Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Let the gigabytes roll ...

This photo of the U.S.Bank drive-up (southwest) corner of the square has no significance other than the fact its posting on the "Chariton's Square Deal" blog, linked at right, helped knock me over the one-gigabyte free digital storage limit allocated to my Google account --- and into the rental realm.

That means I've posted enough photos, all at modest resolution, in the seven years this blog and its later less intensively used brethren have been around to clutter cyberspace with a full gigabyte of imagery. So I signed up for an additional 20 GB of storage at minimal cost.

Then I got confused about whether I was renting gigabytes or gigabits --- and there is a difference. But it's not clear to me what the difference is. And it really wouldn't be worth worrying about were in not for the fact that were one fully informed it would be possible to say, patronizingly, "no, you mean gigabit" should gigabytes and gigabits come up in casual conversation and someone misused the word than ended "yte."

I've stuck with Google's Blogger all these years primarily because it was the only game in town when I started, it's easy to use and I'm familiar with it --- even though WordPress is now considered trendier and there are several other platforms available.

But Google does get on nerves now and then. Like yesterday, when I did a Google search for "Kubitshek" while writing about the Kubitshek Block because I'd forgotten what became of Henry Kubutshek's brother, Michael (I think he moved to Ottumwa during the 1870s).

Google, however, would not let me search for "Kubitshek" because it believes Henry and Michael and all their descendants should have spelled the name "Kutibschek," with a "c," although they didn't, until I enclosed the Charitonians' preferred spelling in quote marks. Even then, Google kept asking me, "Did you mean Kubitschek?" No I didn't, so shut up and leave me alone.


Over the course of maybe a year, I've photographed every building on the square. It's odd what starts to stand out and become visually irritating during an exercise like that.

Take our street lights, for example. These have been around since the 1950s and if you look at them they're actually rather nice, tall and streamlined, very 1950ish, with a graceful swan-like light fixture at the top. The difficulty you notice, if you pay attention, is that the poles seem not to have been painted since the 1950s and by now they're rust buckets. Plus, at least one of them is leaning --- kind of dramatically. I wonder why they've not been maintained.

And then there are all those wires, electrical and otherwise, stretching from pole to pole and building to building, dangling here and there. The explanation --- there's never been a priority here on moving wiring underground.

Somewhere in the Main Street process, I'm sure, "streetscaping" the square will become a priority. That probably will involve plans for new sidewalks, new planting schemes --- and new lighting. That's a ways down the road, however. Maybe we should think about having those old poles straightened and painted while waiting.


The inevitable Mitt Romney is now, well, inevitable --- and the best spectator sport in town for a while will involve watching the old shape-shifter move to the middle: "Aw shucks, I didn't mean that." Next thing you know, he'll be hiring openly gay staffers. Oh wait ....


There's all sorts of other interesting stuff out there to talk about, but it looks like rain is moving in on us again as April turns to March. So I'd better focus on (finally) getting the grass cut before it starts.


Norm Prince said...

You mention of "streetscaping" in todays offering hit a note, or should I say nerve, in my life. Being as the local Master Gardeners seem to have become responsible for Denison's up-town street plantings and having been involved with this for some years, I do pray your Main Street group and you city take a good look at "streetscaping". The plans in the beginning are normally great, but hopefully everyone will also take a long look into the future. There is no rural planting which is maintenance free!!


Frank D. Myers said...

We've already experienced some of the "master gardeners wear down, too" difficulty here since the gardeners have been responsible for many of our existing planters on the square as well as a small but intensively landscaped park a half block away. Some of it may be the program isn't being promoted as intensively here as it once was so the pool is shrinking. Our independent garden clubs are fading, too, for reasons I don't exactly understand --- other than everyone's too busy.