La paradoja

The key question in poetic analysis is why is this poem a poem? That is to say, what is it about the expression of this idea as a poem that makes more more effective than if it had been expressed as an essay, a short story, or a novel. It’s a conceit, of course, but

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Hypocrisy is the Mother of Detention (Centers)

I was buying radishes at the farmers’ market yesterday when this pretentious ass, you know the type, the kind who buys his veggies at a farmers’ market, tells me I’m cutting in front of the people standing beside me. Now, it turns out that there were two different lines depending on method of payment and

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The Center

I don’t know if vindication is something I’m looking for most of the time when I put down my views here at RationalUrbanism since so much of what I express here is subjective. I don’t want my hometown to thrive because it’s demonstrably true that some fact or other makes it the rational outcome of

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A Sunny Monday

At the risk of giving you more insight than you might want into the inner workings of RationalUrbanism, I tried to multi-task by earning some step-dad bonus points as I slyly took some photographs intended to support an opinion at which I had already arrived. One problem: the experience didn’t match my expectation and so,

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You Could Move to Bridgeport

It would be the height of hypocrisy for me to criticize advocacy journalism; so here goes! I learned early on after deciding to live in downtown Springfield that the bulk of the nuanced thought would come from people with skin in the game, people who actually lived in the neighborhood and had to live with

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Updates

With the conclusion of Fresh Paint Springfield LunaLucia appeared, looming over Dwight Street. Many of my friends have commented at the irony that she is gracing the side of a parking garage, given my aversion to such structures: GoodSpace Murals was the name of the group of artists from Minnesota who created the idea and

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Beer Gardens, Food Trucks, and Farmers’ Markets

James Howard Kunstler: “We don’t have to have a craft fair to get people to come here.” “A public place so dismal that the winos don’t even want to go there.” Most of Springfield’s public spaces reside on the better end of this continuum of public space, but, often due to a dearth of programming

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Fresh Paint Springfield

For mid-sized cities having an identity is a challenge. I was working in radio when the laws controlling ownership changed and saw just how quickly “local radio” all but disappeared. The same is true of banking and retail, food and drink, news and entertainment; the list goes on. Lots of places have been staging a

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The Utility of Beauty and the Beauty of Utility

This question of beauty has stayed with me for weeks now. I believe wholeheartedly in the proposition that aesthetic quality is an enormously important characteristic for cities like Springfield to cultivate if they are to survive and thrive at this moment in time. As I wrote just a few weeks ago, however, there is an

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Setting Your Watch

I’m almost embarrassed for the host of the Capitol Watch podcast from the Hartford Courant. I mean, I wish Springfield and Masslive had anything even remotely similar with a focus on the city and urban issues. It is still the case that, even with the multi-million dollar headquarters and broadcasting center of New England Public

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