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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The real threat

The inevitable happened: The parents of the Gomez brothers, along with a grandmother, were deported back to Colombia. Do we all feel safe now?
I wish we were as expedient in tracking down and kicking out terrorrists.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Handwashing has become fashionable.

Another two Miami-Dade students have staph infections, one with the "superbug." You would think this is old news for our kids. But I've noticed that my children -- two teenage sons and a teenage niece -- have become very, very interested in washing their hands. And they do this without being reminded.
Somebody must be drilling them good in school. Hope the habit stays.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Property tax whiplash

The latest offer by our elected officials to alleviate the burden of property taxes took me a couple of readings to completely understand. One good thing in the proposed Senate package for me: portability. I've long wanted to downsize as my children have grown older and moved out, yet it makes no economic sense to buy a house half the size of what I have and pay as much as triple in taxes. Nonetheless, new homeowners -- my children's generation -- are worse off than long-timers like me.
Between still exorbitant house prices, taxes and insurance, it is impossible to have a decent house in a good-schools neighborhood. If I were young and starting out, I'd hightail it out of here. Can you say brain drain?

Friday, October 26, 2007

A fool born every minute, or something like that

Some guy in Houston bought a lock of Che Guevara's hair for $100 grand. That's proof that you can part a fool from his money with absolutely any come-on. The buyer apparently thinks Che, the man who was the catalyst for destroying Cuba's economy, was the greatest revolutionary of our times. How ironic that such a capitalistic transaction should mark a piece of the late Communist icon.
On a good note: There was only one buyer. Gives me hope.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

School officials should've been forthcoming

Turns out that the superbug infection rate is a little higher than we were led to believe. Five football players at Palmetto High were infected a few weeks back. And what did school officials do?
They didn't contact the school community. Oh, no, that would've been too responsible. They chickened out and sent letters only to parents whose children were on the team. The excuse: they didn't want to alarm the parents. Yeah, right.
Well, here's a bulletin for those decision-makers: Football players come in contact with other students -- in the classroom and through extracurricular activities. In fact, my 16-year-old is a varsity football player. His team will be playing Palmetto this Saturday. The likelihood that he will have "open skin" in this bruising game and will come into contact with someone from the opposing team is as certain as death and taxes.
Schools need to stop worrying about their reputations. Lesson here: Less damage control and more information.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Superbug has my kids super scared

The buzz around school yesterday was all about this superbug and how desperate parents were taking their kids out of class. My kids arrived from school all worried that they could be infected. Apparently rumors were rampant about how you could catch the infection. My 16-year-old said his football team's equipment had been removed from the locker room to be disinfected. It was about time. Those pads stunk to the high heavens. He even brought home all kinds of smelly workout clothes to be washed.
Maybe the superbug will inspire our children to try for a little more cleanliness.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What can $46 billion buy?

So now the Prez is asking for another $46 billion for the war. Sounds to me like we're throwing good money after bad.
What have the other billions of dollars gotten us? Dead Americans, worsening situation in the Middle East and no capture of bin Laden. Gee, what a deal.
What would $46 billion buy us here at home? And how long will our children have to mortgage their future to bankroll a ridiculous war?

Monday, October 22, 2007

How painful is this?

Midway through the second quarter of yesterday's Miami Dolphins' whooping, I walked away from the TV and headed to the blazing heat outside,where I began to thin out the overgrown patch of bromeliads. It was more painful to watch the Dolphins than it was to get pricked by the plants.
Does anyone remember the Fins' perfect season so many eons ago? I was in high school then and it was something to behold. Really brought the community together: we had something to be proud of.
Dare I speak the unmentionable -- that our team reflects the state of our community? Or, am I exaggerating?