Monday, October 10, 2011

Twenty years is twenty minutes

I returned to the Land of the Round Doorknobs, twenty years ago today. I had very little choice, move or starve-my family had less. I like to tell people I ended up in Norwich, Connecticut because I lost a bar bet. Point in fact most surveys of those residing in The Rose of New England suggest it was they who lost the bet.

Columbus Day is almost the perfect American holiday because Christopher Columbus is exactly like us. He didn't know where he was going when he was going there, didn't know where he was when he got there, had no idea what to make of what he found where he ended up and squandered all that he received for his troubles and effort.

Meanwhile, despite, and sometimes because of, luminaries such as Chris and the Posse, the rest of us have to learn to continue to be the difference where we live-because if not us, then who? If not now, when? We'll find out soon enough, I suspect.

Today is the holiday part of the holiday weekend and if you have today off, enjoy it as the travails and trials of the world will be with us again soon enough, starting Tuesday afternoon at five with a regular meeting of the Ethics Commission in Room 210. There was a lot in the newspaper a fortnight ago on their hearing-here's the minutes of that meeting if you're so inclined. In theory, this could be the last meeting of this version of the Ethics Commission as all the members' appointments expire a week from today.

Also at five, cross town in the Public Works Department compound at 50 Clinton Avenue, it's a regular meeting of the Public Works and Capital Improvements Committee. The September meeting minutes aren't posted online but read the August minutes, which are, and explain to me how (or why) one of the two alderpersons who voted 'no' last Monday night evening to demolish two unused school buildings could be one of the sponsors who put the proposal on the Council agenda in the first place?

At five thirty in the Kelly Middle School cafeteria it's a regular meeting of the Board of Education and here are the minutes of their September meeting.

Let's spend a moment on 'math meets poli-sci.' Less than a month from now we choose six people to sit on the City Council (no more than four from one party) and nine persons for our Board of Education with State of Connecticut minority representation rules applying. There are twice as many people seeking seats on the Council as there are places to put them. This is not the case for the Board of Ed-the number seeking to serve equals exactly the number of vacancies. If you're on the ballot, you've won. Why spend money for campaign signs? How can I be sure a Board of Ed candidate will be prudent in spending my tax money wisely when they've already demonstrated how frivolous they are with their own money?

At seven in City Council Chambers is a meeting whose on-line notice doesn't come within a mile of complying with State law; I, too, am shocked at this turn of events. It's in all likelihood a closed to the public meeting about the continued employment of the City Clerk, but it should have been better 'noticed' as a public occurrence.

Also at seven, in the Planning Department's Conference Room at 23 Union Street, it's a regular meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals, whose last published meeting minutes are from May (so much for summer vacation).

At 8:45 Wednesday morning in the Planning Department's conference room at 23 Union Street, it's a regular meeting of the Rehabilitation Review Committee whose published meeting minutes suggest they last met in July, which I find more disturbing than surprising in light of the amount of this city's building inventory that looks like the dog's breakfast.

Don't forget, though Autumn is here, there's still a Norwich Downtown Farmers Market from ten until two at Howard T. Brown Park. So if the weather is nice, you have a great place to buy and then eat lunch (and if the swans and ducks end up with a little something as well, you will not hear them complain about it).

The Housing Authority's regular monthly meeting is cancelled-I see no draft minutes posted for their September meeting, so I don't know if they met then either.

At six, the Baseball Stadium Authority meets in Room 210, possibly for the first time since July, if the postings on the website are to be believed. If you attend, wear track shoes as they move at a very brisk pace.

Also at six, in the Wonder Bar Restaurant, there's a regular meeting of the Greeneville Neighborhood Revitalization Committee (who are not as I understand it, the Greeneville Family Zone) and who may not have met since April, I think, based on the city website's archive of meeting minutes.

Rounding out the Meetings at Six Collection, it's a regular meeting of the Recreation Advisory Board at the Recreation Department, 75 Mohegan Road. And at seven, in the Central Fire House, it's a regular meeting of the Public Safety Committee, whose September meeting are here.

There's a One City Forum, starting Saturday morning at nine in the East Great Plains Fire Department, whose overall atmosphere will be improved by my absence as I will be headed into downtown Manhattan to participate in Occupy Wall Street.

If you're willing to live on your knees and hope that at the end of the day you have enough left for your family, you might as well as die on your feet and take a few of the Greedies with you. When you've got nothing, you've got nothing to lose. I've spent a lifetime doing what I'm told and have little to show for it. I'd like to be able to leave more for my children than a reputation for being a good drone.

When I watched NYPD mistreat people exercising their right to free speech and free assembly on the Brooklyn Bridge a light went on. High Times on Wall Street and Hard Times on Main Street. Not a coincidence and certainly not an accident. I am only one, but I am one-and I can't do everything but I can do something and as long as I can anything, I must.
-bill kenny

No comments: