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July 27, 2008

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JessieX

Another option is just to can the event, as it is -- as you say -- rather underwhelming. Why not use the resources and time put into creating said underwhelming event instead into promoting and encouraging Columbia residents to take advantage of the robust, well-organized and well-attended cultural events in Baltimore and Washington? Why not have (for example) a $5 round-trip shuttle that takes people to and from the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival on the weekends? Doing so would help local residents have an easier (and hopefully more fun and engaged) path to taking advantage of the cultural value of living between two major cities. It might help establish or deepen relationships among local residents. And best of all, it would help CA have some groove and vibe, rather than the endless barrage of poorly conceived and executed "community activities" they continue to insist upon providing. Yawn. (Anyone ever been down to the Wednesday lunchtime summer concerts CA provides at Lake Kittamaqundi? What a waste of money.)

Anyway, that's my two yuan on a sunny Sunday morning.

Rock on.

Drew

I wasn't even aware of International Day. Maybe JessieX has a good point?

Clarice

Sounds like there are a couple of new volunteers for the next International Day!

Why wait - might as well get started now.

JessieX

How in the world, Clarice, did you conclude that my having a perspective and holding a new possibility translates to being a volunteer? If CA wants to hire me for strategic direction and vision, sure. But to be a volunteer at an event that's already planned and has a vibe and intent which is half-baked at best would hardly be a good use of my volunteer time. Your assumptions bewilder me. I certainly don't ask that you know the ins and outs of my life and where I direct my energy, but I can assure you, I'm intentional, thoughtful and proactive about working toward the community in which I want to live. Bill is no slacker either (though he is -- as am I -- a GenXer). :-)

JessieX

How in the world, Clarice, did you conclude that my having a perspective and holding a new possibility translates to being a volunteer? If CA wants to hire me for strategic direction and vision, sure. But to be a volunteer at an event that's already planned and has a vibe and intent which is half-baked at best would hardly be a good use of my volunteer time. Your assumptions bewilder me. I certainly don't ask that you know the ins and outs of my life and where I direct my energy, but I can assure you, I'm intentional, thoughtful and proactive about working toward the community in which I want to live. Bill is no slacker either (though he is -- as am I -- a GenXer). :-)

Marshmallow Man

You know, I was raised by my grandmother (who was as "Greatest Generation" as it gets) and my great-grandmother, who used to talk under her breath in German. And it was from them that I learned that you either do things right, or not at all. Or, as my boomer dad would day, "Don't be half-assed". It's not a generational thing, it's a what-do-you-want-to-be-known-as thing?

So, what makes sense to me with this International Day, is to either do it up right-- as a full-blown celebration of Columbia's multicultural mosaic-- or not at all. Jessie's comments, although I hadn't considered not having the festival an option, are well-taken. As in many things Columbia, it could (and should) be done better.

And Clarice, thanks for volunteering me, but I know better than to volunteer for anything associated with CA. Which is why I'm not a member of the CA Board currently. As I've written previously, I find it hard to volunteer for an organization with which I disagree with it's basis for existence. And CA goes into more than a few of its endeavors "half-baked", as Jessie aptly states.

I would welcome a city-wide referendum on the dissolution of the Columbia Association, which, if successful, would lead to another referendum, up or down, on incorporation. But we all know these things won't happen. Yet they should.

Clarice

Since you asked, my serious and genuine response includes a tone of mystification.

Spouting suggestions and criticisms are incredibly easy. Solidifying, detailing, putting the plan into action resulting in success is where the work begins and ends.

Marshmallow Man

Clarice, I think your thought is an especially valid one. And if I had the time or the inclination to swim upstream against Columbia Association culture, I could consider it. But I don't, so I can't.

And that's why more people aren't involved in local affairs.

Clarice

MM:

Noted. I still believe that people with good ideas should take the time to push for improvement.

But I understand.

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