This is not an official blog of the City. It is the work of Mark Kapel who is solely responsible for content.

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Thursday, January 31, 2013

2013 Looking Foward :Videos of Archived City Commission dating back to 2010 to be restored to City's website Friday ?

In the last two years attendance has dwindled to non existent at City Commission Meetings. That is not because as some assert the meetings are boring, It is because residents feel they have stake in what is being  discussed. Public comment  with was a mainstay of the 2009 to 2011  Commission Meetings  was eliminated. In it's place was is something called Recognition of Citizens in the Audience. It has long been understood by all concerned that in the City of Bloomfield Hills residents do not wish to be recognized but they do wish to participate. Today the recognition portion of the meeting  is used by politicians,charities, groups that want something from the City, and if we are not mistaken at least once by once by the seller of a revolutionary new product that no one bought. At least not that night..

In  recent times  the four commissioners who are not Mayor assemble along with the Mayor and City Administration to  generally rubber stamp what is on the agenda. The last meeting however was an  exception. One commissioner of note quietly asked a four word question of the Mayor which was answered and a short discussion ensued..

Two and a half  years ago The City of Bloomfield Hills was way ahead of neighboring communities in providing it's citizens with information about the workings of  their government. We were among the first communities  (a year ahead of  Bloomfield Township)  to televise City Commission  meetings  which were then posted  and archived on our City's web site.

In fact it was such an achievement that current  Mayor Sarah McClure in the last  City election boasted of a being a member of the commission that made the televised City Commission meetings a reality . She said it was indicative of increased transparency in Government  our City was practicing,  Those remarks were made at the League of Women's Candidates Forum last spring  and  the video was posted on the City's web site which in those days functional quite well..
In  2010 City Clerk Amy  Burton took it upon herself to put the minutes and the complete Agenda packet  of all City meetings, (City Commission, Planning Commission, and the Zoning Board of Appeal ) and put them on the City's web site when they could easily be searched by a search engine. She started  with the year 2002 because that was the first year records were kept on computer which made it  manageable for one person to do. It was a remarkable achievement and one that was not  equaled for many years.

Last year Bloomfield Township using  the resources providerd  by a of a population of 40,000,a  team of  dedicated people, professional assistance and two years of time did the same thing Amy going back to 1827
Prior to 1928 those records are all hand written. Typewritten records started in 1928 t year and lasted until computer s took over by the end of the Century.

The key factor here is not that the township out did us but that after our first impressive start we went no further. We only have to back to 1932 and presumably all our records are typewritten. If one person with a full  time job can  find time go back eight years. what could  a handful of weekend volunteers do ? There are many in our City  who are keen on  the area's history and might be  interested in helping but our City, despite the initial success  never pursued the  matter.

Today if you visit the Bloomfield Township's web site you will see the below box. on the front page,

Bloomfield Township's Official Website

Click on Video of the Board of Trustees Meetings which is the equivalent of our City Commission and and after a spit second or so delay  videos of every meeting from 1/14/2013 going back to when the service was started in at the 6/26/2011. The above link works. You may try it if you like.

We are pleased to report that Our City Clerk has informed us that as early as Friday of this week a similar Video on Demand system will be in place on our City's web site.We believe it will  It will include all our old  videos of Commission meetings just like our old web site used to.

It seems there was a glitch in the new (as of July 2012) website and our videos of City Commission Meetings  were never posted , That was an unintended consequence of  switching to the new website
To access the "Video on Demand." icon on our City's website you have to first click on the "Front Desk " button on the home page. Doing so would produce the following.

The only video  that has ever appeared as yet on the new website was the one from the October 19th 2012 meeting. The "Video on Demand "did not work and did not produce any newer or older videos.

You may say that is not a major matter and that would be correct except for  a couple of things.Anyone who visited  our website would realize that October 9th 2012 was a long time ago and wonder why we didn't. Worse every month the the Bloomfield Hill Cable TV cameras roll  at commission meetings. The bill for services rendered is paid by the City.The  funds are supplied by the tax payers who also pay for the web site. In neither case are the residents getting what they paid for or the case of the missing videos anything at all.

So ask concerned Citizens  we ask questions. A never popular past time in the City  but sometimes a necessity

Also as we previously discussed, I am working on the video formats of our city commission meetings in a manner that is easily uploaded and viewed. You are correct that the video meetings were on our old website and the current meeting videos will again be available to view on our new site. My goal is to have this project completed by the end of the week.
Should you have any further questions, I am happy to do my best to respond.
Amy L. Burton, CMC
City Clerk
City of Bloomfield Hills

45 E. Long Lake Road

Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304

The above refers to to our initial correspondence of two  weeks prior. What is most curious is that no one seemed to notice the perpetuity of  October 9th 2012 on the our web site. In our minds the villains of the piece is  not  our City Clerk or staff but all the people who should noticed.but didn't which begs the question is anyone paying attention ?

 A simple announcement that the City Commission meetings due to technical difficulties could  not be posted on the new web site but would in interim would be available on You Tune (No charge to the City) or Vimeo (nominal charge) until further notice would have sufficed. Instead seven months went by, approximately  $2000 was paid for the filming, City Commission  in TV speak faded to black and the residents were left in the dark.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Before there was Downton Abbey there was Cavalcade

Cavalcade, the Academy award winner for Best Motion Picture 1933, was originally a stage play by English playwright Noel Coward.  In a little over an hour Cavalcade takes you from New Years Eve 1899 to New Years Eve 1933. The story is told from the point of view of two families.. An aristocratic family which lives upstairs and a family in service who lives downstairs.

Compared to the television mini series Downton Abbey made almost eighty years later there is no comparison. Downton Abbey at  the end of it's third season will have in 24 hours of  High Definition television viewing to describe a similar  upstairs/downstairs  English family from 1912 to the 1920's.

The Characters in Downtown Abbey after many hours of  presentation are vividly drawn in human ambitions, romance, and conflict. Each plans, plots, and believes they control their destiny.

In Cavalcade in a much shorter viewing time,  the characters are well drawn but secondary to a sense that  becomes the main character and bypasses the optic nerve going straight to the brain. That is the terrible sense of  irony that seemed to follow human endeavour and the collapse of empires in the first part of the last century.

Examples include a newly married couple on a honeymoon cruise standing on the deck of a  ship. They are planning  their whole life together. Then they walk away leaving behind  them, the railing and a life saver their presence had previously  obscured which says RMS Titanic.

At the beginning of the film, when the noise of  reverie celebrating a new century grows loud,  The Upstairs aristocratic father  remarks  "How inconsiderate of the Twentieth Century to awaken the Children,"

The ending,  presents a perhaps unintended irony of the film made in 1933. The now much older father and mother stand on their balcony watching the celebrants in the street ringing in 1933.  Their children, both boys have died in  famous events of that occurred in the first fifth of the twentieth century. Both parents have  long ago decided that life is still worth living and perhaps some day the world will be a better place..

A positive ending  but one that in the twentieth century would be  put on time delay. In January  of 1933,  Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany and World War Two would follow.

 Downton Abbey, with it's modern  technology  many pluses over the ancient  Cavalcade with two exceptions.The first is script. Noel Coward is considered one of the best at writing drawing room comedy or  drama. His dialogue in terms of zing and bite tops many contemporary endeavours..

The downstairs servants (also a family) speak authentic (we presume) Cockney. It's hard to follow at first but it further emphasizes the the upstairs downstairs class difference. In Downton Abbey most of the servants speak the Queen's own English except for the cook and scullery maid  who speak  a decidedly lower class form of the Queen's own, but not quite Cockney. Maybe it has something to do with Cavalcade being set in London and Downton Abbey being rural.

The s second is sound, Noel Coward also had a musical stage background, In  addition to prose and  plays he wrote songs and  musical reviews. The many songs in Cavalcade  bring the era to life and stay with you long after your one hour plus visit to  England 1899 to 1933 is over.

Is Downton Abbey a derivative work ? Yes it is. It borrows from the television mini series Upstairs Downstairs, which borrows the concept  from Cavalcade. Is Cavalcade a derivative work ? Yes it borrows from History.

Regrettably the movie Cavalcade being 80 years old is hard to find.  A VHS video was made in the last  twenty years but there are no copies available at the Baldwin Library. The library does have videos of more recent Noel Coward films like Brief Encounter and In Which We Serve. You may be able to catch  Cavalcade on Turner Classic Movies.Reportedly Cavalcade is one of two Academy award  Best Picture winners not on DVD. Clips are however available on You Tube like the trailer posted above. Be patient and perhaps before Downton Abbey concludes, Cavalcade it's grand daddy will appear somewhere..Maybe even on DVD.

Tomorrow is the 29th and Downton Abbey Subscription Schemes Abound !

The problem with Downton  Abbey is that it is set up for for world wide distribution. Thus the English spoken has a slightly generic sound to it. None of the stuff we remember from private prep school is used. No sticky wickets as in "it can be done but will be a bit of a sticky wicket.".Nobody has a rum go at anything and going round the bend  as in an extreme case of being daft is unheard of. It may be that those expressions  didn't exist until much later like in the Yanks in the R.A.F. era.

Unless you count Heathrow Airport, the last time  this writer  was in  London was  a long time
ago. Then and there, the word "scheme"  was used to indicate a path one might take to acquire something. There were  for example  Car-for-Hire schemes and home financing schemes and even value for your money schemes at Wimpy Hamburger Bars.

A scheme in English seemed synonymous with our  word "plans."In American  usage if  I am not mistaken the word "scheme" is reserved  for something nefarious. Long ago I decided that the British use of the word was just plain peculiar. For this post I decided to look the word up and  discovered the following from

Hmm. Must be an English Dictionary. At any rate today is last day to plan or scheme for the complete
9 episode  third season  of  the popular Public Broadcasting (PBS)  mini series Downton Abbey. Tomorrow said series  will available for public purchase in the United States . The series currently airs locally on Sunday Nights at  9pm on Channel 56  and last night the fifth episode of the season was shown. While many enjoy the  weekly installments there are others who prefer their entertainment and perhaps enlightenment in one big gulp. Some will purchase the boxed set of the third season and watch the ten plus hours  in a single sitting or two. They will then be five hours and five weeks ahead of the rest of the North American world.

Some are even further ahead than that. In late December of the year prior PBS in exchange for a rather generous  donation would have sent you the complete third series for arrival in early January. You may have seen the offer made many times during a Channel 56 auction. Some of you may might even wonder how such an offer was even possible. Others get positively petrified at the idea that Television which was once a fixed and definite time commodity has become unstuck in the cosmos and can now appear anytime. The phenomena ever has a name and is called time shifting. Einstein had somthing to say about that.

Truth be told,  the physics of Sir Issac Newton works just as well  at explaining why you can watch Downton Abbey now while others have to wait and it has nothing to do with time warps or parallel universes.   It was filmed in England. The Brits saw it first and then shipped it out world wide. Apparently we  were next. And if you live in Australian outback you may still be waiting.

The only thing the least bit tricky or sticky wicket about it is that if Downton Abbey were an American venture, impatient  Americans wishing to get the end first would just have to bloody well wait  like everyone else. That is what our friends in the British isles had to do. Starting tomorrow in America the program producers and select retailers can  sell  the DVD's to the impatient while Public Broadcasting continues to broadcast it free of charge. PBS  obliges because it recognizes the high cultural content of the program  and serves as a disseminator of said rather than profit maker.. That's why PBS needs your help at auction time.

In our neck of the woods where book and video stores are disappearing  Barnes Noble would be your best bet for a retail purchase of a boxed set of the third season of Downton  Abbey. The Blue Ray edition,  the last I heard was around $38.00 and the standard one $34. Before having a rum go at it  you should call ahead. I don't know if they will hold a copy for you. You'll just have to zip and hope you picked the right store That is what excites the bold and the daring. I  would have purchased mine from Barnes Noble on line last week but the the coupon I received in the mail only days before expired before I could send off.. Most annoying.

I spent a good portion of Sunday (which annoyed the wife) , trying to figure out the various schemes and calculating the cost per episode on my Amazon Kindle HD Fire device. I guess I also irritated  Amazon by constantly  punching in and out of  Buy Now screens without buying, I sensed that  when I received a message  telling  me the price might go up at any moment.
After a long day's journey  into night, I decided on the above instant  video scheme. So far I have received 7 episodes for $1.89 a piece ( I  pre-orderd)  which if there are nine  episodes will cost  $17.01. That versus the DVD  for $25 which includes shipping.The difference being where you watch. The HD  Kindle  Fire is more convenient than our DVD player and I never watch  on Sunday night  or  miss details due to distractions  when I do.
Later  when the fourth season is due to premier I can buy the Season 3 DVDs  for posterity, at prices approaching dollars in single digits. In the scheme of things the extra estimated $2  cost is worth it for a jolly good show.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Self Guided Tour of Upcoming Birmingham Community House Trips. Day, Theatre, Cutural Outings or National/International Vacations.

The  untold want, by life and land ne’er granted, 
Now, Voyager, sail thou forth, to seek and find. 
   Just Click on the blue links on the left hand side of this page for complete details and off you go !

Course Name
Su from 12 M to 12:00 AM, 1 Session
Su from 12 M to 12:00 AM, 1 Session
Book of Mormon(Closed)*
Su from 11:00 AM to 5:30 AM, 1 Session
Su from 11:00 AM to 5:30 PM, 1 Session
F from 8:45 AM to 3:30 PM, 1 Session
Sa from 8:00 AM to 12:00 AM, 1 Session
Sa from 11:00 AM to 5:30 AM, 1 Session
Sa from 11:00 AM to 5:30 AM, 1 Session
Sa from 12 M to 12:00 AM, 1 Session
Su from 10:30 AM to 5:30 PM, 1 Session
W from 12 M to 12:00 AM, 1 Session
Sa from 12 M to 12:00 AM, 1 Session

Community Forum on the Future of the Baldwin Library Building. Everyone Invited. This Means You !

Baldwin Public Library
A C C E S S I B I L I T Y   A S S E S S M E N T
Baldwin Public Library (BPL) administration invited Project ALFA to review the public library building for issues related to accessibility and universal access design, and BPL’s ability to meet the needs of patrons with disabilities or who may have special needs. The assessment was undertaken as part of the initiatives for updating the current library structure.
The goal of the accessibility assessment was to determine the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to the current facility; to identify possible modifications to the  current state of the Library facility; and to make recommendations for current and future  consideration in making the Library more accessible to all library users in the community.

The current Baldwin Public Library Building was originally built in 1927 with additions  made to the existing facility in 1959 (Youth Room) and again in 1983 (Reference/Non Fiction area). The additions were completed prior to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. In December 2011 library administration began the process of considering renovation of the current facility to meet the changing needs of the community. The public  library currently serves the communities of Birmingham, Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms and  Bloomfield Hills.

For a Quick update on the Joint Library Committee's progress to date read the following.

that a meeting of the
Baldwin Library Board Building Committee
Will take place on 
Monday, January 28, 2013 at 2:00 PM
In the Board Room at Baldwin Public Library
300 West Merrill
Birmingham, MI.
The purpose of the meeting is to discuss building issues.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

2012 Looking Back: The Citizens of the City of Bloomfield Hills.

 The City  of Bloomfield  Hills  can be proud of it's citizens in  2012.They  did all that was asked  of them and more in 2012.
The went to the polls and voted  in   impressive numbers four times in 2012.

In February they  voted overwhelmingly for favorite son Mitt Romney in the Republic Primary.

In May they voted in City Election and the School Bond Issue. The City's Precinct  # 1  (which votes at City Hall)  delivered the crucial margin in the 2011 Library Millage (thirty some odd votes)  rejected the new high school by seven votes. This despite Kingsley Trail, Whitehall , Randall Lane, and Hunt Club Drive being the City's presumed  School District Row. Regardless of outcome, Take a bow Precinct,1.  Your's was the third highest voter turnout of any precinct in the district. Ahead of you were the two two Behemoth precincts in West Bloomfield. You  topped every precinct in the Township. for the  bond issue. A fact that would not go unnoticed  by School Board candidates in the fall.

.It was Precinct 2 (which  votes at the Congressional Church) that  rejected the Library millage  the fall previous that saved the School Bond issue  in the city by voting yes by  12 votes.

 Last May the residents re-elected Sarah McClure to City Commission by an overwhelming margin. She ran on the promise of maintaining the City's Character. She was later elected  Mayor by the City Commission . Michael Dul was  a surprise runner up and at first   it seemed to  offer a differing point of view. In  realit actual  both wound up in agreement on a number key of issues.

In August  city residents gave Favorite Son, Michael McCready votes necessary to win a narrow 250 vote Republican Primary for State  Representative of the 40th district which includes both Bloomfield City and Township, Birmingham, and West Bloomfield.

In November City of Bloomfield Hills residents again voted for McCready overwhelmingly. So did Birmingham and  Bloomfield Township, In quite a few precincts.McCready ran ahead of the National Republican ticket. in staunchly Republican areas.

Of note to  City of Bloomfield Hills residents: In a hotly contested  School Board on election  day so cold  that three of the campaigns did not venture out of doors, two candidates  (that of eventual winner Rob Herner and savvy challenger Joan Berndt) joined State Candidate McCready with signs, banners, and bodies at City of Bloomfield  Precinct 1 when the doors opened  at  7 am  on Election Day.

In addition to voting  residents participated in  the community by seeking office in numbers that on a per
capita  basis greatly exceed  those of their numbers in the Township; In the City there is but one office a resident can seek and that is City Commission. All others are appointed .In the Spring of 2012 five candidness out of registered voter population  of  3500 sought the two available seats on City Commission. In the Township with 40,000 registered votes the seven members of  the Board of Trustees ran unopposed.

In the fall of 2011, when a vacancy occurred on the Bloomfield Hills School Board ten individuals applied for the appointed position. In the fall of 2012 when a similar vacancy occurred on the our City Commission nine individuals applied.

Residents also signed up for the City's newsletter and  read this blog increasing numbers. In terms of  the latter our highest visitor day in 2012 was November 5th the day before the the National Election..

Friday, January 18, 2013

Upcoming General Meetings of the Sierra Club Southeast Michigan Group

The Sierra Club Southeast Michigan  Group will again be holding General Membership Meetings this Winter and Spring  at the Birmingham Unitarian Church which by curious coincidence is actually in the City of Bloomfield Hills. It is located on Woodward just North of Lone Pine. The Church parking lot can be accessed either from Lone Pine or the south lanes of Woodward Avenue. Meetings start at 7pm and are Open to the public and you are invited to bring a friend.. You are also welcome to come  as early as 6:30 for light refreshments. This is the second year that the  Southeast Michigan Group has met in our city. For more information call  248-647-2380,

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Baldwin New Titles 1/15/2013

Good Prose: The Art of Nonfiction by Tracy Kidder:  Good Prose explores three major nonfiction forms: narratives, essays, and memoirs. Kidder and Todd draw candidly, sometimes comically, on their own experience--their mistakes as well as accomplishments - to demonstrate the pragmatic ways in which creative problems get solved. They also turn to the works of a wide range of writers, novelists as well as nonfiction writers, for models and instruction. They offer some tart and emphatic opinions on the current state of language. And they take a clear stand against playing loose with the facts. Their advice is always grounded in the practical world of writing and publishing. Good Prose - like Strunk and White's The Elements of Style - is a succinct, authoritative, and entertaining arbiter of standards in contemporary writing, offering guidance for the professional writer and the beginner alike. This wise and useful book is the perfect companion for anyone who loves to read good books and longs to write one. Check Availability

Habits of the House by Fay Weldon: The Earl of Dilberne is facing serious financial concerns. The ripple effects spread to everyone in the household: Lord Robert, who has gambled unwisely on the stock market and seeks a place in the Cabinet; his unmarried children, Arthur, who keeps a courtesan, and Rosina, who keeps a parrot in her bedroom; Lord Robert's wife Isobel, who orders the affairs of the household in Belgrave Square; and Grace, the lady's maid who orders the life of her mistress. Lord Robert can see no financial relief to an already mortgaged estate, and, though the Season is over, his thoughts turn to securing a suitable wife (and dowry) for his son. The arrival on the London scene of Minnie, a beautiful Chicago heiress with a reputation to mend, seems the answer to all their prayers. 
Check Availability

The Fifth Assassin by Brad Meltzer: From John Wilkes Booth to Lee Harvey Oswald, there have been more than two dozen assassination attempts on the President of the United States.  Four have been successful.  But now, archivist Beecher White discovers a killer in Washington, D.C., who's meticulously re-creating the crimes of these four men. Historians have branded them as four lone wolves. But what if they were wrong?  Beecher is about to discover the truth: that during the course of a hundred years, all four assassins were secretly working together. What was their purpose? For whom do they really work? And why are they planning to kill the current President?   Beecher's about to find out. And most terrifyingly, he's about to come face-to-face with the fifth assassin. 
Check Availability 

To Rome With Love (DVD): Set in the romantic city of Rome. The intertwining stories of a worker who wakes up to find himself a celebrity, an architect who takes a trip back to the street he lived on as a student, a young couple on their honeymoon, and a frustrated opera director who has a talent for discovering talented singers.Check Availability

Won’t Back Down (DVD): Frustrated by her dyslexic daughter's struggles at a failing inner-city school, Jamie Fitzpatrick tries to enroll her somewhere else. When this fails, Jamie recruits a disillusioned but caring teacher to try to fix the broken school. Check availability

What was in 2012 and what will be in 2013 in the City of Bloomfield Hills. First in a series.

The January thaw  has come and gone but the next winter storm has yet to arrive. It is freezing cold outside but the grass is green. Almost all the exterior Christmas decorations are gone but a few still twinkle at night.

What a perfect time to review 2012 (gone but not forgotten ) and to anticipate the challenges  and issues of 2013 ! We will do both in a series of January posts entitled 2012 a Look  Back  and  Issues 2013.

Of  note,  on a  national and international  level, is is the curious juncture of the second year of a decade and the third which in the last 80 years has witnessed a number events with profound historical impact.

  • 1932: August  Bloomfield Hills Village became a City.. That same year Adolf  Hitler, originally born in Austria became a German Citizen. 
  • 1933 January: Franklin Roosevelt became President of the United State, and in the same month  Adolph Hitler would legally, per the constitution of the Wiemar Republic, become  Chancellor of Germany.
  • 1943.February.  The Germans  would surrender at Stalingrad a defeat the Wehrmacht,  which looked invincible the autumn  previous,  would never recover from. Present  at that battle was one Nikita  Kruschev, an aide to Russian Premier Josef Stalin . Kruschev an astute politician signed out for Stalingrad  figuring correctly that the battlefield would be safer at that than the Kremlin. 
  • 1962 October: Russian Premier Kruschev would go eye to eye  with President Kennedy (A World War II naval hero) over offensive missiles placed in Cuba. While many on both sides urged war (possibly tactically  nuclear)  the wartime experiences of both leaders is believed to have played a hand in adverting war and arriving at a peaceful resolution. 
  •  1972  November : Richard Nixon was re-elected  President by one of the largest landslides ever. A "third rate " break of Democratic Headquarters that  Nixon sanctioned prior to the election, and then covered  up was his undoing. In less than two years, he would  resign before impeachment. 
  • 1992 November: Another President Bill Clinton who would go on to be impeached, but did not resign was first elected. 
  • 2003 January : In the State of the Union Address President Bush  announced he was ready to attack Iraq without  a UN Mandate.
It is said that Chinese have a curse which is "May you live interesting times." 

At the City of Bloomfield Hills Blog it is our wish that we can provide you with information and entertainment during  less interesting times.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Baldwin New Titles 1/8/2013

Daddy Love by Joyce Carol Oates: Dinah Whitcomb seemingly has everything. A loving and successful husband, and a smart, precocious young son named Robbie. One day, their worlds are shattered when Dinah is attacked and Robbie is taken in a mall parking lot.   As Dinah recovers from her wounds, her world and her marriage struggle to exist every day. Though it seems hopeless, she keeps a flicker of hope alive that her son is still alive.  As Robbie grows older, he becomes more aware of just how monstrous his captor is. Somewhere within this tortured young boy lies a spark of rebellion...and soon he sees just what lengths he must go to in order to have any chance at survival.  Check Availability

1356 by Bernard Cornwell: The rascally Thomas of Hookton, aka Le Batard, and his band of not-so-merry mercenaries are bidden by the Earl of Northhampton to unearth the lost sword of Saint Peter in this recreation of the Battle of the Poitiers in 1356 wherein a severely outnumbered English army defeats the French and captures the Poitiers and French King John II. Check Availability

Kinsey and Me by Sue Grafton:  In 1982, Sue Grafton introduced us to Kinsey Millhone. Thirty years later, Kinsey is an established international icon and Sue, a number-one bestselling author. To mark this anniversary year, Sue has given us stories that reveal Kinsey's origins and Sue's past. 
Check Availability

Frankenweenie (DVD): Young Victor conducts a science experiment that will bring his dog Sparky back to life, only to face unintended, sometimes monstrous consequences. Check Availability

Dredd (DVD): The future America is an irradiated wasteland. On its East Coast lies Mega City One, a vast, violent metropolis where criminals rule the chaotic streets. The only force of order lies with the urban cops called Judges who possess the combined powers of judge, jury and instant executioner. Check Availability

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Mr. McCready goes to Lansing.

There he will represent Birmingham,The City of Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township, and the eastern half of West Bloomfield in the 97th State Legislature.

Inauguration Day in Washington DC is usually cold and blustery.  January 9th 2013 weather in Lansing Michigan did it's best to offer wind and chill   for the call to duty and swearing in ceremonies for the 97th State Legislature.

Michael McCready  as rookie State Representative was last on the "nice office" pecking order but family members and friends who traveled to Lansing for  his swearing in  ceremony were most impressed by the suite assigned to McCready and his staff. It is a long office with large cubicles for aides  Jami Des Chenes and Jason Lachowski. McCready's office is of executive stature  with a stunning view of the State Capitol.

Fellow freshman representatives, Martin Howlelak (Troy), and Klint Kesto (Western West Bloomfield and Commerce Township) are on either side of McCready in similar office suites.
The state has pretty much kept the Oakland County contingent together.

Michigan, it seems, takes it's Government seriously. If McCready's office is pretty snazzy, the State Capitol is top drawer. Ceiling panels in the Legislative chamber are glass with state seals  engraved  on them. Below is the capitol dome looking up  from the very bottom.

Below a view from the visitors gallery.

McCready (bottom left) voting with the majority 
on a "roll call" vote  as opposed to a voice vote. A "roll call" where no names are actually called,  is tallied electronically and posted on the "big screen". What you are looking at is only the second half of a very big screen . 

A guide taking a class of young students  through the Capitol explained to the kids that the day was very special day.
"We normally don't have parties or eat meals in the hallways but today is different." she explained. "A new State Legislature has just been sworn in and today is their very first day on the job.". That probably didn't sound particularly exciting to the kids. Not like the last day of school. excitement. Maybe that is why a woman at the reception was having a problem. interesting her  kids in  possibly writing a paper for school about the big day at the Capitol. For adults however there is nothing grander than a great beginning.

Official Photo of the Oath of Office. Courtesy of the House of Representatives. Right to Left  State Representative Michael McCready, Mrs.Yvonne McCready, and  daughters Louise, and Madison. Far left administering the oath is Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley.