Monday, January 07, 2008

Open Thread #59

A new year and a new chance to have your say.

36 comments:

walker said...

WOW!! A chance to be first at something.

Katie said...

I went to the new River Cinema on Friday, and it seemed like everyone else did too!! The parking lot and the mall were full!The line went out to the doors, but went fairly quickly (considering). I was impressed, and thoroughly enjoyed my time watching Juno at the new theater. Plus the customer service was great as well!! Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

To my fellow UND-Walsh Hall residers (I lived there from 1987-1989)... I recently visited Walsh for the first time in 10 years or so, on a Friday morning. I walked in through a main door from the quad, then down to the basement to look at my old room. I exited the building (from a door I've been through 1,000+ times) and the fire alarm went off! I froze, and did an about face. Luckily someone shut off the alarm after 30 seconds or so. I thought I was going to be arrested- again, I'm sorry and I didn't know the alarm would go off! I'll bet no one made it out of their beds anyway!
W.A.L.S.H. Hall
W-Where
A-All
L-Ladies
S-Seek
H-Happiness

Anonymous said...

Does GF need a Detox Center ? An article in todays GF Herald. Over 2,300 alcohol related reports this year. Do we need a safe place for drunks to sober up ? How about the jail or Altru ? It is a safety issue. How many freeze to death each year ? GF is the only major city in ND without a Detox Center. Would cost very little, use volunteers save money. Have liquor establishments pay a fee for the misery they cause. Call Happy Harry's with your idea. greenglass4.

Anonymous said...

WOW!! A chance to be first at something.

And you blew it!

Anonymous said...

I just came back from a holiday in Mesa, AZ area. What a snooze. Not much better shopping than Forks...just more of it. And talk about "early-to-bed". I realize the area is filled with snowbirds and retirees, but it made GF nightlife seem sizzling by comparison.

Anonymous said...

"How many freeze to death each year ?"

Some worry about this, I call it natural selection.

Anonymous said...

"How many suffocate to death each year in the summer? "

Don't know if any do, just thought it begged asking :)

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if the seats at the new cinema have a locking device in them to keep them in the reclined position? I went the other evening, and my short little legs (I'm just over 5 feet tall) had a hard time keeping me propped up during the movie. But otherwise I loved the new theater!!!

ec99 said...

"Have liquor establishments pay a fee for the misery they cause."

What this means is have customers pay a fee, anything charged to the liquor stores will just be passed along. Anybody know what the recidivism rate at detox centers is?

Anonymous said...

I never heard the words "sizzling" and "Grand Forks nightlife" used in the same sentance.

Anonymous said...

I bet you've heard "big" and "loser" in the same sentence before.

Anonymous said...

greenglass-Altru regularly provides detox to anyone requesting it and offers referral to treatment in the area. I would guess most are uninsured. The committee studying this should have the figures.

wannagrapple said...

ec99 said..."Anybody know what the recidivism rate at detox centers is?"

I read that piece also and, although I may have missed the subtleties in the article, I felt that there was no hint at an attempt to "reform" those who used the facilities to detox. Neither was there any intimation that the folks who ended up there would be treated as if they needed any rehabilitation... it was more of a "sleep it off" kind of affair. If this is indeed the case, then a recidivism rate isn't even relative as there was no real infraction in the first place.

This is pretty interesting... I have never heard of a place where you could wander into absoshlutely smasho'd and then just hang around and sober up without criminal penalties. It sounds like a good idea that might potentially go horribly awry as soon as some drunks get violent against an overwhelmed volunteer staff.

ec99 said...

"I have never heard of a place where you could wander into absoshlutely smasho'd and then just hang around and sober up without criminal penalties."

Andy's jail in Mayberry supplied that service.

MattFacingSouth said...

To the driver of a late-model yellow PT cruiser:

It is so wonderful to see folks such as yourself driving so conservatively! Observing your driving skills helped me appreciate what a reaction buffer of 22 seconds can offer. And oh my goodness, I never realized the amount of fuel I can save by driving 45 mph on an interstate freeway. One thing's for sure - it makes merging with those nasty big rigs and their 75-mph antics so much easier.

Thanks to you our roads are safer! Do you offer some sort of training program in which we, the mere mortal drivers of Grand Forks, can partake?

Sign me up!

Anonymous said...

"Altru regularly provides detox to anyone requesting it and offers referral to treatment in the area."

BS - only to those with insurance or near death.

Anonymous said...

I can help. I have a simple solution.
Get insurance.
Don't drink 'til near death.

No charge.

Anonymous said...

The GF Mission (Northland) was a home to the detox crowd, many businessmen were helped over the years. Was a drop off point for the cop shop. Years ago the cops would "escort" you home to your farm or house in town. Sadly those times have gone. Happy Harry's should not be glorifying "their rot gut" on KNOX Radio. What do you think ? greenglass4.

ec99 said...

" Happy Harry's should not be glorifying "their rot gut" on KNOX Radio."

So you're saying there is no personal responsibility. Or is Gershman wandering the streets coercing people to shop at his place?

Anonymous said...

anon at 4:28

I suspect you don't work at Altru, hence your smug, incorrect comments. People who come to the Emergency Department and say they want to detox are admitted-6th floor often has detox patients. And they are usually uninsured.

Anonymous said...

We've brought drunks to Altru and unless they have insurance or have medical problem they are turned away.

Anonymous said...

Detox is a medical need. If someone is intoxicated and asks for detox-they get treated. Most of the "drunks" don't have health insurance, buddy.

dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Bingo, Dale - I think you hit the nail directly on the head. that's what I meant.

Anonymous said...

Okay guys...if you go to Altru and ask for detox, you are admitted. When you are clear and sober and medically stable, you are discharged. The people are given resource/referral to treatment, but Northeast Human Service Center is the gatekeeper for Jamestown and Centre-the residential treatment center in Grand Forks. People don't have to freeze under the bridge or in an alley if they are drunk. If people refuse to to to treatment, they usually can go to the Mission or home. Problem is, people tend to use the hospital as a hotel with services to sober up and then refuse help and referrals beyond that.

gf city cop said...

The problem is that when an intoxicated person does NOT want detox. That is when the hospital cannot take them and the police have their hands tied. I have been on countless calls of people passed out in apartment complexes, business doorways and many, many homes of others. These people that are intoxicated may or may not have commited a crime. When they have not, our hands are completely tied. The "good old days" greenglass refers to are gone because police don't have time to cart around people who are intoxicated who may or may not remember their address (if they have one). The mission - rightly so- will not accept people who have been drinking to that extent. There needs to be some middle ground where the hospital doesn't have to take these people in and never get paid for the services rendered (which are at least triple those of a detox center) and just letting them wander the streets. It is a sad state, but this is just a drunk tank proposal. It will fill a need in the community so someone doesn't come into a home and pass out on your couch or three season porch.

Anonymous said...

gf city cop--I've had friends in other cities that have ended up in police custody due to various alcohol-related "activities" who have been brought to "detox" facilities at the local jail. Do you know if any of the police departments in the region do something similar? How hard would it be to do something similar?

MattFacingSouth said...

Not to steer the conversation back to traffic, but it's been a boondoggle for me as of late...

Can the city do anything about the unprotected left turn lanes? It seems to me they've been poorly designed. The way the opposing left turn is situated blocks one's view of the oncoming opposing traffic if there are any vehicles there waiting. The problem is that both vehicles usually end up waiting to turn left because each can't see past the other. In my ad-hoc analysis of other towns I've determined the problem is usually mitigated by 1) no unprotected left turns (especially on major streets) and/or 2) turn lanes that are designed so the opposing left turn is directly ahead of your turn lane instead of at each other's 11 o'clock, which blocks the view.

Getting rid of that 2 feet of median they leave seems like it'd work pretty well to help that visibility: a change of 4 feet - almost the width of a car. I feel like I'm risking my life every time I venture around that visual blocker and with the increase in traffic it's only a matter of time before someone gets smashed. Oh yeah, and it may solve a little of the congestion issues, too.

Anyone else have similar experiences? I'm about ready to take this to a city council meeting.

dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MattFacingSouth said...

I'm not either, but the alternative is crazy. If we keep waiting until we're sure nobody's coming we tend to piss off the people behind us who have some sort of magical insight into the situation.

The worst-offending intersections, IMO, are the following:

32nd Ave S turning onto S 34th St
32nd Ave S turning onto S 38th St
S 38th St turning onto 32nd Ave S
S Columbia turning onto 13th Ave S
S Columbia turning onto 11th Ave S
Gateway turning onto N 42nd St

As far as sitting on a red protected left, I dunno why we don't have lights that sensethat and sneak you through without having to do an entire cycle. That's the way it is in my hometown and it's fast. If you're the only car sitting there it'll go green for 2 seconds before it lets the main artery back open.

Why don't we have that? Weren't many of these intersections (I'm looking at you, south end) built in the last 5-10 years? I know this technology isn't new; did we skimp or something?

Anonymous said...

Finally, I am glad to see others are seeing that traffic signals and intersections are major problems in this city!!! I agree with Matt, especially on the left turn onto 34th St. from 32nd Ave. I take a deep breath when I gun it and hope someone doesn't plow into me at 40 m.p.h. since a truck is waiting to turn from the other side (and I can't see the traffic).

Another big nuisance and unnecessary delay are all the left-turn red lights on 32nd and Washington. Like Matt said, if no one is coming from the other direction, don't make us wait 2-3 minutes for an entire cycle!

While I am on the rant, what about the stupid intersection on 17th Ave. and 34th St. by the Elementary School? I understand not being able to turn right due to the proximity to the school, but please put a sign that says 7:00 am - 7:00 pm like you see in big cities. I'm pretty sure at 11:00 pm, it is not necessary to sit there while not being able to make a right-hand turn.

Anybody know how we can voice these complaints to the traffic engineer? It is not very difficult to see that traffic signals and intersections in Grand Forks just do not flow well. Add the hundreds of visitors over the weekend that cannot clearly see left-turn lanes coming out of the Target complex onto 32nd Ave.

dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Random thought turn into random comments. Does anyone listen to KNOX at 1310 am on Sat mornings from 6 to 9 am. It is a new program/call in talk show by Greg L. It about hunting, fishing, outdoors, ice lake racing, and all outdoors issues. Lets see if the show is listened to ? A friend and I will lunch at Canad Inn and take in a movie at River Center. Will report later. Any people interested in blogging on NASCAR ? greenglass4.

Anonymous said...

Well we had a great dinner/lunch at Canad Inn "Bistro" great European style and music and menue. I had order of "Gnocchi" with chicken. a little Chard and nice surroundings. We later went to River Center Theatre 12. Great movie " Juno " a perfect "date movie" the place was over 50% full, nice and clean and good popcorn. We stopped at Blue Moose for some hot chocolate and Ameratto. Have a good evening, we did. greenglass4.

ec99 said...

Back to traffic signals. The red light on N 2nd Ave at Columbia never turns green on weekends. I have been behind several cars who just go through when it's clear.