Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Palms are not native to Los Angeles, Who knew?

The palm trees past the outfield bleachers at Dodger Stadium or along the boulevards in Beverly Hills are about as iconic to LA as anything you would know but they are not native to the area. Take a look at the following article for an interesting history.

Why Are There Palm Trees in Los Angeles?

Turns out it’s an image thing.

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Buddy Oakes for OddsAndEnds

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mayor Dindiddie Pushes Crematory at Special Monday Meeting in Spring Hill

The following is a release from a Spring Hill resident who is feeling that Mayor Michael Dinwiddie is running over the citizens while pushing his own reckless agenda with no concern for the well being and quality of life of the local taxpayers.

Here is the release...

Mayor Dinwiddie does it again

Mayor Dinwiddie is attempting to silence the voice of Spring Hill citizens.  That's the opinion of a city official who told me point blank, "It's obvious that the mayor is attempting to use a special called meeting of BOMA to limit citizen involvement and input."  This week the mayor hastily added a vote on crematory zoning to the docket of a BOMA meeting slated for this Monday — a meeting that was specially called for the purpose of dealing with library issues.

This Monday, we need you to send the mayor a message:  The citizens of Spring Hill are watching.  We're active, and we won't be silenced.  We need the mayor and BOMA to know that we're not going to allow hastily called meetings, back room deals, or procedural tricks to determine the future of Spring Hill.

Will you attend the special BOMA meeting this Monday night, 7:00 p.m. in city hall?  This will be the first time we've gathered before our elected officials, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen (BOMA) and they need to know that citizens are not backing down on the issue of a proposed crematory.  More importantly, they need to know that citizens will not tolerate political stunts like the one the mayor is up to.

So, what exactly is the mayor trying to pull?  Mayor Dinwiddie knows full well that BOMA can only hear the crematory issue in September if the crematory is part of a Planned Unit Development (PUD) master plan.  If the proper zoning of that parcel of property is anything but PUD, then the Planning Commission has full and complete jurisdiction and BOMA is cut out.  Although city staff, the chairman of BOZA, and the entire Planning Commission have all said that the zoning is B-4 PUD, the mayor is still trying — desperately — to get the property declared otherwise.  If he's up to the same antics, then he's trying to have the property declared agricultural, its original zoning before development began on the property.  But it's clear from zoning ordinance that the original intention of the city was for this property to transition from AG to B-4 PUD at whatever time commercial development began on the property.  That process started in 1998 with the construction of a funeral home, but the process was not formally completed by the adoption of a master development plan by BOMA.  The Planning Commission has resolved that the process should be completed now by the submission of a master development plan to be approved by BOMA.  But Mayor Dinwiddie wants to do the wrong thing.  He wants to make a mockery of our zoning law by declaring the property agricultural, and allowing the continuance and proliferation of commercial use in the form of a funeral home (and now crematory) on agricultural land — something clearly prohibited by Spring Hill Zoning Ordinance which prohibits commercial use of AG land.

This Monday, in order to say YES to a better Spring Hill, we must say NO.

We must say NO to actions by the mayor or any city official designed to limit citizen input.

We must say NO to actions that would make a mockery of our zoning ordinance.

But in order to say anything, we need you to attend this Monday, 7:00 p.m.  Even if you can come for only a short time this Monday, your presence at City Hall will send a message loud and clear that enough is enough.  This Monday is not about a crematory, but about city officials — our elected officials — being held accountable to doing the right thing.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for Odds and Ends

Monday, August 8, 2011

There Should be Excitement at The Spring Hill (TN) Planning Commission Tonight!

I received a copy of the following email from the Citizens for a Better Spring Hill group. It looks like there should be plenty of hardball politics going down for anyone who is interested...

Corruption, Negligence & Failure: TONIGHT Local Media Covering "Controversial Crematorium"


This morning, Channel 4 and Fox 17 ran teasers for tonight's Spring Hill Planning Commission meeting.  "Large turnout expected in Spring Hill tonight as planning commission votes on controversial crematorium," Channel 4 said.  Will you be there to speak out for a better Spring Hill?  We need your presence, wearing green, as city leaders are confronted with their own corruption, negligence & failure. 

Tonight we'll expose:

Corruption:  Mayor Dinwiddie was caught this week in an illegal meeting with Alderman Graham, violating Tennessee's "Sunshine Law," as they discussed together how to keep the crematory issue from going to BOMA.  We have them on camera, and a citizen witness sitting behind them in a local restaurant even recorded notes about what they said.  We've requested an investigation by the Maury County District Attorney, and tonight we'll confront Mayor Dinwiddie on this issue.

Negligence:  The Board of Zoning Appeals (BOZA) has not fulfilled state-mandated education requirements since 2009, the year Mayor Dinwiddie was elected.  The mayor is responsible for appointing the BOZA, and ensuring that we have properly trained and qualified members serving on that board.  Yet, he's been completely negligent in allowing these members to serve — and make decisions — without proper qualifications.  Tonight, we'll ask Mayor Dinwiddie and the city what been done in the week since we made them aware of this negligence.

Failure:  BOZA denied to hear the crematory issue sent to them by the Planning Commission, yet there is nowhere in city law that gives BOZA the right to refuse a hearing, and in fact several places where it is assumed that BOZA must hear the issues directed to them.  Further, the City didn't follow proper protocol in directing the issue to BOZA.  The City of Spring Hill has once again failed to follow and apply its own stated ordinances, and we're going to call them out.

Please show your support by attending tonight with family, friends & neighbors, 5:30 p.m. at City Hall in Spring Hill.  Bring somebody with you, and stand up for a better Spring Hill.

See You Tonight,

Andrew Zirschky
Citizens for a Better Spring Hill

Friday, July 22, 2011

Beavis and Butthead to Return This Fall

In one of the biggest TV announcements in years (in my book), it was announced today at Comic-Con in San Diego that a new 2011 version of Beavis and Butthead would return in the fall. The guys are the same age but will be in to more current MTV shows, UCF Fights, and other more current topics.

Here is a preview clip from MTV...

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Buddy Oakes for Odds and Ends...

Clear Explanation of Google+

Here is the best video that I have seen that explains Google+ and how it is different than other social networks.

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Buddy Oakes for Odds and Ends...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

City of Spring Hill Planning Commission Work Session on Crematorium Tonight

Here is the latest Press release from Citizens for a better Spring Hill.

Tonight at The City of Spring Hill Planning Commission work session, more than a dozen concerned Spring Hill residents are planning to speak out on the proposed location of a crematorium in the heart of Spring Hill.

Organized by Citizens for a Better Spring Hill, tonight’s speeches will focus on the health and safety concerns surrounding crematory emissions, which include vaporized mercury and dioxins. Because of the toxicity of these emissions, citizens are calling upon the planning commission to uphold zoning code that restricts toxic
emissions such as these in Central Business Districts. The current proposal from Spring Hill Memorial Park and Funeral Home is to add a crematory to their existing facility at 5239 Main Street, Spring Hill, TN, which is currently zoned as a Central Business District.

The manufacturer of the proposed crematory, Matthews International acknowledges that crematoria emit vaporized mercury—including a study on their own website conducted by the Cremation Association of North America (CANA) that reveals an average emission rate of 0.23 grams of mercury will be released per
cremation (CANA study hosted by Matthews International). According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), this seemingly low-level mercury release is still enough exceed the weekly exposure limit
for as many as 16,000 children (EPA Integrated Risk Information System: Mercury). Dioxins are listed by the State of Tennessee as “chemical warfare agents” under the Terrorism Prevention Act of 2002. The EPA states that there is no safe level of exposure to dioxins. Citizens are bewildered that even with these acknowledgments of safety concerns from the crematory industry and a leading manufacturer of crematory equipment, the Planning Commission is seriously considering approving the proposed site plan.

It is expected that Ed Romero an Equipment Consultant from Matthews International will speak on behalf of the owners of Spring Hill Memorial Park and Funeral Home. Tonight’s work session of the City Planning Commission will begin at 5:30 pm at the Spring Hill City Hall.

For links to additional information, please visit www.BetterSpringHill.org.

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Buddy Oakes for Odds and Ends

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Interesting Seminar to Solve Every Company's Workplace Problems

I got an email this morning from the Fred Pryor Seminars on how to deal with unacceptable employee behavior. I'm sure it is a great course but I found the description of office trouble makers amusing. I'm sure no one has to deal with any of these folks at their job.

The Excuse Artist — Misses every deadline and goal, but always seems to be ready with a good excuse or to place blame and point fingers at others.
The Short-Changer — Late to work, early to leave, "stretched" lunches, extended breaks ... this person makes an art out of shortening and short-changing the workday, while leaving coworkers "holding the bag"!

The Intimidator — Everyone's tip-toeing around this person, lest they incur wrath and anger! The Intimidator uses fear and bullying tactics to control coworkers and can single-handedly ruin an entire team.

The Gossip — Behind closed doors, over the grapevine, and under the radar, they're waging verbal warfare ... personal attacks, rumors, carping, and criticism are the tools of their trade!

The Clod — This one is ill-mannered, opinionated, and obnoxious. Everyone else is always apologizing and making amends for the rude and thoughtless behavior of The Clod ... behavior that often results in lost business, ruined relationships, and stressful working conditions.

The Downer — No matter what, this person is unhappy ... for this pessimist, the glass is always half-empty. The Downer maintains a consistently negative, stifling presence and constantly spreads the bad news to everyone else.

The Minimalist — Apathetic and low-performing ... these unmotivated workers can be counted on to give the bare minimum (or even less). They make an art out of turning in mediocre performances that are poor enough to frustrate managers ... but passable enough to keep them employed!

The Soap Star — Their continuing "soap opera" of problems not only hurts their own productivity, but distracts sympathetic coworkers who get drawn into their never-ending predicaments and problems.

The Itch — They need constant attention, reassurance, and feedback ... and take so much energy and time to manage, you often find yourself sacrificing your job responsibilities to help them meet theirs!

The Smarty-Pants — Challenges your management authority openly and forcefully, constantly questions management decisions, and creates a harmful undercurrent of "anti-management" chatter.

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Buddy Oakes for OddsAndEnds...