Tuesday, November 22, 2005

"CONSTRUCTION AS HIGH
AS AN ELEPHANT'S EYE...
...and it looks like it's rising clear up to the sky..."
(With sincere apologies to those of you who are fans of "Oklahoma"...)


Sometimes I don't understand the human race. Wait...I take that back. MOST of the time I don't understand the human race. It seems like the rich inhabitants of the planet want to wreck it for those that aren't so rich. I am speaking of tall residential buildings springing up in old, established neighborhoods where the largest thing going is a 3-story house. And, then, up pops a condo which is half the size of a skyscraper, which wrecks the aesthetics of an old neighborhood. Excuse me, isn't that what ZONING is for? To establish "continuity" as a basis for construction within "said" neighborhood?

Well, it's too late for the corner of 7th and Front Avenue in CDA. And, another hi-rise will be going in across the street from that structure in the not-too-distant future. The 7th and Front condo in place now can be seen from miles away, as it juts up like a sore thumb, above the houses, above the trees, and above everything else in that neighborhood. What a shame. But, Coeur d'Alene doesn't have a monopoly on tall buildings built WHERE THEY SHOULDN'T be built. This picture appeared in today's Spokesman-Review:


If the "powers that be" have their way, this condo (it's an artist's rendition at this point) will tower WAAAAY above the quaint little neighborhood known as "Peaceful Valley", which sits along the Spokane River in the Western part of Spokane. I always admired that little neighborhood, and it's had to put up with a lot, with the Maple Street Bridge towering over it. And now, THIS? If built, this condo will take sunshine away from some residents' homes, add more traffic to that small neighborhood, and effectly wreck the aesthetics of the place. I'm not one of these wacko "anti-progress" people; rather, I favor construction which "enhances", rather than "interrupts" the beauty of the area that construction is taking place in.

Don't these builders know that these tall buildings are EYESORES??? If residences need to built, why not "lower" buildings, which are more sympathetic with the existing terrain, rather than gigantic towering monoliths which absolutely DWARF everything around them? It's like these builders basically "thumb their noses" at the residents of the neighborhood. They don't care about the neighborhoods; all they want to do is to build high-priced condos so they can line their pockets. Condos in semi-urban districts of cities are one thing, but when these "towering infernals" invade low-key, old neighborhoods, it just makes me sick to my stomach. I hope this condo isn't built in Peaceful Valley, but I suppose it all comes down to "who has the money". Sheeeeeesh.
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Contemplating my own mortality dept.: It turns out that two Coeur d'Alene high school classmates of mine passed away this month. The guy who died evidently had some really bad kidney and/or liver problems, and he'd been ill for a while. The lady who died was super-vivacious in high school, she was musical, bright and smart, and later on, owned a travel agency here in CDA. I'd known her since the early '60s. Death, be not proud. At our 30th class reunion, the organizers of the event said they'd like to start, perhaps, reuniting every 5 years instead of every 10 years because, after all, we're all getting "up there"! Not pleasant to think about.
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Just how are they gonna do this? dept.: I've read where the CDA Police are going to turn into "seatbelt nazi's", looking for motorists who are unbuckled and issuing them fines. Ah, but Idaho, in theory, doesn't work like Washington State. In Washington, helicopters with telephoto lenses can spot you from hundreds of feet up and relay info to the cop cars below..."10-4, unit 26, a motorist far below me at Sprague and Bowdish ain't a-buckled in, go get 'im!", etc. In Washington, if a cop SEES you not wearing a seatbelt, you're toast.

Anyway, the last I heard, you CAN'T be stopped for not wearing a seat belt in Idaho (here, it's not a "primary" offense) but you can bet that the "blue meanies" will be out there, just waiting for you to make some kind of mistake, such as not using a turn signal, improper lane change, doing 26mph in a 25mph zone, or just looking suspicious. And THAT'S when they'll getcha for being "unbuckled. Beware! Whenever a cop is following me, I get paranoid. I think, "am I driving as well as I think HE THINKS I should be driving?"
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Not such a cool cat dept.: Again, I had to go up into the Northern part of town, an area I try to avoid, because the traffic up there drives me absolutely bonkers. I had to go and get a couple of x-rays. All of this mysterious machinery going "click....whirrrrr...", all of the while, I was freezing because I had to get into one of those hospital gowns....so I lost what little dignity I had at the same time I was freezing. Turns out I was too cold to care.

So, when I got back home, I had some mail in ye olde mailbox. Including a heartfelt communication from Tom Malzahn, the tax assessor here...and when I saw what I owe, I coughed up a couple of HAIRBALLS and my mouth dropped open in disbelief. Sorta like ol' "Bill the Cat" here, from the long-departed and sorely missed "Bloom County" comic strip. "ACKTHPTF!!!"

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All You Need Is "Love" dept.: So, after "grinding it out" today, I was in serious need of some LOVE. Love is all you need, right? And when you're NOT looking for love, supposedly, that's when love "finds you", or so I'm told. Which actually proved true today. I GOT SOME LOVE!

I ordered this record over EBAY a coupla weeks ago and it finally got here. The first album by "Love'. They had a minor chart hit with "My Little Red Book" in 1966. Their real masterpiece album, though, is their 3rd album, which is titled, "Forever Changes". But this album is good, too. "Garage Band"-styled rock with a twist; kinda dark and moody. Arthur Lee, the leader of "Love" (the guy in the checkered pants), actually recorded some sessions with Jimi Hendrix, but most of that stuff is hidden away somewhere; it sure would be interesting music to actually get to hear! "Love" was the first band on Elektra Records, which also released music by The Doors, Paul Butterfield, Crabby Appleton, and other subversive musicians. Subversive? Oh Yeah. My kind of music.

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This "George" will never be on the dollar bill dept.: Time to end this here posting, which may have been "unfair", but at least it was balanced. One article about Spokane, One about CDA. Plus my various gripes thrown in for good measure. Anyway, it's "Ugly Sticker time" once again, so let's all say "HELLO!" to...ol' Georgie-boy here!

Oh gosh, this isn't very pleasant at all. But there have been times when I got a Pepsi "to go" and I got down the road a ways and found out that I forgot my STRAW! Ack!!! Well, from the looks of things, ol' Georgie-boy here never has to worry about that. And it looks like he's enjoying himself. Me, I'm not so sure if I'm comfortable with the idea of carbonated soda in my nasal cavity, but to each his own. I'll just hope that he's sucking stuff inward, and not the 'opposite' or I'll be extremely grossed out here.

"Ugly Stickers" were available in the late '60's, 5 to a pack, along with a brittle stick of razor-sharp calcified chewing gum that would slice the heck out of yer mouth till it got to the point where it was halfway chewable. Those were the days, mein friend! We thought they'd never end.

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"When's he gonna go? When's he gonna end this post?" Okay, be patient. But, before I end this column, tonight is Ted Koppel's last appearance on Nightline. I saw the first-ever "Nightline", which concerned the 444 hostages in Iran, back in 1980. Wow. Am I getting old or what?

2 Comments:

Blogger stebbijo said...

Send those hairballs inside the envelope when you pay your yearly property taxes.

I have always thought they should send those things out in June or July so they don't ruin folk's holidays.

4:58 AM  
Blogger little ol' me said...

Well, I don't wanna gross anyone out with "hairballs in envelopes", but I am tempted to send a "Mr. Yuk" sticker (green face with eyes and a tongue sticking out) along with mein taxes. The only way I can console myself about all of this is that paying taxes is still cheaper than paying Rent, so that's 'something'. Thanks for stopping by, Stebbi...the welcome mat's always out for ya.

9:33 PM  

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