Sunday, March 12, 2006

Column 75 - We Ain't Had Our Best Day Yet

People sometimes ask me if it’s hard to write a weekly column. My stock answer is that it’s not, if I have a topic – the hard part is coming up with something to write about each week that will be informative and, hopefully, stimulate some thinking beyond the reflex attack that comes when someeone’s pet ox is gored.

This is one of those tough weeks. It seems like everything is either settled or on hold, and all of it has been discussed to death – Incline Lake, Place-Based Planning, the Shorezone standards, workforce housing, the tax revolt, timeshares – I for one don’t have anything new to say and don’t see the point in rehashing old conversations. I had hoped to devote this column to the County Democratic Convention, to which I was to be a delegate, but a combination of business and family matters precluded my attending, and so I don’t know what went on there as I write this.

Seems like the most interesting thing going on is the season premiere of The Sopranos, and even that’s not “local” in focus.

I’ve had occasion these past several weeks to spend more time than usual in the Bay Area, specifically in San Jose. I’ve been struck all over again with all the reasons I moved to Incline over ten years ago. The traffic, which I honestly thought could not have gotten worse, has. Last week Emy and I made the mistake of going shopping at the Valley Fair Mall at about 4 pm on Saturday. First of all, I’m quite sure there were more people in that mall than live in Incline. The parking lot, which is two levels and about the area of Tyrolian Village, was jammed, and every driver seemed to think he or she had a right to a parking space within 50 feet of a mall entrance. I also noticed something I’ve observed in airports, namely the number of people who seem oblivious to the fact that there are other people around, and that those other people actually occupy physical space and, when they walk or drive, have a certain momentum on a certain trajectory. Many people move as if they are alone in the world or, at least, others should make way for them.

Now I’m not saying that none of that happens in Incline, though I confess to a bias that has me, when someone acts this way in Raley’s, to seek evidence that they are flatlanders visiting and not locals. I do know that, even when Raley’s parking lot is jammed on a weekend, people with Nevada plates seem generally polite and cooperative, and the only thing I’ve seen that is close to a traffic jam is leaving the ski areas at 4:30.

So overall I think we have it pretty good here, issues notwithstanding. I had to miss the opening meeting of the basin-wide Place-Based Planning group to which I had the honor of being named, but I’m optimistic about the process. I’ve heard good arguments both ways on the wisdom of the land purchase at Incline Lake, and have enough confidence in the IVGID Board to feel it will turn out well, and overall I think the future looks pretty good.

There’s an old Peanuts cartoon where Lucy, in her advice booth, tells Charlie Brown that it stands to reason that, at the end of the line, there will have been one day in our lives that will have been the best day we had, and one that will be the worst. Then she asks Charlie Brown “What if you’ve already had your best day?” For me, it’s an article of faith that my best day hasn’t happened yet, and I think that’s true for us as a community as well. If you had told me ten years ago that 350 people would come together and launch an active planning process I would have thought they were nuts, yet here we are.

So this is a column about nothing (hey – it worked for Seinfeld!), the point of which is “we ain’t had our best day yet!”

1 comment:

INCLINELAKECOM said...

I think the Incline Lake purchase is a great idea! Incline Village residents will enjoy the benfit of visitor revenues..

Bob Robinson: InclineLake.Com

http://www.inclinelake.com/