Sunday, December 20, 2009

Instead of Makin' Me Better, You Keep Makin' Me Ill

Isn't it interesting how at certain times in your life you can come across an old song that you hadn't heard in forever, but you find yourself particularly drawn to the theme of that song more now, than you did when you first knew the song. And do you find yourself wondering "Why am I hearing that song NOW?"

That happened to me yesterday as I drove across the vast city of Chesapeake to go pick up three little munchkins. I found myself jamming out and singing at the top of my lungs to a teenaged song and it struck me how much the lyrics applied to my life, personally, at this moment in time, but even still, how they also apply to our beloved NoMi.

Take a listen and look for yourself, and think of a time in your life when the 'cure' is really the 'poison'. And think of NoMi.

"...I can't stay on your life support, there's a shortage in the switch,

I can't stay on your morphine, cuz its making me itch

I said I tried to call the nurse again but shes being a little bitch,

I think I'll get outta here, where I can

Run just as fast as I can

To the middle of nowhere

To the middle of my frustrated fears

And I swear you're just like a pill

Instead of makin' me better, you keep makin' me ill

You keep makin' me ill ..."

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Bringing the LRT to NoMi

Photo of Hiawatha LRT from tboard's flickr photostream

As a NoMi passenger, I see the development of Light Rail Transit (LRT) as an important, no, VITAL, step in the resuscitation of this urban core neighborhood.

Most readers probably know that there is a new LRT route in the works to connect the northwestern suburbs with downtown Minneapolis. One of the proposed routes for that line would come through NoMi via West Broadway (the North Memorial Hospital)to Penn Ave towards Highway 55, a.k.a Olson Memorial Hwy. Part of this blog's mission will be to organize, advocate for and promote that proposed route through NoMi. It simply must happen.

Thinking about the reality of having that LRT line be developed, built and run through a slice of our community makes my mind boggle with hope. Excitement. Complete fascination with witnessing first hand the changes in thousands of people's lives that would ensue. And for the record, yes, it does conjure up the desire to go into a certain amount of defense and preservation mode.

What I mean by that is, despite what some neighborhood activists will cry, there are many, repeat MANY other revitalizer activists that DO want to preserve the diverse ethnic culture and character of our northside community. I consider myself one of those revitalizer activists who believes there is a happy-medium to be found with the right balance of high standards of livability, high reaching goals and expectations for community, family and education, and high expectations for public conduct and civilization combined with the acceptance and embracment of diversity and culture. An integration of class, race, religion, age and lifestyle that is an integral part of the fabric that makes up NoMi. As another blogger would put it: Urban Utopia. I believe it is possible. I know it is, and I've committed myself to helping to find and achieve it.

The most recent piece of news that got me thinking about the LRT development was this article, click here. For a quick summary, the article mentions a recent bill passed by congress that grants federal dollars to various projects in Congressional District 5, including $250K for the Bottineau Corridor LRT {Bottineau Blvd is the new name of County Road 81 that travels NW/SE from Minneapolis into the suburbs of Robbinsdale, Crystal, Brooklyn Park, Maple Grove and Osseo}.

So as I sip my Sunday morning coffee, listen to my favorite radio program, Acoustic Sunrise, and enjoy my candle-lit house become bathed in the light of day, I read this article with a more hopeful vision of being the first passenger at the NoMi LRT platform located at Penn/WBro in a few years down the road.

Cheers to that.

Friday, December 11, 2009

This Blog's For You

This one's for you. You know who you are.