Friday, September 30, 2011

At least 46% of people won't like this post

That's the statistical number of people polled who will vote either NDP, or PC. According to CTV, it's a dead heat, so depending on where you stand, let me tell you what I think of the election ads so far.
I think that if I were a thinking member of a party, I'd be incensed at how badly my party has done at getting it's message out... or what message it decided to get out.
Insofar as "my party" goes, it is assumed that there are no Liberal or Green readers, because statistically, (given a +/- 3% poll), you are so insignificant that you really don't matter except as spoilers.
The PC's have done little to get their own "vision" out there. Sure, it's their right, since slamming the incumbents is expected, and easy. You really do expect the folks jockeying for the position of "government" to beat at everything wrong over the past few years, but if that's your idea... you've failed. There was NO mention outside of media questions, of the water mismanagement and this years flood. You'd have thought the PC's would have been all over Alf Warkintin's getting his take on things EARLY, not reacting to a media report. Missed that one. The Brian Sinclair hearing? No, missed that too. Election financing scandal? Nope. Correcting the assertion (lie) that the PC's fired 1000 nurses? No. Talk about the PUB's speculation about Hydro rate hikes, mismanagement there? Nope.
Instead we have promises of new back lanes, the PC's thinking they are better qualified to tell the Winnipeg Police where they need to target resources, and promises of more ambulances instead of changing the drop-off protocols at ER wards, effectively doubling the number of hours EMS personnel can actually respond to real emergencies.
PC's under Hugh have been a lot of things, but awe inspiring... nope. If you are a thinking type, you'd think they didn't think all this out too well.
How about the other group doing what they can to continue to cling to power, today's NDP?
Hugh bashing. I don't remember an election outside of the Cretien era, (you remember the line, "The Alliance-Conservatives have a hidden agenda"), when a party had so little to say about what it has accomplished, and done little other than make the other guy a boogy man.
It's silly really. A union schill in her grubs telling us how she remembers the years when Gary Filmon fired a thousand nurses, the privatizer commercials, Hydro rates going up if you vote for that guy, cutting front line public services, firing doctors, closing hospitals by nailing plywood over the doors and windows... ok, I made that one up (today's NDP, please don't take that idea and turn it into another TV spot).
Frankly, knowing the things I know, I'd have to be stupid to believe the drivel they are trying to sell.
As a thinking sorta guy, I'd be offended that they really think I'm that simple.... so where do you take that?
If what I've just thought has any merit, then you have to wonder who the NDP are tyring to target their advertising to.
Either people who never follow anything in the news or politics, (and there are a lot of them... ask my Mom who her MLA is and she'll ask if that's the person from the city and say something about Katz), or their own followers who they want to motivate.
The first group I guess I understand, but I'd think they are also the least likely to vote at all (actually, I've believed that you should have to pass a quick quiz before getting a ballot, but I digress). The second group... well are we to understand that NDP voters are stupid? Hugh privatized Ontario Hydro? C'mon! Pretty powerful guy! (For the folks who don't know, Ontario Hydro WAS privatized under a PC government, but that was AFTER gross mismanagement (especially in their nuclear energy sector) and hopeless maintenance on the same nuclear plants that caused extended shut downs and higher rates). DO the NDP followers REALLY believe these things? Did they all drink the Kool-Aid?
Don't get me wrong, I'm all for a well considered position as to why someone believes in the political ideology they hold to, but to just go on and on about the PC's and Harper with his jets we don't need, and why are we in Afghanistan anyway, (honest... had conversations like this with NDP supporters), yet completely unable to offer up anything other than, "well it would be worse if the PC's were in charge" when you ask, "So how do you like waiting for three months for your hernia operation?" These folks should be glad they didn't have to wait six months to see a specialist BEFORE their three month wait for an operation.
I find it strange that they, at least the one's I've spoken with have little to offer to any conversation aside from, "They help the small guy, they're not the big business crowd."
Uh huh, and unions aren't a business? Just a Mom and Pop trying to get by...
There are things that are hard to reconcile, like the NDP telling us how affordable Manitoba is, yet today minimum wage went up to the third highest in Canada. If it's so affordable here, why does minimum wage have to be only 25 cents less than in Ontario? Toronto is far more expensive than Winnipeg. "But what if they don't live in Toronto? What if they live in Ajax?" Sure, and what if they lived in Arborg and not in Winnipeg?

I'm not unbiased. If I had a credible candidate in my riding, I'd vote for them, but I don't, and can't vote for the status quo. I do have my own political bent, but since I'm not simply throwing my support behind whoever runs under the party flag, I'd like to think that I still have some convictions about voting.

If you're the NDP type... do you, even after your party of choice insulted your intelligence time after time?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Eaglestick should be beaten with one

That name may have been forgotten. I did, but was reminded of her again today, first on the radio news, then on the TV.
The story revolves around a "pissed to the gills" woman who removed a baby from her home and beat her face into the sidewalk repeatedly. Fortunately a passerby managed to wrestle the baby from her before too much more of a beating could be put on the kid.
I guess my first question is, "What did that baby do to deserve that?" (How stupid is THAT question!?) My second question is, "Who's the dumb ass who allowed a plea bargain and dismissed the attempted murder charge?"
Now I'll admit I know nothing about how much evidence is required to prove attempted murder in "the law", but in the arena of public opinion, I'm thinking she went over the top on this one. Maybe beating up a 12 year old she could claim she was just giving the kid a "tune up", but an infant? Who could really believe that someone wouldn't know that beating a baby's head against the sidewalk may well result in it's death?
Oh... drunk were you? THAT old excuse. It isn't one.
Out on bail for three days, and on an order to abstain from drinking, she didn't quite understand what the big word "abstain" meant. She went on a bender, already proving that she was unfit to be a part of society. She was given some limits, and she snooted her nose at them. After the attack, she was heard to have said. "I get angry when I drink".
Hmmm. So had you not been drinking all night, would you have been angry? Why are you angry at a 13 month old? Hey girl, YOU got some problems.
The FreeP said, "Eaglestick's lawyers had argued the woman is intellectually impaired and has difficulty connecting actions with consequences. She was put on suicide watch during her time in custody, but McCawley said she has refused any addiction treatment."
Sooooooooooo she doesn't connect actions with consequences. Why the concern about suicide? I mean If she doesn't understand that tying a belt around her neck and stringing herself up from a bar on the jail cell door would result in death... would she still do it? I mean would anyone do that if they can't connect the action/consequence dots? And refusing addiction treatment! That's a good sign. I'm hopeful!
"Her lawyers had argued she had spent enough time in jail since the attack."  Really? If jail is not punishment, rather a place where people are to be prepared for reintegration into society, she clearly needs MORE time. If it is solely a place for a disciplinary "time out", she needs even MORE time.
This is just another example of our justice system gone wrong.
Justice Deborah McCawley celebrates almost a decade and a half on the bench, and ultimately is responsible for this sentencing mess. Double time credits, so only one more yearin the can and eligible for parole in 9 months and we'll likely find a very drunk Ms. Eaglestick in 9 months three days.(regardless of the order to abstain... oh there's that big word again. No matter, she is simple and doens't understand that when she drinks she gets drunk (and angry))
 The question is, when Eaglestick drinks again, who will she be mad at... and will the 3 years she's spent in the can make her REALLY upset?
I don't want her around here... and there are some babies in the nursery at HSC right now that should be very afraid.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

OK...Whose in charge here?

Some of you will no doubt speculate, "What's he ranting about today?"
I could go on about the Nurses Union schill going on about how she remembers when Gary Filmon fired 1000 nurses with the stroke of a pen, or how Selinger said that "Most Manitoban's tell me they want Bi Pole III built with as little delay as possible", which is of course, total hogwash.That Selinger lie is right up there with his defence of the Bipole III route when he says, "We've consulted with all the experts and they agree that the west side route is the best." Liar.
There could be the vote siphoning from non-parties like the Liberals or the Greens, especially in tight ridings. (no, I don't mind the Commies taking 16 votes, those voters would vote for their NDP cousins anyway).
It's not about my latest joust with a certain department and the response back from them concerning a neighbouring property... and the response of "Call 311." Really... like you can't see it from here? I can!

No, my rant is (again) about the clown planning road work and the pathetic signage. Firstly, I can't get my head around the thinking of closing a lane prior to an intersection because of roadwork straight ahead. Consider the following,
Broadway Ave. eastbound so you've crossed Sherbrook and Balmoral with lights. Typically, since the people in traffic planning can't figure out a decent left turn strategy in this city, you stay in the right lane, regardless of the beating the vehicle takes in the curb lane. You get to Great West Life on the corner of Osborne and... LANE CLOSED. (Just prior to the interstection)
Really? Why?
Because they are working on Broadway AFTER the intersection. Now a thinking person would erect signs a few block ahead. The signs would say, "construction ahead", then "thru traffic merge left", and finally, "all right lane traffic must turn right". You see, if not for the barricades, the right lane traffic COULD have turned right onto Osborne, but not in Winnipeg. In a different major city, they'd have the large flashing signs instructing drivers to merge left if they want to go straight, but not here! Here we expect all that traffic to merge into the left lane with the thru traffic and THEN turn right.
It's "engineers" like these who likely designed the intersection of York westbound onto Main St where we can't seem to have a protected turn signal. Instead, we face four lanes of oncoming traffic, and MAYBE two cars can turn left.
These people are too much. Someone needs to be let go, and a serious house cleaning has to take place. My suspicion is that Escobar's crew of office cubical dwellers aren't responsible for construction area signage, but when I've called to complain about the stupidity in the past, I've been forwarded to some consulting firm who is "responsible" for the project and get a response like, "The signage meets the requirements of the City."
This idea of closing a lane PRIOR to an intersection and forcing even right turning traffic to merge isn't new... I've seen it before, but it finally burned me enough today to share my frustrations.
Frankly, I'm really tired of the blatant stupidity. Does no one else see it, or is it just me?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Leaders Debate. KO punch by Hugh?

I like the bus benches Hugh and Company had made up. There are arrows pointing to the respective people on the bench, Hugh and... whoever the candidate in the riding is. Good thing, as many people don't know Hugh is running for Premier.
That said, in the leaders debate Hugh wins, but only because even I could have won bashing Selinger for his dismal failures, and WHO told him to sport that STUPID grin every time someone took him to task on his "record"? Greg, find whoever it was who told you that dumb grin was a good idea and fire them, for your own sake. You looked like a buffoon.
The KO blow was pretty lightweight. "...your Crocus calculator...", Funny, on point, and a good reminder of what Greg has done in the various portfolios he had prior to becoming our unelected Premier.
Now on to Hugh's own performance. Listen Hugh, I could take Greg on with one hand tied behind my back if all I was going to do was bash. Even when asked a question directed solely at YOU by a member of John Q, Public, you took NO time to talk about YOUR vision, rather you bashed Selinger and the NDP. How about a gun, fish, and a barrel? Very short on substance, Hugh spent too little time getting the PC "vision" across. In that regard, he lagged behind... what was his name? The green guy. no, not my favourite Martian. I gotta google him to get his name, and he's running in MY constituency! (No propaganda from him yet) Beddome! Honestly, he shouldn't have been there.
And what is with the good Doctor? Stammering and "Umm..." interjected so often I wanted to e-mail him a list of Toastmaster meetings in his riding to attend. "Yes, if I voted that way it was a mistake."
WHAT? You can't be serious. Sure, you tried to back out of that hole, but you had already said it, voting against the budget was a mistake. (Insert your best Homer Simpson "D'oh!" here or go to  )
Gerard was possibly as effectual in the debate as Hugh, but his gaffe lost him any sort of place in the finalist category.
In a nutshell, there was no realistic vision presented by the Greens, no vision (that was believable) that went beyond the Doctor's specialized field of health care, little if any vision presented by the PC leader,  and bold new ideas building on the wonderful successes of the past decade presented by the guy who ran Crocus and told you everything was OK, and MOCKED John Lowen for suggesting things were in the proverbial toilet in that "fund" aka Ponzie scheme.
Back to my suggestion of declining my ballot, I'm hoping the media will actually report on the number of people who choose that route.
If only I had more time and money, I might have made up lawns signs and erected them around the city similar to  except mine would have read, "Tired of the lies, lack of vision and status quo? DECLINE your ballot!"
It's going to be a long 4 more years... good thing the NDP brought us the Jets and a winning Bomber season (as well as a new stadium) to keep our minds off it all. Wasn't this originally a Roman idea? Entertain the masses so they can't see how dismal it all is?

Slurpee capital, murder capital... we got is all going on.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Greg Selinger job interview diebrief (aka the commercial that never was)

Setting  A generic office boardroom

Cast     4 characters aside from the never seen "Greg".
Interviewer 1  female,mid 40's, glasses, well dressed, well spoken, comes across as all business, no nonsense style
Interviewer 2  male, early 30's, suit and tie, comes across as a like able guy. Could be on the cover of GQ
Interviewer 3  male, approaching retirement age (aka near golden years), carries himself as if he owns the place... probably does, but Greg is clueless to this.
Interviewer 4  female, early 50's, appears tired, but feisty, good with numbers and spreadsheets, carries lots of papers with pie charts and graphs

Scene 1, act 1 (since this is the only scene and act, I guess this is redundant, but then so is much of the NDP election  platform)

Interviewer 1  "Thank you Mr. Selinger, we'll let you know."

actor with back to camera nods and slinks to stage right hanging head

Interviewer 2   "Can you believe this guy? Coming in here with this padded resume... and that suit! You'd think he could have worn a tie. Who does he think he is, Gary Doer?"

Interviewer 1  "I almost laughed out loud when he claimed he was responsible for bringing the Jets back to Winnipeg."

Interviewer 4   "And his numbers... keep this guy away from my department. They are so out of skew... and he just wouldn't back down, no matter how often I told him they were wrong"

Interviewer 2   "And the way he deflected all the questions about the man made flood, saying, "You'd have to ask Steve Topping about that, or Christine Melnick." He clearly can't take responsibility for the actions of the people who work for him.

Interviewer 1  "And the way he said, "Well we paid the money back" when I asked him about the election financing fraud... as if getting caught stealing from the shareholders and then simply paying the money back when you're caught is good enough to wash it all away"

Interviewer 4  "He did back his support staff. The way he defended his health minister in spite of things getting worse every year over the past decade, it's good to see that he won't throw someone under the bus. It was too bad that he had to try to gloss over the dismal performance of the past with bright new promises a decade later"

Interviewer 2   "How about the stone faced way he talked about he decision to run the electrical wires through the heartland of farming, splitting farms in two and wasting millions of dollars in lost electricity! He kept blathering about "UNESCO designation" or something that was clearly total BS".

Interviewer 3  "I'm tempted to hire him."

All 3 others murmur and speak at the same time, voicing incredulous disbelief and wanting an explanation

Interviewer 3  "This guy is clearly so full of it... and people just don't see it. He lies, and breaks the laws, yet comes out unscathed. He has no honour, and that makes him perfect for a position in our car sales or maybe even our real estate branch, but as CEO? Forget about it! Call in the next guy.

Interviewer 2   Should we tell him about his suit? I mean... somebody should.

The above was not authorized by any CFO, including the Liberal Party of Manitoba, who seem to be able to promise more than anyone could really believe. It is also not endorsed by the PC's who can't seem to run a campaign to save their lives, and promise even more than the NDP.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Concert review: Royal Wood

No fellow Winnipegger's, Royal Wood is NOT just a housing development in the south end. Royal Wood is a singer/songwriter who opened his tour here in River City this evening at the West End Cultural Center.

Dunno who he is? Look him up. Some friends asked "What kind of music is it?", and my wife looked at me... this is almost like the Amos Lee review... umm... hmmm... "He's a balladeer", I responded. "A story teller like Chris De Burgh, only with better vocals and stories that are closer to home."
Royal joked that his songs had been played on CBC but I wanted to yell out, "And on Galaxy, pop adult!"

I don't review every concert we attend... after all I never posted,  "Train was great, Maroon V... not so much". I hold out for the ones I want to write about, and while Train really was great, they're already "big". They don't need any other exposure from me, (as if my musings have any merit or are of any consequence).

The opening acts... well I'm not really sure who they were, and they were both OK. Danielle Duval opened for the other opening act (I guess), and she is on her first tour. Personally I found her music a little , "sounds like the last song you just did", but I see the need and huge upside to opening acts.
We first heard Royal Wood open for David Grey in Winnipeg, and we have been hooked ever since.
The second act was ... honest, I tried to look her up. She gave us some clues... sorry.
I know, if I'm going to do this I should at LEAST get the names.
Anyways, she was quite good and her music was a little more varied. Both could use a lesson in singing diction. I was taught to over enunciate your consonants, especially at the end of words. There is little point in writing a poem, setting it to music, and singing it, if no one listening for the first time can make out the majority of the words.
Let's just say we didn't buy either of their cd's.
Royal Wood came on as expected, wearing a vest and tie, always looking sharp. I think that may be some of the appeal. He seems to be a professional, but here comes the disclaimer... I'm filling in a lot of blanks, and will continue to do so.
Some performers are followed because of their music, while others seem to have a personality that goes with their talent, as if you can sense they are the sort of person you'd like to have a drink with based on their stage persona. Royal is like that.
His voice is always clear and powerful, hitting every note, and sounding as good in person as he does in the recording studio. His piano skill are quite good, and I was reminded while watching him, about why his music is unique. His piano accompaniment is primarily lower than middle C, using much of the lower half of the keyboard. He doesn't shy away from the upper register, but where many artists have a melody line hidden in their musical riffs, he relies solely on his vocals for his melody, a sign of a sure and confident vocalist. His tenor range is quite good, spanning a little more , (maybe as much as an octave), than the average tenor voice, and is able to move into the baritone range easily. His versatility is another great plus in keeping the musical styles fresh and enjoyable.
It's the type of music you can sing along with, as we did with the last number, "Ladies in White".
Fortunately I knew the words from our "sing-a-long" session at the previous concert I already mentioned, but then they're not that tough.
The music is clean, clear, and well performed by Royal and his band, which consists of one other back up singer/guitarist and a percussion section "in a box".
Aside from a great performance, he is personable on stage, joking and making a few self depreciating one liners. He attended the merch table immediately after the show to mingle. Nice touch.
By far the nicest "meet and greet" was with Joshua Radin, (in Minneapolis), where we were able to wait in line for a moment to talk, get a t shirt signed, and pose for a photo, but remembering to come out and mingle... well lets just say that when he gets "big", I hope he remains as approachable.
All in all, if I had a suggestion it would be to loose an opening act, and have a longer set list. I have no idea how much "work" it is to perform a show like this every few nights, so if that's a silly suggestion, my apologies, but I do know that the performance was soaked up like a sponge by many, and left wanting more.

There are artists "fans" wait in anticipation to release new material, and there aren't many artists I follow that closely. Royal is one of them.

Royal Wood was a great evening out, and we are anxious to have the new album autographed and mailed out. It will compliment the previous album we had autographed.

Friday, September 16, 2011

There might be a campaign going on...

but it really isn't much of one.
In our 'hood, we have Belinda Squance running for the PC's. Now since my predilection is Conservative, (although I have voted differently  in the past), I know Belinda and I think she'll make a fine..., no, a  great MLA. Trouble is... I can't vote for her. On the wrong side of Ellice, I guess we can advertise our house as "Wolsely North". Since I know more about the politics of Minto than Wolsely, I had to google WHO is running in my area aside from pony-tail boy.
The Liberal is Eric V.T. Stewart. He has a long list of things he has done in the area, specifically being a part of the BIZ as their Green team Coordinator (among other things), and is on the board of the West Broadway Development Corp. Without getting too much into these groups, these positions hardly qualify someone for MLA.  Sorry, but based on the info on his web page, he doesn't get my vote. As an aside,  does the fixation with middle initials mean anything? I don't know many people who use their middle initials to identify themselves. "Hi! I'm John J.O. Smith". Never happened to me... what's with that?
The PC's have Harpreet Turka, (no middle initial, or he doesn't see a need to use it), and  he has a facebook page. Good thing too, since my google search for "Wolsely, MLA" didn't get me to his official page.
While there I got to read about his high school and University football highlights, as well as Green Team involvement.
Holy cow. I ran a Green Team for two years. I missed my calling! I should run for MLA!
I loved this,
" Recently, he has been advocating for kids to get interested in their education and get them back in school."

 Really? Me too! Go to school, or get a job, but get off the dole! See... ME advocating!

"Harpreet has worked with the Mayor Youth Advisory Council to open a gym, where kids can go after school to play sports and other activities."  
Open a gym,  unlock the door... are these synonyms? Similies?
Sure, I get it between the Green Team and University years, Harpreet hasn't had a lot of time to lean much about "other things" so he can't really list them on his short resume.
On to the devil you know... Ponytail boy. In a nutshell, Rob knows how to compost shit, which makes him PERFECT for both Wolsely (south), and the NDP. Check his page... he can tell you himself. Man I'm glad I don't have to list my resume on line, but if I did, it would be a lot more interesting than these three.

On to the dilemma.

I've voted in EVERY election that I have had the right to be involved in, and for the first time, I really don't have ANY choices. As a result, I will more than likely DECLINE my ballot.

From the Manitoba Elections Act, 117 (2) 

STEP 2: Voter marks ballot
The voter must take the ballot directly to the voting compartment and, without delay, mark the ballot
(a) by placing an "X" in the space provided for that purpose beside the name of the candidate of his or her choice; or
(b) by writing "declined" on the front of the ballot. 

More thoughts on the "nice suit" commercial next week. We'll do our own "Greg's job interview" debrief with our own round table... and I'm not so sure we're going to like even his suit.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Do you remember Woodstock?

No... DON Woodstock. There are these signs with him and some Doctor I think is the leader of the Liberal party in Manitoba. He rides a bike... which is cool as it can be the official party vehicle, capable of transporting all of the elected members to various events...
Don's claim to fame is being the clown who changed "garbage day" to  "recycling day". Somehow, the Doctor figures this qualifies Don to be my representative in the Legislature. I don't think so.
Don has some notoriety... check this out.
Don calls the PM his "brother from a different mother". Now I've referred to some Jamaican friend in this way myself, but my buddy Winston is a bodyman, not the PM. Don, you clearly crack yourself up, but you're not that funny... I mean you are, but not the way you think.
This guy thinks it's OK to put signs on vacant, boarded up buildings. Very visionary.
The Doctor is clearly aligning himself with "wannabees" who not only don't have a clue, they also don't have a chance, and continue to drive politics into the "you don't matter" area.
Really. Brad Gross... again? Didn't we have enough of his BS during the mayoral campaign?

From his web page, "food is a right". Umm... no. Another source I like says, "If a man does not work, he does not eat". Sorry Don... don't agree.
He has a nice post on geo thermal. He clearly has no clue, but pasted a picture of it into his page to make it look like it's something he likes. Ever calculate the electrical consumption costs of running a geothermal heat pumps compressor?
Urban chicken farming? Great, as if I don't have enough issues with neighbours raising rabbits in their basement and venting the stench out their roof vents, but now this guy thinks raising chickens in town is a good idea. Don... I got people living around me who let their dog shit on my lawn, now we're gonna let them have chickens?
Under "10 things you can do" the first one is the great myth we've been fed by the utility companies, including MB Hydro, to convert our incandescent bulbs to CFL's. No one ever really figured out how much MORE space heating we require as a result of the lost heat sources from our old incandescents. We save on our "lighting" costs, but spend more on space heating, (and a lot more on bulbs!)
I know there are a lot of tree hugging environmentalists out there, but c'mon. Buddy... 3 people like your page. Take a hint!

Don, to quote from your soliloquy posted on youtube, "let it be". Go push a pumpkin, sticking to what you're good at.

Doctor. You will be judged by the quality of your"team".

Friday, September 2, 2011

Drumming up votes in the lane

Newsflash. Hugh was seen in a back lane promising $$$ to have them paved. This is an election plank? The NDP runs the province into the ground and you come up with THAT?
There are so many issues Hugh could have latched onto... but somehow paved back lanes fall into Winnipeg's newest "must have". No storm sewers and paved roads in Charleswood, no upgrading to the 100 plus year old combined sewer system serving much of Winnipeg's oldest neighbourhoods. No, Hugh is promising a small perk for a small group, and I can't for the life of me figure out why.
Why not promise $40 million with Sam to build a first leg of a LRT system? While I'm no fan (actually I'm an opponent to) of the BRT corridor, even that would have been preferred to something no one but the people living on the street will ever benefit from.
While we are fortunate enough to live on a street WITH concrete, maintaining the lane with a grader is cheaper than the alternative... new concrete. Where Winnipeg has gone wrong is not embracing soft surface lanes, and locating services under them. Sure, initially it sounds stupid, but over the long term... have you any idea what it costs to excavate a hole through a road to access a sewer pipe when you need to renew yours? Or the water line? And in Winter months you can't do any remediation waork to the street, so the hole settles out with the "stabilized fill" (a slurry concrete mix) settles out of sight, and the orange barricades are plowed over after tipping, leaving a hole of old testament proportions to swallow up any passing Prius.
This is a bad move, and frankly I'm not sure it says anything other than "Hugh is grasping for fresh ideas".
He should call... I could help.