Monday, May 19, 2008

Open Thread #81

A new open thread...ready for business!

112 comments:

Anonymous said...

First.
Question, how was the World Curling Championships? Any total dollar $ out there that the event contributed to the city? Where did most of the foreigners stay?

Anonymous said...

Happy Monday!

Anonymous said...

I know the event "rocked" the attendance records, but haven't heard how it contributed to local economy. I think the Obama/Clinton appearance drew as many out-of-towners as curling that weekend. I even saw a few Canadian flags at the Obama rally.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone been to Grand Junction now that it moved to Gilly's? Is it any good?

MattFacingSouth said...

I ran into the (former?) owner of Grand Junction yesterday and asked him how it was going at Gillys. He said he got a job at Simplot. I don't know if that means he sold or closed shop.

Anonymous said...

I had a sub from there a few months back and it did not taste like it used to. I think it is worse.

local yokel said...

Sorry, I think I missed the post on "any ideas for improving your site." My suggestion is to have weekly photo contests. Put the winning Grand Forks photo in your sidebar.

local yokel said...

Sorry, I think I missed the post on "any ideas for improving your site." My suggestion is to have weekly photo contests. Put the winning Grand Forks photo in your sidebar.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't eat anything made at Gilly's even if you paid me, not even on a dare. It's like a requirement to leave your dignity at the door, most don't retain it once they leave.

Anonymous said...

First!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone signed up for Mayor Brown's Volunteer Committee ? Ad and volunteer card has been in GF herald, Brown 4 Mayor@hotmail.com or call 218-230-3099. check it out. greenglass4

happyharold said...

I love Grand Forks Life, but these open threads make me think that it would be much better to have a Grand Forks Life message board. That way people could post specific threads about all of the different topics discussed here, whenever they wanted.

I doubt it would ever happen, but if you are interested GrandForksGuy, I can recommend some free message board hosts.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure which is more horrifying: That another swastika was found on campus at UND. Or that the Herald's online edition placed the story BELOW the "Bismarck Dairy Queen Robbery" and the "Chaska Canoe Pals."

Anonymous said...

Yet two more swastikas were spotted on the UND campus at the ND Museum of Art over the weekend. They appear in a native American woven rug displayed on the west wall of the gallery. Absolutely shameful! Is it possible that the artisan who created that design is anti-Semitic?

Anonymous said...

Not to discredit what is happening at UND but swastika's have often been used by Native Americans, Archaeological evidence of swastika-shaped ornaments dates from the Neolithic period. An ancient symbol, it occurs mainly in the cultures that are in modern day India and the surrounding area, sometimes as a geometrical motif and sometimes as a religious symbol. It has long been widely used in major world religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. In Finland swastika was often used in traditional folk art products, as a decoration or magical symbol on textiles and wood. The swastika is one of the most common symbols used throughout Baltic art...and so on and so on...

Anonymous said...

anon 2:51 PM
If you would read the paper sooner you would have seen the article first for most of the beginning of the day.

Anonymous said...

anon 3:24
Not sure what your point is. Sincere thanks to anon 3:02 for the anthropolgy lesson. I was merely trying to point out what appeared to me to be comedic irony (swastikas appearing in a native American art exhibit at the University of North Dakota).
Anon @ 2:51 PM

Anonymous said...

I am anon 3:24 sorry, my comment went to anon 2:33. The article was first for a good portion of today.

maura said...

Just FYI for those of you who frequent the Dog Park- it is closed today through the 22nd.

I wish they would have put something in the paper or a sign up at the park earlier so that I wouldn't have hauled my three dogs all the way there only to be disappointed! :(

Anonymous said...

There was a notice in the paper for more than one day about the dog park being closed. I read it and I don't even own a dog. In regards to the swastika, it appears that it may have been there for some time and was just found because of the somewhat hidden location it was in.

Anonymous said...

I have a question for everyone. What is this county home rule I keep seeing signs for?

Anonymous said...

It's a proposed amendmant to the home rule charter which, among other things, would allow the county to charge a sales tax.

open thread lover said...

to: happyharold -

no, no, and no.

thanks!

JoshTee! said...

"I wouldn't eat anything made at Gilly's even if you paid me, not even on a dare. It's like a requirement to leave your dignity at the door, most don't retain it once they leave."

I'd like to hear more from this guy.

I work at Gilly's. In fact, I'm the guy that (basically) took over Grand Junction once Justin, the former owner, left.

Grand Junction's quality faltered for awhile, and from what I've heard it was BECAUSE of that aforementioned former owner. His parents bought the business for him a couple years back, and it was clear that he had no idea how to keep it running smoothly.

He's the one responsible for GJ moving twice within a short period of time and basically running the business into the ground. He's a terrible cook from what I've heard, and he has some drug issues... at least according to some of the people I've talked to.

He also stole my Stephen Colbert book, so I don't think much of him.


I worked at Gilly's before it was Grand Junction, and since returning I have heard a lot of praise for the kitchen. Not trying to toot my own horn or anything, a lot of people have just expressed how excited they are to have me back and how happy they are now that Justin is gone.

I would say that we make good subs again. We've got all of Grand Junction's old recipes, but may be adding a few more items to the menu in the near future.

The only problem with our Grand Junction, from what I can see, is that we only have one small (2' x 2') grill, and only one person working in the kitchen at a time. So, while I encourage everyone to come out and try the subs another time, it's not the kind of place where you can bring in a dozen family members and expect the meal to be out within fifteen minutes. However, it IS the kind of place where you can sit down, have a beer, and enjoy a quality sub by yourself or with a couple friends.

Anonymous said...

I wasn't refferring to the subs, I am sure they are great..it's the atmosphere that is unfortunate. I wish something could be done about it, but I don't think it's possible. The owner has taken great strides in making Level 10 and O'Really's Irish Pub into great places to sit down and have a drink but something is lacking at Gilly's and I can't quite put my finger on it. With it's past contraversy over dress code's and questionable choices for events (Coyote Ugly Contest?) although some are very fun (Foam Party!) It seems to be nothing more then a dirty, over crowded bar with shady character's where people like to end their night over drunk and stupid. But I guess every town needs a place like that!!

Anonymous said...

Comments about the former GJ owner's personal life shouldn't be shared here. This is my opinion but probably would be the opinion of his attorney and the courts as well.

Matthew said...

I love Grand Forks Life, but these open threads make me think that it would be much better to have a Grand Forks Life message board. That way people could post specific threads about all of the different topics discussed here, whenever they wanted.

I doubt it would ever happen, but if you are interested GrandForksGuy, I can recommend some free message board hosts.


You're much better off using real message board software (SMF in particular is great open source software) on a paid host than going with a free one. If anyone is seriously considering taking this on, I can offer some suggestions (I half-run Campus Dakota at the moment).

Anonymous said...

Any thoughts on keeping Riverside Pool open?

A lot of people have been investing their own time (and money, for that matter)to make their case.

IMOHO, twelve cents a month is a pretty inexpensive way to keep a resource like that. (And no, I don't live anywhere near the north end.)

J- said...

I hear HB sound and Light is backing down from the Civic. Say hello to another new round of apartments downtown.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard any reports from people trying to syphon gas out of other cars here in town because of the high gas prices?

Anonymous said...

nope.

Anonymous said...

If the guy is willing to put his name on the line before he makes his comments, he can say whatever he wants. Whether it is good manners is not relevant.

Attorneys and courts? Is that a threat? That's funny.

I'd like to see Grand Junction out of Gilly's as well, just as I'd like to see Bonzer's sandwich operation get out from behind that scruddy bar.

It sucks that I can't go get a decent sandwich at a local place without having to enter a dumpy, smoky dive bar.

Anonymous said...

Say what you want about Bonzer's, they have the best chili in the tri state area.

Anonymous said...

Is anything being done to improve the appearance of the Red River shoreline along the Greenway? It could definitely use some landscaping or at least purging of dead trees and foliage.

Anonymous said...

Is the Gateway Drive corridor suddenly fixed now that the new "welcome sign" is in place? Not much said about its success if any. I haven't seen it as i don't live in GF. Any pictures?

Anonymous said...

It's funny to me that the dress code gets so much negative press at Gillys. People complain that the place is a dump and about the type of people that are in there. Then Gilly (the owner) puts more work and his neck on the line to keep some of the trash out and still gets hell. I guess if I was Gilly it'd be extremely frustrating hearing criticism no matter how hard you try. Oh just to clarify, I consider trash to be anyone who goes out with the intention of getting fall down drunk, starting a fight, or just coming in to creep on any of the college age girls who choose to dance there.

Tobey said...

is that what the dress code says?

JoshTee! said...

Comments about the former GJ owner's personal life shouldn't be shared here. This is my opinion but probably would be the opinion of his attorney and the courts as well.

Mother f*cker stole my Stephen Colbert book, like I said, so he doesn't exactly earn my respect. Haha.

Besides, I'm not saying it's true, it's just what I heard...

Anonymous said...

How dumb do you have to be to be academically ineligible to play college football?

Anonymous said...

I think you have to carry a 2.00 GPA, but I'm not sure.

First! -- FOR ME TO POOP ON!

Anonymous said...

Apparently the hocky team did some dope before the final play, thats why they lost.

Anonymous said...

There was an issue awhile ago about the dress code excluding specific brands like FUBU, South Pole, Phat Farm etc. The idea most people got was the dress code was made to keep a certain demographic out. I don't think it is still in place and if I don't know if it is even enforced but it's as stupid of an idea as saying you can't wear a certain baseball team logo on your baseball cap. I know of friends of mine who were told they couldn't come back and after asking management they were not told why and didn't do anything wrong. It was kind of a surprise. Now these are not the type of people who get fall over drunk or are creepy, but do fall under another type of demographic. There are other people in town who won't even consider going, but why should they when there are a lot of other places to go. If the owner cared that much something would be done in great effort to change it's stigma. Superiority is a complex.
Second to poop!!

black man - not gangster said...

go to any larger decent bar in the region (probably in a larger city) and you will find the same things. If you show up with baggy clothes, pants hanging off your ass and a hood on, you aren't going to get in. It is a security concern as way too much can be concealed in that clothing. Also, it is to keep the "thug gangster" types out of the bar - which is a good thing to me.
And by the way...are we so scared of race in this town that we have to say "a certain demographic" instead of black?!

Anonymous said...

joshtee pees on the food he prepares at Grand Junction. Also sells dope from the back. Not saying its true-just what I heard. Fair enough?

Anonymous said...

So simply resolved: act like a responsible adult and you'll be treated in a like manner.

Anonymous said...

I just found the NCAA regs. It looks like a 2nd year has to keep a 1.8 GPA. That's what, a D+? Well, at least our star will have time to actually read his textbooks next year.

Anonymous said...

Mayor debate tonight at City Hall. Brown: 8 years of rebuilding GF, now time to move forward, mosquito spray, dog park, and 20 miles of Greenway Trials> Humble :Communication with citizens and city hall and give info to the people, was his answer to any of the 10 questions he was asked.MacKNamara: he would be engaged ? spending is a problem, but has no solutions, empty suit !Humble got the biggest laugh ! he will have to move out of town if Mack or Brown raises taxes again !Non-profit groups in town, Humble shut down Eides and had garage sale for Nat Guard and raised $5,900. Lets cut services, info center ! greenglass4.

JoshTee! said...

joshtee pees on the food he prepares at Grand Junction. Also sells dope from the back. Not saying its true-just what I heard. Fair enough?

Say what you'd like... although, you don't know me at all, so you're completely off the mark. Nice try, though. :)

Do you know this kid or something? Or why are you so offended that I'm talking about him? I'm TELLING you, the kid stole shit from Gilly's, has been thrown out of the bar for harassing the bouncers and servers, and was just generally a bad employee. It isn't as though I'm insulting anyone that doesn't deserve it.

And I'm only saying any of this because I don't want people to stop coming to Grand Junction based on a sub they ate three months ago when Justin, a person that no longer has ANY hand in the business, made it for them. Fair enough?

There was an issue awhile ago about the dress code excluding specific brands like FUBU, South Pole, Phat Farm etc. The idea most people got was the dress code was made to keep a certain demographic out...

I used to bounce at Gilly's, as well, but stopped because of this reason. I was uncomfortable enforcing their dress code.

That isn't to say that I don't understand the purpose of it, however. We're in a small town in North Dakota; people around this area, sadly, can be intimidated by that "thug" kind of dress. Their dress code is in place to make everyone that comes to the bar feel comfortable and welcome.

It's sort of silly to say it's racist, because all a person would have to do is go home and change and they'd be let right in. Just don't wear stuff that is going to put other people off, you know? Not just "thug" clothing, but tattered clothing, sportswear, a bathing suit, whatever.

Anonymous said...

The funny thing I see happening in these 'interpretations' of what I am saying, being an anon myself I really shouldn't point fingers. When I mention "a certain demographic" in regards to the people who were kicked out, they were not black. Funny how that was implied. I don't want to go so far as to say the word 'racist' either as that is not what my implications are. GF is not tiny, there are plenty of different people who unfortunalty should not have to be singled out and descriminated against (look at UND) and have the unfortunate term 'demographic' applied to them. THAT is my point. Just like UND needs to make great strides in correcting this past occurences (with all the applied adjectives that describe how shocking it is) so does the whole as a community. I don't think that GF is a completly small-minded racist town, we are just going through some growing pains and learning, as long as people continue to make the proper adjustments and fix these things, hell even get it out on the blog the so what!! All the better, can't look away. 'Nuff said. It's out there now...whatcha gonna do about it?

dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
suit + tie = costume said...

The one thing that keeps me away from Grand Junction is the high grease content, especially for workday lunches. I work downtown and I would really like to utilize the alternative food joint, but I just can't stand lotsa grease. I'm probably more particular about it than most; I have a sensitive, oily complexion, and I need to wash my hands and face after I eat. Some grease, I can handle. But those GJ subs (and fries), so greasy they saturate their wrappers and bleed through the brown bag, would totally throw me off my game for the rest of the afternoon.

Maybe Joshtee's subs aren't as greasy as Justin's?

But hey, Joshtee - would you have room on that small griddle to do some kind of dry-fried (minimal oils) vegetable subs? I'd be there at least once a week.

MattFacingSouth said...

"The Chicken Cordon Bleu was one fine sandwich."

Word.

Anonymous said...

It's sort of silly to say it's racist, because all a person would have to do is go home and change and they'd be let right in. Just don't wear stuff that is going to put other people off, you know? Not just "thug" clothing, but tattered clothing, sportswear, a bathing suit, whatever.

That's rather ignorant to say. Are you saying that we have to leave our personality at the door and put on a polo shirt just like the next guy just so we can get into this bar? Not everyone around here shops at ambercrombie & fitch and has the personality of a brick.

I know a guy who tried to get into Gillys one night wearing a flannel shirt with the sleeves cut off and a pair of jean shirts. The guy is seriously one of the nicest guys you could meet. He didn't have an attitude when he was in line and he was in no way coming off as someone who was going to start any trouble. But because of his flannel shirt, they said "No way" and he couldn't get in. He wasn't too offended - in fact, he was glad to be denied entrance because who would want to give a bar like that business? It's just a cess pool for dense frat guys and skanky girls, anyway.

I really hate how some people (emphasis on some) around automatically assume you're a bad person or you're going to start some sort of trouble by how you dress. More often than not, I find that the people who wear khakis and a polo shirt are bigger assholes than the guy standing next to him in a pair of jeans and a band tshirt.

JoshTee! said...

Josh, in issues of libel and slander, "fairness" isn't really part of the equation.

My understanding of libel is that if you knew what you were writing was false, it's libel. I'm not saying it's false OR true, because I really don't know. In fact, I'm not even the one that made the accusation, I'm simply repeating what someone told me and taking no credit for the quote whatsoever.

So, apologies if anyone's feelings were hurt. Let's forget I ever said it, since it has already been blown WAAAY out of proportion. Again, all I'm saying is don't be afraid to try Grand Junction just because THAT guy made your subs before.

That's rather ignorant to say. Are you saying that we have to leave our personality at the door and put on a polo shirt just like the next guy just so we can get into this bar?

That's not what I'm saying at ALL. You're completely twisting my words. If you knew how I dressed and my feelings on "Abercrombie and Fitch frat boys," you'd realize how backwards that is.

I'm saying that anyone can get into Gilly's wearing normal street clothes. Don't dress like a lumberjack, or a gangster, or a bum, or the uni-bomber, or anything else that is going to make regular people feel uncomfortable or give the business a bad reputation for letting in any riff-raff that walks up to the door. (Btw, that's the first time I have ever used the term "riff-raff." I swear.)

I agree with you when you say that it's sad that some people might feel threatened or intimidated because of the way another person is dressed, but it's true. Especially around in a small, conservative community like Grand Forks. Gilly made a business decision to keep people like that out, and he has gotten all kinds of shit for it.

dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
suit + tie = costume said...

guys guys guys - libel schmibel!

how about the dry-fried (minimal oils) vegetable subs?

come on dale, I know that's what you really care to talk about!

Anonymous said...

A flannel shirt with no sleeves and jean shorts? Was this Joe Dirt?

Seriously, he wasn't kept out because he was going to cause trouble. They kept him out for his own safety!

Downtown Edge said...

Thanks, Dale, for your informed, thoughtful input on issues of libel, slander, and malice. I cringed when I read the original post you responded to, but would not have addressed it in as clear and balanced way as you did. I'm sure that joshtee! isn't the only blogger or reader here who could use some information about how to avoid a lawsuit for talking or writing negatively about another person.

Anonymous said...

So when will GF see $4 gas?
I'm guessing by monday.

Anonymous said...

Will M&M be sued by the staff at the Kegs ? Stay tuned ! greenglass4

Anonymous said...

Huh what, greenglass? What is this about the staff of Kegs sueing M&M?

Anonymous said...

Gilly's is awful! Speaking of drug problems and theft... keep the staff itself in mind. Cocaine use and theft of more than $500 in property... Gilly's staff. That's based on first person experience, not gossip. Oh hey, don't forget the sexual harassment suits pending against two of the doormen. Gilly's does not have a responsible, trustworthy staff on the whole.

Anonymous said...

What do you guys think of Mayor Brown buying his scooters in Minneapolis instead of buying locally? Herald story talked about him and his wife each buying a Vespa in Minneapolis.

Anonymous said...

Can you get a Vespa in GF?

Anonymous said...

I checked for Vespa dealerships in ND-there are none. Looks like southern MN is closest. So to anon @2:08...non story.

Anonymous said...

What going into the old Minimart off 32nd avenue across from Gate City Bank? Also, what's going into the old NDAD building on S. Washington Street? Both buildings have been remodeling lately.

Anonymous said...

The old Mini Mart will be a Simonson's Station Store...not sure about the old NDAD, though.

JoshTee! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JoshTee! said...

Gilly's is awful!...

Gilly's does not have a responsible, trustworthy staff on the whole.

You're basing that on one or two cases? You could look at any business in town and probably say the same. I'd be willing to bet that there's at least one person at every job in this city that has had a conviction on the level of sexual harassment.

How about UND, for example? Wasn't a UND employee recently in trouble for a domestic dispute? A little violence in there, if I remember correctly? Man, what a terrible establishment.

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

I've noticed that about the Simonson's on 32nd also -- higher gas prices. If it's an attempt to bring in more revenue from the sale of fuel, it won't work. People are going to buy their gas where they can get discounts (via coupons, etc.) or where the price is comparable to other businesses in town.

One place I like is Orton's on Belmont Road a block behind Valley Dairy. Full service station that has the same price on their fuel as self-service stations in the city. The staff is courteous which is well worth the stop at the smaller gas station. Of course, I'm all for supporting locally owned businesses.

suit + tie = costume said...

I think it's Odin's on Belmont.

Nobody has anything to say about the grease content of the Grand Junction subs? Okay I won't eat any then.

Anonymous said...

How about this:
I haven't eaten anything at Mcdonalds in over 5 years and I will continue to avoid it at all cost.
I also don't eat at burger king, or any of those other fast food chains, but those don't have the 5 year marker, more like 2.

Anonymous said...

Do you blame him? I'M going to Minneapolis to buy a Vespa. They're awesome.

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

Dale, you're figures look good to me, well done. Perhaps a few other variables could be factored into the economic calculus.

This is difficult to quantify, but enjoyment factors into nearly everyone's choice of vehicle. It might be that the fun/joy of driving the Vespa weighs in its favor.
Wear and tear on the public roads could also be factored in - presumably less wear from a Vespa-and therefore overall greater public benefit. There may be potentially greater risks of harm to Vespa-drivers involved in accidents - and resulting public costs. Perhaps there is a measurable difference in carbon emissions that weigh in favor of, or against, the Vespa.
How about: insurance costs; license and registration costs; energy and material costs of producing an automobile compared to producing a Vespa.

I don't know the answers and I don't plan to research them, just thought I throw out some hypothetical criterion that could be considered in the economic calculus.

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

What if you only used the Vespa during the winter and got rid of your car for four months?
You would save $48.21 a month. Thats $578.52 a year. In 5 years of enjoyable, fun, fresh air rides to work and back caused by the less fuel emissions, that is $2892.60 saved. That is to say it would work for you if you lived in town, but with 15 miles a day, that seems a little far to travel. Just a thought. I think walking might save more.

Anonymous said...

math nerds

Anonymous said...

I am the anon from above to I thought the need to comment Dale. With your worksheet, driving a Vespa would at $15.00 dollars a gallon, you would pay $3.21 a day and $70.62 a month. I can fill my car using that much in a week. In four months you pay $282.48 with a Vespa. You pay $275 in one month with your car. I guess I may not understand why a "scooter is a bad economic decision"?

OUWxGuesser said...

It's all about scale... get enough people to stop driving gas guzzlers and our demand (and pollution) goes down... and theoretically gas prices will lower. The speculative part of gas prices is what confuses me... how can we pay more because there's a FORECASTED big hurricane season is beyond me...

Here on out it's bike to work on any nice day. Infinity MPG Yay!

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

Tried the gillies sub just the other day. Man, was that thing greasy. So greasy it left a grease lining in my mouth afterwards.

Since Joshtee is possibly reading this, either go a little easier on the oil, or cook that stuff at a higher temperature and that will help get the grease out. Oh yeah, and any Giros I've ever had have had more than just a lonely little slice of meat on them. (not trying to be too harsh, but) you might also want to do something to spice them a bit too...slightly bland, but actually not that bad for all the above factored in.

Anonymous said...

Yes, "suit + tie = " that's it. . .Odin's on Belmont. Thank you. Great place to get gas. Great service. Courteous staff.

Anonymous said...

Pita Pit has taken out a building permit for University Village...sounds like a second location in GF.

gfyourself said...

Let's imagine a GF with $15 per gallon gas...

--Full city bus system
--Southward city sprawl ends
--Less traffic
--More exercise (walking, biking)
--Better overall health, so lower health care costs

I'm missing a ton of benefits, and, I'm sure, some negatives, but how is $15/gallon gas a bad thing?

Thanks for the mental nudge, Dale! I had been thinking $5 gas would bring some of these benefits, but based on your math, those changes wouldn't happen at nearly the depth and breadth necessary to create a sea change in people's habits.

Charlie said...

Karen Nyberg.

UND grad.

Off into space this week.

Yet one more example of the good that comes from the university/Grand Forks community.

And lets not forget how proud we are of those remembered today for their service to our country.

OUWxGuesser said...

GFyourself:

We're in the middle of nowhere. I don't want to imagine what the costs of goods would be if $15 gas arrived. Would Canadians come? Would the economy survive without the buying power of Canadians?

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

Well, yes, it's going to put upward pressure on the price of everything, and cause us all to consume less (iPods for starters) because of high prices. How does the farmer get to town? IN HIS TRUCK! Just like he does now. Fifteen dollar gas isn't going to stop anyone from driving. It's sure going to stop people from doing so much thoughtless driving, though.

This is good, good, good. Back to the Earth is good. Local production and consumption is good. You want to save our small towns and our North Dakota way of life? Good! This will help!

I'm not about to start a subsistence lifestyle, or start growing my own groceries, but I do think it would get us all to a better frame of mind to be forced to SURVIVE a good bit more than we do. We're at the top of the food chain, but probably the softest and most complacent living things on the planet! It's not going to kill anyone to live a more thoughtful life, and in fact, it may help us all pull together.

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

What happened to the Dale who believes in the power of positive thinking? haha

Listen, I'm a 35 year old professional with a wife in school and two kids under the age of five that need to get to daycare every day. I also depend on my vehicle to get to clients, and therefore depend on a car for my livelihood. My family depends on cars.

Are you telling me that my family, and hundreds of others wouldn't ADAPT to the situation? Surely you can't be serious! (I am serious, and stop calling me Shirley) Okay, so even if you don't believe people would adapt, what do you think people are going to do with gas at $15? Stop going to work? All the women become homemakers? Stop eating? Lay down and die?

For my family's part, we would switch to one 30mpg car. My wife would be less mobile during the day. Big deal. My clients would pay the increasing cost of my transportation to their site as a cost of doing business. No problem with work, and my job would remain unaffected by high fuel prices. If food prices went up, we would buy simpler food, excellent spices, and we'd learn how to cook better to enhance the simpler ingredients.

I could go on. My point is people aren't going to roll over and give up because their mobility is CHALLENGED. It's not like living four miles away from work is going to stop them from walking to a bus stop, getting on a bike, or walking (yes, even in the winter! we have coats!)

You're also assuming that I would like to see our city become more compact (and European) just because of the 'sprawl' comment. Not necessarily true. I just want it to stop sprawling. I think it's idiotic, even when gas is $.99 a gallon. Sure, it won't 'unsprawl' overnight, but you can bet existing infrastructure will be adapted to perform in the new reality, whatever it might be.

The human condition is weak and soft. Time to toughen up. I'm surprised at you, Dale. I thought you had a little more animal in you.

I'm not trying to be flip or rude with my comments, for what it's worth. I just think people would be more flexible than what you propose. Thanks for the rebuttal.

Matthew said...

You guys make me happy.

:-)

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

When I think of this sort of undertaking, I think more Manhattan Project than Apollo program, but I'm with you. We (as people, as US citizens, as a government?) need to put our money where our mouth is and put our best minds on the problem until we solve it.

This determination (Manhattan, Apollo, hundreds of other innovators) is as American as anything else, and I think we should remember that.

As a political aside, I think such a program, if enacted, would show a clear message to the world that we're fed up with the way fossil fuels are being used as bargaining chips, and that we ultimately have the power to take our ball and go home. Such a bargaining chip would be immensely powerful in the interim before we come up with a viable large-scale solution.

Anonymous said...

What's being built next to the Burger King in EGF, along the old railroad track?

Anonymous said...

The Herald reported a long time ago that a Crookston-based center that helps people with disabilities with workforce training is moving into the land next to BK in EGF.

gfyourself said...

Don't know, but I do know that almost every revolution in history has been a result of the severe economic disadvantage of the majority.

And there we are...the best reason for $10-15-20 gas! The 'ruling class' can't afford it either. Their power base disintegrates. The economic engine that they depend on throws a rod. The wealthy and powerful in this country can't afford to have this happen, so it won't.

But that's the only way an Apollo tpye program would be able to get started. Four dollar gas is probably worse than $15 gas in that respect, because it hurts the poor without affecting any change. Once economic pressure starts to really squeeze the middle class, we will all see changes take place.

In less than ten years following extreme fuel prices, we will have 40mpg diesel engines for trucking (what? impossible!), electric vehicles for regular people (mass market Teslas?), organic, petroleum-free plastics, and all kinds of other innovations that will keep the middle class moving, and more importantly, revving up the economy for the fat cats.

Matthew said...

I enjoy the sentiments, but I think you're ignoring the normal correlatives of a true revolution: war, poverty, disease, famine, and a number of other generally bad things.

Anonymous said...

100!!

dale said...
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Anonymous said...

Is hydrogen technology approaching feasibility? The problem, as I understand, would be distribution, which would have to come about as a result of a "Manhattan-type" project you guys refer to. Because we know the oil companies, perfectly suited to do it, won't, as long as there's one drop of oil in the ground.

OUWxGuesser said...

Biggest problem of hydro tech? Consider the new Honda FCX (I think that's the model name)... in the current system, hydrogen is created from a process involving NATURAL GAS. Hmm. I'm pretty sure there are alternate ways of producing hydrogen, they are just more expensive (please correct me if I'm wrong).

Glad to see others are on board with the Apollo/Manhattan type project. I've been a proponent of something like this for quite some time. Just imagine if we took all of the money (was it real money??) from the Iraq war and put it towards energy research.

Anonymous said...

Or what if, (and I'm sure I'll get all kinds of flack for this) we had heeded ole Jimmy Carter's words back in 1977? We scoffed when he asked us to turn back our thermostats, mocked him when he put solar panels on the White House, and cried, "fool" when he called for us to be free of foreign oil by the year 2000. What a different country-and world-this could have been.

Anonymous said...

Hear, hear...Anonymous@2:51.

Thank you for that post...and that thought! You are right on.

gfyourself said...

I absolutely agree that revolution is ugly. However, I don't think $15 gas is going to cause disease, famine, and martial law. It's going to disrupt people's mobility, and force the government (i.e. the wealthy) to satiate the masses in whatever way they can. Nobody (I should say no *more* than there are now) is going to starve, at least in the U.S., and though I'm not interested in seeing any more people suffer than there already are, it is inevitable that change will create very difficult problems in the short term.

But, my contention remains that $15 gas is a benign catalyst in a reaction that has already started. When it happens, it will accelerate a revolution that has been brewing since the early 1900s.

MattFacingSouth said...

An increase in consumer prices of only 5% can have a pretty big effect on the overall economy. I'd wager that $15 gasoline would cause more of an increase than 5%.

Heck, we've barely even begun to see the effects of $4 gas yet. Many companies are just holding out on raising their commensurate prices in a "wait and see" type of situation. That won't last much longer. And it will go up everywhere. People already stretched thin will end up really hurting and those of us doing "fine" now and able to cope with the direct transportation costs will end up being the ones stretched thin.

If gas continues to rise, bet on it.

$15 is unbelieveable, though. That'd pretty much cause an economic collapse and massive civil unrest. Hell, prolonged $5 gas will be bad enough.

Matthew said...

It's going to disrupt people's mobility, and force the government (i.e. the wealthy) to satiate the masses in whatever way they can.

What exactly do you mean by "force?" What is the mechanism by which the "forcing" will be done? I don't see any way that this is going to happen as nicely as you suppose.

I'm also curious about your wealthy/powerful, poor/masses dichotomy, which I disagree with. For one, you seem to place yourself (and, by association, everyone you know and care about) into the "well-off enough that we don't need to worry about an energy revolution" group, but then you talk about that group as the supposed enemy who needs to be forced to do something by the masses.

This isn't 18th century France, and there is not a strict line dividing any type of so-called class in this country. In my opinion, what is going to get us through the possibly difficult times ahead is to realize that we can survive by joining together, not by supporting baseless class distinctions.

Anonymous said...

Considering the lack of places to enjoy in Grand Forks and the empty buildings, lots, etc., I think the fairgrounds would be a great place for a zoo. I grew up in Minot and loved to go, even into my college years. Actually, I still like to go whenever I make it that way.

Grand Forks is in dire need of more family activities. Other than Splashers which not every family can afford and the splash parks at a couple of city parks, there's not a whole lot for families to do. The Park District does a good job of organizing several events each summer and making the parks attractive and comfortable places, however, there are not many more attractions.

We lost the riverboat several years ago as well as the roller skating arena. Oh yes, and then there was Planet Pizza. That also closed. The races might be okay for some families, but I don't think it's a good place for young children.

Earlier this month I was in Minot to visit a friend. Minot has nearly half the population that Grand Forks-East Grand Forks do combined. I am stumped as to why such a small community has so many more attractions than a city of our size. It seems that any attempts to cater to families in Grand Forks fail. Can anyone tell me why??????

It's a wonder our youth are "lost". I've heard many a complaint about boredom because of no place to go. When young people are bored, they find their own things to do and they are not always constructive.

I say bring back the roller skating, bring back a community center for all ages (other than just elementary age), And finally. . .open a zoo.

Anonymous said...

Chec out the go cart races for children, my son often would spend Wed night there, a great family activity, also car races at the Alerus. greenglass4

dale said...
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Anonymous said...

Yes, the park district does still have their summer program aptly called "Park Board". They also hold Summerthing for to evenings each June and a Family Fun Night (I believe in July).