Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Thank you Schnucks.

Finally. A grocery store is building west of Veteran's Parkway, this city's main artery for all things retail. With very little exception, it's where the good people of Normal are forced to shop. Schnucks, a St. Louis-based store, is easily the nicest of the grocery store options in Bloomington-Normal and they're coming my way!

So when I read they would build about a mile north of my house, I waited with bated breath. I waited and waited. Then I waited some more.

So now that the building is going up, I'm thrilled. It should be here by spring. What makes this extra cool is that the area has some low-cost housing very near and a lot of those people take the bus. Now, they won't have to ride across town anymore.

Super cool Schucks. Way to go!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

More to life than walking

I've been feeling a little trapped lately. So I stopped driving. So what? So the neighbors look at me weird as I walk the girls around the block on 20-degree days.

Walking to Normal public library a couple of days ago, I passed the Ecology Action Center. I knew of their existence, but figured they wouldn't be interested in likes of my only-recently-green help. When I got home, I looked them up online and saw they had an online newsletter.

That's so cool, I thought. I wish I could help them with that.

So on a whim, which usually yields my most successful projects (no time to write-in my neurosis) I wrote them volunteering my writing or whatever they need.

They seemed thrilled. Welcome on board, they said. Join our editorial committee. It turns out, that was their first newsletter and they're looking for ways to reach out to their members.

Awesome. Finally, a good place to put energy.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The one-car household: Not as easy as I thought

I'd just like to say, Steve and I are not salespeople. Frankly, we suck.

That said, our second car, a 1999 Olds Intrigue with 115,000 miles has been on the market for about two months. That poor car has just sat in our garage/driveway/curb since July, taking up our valuable, limited space.

So we're selling it. We looked at the Blue Book value. We compared it to like cars and we slapped a price on it. Turns out, we needed to do a little more.

One guy was interested. He took it into the dealer and they said it needed thousand of dollars of work. Thousands!

And our $3,600 price tag dropped to $1,000. That's barely enough to buy a bike. And seriously, we could really use the money.

Can't transportation karma throw anything my way? I guess not. On top of not being able to sell our second car, our first car is on the fritz, dripping a weird brown goo all over our driveway.

Please send creative ideas on what to do, other than insurance fraud. I'm worse at criminal activity than at selling things. It all makes me very nervous.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Another blow to public transit.

My mom was in town last week and I took her to see Aaron Neville, who I really (surprisingly) enjoyed. On the way home, my mom lamented that she never got to ride the bus.

I told her I'd take her on the bus route home, so she could experience at least the scenery. We'd gotten a huge snow/ice storm two days earlier.

So while the main roads are all perfectly clear, but bus route is coated in a hearty layer of ice. After all, who cares if the buses run on time.