Monday, July 21, 2014

Ypsilanti mayoral candidates debate tonight at downtown library

If you live in Ypsilanti and plan on voting on in the upcoming mayoral primary. Make sure to check out tonight's debate at the Ypsilanti District Library's Michigan Ave. branch. The three candidates who are vying for the Democratic nomination will be sharing their views about the future of our city.

Ann Arbor City Council ( #a2council ) meeting preview for Monday, 21 July 2014

The final meeting agenda (plus or minus a few last minute changes) is printed on Friday at City Hall for Monday's Ann Arbor City Council (#a2council) meeting of 21 July 2014. It's a 10 page agenda. Here are the highlights. A long form preview of the agenda for tonight's meeting has also been published by the Ann Arbor Chronicle.

Watch City Council in person starting at 7:00 p.m. in council chambers, 2d floor of City Hall; or watch on television on cable channel 16 or online at . As always, follow along on Twitter on the hashtag #a2council .

Public comments start the meeting; there are 10 slots of 3 minutes each.

There are six public hearings, including several regarding downtown zoning and a few site plans. PH-2 is for downzoning 425 S Main (the DTE Energy building) from D-1 to D-2, which will reduce the maximum height of a building on that site.

The consent agenda (CA) is for items which are routinely approved all at once. CA-4 is traffic control for the University of Michigan student move-in on August 27-29. (Go blue.)

C-1 is rezoning from industrial to office (which includes residential) of "State Street Village" at 2223 S State.

DC-3 is a proposal for a citizen vote to amend the city charter regarding eligibility for city offices. The Chronicle's exhaustive coverage of Dascola v City of Ann Arbor is background for this.

DC-8 is a liquor license for RWB Group LLC, doing business as "Taste", a planned new restaurant on East Liberty St.

DS-3 is $1.5 million for improvements in East Ann Arbor for the Springwater Subdivision.

F-2 is changes to Comcast cable TV channels. Comcastic!

The end: public comment time, then adjourn.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The legend of Quick Rick, Scorpion Dealer

Today someone posted the following question to r/AnnArbor:
Does anybody know where I can buy an Emperor Scorpion in or around Ann Arbor?
This is by far, the best response:
There's a guy named Quick Rick in the parking lot of the Meijer on Carpenter most days. He repairs screen doors and windows out of the back of his truck, but he's also been known to deal in exotic pets. Just don't make any sudden moves, and don't ask about his politics.
Who knew you could just buy exotic pets in the Meijer parking lot? What a great world we live in.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

7:58 pm Wednesday July 16 2014: DTE Power blips

At 7:58 pm on July 16 2014 citizens of portions of Ann Arbor experienced a series of short power interruptions that caused line voltage to sag. DTE media relations contact Erica Donerson said in a telephone interview that the interruptions were associated with circuits that were being repaired and that no one completely lost power.

Areas affected included downtown, the University of Michigan Central Campus, portions of the NCRC, as well as some homes near Packard and in the vicinity of Wines School. The full extent of the interruption is not known. Reports via Twitter include router reboots, loss of Comcast service, and microwave ovens that stopped in the middle of a defrost cycle. Some computing servers on the University of Michigan campus were affected, but those details are not known as of this writing.

Two UPS logs show the precise timing of several outages.

NCRC UPS (Northeast side, the old Pfizer complex):

2014-07-16 19:56:13 -0400 Power failure.
2014-07-16 19:56:15 -0400 Power is back. UPS running on mains.

Near Wines School:

2014-07-16 19:55:08 -0400 Power failure.
2014-07-16 19:55:10 -0400 Power is back. UPS running on mains.
2014-07-16 19:55:49 -0400 Power failure.

2014-07-16 19:55:51 -0400 Power is back. UPS running on mains.

If you have an interruption in service please notify DTE Energy. An ideal way to do that is via their app for mobile phones which you can download from Google Play for Android or download from the Apple app store for iPhone and iPad.

Updated 7:10 a.m. 17 July 2014 with additional details and log files.

Go! Ice Cream at Rutherford Pool tomorrow

Ann Arborites, are you looking to get avoid Art Fair craziness tomorrow evening? Consider coming to Ypsilanti to check out our sweet swimming pool. Go! Ice Cream will be there slinging sundaes for $3.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Art Fear

Art Fair setup has begun. Are you ready gentle reader? In case you are not, here are some Art Fair Bingo cards from years past.

Photo via: airosche5

First card via

Second via Katy McGrady

Monday, July 14, 2014

New stencils on the Church Street Structure

Looks like someone has been using the north side of the Church Street Parking Structure as a place to practice their stencils. Check out the Tony Stark/Iron Man stencil above or this Shy Guy one below:

Friday, July 11, 2014

FOIA Friday: City of Ann Arbor publishes its FOIA log

FOIA Friday is published on occasional Fridays; it is written by Edward Vielmetti.

The City of Ann Arbor has published its FOIA log for 2014. The file is updated monthly. It includes a list of the FOIA requests received by the city for the current calendar year, with the ID of the request, the name of the requester, the subject of the request, and its result (approved or denied). Requests that are still pending are marked in green.

This is a substantial improvement for FOIA followers in the city, as previous to this it was necessary to FOIA the FOIA log to get a copy.

The current system has a copy of the FOIA log using a file name that doesn't look like it will still be the same file once 2015 rolls around, so the best way to get to this file is through the Ann Arbor City Clerk 
FOIA page. If you want to be notified when this page changes, a straightforward tool to do this is with the site

If you find a FOIA request that's of interest, it's easy and cheap to request it. Simply ask the clerk for "a copy of the FOIA request and response 14-082", and you'll generally get it in the minimum time for typical requests. Since the record has already been paid for, you can also get it generally for free.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

A very Potter Missed Connection

Special thanks to @whitrae for sending this Missed Connection in:
I visit you school as exchange student. We dance at Yule Ball. - m4w (Ann Arbor)

You teach me to say your name with proper (Hermioninny! I remember!) You say I best at Quidditch. I show you my wand in shrieking shack and you compliment it for size and heft. you say like oak and dragon heart string).

Then we lose touch.

Viktor never forget you. Please if you see this send owl right away.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July

Happy Independence Day gentle readers! Here in honor of this celebration, here is a bald eagle swooping over some fireworks: