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Letter to the editor: Broadcasters, bad actors and farm tractors

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The site where Cargill plans to build their 12-track, 200-car rail yard. — Izabela Zaluska/Little Village

By Gwendolyn Sterling, Cedar Rapids

What rock did you crawl out from under?!?

A well-furnished one!

All, it’s your fledgling acquaintance Gwen, back with more opinions on local civics, civic locals and the abandoned Honda Civic I occasionally squat in to avoid the wind. By the way, did you know EPA guidelines stipulate cargo room of 110 to 119.9 cubic feet for a vehicle to be considered a mid-size car? I think my humble abode must be a subcompact.

I saw local radio station KRNA recently held a hottest bartenders contest. About what I’d expect from a station proving the age-old adage that if you want to see white male privilege exemplified, check out middle management at a corporate classic rock station. Seriously, I’m all for hack it until you stack it, but in the words some TV character once said, “The last original idea he had he left floating in the bowl.”

Did everyone just forget that Cargill is gonna ransack nature in favor of a rail yard? I haven’t heard or read much about it in the past couple months. How in the hell are we ever going to spark a revolution if we can’t even focus our attention and outrage for more than a week?!?

Speaking of pollution and degradation, go down and check out the Roller Dam off Old River Road. It’s turned into the premiere dumping ground for all sorts of miscellaneous junk. That’s where I found the Civic.

With Bruce Aune’s retirement, does anyone else think KCRG missed a golden opportunity in not promoting Nicole Agee to his vacated spot? I believe that would have given KCRG the only all-female lead anchor desk in the area, if not the state. Who would have guessed that a TV station now owned by a major media conglomerate (Gray Television) wouldn’t be forward-thinking?!?

On the rare opportunity I get to watch TV, I always see those damned Iowa Farm Bureau ads. How much do you think Laurie Johns gets paid to shill for Big Farm? Does she get a free John Deere E100 Riding Lawn Mower? It looks like good work if you can stomach it.

I noticed a stray [Facebook] comment from someone on my last piece, chiding me for using the “miscreants under the 12th Ave bridge” as a “punchline.” I wasn’t talking about the homeless! I was talking about us former Go CR employees! I can’t speak for the others, but I’m attempting to bank my severance.

But, for the record: The homeless are far from a punchline, dear; they’re the saved. I don’t know if I could live life as literally as that commenter if I tried. Oh well, I suppose knee-jerk, nuance-less criticism is the price one pays for writing letters to the editor. Écrasez l’infâme! Also, donate to Willis Dady. I’m serious; it’s a great organization.

Let’s close with some positives, shall we?

Eternal gratitude to Little Village for providing an open platform for all thought and opinion. I’d say it’s this area’s Mendocino Commentary or Anderson Valley Advertiser, but maybe in need of a tad more satire, poetry and polemics. And to those whom I see comment from time to time, aghast that Little Village would publish a certain piece of writing, or those alleging that mere publication is some sort of tacit endorsement from LV: You realize you can write in, too, right? They’ll publish anything! Shit, look, they (hopefully) published this!

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All praise be to the CR public library for free computer and internet access and a lovely rooftop space. I was up there the other day, slightly buzzed on Franzia, enjoying the emergence of spring and inspired to pen this little ditty:

Azaleas, geraniums, lilacs in bloom

A robin chirps now, a foreboding tune

For the moment is fleeting,

as time will now pass

This is nature’s greeting,

but how long will it last?

That’s probably too rudimentary to submit for publication to The Iowa Review, huh?

I collected enough bottles last week to enjoy a martini at Rodina. I take mine with vodka because gin is for conformists! Five stars. Highly recommend.

Yours in Pessimism and Pretentiousness,
Gwen


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