Meeting OlyCop

I've been an Olyblogger now for 43 weeks and 20 hours. OlyCop is another long-timer here, he's got 38 weeks and 1 day. So we've gotten a chance to read each other along with other Olybloggers for awhile.

OlyCop/Officer John Tupper and I certainly won't agree on everything under the sun, and that is just fine. Because we've both figured out how to find a civil place of agreeing to disagree here. And, through the magic of OlyBlog, we've discovered that the more we listen/read of other folks, the more we learn, the more we figure out that we actually do agree on many things, especially on our love for Olympia.

I appreciate Officer Tupper's voice here on OlyBlog and I can tell other folks do too. I've heard bloggers include "and we even have our own cop" in their list of why they appreciate OlyBlog. So I've especially looked forward to meeting our OlyCop. Thanks to Norm's generous help, I eventually managed to succeed in our Guess Who? game and put actual name to blogging name.

Meeting Officer Tupper was a real treat. We got to sit outside B&B for about a half hour this morning and just talk. I've several ideas from that conversation that I'll eventually write about but for now I want to start the ball rolling. And I want to pass on the word that he is a good guy and worth meeting.

To Olympia by boat

Oly Bats

I see them out of the corner of my eye in the evening, quick winged dashes in and out of view. Once I even heard a series of bat squeaks bouncing back and forth between neighborhood buildings.

Bats are beneficial and we have a bat expert here in town. Woodard Bay has a bat colony. The FLoD is a favorite feeding site. A westside route of hundreds of bats flying from roosts to the FLoD has also been mapped.

Bats that show up in the Governor's Mansion are periodically in our local news, back in 1997 Gov. Locke and family all got rabies shots as a precaution after a bat was seen flying over their infant daughter's crib.

Washington State Department of Health and Thurston County Public Health has more information available on bats and rabies. The main message is to leave bats alone, don't touch them, don't handle them.

The organization Bats Northwest has lots of good information too. Summer is the season for bat watching.

Capitol Lake Bats & Bat Walks

Revenge and the State Supreme Court

I've been looking at some of the conversation on omjp since the Supreme Court of the State of Washinton (SCOTSOW) released its opinions on the constitutionality of Washington's Defense of Marriage Act. Here's a sample:

That marriage's main purpose is "procreation" and since straight people do that a little more conveniently than GLBT folks, gay people shouldn't be able to get married. This makes no sense and is just a smokescreen for good old homophobia. Who are these five idiots on our Supreme Court? Are there any good people to vote for to replace any of them in November?

The motivation to exact revenge for this failure to stike down DOMA is understandable -- it is a ridiculous law crafted by extremists and clearly violates the civil rights of gay people (although, to give the court credit, it wasn't asked to rule on whether the law violated civil rights; it was only asked to rule on whether the state had a rational basis for the law, evidently a pretty easy criterion to meet). The whole issue is complicated, however, by the fact that the Building Industry Association of Washinton is trying to stack the SCOTSOW with ideological conservatives:

The BIAW is the most aggressive, and the most ideological, right wing lobby in the Evergreen State. They despise regulation - everything from environmental laws to ergonomics rules.

The BIAW has used the initiative process repeatedly to get voters to repeal worker and environmental protection legislation it opposes. For example, Initiative 841 in 2003.

They are also partisan Republicans. They heavily supported Dino Rossi for Governor in 2004, dumping millions into the race, and stooped to playing dirty tricks on voters last year on Rossi's behalf. The BIAW also sued earlier this year to stop Puget Sound orcas from being listed under the federal Endangered Species Act.

It would be supremely unfortunate if the progressive community were to take revenge on particular memebers of the SCOTSOW over gay marraige at the expense of every other issue that progressives care about. And I do not like to contemplate what Thurston County would begin to look like if the BIAW had its way in the courts.

a new kind of houseshow!!!



an acoustic round robin event with three songwriters 
(and one opening band) 
bouncing their unique sounds off of each other 
like so many super uniquely shaped particles!!!

the adam and ashley trio (of lake)
micah davis-wheeler (of live active cultures)
reid lee urban (of the moms)
-a (of lake)

donations will be accepted 


Creative solutions to our library space issue

Last night at the General Government committee meeting, another topic brought up by Jodi Reng, library director for the Timberland system, was the possibility of placing a couple of library service kiosks around town. That would take pressure off of the downtown branch.

My initial thought would be to put kiosks in the two high schools in Olympia. Both are far enough from the downtown library to provide geographic diversity, and as you'll read below, I think there is something awfully cool about libraries and schools coming together.

Kiosks are basicaly mini-libraries that have been succesfully used throughout the system in non-library settings:

"The kiosk will provide Timberland Library services to both the Center’s students and Hawks Prairie area residents," said TRL Director, Jodi Reng. "Developed and designed by TRL’s Computer Services staff, the kiosk is the first stand-alone library services station to combine a library catalog and information computer with a self-checkout station. It’s efficient and economical," said Reng. The cost for the two-station kiosk was a little under $5,000.

Timberland library services available at the Kiosk

TRL cardholders can:

Place holds on Timberland library books and other library materials and request delivery to the Hawks Prairie Center.
Pick up and self-check out the materials that have arrived for them.
Return TRL materials in the book drop outside the Center’s main entrance.
Check their library card accounts, including the status of materials they have reserved.
Search the TRL catalog for books, DVDs, music and audio book CDs and cassettes, and more.
Search full-text magazine and newspaper articles and reliable reference resources.

Found: Mel Bay Book & UC Santa Cruz Binder

Funny that my first blog entry up here ends up being a lost and found notice... Anyway I found these on the corner of 5th and Cherry laid out on the sidewalk last Tuesday (7/18) afternoon.

Being a musician I know someone should be missing this stuff. If you know whose this might be drop a line... I'd be happy to get this back to the rightful owner even though the tunes are right down my alley.



I'm excited about a new blog in Olympia; it looks VERY interesting:

Our Failing Education System

I'm Rich Nafziger and I'm a school board member, a parent and someone who spends some professional time on public policy in education.

This is my first blog and I am starting this with the biggest thing that is on my mind. And that is the failure of our education system to meet the needs of both our new economy and all of our kids. I want to start today by laying out my case. Each day I hope to build on it. I don't have all the answers but I'm desperate for the conversation. Please respond if you are willing.

Check it out here.

Become a politician, run for PCO

This is the week to send in your dollar and to get your name on the ballot. If you're a Donkey or an Elephant, you have this week send in your paperwork to become the bedrock of democracy, the Prescinct Committee Officer.
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