Saturday, May 2, 2015

I Went for a Run

This morning I watched the voluminous white clouds, contrasted heavily with their blue-sky background, gently assail straight to God from the kitchen window and decided it was time to immerge from my self-imposed but necessary hibernation and go for a short run.

I gathered my iPod, Oakleys, Asics, and Nikes in their appropriate places and set out.  The light breeze was cold on my face and the calculated frenzied chords of Tori Amos’ “Cornflake Girl” set my pace before I quickly realized I needed to adjust for my lack of participaction through the winter.

To my right, across the street, was a young guy book ended by two equally young girls, looking as though they had just left some sort of debauchery-ridden all night party while a lone gull sat watching us at the corner of the rooftop of the ivied brick high school perched on the highest point of this peninsula, his spectacular ivory feathers beaming.

At this point the music shifted to the pulsing beat and arrythmic tempo of David Bowie’s “What in the World” and the architecture changed to rental units in perpetual states of renovation before I spotted a yet-to-be-claimed nest in a stoic, still leafless spring tree recently staked with surveyor's orange, as an unforgiving government attempted its ownership assertion of history and April March’s “Chick Habit” lifted the cloud of my reality.

I looped downhill, past Saturday shoe shoppers, straight into the view of the bridge that fittingly splits this town and will soon transport tourists through to their intended destination, then levelled onto the industrial road, filling my lungs with exhaust and wood chips as I continued precariously on the gravel encrusted sidewalks, as neglected as the residents of this city, dodging full sods that have immerged like glaciers from the dirt-speckled snow and ice.

Die Antwoord’s “I Fink U Freaky” coaxed me up the unforgiving hill and back onto the once opulent avenue, still marketed as desirable real estate in comparison to other city sections, and a greeting from a familiar leucistic pigeon, nervous atop its shingled roof.

I dodged three bicycles on the sidewalk flanking a rare bike path and eased into my cool-down as Jane Jensen’s penetratingly creative “Luv Song” entertained me.  We’re schooled that positivity is the foundation needed to fuel this city, but we need to feed ourselves on something with better sustenance than sugar – and I do recall being wisely told once not to drink the Kool-Aid.

Monday, February 2, 2015

City of Saint John Set to Improve Local Parks

Saint John - Saint John city council has announced plans to improve a number of the under-utilized parks around the city.  According to councilman Sherman Bugglesbee, the idea for the initiative came when he was surfing a popular Facebook page that shares historic photos of Saint John and he saw a comment referencing plans for an underground parking lot beneath King Square in the 1970s.  Disappointed that never came to fruition, “You can't have too much parking,” he started thinking about other ways in which the green spaces of the city could be enhanced.

“We’ve been using Queen Square in the South End in the summertime for a farmers' market, but that’s only seasonal,” Bugglesbee explained.  “Picture this, residents being able to stroll by Samuel de Champlain year-round, every day as they get their mail from huge new banks of super boxes that will be placed at the south end of the square.  Every Uptown resident will be forced to enjoy the park!”

The City plans to do the same in Victoria Square in the North End of the city too, “It's perfect.  That way the square will be used by everyone instead of just the feral cats,” exclaimed the councilman.

The pièce de résistance will be a new warehouse for the antiquated New Brunswick Museum on Douglas Avenue that will be placed in the barren Riverview Memorial Park, an ancient tribute to the soldiers that fought in the Boer War.  “Who remembers the Boer War anyway?” commented Bugglesbee, “Think of the jobs!  Jobs are what this city needs more than history or a place to let your dog relieve himself.”

The Saint John Public Garden will be a pet cemetery.  “We're going to have the cutest critters stuffed to add a special fun element to the wedding photographs taken in the park.  For a small fee, of course,” he added.

According to the mayor, who said he's practically falling over himself with enthusiasm for the project, they would have also loved to put a drive-in movie theatre in Wolastoq Park, but J. D. Irving Ltd., the company that currently maintains the park, wasn't open to the idea.