Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Manitoba Links Weekly: Can We Build It? No, We Canalta (ManLinkWeek 31)

yeah I'm stealing my own jokes, what up

Hello and welcome to ManLinkWeek for the week of Tuesday, May 15th! I've put this segment off until the day after, as I sometimes tend to do lately, but who could blame me? The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and poorly-handled civic files are dying sudden miserable deaths.

[Wisecracks (Metro Winnipeg): Water park proposal deserved its death]
Firstly: lol

Secondly: As Rob Galston has noted, when a prospective partner backs out on a $75 million contract over an extra (and necessary) $200,000 investment -- 1/375th of the overall project cost, and that's knowing the $200,000 figure is very likely already massively inflated to begin with -- that's not the kind of partner that could have been counted on for anything else, either.

"Hey, I'm willing to put in $375."
"Okay, but I need you to put down a dollar first."

Thirdly: When you're the only entry in a competition, and you still withdraw your entry because you think you're going to lose, what does that say about your level of dedication to your entry in the first place?

Fourthly: so does this mean we reopen the call for waterpark proposals, or

Fifthly: If you are an elected official, and you had to recuse yourself from the previous discussions about a particular piece of land because the development of that land would affect your private interests, don't start making suggestions about how you want that particular piece of land developed immediately after the previous discussions fall through. That kind of thing just makes you look like you don't understand why you had to recuse yourself in the first place.

Sixthly: lol

And that's your waterpark report! May it rest in peace, for real this time.

Now, as it turns out, there were other things going on in the past week:

[96° 48' 35" From the Centre: Manitoba needs to aim higher... higher than one...]
I think the really funny thing about the tickets affair, still continually unfolding is that -- unlike most other political scandals -- this one has no obvious benefactor. Because I'm sure you've all been curious about them lately, here's an update on the provincial opposition parties: there's a total of one person who wants the permanent leadership position of the Progressive Conservatives, and there's a total of zero people who want the permanent leadership position of the Liberals. So nobody is in any position to gain anything off the momentum of this story, it's just straight downhill for everybody it touches, and I for one am not ashamed to say that I get a real kick out of that.

[ Marty Gold Back on the Air with Weekly Shaw TV Show]
Another noteworthy development this week is the return of Marty Gold to the local airw... are they still "airwaves" when they run through a ground cable? Or is that a word that only ever applied to radio, even though television originally travelled over the airwaves as well? Hmm. Okay, well -- another noteworthy development this week is the return of Marty Gold to local medi... actually, you know, podcasting should be counted as media, too, even though people refer to it as a form of "new media" like the distinction is supposed t--you know what, let me just start over.

Hey, guess what! Marty Gold has a new show, it's on Shaw TV, and you can watch it here if you don't often happen to leave your dial on Channel 9. Keep an eye on it, it'll be good times.

Something else to keep an eye on, although it will distinctly not be good times:

[the cold cold ground: pembina underpass]
I have trouble articulating my feelings sometimes about developments like these because they don't form words, per se, emerging instead as an extended and quietly frustrated sigh.

From the City FAQ:

5. Why weren’t these improvements done when the overpass was shut down two years ago?

In 2010 the Jubilee Overpass structure was rehabilitated as part of its regular maintenance. Work for that project was limited to improvements to the structure and connecting roadways. The work was undertaken and completed during one construction season.

The scope of the Pembina Highway Underpass Study is much broader. It involves improvements to vehicle, cyclist, and pedestrian movements between Point Road and Stafford Avenue, upgrades to the underpass land drainage system, and modifications to accommodate the future extension of the Southwest Transitway across Pembina Highway.

Okay, listen -- if you're writing an FAQ, and the only answer you have for a particular question is tautological ("Why were the improvements limited last time?" "Because the improvements were limited last time."), either draw up a more honest answer ("We let it deteriorate almost to the point of ruin way before we got our act together on improving it"; "We honestly needed a study to tell us that three northbound lanes would let more cars through than two nortbound lanes"; "We don't know") or don't include the question.

And that very specific, completely unasked side note about the previous work taking "one construction season"... does not exactly fill me with optimism about the future project. Oh, we did the minimum last time because it would only take the one year to do? Yeah, that's great, I bet this massive expanse in scope will just whiz right by.

Still, I suppose it could be worse: everyone in the ensuing traffic could be falsely reporting everyone else to police as a drunk driver.

[Grant's Tomb (Brandon Sun): Home of the snitch]
I have what I think is a really strong column coming up in this week's Uptown Magazine about the Province's proposed expansion on interlocks, so you can imagine the face I pulled when I saw these preliminary trial runs for drumming up business. If these two seemingly unrelated new ideas should just coincidentally happen to hit Winnipeg at the same time... well, just keep these in mind, for now. I suspect this is going to come up again later.

[Guerrilla Ontology: Ouroboros - The Complete Original Score]
Well, I've used up all my segue-writing magic for the day, so here's forty-eight minutes of free local ambient glitch industrial music written as the soundtrack to a five-part web series.

[Anybody Want A Peanut?: Winnipeg buildings: a random trend]
Here's a mosaic of windows in seemingly randomized formations that may or may not represent a coherent architectural movement!

[Observations, Reservations, Conversations: FIFA Women's World Cup Comes to Winnipeg in 2015]
And, three years from now, we can all get drunk and vaguely jingoistic because international soccer is awesome. I can't even exaggerate how much I'm looking forward to this, you have no idea. And if we're really lucky, the stadium will be all the way done by then! We can only hope.

Thank you for reading ManLinkWeek!

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