Monday, March 21, 2011

The story so far...

Erin and I have debated setting up this blog for a little while. As they have for others, recent events have prompted us to move from silent semi-apathy into a more involved, and more vocal stance.

We both have our own particular areas of interest and concern when it comes to what we want to be vocal about. There is a strong local bent to many of those topics, though, and that lets us weave with a common thread. We have some ideas of where to take this, but as always the proof will be in the pudding. For every blog with even a couple of dozen readers and regular posters, you probably need both hands to count the dead-on-the-vine abortive attempts that didn't meet up to their optimistic First Posts.

The problem with starting a blog up is that it's hard to just jump in and start blathering about the topic-du-jour in midstream, with no context. So, I'll use this post to explain my context.

Not long from now I'll have to admit that I'm no longer in my mid-thirties, and it doesn't seem like very long ago that I was engaged in the same numerological dogfight with my twenties. One thing that has come to me in the last decade is the understanding that the future really does exist: I know it does, because I'm living in it. So preparing for the next batch of future weighs more heavily on tail-end-of-mid-thirties me.

The number one issue that brought me out of my shell and prompted things like attending slightly self-conscious rallies, or writing quixotic annoying-the-pig letters to the Editor and pleas to my regional councilors, is the current debate on Rapid Transit. We can discuss the details later, because a fair percentage of the embryonic posts in my head deal with how we get around our fair Tri-Cities. But I can sum up my overall stance as follows:

1. Waterloo Region needs a Rapid Transit solution for its central corridor, and a more robust express transit network to connect that corridor to the areas surrounding it.

2. Of the options for Rapid Transit that have been presented, I am strongly supportive of the Light Rail based alternative for a number of reasons, the most compelling being the ridership projections which make Bus Rapid Transit look unsuitably short-sighted.

There's a ton more to it than that. I'm resisting the temptation to start diving down any of the rabbit holes that surround those two points like some sort of Dodgsonian minefield. Instead, a little primer on some of the other topics that have my attention as well:

  • Active transportation-- primarily cycling and walking, both of which I do a lot of,
  • Local economy and the high tech sector (which has buttered my bread for the last thirteen years),
  • Community theatre,
  • ...And whatever other shiny something prompts me to start writing of a given day.
I have some other interests too, less locally scoped, like programming, birding and home brewing-- all of which are fair game.

So now that I've got the preamble out of the way, it's time to start making pudding!

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