Archive for the ‘Minneapolis’

Are Residents SOTR Really That Different?

Recently I came across this reader submitted content in the Savage Pacer which talks about one man’s interpretation of life South of the River. An interesting read and one which may bring some head nods and overall disagreement.

From the article:

My first contact with Minnesota was over 30 years ago when I came to Minneapolis to interview with a large retail corporation. I recall walking down Nicollet Mall trying to find the IDS building. It was late November and I noticed something unusual as I passed my fellow pedestrians. Why, they actually looked me in the eye.

This was unlike anything I had ever experienced. “Out East” you walk with your head down or stare at an object in the distance — anything but actually looking at other people.


Years passed. And as I battled the traffic from Edina or Bloomington to downtown Minneapolis, there were no longer many waves or nods from my fellow commuters. They seemed to be replaced by a dirty look or a raised middle finger. What happened? It seemed that the Minnesota I first knew was turning into … OH NO! New York City.


Fast-forward another few years. The kids have grown and moved out of the house (Thank God). Time to downsize, but where to? My wife suggests Savage.


Then a funny thing happened. The Minnesota that I knew so many years ago suddenly reappeared. I noticed that the people waved as they drove by. Neighbors stopped and visited during my walks with our three dogs. People helped each other during giant snowstorms and even nodded you through a four-way-stop intersection.

Personally I came from out East and perhaps the 30 year time difference from when this individual lived there and I lived in the area made a world of difference. People would wave, nod, and *gasp* even say hello to complete strangers–right there in Times Square! Any area I traveled to up and down the East Coast and even as far as Ohio would bring me a similar experience…and then I moved to Burnsville. Yes, the same Burnsville that sits adjacent to this man’s beloved Savage. The same one where I felt alienated, never once saw someone wave, and most definitely didn’t have anyone look me in the eye, even if you attempted to goad them into doing it by saying hello first.

I continue to live South of the River and still don’t see what this man sees. No one looks at you, few people even come out of their houses especially during the winter, and those who do are so busy keeping their eyes averted I’m surprised they don’t walk into the numerous decorative street lamps which adorn our colored concrete covered sidewalks which no one uses.

What am I missing?

Continuing Education Poll

This Friday I complete the coursework for my Masters in Public Administration that I’ve been working through since December of 2009. For the majority of this program I was working for Capella University and one of the benefits of being employed there was free education. Once I left, about a year ago, I had to pay for the remainder of my classes, which I began to do since it wasn’t worth it to just stop the program with only a handful of courses remaining.

The reason I went into the MPA program was my interest in the public sector and the generally ridiculous decisions which I believe are made by both staff and politicians alike. I honestly believed that I would be able to change the world and have it run differently if I was able to provide some direction. However, as I progressed I realized that there are probably thousands just like me who went in believing they could bring something good to the process and ended up bogged down by politics and pressure. Also, in the several years since I began, my career goals have changed significantly and while public service would be great for the soul, it would not feed the mouths I have to feed as well as continuing my work in IT/analytics.

Honestly the entire process seems worthless to me now. Have I wasted years of my life on yet another degree which I will never put to good practice?

How about you? Are you or are you planning to continue your education? Are you going to complete your GED or move into post-secondary work as an undergraduate, masters or PhD student? Why? Do you worry that as you work through your education the reasons you had for starting may change by the end? Are you worried about costs and benefit? Has the job market and world changed over the last decade to the point where continuing education just isn’t what it used to be? Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and vote on the sidebar and comment on below as I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Crooked Pint Ale House: Apple Valley, MN

Pints of Beer originally uploaded by Simon Cocks

According to the Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce, Minneapolis’ Crooked Pint Ale House is joining Valley Tap House in building a sister location in Apple Valley.

Located over by the world famous and unbelievably incredible Pizza Ranch by the most pointless SuperTarget ever and the 5 million dollar, city-owned liquor store that has more neon than Las Vegas, this is the latest addition to an area which the Chamber calls an area “gaining steam”.

From the article:

Apple Valley will soon have a reputation of even a greater variety of Craft Beers on tap.

Crooked Pint Ale House, currently not far from the Gutherie in downtown Minneapolis, will be building just to the east of the new Pizza Ranch just south of Target on Pilot Knob. They are known for their bands as well as for example in a few weeks they have Navarro who wrote “We Belong” for Pat Benatar. They are awaiting the public hearing process for final approval. They have over 35 Tap Beers, plus all the scores of bottled options. Their menu is varied from a Peanut Butter Bacon Lucy Burger to Alaskan Ale Burger; sandwiches and dinner from Walleye to NY Strip, potroast, meatloafs etc.

With the new traffic signal there, Pizza Ranch, GoodScents Deli, the Liquor Store and Think Bank, this area seems to be gaining steam if you were thinking about opening a business in this new commercial sector.

The menu is very similar to just about any other bar that’s serving a mix of out-of-the-bag and barely house-made items. While this new place will definitely and directly impact VTH’s business, we’ll have to see how the food does as, currently, VTH’s menu (and it’s sad to say this) is probably the best in Apple Valley and their beer specials are impossible to beat.

What do you think about a new restaurant opening in Cobblestone? After many years of being totally vacant, are you surprised and/or happy that it’s starting to build up and finally add a non-national chain restaurant? Do you think it will fare as well as VTH or end up the redheaded step child of its sister location like Burger Jones? Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.

What Child Punishments are Appropriate?

We recently talked about corporal punishment after a bus driver slapped an unruly child on his route and some people defended him while the majority said he was out of line considering his job. Well, you may have heard the story of the 60 year old Idaho resident who slapped a two year old on a Delta flight from MSP airport. Well, it appears he has lost his job as his company doesn’t tolerate that sort of behavior from its employees.

Let’s ignore the claims of the child’s parents that the Idaho man used a racial slur and concentrate on the fact that a stranger felt the need to punish another person’s child for screaming on a plane. A recent new commenter on the bus driver thread posted the comment below (I have not yet verified their e-mail address however):

Sorry that corporal punishment is frowned upon and law makers have made it a crime. The little unruly kids need to be spanked, slapped or popped. I was and I am no worse for it. Did not turn into a monster nor did I brutalize my son but if he got out of line with me, he got spanked or popped in the mouth for it and he is a model citizen. Not using corporal punishment now a days is to the detriment because the little bastards feel this is the way to behave and they grow up into nasty, unruly, no respect adults. When I was growing up, never saw too much of kids acting up, being rude and disrespectful because your parents were called and you got your butt spanked. And if you spoke back to your parents or any adult and your parents heard about it, you got popped in the mouth. Now its normal for kids to be unruly and outta control. And that stupid TIME OUT crap crap does not work. When you tell a child to stop being rude, outta control, etc. And she or he continues, his/her butt needs to be spanked..plain and simple. Kids today have gotten worse since this “don’t hit kids” thing. If you popped them more often they would be better behaved people.

Even if the two year old on the flight was truly unruly, I am not sure the Idaho man was going to solve any problems in the short or long term by “popping” the child as he did. I was spanked (infrequently) as a child and am no worse for wear but I currently choose not to use corporal punishment on my children mostly because I am able to control them in other ways, including very effective use of timeouts which are in direct disagreement with the comments above. Now, whether or not this will work into the future, with The Koala, or if it works with The Rooster because of his personality, age, or the fact that he is a product of no daycare, I don’t know. However, for now, I will continue to avoid using corporal punishment until the time I feel it is necessary to do so.

This all said, the use of timeouts are even frowned upon in our society. The Rooster was at Target with me and he refused to say thank you or hello to the cashier, I forget which, after they talked to him. I have asked him many times to be polite when spoken to. As a result, he went to timeout right there in Target, against the nearest wall until he would respond. A woman waiting to checkout asked me in an accusatory tone if that was really necessary. While I had choice words for her own parenting based on what she was putting into her cart, I felt it most definitely was necessary; I am not going to raise a rude child who is uncontrollable. The fact that people feel like the safe and politically correct alternative to corporal punishment is now socially unacceptable is scary. What do we do next, simply put up with a society of children who rule the world because it’s mean to put them in timeout?

Do you approve of either timeouts or corporal punishment? Do you have any qualms in telling a child (or their parents) to calm down? Would you provide your own form of punishment to a child who was not your own? How much does age factor into the equation? Do you think a two year old on an airplane should be “popped”? Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.