Occasionally I try to figure out some way to re-use my copy of the Herald. This happens after its utility as a newspaper has expired, which is usually something like 95 seconds. But I don't have a bird cage to line, and my dogs are house broken. So what do I do with it?
Then today, the answer flew straight at me like a NIMBY out of Harper Avenue. I can teach children to count! How? By using Medici owner Hans Morsbach's itemized lists of NIMBY gripes.
This week's letter from Mr. Morsbach, which quite incidentally deals with a railroad clearing brush off its right-of-way -- to the great surprise of neighbors who were suddenly reminded that they lived next to a railroad embankment [*] -- has 6 items, so it will be part of our beginner's module.
To get to the number 7, we can resurrect Hans' letter of August 1, 2007, which happened to contain a grab bag of 7 gripes about Drs Hospital.
At some point, of course, we'll have to get up to the very important number 10, and then beyond. I'm not sure if Hans has this many gripes left, but I won't write off the possibility. This is Hyde Park, after all, and people tend to have boxes of gripes stored up in their attics.
In the meantime, we may turn to the issue of Harper Court to get us up to and past 10: a Mr. William Knack offered up a 14-point plan for fixing Harper Court back in September 2007, but that will still only get us so far.
We need Hyde Park citizens to roll out their gripes and demands, count them up, and send them in to the Herald. The future of our children's numeracy depends on it.
*[For readers who may actually be interested in the NIMBY content of this letter, in which Hans Morsbach questions the validity of Metra's need to remove trees and brush from its embankment for safety reasons, the author helpfully sums things up in the following sentence: "I have no qualification to assess the danger of mechanical damage to a steel wheel by a wet leaf..."
Click here for the opinion of someone who is qualified to assess such a danger.]