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Crime in the Neighborhood

The other night there was a huge commotion outside, but that could have been anything. People around here like to argue over dumb things, and rarely is it serious. After eavesdropping (it was after midnight and I was in pajamas…not time to meet the neighbors unless I *have* to) all I could get from it was that a “firetruck hit someone.”

Well, there was a firetruck in sight, and later an ambulance drove through. But there was nothing in the paper about this.

But then I see today’s news article about an armed robbery. A few months ago there was an armed robbery of a pizza delivery guy in the neighborhood.

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Refreshing Hoodlumism

Just now, as I was reading and enjoying the peace and quiet of an afternoon, there was a knocking on my back door. When I went to answer it, nobody was around. I went to the front, to see if perhaps they had grown impatient. Not a person in sight. When I returned to the back, thinking maybe they had stepped out of my vision, I saw two little boys, about five or six years old, walking around my garage and toward a nearby apartment building.

A minute later, my neighbor’s doorbell was rung by an invisible caller.

I welcome this harmless brand of mischief. Bring it! When the alternative is something like kids throwing rocks at cars, leaving garbage on the ground, and then, the more serious violence (like the person who was shot in the chest and killed a block away from me last week), a couple of children getting their laughs by disturbing my peace is no big deal.

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Why Health Care Matters

The last time that I had health care was in 2001. Since the age of 16, the longest amount of time that I have spent unemployed has been two months. I show up to work on time, don’t cut corners, and am relatively efficient. I’ve never stolen from an employer, unless you count ballpoint pens.

For me, my American Dream is to enjoy my work, have friends, be a productive member of the community, be healthy and safe, and not have my power shut off. Continue reading “Why Health Care Matters”

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Road Trip to Philly

Tomorrow morning (6:30) a bus will be leaving from the Hartford ACORN office (621 Farmington Ave.) for Philadelphia. The trip is free and will take passengers to a presidential forum with Clinton, Edwards, and Kucinich (confirmed), and possibly also Obama and Dodd.

If interested, email marisa.lindsey[at]gmail.com

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Movin' On Up

It’s about time that CCC employees got vocal. The past few weeks, we’ve seen several articles and letters to the editor regarding the college.  Then, there’s the backlash– people saying nasty things along the lines of “There shouldn’t be a college in Hartford anyway.” Several years ago, when starting employment with CCC, a friend remarked that he’d heard it wasn’t a good college. No doubt many of these comments are made by people who’ve never been to CCC, have a vision that every college must have a sprawling green lawn (grass is part of the environmental problem!), or, and I hesitate to say this, harbor racist or classist ideas about who deserves access to higher education.  In today’s Courant, another CCC employee responds:

Cost Of Parking In Hartford

Gone are the lofty days when education and the arts were revered and measured not by cost, but by the enrichment bestowed on community and self.

Now it’s all about the money.

The Courant’s June 27 editorial “Be Fair To Downtown College” cited parking for faculty, staff and students at the Morgan Street Garage as an unreasonable cost of having Capital Community College in downtown Hartford.

If the city, through the Hartford Parking Authority, feels the need to charge such an exorbitant rate, perhaps the state should tighten up usage of its own parking lots and no longer allow free parking to the patrons who frequent the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts, myself among them.

Quid pro quo, Mayor Perez?

Anne Romus
Newington
The writer is a staff member at Capital Community College.

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Cracking Down on Motorcyclists

Check out Helen’s column in the Courant on this.

I’d like to add to that, cracking down on all other illegal forms of transportation. I’m quite sure that go-carts aren’t street legal, yet I’ve seen them go down my street. There’s also the issue of kids car surfing.

And while we’re at it, let’s make the speed bumps really cut down on speed. The “speed tables” are essentially ramps or mini-jumps that dirt bike riders can use to get air. Real, nasty speed bumps will wreck you if you are going too fast and hit one. But it’ll slow you down, and isn’t that the point?

She’s right, that these small issues contribute to the larger issues here.

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Farmers’ Market Season

Today marks the opening of the West End Farmers’ Market for this season. It’s held on Tuesdays and Fridays from 4-7pm at the United Methodist Church on Farmington Avenue. There is usually live jazz to go with your shopping.

The Hartford Regional Market over by the airport  is open year round from 5-9am. The Downtown Farmers’ Market held at the Old State House has been running for a few weeks now, MWF, 9-2pm.

Still to open– Capitol Avenue Farmers’ Market (July 9) at the First Presbyterian Church on Mondays from 10am-1pm; Park Street Farmers’ Market (July 9) at the Walgreens on corner of Park and Washington on Mondays from 930am-1pm; and the Farmers’ Market at Billings Forge (July 5) 11am-3pm on Thursdays, located at 559 Broad Street.

For a complete listing of farmers’ markets in other towns in Connecticut, go to ctgrown.gov.

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Revising Art

The play, The Pueblo, is actually an in-progress piece– something I hadn’t realized until I went to see it last night. Like HartBeat’s previous in-progress play News to Me, the audience gets to give comments that may impact the way that the final version is delivered next year.

The questionnaire form was surprisingly like the forms I have students fill out when taking part in peer review. Was I able to follow the play? Was anything too confusing? What makes this approach interesting is that HartBeat Ensemble is, well, an ensemble. Their work is created through collaboration. This “new play institute” opens the plays up even more, giving the public a chance to collaborate with them.

As for the details of the play, I don’t want to give anything away, especially anything that may change, but I will say that I enjoyed their creative use of an overhead projector.

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Creative Cocktail Hour

Did you know you can’t bring your own booze to CCH? Well, you know now. (I was only a witness to this)

When I go to this event, I’m always stuck between thinking it’s great, and rolling my eyes all night at the hundreds of cliches walking around. It’s a diverse crowd, but, it’s a struggle for someone who doesn’t necessarily want to carry on conversations with people who are all about (a) their work (b) trying to pick someone up.

But I go for the art. Last night was the opening of an exhibit that used blood leftover from slaughterhouses.  The work is real eye-catching. It’s not gross at all– if you weren’t told it had blood in it, you’d probably never know. The luchador exhibit is still up, and also worth checking out.