My daughter Margaux turns one on Monday, and she’s just become aware of the television. Nick Jr has the capacity to reduce her to a stupor – for about two minutes, whereupon she gets bored and continues her four-limbed assault upon anything within reach.
Today, I noticed that its Wild Safari Week on Nick Jr and they had this whole song and dance routine featuring Diego (the male version of Dora The Explorer) and about 20 lions.
Hmm. You think those folks at Cat Haven are watching Diego as part of their training regimen? If Diego can pet the lions …
Speaking of the Lion’s Den, Councilmember Rick Wood was definitely in the spotlight at Wednesday night’s regular meeting of Mammoth’s Town Council. The public comment period preceding the regular agenda lasted almost an hour as various members of the lodging community teed off on the three Councilmembers who voted on Feb. 20 to forgive interest and penalties for an illegal home rental.
Wood listened to about 45 minutes of comment before launching into a 15-minute “explanation” in rebuttal. It was no apology. After all, Elton John would tell you that “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word.”
So much harder than me, myself and I and my rates start at $350 an hour.
Rick must’ve been thinking about this speech for weeks.
So this was the explanation. The TOT appeal was a quasi-judicial proceeding where Council was sitting as “judge and jury.” Wood said he and his fellow Councilmembers were bound by the evidence presented, and when no rebuttal evidence was presented, Wood said he didn’t ask for it because he felt that the request would’ve fallen outside his role as judge and jury.
*No rebuttal evidence was likely presented because Staff had prepared such an exhaustive report on the case. Staff also probably assumed that each Councilmember had read his/her agenda packet before the meeting.
Just like I do (laughter).
“We were inexperienced in the process,” said Wood. “Everything’s an experiment for a time or two until you get it right. Maybe.”
An eloquent summation of Rick’s ten years on Council.
The whole thing felt so familiar. By Rick’s reasoning, one should never let the right answer get in the way of process. And let process, not those archaic ideas of right or wrong, be your guide and protector.
Why did Mammoth Airport turn into a $50 million debacle? Because the Town’s leaders and lawyers made a calculated decision to f$%# over Terry Ballas. They knew breaking a contract wasn’t right. But they also believed that they could lawyer themselves out of any responsibility for the deal.
Rick said that he received a lot of “vile” and “vitriolic” emails the morning after the decision, more vile and vitriolic emails over this one case than he has experienced in total in more than a decade of public service.
Rick attributed this to the social media age, where we find ourselves “instantly outraged” and push the send button on our computers before we’ve had a chance to think it through.
He seemed to be pining for the good old days, that age of enlightenment (circa 2004) where community leaders, if they disagreed with you, would call businesses who advertised in this paper and ask them to pull their ads. Among other, more sordid, activities.
Rick, where you are correct is that reasonable people can disagree.
I would also posit that reasonable people can admit they’re wrong.
You misread the response. At a certain point, people just become fed up with what they perceive as a mis-application and misuse of vast talent.
There are many politicians. There are few statesmen.
Lunch attended the Storm Spotters workshop down in Bishop on Tuesday. He expected 10 or 12 people might show up.
There were 75. It occurred to him that this is why the Fifty Center runs a story about weather on the front page every week. It also occurred to him that he was surrounded by the Fifty’s 75 readers.
Lunch is personally fond of the weather phenomenon known colloquially as the shitstorm and can spot one every other week in Suite Z.
The National Weather Service recruits storm spotters in this area because the closest radars in Hanford, Las Vegas and Reno effectively triangulate us and make it difficult to provide accurate forecasts and updates.
If you wish to become an unpaid volunteer of the National Weather Service, contact Andy Gorelow at firstname.lastname@example.org.