The sensational Census story proclaims Census: 8 of 10 Americans now urbanites:
Move over, New York City. Nine of the 10 most densely populated areas in the U.S. are out West, and eight out of 10 Americans are now urbanites, a U.S. Census Bureau report released Monday shows.
However, like the recently trumpeted “Chocolate leads to weight loss” study that’s gotten a lot of brief mentions by radio personalities in between their shallow playlists and brief Internet mentions, looking behind the headlines will reveal something that pretty much contradicts the headline.
In the chocolate study, it was the fact that everyone in the study was exercising 3.6 times a week (more than I do, certainly).
In the Census Bureau study, it’s the definition of urban:
The census data identifies two types of urban areas: “urbanized areas” of 50,000 or more people and “urban clusters” of at least 2,500 and less than 50,000 people. There are 486 urbanized areas and 3,087 urban clusters nationwide.[Emphasis added.]
You know what we call an urban area of 2,500 people in the real world? A small town.
But going by the Census Bureau’s definition, ladies and gentlemen, here is the gritty urban world of Republic, Missouri. Continue reading “Gritty Urban Scenes from Southwest Missouri”
As some of you might know, I’ve been having a little trouble with my DSL connection starting sometime last winter. AT&T operators and technicians have been very polite, for the most part, but they didn’t fix the problem yet.
Additionally, I needed a static IP address to make connections to client networks easier, and this did not go well, either, since most AT&T phone representatives only want to sell U-Verse and transfer you to tech support if you even mention static IPs. I finally got it, but at a bill rate three times what they sell it to business customers.
I sent a letter to the head of AT&T Business and Home Solutions: Continue reading “Letter to Andy Geiss, Sr. Exec. V.P. AT&T Business and Home Solutions”
As you might have noticed, suddenly everyone is all about civility. There are national media calls for it, and the city of Springfield has some sort of ten tenets of civility that it’s wasting government time and treasure on.
The local YMCA even has a banner for it with a logo that I think captures the essence of the modern call for civility:
Notice the arrow in it, just as awesome as in the FedEx logo, but to worse effect.
The circle on the left is perhaps being civil to the circle on the right, denoted by the arrow. But this civility is one-sided, and the right circle is poised to eat, Pac Man style, the circle on the left.
Doesn’t that really capture it as a modern one-sided, “You must be civil according to my rules of behavior, even as I pursue your destruction” “civility” of the 21st century?
Or maybe it’s just Atari 2600 Pac Man and Discolored Arcade Pac Man exchanging ideas and I’m reading too much into it.
Yesterday, as I mentioned, we hit a book fair at a Methodist church just outside the MSU campus. It wasn’t very large, and its selection of fiction was essentially romance novels and a pile of James Patterson books. It did, however, have some old record albums, so I was able to stock up on some easy listening for my hi-fi.
- A copy of Sandford’s Rough Country. I’ve already read it, but it was a library book. I own it now. Someday, I’ll explain how G.P. Putnam hates libraries.
- A joke book.
- A collection of Peanuts cartoons entitled We Love You, Snoopy.
- The Romances of Hezekiah Mitchell, a local author’s book. I might already own it, as I’ve seen it often enough, but in case I don’t, I bought one for fifty cents.
- Tales from the Bark Side, a collection of dog things.
- Several books by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
- Profiles in Courage, which I haven’t read since the sixth grade when Mrs. Pickering had a rack of paperbacks she’d let us borrow.
- Cosa Nostra, something in a suspense series from 1971 from a lesser known publishing house.
- A short story in a pamphlet that was a promotional giveaway of some sort or another.
My beautiful wife got a couple books and cookbooks. The children got four books, not depicted because they couldn’t wait until we got home to have them out and paged through.
It’s the gearing up phase: The Friends of the Springfield-Greene County Library and the Friends of the Christian County Library will hold their book fairs later this month.
Soon, we will need to move or put an addition onto our house to house the continuing (!) growth of the library.