Monday, November 9, 2009

Grownup Student Council. But really cool.

The weekend was a friend-filled few days of fun, including a trip to the track, two firepits, several mimosas, a bouncy castle, barbecue, an 18-hour nap, lots of dog drool, and a Neighborhood Association Meeting. Today I'll focus on the Neighborhood Association Meeting.

Friend-with-a-Truck is one of those do-gooder types, and he wanted to join our local Neighborhood Association. I admit I've always been curious. When I lived in Schnitzelburg, I loved reading the monthly yellow newsletter that always included a recipe from Old-Lady-So-and-So. Said recipe always involved a can of creamed corn and a cup of marshmallows, which intrigued me to no end. My current neighborhood is a bit more upscale, but the newsletters aren't nearly as interesting. Nonetheless, it was easy to convince me to go to the annual meeting, held yesterday afternoon.

As expected, we were the youngest people there by many years. There were only a couple of wheelchairs, and most people were just genuinely concerned (and probably former student-council members) folks who cared about the community. It was a nice atmosphere full of cookies and lemonade. As the president spoke about volunteer opportunities, he eyed us enthusiastically and mentioned needing help with websites and email. Clearly, our age demonstrates that we speak HTML fluently and often.

There was a cool presentaion from the sewer company that explained why all those trucks had been digging holes in our neighborhood, and discussion on rain gardens and what we can do to help our community and the environment.

Next, Metro Councilman waved and said he was here to answer questions.

Then there was the "election." It was time to elect six new board members, but only five folks had volunteered. I kept poking Friend-with-a-Truck and giggling, and was about to nominate him, when some nice lady in front of us finally agreed.

Then came my favorite part: The friendly local police officer read the crime report for the past month. He practically giggled as he read the report. "OctoberXX, 10:00 pm. iPod stolen from unlocked vehicle. OctoberXX, 7:00pm Car drove into fence." And my personal favorite, "OctoberXX. 9:00pm Soda can thrown at vehicle."

Wow, the crimes in my neighborhood are pretty disturbing, eh? Someone threw a soda can at a car! Call the police! Put the house on the market! Okay, I shouldn't joke about that, but it's nice to know that those are the biggest crimes of the month.

Sadly, the president was pleased and punch with the turnout, which was apparently double last year's. It's a big neighborhood, and there were maybe 30 people there. Considering there are 18 board members, that's not a very large number of consituents. That made me sad, and it made me want to go back to next month's meeting, with friends.

Have you ever been to your Neighborhood Association Meeting? Or do you just walk into your house, New York style, and ignore your neighbors? Find out when those meetings are, and wander in to see what's going on. (This is a link to the Louisville neighborhood list, sorry to all you out-of-towners.) You'll thank yourself the next time the power is out for a week, and you actually have some neighborhood support. Plus it's a cool way of making a big city feel like a village.

I love my neighborhood, and it's nice to know who prunes those roses on Bardstown Road, and who plans the ice cream social. I think it might be my new priority to liven up those meetings. My block is filled with interesting people who have spontaneous hootenannies and grow heirloom tobacco plants on occasion. I wonder if the Neighborhood Association would pay for a bouncy castle block party next spring?

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