Not Picturesque

Carol Coletta was, quite literally, one of the first urbanist voices I ever heard. I was an early adopter of the Internet, using it for research for a weekend radio program I hosted and produced; a friend hooked me up to do research using an old Mac and a modem (“Whatever that is”) and the

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Grinding my Gears

Criticism of the way in which local media covers various topics in Springfield in particular, and regarding urban places more broadly has diminished here because, for the most part, I’ve had my say and gotten it out of my system. Death Race 2016 was an enormous part of that; actually documenting as it happened just

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Dead Shopping

Malls had begun to kill downtown before I was conscious of either. As I wandered through the streets and alleys of Springfield’s core as a “tween” I couldn’t see the evidence of decline because I had never seen what it had been like when it was truly healthy. In retrospect I was witness to the

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Meeting-up with Chris

Until last Tuesday I had never met Chris Martenson nor had I ever met anyone in the area who knew of him; A prophet is not without honor, except in his own country after all. When I contemplate the different forms of resilience capital, as Chris and Adam Taggart explain it, the most ephemeral is

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Not Unsafe

As I read the story of the Wisconsin Girl Scouts murdered by a pickup truck careening off the road and into a ditch where the girls were picking up trash I was startled by this quote: Not an unsafe area. Hard to imagine anywhere less safe if you are a human not clothed in an

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Ix-nay on the Acism-ray

When the Amazing World of Dr Seuss Museum opened last year to great fanfare and large crowds it immediately became mired in controversy as a local artist charged with the task of selecting illustrations from Ted Geisel’s works to replicate on the walls of the converted Connecticut Valley Historical Museum chose to paint this: Three

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It Makes me Sick

I understand that the folks at CityLab don’t know that I exist and have never heard of RationalUrbanism, but it still feels as though they really are just trying to get my goat having published yet another tribute to an American modernist whose best works appear to, on their best day and in just the

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To See, or not to See

 I attended the funeral of an old friend last weekend. He was 14 years my senior and we had been friends from when I was in my teens until I hit my mid thirties. He was a very significant religious leader in his faith, I became an unbeliever, and his knees and his heart didn’t

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Queen of All She Surveys

The entire family made a concerted effort this summer to expand LunaLucia’s world. She needs it. She’s too bright, too energetic, too inquisitive, and too restless to be happy just hanging around the house. It started with some walks around the house, around the block, and down to our neighborhood’s little Italian shops: a little

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Mikey and Flo

The remnants of Hurricane Florence making for some wet going on Maple Street last month: From my experience news outlets don’t distinguish sharply between urban, suburban, and rural areas while covering the aftermath of disasters but, for obvious reasons, I try to parse the news reports in exactly those ways. I do this because both

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