Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Oddly enough, I feel better having gotten this off my chest...

Went fishing with my father again today. No pictures this time though, no digital camera and oh, I didn't catch anything so there was that too. Still had fun though. Other than that I didn't do all that much today. Wifey and I went over to my parent's house for the usual barbecue fare yesterday. That was fun.

There has been something on my mind lately. There is a small section of Huntsville Alabama called The Village of Providence. It is a small patch of businesses and apartments that is new and hoping to lure young professionals. You see being from Providence I found it funny to hear of the little town taking the name of mine and even a small bit of inspiration from this my hometown. This article in the local paper made me think. Something about it made it seemed a bit goofy. Come up with something of your own. Be original. Were things jumping out at me. I brought it up with my wife and brother and they both were unimpressed with the idea. Out of the three respondents to my survey and the results were staggering. Not a great idea to model your new developments on existing cities and towns. Build and maintain a decent neighborhood and you will draw its own identity.

I really am not sure why this bothers me so much. Until now! I just checked out there website and while they do certainly thank the designers of this McNeighborhood not one mention of the original Providence.

I know what you are thinking folks. Simply using the word Providence in their title is nothing and I would have to agree with that. The thing is, if you check out the street names on this map of "The Village". Thayer, Hope, Meeting, Benefit, Biltmore, A little bit of googling and you would quickly find that these are all names of major streets in Providence. A square and fountain have even been developed as a replica of a square here in my fine city.

I keep thinking -- imitation is the highest form of flattery, but it doesn't help. I can't seem to let this go and there is no reason that I can think of as to why. It shouldn't matter and had I not moved away from Providence for about eight years I wouldn't have even given it a thought but it just bothers me. If people want to see the quaint little neighborhoods of Providence come up to Rhode Island and see the real thing. Spend some time and some money in The real Providence. A town with a little more (to be read, bunches more than your city's) history and not a town that was founded on someone's desk as a drawing and a marketing plan. I guess that's what bothers me. That someone, somewhere believes that by designing pretty buildings and mixing it with small businesses and planning it all out that you can create a sense of community. I am sure that it cannot be created. It must form over time and experience. Generations of familiar families and friends. Trusting the people around you. Can't plan it with shrubs and walkways folks. You have to earn it.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Let's hope that in some sense of karmic retribution George W Bush will be spending some time doing some actual labor someday...

I spent the early morning of my Labor Day with my Dad. He picked me up at 8am for a trip to a really big sale at a really big music store (as in instruments not cd's.) I was there as a consultant to help my dad pick out a good guitar. He has just recently picked up the guitar again after about fifteen years of not playing. I am easing him back into it as a hobby. I gotta say I'm a bit jealous. I have a pretty nice guitar myself but going shopping for a new one is hard to do when you end up at home without one. We stopped off to get some breakfast and got ourselves all worked up because of things like this, and this, and this. We shouldn't be allowed to talk about this administration at all. We both get a little riled. We completely agree of course we both just get a little hot under the collar when we talk about the boneheaded move after boneheaded move this administration seems to get away with without a major effect in public opinion about him. It seems to me impossible that so many intelligent people in this country would give their support to a guy who would sell them up the river if it helped his compassionate conservative big business financiers. A guy who hides behind his father's library seal on most of his past but who loves to point out the past mistakes of others. A guy who... I have to stop. I could be here all day and we all know it. Yet somehow nearly half of the country seem happy to fight for the guy let alone vote for him. It scares us both.

Anyway, Have a good labor day everyone or anyone out there. Please follow the links up there and do a little digging. Find out the truth and get the word out. It scares me so much to think of what this guy could do without having to be held accountable by facing another election. It should scare you too. VOTE!

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Is there a better way to spend a weekend evening than in a kyack on the narragansett bay catching fish? Posted by Hello