Resolutions for the Luv Gov et al.
I never make New Year's resolutions, already being perfect. And if you believe that, I've got a small lake in eastern Kentucky I'd like to build for you, once the Luv Gov finishes building his Civic Center palace in Pike County.
No, I'd rather make New Year's resolutions for other people than myself. They're no easier to keep, but you can't get blamed for breaking them. Or perhaps my resolutions are more like prayers, addressed personally to each resolution recipient.
To the Luv Gov, Paul Patton:
Resolve to get sex addiction therapy along with your ex-presidential pal, William Jefferson Clinton. Maybe you could study Zen and find a mantra to hum for a while, since you're not going to be busy running for the U.S. Senate anytime soon.
To Kentucky's First Lady, Judi Patton: No resolution. Just a framed copy of the "Serenity Prayer."
To all of Kentucky's political leaders, wherever you are: Oops-looks like Gov. Patton has more to worry about than the lint in his bellybutton. He's got to come up with megabucks quick or the state's cupboard will be bare. And when Mother Hubbard gets into that kind of jam, her children go hungry.
The Luv Gov can't let this happen. He's actually a pretty decent fellow, I've noticed, even if he IS human-and he has a heart. I'm pretty sure he'll come up with a tax reform package, and it will include a tax cut for the poor while adding some very affordable tax increases for the rich, who at least won't miss any meals over it.
Or maybe he won't do squat. A cigarette tax increase, casino gambling -both have been mentioned. Some bitter pills may have to be swallowed. But for every new teacher we can hire, for every working teacher we don't fire, we'll save having to hire one prison guard in years to come. That's what education really brings-freedom from poverty and the lack of control which poverty gives over a person's own life (the root cause of crime).
It only makes sense. The more people know, the better they can survive. Plus, education teaches cooperation.
So, state leaders-are you still with me? Wake up! My resolution for you is that you FIX the budget mess you've created-the Senate Republicans by playing politics with the budget and an eye on the 2003 governor's race; Democrat Patton with an eye on Jim Bunning's Senate seat in 2004.
Call him Zip-Lip Paul; he muttered the barest words of warning, even if he's squawking it out now. Well, maybe he couldn't predict the current "not a recession" which bears part of the blame for our state's lost revenue, and the situation we're in now. But FORGET the blame; nearly every state in the country is in this kind of shape. Let's get some relief, which will ONLY come through cooperation.
Let's stop hitting our own heads with a hammer because it feels so good when we stop. Let's get into the top 10 states for education instead of the bottom tier. And I'm voting for the first gubernatorial candidate who says THAT!
Finally, to the Hatfields and McCoys: Drop your lawsuit over access to the Hatfield graveyard where the head McCoy is buried. Work something out. Your feud is over 100 years old; bury the HATCHET in that graveyard
New Year, New Faces
Ace is adding a banner crop of contributing columnists to its pages in 2003. Among them, are this week's addition, Seeing Green, by Hilary Lambert (on local/regional environmental isues). Frank X Walker will be contributing a monthly column, Affrilachia, which will include, but not be limited to local African American issues. We're also adding new local food, theater, and visual arts critics to the roster, whose bylines you'll see in coming issues. (To be considered as a contributing writer on local topics, please submit queries to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
LFUCG offices will be closed on January 1st. Offices in LFUCG include, Parks & Recreation, LexCALL, Public information, and Streets and Roads.
Should your trash collection day fall on the holiday, there will only be one collection day for the week.
Did you get a new Dell? Or any other new computer for Christmas? What about a new TV? If you did, and you need to get rid of your old computer or TV, you can drop it off at the Furrow Building,1306 Versailles Road.Include all the old components. Old televisions and computers can be dropped off, January 2nd through January 10th, from 8am to 5pm, Monday through Friday.
Now that Christmas has past, it's time to take down the lights off of the house. Just as well, it's time to dispose of that Christmas tree. To dispose of the tree, just place it on the curb for collection. But be sure to remove everything from the tree, even those pieces of tinsel. Also, you can get rid of dead poinsettias, wreaths (without wire), mantle decorations (such as pine cones) by placing them in your Lenny waste cart.
Being that the new year is here, why not plant a tree. By joining the national Arbor Day Foundation thi January, you will receive 10 trees in all. The array of trees innclude 2 white flowering dogwoods, 2 flowering crabapples, 2 goldenrain trees, 2 Washington Hawthorns, and 2 American Redbuds. ncidally, on January 10th and January 11th, there will be a mulch giveaway at the recycling center located on Haley Pike, from 8am to 3:30pm. Novice green thumbs can look at the Ace archives online for tips on planting trees.
Happy New Year
It's all just a random lottery of meaningless tragedy and a series of near escapes. So I take pleasure in the details. You knowa quarter-pounder with cheese, those are good, the sky about 10 minutes before it starts to rainand I sit back and I smoke my Camel Straights and I ride my own melt.
As everybody gets back to work (and away from our in-laws) this week, life begins to return to normal.
And for some of us, work feels more like a vacation than the holidays -all that traffic; what to buy? For whom? Are we done yet?
Most of that 9/11 "perspective" had worn off, while economic reality set in.
It seems like fewer people are returning to their jobs or classrooms with those excited "what'd YOU get?" exclamations this year.
(Many are just glad to be returning to a job at all.)
I can't speak for the rest of you, but most of my friends and family were on a budget-and, in some ways, that's what made our holidays together more special, and not in that made-for-Lifetime/Susan Lucci as "Ebbe" Scrooge kinda way either.
For a change, we had to think, instead of just blindly spending (more, better, bigger, faster!!).
And yet, none of us gave each other handprints in plaster of paris, or really painful attempts at origami, or hand-crocheted toilet paper doilies.
The best part of the holidays this year was the extra time I got to spend with people I love-some of whom I rarely see.
And my favorite gifts were small, thoughtful, and perfectly executed.
My friend Phoef found me a Barbie purse (filled with candy), accompanied by a couple of six-packs of baby Cokes (in the 10 oz. bottles). Which resulted in the perfect White Trash Christmas breakfast!
A colleague came in during his week off to give me a Japanese prosperity plant (and what busy office doesn't need one of THOSE?).
My college roommate gave me a set of Eastern good-luck candles for my office mantle (to inspire work) and gardening goodies (to inspire my home). She said, "I really tried to find things you were passionate about," and she did.
A wingman gave me gift certificates for the Kentucky Theatre, so we can see all our favorite movies together (none of which include In the Bedroom).
Admittedly, another year came and went without a 1967 Shelby GT 500 under the Reeves tree-but unfulfilled fantasies help keep us all going.
I know, at least according to the K-Mart ads and most of Madison Avenue, that the true meaning of the holidays-and being a good American-meant spending more this year.
And as a small business owner, certainly I should be the first to sign on for that rhetoric.
But this year, I just didn't find it to be true. Our celebrations were modest but heartfelt.
And they left me optimistic about 2003.
I made a new friend, a Lexington native, at a holiday dinner party who recently emailed me from New Mexico with an encouraging thought, "Lexington's downtown scene mirrors what's happened in Albuquerque over the years, but we've finally been able to dig our way out of it....mostly by taking the initiative OUT of government and creating a 'Downtown Action Team' which brought in private money; formed a 'business improvement district' and jump-started many many projects."
He said it's important to see a"local gadfly stirring the pot," and reminded me "it needs constant vigilance."
I think what Paul was saying is the problems we have aren't going to be solved by waiting around for elections. We have to roll up our sleeves, and continue slogging it out in the trenches.
So Happy New Year from us and ours to you and yours. We're all excited about what 2003 will hold for Lexington.
And as for that extra 10 pounds you're so worried about, relax. You wear it well.
Find pleasure in the details.
-Rhonda Reeves, editor/publisher