It is Summerfest time.
It has been perhaps four or five years since my last opportunity to fest with the best. In an earlier life Summerfest was a routine that involved the purchase of a pass. I got to thinking the other day of when Jill and I were courting.
Wauwatosa Catholic School is proud to introduce new faculty for the upcoming 2011-2012 school year to the community. Past and upcoming blogs, including today's, will showcase the talented staff that Principal Julia D'Amato has assembled. She refers to these fine teachers and support staff as her "dream team." What an exciting time to be a teacher or student in a brand new school!
On Tuesday, July 5, the Common Council will consider raising the salary for the
Making business work takes a lot more than low taxes.
Two recent experiences, one good, one not so good, made me think about the business owner side of the equation. You'd think when times are hard, customer service would perk up. But that's not always the case. I'm beginning to wonder if it's even often the case.
Younger daughter and I went bike shopping in Tosa yesterday. We didn't pick the best time to do it. Not only was it fried-eggs-on-sidewalk hot, but at 4:30, the rush hour was beginning. Just crossing North Avenue is a perilous adventure at such times. Luckily, the store stayed open until 7 that day, so we stopped worrying about being rushed or about rushing the staff.
The bike store, which will remain nameless because one experience does not a whole story tell, is blessedly small. (Neither of us does well when presented with vast quantities of merchandise.) The cheaper bikes--read: the ones we could afford--were at the front, but we didn't know exactly what we were looking for.
Do you remember the story about the Christmas tree that was on our porch that eventually became the Packer tree and after the Super Bowl became the St. Patrick's Day tree? And how we found a curious and large cocoon on one of the branches?
After four months on the porch the tree ended-up as mulch but we kept the silky capsule in the fridge finally bringing it out at the end of May.
What do we celebrate on the Fourth of July? Here's a clue: it's not freedom (that word never appears in either the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution), and it's not "bombs bursting in air." Those came later.
Today we celebrate the approval and signing of Declaration of Independence (not its real name), which didn't actually happen on the 4th of July, but who worries about details? It's a big deal, this explanation of American thinking that Thomas Jefferson later called a "signal of arousing men to burst their chains . . .to assume the blessings and security of self-government. . . (and to restore) the free right to the unbounded exercise of reason and freedom of opinion."
(Please note: "self-government" means government by an American government instead of British rule, not government each of us by our very own tiny prince-or-princessy self. And "freedom of opinion" is not unbound: it's chained to "exercise of reason.")
So we really are celebrating the ability of a small group of people to do something in 1776 that a larger group seems unable to do today: rise above differences to create work of greater truth and more lasting value than any one person or faction could have done alone.
The Second Continental Congress comprised 56 quirky, strong-willed lawyers, businessmen, and landowners. They were divided by class, state's rights issues, personality, and other biasing factors. They agreed on very little, including whether separation from England was such a great idea. Some of them even longed to be French, or so their enemies had it. Can you imagine? Mais non. Neither can I.
We will not discuss their personal lives, which would have gotten Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson at least expelled from office today. But it's fair to assume that we would recognize their imperfections.
Despite having feet of clay, ginormous egos, and a really scary and sobering job to do, one that was likely to get them killed in a literal, dead-as-a-doornail kind of way and not just a fall-from-grace-and-favor-with-corporate-big-money-contributors kind of way, they came together in the heat of summer and managed to git 'er done.
In the process they quarrelled, shouted, negotiated, sweated in their wooly-flaxy clothing, and drank great flagons of adult beverages that weren't even properly chilled. I'm sure there was plotting and scheming. Some might have nobly put their differences aside, but I suspect there was also plenty swapping of favors to get to agreement. That is how the business of diplomacy is accomplished: no one gets everything they want, but most everyone gets something they need out of the deal.
First Congress appointed a Committee of Five to do the tedious work of drafting the document to explain the reasons for declaring independence from British rule. Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin were all for breaking the ties. Roger Sherman and Robert R. Livingston were hoping for looser bows instead.
Jefferson was picked to write the document because he was smart, educated, and knew literature and science. This was before lack of factual knowledge gave you status instead of making you a buffoon. But it wasn't merit alone that got Jefferson the job: political reasons steered the appointment. As John Adams said, “. . .you are a Virginian, and a Virginian ought to appear at the head of this business. Reason second—I am obnoxious, suspected and unpopular. You are very much otherwise. Reason third—You can write ten times better than I can.”
They wouldn't let Franklin draft it because they didn't like his jokes, and they knew he'd try to sneak a few in. I just made that up, by the way: the rest of this is true.
Even with Jefferson's "peculiar felicity of expression," the Congress jettisoned about a quarter of what he'd written with help from Adams and Franklin after they'd squeezed out the other two. All the snarky things he'd said about the people of England (as he sniffed, "the pusillanimous idea that we had friends (there)," were wisely excised. Even the smartest boy on the block needs a good editor.
If I had more time and talent, I'd cast today's Congress in the earlier roles. But I think you get the idea, so I leave the rest to your imagination.
Meanwhile, I'll ponder why the 112th United States Congress can't get its act together over budget and other issues when their progenitors managed an entire philosophic construct in a month or two. Do you think it's air conditioning that lets them linger so? If so, someone turn off the power!
Exciting times continue at St. Bernard Parish in its centennial year! July began this weekend with Masses celebrated by Fr. Michael Barrett. Father Barrett previously served the Blessed Trinity Parish Community in
On Monday, June 27, 2011, doctors told Sarah Pease she only had a short time to live. The next morning a close friend of the Pease family gave me the sad news.
Tosa’s Night Out 2011 Lighting the Way to a Better Community
The Wauwatosa Police Department and the Wauwatosa Neighborhood Watch Committee are pleased to announce that Tosa’s Night Out has been scheduled for Tuesday, August 2, 2011. Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin will be our major sponsor. All TNO 2011 activities will take place at Hart Park, 7300 Chestnut Street. 2011 will mark our 17th annual “Night Out” celebration. Our many dedicated sponsors, participating groups, and fantastic Neighborhood Watch participants continue to make our event one of the best around! Event highlights include:
This song has been covered by any number of artists - including Roberta Flack in the early 1970s.
Make-out music we called it.
What could be more fun than FREE theatre in the park? How about FREE theatre in the park in Brookfield featuring many Wauwatosa, Brookfield and Milwaukee area performers?!
My daughter, a fairy princessy-looking person by anyone’s standards (unless you happen to find tallness off-putting in fairy princesses) has flown into town on her gossamer wings, lighted for a moment, and is gathering sustenance to fly back to her beloved mountains and the one true love who awaits her there.
One of our favorite perks of life in the Milwaukee area is easy access to the shores of Lake Michigan. We moved here in 2006 from land-locked Champaign-Urbana and soon formed a habit of visiting the lake, sometimes daily, to dip our feet in the water at Bradford Beach or walk along the shore at Klode Park in Whitefish Bay in search of sea glass and cool rocks.
Imagine this: you manage a large commercial complex. Times are hard and there’s plenty competition for renters.
Some of the tenants are making improvements, and you’re hoping to lure more like them. You’ve done some work on the plumbing. But the exterior isn’t good. People drive by and are not impressed.
Grede Foundry comes to Wauwatosa's rescue again. After being shut off for many months Grede Iron Foundry is once again combating Wauwatosa's embarassing " Bad Smell". For a century Wauwatosa has suffered with the embarrassing bad odor near its Village which centers in the 6400 block of State Street. The Iron Foundry owned by the Wayzata Coropration has again turned on the jets a top one of its pollution exhaust stacks and is spraying a chemical product high into our air in the attempt to " Mask or Cover Up " Tosa's bad smell. Thank you Grede Liberty Foundry for stepping up to the "Smell". Unlike our officals your at least trying to cover up the problem of Wauwatosa's "Bad Smell". It must be costing the Iron Foundry a great deal of money to spray the mixture of Chemicals and water 24 hours a day 6 and a half days a week. I'm sure Grede Liberty Foundry wishes Government Officals would just take responsibilty for resolving Tosa's "Bad Smell" or BS for short.
Tosa's "BS' seems to be immune to conventional remedies such as common sense, or the elected officals, the WDNR, EPA, Senator Herb Kohl, and Congressman James Senssenbrenner JR. Wisconsin has a Statute against emitting a objectional odors such as Tosa's bad smell but a last the WDNR won't enforce it. After decades of record keeping the WDNR has many citizen complaints pointing at the cause of Wawautosa's bad smell, but the WDNR reports they are still investigating the cause of Wauwatosa's "BS". One WDNR environmental engineers investigation pointed to the possiblity that a resturants dumspter near the complainats home could be the source of the complaint. That investigation continued and was left to the engineers replacement, and so on. Grede Foundry leads to many dead ends.
Wauwatosa Catholic School, an International Baccalaureate K3-8 school partnership between St. Pius X Parish and St. Bernard Parish, is proud to let the public know about the exciting faculty that Principal Julia D'Amato has brought together for the upcoming school year.