Open Thread: “this is my first time taking NyQuil” edition

    As I don’t know how much longer my fingers will accept the commands I send via brain wave, I thought that tonight might be a good time for an open thread. Please talk about whatever you like.

    Before I go, though, I do want to say that I just had what I think is a really excellent idea for a short film. It involves me standing up in the middle of a business meeting, and, without saying a word to anyone, walking out to my car, driving silently for ten hours, getting out of my car on the campus of Princeton University, walking into a building, looking around for few seconds, heading off in a specific direction, seeing a man in the distance with a wild, black shrub-like growth of hair, approaching him, giving him a high-five, and then getting back into my car and driving home. The man, of course, would be Cornel West. And, the film would be shot in real-time. If you don’t think that’s a good idea, drink half a bottle of NyQuil and try again.

    Posted in Ideas, Mark's Life | Tagged , , , , , | 35 Comments

    Michigan rail update by Richard Murphy

    As you may have heard, the Michigan House may be voting as early as today on a Senate appropriations bill that, among other things, includes approximately $400 million in rail-related spending, with would secure federal grants, and move us even closer to the goal of having a functional, state-wide public transportation system. To mark the occasion, we have a special guest post by our friend, mass-transit analyst Richard Murphy…. Here’s what he has to say:

    If you’re interested in seeing better passenger rail service in Michigan, it wouldn’t hurt to take a moment to call your State Representative and ask them to support SB 237, a supplemental appropriations bill that will (finally) allow the state to tap $360 million in Federal high-speed rail funds that we’ve been awarded over the past few years. The bill includes about $32 million in matching funds, $16 million of which is being provided by the Norfolk Southern railroad.

    Obligatory boring details: This funding includes $160 million awarded in 2010, which came with a 20% match requirement–$32 million–that the last State Senate refused to consider. Earlier this year, when Florida, Ohio, and Wisconsin chose to give back their rail funding awards, Michigan won another $200 million, with no additional matching requirement.

    The funds would primarily be used to purchase the rail that Amtrak uses between western Detroit and Kalamazoo from Norfolk-Southern and begin to make track and signal improvements to raise the track speed on that segment–Amtrak already owns the track from Kalamazoo to the Indiana border, with trains running 95 mph on that piece. Due to different track maintenance standards on the NS-owned section, Amtrak trains have been limited to 55 mph on large portions of that track, and this summer the tracks were downgraded to 30 mph. (As Depot Town has noticed, track work has been underway over the past two months to bring track back up to the traditional speed.) The federal funding would allow most of that track to be raised to 95-110 mph (with some obvious slowing in urbanized areas). Along with some smaller projects included in the funding package, the work is expected to cut train trip times from Detroit to Chicago to under 4 hours (compared to 5.5-6 hours now). (MDOT has a lengthier summary of the projects, including the application documents they submitted for funding.)

    There’s been a lot of worry lately that the US House would clawback high-speed rail funds that weren’t yet under contract; an attempt was made this summer to href="http://www.america2050.org/2011/07/house-republicans-move-to-take-back-high-speed-rail-awards.html">tie such a clawback to disaster relief funding. While the US House was so posturing, Michigan was trying to negotiate a price for the track with NS, and get permission to use a write-down of the sale price by NS as part of the matching funds, as well as figure out where to draw the match from.

    Since this has been a closed door process between Governor Snyder’s administration, the Federal government, and NS, there hasn’t been a lot for anyone outside the formal process to do. With much of that finally figured out, though, the administration has pushed to get the funds secured in the current fiscal year (ending, uh, Friday–but for the first time in a while, the legislature doesn’t have a budget to worry about at the final hour, so actually have time for business). The State Senate approved the bill last Wednesday, on a 30-6 vote, and the House will be taking it up either tomorrow (Wednesday) or Thursday.

    For the action-minded, a call to your State Representative never hurts–Ypsilanti’s is Rep. David Rutledge, (517) 373-1771 / DavidRutledge@house.mi.gov. The rest of Washtenaw County is represented by Rep. Jeff Irwin (Ann Arbor), (517) 373-2577 / JeffIrwin@house.mi.gov; Rep. Rick Olson (Pittsfield and south), (517) 373-1792 / RickOlson@house.mi.gov; and Rep. Mark Ouimet (Dexter, Chelsea, Manchester), (517) 373-0828 / MarkOuimet@house.mi.gov.

    If the bill passes, the actual work is likely to be phased over a few years, but the State will be able to obligate the money, securing it against clawback attempts by the US House. While this is not specifically related to the Ann Arbor-Detroit commuter rail project, much of the capital investment needed for that project would be covered by the high-speed rail work. (Incidentally, SEMCOG yesterday issued the first update on that project since April.)

    I know the AnnArbor.com article I linked to above said that it was likely to pass the House, but I’d encourage you to call or write your Representative, and let them know how important mass-transit is to the future of our state.

    update: There are still a few issues to be worked out between the House and the Senate versions, as I understand it, but the appropriation bill has now passed both chambers, so it looks as though Michigan has secured the federal rail funding.

    Posted in Michigan, Rail | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

      Corporate media begins to take notice of the police brutality on Wall Street

      Since we talked yesterday about the dearth of main stream media coverage on the Wall Street occupation, a few things have happened. Most interestingly for me, The Nation called out the New York Times for its dismissive tone and lack of journalistic integrity. Here’s a clip:

      …I’m reminded of Matthew Prowless, a 40-year-old father of two, who attended the Occupy Wall Street protest, and who is as unassuming of a man as I’ve ever seen—not someone who would have caught Bellafante’s gaze. He wore a baseball cap and stood with his friend by a group of black bloc protesters, whom Matthew was eyeing curiously like they were exotic fish in an aquarium.

      When I spoke with him, Matthew called the louder aspects of the protest (the black bloc, the “protest yoga,” etc.) distractions from the far more serious cause.

      “My home has been seized, I’m unemployed, there’s no job prospects on the horizon. I have two children and I don’t see a future for them. This is the only way I see to effect change. This isn’t a progressive issue. This is an American issue. We’re here to take our country back from the corporations,” he said, adding he fears for the future of the United States where corporations can now spend unlimited, anonymous dollars to elect the candidates of their choices. After the protest ended for the day, Matthew couldn’t occupy the park because he had to go care for his two children.

      I also spoke with a young man named Kevin Stanley, a nurse who made the trek to the protest filled with optimism and left feeling simultaneously elated and disappointed. He was alarmed that the protesters (he calls them “kids”) are held up in Zuccotti Park without the presence of medical professionals. During his time there, he treated three cases of hypothermia and a person going through withdrawal as well as infected wounds from not being able to care for open blisters.

      It’s a shame Bellafante didn’t run into Kevin, because they actually agree on the poor organization aspects of the event.

      “Many times the communal nature of things will get the actual task done quickly, but all the competing views with no defined hierarchy just reminds me of Lord of The Flies,” he said.

      For every batshit-crazy quote Bellafante presents, I can match it with a calm, articulate response from another attendee. I guarantee that. However, that’s not the point. I’m not a believer in the “perfect objectivity” goal for journalists because it’s impossible to ever obtain. Human beings inherently possess prejudices and biases that blind them to aspects of reality. Bellafante is less likely to see the Matthews. I’m less likely to see the black bloc…

      And, our friends at NPR defended their decision not to cover the so-called occupation, stating that the protests “did not involve large numbers of people, prominent people, a great disruption or an especially clear objective.” In other words, they did not have the organization and discipline of the Tea Party, which had the benefit of Koch Brother money and such luminaries as Victoria Jackson and Angelina Jolie’s dad. Fortunately, however, it looks as though things may have tipped in favor of the protesters today, as a few “prominent people” showed up to pledge their support. So, I expect we’ll be hearing more about the protests soon on our local NPR affiliates. In the meantime, though, we’ll just have to make due with MSNBC, which has been doing a great job today outlining the instances of police brutality on the ground.

      And I’m not naive enough to think that MSNBC is covering this just because they want to get the word out about the growing protest movement. I realize that violence sells, and that Lawrence O’Donnell’s ratings haven’t been particularly strong. For whatever the reason, though, I think it’s a good thing that the word is slowly getting out. As I mentioned earlier, I have my own concerns about the core group of protesters on the street in New York right now. I don’t think, however, that’s the story. I think the story is that today’s protest is at least 100 times larger than the “occupation” that was attempted on Wall Street in the spring. The story is that a revolution is brewing, and the next protest will likely be a hell of a lot larger.

      Posted in Civil Liberties, Media | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments

      Totally Quotable Linette: “but what will the vegans think” edition

      When I get a cold, like the one I’ve had for the past few days, I tend to make and eat spicy chili. It never makes me well, but, for some reason, I’m convinced that one day it’ll do the trick. (As I believe antibiotics are overprescribed, and refuse to take them when I get sick, I have to rely on home remedies.) So, I dragged myself out to the store for the required ingredients yesterday, and a few bottles of juice. What you read above is what Linette said to me upon my return. You see, we have some vegan friends coming to stay with us later this week, and, as I stood there, hacking my guts out and unpacking bag after bag of meat, you could kind of see the wheels in her head turning. Part of her – the part that loves me – wanted to be supportive of my plan to restore my health through a concoction of spicy meat and beans. I could see it. But, another part of her felt like she’d be a bad friend if she allowed me befoul our kitchen so close to the big day. So, she thought about it for a second, and then gave me her edict. I had permission to make chili, as long as I promised to make it all go away by noon on Thursday. And, not only that, but she also wanted a few other odds and ends to disappear. So, in between hellacious coughing fits, I’ve spent the past few days forcing bits of turkey burger, pork loin and chili into my great, oozing mouth. I should add, in case my vegan friends are reading this, that I did my best to cover my mouth when coughing, so as not to emit great clouds of aerosolized pork and beef. What’s more, all the meat is now gone, and we are all on the path to recovery…. Who knows, this all-meat binge might have been just what I needed to give the nasty, delicious stuff up once again.

      Posted in Food, Mark's Life | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

      Ypsi/Abor Exit Interview: Thomas Kula

      When I think about the kind of people we need more of in Ypsi, there are probably five or six distinct archetypes that come to mind. If I ever went to the trouble of naming them, one would certainly be called “The Kula” in honor of the man we’re talking to here tonight. Thomas moved to town in 2006, and hit the local scene with a slow-burning vengeance, getting involved in his new community at a level which most people who are born here never do. Among other things, he’s proven himself, at least to me, to be thoughtful, engaged, bright and willing to pitch in in order to make things in Ypsilanti better. Unfortunately, he’s also leaving town in a short while for New York City. Thomas was nice enough to answer the following questions, after I asked, “Why?”

      MARK: What’s your name, and were did you call home before Ypsilanti?

      THOMAS: Thomas Kula. Before I moved to Ypsilanti I lived in Ames, Iowa while at my last job at Iowa State University, and before that lived in Des Moines while attending Drake University. I grew up in rural eastern Iowa, where there are three pigs for every human.

      MARK: If I’m not mistaken, you moved to the area to take a job at U-M, but yet you chose to make your home in Ypsilanti, instead of in Ann Arbor. Why is that?

      THOMAS: That’s correct, I moved out here to take a job with U-M. I chose Ypsilanti for a variety of reasons, none of which have much of anything to do with what I really like about Ypsilanti (in fact, before I drove here the day I moved to Michigan, I had never been in Ypsilanti in my life): it looked moderately less expensive to rent in Ypsilanti than it did in Ann Arbor, and I found an apartment complex with a large parking lot that had no problem with me parking the moving pod thing I used to move in the lot for a few days while I unpacked it.

      One of the big reasons, at least initially, that I moved to Ypsilanti is that it was far away from Michigan Stadium. Living for five years in Ames and near Iowa State, which is a Big 12 school, I knew how much of a pain in the ass being anywhere near the stadium on a football Saturday was (especially when Nebraska showed up). I knew it would be even worse in Ann Arbor (especially when Ohio State showed up), so I basically looked at a map and went “here’s the stadium and I’m going to live … way over here”.

      I have a pretty strong rule about not going west of US-23 during football games (or during Art Fair, for that matter….)

      MARK: Recently, you made a decision to leave Ypsilanti for New York. What was it about New York that attracted you?

      THOMAS: The simplest answer is that I got bit by the bug.

      I’ve always been a city kind of person, although until this past July I never thought I’d end up in New York City — I figured I’d perhaps end up in Chicago, or Minneapolis/Saint Paul. Those are big cities, but they are *Midwestern* big cities, and both with a good number of folks I know living there. But until I was there this summer for a conference, and then back there for vacation, I had never considered it.

      It’s many things, I think. There’s excellent public transportation — I was there for six days on vacation and had absolutely no problem getting all over the place on public transit. There’s amazing food everywhere. There’s always stuff going on, and it’s an entire universe that I couldn’t even begin to explore entirely in a thousand lifetimes.

      Really, though, it’s hard to find any one thing that I could definitely point to and say “that was it”. It grabbed me quick and it grabbed me hard, though.

      MARK: What, if anything, will you miss about Ypsilanti?

      THOMAS: Oh, man, where to even start. I’m going to miss an amazing amount of stuff about Ypsilanti. I have a lot of awesome friends here that I’m going to miss dearly. There’s a lot of interesting and creative stuff going on in the area. I love where I live, being five blocks from my favorite coffee shop, the Ugly Mug, and being a five or ten minute walk from downtown Ypsilanti or Depot Town or the Co-op. I love that a good number of places I’d go to or hang out at I could walk into and find someone I know — it feels like a solid neighborhood, really. You know people, you cross paths. That’s great. I love Ypsilanti dearly, and the people here. And it’s great that Ann Arbor is right next door, and Detroit is just down the road.

      MARK: In the years that you were here, you got quite involved in number of different activities and initiatives. I’m sure I’ll leave a few out, but you served on the Co-op board, you helped with the planning of the Shadow Art Fair, you were one of the first people to move into Spur Studios, you were a constant presence at events like Elbow Deep, you played bike polo, were an active member of Bike Ypsi, and any number of other things. I think, as far as new transplants go, you’ve been one of the more engaged that I’ve come across. I was wondering what you learned in the process, both about yourself, and about the community.

      THOMAS: I hinted at this earlier, but the thing that surprised me the most (pleasantly so!) when I moved out here is the number of people doing creative and interesting things here, and the amount of stuff going on here, not just in Ypsilanti but in Ann Arbor and Detroit and southeast Michigan in general. It’s a pretty common theme in most of the issues of my zine Late Night Thinking, trying to understand why that is, what drives people to it, why it’s happening here. Shadow Art Fair and Spur, the subject of my first two interviews in Late Night Thinking, are great examples of this — it’s just something that, to an outsider with a naive view of Ypsilanti, you just don’t expect. An awesome art fair, with real creative people (and not art-onna-stick), in an awesome brewery with awesome beer? SAF was one of the first things I did when I moved here and it helped clinch my love of the area. And Spur? Stuff like that’s been done elsewhere, but as successfully? Not a chance. I was incredibly impressed with the folks creating Spur Studios, how levelheaded and reasonable they were doing everything. It wasn’t some half-assed thing done on the sly, it was a real, genuine “here’s what we can do with the space. Here’s what we can’t do. We’re working with the building owner on this one, and if we can live in these limits, even if we can’t do everything we might want to there we can do a hell of a lot. Let’s do this, let’s do it right, and let’s not fuck up this amazing opportunity.”

      Bike Ypsi and Elbow Deep are also two great examples of this. Bike Ypsi isn’t even a thing in any sense, it’s just a group of people who say “We’re Bike Ypsi”. It started years ago when the city passed the ordinance against riding bicycles on sidewalks in certain parts of downtown. A group of folks asked “Okay, so who is going to address *why* people think they need to ride on the sidewalk? Who’s going to teach folks the proper way to ride on the streets, how to find safe routes, how to ride properly?” And they took it upon themselves to do just that. I still remember our first Spring Ride, the scores of people we had show up to Recreation Park, the stuff we got donated so we could have a free bbq. I remember standing in awe watching 120 people pouring out of the park on the group ride — it was spectacular. I mean, we worked our asses off to make that happen, but we weren’t a huge organization, we didn’t have deep pockets, and still this giant group of people showed up and it went incredibly well.

      And Elbow Deep. I think Elbow Deep might be my canonical example of quintessential Ypsi awesomeness. Just think about it: a monthly drag show at a bar in Ypsilanti. Again, if you had a naive outsiders view of Ypsi you’d never suspect that here — Ann Arbor, sure, or Detroit, but *Ypsi*? And it’s all solid Ypsi. The hosts, the House of Chanel, live here, and they’ve been busting their asses doing drag in southeast Michigan for over twenty years. Dave, the organizer, busts his ass every month to make it happen, get the place decorated, and Kurt the DJ is back every month, and they’re in Ypsi too. Andy and the gang at Woodruff’s make the bar such a great venue. And the best part is that it’s a very open and welcoming thing — too much stuff like that tends to get cliquish quickly, if you show up and you’re not one of ‘their group’ you just don’t feel welcome. Not so with Elbow Deep. I’ve been to every one except three of them (in 30 Elbow Deeps total) and every one of them has been very “we don’t care who you are, gay straight, whatever. Just come and have fun.” And nearly every month that place gets *packed*.

      What have I learned about myself? Honestly, I don’t know, I don’t get introspective all that often. I can say that over the past several years I’ve been more myself, felt more comfortable with who I am and my place in life, than I’ve ever been in my life. That’s really the result of many things, but a good chunk of it I think comes from Ypsilanti and the people here.

      MARK: Is Ypsi just too small?

      THOMAS: Too small for what, really? I mean, I got bit by the glamour of the big city, and Ypsilanti will never be New York City, but if I got told tomorrow that I had to live the rest of my life in Ypsilanti I’d be pretty okay with that.

      MARK: Will you look back fondly on your time here?

      THOMAS: Absolutely. There’s no way for me to say yes hard enough to this question.

      MARK: Do you think you might miss being a part of a small community? I’m not trying to talk you out of the move. Hopefully it doesn’t come across like that. I think everyone should experience a big city. I’m just wondering if there’s any concern on your part about moving into a more establish community, where it may not be as easy to get involved… Or, do you think that I’m wrong, and that it might in fact be easier to get involved in things in New York? I’m curious to hear your thoughts. It’s just always seemed to me that it was relatively easy to do things in Ypsi because there was so little infrastructure in they way, and such a hunger for people with new energy and ideas.

      THOMAS: Well, I think I will certainly miss being part of a small community. And I think you’re right, it is easy for folks to do things in Ypsi because there isn’t much in the way, although for slightly different reasons than you mentioned. I think there is a hunger for people with new energy and ideas here, but more importantly I think there’s a solid pragmatic optimist streak in the community here, a solid “just do things” ethos — “you want something to happen, make it happen,” and people are supportive of that. If you’ve got a healthy amount of gumption to make something happen here, it’s pretty easy to do so (although its not without its difficulties). I think we’re also blessed, in a weird way, with people *not* expecting that kind of thing here. In many respects, at least when it comes to the creative folks here, we don’t have a lot of “Well, I did that thirty years ago” or “We tried that in 1973 and it failed, I don’t know why you think you can do that.”

      As for if it will be harder to do that in a big city, or easier, I don’t know. Ask me in a year. On one hand, New York City is a huge city, with millions of people, so even if you’re interested in not just underwater basket weaving but 14th century upper Scandinavian underwater basket weaving you’ll probably find scores of people also interested in that very same thing — so finding like minded folks for many things I think will be much easier there than here, just because of the scope of population. On the other hand, it also means that there’s gonna be the 20 people who are *really* *into* 14th century upper Scandinavian underwater basket weaving, who let that be the focus of their entire life, and how can someone like me, who likes to dabble into a whole bunch of interesting things and maybe dive a bit deeper into a couple things, compete with that?

      As a short answer, I think it will be easier to find people interested in just about anything I’m interested in, but I think it will be more difficult to have as much impact on stuff as I have here. Unless I become focused on just one thing, which, right now at least, I don’t think I’d do. But again, ask me in a year what happened.

      MARK: Do you think you’ll find what you’re looking for in New York?

      THOMAS: Hell, I don’t even know what I’m looking for in New York. I’ll admit, this entire plan is a harebrained scheme, but when I get one that gives me this much gumption to look for a new job, I gotta run with it. I’m looking forward to exploring a new city, but then again, I had the exact same thing when I moved to Ypsilanti and had just as much joy from it. I’m a pretty simple guy in many respects, so the fact that I’ll have a chance to ride a train to work every day and have ready access to bagels so good I’d stab a kitten for one makes me far happier than I probably should be.

      MARK: Do you want to talk about gay stuff? I don’t know that you and I have ever talked about the local gay scene, have we? Assuming you do want to talk about it in this format, I’d like to know your thoughts. Is the SE Michigan gay scene vibrant enough to hold the interest of single young professionals such as yourself? And it’s not just a gay question, by the way. I think most people we loose in your age range are due to the size of the dating pool. A lot of people, no doubt, head to Chicago for the promise of better jobs, but I think more probably go because they feel the odds of finding love are higher.

      THOMAS: Well, in some respects I think I’m a poor person to ask this question of because many days I feel like I’m one of the least gay gay guys out there, at least when it comes to the stereotypical gay guy things. Although, amusingly, I think that’s changed a lot in the nearly five years I’ve lived here.

      Seriously, though, I think it comes back again to the simple matter of population. There’s an LGBTQ scene in Ypsi, even, because I know LGBTQ folks here, but really, there’s not a huge visible “this is the gay stuff”. Elbow Deep every month, the stuff going on at Qzone at the Ozone House in town, that’s about it here in town. Ann Arbor has like the gay sub-block maybe, and folks like HARC are doing great things in HIV/AIDS education and prevention, which gets closely associated with LGBTQ scenes, and there’s the student associations at EMU and U-M. Even Detroit, well, Motor City Pride each year and there’s some bars spread out around town and the suburbs. I know I’m missing some things, but not *much*. It’s not like there’s whole damn villages like there are in large cities. I mean, the closest we have to anything like that is Ferndale, maybe, and even that pales in comparison to neighborhoods in Chicago or New York City. But, that’s just a matter of scale again — in a city of 8 million people that 10% number that gets thrown about a lot means 800K LGBTQ folks wandering around, and the population density just means it’s easier for those clumps to form. Here in Ypsilanti that 22K population means there’s 220 of us LGBTQ folks wandering around, and we’ve got five times less population density, so we’re all spread out.

      As for it being easier to find love — okay, I’d be lying if I said the thought “Man, it’s gonna be easier to get laid there” didn’t go through my head, but really, that’s at *most* 10% of the reason I’m moving. And finding love, I think, is really just one part of “there’s just a larger population of people around my age”, which, again, comes with the scale of larger cities like Chicago or New York, or even Detroit. And for those things that are broadly more age-centric, it means that with a larger population there’s more of a chance there’s going to be places to go where I’ll be able to see bands I like, or bars to hang out with people I’d like to hang out with, or coffee shops to sit at, or entertainment options that appeal to me.

      If you want to talk about the gay scene, let’s talk about LGBTQ rights. Again, this isn’t something where I woke up one morning and went “I can’t get married here, I’m moving!”, but man, let me tell you, it’s gonna feel good to get out of a state where prejudice is enshrined in the fucking *state* *constitution*. The People of the State of Michigan are so damn afraid of me getting married that they passed a constitutional amendment forbidding me from doing so. The State Legislature is doing its damnedest now to squash even domestic partner health benefits for state workers. Now look at the state I’m moving to, where the law legalizing same-sex marriage had to make it through a *Republican* controlled state senate. New York State is by no means an idyllic gay paradise, but the fact that a pretty fundamental right made it through that speaks volumes, I think.

      MARK: What could Ypsi do better?

      THOMAS: If I were named Dictator of Ypsilanti I would do but one thing: find every one of those damn “Hip Historic Hipsilanti” signs and burn every one of the fuckers in a big barrel. We could close off the streets around the Water Tower and do it under the gaze of General Demetrius Ypsilanti and have a big party. Because, seriously, if you have to *say* you’re a cool city, you’re not a cool city. You’re a cool city by *doing*, not by *saying*.

      Really, though, I think the single most crucial problem Ypsilanti needs to solve is the all to prevalent and entrenched pissed-offness that appears between groups of people in important matters going on in the city. It seems to pop up too much: dealing with Water Street or the Thompson Block, over the whole Ypsitucky Jamboree hoopla, with whatever’s happening with the DDA or whatever it is this month, etc. I still feel that, after five years, I still don’t have enough history to understand where it comes from. And, in many cases, both sides of an issue have done something at least to deserve some pissed-offness. But we’ve got to move past that if the city is going to survive. We’ve got enough issues to deal with in an industrial city in a post-industrial state, with an ever-shrinking tax base, and sometimes at least I feel people are pissed of with each other simply because they’ve always
      been pissed off with each other instead of having a real reason to be so. It won’t ever go away completely, and I’m not naive enough to believe that if we could just get a bunch of reasonable people to sit around the table we’d solve all of our problems, because it just isn’t going to happen. But we’ve got far more important battles to fight than fighting battles between ourselves.

      MARK: Thanks, Thomas. And, if I didn’t say it before, I’ll miss your presence here in town.

      THOMAS: Thank you very much. I’m gonna miss this place, and more importantly, the people here, more than I’ll ever be able to say properly.

      Posted in Ann Arbor, Detroit, sex, Shadow Art Fair, Special Projects, Ypsilanti | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

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