to all the other pizza joints in the area: Yia Yia’s, Lazzari’s, Sam & Louie’s, Papa John’s, Old Chicago, Pies & Pints. Taste of Lincoln has a first look. The core message: Toppers isn’t a dine-in restaurant, it’s a carryout and delivery joint.

Oh sure, you can dine in. But seating is extremely limited, and that’s just not the focus of the restaurant. Toppers is a new Domino’s, not a new Sam & Louie’s.

You might wonder then, as I have, why they chose the location they chose. It seems like such a dine-in-oriented and expensive location. I suppose visibility is a big reason. Getting established Downtown isn’t easy, so they want to catch folks’ eyes and stay on their minds by locating in a prominent, frequently-seen spot, as opposed to situating in a boring ol’ strip mall like, say, Papa John’s.

Will diners go for it? It’s obviously far too early to tell. You can help be the judge on that by giving Toppers a try at some point. I would be happy to, though I’m not sure when I’ll be able to grab a carryout order to test them out. Depending on their delivery zone, perhaps I’ll go that route instead.

Let us know what you think after you give Toppers a try.

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