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Both Sides of the Fence

A Tosa resident since 1991, Christine walks the dog, cooks but avoids housework, writes and reads, and enjoys the company of friends and strangers. Her job takes her around the state, learning about people's health. A Quaker (no, they don't wear blue hats or sell oatmeal or motor oil), she has been known to stand on both sides of the political and philosophic fence at the same time, which is very uncomfortable when you think about it. She writes about pretty much whatever stops in to visit her busy mind at the moment. One reader described her as "incredibly opinionated but not judgmental." That sounds like a good thing to strive for!

Wayfinding in an unknown woods, not a soccer match

Walker recall election, voting, campaign rhetoric fatigue

I’ve already voted in the Walker recall election, so I’m not sure why I keep trying to find new information that will either make me feel better about my choice or make me feel better about the outcome should my vote not prevail.

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The sound of the cuckoo

Walker recall election, audible crossing signals, Cadillac XTS, safe crossings, Wauwatosa village, cuckoos

I love the audible signals at traffic lights in Wauwatosa's village. You'll be scurrying about, head and eyes down, in search of olive oil or noodles or a screw driver, and a chirp or cuckoo startles you into taking a closer look at where you are right now, this second.

The audible signals have something to do with accommodating residents of the Badger Home for the Blind on Hawley Road. My lazy research hints that Tosa must have been on the cutting edge of using signals that work for for the blind as well as for the seeing. But chirping signals are rare enough that I still feel delight when I hear them.

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Bus rider

Bus riding, mass transportation, suburban fear

Except for trips from the Park-and-Ride to the Summerfest grounds, I've avoided the bus for a couple years now.

Aside from the scary reports of wilding and violence on the city buses, there were those awful TV screens streaming endless loops of ads and health propaganda. Even as a law abiding citizen who is inclined toward good health messages, the ernest repetition made me long for a cigarette. And I've never smoked.

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Slap judgment

Indignation pandemic, Jim Stingl, Donald Driver, Tom Barrett

“Suddenly, people a thousand miles away hate your guts.”

That’s what happens, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Jim Stingl points out, in a world where our every thoughtless moment might be passed around the YouTubeverse by people whose judgments are as fast as slapping the “share” button.

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The long death rattle of the Eschweiler buildings

Eschweiler buildings, TIF, Milwaukee County Grounds, Innovation Park

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Father's Day is never over

Fathers, Fathers Day, William Stafford, Bill Abts

Yesterday, my youngest child's Facebook status was "Every time I wish my dad a happy Father's Day he laughs and reminds me that every day is Father's Day. Lucky to have a pops who embraces his role full time :) LOVE YOU."

So even though it's the day after, I'm still thinking about fathers, my kids' dad, Mac, and my own father, Bill, especially. Two men couldn't have been more different, and yet both loved their children utterly and weren't afraid to let them know it. I should include the present tense there, Mac still being very much among the living and loving his children.

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Zombie apocalypse in Wauwatosa!?

Zombies, Wauwatosa, County Grounds, Eschweiler buildings, development, Historic Milwaukee, historic preservation, Northridge Mall, Sydney Hih

Vampires and monsters and  zombies, oh my!

What is there about these times that makes us obsessed with things gone wrong, boogie men and dystopian visions of a really scary world? Even Disney has upped the ante on danger and  heroism, especially for females. No longer just pretty and worthy and waiting to be saved, we have to swash and buckle with the best of them. Or the worst of them.

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Car guys

Landry's, car repair, people I like in Wauwatosa, technology and individualism at odds

I have always depended on the kindness of car guys. For years, it's been Ed at Landry's on Bluemound. He's kept my various cars running, often on life support, ever since someone here recommended him to me.

Today I stopped in on my way back from Madison with the fleet car. It's been telling us for weeks to check the tire pressure, claiming that the front right tire was the culprit. Everytime someone filled the tires, the funny little light would pop on within a week or so, so it seemed like new tires might be in order.  I'd talked to my boss, and we were trying to figure out whether we were supposed to take the car to Place A or Place B. But I didn't want to hand it off dangerous to the next driver, so I thought of Ed.

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Throwing stones at Goliath, not each other

Transmission lines, Wauwatosa Community Development Committee, Walnut Road, Preserve our Parkway, ATC, David and Goliath

Everyone knew last night’s meeting would be tense. When you are looking for a least worst-solution and not a greatest-best one, well, it makes people cranky. And sad. And angry.

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