ghost houses of swedesford road: more photos

The other day I wrote another post about the ghost houses Swedesford Road and how they continue to deteriorate .

A reader sent me photos. Looks like late fall or winter before snow. And I thought I should be clear that these USED to be owned by Church Farms School but now? Some developer or commercial real estate entity. No clue who.

Is this demolition by neglect? Well what do you think? Sure isn’t preservation is it? Wouldn’t you think West Whiteland would want these structures secured?

It is a shame that they’ve been allowed to rot. Now what?

dear usps…

Dear USPS,

I think I’m done trying to be sympathetic for a while. I am trying to be nice but today was just unnecessary. I know you’re understaffed, overwhelmed by Covid affecting your workers, and then of course there’s that guy who calls himself the “Postmaster General” who just keeps eviscerating you.

I get Louis DeJoy as Postmaster General is a postal service killer and a jackass, but seriously? We are the people who always have a clear front walk and don’t block the mailbox…even with snow. I am the one that leaves homemade cookies in the mailbox at Christmas for Pete’s sake.

The above package toss was not the work of our normal postal worker or normal substitute. It was some new guy. This was not a heavy box. The path was not blocked. No dog was gnashing teeth and barking. Dude just didn’t feel like getting out of his truck.

I have mail from November and December that just never appeared. A lot of Christmas cards I mailed just never were delivered. I track every package and I signed up for “Informed Delivery” so I can keep track of mail coming to me. On average, “Informed Delivery” mail arrives 2-3 days after we get the email telling us what is coming, if it arrives.

Our mail sorts through Wilmington, DE which is something that in fact, President Biden did while Vice President. Our mail used to get sorted through Southeastern, which of course makes sense. It has never made sense the Chester County, Pennsylvania mail gets sorted through Wilmington, Delaware. We have had problems for years, but since 2020 we hold our breath every time we are expecting something, or mailing something.

Normally we don’t have a problem at the local level, but lately it’s been rather haphazard. We all know if the mailbox is blocked even by snow that none of us on the road will get mail. That has been getting challenging for all of us including our township snow plow drivers because we’re simply running out of places to move the snow. But this today? Just blows my mind because dude had a clear path and he just chose not to get out of the mail truck and chucked my package.

Please, we are trying to not complain, but today was ridiculous.

Customers deserve better. Heck your workers deserve better. But the guy today? He should NOT have done this.

ghost houses of swedesford road continue to deteriorate

In 2019 I wrote about the little houses along Swedesford Road that just sit and rot.

We passed by them yesterday in the car, and one looks like the roof has completely caved in on. I wasn’t able to get many photos so I just clicked a couple with my phone.

These are sweet little houses. They used to be faculty housing for Church Farms School I believe years ago. And when you think of all the crap that is getting built in the category of new development even just up the road, it’s almost wasteful that these houses were never fixed up and had people in them again. I still think if any of them were salvageable and they were stored them they could sell them and families would move in there.

Thanks for stopping by.

two wrongs don’t make a right

“Two wrongs don’t make a right.” That is what my grandmother used to say when I was little. And she’s still correct.

Chester County resident and area attorney Michael van der Veen was one of Trump’s second impeachment lawyers. Technically he’s Bruce Castor’s new boss, another member of the last minute defense team, so umm was this really surprising?

I mean come on have you ever known any trial lawyers? They can have huge egos and often questionable choice in clients. Did I find it amusing that he joined the big orange defense team? Yes because not only did he defend the Haverford College student who tried to hack Trump’s tax returns, he filed litigation against USPS and Trump in 2020. But then I remembered what an old boss said to me one time with regard to his ex-wife’s divorce lawyer and it was simply put “if I have to do this again I’m hiring them.”

However, if I was a lawyer would I defend Trump? Oh hell to the no. But exactly how many lawyers does Trump or his family have on their payroll? OK scratch that does it really matter? No it doesn’t. Lawyers have clients and not all people like their clients.

The news has reported that people have vandalized van der Veen’s property here in Chester County. That’s wrong. No matter what you think of his choice of clients or potentially his politics, to do that to someone’s property is wrong.

See: https://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2021/02/13/michael-van-der-veen-traitor-home-vandalized-donald-trump-impeachment/

See: https://www.inquirer.com/news/philadelphia/michael-van-der-veen-trump-phillydelphia-vandalism-20210213.html

See: https://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/graffiti-painted-outside-trump-attorney-van-der-veens-chester-county-home/2704391/

Someone a little while ago basically told me I was a bad American because I think vandalizing someone else’s property is wrong. But it’s not staying on some “moral hill“, his wife and children and neighbors didn’t sign up for this. Can you imagine how they feel? We all should feel safe in our homes, and not be scared where we live.

This crap in this country needs to stop. No matter what you think of this man or Bruce Castor, their families shouldn’t be subject to this and neither should their neighbors.

You can’t just trash other peoples’ properties because you don’t like their perceived politics. It’s like when election officials in Pennsylvania and elsewhere were getting threatened over the election. That wasn’t right either, it was wrong.

And this is actually the gift, the enduring gift that the Trump years have left us. A stain on the American people where we cannot have conversations even with our next-door neighbors about politics. We can’t agree to disagree. It’s either you take a particular side or you’re wrong. And if you’re wrong, you can’t just be wrong, someone wants to destroy you, your life, your property.

People can’t you see this is wrong?

Whatever happened to the worthy opposition?

Apparently Mitch McConnell’s home was vandalized and something equally unpleasant vandalism happened to Nancy Pelosi. I despise McConnell and am not a member of the Nancy Pelosi fan club, but do I think it is right to deface someone else’s property? No I simply don’t.

I am tired of this political eye for an eye in this country. I’m tired of the angry rhetoric on both sides. We can’t allow ourselves to be ruled by angry rhetoric anymore.

People, we literally need to stop the violence and the crazy behavior. If we don’t, the Trump legacy will linger far longer than it will already.

I am not trying to sound like a trite 1960s Hallmark card by saying give peace a chance but damn people we really need to do that.

Can we please just stop the goddamn madness in this country? Can we go back to being neighbors and friends and colleagues? Maybe our politics will be similar, maybe they will be different, but do you remember when it used to be OK to have a different political opinions from the guy across the street?

And let’s not be naïve and think that this second impeachment was going to prevail. Once again it never had the votes. That’s not to say I don’t think it was wrong because I completely feel Trump is culpable for January 6 and all the angry crap and vitriol from the election and over the past few years. But if we as Americans don’t draw a line in the sand to begin again, Trump ultimately wins and is that what people want?

Anger, violence, vitriol, and destruction and vandalism of property is NOT going to change the BS in this country. Only we can do that, and the only way we are going to be able to do that no matter what you think you know about politics is it cooler heads start to prevail.

I haven’t fallen and hit my head. I’m sure some of you were just wondering so I’ll make it simple: ten years ago next month I started to deal with my then reality of a lump in my left breast. Within weeks of that, I received an official diagnosis of breast cancer and began to plan surgery and treatment. When you face your own mortality dead on, maybe it changes your perspective.

My perspective is the USA is like a giant Humpty Dumpty and we need to put her back together. We need to make changes, we need to learn from our collective mistakes.

Please. 2020 was a horrible year. Let’s not allow 2021 to be the same. We as human beings can choose between right and wrong, and work for peace in this country.

Thanks for listening.

a column too far

I will start by saying that quite honestly, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is not my cup of tea most of the time. But I will be god damned and dead before I as a woman would judge a woman who was a victim of sexual assault and who also had a recent traumatic event trigger a past traumatic event. (See Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says she is a sexual assault survivor in The Guardian and other media sources like the New York Times.) It is quite possible. And to essentially read a column written by a regional female writing voice essentially mansplain as a woman in her column just doesn’t sit right.

Of course the local papers collective mansplainers on the editorial board have some ‘splaining to do too, don’t they? I mean what is this saying? Being a bitch about someone else’s sexual assault makes great click bait???

(CLICK FOR ARTICLE: Christine Flowers: Some sex-abuse claims don’t deserve to be heard Feb 4, 2021 Updated Feb 4, 2021 and also featured in Delco Times and Pottstown Mercury.)

I feel strongly enough about this that I screenshot the article above. The Daily Local and most of the papers under the control of whatever hedge fund has eviscerated them has a hair trigger paywall. I also looked online at the digital capture of the physical paper and for the life of me can’t find this article in print so did they publish it online and run another column in print?

I (generally speaking), don’t read most of what this columnist writes. Yes it’s all her First Amendment Right to express herself and all that, but I question local papers giving her a platform when the platform is so truly offensive at times. This is hardly the first time she has written something awful, but it’s definitely one of the most offensive pieces. Why doesn’t she just have her own website platform for things like this? Or there is always Twitter. She loves Twitter….and if you aren’t like her, you are against her, and that can be exhausting in a columnist can’t it just?

People, women especially, are outraged by this recent piece and I think rightfully so. It’s just nasty. Here are a smattering of comments:

Sadly (and again I must point out) I can’t say she doesn’t have the right to her opinion, even if I find it well, horrible. However, the flip side is I have my opinion right here and right now that she is truly despicable for doing this and I will go further to say maybe she wants to be more relevant and is just sounding desperate? See some of her Tweetabulous tweeting recently:

“White suburban mommies read it in print, and clutched many a pearl.” Gosh Christine, maybe you don’t know from pearls? Everyone who owns pearls knows you don’t clutch them because that is how you break them, even if they are individually knotted in between each pearl. Very different from pop beads….

“These are the empathetic ovary brigadiers.” Now, I am not going to say it’s acceptable behavior to send this woman (or any woman) emails saying they wish violence upon her. That accomplishes nothing, suborns violence, and just makes people part of the problem, not solution. But the bitterness of calling women “empathetic ovary brigadiers” also doesn’t escape me. I could never have my own children, as medically it was never possible. But I was never bitter about it or was fixated because I just figured God had another plan and he did. Now don’t get me wrong, I sat through many a comment from women over the years like “You don’t have children, so you couldn’t possibly understand” and I will admit sometimes I had the mental image of smacking the smugness off of someone’s face when they said something like that. Or when I was in Corporate America years ago and I always got last chance to pick on holiday time off because I was single and had no children. I called it the “single tax” (and worse) but whatever, there were bigger things in life to worry about. However, in this scenario not sure what women who have had kids has to do with them not liking an article that kind of mocks victims of sexual assault, so I will stick with bitter and non-related.

“#MirrorMirror” What does that even mean? How did she think women would react or perhaps that was the point? A file under all attention good, bad, or indifferent is good?

What she wrote was her opinion, but in MY opinion she was wrong. It is hideous to presume as a writer that you know exactly when and how a woman who has been a victim of a sexual assault will react or exactly when another traumatic event will trigger a memory of another traumatic event. And coming from a woman just makes this worse. Christine Flowers doesn’t get a fab virtual look here as being strong or witty, she gets a virtual look (in my opinion) of bitter and nasty postmenopausal mean girl.

At almost 57 I can honestly say that I know more women who were sexually assaulted in some form (as in not always rape) than those who have not been. And it isn’t a case of birds of a feather. Yes, I was a victim once upon a time. It didn’t define me, I worked hard to move past it. But did I ever forget it? Oh hell no. It happened in the dark ages when you didn’t tell after because somehow it was always a woman’s fault, like you stood with a sign on a street corner that said “Assault Me, Please.Somehow I thought we had moved past that whole blame the victim and victim shaming, but apparently not.

I can’t as a woman say that another woman doesn’t still have PTSD over her assault. I can’t say that she does definitively have PTSD, either. But as a female writer, I don’t think I would build a column shaming a woman who was a victim of sexual assault and I wouldn’t be able to so assertively say this woman was using it to make herself a center of attention in the midst of a national tragedy (assault on the Capitol.)

I can’t minimize or mock what Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez has revealed or said on this topic, because I believe being in the middle or adjacent to the riots and siege of the US Capitol, or in the same city and even country could indeed trigger victims. Just like the sound of the cannon a local school years ago to start off certain football games used to trigger a Vietnam vet who lived close by. Just like a simple email about celebrating someone retiring triggered women I knew because the person that others wanted to celebrate should be anything but celebrated and with good reason. When I read Flowers’ Op Ed it made me remember again, decades later, why I never told.

We can’t say it isn’t possible for certain traumatic events to trigger past traumatic events, and we shouldn’t mock it. Christine Flowers was not right to do so. But she has to live in her own headspace with it, and judging from what I have seen, again in my opinion, she doesn’t give a rat’s ass about what any of us think and she is reveling in her negative spotlight. So bless her heart, she deserves people’s prayers for basically seeming just super hateful and uncaring.

But I do actually think it was a column too far. I do think the Daily Local was wrong publishing it.

Here is a rebuttal written by a woman in West Chester. I will share a large excerpt. Her name is Grace Nelson. Her words spoke to me:

Image result for thumbtack

Opening my local paper each morning, I am rarely without a sense of gratitude for the critical work news media does in upholding the basis of our democracy. Without exchange of ideals and ideas in this public square, our basis of governance would be rendered inert.

I consider the vulnerability and dedication of journalists and writers in these arenas to be acts of public service. It is in this context and with the above description of the heinous nature of sexual trauma in mind that I find myself so deeply disturbed by the disservice done by Christina. Flowers and the Daily Local News upon survivors of sexual assault and their allies…….Beyond this poorly disguised opportunity for political posturing conducted through a fallacy-laden line of argumentation, Ms. Flowers and those who allowed her words to be printed for mass consumption also finds themselves to be innately incorrect in their understanding of sexual abuse, the very subject matter at hand….survivors of sexual abuse know well that your identity as a survivor as well as the humanity you cling in your most difficult moments don’t only exist with convenience. You are always a survivor, regardless of who is watching and how that weight of trauma manifests itself in your moment to moment existence.

Whether Ms. Flowers finds it expedient that Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez’s identity as a survivor manifested more strongly in the wake of the January 6th insurrection, the Congresswoman cannot and never will be able to peel away or compartmentalize her trauma….Neither was I able to shirk my reality as a survivor when I encountered this dangerous and hurtful column reading my morning paper over coffee.

I write to the Editor today not only in disgust of the words….but with an immense feeling of shame. I feel the familiar and occasional crush of shame of I carry in my life as survivor. I feel ashamed of the state of our national discourse surrounding sexual abuse knowing the pain words like Ms. Flower’s will carelessly inflict on a massive constituency of survivors.

I can’t imagine what The Daily Local, Delco Times, and Pottstown Mercury were thinking, and those people can live with their conscience on this. But if they thought they were being edgy and that would gain them additional readership, well I think all they have done is lose more readers, and possibly advertisers. And that in and of itself is a complete and utter disservice to local reporters who, in spite of the state of that paper, do their best to report the news.

When you read pure unadulterated bullshit like this, it just makes all of us no matter what our political or religious or racial persuasions to be better people. Last March she and the Philadelphia Inquirer went their different ways. (See Philadelphia Magazine article.) I didn’t actually know that until this all erupted, but her is her tweet from last year:

What Christine Flowers wrote is offensive but she also draws attention to the fact that sexual assault victims seem to be victim shamed still in 2021. It’s so last century….literally. And again, you just don’t expect the victim shaming of a woman to come from a woman.

Will she keep her job or just eventually go down with the sinking ship that is The Daily Local? Don’t know, and at the end of the day it is low on the scale of things that are important in life. Truthfully I suspect life will go on and Christine Flowers will continue to revel in negative attention.

The First Amendment comes in all shapes and sizes most sadly…..but newspapers don’t print all opinions and I am not sure why they printed this.

the billboard of it all: file under why governments don’t negotiate with terrorists?

I asked this question in 2018 when the billboard issue hit Tredyffrin.

I received a note today and like Alice down the Billboard hole I went, reading what is posted towards end of post which was sent with:

📌”East Whiteland Township is proposing to rezone the Township’s 19.45 acre open space and Ecology Park Land near Mill Lane and Route 401 to professional office. Also, the Township wants to adopt a new ordinance which would allow for the construction of large electronic billboards within the rezoned land. The Chester County Planning Commission has recommended that the township consider other areas that would be more appropriate for electronic billboards, such as the Route 29 corridor. ” 📌

Sigh….even the Chester County Planning Commission is saying BAD FREAKING IDEA to REZONE PARK SPACE and since East Whiteland shares the same solicitor as Upper Merion and didn’t Upper Merion just kill a similar plan there, why is it still alive in East Whiteland?

This is slated for February 1st when East Whiteland has two public hearings, both related to the community scourge of billboards/electronic signs.

Oh and this is more on 202, where in West Whiteland there is one of these suckers being proposed. Off Dunwoody Drive, a sign would go up on some boggy kind of weird space in an office park, right? Wasn’t that the gist of the continued West Whiteland hearing that appeared in the paper on January 8th? But the weird thing is there are two LLCs kind of close together in I guess West Whiteland? See what someone sent:

Now the West Whiteland hearing on January 27th was continued. Until February 10, 2021. The West Whiteland Township billboard hearing meeting was a complete technological cluster F. The video kept freezing but it was interesting in parts especially this lawyer who is representing West Whiteland as special counsel on this. He’s very bright. His name is Ryan Jennings. Amazing to watch. There was some discussion about whether or not a billboard application is actually land development. And then West Whiteland was referring to some other kind of litigation involving the signs and I didn’t really understand what was going on it was very unclear if it was actually related and how were the LLCs related to the parent company or something?

Of course because West Whiteland has issues with being sunshine friendly they said they don’t keep the zoom recordings and only their notes or something become the record and what kind of crap is that?

Back to East Whiteland. Just can’t help thinking about say West Whiteland signs get approved and East Whiteland is foolish enough to allow open space/park land to get rezoned, wow what will 202 end up looking like? I-95? Las Vegas? And you can’t say that residents won’t be affected because these townships all allow these developments to be built to the edge of these highways don’t they?

So one of the East Whiteland hearings February 1st is for a settlement agreement, the other is for the re-zoning. So if the billboard company deals in individual LLCs per site, are both public hearings under E. Whiteland Outdoor, LLC, or are other LLCs involved?

How many LLCs for billboards and electronic signs from these folks over the entirety of Chester County? How much litigation is going on over these signs in Chester County alone?

These public hearings are on East Whiteland’s website. They are slated for Monday, February 1, 2021 at 7 PM. It’s a public zoom hearing and the residents of East Whiteland need help, just like the residents of West Whiteland need help. These signs do not benefit residents. Residents will also be watching for residents and businesses who seem suddenly billboard supportive, won’t they?

Open space means parks and trails and preserving the area the way it used to be before development ran it over. Open space means trying to maintain an environment that will last for all of us and future generations. Do none of you remember the whole situation at Downingtown’s Kardon Park a few years ago that went to PA Supreme Court? It was all about open space, park land becoming something else…via zoning tweaks etc wasn’t it? It’s not the exact scenario but legal precedent would mean any municipality could face potential litigation that could be quite costly which would affect residents/taxpayers, right? That not so in the past case essentially told Downingtown Borough that they could not sell or lease park land, right? But it also possibly sets a precedent for all open space, doesn’t it? For open space that has been set aside as such and parks there are these pesky things in PA like the Donated and Dedicated Property Act, the Public Trust Doctrine, and our own Pa Constitution Article I, Section 27.

For reading about the Kardon Park case, just hit up Google and see these two links as well:

https://law.justia.com/cases/pennsylvania/supreme-court/2017/12-23-map-2016.html

https://www.philadelphiabar.org/WebObjects/PBAReadOnly.woa/Contents/WebServerResources/CMSResources/PhillyLawyerSpr10_depts.pdf

Back to what started this which was outreach by residents. This to follow in screen shots is what was sent to me by concerned residents. Their thoughts and a community call to action, as well as the letter from the Chester County Planning Commission. These are their words, no prompted by me, they asked me to share.

Pack the Zoom meeting February 1st.

four years of where’s anna maciejewska?

A woman I never met. Yet like many others in Chester County, Anna Maciejewska is someone we think of often. It has essentially been four years minus a few weeks.

Her parents are old, and have been in poor health.

Her beloved son is growing up with limited memories of his mother, probably only photographs and doesn’t that break your heart?

The case started with a different Chester County District Attorney than who is in office now, Tom Hogan. Now the Chester County District Attorney is Deb Ryan. I really wish she would light a fire under the Pennsylvania State Police.

And how about our state elected officials? State Senator Carolyn Comitta and State Rep Kristine Howard and State Rep Dianne Herrin and State Rep Melissa Shusterman you are ALL mothers and ALL someone else’s daughters so how about having some interest in justice here?

#FindingAnna needs to take place.

Anna, we haven’t forgotten you. Hopefully some day there will be #JusticeForAnna.

america the beautiful…and dysfunctional

Silly me, I thought it would all start to calm down after the inauguration. Nope. Social media remains the great abyss self righteous political indignation and vitriol….and crazy misinformation.

Cast your memories back four years to when Trump was sworn in. Were we all this crazy? No. But we were already mocking his coloring outside the lines with the “biggest, best inauguration” of it all. But as a nation, we hadn’t gotten so ugly yet.

We will start today with thoughts on the NUTBAG Congresswoman from Georgia who has the most fascinatingly red beak of a nose, Stepford Wife Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who has already been suspended from Twitter once for crazy harassment of a Georgia election official according to Forbes. She is also one of the Trump girls CNN loves to fact check.

I wonder seriously if Greene is mentally stable enough to hold office? She is supposed to represent the entire 14th district of Georgia, and well is she actually doing that by announcing she filed articles of impeachment against President Biden? Even her own party thinks she’s a NUTBAG according to this Yahoo report.

A little closer to home, I sadly unfriended someone else locally I know because of the tone of her political posts on Facebook. And that’s what people don’t get – it’s the tone and attitude that gets me. I don’t necessarily mind the opposing opinion but even from those who share similar opinions to mine, it’s the tone and attitude. Remember when we used to be able to have actual reasonable conversations?

With this person there was this crazy bit of literally fake news they posted about the inauguration that made me say “enough already.” And also I couldn’t deal with the crazy comments from many including the person I unfriended and one other I know.

All this crap about the supposed symbolism of how Vice President Harris didn’t completely rest her hand on the Bible (hello COVID19 makes us not want to touch anything right?) and how Biden’s Bible (a 19th century family bible he has used for swearings in since his early US Senate days) had an upside down cross. I mean hello? Fact check much? In a couple of photos I have seen people holding this massive bible and cradling it essentially wrong end up, which doesn’t make it a satanic book. Oh and saying he did not have his hand firmly enough on the Bible and did you notice in photos their eyes were all black? Yes, seriously, this was the conversation. I mean hello are you people living in an episode of Charmed or The Magicians? I was very happy to not comment and merely leave that party.

I have always found it fascinating to watch the cult like devotion to the now ex President. People standing for hours to see a man who didn’t actually help them or anyone else in their socioeconomic class. People who emigrated here as immigrants and watched the horror show of immigration under his administration, yet think he’s God-like. No y’all he’s a world class narcissistic political grifter and he rooked all of you. Every single one of you. Like that whole thing of the man behind the curtain, the great and powerful Oz. Smoke and mirrors is not reality.

But then again, on the other hand I also find it almost comical the people who are the epitome of white privilege, yet who post about it on social media like they are reformers. I guess living on mommy and daddy’s money and trust funds makes them feel guilty or something?

And then there are the people posting photos of Melania posing in front of the First Lady’s desk. So she was a model, right? She knows how, to pose but what did she actually do while First Lady? She was never even comfortable in the role and spent four years looking like a miserable Stepford Wife Barbie doll. Oh wait, she ruined the rose garden, so she did do something.

Why can’t these people give a new administration a chance like we were asked to give the last new administration a chance? Why can’t we all literally give peace a chance? Is it possible the entire country needs therapy?

I don’t know who is going to agree and disagree with my musings this morning. It’s just what I woke up thinking about and decided to write about. People are fascinating to observe even in sheer dysfunction. It’s kind of like watching who follows my blog here and on Facebook. People who used to describe my writing as self aggrandizing who haven’t been in my life thankfully for over a decade. Yet they still follow me? Why?

Please enjoy the sun this morning. Try to find something positive in your life to celebrate. Celebrate the every day. Celebrate surviving a year of COVID19. Celebrate jettisoning ugliness out of your life to make it a more positive experience. And pray for those who can’t find peace. It must be terrible to love in their heads, yes? And why are they joining Telegraph?

Thanks for stopping by.

when tomorrow became today…

I remember when Annie the Musical first came out. I was in high school, and Shipley had a special ticket offer where we went to Philadelphia to see the show. I do not think we saw Philadelphia-born Andrea McArdle in the role, I honestly think it was Shelly Bruce or maybe even Sarah Jessica Parker. Or Allison Smith. It has just been too long.

Anyway, the song “tomorrow” was a musical earworm from long ago when I woke up this morning. And the sun did come out on this beautiful and cold January day, but it didn’t feel like a bad chill, more like invigorating and crystal clear. A beautiful day.

The sun’ll come out
Tomorrow
Bet your bottom dollar
That tomorrow
There’ll be sun!
Just thinkin’ about
Tomorrow
Clears away the cobwebs
And the sorrow
‘Til there’s none!
When I’m stuck a day
That’s gray
And lonely
I just stick out my chin
And grin
And say
Oh
The sun’ll come out
Tomorrow
So you gotta hang on
‘Til tomorrow
Come what may
Tomorrow!
Tomorrow!
I love ya
Tomorrow!
You’re always
A day
Away!
The sun’ll come out
Tomorrow
So you gotta hang on
‘Til tomorrow
Come what may
Tomorrow!
Tomorrow!
I love ya
Tomorrow!
You’re always
A day
Away!
Tomorrow!
Tomorrow!
I love ya
Tomorrow!
You’re always
A day
Away!

Yeah so the earworm led to watching the first part of the inauguration. In 2016 I literally did not watch the Inauguration. I couldn’t. And it was the first one I had missed since I was a kid. I just watched Joe Biden and Kamala Harris get sworn in through tears, which surprised me. It’s like the storm is over and we can finally see a rainbow. I did not expect a visceral reaction.

I was not so sure about some of the COVID era fashion however. Some people described it as being out of the Hunger Games wardrobe closet. Mostly that was applied to Lady Gaga who sang the National Anthem so beautifully, yet was compared on social media to Effie Trinket of Hunger Games fame. I didn’t dig the pin, but I thought she looked beautiful and no meat dress in sight.

However, the fashion wasn’t what was important. The message was. History, faith, reason. Without unity there is no peace. No more uncivil union. He will be a President for all Americans. I think I actually believe that.

Thanks to the Washington Post we have the text, annotated and here is an excerpt:

“This is democracy’s day. A day of history and hope of renewal and resolve through a crucible for the ages. America has been tested anew and America has risen to the challenge. Today, we celebrate the triumph not of a candidate, but of a cause, the cause of democracy. The people, the will of the people, has been heard and the will of the people has been heeded.

We’ve learned again that democracy is precious. Democracy is fragile. At this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed.

From now, on this hallowed ground, where just a few days ago, violence sought to shake the Capitol’s very foundation, we come together as one nation, under God, indivisible, to carry out the peaceful transfer of power, as we have for more than two centuries.

As we look ahead in our uniquely American way: restless, bold, optimistic, and set our sights on the nation we can be and we must be…..And so today at this time in this place, let’s start afresh, all of us. Let’s begin to listen to one another again. Hear one another, see one another, show respect to one another. Politics doesn’t have to be a raging fire, destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn’t have to be a cause for total war. And we must reject the culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured.

My fellow Americans, we have to be different than this. America has to be better than this. And I believe America is so much better than this. Just look around. Here we stand in the shadow of the Capitol dome, as was mentioned earlier, completed amid the Civil War, when the Union itself was literally hanging in the balance. Yet we endured, we prevailed….”

And poet Amanda Gorman.I never knew her before today. 22 years old. Amazing. Here is an excerpt:

“The Hill We Climb”

We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,

would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.

And this effort very nearly succeeded.

But while democracy can be periodically delayed,

it can never be permanently defeated.

In this truth, in this faith, we trust.

For while we have our eyes on the future,

history has its eyes on us.

Of course all day long, I saw all the ugliness of social media unfurl once again because it’s not President “You’re Fired” . Still claiming the election was stolen, “best president ever.” Yeah and some of these people are out of work and have been since COVID19 started, so I just don’t get it. Trump did nothing that actually helped them. It’s like we were living with a cult leader for four years. It’s their choice, I don’t begrudge them their choice, but really? Are they really so brainwashed or unable to hit pause and reflect maybe change is good? You know what they told us when Trumpty Dumpty was sworn in?

On my blog’s Facebook page I had comments from a couple of angry men. One comment in particular was extra amusing;

“Ahhh, another site which stifles conservatives by deleting their comments.”

I thought the stick man explanation this month would make all of this self-evident even to bumbling online neanderthals like this one, but apparently not. When you are visiting a page or a group on Facebook, you are a guest. It’s not your group, it’s not your page. It’s that simple. Your rights aren’t being violated, you just don’t like it that whomever doesn’t want to listen to your crap. I am perfectly happy to have a conversation with people who know how to be civil. Rude gets deleted. Fake news gets deleted. Scary angry gets reported then deleted.

Today, I felt hope. I felt a lightness I had not felt in well…years….as in back BEFORE when I found I could no longer be a Republican, which still makes me sad.

Do I have a crystal ball? Nope. But I am not going to buy into weird conspiracy theories either. Today marked a new beginning. Let’s be Americans and give it a chance. Democracy matters.

Peace people. Please. Just breathe.

rotting in west whiteland…and completely derelict in appearance….

Two simple photos that speak volumes. They came with a message:

📌It is 2021 and this structure is also still standing and now falling into the local fresh water creek. West Whiteland Township shame on you. Route 100 and Township Line Road.📌

My posting of the (IMHO) dangerous and derelict structure in East Whiteland behind Osman’s Pizza on Route 30 in Frazer and adjacent to the Wawa at 30 and Planebrook has sparked an interesting community conversation. Simply put it is why can these municipalities take such care to approve all of the crazy unwanted development communities do NOT want, yet they seemingly ignore situations like this? I don’t have the answer and I know the process of getting derelict buildings down can be complicated, but maybe people have a point?