Ralphy Boy

Tough week time wise for blogging but I did not want to lose more momentum on the Needles and Haystacks post. I thought the most salient post on this topic was from wmurphy. Here is the key part:

Ironic thing is Amsterdam is actually probably more of an escape from big city living for most people, but indeed our old city traits are what chase the faint of heart away.

How we reconcile this may hold the key- in other words, we invite folks to follow the trends toward a more authentic city lifestyle, and we pledge to adress our troublesome, outmoded, ‘Kramden Apartment’ shortcomings:
http://kunstler.com/blog/2009/09/original-sin.html#more

Authenticity matters a lot to products and it matters a lot to our city. I think a lot of time and effort goes into making our city into something inauthentic: a retail shopping destination like Crossages; a commercial mecca like Wolf Road; a manufacturing center like the Carolinas; and so on.
Why not just admit it’s a small city and make it a livable city, nothing more.  That would be authentic versus synthetic. And likely a more successful strategy in the long run.

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17 Responses

  1. Ann Peconie says:

    So I was reading the local Recorder this am and noticed there was NO mention of the Neighborhood Watch planned meet your neighbors night planned for tomorrow from6:30 -8:30 pm, HUm???? Now why would that not be covered. Someone please explain this to me? IS neighborhhod watch not a good thing to some? and if so how so? I was disappointed that it was not covered YET in the Recorder with it being tomorrow. What’s up with that?

    • MJD says:

      They had an article about the Neighborhood Watch a couple days ago. I can’t remember the specific day but I believe it was within the last 3 or 4 days.

    • Ron says:

      Ann,
      It’s been in the local paper numerous times. Maybe you’re looking at a different paper. Think before you dish out the verbal jabs. We were all well aware of it.

      • Ann Peconie says:

        Ron- think your response is equally harsh. I did not see any of the articles, but am very happy to hear they were in and I do see the topic on the front page of today’s recorder, which is great. I am unsure what you mean by “We were all well aware of it”. But if you mean the neighbor night, then GREAT! I hope there is a huge turn out tonight in all the wards. I have no problem apologizing or correcting myself publically when I am wrong and I was and I am glad. See you tonight at Meet your neighbors Night if you are in the first ward at McD’s on Market st.

    • Karin says:

      Ann,
      You were talking about it on your radio show just yeaterday.

  2. “Why not just admit it’s a small city and make it a livable city, nothing more. That would be authentic versus synthetic. And likely a more successful strategy in the long run.”
    Nobody is denying that Amsterdam is a small city. The matter of defining what constitutes a “livable city” is no small task. This definition is both culturally and socially linked. Rewording the question does not provide a solution. Apathy is not a strategy.

  3. emma says:

    “…I think a lot of time and effort goes into making our city into something inauthentic: a retail shopping destination like Crossages; a commercial mecca like Wolf Road; a manufacturing center like the Carolinas; and so on….” Seems like you left Cohoes off that valuable list?! And if this or any administration would take this line and live by it –
    “Why not just admit it’s a small city and make it a livable city, nothing more.” – we might actually end up with a desirable city to want to live in.
    RE: the Ward Block Parties tomorrow night, I must inquire if any parents were on those committees,as tomorrow night, at the same exact time,every school in this district is having ‘open hose/meet the teachers’ night. Now do you want us to be good neighbors or good parents? I’m not being snotty, but I am alluding to another example of poor planning and no real effort to include ‘all’.

    • Diane says:

      The Mayor announced the date and she is a parent. I do not know who made the choice though. Isn’t this why we are supposed to ck the chamber web site, Debbie is always promoting it, and we now have our own city web site. Too bad, as a lot of planning has gone into these events. As a parent, I hope they go to the schools, which should be a parent’s first priority. Maybe a second family member can come to the Meet Your Neighbor Night….or maybe should they be postponed for a few days?

    • Al Kercado says:

      Emma-
      Meet your neighbor date was set during the summer well before the school district set their schedule. Meet your neighbor program, neighborhood watch, and Citizen Police Academy has been well advertised in the Recorder, Gazette, radio stations, flyers, City website, facebook etc.. Every effort have been made to include everyone in all three community efforts. I applaud all the citizens who volunteered their time and energy to make all three programs a success. Meet your neighbor events, neighborhood watch meetings, citizen police academy etc… will be long term programs and for those that have scheduling conflicts other opportunities to participate will be abundant.
      Anyone wanting information on these programs call me at APD 842-1100.
      Al Kercado

      • I live in the East End / Downtown Area that has been left out of the Meet Your Neighbor Day. Centro Civico is identified in Amsterdam’s Comprehensive Plan as the neighborhood organization for this area. Did anyone contact this organization regarding the Meet Your Neighbor Day?

      • Al Kercado says:

        Jerry-
        Call me 842-1100 Ext 117. The East End does have a committee, however they decided to wait and do their event at a later date. I am sure they would welcome any help. Reaching out to businesses and civic groups is an excellent idea that other neighborhoods did take advantage of. You are welcomed at the La Cucina South Side, St. Stans, McDonalds, Orange/ Union or the West End event.
        Al Kercado

  4. Karin says:

    How long does this Parent night last? Most of the parties are starting at 6 and ending at 8 (or later). When is any particular day ever perfect for an event? Those who can make the parties are all very welcome. I hope that people realize that this a very important event for our city and they should really consider dropping in at any one of these parties, if only for a few minutes.
    I am quite disappointed of the fact that some people can always find something negative to say about something so very positive. I also cannot imagine postponing this event, there was a lot of preparing for them and much time and effort. Please join in the fun and whoever can make it – It Will Be Fabulous!

  5. Karin says:

    PS – The people who are planning these parties are all members of the newly formed Neighborhood Watch Program. If you did not join yet, maybe you should.

  6. emma says:

    First I will apologize for incorrectly stating that all schools in the district are holding OH/MT tonight,there are several, but I was wrong to state it was all.
    Nevertheless, I do feel it’s a greater conflict then the ‘what day is perfect for everyone’ mindset. As a parent, I received ‘school year event schedule’ mid-August, listing open house date. I am not a regular reader/listener to local media ,so while I had previously heard of this idea floating around, until I received a flyer this week,I did not know the date. In fact, I thought I either missed it or it had been postponed.
    The three Citizen sponsored initiatives speak volumes about the volunteers. And if they enjoy long term success, will be a real piece of the puzzle needed to turn things around in this city. I feel the MYN is a very positive happening, but since it is the first go at it, I found it odd to be held the same time and evening that I would hope all parents who have one – attend their children’s OH.
    The Middle School OH/MT last night had a very disappointing showing, so I guess a majority of parents aren’t putting their children first anyway.
    I’m sorry to miss ours,it does sound like you went to much work to make it a success.

    • Diane says:

      I am sorry if I offened anyone about postponing tonights events. I know that alot has gone into the event planning.
      I am even more concerned about the comment that there was a poor turnout at the middle school. This is so sad as so much happens when these kids enter into the middle school grades. They need more parental involvement at this level to combat the problems.

  7. Ron says:

    Does it really surprise you that turnout was so small at the middle school? The lack of focus on education by families is Amsterdam’s biggest obstacle and no dollar amount will ever change that.

  8. Diane says:

    How right you are Ron. We ae dropping student numbers each year, we are down to 200 in the 11 and 12 grades. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get at least 180 of those numbers to graduate in June? Parent’s are always (generally) involved in the lower grade levels, but at middle and upper there is little to no parental response. I do have to credit those parents who worked tirelessly to keep those after school programs in effect. Now if we can just find a way to keep the others out of trouble after school, we would have it made.

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