Showing posts from October, 2023

The Local Endorsements 2023

It should go without saying that I think you should vote in every election you can. The old saw about 'if you don't vote, then you don't get to complain' very much applies here, but doubly so in off-year elections. Some people online saw it as a harbinger of some kind of doom but the Louisiana Governor's race went down last week and you know what the turnout was? 35.8% That means their shiny new governor was elected with 18% of the vote . EIGHTEEN PERCENT OF THE VOTE. I will be the first to tell y'all that I hate these parties with the heat of a thousand fiery suns. But if I must be stuck with them, I expect them to do useful things that benefit me and more importantly, I have a baseline expectation of competence for both of them, regardless of my personal leanings. A moribund and useless minority party does nothing for me. A feisty, pain-in-the-ass minority party that challenges the majority party and calls out their bullshit at every turn? Yes, please. That

Squawk Box: Wheel of Time, Season 2

If you're a fan of The Wheel of Time series and haven't been living under a rock for the past few years and are unaware that it's been made into a television show, welcome. It's a television show. The first season, if you've been connected to the internet in any way, was moderately well-received in some quarters and downright vilified in other quarters. It was... controversial, to say the least, and has riven the online fandom of the series in two.  Personally, I didn't get quite that upset by the first season. There were parts of the first season I liked quite a lot. There were parts of the first season that made me go "eh" and there were parts of the first season that made me go "nope, nopity nope nope nope" but on balance, by the end of it, my general feeling was: "All right, I'd watch another season of this, just to see what they do to it." They had, in my opinion, done enough to get me back for another season. I think part

In Favor Of Disrupting The Development Model

About a month ago, someone over on the Iowa City subreddit posed an interesting question: Why wasn't Iowa City able to develop the east and south sides of town in the 90s and the 00s in the same way as Coralville and North Liberty ? You can click the link to all the answers, but this was my answer: The Coral Ridge Mall opened up and shifted the center of gravity for commercial activity out towards 80/380. Iowa City took about a decade to come up with something resembling an answer to that and arguably still hasn't, even as Coralville continues to run rings around Iowa City by developing areas like IRL, and North Liberty is getting in on that as well. Honestly, the SSMD the South District just launched and the work they're doing with the Diversity Marketplace and that whole area is the smartest thing that Iowa City has done in years and it was a ground-up idea, not one the City really got behind because the powers that be didn't want too. The commercial activity supercha

Bookshot #170: The Verge

So, I read this book for two primary reasons-- first, I devoured the podcast Tides of History and if a podcast is good enough and comes out with a book of some kind, I figure the least I can do is snag a copy of the book and actually pay for it, since I've usually consumed a considerable amount of the author's content for free over the years. Second, it's homework. I did three 'seasons' of a Serial challenge on one of my writing groups and in my last season, I decided to dabble in fantasy. What resulted was... okay, but not something that I'd let anyone see in real life at the moment, but what it revealed to me was that if I was going to be serious about cleaning it up and turning it into something, I was going to have to do some research. The Verge is the first book of several I'll be reading to hopefully get me a little more grounded in the time period and thus make my fantasy novella, short story, or whatever it ends up being, better. (At least better t