Letters to the Editor for May 19, 2012

Walnut will be missed

At 5 p.m. on Monday afternoon I stood with three neighbors in the place where a healthy, 100-plus-year-old black walnut tree stood that very morning. We were all scratching our heads wondering how the tree came down without our input and why it needed to come down only one week after we received a letter of notice from the city.

Having received the letter, a couple of us called and asked the city and public works for a delay in the tree removal. They replied that we “were in the eighth inning of a nine-inning game” and that the decision “had already been through all of the proper channels.” Perhaps if you consider the tree was roughly 5,200 weeks old (and possibly older than the city itself), one extra week probably was the eighth inning of a nine-inning game.

In the past week we learned that “the proper channels” for these types of decisions is the city’s tree committee. Given our experience, we feel the city and tree committee should include residents in the tree removal decision-making process.

We are a creative and intelligent community here in a “Tree City, USA” — we might have developed viable solutions, had we been given the time and allowance for input.

We are deeply saddened that the tree came down and so quickly. While there is nothing in the world that can bring the tree back, nor the intangible charm it brought to the street, please let this be the last tree removed without a proper public input process.

Pierce Louis

Hood River

Do your research

Please consider your position on the issues of our small town carefully. Do your research before you just blindly support things that will have a negative effect on everyone’s quality of life.

Locating a cable park in the Nichols boat basin area of the port will limit the use to that activity only. I also doubt if the kiting community will use it much since when the wind’s blowing they are on the river.

Also on a side note to this issue: One reader of this paper from out of town assumes that the cable park will be located on dry land, not on the water. So do research this before blindly giving your support for something that will affect us all.

Years ago I saw beautiful plans for the port area that included both recreation options and some commercial/light-industrial uses that really looked like the best way for the port to make a return on the investment of land and still provide quality of life for it citizens. But now with all the construction and industrial use it looks like any other city’s port.

Adding a cable park will just continue to clutter and make that area less attractive to locals and visitors alike.

Bob Stewart

Hood River

Use the crosswalks

I travel on May Street every day for work, and am amazed at the number of people who cross where there are no crosswalks, or walk around the no-crosswalk sign to cross the street.

Today I saw a large group of small children on the way to the pool. The teachers had them cross on 12th street where there was no crosswalk. Why, when there is a safe crosswalk nearby would they do this?

Is this the example we want to show our children? It may not be the most convenient way to get to where you’re going, but it’s the safest. Maybe some police presence and tickets would get people to follow the rules before there is a tragedy.

Christy Sollman

Hood River

‘Weed-eating’ solution

Latest Romney quote the radio supplied me this morning wherein he responds to whichever of Obama’s proposals, procedures or fait-accompli he deems key in delineating the difference he presumes to offer the voters of this good land in the upcoming election. And may that event transpire soon!

“…attacking (entities) which create things is counter-productive.”

Humph. Now we get down to the brass tacks of the deal. But, first of all, can we define these entities suffering undeserved attack? Pretty please?

‘Cuz, far as I can tell those Wall Street financiers don’t create any-one-thing. They just move around from one packet into another that has been created by blood, sweat and tears of U.S. middle-class citizens and poor people.

We, the 99 percent, create things and services. They, the Wall Street financiers and their apprentices speculate, and they jawbone, and they lie about those singular realities created by the rest of the populace so they can sell the accumulated wealth to other shysters or dummies.

Give me a break. I may be dumb (as in “voiceless” in any forum to which these “Wall Streeters” may give a listen) but I am a good long way from being a willing worker in the world created by such warts on our economic system.

Better idea, and the only just and effective remedy for their noxious fantasies (I call it the Two Peaks Blues Cure for whatever ails you. Yeah, I also aspire to getting rich peddling quack Rx to the naïve):

I invite these warts on our economy to come out here and get on their prayer-bones alongside me in my blueberry patch. They can start pulling weeds, while they ruminate on their sins and other transgressions.

And when they’ve worked up a goodly appetite, they can dine on some of the weeds I’ve got growing out there (a practice I’ve been known to engage when the gap ‘tween meals becomes unendurable). It’s what I do all summer long, and to which I credit my pleasant attitude, as well as my excellent physique.

Come on out. The weeds are free.

Gloria Krantz of Dee

Hood River

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Latest video:

Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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