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Let it be … summer

If our recent weather hasn’t clued you in, summer’s coming. And right on time, LEO brings you our annual Summer Fun Guide, with tales of camping, offbeat getaways, farmers’ markets and all manner of entertainment. Before we hit the pool, let me tell you about the star of our cover, Ms. Rufferford B. Hayes. She was wandering alone downtown, and we snagged her for safe-keeping. If you know where she belongs, please get in touch. Hopefully before the dog days set in.
—Cary Stemle

City Strobe

Arena alarm bells getting louderThe proposed new arena’s security alarm system has been set off. Can’t you hear it? It’s driving me crazy. I sure hope our Mayor for Life or the Metro Council turns it off so we can all sit back and quietly take stock of where we are and what we have to consider.

Form follows function: We can create a Metro Ethics Commission with teeth. Here’s how

An army of clipboard-wielding signature-gatherers deployed last week to pull support for a clever new financing scheme to fund the expansion and renovation of the Louisville Free Public Library system: three new regional libraries, two new smaller ones, and 13 branches to be renovated or expanded. The current LFPL budget, provided by Metro government, won’t cover that. So LFPL wants to increase the occupational license tax by two-tenths of 1 percent and create a “public library district,” a quasi-governmental agency that would manage the percentage of your tax money earmarked for libraries. It would bring close to $40 million annually, costing a worker who makes $38,000 a year $76.

Vested interest: Newburg taps into federal program to fight crime while fostering home ownership

Michelle Clay lives in West Louisville with her two sisters and her parents, with whom she has lived for almost all of her 38 years. Working full time and taking classes at Jefferson Community College, Clay finally has the opportunity to achieve her version of the American Dream — a place to call her own.

Rumor & Innuendo

That darned moving camera.Despite amazing new technology, often old school is best. During the NBA playoffs — which are marvelous, in case you have not been paying attention — ESPN/ABC have gone where they never should have. It is that moving camera along the sidelines. Send it. It makes me dizzy. I, like most, desire a static, stable view of the action. I don’t care to know what a Baron Davis breakaway would look like if I were a bird flying along the court above him. Think about it this way. You’re at a game, but nature calls when the action is hot. You scoot out the aisle but keep your eye on the court. But if something big is happening, you stop when you get to the aisle, so you can make sense of what you’re seeing. It’s a lesson the show-offs in the production truck apparently never learned. Just because they can have a camera hovering above the court doesn’t mean they should.Coach knows best.

Rumor & Innuendo

The Reggie Report. The name of preternaturally lovely — and talented — Reggie Theus keeps bobbing up in discussions about the next coach for Cisco Garcia’s Sacramento Kings. He’s a legacy, having starred for the franchise when it was still located in the heartland. My source says the Maloofs will pull the rug from underneath the New Mexico Aggie faithful when they hire the dashing former assistant to The Rick.

REPRESENTIN’: A COLUMN ABOUT THE METRO COUNCIL BY STEPHEN GEORGE

Changing of the lightsThere is no hum of advanced computer gear in the small, cooled office that houses — in an armoire no bigger than what you might find in your grandparents’ living room — the racks of equipment responsible for the timing, operation and remote maintenance of every traffic light in the urban services district, or the “Old City.” There are no clicks, like what you might’ve heard while waiting for a 1990-era light to crank through its cycle and allow you to cross on red. There is no wall décor, aside from the blue-and-gold fleur-de-lis wallpaper, which is not the city’s official insignia but resembles it.

City Strobe

Delegation sees American Democracy, Louisville-styleThe Metro Council meeting last Thursday was so boring I briefly considered allowing my body to slink all the way out of my chair and onto the ground, just to see if anyone was awake enough to notice. But rather than befoul my torso with whatever organisms live under those bland wooden chairs, I made a snap decision: Deftly and without warning I popped nine of 10 knuckles, all in a row, loud enough that a woman sitting two rows ahead of me whipped around and gave me a confused, unsettled look.

Share the road

Several weeks ago, city editor Stephen George took a self-imposed pledge to not drive for 30 days. In this week’s cover story, he reflects on the experience. The piece is not a polemic or a diatribe; he merely writes about what he expected beforehand, what actually happened and the people he met along the way. It’s a good jumping off point for further discussion. Maybe we can start a movement. Maybe there’s one already there. —Cary Stemle

REFERENCE LIST ON SUDAN AND THE LOST BOYS

THE LOST BOYS OF SUDAN Books