Fayetteville Pedestrian Crossings: Survival of the Fastest? | Street Jazz

Monday, November 17, 2008

Fayetteville Pedestrian Crossings: Survival of the Fastest?

Posted By on Mon, Nov 17, 2008 at 11:20 PM

Earlier this year Tracy and I spent a few days in Miami, Florida, and last month spent time in the home of the Mid-Western Hellmouth - Elk City, Oklahoma.  The only reason I mention both in the same paragraph is because their pedestrian crossing lights stay on an appreciable amount of time longer than the lights in Fayetteville, which flash back to red before a person is even half-way across the street.

One is a town with thousands of people crossing the streets, and one is - well - Elk City, but someone a lot more rational than the joker who designed our crossing lights had some influence in both places.

What gives? Somebody was in a peculiar mood when they set those lights up, that’s for sure.

******

Fayetteville Mayoral Trivia Game

In 1992, in one of the most exciting years for politics Fayetteville has ever seen, we had quite a roster of fascinating candidates - both for mayor, and for the new city council. After all, this was the year that Fayetteville voted to rid itself of the city manager form of government, and go to mayor/council.

The Fayetteville Board of Directors had a reputation for being, well, snotty, to some Fayetteville residents who had the temerity to take issue with whatever course of action the city might find itself embarking upon.

Then, as now, several of the mayoral candidates found their way to my show. I asked one candidate what he would do if an alderman was rude to a member of the public.

“Id stop the meeting right there and then,” he declared. “And I’d take that alderman in the back and I’d tell him, “Don’t you ever be rude to a member of the public again!’”

Yeah, I thought, stop a meeting. You and what army?

Any guesses as to which candidate that may have been?

Clue: He didn’t win.

*****

Quote of the Day

Fox News went on describing a mission accomplished in a place they called Afghanistan, in a country utterly unlike the one in which we lived. One night, as we sat in the dark to save generator power for the TV set, we heard some no-name right-wing think-tank pro-war neocon talking head explain that America could speedily repair any incidental damage to Iraq's infrastructure, just as it had done in Afghanistan. Security, water, electricity - all those things Kabulis had learned to live without - he said had been restored to Kabul "in no time." Even in the dim glow of the TV, I could see that Helen was weeping. "Please can we go back to the BBC?" she said, and we never watched Fox News again. - Ann Jones, "Kabul in Winter: Life without Peace in Afghanistan"

rsdrake@nwark.com

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